morning coffee.

by: Xmarksthespot
Disclaimer: Unfortunately not.

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If she comes, then he is wanted. If he is wanted, then he must have a reason to live.

His eyes idly trail all of the movement inside the restaurant. The waitresses who stare back at him, flutter their eyelashes, the drunken men, however, look away, and the children don't notice, as they run pass him. He sees the steam coming from coffee mugs, the cloudy smoke from cigars, and the grease all over finished plates.

He does not see her.

He does not see the waitress who sits not too far from him, with elbows propped on her knees, and slender fingers cupping her face. He doesn't note on her nail biting, or the pen being grasped tightly in her other hand. He doesn't mark on her grown hair, long tresses that run down her back, and he doesn't question why she's in a work uniform in the middle of nowhere. His view somehow skip over the saddening eyes that only focus on him.

But he does listen.

He hears the sizzling sounds on the grill, the laughter from the children, and the flirtatious comments from the other waitresses. He knows when a beer bottle is being opened, and when someone digs their fork into their meal. In the background, there is a fire crackling silently, warming up the crowded area, as a snowstorm takes place outside. He can hear the owner of the small diner yell at the girl in the corner for not doing her job.

And he feels.

He feels the timeless breeze wrapping around him, and the thick air that is created from too many people in one building, and not enough oxygen coming in. He is pained from the frost bite on one side of him, but the burning sensation from the fire on the other side. He aches from old wounds, but suppresses any emotions from showing on his face. And despite being on the other side of the room, he feels the warmth exuding from her.

He does not see her, but he knows she is there.

She bites her nails when she is thinking, he remembers, and wonders if she is biting them now. He fights with himself, so his eyes aimlessly wander, sometimes in her direction, but they always drift away, before she comes into view. His hands tighten around the coffee mug, and his fingers twitch at the temperature, but he's been burnt before, so he does not let go. He is exhausted, so sometimes, his eyes would close, but just for a moment. He does not want to be left unguarded – a habit of his after all these years. Besides, she is here, and therefore, she must be on a mission.

He wonders if she will approach him, and he wonders if he is her target.

Her voice still rings in his head, annoyingly. Her sweet gestures, her arguments with Naruto, her 'good morning's are repetitive. When he thinks of the people he has fought, he ponders about the enemies she has faced. His fingers reach to the back of his neck, scratching an itch, and he feels a scar; he questions how many scars she has on her body. He closes his eyes again, and counts to ten. He opens them, but she is not in front of him.

He frowns.

He does not like thinking about the past, and its future. After all, it doesn't concern him. She is not of his concern. Five years out on his own meant five years away from his birthplace. He is isolated from the world, only speaking when he has to, resting when he needs to, and eating when his body feels weaker than usual. He is alone, and he plans to stay that way.

He shuts his eyes again, and counts to eight.

Upon opening them, he sees a stranger smiling over him. The waitress asks him a question, and he merely shakes his head; he was not hungry. In fact, he was not hungry at all, according to all the waitresses who served him; he was just a man who sits and thinks. Eventually, he leans back, and the back of his head touches the wall, feeling the cold energy spread throughout his body. His eyes scan the area again, and purposely skips over her; her who sits on the other side of the room.

He secretly wishes she is still staring at him.

His brother is dead, as is his family. His country calls him a traitor, travelers fear him, and other nations do not remember him. He abandoned his first team, and his second team. He's been in many groups, and cults, preforming actions that they requested him to do, but in the end, he leaves them to go down the long road alone. He yearns to be wanted, because that is enough reason to be alive.

He tastes the time that has past.

The taste in his mouth is bitter, partly from the coffee, and partly the product of remorse. He is aware of the person he has become, and all of the hate that has been inflicted on him, and everyone around him. He remembers the taste of blood well, and he knows the reasons why. He is not one who enjoys sweets, and is not fond of salty foods either. Though ever since he was a child, he detested the bitter taste from the meals his mother used to make for him. Nevertheless, all he could taste was bitter now. So in a desperate struggle, his eyes shoots up, and he sees her for the first time in years.

He remembers.

When he sees her, he tastes something sweet in his mouth, as he remembers her gifts to him during the time when she was unaware of his displeasure for candy. He also remembers trying one, just so that she would not cry. His eyes trail her, because she is finally moving from her position; she is taking orders, and talking to the customers. Now there is a saltiness in his mouth, as he recalls her tears falling over his face; he wonders if she still cries easily.

His eyes lower this time, and he counts to five.

The waitresses decide to walk pass him now, giving up on asking for his orders, or for a night out with him. The drunken men don't see him as a threat anymore, considering he is not doing anything strange. The children still don't notice him, continuing to live freely. There is a mixed taste in his mouth now, and he's unsure if it is bitter, or sweet. He does not feel cold, nor hot, and his closes his eyes once again.

Sasuke Uchiha counts to three, and opens his eyes.

He sees the familiar girl stand next to him, with a pen tightly grasped in one hand, and fidgeting with her chipped nails on the other. Pink locks fall passed her waist, and she gazes at him – only him – with sea-green eyes.

"Good morning," she says in a familiar tone, "may I take your order?"

This time, he says yes.

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