This is just a drabble-ish thing that came to me out of nowhere. I suppose it's a bit of a tide-over gift? I don't know...I was watching the latest Naruto Shippuuden episodes, and I suppose one of them inspired this...heh.

Sorry for taking so long to update RS2 but I'm almost finished the last chapter... so it should come soon. And the next ADB will be out latest Wednesday. ^_^

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this!

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto in any way, shape or form.

Warning: None to really speak might not make a lot of sense though...I dunno. :/

The first time he had ever met him, he saw him as nothing but an annoying brat. He was loudmouthed and stupid, always harping on about one thing or another that was useless or illogical. He had hated him, hearing him talk big and grand but never really acting it out. He thought he was just a moron, a loser, a waste of good chakra.

Several years later, they were put into the same team along with Sakura and Kakashi. Still, he saw him as nothing but a nuisance. God he annoyed him so much. He was always yapping in his ear, screaming at him from across the village, pointing that finger at him and declaring a fight or rivalry. It was foolish and stupid, and yet he took part in it somewhat. It was, to his chagrin, amusing some of the time and actually fun at other times. He was an idiot...but he was becoming a friend. A friend that is always embarrassing you, or making you wonder why you're friends in the first place, yet they're irreplaceable because there is no one else like them. He struggled with himself over the fact that he was friends with the moron. He still saw him as a kid, a silly little child who was naive over the ways of the world. He was a friend, but a stupid friend.

And then things changed again. He no longer saw him as just a friend. The old rival term was dug up even more, and now he was an enemy; someone who needed to be eradicated because he was too important. He was too special. He fought him, and tried to severe those bonds but he had forgotten just how much of a fool the boy could be. He refused to give up, chasing after him, fighting him...He saw him as a strong ninja and a huge annoyance. He was still, however, a child.

Three years later, he met him again. In body he had grown, in skill he had improved, in maturity he had inched and in naivety...he had stayed put. He still harped on about saving him from himself, and taking him back to that accursed place where there were so many memories. So many damn memories that plagued him and haunted his dreams. Memories of a smiling family, bloodied relatives, grinning and laughing friends and his own haunted him to know that he had had a choice. But he refused to acknowledge it. He had made his decision. He knew that the happiness was a lie and it would never last. He had grown up, unlike his former teammate.

They fought and clashed, over and over in various areas and times. His heart grew darker and colder and still, each time he met with him, he would look at him and see that annoying child. Perhaps the fool had grown up slightly in maturity too, but he was still naive and annoying. Still harping on and yapping away about bonds and fighting and saving and friendship. It drove him insane.

He was such an annoying brat.

A year passed and another and another. The fights became less frequent, the hearts growing colder. He was lost in his darkness by now, his path no longer of his choosing but rather a dark winding road that he was wandering in the hopes of finding some clarity. He wondered in the recesses of his mind if perhaps...perhaps he had made the wrong choice? But no, it was too late. His path was set. He had no other choices left. He had grown up now, he was a man. Wasn't he? Yes he was, he had to be. He followed this path, and yet somewhere in his heart he wondered if his former friend was feeling the same as him? Was he also wandering down a path that seemed meaningless? Had the moron found something that he had missed? He was such a naive fool, there was no way he had been able to surpass him. That blond idiot would never surpass him. He could only see the annoying brat.

Now he lay on his back, staring up at the clear sky through eyes that could barely see. His body was beaten and broken, and he knew that his fight was over whether he agreed or not. Even if he lived, his fate was already in the hands of another. He had nothing left to fight for. His pride was destroyed, his family was filled with traitors and liars who were better off dead. He was just like them. He was a true Uchiha it seemed.

And suddenly there was a hand. A hand that was so strange and foreign, yet so achingly familiar. It hurt to see that hand, because he didn't want to see the person attached to it. He couldn't bear to look at what he had never imagined possible.

But that hand was offering itself to him, and he felt his own reaching out. It was the sign indicating his new path; one which was unsure but filled with a light that he had long ago left behind. He didn't know if he could stand to be under its glow now. He had been shrouded in darkness for so long, the light was bound to burn his sensitive flesh.

He was lifted up, his near-blind eyes blocking out most things around him. However, he looked up at the person that had been the biggest part of his life for the past few years without him ever knowing or consenting. Those eyes stared at him, those lips pulled into a straight line...everything was different yet the same. He stared at the person who plagued him day and night, both mentally and spiritually. He stared into those eyes which had always, always, been so naive.

"The fight is over, Sasuke. I'm taking you home."

And finally...he looked at his blue eyes, and he saw strength and wisdom and kindness and so much more that left him breathless with awe.

Finally, Sasuke saw Naruto as the great man he had become. ^_^''