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Ever After

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Sakura never wanted to be royal. She didn't want to be living as the Princess of Soranotou. Originally, she was just a normal girl living with her parents. But her mother, Mei, died protecting Senji, Sakura's father, from an enraged king whom he had betrayed. Senji was a power hungry man who will stop at nothing until he destroys every village he encounters.

When Sakura was an infant, Luca, her grandfather, caught Senji confessing his wrongdoings over Mei’s grave.

Senji had married young and thought Mei would be blind to his actions, but she was not. She caught on very quickly and tried to stop him, but failed. Luca vowed then and there that he would do everything in his power to help Sakura expose Senji for the monster he was. Senji wasn't a neglectful father in the beginning. Every village they entered, he made sure she was far enough away to not be affected, but close enough to keep an eye on. He spent the next eleven years overthrowing the villages of Tuchiyama and Mizumura, leaving both in near ruins.

Kakashi’s father, Sakumo, was leader of the knights of Tuchiyama. Kakashi and his best friend, Obito, joined when they were in their late teens. He lead his troops to war with Mizumura because Senji had been spreading false lies about theft and kidnapping. But to make himself look like a hero, he made a deal with the king of Tuchiyama and ended the war before it could start. But that didn’t mean there weren't any lives lost. Sakumo and Obito died on the battlefield. A group of Mizumura soldiers infiltrated their camp under Senji’s orders. Kakashi had been at home with his dying mother. After word spread that Sakumo and Obito had been killed, it was too much for Kakashi's mother to bear and she passed. Kakashi gathered his things - an engagement ring Obito had bought for his girlfriend Rin whom he had failed to save, his father’s sword, and his mother’s wedding ring - and left Tuchiyama.

Soon afterwards, Senji betrayed the king and abandoned Mizumura to rule over Tuchiyama. He made a deal with their current king as well, promising Sakura to his son, but all fell apart when word got out that Senji had been the cause of the war. Senji killed the king and his advisors before word could reach the people.

Eventually, as Sakura grew older, he stopped showing her affection. He'd leave her in the hands of the castle maids and knights. Once they reached Soranotou, Senji immediately began to search for a way to get inside the castle after seeing how prosperous it was. He ran into a familiar face, Muku Yamanaka, the current Queen. She and Senji had been lovers back when they attended classes together. He told her of Mei’s death and how he was raising Sakura on his own. Taking pity on him, she invited him to stay in the castle. Muku’s daughter, Ino, took an immediate liking to Sakura and they became best friends. Ino was a few years younger than Sakura, so she looked up to her.

Muku and Senji married soon after and he became King once again. Sakura, being left to her own devices, began training with the captain of the knights, Neji. Neji taught her how to wield a sword, ride horses, and treat any wound. Two knights, Sasuke and Suki, liked to pick on Sakura when Neji wasn't around. Sasuke always covered up his harsh words with an affectionate pat on the head.

Sakura was heading to the forest to train when she found what looked to be an abandoned hut, but soon came to realize it was Luca’s. Luca proved who he was by inducing visions in Sakura's dreams, showing her what Senji had done to Mei, that he knew better then anyone the hurt and pain Sakura felt at being all but abandoned. After she woke, she immediately went under his teachings. He taught her how to channel her healing powers like her mother had and how to make poisons/antidotes. Soon afterwards, her hair changed from blonde to pink and her forehead seal became more prominent.

When she returned to the castle, Senji was outraged. He ordered Neji to keep her locked in her room. He knew she had only changed because she had found Luca. Neji helped her escape that night and she ran straight to Luca’s hut, only to find it destroyed. She heard Sasuke and Suki talking as she hid herself and found out their only mission was to help Senji destroy the village so they could gain the wealth he promised to share.

Sakura traveled all night until she found herself in Mizumura, which was still in the process of being rebuilt. There she found a wounded puppy and went into the village to find medicinal herbs she needed. But she was mistaken for her mother, who had stolen from the grandfather of the young man running the herbal stand, and was attacked. Kakashi happened to be walking by and saved her before she could be badly hurt, but she had been knocked unconscious just as he ripped the man off of her. He carried her back to his cabin and let her rest. While she slept, he noticed that the scrape on her arm had disappeared. He sensed something familiar about her and took an immediate liking to her. He only realized it later that she was Mei’s daughter. Mei had taken care of Kakashi when he was a child visiting Mizumura.

Kakashi vowed to help Sakura stop Senji after he realized he was the man who ordered the death of his father and friend. Kakashi had three dogs; Senshi, Oroka, and Yomu. All whom could speak, but only Kakashi could understand.

Sakura wrote to Ino using code drawings. Each flower they sent each other had a different meaning. A sunflower meant a trustworthy ally had been found, a bleeding heart meant there was a problem and she was in danger, a morning glory meant she was suspected of knowing where Sakura was, a daisy meant false alarm, a dandelion meant Sakura needed to lay low, and a black rose meant someone had figured out their code and they couldn't be in contact anymore. So, after months of hiding with Kakashi, Ino had sent her a drawing of a bleeding heart, a dandelion, and a black rose. She panicked. Kakashi and Sakura raced back to the castle, only to find that Neji had been arrested for being Luca’s spy. Sasuke had been made captain and he refused to let Sakura back into the castle. Kakashi took care of him and held him off while Sakura searched for Ino.

Ino was being held captive by Suki in the main hall as bait. As soon as she found Ino, she began to fight Suki, only winning because Senshi, Oroka, and Yomu tripped him up. As Sakura was about to escape the castle with Ino, Sasuke showed up covered in blood, and charged at Ino with his sword. Sakura pushed Ino away and ended up taking the sword in her shoulder. Kakashi showed up just as Sakura collapsed from blood loss. Blinded by rage, Kakashi killed Sasuke and carefully lifted Sakura into his arms, only to come face to face with Senji and his supposedly dead father. Sakumo explained that at first, he faked his death so he could figure out a way to get back at Senji for killing his king, but then ended up befriending him instead.

Kakashi was so shocked he almost dropped Sakura. He quickly set her down against the wall and left her in Ino’s care. Walking up to face his father, he punched him in the face, calling him a traitor. Sakumo didn't fight back and took his own life in front of Kakashi as a way to show him how much it mentally and physically destroyed him to know he had sentenced his wife and Obito to death by making a deal that wasn't beneficial to anyone but Senji.

Now without his right hand man and strongest tool, Senji grew enraged and launched himself at Sakura, telling her how he never wanted a child and that she was a waste of space. In her fading consciousness, she pulled out the dagger Luca had given her as a gift when she successfully read a spell he had imbedded into a tree using her healing powers. She quickly swung the dagger and slit Senji’s throat. Neither Kakashi nor Ino could believe what she'd done. Sakura just sighed and tore the fabric of her shirt off her wound so she could heal herself. As soon as she finished, the rest of Senji’s personal guard attacked Kakashi and Sakura. The two fought back to back for what felt like an eternity. After the final knight collapsed, Sakura released Neji and pulled him into an overdue hug, thanking him for his training and for helping her reconnect with Luca.

Luca made a brief appearance to tell Sakura he had nothing left to teach her and to rule over Soranotou the way her mother would approve of. With a tear filled smile and one last hug, Luca left the castle. Muku ran out of her study to find Senji and the guard all dead and was at first angry at Sakura and Kakashi, but Ino explained everything to her and she felt immensely guilty for giving Senji any form of power. In her guilt, she stepped down as queen and passed the crown down to Sakura, who humbly accepted with Ino’s blessing.

Kakashi was about to leave and return to Mizumura, but was stopped by Sakura who simply stated with a light blush, “I can't rule over this village alone.” Kakashi accepted her proposal and they became engaged to be married. With peace restored and aid sent to the villages Senji had destroyed, Sakura was on her way to be known as the most kind hearted and selfless queen the region had ever known.