Author's Note: First attempt to write a sort of angst-y kind of story. XD

Warnings: Some spoilers, drama, angst, ooc-ness, death and super corny bittersweet fluff.

Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto or any of the characters.

Story was made: Because their bond is the most beautiful thing and because of that soundtrack from Pearl Harbor 'And then I kissed him'… and because of the manga. GYAH I HATE YOU SASUKE! You stupid whiny emo bitch. Anyway, I wrote this super long ago (after reading chapter 404) but I never found the right time to post it.


Heartbeat

By: Hiki-chan


Upon reaching the Valley of the End, Sasuke staggered towards the fallen Naruto and collapsed next to him before gently scooping Naruto against chest. He could feel himself losing blood. So much that he was getting giddy.

-

"It's because you're like my brother Sasuke, why are you doing this?"

"I would never think of you like that." Sasuke answered, his voice unwavering. "Our bonds are broken Naruto, I will destroy Konoha."

-

Blue eyes opened, they once sparkled with life but now they were dull and yet still so beautiful. Naruto spoke in a soft voice that hurt Sasuke on the inside so much because the blond was never so soft and the words he said pierced him. "I knew I was going to die Sasuke, I knew it because I cannot live without Kyuubi inside of me. The shock of having Kyuubi removed is too much for my system… I don't think I can-"

"Don't! Don't say that you idiot," Sasuke mumbled holding his head against Naruto's chest, his bloody hands trembling.

Naruto laughed softly, "It feels like… one part of me is missing. It's strange really, who would have thought that I could actually miss… this some-sort of warmth the demon gave me."

"Naruto…"

-

"Why Sasuke, why would you destroy what was once our home?!"

"To avenge my clan. To avenge Itachi!"

"I can't let you touch Konoha, Sasuke!" He begged, "Please!"

"You can't stand in my way Naruto."

-

"I knew you weren't going to betray us Sasuke," Naruto whispered as a few tears slipped out of his eyes as they stared straight into Sasuke's soul. Sasuke felt hot wetness rolling down his own cheeks as he cradled Naruto gently against his chest.

"I'm sorry, Naruto, I'm—…" Sasuke choked once, "So sorry."

Naruto gave Sasuke a weak cheeky grin, "Stop it bastard…" then he took a slow breath in, "So unlike you."

Sasuke continued to hold Naruto close to him despite his weakening arms. He would hold the world in his arms if it would keep this moment alive. His own heart wrenching painfully as he felt Naruto's steadily decreasing heartbeat. To him it felt like his own world was going to end and it wasn't because of his steady loss of blood, it was the impact of thinking Naruto no longer alive. "Usuratonkachi…"

"Hmm?" Naruto sounded very content just lying in Sasuke's arms.

Sasuke was sure Naruto's life was slowly being drained away and even then, Sasuke refused to let go. Not without Naruto. "I'm dying."

Blue eyes widened as much as they could before they searched Sasuke's eyes desperately to see if he was lying but all he saw was this calm understanding. "You're dying?"

The Uchiha smiled a genuine smile, "I went all out against Madara and finished him, and I lost a lot of blood in the process."

"Live, Sasuke!" Naruto said as loud as he could but it only came out as a whisper.

Sasuke shook his head, "It's too late. By the time the medic nins arrive I'll be dead I lost too much blood fighting Madara."

Pink lips opened as Naruto tried to make sense of what Sasuke said. Slowly, he spoke. "You shouldn't have come here Sasuke. You could have… lived if you went to find Sakura-chan or the old hag…"

-

"Are you waiting for them to catch me, Sasuke?" Naruto whispered. "If they remove Kyuubi, Sasuke, I would die."

"If you die," Sasuke said coldly, his own heart jumping around in his chest, "It would save me a lot of trouble."

On the inside, Naruto knew some part of him broke.

-

Why did he do what he did? Maybe because there was just too much wrong that he couldn't undo, and there were just too many words he did not know how to say, how to express. The raven shook his head; the smile was still on his face. "I… Naruto…"

Naruto smiled in understanding as tears made their way down his no longer whiskered cheeks. "You bastard… I really don't want you to die, and yet my heart is rejoicing because you wanted to see me before I die…" A short intake of breath, "You wanted to destroy Konoha and in the end you save it… It's funny…" Naruto chuckled softly, "I believed in you, and you didn't let me down. I knew you couldn't destroy the place you used to call home. I'm so happy, Sasuke…"

Maybe this was how Sasuke expected to redeem himself, the feeling of such lost and desperation. The feeling like the entire world plus the universe had just collapsed on your shoulder, all the wrongs he had done, all the mistakes he had made, was repaid in this very moment where Naruto laid in his arms, eyes barely open and conscious.

Just thinking the blond gone made Sasuke's heart ache so painfully he was sure he was bound to just explode. No physical or mental pain could compare to this. The words 'before I die' coming out from Naruto were like the sharpest kunai plunging into him and stabbing him over and over again.

-

"You mean the Kyuubi kid is your best friend?" Suigetsu snorted loudly. "And now you're teaming up with the people who want to destroy him. You're really heartless, leader."

Something inside Sasuke stretched and pulled. Why was he feeling like that? He was going to destroy Konoha even if it meant destroying Naruto as well. Why was his body reacting in such a way?

He should have killed Naruto at the Valley of the End so that most of his troubles would be gone now. There was this quote he had heard from Karin when she was trying to impress him, and that quote hadn't left his mind ever since she said it because somehow his mind kept linking it to the Valley of the End.

You know you're in love when the hardest thing is to say goodbye.

-

Yet, he knew nobody could change what was going to happen. Naruto was dying, and his own life was being sucked away every second as he lost more blood from his wounds. There was nothing else he could do, all he could think of was 'Was this how helplessness felt? It never felt so excruciating. Even worse compared to when the Uchiha clan was killed'.

Sasuke looked up into the sky, the time was written with the position of the moon. "I said… back then that if you died, I wouldn't care. But… I cared. I cared so much."

Sasuke breathed in the scent of Naruto's hair and he could smell his own blood. "Nothing I can say will… change our past but…" He closed his eyes. Kami-sama if you are there just make sure Naruto is safe. I don't deserve anything… but if you are real, you can see how much I love him.

Naruto smiled purely, even in death, he looked like the angel coming down for Sasuke. "I'm glad you care teme." Sasuke almost choked at the old nickname.

"I think our past is beautiful." Naruto continued softly as he slowly reached up to brush his hand across Sasuke's face. "No one else endured and had to go through what the both of us did, it's special. And look where it's got us."

"Dying in each other's arms?" Sasuke couldn't help but smirk a little as more tears fell from his eyes, he felt terribly weak and he knew he was dying. The most painful thing in the world, he was sure, was seeing the one boy he loved more than the world itself die in his arms. Kami-sama… if you can forgive me, can I beg you for one more chance to make it right, if there is a next life…

Naruto gave a weak smile, "It's like Zabuza and Haku really. I think their ending was perfect."

"Yeah." Sasuke breathed as he glanced up into the night sky, it was almost midnight and he could feel his own life slowly bleeding away.

One final wish.

So I can finally make him smile.

-

"His name is Naruto isn't it leader? I heard Madara saying it." Suigetsu smirked, "The great Naruto Bridge was the first time I saw you smile. Are you sure you want to go through with this?"

One day I caught myself smiling and I realized it was because I was thinking of you.

-

"To be honest Sasuke, I would have… died a while back but I didn't. I was kept alive… by my will alone." Naruto smiled a little, "I've always been stubborn after all, but… now I realized, I wanted to wait… wait and see if you would come."

Naruto laughed a little, "I unconsciously kept on hoping you'll come somehow." Then his smile brightened so much that Sasuke felt his already slowing heart skip a beat, "Then you came and I was so happy."

"Naruto…" One of Sasuke's tears dripped on Naruto's cheek.

"Ero-sennin didn't believe me, even Itachi didn't believe me… when I said I would save you." Naruto shakily cupped Sasuke's wet cheek and gently wiped the tears away but more kept on coming, "Sometimes I didn't believe myself. But I always believed in you, Sasuke. Ero-sennin would be proud of me and I know because I can feel him watching over me."

"You're such a dobe… Naruto." Sasuke whispered as he pulled Naruto closer, time stopped for a moment when their shaky lips met in their first real kiss.

It was a kiss that was so sweet and yet so bitter. It was a kiss that meant the world. And it was the kiss that was long overdue.

Their time was almost up. They were able to pro-long their death with will-power alone, but they could only resist it for so long. Sasuke pulled away, but not much. He took Naruto's hand.

"…In the end, I couldn't leave you."

-

Sasuke turned sharply to face Suigetsu, "They what?"

"They caught Naruto, your friend, the Kyuubi. Apparently he was trying to find you but he got caught. It won't be long before they start draining him-"

Suigetsu didn't get to finish his sentence because Sasuke already had broken into a sprint. He scoffed, "I knew he still cared."

As Sasuke ran towards the place where he knew the final battle would take place, he swore and cursed himself over and over again. Why was he doing this? He said he wouldn't care if Naruto died. Naruto wasn't part of his life anymore. Naruto was nothing to him.

So why was he still running?

-

Naruto seemed to have sensed this as more tears flowed from his eyes, "I'm so scared to die Sasuke." He whispered, interlacing their fingers together. "And yet I feel so alive, because this was where our bonding had really begun, I would love nothing more than to be at the beginning with you."

Sasuke felt his entire body going weak and knew his time was almost up as the pool of blood around him would tell. "I know I can never say enough sorry to make up for what I've done…"

"I forgive you Sasuke, I always have." Naruto breathed, his eyes slowly slipping shut.

Sensing their end, Sasuke brought the blond closer to him and whispered the words Naruto knew were imprinted in his heart. I love you Naruto.

Just one more moment, Naruto could hear Sasuke's heart beat almost nonexistent along with his own, one more tear trailed down his face before he spoke his last few words. "Aishiteru, Sasuke…"

Then the Moon shone the brightest directly above the two of them and it was midnight when Sasuke's life was drained away along with Naruto leaving him limp with the blond in his arms.

-

His wound hurt, but Sasuke didn't stop. He forced his body to keep on moving, to keep on searching for Naruto.

He trudged through the thick forest before he came to his destination.

Valley of the End… what bitter memories lie here.

His eyes, now the same color black natural color they were when he was born, quickly scanned the area before they landed on the figure lying in the middle. His breath stopped.

No. No! Please no, please God above, no!

He saw the figure shift a little before he started breathing again.

Naruto…

Then he forced his body to move to reach his fallen… friend? No… His most precious person.

-

And that was how they were found. Dead in a pool of blood, with Sasuke limp on the ground with Naruto held closely to his chest while Naruto's hand was interlaced with Sasuke's. Both had utter peaceful smiles on their faces with dried tears on their faces.

Sakura broke down crying on the sight. Tears flowed freely from her eyes to the dirty ground, whether she was crying out of pure despair or out of happiness that her two friends finally found peace with one another, even she did not know. Sai put a hand on Sakura's shoulder as he stared at the scene and wondered, why were there so many tears streaming down his face without his consent.

Iruka actually shoved his face into the arms of a surprised Kakashi. His choked sobs were all he needed before Kakashi pulled Iruka into his arms as he himself stared at the two dead ninja's. They had fought well, until the end, the both of them really were great ninja's.

The rest of Team Rookie was there along with Team Gai, they were all silent but they had tears in their eyes. Kiba was trying his hardest not to cry as he held on tightly to Hinata who fell on him for support, tears flowed freely down her porcelain cheeks. Shino was solemnly quiet while Shikamaru stared at the ground in silent weeping. Ino, next to him had endless tears streaming down her face. It was so heart-wrenching and yet the most beautiful thing she had ever seen. Chouji was sobbing along with Ten Ten and Lee while Neji just closed his eyes, one lone tear making its way down his cheek.

Gai stared at the scene with downcast eyes as he took a few steps towards the couple lying motionless on the ground.

"Konoha will never forget the two ninja's who risked everything they had for the chance to…" Gai breathed deeply, shakily. "Be with each other once again."

"Naruto…" Sakura whispered softly as she closed her eyes to prevent more tears but it didn't help, "Sasuke-kun… arigato." For being there with Naruto when he needed you the most.

--

10 Years Later

Here lie the souls of Uzumaki Naruto and Uchiha Sasuke. May their hearts reconnect and their souls be intertwined for all eternity to come. For such a love like their's is hard to find and once found is cradled like the precious gem it is.

Sakura stared at the tombstone; Sasuke and Naruto were buried together by her personal request. There she stood and sobbed silently. Maybe such ninja-love was doomed to fail all along. She wiped a tear from her eye, but maybe they did not actually fail, maybe it was better this way. For them to end up in each others arm at the very last moment, where no words were needed and emotions were raw but true due to desperation.

Naruto may not have accomplished his dream to become Hokage, but he accomplished his hope and his promise to his friend. As for his dream, the current Hokage of Konoha smiled, she would continue to lead the dream Naruto had wanted.

Sakura understood that no one else had the same emotions, feelings and had gone through the same things as Naruto and Sasuke had. She knew that their bond was so strong that the only way for their love to ever be was to die.

"Sakura-san,"

The pink-haired Hokage turned to face the voice, one tear making its way down her cheek.

The other slowly went up to her and gently wiped the tear away, "Still reminiscing over lost ones?"

She smiled weakly, "Tell me Sai, has a day ever gone by where you did not think of Naruto or Sasuke?"

Sai laughed softly, but no, this laugh wasn't like it was 10 years ago. This laugh was real, it was genuine. "No… their end image has been imprinted in my mind. I'm still learning about the reason why though."

Sakura shook her head slowly, "When will you ever learn, Sai?"

The male continued smiling, "I was… so confused back then. Why did Naruto-kun go so far for Sasuke-kun, why did Sasuke-kun go back to Naruto-kun in the end?"

"That's because they love each other…" Sakura whispered as she turned to gaze at the tombstone. Sakura could still hear so clearly the voice of Naruto in her head. Sakura-chaaaaaaaaaaan! Let's go eat Ichiraku Ramen! She chuckled as tears started rolling down her cheeks. Yeah, Naruto always said that right before Sasuke would say, Tch, Usuratonkachi. And instead of her going with Naruto, the blond would get dragged away by Sasuke.

She startled when warm hands cupped her cheeks, "Why are you crying?"

She stared straight into dark eyes, eyes that were so different than Sasuke's despite what others might have said. "I'm thinking back of all the old times."

Sai gently wiped the tears away with his thumb. "Naruto-kun's and Sasuke-kun's story is already almost like a legend here isn't it. I was walking by the academy and I heard some children talking about it. The girls were cooing at how romantic it was."

"The most beautiful and tragic love story huh…" Sakura whispered as she closed her eyes, "I just hope their story would never fade away."

"Overcoming odds, this is what life is about?" Sai smiled as he slowly let go off her cheeks, "I read somewhere in a book that at the end of your life, the most important thing is the feeling of accomplishment. I wonder if Naruto felt like that."

"He got Sasuke-kun back in the end, right where he belonged. Alongside with him…"

Sai slowly took hold of Sakura's hand and intertwined their fingers, "What's most important now is making sure their dreams are reality."

Sakura grinned as she turned away from the tombstones and squeezed Sai's hand gently. Such a beautiful yet heart-breaking death that was witnessed by Rookie Nine, Team Gai along with Iruka and Kakashi. Sakura was sure the story of Sasuke and Naruto would never die.

"Don't worry Naruto. Leave the future of Konoha in our hands. We will work for our future, our lives, our homes and our hope. We won't let you and Sasuke-kun's death be in vain. Just wait and see…" Sakura looked towards the sunset, "Watch over us and see."

Because we will never forget you two as long as we live, and while the past is gone, all that we can look forward to is a brighter and more beautiful future.



Owari



Gah! Failed attempt to write drama... This is one of the ways I see the ending of Naruto would be. It's just my personal opinion. It's not exactly the way I pictured it but something like that. Tons and tons of plot holes like how Naruto ended at the Valley of the End or how they managed to not die for so long despite the fact that they were dying. But that I leave up to the readers to fill!

I know I left out Tsunade and Gaara and such people. That's why I said there are many plot holes. And I know Naruto and Sasuke are out of character, but they're dying see! XD Anyway it's my personal opinion so. I actually cried writing this, it was tearing me apart and drama, heart-wrenching (to me) and yet I felt the fluff was sufficient. Yes, I am THAT emotional. It's all thanks to the stupid manga.

Let me know how you guys think of it. :)