Categories > Anime/Manga > Naruto > The Oracle

Atonement

by Lyanvis 2 Reviews

Naruto loved, once. You know this, do you not? Of course, you do… everyone knew. It is not as if he kept this a secret. He has not the time for such things, he claims now, and leaves you to won...

Category: Naruto - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Angst,Drama,Romance - Characters: Naruto,Neji,Sasuke - Published: 2008/02/05 - Updated: 2008/02/05 - 1663 words

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Yeah... I don't have anything to say for this...

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The Oracle
Chapter Eight
Atonement



Naruto loved, once. You know this, do you not? Of course, you do… everyone knew. It is not as if he kept this a secret. He has not the time for such things, he claims now, and leaves you to wonder why. Naruto has his hyperactive, happiness, you think, and of course, he is Naruto, so he is fine. Fine. Naruto is always fine.



NARUTO IS NOT FINE.



Let us disabuse ourselves of this petty notion that because all seems well, all is well. All is not well with our beloved Hokage, citizens, and you must not think it is. If we would remove ourselves from this idiotic notion of that, if he acts fine, he is fine, then we would be much better off.



.........................*.



Naruto is busy.



Naruto is always busy.



Naruto is demi-permanently busy.



Naruto is the Hokage, after all. And we must remember this. Naruto is too busy for love. This is what he says, and Sasuke will not ask him if it is the truth, because Sasuke knows that if it is not, Naruto will answer him with an equally personal question that Sasuke does not want to talk about. Sasuke has his demons.



Naruto is his own demon.



No, Not Kyuubi. Kyuubi is no longer a threat to Konoha. Kyuubi is nothing, compared to Naruto himself, and Naruto knows this. Naruto is repenting now. But it will never be enough. So he refuses love.



Because it was Sasuke’s leaving that helped him through this.



Because Kakashi’s death was Naruto’s fault.



Naruto was not fast enough, not strong enough, not skilled enough, and Sakura’s eyes had once again filled with tears. And he had promised they would not. He had promised his friend that she would never again have cause to cry. And this promise, he failed. Naruto was a failure. And beyond this failure, He had lost another comrade. His sensei, second surrogate father figure, Kakashi sensei was dead. And It was all Naruto’s fault.



Do you dare say it was not?



You do not know.



YOU DO NOT KNOW ANYTHING.



.........................*.



Citizens of Konohagakure!! Lend me your ears!! Belief in the way of truth is a denial of power! Our hokage claims to be too busy taking care of ust to care for himself! Let it be known, that his adoring populace will not stand for this!! Our leader must take care of himself as he does for us!! This punishment he laces upon his fragile heart is naught but a dreaming disaster!!



.........................*.



"Paperwork... paperwork paperwork..." Naruto said, semi-obsessively, searching through all the piles of scrolls and mission reports on his desk. "So much to do..." he murmured, looking for a pen with which to start. He was vaguely aware of Rock Lee's voice, but he ignored it for the most part. Finally finding the object of his quest, he kissed it lightly. The blue ink pen, if it had a soul and mouth on which to speak, would wonder to itself why the most respected man in the land adored it so much. To Naruto, the pen was just another escape. All the paperwork he did took up most of his time. The rest of his time was spent training or pestering Tsunade with endless questions on different Hokage things. He was not beyond asking for help, not this point in life. And this treaty, likely to take quite a few weeks, was just another distractionary tool. Naruto filled his life with distractions.


He distracted himself enough, he could forget that he was in love and didn't deserve to be.

He could forget almost anything when he immersed himself in the carrer he'd been seeking since the beginning of his miserable life.

But he'd forgotten how to just be himself.

Forgotten, that the most important thing about his dream was not earning only the respect of the village, but also their love and adoration. That being a leader was more than strategy and safe planning.

It was about taking charge of a group of people who looked up to him for guidance, and would see him as a role model.

And he refused to beleive... that he deserved love as well.

.........................*.

I don't need love. I don't need it, not at all. All I need is the people who need me, and the world, my world, my land of those... the villagers.... Yeah, that's all I need. All I need is just them, because they need me. She'll never love me anyway, I'm just like a kid to her. She has her own duties to attentd to anyway.

Naruto wanted to slam his head into the wall. He was in love with the Otokage...

And she hadn't a damn clue.

.........................*.

On top of the hokage mountain, sat someone who really didn't belong, but seemed to fit perfectly. Her head lifted under a hat proclaiming the word Sound on it. Her eyes were shaded from the sun, their colour made indistinguishable from black by the shadow that covered them. It was a bright, sunny day, and no one would be able to look up and see her. She let herself drop down from the mountain, landing lightly on her feet, protected by a bubble of sound energy and chakra. Orange hair tumbled over bare shoulders, loose and free to be blown about by the wind as she decended, like an angel from thr heave4ns. Naturally red lips curved in a smile that could be called naught else but radiant. And as she walked closer to the town, no one dared stop her progress, and even Neji, fresh from his mission, was surprised that the woman had made the trek from Otogakure to Konohagakure faster than he had. He noticed, even the sexless and aloof Hyuuga had noticed, this woman's excelling beauty, and could not stop the racing of his heart -though, he told himself, it was from exertion, and not the fact that- when she smiled at him, she was even more beautiful than she had been when she was smiling at nothing. He made to lead her to the Hokage's mansion, but the finger she placed over his lips had his eyes fluttering shut, and his body wanting to react. Her voice did nothing to help his situation.

"It is quite alright, Neji-kun, I do not need a guide. I have been here before." He fought the desire to lick his lips and nodded, forcing himself to reopen his eyes, to look at that smile again. Her tongue darted over her lips, and he nearly groaned at the images that sprung to mind. Years of training was the only thing that kept him silent. Neji nodded curtly to her as she moved her finger from his lips.

"Yes, Otokage-sama. I will not disturb you further then." One of her hands lifted to his hair and tucked a strand back behind his ear, and he fought to not lean into the touch, almost losing the war against his own body's reactions.

"I hope I will have oppourtunity to meet with you again." The woman said, removing her hand from him and turning to walk away. He wanted to answer her curtly, but it would not have been quite as flat as he wanted it to be. Disregarding his report, forgetting all else, he simply dissapeared to his home in the Hyuuga compund and, not caring who could see, placed his hands on himself and rectified the problem that the woman had caused with his body. Gasping for breath, his body slumped against the door and slid down after the white spray had gone everywhere. He had never done such a thing to himself before, never had intended to, but the woman....

And she was absolutely oblivious.

.........................*.

Naruto is fine. Fine. He is fine, as he sits in his office working on neverending paperwork. Fine, as he trains until his whole body hurts and he can't think to remeber to breathe. Fine, as he chatters away rapidly in what sounds like excited gibberish to anyone who doesn't know him. He is fine, because he is Naruto, fine, because he is the Hokage, fine, because he looks fine, acts fine, must be fine. And no one sees how he hurts, how in everything he does, there is some kind of apology, how he seemes to be atoning for some private sin. Everyone knows that Naruto loves the Otokage. Everyone, except her, and Naruto himself. He refuses love.

He refuses to love.

and Sasuke leaving, just as the woman would be arriving was not planned, oh, no, not at all. Not because maybe she might fall for him, Naruto sent Sasuke away on another mission. Not because if his best friend noticed Naruto's behaviour towards the woman he would make Naruto do something about it. Not because every woman with any kind of female sex hormones -what was it called, estrogen?- would fall to Sasuke and his kind smiles or sarcastic smirk, but because Naruto truly wanted that treaty with the mist. That was the only reason Naruto sent Sasuke away when he knew the woman would be coming.

Really.

That was the only reason.

really.

I'm being serious...

Okay, maybe. let's say maybe Naruto is a little jealous of how well Sasuke can handle women. Lets say maybe Sasuke happens to be the personification of every woman's sexual fantasy.

It doesn't mean that was why Naruto sent him away...

Does it?

It can't mean that...

Can it?

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This Chapter is, I think, probabaly my worst so far. I haven't even read over it more than once to check for errors. I think I'm just going to leave it as is before I decide to delete it. It took me all of twenty minutes to type this down, and I am just... Ugh. I'm feeling sick today anyway. Stupid influenza...
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