Original challenge here.
VERSION TWO 12/4/06 2.31pm
"Bastard," Naruto gurgles through his own blood. He crawls towards where Sasuke is, an effort Sasuke knows should be futile after the Sound Four have had their fun with him. Except that Naruto is actually doing it, inch by painful, long inch. Crawling. The agony is completely thrown over by determination, and Sasuke sees this etched like the dried blood and scars on Naruto's face.
Sasuke would have been impressed by this, once.
Now he knows, or thinks he does, that Naruto is only somewhat outstanding because he tries. He tries, and fails, and tries and fails again. There is nothing impressive in failure- Sasuke knows he's going to try, then win. Naruto's hands claw and rake the air, pathetically, and then his arm lands with a violent THUD on the ground while his eyes shut and his body slumps.
This is not the most glorious of demises, and through it is Sasuke's satisfaction at knowing something so surely, and a sense of closure.
"Hurry it up, teme," a girl's voice rings in this silence. It should be jarring, but Sasuke takes it all in his stride. There is no real jarring, or dulling of the senses, but rather an acute awareness that grows as much a part of him. He knows what he feels, but the feelings fall on stone like Naruto's hand on the floor, reverberating but changing nothing.
Five pairs of feet tread softly out of Konoha, and silence reigns once more.