Disclaimer: Naruto does not belong to me.
Sharks and Mermaids
"I'm fine! And no, there aren't any guys trying to deflower me! What the fuck, Naruto?"
"Sakura! Teme just hit me!"
"Oi, Naruto, don't touch the fucking hair…"
Sakura rubbed her temple. Even when they were hundreds of miles away, they still got on her nerves. As Sasuke put the blonde into a headlock, his face suddenly grew serious.
She stopped him before he could even begin. "Don't look at me like that. I said I was fine here."
Sasuke sighed, grunting when Naruto karate-chopped his ribs. "I believe you, Sakura. We're just…"
She grinned then, wishing they were here in person instead of her just looking at a phone. What she would give to pull them both into bear hugs and then proceed to thoroughly tease the shit out of them. "Awww, Sasuke-kun, do you miss me?"
"Don't get carried away."
"Of course we fucking miss you, Sakura! Do you see these baby blues? These tears!" Naruto howled, shoving Sasuke over so he could do a closeup.
"You want to huuuug me," she sing-songed. "You want to kiiissss me."
"Yeah, on that gigantic forehead of yours," Sasuke deadpanned. She could see the lightheartedness in his eyes though, even through a camera lens.
Sakura burst out in laughter. "But adorable nonetheless."
"For what it's worth, I miss you guys, too. But honestly, it isn't so bad here. I've made some friends and they're...interesting."
"Interesting?" Sasuke mimed, not at all fooled.
"As in boy interesting? Don't you remember anything I said?" Naruto shouted. "Boys are evil! Stay away from them!"
Sakura stuck her tongue out. "Yes, interesting. And they like to swim, so there! We have something in common."
Sasuke's lips thinned before he exhaled in resignation. "Ino and everyone else says hi."
Sakura smiled, knowing it was his way of letting the issue drop because he knew they weren't going to win this battle. "Tell them hi back. I've gotta go though, study session. I'll talk to you guys later, okay?"
Saying their goodbyes, she ended the call and got to her feet. At times like these, she really did miss her small seaside town and her friends. But gazing at the splendor of Konoha Academy, the blossoming trees that were her namesake...she wondered, maybe even hoped, if this could be home too.
Sakura contemplated Music Room 3 before turning the doorknob. It was quiet on the other side, but for all she knew, the entire room was probably soundproof. Did she really wa-
The door swept open and in she tumbled, catching herself at the very last second before faceplanting into the rather lush looking carpet. Well, no backing out now.
"Sakura!" Tobi grabbed her wrist and pulled her toward the group of desks haphazardly thrown together. Itachi was strewn on a maroon loveseat nearby, eyes closed with a book across his chest. Was he napping?
Trying not to drop the multiple bags she carried, she tugged Tobi to a stop. "Hey, slow down there a little. Trying not to fall on my face, here."
His lips began to tremble. "T-Tobi's so sorry, Sakura!"
"It's okay!" she rushed, waving her hands to placate him. "Don't worry about it! Next time, just be careful. Girls are...umm...delicate, so you need to handle them with care."
His eyes grew round as he nodded. "Is Sakura delicate?"
She laughed, placing the bags on a desk. "Far from it, Tobi."
"But Sakura is so soft and pretty! Like a doll!"
Her cheeks reddened and she quickly turned to hide the blush, rummaging through one of the bags. "Uh, thanks, Tobi."
"Don't you think so, Itachi-nii?"
She glanced over her shoulder and caught the flash of amusement in his too dark eyes as he walked over. "Hnn...very soft and pretty, Tobi."
Now he was just teasing. She rolled her eyes. "Fucking charmers…" she muttered. "Say, you two wouldn't happen to be related?"
Tobi weaved his arm through hers, nodding with so much enthusiasm she was afraid he'd give himself whiplash. "Tobi and Itachi-nii are cousins!"
She held a red bento in her hands as she contemplated the pair. The black hair. Dark eyes. Tall, fit build, from swimming no doubt. And once again, the air of familiarity floated around her and she couldn't quite grasp why.
"A penny for your thoughts?" Itachi asked.
Sakura bit her lip before shaking her head. "I'll let you know when I figure it out. In the meantime, I thought we might get hungry while studying, so here." She opened the lid of the bento and Tobi's eyes widened.
"Onigiri! Tobi loves Sakura! Love, love, love!"
She offered some up to Itachi, who gladly took one and bit into it. What the...how does he make eating onigiri look fucking sexy as hell? She mentally face-palmed herself and quickly gathered her wits about her.
"Delicious," Itachi commented, swiping another.
"What's delicious?" Kisame asked as he, Deidara, and Hidan walked through the door, plastic bags bursting with snacks in hand.
"So...what the what?"
She smacked Hidan across the shoulder for the hundredth time. "Pay the fuck attention."
Deidara and Kisame snickered, ignoring Sakura's death glares. No wonder Kisame had jumped at partnering with Itachi. Hidan had the attention span of a fucking gnat.
"So what are you and Tobi doing here, anyway?" Sakura asked the blond.
"Gai-sensei is Hatake's ultimate rival. Let's just say it pays to sit in on these."
"Gai-sensei...the one with the bowl cut, bushy brows and green sweat suit?"
Deidara nodded. "Gotta give him credit, yeah. One of a kind for sure."
"So Sakura-chan, what part of Okinawa are you from?" Kisame asked as he leaned back to stretch.
"Uzushio, it's a small seaside town," she fondly answered.
Itachi choked mid tea sip, but quickly recovered. Turning his focus back to Sakura, who at the moment was trying to hide her laughter and failing miserably, he repeated, "Uzushio?"
She nodded. "Can I just say best waves ever? You guys would probably love it there."
"Itachi-nii, doesn't Uncle live there?" Tobi asked thoughtfully as he bit into a piece of cake.
"We've been, actually," Kisame added. "I've got a few cousins there. Though it's been awhile."
As Sakura sat there, calmly taking a bite out of a donut Deidara had passed over, she suddenly choked as a light bulb went off. Hidan sprang into action and started pounding between her shoulder blades. Deidara passed a bottle of water and after shoving her half eaten donut into Hidan's mouth to get him to stop, she took a few sips and wiped her mouth.
His eyes filled with amusement, as if he already knew what she was going to ask. "Yes, Sakura?"
"You wouldn't happen to be an Uchiha, would you?"
"Of course we are, Sakura!" Tobi piped in, as if was the most obvious thing in the world.
"And you wouldn't happen to have, by some crazy chance, two uncles, a cousin who calls himself Shisui, and a younger brother named Sasuke?"
"Shit, Sakura, you just named every Uchiha in Uzushio," Deidara whistled, clearly impressed.
"And your cousins, Kisame, wait, let me guess, Zabuza and Haku?"
Kisame sputtered, putting two and two together. "Talk about a small fucking world. You're the Pink Shark."
"In the flesh," she breathed, waiting for the world to stop spinning.
"How do you know Itachi's brother?" Hidan asked, finishing off the donut and thinking that they had just shared an indirect kiss. Fucking sweet.
Sakura couldn't help the bubble of awed giggles, seeing the curiosity in Itachi's eyes as well. "We're pretty close friends...I can't believe you're his precious, most important 'Nii-san'..."
"Aww, Itachi's such an amazing big bro," they all teased among their shared laughter.
And then Sakura scrambled out of her chair and rushed over to him. "Smile!" It was the only warning she gave before she invaded his personal space and pressed the button on her phone. No one caught the 'swoosh' of her message though as Sakura sent the rather adorable photo of her and Itachi to Sasuke, captioning it with 'You never fucking told me your brother went to KA!'.
"Picture time!" Tobi jumped up and the next whirlwind half hour was spent taking photos with her very first study group at Konoha Academy.
A while later as they gathered their things and cleaned up Music Room 3, Itachi's phone vibrated with an incoming message.
'Nii-san...please keep your hands to yourself. Sakura is a good friend and therefore off limits.'
Itachi smirked before attaching another photo. 'Too little, too late, otouto...'
He couldn't help but feel that life just got a whole lot more interesting now that Sakura Haruno was around.
She flopped on the bed, rolling her eyes at her phone. "Two times in one day, Sasuke? You must really miss me."
"You didn't tell me you knew Itachi."
"And you didn't tell me he went to KA."
"I didn't even know you were going to KA."
She snorted. "I told you! You just chose not to listen."
"What's the big deal, anyway? He seems like a good guy, Sasuke. And so do the others." Silence met her on the other end before he finally released a long suffering sigh. "They're loud and obnoxious and…"
"Seriously? Are you describing us or them? Remember when you thought I was the most annoying thing in the world and I told you you could take your ice stick and shove it?"
"Stop being unreasonable. And overprotective for that matter. You're supposed to be the cool, aloof bad boy that every girl crushes on, not a cockblock. Dare I say you're turning into Naruto?"
"Don't compare me to that idiot."
Sakura snorted. "You've met all these guys, Sasuke, and you know what they're like. Do I have anything to worry about?"
"I thought so."
"Itachi will watch over you. I told him not to touch you though."
"You did what?"
"I told him to keep his hands off you, that you were off limits."
She huffed in exasperation. "What if I want his hands on me?"
"I was afraid of that."
Sakura almost choked on thin air. "Give me a fucking break! Would it kill you to have a little more faith in me?"
"It's not you. It's them. Nii-san can be most charming and very convincing when he wants to be, but he usually doesn't care for much. This is…" Sasuke sighed on the other end. "I think you grossly underestimate your own allure sometimes."
Sakura wasn't able to catch the last part as the words had been mumbled. "Will you stop being so cryptic? Everything's going to be fine."
"Just...be careful, Sakura, or I'll be forced to drag you back here myself."
"You'll have to go through 'Tou-san first."
"Hn...on second thought…maybe I'll send Uncle instead."
…to be continued…
Credit to Miss Congeniality must be given. And OHSHC of course for its continuous inspiration.