Rating: PG-13, I guess. Mentions of incest.
Summary: Figuring out that something is wrong, Sasuke runs around trying to find the Itachis. He finds one and not the other. Revelations are made, decisions are communicated, and a new loyalty begins.
Notes: Takes place August 1st. Late evening.
Oto!Sasuke: A day and a half had been spent futilely searching the area his husband was last known to be once Sasuke realized things were amiss. Even as he made his way back to the base, the young Uchiha refused to give up his hopes completely and continued searching the vicinity along the way. It was near Sound that he felt the faint, but distinctly familiar signature of his brother and his speed increased in the direction it seemed to be located. Sasuke knew it might not be the man he had left the underground village in a panicked search for, but he felt no disappointment knowing it could be his spare either. Only confusion. He was certain that Itachi was in Sound and accounted for, even if somewhere in the shadows as the man often was.
Evil!Itachi: He had awoken with a silent gasp, his mind swimming from the backlash of the ceremony going wrong. Last he knew his ghostly visage had hovered on the giant fingers of the bijuu statue while his real body sat atop a particularly warm rock in the landscape around the Sound village. The Senju brat that held the nine-tails had been captured and trussed up, but something had gone wrong with the sealing. Trust Pain to get impatient and try to seal the boy before last... Feh. The last thing he could remember was a flash of bright light as the statue tore itself apart...
Oto!Sasuke: Which of his brothers became clear as his spare came into view, and there wasn’t a moment’s hesitation in Sasuke’s approach. He was surprised to find the elder Uchiha outside the compound, but quite glad to see him nonetheless. Crimson orbs took in the state of Itachi, noting the slight fatigue apparent in his posture and the weakened but growing chakra. Naturally cautious knowing his spare, Sasuke came to stop a few feet before him to avoid startling the other man into possibly attacking. “Itachi...” he calmly greeted to announce himself, then slowly moved closer.
Evil!Itachi: His eyes flashed open, their color perplexed red with a tinge of anger at his weakness for falling into unconsciousness behind it. Recognizing the young man before him and the writhing, darkened chakra that accompanied him, his muscles relaxed as he realized that this was his spare. “Sasuke,” he greeted in return, his voice rather scratchy from at least three days of disuse. His eyes flickered over the surroundings (strange, they looked the same, but something felt off...) before returning to the man before him.
“What is wrong, that you are here?”
Oto!Sasuke: Slender fingers trailed through the hair that framed Itachi’s face and against his skin once Sasuke was close enough, then the younger perched half sitting on the slab of rock next to his spare. “I could ask the same of you,” he replied and gazed out over the surroundings. “I thought you were inside, thus finding you out here is quite unexpected. It eases me to see you, however,” stated the young Uchiha quietly. He gave pause for many moments, then simply stated, “I believe we are somehow in a different world than we were before.”
Evil!Itachi: “...Again?” He frowned. It had been chaotic enough, shifting worlds before, so doing that again was not high on his priority list. However, it appeared that he did not have a choice. At least this time he had an idea of the possible catalyst.
“What makes you think that? Are there strange people around?” His muscles were tensing up, ready for battle if one of them came around the corner.
Oto!Sasuke: “Hn,” he grunted in a confirming tone to the questions. “Not so much in the direct vicinity of this base, but yes. I realized something wasn’t right when a strange report came in from one of the remote bases, and having passed through the border town not far from here it is my guess that we are the ones displaced,” he informed Itachi then shifted his gaze to look at the elder directly. “Why are you out here? And in such a state?” It was a rather blunt question, but not too surprising from Sasuke.
Evil!Itachi: The tense hold on his muscles slackened, and he tilted his head slightly into Sasuke’s touch, just the barest acknowledgement of his attentions. “I was taking part in a sealing,” he answered directly. Itachi could feel that his chakra was no longer so weakened, and his crimson eyes sharpened accordingly. It felt good to leave that vulnerability behind. “There were... unforeseeable consequences. It is possible that they were the catalyst for the shifting of worlds.”
Oto!Sasuke: Sasuke shook his head with a soft snort. “Naruto.” It was as much a question as a statement, but he felt he knew it to be the answer. “Word of his capture had reached me through contacts in Konoha. I would have to agree the amount of power necessary to rip a bijuu from it’s host could have such affects.” Even as he spoke of an alter of the person who had been his best friend in one world and even a lover in the one prior, not a hint of remorse was spared for the loss of the jinchuuriki.
Evil!Itachi: Hn. And after he had deliberately not spoken of the jinchuuriki’s capture to Sasuke, as he knew of their past relationships, the boy had still found out. “Yes,” he admitted, showing no more hint of a reaction on his face than his brother had.
“Do you know what is different about this world, or does it seem similar? I would rather know if we are being hunted or expected to be living some particular place...”
Oto!Sasuke: Even though he knew through Konoha, the young Uchiha displayed no actual care regarding Naruto’s capture, and the topic was left behind as such. “It seems somewhat similar, but I have not had a chance to look into such things much...” It was then that Sasuke’s voice dropped, knowing what he was about to say was never a good subject with his spare. “I was trying to find Ita, since he had been out of the base and any contact with him was lost.”
Evil!Itachi: He glanced up smoothly, a hint of slyness tainting his features for a split second before it disappeared. He had lured ‘Ita’ out of the base, on a distracting mission to keep him away from Sasuke. Maybe he would have been lost in the world switch... But it was too soon to tell. He couldn’t stop the quirk of his lips upwards, though. That would just be perfect.
“In that case, I will do some scouting, and report back with what I find.” Oh, but he couldn’t quite leave the topic yet. “What about the others?” he asked, referring to those that lived in Sound with them.
Oto!Sasuke: The minute bit of pleasure at the news held no surprise to Sasuke, but what seemed to be an offer to look for his husband caused a dark brow to raise. “My spare, do not believe me to be naive enough to think you would not take advantage of his missing status, if found by you. Scouting to learn of this new world, would be appreciated though. I plan to do the same, as I do not like having so much unknown and the disadvantage it creates.”
“Everyone that was in the area at the time of the phenomenon appears to be accounted for and well. You did not luck out completely,” stated Sasuke with the hint of a smirk.
Evil!Itachi: With a quiet chuckle he raised a hand, beginning to card it possessively through his spare’s dark locks. “You know me too well, I think sometimes... But I will scout to learn of the new world.”
“...So you believe Sound is still a safe place to live?” He raised an elegant brow as he asked. Never had Sound been his favorite place, as it reminded him of the slimy snake that used to live there. Then again, there were few safe places in the world that he would actually enjoy living in. He tended to judge living spaces by safety, resources, and who else was there.
Oto!Sasuke: His head tilted lightly toward Itachi’s hand while the elder Uchiha’s fingers moved through his hair. That he was not entirely alone held some relief, although the thought of his husband being in such situation did sadden him. Sasuke had found not even a trace in his search that his other brother might have shifted planes of existance as they had, and from what he had seen so far the instance of the worlds crossing was contained in an area of affect. Yet he knew as long as his husband remained alive and well, there was no reason to extinguish the glimmer of hope buried in himself.
He sighed softly, pushing certain thoughts from dwelling in his mind at the moment. “It is the safest place for now. I ordered an inspection of the base and it’s security before I left the premises. The inhabitants appear to be the same subordinates under me. I do not know if Sound doesn’t have a base exactly here in this world, or perhaps the area of affect completely swapped. I do know the village exists, or existed, in this world and somewhere in this region. Beyond that I have yet to obtain information.”
Evil!Itachi: Giving a nod, his head tilted very slightly to the side as he watched the small flickers of emotion that briefly crossed his spare’s face. As smug and pleased as he was at the thought that his detestable alternate could be gone for good, he knew that Sasuke had... felt for him. He didn’t care about those two’s bond. Really he didn’t. But Sasuke’s state of mind... well. They could explore their bond more thoroughly now if it was true, and his influence would be increased.
He leaned over and softly kissed Sasuke right above his brows, on the spot that countless fingertips had poked the boy’s forehead. The gesture was relatively familiar between the two of them; Sasuke would know what it meant to him. “I will be around, whenever you obtain that information. I for one will not be leaving you.”
Oto!Sasuke: The manner in which the gesture was given caught Sasuke by slight surprise even if his eyes allowed him to predict the action before it was done. An appreciative glint in his crimson eyes reflected the faint smile that appeared despite a small chuckle of disbelief. “I would be most pleased if that holds true, my spare. As I have come to find it common that I am left by others,” he said quietly in almost a murmur.
Evil!Itachi: The barest frown marred his face, and he sat back for a moment, thinking on how to make Sasuke understand what he was saying. “I am not saying that it will always be perfect. Nothing in life is. But I am offering you my companionship, in his stead. Our bond is too precious a thing to let go. There is still so much to explore. I never want to let you go, my light...”
Oto!Sasuke: He reached up and ran his thumb over the edge of the faint frown as if it was meant to wipe the expression away. “You are my spare, and my light. I would never let you go easily. I am not sure I understand what you are offering, however, as I thought I had your companionship even with his presence,” said Sasuke as his hand slowly fell to his lap.
Evil!Itachi: Catching Sasuke’s hand before it could fall to his lap, he threaded their fingers together as he gazed at his light with extra intensity streaming through his crimson red eyes. “I mean to rectify what I should have long ago. I have thought deeply on what you said to me when I attacked... the adopted.” His head bent slightly, dark hair brushing against Sasuke’s shoulder. This was difficult to admit. “You were correct that she is needed to assist in the upbringing of the future of the clan. I don’t like it, but... I... hn... would like to see such a future, even though bringing in outsiders to do it is still distasteful to me. What I am trying to say is... I am giving you more than what you had from me before. I am giving you loyalty as the head of the clan... and the request to stand by your side as the Senju are razed from the earth and the Uchiha rise.”
Oto!Sasuke: Speechless. That was exactly what Itachi’s words did to the younger Uchiha. Many moments passed as Sasuke gazed at his elder in surprise; the only immediate show of appreciation in the tightening of his grasp on the hand threaded with his own. He understood the difficulty his brother must have had with not only the decision, but voicing it. When Sasuke finally spoke, his voice was soft and just above a whisper. “Thank you, Itachi. That you are willing to try and accept this course of action...” He gave a small shake of his head slowly. “By my side is the only place I have ever wanted you to be, especially when our enemies fall to the glory that is the Uchiha.”
Evil!Itachi: Gratified by his spare's reaction to his decision, he sidled closer, brushing his shoulder against Sasuke's. "It was very difficult," he agreed, but then he pushed on, not giving himself any time to hesitate. "There is a lot that will have to go into the realizing of that future... I will locate Madara's research on applicable topics if they are still in Sound.
I want to see the Uchiha become what they are supposed to be under us."
Oto!Sasuke: “It would be quite beneficial if you are able to find the work Madara had done on his own. As long as he did not take it out of Sound, then it should still be in it’s place,” stated Sasuke, allowing the topic to move on from his spare’s difficulty. There was a comfort in the brushing of shoulders, even if it was not intended as such, but to know Itachi was there with him...and quite willingly.
Evil!Itachi: And he was there willingly. For his spare to think otherwise would have been an insult to him. "I will, my spare," he murmured, pressing his lips to Sasuke's cheek, then to his jawbone. It had been so long since he had spent time with his spare and he wanted to demonstrate his conviction that their deep bond would never falter, no matter how much time had passed. No matter whether Sasuke believed that he would not leave him, Itachi had no intention of letting his chosen spare free from his possession.