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From the Heart

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Hashirama perked up as his brother slipped through the window, the trees had kept him informed about his brother, but he'll always prefer the real thing.

Hashirama leaned back in his chair, allowing an exhausted Tobirama to fall into his embrace, face buried in his older brother’s neck, breathing him in. They sat in warm silence, Hashirama wrapping his strong arms around his last precious brother who had finally returned from his too-long mission.

“Do you want me to talk or wait?” Hashirama asked, his brother had admitted long ago he enjoyed his voice, the way it flowed slow, deep, and smooth, but if Tobirama had a headache then Hashirama would know to keep quiet.

Tobirama let out a deep sigh and pulled away, but stayed in his lap, much to Hashirama's delight, “I’m alright, just tired. The mission went perfect, the Hatake agreed to the proposal.”

Hashirama beamed up at him and pressed their foreheads together, intertwining their fingers. They didn’t get the whole clan, but the Hatake are typically nomadic by nature, and the deal allows so when the last Hatake dies, the clan will send another small group, so the few of their clan that wanted to settle could and the village gets their alliance and strength. And his Tobirama did it in less than two weeks! Hashirama tilted his head up to give his clever brother a peck on the cheek, laughing when Tobirama flushed and pouted, turning away from him. Hashirama naturally took this as a challenge and pulled him foreword to get his kisses that Tobirama again dodged. This led to a very mature, very reasonable chase around the office, ending with Hashirama tackling him to the ground and Tobirama began smacking him between each kiss.

“Get. Off. You. Moron!” Hashirama finally stopped, pouting despairingly at him.

Tobirama just snorted, immune to his tricks, like the meanie he was. When Hashirama suddenly sobered up, leaning up with Tobirama still pinned beneath him, blinking surprisingly at his brother's mood change.

“I think my Firebird is… sick,” Hashirama lamented.

Tobirama raised an eyebrow, “how do you know?” Madara had been normal when he left a fortnight ago.

“The doors heard my canary give it an unwanted gift, and ever since it’s been pulling away, I don’t like it.” He scowls at the thought.

So, Mito pulled the wool away, did she? They’ll need to fix that, lest Madara get some unfavorable, untrue thoughts towards his brother.

Confident, Tobirama lifts a gentle hand to caress his brother’s face, “my brother, do not waste worry on your firebird, I will look into it.” Hashirama presses against his cool hand and sighs in relief. What a wonderful brother he had.

Chapter Text

Tobirama slipped into Madara’s house with ease, the man may be a monster on the battlefield, but in defense, he was lacking.

Poking around, he found the bedroom, and let himself in, keeping track of Madara’s dark chakra signature combining with Hashirama’s bright, warm signature in the Senju compound. A most perfect opportunity.

Stepping lightly, Tobirama begins rummaging around, looking for the journal he had seen referenced in Madara’s therapist’s notes. As Madara was considered a high-ranked shinobi all his paperwork was stored in the Hokage tower for anyone with enough clearance to access. And Tobirama had all the clearance.

Tobirama was proud of his bureaucracy. It did its job well.

Stepping back, he begins to scan the room. Madara is paranoid and depressed, but still a shinobi, if he were in his shoes where would he hide it?

Everything was in order in the simple room, no paintings, a sliding door to the yard, it wasn’t in the dresser or the closet, tiles in the ceiling? Empty. Where on Earth-

As he slinks back through the house, his eyes came to rest on Izuna’s shrine in the visitor’s room.

Tobirama’s responding smirk was one of victory. Madara was so predictable.

--

Madara walks back to his home, a twisting feeling in his gut. He had gone over to Hashirama’s house to end the relationship on his therapist’s advice. Madara had never told her who he was in the relationship with, so her advice was uncensored, and after a few sessions, she had advised him to distance himself and end it when he was ready. And Madara thought he was!

But Hashirama, warm, loving Hashirama had welcomed him and touched him, not even sexually at first, just casual brushes against his arm and a quick kiss, but Madara wasn’t touched by anyone anymore and he just-

He was weak, he just wanted Hashirama. He loved him, no matter how evil or manipulative Hashirama could be. He was a shinobi; he was supposed to be! After all, wasn’t Madara just as bad?

Madara’s shallow assurance to himself had lasted long enough for them to fall into bed together Madara relishing another person's tender embrace, but as he walks home, hair mussed and stinking of sex with not a single clansmen greeting him or even looking- shame started to crawl like an infection through his body. He needs a bath and to sleep forever he thought hysterically.

He does not sleep forever, but the next day he does visit Dr. Akimichi and tells her how he pathetically went back to the man again. He watches in surprise as she walks over and grasps his shoulder firmly.

“Madara-san, I do not expect you to completely change everything overnight. We will work through it together, and please, do not think yourself pathetic for laying with a man you love, it is not your fault he ignores the fact you are in pain,” she reassures. Madara swallows harshly, choking on too many emotions.

She sits back in her chair, “Now, let’s talk about your diet,” Madara snorts, a weight in his chest slightly lighter.

---

The next day on a bright afternoon, Dr. Akimichi Chiyo is summoned to the Hokage tower.

Chapter Text

Madara schools his features as Chiyo’s normally bubbly secretary tearfully informed him she was killed in action from a mission gone wrong. He gruffly gives his condolences as he holds his anger at bay.

He casts his chakra sensing out to find Mito. Letting nothing show, he briskly makes his way to her garden, ignoring gawkers in the Senju compound as none were brave enough to approach, not with the Hashirama and his demon busy in the tower and their cousin, Touka, away on a mission in Suna.

Mito rises before he greets her from behind, a sweet smile painted on her face, but her eyes tight.

“Madara-san, welcome, how can I help you?”

Madara, aware of the eyes around them, gestures to the house, “I was hoping for your company, Mito-san, your husband insisted your tea is the best of all Fire-country.”

She nods in assent.

When they settle, Madara makes sure they were truly alone before discussing, Mito calms his fears, assuring him every room was warded with a war in mind. Madara had to admire the paranoia that took, but with a husband and in-law like Hashirama and Tobirama, it was not unwarranted.

Madara sips the tea only to blanch, its just sweetened sake! He stares at her in bafflement as she just stares back, still sweetly smiling. How often did she drink?

Madara shook his head, no time for that.

"They had my therapist killed.”

Mito finally lets her smile fall, and with it, Madara could see even more stress lines.

“I know,” he blanches.

“How do you know?!” Mito sighs.

“I only found out after, apparently Hashirama 'felt terrible', he said the client lied about the rank of the mission and it all went sideways, the entire team was killed.”

Madara leaned back, processing the implications of that. Hashirama, if they were right, let an entire team be killed just to keep him vulnerable, and they had no proof. No proof, no allies.

“That’s genius,” he reluctantly admits, Mito nods in agreement, an easy way to get rid of someone you want dead while keeping your hands clean. Madara was overcome with rage for Chiyo and her team. They didn’t deserve this; she was just trying to help him! If he hadn’t gotten her involved this never-

Madara swallowed a scream, he would deal with the crushing guilt later, right now, he focused on the rage.

“So, what do we do about it?!”

Mito gave an extremely unimpressed look, “We do nothing, but if I were to offer advice, I would tell you to run.”

Madara scrutinized her, “Why just me? Why not you?”

Mito gives him a sad smile, “It’s too late for me.” She placed a deceptively delicate hand on her belly and slightly lifts her sleeve revealing a complex seal. A seal Madara would bet his weight in gold Tobirama created. Even if he did not fully understand what it did, he understood the implications.

Madara closes his eyes in sympathy. That explained her subtle machinations against the brothers, and Madara was suddenly so extremely grateful not to be a woman. Hashirama had ensnared both of them, but Mito was trapped. He met her dark eyes.

“In our clan, it is frowned upon, but we have ways, we could…” he trailed off.

Mito shook her head, “The seal prevents any interference, besides the other village leaders have already been informed, it is a point of great pride for our village.” Her tone is expressionless.

They sit in silence. Madara meets her gaze.

“I could take them on.”

Mito laughs, “Oh? You couldn’t even take them when you had your brother and the entire Uchiha army at your heel.” Madara growls at mention of Izuna, but she pushes past, “Face it, there is no hope for us, not here, and between the two of us, only you can escape.”

She lunges forward grabbing his collar, much to his shock, all pretense of a delicate princess, cast away, “You can escape, so you do. Do you understand me? You leave this retched place and start over, forget everything here and don’t look back. As strong as you are, you can’t take them, that’s just reality, Madara-san, and this reality is not something you can change, so leave!” She screams.

Madara stumbles into his house, shaken by Mito’s outburst, afterward, she had apologized and pretended like nothing had happened, but her frustration was still palpable.

He glances at Izuna’s alter, and breaks. The alter is destroyed.

 

---

Tobirama admitted he had been frustrated. He had hunted Madara’s house for an alleged journal, only to consider too-late the possibility Chiyo had lied in her notes. Tobirama had to give her kudos, he admittedly never considered she would lie in her own notes, but if she suspected someone high-up would look for blackmail or information on the Uchiha head it was a good way to root out a culprit, because few could sneak in and out of the Uchiha compound without getting caught.

Tobirama had been ashamed to return to his brother with nothing on his lover (though he took private pleasure leaving his gift for the man), but Hashirama had just grinned stupidly and asked if Tobirama had the ability to alter mission ranks, confused, Tobirama had said yes.

Hashirama had him change an S-rank to a B-rank and Chiyo and her team were history. Tragic.

Tobirama was making his brother’s dinner, a simple broth with vegetables and pork, when Mito glided in past.

He doesn't bother looking up, “Mito-san, I hope your day treated you well.”

She only decreases her pace slightly, “Yes, Tobirama-san. Thank you for asking.” She was gone around the corner.

Tobirama smirks into his pot, her distaste for him had increased dramatically when he had informed his brother of the life that she held, revealing her position. Her inference meant nothing now; everything was back on-track for his brother’s peace, in fact, her interloping had only hastened Madara’s decent into madness.

Ah, dinner is finally ready. Making two large bowls, Tobirama silently slips into their room, gently placing the bowl in front of his brother, who’s tired eyes light up. Pulling up a chair they dine in a comfortable silence until full. Cleaning up their dishes, he gives his brother a stern command, only slightly undercut by his small smile.

“I expect you to be in bed when I get back.”

Hashirama pouts, “Otouto, I still have work to do,” he waves at the papers surrounding their bed.

Papers Tobirama expertly guides around, “Yes, but you can get more work done, and of better quality after you rest.” He pauses at the door, “Also, tomorrow is a big day.” He could already sense Madara fleeing north.

Hashirama freezes, “You mean?”

Tobirama nods.

Hashirama finally puts the papers aside and jumps up, “Well it’s about time! I thought it was going to take another year!” They needed the fight to go down before Kiri tensions escalated to solidify Konoha’s strength.

They sleep well that night, snuggled together against the cool temperatures, talking about their plans well into the dark.

Mito does not. Alone in her rooms, she silently mourns for Uchiha Madara, she has never liked the man, but he does not deserve to be a patsy for the village.

And everything proceeds as planned. Madara, predictably, went after the largest beast that could possibly beat Hashirama (he never could have just left the village, not with their history) which they beat and seal away. Mito’s face had been amusing as she battled the man, Tobirama thought, as she had originally tried to help him.

Hashirama, afterwards, had his reputation and approval polls skyrocket after the fight which gave them more power and flexibility than they originally planned. So, in a moment of rare empathy for someone other than his brother or a child, Tobirama convinced his brother to open their marriage contract with Mito so she was allowed to take on lovers as long as they were discrete and bore them no children.

After that, Mito was able to tolerate her infuriating brother-in-law slightly more. Time eases all pain, for we would all go mad if it did not, and eventually they even bond over his beautiful, fierce cousin to grow something akin to friendship.

She never forgives Hashirama.

 

Everything is concluded, Tobirama thinks, as he arms the self-destructing seal on his heart, it is finally his turn. The village is stable, his students are safe, and he is about to see his brothers again.

The White Demon of Fire gives the Gold and Silver Brothers a blinding grin, and it all goes black.