Author: rawrchelle PM
Neji/Sakura. AU. “It’s a good luck charm.” “Good luck charm?” “You’re obviously going to need it if you go through those rapist-infested subway stations every morning.” “I’m…touched.”Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Humor - Neji H. & Sakura H. - Words: 4,940 - Reviews: 79 - Favs: 268 - Follows: 23 - Published: 08-21-09 - Status: Complete - id: 5321357
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
dedication: m00kie! because she (i'm just assuming you're a girl, since the majority of people on this site are female…correct me if i'm wrong XD) gives the best reviews ever, suffers from RCM with me, and she's just cool. and asked for nejisaku. BET YOU DIDN'T EXPECT ME TO ACTUALLY DO IT, HUH? -snicker-
Y'know, it's always been my dream to be a doctor. And it still is. But the prospect of not owning a car, and therefore taking the subway every morning to get to the hospital is a little frightening. Just a little.
Because, doesn't it look like the perfect place to get raped?
(But Sasuke says that no one in the right mind would rape someone who looks like me. So all of my potential rapists probably belong to the insane asylum. Which, technically, makes it worse.)
And not to mention that my shift starts at five in the morning. Great. So I have to take the subway at four-thirty in the morning, when the place is empty, save for a couple of people who might just be wrong in the head and contemplating on whether or not I'd be a good rape victim.
I think, with this, my life is complete.
maybe it's not my weekend, but it's going to be my year.
"Why are you calling me at four-thirty in the fucking morning."
"I can't help it! It's so scary down here…Don't you feel honored by the fact that your voice distracts me and calms me down?"
I sigh and hug my purse closer to myself as I sit in the farthest corner of the subway car. There are only two other people in it; an old lady with her grey hair tied up in a tight bun, and a girl with long brown hair sitting at the front. They're always there, every morning.
"Hey, tell me something entertaining, Sasuke," I say into my cell phone.
"No. Let me sleep."
"Come on, it'll only be for half an hour. Please? You're not going to let me sit here, all alone in a rapist-infested area, are you?" I only realize that I'm being ridiculously loud when the old woman turns around and gives me a disappointed look. Y'know, the ones that are like, "You have so much potential—but you threw it away."
"You're alone anyway."
I pout, even though he won't be able to see it. "Yeah, but you're on the line, so you'll know immediately if I'm getting raped, and you'll come to my rescue."
"You won't get raped. Trust me."
"What makes you so sure?"
"If I was a rapist, you'd be the last person on my list."
"I love you too," I grumble. When I'm met with silence, I sigh. Don't you think that he should do a better job as a best friend? "So, what's up?"
"You're also ridiculously cranky."
"So let me sleep."
"Fine!" I retort. "Go have your beauty sleep while I slave away in the ER, hoping to save lives that might not even be saved! Just don't regret it when my lifeless, mutilated corpse turns up on the news because I was raped by someone who's into necrophilia!"
"Okay. Bye." And with that, Sasuke hangs up.
I hate him.
Shoving my phone angrily back into my purse, I begin humming to myself, hoping that it'll calm my nerves. It does, just a little. When it's time to transfer, I stand up and head to the doors, not all to eager to leave the safety of the subway car. I notice the brown-haired girl sitting up front move to wait beside me, and I feel a little safer. When the doors open, I clench my jaw and step outside.
Even though the place is pretty much empty, I feel rather accomplished for making it out without my legs giving out from under me. Which is absolutely stupid. I don't think I've matured one bit since the end of high school. I quickly head to the other end of the platform, hoping that the next train comes quickly. The other girl stands a little ways away from me, waiting for the same train.
Actually, I think she works at the same hospital as me—just in different wings. I'm pretty sure she's a specialized surgeon. I'm just a—well, a regular doctor, sort of.
It's just then that someone's hand lands on my shoulder, and I literally scream.
"Ow!" As I cringe away from the hand, the person behind me takes a step back. "I think you damaged my eardrums!"
"Sorry!" I exclaim, turning to the person. It's a man with blonde hair and sparkling blue eyes. He has these odd whisker marks on both of his cheeks. "Are you…okay?" The way he's clearing both of his ears with his pinkies makes it a little worrisome.
"Just fine, just fine!" He grins. "Was I that scary?"
I can't possibly tell him I thought he was a rapist. He'll think I have problems, and send me to the insane asylum, with all of the actual rapists. Oh my God, that's a scary thought.
Maybe I'm a little—just a little—paranoid.
"Just a little," I say, laughing sheepishly. "Is there something I can help you with?"
"I was just wondering if this train will take me to Tokyo Hospital," the blonde says. "My car's getting fixed right now, and I want to surprise my girlfriend—she fainted the other day. They wanted to keep her for a few days to run her through some tests. I want to be there when she wakes up."
Aw, that's so sweet. I wish I had a boyfriend who'd do that for me. Even Sasuke wouldn't do that, and we've been best friends ever since middle school.
I smile. "Yeah. You take this train and get off at Central—the hospital's right across the road from it."
"Oh, alright. Thanks! What's your name?"
"That's a nice name. It's cute, just like you." I know I shouldn't, but I blush. (Take that, Sasuke! I am pretty enough to be raped!) "I'm Naruto!"
I shift uncomfortably. He's way too energetic for this ungodly hour of the morning. "Nice to meet you, Naruto."
"Naruto," a male voice says from behind me. "I hope you're not making Hinata-sama's health worse?" Naruto peers around me, and his grin widens.
"Yo, Neji! I haven't see you in a while!" He walks right past me to greet someone else. As I turn with him to see who he's talking to, I'm surprised to see he's talking to that girl I take the subway with every morning. Her voice is actually pretty masculine—
All my thoughts stop as she turns towards me so she can face Naruto.
Oh. Oh. She's a boy.
The girl who's been taking the same train as me ever since I started my job at Tokyo Hospital has actually been a boy all along.
I don't know whether I should feel bad or afraid.
(For the record, he looks like a girl from behind, okay? I've never really looked at his face.)
Blushing furiously, I turn away. The train is psychic and decides to save me at this moment, because it starts rolling to a stop in front of us with its loud sounds. The moment the door opens, I rush in and sit at the very back, hoping to camouflage into the wall.
(It never worked, and I don't think it's working now; people with pink hair and green eyes very rarely succeed in camouflaging into anything.)
Luckily, though, Naruto and the Neji—who is a boy, not a girl—sit near the front, where Neji usually sits. Sighing in relief, I sink lower into my seat. I dig through my purse until I find my phone.
I wonder if Sasuke's up for a conversation right now. I need to tell him about my adventure.
I learn from one of my kouhai, Yamanaka Ino, that Hyuuga Neji is a prestigious brain surgeon—one of the best in Japan. He's gorgeous, comes from the family that founded the Hyuuga Corporation, an international corporation that branches into all areas: medicine, entertainment, retail, and more.
Now I feel even worse for mistaking his gender.
The next morning, the oddest thing happens.
Hyuuga Neji, the person who I assumed was a girl, sits in the seat across from me. I'm surprised to the point of trying to shrink into my seat.
His pale eyes are unyielding as he speculates me. (Don't tell me, he's secretly a rapist, too?) Nervous, I look away and find my phone, trying to look occupied.
"My name is Hyuuga Neji," he says suddenly.
I look up at him and smile, hoping it looks natural. "I'm Haruno Sakura."
He nods once. "Nice to meet you."
We fall into silence for the next fifteen minutes, until the train comes to our stop. I stand up and grab my purse before making my way to the opening doors quickly. Neji matches my pace effortlessly.
"So, I hear you're afraid of rapists." I stiffen a little at this. So he heard…
(Well, obviously he heard. I was basically shouting it into the phone yesterday morning.)
"Um. Yes," I manage to say lamely. "I am. Aren't you?" When I look at him, his expression is that of dry amusement. He should be afraid of rapists, considering how he looks like a woman from behind…I bet a lot of rapists would mistake him for one and jump him.
"To a certain extent." We're standing at the edge of the platform, waiting for our next train to come. "But it won't happen to me."
"No one thinks it's going to happen to them," I say indignantly. "But one day, it does happen, and they regret it."
"Debatable enough." Something tells me this guy's a little bit of a prick. Kind of like Sasuke, but a bit more intelligent. (Sasuke established one of the biggest shopping malls in Tokyo; he's not some smart brain surgeon who got a master's degree in…brain surgeon-ness.)
Wow, I don't think I've been studying enough lately, either.
"Don't you think, for a first conversation, we should be talking about something more normal?" I ask just as our next train pulls up. He sits across from me again.
"I realized you're a rather tense person, so I decided not to talk about a tense subject," he says mildly. "Such as you working in the ER and me being a brain surgeon. It might make you feel inferior."
Well, he just did make me feel inferior.
"How did you even know I worked in the ER?" I gave him a funny look. "Did you research me before talking to me?"
"No. You were—how do I say it—shouting it rather loudly yesterday morning while on the phone with a certain…" He pauses for a moment. "Sasuke, I believe it was."
"Uh, yes." He's pretty keen, in a creepy kind of way. "It's kind of funny, isn't it? We've been taking the same subway together, but we didn't even know we worked at the same hospital until now."
"Oh, I knew." Neji's lips curve into a smirk. "I often see you in the cafeteria. Slacking off."
"I don't slack off!" I say indignantly. Geez, who is this guy, assuming that he can just say I'm slacking off because he sees me in the cafeteria all the time. "I just use my breaks wisely! And they make really good cinnamon buns." I smile at the thought. They're so good…the best rejuvenators. The sugar really flows through your veins.
"I wasn't aware that the cafeteria sold cinnamon buns." Crossing his arms, Neji looks deep in thought. "I might try one sometime."
I giggle. "You don't really look like the type to like sweets." He kind of reminds me of Sasuke, and Sasuke hates sweets. He eats tomatoes the way I eat those cinnamon buns.
"They're good once in a while," he says, looking out the window, although it's all black. I notice his cheeks darkening by the slightest shade of pink.
I roll my eyes. "You like them."
"And you're persistent."
We have a silent staring competition for about two seconds, before I involuntarily smile.
Something tells me we're going to get along. Despite the fact that he's a prick. And that I used to think he was a girl.
(He'll never know. I swear to God, he'll never know.)
When I enter the cafeteria during my first break, I see Neji sitting at one of the tables by himself. He has a cup of coffee and a cinnamon bun on a paper plate in front of him, and he's staring at the pastry, as if making the most difficult decision of his life.
After purchasing my own cinnamon bun, I slide into the seat across from him. "You already bought it, so eat it already."
He starts in his chair. (I wonder what he could've been thinking so deeply about to be so surprised by my presence. Because, y'know, I'm so scary. Roar.) "I was just saying my thanks for the food." He takes the bun between to slim fingers and bites it in an aristocratic fashion. It makes me feel kind of childish and messy, with the way I rip mine apart with both of my hands.
"Uh-huh. Because saying a simple itadakimasu takes you three minutes."
"I believe you're the potential rapist here, with the way you've been watching me."
"I-I just happened to see you when I walked in," I say, blushing furiously. Geez, this guy gets on my nerves a little. For a prestigious brain surgeon, he's pretty arrogant. Maybe all popular guys are like that. That'd sure explain the stick up Sasuke's ass. (He's always had a fan club wherever he went. It kind of pissed me off, because all the girls would always use me as a target for their taunts. But he'd always come and save me like a true prince.)
"That's what they all say." He's smirking, and I wonder if this is his way of joking around. It's probably the best I'm going to get.
I roll my eyes. "You have a bit of icing on your face." I point one of my sugar-coated fingers at him. Maybe he's just clumsy, because this is his first time eating one. Man, that'd be weird. Hello, I'm Hyuuga Neji. I'm in my late twenties, and I've just had my first cinnamon bun.
I giggle a little at the thought.
"Where?" He takes a napkin and wipes the corner of his mouth, but he misses it.
"Eh, a little to the right—a little lower—dammit, just let me do it." Swiping the napkin out of his hand, I wipe it off for him. "You're like a child." Suddenly, the pager in the pocket of my white coat goes off. Dammit.
"Work?" He raises an eyebrow.
I sigh. "Yeah. It's pretty hectic, working in the ER. Everything's random, and I never know when I'll get a break again."
He nods. "I understand."
"Sorry—I'll see you around, Neji!" I hope he doesn't get angry at being addressed so informally. If we're friends, I don't see why I still have to be formal with him. Stuffing the rest of the cinnamon bun in my mouth, I stand up and rush out of the cafeteria.
I hope I didn't look too stupid while doing that.
Just as I pass a rolling bed with a patient in it to one of my coworkers, Kabuto, I spot Neji strolling briskly into the ER.
"What are you doing here?" I ask, taking my stethoscope out of my ears. (I've always felt really cool, having one of these. It's kind of like playing doctor again, back when I was a child, but this is the real thing. When I first got it, I listened to Sasuke's heart all the time. It really annoyed him.)
Neji holds out a piece of paper. It looks like it's been ripped out of a small notebook. "Here. It's a good luck charm."
"Good luck charm?" I take it and frown. It looks like a normal piece of paper to me.
"You're obviously going to need it if you go through those rapist-infested subway stations every morning." The funny thing is, he looks pretty serious about it. The not-funny thing is how he remembers my term "rapist-infested".
I'm not sure whether to be grateful or not. "I'm…touched. Thank you."
"You're welcome." And with that, he leaves as quickly as he came.
Actually inspecting the piece of paper, I realize that there's a phone number on it.
I honestly wonder why Neji takes the subway, considering he's rich and all, and probably has enough money to buy a hundred cars. I ask him one day, on our first date.
(Well, I'd like to think it's a date, but I don't know if sitting on a park bench amongst other patients with vending machine coffee during our lunch break is really considered a date. I really hope it is, though, because I'm starting to develop an interest in him. Which might be just a little bad, because he's my senpai and all.)
(And he's also a prick. Have I ever said that? Because he is. Just so you know.)
"It's environmentally friendly," he says, taking a drink of his coffee.
Huh. I didn't think he was that kind of person. "That's…kind of sweet, in a weird way."
"Because you give off this impression that you're an arrogant jerk, and that you only care about yourself and all. I mean, you come from a rich background, and you live off of high expectations, and stuff."
"I…see. I wasn't aware of that."
For a brain surgeon, he's kind of thick, in a weird way.
It's kind of cute.
(When I talk to Sasuke about Neji, he says I sound lovesick, annoying, and gross. I'm beginning to agree.)
"I think that guy's eyeing me weirdly."
"He's looking at the ad on the wall."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes, I'm sure."
"When I first got the job, I was so happy to have my very own stethoscope," I tell him, smiling as I thought of old times. "I always thought it was so cool, to have my very own. I'd make Sasuke sit still, and I'd listen to his heart while he watched TV."
"A child at heart, you are."
Despite myself, a giggle escapes my lips. "I can't help it! I love it when I listen to people's hearts—it's kind of like a sign that they're alive, and they're still searching for something more." Whoa, that was unexpectedly deep. I kind of feel like a philosopher, or something.
"Are you searching for something more, too?" His question strikes a strange chord somewhere inside of me.
I think for a moment. "Yeah. I'm searching for the moment when I'm completely and utterly happy—kind of like saving everyone in the ER, and then sleeping over at Sasuke's house, or something. All in one day. Every day. What about you?"
"I'm searching for…" His voice trails off. "Now that you mention it, I'm not quite sure."
I immediately frown. "Is your heart beating?" There's mock concern in my voice. Sticking my stethoscope in my ears and placing the other end to his chest, I listen. He watches me with amused eyes.
I hear the thump-thump, thump-thump of his heart, and frown. "You have an abnormally fast heart rate. Do you have high blood pressure, or something?"
He remains silent for a moment. "No."
"Oh. Really? Because I think it's a bit faster than normal…" I could hope that his heart's beating faster because he's with me (because mine definitely beats faster when I'm with him), but that's just some stupid wishful thinking.
"Perhaps it's just like that." His tone hides a something. I smile a little to myself, because it might mean something more.
"Just like that when you're with me?"
Occasionally, I take the subway home with Neji, too. My shift ends at five in the afternoon, but his varies, being a surgeon and all. He has appointments and operations at different times, and it's really hard to predict when he'll get off work each day.
Sometimes, he gets off a little earlier than me, and just waits before we leave together. It really makes me happy when he does that.
(Not that it really means anything, or anything.)
He told me this morning that he had an operation to perform today, I'll be going home alone. So here I am, waiting in a subway station for my train to come. Usually, things are better in the afternoon, because the place is brighter and there are more people, but for some reason, today's different.
Not that I still think I'm going to be raped, since Sasuke's done such a good job of convincing me otherwise. (That jerk.)
I sigh and slump my shoulders. Today was so exhausting. We lost a total of three lives—more than usual. It's really depressing to be a doctor, sometimes. You can't always save them all.
"Hey." I turn my head in the direction of a voice, and see a brown-haired man that I don't recognize. "Are you free? I'd like to have a drink with a pretty girl like you, if you don't mind." He has strange red tattoos on his face, and oddly sharp teeth when he grins. When I hear a bark, I notice a dog at his feet.
It's really cute…
No. Don't be deceived by the dog.
"Sorry," I say, smiling sheepishly. "I already have plans."
"How hard could it be to cancel them?" He slides closer to him and casually places an arm around my shoulder. I immediately stiffen.
Oh my God.
"I'm actually really busy. I'm sorry." Where the hell is my train? Shouldn't it be here by now? Oh my God, what if this guy's actually a rapist? What if—what if he's into necrophilia? What about my dreams of going to Paris and Rome and—I think I'm feeling faint…
"Tch. Boring." And with that, he removes his arm from me and saunters away. I feel a little safer, but I can feel everyone watching me now.
What if there's another rapist amongst the crowd, watching me?
Swallowing, I search for my phone inside my purse. Neji said his phone number is my good luck charm, right? I know he's in the middle of an operation right now, and operations could take hours, so I text him. I'm pretty sure nothing's going to happen to me, but I'm feeling paranoid, and it's always better to be safe than sorry.
In my haste, I sign my name with a heart, the way I usually do with Sasuke before pressing send.
"I'm working, Sakura."
"Just half an hour! Please!"
"Like I said, no one's going to rape you."
"Someone came up to me just now and asked me to grab a drink with him."
"He's just some desperate person wanting to get laid."
"No, I'm serious, Sasuke—c'mon, just talk to me? Please?"
"I'm in the middle of a business meeting."
"Please?" I'm met with silence.
Oh. He hung up.
I hate him.
My doorbell rings at seven o'clock, sharp. I'm a little angry, because I texted him a little after five, and he comes two hours later? I could be dead right now, for all he knows.
"You're a little late, aren't you?" I retort as I open the door to find Neji in his casual wear. (It's actually kind of amusing, because I don't expect him to be the kind of guy to wear jeans and polos. It's cute, in a weird way.)
"Like I said, I had an operation to perform." I move aside so he could come in. "But I brought cinnamon buns." Now that he mentions it, I can smell them. Mm.
I snatch the bag from his hand. "All is forgiven." Shuffling into the living room excitedly, I pulled out two buns. One's for me, and the other's for him, I suppose. They're still warm. Gosh, my mouth is watering already.
Neji sits on the couch beside me. "I'm assuming you didn't get raped."
"I was assaulted, though," I say through a mouthful of my sticky pastry. "I'm surprised I'm not scarred for life."
"Of course." His voice is laced with dry amusement. That jerk; he doesn't believe me. No one ever believes me about these things. I wonder why I even like him in the first place, if he's such a prick who's so eager to embarrass me in front of him.
I frown when I see him smirking a little at me. "What?"
"You have a bit of icing on your face."
"Ugh." I put my cinnamon bun down and peek into the bag that they were brought in. Dammit, no napkins. "Be right back."
"Wait. I'll do it." At first, I think he's mocking me from the time I wiped the icing off of his face for him, but I'm sure he's flirting when he wipes it off my cheek with his index finger and eats it. I frantically look away, completely aware of the blush that's spreading across my cheeks.
"Thanks," I mutter grudgingly. I'm about to reach out for my bun again, before he stops me.
"Wait. There's more."
Seriously? So what, he's going to do it again? I don't think I can handle that.
"I'll do it myself, thanks," I say, flustered. "I just need a mirror. Be right back." I stand up, but he grabs my arm and pulls me back down. I fall onto the couch with a little bounce. It makes me feel kind of fat.
"It's more efficient if I do it for you." His voice is calm and collected, but I can just hear the smirk in it. He's such a sadist. He enjoys making me squirm.
"It's fine, really—"
"Just hold still."
Holding my breath, I stop moving. He sits a little closer to me.
"Actually"—my voice feels way too loud for the mood—"I think I'll do it myself after all. Where is it?" He's making me feel really nervous. I'm glad he doesn't have a stethoscope on him, because my heart's pounding. Maybe he can hear it even without it.
"Right here." His finger brushes the corner of my mouth as he moves even closer.
And before I know it, I'm kissing him.
I can feel the tip of his tongue flicking the area where he said the icing was before he pressed his mouth harder against mine. (I wonder if the taste of cinnamon in my mouth turns him on?) One his hands rests at the back of my head, holding me close, while the other one snakes around my waist.
I'm so stunned, I can't do anything.
(Except kiss back.)
"Y'know, Neji, back before I knew you, I always thought you were a girl."
"Yeah! I mean, you look like one from behind…"
"Are you just jealous about the fact that your boyfriend has better hair than you?"
"No! Well, that too, kind of, but you really do look like a girl from behind! Has no one ever jumped you because of that?"
"…No, Sakura. Nothing like that ever happens."
"…Oh. Well, um—would you recommend me some hair products?"
notes: somehow, after writing this, nejisaku seems so much more plausible…(btw, weightless by all time low, yeah?) i'm also wondering if anyone ever even reads these notes…so if you do, tell me if you have twitter or not! because i do, and maybe you guys would like to creep my life…haha. and also vote in my poll, please! :)