A/N: This is supposed to be similar to a 20 truths. I think I sort of headed in that direction but might have gotten lost along the way. Anyhow, it is still a Konohamaru x Hanabi story even if it doesn't quite follow the 20 truths format. Please enjoy!
Konohamaru liked Hanabi. He liked her a lot. With her long dark brown hair and pale eyes, thin face and small frame, she was a natural beauty – one step above fragile. When they first met at six years old that's exactly what Konohamaru thought: this girl was fragile, as delicate as glass. He also thought she was shy, judging by the way she stood partially behind her father with an apathetic face as she gazed out at the other children chasing after one another.
He made the mistake of pulling on her hair later that day in class. It was then that he realized, being ushered by the teacher to the nurse as he clutched at the crimson river pouring from his nose, that she wasn't that delicate after all.
He thought he'd keep away from her for awhile.
Hanabi never forgot Konohamaru after the hair-tugging incident, though she tried as hard as she could to erase his stupid grinning face and annoying chattery voice from her mind. She apologized to the teacher for her violent outburst and, upon returning home, requested that her father teach her within the comforts of the Hyuuga compound as an alternative to schooling. She already felt superior to everyone in her class, and with morons like Konohamaru around she didn't want to ruin her chances at surpassing her sister by becoming tainted with his stupidity. Hiashi acquiesced to his youngest daughter's request without so much as pondering the real reason as to what caused Hanabi to back out of school so quickly.
Hanabi didn't need friends. She would be fine on her own; honing her skills as a ninja was what was key to her. She didn't have time to waste in trivial matters, such as classes and teams and boys.
She didn't notice that she spent the rest of the night twirling the one particular strand of hair Konohomaru had tugged on around her finger.
They see each other is passing over the next few years; no words are spoken, just glances traded and memories dragged up from the depths of their crowded minds. They always think the same thing: You, dragged out in disgust in Hanabi's part and curiosity in Konohamaru's. She wants to know if he's still a moron. He wants to know what it would be like actually getting to know her.
No interaction occurs until he is twelve and she is eleven. Despite it being against her wishes, Hiashi forces Hanabi to apply for membership of a team. Teams of three have already been made; she is forced to register as the fourth member for Team 25.
Team 25 is the technical name for what has become known as the "Konohamaru Corps". When Hanabi finds out she dies inside. When Konohamaru discovers she is their new member his insides leap with joy.
They're both surprised to discover what has become of the other over the past six years. Konohamaru expected her to instantly harass him when she approached him on her first official day as a member of the Corps, but instead she bows to him and gives him any statistical information he'll need on her skills and lists the missions she has accomplished and what she did to accomplish them. This is all completed in a very professional way, her facial expression and tone of voice are apathetic and once she is done she bows again and walks off to toss kunai at a target. Surprised, Konohamaru questions their leader about her attitude and the jonin replies that it is normal for a Hyuuga to be so emotionally detached from the world. This puzzles Konohamaru greatly, along with the odd sensation he feels in his chest whenever he looks at her from that day on.
Hanabi is equally as shocked with her observations of Konohamaru during her first few days of practice with the Corps. Gone is the immature and obnoxious boy from the few memories of her early childhood; here she sees a determined and more reserved young man, filled with emotions and strength and a deep need for acceptance growing within. Curious, she nonchalantly asks the team leader two weeks into practice what has happened with him. He tells Hanabi of the death of Asuma and Konohamaru's grandfather and how both have shaped the boy into the more serious genin seen before them. Hearing this story, Hanabi feels a sting of pity for the boy – but she smothers the emotion quickly. She cannot be emotional; emotions denote weakness, and weak is something she'll never be.
There was, however, one thing her leader forgot to mention: despite his fast maturity, Konohamru was still very much a pervert.
Years pass before anything perverted occurs; or, at least anything perverted involving Konohmaru and Hanabi. Hanabi finds it interesting to see the way Konohamaru chases after girls. On all the missions they attend (and, while they have many, they're always so easy and boring that it almost drives the Hyuuga insane), the Corps is treated to at least one day of watching Konohamaru attempt to hook up and sleep with an array of girls, only to be turned down or beaten. While Udon and Moegi groan in embarrassment for their teammate, Hanabi laughs. She almost always receives a glare from Konohamaru when he returns from defeat, for he knows full well that she has been getting a kick out of his shame.
Hanabi would never admit that she wonders why Konohamaru chases after girls. She supposes he has a lot of built-up sexual need to rid himself, and since he doesn't get anything at home he probably figures he'll get it when they're away. She's also secretly curious as to why none of the other girls show interest back; minus the slight perversion issue, Konohamaru has (unfortunately, in her mind, and she hates to believe that she actually thought this) become quite handsome with age, and at seventeen he should easily be the prime pick as a chunin boyfriend.
She changes this thought immediately after the incident, and instead finds herself wishing that she could wrap her arms around his neck and throttle him in his sleep.
Konohamaru wasn't looking to get into trouble with Hanabi (honestly), but he couldn't resist what he saw. It wasn't his fault he had decided to go for a walk the same time she was bathing. Why a girl would choose to bathe in a lake when the town they were on a mission in had plenty of showers beat him, but he come upon the naked form of the Hyuuga in the midst of a lake outside of town. Her back was to the shore and she was washing her hair, and in that brief moment Konohamaru swore he had never seen anything as beautiful as her.
In that brief moment Hanabi managed to catch a glimpse of Konohamaru's headgear reflected in the water. Within six seconds she was dressed, on land, and on top of him, pressing him down against the ground and seething, demanding why he was peeping on her. Konohamaru was near tears, begging her to let him go and swearing that he wasn't there to see her, that it was all an accident – all the while trying to ignore the fact that he didn't mind her (unintentionally) straddling his lower area.
Hanabi had to let him go because Udon convinced her it wouldn't be a good idea to kill her teammate. She won't speak to him for days and he stays away, not wanting to risk her rage (he's never been more terrified in his life, convinced that that was the closet he had ever been to actually dying). When almost a week goes by with no interaction, Konohamaru gives up on waiting for her to make the first move and offers to take her for breakfast as a ceasefire. She's skeptical of his motives at first, but she agrees to go anyway. And somehow, after that quick meal, they start to become friends.
Moegi and Udon get jobs when they become jonin, while Konohamaru and Hanabi both apply for missions and part-time surveillance work. While they are not the best of friends they are at least friendly, and Hanabi no longer complains if she is told she must go on a mission with Konohamaru. This happens more often than Hanabi would like it to, but Konohamaru is thrilled; he has been in love with her for years and has been looking for a chance to see if she returns his feelings. Although she is still apathetic she now talks to him more and shares things with him she wouldn't be comfortable sharing with anyone else, but anytime Konohamaru presses for a deeper emotional connection she backs quickly away. He is never deterred; he will win her over even if he has to die trying – although he'd rather not die if he doesn't have to.
Hanabi is surprised to discover she doesn't mind Konohamaru's company; now, at age twenty, he has finally been able to almost calm down the perversion issue and can actually make her smile when she chooses to let her guard down. She begins to talk about him more with her family and she mentions him so much that Hinata, while the two are enjoying afternoon tea together, asks her if she has a crush on Konohamaru. Hanabi doesn't respond, or even turn the slightest shade of red; she sits still, her face blank. Finally she places her teacup on the table and eyes her sister, saying, "It's against the rule to fall in love with a teammate. I don't break the rules."
They are on a mission one night when their host offers to take them out for a night on the town. Konohamaru gladly accepts while Hanabi declines; she returns to the room the two are sharing and reads a book by candlelight. Konohamaru doesn't return until one in the morning; he stumbles into the room, his hair tousled, shirt half open, and very drunk on sake. He flops into bed and seems to have passed out. Hanabi continues to read, shaking her head in disappointment, when she feels a pair of eyes boring into her. She glances over and is surprised to meet a pair of brown eyes in an intense stare; feeling oddly nervous, Hanabi asks Konohamaru what he wants. He stares at her a moment longer and then, in a voice a little too comprehendible for a drunk, asks, "Why don't you like me?" Hanabi was about to reply that she did like him – until she realized what version of "like" he was using.
When does she realize she likes him? It's not on a mission where he is injured. It's not while watching him flirt with other girls – because even though he does like her, her general lack of interest pushes him to keeping his options open with other girls. It's not due to the one time where she saw him naked – revenge on her part for the incident when she was sixteen. No, it was the way he smiled at her the night of the firework festival. The moon was bright and casting an extraordinary white light on the crowd gathered to see the display. He was chattering as usual and he passed a joke; it was a stupid joke, a joke Hanabi would be forever embarrassed to admit she smiled at. He caught her faint grin and he smiled back, and that smile glowed in the moonlight and the general happiness he felt at seeing her happy, and it stole her heart.
She spends the entire festival staring at him, wondering why she hadn't realized the depth of her crush earlier as well as the fact that she has liked him much longer than she thought. He watches the festival, his brown eyes reflecting the colors of the fireworks bursting above. He doesn't look down at her until it is over, and for the whole ten minutes it takes for the fireworks to be fired she finds herself unbelievably jealous that she is not the center of his attention for once.
He is ignoring her on purpose. At the end of the show Konohamaru gives her a small squeeze on her waist, shooting her a flirtatious smile and giving her a look that clearly states he now knows she reciprocates his feelings. Unfortunately for him, Hanabi totally misses the look.
Hinata is overjoyed when Hanabi admits to her that she has a crush on Konohamaru. She is well-aware of the maturation of the boy and of his stunning good looks and tells Hanabi that he is a good choice for a lover because it is obvious that he has been nursing feelings for her for a very long time.
Hiashi isn't as thrilled. Konohamaru isn't a Hyuuga and he doesn't possess any traits of skills of particular worth. However, Hiashi knows that Konohamaru isn't the worst boy Hanabi could pick for as a first boyfriend. He tells his daughter she may date Konohamaru if she wishes, but she must keep it strictly casual.
Moegi and Udon aren't surprised. They were waiting for her to realize she liked Konohamaru back – they both know she wouldn't have put up with him all the time if she didn't.
With Hinata, Moegi, and Udon telling him that he has more than just a chance, Konohamaru decides to ask Hanabi out. He is finally getting something he's wanted for a very, very long time and he wants to make their date as perfect as possible. He'll take Hanabi wherever she wants to do and do whatever she wants to do – so long as she says yes, which he's being told she will.
He washes his hair twice and puts on the neatest outfit he owns. When Hanabi opens the door to her home she is surprised to see Konohamaru standing outside, looking more handsome and nervous than usual. He asks her to dinner, muttering something about liking her and wanting to start dating her.
Hanabi politely refuses him, stating she cannot date a teammate, even a former one.
It kills her to turn him down. She will spend the rest of the night in her room sitting on her bed, her insides crashing down within and her heart aching as she regrets her decision. Hinata will sit with her and plead with her to reconsider, asking her why she won't even shed a tear from all of the pain she knows Hanabi is feeling. Hanabi will cry – long after Hinata has left and their house has grown silent.
Konohamaru's heart breaks. He storms out of the Hyuuga compound, fighting against tears of his own. He's ashamed of his emotions and his actions. When he reaches home he gathers up his weapons arsenal and disappears for three weeks.
They do not talk for six months.
Udon insists that Konohamaru needs to take the refresher course for shuriken throwing. Konohamaru insists that he doesn't need to, but Moegi won't allow him to purchase another shuriken until he agrees to do it. He appears at the training ground, waiting for the instructor to meet him.
Hinata insists that Hanabi must register to become an instructor for a shuriken training refresher course. She claims that she doesn't want her little sister's skills getting rusty, and since Hanabi hasn't been on a mission since the Konohamaru incident it might be a good way to shape up. Hanabi agrees, only because she realizes her sister is right. Six weeks of training would do her good.
When Hanabi sees Konohamaru at the training ground she almost turns around and runs home – but she is a Hyuuga, and Hyuugas do not run. Instead, she approaches him and, ingoring the moritifed look on his face, bows to him and tells him to stand. He wants to run too – but his heart, though it aches, is telling him to stay. He does. Without a friendly word passed between them, they begin.
Konohamaru successfully completes his training, and while he does not need to, he asks Hanabi to spar with him. They have not talked outside of what she has to say to him about his technique and, since she doesn't see anything changing anytime soon, agrees to be his sparring partner.
There's something different about Konohamaru when he spars; Hanabi sees an odd look in his eyes, which are only focused on her, and it makes her uncomfortable and upsets her all at the same time. He keeps trying to catch her as well; she can tell by the way his keeps moving his arms when he gets close. Her heart pounds at the brief sensation of his skin against her.
Finally his arms wrap around her waist – and, although she was expecting it, she reflexively jabs her kunai into his stomach. He makes a low grunt but does not let go; he pulls her closer until their chests are touching, his brown eyes apathetic as he stares into her pale ones. She feels nervous; his blood drips slowly across her hand and she can't move her hand to pull it out. Glaring at him and wary of his intention, she whispers in a low voice, "Moron, you're bleeding."
He kisses her, despite the pain in his stomach and the dizziness beating against his forehead. He has her and she's not fighting and he kisses her, finally achieving what he has wanted for so long. She's tense at first but then she reciprocates and the things she does with his tongue literally blow his mind. When he lets her go she stumbles back, her one hand on the stain his blood has left on her clothing and her other hovering near her lips.
He yanks her kunai from his stomach and staggers off towards the hospital; he barely steps through the front door when he collapses. He's there for three days; on the last one Hanabi visits, sitting by his side when he wakes up. He's surprised to see her there but more than elated. Her expression is not hard; she has on the smallest smile, and it is almost as beautiful as the way she looks in the kimono she chose to wear.
He asks her out to dinner later that night. She agrees.
They keep their relationship as quiet as they possibly can. There is no public display of affection – Hanabi insists against it. Konohamaru agrees, only because he finds it enjoyable that they have secret places where they share a kiss or he can subtlety touch her in ways most people can never see.
Hinata, Moegi, and Udon are the only ones that know. They aren't surprised and are more than happy to keep the secret relationship exactly what it is: a secret. For three years Hanabi and Konohamaru go about life one way and spend private time another, and no one discovers or threatens the union they've been building.
Until Hiashi finds out – and he's livid that his daughter has been running around secretly behind his back for three years when she should be looking for a Hyuuga to marry.
Hanabi doesn't want to marry a Hyuuga. They're boring and apathetic and too much like Neji for her to be interested. Hiashi doesn't care. He wants to preserve the bloodline that he so desperately clings to for its honor and prestige. Hanabi couldn't care less about being a Hyuuga. She knows her capabilities as a fighter and relies more on her own skills than the reputation of her family.
Hiashi bars her from seeing Konohamaru, and at first Hanabi believes it is a joke. She's almost twenty-three and has been on her own since she was nineteen; he can't tell her what to do. When she tells him this he threatens to dispatch guards to follow her everywhere she goes and kill Konohamaru if he's within five feet of her.
Hanabi writes to him about her father's decision. The letter is intercepted, and Konohamaru believes she has left him.
Hinata tells him the truth. Konohamaru cannot comprehend what Hiashi has done, and he pledges to free Hanabi from her prison within the Hyuuga compound. Hinata tells him not to waste his time; Hiashi has guards everywhere, waiting for him to do something as foolish as infiltrate their home.
He shows up late at the compound anyway and, with the help of Hinata, meets with Hanabi at a back gate while Hinata distracts the guard by having a fake fit. Konohamaru tells Hanabi that he will do whatever it takes to impress her father and get his blessing. Hanabi tells him it's useless. She will be wed to a Hyuuga against her will and, if he wants to be safe, he should lie low for a few months.
She leans through the bar and kisses his forehead. On the other side he trembles, his knuckles growing white as his hands shake against the bars he's clutching in anger. She doesn't say it, but her eyes speak three words that have never been said between them. Konohamaru declares them aloud and swears he will be back.
He leaves his home to stay in a small cabin in the hills for a few months. There Konohamaru plans on bidding his time and refining his skills, so that he may either impress or fight with the elder Hyuuga. He was on the verge of asking Hanabi to commit to him for good and Hiashi had to come and ruin it all – but Konohamaru was determined not to let Hiashi get away with it. He wasn't going to give up on Hanabi now.
Hanabi went about life quietly, listening to her father and obeying his commands without question. She went out with a few of the Hyuuga men her father deemed good for her; she was polite but distant, and whenever one tried to kiss her she threatened to stab him with her kunai. Eventually Hiashi chose one to be her suitor and planned for a quick marriage.
Hanabi disappeared the night before. Only Hinata remained calm amongst the frantic searching for the young Hyuuga daughter.
Konohamaru was surprised to find that he could not sleep well at all. The rain was coming down in torrents, and the sound it made as it hit the top of the cabin seemed more like bullets than drops of water. He sat up, lit a candle for comfort, and tried to sleep. He rolled over several times, sat up a few more, and hummed himself a tune before he finally felt ready to settle back down.
He shot back up as his door swung open. He could make out a figure in the dark, and he wondered how he could reach for his kunai without getting attacked first. He was about to make a desperate move when the figure stepped inside. Hanabi, dripping from head to toe, stared at him through her soggy hair. Konohamaru felt his heart soar within and he leaned forward, extending his arms out to her. She stepped closer, her footsteps small and delicate. Standing next to his bed, she gazed down at him, her expression hurt but her eyes alive with adoration.
She told him of what had happened that for the past few months. He listened with rapt attention. When she was finished she collapsed next to him, tears gushing down her cheeks. He wrapped her in his arms and silently swore he would never let go.
Konohamaru loved her as completely as he could that night. In his mind he made promises to marry her no matter what and to make a family with her; Hiashi would not stand in the way. Konohamaru wouldn't allow it. Beneath him Hanabi moved in ways she never had before, loved him in ways he didn't know she knew how, and the entire time not one word was exchanged. That night Konohamaru realized how vulnerable and delicate and beautiful Hanabi was – like glass. She really was that fragile, and he had come so close so many times to having her shatter.
A/N: Well, I hope everyone enjoyed that! It technically is a happy ending, just incase anyone wanted to know! Thank you for reading and please review!