Hey people I'm back! Some of you new readers might not know me, some of the old might not remember me – but anyway I'm back with one more NejiHina story! Hope you like it!
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto – thus the personages in my story are not of my creation.
For reviewers – please no flames, if you don't like it – then just close this window and leave me and my story alone. Thank you for reading. If you have any comments of suggestions about possible changes – please write. Constructive criticism will be warmly accepted. I want to apologize if I happen to make any grammatical or orthographical mistakes.
„Why get up in the morning when there is nothing to look forward to" she mused looking at the ceiling. "Nothing nice at least".
Her alarm clock had already rung several minutes ago, but still she had no strength in her to get up. Her muscles were tense and aching after yesterday's training. She trained practically till she dropped and getting up at 5 a.m. proved to be a challenge. But that's what she did every day, trained all day till she fell exhausted and got up early again.
Some would be bemused why a teenager would live such a lifestyle, but most were not heirs to an important ninja clan, and moreover even fewer had to stand a challenge of their rival siblings. Facing facts she had to admit most heirs were not expected to conquer obstacle which were placed ahead of her. Her father made it clear she had to make it to joanin rank as to be able to even think of taking her role in the clan. And becoming a joanin in her case was like telling someone to walk up the highest mountain a million times. At the beginning she thought it was impossible, but looking at her family she know there were some people capable of doing even the most impossible of tasks. Like her father, like her sister, and like her cousin.
Her will to win was strong, even stronger than her will to rest and sleep more, so she finally managed to get up and get ready for one more day of torture to her body.
First she would go into the forests surrounding the village for a walk with Akamaru and Kiba. Keeping pace with the huge dog and his master at the beginning proved to be a struggle, however after many weeks she would be able to keep up, and now after months she was able to treat it as a pleasure walk. Kiba had objected to her joining him the first time she asked to come along, worried about her overdoing her training, but eventually he had to admit it did make her stronger physically and much faster.
Her second part of the day would be medical training at the hospital. From all the chunin Tsunade chose only ten people to train as medic nins and Hinata was one of them. From peaceful running around the forest to forcing yourself to use one hundred percent of your chakra to heal was a hard task. But her chakra control has become as good as Sakura's, not to mention her byakugan which was her biggest advantage when it came to healing. Soon she specialized in healing bones and muscles, and in that aspect reached the level of Tsunade.
The afternoons she would spend with her father, doing some of the most boring things possible, learning accountancy and business etiquette. As a future leader she was expected to master not only ninja skills, but also all the essential skill for a leader to be able to practically lead the clan. Fortunately this proved to be a nuisance for her father as well, so these sessions rarely lasted more than two or three hours.
Later she had to eat dinner with her family, which was definitely the worst part of the day. Dead silence for most of the time, everyone's eyes watching her every move. If anything was said it were the usually conventional stiff things exchanged among her family members. Conventional courtesies, completely fake, completely insincere. In this household no one ever meant anything nice, at least not to her. Her sister would often hear that she was improving, that they were proud of her. Nothing good was ever addressed to Hinata, if they talk about her it would be plain comments not having any truth in them. She always hated sitting here in the company of her father, sister, elders and cousins.
The last part of her day was her real training, she would go out alone into the wild, and train the one thing she was refused by her family. Juken. The secrets were inaccessible to her. Her father gave up trying to teach her when she was only eight years old. All she knew was what she observed, and what she overheard. The feeling of being left by herself was the thing that always hurt most. They would not teach her because she was too weak, and learning by herself was unlikely. She knew Neji managed to discover some of the most important techniques by himself, but she was not Neji. She was weak girl. With an imitation of byakugan which could not even see chakra points. Every time her thoughts went this direction she would train even more diligently, with fury in her veins, with her spirit agitated and willing to kill and conquer all the problems in her life.
Most ninjas in Konoha were praying to have more time before the joanin exam, but the date had been firmly set by the Hokage long before they started begging her to give them more time. When the list of candidates was published in the Hokage's hall, some wondered what the name of the little Hyuga girl was doing there. Names like Naruto, TenTen, Lee and other did not surprise anyone but her name was a shock. Few knew she had no choice, it was the clan's demand, and she having the will to prove her strength really wanted to try. Neji's name was not there, same as Shikamaru's and Sakura's, all three made it to joanin the year before.
He watched her struggle with every move when she finally made it back home. It was late at night, well past after midnight, so in a way he was worried. On the other hand worried was the wrong word. Curious was more accurate. At least that was the only word he would accept as a reason for sitting on the roof and watching her come back home. Once he even considered following her, but then he reflected that he did not care all that much. Curiosity was something he would accept willingly, worrying and caring was something he would not tolerate even in his own feelings. No one worried and cared for him, so why should he be worried where she was going and why should he care what she was doing so late in the night.
His thought went to the joanin list, seeing her name there was not a surprise. Lord Hiashi told him about her duty to participate in the test. What made him wonder was why she complied to her father's wish. It was clear and evident, one might even say it was a fact. She did not stand a chance. He still remembered her trembling figure standing in front of him during the chunin exam. He still could feel the weakness in her punches. If fighting him during the chunin exam was already suicide, trying to pass to joanin level was seppuku.
He knew how well all the others were prepared, after all he was helping Lee and TenTen in their preparations. Lee was Lee, enthusiastic and hard working, he should pass with flying colors. While TenTen has exceeded the level of joanin some time ago, her chakra control was superb and despite low charkra level she should easily fight with strong chakra users. She gained many new jutsus and was a true killer ninja. He did not know the specifics of other teams' trainings but for sure they were all working really hard. He had doubts whether hard work could change anything on Hinata's account. She should stay a medic nin, for which she was already highly praised by the Hokage. Trying to become a joanin was sheer stupidity. And in his eyes it was complete nonsense to try to get it just to become the clan leader. Even if she passed her chances of becoming the clan leader were extremely low, the elders would find one way or another to take the title from her. Not that he cared at all. It made little difference for him, since they would never take him into consideration anyway, he was a branch house member so only a servant in their eyes. Hanabi although a talented ninja, would never make a good leader due to her hastiness and explosive character, but anything is better than his uncle and his grandfather before him.
The exam came so fast that Hinata didn't even have time to test her new methods in practice before the test. She meant to ask Shino just before the exam, but he was busy with his father on his own preparation. In a way she had enough confidence to think she doesn't need to test her new justsu, on the other the old unconfident Hinata kept whispering into her ear that she was a failure anyway.
The theoretical part of the test was a piece of cake for her, and most of her peers. Maybe apart from Naruto who always ignored theory and preferred practice. However when the results were given, it turned out even Naruto passed, and to Hinata's surprised she had the 7th results being on top of the list.
Neji smirked seeing the test result, Hinata always had a easiness to learn so this did not surprise him all that much, but yet he had to admit it was a very good result. But theory is not practice. He knew that the fights are where the real decision about promotion are made. For him it was even more convenient, he won his match in less than three minutes. His road to jaonin was short and comfortable. Several strikes and his opponent lay beaten. He doubted things would be as easy for Hinata. Catching himself thinking about her again, he grunted and decided to make sure his head stayed off that topic. It was useless thinking about her anyway.
The matches began the following week. After several it was evident that those with highest chance to get the joanin rank so far were Shino, Naruto, Lee and Ino, although others also performed well only those with the best results will actually make it further.
One of the last matches surprised everyone, the computer selected what seemed to be the worst match up that year.
TenTen vs. Hinata Hyuga
Everyone gasped in surprise. TenTen a range fighter, very skilled and experienced, against a girl they all remembered as a looser from the chunin exam many years before, a girl using close range combat. Neji had to admit it, it was a serious mistake on Hinata side to even try to take the exam.
Everyone watched as both kunoichi stood in the ring watching each other carefully. Those who knew how much TenTen improved her skills felt sorry and worried for Hinata. Standing there Hinata had huge doubts as well, but standing there she knew she would never give up no matter what.
After a long time TenTen seeing that Hinata was not planning to start the fight anytime soon, she decided to take the simple approach. She threw several kunai to test her opponent, and she noticed that Hinata immediately turned on her byakugan and deflected the kunai.
You've got a problem girl! TenTen thought to herself I've trained with Neji for many years and I know all the weak spots in your byakugan. There is no way I can lose this fight.
She decided to end it fast.
"Sōshōryū" she yelled and two scrolls went into the air releasing a large number of weapons.
Rising twin dragons she used during the chunin exam Hinata thought. I should be able to do it.
She immediately raised herself a bit on her toes and took a stance Neji analyzed with astonishment. That was definitely something he'd never seen before.
As soon as the weapons came into range Hinata yelled "Shugohakke Rokujyuu Yonshou" and precisely deflected all the weapons using her charka.
All looked at her with surprise, only Shino, Kiba and Naruto knew she had such a strong jutsu in her arsenal, so even her own family looked at her as if they say her for the first time ever.
TenTen quickly jump into the air and started her second attack, she grabbed all the weapon with her chakra and tried to hit Hinata. But Hinata knowing TenTen's jutsu quickly severed her connection with the weapons making them completely useless.
She couldn't waste anymore time, if she gave Tenten more time she will start a new jutsu. Hinata made her decision fast and yelled "Hakke Sanjūni Shō" and without any hesitation began striking the shocked Tenten. Although this jutsu would not kill her she would definitely not be able to use anymore chakra during this battle. When she finished her jutsu TenTen lay helplessly on the ground still surprised but with a profound feeling that she just lost.
I can't give up! TenTen thought and with much effort go back on her feet. She could feel most of her chakra was blocked, but she still have more weapons to use. She pulled out a simple scroll and summoned a short sword. She could not use range having this much chakra but for close range fights her taijutsu was pretty strong too.
Hinata observed her with anticipation, close range was something she could deal with easily. She whispered "Jūho Sōshiken" and both her hand were suddenly embed in blue chakra. Even Naruto gazed in closer, surprised by what he just saw. Hinata's hands turned into two huge lion heads. Only Shino and Kiba didn't seemed surprised too much, they both saw this technique in training so they both knew Hinata would win this match.
Even before TenTen aimed to make a strike with her sword, she was immediately hit but one of Hinata's hands. As soon as the hit landed, there was a blast of chakra and TenTen was pushed into the wall behind her.
"Don't make me use two hands TenTen, I really don't want to hurt you TenTen" Hinata calmly told her opponent.
TenTen still bewildered nodded at the umpire that the match was over.
"The winner is Hinata Hyuga!" The umpire announced.
TenTen and everyone watched in amazement as Hinata Hyuga was making her way towards her. TenTen wanted to panic, She just said she wouldn't want to hurt me, didn't she? But as soon as she noticed Hinata's eyes and saw her hands glowing with green chakra, she knew no harm would come. To everyone's amazement she gently healed all the wounds she had just inflicted to her fellow kunoichi.
"I'm sorry if I hurt you TenTen" she told her but TenTen just smiled and said "It's an honor to fight with someone so strong, I'm fine!" She replied as Hinata helped her get up.
"Now that's what I call winning in great style!" Kiba yelled and ran to Hinata. Shino slowly followed him and also congratulated his team mate.
All her fellow ninja approached her with congratulations, praising her high skills and great achievement. All but one person. Neji was still sitting there. Analyzing. He had to admit it, she really did improve a lot. Those weren't just any random jutsus, those were carefully thought out, well trained, and logically constructed techniques matched to Hinata's superb chakra control and swiftness.
Later on that evening was the first time the Hyuga family dinner looked differently than normal. Instead of the dead silence, everyone was talking at the same time. Only two people were silent. Hinata hung her head in embarrassment that everyone was talking about her, blushing and looking at her hands. The second was Neji who was still lost in his thoughts, thinking about the techniques Hinata showed, he kept glancing at her with some kind of sternness, and whenever she catch his glimpse she would freeze, stop breathing and would look back at her hands. His eyes always had the power to make her even more shy and closed in herself.
"Hinata really proved her worth." Said loudly one of the elders.
"You should have been there…" one of the witnesses of the fight began to retell the story one more time that evening.
"This is a memorable day for the Hyuga." Hiashi stood up and looked at his petrified daughter still observing her hands. "I think you all agree with me that it's high time to officially declare Hinata as the heir to our household." Most people began clapping and commenting vividly on the just decision of the leader. And so an ordinary dinner turned into a Hyuga party in Hinata's name. Sake was brought in, and the servants kept brining more exquisite dishes.