So... Yet another fic that may or may not ever be completed. :/ I'll be writing this in a way so that I can wrap it up quickly, though, if I run out of steam, so at least it won't be abandoned

Warnings for the story: incest, yaoi/slash, violence, gore, cursing, angst, some fluff, sex, rambling writing style

I decided to make Itachi a sensor in this, because sensors are fun to write, and it went with the story

I'll be updating once a week or so, although for every 5 reviews I get, I'll push that forwards a day. If you can't wait, this fic already has three chapters posted on y-gallery: /view /941198

Please review! Reviews help me improve my writing, and even something simple as 'update!' encourages me to write faster (and to prioritize this fic over my original stories). Feel free to flame!


His chakra surged in response to Sasuke's forming Kirin, physically pouring from his body (leaving rips behind in his soul and life-force and mind as the jutsu sought hungrily after chakra that Itachi just didn't have) and taking shape, constructing the form of Susano'o with a speed that Itachi had never accomplished before.

The lightning crashed into the jutsu's outer shell with a blinding light and deafening noise, leaving Itachi's ears ringing as it reverberated painfully throughout his already aching body. Susano'o began to disintegrate under its brute force, stealing more and more of Itachi's already dwindling life force.

The roaring stopped... leaving nothing but uncomfortable pressure and a pulsing silence.

The light faded... leaving nothing but flashes of strange lights and black spots dancing across Itachi's vision, gray encroaching from all directions and poisoning his already limited view of the world.

Only the barest wisps of the Susano'o construction remained.

Pain lanced through Itachi as the jutsu started stealing the last remnants of his life-force in order to rebuild itself. He let his eyes slide shut even as his chest heaved agonizingly and the iron taste of blood flooded his mouth, leaving his throat feeling raw as coughs wracked his body. He considered letting the Susano'o do as it wanted, knowing that he would likely need that shield to guard against Sasuke's further attacks while he drew out the poisonous remains of Orochimaru in Sasuke's chakra system and soul...

(Itachi cursed the day that he was so weak as to let that accursed snake live rather than killing him in retaliation for trying to steal the sharingan – why hadn't he realized who Orochimaru's next target would be?)

His spinning head slowly began to steady itself, and Itachi opened his eyes, noting that his vision had settled down ever so slightly, letting him make out vaguely the form of his precious brother.

Sasuke...

A faint memory filtered through Itachi's pain-hazed mind, of sleepless nights spent studying both the Uchiha clan's and Madara's records in search of the many secrets of the sharingan. Could it possibly work?

Gritting his teeth, Itachi brought his iron will to bear and clamped down on the flow of chakra to Susano'o, refusing to allow it to draw any more of his life-force away than necessary, stalling the process even while the behemoth remained invisible. The prospect of sleep, a precious commodity that had eluded him for over a decade, taunted him, yet he knew that Sasuke would likely need him more, especially with that traitorous Madara still around.

He used that same will to force his lungs to work, asking, "Is that what you saw in your vision of my death?" (Sasuke's surprise was almost a tangible force in the air to Itachi's chakra-sensitive skin). He coughed again, quietly, weakly, hopefully lowly enough that Sasuke failed to notice, and began to force himself to stand. He rose into a crouch, sensing the return of that accursed power to active use, and let the jutsu siphon away a small bit of his returning strength, forming a wavering, translucent image of the skeleton of Susano'o.

"If I hadn't used this, I would have been obliterated," he murmured, yet he knew that Sasuke likely heard. Then, wistfully, "Sasuke... You've become so strong..." He pushed against his body's limits, his muscles and bones and very soul screaming at him to stop and rest, and rose entirely to his feet. Not that the protests of his pathetic shell mattered... He wouldn't be alive for much longer to feel the damaging after-effects of his actions. "Behold, my final technique... Susano'o." He straightened fully, swaying only slightly on his feet, letting the technique solidify even further (the chakra as it left his body feeling like fire in his veins and leaving behind only ice).

Itachi didn't really listen to his own words as he began to talk, taunting Sasuke into drawing on that last hidden vestige of Orochimaru's power, much too focused on remaining standing to be able to do much else.

Consciously, he reformed the muscles on Susano'o, builds its right arm to completion... And stopped, the denial even more painful than dying in such a slow and agonizing way. He gasped, unable to stop himself as the jutsu fought against his grasp, wanting to do more, take more, complete itself and win.

(Itachi nearly fainted from the strain – he had never been skilled at denying Susano'o and forming only part of the behemoth.)

He felt the latent power of Orochimaru surge... Sasuke's screams and the almost writhing of his life-force in reaction to the snake somehow managed to hurt Itachi even worse than the struggle with his own jutsu. Scales erupted from his brother's shoulder, shooting out to form a gargantuan hydra, its chakra oppressive and menacing, leaving Sasuke collapsed at its base.

Tremors coursed through Itachi's body as he formed the gourd in the right (and currently only) hand of Susano'o. He took a deep breath and started to slowly walk forwards, holding his body with an unaccustomed stiffness in order to prevent it from collapsing on him. The hydra hissed loudly and surged forwards. Coming to a halt, Itachi redirected his attention to the jutsu, power pouring from the gourd to form into the shape of a glowing, ethereal blade. Susano'o lashed out with it, cleanly severing the head of the foremost of the snakes.

Again, a loud rushing sound almost like thunder... Three heads fell to the ground with resounding crashes. Another swing... Removing two heads. Twisting the sword, moving for another slash in the opposite direction... Another head separated from the body, leaving only the most cautious of the eight, the primary head.

Orochimaru's hiding place.

The snake opened its mouth wide, gross squelching sounds coming from within as something arose. The patterns of its chakra, suddenly uninterrupted by those of the snake, clued Itachi into the change moreso than his already mostly failed vision. "... You finally show yourself..." he muttered, grim satisfaction filling him, battling against the weariness that weighed down his every limb.

Itachi focused inwards as the sounds of Orochimaru's sword-summoning and subsequent rant reached his ears, the sword lashing out to pierce Orochimaru's body right before the last word of his bold declaration. His eyes remaining shut, Itachi grinned slightly, his exhaustion showing plainly, and asked, "Alright Sasuke, you got anything else?" He felt true pleasure for the first time since the Massacre as the sword sucked Orochimaru into the eternal genjutsu. Served that bastard right, for daring to drive Sasuke so far from Itachi's intended path and then actually having the audacity to claim Itachi's little brother as his own.

His vision worsened even as the sword conquered Orochimaru's will, leaving only a dim perception of light and darkness. Itachi accepted that, the fact that he would never receive that one final glimpse of his precious brother, as the price he had to pay in order to free Sasuke of Orochimaru's influence and correct one of Itachi's numerous mistakes.

The gourd closed, permanently sealing Orochimaru away from the world... And Itachi's will failed ever so slightly as Susano'o surged in triumph, partially rebuilding its still unfinished sides and face. He collapsed to his knees, violent coughs ripping out of him, blood flying from his mouth to stain the stones below.

A deep shuddering breath... Itachi mentally repeated the mantra that had kept him going for all those years of unrelenting darkness. You're doing this for Sasuke, Sasuke, Sasuke, your precious little brother. Sasuke is worth it, worth everything, all the pain and misery and blood. Sasuke... Shivering, Itachi fought down the darkness that threatened to swallow him whole, knowing that he couldn't rest until he assured himself of Sasuke's continued safety.

He raised his head, staring blankly in the direction that his chakra-sensitive skin told him that Sasuke should be. Heavy breaths rattled in and out of his chest, sharp pain rising out of the aches with every expansion of his diaphragm. Itachi could sense Death hovering over his shoulder, waiting to claim his soul.

He knew that he would be able to make it over to Sasuke, but he would have to reinforce Susano'o against the panicked boy's more than likely attacks, and that would leave so little for his final jutsu...

Itachi smiled grimly and closed his unseeing eyes. Carefully, agonizingly, he released the addicting jutsu, its disappearance leaving him feeling almost impossibly empty and bereft. Its humming power faded from around him, and Itachi's painfully keen awareness of Sasuke's presence increased nearly tenfold. Every fluctuation in his chakra spelled out his vital signs, his heart rate and breathing, along with his emotions to Itachi's skilled abilities. Itachi lacked the range of most other sensors, but he more than made up for it in sensitivity – especially in regards to Sasuke, practically the center of his universe.

He coughed lightly, clearing the build-up of blood and phlegm in his throat, before calling out (unable to completely hide the shaking of his voice), "Sasuke..." Too soft, so again, the tone betraying his exhaustion and the level of his injuries, "Sasuke." His brother's chakra jumped, twitched in response to Itachi's voice, which Itachi knew must sound so vulnerable. "Come here." No response, except for a nervous flutter from Sasuke's chakra, betraying his indecision. Swallowing his pride, Itachi added, "Please."

The tentative sounds of Sasuke's footsteps filled the air as his brother approached Itachi, who remained kneeling on the stone, unwilling and mostly unable to rise to his feet. Itachi focused on breathing evenly and deeply, hoping to extend his remaining time even slightly, as Sasuke slowed to a halt in front of him. Itachi shifted back, opening his eyes and tilting his head upwards to 'look' in the rough direction of Sasuke's eyes (which still radiated chakra, even though he didn't have his sharingan active – a sign of true potential for power far beyond that of Itachi's, maybe even enough to challenge Madara).

"Itachi..." Sasuke's voice was barely a whisper, shock staining his tone.

Itachi let his useless eyes slide shut once again, the lids impossibly heavy (he felt so tired, so very tired, deep within his soul, as if he had gone a century without a moment's rest). "You won, Sasuke," he whispered, almost smiling. Sasuke's chakra flared in response to his shock and bright triumph as the reality of Itachi's apparent inability to rise sunk in. Then, his voice weak, "Please, Sasuke... Come here." He made the beckoning gesture that he had always used as a kid calling his younger brother closer.

Sasuke's presence nearly overwhelmed him as his brother almost stumbled the last few steps and dropped to his knees in front of Itachi, within easy arm's reach. Unable to stop himself, Itachi's hand rose of its own accord, settling on Sasuke's cheek before the younger could even begin to move backwards. Still, he felt his brother's flinch, and the instinctual reaction tore at his heart. "Otouto..." He murmured, running his thumb over Sasuke's cheekbone, trying to build up a mental image of his brother. He opened his worthless eyes, showing clearly his blindness.

"I can't even see your face anymore..." His voice fell in volume with each word, until it had grown nearly inaudible, but he could hear the way that Sasuke's breath hitched in response to his words and the motion of his hand. "I don't even know what you look like now, and you've grown so much..."

He smiled, wistfully, and continued the exploration of Sasuke's face. Shockingly, his brother did nothing to stop him – maybe some remnant of those feelings that Sasuke had once held for his beloved older brother? Or maybe pity, for the weak creature that Itachi had become? Did Sasuke gloat as his brother acted so pathetically, or did he sit there in shock, unable to think coherently enough to respond? His chakra was a chaotic mess, the many conflicting emotional signals confusing to Itachi's pain-addled mind. Itachi knew that he shouldn't have been acting in such a way, shouldn't give away so much in his final moment, yet he found his normally indomitable will crumbling under the force of Sasuke's aura that pulsed against his skin.

"Sasuke..." he sighed, his pulse pounding in his ears. Sasuke's chakra stirred in interest, questioning, fluttering against Itachi's skin. "I want you..." A cough, flecks of blood flying out onto Sasuke, and then a deep, shuddering breath, "...To take my eyes." Shock with strong undertones of horror and revulsion slammed into him, leaving Itachi gasping for air, his chest constricting painfully. He coughed again, more violently, raising one shaking hand to cover his mouth, blood splattering into his palm. His other hand fell from Sasuke's face to grip desperately at his shoulder as Itachi shuddered and his diaphragm heaved. Sasuke watched him, motionless.

"Wh-Why?" Sasuke asked, voice nearly shaking, eyes surely trained on the vivid blood that stained Itachi's pale lips and hand.

Itachi took a deep breath, halfway leaning into Sasuke as he attempted to regain his bearings. "It's not like I'll have need of them once I'm dead," he murmured, keeping his unseeing eyes downwards, refusing to show Sasuke his face. "These eyes are already useless to me." With another breath, his hand relaxed from its death grip on his brother's shoulder. "You, however... Will have need of them, sooner or later." Itachi felt somewhat proud – and faintly surprised – that he had managed to keep his voice steady and his pain mostly hidden as he spoke.

"What do you mean?" Sasuke asked. The quivering of his chakra betrayed his emotions even as his voice remained mostly steady.

Itachi stayed silent for another moment or so. He absent-mindedly and gently started to caress Sasuke's shoulder beneath his hand. Tremors ran through him at the hum of Sasuke's chakra, at the feel of Sasuke's almost silky porcelain skin – so unlike Itachi's own imperfect flesh.

"Sasuke..." He breathed out, gathering his scattering wits. He must have been more exhausted than he had realized, if his mind felt so hazy. "It is... highly likely that Madara will approach you once I'm dead..." Sasuke's chakra surged briefly at the mention of the name. "Don't blindly follow anything that he says... You have a brilliant mind, Sasuke, but you very rarely think things through..." Sasuke bristled, the affronted tone to his chakra like pinpricks on Itachi's sensitive skin. "I... have never been able to even seriously challenge him." The admittance stung, many of his greatest failures all rolled into the same person. "You've grown so strong, Sasuke, you have so much potential... Please, Sasuke, once you've fully mastered the sharingan, kill him, and rid the world of its worst plague since the Juubi." Sasuke made no sound, the patterns of his chakra indicating that Itachi's words had stunned him into speechlessness.

When the silence had stretched for over ten seconds, Itachi coughed to clear his throat and began speaking again. "The vial with the preservative is in my left back pocket," he said, cursing his body's weakness, which cut his time remaining so tragically short. He took one final, deep breath, his chest expanding incredibly painfully, and gathered the remnants of his chakra and life-force into a tight ball in his stomach.

The hand resting on Sasuke's shoulder slid upwards almost of its own accord, briefly cupping that perfect face before reaching behind Sasuke's head. His fingers threaded into that silky, thick, perfect hair. He shook with the effort of moving despite having drained his chakra channels bone dry. His muscles tingling and fiercely aching and mostly unresponsive, Itachi pulled Sasuke towards him while leaning forwards at the same time, tilting his head in order to press an open-mouthed kiss against Sasuke's closed lips.

Sasuke's lips felt rough against Itachi's mouth and tongue, wind-chapped and dry. Those lips parted as Sasuke made some sound of shocked protest. His chakra fluctuated wildly in time with his racing heart, the pulse nearly audible to Itachi's ears. Itachi opened his sightless eyes and, bracing himself, pushed. His gathered chakra and life-force flowed from his stomach, up his throat, and out his mouth, pouring into Sasuke. He shook as the action tore at the holes left by Susano'o, but still he refused to back down or stop. Itachi reached farther into himself than he ever had before, into that part of him from which radiated his will and love for Sasuke.

Itachi's other hand rose to join his first, holding Sasuke in place. He breathed out. His soul pulsed once within him before the air moving from Itachi's lungs to Sasuke's tugged it along with the stream. Itachi's hands fell, gripping tightly at Sasuke's shoulders as his strength fled him, leaving him light-headed and incoherent.

(Itachi found it morbidly amusing that Sasuke had quite literally taken his breath away.)

Sasuke shifted, and for the briefest of moments Itachi feared being pushed away. But those arms slid around his back, delicate, powerful hands twisting in his shirt and hair, and that wonderful mouth pressed back against his, a tongue flicking out as if to lap up everything that Itachi had to offer. Itachi shuddered and moaned helplessly, melting into Sasuke's touch as his little brother's hand strayed down to cup his ass. He left himself be yanked into Sasuke's lap, legs falling open easily.

His will faltered. Itachi wanted to survive suddenly, to [i]live[/i] and breathe and simply exist by his brother's side. To feel such soft, dominating touches, to be consumed and used and broken and put back together by the person he loved more than any and everything else –

But there was no going back now, no erasing the sins of his past, no faltering from the road he'd set out on. Itachi moaned again, in regret moreso than pleasure. Tears gathered behind his useless eyes as he sorted through the deepest parts of himself, bundling together the bits and pieces that fueled his genjutsu, his personality, his will, and slipping that pulsing seed of life in with the stream of chakra flowing from him into Sasuke.

He slowly became aware of light as he poured his chakra, life, soul into Sasuke. The glow started as a tainted dark blue shining slightly through the darkness before gradually lightening. It faded into the standard blue of shinobi chakra before flashing a brilliant white like moonlight. It radiated out from Itachi, illuminating even the darkness that he existed in, as he continued reaching deeper and deeper for something to give to Sasuke.

The light faded from Itachi's awareness, and all he could feel was a bone-deep cold.

He lifted the same hand that had explored Sasuke's face, grasped first his shoulder then his hair, and poked Sasuke lightly on the forehead, able to feel even through that tiny point of contact the energy – Itachi's own energy –humming beneath Sasuke's skin.

"Forgive me, Sasuke..." He whispered, the words barely audible as he had no breath left to speak them with. "This is the last time."

The last thing Itachi became aware of was a warm chest against his bare cheek and impossibly warm and strong arms holding him tight –

– And he thought that it was a good way to die.