title: Road to Sakura
pairing: possible eventual SasuSaku.
summary of chapter 1: "Can you keep this safe for me until your mother and I come back?" Sakura doesn't realize that her parents won't be coming home anymore.
summary of chapter 2: Because she was the Hokage's daughter, she was all alone now. She cried when no one was looking.
notes: I would like to clarify something before I continue this story. The world in which this story is taking place in is NOT the genjutsu from Road to Ninja. This world is BASED on that genjutsu, just as this story is inspired by RTN. Futhermore, the characters, though they will have some characteristics from the movie, will basically be the same characters we know and love. I'm taking philosophy from Tsubasa Chronicles when I say that characters in different world may have grown up in different settings and histories but are still fundamentally the same in the very inner workings of the mind. For example, Hinata. In the Naruto world, she is shy and very unconfident to a fault. In RTN, she is almost too outgoing and overconfident to a fault. Though she contrasts greatly in the two worlds, I believe she is still basically very unsure of herself which is why in Naruto she is very meek and why in RTN she puts on such a tough girl act. Same thing with Sasuke. Though he is a playboy in RTN, let's not forget that he had girls swooning over him in the original world as well. He may be a lot more talkative, but he'll still say "Hn" when he can't think of anything to say and his relationship with Naruto will still be the some brotherly love. With Chouji and Shikamaru, I don't think they're not the best of friends in RTN; they just show their care through hotheaded words and punches, kinda of how Sasuke and Naruto are in the original world. Also, with Neji and Lee being perverts in RTN, that is only because Gai in RTN is the one reading Make-Out Paradise and not Kakashi. It is easy to see that Neji and Lee are going to be influenced by this because they both (no matter how much Neji will deny it) in the original world draw upon whatever their sensei teaches them. This will pretty much be the basis for the world in this story, for RTN's genjutsu world is based on both Naruto and Sakura's desires while this world is total alternative universe. Thank you for reading this long note of mine.
notes 2: Another pet peeve of mine in some RTN fanfics is that Itachi hates Sasuke. NO! NO! NO! Itachi will still very much be the doting and loving brother as he was in the original! He may not be Akatsuki or the prodigy anymore, but he is still Uchiha Itachi! And nothing will change that!
notes 3: With that all said, I hope you all will stick around to see the changes I made to these wonderful characters and their histories! Enjoy!
notes 4: The lyrics are from Tiffany's Na Honjasa or rather By Myself.

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Road to Sakura

"Please, just pass by pretending like you don't see me
Please, don't even give me a glance"

Even months after the funeral, even after her first birthday without her mother and father, four-year old Sakura could not find it in herself to not call for her parents whenever she arrives home from wherever she goes. It was hard for her. The villagers wouldn't allow her a time of peace, always giving her their condolences and never letting her forget for even a second that her parents were gone. It was worse when she got home. Her parents, when they were alive, had been busy with work at the Hokage Mansion, yes, but they always made it a point to have one of them wait at home for her. She was never lonely like that. But now, who was there to welcome her home? Who would be there with a smile and kiss her on her forehead?

The worst, however, was at night. She would lay awake for hours at a time. When she tossed and turned, her eyes always ended up staring at the picture of her mother and father on the nightstand. And every time, she would lay the frame on its face so that she wouldn't be tempted to cry every time she saw the image of the past happier days. But then, hours later, when she would wake up from a nightmare, she would scream and yell and wail. Her eyes darted to the door, always waiting for either Mommy or Daddy to come in and take her in their arms. But when she would calm down and remember why they weren't coming, Sakura would always flip the picture frame over and stare at it once again, not wanting to forget how her parents looked, for her nightmares would always be of her parents walking away from her and of her never seeing their faces. The cycle would continue until dawn and resume the next night.

School was horrid. Her classmates didn't understand what it meant to be alone like she was. Even though they gave their words of pity, they were only sad because they had lost their Hokage and not because Sakura had lost her parents. They didn't realize how much they hurt her, and so they always spoke to her as if her parents weren't people but just figureheads. Sakura was always hurt by those words, but she couldn't break down. She was the daughter of the Hokage—the late Hokage, she would remind herself. She had to set an example, an example of a fine Kunoichi in the making.

Some of her friendships suffered as well. At times, she would look upon Namikaze Naruto with a bitter taste in her mouth and a empty stare. At times, she would think, If his father had been Hokage then I wouldn't have to be alone. I wouldn't be an orphan, and my parents would still be alive. But then, she would regret those thoughts and regret how she looked at her friend, for she wouldn't dare wish her tragedy upon anyone else. But there were times when she slipped up, times like when she would accidentally bump into Naruto and not apologize and times like when she would accidentally aim a kunai at him. Iruka always thought her unusual slip-ups were because of her lack of sleep, but heiress Hyuga Hinata didn't think so. When it came down to it, Hinata knew exactly what Sakura was thinking because she was Sakura's best friend and, when she realized what Sakura thought, she ended their friendship right away because she loved and treasured Naruto more than she did of a friend who was slowly fading away.

That was what Hinata told Sakura, and that was enough for Sakura to finally snap out of her daze.

Sakura was the Hokage's daughter. She couldn't afford to screw up her family's good name, and she couldn't afford to be the bad example of a would-be kunoichi. She was the Hokage's daughter, and so she cried when no one was looking, trained until she couldn't stand anymore, and kept herself from falling apart. She was the Hokage's daughter, and so she had to be strong and be the person everyone admired and looked up to.

And because she was the Hokage's daughter, she was all alone now.

"Though it hurts, though it will hurt, I'll never cry
Because there is no such thing
as farewell in my love"