Chapter 36

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"Hey. You there."

The little, pink-haired girl turned around with wide eyes to see the glaring man in front of her. "You a Haruno?" he spoke. She looked at him in fear and curiosity.

"I said, are you a Haruno?" he repeated impatiently. She looked like she was considering something before nodding and smiling cheerfully. His mouth pulled back in a grin. "Perfect."

Suddenly, rough hands grabbed the back of her shirt as her bright green eyes dulled in shock. She immediately began to thrash, but the big man only shook her a bit to silence her. "Lemme go! Lemme go!" she yelled, but he paid no heed as he threw her into a nice-looking automobile and locked the front.

His wide-toothed smile scared her, but he kept smiling. "It looks like you're going to pay the debt for your mama and papa," he sneered, before climbing into the car himself.

Sakura's eyes started to leak tears until he stopped the car with a jolt and bellowed, "YOU BETTER STOP CRYING IN THIS GODDAMN CAR OR I'LL DO MORE THAN BEAT YOU, GOT IT?" And boom, tears were gone.

He calmed down as he drove again, his more-than-creepy smile back. "Did you know, little girl? Your mama and papa are thieves."

"What are thieves?" she asked, her curiosity overpowering her fear. "How do I put this so a kid could understand... they're stealers, little girl." Her eyes grew wide. "They're stealers?" she said in awe.

"Yep. They stole money from us, cupcake. And they're not giving it back."

Sakura looked down in disappointment for her parents- they were thieves? "So, if they're not going to give back what they stole, I'm not gonna give back what I stole- you."

Sakura's head snapped back up as he started to laugh, bellowing out "HA! HA!"s every second. "Say bye-bye to your childhood, kid! Man, they're gonna love you," he chuckled, as silence overtook them.

She didn't dare say a word, but she kept repeating in her mind- Mommy. Daddy. Mommy. Daddy...

It must have been hours before the car stopped with a jolt. "Hold on right here, I need to get someone really quick," he told her as he left the car.

She didn't hesitate to run as she yanked open the door, fell out with a thud, got up and started to run without turning back with her knees scraped and bleeding.

Eventually, a woman found her. "What on earth are you doing this late? And alone?" she said as she pulled back Sakura's hair. Her green eyes started to waver as a tear fell out. "Goodness, you're bleeding! What's your name, sweetheart?"

And so, she eventually returned to her worried-sick parents with eyes that could no longer bear tears. They kissed her head, hugged her tight, and whispered reassurance that something like that would never happen again.

As much as she went through, she felt loved. And happy.

How long would it be for me to feel this happy again?

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She gazed at the wonderful man in front of his with his dull eyes sparkling, mouth pulled back in a grin, as he gazed at you back with love with the ring still resting on his forefinger and thumb.

Her heart? In overdrive. Her mind? Breaking by the second. Her hands? Shaking like an earthquake struck- the earthquake that was that proposal of marriage.

It all made sense now. Why the villagers came, why he invited her parents, why he asked her to the ball without giving her an invitation, why he asked what her favorite gem is- everything was explained, not even in words, in the tiny ring in front of her.

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