Kind of a back story, my attempt to flesh Akina out more. Ujiki is her jounin-sensei
He’d come in from the rain, but by the time he finally knocked on the door,his hair, tied back in its customary ponytail, was almost dry. Still damp, but not soaking, not wet enough to do the storm raging outside any semblance of justice
His eyes were soft, quiet, as they always were, but his hands were flirting, restless, fingering the silver ring his wife had given him the day she left for a rather...delicate mission. He never had learned the exact details, but Miya had come back. Not to him, no, and not in one piece. She’d come back in a box addressed to the Hokage, and it had been a small box, barely big enough to fit the dog tags and her beautiful eyes, the golden orbs that had captured and held his heart and refused to let him go.
They had never gotten married, nor had they even been engaged, but still Yasui Ujiki wore the ring, and he had sworn he’d never again look at another woman in the same manner he had Miya. She had been his wife, and he her husband, and the simple fact that they had never officially been married always seemed like a moot point to the jounin with light brown hair.
He toyed with the ring, twisting it around and around his finger, and eventually knocked on the door, not enough to shake it, but enough to announce his presence.
Nothing happened. Ujiki sighed. Of course she wouldn’t answer. When had Akina ever answered?
He tried the knob, twisting it, and was not surprised when he found it locked. The jounin was, however, slightly shocked when he got it open on his first try, and no needles, kunai, or electric jutsu with homicidal intent came blasting his way.
Perhaps her last assignment, no, he couldn’t call it an assignment, could he?, had been bad. Of course, being stuck in the cells under the Hokage tower could be considered a great many things, and none of them (at least that Ujiki could think of), were in the least bit pleasant. The jounin tapped his foot, and then, after once again debating the pros and cons of doing so, pushed the door open all the way, nimbly dodging the lone kunai that launched itself at him.
So she wasn’t that far gone, yet. A part of him supposed that was a good thing.
The apartment was filled with boxes, the lights hadn’t been turned on (perhaps they had not yet been installed), there was something dark on the floor, which he chose to believe was mud, and the entire place smelled like a nasty cocktail of booze, crushed soldier pills, and smoke. There was also, if you waited for a moment, the slight, coppery aftertaste of blood, and though it wasn’t quite fresh, it wasn’t quite old either.
“Who said…you could come in?”
The voice came from the corner, and then Ujiki saw her, sandwiched between two large, towering boxes, a cigarette dangling out of her mouth and several bottles at her feet. Akina was leaning against the wall, feet stretched out before her, one arm held close to her chest, and then her former jounin-sensei saw for the first time the angle it was hanging at, the direction nature did not intent, but someone wearing the same symbol on their forehead protector as Ujiki (but not Akina, no, she never wore hers), had made it that way.
“I heard about what happened,” he said softly, moving slowly but purposefully towards her, towards ‘Kina-chan, because she was still his student, and he still, though more often than not forgetting that he did so, thought of her by that name, the name she had once allowed him to address him by.
A long time ago, that had been. Too long.
She snarled at him, moving her left hand, her good hand, down to the kunai holster at her thigh. “Get out!”
He was surprised she hadn’t sworn yet. Perhaps ANBU had taught her some semblance of manners?
Ujiki halted, showing her his palms. “You’re hurt, I can help you.”
“Get the fuck out!”
Ah, so there it was. He wasn’t surprised, not really. Part of him had known that side of her would never change. People changed, but only by a certain amount. A shinobi would always be a murderer, a bastard would always be a bastard, and Natsume Akina would always be bad-mannered and bad-tempered.
He sighed, and then asked, softly, but knowing she would hear him nonetheless, her hearing had always been excellent. “It is true, then, what I have heard?”
The rain was hitting the window, and part of Ujiki wondered why he had not noticed it before. It cast dark lines, sinister-seeming patterns, across the floor, the uncarpeted floor already stained with blood. She had been there no more than two days, and had already painted her living space with blood.
This time it was her own, though. A change from the norm.
Laughter, cold and bitingly harsh. “You…you come here, to ask me? Damn you, sensei, damn you, get out before...before I hurt you.”
He knows it’s a real threat, though wondered about her ability to exercise it. Akina was drunk, and from the way her eyes, always narrowed and dark, were dilated, probably high as well. Painkillers would be his first guess, but Ujiki knew his student well enough to suppose it was more likely to be Speed.
Yasui Ujiki steps back carefully. “You did it, didn’t you? How could you, Akina? Kill your own comrade?”
He knows that she could have, and now realizes that he knew so all along, and that this entire trip only served to prolong his delusion that maybe, possibly, his former student was innocent of what she was accused of, that she wasn’t so far gone as so many claimed. That she wasn’t beyond…he didn’t know what, maybe redemption.
Maybe in a different life, but he knows from the way she’s glaring at him it won’t be this one, not by a long shot.
He leaves, but not before he hears her, hears her harsh, almost but not quite slurred words, the words of someone accustomed to being drunk and in hiding the fact. “So what if I did, hmm? What then, sensei? What the hell will you do?”
Yasui Ujiki doesn’t do anything for a good long while. Then he goes to the nearest bar and spends the week’s paycheck. The alcohol is strong, and for a bit it makes him forget about Akina, about the student he once knew, but who stares at him with a stranger’s frozen eyes.