Wow... 9 months... 9 months of helping this baby grow, and now it's ready to go out into the fanfic world, fully complete. I will not lie...this is more than just a finished, popular fanfic to me...It's the longest, most succesful story I've written...and...it's finished. I've always wanted to write a story that people like and finish it...yes, these characters aren't mine, but...still... I can't help but feel greatly accomplished. Alright...ah, I want to keep talking here...to postpone it as long as I can but I know I can't do that. T_T It has to end.
Q_Q Without further ado...
Online! Final Chapter!
The sound of birds tweeting outside was like a badly-put together music piece, irregular and yet somehow still entertaining. The sunlight streaming through my curtains was like small beams of pure heat, warming my skin where it lay in the rays of light. I blinked slowly, breathing deeply as I stared towards the window, deep in thought.
It was amazing.
No, not the fact I was thinking, you jerks. Despite what some people-Sasuke-might say, I am very much capable of deep and profound thinking...I just prefer not to do it, because it gives me a headache, what with all the epiphanies, philosophies and many other 'fee' sounds that I don't even know.
What was amazing was how much my whole life had changed in the span of one year...and all because of one little online MMORPG. If I hadn't started playing Shaiya, I never would've met Avenger and the rest...and, ultimately, I never would've gotten close to Sasuke, Shikamaru, and all the others. I'd still only have Sakura as my friend. I'd be miserable, picked on continuously...
I would still be clueless as to why everyone hated me. I wouldn't remember my parents at all. I wouldn't have a family, wouldn't have friends... I wouldn't have anything!
But now...now I have people to call friends, people to call my family...I have Sakura, and Shikamaru and Kiba and the Uchihas...but above all I have Sasuke.
That's all I can truly say...It's all I can really use to express it, because there is no other singular word to describe it.
'Don't hate us 'cause we're happy! Don't hate us 'cause you're miserable!-'
I grinned, turning over and switching off my alarm, cutting off the lead singer for Bowling for Soup. I continued to hum the tune of the song, mentally laughing at the irony of the title.
"Yes, yes I am gay...in both senses of the word," I muttered to myself, shaking my head at the joke. I walked over to the wall, drumming out a rhythm and waiting for Kiba to give an angry return call of some kind.
"BE GONE, DEMON OF THE WAKING WORLD! THE POWER OF SLEEP COMPELS YOU!"
...He was getting creative.
Giving an extra hard thump to the wall, I smirked at Kiba's heightened attempts at banishing me and set about getting ready.
About two weeks had passed since we met up with Ino and the others, and we'd all gotten together multiple times to hang out. More than once, we'd ended up coming to my house, setting up laptops and computers and just playing Shaiya all day long. That had been awesome.
However, lately the site had been going through maintenance, so I hadn't really been on as much as I used to. And to be honest...I was getting a little bored.
The game was fun, without a doubt...but that hadn't really been my reason for playing it from the beginning. Sure, I'd downloaded it because it looked fun, but the thing that honestly kept me coming back...was the friends I'd made.
Well, I had all my friends here with me, so there was little that kept me going onto the site.
I paused in buttoning my shirt, turning to look over at my PC and smiling a little nostalgically.
"Just about a year ago...I'd have been itching to come home from a bad day at school and play Shaiya...Now, it's like a memory," I sighed, letting my eyes close.
Once I was dressed, I walked over to my PC and lit up the screen, gazing at the game icon. A smile curved my lips.
"I guess...I owe all my thanks to you, really. You changed my life." A laugh escaped me as I realized how crazy I may have looked; thanking a computer game for saving me. But it was the truth. If I hadn't played that game, I wouldn't have gotten close to Sasuke and the others.
I continued to smile as I closed down my PC and turned away.
Unlike all those months ago...I knew that today was going to be a good day.
Kiba had been drastically held up by his sister, so we were running a bit late. Apparently, the fact that Hana's boyfriend had walked out of her room in only his boxers was enough of a starter for Kiba to try and pull out his intestines. Hana had spent fifteen minutes just whacking Kiba repeatedly over the head with her shoe until he conceded defeat and agreed to let her boyfriend live.
Upon realizing that walking would make us about half an hour late, Kiba decided we would catch a bus.
...Do you see the genius here?
"Kiba...you're asking me to catch a bus..." I restated slowly even as we walked towards the bus stop. Kiba nodded.
"Yeah. What's the problem?"
Freaking Einstein over here...
"Uhm, maybe the fact that every bus driver in this city would rather run my ass over than let me catch a lift with them?" I said sweetly, and smirked at the realization that washed over Kiba's face.
"Oh man...well, I guess we can be a bit late then."
"No, you catch the bus. You're record is even worse than mine, anyway. I'll just keep walking," I said, waving away Kiba's arguments.
"Oh look! Your bus is here!" I called cheerily as we stopped at the station. I ignored the dirty looks some older people sent me, instead herding Kiba towards the open doors. "Better hurry Kibbles! I'll see you at school!" I said, shoving him inside before he could protest and turning to walk away.
"Little monster..." someone muttered, and I turned to look at them. It was a woman and her husband, standing side by side.
I stared at them for a moment, well aware that many people were watching me from both on the bus and off. Then, I sighed.
"M'am, did you lose someone in that incident?" I asked softly. The woman looked surprised that I had even spoken, and even more so at the polite tone I used. Slowly, she nodded, her face regaining some anger.
"My niece," she said, emotion coming to trim the edges of her tone.
I lowered my eyes, feeling the guilt and sadness creep up on my mother's behalf. Without hesitation, I got to my knees, bowing before the woman. I heard her sharp intake of breath, as well as the surprised gasps and noises around from other viewers.
With my forehead pressed to my fingers on the floor, I spoke.
"I am truly sorry for you loss...It was not my intention, nor my wish for you to feel any pain over the folly of my family. I am so sorry," I sniffed. "I hope that, someday, you can find it in your hearts to forgive my mother for her mistakes...I apologize deeply from my own heart...and I apologize on behalf of both my parents." I pressed my face further down, eyes closed and body still.
The ball was in her court now.
I knew very well that this position would make it easy for anyone to kick me, knock me over...they could do anything and I wouldn't see it coming. My heart beat frantically, muscles tensed. Somehow, even though I was staring at the inside of my own eyelids, I could see Kiba hanging off the bus step, his body buzzing with anticipation. I had no doubt that, should someone decide to strike, Kiba would jump into action to defend me.
He was truly a great and loyal friend.
A sigh echoed from above me, and slowly, hesitantly, I glanced up. The woman turned to her husband, who was rubbing his temple. He looked down at me, his eyes saddened before turning to look at his wife.
"Dear...It's been near seventeen years since that incident. And Lord knows holding a grudge has only made the feelings worse. It's time for you to move on...to let go of the past. This boy is apologizing for his parents mistakes...he had no part in it, why should he be blamed. He has apologized...there is nothing more anyone could do."
The woman closed her eyes, a few tears leaking down her cheeks. After a moment, she opened her eyes and looked down at me. I held my breath, waiting.
Then she held out her hand.
"Stand up boy, the floor is dirty," she said quietly, averting her eyes. "You don't want to catch something..."
Blinking, I slowly reached up and took her hand, and she helped me to my feet. Her hand lingered around mine for a moment, before she let go, huffing out a breath. People around us were watching in silence, as the woman slowly stepped onto the bus beside Kiba. She paused, turning her head to look over her shoulder at me.
"...Thank you, young man. Apology accepted," she said quietly before quickly walking into the bus.
Her husband let out a relieved sigh, and clapped his hand on my shoulder.
"Thank you. She's been bearing a heavy burden for all these years. Your apology was exactly what she needed to hear to be able to move on. You've helped her more than you may think. And I thank you for that," he said, chuckling at my shocked expression. Just as he was climbing onto the bus, he turned to smile at me. "You look just like your father, and you seem to have his kind-hearted nature too. I can tell," he tapped his nose, winking at me before vanishing into the bus.
As the vehicle drove away, and people began to move again, I turned to look up at the sky.
'Dad...Mom...did you see that?' I thought, and smiled. 'I promise...I'll make things right for our family. And an Uzumaki never goes back on their word!'
"Uzumaki...you're over half an hour late," Mizuki said as I stood before him. I held my bag straps tighter, looking at the floor.
"Why are you so late?"
"I was held up... and it takes about fifteen to twenty minutes to walk here from my apartment."
Mizuki tilted his head. "You were held up...at the bus station, correct?" he grinned when I looked up in surprise. "Don't look so shocked," he snorted, "You might pull something."
"How did you know, sir?" I asked curiously, narrowing my eyes. "Hey...are you stalking me?"
Mizuki laughed out loud even while a few people in class made derisive noises.
"No, Uzumaki, I am not stalking you. That's Uchiha's job, not mine."
"Thanks, sir," Sasuke drawled from his seat, leaning against his hand. "Now you've given away my dark secret. I'm going to have to find a new hobby," he continued, smirking at me.
I snorted into my hand while Mizuki chuckled. "A new hobby like what?"
I knew that grin.
Before he could talk, I waved my hand. "Sir, I think whatever 'hobby' he was going to say isn't something appropriate for a public classroom."
Mizuki blinked before turning away. "I always knew Uchiha was a closet pervert."
"And a proud one at that, sir," Sasuke piped up, and I heard my friends snicker. Mizuki shook his head, faking remorse.
"I have a proud pervert in my class. What am I going to do now? Woe is me!" he moaned, placing a hand to his eyes in dramatic fashion. For a moment, we all watched as he slowly walked to his desk, still acting dramatic. Then he spun around. "Ah, I know what to do!" he cheered, motioning for me to come forward. He quickly wrote a bunch of sums on the board, and then handed the chalk to me.
"Uzumaki, please solve all these sums," he said, and turned to Sasuke. "And Uchiha, you're not allowed to look at him."
Sasuke shrugged, turning in his seat.
Mizuki looked over at me and smirked. "Make a show of it."
I blinked before grinning, finally getting his plan. Judging by the few understanding noises I heard, many other classmates understood it as well.
I placed my bag on the floor and started on the first sum. Mizuki was leaning against his desk, absently tapping his foot. It made a kind of rhythm. I grinned, starting to dance a bit to the single drum. Kiba caught on, and began to drum on his desk. I smirked at him over my shoulder as I picked up the pace.
Someone in the class giggled at my random dance, and then Sakura picked up the torch.
"Whoo! Shake that booty, Naruto!" she cheered, and the class laughed.
I obliged, easily seeing the way Sasuke was tensing. Mizuki laughed from his spot, moving to sit down behind his desk.
"Until Uzumaki finishes those sums, I'm just going to sit here and go over some papers. Please carry on, Uzumaki," he said, and I nodded, finishing the first sum with a flourish and moving onto the next one with a well times spin to the drumming.
A few more students began to drum, and then someone in the back began to hum. Their voice was soon joined by others until a full on song was in the making. I was dancing weirdly, I knew, but that was the whole point. We all just wanted to see how long Sasuke could last.
Even when I was standing still, catching my breath, a few students would wolf whistle or call out. It amazed me how everyone was participating in this game, even people who obviously hated me. I could see Karin tapping on her table, her eyes looking at Sasuke as he continued to face the back. It was easy to see he was itching to turn around.
Then, Sai stood up and grinned. "Wahoo, strip tease!" he cheered, and everyone quickly whistled.
"What?.!" Sasuke spun around, only to jerk when he saw me calmly finishing up the last sum, not even dancing anymore. "Dammit!"
The class burst into laughter, students high fiving each other, throwing jokes at Sasuke and me, and some even passing some money around.
It seems Sasuke was a regular betting item.
"Well, Uchiha...you lasted eight minutes," Mizuki said, looking at his watch. "Personally, I'm impressed...I was expecting you to fail after one."
Sasuke groaned, letting his head thump on the table. "You're all evil."
I ruffled his hair as I passed to my seat, and he retorted my hitting my ass.
"Ouch! I need to sit on this, jerk!"
Sasuke just smiled.
"Alright, fun is over!" Mizuki declared, moving back to the front, "Now it's time for the torture to begin! Brace yourselves, girls and runts! Today, we're doing a lovely quiz!"
The song came to an end when simultaneously; everyone let their heads thump onto their desks with a loud groan. Mizuki snorted.
"I wish we'd recorded that, it would've been a hit on YouTube."
Itachi was standing at the front of the classroom, drawling on about today's lesson. I was barely listening, even though not doing so would probably result in my corpse rotting somewhere uncouth once Itachi got a hold of me. But I couldn't really pay attention.
I was too busy thinking about how different everything was.
Had this been a year ago, I'd have been praying for the day to end.
Well, I was still praying for the school day to end, because school was still a drag no matter how fun some of the teachers were. Because even though we had fun, we still had to work.
But so far today...not one student had insulted me. Sure there was still the occasional glare from some girls, or maybe the avoided stare from a guy...but no one had outright said anything.
And now that I thought of it...they hadn't said anything recently. I hadn't noticed it because it changed slowly, but people had insulted me less and less as time wore on...and now they hardly did at all, if ever.
It was incredible.
So many things had changed; it was almost like a dream. I was half afraid to pinch myself just in case I woke up, and it had all been the most splendid dream ever. I no longer felt like I just existed in a world where everyone hated me. I felt like I could actually become someone. Like I actually belonged here after all.
"Naruto, Sasuke, please come help me hand out these worksheets," Itachi instructed, and I grinned, standing up.
"Yes sir!" I cheered, feeling happy. Itachi gave me a look.
"You seem awfully chipper today..." he noted, and then frowned. "You're not going to break out into song, are you?"
I laughed, starting to hand out the worksheets. "No sir, I won't torment anyone with that. I'm not you, after all."
Itachi and Sasuke shared a look, undoubtedly wondering why I was so bubbly today.
Hey, give a guy a break! I was just basking in the wonderful glow of how great my life had become over time. So what if I was extra chipper? There can never be enough happiness in the world!
After class, as we were making our way towards the final lesson of the day, Sasuke wrapped an arm around my shoulders.
"So, why are you exceptionally happy today?" he asked, a small smirk on his face. I sighed, closing my eyes and letting him lead me.
I was no longer hated by everyone who looked at me. I had a chance to make things right with everyone. I felt like my future was bright and not the dull grey I had always pictured. I had friends, who liked me for me and didn't judge me on something I had no control over. I had a loving boyfriend, a family to call my own...
And in the end I...
I smiled, opening my eyes to look at Sasuke. Squeezing his arm tightly, I laughed slightly before replying.
"I'm just having a good day. Things are going my way for once!" I kissed his cheek, and he smiled at me. I looked around, seeing my friends surrounding my. Everyone was smiling contentedly, and I felt my heart warm. I gave Sasuke another small kiss before breaking out of his grip and slapping his shoulder. "Race you to Biology!" I darted down the hall, hearing all my friends chasing after me, Sasuke and Sakura in the lead. I laughed the entire way, the sunlight streaming through the windows and shining brightly on my face; and the sound of birds twittering playing in my ears from the open windows. Laughter followed as all as we ran, our footsteps echoing down the hall as we headed to our next class. As we headed into our future.
"Hey Hey! I love you, Sasuke."
"Hn. I love you to...Naruto."
"Wow, get the camera Sakura, we've got a soap opera going on here?
In the end, I have a great life after all.
And I love it!
To all my readers:
http: /juuria66. deviantart . com /#/ d3gq2fl
Thank you all so much for reading and reviewing this story. I really couldn't have come so far without you all! My heart continues to burst with happiness each time I get one of your inspirational, fantastic, love-inducing-
Kao: Whoa whoa WHOA! HOLD UP! *frowns* The hell was that? 'My heart continues to burst' ? What is this, a frikken Hallmark Card?
Me: Kao! You ruined the moment! We have just finished up the longest and most succesful story we've ever written! We need to give heartfelt speeches to complete the moment!
Kao: Pffft, *rolls eyes* Heartfelt speeches? Inspirational music? What are we? Ninjas? (XD) Why don't you start handing out sparkly tiaras while you're at it? Please, Sensei...Yes this is a new achievement for us all, but to get all sappy over it? I swear, our dustbin is going to overflow with tissues at this rate!
Me: *sniffs* But it's sad! I mean, it's over!
Kao: And people can re-read it, and people can still review it! And they can recommend it to all their friends who like fanfiction and yaoi too! And even those that don't enjoy yaoi all that much can read it! IT's not like it's a smutfest.
Kam: Much to some readers dissappointment. *smirks at readers* Bunch of pervs, the lot of you.
Kao: Hey now, let these adorable duckies perv if they wish. It's their business and we are all entitled to our own perving time!
Me: You're just saying that because you're a perv.
Kao: Guilty as charged, but I don't really care what you say. Either way, I demand that we finish this story with joy, lame jokes, bad puns and other forms of joyness!
Kam: Uhm...alright, got any jokes for us then?
Kao: Well!...well... ._. no...no I don't.
Me: *tosses papers away* Well either way, the whole moment is ruined thanks to Kuk-face over here-
Kao: HEY! :[
Me:- so we might as well say goodbye. Thank you all for reading, and if you haven't already, check out that link I put above. It's a thank you gift/end of story award thing... I hope you will continue to read my stories, and don't forget! Agent Duck-Butt is in the making! (Some of the actors are being difficult though, so production has slowed a bit. Hopefully the director will sort them out. XD)
Kam: Wait, I thought A D-B was a fanfiction?
Me: It is. ._.
Kam: But then...why...how... HUH?
Kao: Oh man, you're stupid tonight. ANYWAY! SERIOUSLY GUYS! We've gotta go do stuff, and sort out things, but we thank you all for reading, for reviewing, we'd love to see some reviews for this final chapter from our readers and hopefully we'll get new readers over time and more reviews. We'd greatly appreciate if you'd recommend our fic to friends and such and all in all...IT'S BEEN A GREAT RUN FOR ONLINE! THANK YOU ALL AND GOODNIGHT!
~*This story will continue to be sponsored by your reviews and continued loyalty~ Thank you all for reading this broadcast~Goodnight and Love to you all!*~