Title: Ashes and Wine
Summary: Those words were heavy things. She could feel their weight crashing in, asphyxiating her; the truth behind them ringing loudly in her head. / One-shot.
Characters: Haruno Sakura, Karin.
Pairings: SasuSaku if you squint.

A/N: I am well aware that Karin has stated that she no longer cares for Sasuke, etc, etc, but this is a different take on what could have had happened after Karin is brought in for questioning/treatment back in Konoha. Also, this was written with the thought in mind that Sasuke might need the best medicnin alive (in this case the most accessible) for his little eye problem. But we will talk about that in the one-shot following this one!

Warnings: OCCish Karin, don't read if it bothers you.

Standard disclaimers apply; I'm only building tiny sand castles in Kishi's sandbox. Title taken from A Fine Frenzy's song by the same name. And like always, many thanks to bluemagiceye59 for her beta work. ILU bb 33
***Comments are always appreciated!


Controlling my feelings for too long
Forcing our darkest souls to unfold
And forcing our darkest souls to unfold
Pushing us into self destruction
Pushing us into self destruction

-Showbiz/Muse


Jealousy is an ugly, ravenous monster; Karin knows this better than most.
It poisons the blood; eats up your insides until you're nothing but an empty shell that can only echo what one desires, but can never have.

She could feel the creature coiling in her belly now. She could almost savor the metal taste of hate and spite on her tongue.

Remember, Karin. Sympathy is a burden, but hate-hate is a delectable pleasure.
When she speaks there's a twisted smile in her voice and a haunted look in her eyes.

"That day…he meant to kill you too, you know."

/

Sakura's hands hesitate, if only for a second, the chakra flow passing through her hands wavering slightly at the girl's words.

Karin. Her mind bitterly recalls, but she says nothing; she never does. Just like she no longer flinches at the sight of the nukenin's marked body, or at the thought of his bite marks adorning her flesh.
Now, there's only silence.

The soft glow of her healing jutsu comes to an end, and as she turns to leave, cool, emerald orbs meet red.

There's a twisted madness reflected in those red pools, and the pinkette finds that she's unable to look away.

/

"He's coming for you, and if I were you, I would run; run fast and far, Sakura."
Sakura.
It's what he had called her.
The name spoken like the recollection of a secret long ago forgotten; spoken as if the Konoha kunoichi had meant something to him once, (his Sakura), and that is more than what Karin could ever hope to be in his eyes.
She has nothing left to lose now.
A cruel smile tugs at her lips, taunting, but when she speaks again there is truth in her words.
"He's not the same boy from your warm childhood memories; the Sasuke you knew is gone. Now there's only a murderer with a poisoned heart."

/

"He's coming for you, and if I were you, I would run; run fast and far, Sakura."
Liar, liar, liar; you are a liar. Not for me, never for me.

"He's not the same boy from your warm childhood memories; the Sasuke you knew is gone. Now there's only a murderer with a poisoned heart."

Those words were heavy things. She could feel their weight crashing in, asphyxiating her; the truth behind them ringing loudly in her head.

And yet she's trapped by her own inquisition, caught by the desperate need to know something, anything, about him. Her desire stronger than the pain that staying will surely cause.

"But you see, he's coming for me too, Sa-ku-ra-chan"
Each syllable is drawn-out, spoken in a voice as sweet as poisonous honey. And then the girl giggles; a shrill, sugary sound that sends a chill down Sakura's spine and roots her in place.
God, turn me into stone, turn me into stone. Don't let me break now.

"My Sasuke-kun is coming to see me, but not for the same reason he's coming to see you."

There's no helping the small tremble of her lips, the sudden pang of hurt in her chest.
Her vision blurs as unshed tears threaten to spill.

Now there's only a murderer with a poisoned heart.

Her silence speaks louder than her words ever could.