Chapter Two ~ Imprisonment

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With most people, I could watch and understand, see almost everything about them.

The man with the younger woman has a tan line in his left ring finger. Obviously having an affair.

The man walking along with his girlfriend was obviously gay. The girlfriend obviously wasn't aware.

The woman in the expensive kimono and jewelry didn't know that her husband has just lost all their money and fortune, probably from gambling.

That person was in love with that person, that woman hated that man, two best friends secretly loved each other, that person was broke, that person was rich, he was failing school, she was skipping... It didn't matter what it was; eventually I learned to see the truth just from watching.

I was good at it. I knew people. I knew how they acted, what they wanted, what they hated, what they loved, how they responded to certain stimuli, what made them tick.

This made it that much more confusing for me to look at the silver haired man and see nothing.

What did he want?

Who was he?

Why did I feel... Like I knew him? It was ridiculous: there's no reason I would know him. I was a Claw, all emotion stripped from me during the pain endurance portion of training. I should feel nothing when I look at him.

I should feel nothing, ever.

Why did he look so sad when I snatched at the side of my head, pain smashing through it as I thought and felt in ways that had long since been trained out of me, in ways I was conditioned to feel pain in?

And why did I care?

Why did he care?

I slammed my head into the metal bar of my cell, ignoring Kakashi's shout as the pain of my throbbing forehead helped control the searing burn in my mind. I breathed raggedly as my mind cleared from the haze of pain.

"What's wrong with her, Tsunade?" The silver haired man asked. Friend Killer. Cold Hearted. How did he earn those names? Was that who he was? Or was that just what he was called?

Or both?

"I... I'm not sure," the woman admitted. Tsunade. Fifth Hokage. Slug Queen. On our list. Not to die, but to be aware of. To watch. To send messages to.

Like Kakashi's death. That was supposed to be a message.

"She's obviously gone through a lot of trauma. PTSD is practically a given at this point. But it wouldn't explain why she doesn't seem to remember you, remember us, remember... Well, herself," Tsunade murmured.

"I am no one," I whispered, "I am nothing." It felt reassuring to say the words that had been drilled into me since day one. "I am a tool for the Rising Phoenix to use at will. I am here to serve the Rising Phoenix in mind, in spirit, and in body. I shall not flinch, I shall not feel, I shall not scream, I will follow the Phoenix till the end of the earth."

"At this point I'm thinking brainwashing. Notice how she flinches and grabs the side of her head sometimes?" I assumed Kakashi nodded, because Tsunade continued. "I believe that something causes her pain whenever she thinks, whenever she feels, or whenever she tries to remember."

"So... There's a jutsu or something effecting her?" Kakashi asked slowly.

"I believe that either there is a jutsu implanted inside of her mind or... She's been brainwashed. Or a mixture of both, of course," Tsunade explained. "We should get someone who can search through her mind in here. In fact, we should get a team."

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