Disclaimer: 'Naruto' is owned by Masashi Kishimoto

A Guide To Fatherhood

It wasn't like I didn't care about my son. I loved him very much. That was why I spoke the way I did.

Shikamaru was taking the death of his sensei hard. Mourning was normal, but he didn't cry. Part of that was being a Shinobi and hiding his feelings, which the boy was quite skilled at. But he was going too long. Sometimes, the harsh truth was what needed to be said.

Let it out, boy.

Those words were the last push needed. He was strong, and fought against it, but it was too late. Once it started, the tears rained down and the cries echoed late into the night. It was a risk to leave him, trusting he wouldn't do anything stupid, but a father needs to trust his only child. That is the least we can do. He'd know what was right. He'd find the path he needed to go. He just needed slight direction from one more experienced.

I'll be here for you.

I'll admit, it was hard listening to my son, but it was even harder once the cries stopped. The only sound was the owl making it's own haunting calls. The boy needed more time. He'll figure it out. He's as sharp as they come.

I never heard him leave the room, so when early morning came, it was the first place to go. One look at the empty room told me. The scattered pieces were gathered, and everything was planned.

He'll be alright.