A New Fox Hole
She had to run.
Not many things were clear at this point but this was crystal. Heart pounding and breath quickened she continued to stumble through bushes and trip over roots that she wasn't quite big enough to leap over. Almost falling over on one particularly large root, she righted her and continued, skirting around the puddles of light that that leaked through to the forest floor. She couldn't be seen or it would all be over
I can't let that happen. She thought with determination. Legs aching and lungs burning she continued, till she spotted a high bush the stood before a large oak. 'Perfect', she thought to herself. It provided great shade in which to hide her. Crawling into the limited space between the two pieces of foliage, she kneeled down to wait till it was safe to move. Laying her hand over her mouth and nose she attempted to muffle her breathing so it was not heard. Only a few more minutes and she would be safe. Breath hitched when the young girl heard leaves rustling a few feet from her hiding place. Holding her breath she awaited their departure as the they continued past her until there was silence. After a moment she deemed herself in the clear and let out a quiet sigh.
Hinata fell back on her rear with a squeal as a blond blob swung down from a tree branch only to stop inches from her face. Blinking her eyes to clear her vision, she looked up to see Naruto hanging from the ancient oak right above her head. Even in the shadowed forest his smile was bright with his victory.
"Found you Hina-chan." he told her with a laugh before dropping down to land on his feet with practiced ease. Hinata covered her giggle with her hand as Naruto helped her to her feet and out of her hiding spot.
"You always find me Naruto-san"
Rolling his eyes Naruto looked at his best-and only- friend. "I told you, you don't have to call me that Nata. We're friends, so we use kun or a nickname or 'sumthin." He replied. Hinata knew he didn't like her being so formal with him but she could help it. Her parents were always teaching her manners and that, as a Hyuuga, she was required to be formal with those around her. She knew that Naruto however was having no problem giving her nicknames. In fact, he had too many. When she asked him why he called her by so many names and his response was 'I don't which one is pretty enough for you' and of course she could do nothing but blush. As of now it looked like he had narrowed it down to three.
"Okay...I-I'll call you...Ruto-kun...if that's okay?" Her voice indicated she was asking a question even if it was a statement. Things were better than when they first meet almost two months, but her stutter would occasionally come back. More out of habit than anything else.
The blond gave a chuckle before lightly scratching his whiskered face. She loved it. At the Hyuuga compound, no one ever smiled. Her mother gave light grins and airy laughs, but never an honest to goodness laugh. Yet, he always had just the right one saved for the perfect moment.
'And they're only for Me.' she couldn't help but think. She caught glances of his demeanor before he saw her headed towards him. He was forever saddened by the looks he received from those around him. Yet, he would always light up when he did see her. And he truly did see her. It was never Hyuuga-sama with her friend only one of of his many nicknames dedicated to her alone. Perhaps that was why she loved being around him so much. He was her sun.
The two children continued on their path out of the forest towards the rear of the academy. Quickly stopping to retrieve the bag Hinata had hidden by the swing, headed towards town.
"Ready to go Hina?" the orphan asked as he offered a hand to his companion. Delicately nodding before taking the appendage our two tykes headed into the alleyways of Konaha. Naruto held tight to his charges hand as he led the way through what kids around his neighborhood called 'The Maze'. Because that's exactly what it was. A huge maze of alleys and tunnels that ran through the entire village many didn't even know about. And he loved bringing the young heiress through it. The look of wonder on her face as she attempted to peer over walls that towered above them, the confusion as her took them through paths that seemed like continuous circles only to come out a portal to their destination. The blond child adored that he could give her this small gift, even if he felt that she deserved something that cost money he would never have. Peeking at her face as they walked, he gave a light chuckle when he saw her lavender orbs widen as she took in the atmosphere around them.
And that's when he felt it. The weird feeling in the bottom of his stomach accompanied by the clutching in his chest. 'Stupid stomach'. When he first felt it, he had thought he was sick. Soon after the realization came that it only happened around Hinata and he worried that he might be allergic to her. Yet, this didn't sound right to him. The feeling wasn't necessarily bad but it didn't feel good either. It was weird and an annoyance more than anything however; if it came with being around Hinata he would handle it tenfold with a smile on his face.
Taking a sharp left turn the couple headed out the alleyways and across the street to the park while it was still relatively empty for this portion of the day. Sitting underneath the large oak Hinata rolled out a blanket and set the food upon it for their daily lunch. To her, her young companion always looked hungry and if her grandmother saw him she would surely complain about how skinny he was. Obaa-sama was always going on about how the girl needed to eat more to grow into a strong clan head and Naruto was even thinner than she was! So, in order to help her friend grow strong she began packing bentos for them to feast on every day before she snuck out of the compound to see him. With Ko working for the village again it was much easier than she could have hoped.
A small child dashes around the Hyuuga complex, ducking behind poles and benches in attempt not to be seen. The younger adult couldn't help but think how cute it was that the little heiress was trying to stay hidden from their all seeing eyes. The Elders thought many times of stopping her since her behavior was not fit for the future clan head. A reminder that she was 'getting a head start on stealth training' was what forced them to let her be. Hinata never noticed their thoughts and preferred to think that no one saw her as she made her way to the garden as sneakily as her clumsy feet could take her. The only people who came here were the gardeners and her mother, besides her. The gardeners were not scheduled until noon and her mother was with the baby. Hinata felt a twinge of hurt at that thought. It wasn't that she didn't like Hanabi, she loved her sister. It was just that, it seemed like her parents never saw her anymore. For any other child this might not seem like something that bad. Hinata wasn't any other child. She only had her family and none of them were close to her age or willing to play with her. Neji was the only one but her started his training recently, leaving him little to no free time.
'It's different now though,' she thought as she continued on her way with a smile. She had Naruto now to fill the ever growing hole in her life. He was quickly becoming someone that she not only wanted in her life, but need to keep going.
Shaking her head to clear out her thoughts, she again focused on the matter at hand. Looking out one last time, she dashed under the rose bush that ran along the wall. Not many noticed the small opening that a child could fit through that led to a hole in the wall of the compound. Pushing the bag she hid there earlier, she ran away to the swing to meet her first, and only, friend.
"Hinata, your food is sooo good!" A blond boy exclaimed as her dug into the homemade bento box. The girl sitting next to him couldn't help but give a small giggle as the rice stuck to his face in his hurry to eat his food. And as always she couldn't help but notice the little bits of food he sneakily hid away in the pockets of his pants. She never figured out why. The fish and rice must not taste very good after it had been in there for a while. She never questioned him however and instead chose to accept it as something she liked to consider a 'Naruto Thing'. Something that was just part of what made her blue eyed friend. Like how he liked the same clothes so much he wore them almost every day. Well...he never actually said they were his favorite, but that had to be why. She always wanted to wear her favorite dress, yet her parents always told her that she couldn't. Her parents seemed like no fun at all sometimes.
"Hey Naruto, are you ready for winter?" the little girl asked as she saw the last leaf fall from a nearby tree. Even if he tried to hide it, she noticed the fearful look on the boys face for a moment. Young Naruto huddled into the clothes she scavenged for him through her cousin Neji's hand-me-downs.
"I hate winter," he said as he looked down and away from her. "It's too cold. And there ain't never any good places 'ta sleep 'dat ain't covered in snow."
The little girl understood-or at least thought she did- to an extent. Naruto slept outside, like when her uncle and cousin would go camping. And they never went camping in the winter because of the snow and that there was no game to hunt since all the animals went to take a nap away from the cold according to her mommy. Well her family came home when it was too cold for camping, why couldn't her best friend? "Hey Naruto, Why don't you stay with me?" she said as if it was the most simple solution in the world.
The little blond snapped his head up at the girl's question. Stay with her? In her home? No one ever took him in unless they were told to by the old man in cool hat that wore sheets everywhere he went. not only was she okay with him being in her home, but she was offering.
"Won't you get in trouble? 'Lotta parents don't like me much." The girl scrunched up her face in thought as she thought in a manner the blue eyed boy found cute. 'She always looks like a little bunny when she does that' he couldn't help but think as he looked at her.
"Well..." the girl replied slowly "my cousin once kept a puppy in her room and nobody knew about it. At Least until it started barking during a tea ceremony, but I don't think you will have that problem." she gave a dazzling smile as she began to gather the leftover scraps and clean up. "Come on, I wanna show you my room!"
Sorry for the short chapter, school is getting kind of hectic and I didn't wanna make anyone wait longer. Now the big parts of the story are coming next chapter and I need to know, how does everyone feel about Fanpanse? If it's not all that liked like I feel it is, I'm dropping it completely. I feel like it confuses readers and adds work when the author has to put up a dictionary. Another thing is that things are going to get dark soon so be prepared. If there are any characters that people want to start seeing some of I will try to throw what they are doing in this timeline into the story.