Categories > Anime/Manga > Naruto

Sweetest Downfall

by penguintears 0 Reviews

He smiled at the world, and he smiled because of him. Now, in the finality of their conflict, Naruto has found a cause of his salvation. Sasuke was saved. But for the price of something he never th...

Category: Naruto - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Romance - Characters: Naruto,Sasuke - Warnings: [!!!] - Published: 2007/11/19 - Updated: 2007/11/19 - 2436 words - Complete

Pairing: SasuNaru, a bit of OroKabu

Warning: Spoilers up to 378. Shonen-ai. Yaoi. ‘Nuff said.

A/N: Enjoy people. Leave reviews please. Much thanks!

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~Naruto POV

I always pretend to be happy. Talking a lot and laughing out loud so that nobody would know what's really inside. But at the end of the day, I always find myself all alone, encountering the crucial truth: that I'm hurting too much inside and that not even a million laughter can take it away.

It has always been like this for me, the cursed child, carrying the village’s ultimate destroyer. I seek attention by causing ruckus and am as loud as I can be just for them, the village people, not to realize that I am slowly dying of this pain inside.

But all of it’s forgotten, at least for now. I don’t think there is a point in lingering with all those bitterness, considering that I am at almost at my limit. One of my Kage Bunshin has found him, and I, together with Kakashi and the others are pursuing him—maybe for the last time.

The chase was on—everywhere. Everyone’s got someone else to chase, and as worried as I am with Ero-Sennin, I don’t think I’d have that much energy left ‘cept for the one I’m reserving for my fight. With whom? I’m really not certain. All I know right now is that I have to protect those that I am with, and ultimately, help Sasuke with his goal and at the same time protect him with everything I have—everything I am.

The sun’s going down again and by the look on Kakashi and Sakura’s face, we wouldn’t last a day anymore. We’ve got to find Sasuke—fast. Or else, everything that I’ve been putting all my efforts on after all these years would have been put to waste. I could at least save him from his own darkness. That’s the least I could do—to save him from the pain that I could not totally fathom.

I have every reason to condemn Sasuke this time around. He had tried to kill me more than once, true, and I was already this close to abandoning my promise that I’d take him back. Was. Until that fateful day I had a talk with, surprisingly, Kabuto at our chance meeting at the Valley of End.

F-L-A-S-H-B-A-C-K

After three years, the water still hasn’t changed. It still has that flow, that coordination, and that unsettling peace in which my fight with my best friend here didn’t have. Sure, it may have looked like the best fight in history—a Suiton dance to which no harmony could ever surpass. But that was the ugliest dance I’ve seen. Because in that dance, I have done the trot, the ultimate waltz, and when I was dipped, he wasn’t there to catch my fall.

Only he could make me lose myself in my thoughts, lose myself to the point that I didn’t notice the presence across me. He was lost in thoughts too, and I realized that I sense no chakra with the intention to attack—to kill. He was there for the same reason as mine—trying to end a seemingly endless nightmare of hurt. There he was, now looking at me with that small tug on the edge of his lips, staring at me. There he was. There he was—Kabuto.

Kabuto, the ever so loyal, faithful servant of that son-of-a-holy-smokes Orochimaru.

“Was it here where he left you?” I heard him say. I swear I could pull his eyes out right at that moment and put it right back in just for the heck of it. I smirked. “You just have to rub that in, don’t you?”

He moved towards me but I didn’t falter. I stood my ground, and we’re now both looking at the scene below. “What are you doing here? Why aren’t you with that snake bastard?” He laughed. It was the same laugh I’ve heard when I met him at the Chuunin exams. “I’d appreciate it if you wouldn’t call him that, Naruto-kun.” I snorted at the way he addressed to me. He continued, “Orochimaru-sama is kind of… busy.” He had that sad look on his face. It’s a sadness reflected upon that weird smile of his. There’s a gleam on his glasses, making it hard for me to see the expression in his eyes.

I certainly knew what he was talking about. “Sasuke, is it? It seems like you’re losing him already.” From the moment I’ve learned that Kabuto’s serving Orochimaru, I knew that power isn’t his reason for staying with him. Most likely, his reason is almost the same as my reason for seeking Sasuke. “He was never mine in the first place.” I heard him say. “But I have no plans of leaving him, even if he plans on taking on a new body and eventually abandoning me.” He lost me after the first place. It’s like I’ve felt a pang on my heart with what he said. Sasuke isn’t mine too, so why am I still chasing after him?

“You should just leave him; find a more sensible reason to live. You’ll eventually find something, someone.” I wasn’t really sure if it was he that I’m convincing or myself. He laughed again. “I’ve tried doing that. Too many times that I’ve already lost count. But after everything that’s happened, I always comes back to him.” I wasn’t sure if he noticed me nodding to what he just said. Right then and there I’ve decided that this man was indeed one hell of a literary poet. He seems to be putting words to my thoughts and feelings. But amidst all his words, I still didn’t understand why he, or maybe we, did what we did. So I did what I’m best at doing: being blunt.

“Why?” I turned my back on the scenery, now facing him with all the seriousness I cold muster. “Why are you doing this for him? You’ll only hurt yourself, Kabuto-san. You’ll only regret doing it.” He started walking towards me now. I knew I shouldn’t fall back… I wanted an answer… I needed it. I needed it because I am right about to declare that I am abandoning Sasuke. And that single voice in my heart is telling me not to—but after all these pains, I just don’t know if I could go on. He reached out and ruffled my hair, just like at the exams, and in a barely audible voice, I heard him say, “Never regret something that once made you smile, Naruto-kun.” I think my eyes couldn’t be any wider. I turned around to look at him, and I knew… right then and there, that we are the same.

E-N-D O-F F-L-A-S-H-B-A-C-K

I could almost feel that dark chakra ahead of me. It excited me to no end, so I added more speed to my movement, if that would still be possible. “Turn down a notch, Naruto.” I heard Kakashi say. “We’ll catch up to him, either way. Save all the energy you have left.” I knew that Sasuke’s heading towards Itachi. And with the other members of Snake with him, things are not going to go as ‘smooth’ as he wanted it to be. “But I can feel them now, Kakashi-sensei. I can sense him.” The group knew that my search for Sasuke has turned into an obsession. But they never did anything to stop me. Probably because at one point or the other, they wanted what I wanted too, I just wanted it more.

More twigs have been broken, foot marks left on the branches we’ve set foot upon. My legs are betraying me, and Sakura has already faltered. The others were trailing, with Kakashi and me taking the lead. A few moments more, I could hear sparks, probably from kunais meeting on ends. I propelled more and there I saw what I could’ve called the greatest battle I could have ever laid my eyes upon.

“Go on ahead, we’ll take care of this.” Sakura and the others have already caught up, and Kakashi decided that they would take on fighting the other members of the Snake. My appreciation was expressed by a mere nod and I somehow realized that my former sensei understood that my gratitude surpasses the heavens. So I took off, following the immense chakra emanating from the last of the Uchihas.

They were talking now, the usual drama between the brothers. I couldn’t feel hatred coming from Itachi but I guess the ones coming from Sasuke could compensate from them both. They started fighting then. In an instant, blasts came from Sasuke’s chidori but Itachi dodged it just as fast. Their eyes are bloodshot red, both seemingly taking forms similar to Kakashi’s. I decided not to interrupt, unless necessary. This is what I must do to help Sasuke reach his goal. This was his fight.

They’re both exhausted now. I didn’t think that Sasuke could exhaust Itachi’s resources. By the way they both look, they could only afford a move or two. And in a grand finality, Sasuke mustered all the energy in his hand to what I could see as ten times greater than what he used on me back at the Valley of End. Itachi did the same, with some power I haven’t seen before. They’re about to engage on a joust, and before I could release my breath, Itachi was lying on the ground, with Sasuke kneeling and consumed every energy in his second stage of transformation. The look of relief was evident on Sasuke’s face. He stood up and started to walk away. I knew I had to go to him. No, scratch that. I wanted—needed to go to him and ask if he was okay. Ask if everything’s going to be okay. I wasn’t engage in that endless fight yet I am the one needing the assurance that he will be fine. And then my eyes saw it. I saw a blinding light on my right and in a flash faster than sound, all I saw was red.

The feel of his skin was salvation to my arms. He transformed back to his normal self and it had felt like forever since I last held him. Miraculously, I am hugging him, and that look on his face seemed all too familiar. It was the same look he had when he had saved me from Haku’s attack—the look of disbelief, irritation, and pain. I was wondering why he was wincing, and last time I checked my vision was still perfect, so how come my sight seemed to be stained in red. Then I realized that my hands were clinging on to him, blood seeping through them. I felt my knees falter, taking me down to the ground. Sasuke followed suit. “Why?” I saw his eyes return to their onyx black. I liked those eyes better. They reminded me of a bond I once had with someone back at my village. I felt his hands on my shoulder, and he was shouting and shaking me furiously. “You shouldn’t have done that!” I smiled then. “Of course I had to do that, teme. I told you I’m going to follow you wherever you go and I will bring you back.” He’s angry—I think. Or was it frustration? “You know I had to do this, dobe!” Oh was he shouting now. Dobe. It still irritated me but I missed that. I missed his voice echoing dobe. “And you did.” I heard a rustle. Why in the world is that traitor still alive?! I guess he heard the rustle too because I’ve felt him tense up. My mind couldn’t process much. But I did what I had to do.

He was safe.

I clutched my hand on his arms. I tried my hardest to open my eyes so that I could memorize the look on his face. This is it. I am going down. “I didn’t know that this would be my downfall.” He’s shaking now. “Don’t say that, dobe.” He, surprisingly, held me up, trying to stop the bleeding on my back but we both know it’s doing nothing for my recovery. I did what I knew I needed to do in order to push him to finish his goal. I smiled that smile I knew he had always reacted to. “No, don’t.” Smart ass. He just had to know what that smile meant. But I’m left with no other choice. “Go finish what you had to do. Go get your dream.” Slowly, my lids are growing heavier but I managed to instill his image on my mind.

I always pretend to be happy. Talking a lot and laughing out loud so that nobody would know what's really inside. But at the end of the day, I always find myself all alone, encountering the crucial truth: that I'm hurting too much inside and that not even a million laughter can take it away.

But I realized that one man is worth my most genuine smile.

In its finality, I knew that I just had to relieve the pain that I might have caused the man in front of me. “Daijobu-da, Sasuke...” I reached out but only made it half way. With a smile, I finally gave up to the weight of my lids, the weight of the world.

“…you are my sweetest downfall.”

I heard his breath hitch, and as I lay on the ground, I heard a scream of anguish then of pain. At that moment, I knew, that Sasuke is saved…that my downfall is my salvation.

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Yosh! Alright people! You want more? Because seriously, this could be more. Or would you rather keep it a one-shot? Your reviews will definitely decide the fate of this story. The more your reviews get, the faster I’ll be able to respond.

Also, requests are very much welcome. If you want to see a pairing to tag along this story, please say so. I’d be happy to entertain the idea.

Much thanks!!

Penguin
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