The past can destroy you if you let it. It helps if you smile, and remember only the good things.
I DO NOT OWN ONE PIECE
The wind whistled through Olivia's hair as she stared at her rival. She had long forgiven the reason they were rivals. She no longer saw Cadence as a threat.
"What are you doing?" Olivia asked as she walked up beside Cadence, who was surveying the street with eager eyes.
Cadence was quite an attractive woman, even though she didn't seem to notice. She had short blonde hair, which glistened in the sunlight. Her blue eyes were quite large, and looked as though they held the entire sea in their depths.
"I'm waiting for him." Cadence replied. She avoided direct eye contact with Olivia and focused on her task; hoping that the other woman would leave.
"Who's him?" Olivia asked confused, following Cadence's eyes. Her question was silently answered, when the other woman's blue eyes lit up.
A tall man with lopsided silver hair strode down the street. His attire marked him as a Jounin. His nose was glued to the pages of a small book, and when Olivia took a closer look, she could just make out the words on the front page. 'Icha Icha Paradise' she curled her nose in disgust.
"You like him?" Olivia asked incredulously. She had thought that Cadence had better taste in men.
"He's a really nice guy. His name is Kakashi." Cadence watched Kakashi starry eyed as he progressed closer to where she was standing. "Last week he helped me when I lost my shopping."
"Look at the book he's reading. Only perverts read that book!" Olivia stated. As she looked at Cadence, something changed her mind. "If you really like him that much, you wouldn't object to going over to talk to him."
"Talk to him?" Cadence asked. Taking her eyes from the silver haired Jounin she stared at Olivia with wide eyes. "I can't do that. He's the great Hatake Kakashi!"
"So? You're a Jounin too; you have the right to talk to him. I'm sure he wouldn't mind." Olivia pointed out. She still had no understanding to why Cadence liked being a ninja. Olivia hated fighting, she thought it was vile. "Just walk over there, and say hello. The worst he can do is ignore you."
"I don't know what I could possibly say to him. My mind is blank, and I would make a fool out of myself. I'm best saving myself from such embarrassment." Cadence sighed. She turned to leave, only to be stopped by Olivia's hand gripping her arm.
"Just trust me okay?" Olivia grinned. She then cut of Cadence's retort by pushing her straight into said silver haired Jounin. Olivia watched as the two collided, and Cadence fell to the ground with a thump.
"I'm so sorry!" Kakashi said; putting away his book, and offering Cadence a hand. "I wasn't watching where I was going."
"It seems that I wasn't either." Cadence replied; accepting Kakashi's hand. She blushed at their closeness when he helped her off the ground. "Thank you."
"You're welcome." Kakashi smiled. At least Olivia thought that he did, as she watched the scene from the sideline. It was hard to tell while he had his mask on. "I'll see you around."
Cadence giggled nervously as he walked away. Olivia couldn't help but feel sorry for her. She had no luck in the way of men.
"That was the lamest technique for flirting I've ever seen!" Olivia grinned. To her surprise, Cadence didn't rise to her bait; instead she walked away silently. Her face was red from shame, making Olivia feel stupid, and evil.
"Cadence; wait up. It wasn't really that bad." Olivia ran after the blonde. She would take Cadence to Juan. He would know what to do; he always had the answers, to problems.
Juan sighed, and walked into the bar. He scanned the vicinity of the small building looking for one particular Jounin. He didn't know why Olivia had to be so nosy. If she just left Kakashi, and Cadence alone, then maybe they would get together themselves; or maybe not. That was their choice.
After spotting the silver haired Jounin, Juan made his way over to sit at the table with Kakashi. Absently he examined the table, before finally breaking the silence that enclosed the two, whilst Kakashi ignored Juan's presence by reading his perverted little book.
"Kakashi, do you fancy a dinner date this weekend?" Juan saw no reason to beat around the bush. He may as well get to the point; otherwise Kakashi may get bored with him. "I mean, you don't have a mission do you?"
"No, I'm free all weekend. Unless I am of course called to participate in a mission by the Hokage. Why do you ask?" Kakashi replied, putting his book down for the first time since Juan had entered the building. "Did you want me to go to dinner with you?"
Juan could have whacked Kakashi over the head. He settled instead for rolling his eyes, and sighing dramatically. "I have a favor to ask of you. I have this friend, and Olivia wants her to have a date so that we can go on a double date."
"A double date...? Why don't you just take this girl out? I'm sure she wouldn't mind. It's sounds as though she has no choice in the matter any way." Kakashi's voice dripped with sarcasm, and Juan could have sworn he could see a slight twisting of Kakashi's lips beneath the mask he donned.
"Look I wouldn't be asking you if it wasn't important." Juan said trying as hard as he could to sway Kakashi to his will. "She's a good girl, I grew up with her. She was in my team when we were training to be ninjas. I wouldn't usually ask a favor from any one, and you know that, but I really need you to accept this one Kakashi."
"What did this woman of yours bribe you with?" Kakashi asked. Juan hated having these types of talks with Kakashi. He always seemed to avoid the questions that he was asked, and he gave Juan the feeling that the conversation was running around in small tight circles. "She must have been good if she had the great Juan begging for me to do him a favor."
"She can be very persuasive when she wants to be. Olivia knows exactly what to say, and do if she wants things to go her way." Juan sighed, and relaxed his stance in the bar chair. "Cadence is a nice girl. It's only one night, and who knows you might even end up actually liking her."
"What do you want me to do then?" Kakashi sighed. Juan could tell he was quickly losing Kakashi's attention; he would have to end the conversation soon. "I mean she may not want to go on a date with me if I just ask her."
"You're only saying this because you're bored." Juan shook his head, and smiled. Kakashi was the same as always. "Just be her partner for her next assignment. She was asked to do a mission over the weekend, and she usually does them alone. If you can get her to agree to that, then you can surely get her to agree to go on a mere date."
"Sounds good, I'll get to it later." Kakashi said picking up his book once more. Juan shook his head, and walked out of the bar. He had done his part, now it was up to fate to do the rest. He just hoped that it was to his girlfriend's liking; otherwise he would have a pounding headache in the morning.
Cadence lifted her head at the sound of her name being spoken softly. To her astonishment, standing at the front door of her house, which was currently open for the world to see in, was Kakashi. Quickly she checked herself to see if she was dreaming or not.
"Kakashi-san!" Cadence responded breathlessly, running to the door to invite him into her home. "Please do come in, I will make you something to eat, and drink."
"I would like that, thank you." Kakashi smiled, his eyes curving with happy lines.
"May I ask about the unexpected visit?" Cadence asked timidly, as she led him through her small and cramped house to the kitchen. "Not that its bad thing that you came, you are quite welcome to come and see me whenever you want."
"I came to talk to you about your upcoming mission this weekend." Kakashi responded lightly. Cadence felt the tension creep into her back, and shoulders as she tried to pretend that everything was okay. "I heard that you are going on it alone, and I would like to ask you a proposition before you leave."
"What would that be? I can't answer you until you tell me." Cadence replied cautiously. She didn't like the sound of the way Kakashi was steering the conversation. She completed her missions alone for a reason. She would not make the mistake she did on that fateful day, three years ago. She would not lose another. "What can I do to help?"
"I was actually wondering if you would let me join you on your task." Kakashi said evenly. Cadence felt her body stiffen fully, as she slowly turned to look at Kakashi. "It's a big assignment, and I have the Hokage's approval. She said that it would be good if you had another person. The only condition was that you had to agree to let me come."
Cadence quickly turned back to fixing Kakashi a bite to eat. Thankfully, he gave her time to think, and spoke no more, waiting for her to break the straining silence. She could not possibly let him go with her, but she could not say no to his face either. Especially when he was offering out of the bottom of his heart, he sounded so sincere.
"I don't really think that I need another person." Cadence murmured quietly, as she brought a plate of biscuits to the table along with two stemming mugs of coffee. "I hope that you like coffee."
"I think that you're wrong about not needing any help." Kakashi said seriously. Cadence didn't mind however, as he would not be talking for long. She had silently slipped paralyzing pills into his coffee. She would leave, and then avoid him until she left for her mission. She would not risk his life. Suddenly Kakashi stood up making a face. "What did you put in this?"
"It's a simple remedy for paralysis. The effects will wear off in a few hours." Cadence walked over to Kakashi as he dropped to the floor. Bending down on one knee, she laid him on his back, and kissed him gently on the forehead. "Thank you for your concern. I appreciate it, but I will not risk another life. I vowed a long time ago to never go on a mission with a team. It is too risky."
She watched Kakashi for a while longer, staring into the depths of his eyes. She was tempted to remove his mask to see what he look like beneath it. She refrained however, as she did not want to violate his privacy. Once she could see that the paralysis had sunk in, she fled. She was confident that her plan would work.
As she ran out the door, she headed for the only sanctuary she knew. The only place that she knew she could cry in peace. As she ran, tears blurred her eyes, but she kept pushing on until she reached that place.
Kakashi waited until he was certain that Cadence had left the house before he got to his feet. He had spied her putting the powder into his coffee, and had noticed what it was straight away. His sharingan eye was a very useful tool. He didn't know what had offended her, but he could take a guess and say that it was something to do with him asking her to allow him to join her on her mission. Juan had told him that she was touchy about the subject, and he knew that their old team member had died. He wondered if that had anything to do with Cadence's enigmatic ways.
Before he left her house, Kakashi made sure that he locked her door. She hadn't had the foresight to close it herself, she had been too distraught. He could feel the tension building in the back of his neck; he had not known that she would react so violently; he hadn't meant to offend her.
Walking through the entire leaf village, he could find her no where. There was only two other places she could have gone, and they were the cemetery, or she could have left the village. The latter was only slightly plausible, as she could have started her mission early. He doubted that however, and he went to look for her in the graveyard first. He would find her and then he would apologize for his actions; he had jumped a little far ahead and taken things a little fast.
Walking into the graveyard, he spotted her heaving figure. She laid at a tombstone, letting everything flow from her system unchecked. Kakashi felt his heart go out to her. He knew what it was like to lose a team member; it was often hard to deal with their death afterwards; especially when you worked with them so closely from the day you graduated from the ninja school.
Silently Kakashi moved to a position next to Cadence. He sat down and waited for her to speak. Her sobbing stopped for a moment as she looked up at him. Her eyes were so large and filled with so much pain, that Kakashi wished he could erase her memory, and help her to ease the pain that was eating her inside.
To his surprise, she made a strange sound in the back of her throat and then launched herself on him. He wrapped her in his arms as he waited for her hands to stop desperately clutching his shirt, and for her sobs to die down. It took a while but eventually she stopped, lying limp against his chest as if it was the only thing that was truly keeping her sane.
"I miss him so much!" She whispered against his chest, too spent to sit upright. "He was my best friend in the whole wide world."
"I know the feeling, believe me." Kakashi murmured back. He let his hand stroke her back, trying to give her as much comfort as he could muster. He could almost feel her pain as she lay against him. It was the equivalent to his own after Obito had died. "You shouldn't remember your pain; you should remember the person when they were alive. It helps to ease the hurt."
"Does it ever go away?" She asked quietly.
Kakashi smiled slightly, and bent his head over to whisper in her ear. "It gets easier to bare, and you start to smile again. Your friend would not like you to be sad."
"I'll try to remember the happy times then." Her face lit up as she smiled, and leaned into him. She would be okay, her pain would fade in time; just as his own had.
Kakashi watched Cadence from the lounge in her living room. She had calmed down considerably since they had come back from the graveyard, but he had still insisted on staying with her for the night. Seeing her so distraught had opened an instinct within him, one that told him that he must protect her at all costs.
"Do you eat stir fry?" Cadence asked as she chopped up vegetables of every kind.
"That would be lovely, as long as you don't put any paralysis powder in there, I will be happy." Kakashi grinned as she stuck her tongue out at him in mock anger. "Do you eat here alone every night?"
"Sometimes Olivia, and Juan come over to share a meal, but that is on the rare occasion. They are always trying to get me to go out, and eat at a restaurant, but I don't really feel comfortable eating out. I would rather be at home." Cadence smiled slightly as she continued to chop up the vegetables. "Of course, I will not put these on to cook for a while, but it is always nice to have them ready so that when you are hungry you can just put them on to cook."
Suddenly Kakashi felt the need to be with her crawl through his flesh. He had not been around her for long, but she had a drugging effect on him, and he found that he wanted to see if he could open the fire within her heart. He was sure that there was a raging inferno in her somewhere.
As Cadence sat down next to him, he watched her every movement, trying to gauge what she was feeling. She twitched, and smoothed her hair as if she was nervous, which seemed to only heighten the sexual tension that was between them. She wanted him just as much as he wanted her; he could feel it.
"Kakashi...?" Cadence whispered as he came closer.
Gently he tilted her head, and laid his lips upon hers. They were soft, and she parted them eagerly, giving him permission to explore. Slowly he brought his hands up to roam her body, and touch her heated skin beneath her clothes. He could feel the rapid beating of her heart, which only served to entice him more.
Smiling he ended the kiss, and pulled back to look at her. "I don't know if this is the right thing to do, Cadence; but I am going to do it anyway."
"I'm not going to try, and stop you; but know this Hatake Kakashi, I bear many scars, and I don't know if you can carry the burden. There are things in my past that still haunt my present days." Cadence whispered, turning her face away slowly, so that she did not look at him straight in the eye. "It is enough to steer any man clear of me."
"Then we will destroy your aggressor one by one." Kakashi smiled. He knew how daunting the past could be, he lived everyday of his life regretting Obito's death; but he had also learned how to smile again. He would teach Cadence how to smile again. "I don't mind how long it takes."
"Thank you." Cadence mumbled her eyes filling with tears. "You have been so nice to me."
"Shh... Say no more, and regret nothing." Kakashi said, bending over to kiss her gently on the neck, before he lifted her and carried her to the upstairs bedroom. "I will regret nothing."
Cadence smiled as he laid her down on the bed, and Kakashi could not help but to think that it was the most beautiful smile that he had ever seen. He would make her smile many more times to come in the future.
Cadence awoke to the dull snoring of the man bedside her. He looked so peaceful as he slept, that she opted to lay and watch him until he woke up from his deep slumber. She didn't know what it was about him, but he had a calming effect on her and when he was there she felt as though every thing was going to turn out alright.
Shivering slightly from the chill in the room, she crept closer to him so that there was no space in between the two of them. She had decided that when he awoke, she was going to tell him of the guilt she still harbored from three years previous. She would tell him the story that she had told no one else, and only one other person knew.
Slowly Kakashi opened his eyes, and smiled at her. She felt her heart leap, and she bent over to lay a sweet kiss on his lips before whispering in his ear. "I have to tell you something. I have to free myself of this guilt; it is eating me up from the inside. It has been for three years."
"I'm listening." Kakashi sat up, and pulled her closer to him, keeping her locked safe in his strong and comforting embrace. "You can tell me when you think that you are ready."
"It happened three years ago. I was on a mission with Kai, and we were alone because Juan had been sick that day and our sensei would not let him go out." Cadence heaved in a breath and pushed away the pain before continuing. "I was stupid and was showing off; I wasn't as strong as the two boys and I wanted to be strong so that Juan would notice me; not that it helped me later on."
Sucking in another harsh breath, Cadence grabbed hold of Kakashi's hand, holding it as if it was the only thing that could keep the pain away. She clutched at him as if he was her lifeline.
"We found a cave, and I didn't listen, so I ran in and got lost. Kai followed me, and we were attacked by a monster; it was huge. We both fought, and found out it was actually the enemy. Kai took a wound but we destroyed our aggressor."
Cadence felt the tears running down her cheeks as she stuttered to a stop. The next part of her story was the worst for her to remember, and she knew that it would be the hardest to tell. She continued anyway, after Kakashi wiped away her tears; saying not a word, and being very patient. "I thought that he would be okay, he looked fine and it was only a small wound. I suggested we should keep going, even though he complained that he was dizzy. I should have stopped and helped him, but I didn't! I only stopped when he dropped to the ground in a panting heap!"
Cadence fully broke down and flung herself on Kakashi. She hoped that he didn't think that she was a bad person now. She hoped that he still liked her. "He died in my arms, and he didn't even blame me! He told me that I should give up on Juan and find someone that I deserved. Then he died!"
"Shh, it wasn't your fault. You probably wouldn't have been able to help him anyway, if it was the poison of an enemy, then it would have been very strong. It would have been so strong that even the best of healers would not have been able to save him."
"Do you really think that?" Cadence whispered against Kakashi's chest as he gently stroked her hair. She felt as though a huge weight had been pulled from her shoulders, she was glad she had trusted him.
"I don't think that..." Kakashi smiled and kissed her lightly on the nose. "I know that."
Juan stalked the wide halls of his expensive house in anticipation. He had never been so nervous in his whole life, and all as he was doing was waiting for his beloved girlfriend to get changed so that they could go to dinner together. Of course as always she took forever, and he felt himself getting more eager to see her with every passed second.
Just as he was about to pound on her bedroom door, it opened to reveal his lover. She looked stunning in the full length green dress that she adorned. He could not help but to show his appreciation with a quick intake of breath. She smiled at him, and let her eyes roam up his body, checking out the outfit that he had chosen.
"You wash up good." She said slyly, walking over to him to run her hands over his torso beneath his shirt. "What's the special occasion, I thought that we were only going out to dinner, and then coming home."
"We are..." Juan smiled and pulled her close to his chest, laying a sweet kiss upon her lips that seemed to end all too soon. "I don't see why I cannot dress up; you do week after week, and I never complain."
"I have to look my best at all times. You are perfect all the time." She smiled at him and moved closer, leaning into his chest more, and taking in his very male scent.
"I think that you look your best all the time." Juan said quietly; enjoying the feel of her close vicinity. "You always will look your best to me, no matter what you choose to wear. I think that you are beautiful."
Olivia giggled and took hold of Juan's offered arm. The two of them walked quickly down the frosty path, and to the nearest restaurant. Juan didn't believe that the background could get any better. It was the perfect night, and so far every thing had been to perfection.
"So what do you want to do when we finish here?" Olivia asked as she sat down in their private sitting area. Juan had purposely chosen the V.I.P section; he wanted to spend the night with her alone, with no one else to interrupt them. "I don't want to stay out too long; I just want to spend the night at home."
Juan smiled and picked up Olivia's hand, holding it to his mouth. "I have a better idea than that. We should get some Champaign and spend the night alone!"
"Isn't that what we were going to do?" Olivia asked him uncertainly. "I thought you said that you didn't want too hard a night."
"I don't..." Juan smiled, and walked around the table to stand in front of her. He then bent down onto his knee to look at her in the eye. Digging into his pocket he pulled out a small square box. He watched with amusement as she brought her hands to her mouth, her eyes wide in pleasure. "Will you say that you will always be mine, and marry me Olivia?"
"Oh, yes!" Tears streamed down Olivia's face as she jumped on him. He kissed her senseless the only thought in his head was of the beauty that she obtained. He couldn't help but to feel like he was the luckiest man in the world. The woman that he loved had just accepted his proposal.
"There is just one thing Juan." Olivia said looking up at him with large and worried eyes. He pulled back and waited for her to continue. "We will have to get married straight away; I cannot wait any longer than tonight! I want you to be my husband."
"Your wish will be granted." Juan smiled and pulled her in for another kiss. His life was working out beautifully. He just hoped that Cadence and Kakashi were getting along; Cadence was a very lonely woman, and it would do her good to have a man in her life. Even if he was only a temporary stand in.
Cadence skipped down the main street of the leaf village. The last three days of her life could not be more perfect, and to top everything off, she had found out the wonderful news that Juan and Olivia were to be married in only a few weeks. She couldn't be happier, even if she was granted her most desired wish.
Picking up her pace, and instead running, Cadence managed to reach her house in record time, where she ran through the door and pounced on the figure that was only just walking down the stairs.
She laughed and straddled him as Kakashi spun her in circles. She kissed him roughly on the lips, trying to show him her joy in that one intimate movement. She tried to inject the trust she had in him, she wanted to tell him her message.
"Why are you so happy today?" Kakashi asked her, as she beamed down at him. "Where did you run off to so early?"
"I went to see the Hokage about a mission, she asked to see me." Cadence smiled, and then jumped off Kakashi and walked a little away from him. She fiddled gently with the vase that sat basking in the sun that shone through the window. "It will take all weekend to do; it's a fairy big one, though it's not much bigger than what I usually get."
"I'm happy for you. I guess I will have to read my book again while you are gone." Kakashi smiled, though it didn't seem quite genuine. Cadence could tell that she had disappointed him, though he hid it from her very well. "I don't have an assignment this weekend."
"Well, you know; there is enough room on my assignment for just one more person if you're interested." Cadence watched as Kakashi's eyes widened in shock. She couldn't help but laugh at the stunned expression on his face. "I thought about it for a while, since we have been together, and I decided that if I didn't take you on a mission, then I couldn't trust you to be my lover. When I thought more on it, I realized that I trust you as my lover, and that I also trust you with my life and ultimately on a mission."
"You have a very long way to ask me." Kakashi smiled and kissed her thoroughly, and she knew that she had made the right decision. He would not let her down, and they would work well together and get the job done. "I also trust you, just as much as you trust me."
"I'm glad, because it's quite lonely, and sometimes intimidating, to complete a mission by yourself. I would very much like the company." Cadence smiled and moved provocatively closer to Kakashi. "You know there is still time before we have to leave..."
"I hear what you're saying, and I agree full heartedly." Kakashi grinned wickedly and lifted her into his arms. "Let's make the most of our free time; the mission will be a lot easier if we do."
"Of course, it's all for the mission, what else would we do it for?" Cadence asked in mock seriousness, as she snuggled closer to his chest while he traveled up the stairs to their last sanctuary before they had to leave. "It will help us greatly, through relaxation."
Kakashi let Cadence pull down his mask as they got to the bedroom, and she couldn't help but to sigh. He was one of the most gorgeous people that she had ever seen. It was a good thing that he wore the mask; otherwise she might have some competition. She giggled as he threw her on the bed in his haste. This was her new life; the past would not repeat itself ever again.
Cadence sighed in bliss as the door closed, and the man that she loved showed her what heaven truly was, as it was not a place. It was him...
Kakashi had been surprised when he had heard the news of the wedding that was going to take place in only a few short weeks. He had heard of it the day before he had gone on the mission with Cadence. The thing that surprised him the most however, was the fact that he had been invited to attend, and bring a guest. He and Juan had never been friends, so when the invitation arrived it puzzled him nearly as much as when Juan had tried to get him to ask Cadence out on a date.
He of course knew exactly who he was going to invite, and it made him smirk in amusement when Cadence dropped the hints to convince him in taking her. She had increasingly been bringing up the subject of the wedding when they were together, which was now at least once everyday.
"Kakashi...!" Cadence called as she ran across the street in the pouring rain. Kakashi looked up from his book, and placed it in his pocket. He would get back to that scene later on that night, after Cadence had fallen asleep. "I bought my outfit for the wedding today!"
"Did you, so that's where you have been, I had wondered." Kakashi hid a smile when she pouted at him. He pulled over a chair for her to sit on, and she sat there staring at him silently. "What do you want for dinner, it's my turn to cook tonight since you cooked last night?"
"I don't know, why don't you surprise me?" Cadence leaned her hand on her chin, and continued to stare at him. He sighed and shrugged, suggesting that they have chicken and veggies for dinner. He could see that she was becoming impatient with him, but he continued to draw the conversation out.
"Kakashi, are you going to ask me to be your date for the wedding, or do I have to ask you?"
"I was getting to that; I just wanted to see how long you would wait." Kakashi smiled, and ordered her a drink as the bar tender walked passed them. "I had planned to ask you to accompany me after I had first heard of the wedding."
"That's good, because I have been waiting for you to ask for days now!" Cadence sighed, making him laugh. She wasn't the most patient person that he had ever met, especially if he was late. Which he was most of the time. "Just make sure you leave early so that you are not late. It's a wedding so we can't afford to be tardy!"
"Don't you worry; I will be there on time." Kakashi smiled gently and leaned across the table to whisper in her ear. "I will do anything for the woman that I love."
He watched in pleasure as her whole face lit up red, and she lost her voice. The only thing that showed him that she wasn't offended was her breathlessness and over bright eyes, and smile. He would show her that she could live in the present, and not in the past. He planned to have many more years with her to come; she was the one that he trusted.
Squealing slightly she nearly jumped over the table to throw her arms around his neck, and show him that she shared the same emotions as he did. "I love you too, Kakashi."
"Then let's celebrate!" Placing money on the table for the food and drink that he had ordered, Kakashi grabbed her hand, and ran out into the pouring down rain. Once in the wet weather, he did not stop; running with her all the way home. Once there he pulled down his mask and kissed her gently on the lips; sealing the unspoken bond to which they had both agreed.