Chapter 15 : Awakened
Her long inky lashes fluttered like the wings of a butterfly, but heavy lids would not open as the pale Hyuga heiress attempted to stir from her coma like sleep, yet unable to.
“She’s waking, check her vitals, Sakura,” a voice spoke authoritatively, strangely familiar and filling her with an unknown emotion as she tried to curl her fingers but failed. The muscles in her arms and legs felt like mush, everything felt slow and agonizing as the minutes passed.
“It’s about time too,” Sakura replied, watching as Hinata’s eyes fluttered behind her closed lids. Her consciousness had awaken but her body wouldn’t, not for at least a couple of minutes.
Hinata could feel soft finger tips flutter across her body before her left eyelid was lifted and slowly released. There were muffled beeping sounds close by that seemed to accelerate the closer Hinata came to waking but she couldn’t get her hands to move by themselves.
What was happening to her?
Then, as if she plunged herself right out of a pool of water, she jolted awake. Her eyes were wide open but unseeing, hands curled into a tight fist as the prick of a needle pinched against her skin like a sudden ant bite. Her head whirled, dizzy and unable to collect itself as if she had been overdosed with some kind of drug that induced this long sleep.
“Hinata?” Came Sakura’s light voice, calling her name as Hinata turned to the bright aura of the woman standing almost 3 feet away from her.
“H-hai.” She whispered hoarsely, throat dry and parched before she felt a hand catch her own trembling ones and a cup of some sort was pressed into it. Hinata didn’t have to think twice to know what it was. She quickly brought the cup to her mouth and swallowed the sweet taste of clean water like she had been thirsty for years.
She had missed this immensely. It was strange to think that she would miss the taste of water so much but once she had been deprived of something so essential like this for so long, her body had automatically craved it.
“Sakura can you leave us for a minute?” The older woman asked before the pink haired medic quickly left the room without a retort and slid the door closed behind her.
Hinata remembered now.
The strong authoritative voice belonged to Tsunade-sama, the person that Sasuke had been striving to deliver her to the last couple of days.
“You’ve been unconscious for 2 months now. Do you remember what happened, Hinata?” Tsunade’s voice rang out, clear and strong like the strength of a tall unwavering mountain.
Two months? She couldn’t stop the gasp from leaving her lips, brows curved in disbelief.
“H-hai,” she replied after the long pause to collect her thoughts, fingers twining the hospital gown between her fingers in a habit that she could not stop.
Her lips parted before jaw clicked closed, wanting to ask but unable to form the question. Hesitantly, Hinata purposefully expelled her aura wider but it only bumped against the older woman’s own before she quickly pulled back, afraid that Tsunade would notice her sudden search.
“Sasuke- -?” She whispered out hopefully, floundering underneath Tsunade’s intense stare that seemed to see right through her thoughts.
Sasuke! Where was Sasuke? Was he safe now?
“He disappeared the night he brought you to town,” Tsunade replied, watching the crestfallen look envelope the young woman’s face. Shimmering tears immediately welled in opalescent eyes and on the verge of spilling over long dark lashes.
He had abandoned her.
He had left her behind.
There was an empty pang in her gut at hearing the news. The disappointment and anguish seemed to make her lungs heave and her pulse quicken.
He didn’t need her after all.
“Are you feeling any pain at all?” Tsunade watched the younger girl’s every reaction with sharp eyes, noting her strange reaction to the knowledge of the missing Uchiha. It was almost as if the news had been a hard slap to the face for the Hyuga heiress.
“N-no,” Hinata whispered back.
Not physically anyways.
Hinata was very tempted to break free of the needles and IV to go find him, her only thought seemed to be on him.
A crystalline droplet stained her white hospital gown gray before she swiped at her flushed cheeks with trembling hands.
“What happened?” The older woman asked rather seriously, the sound of her rapidly writing over a clipboard was the only sound other than the constant beeping of the heart monitor.
Hinata’s heart skipped a beat. The memories of the days and night spent in captivation flashed before her eyes and caused her breathing to become labored.
It was a never ending nightmare of memories.
Her fingers curled into the fabric of the cotton blanket, clutching it with a death grip until her knuckles were white. Hinata’s lips pursed into a thin line, face pale white while opalescent eyes seemed empty and purposeless.
The words did not want to leave her mouth but she forced herself to relay the information. All the disgusting details of her capture and her captivity inside of that cell and her wonderful companion came spewing from her mouth. She had omitted more information that she deemed was not necessary, especially the bits of information about these women’s interest in carnal pleasures of the flesh along with several mind blowing passionate kisses she received from her cell mate.
“And Sasuke was also...tortured?” Tsunade’s question brought Hinata to a halt. The slight widening of lavender eyes and sudden trembling of Hinata’s body betrayed her.
“Hai,” Hinata whispered through gritted teeth, every detail fluttering through her mind as if it was just yesterday. The anger and disgust still tainted her tongue in bitter after taste.
“Did anything else happen?” The older woman continued, noticing the slight hesitation and fear from the younger girl, almost as if she hiding something. The girl was not a very good liar.
“No, n-nothing else,” she lied, fingers trembling as the tears welled again but she forced herself to swallow them down. It was a very great offense to lie to Lady Tsunade but she could - - would not shame Sasuke. He had trusted her and she promised him and herself that everything that had happened, she would willingly take it to the grave with her.
The older woman could clearly see that Hinata was trying to hide something with the way she bowed her head with unease but decided to let it go for now. The hour had moved slowly for Hinata as the former Hokage poked and prodded at the information, repeating certain questions over and over again to verify it’s validity. Anything that seemed suspicious or lacked detail was questioned and repeated until Hinata couldn’t remember what the question was.
It wasn’t that Tsunade believed her to be lying about everything, it was solely because the older woman knew that Hinata was omitting certain information that could be crucial to investigation and she wanted as much detail as she can get.
“Well... it seems that you have grown a certain attachment to Sasuke,” Tsunade set down the clipboard, watching her patient fidget under her intense gaze. Tsunade did not think that this small attachment will lead to anything. It was only a temporary pact between two cellmates that made them slightly closer, but with time, everything will fade to nothing. Time and distance will make everything non-existent.
“A-Attachment?” Hinata repeated in confusion, dainty brows curving slightly at Tsunade’s evasive words.
“Yes, almost like co-dependency due to your captivity with him. It will go away with time, so do not worry. Get some rest, I will be back tomorrow to check on your eyes,” she said, standing swiftly and smoothing out her kimono before grabbing the clip board and pen.
“Hai,” Hinata whispered wistfully, face falling at the older woman’s words.
Tsunade turned from the girl and pulled the door open, glancing back one more time before disappearing down the hall.
It has been two long and lonely months since her captivity and escape, since she last felt Sasuke’s warmth and protective presence. It hurt more than the thought of anything else.
She wanted to be with him.
Didn’t he want the same?
Her fingers latched onto the cotton blanket, wishing that it had been him that she was clinging to instead. His warm skin, his musky masculine smell, his soothing aura, his warmth and his passionate kisses.
Her cheeks flushed lightly at the last thought.
She missed everything about him.
The tears had already wet her lashes before she could stop the hiccup of a sob leaving her lips. She had thought that with the time that they had spent together, that he wouldn’t leave her behind, that he would stay with her. But he had left her behind just like the many people that he left behind when he left Konoha years ago.
He had abandoned her.
She should be angry and upset but yet why did she feel so empty without him?
Her wounds had healed over completely now, some barely left fairly light scars upon her flesh since Tsunade had healed most of them. She wasn’t physically in pain anymore but there was the emotional pain that had left her feeling oddly bereft and empty.
Tsunade couldn’t be right.
She wasn’t emotionally attached to him solely because they were companions in the cell, because her mind had somehow connected that Sasuke meant safe, and everything else was dangerous.
That could not be it.
Then where, where did this need to stay with him come from?
Almost two days later, Lady Tsunade had permitted her to leave the hospital and return home since all her wounds had healed properly after two months of being stuck in the coma like state.
She had waited for him to come by to visit her.
Each day her friends and family had visited. Kiba and Shino along with Kurenai sensei had come by first. She was extremely glad that they were all well and alive but couldn’t help the feeling of disappointment when it wasn’t him.
Neji, Hanabi, Tenten, Lee and several others had all visited her, had wished her well and brought her several items and gifts.
But they were not him.
Everyone always looked at her with pity in their eyes. There was always an awkward silence as they stared at her and pretended to be overly cheerful. It did not make her feel any better. Instead they made her feel inferior, weak, and easily broken, almost like porcelain.
What they saw was the handicapped and broken Hyuga heiress, the beaten and battered Hinata Hyuga. Seeing her like this made them think her weak.
She will prove them wrong. She was not weak. Not after everything that she had been through.
Even Naruto had visited and treated her the same way.
He was as happy and ecstatic as ever but Hinata had noticed a slight strain between him and Sakura, whom was currently her appointed nurse and his girlfriend at the time.
They were currently engaged and she thought possibly that they were having a couple’s fight but later learned from Ino that it wasn’t so.
They had broken up because Sakura was still in love with Sasuke and somehow ended up using Naruto to make the last Uchiha jealous. Sasuke hadn’t cared at all and left the town to travel and atone for his mistakes.
Sakura still loved Sasuke.
Just the thought made Hinata’s stomach turn with unease.
Had the pink haired medic kissed his lips the same way she had, laid in his arms and slept against him the way that she had?
Had he protected Sakura and cared for the medic the same way he had for her?
Hinata huffed, angry and enraged for some unknown reason. Why was she upset at the knowledge of another woman loving her Sasuke?
It was a startling realization that had her insides pinching tight together.
She was jealous. The ugly green eyed monster(not Sakura) made her feel repulsed by her sudden hatred and anger at a certain pink haired woman.
Had the two even been in a relationship?
From what she remembered anyways, Sakura had always pined after him like almost every other girl in Konoha but he had refused all their advances, to Hinata’s sudden relief.
Truth be told, she was kind of dejected that she didn’t know enough about him. He knew everything about her being that she couldn’t help but talk to him about everything and anything during their captivity. He had seldom replied and instead listened to her ramble on and on about her life without interrupting or telling her to shut up.
Everything that she knew about him had been from the rumors that she had heard the citizens gossiping in the streets. None of which were true so they were not at all trustworthy.
Sakura probably knew more about him that anyone else did, she thought bitterly. Hinata quickly stomped that thought down.
She couldn’t continue living like this! She needed to get her life back together! She can’t just be lazing around fantasizing forever.
She had lived without Sasuke for almost all her life and if he wasn’t coming back for her then she obviously didn’t need to be waiting for him. Right? Right.
With a deep frown, she untangled herself from the sheets and quickly left the vicinity of the Hyuga compound. Hinata stopped as she found herself hesitating with each step.
She was blind. Yes. But her body remembered the road that she had walked through many times in her life.
She quickly rushed to her favorite training ground in the dead of night with solid determination shining on her face.
She couldn’t continue to stay weak, she had to make herself stronger. Hinata Hyuga had to build herself up to where no one would ever be able to break her down again.