“Uchiha Sasuke, the mission I am about to give you has 95 chance of failure, meaning you will most likely die in the attempt. Do you accept?” -Tsunade
The room was dim and gloomy, exactly like his mood. He had failed, he was weak and oh so foolish. He couldn’t sleep because every time he closed his eyes he saw them, he heard them; they were burnt into his mind. He heard his family, their screams, and their accusing faces demanding to know why he was alive and why he was too weak to avenge them; to seek justice for them. Most of all he remembered his brother, Itachi; his cold, hard and unrepentant gaze boring into him, telling him that he was weak, his hate was weak, that his desire for vengeance wasn’t enough, that he, Sasuke wasn’t enough.
He remembered, and he couldn’t stop remembering and he was so angry because it hurt and Itachi was alive and …
The door to his hospital room swung open, light spilled across the floor and onto the bed. Sasuke didn’t look up because he was expecting Sakura or Naruto, or Kami forbid Ino so he said by way of greeting, “Go away.”
So it was with some surprise when he heard her reply, “No, Uchiha-san I am here on business.”
Crap. Tsunade, the fifth Hokage had come to see him. He wanted be alone damn it. It was with great reluctance that he replied, “Hokage-sama.”
Tsunade took it as a sign to enter and shut the door behind her. Thumbing through his chart, “You are well Uchiha-san?”
Sasuke, being Sasuke replied with “Aa.”
“Good, you know that's not what I’m here for.” He looked up at her meeting her gaze evenly, her hawk like eyes were sharp and shrewd giving her a no nonsense demeanor.
Her eyes narrowed, “I came to inform you that I am aware of the offer Orochimaru has made you and of your intentions to accept it.”
Sasuke eyes widened in surprise then quickly narrowed with suspicion, if she knew then why wasn’t he under arrest, surrounded by ANBU?
Tsunade continued, “I cannot allow this. I cannot stop you, and with the state of the village right now I cannot afford to even try. So that leaves me with only one option. It’s insane, suicidal, and will be damn near impossible to pull off.”
She had his undivided attention, something that was very rare for Sasuke because it did not involve training in any fashion.
“Before I tell you what I intend, I must ask why would you leave your home, your friends and everyone who even remotely gives a damn for power?”
His stare bored into her, his eyes black like voids, “Because it happened once, and I will not allow it again. I could stay here, with my precious people, learn to laugh, smile, marry, restore my clan, create a family and be happily content as I truly desire. Itachi would not let it last, I would wake up one morning and it will be quiet, deathly still and find them all dead as I slept. I will do anything to prevent that, even if it means betraying my home, even if it means everyone I give a damn about hates me and never forgives me; they will live, I will leave and Itachi will die.”
Suddenly she understood him, this boy all too well and her eyes watered, she was the Hokage she wasn’t going to cry; damn it! Gathering her composure, Tsunade squared her shoulders and took a deep breath before she spoke, “Uchiha Sasuke, the mission I am about to give you has 95% chance of failure, meaning you will most likely die in the attempt. I want you to accept Orochimaru’s offer, gain all the power you can from him and assassinate him. Then, form an expendable team, hunt down and kill Uchiha Itachi. Do you accept?”
A murderous fire was alight in his dark eyes as he spoke one word, “Aa.”
“Sasuke, you understand that you will not return to this village for nearly 5 years, that no one especially your teammates are to know of this mission and everyone will think that you betrayed them?”
He looked at her holding her gaze evenly he replied, “So be it. They may hate me, and detest me, but they shall live.”
Her eyes softened just a bit, “Naruto will forgive you, if no one else does. Your mission begins immediately. ”
He was silent as she turned to walk way and her hand was on the door handle when he spoke, “Hokage-sama?”
Slightly surprised she replied, “Yes?”
Tsunade shook her head slightly and said, “No, Sasuke-san thank me when it’s over.”
He nodded and said “Aa.”
The door closed behind her and he was left with the thoughts of the many lies he’d have to tell them.
Lies He Told Us written on the basis that Sasuke had a mission to execute Orochimaru and Itachi and that he lied to Naruto and Sakura about his reasons for leaving. It is set during Sasuke’s stay in the hospital before the rooftop fight with Naruto.
Special thanks go out Sango’s Courage my beta, who is awesome as always. Thanks also go to DoggieEarLover, and to Southern_Beauty for their help in catching a plagiarist.