A/N: Set a few years down the road- say, late teens for Gai's
team. Spoilers for the chuunin exam. NejiLee and done in one
"A Moment of Silence"
Neji had never understood why girls spent so much time brushing
each other's hair.
Until about five minutes ago, anyway.
He sighed faintly in the back of his throat, tilting his head
back against the side of the bed as the contentedly humming Lee
sitting above him continued running his fingers through it.
Nice. Sooo nice.
Not that he would admit to that.
"You are such a pain," Neji complained with a snort. "Why are
you doing this to me?"
"It's either you sit through this or lose the hair," Lee
countered, untangling a burr from the other boy's hair.
"I don't CARE about the hair," Neji half-lied.
"But if you cut it, people will bother you by asking why or
complimenting it or-" Lee began.
"Never mind," Neji sighed, waving him off. "I get the point."
"Good." Neji could SENSE the smirk in Lee's voice- not that he
needed to, with his range of vision.
It was not the absolute worst thing he'd ever had to sit
through. Lee's fingers were quick and delicate- though the left
hand's were just a hair less so. It would have taken a genius
to notice. That, or someone who already knew. And Neji was
both of those, so to him it was painfully obvious.
Lee was his teammate. He should have been able to protect him
Lee's fingers, unbalanced though they are, were a comfort.
Neji wished he could be the same for Lee.
Even now . . .
"You're going to need to wash the blood out yourself," Lee told
"Make me," Neji replied dispassionately. Lee grinned behind
"Maybe I will," he said lightly, twisting a lock of Neji's blood
and dirt-encrusted hair around his finger.
Neji thought of old wounds and old insults. Of the way they'd
been as genin, as chuunin, as anbu and jounin and as they were
The genius of a bloodline. The genius of hard work. The one
who could not forget his father and the one who could not forget
The two who, somehow, had become alike. Who somehow had become
teammates, partners, friends. Best student, worst student: the
number one rookie and the number one failure of their year. And
Ten Ten between them, sometimes a buffer and sometimes
But always, always, there was Neji and there was Lee and the way
they fought together and against each other.
Neji's white eyes and black heart.
Lee's black eyes and white heart.
Neji reached up and pulled Lee's hand into his own.
"Help me?" he murmured.
"Every time," Lee agreed easily.
They both knew that they weren't just talking about hair
anymore. Neither of them minded.
* fin *
. : your hair, it's everywhere/ screaming infidelities/ and
taking its wear : .