The truth shall set you free

5. Confrontations and promises

5. Confrontations and promises

Two hours were little for sleep. It was worse in time of stress, even for a sleepless person like her. Having the foundations of what you knew blown away in the last minutes was harsh –she didn't totally recover from learning about the unclaimed child of Madara. That had her wide awake for most of the night.

Even now she still couldn't stomach that news. It was unbelievable. After all life had dropped on her shoulders, something as such could happen. Life was definitely showing another level of discrimination. This time around she was going to fight back though, because it was really about being a pushover or a bully.

She chose her side after knowing and submitting to Uchiha Madara. Hinata had learned how to be hard and greedy.

"You should go out more often –you look pale"

"Ah, Obito-San. How are you?"

"Fine"

"I prefer staying inside. The sun… it's hurting"

"You used to like sunny places"

She just hoped it wasn't a confession under influence. In that case, she'd have to worry about what else went through her lips.

"I used but people change. I changed and kept nothing from the girl I used to be"

"I can testify that"

"Besides, I feel too weak and this massive headache is not something you can expose yourself with –it might kill you. I know I look like a zombie"

Obito crossed the office to the large bureau she was sitting behind and closed the bottle she was drinking from. She scowled a bit but let go and stared through the darkness of the room, her jaw hard to unstick.

But when he went to the window to push open the heavy curtain, letting a haze of golden light washed through the place, it was another story. The light was supposed to bring her a balmy comfort but the effect was quite the opposite. In fact, it drove her up the wall.

He would have thrown a bucket of acid on her it wouldn't have the same strong effect. The light didn't even caress her skin as it was blocked by the shiny glass but it squeezed her nerves so much it was like her life was threatened. With energetic strides, she went to the windows and violently closed the curtains.

"When I say I don't want light, I do not want it!"

"But you need it. It's unhealthy to stay here. You don't understand" he said with a pressing deep voice, but his eyes as calm as ever "You're not okay"

"I respect you Obito-San. And I just ask the same from you"

"Even if you want revenge and deserved to get it, you're doing it the wrong way."

"How would you know?" she mocked

"You're not winning now -you're killing yourself slowly. And he's the one winning over you"

"I want to stay here. Is that too much to ask? I'm okay"

"This is not being okay. This is being depressive. You wake up, you drink, you space out then you sleep. You're ruining your life. I … don't want you to live through this."

"Really? Please stop doing as if you cared! You think I don't know? All of you want that scumbag's fortune. And since I'm the certain heiress, everyone take me as the target" she screamed, and then shook her head, a fist against her forehead

There. It was out there. She chuckled.

"Just so you know, just stop pretending because it sickens me to no end. You know how things are and with whom you'd better associate with. As for now, instead of talking about depression and what's good for me or not, tell me more about what we are going to do about the unclaimed child of Madara"

She leaned against the edge of the bureau, fully aware that a line had been crossed; that maybe tomorrow would be the day her death was announced to the world too. Somehow the thought brought that balmy alleviation the sunlight had been unable to.

Obito didn't say a word. He kept staring through the slim gape of the curtains, his hands in pocket. The straight expression on his face was the ounce of honesty she needed, instead of a vapid and superficial 'concern'. She didn't need anyone's pity or worries. She didn't give a damn that it was her against the world.

"First of all, you should do some search in his office here and at Akatsuki Inc." he drawled, never leaving the window once bit "Since we never heard about that child, it would be hard to find him. Especially as I'm pretty sure he erased any evidence"

"But you were close. Did you never hear about anything?" she asked, matching his cool expression for better effect

"Well, there had been a scandal that shook this family. It was not proved but it certainly did bring troubles among others"

"Really"

"Thinking about it, there's so little you know about our family" Obito said with a grim smile, but never did he look at her

As she was ready to ask more, Zetsu sneaked on them. Used to that kind of unsettling habits she just turned toward him, a bit blazed and annoyed. Whatever he had to say it'd better be important.

"Some Hatake Sasuke is there to see Mrs. Uchiha"

"What? -"

At the mention of Sasuke being there her mind instantly stopped any connection with the physical world. Zetsu words died in her ears as much as Obito sudden bulged eyes and unusual expression went unnoticed. She didn't know if it was the world that was suddenly slow or if it was her brain and neither her buzzing ears nor her crazy-beating heart were helping her to grasp reality.

All her barriers broke down as a shudder rippled through her small frame.

Her body reacted faster than her mind was able to catch up with the reality in those words. She was lost in the illusion of a spinning room and a hollow roar in her ears. Her mind labored, unable for a moment to make sense of the world surrounding her or the reason of his presence while her body swayed, her heart beating too hard and muscles squeezing each other in a death grip.

She didn't at first grasp the fact that he was really there. Her mind was a haze of incoherent thoughts flashing like strobe from too much information to nothing.

Obito moved infinitesimally in her peripheral, and the need to get back on track befell on her. She labored to pull herself back up despite the dizziness, and seized the first rational thought flushing in.

"No! No, no, no! He can't! He can't be there…"

There was a period of utter shock where her mind was disconnected with reality, and her body reacted like it would if she had been thrown cold water in winter. Seconds passed with her mind still unable to make sense out of the news while her body swayed searching release, a release she knew nothing about.

Finally something grazed the periphery of her brain. It was a vague memory of him from their last summer together, an image swayed by the wind of nostalgia and forgetfulness. The image wasn't clear but the feeling left was like wind -like something that can be felt but not seen. Anger flared, piercing through her and making it hard to breathe.

With the same energy used to close the windows, she energetically walked toward the door to release that whole burden that had been confined for too long. Murderous intent couldn't cover up what was roaring in her mind, behind her eyes and inside her muscles.

The more steps she took, the more hate shook her to her core.

He left you behind. He never came back. He lured you in then left you in a monster's hands.

Sasuke who had been betrayed her, left her behind was there.

Sasuke who could have helped her run away from Madara, even if he had dumped her after was there.

Sasuke who she was engaged to despite their young age and out of the blue, was there.

Hatred pinned her against the table for one long minute. All that was before her eyes was Sasuke smiling face of their last summer together, the last real time they spent before everything went to hell. That Sasuke, she had been crazy in love of him. That Sasuke had hurt her.

Hinata slowly stood up. Her hand had been shaking so hard it took her a minute of concentration.

She wasn't just mad at him but her too.

Roughly one month ago she wrote him a letter. One month ago, she was still deeply in love with him, desperately gripping to that love like a lifeline in the middle of an ocean -like all those days back during Madara's time.

After all that happened, she wrote him a letter asking him to take her far away from there. When it had been too hard to wake up on morning, when at night she had wished to kill herself just to end her misery, when she had hated her body and had wanted to hurt it after Madara's abuse, it had always been about him. Only Sasuke's smile and the idea of seeing him again helped while she laid there naked and broken.

Only him could heal her wounds and bring back light and hope. He was the only person left in this world for her, and up until now her heart had belonged to him to do whatever he wanted.

He decided to crush it.

The moment between her office and the yard was blurry, and Sasuke's chiseled face was suddenly in her sight. Nothing prepared her for that, not even her 'pride' or 'hatred' that had been knocked out of her chest. It was like all she needed was to see him once again to remember that feeling.

After eight agonizing months he was there before her and for one fatidic second, hope bloomed into her chest. The sensation felt like delicate butterflies' wings caressing your skin under the clement warmth of spring's sun.

For one second she felt alive and breathing for the first time after a century of swimming wayward waters. She felt it, and for one intense second it had been there, and it had filled her over the brink. That memory of her lying awake at nights thinking about their reunion, about holding him until all the hurt and numbness went away came back –she needed him in order to be sane- along the emotions.

For one second she mused on the effect he seemed to still have on her. There he was, like the ghost-like illusion that had hunted her some time ago. He was not hostile nor happy, just calm as if she wasn't there or if he was not real. Of course he was cruelly handsome, the calm and soothing aura of his gorgeous traits reaching slowly toward her. For one second, she thought tears would betray her for something her mind still didn't grasp… for one second she felt like he had won again and the battle was over. For one second she had enough time and yet not to drink in his wild and appealing traits that sent her back to good old days.

Only three things were real: Sasuke, her soothed heart and her aggressive belly. Her brain still didn't connect, unable to fight that languor winning over, as if nothing ever happened.

It just took one second to give back colors to the world.

It took even less to crumble everything back.

Suddenly, something caught her attention.

Her feet froze in its track; her whole body froze into place, as she realized what was really on his face and who he came with.

His face was so full of hatred; his handsome traits twisted in a frown that match the face of a fervent believer would have before the Devil. Besides him was the girl he had chosen easily over her, a blond she was definitely sure was his best friend he had one day promised to introduce her to and his tutor…

Their pack was squared as family going against adversity.

She couldn't breathe or move.

Hinata then realized there was no one out there, waiting for her. The Sasuke that had helped her go through Madara's madness had been an illusion created by her mind. He'd never come to save her, and she had only her hate as companion, guide and friend.

That was the only friend that could support and, never betray.

Her hate was her only family's member.

Now she remembered. He had always answered to her 'I love you' by a 'thank you'. Right now she wished she had never met his path. With what her future had held with Madara, she'd have been better off without ever form of happiness –things would have been easier because she would expect nothing from anyone.

Why would the victim feel bad? Then again, she wasn't a victim. Hinata was a survivor, and survivors are fighters who aren't blinded by self-pity.

Animosity flared through her chest, chasing away that stupid butterfly thing.

Her knees trembled for a second, and she nearly felt. There was nothing worse than to know you had been just a pawn in the hands of someone you loved, and that you'd never be loved. The only solution was to swallow your heart and go on… and ignore the pain rippling through you.

The least she could do now was to save the face and her dignity along. She just hoped none of them saw hope flicked past her pale face.

The pinkette took Sasuke's hands under Hinata stern gaze. Hinata followed the movement, saw how their fingers linked and then travelled back up to Sasuke's face where her eyes stayed.

"We came all the way here to ask you to leave us alone Hinata!"

Unconsciously Hinata's body stiffened to the point of hurting. However that fight was hers to win. Slowly she looked at that pink haired girl that dared to open her mouth but went back to Sasuke with a raised eyebrow.

So he came to show off his happiness.

Heavy silence ensued before Sakura gathered her voice to speak again, after tightening her grip on his larger hand.

"You have done enough damage to Sasuke's life but that wasn't enough for you. After marrying some old rich geezer and becoming rich after his suspect dead you still came after Sasuke to ruin his life! What the hell is wrong with you?"

"You drag your worthless ass here in my house and you ask what my problem is" Hinata drawled out with a stern undertone "How funny"

"Of course you do! All I see is someone trying to give herself some consistence -if you had nothing to do with him why to do keep pursuing him? I know you know about my pregnancy and that's why you are trying to make him pay. People like you who think the world belongs to them disgust me"

"The typical speech of the poor. I don't give a damn about your two cents. But you, it's good you're there" Hinata pointed a dark painted nail toward Sasuke "it's time we get that fucking divorce"

At the mention of their clandestine marriage, Zetsu and Obito turned toward her while his companions glanced at him. That was a little victory but her chest didn't swell with utter joy as expected –their linked fingers couldn't stop opening wounds in her.

"For real? Who do you think you are? It has been a long time since he wanted that too" the pinkette said with a loud voice "I'm pregnant and we're going to build our family" she said and peered at Sasuke who glanced back at her

Her stomach dropped, dragging along all her guts in the fall. Her body was too light, too ghostly to be real. The smile she tried to show was crisped, and the fact that Sasuke was winning all over again and was probably seeing through her mask destroyed what was left of her.

Her exterior was one of a mocking woman, but she was dead inside.

How long had he been planning to get rid of her?

Hinata tried to smile wider but failed. She brought a finger to her light-painted lips and a fist to her side to keep her stance. Slowly she walked toward them until she was facing Sakura. Sasuke pushed Sakura behind him and ended face to face with her.

A rush of despair flooded, the despair of an unrequired love blending with the hate of an evil ex-lover. She was looking straight into his black eyes shining gray from the proximity.

"Did you come all the way to announce that you were waiting a bastard? Of course, the apple never falls far from the tree"

Sasuke's jaw moved indicating how hard his teeth clenched, and his eyes that were empty now were troubled. She could see all of that because of her proximity, a proximity that made her skin feel Sasuke's breathe caress. The staring contest flared again.

"You're such a pathetic creature"

His words wounded her more than she let on.

"Coming from someone like you it can't seriously be an insult" Hinata said

"You're such a horrible woman. You'll regret it –I'll make you regret it" Sakura said, trying to reach between Sasuke and Hinata

"So I'm horrible!" she exclaimed still looking at Sasuke, never backing away "Since every story needs a bad guy, I volunteer. But in my generosity I'll give you some advance. Go for it; give it your best shot. Be sure at the end you'll regret ever crossing my path"

She was sure that the trouble Sasuke had just put her through was just her system getting rid of the last compassion she ever possessed for him. The battle had definitely begun and that was visible in the trembling of Sasuke's body.

Just as he opened his lips to speak, Naruto intervened.

"I'm tired of this shit. I'm tiring of you going on and on about your shitty moves as if you were right! What the fuck is your fucking problem? I never knew you personally because I was very busy at that time but never had I doubted about his feelings for you. He had loved you so bad it hurt. Yet you are there talking like a revengeful bitch.

Ever since your stupid father had tried to steal money from Madara, Sasuke helped you. He had been there when your mother called, he had been there. Sasuke had been there when you brought your stepfather home; he had been there when-"

"It's about time all of you get out"

"Let it go Obito-San. Let's him speak, I'm curious"

"He had been there when Madara threatened your family and even got health problems because of all the stress since he wanted so much to get the money to repay your father's debt. Fuck, he even stayed around when you decided to marry Madara. He still had been there even when Madara sent people to beat the crap out of him, and the funny thing about it is if Sakura didn't find him that day, he'd be dead by now. As if he didn't go through enough troubles, he started wasting himself away.

To thank him you not only married the dick that persecuted him but you even started persecuting him yourself. Are you in your damn right mind? Now that he decided to get back on his feet again, and want to build a family with the girl that saved him, you somehow find you have the right to ruin his life and dare saying stupid shit like 'I'll be the bad guy'? You find this funny?

I'm wondering what kind of devil Sasuke let entered his life. Of course Sakura is right about you being horrible. But you don't know me or Kakashi and you know Sasuke neither enough. Go ahead and give us your 'bonuses'. Whatever you do, it'll backfire and I'll make sure to be there when you fall from your high horse! As long as I'm alive you won't lay even a finger on his hair, you fucking gold digger! Fuck, I'm outta here."

Naruto angrily made it out; bumping into some guards watching out the scene unfold.

Hinata clapped her hands, amazed by the tale. Either his friend was his accomplice to ruin her life, or he was just another idiot Sasuke managed to put in his pocket.

"What an interesting way to introduce your folk Sasuke. So, this is your best friend Uzumaki Naruto, and that is the woman of your life –Sakura. And your dear step-father -"

"Kakashi Hatake" Obito ended for her

"Oh you know him"

"Too well" he mumbled still looking at the man since the group entered the gates

"I can't believe what I Just heard. What the hell are you doing Sasuke, with your friend serving me bullshit? You think I don't know the story? Or did you come to scratch some money to help you take care of your bastard? You think I'll help you take care of your girl by playing the poor victim? How pathetic"

"I never asked you for money" Sasuke growled

"Why else would you come confront me with your pack of idiots? And what about that story painting you as the hero and leaving out the fact that it's your own fault you went through all of that?"

"First, you tried to kill me and burn my house when I didn't even know you existed anymore. Of course I wouldn't come alone. Secondly, all this shit you put me through is my fault?!"

"Definitely. I blame your cowardice and you being a dickhead"

The frown that twisted Sasuke's face was so scaring that even her bodyguards shifted to prevent an attack. She didn't flinch.

"…What the hell do you want?"

"Nothing –I just wanna see the extend of my power"

"Power you say… How did you gain that power? You're so disgusting. Now you are looking for something to do with your meaningless life, all alone in your 'castle'. Do you even have a goal anymore?"

Her palm itched.

"Your complete inhalation"

"You think you're almighty and powerful but what I see is a desperate girl making excuses for playing god with people's lives. I'm a bastard but you're worse than me"

"Really? How funny"

"You're just a whore seeking for attention"

'You're just a whore Hyuga'

When her mind caught up with her body, she realized she had tried to slap Sasuke but Sakura took it for him. when she thought she was already stone cold, the scene that unfolded before her managed to tear the wound wider: Sasuke was worried about Sakura's state and she nudged against his chest with eyes oozing with love –they had something she had wished all her life, but that had been denied to her time and again.

Sasuke turned hateful eyes toward her

"You sicken me" he said over his shoulder while going toward the exist of this house, of her life –of her story

Hinata was in the master room without understanding how she got there. But it didn't matter.

She stood there in the darkness for a while with her mind too numb and body too tired to felt anything. After what felt like eternity in her oblivion, she felt the smooth wooden floor beneath her knees, followed by the palms of her hands and then she laid her cheek against the cold floor, like a wounded animal waiting for its dead.

For the millionth time she wished for it, thinking the coldness of her body was the awaited sign, but to her disappointment, she never lost consciousness. The waves of pain that had only lapped at her before now reared high up and washed over her head, drowning her.

She laid there broken and numb, tears sipping from her eyes and rolling down her doll's face.

.

.

.

It was an ordinary summer evening. In the core of the town, lights were probably blaring on lively people going about their business and having fun. The streets were probably full of people, suffocating with life and energy –the total opposite of the road she was taking.

It was isolated.

The place was peaceful with only sounds of the fauna as background, and the faint sound of distant vehicles. Scents carried away by the warm breeze gave to the scenery the cozy bubble of sweet dreams that could easily be soothing to walk through while you ears were filled with soft sounds…

But those appealing scents never reached her lungs for she was panting, neither did the nature's sounds soothed her for all her buzzing ears perceived was her beating heart. She had been running for hours, yet miles seemed to add instead of decrease. Her legs seemed to move slower and slower as she fought to stand, despite her hurting heart, despite the lack of air in her lungs, despite her multiple bruises and cut, despite her fear, and despite the horror movie-like scenery.

Unfortunately this was not just a bad horror movie or even a nightmare. This was her reality, a reality where all recent nightmares came to life. She had sent a close friend to Sasuke so he could fetch her before anything was too late –he never came and she married the vilest man she'd ever known. He never answered any of her calls, and never tried to seek out for her but she guessed and hoped he couldn't.

For one week before her dreadful wedding, she had been locked away in the big mansion, having for only companions the fear of losing Sasuke in any way, and the longing to find again his arms and make sure he was fine. She had been so desperate there without a contact with the outside.

Sasuke had never dared to ask but it had been visible in his troubled dark eyes, his restrained moves and his tight embraces. He didn't dare but Hinata knew now, and she couldn't continue and sacrifice herself for nothing –she wanted too to go away with him. This time around she's gonna think about herself -they were going to run away. That's why she dared to run away tonight from that vile Uchiha Madara, knowing that her life was at stake.

All these days she had been waiting to flee and now, she finally succeeded in doing so. Her surprise couldn't be explained through words. It was a fucking mansion well kept, so how? Did he know that she would run?

Did he let her do so because… he murdered Sasuke? It would not have been his first attempt.

That thought stole the road under her feet and she inhaled dust. For some seconds the mere idea of Sasuke been dead paralyzed her on the dirty path. Forcefully, dark thoughts and images flashed before her already traumatized mind.

Anyone but him! Her mind screamed, giving her the strength to stand back on her feet. For a desperately-in-love heart like her it was inadmissible to imagine your beloved one's dead. It was like Sasuke was immortal –imagining his dead was not acceptable.

Her forces came back and she continued until reaching his building.

There it finally was but she kept running, climbing stairs two by two. Even before his door she didn't calm down. In all her hastiness, she didn't even stop to wonder how and why the door was not closed. All that was important was falling into his safe arms. She wanted to tell him how much she loved him that words weren't even enough to cover it, and they could run away from everything.

They could go right now without a yen in pockets, and once away they would change identity and start over. Everything was planned in her mind…

"Sasuke-kun…" she called softly, too afraid all of this was a dream –it had been too much time "Sasuke-kun…?" she called again, unsure and starting to get afraid "are you there sasu-"

Everything was planned in her mind… until she saw them.

Just before her eyes, a naked Sasuke was peacefully asleep and half covered, with a pink haired girl lying on his chest sounding asleep too. He shuffled a bit and put a lazy arm around the girl who snugged more into him. She was naked too, her slim and model-like body underlined by the white sheets and light of the cozy room. Hinata participated powerless at the scene unfolding before her eyes, the scene of a peaceful couple snugging in their bed.

How she reached outside was beyond her. She was sobbing, fighting against the breakdown looming over her head. He promised to come and seek her, and he swore he loved her –he knew she loved him so much, that he was more important than anything on earth! She had confessed so many times her love, her insecurity and he never missed to soothe her pains, her fears… he had been more than the breathe she took every day.

Unable to contain the building heartbreak, she threw up. It had been so hard she felt on her knees and forearms. The exercise felt like all her guts would climb up inside and exist from her mouth.

Her body felt so empty, so cold against the warm night. At some point she was barely feeling her body, barely registering that somebody caught her by her arm and threw her into the backseat of a black car. Even when her eyes met with the tainted windows' glass her mind didn't respond.

She let whoever was taking her away from her worse nightmare drive her wherever they wanted, never knowing that another nightmare was waiting her there.

….


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