Flames of My Heart: Hey people, this is my first story. It's about a 15 year-old girl that goes from being a servant of a lord to a ninja. She has to go through living with a perverted sensei, love triangles, and lots of fighting! Hope you enjoy!

-------------

"Come on! You can do better than that, you baka!" the old man screeched, as my hands continued to shake and twitch. I could feel my grip on the hilt of the sword loosening, and I wondered if my sensei would take this opportunity to chop my head off, and then play it off like it was an accident.

"You're useless! I don't know why the village picked you! An onna! They must be mentally retarded!" my sensei continued to yell at me, erasing what ever drop of confidence I had left. I just nodded my head, hoping that it would make him shut up.

SLAP!

I growled; my grip on the sword tightened. That old man… how dare he… THAT ASSHOLE! Flipping the sword so that I was holding the blade, I threw it with all my might… and thanked Kami-sama, that I had good hand-eye coordination.

Bonk. The hilt of the sword connected with the old man's head, and I watched him drop to the floor, drool already leaking out of the corners of his mouth. "Look at the naked ladies," he mumbled as I sighed and walked over to retrieve my sword. Sheathing it, I wiped sweat from my brow, and walked back to the temple.

-------------

It had all started a year ago. I have yet to get over the shock. My village was a peaceful one. We had never had any wars break out between us and others, because we tended to keep to ourselves. Though most of us were against violence, the founders of the village had decided a long time ago to make sure that we had at least some sort of protection.

In exchange for provisions, such as food, clothing, gold and all of those other natural resource bullshit, the village neighboring us would allow one of our people to enter their village each generation. (A new generation to us, is when we get a new leader) They would be trained by the elitist ninjas, and then returned back to our village 2 years later. They would become a sort of protector. Personally, I thought it was all just a hoax to make the villagers less jumpy.

Our former leader, Kisho Hiroshi (name meaning: Kisho- wise, Hiroshi- generous) died at the beginning of the spring season, and his son Kisho Haru (name meaning: Haru- born in spring) had taken over. Haru was a young man, only 7 years older than me. He would've made a good leader, but he was still immature and did not have enough experience to be called wise.

So it was no surprise to me that the baka would pick a woman as the new protector. What did surprise me though was that he picked me. I can still remember the outrage of our people when his messenger made the big announcement. It was a life changing experience.

-------------

I had been walking through the market place, a basket of fruits balanced over my head, dressed in my work clothes which consisted of a giant grey dress that looked like a sack, a green sash tied around my waist, and sandals that my mother had worn when she was my age. They were a green color, open toed, and worn around the heels.

I smiled at the few people I could recognize in the swarming crowd, and continued down the dirt road, making sure nothing spilled over the basket. I noticed the messenger before he noticed me, not that it was hard. He was dressed in a white and blue yukata, symbolizing that he was of an upper class. Also, there was a scroll tied over his shoulder and back.

He was a middle-aged man, with salt and pepper hair, and cold onyx eyes. When our eyes connected, he let out a sinister grin, and I resisted the urge to shudder, as I returned his grin with a glare. He raised his eyebrow and then changed his course of direction, so that he was walking towards me. I gulped, and wondered if I should run. But then I noticed the samurai sword strapped to his side, and decided that he would probably strike me down if I tried.

When the man finally stopped in front of me, he stared into my eyes, as if calculating my worth. He let out a deep sigh, and then untied the scroll from his back. He held it under his arm, and after a few more seconds of our staring contest he spoke. "Are you Michi Leiko?" (name meaning: Michi- righteous, Leiko- arrogant) his voice dripped superiority, and I resisted the urge to grab a fruit from her basket and shove it in his pig-like mouth.

Instead, I decided to 'kill him with kindness' and in a sickeningly sweet voice, answered, "Hai. And who may you be?"

"Akiyama Dai. (name meaning: Akiyama-the mountain, Dai- great) Not that that's any of your business, little girl." I removed the basket from my head, and balanced it on my hip, using only my right hand. My left hand itched to scratch up his already scarred face.

Without my consent, he grabbed my arm and dragged me to the center of the market place. The significant thing about the center was that it was a place where announcements were spoken. Here, men would stand on top of a high platform and scream at the top of their lungs their message, hoping that the people below would hear their shouts. The man dragged me up the ladder of the platform and then began to unroll the scroll.

He didn't even need to try and shout, because people all around us instantly stopped what they were doing and turned to stare at me and him curiously. Obviously, this was one of the many perks of the upper class.

"AS YOU KNOW," he began, his voice booming. "KISHO-SAMA HAS TAKENT HE POSITION OF OUR LEADER. AND WITH THAT POSITION, COMES THE DECISION OF OUR PROTECTOR. I PRESENT OUR NEW PROTECTOR…" He turned and pointed at me, as gasps erupted throughout the crowd. I dropped my groceries in shock, my mouth hanging open.

"THAT WEAKLING! NO WAY!"

"AN ONNA?"

"WHAT A FOOL THAT HARU IS!"

Clearly, the people hadn't been very accepting of this decision. Neither had I for that matter. "Are you crazy?!" I shouted at the man, as he walked off the platform. I followed him in hot pursuit, as he pushed his way out of the crowds. "DON'T WALK AWAY FROM ME!"

He continued to ignore me until we had reached the outskirts of the village. He turned to face me, his eyes finally showing some emotion. Pity. He pitied me? Why? "Don't look at me like that…" I said in almost a whisper.

"You're just a little girl…" he spoke, and then turned around. He continued walking to where ever it was that he was heading. I was too caught up in my thoughts to try and follow after him.

-------------

"Haru-sama, you must be reasonable," I begged of our leader. He stood before me, deeply focused on his archery. I watched as he expertly aimed the bow, and let the arrow cut through the air, and hit the target.

"Leiko-chan… I've known you since we were little. You are fully capable."

"Yes, but—No! I'm not!" I sat on the grass, hugging my knees to my chest. I'm nothing more than a silly orphan. How can I possibly become a legend among my people? I thought.

"You have no choice in the matter. It is my decision," Haru said, his dark blue eyes flashing, as if daring me to challenge his authority. Under different circumstances, I probably would've fought tooth and nail with him, but now it was different. He was a powerful man, and I was his little servant girl. It would be disrespectful.

"Well it was a stupid decision…" I mumbled, as I rose from the ground, and began to walk away.

"Your sensei will be arriving tomorrow to bring you to Hoshi (meaning- star) village," he called from behind me. This is really going to happen. I could feel the tears threatening to fall down my face, but I wiped at my eyes. If I was going to be a protector, than I would stop having to act like a little girl, and start acting like a warrior.

-------------

The day I met my sensei, Fujita Fudo (name meaning- Fujita- field, Fudo- god of fire and wisdom) had been a strange day indeed. His hair was a snow white color, and he was slightly balding. There were many wrinkles around his eyes and forehead, and a long crescent shaped scar running across his nose. He had narrow blue eyes, and was about 2 inches shorter than me.

He wore black slacks, a white shirt and a black vest over it. Strapped to his left thigh was some sort of pack. His hands and wrists were covered by white bandages, and he wore black sandals similar to the ones my mother had given to me.

"You're my pupil," he grinned at me. I'll admit I was very surprised, I had expected the same reaction from him that the town's people had given me.

"I'M SO HAPPY!" the old man shouted, as he ran and threw his arms around me, pressing his face into the curve between my breasts.

I twitched, and tried to pry out of his grasp. Maybe he doesn't realize he's being a—but my thoughts were interrupted as I felt something rub against my backside. "HENTAI!" I shouted as I smacked him across the face, and then pushed him off. "WHAT KIND OF TEACHER ARE YOU?"

"The happy kind!" he grinned, not at all fazed by the smack I delivered to him.

"Kami-sama… save me," I pleaded, as I looked up at the cloudless sky. A beautiful spring day… the start of a new life.

-------------

Flames of My Heart: Well, that's the first chapter. I hope you liked it! Please review so that I can have the motivation to continue writing!