And I strike upon an interesting idea. We know that Orochimaru dearly wanted to meet his parents again, but we do not know what kind of parents they were. What if they did not treat him well? Still, he wants to see them to prove that he has become something they could be proud of. Because, despite however they treated him, at least they interacted with him. I still suspect that the other members of the village must have feared him and distanced themselves. This would explain more of why Orochimaru resulted in the way he did, thinking that it is okay to experiment on people to meet his own ends.

Note: Nothing more than a drabble, of when Orochimaru is quite young, from his POV.

"How foolish of him, if he possessed enough skill and knowledge he would not have perished." Her voice holds no pity for those who are gone. It is as if she is speaking of spoiled fruit (and she loathes fresh fruit – the sweetness reminds her of decay).

I am accustomed to my mother's disapproval of all things. But an idea strikes upon me, I hesitate to ask because I feared her response. "Would you miss me if I were to leave?" Knowing the answer, yet still hopeful.

She does not even spare a glance my way. Her words are deliberate, an indication the question required no thought, "I would not care if you were to die today." This line she says with such soft cruelty; I wish I could listen only to the voice and ignore the words.

A thoughtful pause follows as she formulates her next sentence. "However, as you live, you may provide some use to this village in the future." Almost an expression of comfort from her. I know the words are not for me. The words are said for her alone. She cannot let it be considered that her own son could grow to be of no importance. She speaks of use in terms of how it will benefit Konoha. A reflection of how much she loves the village, something she believes to be everlasting unlike the fragile lives around her. I resent my home for this; if I were strong enough to overcome this village perhaps she would acknowledge me.

Deeming we have spent enough time in front of the monument of her husband, my father, she turns away. "The dead are of no use except as nourishment for the soil. Even then, they eventually dwindle to nothing."

I remain by the newly turned ground and look at his grave marker a little longer. She spoke the truth, even the headstone will be filed away to dust by the elements as time passes. Time conquers all, and all I must do to reign supreme is conquer time.

A few days later her body is found, miserably failing her last mission. I find some comfort in knowing she had become what she so reviled. But with her gone, who will know of the greatness I will obtain?

As Sarutobi and I visited my parent's grave. In life they never would have tolerated staying so close, but as cold corpses they could say nothing to now sharing one headstone. A flash of something white is resting on her name, and I pick it up.

The skin of a white snake, symbolic of rebirth and good luck. Perhaps, with this, they will see what I can make of myself in the future.