A/N: Yet another small one-shot in the SYWBL universe. Probably the last one, to be truthful. I find that this universe is over for me, something I don't feel like revisiting anymore. I'm not necessarily done with Naruto fanfiction, although I'm focusing on Bleach right now, I'm just not feeling it right now. Probably because I'm no longer enjoying the manga.
Enjoy! R & R if you liked it!
"SYWBL: Bank Account"
"This can't be right," she muttered, glancing from the paper statement in her hand to the ones lying organized by date in the box next to her. She was meticulous in not only her records but in her balance statements. She had to be; missions were never a sure thing so budgeting was important.
Even with Sasuke's money. She adamantly refused to just use his bank account like it was hers, although he had told her time and time again that she was welcome to it. It just felt, wrong.
But this—this was unreal!
She jumped up from the desk chair in Sasuke's—well, their—home office and strode to the wall lined with bookcases and shelves, knowing exactly where he kept his own financial records.
Peering through the file box, she saw that everything was just as organized as her own, the most recent month's printout sitting right on top.
She glanced around the room in a paranoid fashion, as if someone might be watching her and see her looking through her boyfriend's finances, not that she wasn't allowed. He wouldn't say anything if he caught her himself; the paranoia was ridiculous.
She shook herself and concentrated on the table of figures.
He hadn't done it.
Then where did it come from?
Someone had deposited an obscene amount of money into her account, enough to pay for at least three S-rank missions. This was more than she made in a year working at the hospital!
There was no name, no identifying information to give her any clue of where the money had come from.
And if it wasn't Sasuke—it couldn't be her aunt. After they had all fled her mother's ancestral home, most of the things had been liquidated and confiscated by the local authorities, which really meant the local criminal organizations. Her aunt had gotten just enough to support her and the children for the next few years.
A sudden feeling of terror came over her, a chill sweeping up her spine. Memories were rushing to the surface of her mind, flooding her brain with thoughts she had long buried.
"Kaa-san, where did you get that?"
"A piano! Really?"
"But I thought we couldn't afford the academy?"
"We get to go—what? How can we go shopping, kaa-san?"
And one encounter she hoped to never remember…
There was a man at her kitchen table.
She didn't know him, was sure he'd never been around before. But he was smiling at her, calling her his little Sakura-chan, and kaa-san was just standing there.
He looked a little like kaa-san, even had her hair color.
"Saku-chan, why don't you go up to your room?" her mother said, her voice wavering.
Her mother was scared.
She had never seen her mother scared. Her mother wasn't a ninja, but she was a fighter. She had been training her and Ino for years, helping them learn the ninja techniques they were taught at the academy. She had even been able to spar against her father, he had been a ninja, and she had beaten him before. So who was this man?
"I—okay, kaa-san," she said, before turning and hurrying up the stairs to her room.
The man wasn't forgotten, but he wasn't doing anything other than sitting there. Her mother may not like him, but she had let him in the house. That meant he couldn't be bad. Her mother would never let a bad man in the house, especially now daddy was gone.
Sakura slumped down the wall, papers in her hand forgotten and falling to the floor.
This was how it happened before. Strange amounts of money showing up in her mother's bank account, gifts being delivered that neither had ordered. At first it had just seemed as if they had a benefactor, perhaps someone taking pity on the poor widow and her daughter. Later, her mother had told her she knew where the money was coming from, not to worry about it.
And she hadn't. She had been too young to realize that money didn't just appear from nowhere like that.
But this—this was impossible.
He was dead. She had killed him herself. She had watched the light leave his eyes as he left the world, had seen the fire that burned his body before they fled the scene. There was no way he lived through that.
There was, of course, a chance that Jin—that bastard traitor—had lived. She didn't know who all her team had killed when they were securing the residence. She had always assumed they had taken him out.
Besides, Jin wouldn't do this. This wasn't his style.
Will it ever be over?
She had asked herself that too many times. It seemed like her family's history continued to trail her, to haunt her every step. And this only proved she would never escape the fact that she was a Kazedama.
You're mine. Me.
She shook her head again, this time clearing it of the voice of her dead uncle as he tried to warp her mind. There was only one thing left to do, and it didn't involve a trip down memory lane.
Konoha's bank wasn't busy in the early afternoon, thankfully.
The village had only one bank, which supported both the civilian population and the ninja population. It actually worked quite well for everyone, although there had been some uproar about monopolies once the country had allowed banks to begin forming "branches."
It wasn't normal, in Sakura's opinion.
She walked up to the large desk with about five civilian females standing behind, ready to help any customers. Two were already occupied but one, at the far end, was not and looked to be just a bit older than the others.
It was the matron that Sakura chose to approach.
"Good day. May I help you?"
"I hope so." Sakura sent her a smile as she unfolded the account paper in her hand and pressed it onto the counter in front of her. "You see, I've just received my monthly account balance, and there is something wrong here."
She pointed to the line that showed the very large transaction being deposited into her account.
"I see. Is the amount incorrect?"
"It's not so much that…as…" she fumbled for a way to explain it.
"It shouldn't be there."
The lady gave her a quizzical look and copied down the account number to pull up her information on the computer—they always fascinated her even if she hadn't gotten to use them much due to the old-school methods of the ninja population.
"Well, it shows that it was supposed to go into your account, Haruno-san."
"But it shouldn't have," Sakura said, her consternation beginning to show.
Sakura took a deep breath and ruffled her bangs in agitation.
"Who is it from? Does it say?"
"No, no…just an account number," the woman said as she squinted at something on the computer screen. She clicked with the small thing attached to it, and everything changed.
Her face went white, she stiffened, and her breathing pattern changed. The ninja in Sakura recognized the basic fear response and almost reciprocated but she fought to stay calm. The woman stared at Sakura in disbelief before glancing around quickly, leaning in, and speaking softly.
"You're a ninja, Haruno-san?"
"Yes," she said, puzzled.
"You should be very careful about this! If the council found out—I won't report it, I'm not allowed to, but still, take my advice and leave them alone."
"Who?" she said, confused and puzzled and almost furious with the fact that she couldn't get a straight answer.
"That account number. It's from Cloud, actually. Their B.B. account, as we call it, otherwise known as the hunter account."
"I'm sorry?" she said, surprised. "What does—huh?"
"Have you taken down a Cloud missing nin lately, Haruno-san?"
Not that she knew—wait.
"Thank you, then. I know what it is now."
And she picked her paper up, leaving the woman staring at her.
Cloud missing nin. Three S-rank salaries.
Jin, her uncle, and apparently another missing nin in the house. Cloud really had not cared how Jin and her uncle were out of their hair as long as they weren't her problem. Whether it was through them bribing someone in the village or just being taken out.
Cloud had paid her for taking them off their hands. Unbelievable.
It was, all at once, a relief and a headache. One the one hand it wasn't some crazy Kazedama scheme, but money from Cloud was poison. The council would be after her headband if they found out she had it.
She stuck the paper in her pocket and headed towards the tower. If Naruto or Tsunade couldn't take care of it, then she would just file a report on it and give the money to the council. It would be over and she wouldn't have to worry about it anymore.
I'm not yours anymore. I won't let you hang over me any longer.
As she walked toward the tower, the sun shining brightly, she let go of all thoughts of her uncle and the havoc he had wreaked in her life. It was time to forget him.
A/N: And that's it. No more of this universe. And I don't know if ninja use banks, but the idea stuck and wouldn't let go. They have to cash those paychecks somehow, right?