It's been a while since I've done a serious fic. And after finishing Ultimate Ninja Impact last night, I wanna try and get back into the groove of writing Naruto fan fiction. What better subject than our favorite little bundle of problems and complexes, Sasuke? Inspired by the TV Tropes subject, Cosmic Plaything, of which Sasuke seemingly is just to hammer home the point of the effects the past of the shinobi world have on its future. I know it's probably not the best, but, eh. Chalk up another typical angst one shot!

Disclaimer: Blu Rose doesn't own the Naruto characters or the series. She only owns this fic.

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Mend (verb) – 1) To make whole, sound, or usable with repairing. 2) To remove or correct defects or errors. 3) To set right; make better; improve.

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It's funny how things work out in life. In the case of Uchiha Sasuke, he was certain that to someone—perhaps a higher entity, though he never really believed in gods and deities—his entire life would seem some twisted excuse of a joke that had lasted for years too long.

It all seemed so simple in the beginning. He was an ordinary boy who wanted to be an excellent ninja like his father and big brother before him. He'd beg his brother to train together, did his best to make his parents and his clan proud… But he was just a child who was blind to reality until his brother shattered his normal, happy life for the sake of power, and told him to seek power—to kill him and prove his worth.

And so, he went through so many things to avenge his clan: defecting from his village, trying to kill his former comrade, becoming the apprentice of a man who only wanted him to gain ultimate knowledge, killing said man when he thought he was stronger, then setting out with a group of his own design to kill his older brother…only to learn the truth afterwards that his brother killed their clan because Konoha told him to do so, for the village's sake, which led to his personal vendetta against every man, woman and child living in it, which in turn led to his ultimate confrontation with Naruto to determine what was mightier: the Will of Fire or the Uchiha clan's centuries-long Curse of Hatred, which led to…

His defeat. The last thing he remembered before blacking out from overusing his chakra was Naruto standing over him, looking victorious with that ethereal golden glow. While he was blacked out, his mind was reeling. Wasn't his vengeance justified? Was his hate simply not strong enough? Was everything he went through worth nothing but further shame to the Uchiha name? And when he finally woke up in a cell…in Konoha's clutches…with his chakra sealed…he broke. Nothing was worth it anymore. Death was better than going through more pain and failure.

"Sasuke. You woke up." The sound of a familiar voice made the truly last Uchiha roll over in his cot to see who it was. The last person he saw when he was last awake: Naruto. The blonde remained awfully quiet for minutes. Wasn't he the one who always went on about how he would bring him back to the village? Now here they were, the hero and his fallen comrade, and he had nothing to say? "…I'm glad you're okay."

The raven just gave him an empty stare before rolling onto his side so he would stare at the wall instead of Naruto.

"Tsunade-baachan would chew me out if she knew I came here, but I just had to make sure you were okay. I know you probably don't like the conditions…but staying in prison until they say you're mentally sound enough to return to the village is better than…what they had planned for you."

"…You're just like the rest of them," Sasuke hissed, making the Uzumaki stare curiously. "You think you have the right to determine what I'm going to do. Like Madara and Orochimaru and…Itachi. You've already won and proven your nindo is superior… Why can't you just leave me to die in peace so this sham of a life can be over with?"

"Are you telling me…you want to die?" Naruto asked with a look of shock. "Why?"

"Anything is better than living with the fact that I've been manipulated time and again into doing what someone wishes of me…and you're just as bad for thinking you can make me want to come back to this place when there is nothing here that I want. No family…no friends…no desires at all. There's nothing I want from this world anymore…except maybe an ending," the raven said as he moved himself closer to the wall. Anything not to be within arm's length of Naruto.

"But you're wrong: I'm your friend! And Sakura-chan, too! We care about you as much as Itachi—!"

"DON'T SAY THAT NAME!" Sasuke screamed, making several people in nearby cells shout and wake up from whatever stupor they were in. He turned over to look at Naruto with an angry glare. "Don't say that name…! It's his fault my life turned out this way… First he says that I must avenge the clan by killing him. Then I learn that he was lying and that Konoha forced him into doing it and that he only let me survive out of 'love'! Then you have the nerve to practically beat it into me that what he wanted was the exact opposite of what he told me to do—that he wanted me to protect the people who had a hand in making my life a living HELL! I no longer consider that man a member of my clan, let alone my brother!"

Naruto just stared in shock as Sasuke continued ranting, more to himself than to the blonde. He knew that in the end, things wouldn't go back to normal. Sasuke did several things—murder attempts, treason against Konoha, working with Akatsuki—and had several things happen to him as well, physically and mentally. He thought that when the war was over, things would at least get a little better, and Sasuke would be willing to repent for his crimes… He didn't think that by beating him, Sasuke would actually lose what little sanity he had, along with hope for a pleasant future. At some point, Sasuke seemed to forget he was there and Naruto just left, not wanting to see his former comrade in this state.

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Later that day, after returning to Konoha, Naruto sat with Sakura at Ichiraku's where, after being unable to take several minutes of his silence, the pink-haired girl prodded her blonde teammate with a slightly peeved and worried expression.

"Come on, Naruto. This isn't like you! What's the matter?" She asked, frowning slightly. She couldn't help but worry when the usually vibrant blonde disappeared for half of the day and came back looking dejected. He was still on his first bowl of ramen, too, simply stirring the contents around in the broth. "Please, Naruto. I don't like seeing you like this… Tell me what's wrong."

Naruto glanced at her out of the corner of his eye before looking at her. "Do you think we could've done Sasuke a favor by killing him…instead of letting him live?"

Sakura's eyes widened. "What? Where did this come from?"

"From Sasuke himself." He ignored the pink-haired girl's stern look and continued, "I went to see him today, and…he said that he has nothing left to look forward to in life. That I'm just as bad as everyone else that tried to control his life by pleading for them to take it easy on him. That all he really wants is to die in peace."

"…Oh. I see." Sakura honestly didn't know what else to say. She knew that it would be difficult to get back the Sasuke they knew and loved—near impossible, in fact. Revenge and hatred clouded his mind to the point where he didn't seem to care about anything or anyone else. But she never thought he would become hopeless in the aftermath of everything that happened.

"Do you…really think he means that? Or is he just upset over what happened?"

"…He may have finally broken down from the stress of it all," she said softly, closing her eyes. It figures, as soon as he lost what was supposed to be the most important battle in his mission to seek vengeance for the Uchiha clan, what little left of his sanity broke.

"But he'll get better, right?"

"…Right."

And the two resumed eating their ramen in uncomfortable silence, clinging onto hope that was hanging from its last seam that things would change for the better. Someday…

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Ah… Not much of an ending, but what can I say? I'm just getting back into the groove of things. Hopefully if I do another oneshot, it'll turn out better. Remember to review.