Haha no, it was never my intention for my ask to sound loaded, and I’m not sure I understand why it would. I know the barebones of the naruto series, and that crow summons appeared at least once in the anime with Itachi in the scene? Either way, I don’t mean to upset anyone. Just saw the recent post of a crow over at the main blog for DoS and it reminded me of sakako’s abilities since it was so creepy with all the haunting eyes staring at the viewer. But yea, love the prompt fill! Thank you!

Oh no, not loaded as in conflicting but loaded as in… loaded with feels. Because the fanon (or is it actually canon?) is that Shisui Uchiha–who is a Discord favorite–had the crow summons and Aoba also (somehow?) was a crow summoner. Along with Itachi, of course, which is canon-ish.

The only upsetting is the good upsetting, no worries, anon!

And I’m glad you like both the picture and the fill 🙂

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Sakako with crow summons feels like the perfect mix between shadows and her dad’s hawks!

A/N1: OMG, anon! I’ve been going through Sakako posts recently as well and I was thinking about doing something in that ‘verse so…

I’ve consulted the Holders of Fanon™ over at the Discord (ie Pepperdoken! and frolic/wafflelate) regarding the… lineage?… of crow summoners because your statement is very loaded and I’m not sure whether or not you know that… so… um… here are some feels which are only peripherally related to Sakako that I’ll attempt to disguise with drama/mystery?

Walking Around (Flying Together)

After the sixth time Sakako summons Hansha on a mission–in all fairness, five of those were legitimate emergencies–the hawk gives her and Dad an ultimatum:

“It was fine when she was still a chick, but now she flies.” Hansha says, wings lifting partially in an awkward imitation of a human shrug. As if she, too, disliked the situation but had no choice but to comply. “She must sign a contract with us or I can no longer fly with her.”

Sakako and Dad exchange a glance. She’s not entirely sure what expression is on her face, but it must be telling, because Dad responds to Hansha with a firm, “One week. I’ll talk to Garuda-sama personally, if need be, but give her one week to decide.”

Hansha bobs her head, another borrowed human gesture, before she leans forward. Sakako, obediently and somewhat sadly, does the same, bowing her head so that Hansha can  fondly preen through her hair even if it’ll mess up her braids.

It won’t be the last time, surely–even if Sakako doesn’t sign the hawk contract, surely Dad can summon Hansha to visit–but it feels so much like the end of something that Sakako can’t help but think she already misses this.

Sakako knows that when it comes to personal matters–emotions and goals and friendships–she’s fairly… slow. She likes taking her time to think things over, analyzing all of her options and pondering the differences. Surely such important life decisions deserve proper consideration?

Mum says it’s definitely her Nara side showing through–“though I’m sure Ino will say it skipped a generation with me”–while Dad says it’s something that the Uchiha clan could have used more of. Either way, it means that her parents are indulgent when she asks them questions about their own choice of summons.

Mum explains her logic: variety in combat abilities, clan tradition, the ever present drive to be stronger, a desperate need for someone she could trust unerringly.

Dad’s reasoning is shorter, but equally weighted: “Hawks eat snakes.”

Her parents are not the only one she asks.

“What about cats?” Itachi-oji suggests.

Sakako shrugs, mouth matching with a twist of uncertainty.

“The Uchiha clan had an alliance with the Neko-baa for generations.”

Sakako nods; she is the heiress, she should know her clan’s past.“I’ve been to Sora-ku,” she says, then considers the possibility. Denka and Hina are competent ninneko, they and their clowder would be reliable and trustworthy partners… but it’s not…

“It’s not what you want?” Itachi-oji asks. Sakako shakes her head.

Back to square one.

Understandably, the rest of the Uchiha clan ghosts aren’t keen on sharing space with the man who killed them.

Sakako has been helping them move on–a blend of her heiress and medium duties–and while some of them eagerly went on to the Pure Land without a second glance, others have elected to stay. Similar to Itachi-oji, but in separate areas of the compound.

Shisui-oji is one of them, but while he also avoids Itachi-oji’s ghost, he does so for an entirely different reason.

She’s been told that the Uchiha bloodline is prone to madness. Obsessive, possessive, consuming love that easily turns into insanity. But Sakako knows better–the most powerful Uchiha manifestation of love is not madness.

It’s guilt.

Mum’s career is long and storied. Literally. The amount of plays and movies inspired by some of her Mum’s adventures would be ridiculous if some of the more accurate and educational ones weren’t also occasionally shown at the Academy. Maybe that makes it even more ridiculous.

But there are some stories that aren’t shared with the public. Some that are just for her, Sakako falling asleep to the sound of Mum’s voice, quiet and somewhat scratchy and soothing despite the action of the tale.

There are a few that Mum holds back–with promises to tell her in the future when she’s older–but there’s one that doesn’t even get a mention.

In fact, the only reason that she knows it exists is because she stumbles on it by accident.

To Sakako, the majority of ghosts look like the living except for a slight translucence that wavers. When she was younger–before she could more clearly discern between them–it used to get her in trouble. She would look at a ghost or move around one and garner attention for her strange behavior. Thankfully she’d never been caught talking to one, but that has more to do with her reticent personality than luck.

The majority of ghosts.

There’s one in particular that looks different.

He glows, which is the biggest difference, a light so bright that she can’t actually make out his features. Just a vague, general shape. The only reason she knows it’s a ghost is because she’s the only one who can see him during the sporadic visits. He only shows up when Mum is around and given her traveling lifestyle, Sakako’s not sure how frequent he checks in with her.

Sakako can’t hear him, if he even is trying or capable of speaking, but she’s pretty sure he waved at her one time.

According to Kisuke-san, his name Aoba Yamashiro and he’s the First. The first what, he won’t elaborate, but the name alone is enough for her to work with.

He died before Sakako’s time, but he is far from forgotten. And besides, death is hardly an obstacle for her.

There’s a lot about the Uchiha which Sakako isn’t proud of–these are the histories which she learns nonetheless, because to forget them puts her fledgling clan in danger and already she will not stand for that–but there are others which are valuable. Tales that, like her Mum’s stories, are an important part of her heritage.

She will not sign a contract with the hawks or the deer, but her parents’ reasons applicable in their own way.

A balance of clan tradition and personal necessity. Flight and shadows, sharp eyes and sharper minds. Someone that she can trust.

Crow summoners may not have had the kindest of fates, but Sakako knows that fate is something that can be changed.

~

A/N2: I’m not terribly keen on the ending… but hopefully it’s still a fun read? Also, for all my pestering of the Holders of Fanon™ I only barely mentioned Shisui?! Ugh, I’m awful… a disgrace to the discord.

13 days until the show!

Ascendant (2018-01-24)

Tobirama-sensei chooses Hiruzen and something you didn’t even know existed within you shatters.

Everything after that is just collateral damage.

The first is an accident.

Or, at least, that’s what the report will say.

A training accident, two wartime soldiers unable to readjust to peacetime sparring.

A misunderstanding, you say, still covered in your teammate’s blood. You thought it was a genjutsu, luring you into a false sense of security.

It’s not completely improbable, is the thing. Kagami is–was–the most mischievous of the now disassembled Team Tobirama, with a flare for genjutsu and tricks. A smile and bright captivating eyes that had nothing to do with the Sharingan.

An Uchiha that even the most stalwart Senju trusted.

The first is an accident.

Decades down the line, you’re not certain if that’s true anymore.

Second and third are easy, the wrong words whispered at the right time.

You are not the only one who got skipped over.

Why Hiruzen? How is he more worthy than us? Were we not all students of the Hokage?

Politics, you’ll hiss at them, a blade sliding between ribs right into their hearts.

An enticing weapon, but ultimately a trap.

Shisui’s eye is a redundancy.

Fourth bows out before you can do anything.

Torifu was there during the first, he remembers it as well as you do.

Better maybe.

He steps aside and for that you turn your attention away from him, from his clan, and their vassals.

In your last moments, you will wonder if that was your fatal mistake.

For a while, you think that is enough. Prove your worth and sweep away those in front of you, it is only a matter of time before Hiruzen’s weakness provides an opportunity.

But time does not stand still. Soon fifth through seventh arise.

Children, compared to you. Literally. Hiruzen’s students. What do they know of war? Of sacrifice? They do not have the experience.

But youth and talent–and pedigree in young Tsunade’s case–is not something so easily dismissed.

For now you can do nothing–nothing overt, at least–but they are primed to tear themselves apart.

It doesn’t take much to help that along.

Eighth, you almost regret.

He is the youngest, certainly, but you were once a child in war–surely if your sensei’s grand nephew were actually worthy, he would have survived.

Perhaps it’s the loss of the Mokuton that you regret.

The ninth was never truly a threat, a dreaming boy with no real claim.

But Konoha was built on dreams and you will not let some upstart stand in your way.

The White Fang of Konoha, a silly moniker that somehow strikes fear into enemy hearts.

As formidable on his own as Hiruzen’s brats are altogether.

No, this won’t do at all.

It is not enough for him to die, you need to destroy him utterly–his career, his reputation, his spirit.

You are ruthless with the tenth.

Every so often, you push them along–fifth and sixth and seventh succumbing to their own flaws–weaknesses that would have been exploited by enemies of Konoha.

Cowardice, fear, so quick to run away from what should be her only priority.

Obsessive and vain, so easy to distract and lead astray.

Foolish and sentimental, desperate for approval.

You are protecting your village by exposing them–what else reason could there be?

(You overreached with The Salamander, the man who titled Hiruzen’s students. You thought it would be a simple trade of services, a mutual extermination of brats.

But foreign shinobi are hardly worth the effort; the deal is dropped.

Konoha first.)

(Uzushio is a separate matter, but their lives are long and their memories longer.

Mito-sama was always biased against you.

Konoha will never be able to achieve its true potential with them forever poised above.)

Time marches on.

You uproot those you can, prune those you can’t, but they sprout like weeds beneath your feet.

That absolute infant that Hiruzen chooses may have made a name for himself during the war, but he is nothing more than dandelion fluff easily blown away in the breeze.

Konoha is better off without him.

You remember the first.

Uchiha that even the most stalwart Senju could trust.

There might as well be no more Senju, but the sentiment applies. Shisui follows in Kagami’s footsteps and the clan head’s brat has far too much potential.

You remember the first.

You remember that Konoha was built by two clans.

One is near to extinct. Surely the village can also survive without the other.

Hiruzen is old, weighed down by years and loss and having to put on the hat for a second time.

Or so he says.

You wouldn’t know, you’ve never worn it.

He is so completely unaware of all that you do for Konoha, so blind and soft. He walks amongst the villagers, a kindly, foolish grandfather instead of the unyielding pillar of strength that he should be.

He is a disgrace.

(He was your friend, once.

Now he is forever imprisoned within the belly of the Shinigami.)

(Kagami was your friend, once, too.)

Everything is just collateral damage.

~

A/N: … EURAGHRURH!! I’m disgusted with myself. But, okay, like. This is not meant to be apologetic or sympathizing for Danzo–I literally just wanted to experiment and see if I could get into his headspace and it… I dunno. Did it work? YEURGH, gross gross gross.

Brought about because of the massive hate-on for Danzo that’s going on in the discord, and the ongoing theory that he sabotaged every prospective Hokage candidate in the past fifty years. If it’s not clear who is who: 1 – Kagami Uchiha, 2 – Homura Mitokado, 3 – Koharu Utatane, and 4 – Torifu Akimichi were the other members of Team Tobirama. 5 – Tsunade, 6 – Orochimaru, 7 – Jiraiya. 8 – Nawaki (aka Tsunade’s younger brother). 9 – Dan Katou (aka Tsunade’s boyfriend). 10 – Sakumo Hatake. And then Minato who did succeed at getting the hat because his career trajectory was frankly ludicrous and too quick for Danzo to squash. And then Shisui and Itachi because those dang Uchiha.

I am not too keen on the ending (as per usual for me) given that I didn’t think I should end at the Chuunin Exams but I didn’t want to get into the whole Tsunade is Godaime and the whole constant undermining of her authority, even though I did kind of want to get to the point where Danzo dies? Should I have just stopped at the whole Uchiha it comes full circle thing? … maybe…

Arguably, if you ignore the line in the Torifu section, then this could be Naruto-canon compliant? But obviously I wrote it with DoS in mind. And I am hoping that Shikako is at least tangentially involved in Danzo’s downfall which is another reason why I didn’t go past the Chuunin Exams because… I have no idea what that downfall is going to look like. Fantastic, I assume.

I love your pkmn headcanon where growlithes are abundant in konoha b/c it’s the land of /fire/, aha. the uchiha police prob used a lot of arcanines and growlithes too! so, team7 is probably even weirder now because it’s shikako who is the one with a growlithe.

Land of Fire just thematically makes more sense if it’s because there’s an abundance of Fire types. I mean, I’m definitely not going by the traditional generations, so I might as well have some sort of organization. Which isn’t to say that other types can’t be found in different countries (especially near villages which deliberately cultivate different types) but naturally the types correspond.

Here’s the thing about the Growlithe and Arcanine, though, is that I’m still not entirely sure how to resolve the issue of Inuzuka’s ninken? Like. I already gave Kakashi the all dog team, and having all of an Inuzuka’s team be dogs kind of reduces the strong bond they have with their ninken equivalent. But I also don’t want the Inuzuka to only have ONE Pokemon (except for Hana, who would have three).

Hm… I don’t think I’d restrict the Inuzuka’s ninken to a specific species, so maybe some of them do have Growlithe/Arcanine?

But I digress–your question was about whether or not the Uchiha (and specifically, the Uchiha in the KMP) would also have Growithe/Arcanine. And I think yes, but it would be a “lesser Uchiha” kind of thing because they are so common. The Talonflame flocks are specifically bred–they’ve got pedigrees and such–to have a Growlith would be kind of like adopting a mutt. (Which, I mean, is MY dream to do, but beneath a Noble Clan).

So as the sons of the clan head, neither Itachi or Sasuke would have had a Growlithe, but some of the other Uchiha would have. Like Shisui, probably, given Arcanine are known for their high speeds (and majestic manes) and maaaybe Obito–though I do prefer the idea of him with a Cyndaquil, instead.

I have a feeling that Uchiha who did join the KMP probably all had a Salamence or a Haxorus–as a unifying species amongst the police officers, but also because it kind of contributes to how frightening and alienating the Uchiha became to the rest of the village. Like, these massive armored dragons? O_O

image
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The future KMP would probably benefit from having Growlithes and Arcanines instead.

~

A/N: Check out the Ask Box Advent Calendar!

“Snapdragon” for Shisui/Shikako, if you feel comfortable with it? I’m really enjoying the Gardens!Shikako verse going on in the Recursive thread on FFnet, and I think these two would have an interesting dynamic in another reality

I had to do some sleuthing to figure out what you were talking about, anon, because while I love the recursive fic forums, they also frighten me a little. My completionist tendencies won’t let me do it unless there’s a specific ‘verse I’m reading, so if nothing else I appreciate the fic rec; wafflelate is a fantastic author!

I am going to specify, though, that this is based mostly on wafflelate’s linked posts… the “canon” thread, if you will, because I’m not sure what else has been accepted as true or not. Although I did like the idea that… wait, hold up, *SPOILERS* y’all. I’d suggest checking out wafflelate’s The Many Gardens of Shikabane-hime before reading this, otherwise it won’t make much sense.

Anyway…

I liked the not-(yet?)-canon idea that Konoha interprets Shisui’s testimony as Shikako being a Senju descendant with the Mokuton and blood access to the vault (in order to steal the lightsaber). And I’m also liking “Kamiko” as her name as derived from “Kako” since “Shikako” is a little too obvious for her parentage, though given her penchant for shadow jutsu, they are aware she is also Nara.

I’m personally going to go with the idea that Shikako’s existence is fairly unique in the multiverse–maybe in the style of Lady Hallen and Fragile Dreams, in that Shikamaru was born a twin but said twin did not live through the Kyuubi’s corrosive chakra eighteen days later–so “Kamiko” is the only (living) Shikako in this universe.

Now, all that being said, anon, Shisui/Shikako as a ship in the Gardens!verse is rather compelling and I love your choice of title. It harkens to both Gardens and DoS, and given the meaning of snapdragons is deception that works pretty damn well for both Shikako and Shisui. Perfection!

Snapdragons can also mean grace under pressure and inner strength which is also pretty apt for both of them as well. However, in Japanese hanakotoba, it can signify a range of meanings, such as foresight, shamelessness, or an intrusive person. Which… also sort of works? And… apparently they look like skulls when they wilt? Dang, I am learning so much.

… er… enough fawning on my part!

So the main problem I’m seeing is that Shikako will always be trying to go back home (after she’s made sure that Kakashi is relatively safe) and unless that can be definitely closed as an option, then that will stay between her and anyone else that is not Kakashi and prevent her from getting close. Then again, Shisui is the kind of person who is best friends with Itachi, so it’s not like a couple (hundred) secrets will frighten him off.

But I do think that is an issue that needs to be resolved before Shikako can start to put down roots (heeeeeey) and get emotionally involved with this particular dimension, much less its people (besides this Kakashi), even much much less some Uchiha who she’s never met before.

A simple way would be to have Gelel tell her that what she wants can’t happen. Sure she can use their power to go into another dimension, but she’ll never get back to her specific dimension. The multiverse is vast with all sort of dimensions forming and dying and brushing past each other. They’re not linear paths she can just jump across, or even tangled strings that–if she just finds the right one–she can just track back home. Each dimension is more like a air molecule, bouncing around and past each other, no bonds holding them in any semblance of order. The dimension she came from has long since blown beyond her reach and there is no wind that can bring her home. At best, she’ll just doom herself to traveling forever, bouncing between dimensions that get further and further away from something she can recognize.

That’s bleak, sorry, but I really do think it needs to be a definitive no, otherwise she will always try to go home. As for how the Gelel know this, well… they did create a massive seal that still worked for centuries after their empire fell and was forgotten so… if Shikako and the Uzumaki could create three dimensional seals (which Konoha are baffled by) then whose to say the Gelel weren’t also super sealing genii.

With that out of the way the story then becomes smaller. It’s no longer about Shikako fighting the cosmic flow of time and space–pausing only to help someone who is very similar to her teacher–but rather a more intimate story about a figurative fish out of water settling into a village which has no idea what to do with her.

That’s the kind of setting we need here, anon.

So as I said earlier, I did quite like the idea of Shikako being assumed to be a SenjuxNara descendant. From there–and I don’t know if someone else thought of this already, but if they have then sorry–I like the idea that in order to resolve Kakashi’s “PR nightmare” (or whatever it was that got him named comrade-killer) with her sudden appearance and bewildering heritage, that they (probably Tsunade) say that he was on a “secret undercover mission from the Sandaime” to protect the last Senju from Danzo.

And, well, he’s dead so who’s to say he didn’t. Also, it worked for Itachi, kind of, so…

Unfortunately, Shikako no longer has her uncle’s earrings–but that could have sort of explained how Kamiko learned shadow jutsu so long Ikoma had a interesting shinobi career with several unaccounted for gaps. Maybe he was ANBU or MAYBE he was training a secret SenjuxNara child?! He’s dead too, no one can say otherwise!

… I’m getting very off track, I think.

Basically what I’m saying is, Shisui would fit perfectly in this political subterfuge campaign and if anyone’s going to bring the Uchiha clan out of their pariah-hood it would be a ridiculously powerful Senju x Nara who has, if not hard evidence, then an easily proven list of Danzo’s crimes and intended crimes.

Also, she killed Orochimaru, so shut up. (FINE, Kakashi helped A LITTLE, but he’s the only one who can say anything)

Speaking of, Kakashi would probably be one of the few people to tease her about the Shisui thing. Like, everyone else is super serious around her and is just “yes, what a politically advantageous match,” or “whatever the crazy powerful badass wants, she gets” whereas he’s just like… “ah, my adorable little kouhai, growing up so fast.”

I think this is all I got, anon, sorry for being slightly incoherent about it and thanks again for pointing me in the direction of Gardens!verse.

~

Ask Box Event Now Open!

Fake Fic Title: “Fear Death By Water”. Shisui Uchiha (from the TS Eliot poem)

I had to look up this poem, anon, because my English education was not as expansive as it, perhaps, ought to have been? Anyway, I think I understand it but if I don’t, then uh… please enjoy this abstract interpretation?

So title alone, Fear Death By Water, is very much so a Shisui fic, but the content of the poem also rings very true. A premonition of doom and how all efforts in life are essentially made useless in death. Or, at least, “profit” and business efforts.

There’s a bit of futility in there that’s beautifully Shisui, but I wonder if it’s too on the nose for his last few weeks/days of life. Like… this title would be very apt for a fic for Shisui POV in the weeks up to the massacre.

Unless…

Is this a time traveling!Shisui fic in the waiting, perhaps? Oh! Or, a time traveling!someone else but from Shisui’s POV?

… yeah, I think I like that better. BUT WHO?

The obvious choice would be Itachi–or maybe Sasuke–then again, there’s also Obito which would have international repercussions and not just internal Konoha consequences…

But you know who I would love to see more of in fic? Kisame.

And, like, okay. Hear me out: I know Itachi’s a stoic bastard and, his whole “actually a spy” thing wouldn’t have made him particularly chatty, but if fanon has it right (and I like to think it does for a lot of things) then Shisui was the most important person to Itachi (besides Sasuke, that is) and I like to think that he wouldn’t want to have his memory be completely forgotten even if he’s sharing it with a Mist nuke nin who he’s spying on.

So Kisame probably knows something about Shisui–and even after the whole “actually a spy for Konoha” I like to think he’s still somewhat fond of Itachi.

Mist is, as far as he’s concerned, a lost cause–though there is a possibility for a neat Zabuza and Haku cameo–but Itachi was kind of the closest thing he had to a best friend for years so…

And also, on principle, Danzo is just the WORST for him since Kisame hates lies. And Danzo is, like, the fount from which most lies in the Naruto ‘verse spring or something like that.

Anyway: time traveling!Kisame from Shisui’s POV.

Which, simply stated like that, I think has quite the potential for an interesting long fic. There’s drama, there’s mystery, there’s comedy, there could be romance?

I think Kisame has always been ludicrously powerful in canon–there wasn’t really any major bullshit power ups for him so much as it was he just never got pushed to the point of needing to use all of his power (HE TOOK ON A TAILED BEAST SOLO, WTF?!)–so him traveling back in time, whether into his younger self’s body or physically, wouldn’t make too much difference.

And that just means there’s a ridiculously powerful Mist nuke nin going around taking politically impactful actions.

And, like, can you imagine? A fic from Shisui’s POV in which first thing that happens is that Danzo, his own personal boogeyman and bane of his family, gets randomly assassinated by a random Mist nuke nin? Like… what?

Shisui was prepared to have his best friend MURDER him in order to protect said best friend and family and village (though, I mean, that second one didn’t really work out to plan) and instead it’s like… what the hell? What?

And at first, Konoha is like… DEFCON 1 we’ve been infiltrated and one of our Elders has been attacked… but then once Danzo’s UTTER BULLSHIT starts to get revealed, Konoha is just… oh. That’s… helpful?

Maybe they try to recruit Kisame? If they do, guess who’s on the team sent to track/recruit him? 😀

Uh… this has kind of gotten away from the prompt, I think, but it’s a pretty cool premise… right?

~

Ask Box Event Now Open!

Down Every Road: Or, Some Ways Shikako and Sasuke Get Together, 1/? (2016-04-09)

jacksgreysays:

jacksgreysays:

(one: arranged marriage)

Shikaku’s daughter is a quiet creature. Content, but silent; solitary. She would rather read books or watch the grazing deer or follow in his and Yoshino’s footsteps than go outside and play with the other children.

It’s nothing to be worried about: Shikamaru is much the same, switching shogi for books and deer for clouds, though he, at least, has Chouji. Shikaku had been self-contained as a child, too, it is the way of most Nara children, he thinks, though he remembers, hazily, how Ikoma had been a little more active.

Eventually Shikako will come out of her shell–or perhaps she won’t, there is no rushing these things, pressure will only make the matter worse–Shikaku is prepared to be patient with his daughter.

Patience is not the problem.

“You want… what?” Shikaku asks, blindsided for the first time in three years–the last time had been when the ambassador from Cloud double crossed them and tried to kidnap the Hyuuga heiress–and by his own daughter no less.

His tiny, quiet daughter, who looks up at him, head tilted slightly, as if he’s the one acting oddly. “An engagement,” she says, with an odd twist to her mouth, as if the very word is bitter on her tongue, “to Sasuke Uchiha.”

He looks at Yoshino who also has an expression of bewilderment on her face.

“Shikako, sweetheart,” she says, stalling for time, trying to parse her thoughts, doing a better job than he is at the moment. “Just because you have a crush on this boy, it doesn’t mean you need to marry him. You can,” she pauses, glances at Shikaku, finding some sort of comfort from him, “Start small, honey, try being his friend first.”

It’s sound advice, truly; it probably would have ended the conversation if this were in fact a discussion about a girl with a crush on a boy.

It is not.

“I don’t have a crush on him,” Shikako says, entirely honest, no hint of embarrassed denial in her tone, “I don’t want this for me, I want this for…”

She drifts off. Neither he or Yoshino want to interrupt, and so they stay silent as she thinks. Searching for the right words.

“It’s the smart thing to do.”

[She is only a child, an untrained child, but what is the point of having this knowledge if not to save lives? She cannot stop this as a shinobi, not with her chakra hypersensitivity and her less than a year’s worth of training, not against S-class ninja who would sooner kill her than look at her.

But in this world she is not only a child. She is a Nara. The clan head’s only daughter, and that means something.

The Uchiha were isolated, seething and resentful, planning for a coup against a village that had already betrayed them. But what if she could change that? What if somehow, she could bring them back into the fold? The Uchiha were one of the founding clans of Konoha, and they just have to be reminded of this fact.

She is a Nara, and with her comes her clan. And where her clan goes, the Akimichi and the Yamanaka follow. And four clans is enough, has to be enough. Danzo cannot kill them all, not when the Akimichi are so deeply entrenched in the civilian sectors. Not when the Yamanaka pervade every branch of the shinobi forces. Not when her father is the Jounin Commander, as his father was before him, as, likely, his son will be after him.

She can do this. This isn’t something that requires chakra and jutsu and strength she doesn’t yet have and might never get. And, anyway, marriage is such a small thing to sacrifice to save so many lives and to prevent so much grief and hardship. It may not have to be a sacrifice at all. Sasuke, as she knows him from the past, was a product of his tragedy, twisted and angry and bitter but still with some moments of kindness and courage. Sasuke as she knows him now is just a little boy, but there is still kindness in him, and maybe some courage. More smiles, that’s for sure.

She will marry him and maybe they’ll become friends, maybe they’ll grow to love one another, maybe they’ll be happy together. But even if they don’t, even if they are cold to each other, civil colleagues forced to live together, then she’d still do it.

It’s the smart thing to do.]

~

A/N: Well… that was a quicker turn around time than I thought it would be. Also… I was supposed to go to sleep three hours ago but… oh well.

This is for you, anon, who wanted some Shikako/Sasuke. But that’s not all! As you can tell from the title I will be doing more installments of this in the future. Probably not as quickly–but it will definitely happen! Though, I’d definitely appreciate some Shikasuke-specific prompts to help with future installments

Title (or at least, the main title, not the subtitle) is from the song “The Only Dream” by Tyrone & Elina because it’s one of the few love songs in my favorites playlist and also it kind of works really well for the Shikasuke ship. Not this particular ficlet, but the general vibe I get of the ship from DoS.

Further Down Road One, (2016-04-15)

(shogi)

Someone is testing his patience–unfortunately, Danzo doesn’t know who.

His plan to destroy the Uchiha and steal their Sharingan–justified by preventing a coup, of course–has been thwarted by a single engagement. Which ought to point out the culprit as that upstart Nara clan head, especially given his tenacious tracking of supplies Danzo has appropriated for ROOT, except there is more:

The Merchant’s Guild, primarily a civilian organization, has begun making inquiries into some of Danzo’s less legitimate businesses–though they are several times removed from himself. The Intel Division, who aren’t worth the title shinobi, are enacting a stricter review over mission assignments and reports, restricting his soldiers’ movements.

The Uchiha Police Force–yet another reason to exterminate those overpowered menaces–have received anonymous tips, turning certain deaths from “accidental” to “potential foul play.” Most are easily avoided, but some lead directly to the younger recruits recently orphaned on his orders.

It is too many instances to be Shikaku Nara, beyond his scope as Nara clan head and Jounin Commander. And yet, the timing is far too suspicious to be merely coincidental.

Someone is testing his patience.

[She is still a Nara, no matter what she’s consigned herself to be in the future, and there are some parts of her heritage that she refuses to lose. Shogi may seem like such a small thing, but it is a connection she refuses to sever. She will remember these soft, lazy days with her parents and her brother fondly.

Also, the lessons are useful.

She has stepped into a shogi game spanning the entire village. Danzo has his political contacts, his wealth, and ROOT as his pieces. In opposition are her clans–present and future–their allies, and herself.

Danzo is paranoid, increasingly so, but not enough to correctly guess the identity of his opponent.

Shikako is piece and player, both.]

(friendship)

He is so busy straddling the line between clan heir and loyal ANBU that when news of his little brother’s engagement finally makes it’s way through the fog of stress and desperation, Itachi is completely blindsided.

Shisui is, too, so it’s not like he has any high ground to stand on. “Your little sister in law is very cute.”

“Future sister in law,” Itachi says back, just to be contrary, “Also, she’s six.”

“Yeah, which is why I said cute; smart, too, quiet, though,” he smirks, “She reminds me of you, actually,” he says pointedly enough that Itachi meets his eyes in curiosity.

There is danger in speaking out loud, unsure of who may hear, and so Itachi and Shisui have developed their own silent language.

Shisui can’t actually be thinking about bringing a six year old into their counter conspiracy, can he?

“She’s six,” Itachi repeats out loud.

“And what were you doing when you were six?” Shisui responds, dryly, “Anyway, I’m not saying we do anything until you actually talk to her.”

Itachi hums noncommittally.

“Ask her about the engagement,” Shisui suggests, “about whose idea it was.”

[She isn’t really expecting to make friends, doesn’t have the time to, what with the silent war she’s undertaken. She has her brother, she doesn’t really need anyone else. And anyway, allies are one thing, but friends? Not likely.]

(cats)

Mikoto has always had a soft spot for Sasuke: he is her baby, after all, unlike Itachi who has the weight of Fugaku and the clan elder’s expectations. Which is why she keeps such a close eye on her daughter-in-law to be. Mikoto is not against the engagement–Shikako Nara is a good match for her youngest son, and a sweet girl from what she’s seen–but she’ll be damned if her baby ends up in a marriage that makes him miserable.

As it is, perhaps she is too busy expecting the worst, focusing on Shikako instead of Sasuke, because he seems to be quite content with the engagement. Happy, even. Maybe even in love–though they are both only twelve and it is too early to say–at the very least, on the path to it.

Sasuke is her baby, so she was planning to pass down her summoning contract to him, but it appears as if he has other ideas:

“It’s an Uchiha contract,” Fugaku denies, never mind that it’s not even his decision to make, trying to divert his youngest son from this notion with a cold tone of voice.

But Sasuke holds his head up, standing firm against his father, and easily says, “Shikako will be my wife. She will be an Uchiha.”

The confidence, the devotion, the clear, pure conviction that he is right, that he will do this for his bride-to-be, no matter what his father–who might as well have been his god–says. It doesn’t matter what Mikoto thinks of Shikako Nara, not really, because she knows enough about the girl from this single moment to know. Sasuke may not love her yet, but he’s definitely on the way: as far as Mikoto is concerned, if Shikako is worthy of that, then she can be worthy Mikoto’s other legacy.

[She knows there is a deer summons. Knows that, because of the engagement, she will never be allowed to sign it. She may be a Nara for now, but she will not be in the future, and and children she has will be Uchiha not Nara. The deer contract should remain in the clan, she knows that, it’s enough that she still gets to learn shadow jutsu.

It’s a minor thing, anyway, summoning. There are powerful shinobi who don’t have summoning contracts and it’s not like she was guaranteed to have the deer summons, anyway. It was just a spare thought. Something that would have been nice to have–not something she needs. She resigns herself, something she’s been doing a lot of, to never being a summoner.

Except Sasuke changes that. His mother has a contract, and while it was originally meant to be for him, he’s convinced her to offer it to Shikako. And that still doesn’t guarantee anything–maybe the cats won’t like her, maybe they’ll reject her as a summoner–but it’s far more than she was expecting.

Cats are not deer, and being an Uchiha bride is not the same as being a Nara daughter, but it’s more than what she was expecting. More than enough.]

~

A/N: @book14reader and I had a very lengthy discussion (transcript here) about the consequences of a Shikasuke engagement. Primarily? The Problem of Danzo. And while I still basically sidestepped the issue, I thought it was important enough to brush over. In a way, this AU’s ultimate Big Bad isn’t Akatsuki or Madara, it’s Danzo. So… there you go.

Also, the other two were just kind of cute thoughts… and two POVs who I probably wouldn’t be able to do otherwise? Given… the obvious.

Even Further Down Road One (2016-06-04)

(friendship–jealousy)

“Little brother,” Itachi says, barely a warning before he musses Saskue’s hair. Now that he’s a genin with the forehead protector to go with it, his brother can no longer do his usual greeting flick. But Itachi has adapted easily, finding another way to simultaneously express fondness and casually exert dominance.

“Aniki!” he complains, trying to straighten the mess.

“Little sister. Naruto-kun,” Itachi continues, instead, gently tugging on Shikako’s braid. Which is, frankly, unfair. The idiot also gets treated to a hair ruffle, but considering his hair is always a mess, it hardly makes a difference.

“Itachi,” Shikako says with a smile, “What are you doing here?”

Here being Team Seven’s usual training grounds, sans their jounin sensei since no one knows where Kakashi might be at any given point in time. Certainly not where he’s supposed to be.

“We both just got back from missions and we wanted to check up on our favorite genin,” Itachi answers, with a smile of his own.

An evil smile.

“We?” Sasuke repeats, dread already pooling in his stomach.

“Sasuke-chan!” A terrible voice rings out before, yet again, a hand ruins his just neatened hair.

Shisui.

Fortunately, the offender moves on to a different victim. “Naruto! What embarrassing things has my baby cousin been up to?” Never mind–it’s unfortunate.

“Shisui!” Shikako says, delight in her tone and eyes. She doesn’t even flinch away when the bastard pulls her into a hug. “I thought you weren’t coming back for another week.”

“Well,” Shisui half shrugs, one arm staying around Shikako’s shoulders. Unnecessarily. “I couldn’t just let my adorable little sister languish without her favorite Uchiha.”

Okay, that’s it.

“Go away!” Sasuke shouts, just barely resisting the urge to physically shove Shisui away because that might jostle Shikako with his proximity. “Go bother your own team!” Because maybe that’ll work. “And she’s not your sister,” he adds.

“Little brother,” Itachi sighs, shaking his head in disappointment, “There’s no need to be rude.”

Shisui, infuriatingly, just smirks. “It’s okay, Itachi. I understand,” he nods, smirk growing wider, “Puberty.”

The inarticulate noise that claws its way out of his throat does more to ward off his brother and cousin, because–after yet another set of hair ruffling–they leave.

“Jeez, Sasuke,” Naruto says, because he never met a situation that he didn’t decide to aggravate immediately, “What’s wrong with you?”

Shikako is too tactful to ask, but looks equally interested in his answer. Sasuke tries not to blush, already embarrassed at how easily flustered he was.

“Nothing,” he mutters, “Let’s just spar already.”

Hopefully by the time Kakashi arrives, she’ll have forgotten his complete lack of cool.

(shogi–respect)

Sasuke has known–ever since they were children at the Academy, even before their engagement–that Shikako is a genius.

Sure, it probably started as a childish, self-absorbed acknowledgement–anyone smarter than him had to be a genius by default–but now that they are older, Sasuke has realized just how much of a genius his fianceé truly is.

She is constantly working on one project or another, always improving herself to tackle even bigger challenges. She sees beyond what everyone else can, always three steps ahead. So why would she do this?

“I’m not going to fight my brother,” she repeats, after returning to the viewing area, after forfeiting to Shikamaru of all people–the laziest person Sasuke has ever met.

He doesn’t understand. Even if her relationship with her brother is different from  his relationship with Itachi–which is, admittedly, probably more of a one-sided competition than a true sibling rivalry–that doesn’t mean she was only left with the one option. The preliminaries are hardly death matches, and it’s not as if she couldn’t have at least sparred against Shikamaru. Chances are, if it had required even a modicum of effort, Shikamaru would have been the one to forfeit first.

Sasuke doesn’t actually say so out loud, wouldn’t want to verbally undermine her decision in front of so many people, but she can probably see the confusion in the slant of his eyebrows, the twist of his mouth. Shikako’s always been able to read him so easily.

She smiles back at him, a poor attempt at reassurance given the tightness in the corners of her eyes. He likes to think he can read her just as well.

“Who knows the next time my brother will ever get close enough to a promotion?” She tries to joke, and while that’s enough to put off the others, it’s not enough for him.

Softer, so only their team can hear, she adds, “There’s a different battle I need to prepare for,” her tone tamped down to something serious, almost concerned.

He doesn’t understand, and neither does Naruto from the look on his face, but Kakashi seems to. For now, at least, Sasuke will trust their jounin sensei on this matter–at least until Shikako is ready to reveal more.

Somehow, even though she’s the only member of their team not part of the third round, Shikako trains harder than either of he or Naruto during the month long gap. Sasuke’s time is split between Itachi and Kakashi, Naruto’s split between Kakashi and some weird old pervert he randomly happened across, apparently, but Shikako? Has been participating in training with Kakashi, Itachi, Naruto’s old perverted mentor, Shisui, her parents, and even Sasuke’s mother. He would call it major overkill if it didn’t seem so important to her.

Just what is she preparing for, anyway?

The answer comes soon enough when, in the middle of his fight against Gaara, a genjutsu falls over the arena.

An invasion–by Sand and the snake bastard who tried to bite him in the Forest of Death–what the hell?

Sasuke goes after Gaara and his siblings because, well, he’s already fighting him so why not? Shikako and a bunch of the other Rookie Nine appear not long after, and if he weren’t so glad to see her, he’d probably be confused as to how easily she steps up and takes charge of the situation. As is, he’s still pretty damned impressed. Also, proud.

Now he understands why she forfeited during the preliminaries. An exam? A promotion? Those don’t mean anything in the grand scheme of things.

This is the Shikako he knows–observing everything, three steps ahead and already reacting. A genius.

And he’s going to marry that girl.

(cats–affection)

Usually when Shikako and his mother train together, Sasuke tries not to hang around. He doesn’t want to distract them and, plus, he gave up his right to the cat summons. Also, sometimes, their training devolves into his mother regaling Shikako with baby stories which he’d rather not be around for. Bad enough that she hears them; if he’s not there to witness it, at least he has plausible deniability.

But given that they do train at the house and he, well, lives there, he can’t always avoid it.

Thankfully this time the two of them are actually summoning cats.

“Summoning Jutsu!” Shikako calls out, a familiar pattern of ink spreading from her fingertips. The chakra smoke is minimal, because Shikako has always had excellent chakra control, but the result is still… less than ideal.

A kitten mewls curiously, before shakily walking around.

Shikako sighs.

“Well,” his mother says diplomatically, “At least this one’s capable of moving.”

Shikako sighs again, even louder. Disheartened, she sits: legs crossed, elbows on her knees, head propped in her hands. She watches the kitten makes its sluggish trek across the floor.

“You’re actually doing quite well,” his mother tries again, “I didn’t even start learning how to summon until I was older than you.”

It doesn’t appear to be working, even though Shikako nods politely.

And it’s not as if Sasuke thinks he can do any better, but he hates seeing her so dejected. So he takes a seat beside her, scoops up the kitten, and holds it out to her. He tries to smile at her: it’s only strained as it is because he’s risking hearing really embarrassing childhood stories about himself and also the kitten apparently hates him and is using it’s tiny claws and teeth on his hands. What the hell, it might be breaking skin.

Shikako understands, because she gives a soft chuckle before taking the summon from his hands. Unsurprisingly, it stops fighting, rubbing it’s face affectionately against her skin.

Sasuke doesn’t need to say anything: he just sits quietly at her side and lets her know he’s there for her, no matter what.

~

A/N: God, Sasuke, way to be SUPER obvious about how totally in love with Shikako you are! That’s embarrassing… 😀

For this anon–I tweaked the prompts a bit, but hopefully you’ll still enjoy this. But seriously, y’all need to let me go down the other roads already. 😛

I’ll upload this to ao3 later.