If I had to assign Hinata a colour, it would be purple or blue. Maybe somewhere in between. It would most definitely be one of those colours. Colours, Sai has told me are cool colours. I would agree with that, coz Hinata is one of the coolest, calmest people I know. And that effect is contagious. Her very presence is calming, even on me: Naruto Uzumaki, next Hokage of Konoha.
I know Ive said that a lot over the years
and people think somethings wrong with me if I dont say it. But this time its true. Ill be taking over for Tsunade-baa-chan soon after Ero-sennins memorial. She said shes tired, thats shes had enough of watching the people she cares about most, die.
Its been five years now since Jiraiya died, five years since Team 7 and Team 8 set out on our mission to collect information on Sasukes whereabouts. It wasnt supposed to turn out like it did, and only little good came of the seemingly endless battles. We lost Ero-sennin, that was the only fatality on our side, thank Kami
though it was still one too many.
Our meeting with Kabuto, our battle with Tobi
or rather Madara Uchiha as we found out soon afterwards. We won that battle, but his demise is still to come. We did avenge Ero-sennin, killing Pain
and Konan soon after. We found Sasuke, but with the help of his new teammates (Even now, if I mention Karins name around her, Sakura looks pained) he escaped. And hes still out there.
I distinctly remember the trip back to Konoha. Hinata was on my back, having broken a leg in her battle with Konan. Sai and Kiba were riding on Akamaru
and I had refused to carry Sai. And Sakura
she couldnt heal them, she was exhausted. She was exhausted of chakra, and emotionally exhausted. Just seeing that girl Karin hug Sasuke, even though he pushed her away, had broken Sakuras heart. As Id carried Hinata on my back, Sakura walked along beside me, crying silently. Even then, broken and sore, Hinata had consoled Sakura, talking to her quietly. I remember feeling extremely grateful towards Hinata, because Id felt totally helpless, unable to help my best friend in her time of need.
When wed set up camp for a night, Sakura went straight to bed, and I knew she was crying herself to sleep. Shino, Kiba and Sai followed suit soon after, crawling into the tent that all four of us guys had to share. Kakashi-sensei and Yamato-sensei booby-trapped the area and then set up their tent, and I swear within a minute, I could hear them both snoring. Only after that, did I set Hinata down off my back. Id been reluctant to do so beforehand because I knew every movement caused her pain.
I remember her sharp intake of breath the moment I sat her on a log, and Id spun around and apologised immediately. Being Hinata, sweet and calm Hinata, shed waved it off, blushing and not meeting my gaze. She even apologised about being a burden, but I set her straight, telling her how awesome she was. I remember feeling awkward after that, feeling Id said too much, and when she softly touched my hand, I remember the blush that warmed my cheeks.
She misread the situation, probably thought Id been thinking about Sakura, and shed said that Sakura would be alright, that her heart would heal. Even though her words did soothe me, that hadnt been what Id been thinking about. I hadnt been thinking about Sakura, Id been thinking about her. I looked at her in that moment, and as our eyes met, I opened my mouth and began rambling. I dont even remember what I said. I know I mentioned the battle with Madara, and Pain and Konan. I do remember telling her she was amazing, that shed improved a lot over the two and a half years Id been gone. She blushed then, and I blushed, because for some reason, it clicked, and I understood her feelings
her feelings about me. All the glances, all the smiles, all the blushes
and the fainting, I realised what it all meant.
As all this had been going through my head, I hadnt realised Hinata was talking to me, but I caught her last words, when she said shed missed me while I was away, but was proud
and that in itself was foreign to me
at how must Id improved, how much Id matured.
As she trailed off, I realised that she hadnt stuttered, and she was looking me straight in the eye as she gave me all these new, wonderful compliments Id never heard from anyone, directed at me. I couldnt think of anything to say. Id never imagined someone would miss me, would be proud of me, would believe in me that much
would like me that much; thus I had no verbal answer to give, no response. For once I was at a loss for words.
So I did the only thing I could think of.
I kissed her.
As I kissed her, thoughts of gratitude were swirling through me head, and I realised that was not enough basis for taking a kiss from her. I pulled away. But as I did, I looked at the girl Id kissed. The incredibly sweet, impossibly nice, amazingly strong young woman who, Id just realised, had feelings for me that ran deeper than friendship. Memories of our Academy days flittered though me head, she had never laughed at me along with the other students, never teased me, never taunted me, never looked down at me. I realised in that infinitesimal second that Hinata Hyuga was someone that I wanted to get to know a lot better, someone who was worthy of my time, was worth becoming closer with. Why waste my time trying to impress people whod spent my whole childhood hurting me?
These thoughts, all of them, had occurred in the space of three seconds, I dont know how, and to this day, I dont care, but I am forever grateful they did. Hinata had whispered my name then, and as Id focused back on this amazing girl, this beautiful woman, I saw her eyes were slowly opening. Then, mind filled with thoughts of reciprocation and awe, I leaned in and kissed her again.
After that second kiss, which lasted well over a minute, we talked. She confessed then, telling me shed had a crush on me since our Academy days, and I remember the guilt that washed through me for not noticing her feelings
not noticing her, sooner. And I told her that, and everything that had gone through my mind in those three seconds in between our two kisses. What she said then, those unselfish, unforgettable words, have stuck with me these last five years, and are undoubtedly the reason why Tsunade-baa-chan chose me as her successor.
Naruto-kun, even though some people may not deserve your attention, your worth
your time, you should do so anyway. To be the bigger man is to be the better man.
Looking back on it now, I realise she was speaking from experience. Her father, her family, her clan, for so many years, belittled her and ignored her. She however, rose to the challenge and proved her worth, gaining their acceptance. For their benefit, rather than her own. It had been that philosophy that allowed her to forgive Neji for the pain; both physical and mental hed put her through in the first Chuunin exam. And forgive her father, who had tossed her aside so carelessly at such a young and impressionable age.
After shed spoken those amazing words, Id lifted her carefully from her seat and carried her to the tent she was sharing with Sakura, whod since cried herself to sleep. Hinata had whispered a soft goodnight to me, to which Id replied earnestly.
There were no unexpected surprises after that on our trip back to Konoha, and I managed, at least once every two hours, to steal a kiss from Hinata, away from prying eyes. It hadnt occurred to me at the time that our relationship had evolved at the most inappropriate of times, yet I firmly believe that it was her, and the feelings she stirred within me, which kept me sane and healthy through the rough months that followed.
Once we returned to Konoha, everything happened at once. I found out about Ero-sennins death, Sakura went through a breakdown, and Baa-chan too. I was a wreck at Jiraiyas funeral, not much better then Baa-chan, and it was Hinatas hand in mine that kept me from sinking to the ground in a fit of despair. Tsunade-baa-chan blubbered her way through her speech, and when the moment came, I found I couldnt speak at all. But Hinata did it for me.
She spoke so eloquently, speaking what both Baa-chan and I had difficulty saying. That Ero-sennin (though she didnt call him that) had died fighting to protect those he loved
and the town he loved. She said he died a hero, a student of the Third, the teacher of the Fourth, and mentor to me. She then said she hoped hed rest in peace knowing that we mourned the loss of a terrific shinobi, and a fierce friend, and that he had been already avenged by the one who carried on his teachings
Her speech, both her tone and words, had greatly eased my suffering, and Im sure the suffering of Tsunade-baa-chan too. Indeed, she reached Hinata before me, once my angel left the stage, and engulfed her in a fierce hug. Once I finally reached her, I had no words, and all I did was gently touch her face, grazing my fingers down her smooth cheek. The very sensation of her skin against mine is something that to this day still captivates me, but in that moment, I regained minimal brain function, and kissed her gently.
I dont remember anything else of the following week, though Hinata has told me that I was like a robot, training from sun up, to sun down. She was the one that pulled me out of my depression though, I know that much. But then, I became aware of Sakuras condition.
Shed barely left the house since returning to Konoha, and Hinata has said that she and Ino had both tried to console her. She told me that Sakuras feelings about losing Sasuke again, and realising he didnt want to return to Konoha, had impacted her hard. I was unsure of what to do, and I told Hinata so. Being the brilliant, beautiful person that she was, she told me what I needed to do. She said that the only other person Sakura could relate to about her feelings was me, and that I was the only one that could console her.
She said I needed to spend time with Sakura, as long as it took, to help her recover. I was amazed at her understanding, both of Sakuras feelings, and my own, as she seemed to understand without it being said that Sakura was like a sister to me now, and nothing more. She made it very clear that I didnt have to reassure her of my feelings towards her or Sakura, assuring me she understood completely.
It took a few months for Sakura to recover to the point that she began smiling and laughing around and with friends again. In those few months, I spent each and every day with Sakura, talking and listening, doing what needed to be done. In the few hours a week when I chanced across Hinata, when shed be standing outside my apartment when Id be returning from Sakuras place, we spent talking
and I have to confess, kissing. Some days, I was just so burnt out from the emotional overload that Sakura seemed to be transferring to me, that Hinata just sat with me as I cried, or ranted, or tore a cushion to oblivion.
Some days, I just wouldnt know what to say, where to begin, that, when I saw Hinata standing, leaning against my apartment door, that Id kiss her. There were a few nights in those few months were no words were spoken at all, I was exhausted with verbal communication and relied wholly on physical communication. I am physical person, I deal better with actions rather than words, and Hinata, without a word being said, seemed to understand that. So, Id pour all my pent up rage at Sasuke, frustration at my failure, and guilt of Sakuras condition into fierce, passionate kisses that left both Hinata and I panting heavily and with swollen lips. Other times, Id be so exhausted of emotion, that she would comfort me through soft, sweet kisses that spoke of love and commitment. I think the fact she expressed shed always be there for me, was my rock, my footing, the reason I didnt fall apart again.
After Sakuras recovery, I spent the next two months, nearly every waking moment, with Hinata. I worshipped her, praised her, learned from her, and loved her with every fibre of my being. I was so sure that she was a being sent to me by Kami himself to help me deal, and thats why I found her, realised her
noticed her, when I did.
Thats why I say if Hinata were a colour, shed be purple
or something in between. But my point is this, the fact remains now that Ive been dating Hinata for five years now, and I havent been seeing purple everywhere I go, the colour that reminds me so much of my Hinata, but red. I keep seeing red.
I see red in Hinatas blush. Which, even five years and one proposal into our relationship, is still quite a regular event. I see red in the cherry-red lipstick she wears on those special occasions. Occasions such as our anniversary, my birthday, her birthday
and the evening we spent together when I proposed. I see red in the faces of the older generation, who are so flushed with anger at my and Hinatas relationship, that they turn red.
I see red in the faces of women our age, who glare at Hinata in envy
apparently Im a catch these days. I dont care, I have the woman I want, and Im fortunate enough that she wants me too. I see red in the faces of men who lust after Hinata and frown at me. Its funny, they say that green in the colour of jealously, yet their faces all turn red when they realise that Hinata is not available. I see red on those days when missions go wrong, and I see Hinata, or someone else I care about, leaking and coughing up blood. I see red in the faces of our friends and colleagues who catch Hinata and I in a passionate kiss or embrace, their faces burning with embarrassment.
Finally, red is the colour of the eyes I dream about every night as of recently. Its two sets of eyes though, the Kyuubis and the Sharingan. Its telling me the final battle, with Sasuke and Madara, will be soon.
Bring it on, I say, because red is the colour of the fury that burns in my system when I think of them.
But every time I think of Hinata, though her colour should be cool, I see red
Because it is the colour of my feelings, the feelings of love and passion, I have for her
and her alone.