Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or Shugo Chara. THERE'S A SAD ON MY FACE.
Chapter One: And So It Begins
This was not part of the plan.
She was supposed to be out there, not in here. She was supposed to be dry, not soaking wet. She was supposed to be hidden, not found. She was supposed to be with her team, not withsome goons.
Haruno Sakura was not amused. Her wet petal pink locks were plastered to her face with some droplets of rain falling to the already wet floor. She was cold and grumpy and her teammates had yet to find out that she was gone. Oh, yes. Haruno Sakura was, indeed, not amused.
"Tch. Boss won't be happy when he finds out that there was a kid snooping around outside."
"He'll be even less happy if we try to hide it from him."
They were literally dragging her across the red carpeted floor, passing numerous doors, towards what would probably be their boss's office. One of them was gripping her right arm while the other gripped her left. She was sure that there would be hand marks by the time they let go, and yet, she couldn't bring herself to care as she was currently devising an escape plan.
'Come on, Kura. You gotta think. Just concentrate and think!' She'd probably be able to just kick them both where it hurts and make a run for it, but they might alert the other guards before her team finishes the mission. She had to escape, yes, but the mission was top priority, not her. Thus, she had to find a way to escape without causing a riot.
'Dammit! I wouldn't even be here if that stupid ice cream truck just minded its own business! Who the hell sells ice cream at this time anyways?'
It was dark and quiet. The only thing that could be heard was the soft sound of raindrops hitting cement. It was drizzling lightly. Far too lightly to penetrate the leaves that the trees have-
"Ne, Sakura-chan, I'm awesomer than Sasuke-teme, right?" The loud voice of Uzumaki Naruto rang through the silent night followed by a loud thump and even louder wailing.
"Shut up, dobe. We're on a mission. You'll get us spotted." Uchiha Sasuke's voice was silent and deadly as his obsidian eyes narrowed slightly at his knuckle-headed teammate.
"We'll be going in now, so if you two don't shut up, I'm bringing Sakura-chan with me instead." It was said in a teasing manner, but the two knew better than to put it past Hatake Kakashi than to go through with his word.
The blonde suddenly had a concerned expression on his face as he turned to the only female in the team. "Are you sure you're gonna be okay alone, Sakura-chan?" His voice was unusually soft as his bright blue eyes were searching the pinkette's face for any trace of hesitation.
The short girl made an unladylike snort and playfully punched her blond-haired teammate on the arm. "Of course, Naruto! I'm not a little girl anymore! I can take care of myself." She huffed out her chest in pride as she smiled reassuringly at the rest of her team. They all returned her smile in their own little way and stood up from behind the tree and started to walk discreetly towards the building.
As soon as her team was out of sight, the familiar tune of an ice cream truck caught her attention. Her head snapped towards the general direction the sound was coming from and a white truck with a big popsicle in the middle, drove into view momentarily, next to the pavement near an apartment complex. Before she knew it, she was making her way towards the truck while humming the tune under her breath. She quickly bought an ice cream cone and began to walk away, casting one last glance behind her to make sure that no one was watching her, before silently running back to her dry hiding place.
"They just got in. They won't be that fast." She was heartily licking her chocolate ice cream without a care in the world, thinking that the sound of the rain, which was getting heavier by the minute, would disguise the sound of her loud slurping. She knew she thought wrong when the sound of footsteps easily caught her attention through the thick rain.
'That's not right. They shouldn't be back yet.' Two huge shadows suddenly appeared behind her, blocking her light.
"-ey, brat! Show some respect to your elders!"
Her head snapped towards the man on her left, viridian eyes burning defiantly as she glared up at the much taller, heavier man.
"I'll do that when you earn it, old man!" She knew what was going to happen. She had it all played out in her head. He was going to loosen her grip on her and attempt to hit her, then she, Sakura, would use this to her advantage and knock them both unconscious, resulting in her escape.
"What did you say?" She felt his grip loosen, if only slightly, on her arm as he turned to look at her, his face red with anger.
'Bingo.' A lightning bolt appeared on the headband she wore, replacing the Leaf symbol that was once engraved there.
She tugged her arm free and landed a well deserved kick to his torso, being too short to reach his head. She then twisted slightly, using the man's stomach as leverage, and threw a punch towards the one still holding her arm, thus making him let go. They both keeled and held their pained parts, leaving themselves vulnerable to the waiting pre-teen. She hit the pressure points in their necks simultaneously and they fell over, unconscious. She dragged the two goons one-by-one behind a large plant, frowning a bit at how heavy they were.
"The bigger they are, the harder they fall." A smirk played across her lips as her headband turned back to normal, as if there hadn't just been a lightning bolt instead of the Leaf symbol that was usually there.
"Sakura-chan?" A familiar, yet confused voice echoed through the hallway, as Sakura turned around to face her teammates.
"Hey guys!" She looked over at them, a sheepish grin etched on her face as she scratched the back of her head awkwardly, noting that her hair was a tad dry.
"What are you doing here?" Her vibrant eyes made contact with the lone black eye of her sensei, then proceeded to the folders he was carrying under his arm.
She shrugged and spotted an open window, just out of reach to the short girl. She shot her team a pleading look before hearing them sigh and head towards her. The tall, blond boy stepped in front of her and laced his fingers together tightly, then nodded at the obviously smaller pinkette. Sakura ran towards him and stepped into his hand, as he propelled her upwards and through the window. The green eyed girl landed softly on the grass, just outside the Easter building. She looked to her sides and found that her teammates had already made it out right after her. Damn them for their height.
"Long story short, ice cream is a trap."
She could feel the curious stares of the boys on her and she sighed slightly before heading off towards Tsunade's apartment.
When Tsunade opened the door, she expected to see dry, smiling people.
Key word being expected.
What she did see however was only half of what she expected to. Standing in front of her was Team 7, clad in wet clothing with sheepish smiles on their faces, or in Sasuke's case, a bored look.
"Why are you all wet?" Her eyebrow twitched slightly as they made their way inside, making a wet trail across her cream carpeted floor.
Kakashi held out a somewhat dry folder towards the annoyed elder blonde lady. She took it from his grasp and pushed them out of her apartment quickly, as to not get anything else wet. Not that her apartment was too small to fit all of them. No, not at all. It had a homey feel, as Sakura always said.
She sat down on her white colored couch as she opened the file eagerly. She scanned through it, honey colored eyes getting wider with each line she read, until her face finally broke out into a grin as she shut the folder. She put it carefully onto the glass coffee table as to not dirty it, and walked over to the kitchen. Her eyes scanned the numerous cupboards above the sink and the stove, stopping at one and opening it, revealing a pack of sake. She took it and walked back to the living room, putting the pack down beside the file she had just previously read. She made a quick call before finally giving her undivided attention towards her beloved sake.
"This calls for a celebration." And celebrate she did.
BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEE-
A sickening crunching sound pierced through the peaceful silence as the alarm clock was brutally crushed to pieces under a tiny pale hand. Pink locks leaked through the blanket and shifted slightly as a loud groan resounded through the room. Green oculars blinked open and looked over the room for anything unusual.
"Kura-chan! Kura-chan!" Her head snapped towards the tiny voice, eyes settling on a floating figure above her broken alarm clock. Light filled the room through the gap in between her curtains, momentarily blinding her as she slowly adapted to the brightness.
"Get up, you lazy bum! You're gonna be late for school!" The pinkette narrowed her eyes at the small figure that was now floating directly above her, its arms crossed above its chest with a mischievous glint in her mismatching eyes. She had choppy, layered, shoulder length, light brown hair with a fringe that rested right above a yellow eye and an orange one. She wore a light orange shirt that had a bright yellow lightning bolt in the middle with two belts making an "X" over the tee, above black shorts that ended mid-thigh. Brown ankle-high combat boots covered the lower part of her rainbow stockings that ended above her knees.
"Stop lying, Taiga. Even I wouldn't be able to wake up this early after a mission!" A second floating figure stood next to Taiga, looking nothing like the aforementioned Chara. Her blonde hair was down, ending somewhere in the middle of her back, while her blood red eyes were fixed on the sleepy pinkette with a somewhat sympathetic look. Her red tank top had a flowery design on them. Black biker shorts could be seen from under the pink skirt she had on, her red ballet flats on her feet with red ribbons decorating them. Compared to the former Chara, she looked more girly, and hyper.
"Taiga, Rai, it would be wise to lower down your voices this early in the morning." The two floating girls made way for a third to come in between them. She had raven hair that was in an elegant braid resting on her back all the way down to her waist and eyes that were an icy blue. A dark blue Lolita dress that fell to her knees with black strings crisscrossing down the front of her upper half, revealing a black inner, was what she wore. Black laces outlined the dress, making it seem more elegant. Blue and black striped tights could be seen covering the rest of her legs, reaching her feet, though they were cover with black Mary Jane's. A black tiara was resting on the side of her head on a thin headband.
"Good morning, Taiga, Rai, Kaori." The pinkette stretched and sat up, white sheets falling to her waist to reveal a baggy shirt. Each Chara nodded to their owner when their names were called, moving aside to let the girl get ready.
"It should be illegal for school to be this early." The small girl walked over to her bathroom with her school uniform in hand. She took a quick shower, ridding herself of whatever dirt could have gotten on her during her short, but much needed sleep. She put on black shorts under her red mid-thigh plaid skirt, wearing knee-high red and black striped socks to match her black school shoes. She wore a white dress shirt, not fully buttoning it, and put the red tie loosely around her neck. She left the black blazer unbuttoned and tied her Leaf headband on her upper right arm.
"Let's go guys." She grabbed her brown satchel and lazily snatched three eggs off her desk: an orange one with a yellow lightning bolt, a red one with a pink ribbon, and a blue one with a black tiara.
She slowly made her way through the apartment complex, still a little drowsy from lack of sleep.
"Sakura-chan!" The owner stopped, together with her Charas, and turned to look at her ever-so hyper teammate.
The pinkette waited for him to catch up to her, taking in his different uniform and frowning slightly.
"How could you be this happy in the morning? I thought that was impossible." They continued walking again, although this time, they were side-by-side.
Naruto chuckled beside his grumpy friend and patted her head solemnly. "It's a tough job, Sakura-chan. You'll never be able to do it." The smaller girl saw him wink from the corner of her eyes, as she felt herself shake her head slightly.
As Sakura walked through the gates of Seiyo Academy, she felt that she died a little from the noise that the crowd was producing.
"It's the Guardians!"
"Ah! I think Tadase-sama looked this way!"
"Nadeshiko-sama definitely waved at me!"
"Look at Kukai-sama!"
"Yaya-sama is so adorable!"
She continued to make her way through the crowd and spotted a familiar head of pink.
"Amu-chan!" Said girl turned towards Sakura, a light blush covering her cheeks, looking as if she had just got caught staring at someone.
"Sakura-chan." The other pinkette started walking towards her. Sakura noticed that the taller girl had a protective hand over her bag.
"Wait!" A hand shot out of nowhere, latching itself onto Amu's shoulder. The girl looked enraged and turned to face the unlucky person who was going to face her wrath.
"Don't act as if you know me, 'Little Prince.'" She slapped the blond boy's hand away and turned, walking away from the students shouting.
"Cool and Spicy!"
"-Anyone with a suggestion please raise your hand."
Sakura scanned the room for anyone stupid enough to actually say something. She was sitting together with the other fourth graders and beside Hinamori Amu. Her Shugo Charas were tucked safely inside her bag, although unknown to her, the taller pinkette also had three eggs hidden inside the confines of said girl's satchel.
"Yes! I'm sorry! I like you!"
The voice was so unbearably loud that it was hard to ignore the fact that that voice was coming from someone beside her. Green eyes clashed with yellow as she stared bewildered at the girl standing in front of her, hand raised, and eyes sparkling.
"We are currently in the middle of an assembly. Please discuss opinions that deal with the topic at hand. And… there is someone else that I like. I'm sorry." Hotori Tadase looked solemn as he turned to scan the room for any more suggestions.
Amu's cheeks flushed red as she ran out the doors of the auditorium. A lightning bolt replaced the Leaf symbol that was there momentarily and the smaller pinkette, although they were the same age, stood up and glared at the Prince.
"Jerk! You could've said it a little nicer?" her voice was dripping with venom as she sneered at the shocked blonde. She ran out the room, the Leaf symbol returning, as she looked for her fellow Chara bearer that was beside her seconds ago.
Sakura's head snapped towards the source of the voice that wasn't too far from where she was. She spotted a construction site and stopped directly in front of a hole, inside of which was the person she was looking for.
A head of pink hair looked up towards Sakura and breathed out a sigh of relief.
"Sakura-chan. You want to help me out?" As the smaller girl was about to reach into her bag and pull out an orange egg, a pink one flew out of Amu's bag. It had a tartan design and had pink hearts all over the middle, inside a thick black line surrounded by smaller black hearts. The egg cracked and revealed a small girl with pink shoulder length hair that had a small portion tied with a heart clip. She wore a pink visor to block out the sun from her pink eyes and had on a pink cheerleading dress with red shoes to match.
"You can do it yourself, Amu-chan! Chara Change! From a girl who can't jump, to a girl who can!"
Small light pink wings appeared on Amu's wrists and ankles and the little pink Chara looked thrilled.
"Hop! Step! Jump!"
And with that, Sakura watched as her friend bounded off, high off the ground and landed herself on top of a tall building. Even with the long distance between the two, the green eyed girl could still hear the other girl screaming her head off. She found it amusing, until something, or was it someone, caught her eye. It didn't worry the girl much though, seeing as the teenage boy didn't look like a threat. No person in their right mind would dress up as a cat and expect to look intimidating. She was at peace, eyebrows raised in amusement, eyes wide with laughter, until the boy tried getting Amu's bag. She still didn't feel threatened, knowing that she could just get the eggs back once she transformed with Taiga. And that was when she saw Amu jump off, grab her eggs and come pelting to ground. She felt threatened. She felt worried. Heck, she felt scared.
Green eyes narrowed up as she reached into her bag and pulled out an egg.
"Taiga. Let's go." She glanced at her Chara and saw her nod, different colored eyes burning with determination.
"Chara Change!" Her headband, that was currently tied to her right arm, turned into a lightning bolt as Sakura took off, expertly jumping over the cones and hurdles the construction site had lying around. She could hear the taller pinkette scream in fear as she pumped her feet to go faster in order to get there on time.
"Gotcha!" She caught Amu just in time, although her eyes were dilated with fear, her breathing was shallow and she was shivering slightly. She set the girl down and her ears perked up when she heard someone behind them. She stepped protectively in front of her taller classmate and relaxed a bit when she saw that it was the Little Prince.
"Holy Crown!" There was a golden crown on his head, she noted. And a scepter in his hand. A small Shugo Chara floated near his head looking kingly and authoritative.
"Well, well. If it isn't the Kiddie King." The cosplay boy didn't look too happy at the sight of one of the Guardians. He looked tenser, more guarded. His eyes darted from the eggs Amu cradled in her arms, to the King, to Sakura, to Taiga, then back again.
"Tsukiyomi Ikuto! Cat thief!" Tadase pointed his scepter at the boy with the cat ears. Something clicked into Sakura's head. Not only did the Prince have a Shugo Chara, the weird cosplay guy had one too.
Ikuto, as the blonde had so kindly put it, smirked tauntingly and snapped his fingers. A giant cat's paw appeared seemingly out of nowhere and was aimed towards them.
"Holy Crown!" The Prince ran in front of the two pinkettes and a shield formed to protect them from the cat thief's attack.
Viridian eyes narrowed dangerously at the spot the high schooler was previously standing.
"He ran away!" The crown and scepter disappeared from the blonde's reach as he walked briskly towards the pinkette that was still sitting on the ground. She was clutching her cheek and there seemed to be a little blood on it.
"You're bleeding. Are you hurt?" Sakura watched in amusement as Amu's face burned red with embarrassment. The Prince had just wiped off the blood with his own handkerchief and told her that he'd protect her. He then proceeded to tell her to go back to class and that she had nothing to worry about.
"Haruno-san, please take care of her. I'll be taking my leave." And with that, Hotori Tadase, Prince of the School and the King's Chair of the Guardians, walked away, his blue checkered cape billowing in the wind behind him.
Sakura discreetly watched the taller girl turn an even deeper shade of red as she tightly clutched the handkerchief to her chest.
"You must really like him, huh?" Loud laughter escaped through the standing girl's lips as she helped up her friend and started walking hand-in-hand back towards the school grounds.