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Shizukesa:  - CollapseSasuke descended from the sky like a meteor, landing with a disproportionately soft thud on the grass between Sakura and Kakashi. Karin was cradled like a sleeping infant in his arms, and his face wore all of the exhaustion of a sleep-deprived parent.
“What happened?” Kakashi spoke up, his breathing just as heavy.
Sasuke began to speak, but was cut of by Sakura's gasp.
She clasped her hands to her mouth as she watched Chiyo fall into Naruto's arms. Gaara began to stir slowly, his eyes sliding open like a grand set of doors. Naruto lit up like an oil lamp, suddenly grinning.
A groan escaped from the kazekage's cold chest, and the green of his eyes began to catch the sunlight once more. Dazedly, he rose like freshly trampled grass, mint green eyes adjusting to the oddly familiar sight of sunlight.
“...I don't know exactly.” Sasuke resumed hesitantly, confused. ”I was out for a while myself. When I woke up she was falling over.”
Kakashi raised his singl
Shizukesa:  - CasualtiesClaws whistled through the air near Deidara's face, skimming the skin with rushing air. Naruto shot by, having missed his target, and slammed his hands and feet onto rough stone, sending small chunks of fragmented rock spewing out from the points of impact. Pumping chakra violently to his feet, he burst back into the air, taking on the appearance of an orange blur. Against the camouflage of the forest, he stood out like a fireball in the dark of twilight.
Kakashi's mangekyou pulsed with pain as if he'd been stabbed. He felt his body fighting him as he tried to draw a second use of its dimensional powers, but with all of his ANBU dedication to the mission, he forced it to comply. The small clay explosive that flew toward Naruto's chest was moving almost too quickly to follow with his exhausted eyes, but in a painful arc, his blurry vision locked onto it and he desperately cast his jutsu one last time.
Snapping his sharingan shut he caught sight of the bird collapsing in on itself. With
Shizukesa:  - Sakura's SharinganSasori's face of confusion was met with a cheeky grin by the pink haired medic.
“Uchiha...?” he questioned silkily, glaring at the destroyer of his prized puppet. A hundred feet of hand-sized stone fragments stuck up out of a black sea of iron sand before him.
“Not yet.” Sakura sassed, straightening herself to stand at her full height and cracking her knuckles.
The red haired child narrowed his eyes and ruffled his hands in a blur of motion. The clouded black Akatsuki cloak fell away, revealing a hollow stomach filled with some kind of metal coil and a pair of wing-like structures with blades instead of feathers.
Sakura reappeared behind said wings, artistically evading all of the blades that swung at her. Cocking back a fist, she swung with the force of a falling mountain at Sasori's back.
Almost too quickly to see, the metal in his stomach uncoiled, shooting like a striking snake into a rock near Chiyo. Sakura's fist met empty air as he was pulled at jarring s
Shizukesa:  - DuplicatesSakura's fist reduced the boulder into dust. Naruto and Chiyo sprang to her sides, Kakashi running ahead and gesturing for them to follow.
Beyond the gaping entrance lay an unnatural darkness. No sunlight penetrated what seemed to be a sphere of solid black. Pinpricks of brilliant blue were visible as if from an impossible distance, dancing and swirling around a central cluster of dull illumination.
Then a deep voice spoke, and the whole sight vanished.
~ ~ ~
Karin was frozen in place, physically stunned by the amount of chakra that was pouring out from the spectacle before her. Sasuke Number Three had appeared almost instantaneously, without any indication of travel. In the space of a nanosecond the space where he stood had gone from empty to filled with a practically glowing Uchiha.
Her vision was starting to blur, but she could see the faint blue miasma that surrounded him.
That's the real one.
Making a monumental effort, she rose to her feet shakily, fumbling in her weapons
She Knows (SasuKarin... thing.)She knows why he won't smile anymore.
He doesn't know why she keeps trying to make him.
She knows why he can't sleep on the night of the full moon.
He doesn't know why she always seems more tired than he is.
She knows that his heart can never belong to her.
He doesn't know why she still hopes.
He knows that she cares too much.
She doesn't know that he cares at all.
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