"Hey! Wait!" shouted Sakura loud enough for the unknown man to turn around and face her.
"I can tell by you're scar, you must mean real business. But I was just wondering, why are you doing this for ME?" Sakura takes a step closer, squinting to get a better view at the blurred figure.
"I'm not doing this for you, but for a dear friend of mine that I wish to help. To stop the misery that you've caused him for quite some time," replied the blurred figure in such a calm yet raspy tone.
Sakura could only look at him, confused. The figure turned away before Sakura could take a better look at him. Before she could question him once more, the man stops abruptly and slightly turns to look at Sakura in the eye, "Since you won't let me find you, the least you can do is keep your eyes on the lookout for him. Believe me, he's not hard to spot. He will recognize you in a heartbeat."
"HEY! Wake up already, will you?"
"Huh? Wah?" Sakura shot right up and couldn't quite see because of the sun's mean glare. Groggily, she yawned and rubbed her eyes to force the blur out of her vision. She blinked a couple of times and turned to the dark blonde woman sitting right beside her, reaching out with a wet cloth to her forehead.
Sakura let herself be aided by the woman but was about to bombard her with tons of questions: the what, where, and why.
The dark blonde chuckled coolly and raised an eyebrow, "Well someone's a good girl. I wish my brother would let me pamper him like this sometimes!"
Now it was Sakura's turn to raise an eyebrow along with a slight smile, "Umm where am I? What exactly happened last night, mam?"
"Mam? Hah! Call me Temari. I bet ya our age differences aren't that far apart," she grunted teasingly and stood up to leave the room. A few minutes later, Temari returned with a tray of breakfast and placed it on a nightstand beside Sakura. The sweet scent of the warm cinnibons filled her nostrils and her stomach growled hungrily in response.
Sakura thanked the dark blonde politely, and gulped down the glass of milk along with the plate of mini cinnibons, "Thank you so much, Temari. But I'm not used to taking charity from strangers. Especially taking things that don't belong to me-"
"It's no problem! After almost running you over last night, I figured it would be the right thing to do this. Thankfully it wasn't anything serious; you just received a blow to head from the landing. Besides, it seems to me that you don't have a place to go to after spotting you wandering around in the same clothes a couple of times before," Temari picked up Sakura's tray and disappeared out of the master bedroom once again.
"Wow!" Sakura gasped as she finally took a good look around her surroundings. The room was indeed vast; much bigger than her room back at the Minamoto Mansion. The bed she laid on had beautiful designs on both ends. The curtains were a satin red with fancy designs and a gold fabric as the outlines. By looking out the window, Sakura knew it couldn't be a mansion judging at how high they were from the ground. It must be some kind of condominium; a real fancy one!
"Are you new in this city? What about your parents? Mind to tell me why you are homeless- erm…I'm sorry but what's your name?" Temari asked, leaning against the doorway with her arms crossed.
Sakura glanced out the window again, admiring the view, then turned to look at the dark blonde, "My name is Sakura. Haruno Sakura. I used to live in this city until my parents had passed away."
Temari's grin suddenly wore off a bit into a more saddened look, "I'm sorry to hear that, Sakura. I didn't mean to ask anything too personal."
Sakura shook her head and smiled, "Oh no, it's ok! You didn't know. I was about ten years old at the time and had no idea what to do since we weren't financially well. But then this really nice rich man who was in town had taken me to his home. I don't mean to tell you my entire life story," the roseate chuckled, "I wasn't exactly happy over there as I was with my parents here in Konoha. Despite the fact we were poor, my life was better than it was during my years back at the mansion. After some years later, I decided to come here and leave Iwa-"
Sakura was cut off suddenly when the doorbell rang continuously.
Temari quickly apologized and rushed out of the bed room to get the door. Sakura looked out the window once more. Things really did change around the city after she had left. The way she remembered Konoha was a small and still-growing town. Now, it's expanded and one could easily get lost without any sense of direction. Tall edifices were constructed and more advanced technology was brought to the city. If things were now this advanced, then Sakura's interest in the medical field grew even more.
"Hey sis! I brought some food!"
Sakura turned towards the doorway as she heard the voice of a man echo down the hallway. She slowly got off from the bed and made her way out into the semi-vast living room. Sakura couldn't believe at how beautiful and big this condo was than a mansion! The roseate came to halt when she spotted a tall fit man with tattooed line patterns on his face, standing beside the counter of the kitchen.
"Kankuro, this is the girl I was telling you about last night. Sakura this is my brother Kankuro."
Kankuro examined Sakura which made her feel a bit uncomfortable. She always felt nervous when someone would examine her figure since she didn't know what they were thinking on the inside. But if they were to state something negative, she would give that person a good punch.
"Hey! I'm sorry my sis almost killed ya last night-" Kankuro was interrupted by a flabbergasted Temari who nudged his arm.
Sakura giggled and extended her hand out while walking up to him, "It's not a problem at all. She didn't hit me too bad."
Sakura came to like Kankuro and Temari a lot while conversing with them at the kitchen table and eating some ramen take-out Kankuro had brought. It didn't take Sakura long to figure out the two were siblings and very powerful. It turns out the two are a part of Suna Corporations and played crucial roles in the company.
Aside from getting along with the siblings, she realized they were being friendly and calm about the situation: her being homeless, jobless, and not having a place to stay. Temari did not hesitate to offer Sakura to remain in the apartment until she gets back up on her feet. After they were done eating, Kankuro suggested they take Sakura out for a ride until it was time to go back to the company and attend the late night meeting that was postponed for later that day. They didn't tell her why and Sakura did not expect them to since it was about the company's business.
"Sakura, I laid out a couple of outfits of mine you can wear for today. You can go change while Kankuro and I wait here," stated the dark blonde.
Sakura nodded and went to the bedroom she had slept in to go change from her previous clothes. Deep down, she wondered why they were being this nice, and thought it was very noble of them to be able to take care of her this way. For the very first time in a while, she has never felt this welcomed into a home she's never been to before.
"She seems like a cool chick! I'm surprised you even decided to take her in. You're not the type to be this nice, especially to strangers. Anyways, I like her…have you told Gaara what you've gotten yourself into though?" Kankuro asked, scratching his head and reaching over the table for his drink.
Kankuro was right. Temari was not the type to do something this noble to anyone she was not familiar with. Come to think of it, she never liked letting anyone stay in her home while she was not present. That day when the pink haired girl had bumped into Gaara, Temari noticed her bruised arms and legs. And she definitely knew she had stolen those apples out of desperate hunger. The dark blonde just did not have the heart to turn away from Sakura. Not now. She knew she had to help the rosette start over.
Temari sighed thoughtfully and shrugged, "No I haven't and I don't think I am going to anytime soon. I don't want to worry Gaara with this. Besides, that day she bumped into Gaara after leaving the restaurant, our little brother seemed rather disturbed about her."
"Well, I can bring her food sometime during the day when you're stuck back at the office," Kankuro offered.
Temari chuckled, "Kankuro, she's not a lost pet! I'm sure she can handle things on her own while I'm not here. But go right ahead."
"Well," Kankuro yawned heavily and laid his back against the couch, "she's your load now!"
Temari looked at her brother bluntly. But deep down, Kankuro knew he would help Temari with Sakura, "so where do we take her to in downtown?"
Temari shot her brother a smug look, "take us to the mall. I think I shall treat myself and my guest to shopping. She could use a few more outfits! The poor girl has nothing but the clothes she's wearing now and a bag she's been carrying around. I have so much money stored up, I don't know what else to do with it!"
Kankuro groaned disappointedly. He was not the type to go the mall and stare at clothes for hours on end like some women do, in his opinion. It was the most dreadful way to kill time. But, there's no arguing with Temari and so he accepted into taking them there.
Temari arrived at the building shortly after leaving Sakura back at her apartment. The dark blonde forgot how much fun it was to spend time with someone accompanied by her brother. Unfortunately, Kankuro had to leave a bit early since he had to prepare a few things before the meeting. They had gone from the mall, an ice cream shop, to a couple of more shoe stores in town. Being stuck in the building almost the entire day each week was tiring and life-taking. It's been a while since she has been out like that. Temari entered the building with a beaming smile and a straight professional posture as usual. The week has sure been quite bizarre for her.
Temari picked up a couple of portfolios for the meeting. Inside the portfolio contained the company's financial documents which Temari is in charge of. She then left her office and headed straight towards the councils room. It was going to be a long night, no doubt.
"Sure, I'd love to go, Shikamaru. If you stop sounding so bored just for a second!" the dark blonde teased, "oh, Naruto wants to speak with Gaara? Well he should be preparing his things in the office and getting ready to leave by now. I'll go see if he's in there. Don't hang up!"
The meeting had dragged for about three hours. The members were in a bit of a debate of the expenses the company was going to spend on the allied visitors. As she made her way down the hallway, she stopped in front of Gaara's office and knocked a couple of times.
"Come in," Gaara said through the other side.
Temari entered his office and told Shikamaru to put Naruto on the phone, "Here, Naruto's been trying to reach you."
The dark blonde stared at her younger brother as he talked on the phone. His face; it would somewhat lighten up whenever he is talking to Naruto; the man who saved her brother from falling any deeper into darkness. Her eyes then moved up to look at the scar, a kanji love symbol, on the side of his forehead. She knew he wasn't fully recovered yet. Both Kankuro and Temari were fully aware that Naruto did pull him out of his misery and showed him the light instead. But both siblings hoped for that one day to come: the day when someone special would enter Gaara's life and wait for him at the end of that light; that light which Naruto had guided him towards.
"Temari, here," Gaara handed Temari's phone back to her.
"Well? Are you going with us?" Temari asked.
Gaara only shook his head in response, not saying another word.
Temari wasn't about to give up just yet. Him going home only to see a half-naked Kira trying to seduce her little brother only angered her and would do anything to prevent him from seeing that witch.
"Come on, Gaara. You work every day, it won't hurt if you go out for the night! Besides, you'll be under my supervision!"
"And you think I want to be pampered by my sister throughout the entire time?" retorted Gaara in his relaxed and serious tone.
Temari sighed, trying not to lose her patience with her brother, "I'm bringing a friend along with me, I'm sure you two will get along great!" As if! Sakura and Gaara are complete opposites. Either Gaara will bore Sakura to death or Sakura will just scare Gaara away! "Do it for Naruto, Gaara. He needs you there. You were saying how he's been upset about not finding his friend, so he probably wants you by his side! To have fun, Gaara. You need to live a little."
She got him with that. Gaara sighed as he looked out the window of his office and he nodded, "I'll be at your door shortly after ten."
The dark blonde smiled smugly. It was a complete success.
I just can't let him know about the problem. Other than that...I hope they will get along.
The pink haired girl decided she would go out for a stroll outside. She picked out a pair of denim jeans and a red t-shirt Temari had gotten her from the mall. Quickly, she brushed her hair and was out the door. The city was alive.
Sakura looked into the night sky. She was expecting to see stars as the roseate does back in the countryside of the city, away in the little corner of the world. Instead, Sakura's eyes was filled with bright neon and electronic billboards that brightened the night sky so not even a twinkling star can show its light down on her. The never-ending head lights was blinding her, and for a moment she wished she was looking at the beauty of her country home away from the city. But tonight Sakura wanted to find the beauty of the city.
Instead of the familiar sounds of her home by the lake where crickets dance their symphonic sounds, it had been replaced with the roar of the crowd, the honk of car horns, a police siren screams to life behind her from what seems like everywhere. A loud soaring plane passed by from high above in the sky. Konoha definitely progressed much farther than Iwagakure did.
Sakura walked along the many shops that were aligned down each block. A humble shop from which aromas of fresh, home-made sweets that filled the air caught her attention immediately. The sign above the bakery read: "Yamanaka's Bakery: A place in which hunger, the most basic of human needs, can be replaced with the satisfaction of tiny drops of heaven in a divine and fulfilling manner." Indeed, it was right! The shop was a place where happiness for the belly and completion of the soul can be found. Her senses brought her to go inside the bakery shop.
"Hello! Welcome to Yamanaka's Bakery!" Sweetly greeted a woman with a pair of glasses and intense bright red hair from behind the counter, "HEY BUDDY! Either pay for that or get the heck out of here!"
A boy turned to look at the sales lady with a mouthful of cookies and crumbs scattered on his chin then shot his way for the exit.
Man…she has about the same temper as I do…
"I've never seen you around before. You must be new in town," stated the woman.
Sakura walked over to where she stood, "I guess you can say that."
The pink haired girl looked around the shop and carefully glanced at each sweet that caught her eye. A couple of minutes later, the sales lady walked over and stood by Sakura, "would you like to try one? New customers get to try a free sample. Choose whatever you like!"
Sakura smiled excitedly as she turned away from the woman. There was so much to choose from, it seemed impossible for her to pick! There was fluffy kind of cake that caught her attention, though. It seemed as if it were drenched in some kind of milk and had some classy custard layer in between, "I'll have that one, please!"
"Aah! That's one of our best sellers yet; Yamanaka's Drenched Sponge Cake! I'll cut you a piece and have it wrapped in a box for ya! I'll be right back!"
"Thank you so much, erm…" Sakura leaned a bit close towards the woman to read her name tag, "ah! Thanks so much, Karin."
The girl shifted her glasses and smiled. She then grabbed the tray of the sweet and took it to the back of the counter to have it cut. I wish I had money to bring a piece to Temari. I'll just give her this piece! She's done so much for me already...and she's barely known me for a day.
"I cut up two chunks for you," stated Karin from across the shop.
Sakura looked up, interrupted from her thoughts, and her eyes widened, "Really? Thank you, Karin!"
Karin flashed her a sweet smile and disappeared to the back again.
The bells on the door clanged as they swung opened, making Sakura glance over to see the incoming customers. A couple of men in business suits made their way towards the pie section. Next, entered a tall voluptuous woman whose hair hung low in between her bosom in the shop. Sakura couldn't help but notice the woman's glamorous clothing and the way it hugged her curves extremely well. The woman walked up to the counter, ignoring Sakura's existence, and tapped her long fingernails impatiently against it. The two men who were chatting with each other walked back and stopped to get a good view at the goddess. The woman found interest in one of the guys. She walked over to them, whispered a few words into his ear and handed him a card she slipped from her purse. The guys forgot what they even wanted to get and had left the shop, beaming over something.
Karin then reappeared out from the back with a bright pink box tied with a cute red bow in hand, "Here's your-"
"About time you came back, girl. I'm here to pick up my order for my Gaara and it better be ready. I have waited long enough! How long does it take to make a bunch of stupid chocolates!?" exclaimed the woman in an ill-mannered tone.
Gaara? Why does that name sound familiar, Sakura glanced over to the woman and examined her: the woman was dressed in a very flamboyant way and Sakura's guess was that she could be Gaara's lover by the way she claimed him as hers. If only her attitude were as good as her looks, she wouldn't be so nasty.
Karin forced a smile through clenched teeth, and placed Sakura's order down carefully only to go disappear into the back to fetch the woman her order.
The roseate tried her best to avoid eye contact with the rude woman, for she did not want any problems.
Karin had reappeared and handed the woman her wrapped box of chocolates. But the woman pushed the box back roughly towards Karin, "I demand another order free of charge and I want it wrapped as well. I'm not paying taxes for nothing, kid."
Karin sighed and heavily rolled her eyes back to her work, only to receive another menacing remark from the woman.
Sakura's fists clenched, her knuckles whitening.
"Yeah, you can't say shit to me like last time. Keep the snotty act up and you'll hear from me again. The next time you do, you'll be out on the streets-"
"Leave her alone, will you?! She's doing her job what else do you want from her?! Karin is NOT your servant! How about you go back to your precious boyfriend and ask him to keep you on a damn leash!" snarled the pink-haired spitfire. The woman looked Sakura from head to toe and raised an eyebrow. Flipping her hair over to the opposite side, she snickered loudly and took the box back from Karin and left the shop without saying another word.
Karin's shocked expression soon softened as she turned to face Sakura. She couldn't believe she had just shut down the girl of one of the richest guys in town, "you didn't have to do that. But thanks, I appreciate what you did there. I couldn't afford to get another warning from my boss. I must say, we have about the same temper!"
Sakura chuckled and received the order by Karin, "Don't sweat it. She was being very nasty, and I don't like to see others put down. I could only wonder what her boyfriend is like."
"He's a hunk, that's for sure! He's quiet and keeps to himself most of the time. If you ask me, it seems to me like Gaara is Kira's next target. She's been with almost all of the rich hotshots here in town! With a body like that, I can see why. But I sometimes wonder how he even puts up with her. Anyways, you have a nice day! Don't hesitate to come back."
Sakura tilted her head slightly, smiling. Waving goodbye, she turned to step out the door.
"Hold on! I didn't catch your name!" called out Karin.
Sakura stopped and half-turned to the red-eyed woman, "my name is Sakura!"
It was 10 o'clock sharp. The hours flew by and the night was more alive than ever. You would think the majority would want to go home on a Friday night and sleep in from a long day at work. However, the bars clubs and restaurants were opened and full of people! Sakura wished to explore more but the roseate knew she had to make it back so Temari would not be disturbed if she was already asleep. As Sakura entered the apartment, she saw Temari sitting on the couch completely dressed in a flashy outfit.
"Hello Temari! Umm…I don't remember you going to work like that," she teased.
Temari giggled and got up to greet Sakura, "Let's get you dressed, Sakura. We're about to go on a night out with the guys!"
"WHAT!? Guys? What guys?!" Sakura asked, a bit shocked.
"Well this guy I really like has asked me to go to one of Konoha's main clubs in towns with some of his friends tonight," Temari explained, finding Sakura's reaction rather amusing.
Sakura was about to meet…more rich snobs like Kira? Chances are slim judging at how different Temari and Kankuro were from other high officials, "Oooh so he's your date then? You boyfriend" The roseate then asked, teasing the dark blonde.
A light red color spread across Temari's cheeks and she nodded, "a friend of his is bringing his date as well. It turns out his friend had invited my little brother to come along so I thought it would be a perfect way you two could meet!"
Temari's younger brother? I don't remember them mentioning they had a younger sibling. The youngest meant the less experienced and most likely the more immature. At the moment, she wished it was Kankuro who was going. What if they didn't get along?
Despite that factor, her wish had come true. Sakura has never been to a club before and the thoughts of what kind of music or people you'd meet in one excited her. Not wasting another second, the girls hurried to the guest room. Temari quickly went over the clothes she had picked out for Sakura and in a split second had an outfit ready for the roseate. Once she handed her the clothes, Sakura went inside the bathroom and threw on a green mint crop top and a pair of high waist black shorts.
"Uh, Temari?" Sakura called out from the bathroom, in an uneasy tone.
"What is it?"
Sakura peeked shyly from the bathroom, not wanting to come out, "I've never worn clothes like these before."
Temari could only giggle at the poor innocent girl behind the bathroom door. Even so, she encouraged Sakura to come out and assured her that she looked perfectly fine. Sakura noticed Temari's breasts were rather large, making Sakura glance at her own and sighing disappointedly. But as she looked at the mirror once more, she couldn't help but wear a satisfying smile on. Never did she think she would have worn clothes like the ones she was wearing now. The last time she did was when Deidara had brought her to some celebration of the company as his date back in Iwagakure. She was the type to not worry much about what to wear one day or the next.
A few minutes later, Temari and Sakura stepped into the living room and sat down on the couch chatting a bit longer until someone knocked on the door. Getting up from the couch, the dark blonde made her way towards the door and opened it, "Good to see you'd come, Gaara."
For some unknown reason, Sakura's heartbeat began to pick up. Was it out of embarrassment due to her appearance? Or because she's about to meet the youngest sibling?
"Sakura come one don't be shy," Temari said smugly, "I want you to meet my little brother."
That name again. Slowly, she stood up from the couch and fought hard to turn around and face the man she wasn't looking forward to meeting. But when his blue mint orbs met with her sea foam-green eyes, Sakura's heart skipped a beat.
"My…my name is Gaara," said the red haired man with black rimmed eyes, extending his hand out. For some odd reason, he stared at her wide-eyed which slowly shifted to a slight frown.
Sakura walked up slowly to him, hesitating to take his hand into her own, "Nice to meet you, Gaara. My name is Haruno Sakura."