Revenge. That is what he lives for, what he works towards, what he is.

He is an Avenger after all, his destiny is carved into his soul; inescapable, undeniable. At least, it used to be. Now, his revenge has been completed, Itachi is dead, his life-long goal has been fulfilled, he should be happy. But he isn’t. Because deep inside of him, in that very same place where his hatred, his desire for revenge used to be, there is nothing. He is empty, and hollow, and he hates the feeling. His very existence is pointless now, he has no drive, no goal. He doesn’t know what to do now, save continue down his path. there is a dark chasm before him, and he has slipped to far into it to go back now. he has killed one too many times. That is what that idiotic blonde moron just can’t understand. He couldn’t go back now even if he wanted to. Yet, when he sees his reflection, the cold, dead eyes and too pale skin, he feels emotions he thought long crushed well up inside of him. Guilt. Regret. Fear.

He dreads the nighttime now, because of the dreams. The nightmares that clutch him in their icy fingers and cause him to shoot up out of bed, sweat pouring down his face. Sleep is long in coming after these, and he lies in bed and stares up at the nighttime sky, listening to the soft whistling breaths from Suigetsu, and the harsh snores from Karin. Images flash through his mind, elusive and terrible, haunting him. Even when he closes his eyes, they float behind his lids, the memories. He sees his childhood days, happy and warm and bright. He sees himself as he used to be back then, a happy, open child with life in his eyes. He sees a loving mother, and gruff ( yet proud ) father. He sees a tender older brother, watching over him with fathomless dark eyes, protecting him where he can. The memories halt then, and angle off in a different direction, to his relief. Thinking about Itachi always causes him pain, as if his insides are tearing themselves apart. Now, he sees himself as he had become after his clan’s decimation. He is training fully now, to become a ninja, and his mind is already focussed on the Chunnin exams in

But it could be worse. Words are spoken. stay here with me!” Sakura.I love you with all my heart! If you were to stay here with me. we’d be happy I swear! I would do anything for you! So please. You and I haven’t really been fortunate. bitter and cold and empty.. ****** . We’ve found good friends haven’t we?” Kakashi.. echoing and building inside his mind until he wants to clutch his head and scream. before his very eyes. and for you too. emotionless.the future. This version of himself is more like his present one. And things have been bad. because every day we’d do something fun. Then. “ This is the first time I have ever had a bond like this! That is why I will do anything... to stop you! I will bring you back to Konoha. it’s true. How could I ever become Hokage... if i couldn’t even save one friend. there would be no regrets. “ I’ve lived longer than you. but underneath this they are lost.. I know the agony of loss. His eyes are dead. and golden light illuminates everything... for me. Right Sasuke?” And. everything else vanishes. even if I have to break every bone in your body! .. The only thing left for him now is revenge. “ I.. trapped in his own confusion and agony..

He sees himself. Yet sometimes. He never breaks a promise after all. realizes that had he just tried a little harder. That is what he works towards. For the past two years his goal has been his life. made him stronger.A promise. Deep inside of him. what he lives for. cared a little more. If only he had realized that he wasn’t the only one who was alone. He did give his word after all. he wonders if his vow was as much for his friends as it was for him. Sas- . Now. buried beneath layers of denial and who knows what else. and a few years later he had met his best friend for the first time. he cannot live in the past when he should be focussing on the present. a pain that he can see on his face every time he walks by the mirror. Lonely. It seems hopeless most of the time. he will catch himself remembering the past. But he hadn’t. It feels good to do so. looking back. in his eyes that wasn’t there before. Every once in a while. never truly be happy. If only he had reached out to the only person in the entire village who could understand how he felt. or dwelling in memories. what he is. and then they overpower him Then he shudders as icy cold fingers grip him in their chill. There is an ancient wisdom. the way he used to be as a child. until his dearest friend is back at his side where he belongs. he realizes that is was his fault the Teme left. but he always cuts off his thoughts off before they can do too much damage. and desperate to understand why everyone treated him like a monster. he has no time for nostalgia. and the images of the past flash through his mind like painfully brilliant fire-crackers. and his choice has taken him down paths he had never thought to walk. a pain. And sometimes he wonders if his promise will ever be kept. after all. made him wiser. in a bittersweet way. and afraid. he knows he will never truly be content. But sometimes he finds he cannot help himself. Sometimes the memories swarm him when his in vulnerable.

. He won’t even think it.. He can’t. How on earth could you possibly understand what it feels like. won’t say his name. He won’t sat that name until he has dragged that person back to his rightful home by his hair. to lose all that?” Why? Why did you..No. “ Just shut up for once! What do you know about it?! It’s not like you ever had a family in the first place! You were on your own right from the beginning! What makes you think you know anything about it huh? I’m suffering now because I had those ties.

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