When she wakes, a bone crunching, joint burning agony radiates up from her right hand and arm through her entire body. Her pores sting and her scalp blisters as if it is on fire.
Panic threatens to overtake the physical discomfort.
Why was she unconscious? Where is she? Where are Boruto and Mitsuki and Konohamaru-sensei? The last thing she remembers is---
---howling wind, stomach in knots, ground rushing up towards her faster and faster and---
Sound filters back to her now, rendering the deafening silence she didn't notice earlier into a sudden cacophony of noise.
It helps her realise the second thing: she's not alone.
Silhouettes loom over her, indistinct shapes comprised of blurred colours.
Pink and orange and blue and white.
She needs to get back on her feet; she can't let strangers take her. She may have failed the mission and lost her teammates, but she will not let the enemy take her!
Sarada Uchiha will not disgrace Konoha or her family name.
But when she goes to move, she can't even make her fingers twitch.
One of her eyes is swollen shut and feels sticky, as if it's covered in a liquid substance that hasn't dried yet. The other eye is blurry from tears, making the world around her impossible to interpret.
Her glasses are missing.
"… she's… sensei… waking…!"
Her hearing fades in and out of focus, but one thing resonates to the depths of her marrow: she knows that voice.
That alone fills her with hope and resolve, and she struggles to make out the faces looming above her.
"Mama… Papa…" The uncertainty of unconsciousness has her reverting to the most basic of names, the words that speak of safety. "… Uncle…?"
The distorted figures move closer now, leaning over and blocking the sun she didn't even realise was obscuring her view.
"… she delirious…?"
"… probably a concussion…"
"… not surprise… fall like that…"
"Hey, look what I found!"
An exuberant shout fills the air, setting Sarada's teeth on edge.
Noise is evil. Noise is horrible, and she wishes a vicious death upon the moron that's yelling.
"… can't believe they survived…"
Gentle fingers mop the stickiness from her eyes---she winces as they prod a bruise by accident--- and then something is settled on the bridge of her nose.
Though they are somewhat cracked and bent and one rim is digging into her cheekbone, the familiar shape of them brings her some comfort.
Her world makes sense once more---at least in increments. Shapes coalesce into bodies and faces. Details emerge that she can now see without calling upon her Sharingan.
She blinks once, the movement uncomfortable, and then thrice more in quick succession to make sure what she's seeing is real.
Disbelief barrels into her with the force of an explosive tag.
Because she knows these faces, there's no question of that.
But last time she saw them arranged in this fashion, they gazed up at her from behind the glass pane of a photograph taken ten years before her birth.
Sarada Uchiha stares up at the youthful faces of her parents and uncles. She's either unconscious or she's dead.
Either way, her day has just gotten much more complicated.