(In)Difference drabble (2015-07-12) [2]

The Utsugi clan compound is hardly deserving of the name. There are maybe eight smaller families, siblings and cousins and aunts and uncles to each other, and really it’s more of a massive extended single house than a neighborhood.

She was born during a low birth peak meaning that, unlike her other cousins who have at least three age mates to grow up with, the nearest Utsugi relatives to her on either side have a gap of over eight years. She’s far from lonely though, a trail of children not yet old enough to be at the academy beseeching her to play ninja. Older cousins ruffling her hair in congratulations for passing, their own flak jackets as new as her headband. An uncle, who may or may not be ANBU, gives her a booklet of shock tags, a handsome graduation gift indeed.

Her parents, as enthusiastic over their only child’s achievements as ever, have begun planning a clan wide celebration. Though, to be fair, there was a celebration for cousin Tetsuo’s promotion to tokujou last month and anyway, her father is the clan head; a celebration was expected.

It should be a good day.

But as she watched her friends get placed on teams obviously slated to fail, and herself put on a team with two of the better male students in their class, she couldn’t help but feel the weight of her plan twelve years in the making crumble around her.

She could have been a Nae-chan, she thinks. She would have been free. Instead, Kunugi Mokume stares dispassionately at her while Dan Katou smiles, young and very much not dead.

Her eyes flick between him and the only other viable team–the one with the Rookie of the Year, the frustratingly skilled dead last, and the Senju Princess.

Likely sensing her gaze, Tsunade looks back and smiles hesitantly.

She could have been free.

~

A/N: Aaaaand some Kiyoshi Utsugi feels, also brought about by my seven hour bus ride to my sister’s.

Also, this derailed itself very quickly. I was going to have it be about how minor clans operate within Konoha–but then I apparently felt like having existential “oh god, I can’t escape canon” feels.

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