Author: aNdreaa PM
For Iz and her birthday. "Let me tell you something about love. It will crush you. You will cry. And it leaves you brokenhearted in the dust. But trust me- it’s all worth it. Because nothing’s as big as your first love." SasuSaku. OneShot. AU.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Romance/Humor - Sakura H. & Sasuke U. - Words: 6,545 - Reviews: 30 - Favs: 76 - Follows: 6 - Published: 10-22-08 - Status: Complete - id: 4611658
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"For all of you less experienced than me, let me tell you something about love. It will crush you. You will cry. And it leaves you brokenhearted in the dust. But trust me- it's all worth it. Because nothing's as big as your first love. SasuSaku. AU."
For Izzlemanizzlefoshizzleforizzle of the QUADRIZZLE. Otherwise known as Iz. Or AngelforSHOW.
HAAAAAAPPY BIRTHDAY. Joe Jonas loves you. I'M SORRY THIS IS SO LATE.
(By the way, the divider characters mean 'Young Love' as told by the one and only Altavista Babel Fish Translator. Love it. Love Iz.)
We boys were always on the same side. We were the group that ate all the red meat and played football without worrying about dirtying our clothes and settled arguments by fist fights and sprinting races. We were the group that didn't care about the 70's we made on arithmetic tests and we laughed off teachers' evil glares with a clever joke. The more of a jokester you were, the more friends you had.
I was king.
You'd thing it was Uzumaki Naruto because that guy has a mouth big enough to fit eight fish sticks (and that's saying something) all at once. But Naruto was my best pal and despite his inclination to crack the most retarded, yet funny, jokes, he was and is not dominant in the popularity factor.
I'm eleven years old. Now, don't look at me like I'm some youngster, because I'm not. I really am not. I have experience. Because I've been in love and I know what one goes through when you're in that whole When-You-Look-Me-In-the-Eyes-I-Catch-A-Glimpse-of-Heaven phase.
I know so.
This is not going to be a pretty love story. You can be the judge of whether it has a happy ending or not, but I'm just going to tell you the flat truth.
So, for all of you less experienced than me, let me tell you something about love.
It will crush you.
You will cry.
And it leaves you brokenhearted in the dust.
But trust me- it's all worth it.
Because nothing's as big as your first love.
And Haruno Sakura was no exception.
In those days, all boys stuck together like glue and we were always segregated against the girls. The teachers always promoted everybody to treat everybody nicely and equally, but they just ended up being hypocrites when they separated the boys from the girls during Physical Education and naptime. So, really, there was no way possible to lift the iron curtain that had settled itself right where it was always meant to stay- wedged right between the boys and the girls.
One time, the girls dared each other to touch one of us after school. As lame as it sounds, it was a huge deal.
Like, a really huge deal.
I'm not joking.
The dare ended horribly (did you know girls were more inclined to accept dares than boys? Yeah. I though we were brave, but those freaky girls pushed the limit.) and resulted in one boy throwing up, another one screaming, and an angry mother questioning another mother.
Cooties, my friend, are not a myth. And that circle-circle-dot-dot stuff doesn't work either. You can only get rid of your cooties by passing them on to somebody else. And the no-takebacks rule applies, of course. But Kiba (he was the one the girl, Yamanaka Ino, touched on this fateful day) totally came down with a horrible case of cooties, threw up, and spent the next two days at home with a fever.
At least, that's what the other kids said. All I had heard was a piercing shriek of, "AHHHHHH! SHE TOUCHED ME!" and a bunch of other screams following that.
Facts never are set straight here at Konoha Elementary, and maybe Kiba had already been coming down with something and the cooties were just that last Jenga piece that made his whole system collapse, but yeah. Definitely the cooties.
When Kiba came back, oh man, did he become a total social leper. All the other kids, including the girls, stayed away from him until lunchtime where he tagged a poor and unsuspecting Rock Lee with the disease. Kiba was popular again by 1:30 and all was well. Guys swarmed him with questions of "How did the touch feel?" and "Were you dying?", but I knew better. Cooties couldn't kill you- only make you seriously ill until you were an inch from death, but as soon as the preliminary fever went away, you were to dispose of them quickly. Rock Lee was to be the second victim…as soon as he realized he'd just been infected with the disease.
I then realized just how lethal girls were. Didn't they know the venom their fingertips contained? Surely, WE didn't give THEM cooties. And I wondered why. Girls were so freaky, though, with their masses of long and curly hair and dress obsessions and girly pictures and hearts and frills. It was disgusting. I could see them having venom.
I had no intention of getting a woman in my life. I was happy without her. I had no room for one.
I had no need for one.
A week went by and the incident, no matter how many times everyone says it, did not pass. Girls avoided Lee like the plague and he had no idea why.
Anyway, this was the day my life completely inverted itself and kicked me in the gut. It was the day that I realized how poisonous girls could be- seeping into your brain and bloodstream and manipulating you to make you, dare I say it, like their foreign species.
I was getting my books out of my desk and ready to start class as usual. The teacher, Shizune, liked to integrate the boys and girls (one of their equality tactics) by placing a female in between and in front of and behind each boy. Haruno Sakura was on my right Hyuga Hinata was on my left, and Ino in front of me. Oh and, Tenten, who might as well have been a boy because of her ferociousness, was behind me. Hellish, I know.
I almost caved in upon learning this disgusting seating chart, but I learned to ignore all four of them. I mean, Naruto and Kiba were diagonally on my southwest and northeast radar, respectively, so the atmosphere was survivable. (Actually, Ino was sitting next to Kiba and she look like she could have puked from sitting next to him I guess touching him was her mistake.)
I always carefully planned every move I made so touching them wouldn't be an option. Like I said, even if cooties couldn't kill me, I didn't want to be ill.
But one thing I couldn't predict that day, was me stupidly knocking over my pencil bag and having a pile of pencils and pens and markers drop to the floor, scattering everywhere.
I felt like my heart had stopped and was going to explode out of my ears or something. Because not only had I embarrassingly spilled the contents of my bag everywhere, Haruno Sakura immediately stooped down to help me pick them up. She was the only one.
And to make things worse, when she handed me back a bundle of my junk, her finger brushed mine.
If it hadn't been for Shizune's presence, I probably would have screamed. Believe me, I was screaming on the inside.
"Here you go," she said simply, handing me back a pack of my pencils.
I stared at her, my eyes bulging out of their sockets and my mouth open like a fish. She got back in her chair and continued her work. Not another word was exchanged between us the rest of the day…in which I spent the remaining time in utter silence, staring at my index finger and that tiny spot where I'd made contact with a girl for the (I think) first time.
Nobody saw this forbidden act so I was, miraculously, safe unlike Rock Lee.
I was in the green zone. But I felt downright horrified- even if no one knew.
A day to remember, indeed.
I felt queasy.
I was so not imagining it. Definitely a cootie disease. I had barely even touched the girl and I was already stricken with some sort of unknown, haunting, horrible illness that made me want to puke up the tamales I'd eaten earlier. Stupid school-made lunches. Ugh.
What was happening to me?!
My vision was getting warped!
It was getting blurry!
I was getting dizzy!
I could see death standing before me now- like a ray of sunshine! Oh, God, help rid me of this nauseating illness that has seized me!
"Sasuke, sweetie, what on earth had gotten in you?"
My mother, bless her soul, has never understood the concept of my aversion to girls. She thinks I'm mental. That's only because she compares me to Itachi- who I see with a new girl every month. But that's besides the point.
So, I don't think she took it very well when I swayed on the spot, keeled over, and vomited on the doormat.
I was bedridden for two days.
Two, whole, miserable days, my friend. And there's not much to do when you're stuck in a bed sipping twenty gallons of orange juice through a crazy straw and going to the bathroom every hour and having your temperature get taken countless times and watching soap operas and wondering if Ryan will ever get over his amnesia and go back to Annie.
Two days of soaps does a lot to an eleven year old. Obviously.
My mother flipped out and declared me ill with a light fever, but I knew the real reason. I'd asked her earlier to put a band aid over the very spot where Sakura'd touched me. All I got was a hair ruffle, a scoff, and a firm, "No, silly."
Well. We'd see who the silly one was once we got to the real reason for my impromptu illness. My mother had blamed it on the tamales and had diagnosed me with food poisoning.
I knew the accurate disease.
And as foolish as this sounds, it took me eight tries for the circle-circle-dot-dot remedy before I finally felt better- good enough to go back to school.
No one had actually seen the touch that me and Sakura had exchanged which rendered me off the hook.
I was safe.
But I was also burdened by this secret. Sakura could spill it and it would all be over within minutes! My life was, literally, in the hands of this insignificant woman!
It was time to take some drastic action before I was the one being treated like a leper.
I decided to find the girl, tell her to keep a secret, and sever ties altogether. It really was a win-win situation. I mean, cooties were starting to not be that big of a deal anymore, but just to be safe, I wanted my slate to be clean.
Unfortunately, it was about to get a lot worse.
I located her after school.
Actually, I kind of stumbled into her.
She'd just come out of the girl's bathroom and she was dressed in a leotard and tights and her hair was up in a bun and she was wearing ballet shoes and carrying a large duffle.
I could not stop staring at her.
I've seen ballerinas before. I mean, on posters and in movies and stuff and sure they're "elegant" as women say, but I've never seen one face-to-face and in real life. And although Sakura, being only eleven like me, wasn't considered an official ballerina yet, could have looked like one.
What was this…feeling inside me?
It was foreign and…difficult to express.
It was like I was seeing Haruno Sakura, a girl I'd been relatively acquainted with since kindergarten, for the very first time.
But right now, her surprised face and her "elegant" demeanor was…nice.
Oh, man! What was I saying? I had no room for girls in my life! They were unnecessary to a boy's human nature!
But I couldn't stop this…weird feeling. I just stared at her.
"Sasuke, are you okay?" she asked, snapping me out of my reverie.
"YES," I said, a bit too quickly and loudly.
"Did you need something from me?"
Well, I did. But I didn't feel like saying it anymore.
Because even if I didn't know it at the time, the next seven days that I would spend thinking about Haruno Sakura would be pure bliss, pure heartache, and pure love.
I think I fell in love with her the moment she brushed fingers with me. I just didn't want to admit until now.
Do you want to go get some ice cream with me?
What a question.
I mean, so much relies on such an inquiry.
A, I could be insulting her if she's diabetic.
2, if I sprung for frozen yogurt instead, she could take it as an implication that she was fat.
And D, what if she didn't like ice cream?
And did I really need the with me? part? I mean, Do you want to get some ice cream? was surely enough to hint that she would be coming along WITH me to get the ice cream. That last with me? just sounded clingy and desperate. It was uncalled for. It was unmanly.
So, don't think I'm stupid for contemplating this question. It may be black and white to a simpleton but for an experienced guy like me, we all know the many shades of gray that lies with the query.
So, you can see how I spent the last half hour sweating my forehead off just considering this offer I was about to make.
To her. The girl.
With no cooties, as I had resolved.
I stared at the phone. The stupid black contraption with huge buttons that winked at me. The stupid coiling cord that would choke me into talking like a sap. The earpiece and mouthpiece and tricked you once in a while when you turned it upside down.
My palms were sweating and I hadn't even done anything yet.
"Just call her," I muttered to myself.
Really. It was just ice cream.
My hand grabbed the phone before my mind could say no. And then my fingers were dialing before my brain comprehended the numbers.
Oh, crap. It was ringing.
"Hello?" said a woman's voice.
"H-Hi," I said, my voice cracking an octave higher. "May I please speak to Haruno Sakura?"
"Sure. Who's calling, please?"
"Alright, one minute, sweetheart."
Probably her mother. Only mothers would call stranger kids 'sweetheart'.
My heart jumped.
Oh, GOD, get a grip, will you?! She's not a Jonas Brother, she was a freakin' girl! In my class! (Not that my heart would jump for a Jonas Brothers. I am, after all, a guy. Hello.)
"H-Hey," I said as casually as I could, dragging out my 'y' like an idiot.
"Hi," she said brightly. "…did you need something?"
"Um," I began, "I was just…wondering if you…wanted, maybe, possibly, you wanted to go ice cream get some?"
My tongue was infinitely tied. I slapped myself, literally, and shook my head to restart.
"What I meant was…did you, uh, want to get some ice cream today or something?"
This is the part when I started rushing. "I don't know- it's almost summer and it's Saturday and I had nothing to do today so I was just wondering…"
"Well, the thing is, I have ballet practice today."
"Oh," I said. My heart dropped to the floor.
"I'm finished at five o' clock, though. Do you think you could wait?"
"Five o' clock is almost dinnertime," I said, starting to feel really depressed. "You'd probably have to be home by then."
"I probably should be," she said, "We're actually moving in two weeks, so it's pretty busy."
"Moving?" I said, horrified. "Where?"
"To Suna. It's for my dad's job."
"I see," I said glumly.
"Well…I could ask…and we could go eat dinner tonight and then get ice cream for dessert?"
"Dinner?" I repeated. Oh, geez, I just did the whole voice crack again.
"Yeah. Is that okay?"
"Yes. Sure. Yes, it is," I said, nodding and then realized I was nodding and then I stopped because I felt like a moron.
"Okay," she said. "Um, my class is at that big white building on Crescer Street."
"Yeah, I think I've passed that a couple of times."
"Okay. I'll meet you in the lobby at five?"
I hung up.
And then I danced giddily.
I had a DATE with Haruno Sakura. A date.
I didn't care that it would probably be at a cheap restaurant and that she was leaving soon— it was DINNER and SHE had suggested it. And then ice cream afterward.
Life was looking good.
"Mom, where's my suit?"
She looked at me as if I'd gone insane.
"My suit," I repeated. "Where is it?"
"I put it in my closet to keep it from wrinkling," she said, turning back to water the garden. "Why do you need it?"
"I'm not going to eat dinner with you guys tonight," I announced awkwardly.
She tilted her head to glance at me. "Oh? Why's that?"
"I'm going somewhere."
"Dinner. With Sakura."
NOW, she put down the water can and turned to face me fully. She looked surprised.
"Dinner with Sakura who?" she asked, interested.
"Moooom," I said, gritting my teeth. "Sakura. Haruno Sakura. She's in my class."
"You're going to get dinner with her?"
"Yes," I mumbled, embarrassed. My mother beamed and threw her arms around me as if I'd won an Olympic medal.
"Oh, sweetie! Absolutely. It's so good to see you finally making friends with a girl!"
"Mom- geroff me. Where's my suit?"
She went to fetch it immediately. She even ironed it for me. It was great. And no clip-on ties either. This time, I was wearing a manly tie- with a nice knot. She then grilled me on curfew and where I'd be in case of an emergency. I told her Crescer Street- that was within the nine square blocks of our penthouse that I was allowed to roam alone. Sakura also lived within that radius so I was free to walk her home afterward. I was a man with a plan.
She wouldn't allow me to leave until after 4:30. It was all in good taste though because it took about ten minutes to walk. She told me that gentlemen were always prompt but being twenty minutes early looked cheap.
My father came home right before I was about to leave and I immediately shrunk back, afraid he'd ask me about Sakura. It was embarrassing to spill the story to your mom, but this was your dad. That made it horrifying.
He just stared at me with my nicely styled hair and non clip-on tie and slacks and blazer.
"Why are you standing alone in a corner with your hands behind your back and in a suit?" he asked me tonelessly.
"Um," I began, not sure what to say, "I've got…plans."
He looked as if he didn't want to know and he obviously didn't when he muttered something and then shrugged. "Okay, then. Have fun."
I dashed out the door.
True to her word, Sakura was in the lobby, dressed and ready to go, at five o' clock sharp. She looked…nice, I guess. Wearing a white summer dress and all. I didn't know a thing about girls' dresses but at that moment, I just knew that white was her perfect color.
We walked down the sidewalk, glancing at optional restaurants, and she kept averting my gaze.
What? Did I smell horribly or something? Was I overdressed?
I WAS overdressed. Oh, God.
"I like your suit," she said, smiling and breaking the silence.
"Oh, erm, thanks."
"Really. It looks good. You look sharp."
I looked sharp? What did that mean? Pointy?
But it seemed complimentary. "Thanks. I like your dress."
"It looks good too. You look…"
She smiled even wider when I struggled for an adjective. "…sharp?" she aided me.
"Yeah," I said. "Sharp."
We both nodded while grinning like two fools in love.
And strangely, that's exactly what we were.
Two fools in love.
After one day.
"So…" I said slowly, gesturing around me. "…come here often?"
What kind of question was that?!
I hate myself.
"Konoha Park?" she said, smiling slowly.
I gulped. "Y-Yeah."
"Um, I guess so."
Then she glanced at me just as I glanced at her and then we both smiled and laughed and after that…things just fell into place.
We settled upon a little nook of a restaurant where there were only eight tables inside and a small stage in which a string quartet was performing. The place was dimly lit but it was nice and warm and the table we sat at was just our size.
As I listened to the quartet play some kind of romantic love song, I had the profound privilege to stare at Haruno Sakura's beautiful face all night. She was focused on the performers but I was just focused on her. How could I have thought that this beautiful creature before me ever had the cooties? How I was thankful for that touch of fate! Sakura was such a perfect addition to my life. I'd been miserable without her all this time- I was just too ignorant to know so.
And then, well, I'm not sure where I got the courage, but I knew I had to do something to tell Sakura that I maybekindofsortof loved her.
I looked at her lonely hand resting next to her. I looked at my lonely hand dangling helplessly from my arm.
So I reached out, grasped Sakura's little hand, and held it for dear life.
My palms were sweaty but I was determined to not let go.
Because if I did, she might not have turned to me or looked at me with that special gaze I'd never forget. One of affection. One of slight shock and embarrassment. But one of definite adoration.
She turned her smiling face away from me and then we just watched the quartet play and play and play.
Boy, I had the goofiest smile on my face that night.
That, my friends, was a smile of a boy in love.
I walked her home around eight o' clock.
I don't know where those three hours went but they flew by us like a whirlwind.
It was a perfect date. It was the perfect moment- we were right in front of her house! This was the time to take action!
So…why couldn't I kiss her already?
"So," she said, "the big move is in a few days."
"Oh," I said, pretending to be interested. But being reminded of our limited time together was not a nice idea.
"Our house is full of boxes already and everything," she said. "But I haven't even started packing. I'm thinking of—"
I kissed her.
Well, sort of.
I don't know if that counted because it lasted less than two seconds and she was sort of caught off guard and I was still shocked by my audacity but…it was a kiss.
Did I do it right?
I had no idea!
I had absolutely nothing else to compare it to.
She stared at me, not smiling but not shocked, for a long moment and then touched her fingers to her lips.
"Oh," she said softly.
I kind of just gaped at her with my mouth open like a fool. Measuring her reaction. Her blinks. Her mouth.
"I should go," she whispered, looking down at the floor.
My mouth was dry. "Oh. R-Right. It's getting late."
"Goodnight," she said, smiling at me. A smile! So, she didn't hate me!
"Goodnight," I gulped.
Her eyes fluttered back to me once more before she turned around and went into her house.
And then she was gone.
She didn't call until Monday night.
She hadn't been in school- probably busy with moving and all, but it was still awful to see an empty seat next to me. Had I scared her off? Was I moving too fast?
I'd waited all of Sunday with the phone in my lap. I even walked to her house- TWICE- to see if she was in. She was. But I was too cowardly to approach her. Too cowardly to call her.
But, boy, when that phone rang on Monday at 8:42, I was the happiest boy alive.
"HELLO?" I practically screamed.
"Hey," came her quiet voice. "What are you up to?"
"Nothing much. School," I said quickly. "What about you?"
"Busy packing," she said. "I don't think I'm going to school again- we only have four days left and I already finished all my tests."
"What about the graduation dance on Saturday?" I begged. "You have to go to that."
"Um…yeah, maybe. I want to."
It was time to stop beating around the bush.
"So when can I see you?" I asked.
"I don't know, Sasuke," she replied. I couldn't be sure of what kind of tone was in her voice. Regretful? Annoyed? Angry?
She sounded so helpless though. What? She wouldn't even TRY to set a date for us to meet?
"How about tomorrow?" I proposed.
"I can't," she said. Now she sounded sorry. "I have ballet practice in the afternoon."
"Dinner with my grandparents."
Geez. It was easier scheduling Arab-Israeli peace talks than making a date with this girl.
"What time does that end?"
"How about we meet at eight?"
"I can't, Sasuke," she said. She was starting to sound rushed. What- was I rushing her?
"So you have no time at all?" I practically cried.
"I'm sorry!" she said, her voice rising. "I don't have a lot of days left until I move so my parents had to schedule as many things as I could to finish the year out. I'm not going to continue ballet and cello when I go to Suna."
"I can't believe you're moving," I muttered.
Then I said something I would regret. "Your parents are stupid."
I could feel her anger before I heard it. "They're not stupid, Sasuke," she retorted. "I don't like the decision any more than you do but that doesn't mean they're to blame."
"They're taking you away!"
"It's not their fault!"
"Yes it is!" I burst out. I lost it completely from there and like a mad man in a fit of momentary rage, I said three forbidden words and NOT the three I'd been feeling over the past seven days.
"I hate you!" I bellowed into the phone. Sakura sounded crushed.
"What? How can you say that?" she cried.
"Because I can!" I shouted. "I hate you!"
"I can't believe you said that!"
"I can't believe you! I hate you!"
"Well," she sputtered, "I-I hate you more!"
And then I heard the slam of the phone into its cradle and the evil sound of a dial tone.
She hung up on me.
I stared at the mouthpiece for two whole seconds before I dissolved into a fit of tears.
I was sobbing.
It's unmanly of me to say it, but I was sobbing.
I threw the phone at the wall and then smashed my face into my pillow to muffle my cries of pain. The pain that had no name. What was this tormenting feeling?! Why did she hate me? Why did I hate HER? Why did I say that? Why did I say that THREE times? How could I be so stupid? Now there was absolutely no hope for me to take her to our graduation dance! I'd never get to kiss her or hold her hand again! Ever. Haruno Sakura, in a single fleeting phone call gone terribly wrong, was gone from my life. I hated her. She hated me.
My mother came in after half an hour of my incessant wailing. I could tell she and my father had drawn straws to see who would meet with me first because my dad was poking in his head during our conversation rather uneasily.
"Sweetie," she said carefully, "I know you're hurting."
"I don't understand," I moaned into my pillow. I was still on my stomach, lying facedown. "How could she do this to me?"
"Sasuke, you know she's not moving just for the purpose to make you sad."
"She might as well be."
"Hey, now," she scolded gently. "Let's not be harsh on the poor girl. Who was the one that screamed 'I hate you'?"
"Me," I said, muffled.
"And who was the one that put pressure on her to go out for a date? Especially on a schoolnight?"
My mother rubbed my back gently and I sat up, glumly staring at the floor. She smoothed out my unruly hair and whispered, "Sometimes, love can't last forever. But it's beautiful while it lasts."
And then, I felt that horrible burning sensation in the back of my throat and the prickling at the corner of my eyes and the flood of tears that ran down my cheeks. I buried my face into my mother's sweater and wailed.
"I know, sweetie. I know."
Today was the graduation dance. Saturday night.
Sakura didn't call me back.
I didn't call her back.
I didn't go. At least, for the first half.
It was eight o' clock already and the dance had started at six. I was in no rush. These things lasted a long time and if I ended up missing it, it was no big deal.
To be honest, I just didn't want to go because I was avoiding her.
Can you believe it? A girl. Keeping me away.
Naruto actually stopped by my house before the dance and tried to get me to go, but I shrugged him off and he left. It's only fifth grade. Itachi told me that it was the high school dances that mattered- not stupid elementary ones.
So I didn't have a care in the world. It was odd how Sakura meant everything to me 24 hours ago and now, I could have cared less. I think.
My mother gave me ten dollars and permitted me to walk the three blocks to a barbershop because she insisted I get a haircut. I was indifferent, personally, but maybe it was getting a bit too unmanageable in the back.
As I plopped down in a big, old leather chair and had a bib tossed over me and had my head misted with water, I felt relaxed. But, to tell you the truth, the relaxation might have been a little forced. Like I was suppressing something. Like I was trying to shut a closet full of junk that threatened to spill out if I wasn't strong enough.
So, while my hair was being chopped off, I was pensive.
"Ah, I love April," the old man said, brandishing the scissors. I ducked to avoid the onslaught. He continued to snip away at my hair, strategically shortening some of the bangs I had in my eyes.
"Those Sakura trees ought to be blooming any day now, eh?" he asked rhetorically.
"It's the season for it," he continued, "every year. Don't you know?"
Of course I knew. My mother used to blow fits about landing tickets to the annual festivals to celebrate the blossoming of those little pink trees. Actually, she still blew fits about it. I couldn't forget them- piles and piles of rosy petals flying in your face and stuffing the air with allergy attacks waiting to happen.
It was just now that I realized how positively beautiful the name was.
"I gotta go!" I yelped and with that, I leapt out of my high chair and as a result, a cascade of black hair poofed from my bib and practically showered everyone near me. It was pretty gross I have to say, but there was no time to promise to sweep it up later. I ripped that bib off like a man and before the barber could say, "What the hell, kid?! Your haircut's lop-sided!" I was out of that barbershop and dashing down the block.
I knew the graduation dance was well underway by now, but I didn't care. Skipping just because I wanted to avoid the girl I was in love with was a stupid reason. It wasn't manly. I had cried my heart out last night and I wasn't about to let those be wasted tears.
I was going to stand up for my love for Sakura
I wasn't going to leave anything unsaid. I was going to tell her I loved her.
I had to.
Dances are so gaudy.
Especially the ones held in your school gym- the ones with hundreds of feet of crepe paper and dozens of balloons bunched up in all the corners and the disco lights bouncing off the walls. Nothing but green and white as far as I could see.
The Konoha gym wasn't very big but then again, there were only about a hundred kids total in the fifth grade graduating class. An amateur DJ was at the front of the room, playing cheesy pop songs. Everyone was mingling and dancing.
But when I saw her, she was sitting at a table by herself (a table covered in ugly balloons and an ugly centerpiece and confetti and crepe paper) and staring at her shoes.
I was not dressed for this dance. Guys had shown up in slacks and suits and here I was in my blue shirt and white shorts, ready to take on the world.
"Sasuke," she said, surprised. She looked around and then slowly got up, her carefully curled hair falling across her shoulders.
"What are you doing here?" she asked.
"I…" I didn't know where to begin or what to say. "I just wanted to see you."
"I thought you hated me," she said, not sure of where I was heading. I couldn't blame her. I didn't even know what was spilling out of my mouth.
"I didn't. I don't," I said, taking a step closer to her. "I-I wasn't thinking. I didn't mean it."
"I didn't mean it either," she whispered.
Okay. It was time.
I had to tell her!
"Sakura…" I started carefully, "I love you."
I couldn't gauge her reaction. Was she…happy?
It was the exact same expression she'd given me after we kissed seven days ago. The same apprehensive, not totally unhappy, but surprised look.
"I love you," I repeated. "I do. I know it's only been seven days and I know we're only in fifth grade but…I love you."
Sakura swallowed and then clasped her hands together.
Did she love me too?
Could we be two fools in love like I thought?
"…I don't know," she finished.
You know on a zip line, where you first let go and you plunge a few feet down and begin the slide? Pause it at that moment- right exactly when you're in the slow-motion of plunging.
That's what my heart felt like.
But, like the zip line, instead of going straight down, it was level. And it kept moving forward.
"I'm only eleven years old," she said to me. "I don't think I'm ready for love quite yet."
I wasn't ready either.
"Sasuke, I'm really glad I saw you before I moved."
She smiled at me sadly. "I'm really…glad you came."
The music transitioned into an oldie's romantic love song and Sakura and I moved closer together to dance.
As my hands were wrapped around Haruno Sakura's waist and her head was on my shoulder, we both knew the truth. After she moved to Suna, it was a slim chance that we'd ever meet again.
We were just two fish in the sea. Two fish of completely different species that happened upon each other in a whirlpool. Two fish that spent seven incredible days thinking about each other. Two fish that went only on one date- but one incredible first date that left an imprint.
I was a fish that fell in love after only a touch of fate.
A short-lived moment.
I told you that this wasn't a pretty happily-ever-after love story.
Love is an ugly, terrible business practiced by fools. It'll trample your heart and leave you bleeding on the floor. And what does it really get you in the end?
Nothing but a few incredible memories that you can't ever shake.
The truth is, there's going to be other girls out there. I mean, I hope. But I'm never going to get another first love.
That one is always going to be her.
In case you haven't realized, YES this fic was inspired greatly by Little Manhattan with Josh Hutcherson, the little cutie. GO WATCH IT. It's good.
AND, um, the soap opera reference with Ryan and Annie (Annie, that was unintentional) is from All My Children. No, I don't watch soaps at all. I just Googled it and BAM.
IZ, ANGELforSHOW, I HOPED YOU LIKED IT. I couldn't make my Sasuke as perfect as yours but I tried.
HAPPY SWEET SIXTEEN, BFFFFFIZZLE FO' SHIZZLE.