This was my submission for @naruhinafanzine !! I hope you all enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it. The theme is Autumn 💛
The leaves turn, and change, and fall.
Autumn takes its time moving through the streets of Konoha,
fingers flushed and dripping with gold, turning pastel life molten. It takes
Naruto by surprise, as it usually does, despite the measured shifting of colors
and temperature. He blinks as he glances up into the trees, watches the way the
leaves turn under the gentle touch of sunlight, flickering in the breeze.
He watches some of them fall, and when he brings his eyes
back down to earth and feels his attention leap instinctively to the woman
heading towards him, he thinks, yeah.
I know what that feels
Hyuuga Hinata takes his breath away; it’s more than the
elegant slopes of her cheeks, perpetually flushed; more than the way the
sunlight catches in her eyelashes and holds; more than the simple change in her
when her eyes find his, and everything about her gentles.
It’s the kindness with which she reaches out to touch him, a
question and a greeting—
“Naruto-kun,” she says, and her voice is every swift and
sudden shift in the temperature around them, sending chills down his spine.
“How are you?”
“Good,” he says, and it comes out quick and messy, just like
him, just like his feelings. His blunders only make her smile, gentle twists in
the corners of her lips, that same genuine affection she holds for him moving
over her expression in every shade of warmth. He catches his breath, watches a
leaf flutter through the air between them, and catch in Hinata’s hair.
There isn’t an ounce of hesitation in him—never has been,
really. He reaches out to her even as he corrects himself, lets his fingertips
trail over the heated curve of her cheekbone until he can feel the jagged edges
of the leaf against his skin. There’s still some green on the stem, bleeding
out into yellows and oranges and the deepest of reds, just there at his
“Good,” he repeats, and feels one side of his mouth tick up
in amusement when Hinata merely blinks up at him, wide-eyed and captivated.
It’s still such a curious thing, he thinks, that out of everyone in the world
Hinata has chosen him.
It’d been weeks since he had finally told her he loved her,
there in the meadow with the light of fireflies catching in her eyes, twin
pools of heated wonder. Weeks since she’d fought alongside him to rescue her
sister, to prevent unnecessary destruction at Toneri’s misguided hands.
He carefully extricates the leaf from her hair, fingers
twirling the stem in the short space between them, a hair’s breadth away from
Hinata’s lips. “What are you up to?”
“Nothing much,” she responds, finally breaking eye contact
to shyly duck her head, the toe of her sandal scuffing the dirt.
It’s sudden, and impulsive, but the moment the idea alights
in his mind Naruto feels himself reaching back out to her, the leaf in his
hands falling to the ground between them. He traces the smoothed edge of her
jaw with his fingers, eyes heavy-lidded with affection, and asks, “Will you
come with me?”
Hinata does not ask where, or why. Her trust in him is
implicit and exhilarating, and her hand is steady when she reaches out to take
his, to twine their fingers together and follow his lead. Naruto’s strides are
purposeful, a pace quicker than leisure, and Hinata doesn’t question that,
He brings her to a familiar place, one all their own, a
meadow full of life and light and surrounded entirely in Konoha’s infamous greenery.
In the distance, the sun makes its way over the mountains, casting the sky in
liquid tones of flame, hindered only by a handful of clouds.
Naruto stops and Hinata is there in front of him, close
enough to touch, to hold. It’s easy, then, to pull her into his arms, to press
her against him until he can feel the subtle push of her pulse against his
skin, a promise and a reminder.
“Hinata,” he breathes, and her name is a prayer. He runs his
fingers through the long length of her hair and feels the way she trembles
against him, her fingers pressed between their chests. He pulls back only so
much as to see her face, the watery gleam of her eyes, unmistakably joyful.
“Here,” she says, so achingly quiet and sincere. “You’ve
brought us back to this place.”
“Our place,” he agrees, leaning forward to touch their
foreheads together just once, an intimate gesture of affection.
“I have incredible clarity of the moments we’ve had here,”
Hinata admits, and Naruto watches the way her cheeks shift from cream to rose
right before his eyes. He reaches up and runs his knuckles ever so lightly
against her temple, her cheek. He leans in and it’s easy, as it always has been
with her, as it always will be, to press his lips to hers and feel her melt
into him in turn. He pulls back a moment later, his chest tight with nerves and
anticipation, and he watches the way she watches him.
“I have incredible plans for future moments we can have
here,” he says, surprised that the words come to him so easily. So cleanly. And
maybe it’s love that does that, at times. Cleans up the messes it makes.
Hinata’s eyes widen, and Naruto smiles.
“Will you be mine?” He asks, knuckles trailing lightly over
her skin, her breath against his lips. “Can I be yours? Forever?”
“Yes,” she says, without hesitation, so easily, so
beautifully. Tears turn her eyes glassy and Naruto lifts her against his chest,
feels her arms wrap around his neck, and he presses every promise of memories yet
to be made of love and support against her lips.
The leaves continued to shift, to change, to fall; for new
life, new beginnings, and new stories.
And Uzumaki Naruto does the same, with Hinata at his side.
I received my copy of the @naruhinafanzine today!! It’s beautiful and so much hard work was put into it, I feel very blessed and grateful to have been invited and included to participate. So many wonderful artists and authors were included in this project, and I’m humbled to have been allowed to join them! The print by @popimitaya and the charm by @ladie-bug are seriously darling, thank you so much!! And thank you so, so much to @artistari-chan who pulled it all together with such love and dedication and made it such a special project ❤️
“I’m connecting the words that had gone stale. Though we just want to convey our simple feelings. The sombre wind that blew on that day, Is abandoning the ruins of yesterday. So I can smile and live with you. But then, doesn’t that incident torment you? That’s why this is goodbye.”