Hadopelagia by R.C. McLachlan
Word count: 51,039 (thus far)
Tags: Canon divergence, gratuitous misuse of mythology, slow build
Summary: A forgotten sea gives birth to a continuation at the tattered edge of all things.
… he shattered like glass under Kakashi’s skin, a million shards of Umino Iruka—each one a new thing to learn, a new facet. Almost a decade later and Kakashi is still finding new pieces.
He’ll never be rid of him, not when he sees Iruka putting his students through their paces on the training field with a wide, proud smile on his face; when he passes Iruka in the market talking to each vendor like an old friend; when he stands before the Mission Desk and suffers Iruka’s dissatisfaction with his reports because apparently there’s a correlation between legible handwriting and one’s worth as a shinobi; when he watches Iruka tuck the boy who holds the Nine-Tails under his arm like an older brother would and treat him to a feast of kings.
When he sees Iruka stop suddenly on the street and turn to stare up with visible longing at the Monument, and is suddenly a boy himself, again, terrified and covetous of the easy acceptance and friendship of a stranger.
And after ten years—
After the match, after he watches Sasuke walk out of the arena with shoulders held just a bit lower under the weight of a new rank, Kakashi will man up—slip past the wards around a sparsely-furnished apartment, come up quietly to the Memorial Stone in the hush before night falls, ask for a private audience in the Mission Room, slide open the door to a classroom empty of all but one—and explain everything.