A/N~ Hey guys. So, I'm back, yet again, with another story! So, yeah. It's my first song-fic... O_O It's an AWESOME Japanese song, that I'm sure most of you have heard before. If you haven't, SHAME ON YOU. It's called 'Blue Bird' by Ikimono-Gakari, and it just so happens to be Naruto Shippuden's 3rd opening theme. Yeah. :D I love this song. A lot. Anyways, yeah. Enjoy!
Disclaimer- I don't own Naruto. First of all, wrong gender. Secondly, I wouldn't be broke if I did, Neji would be the main character, and NejiTen would be more canon than your parents. :P
Song disclaimer- I DON'T OWN THIS SONG. C'mon, you gay-ass lawyers (Gay as in happy :D). YOU KNOW THIS, DAMNIT. GO SUE SOMEONE ELSE.
Note- Just so you guys know, I used the english translation... Because I fail at Japanese. Oh, ANDDD! THIS JUST SO HAPPENS TO BE A CHRISTMAS PRESENT FOR MIDNIGHT INSOMNIAC! Why? Because, Midnight, you have done soooo freaking much for me... I'm not even kidding. You have provided me with happiness, friendship, and let's not forget your stories! I honestly don't know how else to thank you, but dedicate this to you. To my amazing friend (: Woah. That was sooo cheesy! But, got to the point in what I wanted to say. Ahh, well.
EXTRA NOTE~ To you guys who have reviewed, and liked, and such, you people have really inspired me. If any of you have any suggestions on another one-shot, multi-chapter, or songfic, PM me, or drop in a review, and I'll see what I can do. I'd be happy to hear more from you guys.
Extra-extra note~ Characters may be OOC... I WOULD KNOW, OF COURSE. I KIND OF WROTE IT. Ahem. Carry on.
A caged bird.
'You say if you could fly, you would never come back
You aimed for that blue, blue sky.'
He was always so cool, collected, and calm. He wore a stoic mask, as if nothing was too difficult for him. But on the inside, he was slowly, silently, and unknown to everybody, falling apart.
'You've yet to remember "sadness"
Just now began to grasp "pain."'
He seemed in control. On a leash. Unable to turn from the path he had created for himself. With no friends to guide him, I honestly don't know how he was able to get through the hard moments that life throws at us. That had always been the main thing I admired about him-he was always so efficient, and so calm. Nothing bothered him, and I truly respected him for that.
'Even the feelings I held onto for you
Are just now changing into words'
But, coming from the prestigious Hyuga clan, I had never expected less from him. Although, sometimes, while Iruka-Sensei would lecture us on some important subject like awesome weapon techniques, some important battle, or difficult chakra control for advanced jutsu, Neji would doze off.
Even though he had the ever-so-dazzling lavender-tinted Piercing Eyes of the Hyuga clan, I could see he was in some far away land. Away from the lecture. Away from the class. Away from the world. He would snap out of it quick enough thought, and occasionally, I could see the pain in his eyes.
'As you awaken from the dream of an unknown world
Spread your wings and take off.'
Soon enough, we graduated from the academy. The exam itself was pretty easy-especially for the Hyuga prodigy. He passed with flying colors, and was soon known as the #1 rookie of the year. Me? I was the top Kunoichi of the class. Even if my grades and scores were lower than his, they were considered almost perfect. We, as suspected, were placed on the same squad, along with Rock Lee, who happened to have the worst scores.
It was a little unbelievable. I mean, the kid couldn't use any jutsu! And, he could barely do any Taijutsu, which didn't necessarily require chakra most of the time.
The way I saw it, Neji thought Lee would just slow the team down. I bet he even thought I was a hindrance. I wouldn't really know thought. It wasn't like we even talked to each other, unless the situation demanded it.
Thought I was slower than him, he couldn't really say I wasn't talented at what I did. I moved with enough grace, and speed, and my aim was perfect. Still, it seemed like no matter what Lee or I did, he wasn't happy. No matter how hard we tried, he wasn't satisfied with us... But I wasn't anyone to judge him. I was wrong to do so.
'You say if you could fly, you would never come back
You aimed for those white, white clouds.'
Training with him wasn't any easier either. I had only done so a few times, and yet I knew enough. He was ruthless, and worked to the full extent of his potential. "What use is it, if you quit once you reach your limit? The point of training is getting to know that limit, and then surpass it." he would always scowl, whenever I would just drop to the ground, panting, and sweating profusely. "I-I can't - continue... I'm out of - chakra, Neji," I would tell him, hoping he would feel at least a little guilt, and let me take a much-needed break. But to no avail. He had a one-track mind, and it was training. 'He's...he's just so selfish. He doesn't think about anyone but himself!' I would think to myself. But, it wasn't my right to judge him. No right at all. Needless to say, I tried to stay away from him during training after that.
'If you break through, you know you'll find it
So try until you break free to that blue, blue sky
That blue, blue sky
That blue, blue sky'
Team Gai was widely known in Konoha, for the different talents, which complimented each other. After a year of being teammates, the Chunnin exams came. Neji would never show it, but I knew he was excited about it. He wanted to show everyone what he was capable of. He was, after all, the great, almighty Neji Hyuga.
I was pretty excited about it too. It would be our first official exam as a team, and I just knew we had the potential to become Chunnin. Gai-Sensei, though being absolutely proud, and sure of our abilities, had wanted us to wait a whole year before entering. Besides, they wouldn't let rookies enter the exams, (something that had changed that year) and it would've been just a little too soon for our team to enter. We were talented, alright, but we just weren't as experienced. Neji had been a little irritated about not being able to enter the year prior but he didn't really show it. Shinobi rule. Don't ever show any emotion. Heh. If they were giving out awards for being an emotionless prick, Neji Hyuga would surely win first prize. By a landslide...
Then, one day, I found out I was totally wrong...
He was full of emotion. The thing was, no one knew about that. I didn't have a right to even ask, but I felt compelled to. I was his teammate, after all, so I had a right to know why he was acting that way... right? That's exactly what was on my mind when I asked him that day...
Flashback~ (3rd person POV)
Tenten walked into the training grounds. She had been a little surprised to find that Neji was actually benefiting from training with her for the upcoming Chunnin exams, after passing the preliminaries (which she had been very close to passing as well... had she not been paired with that Sand kunoichi...). So much, in fact, that she even felt a little overwhelmed over the whole thing. Then again, who wouldn't? This was Neji, the great Hyuga prodigy!
"Are you sure – you want to – um- train with me? I mean, everyone asked either their Jounin senseis, or a highly-ranked family member, and you come asking me, a Gennin, to help you train?" Tenten looked at him a little disbelievingly.
The prodigy raised an elegant eyebrow. "Do you seriously doubt your abilities that much?"
The brunette female narrowed her eyes after that, and said, "...I don't doubt my abilities. That's not what I meant."
"...Then, what did you mean?" he seemed to be enjoying himself by making her lose her patience.
"Just... why me?" she looked at him, with curiosity brimming in her beautiful amber-chocolate eyes.
"...I believe the question you are trying to ask, Tenten, is, 'why not?' but if you don't want to train with me, just say so." he said, emotion lacking in his voice.
"N-no! It's - it's not that! It's – just that – I'm surprised – that's all!" The bun-haired girl exclaimed.
Neji suppressed a smirk, and decided to nod. "Hn."
"...What the hell does that mean?" she asked, quirking a brown brow.
Neji did not respond immediately. "...Nothing at all," he said, an amused smirked plastered itself into his usual stoic face after seeing her narrow her eyes in annoyance.
Tenten was even more surprised at his smirk. Amusement. It was, after all, an emotion, right? Then again, so was anger, annoyance, irritation, and that distant, distant pain she could see in his eyes whenever he dropped his guard.
She then remembered the long haired boy in front of her. "...I'm having a hard time believing that," she said. "I'm almost positive it stands out for something... Oh! It stands out for 'Hell No,' right?" she asked, her brown eyes widening slightly.
The Hyuga had closed his eyes, sighed, and proceeded to look at her. "Tomorrow. 6:30 AM. Same place." He turned around to leave, without another word.
Panting, Tenten reclined her back, not quite sitting, against the big oak that served them as shade.
Neji, on the other hand, was barely scratched. That Palm Rotation of his was something else, alright. After much work, the duo had been able to strength it. It was a complete success now, and it was able to deflect Tenten's weapons perfectly. After 3 Twin Rising Dragons, however, the couple had been quite exhausted, and out of chakra.
"We – can continue tomorrow," Tenten dismissed, and closed her eyes.
"Hn." The Hyuga silently agreed, and sighed. It had been quite a workout session. However, he had been able to deflect Tenten's weapons, and that was all that mattered. He had perfected one of the Forbidden Jutsu of the Hyuga clan- The Palm Rotation.
He knew he had Tenten to thank for that, but didn't say anything to the brunette. It wasn't necessary.
"Hey – Neji?" Tenten asked all of a sudden, bringing the boy back to the present.
"Hn," he grunted.
"Why – why do you want to master this jutsu so badly? What's to it?" the brunette asked him, out of true curiosity.
Neji tensed slightly. Tenten noticed though, and stared at him, waiting for an answer.
"..." he didn't say anything, and refused to meet her gaze.
"...Neji? Did you hear what I said?" Tenten asked, hoping to get a reply from her sparring partner.
"Hn." he grunted, and proceeded to sit down next to a nearby tree. He closed his eyes, and crossed his legs Indian-style, deliberately ignoring her.
Tenten wanted an answer though. When she agreed to train with him for the upcoming event, she had known it would be no walk in the park. She knew just how ruthless he was when it came to training. But still. He pushed both of their limits to the edge, and expected her to say nothing? No bloody likely.
"Neji," Tenten said, with determination brimming strongly in the dept of her voice.
The Hyuga continued to ignore her. Tenten didn't really want to push him though. She also happened to know what it was like to face his wrath. Not that it had been directed to her, but to Lee. She wanted to know, though. There had to be reason behind it, right? Aside from winning the Chunnin exams, of course...
"It's none of your business." he said quietly, finally looking at her.
Tenten stared at him with a disbelieving expression. "None of my business?"
He sighed, stood up, and went to his sack, which was positioned next to hers. "We'll call it a day." he said, monotonously.
Tenten frowned, and decided she needed to know. "Why – why won't you tell me?" she looked at him expectantly.
He turned to look at her. His face showed a mixture of annoyance, irritation, and exasperation. "I told you. It's none of your business. You have no right to pry into my personal affairs, Tenten."
The way he said her name made her flinch. His tone was cold, and his face grave. She bit her lip, and took a deep breath. "...No, I don't... But there's gotta be a reason for your attitude. I'm sure you're nice... way deep down..." she murmured to herself, very, very quietly, hoping he wouldn't catch that.
But he was Hyuga Neji. Of course he would. "It's none of your concern. I thought I made that clear before," he said, turning to glare at his sparring teammate with his piercing, Byakugan eyes.
Tenten bit her lip uncomfortably. "Neji... I'm sorry I asked, but – but I mean – I was worried about you! You've been training to much, and I – you know what? ...Forget I even asked..." she said, trying to evade his wrath.
But he glared at her, as if he had not heard her. Tenten could sense the raging aura emitting from the boy in front of her. "No, Tenten. You want to know why I have been training so hard, and so much? You want to know why I'm so determined to learn the Kaiten? WELL, DON'T YOU?" he suddenly yelled.
Tenten's eyes shot wide open. She kept quiet, but on the inside, she was terrified. She knew she had crossed a line earlier, but she had never guessed he would react this way. A glare, and a 'Hn' was what she had expected.
"I train.. for a single purpose. To prove to the Main Household of the Hyuga clan, that they did wrong in 'honoring' me with the cursed mark of the Caged Bird. I do it out of hate. Out of desperation," he said, looking more, and more angry by the second. His frustration was coming all out. Tenten knew not what he was talking about, and she had a feeling she DID NOT want to know.
Suddenly, Neji was up, and advancing towards her quickly. Tenten tried backing up, but it was impossible with the oak tree already pressed to her back.
She shook her head, hoping it would signal Neji that he had gone too far. But to no avail. The Hyuga prodigy kept walking slowly towards her. Tenten could see a glint of hate in his lavender eyes, and it scared her.
And something that surprised her, to say in the least, was to see how much he was trying to actually defy his destiny. Even after all those lectures directed towards her and Lee, she didn't know what he was trying to imply. But she wasn't going to ask. Not when he was acting this way. Not when he had full advantage and control of her. She didn't want to trigger more of his anger, though it seemed as if his hate, and rage had all been set out. And, that, that was what truly frightened her.
Neji had a glint on his eye, that told her that he had full intentions of hurting something – namely her. He pulled at his hitai-ate, and suddenly, a green mark on his forehead was visible.
She gasped quietly, and stared shamelessly. Neji glared at her. Their communication that moment, depended all on stares, looks, and glares, until Tenten decided to speak. She didn't want more anger aimed at her, but she just needed to ask. She couldn't help herself, and so, she spoke.
"...What – is that?" she spoke slowly, in a dazzled manner.
The Hyuga narrowed his eyes. His voice cold, and bitter. "This is what has me working so hard every damn day. This is what keeps me under that damn leash. THIS IS WHAT SEALED MY DESTINY!"
Tenten didn't say anything, but kept staring. Neji's voice had scared her own away. She could only gape at him, and hope with all her might, that he would not hurt her to the extent that no one would recognize her.
"Is – is that the-" she was cut off by his roar of a voice.
"Yes. It's the Caged Bird curse mark of the Hyuga Clan. Look at it, Tenten. LOOK AT IT! This is what sealed me. This is what is causing me so much sorrow, anger, and pain. DO YOU SEE IT?" he yelled, pointing at his forehead, in an accusing manner.
The bun-haired Kunoichi said nothing, in fear that her voice would crack, or wouldn't come out at all.
"Do – do you see it?" he said, his eyes dropping to the ground, ashamed. His eyes were moist, and Tenten could see he was trying to restrain tears.
Neji Hyuga crying. Now, that was something else. And, she felt bad. Because she had triggered his sorrow. And his tears. And she felt horrible for it. She knew it wasn't something to just be scared of, and she knew she couldn't feel pity for him, as he would never accept that. He wouldn't want her to think he was weak. That's what tears meant for him. Weakness. And if there was something Neji Hyuga wasn't, it was weak. Pity, was something he did. Not her. He was always pitying people, telling them that they would never reach their goals. Because everyone had a destiny flow. That was his belief – Destiny controls everything. Everything is set in stone. You can't change your life pattern. It's been pre-destined, and there is nothing you can do about it. Yet, he always spent time training. Trying to get stronger. She had wondered about it too... She would think, 'If he thinks that everything is controlled by destiny, then why does he keep doing that? Why does he try to get stronger when he says that your strengths wont change? Why is he defying his own beliefs?' It didn't make any sense. At all. Whatsoever.
Part of Tenten didn't want to say anything. She didn't want to know anymore. She didn't want to know what the Caged Bird curse mark was. She didn't want to know why he had it on his forehead. But the other part, well, the other part of her wanted to speak up. To ask questions. To understand. That part of her wanted to know why he was in pain. Wanted to know why he was suffering, and who's ass to kick for that. Wanted to know what the curse mark was, so she could get rid of his suffering. These two parts, were, her brain, and her heart.
She realized, the moment she saw his tears, that she loved him. The Ice King. Konoha's Human Ice Cube. The long-haired Hyuga Prodigy. Neji Hyuga.
She loved him more than anything. She saw his tears, and realized how much it hurt her to see them, spilling from his beautiful lavender-tinted eyes, and rolling over his fair cheeks. She wanted nothing more, than to give him a hug, and be the one who could catch all his tears.
"This. The symbol of the Branch Family. The reason why my – my father-" he was cut off by his own voice, breaking. He didn't meet her eyes. His head looking down, as if he were bowing to her. She didn't want to see the back of his head though. She wanted to see his handsome face instead.
"...What happened to your family?" she asked almost to herself.
Neji finally looked up. "Do you really want to know?" he asked bitterly.
The moment of truth. Did she? Did she want to find out? If you were to ask her, her very first answer would be a 'HELL YES!' from her heart. But her brain contradicted it.
She opted to go for the very first answer. "...Yes." she said faintly.
His eyes narrowed. "Very well, then. I will tell you. But you must keep the secret. Do you UNDERSTAND?" He said, almost yelling the last word.
She nodded her head yes slowly, assuring him that she wasn't scared (even is she was... a tiny bit. But she wasn't going to tell him that.), and that she trusted him (even if it wasn't much...) That she wanted to know more about him, and learn his secrets. She wanted to tell him she loved him. But she wouldn't, of course. She wouldn't do anything that would set that little trust he barely seemed to have in her, to vanish as quickly as it had been born. In a flash.
"It was the Hyuga Elders. Lord Hiashi. My uncle. They – they branded my father with this same curse mark I wear in my forehead. And you know why? It was just because he was born a few seconds later... he was thrown into the Branch Family like a piece of garbage. Suffering, always restrained by the leash of the curse mark." he said bitterly.
"Neji – what- what does the curse mark – what does it do?" she asked, feeling as though she was prying into dangerous territory. It wasn't her right to ask, and she knew that. She knew she should probably let him speak, and explain everything by himself.
"The curse represents the mark of a bird in a cage... It is... the symbol of being tied down to an inescapable destiny. Not only that, but it causes great pain to the bearer." he explained, looking down.
It surprised her, really, how he seemed to have calmed his temper down. He didn't seem mad at her anymore. He seemed mad at the Hyuga. At the curse mark. At himself.
"Why – why is there even a curse mark? Why would they have such a thing?" she mused silently, hoping he wouldn't catch it.
"The seal is given to all Branch House members by the members of the Main House. Its main purpose is to seal their Byakugan ability when they die, preventing an enemy from learning its secrets. Its secondary purpose is to control the Branch House," he said, his voice getting icy cold. His eyes were shut, and he ran his fingers over his forehead. New tears formed on the edges of his closed eyes. "since it can be activated at will by a Main House member with a hand seal that only they know about."
"But – why would they do that? Why would they cause pain? Why would they torture people – their own family – so?" she asked quietly, looking fondly at him.
"The pain – the pain is so great, it destroys the wearer's brain cells." he said with hate, and sorrow full on his voice. His cheeks were stained with the salty substance, but even so, he seemed to be trying to hold the tears back.
"N-Neji," she started, and sighed. "When – when did they-" he cut her off. He knew what she was getting at.
He explained it in a business like manner, even when his voice sounded strained, and husky from the crying. "The seal is placed on the wearer's forehead when the next member of the Main House turns three years old. I received mine at the age of four, on Hinata's third birthday. It's only removed upon our death. Branch House members – we tend to keep our forehead's covered because of the seal." he murmured, sounding pained.
"Oh, Neji..." her voice sounded distant. She couldn't hold back any longer. She couldn't just stand there, and watch him suffer. She just couldn't do it. Not when she loved him so. Not when she only wished for his happiness. Not when she wanted to be the one who bore him that happiness. She wanted nothing more than that. His smile. She wanted to see it. If not a small, little smile, then at least, a smirk. It would show something other than sorrow, pain, anger, and irritation – the emotions he had displayed just now.
"My father – he was killed for the Hyuga clan. He was murdered by them. Taken away from me – from life. He had no choice. He had to die for the 'good of the clan'. Hinata-sama had been taken by one of Kumogakure's enemy ninja, with the intent of gaining the secret of the Byakugan. Lord Hiashi stopped him, and killed him. He was a feudal leader, and, apparently, Kumogakure was not happy. They demanded the body of Hiashi-sama in return for the death of their leader. Hiashi-sama was too good to go – he was their precious leader... and so, they – my father..." he said, crying harder now. He didn't try to stop the tears this time – it just couldn't be helped. Not anymore. He knew she could see them clearly, but honestly, he didn't care anymore. Not when he had just told her his deepest, and darkest secret. He needed to vent – to let his anger out. Though, if he were to admit to himself, crying in front of his sparring partner, probably wasn't the smartest way to go – he didn't care anymore. His pride and ego were long dead, and gone, so it didn't much matter anyway.
"Your – your farther... Neji, I'm so sorry..." she looked down, feeling a little of the sorrow he felt. She almost felt what he did – her parents had been killed during an ANBU mission, which had been the hardest one during their time yet. The chance of getting out of there alive, was very slim, and so, they weren't lucky, leaving a 5 year-old Tenten alone, in the trusting hands of her grandmother.
Of course, her grandmother had taken great care of her, and never tried to tell her otherwise of her parents' death. She had known from the beginning that mommy and daddy weren't coming back. That she would never see them again. She had cried herself to sleep countless times, and she would even dream of them occasionally, waking up with tears in her eyes. But the emotion she felt the most, was hate. Hate towards those enemy ninja who had taken their lives. Hate towards the people who had taken all that Tenten loved. So, Tenten knew, if only a little bit, what Neji was feeling. She knew what great pain it must've been causing him. She had gotten over her parents' death a long time ago, and didn't bore that big of a grudge anymore. She knew they had died in a mission, yes, in the hands of enemy ninja, but she also knew they had died, protecting their village. Her. Their loved ones, and that made them heroes.
Tenten bit her lip, crossing the short distance in between them quite quickly, and decided to test her luck. She wrapped her arms around his neck, and immediately felt his body stiffen. A wave of panic soared through her body. She expected him to push off of him right away, but, much to her surprise, he didn't. Instead, hesitantly, he wrapped his arms around her waist, and buried his face in her shoulder blade. She felt him hiccup against her skin. She smiled fondly, holding him tighter. She felt him relax a little – not much though. You could practically feel the tension rolling in the air. But he was hugging her, and that was all that mattered. He trusted her, and he was letting her hold him. He needed her, and if he did, she was going to be there, even if it costed her her very own life.
"Thank you, Neji," she said softly. He pulled away a little, his eyes a little bloodshot.
"...For what?" he asked, a little confused.
"For trusting me. For letting me hold you. For letting me in. Thank you."
He looked at her. There was a strange fondness there, that she had not noticed before, as it was never there. She felt a blush cover her cheeks and her neck.
"No. If anyone should be saying 'thank you', that should be me. Tenten you – you have set a small part of me free." he told her. His deep baritone voice husky.
"Thank you, Tenten."
'With a sound like all civility was gone
The rusted, old window broke'
-End of flashback-
Incredibly, he lost to Naruto. He had been amazing during the battle, though. Except for the monologue at the beginning. It almost seemed as if our little chat had never happened.
As if I had never set that small part of him free.
I went to see how he was doing right after Shikamaru's battle with that Sand kunoichi who had beaten me during the preliminaries, Temari.
After awhile (….AGES), Shikamaru was able to somewhat beat the blonde, but then decided to quit, as he was out of chakra. Naturally, she won by default.
I asked a medic for directions, and made my way to Neji's room.
I was prepared to hear all about it – destiny this, destiny that, but I didn't really cared. His pride, and ego would be gone by now. He would probably sulk, and glare, and yell. I didn't care though. I loved him. All I wanted was to see how he was doing. Emotionally. Was he okay? Was he hurt? Would he want to talk later?
Needless to say, I was more than shocked and surprised at what I found instead.
I opened the door slowly, to find him staring down on the stretcher. But instead of the frowning, annoyed, and pissed-off face I had been expecting , he was smiling.
It was tiny, but it was there. A genuine smile. In his hand, was a scroll.
"N-Neji?" I asked quietly. He nodded in acknowledgment.
"I came to see you – How are you feeling?" I said, just as loudly as before.
He looked at me. There was something different in his eyes. The way they were glinting...
I walked inside the room, and stopped at about ten feet away from him.
"I'm fine." he said, closing his eyes.
"Don't be disappointed... Naruto – it was sheer luck he won! You're unbelievably strong, and you were amazing during the match..." I kept talking – or... rambling.
He re-opened his eyes to look at me. I saw a twinkle of of amusement playing in the depths of soft lavender.
"It's alright, Tenten." he said, cutting off my ranting, and rambling. "I'm over that already. Naruto won fair and square. That kid – he doesn't give up. He taught me something by fighting with me." he said thoughtfully.
"Taught you – something?" I frowned, a little confused by his words.
"Yes. Naruto Uzumaki taught me – that I am free. I've always been, and always will be – so long as I have a goal – and the desire to do accomplish it. The desire to fly away." he said, looking up to me with a smile playing on his tired face. "Naruto laid out the lesson – and my father helped me comprehend it." he said, looking out the window.
Two birds were flying free in the sky, next to the ever-so-green tree tops.
"I have learned my lesson."
'Look, you're so sick of looking at that cage that you're throwing it away
Without ever looking back again'
He became much more open with time. We didn't seem like a hindrance to him any longer – at least, I didn't. He tolerated Lee, but that was about it.
We kept training together, but this time, he wasn't as ruthless. We could actually take breaks, and he wasn't always just scowling at everything I did.
On the contrary – he guided me, praised me (yes, it may seem like a bluff, but he did so – in the most, subtle way possible.) He also opened up to me much more, letting me into his new life ambition – becoming ANBU captain leader.
I was quite surprised with his choice, and part of me feared he would suffer my parents' mistakes, and misfortune, but I didn't let him know. I couldn't. I had promised myself, that I would support him 100%, no matter what.
I wanted him to have dreams, even if he was realistic about things, so, I told him what he already knew – he could do it.
He was a genius, a prodigy! Of course he could do it. Hard work, and determination were not things he wasn't associated with, so, with a combination of both, he would soon be an ANBU leader.
When? Whenever he was ready, of course. There was no pressure. Only the desire to become stronger.
'That throbbing beat takes your breath away
And you kick open that window and take off'
The day we were informed Sasuke Uchiha had been taken by Orochimaru, we were training. Shikamaru came, looking extremely annoyed, to tell Neji about th events that had happened regarding the younger Uchiha prodigy.
"...So, Tsunade-sama had ordered me to gather all the Gennin. We're on a mission to bring Sasuke back. I'm team captain. We leave today. Get ready." He finish with a yawn, as Neji processed the information given to him.
With a sigh, he turned to look at me.
"I guess I don't have much of a choice. I'm sorry about this inconvenience, Tenten. Do you mind if we continue our spar right after we're back?" he asked.
I blinked. "No need to apologize. I completely understand, and not at all. I will be waiting, though." I smiled at him. He smirked back, getting his rucksack.
"Then, I shall not make you wait long, right?" he raised an elegant eyebrow.
"No. That would be extremely rude. Now, go and bring that damn rookie back already, will ya?" I smirked when he rolled his eyes and began walking away with Shikamaru.
"Good-bye, Tenten. See you soon," he called over his shoulder.
"Bye Tenten." Shikamaru did the same, though he did so in a lazy manner.
"Good-bye. Be safe..." I whispered the last part, a smile playing on my lips.
'You said if you could run, you would obtain it
You're tempted by that distant, distant voice'
"Tenten-chan!" I head a female voice call my name.
I turned around, to find the pale face, and pink hair of Haruno Sakura.
"Oh, hey Sakura. What's up?" I asked nonchalantly, as I sharpened the kunai in my hand.
"The Sasuke Retrieval squad – they're back! Naruto, Kiba, Akamaru, Choji, Neji, Lee, Shikamaru!" she exclaimed.
The Kunai slipped from my fingers, and met the cold ground with a 'klank'.
"LEE? What the hell was he doing with them? I thought he was in the hospital, in the intensive care area!" I yelled, trying to get all my weapons into their respective scrolls quickly.
"Yes, well... He... kind of escaped..."
...Now she tells me...
"Neji..." his name slipped from my mouth.
"Tenten," Sakura bit her lip and hesitated.
"...What happened to him? Where's Neji? ...Damnit, Sakura! What the scorching hell happened to Neji?" I finally yelled. My voice was shaky though. Unusually so.
When she didn't say anything, my thoughts flew to the worst.
"...He's – he's not d-"
"No, he's not dead! Just gravely injured. Shizune has been operating on him ever since they got back. They're hoping Tsunade-sama will finish operating on Choji, who is in a more grave stave, and then move onto Neji." she explained.
I gave a shaky sigh of relief. "Thank – thank goodness."
I forgot all about my weapons at that moment thought. All I wanted was to see Neji. To hear him talk. To hear, and see that he was alright.
'It grasps your far too dazzling hand
Until you pursue that blue, blue sky'
I don't remember much... only waking up with dried tear trails staining my flushed cheeks, as he gripped my hand, looking intently at me.
"Neji! You're awake!" I sighed in relief as he smiled.
I couldn't help myself at that moment. I threw myself at him, trying not to hurt him.
He stiffened for a nanosecond, before pulling me closer to him. New tears filled my eyes. Tears of joy, relief, happiness. Tears of love.
'I understand that you are falling
But still, continue to follow the light'
"Thank you, Tenten. Thank you." he murmured.
I smiled. I loved him. No matter what, and no matter why, I would always be there for him.
"...I – I love you, Tenten." he mumbled into my hair.
I stiffened, and he tensed.
...He... loved me?
I pulled away from our hug to look at him. He was blushing, but he wasn't kidding. He was completely serious.
I smiled fondly at him, and looked at him in a way that said 'Good. Because I love you too.'
He smiled once again, and brushed a hand over my cheek. Cupping it, and pulling my face closer. He leaned in, and our lips met for a few, heavenly, blissful seconds.
'You say if you could fly, you would never come back
You searched for those white, white clouds'
I smiled as we pulled away. The way he looked at me, told me that our kiss, had meant more to him, than any silly rank promotion ever would. It told me how much he really loved me.
'If you break through, you know you'll find it
So try until you break free to that blue, blue sky
That blue, blue sky
That blue, blue sky'
"You are my blue sky, Tenten. And I'm a lost, blue bird."
A/N~ Sooooo! Just how utterly crappy was that? Gotta admit, it was way fun to write, but it wasn't that great... not the ending anyway O_O But, give me a break! It's my first songfic, it is currently 1:00 AM, and it's CHRISTMAS. HELL YEAH! ;D
Did you all get awesome presents? I hope you did (: I got a PANDA PILLOW PET, a Pikachu stuffed animal , money, make up, perfume, clothes, a new electric guitar, and a bunch of other crap xD
Anyways, hope you all enjoyed this... On, and for the record, it wasn't supposed to be this damn long... =w=" *shot*
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL OF YOU. I LOVE YOU ALL! -insert less than three here-
Don't forget to review... as a Christmas present to me? :3
Until Next time,