Wow, FanFiction has definitely changed since I was last here. Interesting but I appreciate this new photo thing, though I'm not entirely sure if this change is essentially for the better or the worse...


His lungs burned alive.

His head instinctively knocked backwards as he searched for air.

He rose from the cold water, and then noticed two hands holding his wrist.

His eyes were still closed, but by the sound of a chilly voice, he knew it was that man.

"He's the only one left and alive," said the man's voice, without any sort of empathy. It enraged Tenzou to hear the voice was not worried, but instead curiosity?

"Quite disappointing," the voice continued. "That treatment surely has a low pass rate."

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Anko chewed a bit before swallowing the dango, having done so slightly thoughtfully.

"Well, I'll be right back. I'm going to have a quick chat with some of my friends over there," she said, and then threw away the dango stick before beginning to step away.

It was now or never. He watched her take a few steps away.

Nah, he dismissed it. He could do it at a later time.

He watched her take a couple more steps.

"Uh, chotto!" he suddenly yelled out, and she pivoted her on her foot, a puzzled expression on her face.

She tilted her head in question of him, and he quickly walked over to confront her directly.

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"Very good," said the man, after seeing wood sprout out of the ground, and after seeing Tenzou curled up in a tired ball at the side.

"What now?" the purple-haired girl asked.

"We'll keep him here—see what made him so much more special than the others."

thenextnight

When he heard the metal jangle of the keys, Tenzou thought they were going to take him out again and experiment on his new found abilities.

It wasn't like anything else that he had ever experienced. It wasn't a jutsu, it wasn't a fighting style.

It was like the wood was part of him—and it was in his blood.

It was limp when he was sad, rigid when he was angry. The wood twisted and turned to his every will, every thought, every feeling. The wood branched out and represented what he felt—even when his face controlled the muscles that hid his emotions.

"Hey," he heard a small voice call out.

He looked up, startled to see the silhouette of the purple-haired girl.

Alone.

The gate to his individual prison now opened, and then he saw her hand beckon him.

Adrenaline pumped him through to do this, though his body was sore and aching.

"What's happening?" he asked, though he clearly knew what was happening by looking at her darting eyes and the dark hallway, his rapid heartbeat and her slow and careful steps.

"I'm getting you out of here."

He made sure it wasn't a dream.

"And all of your friends."

"What—" and he bumped into something metallic, and it clanged hard on the floor.

Cursing, she pushed him towards darkness—he was surprised she knew where she was going, and then suddenly, he felt a door.

He pushed and then tasted the crisp air of the outdoors, something that for the past eternity was replaced with air salty of tears.

"Go!" she interrupted his thoughts, but it was good she did, because there wasn't any time left at all.

"How do I get out—?"

"Just jump into the water—swim as fast as you can!" she exclaimed silently, helping to push him overboard.

And he fell face down into the black velvet of the warm seawater, salt stinging his eyes. Pulling an arm up for a stroke through the water to get him going, his clothes dragging some weight down on his lanky body, he lifted his head up above the surface of the water, sputtering.

He had to get out—don't think about anything, not anything—just get out.

There wasn't even time to say thank you.

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It took him a minute to say it.

"Thank you."

Anko raised an eyebrow. "What for?"

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Her face turned playful.

He watched her eyebrows knit in slight confusion.

"For saving me," Yamato finally clarified.

She laughed it off, as though it was supposed to be a joke. "I don't know what you're talking…"

Her voice faded as a small scab slowly peeled wide open again, and out flooded repressed memories.

Her eyes widened and her mouth gaped open. She looked down, and when her light brown eyes rested back on his face, they saw him through a much different sheen.

"That was you?"

"Yes," he said slowly. "Thank you."

She was speechless.

"I…thought you knew," he said.

"No," she said. "I thought you hadn't made it."

landing

He had never swum faster or longer than that night, collapsing in the middle of the waves and waking up again with the blazing sun in his eyes, his clothes and skin caked with the salty mud of the shoreline.

"Hey, where are you from?" asked the first group of people that noticed him, the small beat-up looking orphan.

He didn't have to answer though—once they saw that the trees bent over while he walked past, they knew that he was from Konoha.

And once in Konoha, once they saw that he could move the forest at will and saw him with no family, they placed him into the ANBU.

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"Thank you," Yamato said. "That's all I wanted to say…in case I didn't see you again or something."

She shook her head. "N-n-no, I'm sorry. For having you go through all that—I know it was horrible—"

"Don't apologize on his behalf," he interrupted. "He's the devil himself."

moment of being the only two with their heads down in a large gathering passed between them.

"Well then, let's leave the past where it belongs and enjoy the damn party," she said, her torso swiveling backwards to the drinks, snake fang necklace following her


And here ends the story. Well that was a crappy resolution, lol. I feel like there could have been an alternative ending but I couldn't think of any at the moment as I was writing. In any case, that's it guys!

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it throughout the entire thing—please leave a review!

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