This fanfic is for the one and only Jaggmo, I hope you are satisfied with the outcome of this one! ;) Sorry it took a bit longer, ne?

This is rated M for a reason this time, haha. It's probably one of the darkest and most depressing stories I've ever written. Plus, I know it's rather long and I tried to make a cut, but I had no idea where, so I left it as it is.

Also, I gave my best to earse every typo, so yeah, when you find one, keep it.

Disclaimer: Nope, Naruto is not mine and will never be. *sigh*

Warnings: Yaoi (NaruSasu), AU, violence, swearing, abuse... did I forget anything? Well, you'll see when you read it, but if any of the mentioned above is not your cup of coffee, you better leave now.

So, enjoy the story!

The doorbell rang at 2.39 am.

The ugly sound ripped him from his not-so-peaceful sleep and he twisted inside the not-so-clean sheets in order to at least manage to sit up on the bedside.

"Not again..."

At 2.43 am, when he inhaled the used, stale air, the doorbell rang a second time, this time twice. With a grunted sigh, he massaged his temples and most certainly wasn't in the mood to open that goddamn front door, he knew who was waiting out there anyway, and he brought a handful of horrible memories he tried to forget.

In the half-darkness of his bedroom, he glanced around to find the most suitable way to get through the mess in order to reach the open door so that he could cross the kitchen and open that cursed front door. When he couldn't bring his mind to work for him, probably because of the splitting headache, he staggered on his bare feet and shuffled them across his stained carpet.

It could be three am already when Naruto finally opened the front door and his face showed no signs of surprise or shock at the sight of the raven-haired mess standing on his doormat. Uchiha Sasuke, looking stoic and strained at the same time, had blood on his face, one eye had turned to a dark blue shade and was slightly swollen; his shirt was ripped and bloodstained. With soberness that actually should frighten him, Naruto thought how he had looked worse already.

Instead of worry, anger tickled his nerves.

"Was about time."

Naruto held his breath. This entire scenario seemed like a sick déjà-vu to him and he held onto the doorframe for support while brushing over his face before he gave Sasuke a deadly glare – which ended in a tired, annoyed look into his pale, onyx eyes, "Didn't I give you a fuckin' key?", he asked with a tired headshake.

There was no answer when Sasuke pushed him aside and went inside the small apartment – stumbled inside, to be more precise and Naruto fought the urge to support him. He headed straight towards the fridge, took a bottle of water, sipped from it before slumping down on the worn out couch. Naruto gave the front door a swing and it fell close on its own. Turning the kitchen light on, it buzzed to life and hurt his eyes when he turned around and stared at him.

"It's three in the morning.", he growled, his voice shedding the roughness from his sleep. Sasuke ignored him, and it always managed to piss Naruto off – he hated the Uchiha's goddamn attitude to keep silent as if his lips were glued, when in fact, he had a ton of useless things to say.

Naruto always played the game until he got too annoyed to bottle it up inside, "Mind telling me what the hell you're doing here - again?"

Sasuke moved his eyes to look at him, sipped from the water and provoked the blond most positively with a slight grin. That grin – looking maniac and helpless, feelings only Sasuke managed to convert in a smile – was something Naruto would've gladly wiped from the raven-haired's disgustingly perfect face. Well, usually perfect – his features looked a bit off because of all the injuries.

"Fine.", he grunted and shuffled towards the kitchen where the malboro lay beneath the stove. He picked one, took the lighter he had shoved inside as well, and lit it. While the blueish smoke rose to the ceiling, he took an empty beer can as a dustbin.

"And do-,"

"Can I have one?", was the first Sasuke said to him, his tone monotonous like a long day at work. Naruto licked his chapped lips and threw the pack towards Sasuke, who caught it swiftly.

The Uchiha copied Naruto and smoked a cigarette while playing with the cap of the bottle. He screwed it on, and off, on and off, the only sound breaking icy silence. Naruto decided to go to back to bed once he was done with his smoke; the raven-haired would still be here in the morning and maybe he would then step from his high horse and maybe he would feel the goddamn urge to tell him why he was here. Then again, who was he even fooling – Naruto knew very well why he was here. It was the same reason he always showed up at his place, no matter what day or nighttime.

He pressed his finished cigarette against the aluminum lid and then shuffled past him, bumped his naked feet against the wooden chair and cursed violently.

Sasuke snickered.

"Shut up.", he grunted and then went to the bathroom, relieved himself, went to his bedroom and got back to bed with fury biting his insides. He'd gladly run back and punch that goddamn smirk from Sasuke's lips – he knew it would haunt him until exhaustion would batter him to sleep, but he took two deep breaths and tried to convinced himself it had helped.

The bathroom door closed, then for a long time Naruto heard nothing. He was already drifting off to sleep when he heard Sasuke gagging and spilling whatever he had eaten before into his toilet (or sink. Or even floor. Not that he cared much, he just hoped he wouldn't step into it next morning) and he took a deep breath, yet again, but this time it seemed to only intensify this burning in his stomach.

He would not get up. No, he would not get up and slam his knuckles sore against the locked bathroom door, acting like a pussy worried about this sick bastard. The door wouldn't open anyway, he knew better than this foolish thinking of his.

Naruto turned around.

The toilet flushed, Sasuke coughed a few more times, then he heard the howling sounds of his shower coming to life. His pipes shuddered under the pressure and Sasuke probably took the longest shower in world history. After half an hour, Naruto wished he would just stop, the noise was keeping him awake and he was so very tired, he had to get up in three hours to get ready for work. He wished he would just leave again, but he knew the Uchiha had no place to go back to. However, one of his selfish wishes was granted five minutes later when the shower was turned off, and a few minutes after that the bathroom door clicked and Sasuke shuffled outside.

By now, Naruto could trail his footsteps in his mind. It was the same routine, the same useless game every time Sasuke showed up. He would walk into the kitchen, snatch another smoke, smoke it while he stared and stared and stared, at the fridge or the table or whatever his eyes fell onto. This time, he probably would search anything to cool his wounds with, use whatever he'd find; a piece of raw meat, some ice cubes he put in a plastic back, a cold beer can from the fridge or just a wet dishtowel. He would fight bravely, he would stubbornly refuse to let both his memories and reality haunt him, but it would never last. Eventually, the fingers holding the cigarette would tremble, he would close his eyes and will himself to not break down. Finally, however, he would give himself to his misery and melancholy and he would drown inside those feelings nobody could ever erase from his heart again.

When he was done smoking, he would grab the thin blanket on the couch and then try to sleep. It would probably take fifteen to twenty minutes, sometimes longer, sometimes not, when he got up again and showed up inside the bedroom.

Naruto only played his role – pretending to be asleep. And he was very, very good at it, practice had made it seem perfect. Forcing his breathing to be steady and calm, he relaxed his closed eyes and the muscles in his face. Then he'd listen to the sound of naked feet on the carpet, sometimes hitting an empty bottle or pieces of laundry, and the fury from earlier would be rising again, leaving nothing to do but clenching his sweaty fists inside the sheets. The mattress moved, Sasuke crawled under the sheets, still laying on the other side of the bed.

A strange feeling of emptiness spread around them like a second blanket, maybe even like a second skin. Words bubbled up his throat, words of comfort that didn't mean anything anymore, words of blind anger, maybe even words of regret that were needless anyway.

Naruto turned around – in his sleep, of course – so that he wouldn't lie face to face with him, because even though he had his eyes closed, he felt as if he could see the needy face of the suffering man next to him. The smell of cold smoke and whatever showergel had been in the shower to use filled his nose and he felt sick.

Then, the inevitably happened when arms hesitantly curled around his naked torso, making him tense up under the familiar, yet unwanted touch and he moved slightly against it. But Sasuke needed the warmth and he needed something to hold onto, so he only strengthened the grip, whimpering slightly. With the raven-haired's breath tickling his neck, Naruto tried to sleep, fighting the urge to shove him away from him, to scream and curse him and to kick him out like a lost puppy.

But this night wasn't different from all the hundred or so nights before, and even the same as the hundred before the hundred. He never had felt any different – no night seemed to have been any different, as he came to realize. And just like that, Naruto kept still and hoped sleep would just take him away from whatever this was called.

Breakfast consisted of thinned coffee and cheap cup-ramen. His hair felt greasy and his face puffy, and he needed to take a shower and brush his teeth, but the bath was occupied. He still had half an hour until he had to leave for work, so it should be fine, but he was so very pissed, so very annoyed, and so very angry, not only at Sasuke but at himself and this whole fucked up situation he had to call life. Sipping the coffee, he decided to toss more sugar inside to at least make the caffeine taste of something.

The sound of the water abusing his pipes stopped and a few minutes later, Sasuke left the bathroom; hair wet, face pale and a towel covering his slender hips. He scratched his scalp while moving closer, then he sat down, reached for the coffee can.

Naruto glared at him and hoped it would help to get Sasuke to open his mouth and talk. This silence was draining him far more than it should.

Sasuke only rose both eyebrows, "What?"

"English, Sasuke, do you speak it?", he growled and opened the lid from his cup ramen, stirred the noodles with a fork.


Naruto rolled his eyes, "Come on, you know what I mean."


The blonde stared at him, not saying one word. Of course Sasuke understood, butinstead of talking about what had happened to him, he wordlessly took a cup and poured some coffee inside, then took the sugar, added two teaspoons, stirred a bit and gulped the watery coffee down.

"You can be such an-,"

Sasuke cut Naruto off with a smirk playing around the corners of his mouth, "Do you have another one?"

"No.", he lied, wondering why. Sasuke knew where he stored his stuff, he could just get up and help himself, there was no need to ask - he had never asked.

"Can I have a smoke, then?"

"Since when do you even ask?", Naruto finished eating the noodles, drank the broth and then put his cup and the ramen-cup inside the overflowing sink. When he was about to walk past Sasuke in order to finally use his bathroom, a hand grabbed his wrist and stopped him.

He looked back, meeting Sasuke's onyx eyes with his azure ones and the sad, desperate look was like a knife stabbing his heart. For one moment, he felt it - the worry, the fear, the despair, only to ban it from his heart a second later.

"Look. I'm sorry."

"Are you fuckin' kiddin' me?", he asked, wrenching his hand free "You-,", and all was set for the walls to break, but Naruto stopped himself in the very last second, "Whatever.", was what he compressed his anger into.

Sasuke nodded and turned his head back. They almost would've cleared the air between them, but it never happened. Never, it was the same scenario as every time, and the words were on the tips of tongues, ready to be spoken, but nobody did. Reality was fucked already, why screw it all over again? Things were as they were. No words could change what both were aware off.

The bathroom was a mess as always, but Sasuke had at least opened the window. Fresh air, along with the sounds of morning traffic and city life breezed inside the small, tiled room. Naruto supported himself on the dirty sink, let rusty water flow and waited until it was clean enough to wash his face. Drying himself with a wet towel, he cursed his reflection and stepped under the shower.

The water was cold.

He dressed up and walked back in the kitchen, snatching his cell phone, wallet and car keys and he stared at Sasuke, who had gotten dressed in one of Naruto's denim and a dark-blue, short-sleeved shirt, was doing the dishes, humming some sort of tune.

"I'm doing that when I come home."

"You're late for work.", was the answer.

Naruto couldn't help but grin, "And aren't you late for school?"

Sasuke stopped doing the dishes, sighed and looked at the blonde with an arched eyebrow, "Do I look like I'm going to that fucked place?"

Naruto only returned the sigh, grabbed his jacket and left the apartment, took the stairs down, got in his car and drove away from the parking lot of his apartment complex. The entire drive was filled with thoughts he had expected to come and he had learned quickly and early how to push them away. The only thing he let himself allow to wish for was this life to be different, he wished it all was different and he could shape reality it like he wanted.

In the end, just when he turned into the parking lot of his workplace, Naruto realized that it didn't matter what he wished for. It was like it was and a sick part of his wrecked soul even enjoyed like it was - Naruto didn't want to change anything anymore. Maybe because he had done many changes in his life, maybe because he had to undergo many unwilling ones as well, he simply was tired of doing anything.

His day was packed with thoughts about Sasuke – if he had gone to school, if he had gone back home and, if he really had gone home, was he alright, was another bone fractured, was a new bruise added to the old ones, was another fading.

It drove him so very insane that he couldn't focus on work, his distraction caused him to mess things up and get a nice and long lecture in the end, only because his thoughts were occupied with no other than Uchiha Sasuke. Exhausted and tired, Naruto clocked out early and drove back home again only to find Sasuke standing by the stove cooking something that smelled like fried rice with soy-sauce, because that was the only stuff he could cook.

He threw his keys, wallet and cell phone on the side table by the door, "Hey.", he flexed the tired muscles in his shoulders.

"Hey.", Sasuke replied and pointed towards the small shelf holding all the spices,"You're out of salt."

"Then why didn't you buy any?", was all he replied.

"Because you took the car, idiot.", it was meant as a joke, but Naruto was not in the mood for jokes, especially not now. He only raised one eyebrow "And you have a pair of feet, you could've walked."

Sasuke looked back with that spoilt-brat expression on that abused face of his, "You and your smartass comments, it's starting to bore me, really.", he muttered under his breath and then went back to cooking. Naruto rubbed the bridge of his nose, then he noticed the radio was on and the cheerful music annoyed him.

Sasuke reached for the soy-sauce.

"How long are you gonna stay?", he asked when he got some beer from the fridge, turned the radio off while doing so. Sasuke didn't look at him when he said, "Until tomorrow. Maybe."

Naruto cocked his head to one side when he opened the beer and he scanned the wounds on Sasuke's face. They had started healing a bit and a glance towards the kitchen table let him know the Uchiha had taken a few painkillers – or maybe more than a few, he had no idea how many he had had left anyway.

His voice was flat when he said, "You can't stay until tomorrow."

Sasuke looked at him, stopped stirring the rice when a panicked shimmer appeared in his dark eyes, "What? Why not?"

"Because I don't want you to stay. Is that understandable for you?"

Faster than he could even blink he had a hand wrenched inside his collar and was pushed against the fridge. All air was forced out of his lungs and the last coherent thought in his mind was how deliciously fucked up everything was. The beer bottle fell from his grip, splintered into pieces, staining the ground under their feet.

With a grin, he choked back the cry that had made it up his throat.

"Then where the fuck am I supposed to go?", Sasuke grunted through gnashing teeth, pushing Naruto even harder against the fridge.

"Why're you askin' me?", he growled back, not seeing the need to fight back, not seeing the need to do what Sasuke wanted him to do, "I'm not your goddamn nanny, Sasuke."

The pale fist connected with his tanned face and Naruto could withdraw his tongue the last second, else he probably would've bitten the tip off. He grunted as he spat blood down on the floor, coughed and retched when he glared back at Sasuke, pain exploding behind his skull.

He made use of his free hands and grabbed the Uchiha's collar as well, bent him over the kitchen table easily. Naruto was older and stronger than the raven-haired, he had little effort to pin his arms behind his back and press his head down on the wooden surface.

Sasuke, stubborn and feral as he was, struggled violently against the iron grip, kicking and hissing, but eventually he gave up, "Let me go you fuckin' asshole!"

"You wind up at my place every goddamn night, you keep me awake and you fuckin' piss me off with that attitude of yours, and then you have the nerve to even punch me in the face!", he yelled, shoving Sasuke even harder against the edge, not caring if he hurt him, "Who do you even think you fuckin' are, Uchiha?"

Sasuke managed to get one arm free and used it to hoist himself up a little, glancing at the blonde behind him and giggling like a maniac, "What? You're just as fucked-up as I am, don't act as if you're any better than me!"

Naruto pushed him one final time against the table and then he let go of him. Sasuke shakily straightened up and watched how the blonde rinsed the blood from his mouth. The smell of burnt rice filled the kitchen and Naruto turned the stove off before he removed the frying pan.

"I'd pay rent, you know.", Sasuke muttered as he flexed his shoulders.

Naruto glanced towards him, drying his mouth with a kitchen towel, "You don't even have a fuckin' job."

"I'd find one."

"You finish school. Then you find a job. That's the way it works.", the blonde grunted, "You get your panties back on and get it over with like everybody else."

Sasuke snorted, "Easy for you to say."

Naruto was tired of that game and he only shook his head, walked towards the bathroom and disappeared inside, breathed hard through his nose and closed his eyes, flexed his fingers, formed fists, relaxed his hand again.

He had to calm down.

Closing his eyes, he saw his father's face before his eyelids as if he was looking at a photograph. He saw his smiling features, and he heard his voice inside his head, making him believe he as standing right behind him.

It was worth the price, you know.

Naruto opened his eyes and looked at his reflection – he saw a perfect copy of his father, only twenty years younger, and still he was so very different.


Sasuke's words didn't even piss him off anymore. He had heard a lot from him, and he was immune against the pain already. That neither of them was Mr Brightside was most obvious to the normal observer, but Naruto was mature enough to not compare who had it worse. Sometimes, only sometimes, Naruto wished he could switch positions with the raven-haired idiot. That Sasuke's family wasn't all cakes and butterflies – shit, it was very, very far from that – Naruto knew it all, he had witnessed all the shit, all the abuse, all the chaos and mess with his own eyes.

And still, he would trade his firstborn for a family, even though he'd end up with a family made out of everything you'd brutally erase from your life. Sasuke would never understand, of course he wouldn't. He would trade anything to switch positions with Naruto, a thing the blonde didn't understand and never would. Physical pain, in his opinion, was much more endurable than the one torturing his soul, and the bruises and cuts and fractures would heal over time, whereas the wounds on his soul would remain forever.

He was done showering and dried his hair with a towel before he slipped inside a faded denim and a dark blue shirt before putting the crystal pendant dangling on a black leather band around his neck. The TV was on when he left the bathroom and walked towards Sasuke, leaned against the couch the Uchiha was sitting on.

"Fine.", he said, decided he would be the idiot to take the shorter end of the stick, "You can stay. But you can't stay the whole week."

"Thanks.", was all he got.

Naruto was riding the wave of the apologetic moron nicely, so he went on, "Mind telling me what happened?"

Sasuke grunted an unamused laughter, "Can't you imagine?"

"Well, sorta."

The younger sighed, "Then why are you even asking?", he shifted uncomfortably on the couch, "Just let it be."

"You really are one of a kind, teme.", the blonde grunted, ran a hand through his blonde hair, "Coming here, waiting for my pity and when I give it to you, you refuse to take it."

"Who said something about fuckin' pity?", the Uchiha snorted, slightly turning around towards Naruto, glaring at him, "Maybe I just wanted to get away from that bastard who has the nerve to call himself my father. Maybe I just wanted some fuckin' company that didn't involve my shit-headed family."

"Yeah, maybe you just wanted some fuckin' comfort as well, but I gave up spending some to you a while ago.", Naruto sighed, "Why do you even show up? It doesn't seem to matter what I do anyway."

Sasuke bit his lower lip, "It's the only place I still can go to.", he said quietly. He was ashamed, of course he was, his pride was something he nursed like a baby, "The only place I feel safe."

"You sound like a chick.", Naruto felt the sting but ignored it, "And this is not your home."

"Yeah.", he replied soberly, switching the channels stoically, "Where is it, then?"

A shrug, "How the hell should I know?"

Sasuke had enough then, he got up and left the apartment.

Why was it always like this?

Why was he unable to just be a friend and why was Sasuke unable to just take whatever little sympathy Naruto had to offer? Why would it always end in the same, they would scream more abuse on themselves than they already had to endure, they'd hurt each other, they'd lick each other's wounds and that was it then.

No love. No friendship. No feelings of affection.

What was this bond they shared, then? If it was neither friendship nor love, what was it that connected them?

The same pain? The same loneliness?

Naruto didn't know the answer to any question popping up in his brain. He ate cup-ramen (again) and waited for Sasuke to come back inside the house. The Uchiha probably just let his fury out on some random tree, if he was lucky he'd meet one of Naruto's neighbors and find something they did to piss him off so that he could scream at them to relieve his frustration.

Naruto slurped his noodles, wondering how it could've come so far, the only question he put some effort in answering. In the beginning, Naruto had believed it had started with his parent's death, but he was wrong. It always had been like that, he just had been too young to see and his parents had been the wall to keep reality away from him.

Sasuke had always been suffering, ever since he knew the other boy. Naruto had just never seen it like he had the last three years. Before the accident, his father and mother had taken care of this broken, abused and torn boy he had always considered as a brother. He remembered evenings when Fugaku was about to pick Sasuke up from their old house, his father would get so worked up seeing the man that both ended up in an all-out war battle. His mother would assist her husband bravely, she wasn't like Mikoto who cried silently in the background, foolishly believing everything would change as long as she let her husband get whatever he wanted. Situations escalated, limits and boundaries were erased and crossed, and it all broke into utter chaos.

Yes, it had never been different. Naruto just had changed, from a happy teenager boy with a stable, happy family in a nice, suburban house from whatever he was now. A twenty-year-old adolescent, having been forced to end school early, to take whatever job he could get in order to finance this run-down flat in this fucked-up neighborhood. He was shamelessly exposed to the cruel world outside, bottled up with grief and hatred and bitterness.

Only one thing hadn't changed – and that was a poor, abused Sasuke who still needed the comfort he had once received from this family, but the family he had once known was gone and Naruto wasn't able to spend the comfort the other needed so badly. He refused to be weaker than him, thus he couldn't tear his walls down, and Naruto refused to admit that he was as miserable as his childhood friend, so he couldn't bring words like 'I'm here for you' over his lips.

The equation was easy, then. A nice equilibrium. A perfect juxtaposition. Both suffered. Both needed each other, so they kept the other near. And whenever they were together, they punched insults into each other's faces, they'd add more bruises to their already bruised bodies and every now and then give into feral, primitive lust and stilled their hunger for love and warmth with their rough, hard and broken bodies. Yes, this probably wasn't normal and yes, he probably was sick and needed therapy or some shit like that, but the worst was that he didn't give a damn shit about it anymore.

Sasuke came back inside, slamming the front door close behind him. His face was still a mess and fury had painted it red. Gasping loudly, he glared death at the blonde sitting on the couch and his voice was vibrating through the flat, "Why?", he demanded breathlessly, gritting his teeth together until his jaw cracked.

Naruto frowned, "What? What why?"

Sasuke formed hard, trembling fists, "Why-, why-, shit!", he screamed and Naruto could see he fought the urge to punch anything within range. He kept himself from crying as well, his eyes were red and puffy, glistening with angry tears of hurt and frustration.

"Let me stay here.", he almost begged, his body not relaxing in any way, "I'll work and go to school. I fuckin' swear it, Naruto, but-, I can't go back. I can't, not this time! Not this fuckin' time, I can't-, fuck, Naruto, why won't you understand me? He'll-, when I come home, he'll-,", his voice broke, "He'll-,"

The blonde shook his head, "Sasuke, you're seventeen years old. You can't move in with me."

"You were seventeen when-,"

"Damnit, my parents died!", he yelled, knowing the Uchiha had wanted to take him as a prime example of a teenager living alone, "Do you think I want to live here? All alone? Earning my money in a supermarket?", he snapped as he got up, returning the aggressive look of Sasuke's eyes, "You are so goddamn stupid, Sasuke, for even believing that I want all of this. That I am happy with this!"

"Fine.", the other boy pressed, "Then just let me sleep here."

Naruto wanted to roll his eyes, "What do you want, Sasuke?", he almost growled "You want me to pity you? Comfort you? If I fuckin' let you live here, you're parents just show up and take you with them. You're not that stupid, you know that, too."

Sasuke snorted, "You don't know me. You don't know anything about me! If you knew me, you wouldn't be such an asshole to me!"

Naruto was unforgiving, "Nobody came to me and asked me if I wanted to move in with them when I had buried my parents, nobody fuckin' pitied me either. I'm not your family, Sasuke, I can't take care of you, why does that go over your head like fuck?"

"Why do you have to be such a bastard?", Sasuke yelled, "Alright, I get it – I have to take this shit I took all my life for the next four years, too. Alright, whatever – but why don't you just do me one favor and tell me that I will be fine or whatever – don't you understand me? A little? You, of all people, should understand me!"

"I ain't thinkin' of some cheap lie to make you feel better. You can't chose your life, you can't chose your family, so live with it. Life can be a bitch and it is fuckin' disappointing, but what am I supposed to do? I can't make it stop! I can't let you stay here!"

Sasuke's eyes were hard as steel, "Your father would've let me stay."

And Naruto returned the angry stare, "My father is dead."

"He was a better man. He was a better man than you will ever be!", the Uchiha snapped, then he moved his chin and glared with arrogance that was typical Sasuke, "You're nothing like he had been, all you are is one pathetic, fucked up bastard-,"

Naruto lost it, then. He punched Sasuke straight in the face, the raven-haired fell to the ground and coughed while struggling to get up, but Naruto pinned him down on the stained floor; his crystal pendant dangling in front of Sasuke's nose.

"All you ever do is fuckin' whine into my ears, how fucked-up your life is and how you envy me because I don't have to deal with all that shit problems, but just in case you didn't notice, you spoilt-fucked-up-princess, your whining is doing nothing but pissing me off! Who's goddamn fault is it that I live alone? Hm? Who always made my father step up for him?"

Those words had killed Sasuke, he could see it in his eyes. The raven-haired's lips were trembling, "You can't possibly mean that, you-,"

"My father-,", he couldn't bring the words over his lips, they were heavy like lead and unmovable like a mountain, "If you can't live in that goddamn manor of yours, take my fuckin' car and drive to some stupid child protection service or what-the-hell-do-I-know and ask them to take care of you, but don't you be so foolish to think they can change anything. Nobody's gonna change the fuckin' fact that your goddamn father is an asshole who's beating the living shit out of you on daily basis."

Sasuke flared his nostrils, laying unmovable on the ground and under Naruto. He swallowed, the tears were waiting to run down his heated cheeks, "You have no idea what you're talking about. You were happy. Your father loved you."

"My father is dead. He can't love me anymore."

"Nobody's ever loved me.", Sasuke choked, the tears finally running down his temples, drowning in his raven hair, but his face was a steel-hard mask of pain and brutal fear "You at least had parents who loved you. Don't think you got it worse than me. Don't you go and fuckin' lecture me like you know anything about life, you goddamn bastard!"

Naruto lifted a fist again, ready to punch Sasuke a second time. Sometimes, he wondered if Fugaku felt like he did right now when dealing with Sasuke, the boy just didn't know when to shut up and when he crossed the goddamn line.

"Do it.", Sasuke spat, his eyes dangerously wide and filled with madness and sorrow, "Do it, you motherfuckin' bastard!", he all but screamed now, his face reddening even more, his veins popping out, "Break my nose! Do it already! You're not the first one!"

With a roar, Naruto brought the fist down, but instead of Sasuke's injured face, he punched the carpet beneath Sasuke's temple and then he grabbed the collar with both hands and he crushed their lips together. His fury and his rage burnt inside him like an inferno, and Sasuke's lips were the right place to let it all out. Not closing his eyes, he watched how the other squeezed his own shut, whimpering stubbornly against the kiss, hammering his fists against Naruto's toned chest, but it was useless. Instead of breaking the touch, Naruto grabbed his neck with one hand to hold him steady and forced his tongue in between his lips, brushing over Sasuke's teeth, dug deeper inside until he found his tongue and he licked along it, tasting the smoke and the alcohol and whatever else this taste of Sasuke consisted off.

The Uchiha winced away with a panicked gasp, he glared at Naruto, who let go of him, but took two wrists, pressed them down above Sasuke's head

"What-,", the younger croaked as he arched his back through under the blonde's weight, but Naruto only growled at the resistance and kissed Sasuke again; he could trash and struggle like he wanted, but the hard bulge Naruto felt against his thighs was more proof than he could ask for. He was hard, Sasuke was hard, it was self-evident that they both wantedd this sick pleasure their bodies could give them.

Sasuke needed air and he turned his face away to break the kiss, he wrenched his hands free and punched Naruto away, then struggled on his feet, staggered a few steps and wiped his mouth as if he had drunken poison. He stared at Naruto with fear and emotionless desire "Forget it, you-,"

Naruto got on his feet as well, licking his lips with a smirk, he moved closer again and grabbed Sasuke's shoulder, yanked him around and pushed him against the front door. The wood shook under the impact of the younger's body and Naruto dug his fingernails deep inside the fabric of his shirt, grabbed a fistful of raven hair and yanked Sasuke's head back, brought his mouth to his neck and bit inside the tender, muscled flesh while grabbing his semi-erection with the other hand, "You're hard, Uchiha."

"So are you.", came the growled reply, almost as if he was proud to be the reason of Naruto's arousal.

He forced Sasuke around, slammed him against the door a second time, brought his mouth to his neck again and nuzzled the bite before he kicked his legs apart with his right knee.

"Then stop struggling already.", he hissed and tore the buttons of the denim open, yanked the pants down until they hung between Sasuke's knees. The bulge in the boxers the younger was wearing had grown even more and Naruto cupped it hard, harder than before, causing the other to hiss. There was no time for foreplay, not today, not ever. He grabbed Sasuke's hips, ripped the boxers down as well and exposed his back nicely. Then he yanked his own down, hurried movements tearing a zipper open, pushing jeans away. He ignored Sasuke's grunted groans and merely licked two of his fingers, wetting them nicely with saliva and smeared some around the other's hole before he gave his own erection two fast pumps.

He pressed Sasuke's buttcheeks apart, a rush of excitement tingling his nerves at the pure imagination of taking him raw; something he had never done before, not to anyone. Sasuke groaned loudly when Naruto sank inside him, slammed his forehead against the door, brought his hands up, banged them against the wood as well.

Naruto stopped halfway, there was no way he could enter the dry tightness in one fluid push, so he pulled out again, making Sasuke groan his name against the door before he thrusted in again, going deeper now. It was the most pleasurable pain around his sensitive erection, the tight flesh squeezing him to his limits, the forcefully stretched ring of muscles swallowing him perfectly.

Sasuke opened his mouth in a silent scream.

He rubbed Sasuke's lower back with one hand while the other searched for his erection, pumping the shaft roughly. Sasuke grunted as he shook under the impact of their bodies, he curled his fists against the door, slammed his hips back as much as the limited space between them allowed. Naruto wondered if he felt pleasure, if he felt good, but he didn't ask. Why should he – there was no love involved, no need for any words of affection. Not all this 'does it feel good' crap, no, not with them. This was just sex – that he had his cock shoved up another male's ass didn't change it in any way. Fucking a woman, fucking a man, to Naruto it was sex and sex was good.

Sasuke moaned loudly, lifted his head, closed his eyes. Naruto let his hands wander towards Sasuke's toned chest, slipped his hands under the shirt and massaged ivory skin, bit down inside the soft flesh of his neck again, causing him to yell. He soon forgot his control and fucked Sasuke without holding back – he would be sore tomorrow, but he didn't see him struggle, nor did he see him not enjoying this. In fact, Sasuke's moans were a lot more ecstatic and feral than they ever had been.

As sweat dropped from his forehead, Naruto smirked "Enjoying yourself?", he chuckled in between his gasps for breath and dug his fingertips deep inside Sasuke's skin, hoping to cause bruises and marks.

"N-Naruto-o...", was the only coherent sound rolling over Sasuke's lips, Naruto smiled and grabbed Sasuke's hair again and yanked his head back, earning a startling, choked gasp. He licked his throat up to his ear and bit inside the lobe. His other hand squeezed his cock harder, unforgiving, closing his fist tightly.

Sasuke yelled his name.

Naruto moved deeper inside him, until his balls slapped against Sasuke's pale skin, until he was standing on the tips of his toes, grunting and howling in pain.


"Aha.", he grunted, fucked the living daylights out of Sasuke, who was unwilling to show whether he enjoyed it or not. Sasuke moved his eyes to steal a glance at the blonde and when Naruto's azure ones met the onyx orbs, he was faced with brutal pain and blissful desire. With a grin, he kicked Sasuke's legs further apart, pushed inside deeper, made him moan and curse under his breath, trapped him between his torso and the door until he probably couldn't breathe anymore.

"F-Fuck you, Uzumaki...", he grunted, closed his eyes, his face cramping with – with what? Pleasure? Pain? Naruto wished he didn't care, but suddenly, something like worry did stir his heart.

Sasuke gasped and groaned, Naruto grunted and closed his eyes, his climax tingling all over his nervous system. Seconds later, his orgasm crushed down on him and he filled Sasuke with his semen before he pulled out. He collapsed against Sasuke's body, he felt his chest heaving against his own, breath hitting the door and some his face.

The remained like that for a small eternity, lingering in the blissfull emptiness that spread over their bodies. Sasuke slowly opened his eyes, licked his lips, "Let me stay here.", he muttered against the door, cowering under Naruto's torso. He turned around and stared into a pair of azure eyes, "Let me stay, Naruto. Please."

Naruto drowned in bottomloss pool of darkness and licked his lips as well, "Sasuke-", he began, his voice still raw and low from the aftermath of his orgasm, "You know-,"

"Please.", he whispered, leaned his head against Naruto's toned chest, nuzzled his collarbone, "Please."

"Even if I wanted,", he replied and pushed back from the dark-haired teenager, "I can't let you stay."

It was a lie.

If he wanted, he would find a way to save Sasuke. If he wanted, he could free his friend from this world of torture and soul-breaking disaster, he could end so many painful moments and begin a better life. If he wanted. But Naruto didn't.

And Sasuke knew. Sucking breath inside his lungs, he pushed away from the blonde and staggered a few steps, collected his denim and yanked it up again.

"Where are you going?"

"Bathroom.", Sasuke grunted back, stopping mid-movement. Naruto saw his own cum dripping down his thighs when he stumbled forward again, opened the bathroom door and disappeared inside.

He leaned against the door, breathed heavily and let himself slide down until he slumped down on his floor and then he stared at his ceiling in silence. He heard the toilet flushing, he heard the shower running. He briefly wondered if he should think of some sort of apology, and it probably was what he was supposed to do, but he didn't.

Sasuke left the bathroom and stared at Naruto.

"Took you long enough."

"You asshole came inside me.", he grunted back "I hate that."

"Oh, come on, don't be such a chick, you-,"

"Shut the fuck up.", was what he got and Sasuke walked inside the kitchen and snatched himself a smoke, needed three tries to get the lighter to produce a flame. Naruto listened to the crackle of the burning tobacco and then watched how Sasuke inhaled, deeply, before he blew the smoke out staring directly into Naruto's eyes.

He looked away. He turned his head back and then, he knew, pity filled his eyes. Pity for Sasuke, pity for himself. Pity for everything. For his parents, his lost life, Sasuke's lost life.

"What?", Sasuke snapped, dipped some ash inside the sink, "Want me to pay for the fuckin' cigarette?"

He looked away again, "No."

"Then why're you looking at me like that?"

He shook his head, lowered his eyelids. He was tired. "Nothing. Never mind."

Sasuke licked his lips, took another lungful of smoke, "I know.", he said as if he didn't mind either, "You idiot pity me."

Naruto grimaced, "What-,"

"You think I'm just a poor little brat whining about my fuckin' life when you have it so much worse. Said that for yourself. Right? Hm? You think you got the worst of all, but you believe you're so strong and awesome when in truth, you're all fucked-up and shit.", he cocked both his eyebrows up, only for a second, the previous arrogance washing over his face again and Sasuke looked like somebody who was able to kill and laugh at you the same time, "Actually, you're even more fucked-up than I am. You can't stand looking at me because you think I'm the reason why you are alone. You blame me for everything. Must be awesome, having someone to let all the frustration out on, hm?"

His heartbeat stuttered and memories flared up before his inner eyes, "I'm not in the mood for that.", he drawled and he closed his eyes, buried them under his palms.

"Sure, you got what you wanted."

"If you can't take it, asshole, why don't you just leave?", he asked, removing his hands a bit to glare at Sasuke.

"If you can't stand me, why don't you just kick me out?", he retorted, "Hm? You never kick me out. You always let me stay. You say you want me to piss off, but you always let me crawl inside your bed. Do you think I don't know you're faking to be asleep?"

Naruto's eyes, despite himself, widened with – shock? Yes, it probably was shock. His stomach felt slack and he licked his lips. He struggled to find the perfect insult, but he didn't find any.

"Knew it.", Sasuke grunted and finished his smoke in two, long inhales. He dumped the filter inside the sink and exhaled the smoke, "You're a fuckin' coward."

"What do you want, Sasuke?", Naruto croaked, his voice finally giving in to his feelings, "Tell me. What do you want from me?"


"What I want from you?", he hissed, "If you just opened your eyes, you would see that I don't want anything anymore, Naruto."

He started to feel panic. Sasuke – those goddamn words – Sasuke needed to shut up.

Naruto struggled. There was a crack in his mask "Sasuke, listen - I'm-,"

I'm at my limit, you asshole, don't you get it? I wish you would just leave, I wish I wouldn't have to see you anymore, but – but-,

His tongue felt furry when he tried to speak words he didn't want to say. Something was blocking him, something deep, deep inside him, something he had buried a long, long time ago.


But I'm-,

I'm alone.

Sasuke flared his nostrils and lowered his swollen eyes. Then he shrugged and suddenly looked like a broken teenager again. The arrogance and bravery left his eyes and he was weak again, "It wasn't my fault.", croaked and Naruto tried to convince himself he wasn't crying.

"It wasn't my fault."

He turned his head at him. There were tears in his eyes. He wasn't crying. Not yet.

"Right? Naruto?"

Naruto nodded.

Half a year ago, Naruto had taken Sasuke for the first time.

It had been a night like this, very much similar and very much the same. He had taken Sasuke on the couch, they had taken olive oil from the kitchen as lube and he had felt good. He knew Sasuke had felt good, too. Sounds like that could never come from pain – the sounds Sasuke made during sex were the pure proof of pure pleasure. And Naruto had got what he wanted, too – too feel good again. That had been all he had wanted, to feel good again. He wanted to forget. He wanted to hurt Sasuke. It made him feel better.

God, all of this was so messed up, and now he felt like a piece of shit. He didn't really know why, but he had to admit it was a lie, because he knew very well why and what the reason for his helplessness was.

He had taken a shower, Sasuke still sat on the kitchen table and two hours had passed, in which neither of them had said a single word. The air they breathed was filled with something malicious and something heavy, and neither of them was willing to carry the weight for the other. Naruto wished he knew why he felt like that, so restless and incomplete, and on top of that, all alone when he had someone to share his pain with.

Sasuke got up, the chair was creaking and he supported his weight on the table "I'm leavin'."

Naruto looked at him, words of comfort lingering on his tongue, but he was unable to speak them. Instead, he said, "You're leaving?"

He stared at him and there was this raw pain in his eyes Naruto knew so very well. He had to look away again.

"Well, what can I say? Gotta go back where I came from."

Sasuke was by the door already when Naruto erased the distance between them in a few steps, stopped the rave-haired from leaving and stared inside his dark eyes, felt as if he had swallowed broken glass.

Neither of them broke the eye contact.

His skin flared up with goosebumps and he shattered. Sasuke knew – he knew it all. He knew the feelings Naruto didn't, and he saw the mask Naruto was wearing and he even saw behind it. The kid he had pitied and hated all those years had finally done it. The first person to get him was the boy he had thought could never, not ever, reach up to grab what he couldn't even brush with his fingertips.


Sasuke, surprisingly, shook his head "Leave it.", he said and he had accepted defeat, "I don't need anything, not from you, Naruto. It's alright."


There was no reply. Sasuke pushed him away and put his hand on the handle. He waited another second, he waited for Naruto to say what he was supposed to say.

Naruto said nothing, though.

"See ya 'round, Naruto."

Naruto didn't look at him, neither did he turn around. He licked his lips and then pressed them together, a weak attempt to fight all the words crawling up his throat.

The door unlocked, Sasuke opened and he stepped outside in the cold night. The door closed and Naruto heard his footsteps on the concrete.

In his head, he could see it all as if it was real.

Sasuke would walk home, his hands shoved in the pockets of his denim, his shoulders slumped, his head bowed. The soles of his shoes would shuffle on the floor, each step was one step closer to his own execution, and he didn't possess the bravery to walk with his head held high. He probably had in the past, but even the greatest courage and the greatest bravery could be broken by fists belonging to your father.

In half an hour, maybe fourty minutes, he would be home and pick the key from his pocket, unlock the front door and slip inside, trying so very, very hard not to make any sound. Holding his breath, he closed the door soundlessly and then removed his shoes.

In fact, it didn't even matter whether he was quiet or not, his father would be up anyway. His mother, too, but she would be in her bed, pretending to be asleep – just like he always did when Sasuke needed help – and his brother, well, his whereabouts usually were a mystery to the Uchiha family. He was like a ghost in this house, coming and going when he pleased, and when the punishment for disobeying was in reach, Itachi was never receiving it - unlike his little brother, he had the brutality inside him to break bones as well.

Uchiha Fugaku was merciless, the more Sasuke would beg to stop, to let him just go, to not do this to him anymore, the more his father would get worked up over his son's pitiable weakness. That was still not the worst to do – the worst Sasuke could do was to beg him in between painful sobs – butI'myourson! - that would only make things so much worse. He probably was sick and tired pitying himself by now, he knew begging would never change anything and he had accepted it all with apathy and strengthless resistance.

Nobody would be there to pick him up, to carry him to a chair and treat his wounds. Nobody would be there to give him a glass of water, to give him a few painkillers, to help him crawl up the stairs to his room.

He was all alone. And Sasuke, once he was done giving himself crappy first-aid treatment, would go to sleep, or at least try to, and whenever had the chance, he would sneak out of the house, walk and walk and drag himself over to Naruto's apartment.

And it all began anew. The insults, the tension, the sex, the blame. There was this vicious circle they were trapped in, and neither of them knew how to break out of it.

Naruto sat on his couch, smoking and drinking and he did what he usually avoided to do – he wandered back in the past, he laid himself open and started to tear at old wounds and nursed old scars.

The reason why he was unable to comfort Sasuke, the reason why he pretended to be asleep, the reason why he couldn't be the friend he was supposed to be was a very simple reason he fiercely pushed away, but was so very aware of.

The reason why he was alone.

One day in winter, when he had been fourteen years old, his Dad had brought Sasuke back home from school. Naruto had sat in the backseat of their car while Minato and Sasuke left. The young boy had fearfully grabbed Minato's hand with his tiny one, his shoulders shivering, tears in his eyes. He knew what would happen once Minato was gone. Everybody knew it – nobody could stop it, though, and that was even worse than knowing what was going to happen, knowing what was not going to happen tortured them all even more.

Naruto watched his father ringing the doorbell. He watched Fugaku opening it. It didn't take long until a fight broke out, and with that, he didn't mean verbal insults, that was just the sick warm-up to the real battle. The two men started fighting and they fought without any holding back. Naruto had watched with great fascination and immense fear how his father started to slam his fist against Fugaku's face, how he was breaking bones as if they were made out of splintered glass.

His body moved on his own when he left the car, adrenaline and fear were stronger than the strict order to not leave. His father screamed at him to stay back. Sasuke yelled his father's name. In the heated, blurred moment, there was nothing but feral screams, insults, the sound of flesh hitting flesh. A neighbor had called the police. Mikoto stood in the doorway, watching paralyzed with fear.

It happened very fast.

Sasuke was about to grab his father's leg in order to make him stop beating Minato up. Naruto was about to run towards his father, trying to hold him back from killing Fugaku with his bare hands.

Faster than a bolt of lightning, Fugaku's fist connected with Minato's face – hit his right eye – and all Naruto heard was the crack of a bone breaking, then a painful scream rolling over his father's bloody lips, his voice sounding foreign and unlike all he was used to. The rest was a blur in his memory and it only became clearer when he saw the white light inside the hospital room. The doctor said he was sorry, and Naruto was overwhelmed with shock. Minato had only smiled and said, "It was worth the price, you know."

Naruto would never understand why his father hadn't been angry – why he hadn't been furious, shaking with madness, with hatred for the man who had taken the light from his right eye. Minato had wanted to ruffle his son's hair like he always did when he wanted to reassure him, but he missed his head two times.

The smile never left his lips.

"Kushina, you know how useless it is to tell the police.", Minato had chuckled when they had come home. His Mom felt how Minato was supposed to feel, Naruto had thought, she was burning with fury, she was ready to kill Fugaku. She was examining Minato's wounds, already searching the first-aid kit to redo the treatment of the nurse in the hospital.

"He-,", her voice was shaking, her head turning red with fury, "Minato. You're blind on one eye. Because of-, because of what? Sasuke is-,"

"Don't say something like that, babe. Sasuke's just... he's just a poor boy. He's got nobody besides us."

"And you?", she snapped, "Do you have to sacrifice everything for everybody?", she was yelling now, throwing a bandage back in the kit; so fiercely that the lid fell close, "Why? At least file in a report!"

"What?", Minato chuckled again, "That's ridiculous. He's the chief officer, honey. Don't even bother trying to get him."


He shook his head, "Don't worry. I bet he'll be deaf for a weak, I'm pretty sure I hit his ear nicely."

Kushina's fury was replaced with deep, heart-wrenching worry, "And what if he's reporting-,"

Minato shook his head, "Relax, Kushina.", he said and brushed over her face with his thumb before he kissed her – missed her lips by an inch and ended up pressing his lips against the corner of her mouth. They parted and the pain was reachable.

"That asshole will get what he deserves."

Two years later, Kushina had called from work, the car had broken, she needed someone to pick her up and she couldn't reach a cab. Naruto tried to stop his father from leaving with the family's second car – how should he drive, half-blind as he was? So he had sat down behind the steering wheel, Minato had sat down next to him, not wanting to be left behind like some cripple. There was little Naruto remembered – he heard his parents arguing, Kushina slamming against the steering wheel on the way home – whose fuckin' fault is it you are half-blind, Minato? It's not mine! It's not Naruto's either!- and next thing he knew was a bright light blinding him, and then nothing.

Nothing until he woke up in a hospital bed, with a fractured leg, a concussion and four cracked rips.

His parents both were dead.

Fugaku would never get what he deserved and Sasuke had no-one to protect him anymore.

Naruto – well, Naruto only had one person to blame. Unconsciously, though, hidden behind layers of grief and memories. But now, the pieces of the puzzle moved on their own and Naruto finally admitted the truth he had shunned out all those years.

It wasn't my fault.

The answers had been there all along, he just couldn't grab them.

Sasuke didn't want any love, any friendship, he didn't want any comfort, any pity. All Sasuke wanted, the only thing he ever had wanted from Naruto was forgiveness.


He had been a better man than you are.

Naruto swallowed the bitter taste from his tongue and he lowered the glass with the cheap booze inside. It was like a slap in the face, unexpected and heavy and painful. Adding up to the pain, Naruto felt shame, deep inside his heart and it rose up, heated his cheeks. He lowered his head and then he imagined his father standing there, only able to see him with one eye, but he would smile and say, is this how I raised you, son?, and he would ruffle his hair – miss two times, probably – and then he would say, it was nobody's fault.

With his heartbeat going crazy in his chest, Naruto got up. His feet moved on their own, just like his body had moved on his own back then, and he grabbed his car keys and his cellphone and he slipped inside his chucks and left his apartment, foreign determination burning in his gut, making him jog down the stairs as if the devil was behind him.

He was already on his way to the car when he stopped mid-movement, breathing hard and feeling positively grossed out by himself. If he showed up at Sasuke's house, what should he do? There was nothing he could do. There was nothing he could do – it was as easy as that.

He stepped down the stair he was only standing on with one foot and then he sat down, buried his face under his hands and whimpered. He was no hero, he wasn't his father, he wasn't able to even help himself, how should he help his friend, then? He had never helped him, why now?

"Shit..", he cursed and felt sick to the stomach, willed the bile rising up his throat down again. All those years he had always blamed Sasuke – he had always only felt hatred for him. And still, even though he hated him he had let him stay, had kept him close, out of the most selfish reasons, so that he had someone to scream at, to hurt, to punish.

He couldn't help Sasuke – Sasuke didn't deserve anything coming from him. Naruto got up and then he went inside his apartment, sober realization dawning down on him. He gulped and closed the door, leaned against it, didn't switch the light on. Instead, he grabbed his cell phone and speed-dialed Sasuke's number.

He waited patiently and listened to the beeping sounds, but nobody picked up. Only Sasuke's mailbox, and then he hung up again. Naruto put his cell phone back in his pocket and bit down on his lower lip.

Maybe it wasn't meant to be any different. Maybe they were forced to live like this, forever, until they breathed their last breaths. Maybe his parent's death had ended it all and had taken every hope they once had.

But that was a lie – he knew it.

"Don't be such a coward, Uzumaki.", he said to himself, "Don't be such a coward."

He had nothing to lose.

He turned around and left the flat.

He rang the doorbell twice. After ten minutes of waiting, he rang it a third time. He heard footsteps approaching from inside the house and held his breath, hoping – no, begging – it was Mikoto who opened up.

He should really know better, because he wasn't the lucky kind and it was, of course, Fugaku's angry face who stared at him. Naruto saw the hatred filling his dark eyes faster than a sinking ship filling with water and he inhaled the smell of liquor coming from the man.

His stomach recoiled.

"What do you want here, bastard?"

"Is-,", he licked his lips – God, his mouth was drying up – and then he cleared his throat, "Is Sasuke home?"


He exhaled, his breath shuddered. He cramped his fingers around the car keys until they dug inside his palm, "I just need to talk to him. For a second. Just-, just a second."

"No. Piss of.", Fugaku grunted and he wanted to slam the door close, but Naruto quickly shoved a foot between the frame and the door.

It hurt like a bitch when his foot was caught in between and he hissed between gritted teeth, squeezing one eye close. He didn't hesitate when he growled, "I said I want to see him."

"Piss off already.", Fugaku growled back and tried to make Naruto remove his foot by crushing it with the door, but the blonde didn't move one inch. Instead, he sucked breath inside his lungs, "I ain't leaving."

"Honey, who is it?", he heard Mikoto's thin voice and he caught the nervous shimmer in Fugaku's eyes.

"Go back inside."

"Honey, please-,", she hiccuped, her voice was breaking and Naruto felt worry biting his insides.

"Please, if it's-,"

"Shut up and go back inside already!", the man barked and then he glared at Naruto again, "If you know what's best for you, you fuckin' leave right now, brat. Be smarter than your father had been."

Naruto gnashed his teeth together, "I need to talk to Sasuke."

"I told you to-,"

"I only want to talk to him.", he said and then tried the last card, "Please."

A deadly glare was the answer, "Are you fuckin' deaf? Piss off already!", he yelled and shoved Naruto away with such brute that he stumbled backwards, but he didn't fail to see the blood on his knuckles. The next second, he stared at Fugaku and he felt his face paling rapidly.

Fugaku was not wasting any time and slammed the door shut. Naruto, with a heavy rush of panic, jumped back towards it and started hammering against the wood with his fists, "Let me inside!", he roared, a feeling he wasn't used to taking control over his body. His mind started spinning and spinning and the most atrocious images started to haunt him – Sasuke, bleeding to death, laying on the floor in his own blood, life leaving him and nobody helping him.

His heartbeat doubled inside his chest. "You motherfuckin' asshole, let me inside!", he screamed at the top of his lungs, scratching his knuckles open on the raw wood, "Open the fuckin' door!"

Inside, he heard screaming. Fugaku and Mikoto, the former crying hysterically. Naruto stopped trying to punch holes inside the door and he took a few steps back, let the keys slip inside his pocket before he tried to break the door open with his shoulder. Instead of making the door move, he probably dislocated his shoulder, judging the sharp pain that shot through his torso. He wasn't thinking straight, because despite the pain he tried it again.

And again. And a third time.

You're a fuckin' coward.

He grunted through gritted teeth when his eyes started to sting with tears he would never cry. He slammed a fourth time against the door, the screams inside ringing in his ears, he heard glass breaking. The door broke under the impact and he fell inside, landed most ungracefully on his hands and knees. He tried to get breath back in his lungs when he crawled on his feet, splintered wood falling from his hair and back.

It had been ages since he had been here, but he knew the sounds of fighting came from the kitchen and he stormed inside, saw Fugaku raising a fist to break whatever bone still was unfractured in his wife's face. Naruto was feeling the fear, yes he was, and his feet wouldn't move easily, but something deep down inside him drove him on. The pain was a monster inside him, but he moved – he moved and he vanquished every feeling from his heart and formed a tight fist.

With a roar, he punched Fugaku's face, hard. His knuckles flared up with pain when he felt his nose breaking, heard the sick crack and then warm blood painted his fist red. Oh, it was the most pleasurable high he had ever felt – finally, he could pay this bastard back for what he done, not only to him, but to everybody around him.

He watched with delight how Fugaku stumbled, only two steps, how he brought his hand to his nose and how he glared at him, "You little bastard!", he barked "How dare you-,"

Mikoto sank to her knees and cried inside her hands, rocked back and forth and hiccuped incoherent words, "My boy... my sweet boy..."

Naruto wondered how he still could hear anything besides his frantic heartbeat and the rush of blood in his ears, but he stared at Fugaku, whose nose he had gladly broken. He couldn't even explain it to himself, why he was here, why he was even thinking he had a chance against him. Maybe it was revenge that drove him – maybe he was a total moron or a goddamn idiot. Or – and it probably was the answer he could live with best – or he was just being the friend he should've been all along.

"I ain't letting you do this anymore.", he grunted, but his voice wasn't as steady and as strong as he had wished it to be. In fact, his knees were shivering and he was fighting the urge to just beg the man to stop all of this, "You hear me?"

Fugaku laughed, "Hah... haha, you amuse me, bastard. You think you can tell me what to do, hm? Hm?", he grunted and licked the blood from his lips, "You better piss of before I rearrange your face."

"Where is Sasuke?"

"He-,", it was Mikoto's broken voice, but a deadly glare of Fugaku shut her up. Naruto cursed in his thoughts and flexed his fingers.

While the dark-haired woman went back to weeping, Naruto tried to calm himself, with little success, "Just tell me where he is."

"Now, why would I do that?", Fugaku grunted, "Hm? Name me one good reason."

Naruto was silent. Even if he had an answer, he probably couldn't make his voice work for him.

Fugaku's eyes narrowed as he stepped closer "You think I don't know what you two are doing when you're together, hm? How you fuck him like a cunt? Hm? My son – fucked in the ass like a goddamn bitch! And now-, hah, don't you go and make me laugh, boy, and now you want to see him?", he chuckled, darkly "I only hope you hurt him good when you do him. I really hope you enjoy it, you menace."

All those insults set a raging fire inside his heart, but he forced himself to ignore it, "What have you done to him?"

"What is that supposed to mean?", the man asked, "I did whatever he deserved."

He inhaled sharply through his nose "Where is he?"

"You're making me repeat myself, boy.", Fugaku came closer. Naruto backed away. He came closer. He back away. One step forward from Fugaku meant one step backwards from him.

Step – step – step.

Until his back collided with a wall.

"Fugaku, please!", Mikoto begged under tears, "Please, not the boy!"

"Shut up already.", he growled, but never let Naruto out of sight, "Last chance, brat. Either you leave or you'll wake up in hospital tomorrow. If you're lucky, that is."

Naruto wished he could leave. Yes, in that moment, his cowardice got the upper hand. He wondered why he didn't beg. He wondered why he didn't say anything. Was he too scared? Was he trying to play the hero? Was he trying to convince himself this was the right thing to do?

He must have lost his mind.

Naruto grinned, and he knew he had Sasuke's maniac look in his eyes, "Do it, then. I won't leave and nothing you do will change that."

Fugaku raised one eyebrow.

Naruto narrowed his eyes and roared, "Do it already!"

And then he saw stars bursting before his eyes. His head slammed against the wall from the impact, leaving him feeling numb and paralyzed with pain. Another fist hit his temples, sending a ringing to his ears that made him deaf for every other sound. A third punch fractured a rip on his left side; he didn't only feel the crack, but heard it as well. He yelled, coughed, blood and saliva dripping down on the floor and his vision was still spinning from the first punch in his face. The pain was something he had never felt before, and he didn't even see Fugaku's face, he only saw swirls of colors and then he felt the pain and he lost track of everything.

That asshole will get what he deserves.

Naruto could see his father's face as if it had been yesterday when had last seen him. The smile that had never left his lips, never, not once, and he suddenly felt even more ashamed than he had been. This was what Minato had left behind – a weak coward who couldn't even defend himself.

He wouldn't let it end like this. There must be a stop to all this suffering, there must be an ending one day.

Naruto reached inside his jeans pocket and fingered for the key. He grabbed it and in the last second, brought it up when Fugaku was ready to punch him again.

The sharp key dug itself deep inside the man's palm and blood streamed across Naruto's fist. A torn cry rang to his ears and Fugaku stumbled back, held his injured hand, "You fuckin' asshole!", he screamed and was ready to storm at him again, "You fuckin'-,"

"Where is Sasuke!", he roared back, "Where is he?"

The fist hit his face again, breaking already broken bones again. Naruto felt the pain stabbing his skull like hot iron and he screamed, staggered backwards, held his face both hands. He grunted, refused stubbornly to make any sound of weakness. It was over – he was sick of this fucked-up mess he was caught inside and he was willing to do anything to break out of that vicious circle.

This war had been going on for far too long.

It probably was most primitive and feral instincts that made him still move, that kept him on his feet, but he staggered forward, staggered and staggered and wanted to throw up because of pain.

"Wh-where is he?", he gurgled, "Where is Sasuke"?

"You're still not givin' up?", the man grunted, "Why? Why are you and your goddamn family so goddamn in love with my son-,"

"Shut the fuck up.", he gasped, slurred, "You have no fuckin' right to call him your son, you goddamn son-of-a-bitch!"

There suddenly were sirens. Fugaku looked panicked and Naruto, too, didn't understand what was going on. Both then looked at Mikoto, who, with a shaking hand, let go of the telephone. Tears streamed down her face She looked at Naruto, the most primitive way of pleading in her eyes, "He's-, Sasuke is in-,"

Fugaku flared his nostrils and stormed over to her, "You little-,"

It happened fast then. Fugaku raised his fist – Naruto ran, at least tried, he moved as fast as his feet allowed him.

"No!", he heard himself screaming and in the next second, the fist that was meant for Mikoto's face hit his face, and white-hot pain made him see pure white for a dangerously long time. He staggered back, hit Mikoto who grabbed him by the shirt, but both went down on the floor. Her voice in his ears, he heard footsteps inside the house, hurried and heavy. Voices yelled, Fugaku cursed. Naruto opened his eyes, saw only colors mixing to one, smeared silhouette of chaos. He started laughing then. He laughed, because he understood the absurdity of this fucked-up mess. Mikoto helped him on his feet and while the police took care of their own chief officer, he tried to speak, "Sa-,Sasuke-,"

"Upstairs.", she cried, "He locked him in his room. H-Hid the key.", she broke into a fit of sobbing, "Oh, I'm so sorry! I tried-, I really tried to stop him, I really, really did, but-, but-,", another wave of fresh tears dropped down "Oh God, Naruto... Naruto... my boy, my sweet boy, he-,if he's-,"

"Shit...", he cursed and covered his wounded face with his palm, "Goddammit..."

Naruto then pushed away from her. Where he took the strength to move his torn body, he would never know and while he stumbled towards the staircase, he wished his father could see him and say something. Say how stupid this had been, say how he would never learn – say that he was proud.

Naruto fell and landed on the stairs, hit the wood with his chin and yelped in pain. He heard the police shouting something, he heard Mikoto shouting something as well, but he had never listened to anybody before his life, why should he start now.

Blood dripped from his mouth when he got up again and he started crawling up the stairs. They were already covered with blood that didn't belong to him, his stomach cramped and recoiled at the sight and with gritted teeth, he crawled up, further up. In the background, he heard the police calling ambulance.

He staggered on his feet again, coughed up more blood and spit it out. Sasuke's room was across the hallway and he took the walls for support as he walked on and on.

Weak pounding came from his room. Weak, unsteady and desperate pounding against the wooden door. His heartbeat stuttered and he squeezed his eyes close; the walls started crushing down on him and he begged for something or someone to make it all stop spinning. When he reached the door, he had no strength to support his weight anymore and fell on his knees.


There was no answer. He grabbed the handle and tried it, but Mikoto hadn't lied, the door was locked. Naruto banged his forehead against it.

"Sasuke...", he croaked and then he smiled as tears stung in his eyes again "Sasuke, I'm here. I'm sorry."

And then he collapsed.

It was 2.34 am when his doorbell rang.

Naruto turned around, pressed his face against his pillow, "Oh, for the love of God...", he cursed inside the fabric and he fought himself free from the tangled sheets. He sat down on the bedside and massaged his aching temples when the doorbell rang a second time. He grunted and got up, staggered on his feet and tried to gather some orientation, "Goddammit..."

Then he stumbled through his room and made it to the front door. He opened and saw Sasuke standing in front of him, his face a stoic, indifferent mask – that would soon change, Naruto thought and his heartbeat doubled up.

This time, his face was healed and without any cuts or bruises, only some faint red marks shimmering under the pale complexion, small reminders of what Fugaku had done to him four weeks ago. Naruto had only heard from Mikoto how her husband had mangled his son, and what the doctors had said had given him the final blow. Seeing Sasuke like that was unusual, but he felt genuinely happy for him. Still, it was the middle of the night and he groaned and brushed over his puffy face, "Did you lose the fuckin' key I gave you or what?"

Sasuke got inside and ignored Naruto perfectly. The blonde frowned and glanced at the clock hanging above the fridge, "Okay. And why do you honor me with your presence at fuckin' three in the morning – again?"

Sasuke turned around and his eyes pierced him. But they looked different, they were crystal clear, a rich, dark brown, almost black. Most of all, they were free from every pain, every sorrow and every guilt. Sasuke slowly shook his head, "Why?", he demanded, almost angrily, crossing his arms in front of his chest.

"What?", Naruto asked in return, not really understanding what was going on. Maybe he was dreaming, maybe this was just some fucked-up hallucination of his sleep-deprived mind, "What why?"

"Why didn't you tell me anything?", the raven-haired yelled, "Hm?"

It dawned on him, then, slowly, and then it hit him like a tidal wave. He gave the front door a slap and it fell close, "You came all the way over here to ask me why I didn't tell you?"

"Yeah, is that a fuckin' problem?"

"Well, sure! It's the middle of the night! You woke up!"

Sasuke didn't know whether he should laugh or smack Naruto over the head, "You-, you asshole save my life and you don't even have the fuckin' balls to tell me?"

"What-, What in the-,"

"You didn't even visit me at the hospital!"

Naruto licked his dry lips, trying to find a good excuse that would make his raging friend shut up, once and for all. He brought his hands up in order to calm him down, "Sasuke-,"

The Uchiha, however, was inconsolable, "Why?", he asked again, "Why, Naruto?"

When Naruto didn't reply anything, the same old silence started to engulf them and both stared at each other. He shrugged, shook his head, struggled to find the right words. He suddenly felt very small compared to the furious Sasuke and he looked away.

"Tell me!"

"What do you want to hear?", he asked, his voice was steady and calm, "Why is it so important that you know? Maybe I just did it. Maybe-, maybe I just-,"

Sasuke furrowed his eyebrows.

Naruto shrugged again, "Maybe I just did it."

"I don't believe you."

He sighed. Then he leaned against the door and he couldn't bring himself to look at Sasuke. A full minute passed until he gathered a shaky breath and made his lips move, "I'm sorry.", he finally said and bowed his head even more. He wished he could kick Sasuke out, but that had never worked before, so he probably had to take what was coming at him.

"Sorry? For what?"

He shrugged again, "Everything. I'm sorry for fuckin' everything. I should've... I should've helped you. A lot earlier, you know.", he muttered and squeezed his eyes close, still not able to face the raven-haired teenager. Something inside him itched, as if to tell him to stop talking, and then there was something that pressed the words up his throat, "I'm sorry. You... you were right, about me. I am fucked-up and miserable. And I blamed you for it, all those years. I treated you like a bitch. And I'm sorry."

Sasuke gulped soundly. Naruto heard him walking two steps.

He didn't look up, though, when the words came like a flood, "I didn't come to see you because... because I couldn't. You're living proof of my fuckin' cowardice, after all. So, yeah. There you have it. I wanted to...", he cut himself off.

Then he slowly lifted his head and looked at Sasuke. He stood there, two steps further away now, a blank and shocked expression on his pale face.

Naruto brought his lips to form a smile – oh, it was very hard to do so. He hadn't smiled in a very long time, but somehow he felt as if he was doing the right thing, "I wanted to be a friend. That's all."

"Naruto-,", but Sasuke wasn't capable of saying more. Maybe he had expected another excuse, another insult, another blame. The truth was something both couldn't handle well, after all.

Naruto shrugged again, it seemed to be the only motion he could produce, "So, how... are you feeling?"

"What? How-,", and then he got it and shook his head briefly, "Fine, I'm... fine. I mean, yeah. Compared to last weeks."

Naruto nodded, "That's good.", he said and basically could see Sasuke's confusion and his working mind. He was swamped with the situation, even more than that – overwhelmed, probably.

"Naruto, you..."


"You saved my life!"

"I know."

Sasuke shook his head again, "And you would've never told me? You-, you asked my Mom to keep quiet? You-, that is not you!"

Naruto said nothing.

"You-,", Sasuke closed his eyes and formed hard fists, turned around and walked restlessly on the spot he was standing on, "What the fuck? I don't get you! Aren't you furious? You must hate me even more now!"

"No.", was the honest reply, "I don't. I don't... feel mad. I'm not furious.", he then laughed, like he had two weeks ago, so very insane and idiotic, "In fact, I've never felt better. My body hurts like a fucked bitch, but I never felt better.", he chuckled, "Okay, I did feel even better than that, but... I feel fine. I'm fine, Sasuke."

"You're crazy! You-, my father must've knocked your brains out, because-, because-,"

"Because what?"

"Nobody-,", Sasuke stopped himself again and he brushed over his face, "Nobody but your father ever did something like that for me!", his voice was rising, but not because of anger, but because of feelings of comfort he didn't know and wasn't used to, "Don't you get it? I-, I thought I was done for! The last person I had expected to show up – is-, is you!"

"Well, you can consider yourself lucky, then. Looks like my Dad had left some impression on me, hm?"

"You're an idiot. I ain't owing you something now or whatever. Got that?"

"Never said that."

A frustrated grunt escaped him, "Stop it already! Stop being like that! Where-, what's wrong with you? No insults, no fuckin' cockiness? Hm? Why don't you scream at me again – why-, why-,"

Naruto had enough – he crossed the distance between them with two fast steps, grabbed the collar of Sasuke's shirt and yanked him close, pressed his lips against Sasuke's and when he shoved his tongue inside their tongues found their match easily. He kissed Sasuke and tasted him, kissed him like probably was supposed to and he enjoyed the warm flames in his stomach.

When he broke the kiss, he looked into a pair of confused, dark eyes, "Just shut up, Sasuke.", he whispered against his lips, cupped his face with his hands and smiled, "And don't ask why."

It took Sasuke a moment to copy Naruto's smile and it took another moment for the blonde to think of something more to say than that.

"And do me one favor,", he went on with a grin on his lips, "Stop showing up in the middle of the night, okay?"

A/N: This story even has a happy ending, wow, aren't you all surprised now. Just in case you stumbled over one of the other fanfics, yes, I do have the habit of naming the file after the song I listened to while typing, haha.

Well. That was it - very long, I know, so thanks for reading all the way through it! ^_^

Leave a review, ne?