Sasuke kept his head down as he kept pace with Deidara, the dark ground of the forest disappearing beneath him. "Little bitch is fast, at least." Deidara muttered. His partner, Sasori, and Kakuzu were the only others going. The raven still wasn't sure where it was. His paranoia had been growing since they left. What if they had gotten tired of him and were going to kill him? Surely all three of them wouldn't need to have come if it were that, though. He swallowed his anxiety when Deidara came to a stop, he lifted his head to look around his surroundings. It was in the heart of the forest, near an inky colored lake. He looked up at the looming, ominous looking house. It looked huge, he wondered how big this Clan was. Deidara took his chin in a rough grip to make him look up, he kept an apathetic expression on his face, it made it easier to keep Deidara locked out from his mind. "Know your place, slut." He hissed, Sasuke noticed it had been a while since anyone had said his real name. "Don't look at anyone here, unless you plan to get on your knees, hm." He sneered.

Sasuke had been told by Kakuzu that as he was a slave, if Deidara allowed it, anyone could do with him what they pleased. The raven swallowed, nodding. He would try to avoid anyone, the last he needed was anyone else adding to his pain. Deidara smirked and let him go. Sasuke sighed inaudibly, looking over at the lake. It looked beautiful, it mirrored the night's obsidian color and the moon cast a shine over its surface. He'd overheard Deidara say this place was called "Mizuumi Inku," Lake of Ink. The entire forest seemed almost enchanted in a way. He shivered when an overwhelming presence suddenly shadowed over him, but it was different than his own Clan's. It was strong, but didn't promise danger; he felt a bit of déjà vu. His eyes shifted up, freezing in utter disbelief. He felt his breath catch at the shock, but he tried to keep his expression clear as he caught the gaze of the mysterious stranger he'd met the other night. Would he tell the others of their encounter? Sasuke immediately looked away, praying Naruto wouldn't say anything. He would be in a world of trouble and lose privilege of the few minutes of freedom he could get.

Naruto's eyes widened when he saw the young Vampire that had been haunting his thoughts since their encounter a few nights back. He knew their eyes only met for a second, but it felt like they'd stared each other down for hours. He narrowed his eyes when Sasuke turned away nervously. He had been right, the raven was a Drudge and he was slave to the Akatsuki. No wonder he'd been as timid as he was. He wiped the shock and slight traces of anger clear from his expression and turned to meet Kakuzu's gaze. Once upon a time, he'd been afraid of the Akatsuki and their power. He'd been a kid then however, now he was on the same power level and led a Clan much larger than theirs. They could hold their own.

"I see you still don't trust us entirely." Kakuzu said, glancing over the temporary hideout. Naruto internally scoffed, he had no reason to allow any member of an enemy Clan inside his true home and endanger the others. "I'm not interested in wasting time, let's discuss what it is you came to discuss." The blonde replied, stepping aside to let them inside. Deidara snickered, amused at the thought of Naruto's pathetic Clan being nervous of them. He took Sasuke's wrist and pulled him inside, causing Naruto to turn away to hide his glare. He hated the thought of Sasuke being used like a toy by this pathetic excuse of a Vampire.

Sasuke caught sight of Naruto's angered look, wondering what it meant. He was grateful Naruto hadn't mentioned anything about him to Deidara, he didn't want to know what the bomber would do if he found out Sasuke had been associating with an apparent enemy. He gasped when he was pushed onto the floor beside a chair, narrowly avoiding being shoved into the corner of a table. Deidara sat in the chair, smirking down at Sasuke as if hoping the raven would challenge him. He almost wanted to, he was humiliated that he was being degraded like this in front of anyone else, it was bad enough alone.

Naruto sat at the opposite side of the table, along with a red-headed male that had a small tattoo on his forehead, and a brunette with his hair tied up and who looked rather bored. "I understand you are interested in expanding your hunting grounds onto our territory." Naruto said, nothing like the bright and cheerful person Sasuke had met the other night. His eyes were cold and his tone was serious as he held Kakuzu's gaze, a feat he hadn't been able to do nor had he seen any other of the Akatsuki even try. The older Vampire remained impassive, though his eyes held irritation at being treated as an equal by the younger blonde. "Indeed. You have richer food sources, and my Clan is growing weary of having to travel far out to seek decent meals." He replied, earning a disapproving look from the redhead sitting beside Naruto.

"Understand our hesitation to allow this, seeing as I know your ways and know you would wipe out our sources within a short time period. I'm not looking to move my Clan away solely because your Clan cannot control its hunger." Naruto said icily, clearly not wavered by the threatening glare Deidara sent him. The redhead turned to stare the bomber down, the flare of anger sparking between them sent a shiver down Sasuke's spine. "I can keep order with my Clan, the same as they understand how to control themselves. Humans are something that will never diminish, seeing the rate they reproduce." Kakuzu said, his own tone turning hostile.

"That doesn't mean Vampires should lack self-control and kill every breathing thing they encounter." Sasuke grit his teeth at the reply that left Naruto's mouth. The brunette spoke up next, sighing as if it were too much trouble to talk. "The nearby towns are suspecting something is attacking people, they think it's wolves or something else leaving the forest for the scraps it gets in the city." He said, waving his hand in the air. "Since Naruto and Garra want to try to be polite, I'll be the blunt one. We don't want you or your blood-lustful harpies tearing apart our lands or destroying our food supply." Deidara growled then, causing Sasuke to tense. "Don't talk down to us you sniveling fool. You're cowards, trying to protect humans. Don't play with your food." He said, his eyes flashing dangerously. Garra stood, locking Deidara in a stare down. "Don't take that tone where you are not superior. Learn your place." The redhead hissed. Deidara stepped forward as if planning to attack the younger Vampire, but Sasori pulled him back.

Kakuzu cleared his throat, having not looked away from Naruto. "I can control my Clan, I suggest you rethink your decision before we depart tomorrow." Naruto raised a brow, and Sasuke couldn't tell if he was surprised or amused at being threatened. "I will be thinking on it, but unlike you I care about my Clan and their opinions." He said, and Sasuke thought he saw Naruto glance at him, but he wasn't certain.

"You may venture around our home tonight, but we are guarding parts of our territory." Naruto said slowly, as if thoughtfully. "To prevent… Accidents." He said the last word with hidden sarcasm, earning a glare from all three Akatsuki members, making Sasuke wonder if they'd used such an excuse. "I'll see to it they remain on their best behavior." Kakuzu returned the sardonic tone, and stood up along with the other members of the Akatsuki and Naruto's clan. Garra glanced at Sasuke, his eyes showing a hint of sympathy before he turned and left along with the brunette. Deidara pulled Sasuke off the floor none too gently, and the raven sensed his anger. He grit his teeth as he was all but dragged outside and roughly pushed against a tree.

"I see you're learning to be obedient, keep your head down and mouth shut. Though, I caught Naruto's glances towards you. Perhaps he'd like to taste you once?" Sasuke's eyes widened slightly, shuddering at Deidara's cruel smirk. "You'd probably like that, wouldn't you slut?" He hissed, slamming his fist into Sasuke's stomach. The Uchiha cringed, losing his breath at the sharp hit and falling to his knees. "I'm going to see if I can find something worthwhile to eat in this place." Deidara said, kicking Sasuke over and stepping over him, leaving into the vast trees.

Sasuke coughed, pushing himself up with one hand and holding his now bruised abdomen with his other. He tried to quiet his ragged panting for air, not making a move to stand as he didn't feel he could push himself up. He swallowed, cringing at the taste of blood still in his mouth. He had known it was stupid of him to hope that Deidara wouldn't be as malevolent while around others.

He tensed when a presence shocked his senses, knowing whoever it was had used the ungodly gift of speed Vampires held. He blinked in confusion when the stranger held a hand out to him, looking up and meeting those familiar sapphire eyes. Warm and concerned. Naruto's expression was sympathetic, as if this was nothing new to him. Sasuke took the blonde's hand, wincing slightly when he was lifted off the ground as if he were weightless. He stood shakily, licking his dry lips so he could speak. "Thank you." He said, his voice a bit rough from lack of use, he didn't talk often and his throat was becoming unused to his own voice.

Naruto concealed the anger coursing through him, wiping a speck of blood from the corner of Sasuke's mouth. He hated the meek way he spoke, the timidity of this young Vampire wasn't who he was and even Naruto could see that. He wanted to see what the raven was truly like. He felt unleashed rage and animosity towards the Akatsuki for trying to destroy Sasuke like this, the way they destroyed everything else in their sight without caring.

"Are you okay?" Naruto asked, noticing Sasuke was unsteady. Sasuke nodded, swallowing hard. He felt incredibly weak, he didn't know why. He'd been starved, but it had never been this bad, never this strong. Naruto tilted his head, noticing the way Sasuke's eyes dilated, his own eyes widened in shock. "How long has it been since you last fed?" He asked. Starving a Fledgling could end with catastrophic results, or inevitable termination. If Sasuke wasn't trying to kill everything in his sight, then he was close to dying… Or incredibly strong.

"Five… Five months." Sasuke said, feeling his legs start to give. He started to sink to the ground, surprised when Naruto caught him. He felt his heart pick up its pace a little when he placed one hand on Naruto's chest, the blonde holding his arms around his waist. "You need to eat something before your body gives out on you." Naruto said, their faces close with Sasuke resting against his chest. Sasuke started to say something, but he gasped when a familiar cold feeling encased his heart.

"I can't. I need to leave, I'm sorry." He pulled himself away and before Naruto could argue, he left. It was difficult to walk, but he felt better than he had a few minutes ago when he was close to fainting. He leaned against a wall, realizing he'd walked into what appeared to be a living room. Sasuke glared at the ground as if willing Hell to open its doors and finally take him, not knowing the cause for his sudden anger, but combined with the exhaustion and weariness he'd been feeling, it had hateful results.

He pressed his lips together when an arm grabbed his wrist, turning to meet a very cold gaze. He felt time slow then, pondering why Naruto's and Deidara's eyes were so different. Deidara's were a lighter color, icy and full of venom and sadism. Whereas Naruto's were deep, bright and warm, as if you could get lost in them. Sasuke broke out of the thoughts when Deidara's grip tightened, threatening to break his arm. He noticed Naruto step inside from the opposite side of the room through a different door, feeling the gazes that turned to them.

He tried to pull his arm back, determined not to say anything or anger Deidara; he didn't even know what was wrong with him then, it just seemed like if he was in range, the blonde was going to do something to make his life worse. Deidara pulled Sasuke forward and the raven closed his eyes to brace himself for the hit he already knew was coming, and was startled when someone spoke up. "Deidara, no matter what you do at your home, I don't appreciate you acting like a barbarian in ours." It was the redhead, Garra. Deidara hesitated then, but Sasuke knew it wasn't anything to be relieved about. An odious look darkened Deidara's eyes.

"Of course not, Garra." He said, his tone almost toxic with false innocence. He turned, meeting eyes with Naruto. The tension of such anger was almost audible, as if two swords had clashed. "Where are my manners? I've seen how you look at my little pet, what kind of guest am I if I don't give some sort of offering?" Sasuke felt his eyes narrow in confusion, gasping when Deidara jerked his arm, tossing him forward. The raven landed on his hands and knees, wincing slightly at the impact, he looked up. He swallowed hard when he was met with Naruto staring back at him, surprise, anger and something else that was hidden.

Naruto looked up at Deidara, eyes narrowing at the older blonde's smirk. He decided to take the given chance, his Clan would know better, Deidara wouldn't. But, Sasuke wouldn't either. He could handle that in a moment. He knelt and took Sasuke by the arm, startling the raven as his eyes widened and pulse quickened. "I suppose I can make do, it's been some time since I last ate." Naruto said with a glance at Deidara, keeping his voice steady and almost careless. Garra and Shikamaru cast him wary glances, knowing him well enough to understand what he was trying to do as he left the room.

Sasuke felt his heart begin to pound as Naruto picked him off the ground, pulling him down a hall. He didn't try to jerk away, he strongly doubted he could have. Naruto opened a door at the very end of one of the twisting corridors, pulling Sasuke inside and locking the door behind them. Sasuke pressed his back against one of the walls, his arms folded over his chest as if trying to use some sort of protection. He watched Naruto with calculating eyes as the blonde turned around. "Sasuke… You can relax, I'm not going to do anything. I only wanted Deidara to believe the lie." Naruto said softly, stepping towards Sasuke and offering a warm smile before continuing. "You need to let me help you, you're weakened."

Sasuke shook his head, unwilling to risk Deidara finding out about him receiving help, and he wasn't about to trust Naruto so easily. "Please? I promise I'm not going to hurt you." Naruto said, knowing the young Vampire had probably been through torture. The Akatsuki were cruel and sadism was in their blood. They were known for hurting their own kindred, for attacks against humans and Vampires alike. The older Vampire placed a hand on Sasuke's chin, tilting his head up to look at him. "I don't want to kill again." Sasuke said, taken aback by the heavy feeling lifted off his chest from admitting this. Naruto tilted his head, eyes taking on a thoughtful look. "What happened?" He asked, both confused by the unusual statement and pleased that he wasn't turning out like a member of Akatsuki. Sasuke swallowed, twisting his mouth to the side in bitter reverie.

"I hadn't fed since he'd turned me, he brought this… Man to the room I stayed in. I killed him. I didn't even feel like I knew what I was doing." He said slowly, feeling a twinge of shame and guilt. Naruto sighed, pulling Sasuke to sit on the bed. Sasuke looked up at Naruto's empathetic expression. "We've all killed someone before, that's what we are. Fledglings like you can't control their need and you overfeed." Naruto's eyes hardened then, making Sasuke feel a bit anxious. "That's why childe Vampires are taken to prisons or to hunt criminals. Rapists, murderers, thieves, people that need to be taken down to protect everyone else. They learn to curb their hunger and grow experienced."

Naruto sighed again, rubbing the back of his head. "The Akatsuki don't care who they kill. They don't care about anyone, not even each other. You need to feed, but I cannot leave my Clan alone with them or have someone catch you something to eat. The Akatsuki won't approve." Sasuke opened his mouth to protest against eating at all, pausing in question when Naruto pulled his jacket off, tilting his head to expose his throat. Sasuke shuddered, tensing when his senses locked solely on the blood pumping through Naruto's veins. "No, don't." Sasuke shook his head, horrified at the offer. The blonde chuckled softly. "You won't kill me, you need to survive. I promise it will be fine."

Sasuke glared, pursing his lips. Naruto pulled him close, forcing Sasuke's senses into overdrive. He felt the same daze he had when he'd first fed, his body saw only one purpose at that moment; survival. He clutched Naruto's shirt, his fangs sinking into the offered throat. The Uchiha's body convulsed as the crimson life returned his strength and energy. He didn't know how long or how much he fed, but when he pulled back he felt incredible, better than he had in months. He knew how to seal the wound so it would heal, pulling back. He felt guilty at the dazed look in Naruto's eyes.

The blonde shook his head as if clearing it, giving the familiar, bright smile to Sasuke as if reassuring him he was okay. "Don't look so worried, you didn't even take much. We have quicker blood regeneration than a human." He said, Sasuke found himself returning a small smile. It was then when he realized he was sitting in Naruto's lap, straddling him. He blushed, looking back up and meeting Naruto's eyes. He felt his breath catch as everything in the room seemed to fall still, he felt his heartbeats as they reverberated through him.

He felt a frighteningly strong emotion course through him, and he could feel Naruto's heart begin to beat faster as well. As if something was pulling them together. Sasuke knew very well this was dangerous, it could hurt him or even Naruto. He'd never wanted anything more in his life, this unbearable need to… To be with him. As if Naruto was an addiction and his soul needed it. He knew he couldn't, he couldn't trust this easily, couldn't let himself get caught in childish crushes when Deidara held the threat of his life and possibly Naruto's over his head. He couldn't let himself fall for this.

Even when everything in him wanted to.


AUTHORESS NOTE:

"Gettin' real tired of your shit, Amaya." I know, I keep changing the story. If it makes you less annoyed, this is the only time I've done this and it means I genuinely love this story enough to make it the best I can possibly give… So, chapter five was ONCE AGAIN modified. Naruto (suspected) but didn't know Sasuke was in the Akatsuki…

Fuck you, I've treated Sasuke like absolute shit and we both deserve this fluff. I wanted sweet and I've got it. Considering things will once again get fairly dark for a bit, use this to keep yourself above the angst.

Some of you reviewers are incredibly sweet.

Hm… Honestly, this might seem a little… Off. I apologize if it is, because I wasn't patient enough to settle into the state of mind I probably should have been in to write this. I already spoke with CrystalDarkSamus about being stuck on writing it because I'm working hard at keeping the character's in-character, since I've made changes to their personalities. Just… Eh. I kept them in line with how we wrote the roleplay.

Naruto: So deal with it.