A/N: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! The number of reviews I received for the pervious chapter surprised me pleasantly. :) You really are amazing!
This chapter was not revised by a beta reader. Please, forgive me for any mistakes you might encounter!
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto!
5th Chapter: Confessions
Sakura woke up only to find herself surrounded by the darkness of the night. She realized that it was still too early for the sun to even touch the sky above the village. Even if she slept for more than four hours, she still felt worn out. However, her exhaustion was born from her broken heart and not by a physical cause.
The happenings from before came crashing down on her in an instant and the shadows that lingered in the room added to the emptiness she felt.
The small piece of paper that lay on the nightstand beside her bed was the only thing that glowed under the moonlight passing through the thin curtains. It looked almost inviting, as some small piece of hope laying in wait for her to reach out and take it.
She was sure that it was Sasuke the one that left it there and that fact is what made her feel nervous. It was like she lost the valor to face him or hear him speak. The most obvious thing to her at that moment was that she was afraid to even read the words he wrote for her.
Mustering enough courage to face whatever he wrote to her, she finally snatched the note. Her hands shook in anticipation as she began to unfold the white sheet, while heavy dread filled her from the inside.
Sakura, I am sorry!
His apology evoked a strong emotion to resurface. Few teardrops slid down her cheeks and stained the white paper. The dark ink was smudged and his words were lost among the stains made by her tears.
She curled up under the blankets in hope that she will forget about her misery, but what she truly wanted to forget about was him.
Not knowing what to do with all the restlessness he felt, Sasuke decided to try to release his anger through some serious training. However, he was unable to do so because of lack of concentration. His thoughts betrayed him. He couldn't keep himself focused enough to even punch something until it was broken. He was constantly thinking about Sakura and how he must have hurt her with his more than harsh words.
He was angry at himself, for not being able to control his rage and jealousy. He hated his own guts for never doing the right thing when it came to Sakura and for always hurting her. She did not deserve that, he knew that well.
In the middle of his incessant pacing on the training field, an insane idea struck him. However, he did not consider it to be crazy ― not even in the least. He actually thought that it was exactly what he should have done right after leaving Sakura's apartment.
That is exactly how he found himself headed in the direction of the apartment owned by her best friend, the one he considered to be at fault for this whole mess. He did not care that it was in the middle of the night, because what he desperately needed at that moment were some answers.
He wasn't even trying to suppress his anger, so once in front of the door of her apartment he banged on it a bit too forcefully. He was not willing to wait until morning to ask his questions and he really did not care if he woke anyone up with all the noise he was making.
There was no response for a while and he was seriously getting irritated. However, he did not have to wait that long, because after his second rap on the door he heard a small thump that came from inside of the apartment. Encouraged by it and feeling rather annoyed for having to wait so long, he banged on the wooden surface for a third time.
"I'm coming!" He heard Ino's irritated yell from the other side and in an instant relief washed over him. He doubted that he was ever this impatient to talk to the blonde.
The door was yanked open rather forcefully, but that was nothing in comparison to Ino's expression. She was practically fuming on the inside, obviously angry for being brought out of her sleep in such a rude way. However, once she recognized Sasuke, surprise took away all the anger she felt.
She blinked a couple of times, before finally opening her mouth to ask, "Sasuke, what in the world do you think you're doing here?"
"I want to know the truth!" he seethed through his teeth, the glare in his eyes entirely directed at her.
By the look in his eyes and the words he just said, Ino already guessed his reason for coming at her apartment at such hours. But, she was not willing to let him go easy, because she believed that he deserved to suffer for making Sakura wait this long, so she feigned ignorance.
"What are you even talking about?" she nonchalantly asked, while purposefully ignoring him by yawning sleepily as if she was bored out of her mind and ready to get back to bed.
Sasuke was not pleased by her response, so he just moved past her and invited himself in. He was not willing to let her close the door in his face, so he made sure that she won't try to evade this.
In the next instant she turned to yell at him with fire raging in her eyes, "Hey, you can't just barge into my apartment like this!"
He glared fiercely in return. "I really don't give a damn about your stupid house rules," he spat out. With no intention of ever backing down, he skipped right to the point. "Tell me what happened with Sakura. How did she end up dancing in that club?"
Realization hit her like a ton of bricks. She could practically see Sasuke taking out his fury on Sakura and the image enraged her fully. She should have guessed that he would not cope well with his jealousy and that he would do something awful. Now, she was convinced that he was the biggest asshole that ever existed.
"What did you do, you stupid asshole?" she screamed at him, unable to suppress her anger. "You were supposed to be all over her!"
At first, Ino did not realize that she just spoke of the one thing she meant to keep a secret, but as she saw the slight widening of his eyes, she did. As she internally scolded herself for losing control of her own mouth, he was already glaring at her.
"What did you just say?" he practically growled the words.
"Whoops," she squeaked nervously. She was really mad at herself at that moment, because no one was supposed to find out that she planned everything just so she would get the two of them together. And, now, because of her big mouth, Sasuke knew that she was the one that played the role of a matchmaker.
"So, you were behind this!" he shouted angrily, his glare turning deadly. He was beyond irritated for snapping at Sakura for nothing. Now, that he knew that she did not dance in front of those men for her own enjoyment, but because of her friend's little game, he was infuriated.
"Well, I wouldn't exactly say it like that," she tried to cover up her slip, but it was all in vain, because the cat was already out of the bag. She had nowhere to hide, so she was left with only one option… to openly tell him everything.
"Then, what would you say?" he asked sarcastically, narrowing his eyes in resentment toward her attempt to find an excuse. In his eyes there was no justification for what she did. She shouldn't have messed with Sakura's innocence.
"I would say that you are one hell of a bastard for waiting this long to express your feelings for her, so I had to take matters into my own hands," she honestly admitted. She felt elated that she finally could say it all to his face. The insults that raked through her mind were not even close to what she said out loud, but at least she was satisfied that she could say that much. Not liking his glare, she asked boldly, "You can't say that it didn't work?"
"Hn," he grunted, because he was definitely not planning to openly admit that she was right. There was some truth in her words, he could acknowledge that much. He was, after all, more aware of his feelings for Sakura after what happened. However, he did not agree with her meddling, so he openly admonished, "You shouldn't have interfered."
"Shouldn't have interfered, huh? You are definitely the dumbest person alive. Not even Naruto compares to you and your stupidity!" she bellowed heatedly, her hands perched on her hips in a pose that was meant to prove a point.
"As if," he strongly disagreed.
"Were you planning on confessing to Sakura anytime soon?" she asked, but she was not really expecting an answer. And, she was right… he just stood there in silence, while he lowered his head slightly. That small gesture gave her the answer she needed, so she emboldened herself when she spoke knowingly, "So, I guessed right! You are not only dumb… you are a coward as well."
"What do you know?" he spat out, feeling irritated because of her know-it-all attitude. He could not believe that she gave herself the right to meddle in his life and even imply to his feelings and assess his actions.
"Well, I know that you always stare at her with the same look in your eyes," she spoke as if pointing out the obvious.
He was silently looking at her for a while, trying to really soak in her words. Finally, he asked surprisingly, "What look?" without really knowing what she was even talking about. He was sure that he did not look at Sakura differently and he definitely did not stare at her.
Ino laughed at his cluelessness, surprising him even further. Suddenly, she felt sorry for him, because he was clearly in denial, so she tried to clear it up for him. "The look that speaks loud and clear that you're in love with Sakura," she spoke through her laugh.
"Hn," he grunted weakly, not knowing how to respond to that. He knew that he was in love with Sakura, but he did not know that he made it that obvious. First with Naruto and then even the clueless Saia assumed the same. Now, Ino had to join in. Suddenly, he felt nervous because of what Sakura knew about his feelings.
Recognizing the look in his eyes as sheer panic, Ino was tempted to smile at his social awkwardness. But, she really felt sorry for him, especially since it was not his fault that he was emotionally constipated and that all of this was new to him. That is why she decided to simply reassure him, hoping that maybe if he was freed from his nervousness he would confess much more easily.
"Don't worry. She's as clueless as you are," she spoke nonchalantly, waving her hand in a gesture that displayed her certainty.
Sasuke was shocked to say the least. He was really taken aback by her words, because she addressed him as if she knew what he was thinking. Suddenly, he berated himself for letting his emotions slip out on the open for everyone to see, not even considering the possibility that Ino was a person with special talents when it came to romance and everything in relation to that.
Seeing that he was already out of words, she moved to usher him out. "I think that now it's the time for you to leave and let me have my beauty sleep," she said, wanting to be done with him and hopefully resume her night's rest. However, once he was out the door she remembered that she never gave him the answer he came to hear.
"Oh, and for the record… Sakura did not want to get on that stage," she hollered after him, her words making him freeze on the spot. "It was all because of a bet," she finished, a sly smile grazing her lips. She felt utterly triumphant at that moment, so she closed the door behind him and went back to sleep with certain amount of satisfaction growing through her.
Outside her apartment, Sasuke was still standing still. He was lost in his own thoughts for a short moment, as he tried to soak in everything that happened.
'I should have known,' he thought bitterly, before taking the first step toward the fulfillment of his new goal. This time, he decided to stop being a coward and to finally open his heart to Sakura.
Sakura was barely aware of the fact that she stayed in bed for almost the entire day. She felt dead to the world outside.
It was during the late hours of the night that she could no longer deny herself the necessity for food. She was also in a desperate need of a shower, so she willed herself to get out of bed and forget about the comfort it offered. She felt more than glad that those activities did not require her exiting the apartment.
The shower elated her somewhat. The food satisfied her hunger. But, there was nothing that could ease the pain in her chest.
In the end, she did not want to get back to bed, because that would mean that she would be left with nothing but the bad memories circling through her mind. That's why she stayed in the living room, perched on the windowsill with a hot cup of tea in her hands.
She felt safe there with the silence of the night keeping her company. But, the feeling didn't last long.
Her safety was breached once she heard a knock at the front door. Her footsteps were hesitant, but once she reached the door fear overwhelmed her.
'What if it's him?' she asked herself, before another loud knock startled her from her thoughts. The noise ringed in her ears, but most of all it cleared her mind and encouraged her.
She refused to succumb to the torturous feelings brought by the fear of having to talk to him. So, she opened the door with firm resolve.
It was him.
"Sasuke-kun..." she whispered timidly.
She couldn't bear looking him in the eyes. Images of him yelling at her flashed in her mind. His accusations were still a fresh memory, one that destroyed all determination within her.
Seeing her downcast eyes was like getting pierced by a burning blade. He wanted… no, he needed her attention. "Sakura..." he spoke gently, eager to make her look at him. "I… I came to… to apologize."
"It's okay. I already read your note," she spoke barely above a whisper.
Her quietness made him feel like she was distancing herself from him right when he needed her the most. Fear urged him to approach her. He was now standing before her, both of them unmoving. She appeared lost and hurt, which only served to further ignite his fear.
He lifted her chin, granting his own wish. "You still haven't forgiven me?" he asked, but she stayed silent, keeping her eyes away from him, looking almost guilty.
Nevertheless, her mind was working a mile. She was taken aback by the gentleness he showed her. His closed and distanced disposition practically defined him, but this was different and she couldn't erase the feelings of surprise.
He tried a more gentle approach. "I can see it in your eyes, Sakura. I really hurt you, didn't I?"
She bit her lip in order to suppress the onslaught of tears. Showing weakness in front of him was the last thing she wanted.
But, Sasuke understood everything. He was finally able to read her thoughts. The ironic thing was that he did it just by paying a little more attention to her expressions. If he knew this before, he might have acted on his feelings sooner.
"Sakura, I never meant to hurt you… and those words I said... I didn't mean it that way." His tone was apologetic.
Sakura noted the honesty in his words, the sincerity in his deep voice. However, she was not yet convinced. She still knew of what was truly going in his head and most importantly what was truly in his heart.
He did not love her.
That's why she chose to be as much closed off as him.
"I understand. I really do," she lied. At that moment she only wanted him out of there.
"If I'm being honest to myself, I will admit that I was driven by my anger," he finally spoke words that came from inside his heart.
Hearing him speak of his own feelings stirred something within her, so she looked up. Her eyes were wide open as she stared at him.
"Anger? I don't understand," she asked in surprise, her voice almost a whisper.
A strong blush crept up his neck, making him feel even more nervous than he actually was.
She took notice of his timidity once the blush reached his cheeks. A small smile grazed her rosy lips out of sheer affection for him.
After witnessing the small reaction his shyness evoked, he felt a strong resolve wash over him. "I thought that you'll wait for me," he said, his facial expression showing strong determination.
His words confused her. She stared at him for a long moment, unmoving. "But, I waited for you, Sasuke-kun," she finally spoke, her tone betraying her bewilderment.
"I'm not talking about my coming back to Konoha," he specified, his eyes moving suggestively.
Sakura was still clueless as to what he was talking about. "Then, what are you talking about?" she asked.
He blushed fiercely, before gathering enough courage to speak what exactly was on his mind. "I thought that you will save yourself for me," he said, barely above a whisper.
Still, she heard him well. "What...?" she began, but caught herself. Once she realized what he was talking about, she was only capable of staring at him with an equally strong blush on her cheeks.
"I thought that your love was pure and only for me and I selfishly believed it to be the truth," he continued, feeling encouraged for some reason. He could feel his blood boiling, but this feeling was entirely different than what he experienced before. "I was never this possessive until I realized my feelings for you."
She was beyond shocked. Was this really Sasuke standing before her, she asked herself. Encouraged by that thought, she unconsciously reached to touch his face. The touch only made her realize that it was really him standing before her, that this was really happening, but most importantly that his words were real.
"Sasuke-kun, are you saying that... you have feelings for me?" she asked, sounding a bit unsure. Despite that, the newfound hope made her feel weightless, as if floating on air.
His heart was speeding inside his chest. "I always claimed your innocence as mine, even as an unconscious thought," he confessed, all shyness thrown out of the window.
She could't keep the smile off of her face. "Well, you can have it, Sasuke-kun..." she said, blushing. "...because, it always belonged to you."
He did not expect to hear those words, but he more than welcomed them.
With a satisfied smirk on his lips, he gently put his hand on her waist, bringing her body close to his. "Sakura…" he began, the look in his eyes shining with sincerity. "…I love you."
Sakura was about to faint from happiness. "I always loved you, Sasuke-kun," she confessed softly in return. A smile brightened her expression. "I still do."
That is all he needed to hear, before becoming a slave to his own feelings.
He pushed her toward the wall, and stood very close to her, while trapping her in between his strong arms. He leaned over her in an almost possessive way, his gaze steady and penetrating.
Sakura felt like he was looking right through her soul.
His eyes roamed over her face and for a fleeting second his attention focused on her lips, before their eyes met in a passionate exchange. Her green eyes shined in a way that fascinated him, so he leaned in, bringing his lips closer to hers.
"Sasuke-kun," she whispered his name so gently that he barely heard it, but it was enough to cloud his mind.
Her breath caressed his lips in a gentle way, but when his lips brushed hers, he felt a tingling sensation wash over him. He could not take it anymore, so he firmly pressed his lips over her soft ones.
Their first kiss was gentle, filled with love and devotion. There was even slight hesitation, which soon was overthrown by the feelings of sheer affection. His hand caressed her cheek lovingly, as he gained control of their lip lock. His tongue slid over her bottom lip, boldly asking for permission to taste her fully. Granting his wish, she lifted her hands to his neck, bringing her own body closer to his.
During the short moment their lips separated he gasped for air, her scent overwhelming his senses. It mesmerized him how even one look from her green eyes was enough to make him feel utterly complete.
"I've waited so long for this," he whispered in desperation.
She smiled softly, something he willingly accepted as an open invitation from her.
He leaned in for a second kiss, their exchange reaching new levels of pleasure. They were both lost in each other's embrace, feeling only what the other was feeling. He slid his fingers under her shirt and gently caressed the skin on her back. His touch made her shiver in delight. Then, he swiftly moved his hands downward and gripped her ass.
She gasped in surprise, in the process breaking their contact. She could feel pure ecstasy, almost as if the hold he had on her burned her through the thin silk material of her panties.
"More," she whispered more to herself than to him, before bringing his face closer for another kiss.
"It's not enough," she murmured against his lips, her breath softly brushing them.
Driven by her boldness, he intensified the kiss.
Her eyes were clouded and she felt fire built up inside of her. She was unable to stop herself from sharing her thoughts with him, "It'll never be enough."
"Hn," he grunted in agreement and smirked at her. It was exactly as if she read his thoughts. He already knew that it will never be enough, because he was more than just driven to her. He was entirely addicted to her.
His next move made her gasp in surprise. He swiftly lifted her of the ground and moved toward her bedroom. She was very fast to catch onto his intention.
As he set her on the bed, fire rose at the pit of her stomach at the mere thought of Sasuke making love to her.
They shared more kisses, in the process taking off of each other's clothes. Surprisingly, his movements were not fast, but gentle. It seemed as if he was taking his time with undressing her, almost like he was enjoying himself. With every touch he felt like he was unraveling her most intimate secrets.
As he moved back, he kept his eyes closed, allowing himself a short moment of enjoyment where her scent clouded his mind. "Sakura..." he uttered her name in a soft whisper, his voice deep with passionate desire, before finally opening his eyes to look at her. If the wonderful cherry aroma she exuded wasn't enough, the sight of her mesmerized him.
He brushed a strand of her pink hair aside just to be able to fully look at her lovely face. Then, he leaned in to whisper in her ear, "You're beautiful …and, you're mine."
He gently slid his fingers along her neck, all the while lightly moving the silky pink locks out of his way. As he slowly lowered his head to lay soft kisses along the exposed skin of her neck, he entwined his fingers with hers.
The reaction he received in return was instantaneous. She arched her back, exposing more of her neckline for him. His tender kisses and the strong grip he had on her hand evoked explosive feelings from the inside of her soul. The deep longing he felt was present in every little caress he executed over her body.
She rewarded him with soft moans that rang in his ears like a soft melody.
But, suddenly he stopped and stared at her with an intent gaze.
"Sakura… are you sure you want this?" he asked hesitantly.
Having the chance to pay closer attention to his expression, she saw something in those black eyes of his. These were hints of longing, but most of all he looked at her as if expecting something from her.
"Just as you claimed my innocence a long time ago, I vowed to give it to only you," she said, smiling gently at him.
Her words were enough to make him understand that she wanted this as much as he wanted it.
He kissed her fiercely and with one swift movement took her virginity away. At first all she felt was a sharp pain, but once he showered her with tender kisses the feeling changed into one of pleasure.
The way his hands glided over her skin was as gentle as a whisper in the night. She felt as if he literally touched her heart with his gentle lovemaking.
They moved like one. Whenever he moved, she moved as well, meeting him halfway. Their hearts beat like one, making them connect in more ways than one. Lost in a world of passion and desire they found their release, reaching a moment of pure bliss.
At that exact moment they both realized that even if lots of tears and anguish led them to this moment, it was very much worth it.
Most importantly they realized that their love was not just a passing thing, but it was meant to last forever.
TO BE CONTINUED…
A/N: Thank you for reading, my lovely readers! I really hope you liked this chapter, especially the last scene. ;) Please, share your thoughts with me. I would really like to know what you think, whether you liked it or not.
This is unofficially the end of the story. But, since you were so nice to me with your reviews I decided to reward you with a short epilogue, which will be posted very soon. :)