For the hundredth time since he'd discovered his carrier status, Harry James Potter cursed his luck. At first, he'd been shocked and thrilled... until someone leaked the information out to the press, then the Ministry issued a badly disguised arrest order so that he could, essentially, be used for pureblood breeding.
Well, no one loyal to him had taken that lying down and thus the scheming had begun.
In the midst of rape attempts, kidnapping attempts and hiding from the Aurors and Hit-Wizards, Harry and his family in all but blood came up with a solution so strange even they couldn't believe it would work.
They did a ritual which would send Harry to another world, far out of reach of the Ministry. They all agreed that though they would all be sad to see him go, Harry especially, this was the best option unless Harry wanted to be in a constant state of pregnancy... just no.
As such, Harry packed half his fortune, his important items and the entire combined library of all his inheritances. Of course, he'd copied it all and let Hermione have said copies, trusting her to keep them safe and use them well.
This was how he'd arrived in the Elemental Countries. He found the world fascinating and was quite surprised to learn about Shinobi, chakra and most importantly, Bloodline Limits. The perfect excuse for his carrier status, should it be discovered.
Unfortunately, it had. By the wrong sort of people.
Well, he guessed it could be worse... they could have been after him because of the partial creature inheritance caused by the mix of Basilisk venom and Phoenix tears coursing through his veins. He was able to produce venom in his saliva and blood and his tears could heal, exactly like a phoenix. He still couldn't sing, so that was a bummer.
More to the point, Harry was running through the woods, evading some shinobi that wanted to use him for breeding, probably for the sake of Bloodline Limits. Well, even if they caught him they'd have trouble getting him pregnant. It was a pretty nifty defense mechanism, though it only worked as long as he was awake and coherent, if they drugged him... then it would be a different story, that was, after all, what the Ministry had been planning on doing. Unfortunately, these shinobi didn't know this and if they caught him, Harry would be raped over and over again until they demanded answers and, by then, he might just spill everything about carriers. At least he'd be able to spite them until that happened.
In other words, it would be hell. He would not be allowed to raise his children, they would be taken away from him, he'd slowly die inside until his body stopped functioning due to the breaking of the bond between child and carrier. It was what had happened to most carriers throughout history, he knew, he'd read up on Magical Britain's history. Everyone, at least in the older generation, knew it, but no one talked about it.
Just as Harry entered a clearing, something wound around his legs, causing him to fall to the ground and roll due to his momentum and come to an abrupt halt from whatever was at the other end of the wire around his legs. Before Harry could as much as get his arms under him, one of the ninja was on top of him, securing his hands together and hauling him up and against a tree, where the raven-haired wizard was left to hang as the shinobi stabbed a kunai into the tree, which the wire around his wrists was tied to. Seeing no other option, Harry started producing venom in his mouth before spitting it at the shinobi's face.
Which was how he earned a blow to the stomach and a gag to prevent a repeat of the incident. Unfortunately, he'd only hit the man's hair, but they'd realized the danger from the way his saliva had melted said hair, leaving behind only the burnt smell. They soon added a blindfold when they noticed his pupils morphing to resemble a snake's. Quite unfortunate on Harry's part, since he would have been able to kill them with a mere look into their eyes. He was completely at their mercy now. It took all he had not to start crying in despair.
The day had already turned to night, but Sasuke didn't feel like stopping. After he'd killed Orochimaru he hadn't really known what to do. It was as if a driving force behind his actions up until then had vanished and he wasn't sure why. Thoughts like this were getting more and more frequent and they were always followed by-
Sasuke stopped as his curse mark started causing him pain again. He gritted his teeth and placed his right hand over it, bearing the pain silently, leaning against the tree he'd stopped in. This was the only reason he noticed the camp. Iwa-nin, three of them, over the age of thirty at the very least. The pain having passed, Sasuke crouched, wondering why shinobi of Iwa had set up camp there, somewhat close to the Fire Country border. That's when he saw the captive. A black-haired teen around Sasuke's age, feminine but undoubtedly male, hands and feet tied by ninja-wire, hanging from a kunai stabbed into a tree, gagged and blindfolded, captured after trying to escape through the woods if the torn clothing and leaves in his hair were anything to go by. Civilian, most likely, since he hadn't escaped yet. Sasuke narrowed his eyes as he heard what the Iwa-nin were talking about.
“Lucky we got 'im before he could get to Konoha, imagine if they'd gotten the little goldmine.”
“Agreed, his Bloodline will be very useful.”
Not a normal civilian, then. Sasuke contemplated what he should do. He might be a missing nin, but he was still of Konohagakure and some things stuck throughout life, no matter what. Distrust of Iwa and anything to do with it, that came from growing up in Konoha. Then again, no one really liked Iwa.
One of the Iwa-nin approached the captured civilian, his comrades already asleep, having given him the duty of first watch. Sasuke wasn't sure what the man was doing until he touched the tied up teen. The teen jerked away from the touch, but the shinobi grabbed his hair and forcefully tilted his head to the side and bent his own head down to sniff his captive's neck.
“I wonder, should I sample you for myself before handing you over...”
It became disgustingly clear what the man intended when his other hand traveled down the raven-haired teen's body. The civilian had also realized this and started to struggle, causing the wire to cut into his wrists and draw blood. The Iwa-nin only chuckled maliciously at the reaction as his other hand traveled lower...
Sasuke would later realize that he couldn't actually remember killing any of them, only that suddenly there were three dead Iwa-nin in the clearing and his hand was splattered with blood. After belatedly wiping it off, Sasuke approached the now shaking civilian, making sure to make noise as he did. The civilian flinched at his touch, but Sasuke ignored it and instead focused on untying the blindfold.
“Relax, I'm trying to help you.”
The teen relaxed slightly even as he shook, probably due to the fact he couldn't recognize Sasuke's voice, which would've told him he wasn't part of the group that had captured him but still made him an unknown. Sasuke was just relieved he didn't have to deal with a hysterical civilian as he finally got the blindfold off. He was then unexpectedly faced with the greenest eyes he had ever seen, which caused him to pause for only a second before he started working on the gag, which also came off without too much difficulty. Next he cut the wire holding the teen's wrists to the kunai, causing the green-eyed beauty (wait, what?) to collapse onto him.
It wasn't that surprising, nor was the fact the civilian fainted with tears still running down his face. What was surprising was the effect of the civilian's tears as they hit his skin. More specifically, the curse mark Orochimaru had given him. There was a burning sensation from the mark, painful in a way that surprisingly didn't make Sasuke think of Orochimaru, unlike all the times the mark would cause him pain. Then, suddenly, his world cleared. For the first time in years, Sasuke could think clearly. It was as if all his negative emotions had been spent and had been reduced to mere embers as opposed to the flames they had been. Sasuke slid the teen into his arms as he sat down in order to untangle the wire around his limbs. While he was doing this, he realized just why the Iwa-nin had called the ravenette a gold mine. If his tears could do more than dissolve Orochimaru's curse mark then he was very valuable. The thought came automatically, Sasuke was a shinobi after all, but he was humane enough to not actually consider doing anything like that himself. He knew he'd have to take the civilian away from where they were. He wondered if he should stick to Fire Country or avoid it. Then again, people would assume he was in Sound, so he could most likely hide in his homeland. Oh, the irony.
Then again, Sasuke wasn't too sure what to do anymore. He was currently staying in an out of the way hotel in some unnamed village in Hi no Kuni, waiting for his charge to wake up. He'd originally joined Orochimaru due to seeking power to be able to kill Itachi, but he didn't feel like chasing after his brother anymore. That and, for some reason, his memories were quite blurred and distorted after he'd received the cursed mark in the Forest of Death. It was quite troubling, as was the fact that the majority of his anger had completely vanished after its removal. It begged the question: how much of his actions were due to his own free, uninfluenced will? Sasuke didn't know.
Perhaps that was what scared him so much.
He'd bandaged the unknown teen's arms where his struggling had caused the ninja wire to draw blood and tucked him in the single bed the room held. There wasn't much else he could do, he wasn't a medic nin, he could only administer the most basic first aid. He should really rectify that, sooner rather than later.
He had no idea why he had saved the civilian, much less why he hadn't just left him at some hospital and ran. Then again, his emotions and actions had gone completely haywire even before the civilian's tears had hit his seal and he wondered whether or not Orochimaru's death had something to do with it. He looked at the civilian and viciously squashed the Naruto-like childish urge to nickname him.
Speaking of Naruto, Sasuke realized he couldn't remember what Team 7's smiling faces looked like anymore. This was disconcerting, to say the least. All he could see when trying to remember them was Sakura's tear-stained face, Kakashi's stony expression and... Naruto's broken look.
It felt horrible.
Why had he left? He'd cared about them, hadn't he? Then why?
Sasuke's mind was in turmoil, yet at the same time, he was thinking clearer than ever. Free of any external influences, Sasuke's mind raced to explain things in his life that, in hindsight, made no sense. After that, his mind turned to other things.
Itachi's “reason” for the massacre.
The death count of the massacre.
The hatred the village held for Naruto.
His own dislike for Naruto.
His budding friendship with Naruto.
Drawing parallels between Team 7 and family.
… his betraying of Naruto.
I was lonely.
He was lonely.
It got better.
I made it worse.
I'm alone again.
… it hurts...
With this internal monologue, it wasn't surprising that Sasuke almost missed the civilian waking up. Almost. The Uchiha was, after all, a trained shinobi. That was why, when the ravenette on the bed shifted and let out a pained noise, Sasuke put his churning thoughts on the back burner and faced the slowly waking teen.