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I lost.

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When he stands there, the sixth Pain lying defeated at his feet, all he can think of is Kakashi, his lack of presence and just – where is his chakra?

And when he searches one last time in desperation, he still finds nothing and realises—

"I lost."

Where are you, Kakashi?

He lost.


Kakashi is gone .


He realises he's falling but he's just too tired to catch himself because he lost, lostlostlostlost and he doesn't care anymore, not about crashing and not about himself.

But then he lands on a firm, comfortable back and the first thing he does is hug and hug and hug Kakashi, inhaling the man's scent, feeling the strands of silver hair tickling his face, stretching up to rub against a masked cheek while his mind screams he's alive! He's alive!

"I won," he whispers, and smiles.