I put down my schoolbag with a sigh. I hated going home to an empty house, but my parents had passed away three years ago, when I was just five, and the only family I had left were the Uchiha clan members. However, they never acknowledged me. Ever. It was quite depressing, actually, but… oh well…
But they were still my only kin left, and I visited the Uchiha compound quite often. I usually avoided them when I visited, preferring to sit on rooftops or in trees, watching happy families joking, laughing, and enjoying themselves.
That had been my plan for this afternoon, but I had promised my friend Hinata that I would visit her after school. And I wasn’t someone who broke promises just ‘cause.
So I jogged over to the Hyuga house, which didn’t really count as a house. It was like a small mansion and training ground in one. Hinata was originally supposed to be the heir of the main branch, but because of her personality, she wasn’t the best at fighting others. So her father, Lord Hiashi Hyuga, had appointed Hinata’s younger sister, Hanabi, as the next heir. I felt sorry for Hinata, since it wasn’t really her fault. And I highly disliked her father, who disliked his own daughter just because she had a gentler personality.
“Hinata!” I called as I neared the front door. The door flung open just as I climbed the top step. It was Hinata’s younger sister, Hanabi.
“Hi, Karina.” She said. At least Hanabi was nice, and while she followed her father’s directions and was very obedient, she still loved her older sister.
“Hey, Hanabi. Where’s Hinata?” I smiled at her.
“She’s with Sakura.” She said. “She said to tell you to go find them in her room when you arrive.”
“Okay. Thanks, Hanabi.” I stepped into the house and took off my sandals. Hanabi nodded, then disappeared into a side room. I knew my way around the house, and headed for Hinata’s room at the end of a long corridor.
I poked my head into Hinata’s room. “Hey, guys.” I said as I stepped into the room. Sakura and Hinata were sitting cross-legged in the middle of the room, playing cards.
“Karina!” Sakura smiled and waved.
“Hi. Do you want to play?” Hinata asked. I shrugged.
“Sure. What are you guys playing?”
“Just some old game called Big Two. It’s from China, I think.” Sakura answered, playing a couple of cards as she spoke.
“But it’s not as fun with only two people. I’ll teach you the rules, and then we can all play, okay?” Sakura continued, looking up at me. I nodded.
Karina was, as always, a fast learner, and caught on quickly. She won the first two games and was well on her way to winning a third.
Sakura played a full house. I passed. Karina played another full house, and everyone else passed, so she played singles. Finally, Sakura had four cards, Karina had one, and I had three. It was my turn, and I played two of my cards—a pair. Karina had to pass, of course, not having two cards. Sakura played two cards, and I had to pass. So Sakura played a single—and Karina won.
“Yes! I won!” Karina cheered. I laughed softly.
“Nice job,” I congratulated her. I suddenly realized that I never stammered when I was alone with my best friend. At least, she was my best friend. I don’t know if I was hers.
“Yeah… I beat you one day, Karina…” Sakura pouted, and Karina and I both laughed.
“Okay. Good luck with that.” Karina replied, stretching.
“Sorry, guys, but I have to go,” Sakura then stood up. “My mom said to be back by five-thirty, and it’s already five.”
“Okay,” I answered. “Uh… bye, then…” I was unsure of what to say, but Sakura smiled and left the room.
“I should be getting home too, okay?” Karina said. I nodded.
It was starting to get dark outside, as I leaped across rooftops towards the Uchiha compound. Like I said, I liked watching the various families, whatever they did. Today, I would go to the center of the compound, where the chief of police and the head of the clan lived. Fugaku Uchiha, his wife Mikoto, and their children, Itachi and Sasuke. Itachi was the youngest Academy graduate ever, and had already been in the ANBU black ops for six months. He had developed his Sharingan at age eight, which was a feat unheard of before. Of course, his brother Sasuke was doing pretty well in my Academy class… he was always the first ranked in ninjutsu and taijutsu, but I beat him at genjutsu. He wasn’t too happy, of course.
But as I approached, I knew something was wrong. It was too dark. The lights were out at what was supposed to be dinner time, when most people turned their lights on. And there were no sounds. Everything was silent.
My first thought was that everyone had left for some reason. And my second thought… I didn’t have a second thought, because at that moment, I saw them.
Slain. Bloody. Lying on the streets. I was too surprised to move, but then, I got to my senses and hurried on. To the head of the clan’s house. He needed to know about this. Right?
Along the way, though, I saw many others. Other families that I had watched just the week before. Happy families and joyful families. Families that enjoyed each others’ company. All dead. How could anyone do this?!
If you’ve never had a shock as big as this before, you wouldn’t understand. You couldn’t. It’s shock, sadness, and horror all multiplied by a million. It’s unbearable.
Finally, I couldn’t stand it anymore. I was about to yell for anyone, to see if there was anyone that was still alive. I needed someone alive! The Uchiha clan couldn’t be wiped out! Could it…?
But then I saw them. Itachi Uchiha and his brother Sasuke. Sasuke was crying, and seemed to be pleading with Itachi. Itachi was standing there, fully armed and dressed in ninja gear, and was completely calm. Why? What were they doing there?
And then, it hit me. The truth. Itachi had murdered his clan. Sasuke was probably the sole survivor. What would he do? What would I do?!
Instinct made me creep closer to the two brothers, in an attempt to overhear their conversation. I leaped from rooftop to rooftop, all the while getting closer and being stealthily quiet. I caught the end of their conversation.
“—like me, you have the power to awaken the Mangekyo Sharingan.” Itachi said, his Sharingan becoming a Mangekyo. Sasuke looked horrified, still staring at Itachi as though he had suddenly turned into his worst enemy. Which, as I realized, he had.
“But there is a catch,” Itachi continued calmly. I held back a sigh. I knew what he would say. “You have to kill… your closest friend.”
“Kill… my closest friend?” Sasuke stammered. Then, his eyes opened wide. “Then… it was you! You killed Shisui!”
Shisui Uchiha… I remembered hearing that he had committed suicide by throwing himself into the river. I also knew that Shisui and Itachi had been the best of friends. So… like Sasuke said… it must have been Itachi who had killed Shisui.
Itachi stayed silent, then turned, about to walk off. Sasuke stared after him, then yelled desperately, “Kill me, then!”
Itachi turned slightly. “Baby brother, you are not even worth killing. You’re pathetic. If you want to kill me, then hate me and live! Cling to your life without honor! And when you have obtained the same eyes as me… then you will find me again.”
And with that, he turned and walked away. Sasuke ran after him and threw three kunai knives. Itachi deflected them easily. As he looked back at Sasuke, who staggered and fell, I thought I saw tears at the corners of his eyes.
He was crying…?! I immediately threw this idea away; Itachi was a cold-hearted murderer who had killed his entire clan. There was no way he would be crying.
And then, he leaped onto the nearest rooftop—which happened to be the one I was standing on. I stumbled back in horror. Would he kill me, too?!
As he turned to look at me, I squeezed my eyes shut. I knew too well what the Mangekyo Sharingan could do, and I had absolutely no desire to meet Itachi. As he brushed by me, I tensed, hoping with all my might that he wouldn’t attack. But to my surprise, he whispered in my ear, “Take care of him.”
And then he fled into the darkness of the night.
I woke up in a bed, staring at a white ceiling. As the memories of the night before rushed back, I refused to believe it. It was a dream… just a dream…
But as I tried to block out the memories, a cut on my left arm stung. I winced, and remembered how Itachi had thrown a shuriken at my arm.
Finally, I was forced to face the truth: Itachi had killed the entire clan, and I was the sole survivor. What would I do?!
I sat up, determined to see the sight for myself. I would go back home. So I slipped out of the bed and changed into clothes that were laid over a chair back next to the bed. As I put them on, a piece of paper slipped out of the folds of my shirt. I picked it up. It was a note.
You probably know me, but I know you better than you think. I know what happened last night, as I witnessed the last part of it. I also brought you here and alerted the Hokage and ANBU of the situation. They rushed to the scene immediately, but of course, Itachi did not stick around.
You have my full sympathy. I know what it feels like to have your family murdered. It is a terrible feeling, but I have learned to live with it.
Please, do not mourn too much. Your family would not have wanted you to. They would have wanted you to be happy. I will see you again, soon. Until then, though…
K. U. K.
I stared at the letter. How had… K. U. K. known about this? She—or he—had been watching the whole time?! And the initials KUK… I didn’t know anyone with those initials. There were many people whose first names started with K, and many whose last names started with K. But the “U” could only stand for one clan—Uchiha! So there was another Uchiha living…?!
I laughed softly over my imagination. There was no way that another Uchiha was kept alive. No way. My clan had been killed. I was alone in the world. What would I do?!
I buckled on my sandals, then slipped out of the hospital undetected. I ran as fast as possible to the Uchiha compound, screeching to a halt at the entrance. Yellow “caution” tapes blocked most of the entrance, but I ducked under the tapes and into the streets.
My aunt and uncle were sitting by their shop. “Hello, Sasuke! What’ll it be today?” asked my aunt. I smiled. It had been a dream!
And then I realized that it was all my imagination. My aunt and uncle were gone. Everyone was gone. It hadn’t been a dream. It was reality.
I walked slowly through the empty streets, heading for the largest house in the center—the home of the Chief of Police, the head of the clan, and my father, Fugaku Uchiha.
I let myself in through the door, and eventually wound up in the room where I had seen my parents’ bodies lying on the ground the night before. They had been taken away, and all that was left was a chalk outline of their bodies, serving as a marker for the ANBU to possibly investigate.
It was raining outside, and without planning it, the rain came out. It poured over my face, and down to my feet. I fell to my knees, unable to stop the stem of tears. I was alone! I had no one! They were dead… I would never see them again. Ever. I would never be able to apologize to my father for being so distant with him. I would never be under the gentle care of my mother, ever again. She would never tend to my wounds when I had had a hard day out training. My father would never tell me the words that I had so desperately desired for so long: “that’s my boy”, again. They were gone. All because of Itachi. Itachi, my older brother, and the one I would someday track down… and kill.
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Chapter notes: NOTHING BELONGS TO ME!!!