Burial In Crimson Flames
by Kaline Reine

Disclaimer: I do not own One Piece or Naruto or any of the characters/settings. This is just a crossover fanfiction story.

WARNINGS: This story contains (or may contain) graphic adult content and language, explicit sex scenes which may or may not be consensual, possible violence, gore, cursing, adult themes, etc. This one also contains Yaoi. I do not censor my writing, but I do my best to warn people about the subject matter and potential subject matter. So if you don't like that kind of thing or can't handle it, then I suggest not reading this story. You have been warned. Also, I know this doesn't follow canon but it doesn't have to, that's why it's a fanfic. xD

Chapter 1:

"What do we do with him?" A guard was looking at the prisoner they currently held.

The two guards yanked him around like a ragdoll. The man was clearly defeated. His shoulders slumped and his head hung low. His long black ponytail was halfway undone and slung messily over his shoulder. He had surrendered his body to them long ago, exhausted from fighting. He'd had all he could take of their abuse. The man's hands were tied firmly behind his back. Both of them continued to drag him down the gloomy stone steps. They seemed to be going down to an even lower level... Did this place have no end to its depths?

"This isn't right..." The prisoner barely managed to rasp, his throat dry and parched. "What kind of prison actually runs things this way?"

"Oh, so you're finally going to talk, now that it suits you? This isn't just any prison," The other guard was quick to inform him, with a low chuckle, although he really didn't have to acknowledge that he'd even said anything. "Welcome to Impel Down!"

Both of them wore long black trenchcoats as part of some kind of uniform. All of their faces looked the same to him, everything had blurred together a long time ago... He wasn't even sure how long he had been here. They'd dragged him through numerous separate levels, each one a different kind of hell; a new torture for him to endure...

"Just shut up and be glad you haven't had to deal with Sadi-chan yet!" The first guard, standing to his left, snapped.

"Magellan-sama said to put him in the big cell down here at the end. You know... That one. There shouldn't be any need to do anything further. We'll let him rest for a bit. I'm bored with him now, anyway. But we have to be careful, considering what he is..."

"That's true," The other nodded, seeming to agree with him. He cast a glance down at their prisoner. "Well, you're in for it now... Have fun!"

The bound man didn't say anything, he only tried to lessen the blows as they continued to kick and hit him on the way down. They'd been slapping him around since he got here. Of course he'd never intended to be captured, especially not by Marines... He couldn't believe he'd been so careless. He could only watch, as the rusty hinges to a large cell door were swung open.

Itachi winced, as he was thrown haphazardly into the prison cell. He landed on his knees, and then collapsed onto the frigid stone floor. It grated against his scarred cheeks, scratching his face. The guards had already had their fun, beating him to a pulp. They'd made sure he was covered in bruises and lacerations when they left him there. They didn't give him any treatment for his injuries either.

This place, whatever it was, had been far less humane than the prisons back in Konoha were... But that was behind him now. He'd been on a mission for Akatsuki when he'd gone too far, and been accosted by Marines. He knew he was way out of the Land of Fire's territory when he'd been captured. There was no telling what they might do to him. And as fate would have it, he hadn't brought any cyanide tablets with him.

They'd instructed him to travel light, so he'd simply brought nothing on this trip. Only the proud red and black cloak that symbolized the evil organization that he was a part of, and his ring which signified the same, both of which they'd taken from him as soon as he'd arrived here. He was left wearing only the plain gray Shinobi outfit that he wore beneath it. He was in enemy territory now, and there was no way to escape... Thus far, he hadn't seen any flaws in their security that he could exploit. They had this place sealed up tighter than Konoha's prison! He didn't even know where he was.

His hands were still tied behind his back. He couldn't see his surroundings very well yet... Partially from the dim lighting this deep in the dungeon, and partially due to the loss of his sight from overuse of the Sharingan.

Itachi currently had many regrets...

Cockroaches crawled along the walls, their legs rasping across the cold concrete. He could hear rats screeching as they ran along the rafters. This place thoroughly disgusted him on every level. He managed to scramble into a sitting position before any of them got on him, thankfully.

Thanks to the ropes they'd used to bind his wrists, it was difficult to move around. And it also left him unable to form handsigns to use any Jutsu. They must have known that, somehow... The guards had also been warned not to look into his eyes, rendering even his Sharingan useless.

'Damned bastards...'

Once his eyes adjusted more, he began to look around. He'd thought he was alone, but he was wrong. There, chained to the far wall, was another dark-haired man who looked to be about his age. His face was covered in freckles, but he grinned sinisterly, waiting for the newcomer to make a move.

He glared at him, not daring to move a muscle. If this guy was so strong that they had to chain him to the damn wall, Itachi surely did not want to tangle with him. Not in the shape he was presently in, anyway... He had really big muscles too, the guy was huge! Definitely bigger than Itachi himself, which was yet another reason to fear him. His short black hair sort of reminded him of Sasuke's, but it was longer in the back. The man was foolish enough to look him in the eye, but he decided it would just be a waste to use the Sharingan on someone who was of no real threat. The nukenin stared, and waited to see if he would speak.

For a long while, neither of them said anything at all... The two prisoners sat together in perfect silence, each understanding the other's predicament all too well. But something still bothered Itachi...

Why would they only tie him with his hands behind his back, as powerful as he was, but have this man all wrapped in chains like this? Something about it just didn't sit right with him; it irked him... It was like they were saying this guy was stronger than him, or more powerful somehow. He didn't like that.

And the way the guy was looking at him certainly didn't help any either. He looked so cocky, so fucking arrogant! His smile seemed to say 'I'm so much better than you'. But his eyes... The young ninja tilted his head sideways. Perhaps they held something more...?

No. It was just his imagination, and a trick of the light perhaps.

"Hey." Came the one single word that spilled from his mouth, at last.

Itachi ignored him for the better part of five minutes before replying. "Want to tell me what makes you so dangerous?"

The other man just stared at him. "Dangerous?" He arched one eyebrow.

'Damn,' Itachi's own frantic thoughts took over. 'He looks way too fuckable like that! No wonder they have him all chained down like this and locked safely behind bars... Maybe they had to keep themselves away from !'

He shook it off, as his own inner monologue ran away with him. He didn't want to get too carried away. Keeping his libido in check was one of the things that had kept him alive this long. The ninja world was a ruthless one, and people would stop at nothing to attempt to throw off his tactics. The enemy would even stoop so low as outright seduction, if they thought it might help extend their sorry lives.

But this man did not regard him as an enemy... He simply did not regard him at all. No, he looked upon him instead with eyes unclouded, free from any judgment.

"They seem to have you in a lot of chains for someone who isn't dangerous." The weasel quipped, after thinking it over for a moment. He had to be careful not to reveal too much.

"For a minute there," Those sultry lips began to move again. "I thought maybe you were mute. Heh."

There it was again; that arrogant smirk... It pissed him off.

Cold black eyes narrowed at the other man, unable to resist the urge to let the red glow of the Sharingan slowly descend over them. Over the years, it had become his go-to defense mechanism. For one thing, it made it easier for him to see. Itachi stared him down, right in the eye, although he didn't do anything just yet. He simply waited to see what would happen. He wasn't in the mood to become someone else's toy.

"What's your name?"

The weasel frowned, already dreading his predicament. "Itachi." He breathed. "You?"

"Ace." The man's smile changed to a twisted grin.

"Hn." He nodded, accepting the answer at face value... It didn't even sound like a real name.

"They call me... Firefist Ace."

The weasel rolled his eyes. 'Oh, here we go... Another psychopath on an ego trip.' He dealt with his type all the time.

"Never heard of you." He knelt down against the wall in the corner, where he would be just out of the other man's reach, even if he weren't in chains.

"You must not be from around here then."

It seemed they were at an impasse; a stalemate...

"You think you're better than me?" Itachi snarled. "Hn. Typical."

"I never said anything like that," Ace smiled. "There's no reason we can't be friends. After all, we're in here together. We're both locked up and there's nothing we can do about it. Did they make you go through hell on the way down too?"

"I don't want to talk about it."

"Yeah, that's what I thought... Welcome to the bottom layer of hell."

Itachi didn't have time to revel in the warm welcome. He simply wanted out... All he could think about was finding a way to get out of here. This place was horrible. He didn't like that they'd placed him in someone else's cell, either. There were no other inmates around, not this low, although there were other cells standing empty... If they were vacant, he didn't understand why they would place him in here with this guy. He was as bad as the guards. There was nothing good about this situation. The stranger also seemed to sense his anger and irritation.

"What did you do to get yourself into this situation?" Ace attempted to make some light conversation anyway. After all, there was nothing better to do. He hadn't had company for a while. "And what's with your eyes? They're glowing."

"The answer to both..." Itachi smirked. "Is that I was born into the wrong family, more or less. And you?"

"About the same," It was now Ace's turn to smirk. "My only real crime is that my father's blood runs through my veins."

"Yeah? My family passed many things along to me as well. Though most of them are dead now... At my own hand."

"You killed your own family?" Ace was shocked, his jaw dropped. "That's cold, man... Real cold."

"You would have likely done the same, in my position."

"You don't know what I would do. And I doubt that. Except maybe my father... I always hated him for the kind of reputation he had. That's the only reason I'm chained up as I am... Though maybe I've killed a lot of people too."

"We're not so different then..." The ninja settled into a more relaxed position. "Did the Marines bring you in too?"

He'd had enough of being tense and worrying for today. It looked like the guards weren't coming back for a while. He was able to calm down a bit once he realized that his cellmate was at least somewhat sane and rational. He slouched against the wall, glad that he wasn't in the same position that this Ace guy was.

"No... I got into a brush with Blackbeard. Apparently this means I lost. But oddly enough, I'm alright with that."

"Blackbeard?" Itachi raised an inquisitive eyebrow.

"Someone who betrayed a good friend of mine. Stabbed him right in the back, literally. You really must not be from around here..."

"You think so?" He smirked. "No, I'm from a place far away... Somewhere called Konoha. I'm sure you probably haven't heard of it either. It's a Ninja village."

"Ninja? So you mean you're a...? Wow." Ace was actually impressed, for the first time in a long time.

"Does it surprise you? What village are you from?"

"It doesn't matter," He was quick to inform this newcomer. "I'm a Pirate."

Itachi was silent. He really didn't know what to make of that confession. Were Pirates even real...?

"Surprised, eh?" Ace chuckled. "If you don't believe me, come over here and check out the tattoo across my back. It serves as proof that I'm a member of Whitebeard's crew."

As a child, he'd often heard stories of brave, vicious men who scoured the seas in search of treasure... But then, what child hadn't? He'd heard tales of the famous Pirate Captain Whitebeard and his coldhearted crew. Everyone knew his insignia, though some regarded it as a simple myth and nothing more. Could this man be telling the truth?

'Only one way to find out...' He thought, before he could stop himself. 'But I can't do that. If I get too close to him, there's no telling what he might do...'

All kinds of things flashed through his mind, at that point. Things he had to block out.

Before he even knew what he was doing, he was angling himself against the wall in just the right way to stagger to his feet. Once he was up, Itachi had already crossed the room before he became fully aware of his actions. He was standing close enough to touch the other man, if his hands weren't tied behind his back.

"Would you like some help with that?" Ace smirked, looking downward...

A/N: Ahhh cliffhangers! Sorry about that... You'll have to wait until the next chapter to find out what he's talking about. c;

Reviews are very much appreciated.