Author's Note: So, we have Sakura who is 17 and Neji who is 18. You can calculate everyone else's ages from that. Both are in ANBU and Sakura now heads research at the hospital. I cant really tell you much else cause it happens in the story. Enjoy!
Summary: When dealing with the mystery that is life Sakura finds that it is best to experiment with what you have and look forward to the gifts that lie ahead. NejiXSakura.
Disclaimer: You know the drill…
The Hyuuga halls were buzzing.
Now, had this been any other house hold Hyuuga Neji would not have been surprised or suspicious in the least, but the Hyuuga compound was always quiet. Some might even call it eerily silent.
But today was different. According to his aunt there was a medic having a private meeting with Hiashi-sama. It was this fact that had every Hyuuga whispering amongst themselves, hence the annoying buzzing.
Hyuuga Hiashi and his nephew had many things in common. Their detest of hospitals was one of those things. Hiashi-sama avoided hospitals and medics at all costs. So why was he willingly having tea with one right at this very moment?
Neji didn't know, but he fully intended to find out.
"Now Sakura-san, what was it that you wished to speak to me about?"
Sakura took in her surroundings. Hyuuga Hiashi was seated across from her drinking tea and she was seated on a cushion desperatly hoping he would not say no to her request.
She had come here on official business, official medical business that is, and everyone knew that Hyuuga Hiashi, and Hyuuga Neji for that matter, avoided medics like the plague. Needless to say, she was lucky to be sitting here sipping tea with the man.
The meeting had started off nicely enough. She had entered the compound and requested to see the clan leader. A few moments later the older man pleasantly greeted her and lead her here.
They went about the usual social graces and Sakura was relieved to find that Hyuuga Hiashi, while a very powerful and stoic man, could be pleasant when he choose to be. He seemed to be rather like Neji in that respect.
Sakura focused on the matter at hand and pulled a rather large set of files out from her bag resting on the ground near by.
"I don't know if you are aware, Hiashi-sama, but Tsunade-sama has recently created a new research branch with in the hospital. This branch will deal with kekkei-genkai and clan jutsu primarily." Sakura watched the man's gaze, looking for any sign of what he might be thinking. Of course she found nothing.
"And you are to head this department?" he asked.
"Yes, but I will be the only one working in this area until all of the required information has been collected and even then the research might never have any use. If that was to be the case, I would be the only one to ever see the infromation," Sakura said as she sipped at her tea.
Hiashi set his tea down and glanced at the young woman seated in front of him. She was petite and her once short pink hair was long once again reaching her lower back. Her clothing was concealing and practical. She wore black pants that tucked into her knee high boots and a black tank top with a long sleeved mesh shirt underneath. She had removed most of the weapons from her person upon entering the compound but he knew that she usually carried a set of kodachi strapped to her back and she also wore a thick black belt which concealed poison tipped senbon.
If he was not mistaken, she had informed the guards of a few weapons she had not removed. She had a razor on the tip of her boot and another razor edging the back of her high heal. If she were to make a fist with her hands the small metal claws in her gloves would show adding more damage to her opponent than her high impact punch normally would. She had the traditional weapons pouch (though it was empty at the moment) on the outside of her right thigh. Like her senbon (would have been if she hadn't removed them) there were a few scrolls placed in holder on the inside of her belt. According to Hinata, Sakura always carried a thin wire that could be used for choking a victim in the hem of her mesh shirt. He didn't even bring her perfect chakra control, monstrous strength, or intellect into the picture.
By all accounts, even "unarmed", the woman in front of him was a living, breathing weapon that could easily put up a hell of a fight no matter the circumstances she was presented with. Her reputation as the best kunoichi in Konoha had spread to the foreign bingo books. This was a wanted woman.
The funny thing was that she didn't give off the impression of being dangerous. She was physically small and her delicate coloring didn't help the innocent appearance she gave off. But perhaps she was innocent to an extent. She was, after all, a medic with skills to surpass her master. Healing people was natural for her and there was something strangely innocent about healing people.
"If I was to allow you to examine my clan for your research would I have your word that no one else would have access to the files?"
He expected her to pull away and seem appalled at he was suggesting. The idea that any leaf ninja would use the files against the Hyuuga clan should have been the last thing on the clan lord's mind. But she didn't not seem surprised. In fact she seemed pleased, pleased that someone finally had the sense to consider all the possibilities. She was the former team mate of a traitor. She was no stranger to betrayal.
"You are the first to demand that and yes, if you demand it, I will be the only person with access to the Hyuuga files."
Hiashi could hear the shuffling of his clan members, two to be exact, outside the door hoping to catch a snippet of the conversation going on with in.
"What other clans have accepted so far?"
"The Aburame, the Inuzuka, the Achimichi, the Yamanaka, the Nara, Kurama Yakumo, Uzumaki Naruto, Hatake Kakashi, and Sabaku no Gaara."
It sounded as though she had a great deal of success recruiting people to her cause. She had collected a nice mix of kekkei-genkai and clan jutsu. So why did she want the Hyuuga?
Hiashi thoguht for a moment about it and considered all the options.
Her offer was so far unappealing. But it was obvious to Hiashi that the young medic had something else to offer him, other wise she wouldn't have come. Now all he had to do was ask the right question.
"If I was to accept on behalf of the Hyuuga clan, what else would you offer us?" Sakura grinned.
"I will be frank Hiashi-sama. Tsunade-sama has not given you any incentive to willingly help with this research. There is nothing Konoha is offering you that will make you want to give up your clan secrets to me. I, on the other hand, am offering you a great deal." Hiashi raised his eyebrows in surprise.
"What is it, exactly, that you are willing to offer me?" he asked regarding the ANBU kunoichi in front of him.
Sakura set her tea down and pulled a contract scroll out of her bag.
"I will become the personal medic for the entire Hyuuga clan. Any medical attention the members of this clan need will be addressed by me. If you would like I will also train your youngest daughter and become her genin sensei. With the research I collect I will attempt to strengthen the power of the Byakugan. This could range from new attacks to possibly reducing the size of the blind spot every Hyuuga has. And lastly I will be willing to do one favor for the Hyuuga clan, no matter what it is, as long as you are the one that asks."
Hiashi watched her and came to the conclusion that she was not joking. She was completely sincere in her offer.
"Why would you be willing to do so much for our clan in return for a bit of research?" he asked carefully hoping she wouldn't suddenly change her mind.
She began to drift off thinking of an answer to his question. Her eyes seemed to look through him rather than at him. Or perhaps she was identifying that chakra signal approaching the door to be his nephews.
"The Hyuugas are the most powerful clan in Konoha. They also have the strongest kekkei-genkai to ever come out of this village. My research would not be very complete with out them. And ever since I saw Neji-san fight Naruto in the chuunin exams I have been curious as to how the Byakugan works." Her eyes came back into focus as she spoke.
"What about the Sharingan?" Sakura laugh was melodious and seemed to carry on past the door and down the hall.
"Hiashi-sama, I have studied the Sharingan and thus far I am not impressed, as a medic I mean. The Sharingan has many flaws that I have discovered, one of which is the deterioration of the users natural eye sight. As such, it is an imperfect cousin to the Byakugan. I have learned the secret to the Sharingan and am now using those secrets to heal my sensei's rapidly deteriorating left eye sight ." Her smile was contagious and Hiashi found himself smirking a the woman.
"I see. It would seem that you do have a lot to offer the clan…" he said trailing off.
The way he said it made Sakura wonder what he was thinking. It was not often that she had been in the presence of the Hyuuga clan lord but one didn't often see him with his guard down. And if ever his guard was down it was now. He seemed to be too deep in thought to pay any attention to his surroundings.
But she knew better. He was probably aware of everything. He probably knew what remaining weapons she had on her person. He probably knew exactly how may birds were perched in the window sill. He probably knew that his two daughters were sitting with their ears against the door and that his nephew was standing behind them.
Her thoughts were interrupted when Hiashi focused back on her.
"The Hyuuga clan will take up your offer but I would like to make a few changes to our contract, if that is acceptable." They both knew that she would agree.
"Of course," she said, simply happy that he was even considering it.
"Instead of the entire clan I would like to serve as personal medic to only a select few clan members."
"Which members would you be referring to?" she asked, truly curious as to who he deemed worthy.
"Myself, my daughters, and my nephew," he said as though it was obvious.
But to Sakura it wasn't all that obvious.
"The nephew you would be referring to is Neji-san, correct?" she asked making sure she understood. Hiashi had a lot of "nephews" but Neji was the only true nephew the man had.
"Yes. I would like you to train my daughter, but I would also like you to take her on as an apprentice when the time is right." This truly did surprise Sakura.
"You want her to be my apprentice?" she asked with wide eyes and a dazed expression.
"Yes. You are the finest medic in Konoha rumored to have surpassed your master. I would like you to impart some of that knowledge to my daughter. It is Hanabi's dream to join ANBU. I want her to do so as a medic," he said pointing to the covered shadow of an ANBU tattoo that adorned her right shoulder under her mess shirt.
They heard a gasp from outside and Sakura couldn't help but giggle at the young girl on the other side of the door.
"I will train her to be my apprentice when the time is right. Is there anything else?" she asked making the necessary changes to the contract scroll.
"Yes, there is one more. If the Hyuuga clan should ever require your assistance in research in the future you will assist us. This research would be medically based of course and I would be the one requesting it of you." Sakura nodded and added it in.
Hiashi still had some questions and waited until she was finished to ask.
"Sakura-san, I want to make sure that we are clear on the last benefit you mentioned. I will be able to ask anything of you and you will do that one thing should I ask it of you. Is that correct?" Sakura nodded.
"Yes, and you may ask it of me at any time Hiashi-sama. That favor is in addition to the research you have requested. If you would sign here please, like you would with a summon."
Hiashi bit his thumb and wrote his name in blood. The contract glowed for a moment and then appeared as normal as it had before.
"Thank you for your time and cooperation Hiashi-sama. I'm afraid I must be going. My shift at the hospital starts in about ten minutes." As she stood Hiashi noticed something. Her belt was positioned to where any time she stood up or sat down the posioned senbon would prick her. His curiosity got the better of him.
"Sakura-san, just out of curiosity, but how do manage sitting and standing with out poisoning yourself?" Sakura looked puzzled for a moment and then mirth spread across her features.
"You don't miss a thing do you Hiashi-sama? Well, I have the senbon in containers that hold the poison on the inside of my belt. But I don't use them very often, only when I am on silent assassination missions. But even if I was to prick myself it wouldn't be a problem. I'm immune to all of these deadly mixtures. After all, I am the one who created them," she said with a wink. She bowed and walked out the door.
As soon as Neji heard Sakura stand up he pulled his cousins away from the door. The two girls ran down the hall way sending grateful glances back at him. Hanabi was so thrilled that she was practically bouncing up and down.
Honestly, didn't they have anything better to do other than eavesdrop?
Neji stood a ways away from the door to avoid being hit when Sakura exited. Sure enough, a few seconds later her pink hair came into view.
She looked up at him and smiled and suddenly his brain turned off. All he could do was look at her.
"Neji-san," she said with a small bow as she walked past him.
Neji turned and watched her walk out of the compound. He could feel his uncle's gaze upon him and so Neji steeled his features before addressing his uncle.
"Yes, Hiashi-sama?" he asked facing the clan lord.
The older man crossed his arms and lowered his gaze. He seemed slightly amused.
"Next time, talk to her nephew. She'll never know what you're really like if all you ever do is stare."
Neji didn't say anything as he walked towards his room.
Hiashi began to think and slowly a plan formed in his head. Perhaps accepting Sakura's offer would be more beneficial to the clan then either one of them had previously anticipated.
End Comments: I know that this chapter may seem a little boring but it was necessary for the rest of the story. So up next is the Hyuuga Line Up. Don't worry there is going to be some Neji/Sakura action in that one. The next one will be funny… I think. Anyway I hope you like this chapter so far. The next one I want to have out by Tuesday. Review if you feel up to it.