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10 December 2006 @ 05:24 pm
Series: Naruto / Character: Ino Yamanaka / Prompt: 12  
Title: Her Choice, Her Life
Character: Ino Yamanaka
Fandom: Naruto
Theme: 12. Last Sanctuary
Rating: PG-13?
Warning (if any): Nada.
Summary/Note: AU. Ino, finding the set path her family sees for her as intolerable, rebels against whatever tells her is destiny. Shika/Ino, sorta.
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto. Kishimoto does. Unbeta'd, rough draft.

It was always expected.

Her falling in love with him that is.

She saw the sidelong looks her parents gave her, and the way his treated her like their own. It was always considered to be set in stone. A foregone conclusion.




He'd bought it too. She could tell. In the way that his dark eyes watched her... how he'd be silently furious when she flirted with other men. How if she needed him... he was always there. With a sigh, perhaps, but as dependable as the earth.

It really pissed her off.

What if, she had demanded once, if I don't want to love him?

Only to be met with polite bewilderment.

But Ino, they would say, it's meant to be. Two sides of the same coin and all that. She would storm off - incoherently furious - only to be brought back sulking later by him.

And they'd smile at her - indulgently. As if saying 'you'll accept it in time' and 'why are you fighting it?'.

She fumed. Raged. Screamed her fury into her pillows at night, and worked herself to the bone during the day.

It was not, that there was anything so very awful about him. He was dependable, sometimes kind, often funny. But still, the day she woke up and realized that she'd fallen in love with him the way everyone had always said...

Something broke. Shattered. And she couldn't pick up the pieces.

And she said, well fuck Destiny. She'd do what she wanted and nothing else. He wasn't in her plans. She wasn't going to bow her head and take that quietly. She'd never taken anything quietly no matter how many people expected it to happen.

The next day she joined ANBU. Furious. Defiant.

One Yamanaka Ino, reporting for duty. Resolutely determined.

It had been her last choice. Her last resort if it came to pass that she fell in love with him. ANBU had their own apartments, hidden away from the general crush of Konoha. It had the added bonus that her family wouldn't think to look for her there. She was just a special jounin, and while she had plans to take the jounin exam that wasn't going happen soon.

So she'd picked ANBU. What did it matter if the death rate was higher? Her life was her own. She could do what she wanted with it.

And mostly she wanted freedom. And ANBU, while dangerous, likely to get her killed and not at all peaceful would give her that. Aside from her missions she could do what she wanted to.

She planned to enjoy her last sanctuary. No matter the blood, sweat, and tears that came from it. This was her choice.

Her life.