A/N: Hello to you all! I'm sorry for the super duper late update. I was having a major writer's block, cos I didn't know how to continue writing. I also had to worry about the results of a major exam... I also transferred to a new school… Anyways... I have my friend Lupine Laser acting as my unofficial Beta. P.S. I'm doing this in my ICT class.

Shout-outs: Ketsueko, DemonicThoughts, BabiBunchez, XxHell's KittyxX, annsaralonde, Kasai no Oni, DarkShadow978, glorianiuniu (she favourited/followed this story a long time ago, I just hadn't written her name down.), and Good-Fellow for reviewing, favouriting and following!

I shall respond to reviews here, in case I touch on a topic that you wanted to but did not ask about.

To Ketsueko:

I like to think that because Kakashi was in love with Kira, that he was a little AU. Love makes a man do crazy things. Heehee ;) I'm gonna make them dislike each other a little first, then slowly progress (I hope ). If something seems off to you, let me know. Thanks. I just wanted Taidana to have a little side pairing, which BTW is now Gaara. Yes, you were a big help. Thanks for reviewing!

To Reavers Killer, Kasai no Oni, and Demonic Thoughts: Thanks for reviewing! Glad you liked the story :D

From now on, I'm going to try to make my average chapter length about 4k...? So... This chapter may be really long...

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto, even though I would love to. I only own my OCs

Warnings: Slightly AU characters because I can't portray them well, perhaps a tiny bit of mild swearing.




Previously, in Sorrow:

Kurenai shook her head, and sighed, "Still holding up on that grudge, I see. How many times have we tried to tell you that Anko put a genjutsu over him? A multi-layered one at that!"

"Never!" Kira huffed angrily at this revelation.

Kurenai shrugged noncommittally.

Hakiri and Taidana grinned.

After finishing up their dinner and saying goodbye to Kurenai, the three Hyukinaris left the restaurant with Kira in a slightly foul mood at the topic of conversation that came up.

Storming up to her room without a second word once they reached the house, Kira slammed the polished wooden door of her room. Hakiri and Taidana glanced at each other, and headed up to their own rooms.

Hey, she'll calm down by tomorrow; so long no one brings up Kakashi again... That would be terrible! This reminds me, I need to meet my new team tomorrow. I wonder who they are... Hakiri thought as she ascended the stairs.

Changing out of the semi-formal dress and into her usual pyjamas; a tank top and a pair of short shorts. After performing her usual hygiene ritual, Hakiri plopped onto the bed and started drifting off to sleep. Before she fully disappeared into the black nothingness of unconsciousness, Hakiri only had one thought: Konoha doesn't seem like a bad place...

The next day...

"Bye! I'm leaving!" Hakiri hollered from the front door.

"Bye, Hakiri!" Taidana replied.

"Have fun at the Academy, Tai!" Hakiri smiled cheerily at her sister.

The yet-to-be Genin smiled back just as cheerfully, before waving goodbye. Hakiri checked her watch; she had exactly ten minutes to get to the Hokage Tower, just enough time. She strolled towards her destination at a leisurely pace. She took in the sights of the civilian shopkeepers set up their stalls in the market and the early morning shoppers buying groceries.

At the Hokage Tower, Hakiri was met by the same secretary who had refused her entrance the previous day. Cackling evilly to herself, Hakiri smiled sweetly and said, "Hello, I have an appointment with the Hokage, for my team placement? I'm Hyukinari Hakiri."

Upon hearing 'Hyukinari', the secretary froze and stared at Hakiri with a petrified expression, to which Hakiri's smile turned even sweeter. The secretary hurriedly stuttered out, "Right away, Hyukinari-san,"

Hakiri was immediately led to the Hokage's office.

Inside the Hokage's Office

Maito Gai and his genin team were standing in the Hokage's Office, waiting for the latest addition to their teams.

"While we're waiting for your newest team member to arrive, why don't you tell me about how your team has been progressing, Gai?" the Hokage asked.

"Of course, Hokage-sama!" Gai gave a million-watt smile, "My youthful student Lee, even though he is unable to use chakra for ninjutsu, has worked very hard on his taijutsu and is progressing very well! TenTen here, is a budding weapons mistress, she can now hit the bulls eye on the target 96% of the time, as opposed to the 93% when she first graduated the academy. Neji is progressing as well as you would expect a prodigy to. They have all improved a lot since they graduated, Hokage-sama!"

The Hokage nodded, "Hm… That is good to hear…"

TenTen glanced at the clock, and asked, "Pardon me Hokage-sama, but shouldn't our new teammate be here by now?

The aged Hokage nodded, and replied, "Yes, she should arrive just about..." The door opened, "now."

The four members of Team Gai turned around, only for the three genin to realise that their new teammate was the girl they had met the previous day.

"Good morning, Hokage-sama. I apologise for my tardiness, " Hakiri bowed to the Hokage.

The Hokage waved his hand nonchalantly, "You were not late, my dear, you were right on time in fact. Your new team just happened to be early."

Turning to Team Gai, the Hokage introduced, "This is your new teammate, Hyukinari Hakiri."

Hakiri turned to look at her new team, a glint appearing in her bright green eyes, as she saw who they were.

Ah... The spandex guy, bun girl and pretty boy from yesterday... How interesting... Hakiri scanned her teammates with a critical eye.

"Yosh! So, Hakiri-san is going to be our new teammate!" Lee exclaimed loudly, once he had gotten over the shock of having Hakiri as his new teammate.

The Hokage turned a curious glance towards Lee, "Oh? You have met before?"

"Yes, Hokage-sama. Hakiri-san needed our help to find her way to the Hokage Tower yesterday, " Lee replied.

Hakiri nodded slightly in confirmation.

"Well, I shall introduce your new teammates to you, Hakiri, " the Hokage said, pointing to Lee first, "This is Rock Lee."

Lee struck a good guy pose and gave a blinding smile that was not dissimilar to Gai's, "Ohiyo, Hakiri-san! It is wonderful to have another youthful kunoichi such as yourself on this team!"

Hakiri smiled and replied, "Same to you, Lee. Call me Hakiri, no suffixes please."

Lee nodded his head vigorously in reply, "Of course, Hakiri-chan!"

Hakiri cringed, but dismissed it.

Gesturing to TenTen, the Hokage said, "This young kunoichi here, is Higarashi TenTen."

TenTen smiled cheerfully and waved at the green-eyed girl, "Hello, Hakiri. Welcome to our team! It's nice having another girl on this team. "

Hakiri grinned and winked at TenTen.

"Last but certainly not least, this is Hyuga Neji."

Neji gave Hakiri a curt nod in greeting.

Hakiri just continued grinning.

The Hokage turned to Gai, "Now, Hakiri, your jonin-sensei will be Maito Gai."

Said man struck the same pose as Lee had, and shouted, " Welcome to Team Gai, Hakiri! I AM THE YOUTHFUL MAITO GAI, BLUE BEAST OF KONOHA!"

If their surnames weren't different, I would have thought Gai-sensei and Lee to be father and son... Hakiri sweat dropped, but still offered a bemused smile.

"Alright, since the introductions are done, I shall leave you to your training, Gai. " the Hokage dismissed the team.

Once outside, Gai exclaimed loudly, "YOSH! Now we shall head to our training ground, Training Ground 23!"

Team Gai nodded.

At Training Ground 23...

"Hakiri, could you please introduce yourself?" Gai asked.

The four genin were sitting under the shade of a particularly tall tree. Hakiri scratched the back of her neck, "Eh... Didn't I already do that in the Hokage's office?"

"Well, all we got to know was your name. Could you please tell us your likes, dislikes, dream, and fighting style, so we can help each other as a team?" Gai explained.

Seeing the apprehension on his newest student's face, Gai offered, "I'll start, then Lee, TenTen and Neji. Okay?"

Hakiri nodded.

"I am Maito Gai, jonin of Konoha. I like training, super spicy curry rice, spending time with my youthful genin team, and challenging my eternal rival Hatake Kakashi to different contests. I dislike people who are unyouthful, and people who try to harm Konoha. I am a taijutsu specialist. My dream is to help my genin team become the most youthful shinobi they can be! " Gai said, giving another one of his smiles.

(A/N: I'm getting their likes, dislikes and hobbies from Narutopedia, though I only added some...)

Oh Kami... Smiling like that should be illegal...

"YOSH! It's my turn! I am Rock Lee, the green beast of Konoha and eternal rival of Neji! I like training with Gai-sensei and my team, medium spicy curry rice, going on missions and meeting new people! I dislike people who look down on me because of my disability to use ninjutsu, and people who look down on other people's dreams. Because I cannot use ninjutsu or genjutsu, I train only in taijutsu. My dream is to prove that a genius of hard work can beat a natural genius! YOSH!" Lee exclaimed.

"Lee... That was..."




Somehow, as this scene unfolded, Hakiri seemed to see a sunset behind the two hugging spandex-wearing males. Horror etched onto her features as she continued watching the hugging Gai and Lee.

It must be a genjutsu... KAI!

Sadly, Hakiri was unable to break out of the sort of illusion. TenTen and Neji had already averted their eyes, with TenTen muttering to herself about how they should have warned Hakiri.

After the horrifying scene, TenTen tried to comfort Hakiri.

"Do they always do this...?" Hakiri shuddered.

"Sadly yes, just avert your eyes next time, " TenTen advised.

"Yosh! It is TenTen-chan's turn!" Lee yelled.

TenTen smiled at Hakiri, "Hi! I'm Higarashi TenTen. My likes are Chinese food, weapons, fortune-telling, helping my dad in the store, kunoichi who actually take their training seriously, going on missions and listening to songs by 'The Trio' (A/N: It's a band. It will be explained in later chapters.). I dislike pickled plums, fangirls, people who think that girls can't be good ninja, and people who look down on me because I only use weapons. As I have already mentioned, I specialise in weapons, I can use almost every single kind of weapons. My dream is to become as strong as Tsunade-sama!"

"Nice dream, TenTen, I support you. " Hakiri stated.

TenTen grinned.

Then, all eyes turned to the stoic Hyuga prodigy, who seemed to give a small sigh before saying, "I am Hyuga Neji, from the branch family of the Hyuga Clan. I like training, meditating and herring soba. I dislike the main branch of the Hyuga Clan, irritating people, pumpkins and spicy food. I specialise in my Clan jutsus and taijutsus. My dream is to prove to the Main branch that I, a branch member, can be more powerful than any of those Main branch members, especially Hinata-sama..."

Neji ended with a sneer.

An awkward silence seemed to settle as Neji's words settled.

"Er... Well, it's your turn, Hakiri!" TenTen stated, trying to defuse the tension.

"Oh, right. I am Hyukinari Hakiri, formerly from Suna. I like ramen, training, singing, dancing, annoying my sister and aunt. I dislike clan meetings, the clan elders, people who think that just because I'm a clan heir, I have to be stuck-up, and using suffixes. I normally use my kekkei genkai to fight. My dream is to become a strong kunoichi to make my parents and the clan proud, " Hakiri said.

"I have a question, Hakiri, " TenTen asked, receiving a nod from said girl, continued, "why don't you like using suffixes?"

"They tell people how I feel about them. So I just stick to using the for authority figures or for persuading people, sometimes on missions or at home, " explained Hakiri.

"Oh. "

"YOSH! My youthful teammate! I too have a question for you!" Lee shouted.

"Go on, Lee,"

"What IS your kekkei genkai? You didn't explain, " Lee questioned, with a curious look in his eye.

Surprisingly, it was Neji who answered Lee's question, "The Hyukinari Clan's kekkei genkai allows them to manipulate two elements; wind and lightning. They can manipulate it more than 10 times easier than any other shinobi. At most, they only use one or two hand seals."

His explanation was met with 3 sets of shocked eyes and one narrowed one.

"Hiashi-sama made me read up on different clans in the Shinobi Nations, " Neji answered the unspoken question that hung in the air.

A look of understanding washed over the three genin and one jonin.

"Um... Well... Hakiri, would you mind demonstrating for us? Most genin don't even know how to use elemental manipulation..." TenTen asked.


A gust of wind blew into the clearing in the middle of the training ground, making the leaves and twigs on the ground flutter a bit, while lightning flashed momentarily in the sky.

Neji snorted, or at least the closest a Hyuga could get to a snort, "Is that all you can do? For a clan heir, that is pitifully weak. "

Hakiri glared at him, "I'm just getting started. If you're so high and mighty, why don't I use YOU for my demonstration?"

Suddenly, an extremely strong gust of wind blew around the genin, Neji specifically. The air around him swirled so fast that it was almost visible. Then, the Hyuga prodigy was lifted 3 feet into the air. Hakiri's right hand twitched slightly, controlling the tornado whipping around Neji.

Tenten and Lee gaped at her abilities while Gai mused about his newest student. Well, she can use her kekkei genkai rather well...

"Hey! What are you doing?" Neji snapped angrily, glancing around at the swirling air around his body.

"Demonstrating," Hakiri replied, "Would you like me to demonstrate the lightning element as well?"

As soon as she finished that sentence, lightning and thunder cracked loudly in the suddenly grey sky. Electricity began to float seemingly harmlessly in a ring around the Neji-holding tornado, cracking loudly as it did so.

TenTen let out a gasp as she saw the lightning near Neji, rushing to Hakiri, exclaiming, "Hakiri! The electricity will shock Neji! Stop it!"

Turning her focus to TenTen, while simultaneously a hand seal that kept Neji floating in the air, Hakiri said, "You don't have to worry, TenTen, wind is a natural insulator of lightning, it can't hurt him."

TenTen sighed in relief.

"So, Neji, strong enough for you yet?" Hakiri smirked triumphantly.

Neji just glared.

"I could do this all day you know. I barely need any chakra to maintain this. You can apologise and I'll let you down, or you can stay there. I can also just lift you higher and drop you from there..." Hakiri mused.

If looks could kill, Hakiri would have been dead twice over.

"Fine. My apologies, Hakiri-san, " Neji stated, a slight smirk on his face.

Hakiri gritted her teeth at the suffix, but let go of Neji, letting him drop unceremoniously to the ground.

"Neji, that previous comment was completely unyouthful, " Gai said in a reprimanding tone that Hakiri was surprised that he had.

Neji just stared stoically at Gai.

"YOSH! Now that we have seen a demonstration of Hakiri's skills, we can start training!" Lee broke the silence with a yell.

"That's right Lee! Now, Lee, TenTen and Neji, you may go run your usual rounds around Konoha, 50 each for TenTen and Neji, and 100 for Lee. I need to talk to Hakiri, " Gai instructed the genin, who nodded and began running.

Gai's face turned serious, "Hakiri, I am aware that your parents have just passed on, and should you need any help, you can count on me."

Hakiri, surprised by Gai's words, only nodded numbly. Gai grinned and said, "Anyways, welcome to Team Gai, we usually meet here at 8 o'clock every morning for team training, we break for lunch at about 12 o'clock, before we head to the Hokage's office for missions. We usually complete 2 to 3 missions a day. After the missions, we continue our training until at about 7. Which leaves you enough time to have dinner and pursuing your own activities. Lee and I meet here at 4 each morning, to have an intense training session. I have tried to convince TenTen and Neji to join, but they refused. As my student , you will be trained to be in peak physical condition, as all three of them are. You, look to be quite fit, and should have no problem catching up to them. When you do, you may consider wearing weights to increase your speed, as Lee and I do. Which reminds me," Gai pulled out a green spandex suit out of seemingly nowhere," I recommend that you wear this youthful outfit which has allowed Lee and I to train to our very best!"

Looking at the horrendous green jumpsuit that Gai was holding out proudly, Hakiri held back a shudder, and said, "Um... Gai-sensei, that's nice and all, but er... I prefer my current outfit," gesturing to her outfit which consisted of a long-sleeved military green crop jacket that had her clan symbol proudly emblazoned on it, (A/N: It's a blue-edged white lightning bolt with a gray swirl in the background, just in case you guys are wondering. ) over a black tank topand a pair of tight camouflage shorts.

"Thanks though, Gai-sensei, it was a nice thought," Hakiri said to the deflated Gai. He seemed to be mumbling about students who refused to wear his youthful jumpsuit.

A second later, Gai perked up and instructed Hakiri to run 50 rounds around Konoha, causing her eyes to bulge from such a large number.

"Remember, you have to be in peak physical condition, that includes stamina, " Gai reminded Hakiri.

Hakiri just sighed and started running.

An hour later...

To Hakiri's credit, she managed to last until the thirtieth round before she began feeling slightly worn out, as opposed to TenTen and Neji's first try, which had them feeling tired at the twentieth round. However, TenTen and Neji had had improved in the months they had been made genin, reaching the thirty-seventh round before feeling tired. Lee, on the other hand, could run ninety-two rounds before tiring out.

After the jog, the four genin had target practice, which was just some basic practice. TenTen managed to hit 96 bulls eyes. Hakiri, Lee and Neji had 93 bulls eyes. After that, they did the tree-walking and water-walking exercise, which Lee was somehow able to do.

"YOSH! Let us now pit ourselves against each other to test our flames of YOUTH in a friendly spar!" Gai shouted while the genin were having a short water break.

TenTen was paired up with Hakiri while Neji was paired up with Lee.

"TenTen and Hakiri, you're up first, " Gai announced.

The two kunoichi stood fifteen feet apart with Gai standing in the middle. He looked to both girls and said, "If both of you are ready, HAJIME!"

Gai leapt ten feet away.

TenTen and Hakiri scanned their opponent's face carefully, both waiting to see who would make the first move. Eventually, TenTen did, launching a flurry of shuriken at Hakiri, who leapt back in order to avoid getting slashed. TenTen, undeterred, continued throwing all sorts of weapons at Hakiri. Hakiri just kept dodging, until TenTen got frustrated and yelled, "Fight back, damn it!"

Hakiri gave her the slightest twitch of her lips before throwing sporadic gusts of wind at TenTen, all of which she evaded. Hakiri sent TenTen off her feet with a particularly strong gust of wind aimed towards her legs. She dashed forward with surprising speed before coating her hand with lightning chakra and positioning her hand near TenTen's throat.

"Yield, " Hakiri said.

TenTen, seeing her current situation, sighed and replied, "Fine, I yield..."

The lightning around Hakiri's hand disappeared almost instantly, and what was meant to cause damage to TenTen became a hand to help her up.

Gai came over, "YOSH! That was indeed a youthful match between our two beautiful blossoms! Hakiri, that was an impressive show of evasion, but unless it's an exhibition match, you shouldn't prolong the fight. TenTen, you need to increase the speed of which you throw your weapons, so that the opponent has less time to think where to dodge. You may rest now. Lee, Neji, you're up."

Hakiri and TenTen both nodded, and headed towards the shade of the tree.

Hakiri watched through emerald green orbs as Lee dashed around the training ground with unbelievable speed. Neji just dodged or retaliated with punch or kick. After a few minutes, Lee was disabled by a strike of Neji's devastating Gentle Fist. Neji had won.

(A/N: I need someone to help me write out the battle scenes! PAGING FOR A BETA! Pwease?)

"Alright, that was an incredible showcase of your skills my youthful students! Lee, you have to increase your speed and strength more to use the Goken more effectively. Neji, you're doing fine. However, you still need to increase your speed to avoid getting hit. "

Hakiri noticed a bruise on Neji's cheek where Lee had punched him. So the genius Hyuga isn't invincible...

The rest of training went by with Gai running them ragged through a bunch of drills; 100 reps of sit-ups, push-ups, crunches. Hakiri also had to experience Lee and Gai's horrifying genjutsu multiple times. By the end of it all, Hakiri's respect for TenTen and Neji's sanity had increased, though more for TenTen than Neji. He had spent most of training telling her that she was fated for failure, after she had fallen into the pond on her first try at water-walking. She had sent a small lightning bolt at his hair in retaliation, causing his hair to become frizzy and dry. He hadn't noticed.

At that thought, the emerald eyed kunoichi giggled. Lavender orbs narrowed in her direction. Just then Gai, who had been correcting Lee's Goken stance, came over and said, "Alright, it's time for lunch."

After lunch, Team 9 headed to the Hokage's office for missions; catching Tora (Cue Hakiri's rant: that demon cat!)and helping to paint the fence of some rich lady's house. Training resumed, with Gai making them dodge the weapons he threw at them in order to train their agility and some other exercises. By the end of it all, Hakiri was panting. She'd always trained a lot, but not exclusively in the physical department. At 5, Gai let them train on their own.

Hakiri made a small tornado and sat on it. The 'tornado' immediately flattened out into a platform of sorts. The platform rose higher and higher into the sky until it was about 10 metres in the air. Said wind-controlling kunoichi then stood up and began her training.

"Fuuton: Wind spear!"

The air around her hardened into three hard spears, a twitch of her finger later, the spears flew at a bird that happened to be flying by. At the sight of the sharp pointy objects hurtling towards it, the poor bird flew as fast as it could to get away from it. Down on the ground, TenTen gasped in horror.

Just before the spears hit the bird, the spears suddenly changed directions, flying towards the ground instead. TenTen relaxed and returned to her training. Then, the spears were directed towards Hakiri again. This continued with Hakiri directing the spears around at high speeds, but never hitting anything. After a while, the tips of the spears crackled and turned yellow, signifying that Hakiri had infused her lightning chakra into it.

Faster than it moved before, the spears rammed into the trunk of a nearby tree, going through it and sticking halfway out of the tree behind it. The spears dissipated.

Taking her attention off the spears, Hakiri floated lower a little. A ring of energy appeared around her, about 3 feet in diameter, crackling dangerously. Hakiri sat down in the lotus position and began to meditate. As she did so, the energy ring calmed down and just circled the floating kunoichi. It started to expand to double its size and spread out, resulting in some sort of sphere.

"TenTen?" Said person looked up to see an emerald orb looking down at her.

"Could you please try attacking me with some weapons? I need to see if this shield can hold," Hakiri replied, her voice slightly strained.

Nodding, TenTen launched a barrage of kunai and shuriken at the girl sitting in the floating sphere. The deadly weapons struck the sphere with a loud thud before falling to the ground like harmless toys.

The sphere disappeared. Suddenly, the platform swirled and launched Hakiri into the air. Hakiri pumped her fists and gleefully shouted, " SUCCESS!"

She then glided gracefully to the ground on a strong chakra-infused wind. The fallen kunai falling to her feet in another tornado seconds later.

"Here, TenTen, your weapons."

TenTen nodded her thanks, and began collecting them. Gai, who was watching asked her, "That was a most youthful jutsu! What was it?"

"It's one that I've been working on. The ring of lightning chakra expands to form a sphere-like shield around me. I've been trying really hard to actually make it a sphere. I only just managed to do it today. I wasn't sure if it would deflect weapons, so I got TenTen to test it out, " Hakiri explained.

"Oh! And how long can you keep it up? It is quite useful, and may be of some use to our youthful comrades!" Gai flashed her his million-watt smile.

"Um... I think about only 30 seconds? It takes a lot of concentration, even for a Hyukinari, not to mention a normal lightning user. But I think it should work for all the elements."

"Ah... Keep working on it then, my youthful cherry blossom! How about a challenge?" Gai propositioned.

"Hm...? " Hakiri hummed, playing with a small bolt of lightning dancing around her index finger.

"You have to hold up the shield for 10 minutes, while sparring against TenTen. You can't drop it for a second. Up for it?"

The lightning bolt fizzled out.

"Say what? That'll take at least two months!" Hakiri's mouth gaped.

"Then it will be a youthful challenge for you to become a genius of hard work like our Lee!" Gai grinned, giving her a thumbs-up.


TenTen, overhearing the conversation, said, "No worries, Hakiri! I'll help you!"

Flashing TenTen a grateful grin, the green-clad kunoichi (A/N: Do remember she's wearing green jacket and shorts and not the green spandex.) replied, "Thanks!"

"Ch. Why are you even helping her? She's obviously fated for failure since she can't even use her own kekkei genkai properly, " Neji scoffed, lavender eyes full of disdain.

"Hakiri is our teammate, suck it up, Neji! " the fiesty kunoichi replied.


Hakiri glared at the pale-eyed Hyuga.

"What's with the ten-foot pole up his ass and the huge obsession with fate?" Hakiri asked as she sat down next to TenTen.

"Aish, it's a long story. Could you do the platform thing again? It's kinda cool!" TenTen smiled cheekily at the blackette.

Nodding, a platform bigger than the previous one, appeared under the two girls, lifting them 100m into the air. Hakiri noted that from the high point, she could look over most of Konoha. It was beautiful!

TenTen started to explain about Neji's past (A/N: I'm sorry about the many author notes, just bear with it. I'm not gonna bore you with the story, I assume you know. If not, google it.) and Hakiri felt that while she could understand that Neji felt that his father's death was undeserved, he shouldn't have just attributed everything that happened to fate. People made their own decisions, they made their own future.

While chatting with TenTen, she told TenTen more about herself and her family, with said girl doing the same as well. Hakiri made a mental note to visit her father's weapons store should she ever need to. TenTen discussed some training tips with her, and also told her more about Konoha.

As the sunset, Gai said, "It has been a youthful day my students! Now, it is time for us to return to our homes. Hakiri, tomorrow, we will go to your house to pick you up at 6 alright?"

At Hakiri's nod, Team 9 was dismissed.

What an interesting team... Wonder what Kira and Taidana did today...?

At the Hyukinari Residence

Hakiri stepped out of her room, a towel in her hands as she dried her mostly ebony locks, only to see a dagger flying towards her head. She stopped the dagger in mid-air with a flick of her hand. Summoning it to her hand, she cast a cursory glance over it. The hilt of the dagger was covered with intricate designs surrounding the Hyukinari clan symbol. Hakiri recognised it as one of the special daggers used exclusively by the head family.

The petite clan heiress walked down the stairs, skillfully twirling the bronze dagger in her hand. As she stepped down from the last step, she flung the dagger at Taidana, knowing that she was the culprit. Taidana turned around and caught the dagger, grinning as she did so.

"You know, when I tell you to practice with our kekkei genkai, it doesn't mean that you can randomly send dangerous pointy things at my head, " the corner of Hakiri's red lips pulled down slightly in a frown.

"Meh, I was close, wasn't I? " Taidana asked, twirling the dagger in her hands in the same way her sister had just did.

"A little shaky, your control needs to be firmer. The aim was good though, " Hakiri stepped into the kitchen, with Taidana behind her.

Pouring herself a tall glass of milk, Hakiri asked, "How was your day, Tai?"

"Ok, my sensei is quite nice, though he spent quite a lot of time chasing after Naruto. "

"Naruto? He's in your class?" a delicately raised eyebrow was seen above the glass, as Hakiri sipped her milk.

Nodding, Taidana replied, "Yeah, and apparently he's a troublemaker. Today, he made paint bombs and stashed them in the staffroom during lunch! It was hilarious when Iruka-sensei came in with pink and green hair..."

The two sisters giggled.


Green eyes met red eyes.

Putting down her glass of milk, Hakiri and Taidana hurried to the main door. Kira had flung the door open so hard the white wood had cracked. Oh great... How are we gonna tell the furniture store owner that we need a new door...? Hakiri internally sweatdropped at her aunt's temper.

"Kira-nee, what's wrong? " Taidana ventured, almost meekly, in fear of Kira's wrath.

"Urgh! The Hokage put me on an A-rank with Kakashi and Asuma! " Kira raged, navy eyes flashing angrily.

The sisters shared knowing looks.

"Wait, who's Asuma?" Hakiri cocked her head to the side.

Kira calmed down a little, "He's the Hokage's son."

Nodding, Hakiri went back to the kitchen to retrieve her precious glass of milk, before returning to the living room. Taidana and Kira had situated themselves on the couch, with the youngest Hyukinari trying to calm the furious Kira down.

"So, " a sip of milk, " what's " a sip of milk, "the mission, " a sip of milk, "about?" Hakiri asked.

"Just escorting this business tycoon's daughter back to her father. Apparently, this girl is Gato's daughter..." Kira said, reaching out to snatch Hakiri's milk.

Shooting her aunt a glare, Hakiri cradled her glass of milk protectively.

"Gato? The shipping tycoon?" Taidana's crimson eyes went wide.

Kira nodded.

"How nice, a spoiled brat. Have fun!" Hakiri grinned cheekily, gulping down the last of her milk.

Sighing, Kira got up and headed to her room. How am I going to handle Kakashi AND a spoiled brat...?

Hakiri and Taidana, upon hearing Kira's door slam, immediately huddled together.

"Do you think anything's gonna happen on this mission?" Taidana sort-of squealed.

"Maybe, I think the brat will probably cause some drama and then Kakashi and Kira will end up together," Hakiri mused.

They giggled again.

Remembering Gai's challenge, Hakiri surrounded the glass with a bright yellow sphere, and after much concentration, sent it back to the kitchen. Unfortunately, her control wasn't good enough and the energy sphere disappeared leaving the glass to crash to the ground. Only for it to be saved by a small tornado five inches from the ground, courtesy of Taidana.

Both girls heaved a sigh of relief, before Hakiri dashed to the kitchen and washed the glass and returned it to its rightful place.

"That's a neat jutsu, finally perfected it huh?" Taidana commented as Hakiri plopped back down on the sofa.

"Not really, Gai-sensei challenged me to hold it up for 10 minutes while sparring with TenTen. Which is damn hard to do!" Hakiri lamented, unknowingly pouting a little.

Taidana laughed, "Have fun with that!"

Hakiri stuck her tongue out at her sister. The sisters spent the rest of the night chatting before heading up to bed. Just before she went to bed, Hakiri looked out the window. She could have sworn that she saw a pair of lavender eyes staring at her.

The next day...


The alarm clock was cut by Hakiri's hand. Groaning as she got up, the emerald-eyed kunoichi ran her fingers through the mussed up hair, and started to get ready for training.

The doorbell rang, just as Hakiri finished her milk. She hurriedly opened the door, only to see Lee and TenTen standing there.

"Eh? Where's Gai-sensei and Neji?" Hakiri asked.

"Gai-sensei meets us at the training ground, and we're going to pick Neji up later. The Hyuga compound is just next door, so we thought we'd pick you up first," TenTen replied cheerily.

Nodding, Hakiri gestured to the living room, "Why don't you come in for a while, I need to get some things."

TenTen and Lee entered. Hakiri hurried up to her room to retrieve her forehead protecter. She had forgotten to put it on earlier that day. She quickly tied it around her neck and headed back to her team.

"Alright, let's go!" she smiled.

Scribbling a quick note to Taidana, Team 9 left the house.

The walls of the Hyuga compound were startlingly white. A branch member opened the gate to the compound, "Here for Neji, I presume?"

At Hakiri's nod, he let them in, "He is in his room."

"Thank you Kotou-san!" Lee thanked the stoic Hyuga exuberantly

As soon as Kotou was out of hearing range, Hakiri asked, "Uh... Where's Neji's room?"

Chuckling, TenTen lead the way to the fate-obsessed Hyuga's room. On the way there, they encountered a timid-looking girl with a hime styled hair.

"Ohiyo Hinata-san!" Lee called out to her.

Turning, Hinata smiled meekly at them, "O-ohiyo, L-lee-san, TenTen-san, Hakiri-san."

Hakiri was surprised to note that this girl whom she had never met before knew her name. At her startled look, Hinata quickly explained, "Neji-neesan told us a-about his new teammate."

"Are you his sister then?" asked Hakiri, noting the use of '-neesan'.

"No, she's Neji's cousin."

Understanding dawned on Hakiri, her mouth formed an 'o'. So she's THAT cousin...

"Nice to meet you Hinata-chan!" Hakiri surprised herself by using a suffix to address Hinata.

"I-It's nice t-to meet you too, Hakiri-san. I must be going now, " with that, the Hyuga heiress took her leave.

"I thought you said you didn't use suffixes?" Lee questioned.

"That was not planned. She seems nice, if a little too shy," Hakiri shrugged.

Neji was meditating in his room when he heard TenTen's voice, "Neji? Are you in there?"

The Hyuga genius stood up and opened the door.

"Let's go."

"Your cousin's nice, Neji," Hakiri stated randomly.

Lee and TenTen shared a slightly worried look.

Neji raised an eyebrow, "You met Hinata-sama?"

Upon receiving a nod, Neji replied, "Hn. "

Rolling her eyes at the stoic Hyuga, Hakiri continued to the training ground.

Really. Such. An interesting team. One, no two youth obsessed people with freakishly thick eyebrows. A weapons mistress. And this pale-eyed pretty boy with a ten-foot pole up his ass and appears to have family issues. Am I normal? No, don't think so.

A/N: And that's a wrap people! Sorry for not updating sooner! How long has it been? My updates won't be that often, because I'm really really busy with school. There are too many projects!

I hope you guys enjoy this chapter. I know it's a little like a filler, but it just gives some background. The next chapter will be a month later, is that okay?

If you have any opinions or suggestions, please feel free to tell me. but phrase it nicely please :D No flames please.

As usual: Like it? Love it? Hate it? Review, favourite and follow! Thanks for reading!

Ja ne

See you next time! * waves *