As always, I do not own Naruto.
Please enjoy and reviews are appreciated.
Hinata took a small sip of her hot jasmine tea and touched a picture and unfolded the letter. Hinata left nothing to chance anymore. She documented so much of life that anyone who wasn't her would feel as if by looking at the pictures they had been her all their lives.
She had kept his letter. The first sign of him in nine excruciating months.
Her memory sparked.
Hinata tried to open her eyes but they felt heavy.
She could hear the light beeping of a machine, the antiseptic smell of the hospital and the cotton sheets on her bed. She forced her fingers to twitch in order to make sure they were working properly.
When she got to the left hand something obstructed her from moving them.
She felt the warmth on her hand and tried harder to open her eyes.
A hand was over her's. Her vision was blurry but she lifter her other hand to rub her eyes.
A hand caught her weak trembling arm and she felt a pair of lips kiss her gently on the forehead.
She blinked many times to see Sasuke standing at her bedside.
"It's you!" she croaked. Her throat was dry and raspy. Tears began to flood her vision. "You came back!"
"I said that I would," Sasuke put a warm hand on her cheek and kissed her.
It wasn't quiet the next few days. Hinata didn't ask and Sasuke didn't tell. Both busied themselves with the two boys who fussed over everything. Sasuke was patient and handled them with care and Hinata was just as gentle. It was four days of silence between them before it was finally broken.
"You kept these?" Hinata had been snooping through Sasuke's desk. It's not like he objected. She had found all the letters she wrote to him. A small ribbon tied them into a small bundle.
"Of course," he said to her as if it was odd she would ask that question. "It was what made me strong. I don't know how long I thought you were dead."
"You thought I was dead?" Hinata whispered. She didn't want to wake the twins.
Sasuke stood up and motioned for her to follow him. She fell into step next to him as he left the house and lead her through the gardens behind the house.
"You did wonders for this garden," he stopped next to a rose bush. Hinata opened her mouth to speak but she shut it and glanced back at the house with her Byakugan. She was satisfied with seeing just her two boys asleep.
"I completed my mission," Sasuke. "I can't say what it was because of it's rank."
Hinata rolled her eyes, "Of course."
"It was fine until I left," he stared into her lavender eyes. "I was taking my time, thinking I had plenty of it. I found this small picture of you, just lying in my path and I picked it up. It had blood and a message saying, "Blood for blood." I believed that they had killed you. I let my guard down for only a moment. I remember a stinging feeling all over my body."
Hinata saw the pain in his eyes. He kept his composure but she knew where to look for the answers. She touched his hand with hers. The slight touch seemed to bring him alive. His eyes were shining like he was holding back tears. Hinata slid her arms around his waist.
"We've just found each other again," her voice soothing. "Let's not rush this."
She felt him nodding in agreement. She hated not knowing but she didn't want to rush his story.
Inside one of the twins cried.
Hinata sighed, "It's probably Tsuhiko. That boy just doesn't like to sleep."
She pulled away and gave Sasuke her sweetest smile before disappearing into the house to calm Tsuhiko.
At nearly two in the morning Hinata got Tsuhiko to sleep. His twin never woke during the night. Hinata climbed into an empty bed and fell asleep almost as soon as her head hit the pillow. She woke in a quiet house. She touched her stomach instinctively to make sure she hadn't dreamed it all. Instead she found Sasuke's hand around her waist. He was still fast asleep as she crawled out of bed to make breakfast and check the boys. On the kitchen table was a typed letter addressed to her. She smiled and began to read.
As my wife, you are entitled to know these important things. I didn't think you would mind reading it. When I was attacked, they beat me within an inch of death. They left me and I was certain I would die. I welcomed it if I would see you again. The next memory I have is waking up and seeing blackness, or rock walls from the small flame of a candle. At first, I was alone. I wondered how I survived, and where I was. My wounds were dressed and my muscles were weak and they ached. Bones were broken and I waited for death again.
I slipped in and out of consciousness many times those first few... well I'm not sure how long it was. The next thing I remember was I was sleeping and dreaming of you, it was a cheesy dream but it was wonderful. I felt something stinging in my side and I woke up to find this redheaded girl dabbing something into an open wound.
I asked her what she was doing and what happened.
She smiled weakly and told me to remain lying down.
"I'm sorry," she told me. "It's hard to administrate the antidote if you move."
"They attacked you with a poison only known to our clan. It's extremely lethal due to that fact," she went back to brushing this thick gel onto my open wounds. It stung like hell.
"What kind of poison is it?"
"The kind that makes healing almost completely impossible. It isolates the genes in the cells to stop the regeneration of new and healthy cells," she looked at me to see if I was getting it. "Basically it makes any wounds you receive only worse because they won't heal. This antidote rarely works because of different variants such as severity of wounds and number of poison."
"Number of poison?" I had to ask her.
"Well poison number one is simply used for interrogations, doesn't cause much damage just makes the wound heal very, very, very slowly," she motioned to an unopened jar next to her labeled #1. "Number two is used on weapons, it makes the wounds received sting and leaves it unable to heal.
"Number three," she held up the jar she had open and, I guess, had been using on me. "This hasn't been used since the ninja war. Your lucky to be alive. This level of poison effects the surrounding cells making a small cut on your side into a huge gash within days. It's a slow suffering death."
Her eyes were shining with tears like she was remembering something.
"So I was attacked with number 3?" it was stupid to ask but she nodded and began to tell me how she found me.
"I have long been disowned from my clan because of my heart. I fell in love with someone of a rival clan. My family disapproved and had him slain and me disowned," she told it so willingly. "I have been waiting for the day when I could get back at them but I don't have the heart to be ruthless like them. I caught wind of what you did – I can't explain seeing as this was part of my mission. Just know that it pissed them off real bad. - I knew they would use number three and attack you. Where they got the picture is a mystery. All I know is that they left you believing you would die shortly."
"This is you getting back at them?" I connected the dots. They wanted me dead and I wasn't, thanks to her.
"Yes," she smiled. "They really should have killed me if they didn't want me in the family. I mean honestly I was the poison expert of my generation. I was going to take their secrets with me."
She shared a lot of her life story. I know I fell into my old way of thinking: wishing she'd shut up. I tired to tune her out, but I realized that I was alive because of her. So I made an effort.
Then I asked her about you.
"Is Hinata really dead then? Or was that just to catch me off guard?"
"My guess is it was just to take your guard down," she told me honestly. "It's too complicated for them to go into a foreign village and kill her just to get back at you before you died."
My heart grew lighter.
"I feel like an idiot," I admitted. "I can't believe that I was so stupid and actually fell for that trick."
"You love her," she said so matter-of-factually. "It's completely understandable. For those we love we let down our guard. My family didn't kill me. They should have, but they didn't. It's really the thing that makes me not have the heart for getting revenge."
It made me think of you for hours before I got the courage to ask her a favor.
"Hey," I fumbled for a name but I remember she never gave it. "I know I don't deserve it but can I ask something more of you?"
"Of course," she sat closer ready to listen.
"Please will you check up on her? If I tell you where she is? Please? I just need to know," I asked.
She left me with the antidote, the poison was so strong I had to continue to put the antidote on it at certain intervals. She stealthily found her way into our estate and she saw you sleeping. She also saw the letters and brought them back to me. I had just finished the last of the food she had left me with the night before and I was starving when she came back.
"Great news!" she practically bounced in. "These are for you from her."
I couldn't read in such dim light so she read them to me. I imagined you speaking the words though. I thought only of you. I wanted to write you but my broken arm was so weak from dis use. I didn't realize how long I had been out until your letters. I had something to look forward to.
As I grew stronger she made another trip to find more and check up on you. I was beginning to walk. My wounds were closing faster. It was a personal inside joke of ours that love was what was healing me so fast. Honestly my wounds were of little concern to me. But she insisted on my taking a jar of the antidote so that when I did decide to leave early, which I did, I would be prepared for the trip home.
I got your very last letter and I could not wait longer I told her I would write you a letter. I wrote carefully but I think it came out crappy. That doesn't matter and I know that but it felt important. She delivered it without hesitation and my last wound was finally closing enough for travel.
I left as soon as I could.
It was a safe trip home.
I found you weren't home and I went to the hospital immediately.
I had asked a passing intern where you were and they said you were the only one in the maternity ward. Tenten was calling Neji when I came into your room. It was a mad house and they told me to leave but when they saw that it was me they didn't make me leave. They let me stay until they had you stable and the babies were safely delivered. They left me alone with you. You slept so peacefully and I filled a report for Tsunade while I waited.
I was relieved when the machines beeped faster to signal you were finally awake.
You know the story from then on.
Love forever and always,
Hinata smiled. It was now lamented and in her scrapbook. The months after she took pictures constantly of her boys, all three of them. She composed a proud photo album. Years passed and her sons could not understand why she was constantly clicking the camera's button and capture the moment. Now Hinata teared up. She had flipped to the most recent photos.
Two boys with raven black hair stood staring blankly at the camera.
Akemi is the older of the twins and only by seconds. His raven hair was longer than both his father's and his brother's but it was not shoulder length. His eyes were a deep purple, and in some lights they looked black. He was the more like his mother, so many days he spent in the kitchen with Hinata and reading from their small library along side her. When it came to training he was glued to Sasuke's side.
Tsuhiko was the younger boy. He was slightly shorter, and he was smiling often. Sasuke made a joke when Tsuhiko was young saying that he believed that Hinata had some secret affair with Naruto and Tsuhiko was their love child. He never made that joke again when he saw his wife crying and holding onto Tsuhiko for dear life. She was shouting something about being completely faithful and that Tsuhiko was Sasuke's boy. He had become Sasuke's shadow over the years and he was the heartthrob of the two. His raven hair was longer than his father's and it was completely straight like his mother's hair. His eyes were a dark purple like Akemi's.
Hinata felt a hand on her shoulder and look up to see Tsuhiko and Akemi in their pajamas. A sleepy grin on Tsuhiko's face as he yawned a good morning to his mother. Akemi stood next to his brother, he was only slightly more awake.
"Morning," Akemi patted his mother on the back. He went to the fridge in search of a before breakfast snack.
Hinata closed the album and wiped her eyes.
"Morning," she said cheerfully.
"What's wrong?" concern spread across Tsuhiko's face.
"Nothing's wrong," she smiled and hugged him tightly. "Happy 18th birthday Tsuhiko."
"Thanks mom," he smiled and hugged her tightly back.
She walked over to Akemi and hugged him tightly as well.
"Happy 18th birthday Akemi," she let go and felt another hand on her shoulder as she heard a thanks from Akemi. She glanced behind her to see Sasuke ready for his hug.
"You do this every year," Sasuke hugged her.
"Do what?" Akemi asked.
"Every year on your birthday she pulls out that old album and she cries about how her boys have grown," he smiled at his wife. "I don't think she's ever shown you the beginning of that book."
Both of his sons shook their heads. Neither had been curious until that day.
"Once you see it you'll know why she documents everything," he told them. "If she didn't I would have. I think half of those in the beginning are photos I've taken anyway."
"Yes, yes," Hinata waved his words away. "I do it every year but this year is special."
"How is it anymore special than last year?" Sasuke asked.
Both boys were rooted into place.
"I thought you were going to tell him when he got back from a mission with his genin," Hinata had turned to her sons.
"Well he was home and we got home late and we were tired from our mission," Tsuhiko tried to say quickly.
"What were you supposed to tell me?" Sasuke turned to them as well.
"This year I'm joining the Anbu," Akemi announced.
"And?" Hinata urged.
"I am gonna ask Maeko to marry me," Tsuhiko smiled.
"Maeko? That's one of Ino and Shikamaru's daughters right?" Sasuke tried to recall what she looked like. All of their friends that had families all had many children.
"Yes," Hinata smiled.
"Black hair, blonde streaks, she runs her mother's families old flower shop," Tsuhiko offered.
"Ah," Sasuke remembered now. She decided not to become a ninja. Tsuhiko could care less. Sasuke didn't know much of his son's history with her but he gave his son a pat on the back and then a hug.
"I'm so glad to see that this clan will finally grow and become honorable once more," he said to his sons.
Hinata found her camera on the counter and took a photo before the moment was over.
"Mom!" both boys instinctively whine.
I was a little uncertain of how to end this. It's kind of sad to see it end. I'm terribly sorry for all my errors in every chapter of this series. This one is probably full of them. I wrote it quickly.
I kind have an image in my mind of what they look like, but honestly I can't draw well enough for it to resemble that. Other wise I would so make something for this chapter. Thanks for reading this series and staying faithful to it. I love all the reviews I've gotten from it. Made it worth while.
If anyone thinks I should write something about the sons then let me know. I'm on the fence about it right now.
For now this is where I will say my good bye.