Chapter One: Words of Truth are the Hardest to Bear
“Say it,” moaned Sasuke. She remained silent, however. She still didn’t know if this what she wanted, what she needed. She still didn’t know if she wanted to lie there on the hotel’s queen sized bed, warmed only by her boyfriend’s toned body and a down comforter. She didn’t know if she needed his cold hand caressing her porcelain body as they were covered in each other’s warm embrace on that cold December night. She didn’t want to know if she should be running her hand there, the taboo place. The place where, if she dared to tread there, her future would be completely and solely in her own hands: to make or break, to build or destroy.
“Say it,” demanded Sasuke as he squeezed her wrist, hard. She winced in pain and tried to jerk away from her boyfriend’s vice-like grip only to find it tighten. “I said say it you stupid bitch.”
“I’m…I’m…y-yours and only yours, for-forever and ever,” stuttered the girl as Sasuke pulled her into him even closer, so that she could feel all of the carved muscles in his body as their lips locked in a passionate and angry kiss as Sasuke traced her body with his long and slender fingers. They broke apart after a few minutes, both gasping for breath. “I rea-really need to go now, Sasuke. My fa-father will be wondering where I am,” she whispered as she pulled the blanket off of them and redressed into a pair of jeans, long sleeved shirt, and then pulled her fur-lined sweater over her head.
“Remember Hina, tomorrow we’re meeting Naruto and Sakura at Fresco’s at five,” reminded Sasuke as he himself got out of bed to redress.
“Al-alright,” answered Hinata hastily as she ran out of the door, and then out of the cheap hotel that Sasuke had got them a room at. She herself didn’t have a car, but she didn’t care; anything to get away from all of the questions that were buzzing throughout her head and back to her own private library, where she could forget about real life and pretend that she was a princess, waiting for her prince to rescue her from her living Hell.
She decided that walking home wasn’t that bad. After all, forty-five minutes wasn’t that long for Hinata; she had run track before moving to Konoha and was one of the best runners on the team. So she let her body run on autopilot on the long, asphalt street as her mind slipped into a total state of peace, where the only things that mattered were the feel of the wind pounding against her pale face, the pounding of her feet on asphalt, and the small clouds of air that appeared whenever she exhaled.
She had made it a quarter of the way home when a car pulled dangerously close to her and the driver rolled down the dark tinted window as he rolled to a complete halt.
“Hey, you need a ride home?” he asked, his voice carrying a sort of calm authority that seemed to comfort Hinata and perfectly matched the soft purring of the car’s engine as clouds of smoke were being propelled out of the exhaust.
“O-only if it’s not out of your way,” responded Hinata as she brushed her bangs out of her pale, silver eyes.
“Are you going to Konoha?” he asked.
“Hop in,” he commanded, and the passenger seat of the bright blue car seemed to fly open, beckoning her to enter.
“Th-thanks,” she said as she slid into the leather seat, savoring the warmth of the interior. She then finally looked at the man who offered her a ride, and she was surprised to find one of the sophomores that attended her very school.
“Hinata Hyūga, right?” he asked as he put the car into first third gear and began to drive, ten miles over the speed limit.
“Ye-yeah,” answered Hinata as her already red face deepened with her blush.
“Naruto speaks highly of you,” he stated, creating an awkward silence.
“Are you…fr-friends with Nar-Naruto?” questioned Hinata as she allowed the blaring music to resonate throughout her soul as she watched the yellow paint of traffic lanes darting beneath the sophomore’s car.
“Yeah,” answered the boy, the speedometer slowly rising as his eyes narrowed.
“Oh,” answered Hinata, pressing her index fingers together. “Umm…what song is this?” asked Hinata, trying to keep up some conversation.
“Invisible Monsters,” he answered, not attempting to even interact with her.
“Oh,” Hinata responded, blushing. ‘Looks like he isn’t much of a talker either.’
“What street do you live on?” he asked out of the blue, startling Hinata.
“Oh…um…66 Cam-Cambridge Road,” answered Hinata. An awkward silence then fell over the two until the teen drove through the open doors of the Hyūga estate and up the long, winding driveway until he reached the door of the expansive mansion. “Oh, I forgot to ask; what’s your name?”
“Gaara Sabaku,” he answered solemnly as he brought his bright emerald eyes up to meet her pale silver ones before drove away from the mansion as quickly as he drove in and swerved back onto the street, Motion City Soundtrack blaring on his radio.
“Thanks,” whispered Hinata as she walked into the mansion only be immediately relieved of her sweater by one of the many servants that were employed to her family. “Joseph, is Neji home yet?” she asked as she slipped her sneakers off.
“No, madam. Master Neji has not returned from the campus yet.”
“Thank you,” answered Hinata as she walked further into the labyrinth of hallways.
She immediately began to navigate throughout the maze of corridors and doors that were plastered every several feet. She stopped however, at a simple whitewashed door with pink paint on it that spelled Hinata sloppily, as if a child had made the letters and opened it to reveal a large library packed with books, the only other objects in the room being an overhead lamp, a deep blue recliner, and an iPod connected to a stereo system.
Hinata walked over to the bright green iPod and went through her song library until she finally found the song she was looking for; “Invisible Monsters” by Motion City Soundtrack and raised the volume to max as she sat down into the recliner and picked up the book she had been reading; Invisible and lost herself in the books as one particular verse from the song repeated itself over and over in her head;
“I fuckin’ pretend I don’t depend
I can deny, deny, denial.
Yet when push comes to shove
And all the above
I decide to live the lie”
‘That pretty much sums up my life,’ thought Hinata as one of the servants informed her that it was midnight and she sleepily walked to her room and changed into a set of rose colored pajamas and settled into her single bed; the one that had been passed down to her from her mother.
‘Mother…I’m home,’ thought Hinata as the cold December air wafted in from her open window and she drifted into a sleep free from possessive boyfriends and unwanted inheritance and all of the shit that life throws at you. It was a sleep full of memories from before the cancer had broken her family and Hinata could still smile innocently and naively. It was an attractive hideaway, but that’s all that it was, a hideaway from life.
“Gaara! Where the hell have you been?” screeched the woman as Gaara pulled into the driveway of their house, the raucous sounds of Slipknot emanating from his car.
“Out,” he answered as he walked past his older sister and threw his bag onto the old couch.
“Out where? And you don’t even have your license yet!” she yelled as she followed him into the kitchen.
“I took a little road trip, is there anything wrong in that?” Gaara asked as he took an apple out of the refrigerator and went to go wash it off.
“When you’re fifteen it is!” retorted the girl.
“Well I don’t give a shit, so screw off Temari,” coldly demanded Gaara as he viciously bit into the blood red apple and walked out of the kitchen and up a flight of stairs. However, a hand grabbing his shoulder stopped him.
“Listen to me Gaara; I know that you’re taking Dad’s death hard, but that gives you no right to talk to me like that,” coldly remrpimanded Temari, her face set in a hard grimace.
“Just leave me alone,” he mumbled as he shrugged Temari’s hand off of his shoulder and ran up the rest of the stairs, threw open the door to his room and then slammed it shut.
“Can’t she just leave me the fuck alone?” he groaned as he fell into a swivel chair and turned on his computer. As he waited for it to boot up, he looked longingly at the picture of him and his girlfriend when they still lived in Suna, when he was at least somewhat happy. When his old computer finally booted up, he opened AIM and found that only one person was on, Cherise. He couldn’t help but show a small grin at the thought of finally being able to talk to his girlfriend again.
InsomniacShukaku 10:40pm: Hey DarkDiamond 10:40pm: Hey there InsomniacShukaku 10:41pm: So how’s the desert been lately?
DarkDiamond 10:41pm: Hot…Gaara we need to talk.
InsomniacShukaku 10:41pm: Can we talk later? I’m not feelin 2 well now.
DarkDiamond 10:41pm: No, we need to talk now.
InsomniacShukaku 10:41pm: Fine fine. Wut about?
DarkDiamond 10:42pm: Us. Gaara, this long distance thing isn’t working out between us, and I really think that it would be better if we were just friends.
DarkDiamond 10:43pm: Hello? Gaara?
DarkDiamond 10:45pm: Gaara? U there?
InsomniacShukaku has signed off at 10:45pm.
“Fucking whore,” spat Gaara, livid with anger as he lifted up the computer that had been given to him as a hand-me-down from his older brother and threw it against the wall, completely obliterating it. Footsteps could be heard pounding on the wooden staircase as the door flew open, revealing a distraught Temari.
“Gaara! Are you alright?” she asked as she inspected Gaara for any wounds, making sure to look at the places that were usually cut. Then she saw it; Gaara’s computer destroyed on the floor.
“She dumped me,” he whispered. His eyes were a dull green, devoid of all emotion. “After three years, she dumped me.” Temari loosely embraced her brother as he rested his head on her shoulder.
“Gaara, I’m sorry that we had to move, but we had no choice; we couldn’t afford our old house. And this way, all three of us don’t have to work insane shifts. I know that it may be hard to think straight now, but maybe it’s for the best that you and Cherise broke up,” she whispered. “Now letting go of Suna will be that much easier.”
“Leave,” he said. “Leave me alone and get out of my room.” Temari slowly released her brother and smiled sadly at him as she left the room, closing the door behind her.
Gaara then shut off the lights and slumped against one of the walls, feeling too exhausted even for sleep, and watched the reflection of the moon through the glass paned window on the opposite wall.
‘Another sleepless night in this living Hell. Sometimes, it’s exhausting just trying to get out of this alive. But of course, no one’ll get out of this alive. We’ll all die in the end, it’s just a matter of when, and where.’
Gaara moved his fingertips to the scar that his father left him, right next to his temple, his passage into manhood. He traced his finger over every aspect of it, the true meaning of the phrase unknown to him. He knew that it was in a foreign language, but neither him nor his siblings knew what it meant. And the only thing he had to know was the truth.
And the truth was that it would be there for the rest of his life, forever branding him as a tortured soul. But his siblings had no clue just how exactly the scar came to be. And that was the part that frightened him the most; the truth was thrust right into their faces yet they didn’t see it, masking it with layers upon layers of lies and excuses, both of them to afraid to face the truth and see life for what it was.
Gaara was not like his siblings.
He faced the truth head-on.
And he paid dearly for it.
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Chapter notes: I don't own Naruto, Invisible, or Motion City Soundtrack.