If Naruto were keeping count, it must surely be in the hundreds by now. Uchiha Itachi… isn’t. Possibly his kill count is. 5th Temari drabble.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Naruto. If I did, I’d be rich, and my fics would be canon.
A/N: Okay, this one is a sort of response to the various portrayals of Itachi that I’ve seen. Frankly, I want to know where people get their ideas - not that there's anything wrong with them, I just totally don't agree. However, since my brain seems insufficient to the task, various fanfiction premises that I’ve seen appear in what I like to call… well, you’ll see. In any case, this is my take on Itachi’s character, through Temari’s eyes. Mostly. I’ve tried to ensure that beliefs I have written here are in character for Temari, and also that the tone of it matches the tone Temari would take. Feedback is appreciated.
Uchiha Itachi is no unrecognized hero. Temari isn’t certain where the idea came from, or how it got into her head – since no one would dare speak the idea aloud in Uzumaki Naruto’s presence – but it’s there nonetheless.
The idea is this: he might not have meant it. He may have been injured, concussed, or confused until his own family was strange to him. He may have done it to infiltrate Akatsuki, or to find Orochimaru and execute him. He may have done it to avenge some crime committed by his family.
The idea flits about in her head that he may have been protesting Naruto’s treatment.
Of course, Temari knows it was none of those things. She just finds it strange, hard to accept that soft, pathetically kind Konoha could produce such a monster. It is a city that couldn’t even find the heart to kill its most hated citizen. Surely a city such as that could never have made a single boy into so ruthless a killer.
And yet, weak, pathetically kind Konoha has also produced such as Rock Lee, who injured her brother and survived. It produced Nara Shikamaru, who had been one of very few to defeat her. It produced Haruno Sakura, which was a statement in and of itself. So perhaps Konoha was not so weak and pathetic. But it still seemed impossible that it could have produced monsters along with it’s heroes.
Except that it had. Konoha had twice done so: first in Orochimaru, and then in Uchiha Itachi.
It hardly seems possible, and the reality of it makes Temari almost sick as she listens to Naruto recount his tale of his years of travelling with Jiraiya – and the many times he and the elder Uchiha have fought.
Because Temari believes in actions. It is actions that make the man, not pretty words and pretty promises – which, she thinks viciously, is why she will never date the Nara boy, no matter what Naruto thinks, pretty promises or no (which, admittedly, Nara Shikamaru had yet to make)
It is his actions that make Naruto, if not into a saint, then at least saint/ly/. He has never killed. Never stolen (though borrowed without permission, certainly). Never broken what could not be fixed. And he has fixed. He has fixed what he had broken. He has even fixed what others had broken. He has fixed lives. Temari has no idea how many, by now, but she watched him fix four lives in the course of a few hours, and another one (maybe two, if the Hyuuga girl isn’t still so pathetically meek) in the 38 days of the chuunin exam.
If Naruto were keeping count, it must surely be in the hundreds by now.
Uchiha Itachi… isn’t.
Possibly his kill count is.
Uchiha’s – either of them, both of them – actions have made him into a monster. She knows, because she watched the creation of a monster from within her own family: one of the four lives Naruto fixed that day.
There is no excuse for the Uchiha’s actions. Soft, pathetically kind Konoha would never have sanctioned his murder of his family, much less sent him out on a mission requiring it. Since then, Uchiha Itachi had broken items, and hearts, and lives, and if he felt any remorse, he didn’t show it.
If there was a crime committed, it was the Hokage’s duty to see punishment meted out. And soft, pathetically kind Konoha would never have ordered a punishment like that. Temari is fairly certain that there isn’t a crime in existence that could have merited an order like that.
Although/, the idea whispers, /if it were so, he may have left in shame. He may have convinced himself he was a monster until he can only act that way.
No, she decides. If there were anything left to save, Naruto would have by now. The two – the three – had met time and again over the years, and the Uchihas were no closer to being saved.
Naruto would be best to cut his losses and let death redeem the both of them… but then Naruto was who he was. And stubborn, and stupid, besides.
So perhaps some would be taken in by the idea – the one that seemed to float on invisible wings, not needing voices to speak it or ears to hear it to exist – but Temari knows the value of words.
It is actions that make a man, and Uchiha Itachi is no man.