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After Sasuke leaves, Konoha forces Naruto to become their perfect weapon through mind controlling jutsus. Sasuke meets Naruto and resolves to save the blond from the life he is forced to live.
*Thump* *Thump* *Thump* *Thump* Sasuke spent years jumping through the trees of the Fire Country, so the sounds he made, inaudible for the untrained ear and near impossible to hear unless they were within 5 meters of the Uchiha, no longer bothered him but rather calmed him down. The fact that he could hear the practically silent, steady pace he kept meant that he was alone. Perfect. No one could distract him from his current mission.
Sasuke had finally fought with his brother, only to discover the truth behind the Uchiha Massacre. Itachi was innocent. At first, Sasuke wanted revenge against the village. Hell, he was ready to kill every last villager the way Itachi was forced to kill his family. But when he began preparing his bloody return, his thoughts strayed to one particular villager.
Memories of his time spent with the blonde were swirling in his head alongside with resurfacing feelings he thought he had repressed. Sasuke had always known that he was in love with Naruto. It was the hardest thing he had to do to leave his blonde behind in that damned valley. It took two years to successfully suppress the urge to run back to Konoha to tell Naruto exactly how he feels and to beg his love to forgive him. No. Not beg. Uchihas don't beg. Maybe ask sincerely. Naruto would understand. He always did before, right? Naruto just had to forgive him, he just HAD to.
Every time the two faced each other, Sasuke had to again suppress his urges. These times, he had to suppress taking his love into his arms just kiss those alluring lips. He had to resist simply staring into those impossible blue eyes, always filled with emotions; to apologize and take up his offer and return to the village.
But Sasuke had to take his revenge. He believed only that would satisfy him. When Sasuke learned the truth, he didn't know what to He was going to take his revenge against Konoha, but then the dobe filled his mind.
Sasuke knew he could never kill Naruto. Then he realized if he killed the villagers, he'd be killing a piece of his idiot; killing the idiot's smile.
No. Sasuke would never do anything to hurt his blonde anymore. He now regretted leaving Konoha for many reasons, but above all for hurting his Naruto. Sasuke would never forgive himself for that.
All he wanted to do was to return to that idiot. To see him smile at him once more. To maybe hold him in his arms. To finally tell him how he felt. To maybe kiss him. Sasuke knew he wouldn't be happy with just a kiss forever, but he was equally as sure that if it was Naruto, he would hold out for as long as it takes. Naruto was worth waiting for. Naruto was worth returning to the village.
So that is why the raven was headed back to the village. True, it had been years since he had any contact with anyone from his former home, but he was trusting his blonde friend was still determined to bring him back. Sasuke had also spent the last few months presenting his case to present how Itachi had been innocent all this time. Sasuke knew it was a bit of a long shot, but he was hoping that how he had killed one of the Leaf's biggest threats, Orochimaru, would help the Hokage be lenient with him. Sasuke had also been relatively inactive in his revenge since learning the truth. He was going to hunt down Danzo, but after much introspection he knew Itachi wouldn't want him to.
Sasuke had spent the past few years trying to convince himself that he didn't need to go back to Konoha. Konoha was the root of his inner turmoil. On one hand, the village elders were responsible for putting Itachi in the position where he had to kill his entire clan save for Sasuke. The village also thrived on Itachi's sacrifice. Hell, the village was happy that the Uchiha clan was nearly exterminated. The elders caused all this pain and Sasuke could not forgive them for that.
On the other hand, the villagers themselves had little to do with the massacre. They accepted him when he lived there. Hell, he made friends in the village. Sasuke even met his first—and only—love in the village.
Sasuke also knew how Naruto cherished Konoha. It had always been Naruto's dream to become Hokage and protect those who he loved. Naruto's loyalty to the cause of Sasuke's problems never wavered.
While Sasuke's devotion to the village often wavered, his unspoken dedication to Naruto never faltered. If Naruto loved the village so much, then Sasuke would not attack the villagers.
With a renewed vigor, Sasuke quickened his silent pace towards Konoha.
He still made sure to completely cloak his chakra and to check all around him for possible traps. His attention to detail was rewarded when he spotted a well concealed trap.
Sasuke halted before the trap, careful to give it a couple meter radius. He recognized the patterns on the paper bomb he was observing. It was a Leaf bomb. Upon closer inspection, Sasuke saw that the bomb was not meant for injury but as a signal as well as a warning. He had often helped set up these types of bombs during his time spent as a genin; this type of trap meant that a dispatched team was done with their mission and was heading back soon. With the traps set, the team could relax a bit after their mission and only assign one or two people as lookouts at a time.
Sasuke was apprehensive at the idea of seeing Leaf ninja after so many years. He quickly decided that he would see who the team was and decide what to do from there.
Sasuke would probably meet some unremembered ninja. They would probably recognize him but he would have no idea who they were. If he revealed himself then that would only bring trouble and would greatly diminish his chances of returning to the village if he were to fight the ninja. He knew that he would not reveal himself and that checking the team was probably pointless.
But Sasuke could not shake the urge to see if Naruto was a part of the team.
Sasuke knew the chances were slim to none, but he also knew that he just had to check. Even more silent than before, making sure that his chakra signature was undetectable, Sasuke crept forward towards the deployed Leaf ninja.
He moved slowly, activating his Sharingan to be better able to detect any more traps. The first bomb was barely concealed in comparison to the other traps he found and avoided. He was impressed with how well hidden the traps were. They would be invisible to Sasuke if he did not have his sharingan. Sasuke knew that meant that it was a Jounin team or higher deployed.
The traps started to get closer together, then suddenly there were no more traps around. Sasuke knew he was in the general area of the team. He took his time getting any closer to where he knew the team would be. He didn't want to mess anything up now.
Suddenly, he noticed something shift in the corner of his eye.
Sasuke halted immediately, making sure he was safely hidden behind the branches in the tree he landed in. Luckily for him, the thing he noticed did not see him yet.
Upon closer inspection, Sasuke saw that what he noticed was actually an ANBU Black Op.
Sasuke was going to wait until the ANBU left to depart himself when he noticed something about the ANBU that would have made him jump if he weren't an Uchiha.
The ANBU had blonde hair that stuck up in gravity defying spikes.
Sasuke would notice that hair anywhere.
It was Naruto.
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