The Day I Visit Her


Yeah, I decided to do a oneshot after I saw this AWESOME pic on Deviant art. Find it on dannex009's gallery. IT IS GREAT. BTW, I don't own Naruto. Wish I did, these two would be married by now…

"DAMN, Hinata, you look like your ass got handed to ya'!" I start at the sudden gruff sound, and then wince as my head reminds me that it isn't feeling too well. My head…my back…my arms…my entire body… Another voice speaks, a softer, less harsh-sounding monotone. "Kiba, mind your language. Hinata obviously does not feel well, and doesn't need your rudeness."

I wave my hands at them both. "N-n-no, Shino, I really don't mind. I'm just happy that you came to see me." Kiba sits down at the foot of my hospital bed, smiling from ear to ear. "Yeah, sorry 'bout that, Hinata. Just glad to see that you're okay…" His smile fades and his eyes turn soft. "You are okay…right?" I look down at my hands resting in a blanket-covered lap. I clench the right in a fist; the left is still too tender to flex, and I don't want to stretch the bandages on it, anyway… I feel the tears start again. I clench my eyelids against the burning tide, but still, some manage to leak through. Why…, I whisper in my mind. Why am I so pathetic…?

I feel two hands, a rough one tenderly squeezing my right hand, another gently rubbing my shoulder. I open my eyes, tears still falling, but I manage to smile. "Yes…yes, I'm fine. It was time to move on, anyway. This is just what I had to go through to see that." I look at them both, Kiba with his wide brown eyes, so full of care for me, and Shino, as unreadable as always, but still brimming with emotion from deep inside him. They've always been there for me, from the time we first saw each other in the Academy to now. Forever sharing in the friendship we had…Kiba Inuzuka, the strange dog-lover, always able to cheer me up…Shino Aburame, the quiet beetle commander, always able to see what I am thinking…and me, Hinata Hyuuga, Konoha Ninja Royalty, shy and stuttering, and heir to the title of Hyuuga Leader…at least, I was until two nights ago…

Kiba is talking. I pull myself out of my thoughts to hear him out. "…an' Lady Kurenai's pissed as hell about this whole deal. I wouldn't be surprised if she called your dad out about the whole thing. 'Course, she pro'bly won't, what with the brat, an' ev'rything, but anyway…" "Has Naruto seen you yet?" Shino interrupts him, giving me a hard look through his sunglasses. I blush a bit as I look down into my lap again, my fingers tapping together as I mutter a small "no" under my breath. Kiba pipes up again. "Well, damn, Shino, not like that's surprising, he only got back last night. He more'n'likely ain't heard about it yet."

Oh, yes…Naruto has been gone these last few weeks, trying to find any surviving members of the Uzumaki and Namikaze clans, and was due back last night. Lady Tsunade had sent Sakura and Kakashi along with him as backup. When I had heard, I felt a twinge of jealousy. Why hadn't I been chosen instead of Sakura? Granted, Sakura was a healer, but I was useful, too…

"D-did he find anyone?" I manage to choke out past the bitterness in my throat. Kiba gives a shake of his head. "Nah…well, actually he did find his great-uncle, but he had just died, like, a month before Naruto got there. He said he'd found a lot of graves with the family names on them, though, so it's like he HAD family, at least." I feel an immense stirring of sympathy in my heart for my love. "How is he taking it?" "He seems to be taking it in stride. You know how Naruto is; nothing keeps him down for too long." Shino seemed to be proud of Naruto for this trait, and commented on it to me every chance he got, like now. I smile a little, feeling proud of Naruto myself.

We spend the next hour chatting over nothing, each avoiding the topic of what had brought me here. Kiba has FINALLY trained Akamaru, his giant dog, to pee outside, and not in the middle of his bed ("An' lemme tell ya, it sure as hell wa'n't easy!"), and Shino has successfully cross-bred his chakra beetle with the rare Bikochu beetle (which would "revolutionize the art of tracking a target and bringing them back to the village to be questioned"). We are in the middle of talking about how cute Lady Kurenai's little toddler is when the nurse pops her head in. "I'm sorry, but visiting hours are over. Please say your goodbyes and come back tomorrow."

Kiba gets up, muttering under his breath about how he'd leave whenever he felt like it, and Shino walks him to the door. They both turn. "Hey, Hinata…" Kiba mumbles. He looks up at me, and then glances toward Shino, who picks up where he left off. "We were just wondering…what your plans are, now that you've been…" I shook my head at them, the setting sun coming through the window. "I'll worry about that when I'm better. That shouldn't take too long; Lady Tsunade says I'll be out in a few days." I take note of the looks on their faces, and I feel a little flustered. "I p-p-promise…I'll be fine." Kiba looks away and swallows hard. "Later, Hinata…" Shino stares at the window, then he gives a small wave as well, and they turn…and walk away.

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I crouch in the window, unseen behind these eclipse curtains. For the last two hours, I have been hiding here, waiting for Kiba and Shino to leave. They knew I was here, not that I was trying to hide from them…just Hinata. I'd asked them earlier for some help in getting me and Hinata alone to talk. Heh…time to talk…this is the first real chance I've had to talk to anyone while not on edge, waiting for someone to attack me, let alone talk to the girl who said she loved me.

The girl who said she loved me two years ago.

Yeah…two years of fighting, of blood, of death, of watching all of my friends get hurt in one way or another. Two years of ignoring the feelings that erupted in me the day she said those words.

"Because…I love you…"

She is just staring out at the wall opposite the open door, not moving. If not for her sitting up and blinking now and then, she could be asleep. I wait another five minutes, but she doesn't move. Night is starting to fall; I am starting to cramp.

Finally, she sighs, leans back, and closes her eyes. I make my move, gently setting one foot down on the floor beneath the windowsill, then the other. I wait a few seconds, and, when I am sure she is still asleep, make my way over to the chair by her bedside. I watch her as she dreams.

I start to get caught up in the rhythm of her breathing. In...out…in…out…in…out…when I hear her start to mutter in her sleep. "…please…daddy…don't hit…me…" My stomach gives a sickening lurch as this confirms what I had already heard. A tear makes its way down my cheek as I fight down the sadness and raw anger fighting its way up from my soul. Hinata's father, Hiashi Hyuuga…

Had beaten his daughter. Badly.

I clench my fists and grit my teeth as the familiar, hot feeling creeps its way through my mind; the Fox is stirring in response to my emotions, begging me to unleash it upon the Hyuuga leader. I tell it no. It's not as simple as that, but the main point is I fight it down. I can't afford a murder on my hands…not even a justifiable one…

I look back at Hinata. Her face is sweaty and flushed, and she doesn't look well at all. I get up and go to the door, stick my head out for a quick look around, and close it. I tiptoe back to the chair and sit. Now…how to go about this…

I give a hoarse whisper. "Hinata…" No answer. I am really, really wishing that I had taken a drink of water before talking, my mouth is so dry. I give a slight cough, more of an a-hem, before trying again. "Hinata…can you wake up for me? It's Naruto…" I catch a glimpse of her beautiful grey-white eyes under her long eyelashes as they flutter open and back closed. Her flawless brow wrinkles as she mumbles, still mostly asleep. "…N…Naruto?..." I half smile. "Yeah…" I look at her hard. She really doesn't look too well…and the bandages only make it worse. I lift my hand, and hover it over her forehead. Should I check and see if she's running a temperature? Or should I just call a nurse?

I shrug. Aww, to hell with it. I slide my hand under her bangs and set my palm gently down on her brow, feeling her body heat through the bandages wrapped around her head. She does feel a little warm…but she also feels…kinda good. I've never touched a girl like this…not in a caring way. I can't help but rub my thumb in a small circle on her skin. So soft…smooth…

Big mistake.

Hinata's eyes snap open, and she stares at me in horror. In her eyes, I see her confusion as the sleep falls from her brain like a curtain from a window. She's taking it all in. Her; in bed, wearing nothing but a very loose hospital gown. Me; in a girl's hospital room after visiting hours, touching her. I can almost feel the molestation charges coming. I cringe slightly, and take my hand away like it's been scorched, and wait for her to scream.

The scream never comes.

I watch her watching me. The blush that was present when she was asleep has magnified from merely fiery to nearly inferno hot, and her breath is coming in quick little gasps. I give a little smile at her, hoping to reassure her somewhat. She seems to shrink back into her bedding, almost withdrawing into her hospital gown. Nice going, Naruto. =Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7= Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7 Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=

Naruto crouches back into his chair as Hinata's head goes up in flames. Man and woman regard each other, both certain of how they feel, neither sure of how to pursue the subject. Now, let the music as old as time commence, let the mating-dance, the eternal intertwining of two hearts, begin. Naruto leans one elbow on his knee as his right hand comes up to scratch at a spot on his cheek. "Uh…hey, Hinata…"

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"Uh…hey, Hinata…" Oh…..oh, my….Naruto is…here, he's right here with me! In the same room, breathing the same air…with me! I weave a little, my head feels so light and I just want to…no…No fainting. Not this time. This time, I'm going to talk to Naruto and tell him, again, exactly how I just wanna die right here and right now so I can go out with some dignity…

Amazingly, though, I don't die or faint. I feel my mouth moving of its own accord, my lips forming words that I don't remember wanting them to. "H-h-hello…Naruto…i-i-it's good to s-s-see you…" The stricken look on his face gives way to a more natural look, more like the grin that he usually has, though still slightly more nervous. "Yeah…good to see you, too…"

He and I sit there in silence for a while. I keep my eyes down at my lap, only casting fleeting glances at the man I love, but shouldn't, and he…well…stares at me. Not in a mean way, more like he's not sure what to do now. How long has it been…5 minutes? 10? I decide to breach a subject. "So…I heard that y-y-your mission was successful?" Naruto seems relieved at the break in silence. "Yeah, well…not really. Getting to where the graveyards were at was the really hard part. Kakashi kept disappearing, and Sakura was no help at all. She kept on wanting to try out this new jutsu that would let her trace any living relative of mine, but for that she needed to dig up one of the corpses, and I wasn't too comfortable with that, so she was mad at me the entire time, even though I let her do it. Not to mention that my last living relation, Great-Great-Great-Uncle Ryoshin ,on my dad's side, he was like, 200 years old, died from eating some bad rice just a few weeks before I got to him. So, all in all, it was kinda a crapshoot."

I felt a resurgence of the pity I had experienced earlier. I have to do something for him, to let him know how sorry I am. I put my uninjured hand close to the bed's edge, and manage to stretch my fingers to give him a semi-pat on the knee. He looks up at me and gives a wide grin, and my heart melts. I love his smile, I love his eyes, I love…him. All of him. I gasp a little as he places a few of his fingers upon mine. Almost holding my hand. Holding my hand. I look up at him…and my heart stops singing as I see the expression on his face. It is sad…almost serious. I know what is coming.

"Hinata…I've heard…some things. Bad things. I need to know the truth." He's looking me directly in the eyes now, and I feel lost in the blue oceans contained in each. I nod at him. "What do you want to know, Naruto?" He studies me for a second. "Why are you in the hospital, Hinata? Please don't give me some lame excuse like it was a training accident or you fell down the stairs. I need to know what happened to you. I need to know the truth."

I feel the tears in my eyes. That burning tide is resurging, and no amount of eye-closing will stop it. I pull my fingers out from under his, and turn my body away from him as much as possible. I don't want to tell him…but he asked me. I can't refuse him, but he's asking for the one thing I just can't talk about

"Hinata?" I hear the catch in his voice. I turn my head towards him, tears running down my cheeks. His eyes capture me again, but not in a hypnotic way. The normally deep blue irises have slightly changed color to a lighter shade, and they, too, are flooding with unshed tears. "I know that you don't want to talk about it…but I've heard so many versions of it already…and I know that you never lie…please, Hinata…I'm begging you…" The tears flow freely from his eyes, and I feel so guilty for making him suffer through ignorance. I swallow hard. =Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7= Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7 Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=

I listen in disbelief as Hinata begins her story. "My Father is a harsh man, Naruto. He has always been this way, and I don't foresee him changing. Ever. My Mother was the only good thing he ever treated well in his life, and after she died giving birth to Hanabi…he retreated into his own shell even more. He started to drink when I was 6 years old, and would fly into these rages that would make the whole earth shake. Neji was no real help then-he couldn't raise a hand to Father. I protected Hanabi as well as I could, but she would always cry, and that would only infuriate him even more, and he would punish us. Not always by hitting…sometimes, he'd make us stand outside all night, other times he would make us read to him nonstop.

"But as we got older, he started seeing Hanabi…differently from me. Where I was more like my Mother, she was more like Father. He tried for so long to remake me, but I was too different from him and Hanabi. After some years, he finally started to ignore me, and focused totally on Hanabi, shoving me off into Lady Kurenai's hands.

"At first, I thought I was free…but then, he started demanding weekly progress reports from Lady Kurenai, and she had to comply. She had no choice but to be honest, and when Father saw that I was making only slightly better progress…well…"

I look down into my lap, and am very surprised to see my hands have turned into fists. I turn my attention to Hinata, but her eyes are hidden by her hair. I reach out and take her uninjured hand, and gently rub my thumb against her soft, smooth skin. She jumps a little, but doesn't pull away. That's good. "Keep going, please." She nods.

"During all that time…you were my inspiration, Naruto. The way we were treated was the same, in a way, and I couldn't help but feel drawn to you. After the Chunin exams, my Father seemed more…gentle, but it quickly returned to 'normal'. Then, you left…" As she said this, I can't help but feel a twinge of guilt.

"Then you left, and I had only Kurenai, Kiba, and Shino. After we were all made Chunin, though…we saw less and less of each other. Eventually, I only had Neji to be able to get in constant contact with, and he…isn't exactly a well of sympathy." She chuckles a bit at this. "And then…you came back…and I was so…so happy…and so mad at myself…because I still couldn't talk to you without fainting."

"And then…I faced Pain…and told you how I felt…and…" Her hand loosens on mine a bit, and I feel more guilt. I know what is coming. "And…you never said anything back…it was like it never happened…But I didn't give up…because that would mean breaking my Ninja way…and you never broke yours…so why should I break mine?

"Father found out about my confession…and he was…there isn't a word to describe it. He called me every filthy name that describes a loose woman; he called you worse things…and shortly after you left to find your family…I had enough. I told him that I didn't care what he thought anymore. I told him that I was leaving and never coming back, and he could take the clan and go to Hell for all I cared…" She was openly sobbing now. I was weeping for her myself, and doing my best not to break down in front of her. "A-a-a-and then, he a-a-a-attacked me! It w-w-was so sudden, I-I-I couldn't defend mys-s-self! Oh, God, I'm so pathetic!" =Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7= Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7 Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=Z7=

I couldn't take anymore. I lift her out of her bed and into my lap, holding her like she should have been held every day of her life. I stroke her hair and rub her back and cry with her as her head leans into my chest. I quietly whisper into her ear about how it'll be alright, I'm here, and nothing will ever hurt her again. Gradually her sobbing slows, and then stops, except for a hiccup here and there.

"So n-n-now you know…" she said, wiping her eyes. I pull out a handkerchief and she wipes the rest of her tears away. "I'm pathetic and worthless, and I hate myse-" "Stop it," I say gently. "Just…stop, okay?" She looks up at me with those huge grey eyes, and nods. She leans her head back into my chest as I gently rock her back and forth, her arms around my neck. "You're not pathetic OR worthless, Hinata. You're strong and brave, and lovely and kind. You're everything that anyone would want in a wife or daughter. Do you hear me?" She nods into my chest and a muffled "uh-hunh" comes out.

We sit like that for a while, just me and her. "Hey, Hinata…" "Yes?" "I owe you an explanation." She rests her head on my shoulder. "I'm listening, Naruto." I take a deep breath. This isn't going to be easy. "Actually, I have a few things to explain, and one to ask you. Is that still okay?" She nods. "Alright, good.

"The first reason I never told you how I felt about what you told me that day is the fact that I was a marked man. Trust me, the second you told me you loved me, I felt something leap in me that I knew had to be the same feeling. If we were anywhere else at any other time, I would have swept you off your feet to take you somewhere we could be together forever. But that was the thing. I didn't want to introduce another way for the Akatsuki to try and attack me. It wouldn't be fair to you, and it wouldn't be safe for either of us.

"The second reason is the fact that I didn't know how you would react when you knew that I am the host for the Nine-Tailed Fox Demon. Usually, the least many people do is make an excuse to get away the second they find out. The worst…well…they try to kill me. It took me a while to hear that you were awake during that entire battle with Pain, and saw me in my 8-Tailed form. But, you still looked at me with the same glow in your eyes…and Neji told me you still thought about me all the time…and I knew then…"

Hinata cuddles her head into the crook of my neck. "Oh, Naruto…I know it isn't your fault for what you have in you. Besides," and I hear a little smile in her voice. "You wouldn't be Naruto without that cunning fox part inside you." My heart gives an extra beat as she says that, and I give her a little extra squeeze.

"The third reason I never responded is that, right after this whole business with Akatsuki, Madara, Sasuke, and Kabuto was cleared up, Old Lady Tsunade gave me some information that changed everything. At first, I was just going to go back to how things were, but when she told me about my family, I had to make some quick decisions." Hinata looks up at me questioningly, and I go on.

"I am the sole survivor of 2 immensely powerful, influential, and wealthy clans. I just recently turned 18, and there is a law that states that, if the majority of a clan's general population is longer living, than the last of the line is to be allowed to claim all belongings and rebuild their clan. That was the main point of my mission to the graveyards. Great-Uncle Roshi was the only other surviving member of my family, and now that he's dead, I'm the lone survivor." Hinata's eyes grew wide. "Naruto…if the Uzumaki and Namikaze clans were so powerful…then that means-" "That I am currently the most powerful person in the village, possibly in Fire Country."

I lean back a little, and look Hinata straight in the eye. "However, now that I've made sure that I am the only living Uzumaki and Namikaze, I have one more duty left to perform." "What is that, Naruto?" I study her intently. "Hinata, you do know what the Hyuuga Law states about those who leave the clan, don't you?" She looks down at the floor. "Yes…the Caged Bird Seal…" I gently lift her chin until she makes eye contact with me. "There are two ways to avoid this. You can either go back to the clan to throw yourself on your Father's mercy…" At this, her eyes grow hard. "I'd rather suffer the Seal," she whispers. I nod. "I know. But there is another way." Hinata leans forward at this. "What is it? Please tell me!" The look in her eyes…so earnest, so pure…I swallow hard. "Hinata…you could marry me…"

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My head reels and my knees turn weak. Luckily Naruto is holding me in his lap so I don't fall. I can't say anything. I can only stare at him like he's speaking a foreign language. Naruto immediately turns red. "I'm sorry if it's kinda forward…" he mumbles. "The thing is…I love you more than anything, Hinata, and I want to protect you from everything that could hurt you. I don't want the Sealing to happen to you, Hinata…and it can't happen if you marry a clan leader who has more political pull than your father…if we do it as soon as possible, and he tries to Seal you, he won't be punishing his daughter; he'll be attacking my wife."

His big blue eyes are almost begging me to say something, anything, as long as it's yes. I lift my hand to my mouth, and give a dry sob. Naruto flinches and his eyes shatter into pieces. "…you don't have to laugh…I understand if you don't want to…" "Oh, Naruto…" I whisper. "I'm not laughing…" His eyes light back up, and he grips me tighter. "You mean…" I nod. "Yes, Naruto…I'll marry you…" He hugs me against him, smiling from ear to ear, body radiating pure joy.

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I feel the lump in my pocket, and memory hits me like a ton of bricks. "Oh, yeah, Hinata hang on!" I lift her back into bed, and fumble around in my pants pocket. "If we're gonna do this, we're gonna do it right!" I find the little black box and yank it out. "I spent all day today finding this." I get down on one knee and open the lid. Inside is a beautiful gold ring, with an engraved ivy vine running around it. Hinata's eyes are shining like diamonds, glittering with unshed tears. She looks at me like I'll disappear if she isn't watching me at all times. I breathe deep. Here we go, Fox.

"Hinata Hyuuga…I don't deserve you. You've been a constant in my life that I took for granted until I almost lost you, two years ago. You are a lovely, sincere, and honest woman, and I would be honored if you would have me as your husband. Hinata…" and at this, I take out the ring and present it to her. "Hinata, will you marry me?" She's openly crying now, a huge smile on her face. "Yes…Yes, Naruto, I will, I WILL!" I go to put her band on, and she holds out her hand. That's when we both take a good look at it. It's her injured left hand. I look up at her. She gives a small smile and takes my hand…and slowly helps me put the ring on.

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"Excuse me, Sir." Hinata and Naruto look up to see the floor nurse in the doorway. "This is all very romantic, Sir, but visiting hours ended some time ago. I'm going to have to ask you to please leave." Naruto looks at his fiancé, stricken, but Hinata puts a finger to his lips before he can say anything. "It's okay, Naruto…I'll be fine." He smiles at her, and gently pulls her in, stopping just to look at the nurse.

"I hope you're taking notes," he says cheekily, and, before the nurse can say anything, plants a slow, loving, full-on kiss to his blushing-like-mad soon-to-be bride. He then dashes out the open window, and into the night. The nurse looks at a very flustered, very red Hinata. "That's some man you got there," she remarks drily. Hinata lowers her eyes to the glistening ring on her finger, a perfect fit below her knuckle. "He sure is," she murmured softly, a single, joy-filled tear, more precious than a diamond, falling down her face.

The nurse was helping to get Hinata situated when, from the top of Hokage Tower, the loudspeakers gave a loud squeal from feedback, and a very familiar voice exploded from them. "ATTENTION ALL RESIDENTS OF KONOHA! THIS IS YOUR FUTURE HOKAGE SPEAKING! YEAH, THAT'S RIGHT, NARUTO UZUMAKI!" The nurse looked at Hinata, who had gone a strange combination of pale and dark red and was looking absolutely mortified. The voice continued.



After some noises of a scuffle, including Naruto screaming for mercy, the loudspeakers finally went silent, and the crowd went back to sleep. The nurse shook her head. "That is one wild and crazy boy. I hope you know what you've gotten yourself into, young lady…" She turned around, only to find said young lady fainted dead away in her bed. The nurse rolled her eyes as she readjusted Hinata's blankets. "So visual range is fine, now he just needs to work on the hearing range…" She went to the door, taking one last look at the sleeping figure within. She chuckled. "Oh, to be young again…" She closed the door, and went back to her station.

So, how did you like it? Didn't like, what could be improved? Did like, what did you like? I took me a whole 3 hours to do this, so review! I N33DS THE ENERGY! No flames, tho'.