Characters: Naruto Uzumaki, Sasuke Uchiha, Kakashi Hatake

Character Mentions: Sakura Haruno

Past Mentions for Plot: Kage Council (All the Five Nations Shadows), Madara Uchiha

Main Pairings: SasuNaru

Side Pairing Hints/Mentions: None . . .

Warnings: Shounen-ai, Character Tragedy, Suspense, Hurt/Comfort, Drama, Angry Kakashi, Language, Adult Theme Suggestion

Disclaimer: I do not own any of these characters, unless stated and I also did not make any money from this writing. I am just creating this story to entertain myself and (hopefully) you.

All of the character's depicted (or referred to) in sexual situations in this story are intended to be and considered to be me of the legal age of consent, in any jurisdiction, regardless of what age these characters may be in the material they are derived from.

Things To Know:
I had always wanted to write a IN Universe SasuNaru ending, even before the war started. However, I had always been nervous about writing it because it really does take quite amount of skill to write a in universe story without making it considered AU. This change after seeing the start of "Reminiscence" by the wonderful Feiucca. She really showed me that it was not an impossible goal, if I applied myself. So, I thought long and hard about how I wished for it to begin, end and what would be the words behind the story.

I wanted to stay as far away from Fei's story direction, because I wanted a new angle to the end of Naruto Ship. Then I remembered Naruto had stated something about how loneliness made a heart dark and that he had almost taken that path had it not been for Iruka acceptance and Sasuke's bond. That was the accelerate I needed to get the fire really burning and this story popped into my head.

Of course, what you see now is a complete rewrite of what I had original written back a year ago. I have not only gotten better in grammar, spelling, punctuation but also wording and keeping character's in character. The original you could tell I hesitated during the story and Sasuke was sadly out of character under my def. Plus, I wanted to add a little of what is seen in Taiyou no Sumika (Residence of the Sun) why still staying clear of her story direction.

Then focused on Naruto and who he is now more than whom he was when he was younger and lastly Sasuke. He harder to write because of who he is now in the story but I wanted to stay clear of his dark, bitchy side and focus more on his unsure, hurt, and scared feelings underneath. I guess you could say he's basically, he is a cross between Fie's and RANKAI's Sasuke's and my watching. I really just loved how they interrupted their Sasuke's yet still kept him in Character.

Ok so lastly, how the name of the story came to be born. This actually came last; I was quite tied between two different titles. I usually like naming my stories after something written in the story, a short quote, or the meaning behind the story. This time I named it after the word 'Separation' and just expanded it from there since it was the plot idea word.
Definitions of word:
1- a. The act or process of separating.
b. The condition of being separated.
2. The place at which a division or parting occurs.
3. An interval or space that separates; a gap.

Basically, each word has some meaning to the title name.
The- specifies that exact moment in time.
Hour- length in which it took for it all to happen.
Of- used to connect the hour and reason.
Separation- reason this story even exists.

Note: I dubbed it a Naruto X Sasuke story, because Naruto took responsibility first, on who would care for whom and was the first to admit feelings. However, you could also take it as a Sasuke X Naruto ending.

Definitions: None.

Shout Out: I wanted to show my love to my bestie and my little princess for helping me with the spelling, punctuation, in character tweaks and support.

Summary: The raven never thought their last fight would end with the blonde's last words being a love confession or that seeing the blonde's glazed eyes as he slipped away would hurt this bad. Well the heart doesn't know its own depths till The Hour of Separation.

Naruto couldn't help but smile; even as the pain throbbed in his chest, limbs began to tingle at the tips and blood pooled in his mouth before trickling down the corners of his upturned lips. To him, this was just the day of the long-awaited performance, a performance that he had practiced day after day in his head even before learning the truth.

However, now that the curtain was up and the moment was here. He was beginning to wonder, would he even live through it? Like he had planned to in all his thoughts, all of his dream? But, what's just what they were, and now he was faced with reality that maybe . . . just a little more than maybe he might have gone a little overboard and taken a little too much damage this time.

Would this be a shitty remake of the story Elizabeth Bennett and Darcy with a sad and tragic ending as he said his sweet goodbyes to his best friend and the first real person to make a bond with that could never be broken?

Either way, he knew this would be the last time they would fight. Therefore, he only had one more thing to do, he hoped and he prayed the stubborn jerk would realize what he had in front of him before it was too late. Too late . . . that was a funny thought. Because as of this moment he was standing with a sword pierced through his chest and a stupid smile on his face.

With his thoughts back to where they should. He stumbled back pulling the sword out as he did, never once taking his eyes off his best friend whose only good eye widen before returning to its usual blank and uncaring demeanor.

"Bastard, um done fightin' you to come home, I only got one more thing I gadda say-I wish for you to know."

Sasuke narrowed his eye before flicking the blood from his freed sword and placed it back in its sheath. He knew the blond did not just say things to hear himself talk, though at times it seemed like it. . . However, it was hard to believe the moron would simply give up now after so long of spouting off about bringing him back and that he would be the one to take all his anger.

Part of him was happy with these words, because he too was done. As much, he loved this fucked up game of cat and mouse . . . he was tired, hurt and he did not see anything left to live for anymore. He had livid for the revenge and now it was over . . . his soul purpose in life had left a gaping hole with nothing to fall upon once it was done. Death was the only answer that he thought left.

Although, what had happened just moments ago had somehow affected him greater than he had ever anticipated. He had always told the blonde he was willing and ready to kill him, because he had long ago severed the ties that faithful day; when his hand went through his chest barely missing his heart.

Either he had done it intentionally or had simply miss calculated the placement of his heart in battle; he would never say or maybe it was because he still was not sure himself. What he did know was at that time, he had felt somewhere deep inside a slight pang of hurt and guilt. He had even spared his best friends life. Not because of his own injuries, but 'cause of that one dirty secret he had almost let out as he kneeled over Naruto's barely hanging on form.

This time however, that small hint of a pang felt more as if he had been the one to be pierced through the chest and right through his heart. Even his hands were shaking and what was worse . . . what made it feel like anger was oozing out of that hole, was the fact the stupid fucking idiot was smiling, smiling as if he had known that this moment would happen all along.

"Sasuke, I want you to know that it was always easy for me to talk with you. Because even if you could care less to what I had to say, you stood there glaring as you listened without a word."

He could not help but roll his eyes and he had no problem spitting malice in his words. "Spit your speech out idiot, so I can leave. You're getting blood all over the place."

Naruto chuckled as he took a step closer, despite his best friends try at harsh words, but the movement brought a large gulp of blood up and he had to cover his mouth again as it oozed out between his fingers almost choking him. He felt dizzy, and a sudden wave of his bodies aching screams hit him from the back in his mind. Nevertheless, even this wouldn't stop him from saying what he'd been meaning to say far too long now.

"Always so impatient you bastard. . ." He smiled, as he wiped the blood from his face and let his hand fall to drip at his side.

"It's funny how this turned out, yet all the same I knew how this would end. More people than I can count even by your own brother have asked me; 'What is it about Sasuke that makes you care so much? He's nothing but a rogue ninja who abandoned you.' finally I have a better reason then 'the bond of friendship' or what I told Itachi, 'because he's like a brother to me and I'm a better brother than you ever were.'

The mentioned of Itachi infuriated him, yet the feeling of guilt only grew stronger as if they had taken the object embedded in his heart and yanked up for a blood-splattering end. He had never known his brother had spoken to Naruto, because Itachi had never spoken about it in their last battle.

"Hee, I know what ya thinkin' bastard. But I'm not done just yet, Dattebayo. It finally hit me why I really chase after you. Even now, the answer is so simple; just one feeling that sums up all the other answers I gave. . . Love, true love; like that kind that makes your breath stop as the fluttering in the pit of your stomach leaves you dizzy. I thought I loved Sakura, remember? 'Cept she never made me feel like that. Nobody else has or will ever make me feel like this. 'Cause, nobody understands me the way you have always understood me."

Sasuke in all his life had never felt so speechless . . . so caught off guard. It just was not something a Uchiha felt. Though, this was not a feeling of being trapped, more like he had been slapped silly and he just wanted to laugh and cry all at once. His body felt weightless, like he had not just battled with everything he had, instead awoken from his first night's sleep without any nightmares. Nevertheless, he said nothing just simply narrowed his eyes more and bawled his fists up to stop the shaking.

"I've lived all this time lying about how I felt. So many false smiles . . . so many words said to make others believe everything was just peachy. Heh, I even started to believe my own lies, but you never did-ttebayo. You always saw right through me . . . and I don't want to lie anymore. I-I have to say . . . that if it had been anybody else standing where you stand . . . I wouldn't be the one standing where I am now. . . Because . . . like I said before . . . nobody gives me the strength . . . that you give me. . . . I am who I am . . . I fight . . .with more . . then what I have . . . because of you. . . . B-bastard . . it makes me laugh . . . that it never once occurred . . . that I was givin' up . . . my dream . . . to be Hokage . . . to bring . . . back. . a. . shel-enter. .ed pri-"

His mind was going a mile a minute to keep up with everything that the Usuratonkachi was implying in his round-about rambling. The more he spoke the harder it seemed like he could speak, the more breath of air he gulped down painfully, the more the blood slipped past his lips and the lower his eyes sank as if weighted down by bricks.

A little half way through the speech, Sasuke's gaze fell to the menacing dark red spot on Naruto's chest where it had now begun to soak more than just the spot where his sword had gone through and he stepped forward, and then hesitated. If he showed that he cared, all the running, all the hateful words, all the fights . . . would have been in vain.

He did not have long to think about it before his eye widen when Naruto stopped in mid-word and began to choke, as his eyes went wide before seeming to roll in the back of his head as he swayed spilling a fall that would only end with a ungracefully crash to the cold, hard unloving floor below.

Sasuke had not even remembered when his thoughts stopped, let alone when his body had moved until he was pulling the blondes cold, heavy body close to his. Somewhere in the distance, he could hear Naruto's name being called repeatedly in a frantic state by his teammates and it would not be long before they would be there. He needed to leave, but something from the past that he had long thought had burnt out was starting to burn and waver inside his body and it just would not move.

Despite how cold Naruto felt only moments ago, he was now warm. It was mind dizzying to be truthful. Mmm, but that could be due to the blood loss. When he opened his eyes, he saw that he was now leaning against the chest of none other than the broody bastard himself and he couldn't help but grin like an idiot. Once again, the strength was poured back and he took no pause in his pursuit to end the play with all his lines spoken with pride.

"Uchiha Sasuke, I am in love with you so much that not having you hurts; more than any wound ever inflicted upon me. I love everything about you, Bastard; from your stupid superior, 'I'm better than you' attitude, down to that fucking annoying way you answer with the simple sound 'hn'. Hee, sounds all bad, neh. Everybody sees ya as some godly superior Uchiha, walking his brother's path. But did ya know . . . I never have! Dattebayo"

The words made Sasuke choke back tears as the anger he felt subside and all that was left now were all his other emotions that he had for so long thought he had bricked in. They fell to pieces, leaving him barely able to stand on what little strength he had left.

He had prided himself in knowing everything, being better and smarter than everybody else around him and spent most of his life calling Naruto the moron . . . but in truth, he had been the idiot. Never once had it accord to him the blonds' obsessive, touchy feely, argumentative, name calling, competitive nature towards him was simply a boys way of comprehending love the only way a kid their age could.

"I always saw beyond that broody and cold act you hide behind. I always saw the Sasuke who wanted nothing more than the loneliness to go away. Who despite being irritated and cruel towards others attempts to bother him, knew that deep down it made him feel just an ounce better than he had waking up that morning. But, the best part of you-my favorite part of you is that smile that spoke a thousand words whenever it slipped without you knowing."

By this time, Sasuke felt he was barely hanging on as tears dared to sting his eyes. However, he be damned if he was ready give in as Naruto had. His silent sobbing was making trails down his blood and mud caked face. Yet, neither seemed to care who might just stumbled upon them in such an intimate and weak state anymore. Their bodies hurt, their souls bled, and their tongues had finally been unbound.

"True, you been one lost . . . fucked up jerk to everybody. Even . . . even I thought for a moment . . . that whatever I used to see . . . behind those deep eyes . . . was long gone. . . . But he's . . . still there . . . that . . little Sasuke . . . is . . . cryin' . . . to be . . . freed . . . .fum-his . . . dark . . . culd . . . lo-ely . . . prison."

Naruto knew this would be the last question he could ask, so he had better say it fast, because as his breath became shallower and his body became colder and it was also getting harder to see what was so close and yet still so far away.

"B-astard. . . t'me. . this . . . now . . yer-know . . . n-yer . . . h'een outed . . . wi'yer . . . change? . . . N'come . . .home . . . at . . least . .f-ur-me?"

The question was completely futile and wasteful of precious energy. It was as if the words were mocking him in some way. He had to lean down to touch the Naruto's forehead to his own, to even hear the faint question.

Once there would have been that clink of their forehead protectors, but now he could only feel the rough edge of his scratched one that had once belong to him so many years ago. He could also feel blonde's grit and sticky blood coated strands of hair as his own sweat covered locks clung to his face.

He too had discovered his feelings, although it had been much sooner and had never admitted them, even to himself, because he only ever wanted to live in his selfish desires. He never put into thought what really went through the Dope's head, at least not until now.

"Naruto . . . why . . . why . . do you go so far me? . . . Why . . . why, is my happiness . . . worth more than your life!? I d-don't get it. . . I've done nothing . . . nothing, but hurt you . . . and the people you care for. . . . Yet here you are . . . like an idiot . . . declaring your love for a traitor. . . . I d-did not think . . . I would ever be hearing those words . . . I . . . f-fuck . . . I too ca-shit . . . Love You

His voice was low and rough as he struggled with not only Naruto's words but also his own, as his mind and heart tore at each other between truth and guilt. After he had spoken those words, he received no reply, just the trembling of his best friend below and a choked cough break through his shallow breathing.

This made Sasuke pull away his heart beating as if it was threatening to tear through his chest. Nevertheless, what he saw when he did was not what he expected. To his surprise, there before him was a tear-filled blood stained blond smiling, but not a smile he had ever seen before. This was so happy it was pure, relieved, and filled what he could only guess was the warmth of love from being accepted.

He knew now the Naruto could not speak, although that would never stop the Dope from getting his point across and just as he thought this, he watched his lips move, "Because I love you." and with strength Sasuke did not knew the blonde still had, a shaky hand smeared in dried blood reached up.

With his fingertips, Naruto brushed across the ravens' pale, mud coated face and tugged very lightly down. Sasuke to his surprise complied and leaned over without a fuss to brush his lips against his own and if he had been anybody else, he might just have thought . . . If I died now, I can die without any regrets.

It seemed like the light kiss could last forever; Hours? Minutes? Maybe even seconds later the other was ripped from his arms and he barely opened his eyes or maybe his eyes had already been open and only now were they registering the frantic watery green eyes widen in shock and horror above him. Sakura-chan was saying something . . . screaming something . . . but he could no longer comprehend what was happening around him. He felt himself sinking lower into the darkness around him.

'Kurama . . . I don't want to die . . . I don't want to die . . . Kyu, I just told the Bastard I loved him and he returned my love.'

At first, he heard nothing than from somewhere in his foggy mind an answer came. "Fight Kit . . . I did not give you my strength so that you could die."

'Thank you . . . I want to bring him back, not for everybody else . . . but for me.'

Sasuke did not feel the strong, trembling hand grab him by the neck. It did not occur to him that anything had happened until he was face to face with his old sensei. However, he looked away and over to the blond who was now on the ground with his old teammate, a screaming tearbank pinket above him. Her hands glowed an eerie green as she screamed Naruto's name repeatedly between pleadings for him not to die.

After he had seen enough, he looked back at the man who had so many emotions written on his face that the he had never seen before. He did not know if it had been Sakura screams, the choking gurgle of the blonde choking on his own blood or maybe the emotions in his old sensei's face, as he said whatever he was saying. But his mask completely feel and he cried . . . he cried as hard or even harder than the day after his brother's death and finally he heard the words being spoken.

"-,nother nation's shinobi to protect your name, your secrets. He mental broke himself as he begged on hands and knees for the Yondaime Raikage to take back the death sentence he placed on your head. . . . Gave up his dream to take all your pain and anger on him just to see you happy again, and you return all that with this?"

Kakashi grabbed Sasuke's chin so that he could not look away from the scene only described as something you see in some sick and fucked up story. Sakura was no longer herself but a miserable little girl crying over a puppy that had been run over as she tried to pour more of her healing chakra into the pale blonde. If any life still bubbled somewhere deep, it could no longer be seen though death glazed eyes.

A month after what had happened I stood in front of what had become the new place for the summit meeting. There before me, sat all five Kages and behind them, the old giant tapestries of their Kanji Kage symbols adorning the wall like pillars of their strength and an acid to my wounds. I littered was in them wrapped up like a mummy. Not just from the war and the death of my Ancestor Madara Uchiha, but from the battle that changed my life and tore my soul to pieces.

I had wanted to tell them there should be no decision, but the one that lead to my death. However, I could not . . . I had promised him I would live and for that reason alone I stood silently and watched Lady Tsunade and Gaara speak silently, their mouths hidden from my prying eye. It was then I saw a flash of blue and silver as it was passed between the two and then she got up and placed the object I had seen on the table.

"Uchiha Sasuke, we have all came to the decision that-"

That had been almost four years ago . . . at least that's as long as I felt it had been. I am sitting with my back against my small, damp, cold, and musty cell. The verdict had not been death, but imprisonment until the new Hokage could decide my fate. Death I thought would have been bliss, this was far worse. This was a life sentence to a permanent condemning of loneliness, to the darkness of my thoughts and guilt's. Which I had not chosen, but those very people I had once wanted to hunt down a kill had.

I remember the words Tsunade had spoken before ANBU took me away, as if it had only happened moments ago. 'One's heart can be that of the blackest when filled with hatred and loneliness, I was almost like that but when shown even the slightest touch of softness in the form of love even the darkest heart can be purified. I could have been where he is, I too have felt pain almost as similar as his, so I get why he does what he does. I will end this fight even if victory ends in my death. I just want to see him happy; I want to see him live a normal life.'

Those had been Naruto's words as he left to fight me. Hearing that shattered all strength I had left, as it only added to what I had to think on as I waited . . . second after second . . . hour after hour . . . year after year. Hunted and mocked by my life's decision. All objects with sharp edges or things that could be made sharp were just out of my reach as if they too were mocking me. I think they expected me to take my own life, they probably even wished so. However, even though I had fallen to the level of scum and my soul been crushed I refused to dig that last inch or two of my own grave, that gave them the satisfaction.

As I was being devoured by my thoughts, I suddenly felt that sting behind my eyes and I reached my shaky hands up to the bandages covering my healing eyes. It had been quite some time since I had cried.

"Bastard, you're not going to cry while sitting there. Dattebayo, like some trapped bird in a small cage. Makes you look so weak and pathetic, don't you think?"

His voice calling out could only be described as cheeky, affectionate, and playful, never intending to hurt as it poked and prodded.

I am sure had those not been there, I would have looked pathetic because my eyes widened. I had not even felt him enter the building much yet the area I was being held. How long had he been standing there watching me? Better yet . . . why was he here. I knew why, but I did not get why. I had asked myself why since that day. Those simple words to me were not enough to cover up all the sins I had committed.

"'Hn' Do not think just because you are Hokage that you are somehow better than me. You are still. . an. . idiot."

He laughed at my weak attempt at a comeback, but I was not really trying. I could hear the cell door open and my heart began to beat faster before it seemed to stop along with my breath as a soft pair of lips took mine. I did not care at the other presence I felt with us as my body pulled the blonde into my lap, drawing him into a long deep kiss. When he finally pulled away so did the wrappings around my eyes.

"Oi, promise me you won't cry anymore. I told you the day you were free, it was your past you were to be freed from. Anyhow, you can't be doing this in public. I have an image to keep, punk-ttebayo."

It had taken many blinks and a bit of concentration to see. It was still blurry; however when I did so did the tears. I was starting to feel like some fucking weak girl, but I had ever reason to feel miserable and the guilt, did I not? During my fight with Tobi my right eye had been damaged beyond repair, I could no longer see from it, and again, my happiness came before his.

"Come, I don't have all day. We need to get you washed up, you stink, your haircut, you look ridicules and for you to pledge your loyalty as my guard. So after that, what does the free man wish to do?"

I did not respond nor did I move to get up. Instead, I brought a shaky hand up to touch my new eye. If only I had a mirror to see the damage, I had caused. Again, my skills had failed me. I was starting to think I had none. Because I had not felt his presence move closer until a hand was placed upon my wondering one and I was forced to look up. Now I could clearly see the one clear right blue eye as the other now long gone was wrapped up and hidden behind an overly sized Hokage hat.

"Does it hurt?"

His question seemed unlike it had been asked as he already know my thoughts, but wished not to voice it and I had to silently thank him.

"Why?" Was all I could breathe out as a reply, making him tilted his head as he was trying to understand, why I had asked that.

"I don't mind sharing what I have two of and blue has always looked best on you."

Again, more added guilt from more kindness I did not deserve from somebody who deserved the world. If that was the case, I would give him that world. I would live in my guilt silently as I give my freedom to serve him. I would spend the rest of my days living only for him, doing all in my power to return each kind jester back as if marking off my sins and guilt so that when I died . . . I might in death be able to join.

"Naruto . . . I . . ." I could not bring myself to say those words again . . . I was still unworthy of them, so for now I will swallow my pride so that one day I may say them freely.

"Take you to go get ramen at that little shop, just like back then? Then I'll take you back to the Hokage tower."

With my mind wandering back to his question of what I wished to do, I spoke softly as I nibbled on his ear. Surprisingly it earned me a low whimper followed by a moan that brought joy to my ears, and I could not help but chuckle.

"And you put an 'I'm currently busy' sign on your door as I take up the rest of your day?"

"That sounds like a terrible Idea, Dattebayo!"

He smacked me on the head and grinned as he pulled me to my feet, so that I could fallow his hurried form out of the cells and into the light. That I had to narrow my eyes at. It had been so long since I had seen true light. For years, he had been the only light that reached my eyes before it had become completely dark and I could not help but have a selfish thought. That light was mine . . . as much as I did not deserve it . . . it was mine until the day it completely goes out and without warning this thought made my body move to take a hold of the blonde possessively.

I thought he was going to yell at me when he suddenly became a bit stiff and turned around his mouth hanging open like some gaping fish. Instead he only grinned like a moron, "If I had been anybody other than Naruto Uzumaki the world greatest Hokage!"

With those words spoken, he burst out laughing as he pushed away from my hold and all I could do was stand there gaping like an idiot, this time. I watched his figure slowly disappear before a smirk played on my lips. 'Yes, you are the world's greatest and I will spend my life happily serving you.'

Before, Sasuke know it he was chasing after the others retreating form, disappearing into the crowed village streets to start a new play with an ending that they both so desperately wanted and only thought possible in their dreams.

"Even a heart filled with darkness can be purified with love.

Nevertheless, never does this heart know its own depth until

The Hour of Separation."