Trapeze

Chapter 54

Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto, now how about that!

Thanks to Chichi4mangaHero, xXGaaraXxOfxXTheXxDesertxX, ArtemisKirara7, Tamani, AwaitTheRise, dbzamywinxchic for reviews. Thanks to NamelessFlower15, Horror's Bride, Littlevbigdreams, Karenheartfillia, for favorites.

So this chapter had ORIGINALLY been apart of Chap 53... but I moved pushed it back a chapter because it made Chap 53 too long... plus I got fluffies for Yuki after I moved it! ^^

vvv

Tenshi gasped when she pulled out a pretty kimono, "Aunt Ino, it feels so soft! What color is it?" My blind daughter asked, turning her head to look in the general direction of her blond adopted aunt. Ino smiled, "It's a light purple with little blue flowers on it. Do you like it?" Tenshi nodded eagerly and laid the material in her lap, petting it with one hand while she waited for the next present to be placed in front of her. Already a considerable pile of opened gifts surrounded my daughter. She looked almost like a little rich princess among all her treasures. I smiled at the image.

Sakura set her present down in front of Tenshi, "Here you go, darling, this goes with Ino's present." The pink haired teen said cheerfully. Tenshi squealed and practically pounced at the gift, somehow aiming perfectly and tackling the thing to the ground. I frowned worriedly, I hope she didn't do that when I gave her my present. Paper went flying as Tenshi tore into her present, then triumphantly held up a deep blue hair clip in the shape of one of the flowers on Tenshi's new kimono. Tenshi pawed at the hair clip, trying to figure out what it was, but not being able to see it confused her, "Sakura-oba? What is it?" Tenshi asked. Sakura chuckled, "It's a hair clip to go with the kimono. You can wear it at the next Sakura festival." Tenshi brightened when she heard Sakura and immediately tried to put the clip in her hair. Sakura hurried over to help my daughter before she could yank her hair out.

It had been three days since I talked to Yuki and most of those days were filled with preparing for Tenshi's fifth birthday. It was hard trying to get everyone to find the time to drop by and spend at least a little time with the blind birthday girl, I barely even got Team Kurenai to come at all since they had a mission planned that day. With the help of Ame, Kakashi and Naruto, I managed to convince Hinata and Kurenai that it would be rude not to at least stop to say hello and give Tenshi her gifts before heading out on their mission. Itachi, thankfully, had the foresight to warn the Hokage of Tenshi's birthday, thus giving ANBU Team Four a break, unless absolutely needed. I did not need Tenshi crying on her birthday because her father hadn't shown up, that was a headache I was glad to avoid.

"Here you go, Tenshi, this is from Kakashi and me." Ame said. Tenshi once again tore into the gift with fervor. I watched my daughter with interest wondering if every birthday from here on out would be like this, with Tenshi sitting in the middle of the floor, waiting for the next 'victim' to fall pray to her clutches. Tenshi pulled a black plastic case from the box. She ran her fingers cautiously over the case before turning cloudy eyes at Ame and Kakashi, "What is it?" She asked. Kakashi smiled, or at least I think he did it was hard to tell, "Open it and find out." The masked jounin said. Tenshi moved her hands from the top of the case to the front, fumbling to find the latch. My eyes widened when I got a good look at the wording on the box, and I glared at the older couple. Ame just smirked at me, she knew what I was thinking, "You can't protect her forever, Tora." My team leader teased. I crossed my arms, "I can't wait until you're the one trying to keep your kids young forever." I snapped. Ame pointed a finger at me, "Ah ha! You admit it!" She exclaimed. I rolled my eyes, "Duh, I'm a mother. I take pride in knowing that I'm protective over my daughter." I retorted.

Our argument was cut off when Tenshi practically screamed, "My own ninja kit! Thank you Kakashi-oji, Ame-oba!" Kakashi chuckled, "It's a practice kit. I'm sure your father will help you." I blinked at the older man; I had grown used to Tenshi calling Itachi her father, I had even started doing it myself, but it was still strange to hear it come from someone else. Shisui leapt forward before anyone could present the birthday girl with their present to her, "Here you go, Tenshi, this is from Yuki, since she can't come see you at the moment. It's an ANBU mask." Shisui said and tied the little mask around Tenshi's head before he proudly set down a slim package in the blind girl's lap, "And this is from Hana and me." Tenshi frowned at the light weight and ran her fingers cautiously over the gift. Slowly she began ripping away the paper, as if she was afraid she would ruin the present beneath. The wrapping fell away and Tenshi was left holding a slim book, "Shisui-oji, what is this?" She asked as she ran her fingers experimentally over the cover. I glared at my best friend, did he honestly forget that Tenshi was blind and she would never be able to read? I opened my mouth to yell at him, but Itachi placed a hand on my knee. I glanced at my boyfriend to see him shaking his head. He didn't want me to interrupt, why?

Hana knelt down beside Tenshi, "Here let me show you." The Inuzuka woman said softly and gently grabbed Tenshi's hand. She opened the book and made Tenshi rub her hand over the thick cardboard page, "Feel that?" Hana asked. Tenshi frowned, "Bumps?" She asked hesitantly. Hana grinned, "Yep." I stared at the book, did they really-? I looked up at Itachi to find him smiling at me. So he knew then. Shisui knelt down beside his fiancé and niece, "Those bumps are used to create patterns so blind people can read. See? This pattern here, this is an 'A'." Shisui said as he rubbed Tenshi's fingers over something on the page. I just stared at the couple, they really had gone as far as to hunt down a braille book so Tenshi could learn how to read. I felt a grin inching up my face, so far Shisui and Hana's gift was probably the best... at least to me.

It went on from there. Naruto got Tenshi five free coupons to Ichiraku's Ramen stand, something he did every year. It was really cute that each year he added a coupon to celebrate her jump in age. Ruri presented Tenshi with a plate of homemade cookies, strictly to be eaten by Tenshi and Tenshi alone. Ruri was very adamant that only Tenshi got to eat her cookies. It made me wonder if my friend had put anything in them or not. But I brushed the suspicion away, Ruri wouldn't so something that mean unless the person absolutely deserved it. Mitsuko gave Tenshi a My First Medic Kit, to which Tenshi immediately started asking for patients. I told her that she would have to wait for someone to be sick until after she opened the rest of her presents, causing everyone to laugh.

Tenshi opened a small box, given to her by Reiko, and brought out two slim cards, "Reiko-oji, what are these?" Tenshi asked. Reiko smirked and glanced at me, "They're 'get out of trouble' passes." My brother said. "REIKO!" I shouted, shooting to my feet. The only thing that saved my laughing brother from his untimely death was that Itachi immediately grabbed me and yanked me back down, wrapping an arm around my waist to make sure I didn't escape. Tenshi frowned in confusion at the commotion, "Reiko-oji? Why is Mama upset? What is 'get out of trouble' passes?" She asked. Reiko, still chuckling, hugged his niece, "If Tora is getting on to you, you just give her one of those passes and she can't yell at you anymore. But you only get two, so use them wisely." Reiko said, still smirking at me. I glared at him, "You're going to need one of those passes yourself, buster. When I'm finished with you-" Itachi's hand slid over my mouth and he calmly asked, "Who's next?"

Sasuke saved Reiko by stepping up and setting a box down in front of the birthday girl, "This is a new friend for Hoshi, your favorite doll." The youngest Uchiha said quietly. Tenshi gasped in delight and scooted closer to the box, taking extra gentle care to unwrap it. At least she knew not to tackle to box and break her gift this time. Tenshi slowly reached into the now open box and brought out a porcelain geisha doll, she hugged the doll to her chest, "I love her, Sasuke-oji! Thank you!" Tenshi squealed with happiness. Sasuke grinned down at his adopted niece and reached out to ruffle her hair, "I'm glad you do, what are you going to name her?" He asked. "Tsuki! That way her name matches Hoshi! They'll be best friends!" Tenshi responded as soon as Sasuke finished speaking. Everyone couldn't help but chuckle at the cute scene. It wasn't often anyone got to see this side of Sasuke, not even Itachi or Sakura.

Ame turned to Itachi and I, "You two are the last ones." She commented. Itachi and I glanced at each other, wondering who should go first. Originally I had planned to have Itachi and I give Tenshi something together, until Itachi came to me two days ago and said he had something to give to her himself. I stood up, "Stay right there, sweetheart." I said and went to the kitchen. There, keeping silent just as Kiba trained him, was a little brown and white puppy sitting under the table in a cardboard box where no one would see him. I bent down to the puppy's level, "Come on, you. Let's go meet your new owner." I said and pulled the box out from under the table. I grunted as I stood back up, "You're a heavy puppy." I muttered as I shifted to get a better grip on the box. The pup leapt up and licked my chin. I glare down at him, "Down. I can't have you spoiling the surprise for everyone. The puppy silently settled down and didn't move as I covered the box with a blanket.

"Mama what is it? Huh? What did you and Daddy get me?" Tenshi asked excited, so she already suspected she got a puppy. I set the box down, careful not to hurt the poor dog. "This is only from me, Tenshi. Itachi got you something different." I said and stood back. "Okay, lift the blanket off." I said. I noticed everyone leaning forward, tense with excitement. Tenshi whipped the blanket off and the puppy immediately leapt out of the box to jump all over Tenshi, licking and barking happily. Tenshi shrieked, "PUPPY!" She screamed and hugged the energetic thing close to her. The dog panted, wriggling in her grip with excitement. Everyone laughed as I settled back down on the couch beside Itachi, happy that Tenshi finally got what she wanted. Hana stepped forward, "Here, Tenshi, this is from my brother Kiba." The woman said and gave Tenshi a bright green collar to put around the dog. Hana helped Tenshi put the collar on before speaking again, "And Kiba is also going to help you train your puppy so he can be a good dog and help you get around, okay?" Tenshi nodded happily and buried her face in the pup's fur.

After she had calmed down from her excitement of getting the dog, Tenshi looked towards Itachi, "Daddy, if my puppy is from Mommy, what did you get me?" I could tell everyone, myself included, was wondering the same thing. Itachi leaned forward, "Tenshi come here." He called. Tenshi immediately left her pile of gifts behind to run towards her father, the dog at her heels. "Yes Daddy?" She asked, placing her hands on his right knee. Itachi reached into his haori and pulled out a thin scroll, "Here. This is my present to you." Tenshi frowned, clearly she had not been expecting a scroll. "What's is say, Daddy?" She asked. Itachi leaned back, smiling, "Give it to Tora to read out loud." He said. I frowned at him as I took the scroll from Tenshi, he was up to something.

Slowly I unrolled the scroll, thinking that maybe it was a storage seal and the real present was inside. No, it was a contract of sorts. I skimmed over the words, then had to reread to be sure I had understood it. I did. There was no mistaking it. I turned towards Itachi, my eyes wide. I could not believe he had done that. Tenshi tugged at my fishnet leggings, "Mama! Read it read it read it!" She cried. Everyone else was nodding, they wanted to know what on earth had me so freaked. I read over the words again, just to be sure I read it right once more. Clearing my throat I started reading out loud, "In accordance with Lady Tsunade, Godaime Hokage of Konohagakure, and Uchiha Itachi, Leader of the Uchiha Clan: the elders of both the Uchiha Clan and Konohagakure are in agreement with this arrangement. Tenshi, adopted daughter of Hottarakashi ni Sareta Tora, is to-"

My throat closed and I was suddenly fighting back tears. I bit my lip and had to swallow a few times, trying to work the lump back down my throat. Tenshi shook my leg, "Mama, read it!" She said urgently, she wanted to hear what this was about. I glanced up at Itachi, this man... I never knew Tenshi had meant so much to him. Tenshi climbed into my lap so she could tug on my shirtsleeve, "Please Mama, please read it!" I hugged my daughter close, unable to stop myself. Everyone exchanged looks, wondering why I was almost crying. I continued, my voice thicker as my emotions tried to break through, "...is-is to be h-hereby recognized as a... member... of the Uchiha clan. All privileges and rights bestowed to a natural born Uchiha shall be granted to that of T-Tenshi for as long as she bears the clan's name. Should anyone question this contract, they are to take-" I couldn't read it anymore. Putting Tenshi on the ground and dropping the scroll in her lap, I launched myself at Itachi, letting the tears of relief finally spill over as I wrapped my arms around my boyfriend and buried my face in the crook of his neck, "...Thank you..." I sobbed, relieved that I was no longer alone in taking care of Tenshi. Itachi's arms tightened around me, "Anything for you, Tora." He whispered back.

^o^

Squee! Tenshi is now an Uchiha (by adoption, but that's a minor detail)! Bet you didn't see that one coming... at least not so soon ;P

QUESTION TIME! Favorite Candy? Answer: Toss up between Smarties and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.

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