Don't Let Go

DISCLAIMER: I do not own Naruto, if I did, ShikaTema would have happened by now

"Temari!" Shikamaru screamed her name as she fell into the rapids. No one, except her brothers, probably didn't know this but Temari Sabaku No can not swim. She lives in Suna afterall and being a ninja you usually can just walk on the water. So ninjas don't necessarily need to learn. Plus there are a lot more jutsus ninjas could use to escape swimming.

At the angle she fell and how shocked she was the enemy actually was able to pinpoint a weakness on her, she didn't make it in time to use a jutsu or stand on water. Plus this part of the river was so choppy because of all the rocks. Creating level 5 rapids. Only a great swimmer could live through that, and let's face it. She can't. He had to try though, he couldn't lose her, not like his sensei.

The enemy, unfortunately can use water type jutsus. So he can make the water more rougher, faster, more violent to her body. She looked like a rag doll being thrown into rocks like that and Shikamaru couldn't do anything. He very well can't jump in to save her. He would only be killing both of them. Yet he can't sit on the sidelines watching her fall to her death. This isn't how she would have liked it to go.

"Temari, have you ever thought about how your going die?" Shikamaru asked, curious about the answer he would get.

"Of course. It will be me against a whole army of men, that are at least A-rank criminals. By the end of the battle, the last man will fall. I, a woman, would have defeated a whole army of men. Then the world will realize that women can be just a strong maybe even stronger than men. Then as soon as that last man falls, I will struggle to stay alive. Then someone will no doubt find me dead. I mean seriously. I just fought a whole army and have no chakra, and there will be injuries all over my body. I would have bled to death." Then she smiled proudly about her future death. "Everyone will recognize that I can do as much as my brothers."

"What if you live though? Like the person who finds you is a medic and can save you?"

"I never thought of it that way. Well I guess I will be saved. Then I can go on living. If I am not already, I will get married and have kids. Then at an old age I will die." She thought of the future. Smiling at the thought of having kids and a family to take care of.

"Oh...who do you want to marry?" Shikamaru leaned in as if she was going to tell him the secret.

Temari smirked at him and put her fingers to her lips. "Now that, my friend, is a secret." Then she got up and walked away saying something about it being late.

Shikamaru shook his head. He wanted to know the answer. He wanted to ask her on his own, if she would marry him and carry his children.

He launched himself into the water not caring about dying anymore. Just the thought of losing her drove him crazy!

"Shika-!" He looked over at her just in time to see her struggling on a rock, and the rock getting slippery as each mili-second goes by. She tried to pull herself on top of it but the enemy created a enormous wave that pushed her off it. Closer to the waterfall. Shikamaru started to kick his legs faster. The current helping him get pulled along, closer to her, closer to saving her.

Shikamaru looked over the surface of the water, trying to find her and yet also trying to keep his head up out of the water. He saw one of her blond tufts go under. He pushed forward and reached out for the stray tuft of hair. His fingers grazed her face, then she was grabbing onto him trying to pull herself up. They were clinging onto each other through the rapids, afraid to let go of the other, afraid that if they let go, their lover would be lost and never seen again.

Shikamaru looked at her frightened eyes, there was blood on her body, blending into the river. He didn't understand, it looked like she was losing all of her blood. If that were true, shouldn't the river be as red as her blood? Showing the might-be-death of his future wife (hopefully?).

"Temari! I have a question to ask you?"

She looked at Shikamaru as if he was stupid. "Now? I think we are a little busy. Don't you think?"

"This may be the only time I can ask you!" She nodded her head, giving him permission to ask away.

"Temari Sabaku No, will you marry me? I have no ring, not much money, I still have yet to buy an apartment, I don't exactly know if I am the right choice for you, but I want you to be mine. I want to wake up to your face every morning. I want to have children with you. I want to always be there to protect you no matter what."

Shikamaru couldn't tell if she was crying or if it was just the water on her face, but she did look happy. "You finally asked. I've been waiting for awhile." Signaling him that she would marry him.

Shikamaru kissed her, well tried. They were still hitting rocks and getting dragged under the surface at some points. A rushing came to Temari's ears.

"Hey, the waterfall...what are we going to-"

"How precious is this! Two ninjas, two people just got engaged and they are about to die. This is all much too fun." They both looked at the guy who interrupted Temari. He was the enemy that was giving them trouble in the first place. Shikamaru grounded his teeth together, furious with this man trying to hurt his future wife.

"Too bad one of you won't make it to the wedding..and I think I just know who it might be." The mist ninja smirked towards them then started to start summoning a jutsu. The water started to go faster towards the waterfall. Shikamaru's mind was working as fast as it could. He saw a tiny brown boulder type-thing. 'If I can grab that then we can survive...most likely." He thought.

Shikamaru grabbed the rock and it yanked his arm back a little bit, causing slight pain to shoot through his nervous system. He snatched Temari's hand at just the last minute before she fell to the rocks below them.

"Nara...the rock." He looked back up and saw it start breaking, crumbling. The ninja was standing on it, even jumping on it to hurry up the process. 'What am I supposed to do now? I can't let her go.' He scanned the area for anything, anything that could help him in this situation. He felt her hand start to slip. He looked down and saw water forming between their intertwined hands, trying to loosen their grip.

"No. Don't let go Temari! You can't. You just can't."

"Crybaby. If I don't let go, we both die. I can't know I let you died. I have to make sure your safe. You know earlier when you said you would want to protect me always? Well I have a little secret. I am secretly protecting you, with you thinking you are protecting me. If that makes any sense to you at all. I don't want you dead, stay alive. Don't cry for me. I love you crybaby."

Then she let go, falling to the rocks. Her body crumbled like a rag doll. She hit the ground so hard, and blood just started pouring out of her frail form. Anger bubbled inside of him as he looked at her body laying there, not moving at all.

-(The rest will be in Shikamaru's POV)-

There was an area where she always wanted to be buried. A place where the sand meets grass. The tombstone was at the bottom of the tree and her whole coffin would stretch to the sand of the desert. That way she is connected to her family ties, her brothers, and also me. She hated the idea of being seperate from either of us. That is why we never pushed our relationship. I couldn't leave Konoha, she couldn't leave Suna.

Now here I am. At her grave after a year of losing her. Talking to her, I visit her every month. Telling her everything that has happened with everyone. Especially her brothers. I bet she would have loved to hear about how they are doing. I miss her so so much, my heart is aching for her.

"Sir. We need to continue the mission." I set down the lillies, her favorite flower, on her grave.

"Of course. Anbu squad 4 head out."

I became an anbu captain, not caring about my life or anything. Yet I still am alive to keep her final wish. I was going after her killer. Apparently he was a deadly S-class criminal.

Now he is going to pay for making her let go of my hand.

Author's Notes:

Ok. This has been on my mind for awhile. The ending took me forever to write. I had 3 ideas (this one being the 3rd). I know it is sad, but I thought it was cute..well you know what I mean. Thanks for reading and please review~