Disclaimer: I own nothing but the OC (if there will be any)

A clear tolling of a bell spread over the confectionary preceding arrival of a new customer. As he came in, a sudden and uncomfortable hush fell over the patrons. The easy going atmosphere of unrestrained playfulness was instantly replaced by thick tension. Kagome could swear she was able to hear how everybody held their breaths in anticipation of… something.

Intrigued by the reaction she focused her attention on theboy, who looked oddly out of place. A Shinobi, by the grace of his attire, radiated an intense aura while scrutinizing the assortments of sweets. His scowl deepened greatly as if numerous baklavas, umm ali's and pieces of Basbusa offended him somehow. Neither rice puddings, donuts or fruity salads and cakes met his approval. It also looked like some lost their radiant sweetness under his heavy gaze.

The patrons tried to vanish into soft cushions or disappear behind translucent silk shawls not unlike a five year old who is playing hide and seek and believes that if one closes its eyes one is invisible to the world. Others observed with rapt attention waiting for a sign to flee, calculating the best route to survival. No one dared to move rapidly or… breathe.

That's it! Soon someone will suffocate. Kagome moved past the counter and cheerfully asked, "Hello, how can I help you?"

Surprised by her eagerness, Gaara evenly replied, "Temari's birthday is today, so I'd like to purchase sweets".

"Oh. Does she have a preference?" she dwelled further, but seeing total incomprehension she continued, "What's her favorite dessert? What does she buy for herself?"

"I don't know"

"Ok. You know what… You have been looking at the shelves for couple of minutes and it's not working, so I think there is a better way to solve this puzzle" Kagome turned around and waved him to follow. Because she didn't hear a set of footsteps behind she turned and saw him rooted to the place.

Well, with this tempo, we will be here until midnight. So she returned and tugged at his white sash. "Come"

"If you don't know what your friend likes it is always a good idea to give her something you would like to share with her. Like, in this case, sweets you like. Here…" Kagome indicated small bowls "are samples of our most popular biscuits. Try some. When you decide what you like give me a call."

She tried to wait and see which type he will chose first but one of the customers raised his hand demanding her attention. Right before she walked off, her impatient nature get the better out of her so she grabbed the pile of dark, rich baklavas and shoved them under his nose daring him enthusiastically to start from them. "Here. In my opinion these are the best," she exclaimed briskly and went to serve tables.

Gaara discretely followed her with his eyes while sampling goods. While he wasn't a stranger to displays of kindness and familiarity, they rarely, if ever, were directed toward him. During his childhood he frequently watched interactions between passersby trying to decipher the meaning of their expressions and actions. On lonely nights he spied unsuspecting villagers through windows gaining a wealth of information on human interactions and an unquenchable hunger to experience it first hand. Although since he came back from Konoha his relationships have got significantly better (especially with Temari, Kankuro and Baki) he found it difficult to connect to civilians. So this bubbly girl, who manhandled him with impunity, pleased him greatly. Her open face was a refreshing novelty.

And that's how Gaara found himself compiling an assortment of many sweets that were packed into cute, pink-white and floral box adorned by frivolous ribbons. As he was leaving, Kagome cordially called "I hope your friend will be happy with your gift. Please do come back and share how it went. Ok?" The only reaction she got was a slight nod oh his head, as he was leaving the confectionery.

After Gaara left he could see that conversations among customers exploded and the dark – haired waitress was ushered into back office.

If villagers thought it bizarre that Gaara paraded with a very feminine box, none expressed this sentiment to his face.

Author note: English is my second language so feel free to point any and all grammar mistakes. Read and review please.