Onyx and Ivory
Hoshiko awoke gradually. She felt well rested and undeniably happy. Faint sunlight streamed through the window. It was barely morning. She was on her side, her hands tucked under her cheek and a light weight was draped across her stomach. It took her a moment to realize that the weight was Itachi's arm. And that pressed against her back was his chest. He was curled around her. The position was strangely childlike. It was like they were both huddled like children, neither wanting to face the dangerous outside world.
Maybe it wasn't childlike—more like innocent. Ironic considering neither of them was innocent anymore; they hadn't been for a long time. Hoshiko sighed and relaxed against Itachi. She wanted to go back to sleep, but she realized she had done enough of that the past two days. Seeing how she hadn't been plagued by nightmares for these two nights she had been able to sleep peacefully for the first time in years.
She rolled over onto her other side so that she was facing Itachi. He was still sleeping, his eyes shut and his face looked perfectly peaceful. He subconsciously pulled her closer, his arm tightening around her waist. Hoshiko wriggled her arm out from in between their bodies and tenderly brushed a piece of his hair away from his face. She liked seeing him this way. When he was asleep, he looked peaceful. He didn't have his signature brooding look on his face. She ran her finger down the length of his nose lightly, giggling airily to herself when she watched his nose crinkle slightly from the feel of her finger. A few moments later his eyelids began to flutter. His dark eyes opened slowly as he inhaled deeply and if possible pulled her closer to him. Hoshiko nuzzled herself under his chin and wrapped her arm around his torso.
"We need to leave today." He said huskily to her.
"I don't want to go, not yet." She replied, her fingers tracing idle shapes on his bare back.
She felt his chest vibrate from his low chuckle. "Kisame will be wondering where we are, he'll no doubt have his suspicions."
"Ugh, who cares about Kisame? Why don't we just run away?" Hoshiko pulled away and leant up on her arms. Itachi's hand trailed down her naked back and then tangled his fingers into her hair. "We could just disappear, go to some tiny island where there's no shinobi or Danzo or Pein. You could open a dango store and I'll become that florist that I said I would always be."
Itachi smirked up at her. His hand that had been playing with the ends of her hair moved up to her cheek as he tucked her dark hair behind her ear tenderly. "You'd get bored."
Hoshiko pouted at him childishly. "We could do it though. Couldn't we?"
Itachi pushed himself up so that he was eye level with her. "I would want nothing more then to do that—but I cannot abandon my mission here."
Hoshiko sighed and looked away from him. She hated how it always came back to the mission. Itachi had always been a man of his word, which would never change. She really should just stop trying to convince him to give up on trying to live for her. His mind had already been made up. Hoshiko felt his fingers on her chin as Itachi gently moved her head so that she was looking at him again. "I've disappointed you again, haven't I?" He said softly.
Hoshiko shook her head and intertwined their fingers. "No, it's not that." She said quickly. She thought for a moment. "I just…don't want you to die, not by Sasuke and not by this disease. Is that so wrong?" She asked dejectedly. Itachi shook his head and then pulled her to him. Hoshiko nuzzled herself under his chin and wrapped her arms around his torso. Itachi squeezed her back slightly.
"No, Hoshiko. It's not wrong at all."
"Why did you decide to tell me?" Hoshiko asked Itachi. She was walking across a fallen log, her arms held out as she balanced precariously. It had rained the previous night, so everything was still damp and if she weren't careful she'd slip.
Itachi was walking on the ground parallel to her; he glanced over at her for a second before looking back ahead. "Tell you what?"
Hoshiko's foot slipped slightly but she caught herself, she shot Itachi a jesting grin, which he rolled his eyes at. Hoshiko continued walking along the log. "About everything. That day when I cornered you about Sasuke…you could've just blown me off like you did in the past, what changed your mind about telling me?"
"You wish I didn't?" Itachi asked, pausing to glance over at her.
Hoshiko reached the end of the log as she jumped down, her ankle high sandals splashing in the small puddle. "No, it's not that…just why?" Itachi held her gaze for a long moment. He stared down at her, studying her face. Hoshiko cocked her head to the side, a small smirk on her face. "No more secrets, remember?"
Itachi nodded once, he did remember their promise that they made two days ago. "I told you, because I saw your face when Pein initiated you into the Akatsuki."
Hoshiko's smirk suddenly turned into a grimace as she stared up at Itachi in confusion. "Huh?" She muttered ever so eloquently.
Itachi stifled his laughter at her expression. He turned serious after a moment. "When Pein explained to you the goals of Akatsuki I saw how you reacted. You believe in him."
"And you don't?" Hoshiko questioned, crossing her arms. She waited for Itachi to elaborate but he stayed silent, prompting her to continue. "Why would it matter if I went along with Pein's plans? I don't owe allegiance to any one village anymore—and what has that got anything to do with why you told me?"
"Pein intends to destroy Konoha. I will not allow that to happen."
Hoshiko froze. She couldn't tell if he was making a joke or if he was being serious, but by the look that he was giving her, Hoshiko had to assume that he was being completely honest with her. "You're kidding me, right?" Hoshiko barked out. "After everything that the village has done to you—like make you slaughter your own family, you are still going to protect them?"
"I did what I did to protect my home, you know this."
"I know." Hoshiko chuckled. She ran a hand through her hair as she tried to figure out what to say. "But you joined the Akatsuki, I just assumed that it meant that you were—I don't know pissed off at them or something? They are the ones who ruined our lives in case you forgot?"
"I haven't forgotten." Itachi stated. "But I did that to avoid a war, to avoid the deaths of hundreds and thousands of innocent lives. Why do you think I joined the Akatsuki?"
Hoshiko glowered over at him. "I've had enough of these guessing games, Itachi."
"To watch from the inside, Hoshiko." He told her. Itachi took a step towards her as Hoshiko angled her head back to stare up at him. "I have always been on the villages side. Everything I have done has been for the benefit of it. I joined the Akatsuki to watch their movements—and to stop any attacks that would disrupt the current peace."
Hoshiko rubbed her forehead. "And that's why you told me."
He nodded. "I wanted to avoid the inevitable outcome if you would've gone along with Pein's plan for the villages."
"And what would that have been?" Hoshiko asked, knowing full well what the answer was going to be. It seemed that Itachi didn't want to voice it out loud as he turned from her and started walking again. Hoshiko wasn't stupid; she knew what the outcome would've been.
They didn't speak on the subject for the remainder of their journey. Hoshiko's mood was sour. Their conversation had put a damper on the good mood they had both had since getting together. Hoshiko couldn't get the thought out of her head. Could Itachi really kill her? Even now after everything that had happened between them? She liked to think that he wouldn't. He had done so much to protect her over the years and over the recent months that hopefully she meant more to him than the village.
But he had killed his own mother and father for the sake of his village—he's more than capable of killing her too. She wasn't afraid of him; he wouldn't hurt her as he is now. But she also knew that Itachi loved the village, he had done everything in his power to protect it, and is still protecting it. It was hard for her to understand where he was coming from in his love for the village.
She didn't feel anything but contempt for Konoha.
It was where they truly differed in opinions.
One night while they had been travelling together, Hoshiko had voiced her final opinion on the matter. They had been sitting together around their fire. It had been slightly tense between them, but it had eased once Hoshiko had spoken.
"I can't condone the protection of Konoha…but I won't condemn them to war and suffering. If it comes to it, I'll remain neutral in the matter."
Itachi had replied with a simple, "Aa."
After that, things had slowly gone back to normal between the two.
"Well, well, well, look what the cat finally dragged in." Kisame taunted as he leaned up against the pole of the large gazebo. It was raining in Taki country. A heavy cold downpour had soaked Hoshiko and Itachi to the bone. The gazebo was large, and the wooden floor of it had a large swirling pattern made from different coloured woods.
Hoshiko glared up at the grinning blue man. "I certainly didn't miss your wonderful personality."
Kisame chuckled as he leaned back for them both to walk by him and under the cover of the gazebo. "You weren't even gone long enough to miss it. I knew you couldn't resist being around us."
"Yes, Kisame." Hoshiko drawled as she started to ring her hair out from all the water that she had accumulated. "You're constant jibes, wonderful sense of humor had me running back here with open arms—nothing to do with the fact that we belong to the same organization…" she deadpanned and flicked her hair over her shoulder. She felt some satisfaction when drops of water splashed Kisame in the face. He flinched from it but she knew it didn't really bother him; he was part fish after all.
"Could it have been because of the fact that you and the Uchiha over here reek of post coitus activities?" Kisame flashed his teeth teasingly.
Hoshiko scowled up at him and threw her hands into the air exasperatedly. "I thought you were half-fish not half-mutt. And it's none of your business what Itachi and I do anyway."
Kisame rolled his eyes and leaned back up against the pole. "I'm half-shark not half-moron. Besides, I can't smell anything—I just knew something would've happened between you two eventually, you just confirmed it yourself. Nice going, shrimp."
Hoshiko's jaw dropped as she stared at Kisame, appalled with herself. She spun around, silently seeking Itachi's help but the Uchiha was staring at her with a content look that said 'you had it coming'. Hoshiko growled in frustration at both of the men. Kisame let out a deep chuckle.
"Come on, let's head on in." Kisame motioned with his head.
Hoshiko looked around the area in bewilderment. "Head in where?" She asked him. Kisame winked at her as he walked to the middle of the gazebo. He crouched down and stuck his fingers in the center of the swirl and pulled up the floorboards, which turned out to be a very nicely concealed trap door. "And why am I not surprised that you guys have another hideout?" Hoshiko muttered more to herself then the men.
"Because we can't always be spending Kakuzu's money on hotels and shit." Kisame commented. "He'd kill us all if we wasted all the money he's been collecting over the years."
Hoshiko shrugged her shoulders. "Well, I mean the world would be a less scary place if all of you guys were gone."
Kisame waggled his finger at her. "You're laughing now but you've never experienced Kakuzu when he's misplaced money before. Now that is truly scary."
"He seems like the type of person that would very rarely misplace his funds." Hoshiko drawled as she approached the stairs that led down into the hideout.
"He didn't. Tobi hid it." Kisame explained. "That kid is lucky he can phase through things I tell you now." Kisame descended down the stairs and into the darkness. Hoshiko peered after him and could see small lanterns lighting the way down.
"Phase through things?" Hoshiko asked as she followed after Kisame.
"It's Tobi's ability." Itachi said from behind her. Hoshiko glanced over her shoulder at him for a moment. Itachi was lowering the trap door back down over their heads as the staircase was thrown into darkness. The only light they had were the small lanterns by their feet that showed them where the next step was.
"Get him to demonstrate it to you when you see him." Kisame continued.
"I'll think about it…" Hoshiko muttered unsurely.
They walked for maybe a minute longer before Kisame came to a stop and then reached for what could only be a door. He pushed it open and Hoshiko was suddenly greeted by more light. Kisame led them into a small room with a wooden table in the middle. There were currently two people sitting at the table.
"Hoshiko-chan!" Tobi greeted with a large wave and a loud screech. Hoshiko grimaced. She had not prepared herself for another hideout with Tobi. The other occupant was Deidara, and Hoshiko found herself not hating the fact that she was sort of pleased to see him. Deidara sent her a bored wave and then resumed his bickering with the orange masked man. Tobi wasn't listening to him; instead he was launching out of his chair and was across the room in a second flat.
"Tobi missed you, Hoshiko-chan!" He yelled happily. Hoshiko didn't have time to dodge the exuberant man as he gathered her up in his arms and spun her around. "Tobi hopes you've been ok?"
"I'm fine." Hoshiko gasped out, struggling to breathe from the force of Tobi's grip.
"You're gonna suffocate her, you dumbass." Kisame barked out at the masked man.
Tobi jerked and released his grip on her quickly as Hoshiko stumbled on her two feet. She raised a hand to her head and rubbed at her temple. The sudden rush of blood and oxygen to her brain had made her woozy. Tobi noticed something on her hand as he gasped.
"Ah! Hoshiko-chan, you got your ring!" He exclaimed. Tobi grasped onto Hoshiko's hand, which had the small blue ring on her pinky finger. Hoshiko tried to rip her hand out of his gloved grip but he had a strong hold on her. "That means you're a proper member now!" Tobi let go of her and whirled around to Deidara who was still sitting at the table. "Deidara-senpai, when do you think Tobi will get a ring?"
Deidara gave him a deadpan look. "Fucking never if I have anything to say about it."
"No fair, Senpai!" Tobi whined.
Kisame, unknowingly to all, was suddenly wielding Samehada in his hand. He brought it across at Tobi, the masked man's head jerking to the side when he obviously sensed the attack coming. He screamed in terror just as Samehada sliced through his body. Hoshiko prepared for blood and guts to go splashing everywhere was surprised when nothing of the sort happened. Kisame was holding Samehada in the middle of Tobi's torso and Tobi only seemed slightly inconvenienced by it.
Kisame rolled his head down to grin at her. "See? He can phase through things. Makes it all the more annoying to actually hurt him."
"Or blow him up." Deidara added from behind Tobi.
"Why does anyone want to hurt Tobi anyway?" Tobi cried out.
Deidara waved his fist threateningly. "Because you're an annoying piece of shit!"
Kisame placed his sword back at his side and then leaned on the hilt. "We ain't got much else to do around here expect pick on the small-fry. Now that shrimp is back we can have some more fun." Kisame flashed his razor sharp teeth at Hoshiko.
Hoshiko rolled her eyes and folded her arms across her chest defensively. "Oh no. I am off limits. I'm not putting up with your shit any longer. Besides I have a mission to do. I'm only here to stock up on money and all the other necessities and then I'm out of here."
"Suit yourself." Kisame shrugged his shoulders. He shuffled over to Deidara and then rummaged around in his coat for something. Hoshiko watched as Kisame pulled out a small moneybag and tossed it to the blonde man. "Oh, you won by the way." Kisame glanced over his shoulder and grinned at Hoshiko. His beady eyes slid between Hoshiko and the silent Uchiha that stood slightly behind her. Deidara beamed and pocketed the money.
"What the hell did you two bet on?" Hoshiko asked, scowling at the two men.
Deidara kicked his feet up onto the chair next to him and then tucked his hand behind his head. "How long it would take for you and the Uchiha to bone."
Hoshiko took one leering step towards them. "You sons a bitch—ugh!" Hoshiko was cut off when Itachi gripped her upper arm and then whisked her down the nearest hall. Hoshiko could hear laughter from behind and wanted nothing more then to go back and give them both a piece of her mind but Itachi wasn't letting her out of his grip.
He marched her into what was apparently a small room and then shut the door behind them. "What the hell? I haven't finished yelling at them yet." She complained to the stoic Uchiha.
Itachi sent out a fire jutsu to the few candles around the room, filling the room with a dim, flicking light. "You must see that that is what they want you to do."
"I know, but it makes me feel better when I can yell out all my frustration." Hoshiko muttered bitterly, pouting and looking like a young teenager. In the light, Hoshiko could see the faint smirk on his face. "Well, it didn't take long for them to all figure it out about us."
"It would happen eventually." Itachi commented nonchalantly.
Hoshiko pulled a face at his back and then flopped down on the bed. It was only a single bed, and the mattress felt like it had taken a few too many rolls down a hill. Hoshiko stripped her cloak off her shoulders and tossed it across the room. "So considering they know about us, does that mean we can still share a room?" Hoshiko crossed her legs on the bed and peered over at Itachi. He was removing his own cloak and folded it neatly on the lone chest in the room. Once he was done he gave her a silent, enquiring look. Hoshiko rubbed her neck in embarrassment. "I just mean…I haven't had a nightmare since…I don't really wanna go back to that again."
Itachi's lip quirked in amusement. Hoshiko felt her cheeks flush red; she turned her face away from him. She heard him approach her quietly. When she knew that he was standing in front of her she slowly angled her head back to stare up at him. Itachi reached out with his middle and index finger and placed them delicately in the middle of her forehead.
"You worry too much." He said. He pulled away as Hoshiko reached her hand up to the spot he had just poked.
"Why do you—you know what, never mind." She muttered stubbornly as she crossed her arms. "You never tell me anyway so I'm just gonna stop asking."
Itachi stifled his smirk from her. She could tell that he was trying not to laugh at her. His expression suddenly changed and it had her concerned. A scowl appeared on his face as Itachi sat himself down next to her on the bed.
"Will you do something for me?" Itachi asked her. Hoshiko sat up straight on the bed. It was almost unheard of for him to be like this. Normally he was all 'order' and 'commanding' with his instructions. Hoshiko knew that this was different. "Don't let your guard down around Tobi."
"What?" Hoshiko scoffed in disbelief.
"He's not who he appears to be." Itachi continued. "He is dangerous."
"He's a nutcase." Hoshiko grumbled at him. "Honestly, I think you've got your wires mixed up about him." Hoshiko was chuckling but saw the serious look that Itachi had on his face. Her joking expression dropped off quickly. "You're not joking, are you?"
Itachi shook his head. "I don't know what his plans are…but be wary of him."
Hoshiko nodded. "Ok, I will."
Itachi lay awake in bed that night. Hoshiko was curled into him, sleeping deeply and peacefully in his arms. He couldn't sleep, even if his body was screaming at him too. He knew that Madara was in the base so his guard was on high alert. He knew that the fallen Uchiha was curious about Hoshiko, but he wouldn't risk being detected by her if he could help it. Now that Itachi and Hoshiko were sharing the same room, he would not visit him.
But Itachi could sense him. Madara was currently walking along the corridor just outside his bedroom. Itachi made it so that his chakra levels would be that if he were sleeping. He would not risk Hoshiko's life with that man; nothing good would come of it.
Madara paused outside of the door. Itachi waited for him to phase through it, or knock. He did neither and after a minute Madara continued on walking. Itachi released the breath that he had been holding in. The force of it had him coughing. A pain shot through his chest as he winced and tried to muffle the sound of it so that he wouldn't wake Hoshiko.
It didn't work.
"Are you alright?" Hoshiko muttered sleepily as she leaned up on her elbows. Hoshiko rubbed at her eyes.
"Aa." Itachi replied. He coughed once more, muffling it with his hand.
"The trip in the rain didn't help you." Hoshiko stated with a frown.
"I am fine." He reassured her. She didn't look convinced. Itachi brushed her cheek with the backs of his fingers. "Don't worry about me."
"It's what I do best." Hoshiko smirked down at him. Itachi returned it with one of his own. Hoshiko lay back down with one of her hands lying on his chest. She sighed in content. "I'm never gonna stop worrying about you, baka."
Itachi's lip twitched up into a gentle smile. It seemed that now he had no trouble falling asleep this time.
It had stopped raining the next morning. So it was clear skies for Kisame and Itachi's departure. Hoshiko stood on the steps of the gazebo, leaning against the pole that Kisame had been on the previous day when they had arrived. Itachi was standing down on the grass as he turned back to her.
"You really need to go now?" She asked him.
Itachi nodded. "Pein wants us to get moving. Kisame and I will gather information on the Taki Jinchuuriki for you. You should head to Kumo, their Jinchuuriki will be the hardest to get information on."
Hoshiko nodded in agreement. Pein had chosen her for this because of her excellent reconnaissance skills. She needed to prove her worth to him if she wanted to keep up pretenses. Hoshiko gnawed on her bottom lip anxiously for a moment before she spoke.
"What about the Kyuubi?"
Itachi knew that she was speaking in code. Worrying for Jiraiya and his student. She was worried that someone else might be given the task of retrieving the Kyuubi and risk Jiraiya getting killed.
"Pein has ordered us not to go after him for now. He has learned that one of the Sannin is protecting the Jinchuuriki."
Hoshiko bit down on her lip to stop herself from smiling. Itachi had no doubt done that for her, to ease her mind. She tried to send her thanks through her eyes, letting him know that she appreciated it.
"Shame that." Kisame said, appearing from the trap door. "Would've been a good challenge to try and off one of the Legendary Sannin." Hoshiko tossed a glance over her shoulder as Kisame approached her. He flashed her a cheeky grin as he slung Samehada over his shoulder.
"You could still go and try. Do us all a favour and scope out the enemy."
"I'd much rather stay on Leader-sama's good side for the time being, Shrimp. Are you ready, Itachi-san?" Kisame headed down the stairs, but not before he swung Samehada towards Hoshiko. The great, hulking sword smacked her in the back of the head and she went falling down the step and crashed into Itachi.
Hoshiko sent Kisame a glare as the shark man chortled and waved his hand over his shoulder. "Sorry, sorry, gotta make sure I look where I swing this thing, huh?"
"One day." Hoshiko muttered under her breath as her glower moved over to Itachi who was staring down at her, a faint smirk on his lips. "I'm going to throw that sword of his into a volcano and he's gonna have to use a toothpick from then on."
"Try not to do anything…reckless."
Hoshiko scoffed at him. "You say that like it's a recurring thing." Itachi gave her a pointed look. Hoshiko smirked at his reaction as he pulled away from her and followed after Kisame.
"Bye, bye, Kisame-san, Itachi-san!"
Hoshiko's body jerked in surprise at the sudden appearance of Tobi. He was waving erratically at Kisame and Itachi who had paused in their departure to look back at the masked man. Hoshiko gaped up at him, shocked at the fact that she hadn't been able to sense his approach at all, until he had been right next to her. It was unheard of for her to not sense someone. Itachi had been right to warn her about him.
She caught Itachi's pensive stare. He was giving nothing away from his expression but she could tell from his eyes that he was reminding her to be wary of him. She gave an ever so discreet nod to him before Itachi and Kisame disappeared down the road.
"What are we gonna do now, Hoshiko-chan?" Tobi asked excitedly as he tossed an arm around her shoulder and pulled her to him. Hoshiko attempted to not let her nervousness seep through, but she pushed Tobi off her and headed to the trap door.
"I'm heading to Kumo. You and Deidara can do whatever the hell it is you were doing before I came here."
Tobi rolled on the balls of his feet. "We're waiting for Sasori-senpai to come back from his solo mission." Tobi tapped the chin of his mask as he followed her back down the stairs. "When do you think we'll see Kisame-san and Itachi-san again?"
"I don't know." Hoshiko sighed. "But I have a feeling it's going to be a while."
SIX MONTHS LATER
Hoshiko entered her hotel room and chucked her tote bag onto the bed. Her purse and a few weapons that she held in there came spilling out as she undid the hair tie for her hair and released the Henge that she had on herself. Her short brown hair suddenly morphed into her long black locks. As she passed by the mirror she saw her signature silver, pupil less eyes, not the boring static brown that she gave herself while she was staying in Kumo. She was posing as a travelling civilian, staying in Kumo and working at a few stores for cover. On the night she would spend her time trying to locate any information on the two Jinchuuriki's that Kumo had. It was hard work.
A sudden pulsing on her pinky finger had her jumping in fright. Hoshiko glanced down at the blue ring on her finger to see the gem pulsing with a white light, signaling that Pein wanted to call a meeting with her.
Hoshiko set up her trap on the door and window, making sure that she would be notified if anyone tried to enter the room while she was off contacting Pein. Once that was ready she formed the seal and felt the uncomfortable feeling of her astral body being pulled out from her naval.
When she opened her eyes, Hoshiko was standing before Pein. The colours were all muted in grays and blacks. Konan, who stood a little bit behind him but still an imposing presence, accompanied Pein. Hoshiko couldn't make out where they were, but it was most likely the Ame hideout.
"Your report?" Pein asked her.
Hoshiko sighed. "Only a few new things. Kumo keep their Jinchuuriki information pretty locked up. I managed to get their names. Killer B and Nii Yugito. From what I've heard Killer B has close ties with the current Raikage. Yugito seems to be on active rotation with Jounin teams. I haven't been able to pinpoint a specific location of hers yet because she moves around so much with her teams. Killer B I've found does training somewhere secretive that only the Raikage and his advisors know the location of."
Pein was silent for a few moments. "If you can apprehend one of the advisors, you can get the location, can't you?"
Hoshiko nodded. "Yes, but I'd be taking the risk of getting discovered. I have no means to wipe people memories once I'd have what I needed."
"We cannot risk the nations finding out about our plans yet, it's still too soon." Konan added from Pein's side. Pein nodded in agreement.
"Use this week to find out what you can of Killer B's location. After this we need you to assimilate yourself into Sunagakure. Sasori has already implemented a sleeper into the ranks of the Kazekage's advisor team, but we need information on their defenses and shinobi capabilities."
"I understand. I'm meeting with a reliable source who may be able to get me some information tomorrow. I've worked with him before of a previous mission for you."
"If it's whom I think it is then you made a smart decision. His help is always valued." Pein waved his hand at her to go. Hoshiko bowed her head respectfully as she released the seal.
When she opened her eyes she was thankful to be back in her hotel room. Meeting with Pein was always daunting, and she was worried that he would find out that she had been sending messages to Jiraiya on their movements. She was trying to give the man as much information as she could on all of the teams, including Kisame and Itachi. Itachi knew of course but she needed to make sure that Jiraiya managed to stay safe. And she couldn't give out too much otherwise Pein would get suspicious if his teams suddenly started getting ambushed by shinobi on the road all the time.
It was exhausting being a double spy. Was this how Itachi felt all those years ago? If this wasn't irony at it's finest…
Hoshiko sat down at the desk in her room and pulled out two scrolls and started writing on them.
Haven't got any more movements to report. Assume that the last positions I gave you are where they all still are. Leader of Akatsuki is still based in Ame; don't think he's planning on leaving the base anytime soon. My location is still in Kumo, but I've been given orders to head to Sunagakure in a weeks' time. It'll take me around a month to travel that far south. If you're around there let me know and we can meet up.
Hoshiko rolled up the scroll and then placed an Fūinjutsu on it, so that only Jiraiya would be able to open. They had come up with this idea a few months ago; to better protect the information that Hoshiko would send him. Hoshiko took her pen and moved to the second scroll.
I'm leaving Kumo in a week to head to Suna. You and Kisame were in Stone last time I heard from you, right? Any more luck on finding the Yonbi? Pein said that I need to assimilate myself into Sunagakure…guess that means I'll be there for a while. I was hoping to see you soon. My nightmares have come back Hoshiko scratched out that line. I hope you've been keeping up with your medication…don't be stupid and stop taking them because you don't want Kisame to know.
Hoshiko rolled up that scroll and sealed it as well. She bit her thumb, drawing blood and swiping it across her forearm. "Kuchiyose no jutsu." In a puff of smoke, a crow perched on her arm.
It cawed at her as Hoshiko let it hop onto the table as she placed the scrolls into the little messenger pouch that she had acquired a few months ago. "To Jiraiya and Itachi please." She said kindly to the crow. It cawed at her once again. Hoshiko opened the window as it flew out and into the dark night. She watched it go for a few moments before shutting the window and then got ready for bed.
At midday the next day Hoshiko was sitting outside on a bench at a teashop. It was where she was meeting her source. She had ordered a sweet tea and dango to wait as she brushed back her short brown hair from her neck. It may be mostly cold in Kumo, but during their summer seasons the sun really did like to burn hot for them.
"Hoshiko-san?" A voice said from above her. The mans body blocked out the hot sun for a moment so that Hoshiko could tip her head back and stare up at her visitor. His familiar charming smirk greeted her. "Ah, you've changed your hair and eye colour but I'll always remember a pretty face."
"A pleasure to see you, Jinrui." Hoshiko greeted him as he sat down opposite her. Jinrui was the man whom she and Itachi had stayed with for her first mission for the Akatsuki. He was a corrupt business man, who's allegiance was to the Akatsuki but played it off like he had Kumogakure's best interests at heart. He had also tried to flirt with her shamelessly, she had shut him down then and she would again.
"What brings you to Kumo, my dear? Is your lovely partner with you too?" Jinrui asked, running a hand through his slicked back black hair. His icy blue eyes twinkled as he smiled at her.
"This is a solo mission." Hoshiko commented as she drank her tea. "But, Itachi and I are planning to reconcile very soon." Hoshiko let the tone of her voice sink in. She wasn't here to flirt or get information from him by selling herself. She had more dignity then that.
"I do hope Uchiha-san is doing well. And all the best for you both, you make a wonderful pair." Jinrui clasped his hands together. He signaled to the waiter to bring him over some tea. "Now, what can I do for you?"
Hoshiko set down her cup onto the little table and then leaned onto her knees. "I need some information on the two Jinchuuriki's that Kumo currently have a hold of."
Jinrui's smile was beaming as he leaned back in his chair. He folded his leg over his other one and then stroked his short beard. "My, my, what are you little criminals up to I wonder?"
"You won't help me?" Hoshiko faked sounding hurt.
Jinrui chuckled. "I never said that, my dear. Of course I'd be happy to help with this. Now, where do we begin?"
omg, words cannot express how guilty I feel right now. I can summarise it into two though: boys suck.
anyway, i'm blown with all of your responses for last chapter, I know it's been a while and this chapter is very fillerish but ill be diving into some more canon stuff next chapter. yous can all probably guess what'll be happening, and who she might be meeting again very very very soon! im so excited to get onto the main storyline soon!
Thundqh - hahahaha i hope that was a good well shit xD
Mokki Takashi - Thank you! I certainly have my flaws with writing but i do try my best! And yes, it'll probably make you cry...warning you now. hahah
sHiZoooo - yeah sorry for the hiatus on this chapter lol boys and a funk will do that to you. I'm glad you enjoyed the chapter!
FANGIRLWHODIES - hahaha literally me anytime Itachi and Hoshiko have a little bit of interaction xD I love how your reviews have me laughing each time xD
Kris XD - You're welcome! sorry it took my so long to get this one out!
Destinyd643 - we'll see if she find's a cure! but will itachi let her is the real question?
Janeth16 - i am so sorry for taking so long for another chapter! I felt so bad for everyone waiting! D: i had been waiting for them to get together for so long too! hope you enjoyed this one!
Guest - Aw thank you! sorry this took me forever to get out! glad you're enjoying and no one can take Kishimoto's place!
CharcoalChicken - ikr!? took them long enough to get together! hopefully hoshiko does save him, we'll see
SuperKaiokenGoku - Yay i'm glad you enjoyed! we got tobi in this one, and hoshiko getting a little bit more insight into the whole 'madara' thing as well. id been meaning to finally bring up the conversation with itachi and hoshiko about nagato's plans for the tailed beasts so now we have that!
Lala Maryama - I'm glad you enjoyed! to answer your question. Itachi still wants to die by sasuke's hand to atone for everything he's done and to keep the honour of the uchiha clan in tact (same as canon) Hoshiko just wants to save him as she doesn't want him to die but y'know-he's stubborn lol
andresskorskiruiz - Thank you! sorry it took me so long to get this out! glad you enjoyed
Hikari Heidi Haruki - sorry it took forever for you to read the next chapter! glad you enjoyed and you have theories for this!
katydid001 - aw man we didn't see much possessiveness in this chapter but we had some lil cute moments with them 3
Nostalgic29 - noo no more torture for them. a new chapter however? yes i tortured you guys but it wasnt my intention, promise! i had a bit of pressure for the kisame scenes, they're not as funny as i hoped but i did find them pretty wholesome in some strange way hahah
MK - yay i'm so happy you enjoyed the chapter! Hidan i'm not sure when and if he'll pop up again for a while. we'll have to see
JoanaIsHere - aw thank you! such a sweet thing to say and yeah they did but i'm a whole for smut sometimes xD
asianuruknan - didn't torture you then but i did with updating again, my bad! kisame = torture anyway hahaha glad you enjoyed, i love having them together finally as well!
Lotus48 - Yaaaay! me too! thank you!
Tomato - aw i know right! they are so cute together i love how itachi does the forehead pokes and she still hasnt caught on by what it means xD she's a dumbass sometimes lol
Guest 2.0 - hopefully he doesn't die! we'll see soon enough!
TataF - good job on reading this whole thing in 2 days! god this review made me lol so hard when reading it hahaha im glad you enjoyed this chapter so much thank you!
Elia Chanel - thanks so much for reading this story! everyone has been waiting for these two to get together for a looooong time, i'm the worst lol but thanks for your kind words, means the world to me!
edrch - thank you! im glad youre enjoying the story! sasuke will come back in and we'll see how he reacts to everything soon!
Thank you all so much for reviewing!
Again i'm so sorry for being away for so long. Got into a real bad funk and lost motivation for a while there but i'm gonna try and get back into my weekly updates again. if I cant then hopefully some 2 week updates. thanks for sticking around, love you all! x