"Sake!" she snaps, her voice brusque. "More sake, damn it!"

Her attendant stands aside, not saying a word. She understands completely why her master is this way. She knows the pain concealed within her master's bosom. That's why she chooses not to say a word to the contrary. To do so would be cruel.

A container of sake is placed before her hand. Without looking, she tips the numbing liquid into a shallow dish and drains it. She refills it, only for that to be swallowed as well. She repeats this action until the container is empty. She hold it upside-down, watching vacantly as a single drop falls.

"More sake!" she demands again. Her cheeks are a flushed, mottled red. Her eyes are vacant, uncaring.

I will become Hokage someday! Just like our grandfather!

She can hear him. Hear his excited voice.

I love you, big sister!

She can see his eyes, so large. His grin, infectious, beaming.

She sees her teammates. She hears Orochimaru and his uncaring words. She feels Jiraiya, his arms holding her, stopping her from advancing. She can see the blood, trailing from where they stand, leading to where he is laying. To where his broken body lies. She sees Jiraiya shaking his head, his grip on her tightening as she struggles. She feels the tears falling from her stinging eyes.

"More sake!" she screams, wanting to forget, wanting to no longer feel. She needs the drink. It is the only thing that helps. Without it, she is vulnerable. Without it, there is no protection from his eyes, his voice, his smile. Without it, she is lost.

One day, I will become Hokage. To protect this land and all the people who live here.

She feels his surprise as her lips touch his forehead. She nods as he asks her if he can hold her hand. She smiles as his fingers run across her naked skin, gooseflesh forming rapidly. She moans as he makes her feel, makes her glad to be alive.

I love you, my princess.

She watches in disbelief as the blood pours from his body. She shouts at him as she continues healing him fruitlessly. She feels her body trembling as she realizes he is lost to her. She feels the salty tears falling from her dead eyes.

She feels the longing, the ever-present desire. She prays for it, deep within her heart. She pleads for it in the dark, for the chance to see them again. To hold them in her arms. To never let them go again. She chokes as she remembers that is nothing more than a dream, a drunken wish that will never come to pass.

"More sake...please...?"