AN: Okay, this is long overdue, I admit. I'm not even sure if people are still following this story but I'll post it nevertheless. I wrote this last year but I never feel satisfied with and I'm still not satisfied with it now, lol. But I guess this is needed to bring the story to the direction I want. Anyway here's Chapter 9!
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or the characters in it. I apologize if this is similar to some other fanfic and I can assure you that this fanfic is as original as it can be.
Chapter 9: Worry
Sakura woke up to the banging on her door which inevitably caused her hangover to worsen. She had just finished her clinical exams yesterday and was immediately dragged to the nearest pub by her colleagues, still in the clothes that she was in when she went to school early that morning. It was a spur of the moment thing, not something planned, so she ended up going looking like someone refused to go home.
Not that that was far from the truth.
Well, she had a problem. Her exams were frigging hard. She had just have to be one of those unfortunate students who was given a debatably healthy patient. It should have been easy but when the conditions are simple, there would always be a problem on how to explain things and more often than not, the Professor in charge would end up asking things so simple or things so complex. Something simple is something that you thought you would never be asked, especially in an exam. It also did not help that it involved the kind of information that was typed in small fonts somewhere on a presentation slide.
The main point was she ignored that statement. She ended up just babbling about things that came to mind which she believed to be total nonsense now that she thought back to what she said. It did not help that the other people who had the exam on the same day kept saying how they thought they might ace the exam because everything that they read was asked. Nor did it help that they discussed the answers to the questions that she got when she told them what she was asked.
Curse her luck.
Maybe she used up her luck when it gave her Itachi.
Anyway, she ended up drinking an amount which Tsunade-sensei would be proud of. The head of school's drinking problem was not a secret to them. It was almost impossible to not acknowledge what was presented to them so clearly. The blonde-haired woman often came to their morning lectures with an obvious hangover.
Back to her current predicament. Thinking about it, it was due to her own carelessness that she ignored those little texts on the handout. Furthermore, was it not her job as a student to know about it a bit more?
But still, it was nice now that she was able to drink her stress off. The prickling headache she was sporting now though was another story.
She opened the door, not bothering to peek through the peek hole. While fighting a groan at the sunlight that attacked her vision, she rudely greeted, "What?"
The unknown woman opposite her did not even flinch at her rude greeting. Sakura could not decide whether it was because she was used to it or she just could not bother about it but… God, she could not think. Her head hurt so much.
"Good day, Miss. I am sorry for disturbing you. I am an officer from the Konoha Police Force."
At the introduction, Sakura forced herself to actually look at the woman and true enough she was wearing the full uniform. Instinctively, she racked her mind for any crime that she could possibly have done last night. Did she hit someone? Ino had always told her that she was a violent drunk. It was probably the truth too as she recalled the state Naruto was always in when someone slipped her some alcohol (she had a feeling Sasuke had his hand in that). The ache refused to give ways for the memories though but she saluted herself for being able to keep her calm and not let her worry show.
Not that she did very well.
"We are currently investigating the assault that happened last night at around nine in the fifteenth level of this building. Do you know anything about it?"
Nine… She let out a sigh of relief. It was not possible that she was the criminal then. She remembered that it was around nine when their party started to get a bit more rowdy and it was a around ten when everyone started to heavily compete over who could down more drinks than the other. She could not have been back by then and if her memories could be relied on, then she was innocent.
"No," she said with a conviction that she did not know she had. "I was out with my friends."
Okay, so maybe she did not need to give a reason. Or maybe she did but not that one. That was one of the many reasons that often got people in trouble. Like when one of the couple in a shaky relationship said that very line, the other would definitely think that the other was cheating. It was one of the classic lines that criminals often use. Friends. That word would only lead the investigator to think whether those people were real or simply an excuse. She expected the officer to look at her suspiciously as soon as the words came out of her mouth and the pointed look that she received was close enough.
Yeah, she was in trouble.
"May I know what time you were out and around what time you were back?" At this point, Sakura was already trying to calm herself which was proving to be difficult even as her headache slowly evaporated out of her head. It would not do her any good if she continued to say things off her head like that. "If it is possible, can you give me the name of someone who can testify your alibi. Since the incident happened within this building-"
"I can testify for her."
The two women turned to the person who interrupted their conversation. Normally, the officer would warn the person for getting in the way of an investigation but at the sight of the man, she immediately took back whatever word that was going to leave her mouth.
"Itachi-san, what are you doing here?!"
Before Sakura could even feel relieved that her boyfriend appeared just right when she needed someone to be, she felt something akin to jealousy bubbling in the pit of her stomach. The way the female officer addressed the man so familiarly did not escape her notice. She tried telling herself that in his line of work, it was not impossible that he could be chummy with people in the officer's line of profession.
The both of them started talking and Sakura did not even bother to listen to what they were saying. She knew Itachi as a man of a few words, saying only things he felt like saying. Even with her, it was only when he felt like he had a few points to be made that he would talk so much. She was not sure whether they were having small talks or not but she was positive that she did not like the look on the officer's face as she talked with Itachi.
How she hoped that she could just close the door. Sadly, she could not as it would only make her look more suspicious. Forcing herself to focus on the conversation, the jealousy that she was feeling did not disappear even as she heard the female officer telling Itachi about what had happened in the area as Itachi asked her a few questions that were obviously work-related.
It might be the remnants of alcohol in her bloodstream saying but she did not realize what she was saying until it left her mouth. "Are you supposed to talk about that in front of me?"
Sakura could feel her emotions worsened and she blamed the hangover for her crankiness. Itachi told her to go back inside after her outburst and she reluctantly complied, not liking the emotion the scene of them talking were bringing to her.
Most people who knew Sakura knew that she was the kind of person who felt strongly about everything. She was short-tempered and although she rarely got envious about little things, when it came to the people she had romantic affections for, she tend to get possessive and jealous. Usually, she would be able to keep it at bay but this time, she could not and again, she blamed her hangover for it.
She was lying on her stomach on her couch with her face buried in one of the cushions as she cursed at herself for her actions. She did not even hear the front door closed as Itachi entered inside her apartment and unfortunately, she did not see Itachi's lips curving upward and his eyes twinkling in amusement at the sight of her berating herself.
He purposefully made a bit of a sound as he walked towards the couch to get her attention and to his delight, she stiffened.
Sakura heard soft shuffling as Itachi sat down on one of the beanbags Naruto forced Sasuke to buy as he confided his horror of the possibilities of sitting where Sakura and Itachi probably did the deeds even after Sakura embarrassedly told him that they had not gotten to that level yet. They rarely even kissed. As much as she understood that Itachi was the kind of person who was used to restrain himself, she was sometimes a bit disappointed at the fact that he had that much restrain over himself.
She felt tense at the lack of sound as Itachi settled himself on the beanbag in front of her. She would really like it at this moment if he bombarded her with questions for answers to justify what she did and scolded her for acting the way she did when he was obviously doing his job. Only then would she know what to do. She would get angry at him for getting mad at her and he would then accuse her for being jealous and she would say something to deny what he was saying.
But let's not forget about the fact that she was dating the Uchiha Itachi.
She unintentionally let out a muffled scream of frustration. She did not want to be the one to break the silence but she knew that she had to or else the tense silence would go on eating on her patience.
She slowly lifted her head and she was not surprised to see Itachi looking at her while sitting comfortably. He did not seem to feel the tense atmosphere that she was feeling and she realized that whatever she felt earlier was only in her head. Embarrassed, she hid her face again but this time, she tilted her head so that she was looking at the back of the couch.
"You're having fun with this, aren't you?"
He did not answer and she should have expected this from him. She tried not to feel guilty at the accusatory tone she was using. Itachi did nothing, really. It was her who was jealous without any reason.
They fell into silence again for what felt like thirty minutes when she heard Itachi shifted. She was not aware of what he was doing until she felt a hand running through her hair from behind her and a kiss on her temple. Suppressing the need to look at him, she tensed.
Realizing that his attempt to make her look at him failed, Itachi let his hand played with her hair and sat against the couch. Something about the way his fingers stroked her hair calmed her down causing her to sigh in defeat.
"Thank you for helping me out there. I hope you won't get into trouble though for lying to the authorities just to vouch for me."
She moved a bit and he got the message as he pulled back his hand. She turned on her other side and stared at the back of his head. She could not see his expression but something in her was taken aback at how unusually quiet he was being. He tended to say a thing or two at least a minute into seeing her even if it was only a greeting but he had not said anything this time.
"And erm… Sorry. I acted a bit out of line."
That might be the very thing he was waiting for because the next thing she knew, he spoke.
"You were jealous."
Sakura's eyes widened at the first sentence that came from his mouth. Hearing something akin to amusement in his voice, she sat up into an uncomfortable position. "What? You were amused by this?" She stared at the back of his head, incredulous.
He tilted his head, his amused stare suddenly darkened with disapproval at the way she was sitting. Sheepishly, Sakura let her legs fell to the floor next to Itachi.
The amused glint returned to his stare and he smirked a bit. "I like knowing that your feelings for me have not disappeared."
Sakura snorted, knowing that he was just delighted that what she was feeling for him was just as strong as his feelings for her despite the fact that her feelings developed later than his did. "Don't take me lightly. A few weeks are not enough for me to stop feeling for you."
They both knew how true that was if her feelings for Kakashi was any indication.
Now that she knew that Itachi was not angry at her for acting childishly, she got off the couch. Itachi instinctively stretched his leg forward making sure to make some space for her to sit. She took her position in between his thighs and he lazily wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her close.
Sakura sighed as she listened to the beating of his heart. "Can I assume that you're here because you missed me?"
Her eyes strayed to the side when she saw the remote control to the television that Sasuke left in her apartment because his parents could not know that he bought another set or his father would freeze his bank account. Naruto volunteered his house at first but knowing how much of a klutz their blonde friend was, he did not want to risk it.
She had been looking for that damn thing for a few days already and it was in the most obvious place all along. She reached for it and clicked on the power button. The television came to life and a comedy show appeared on its screen.
She felt Itachi buried his head onto her hair and he inhaled. "Of course," he replied curtly.
She tilted her head to the side for a bit and she saw the bags under his eyes. She kept her mouth shut from asking if he had been sleeping at all. She knew that whatever tired him out could not be anything related to his work as a lecturer. There were a number of females whining at the fact that they had not seen her for days and even if he never told her, it was obvious that he had not been in the Law School for the past few weeks. He never told her anything if it's related to his other job as a lawyer and she knew that it was confidential but sometimes she got curious and worried as to what he got himself into. It was a well-known fact that a lawyer could not have been involved in the safest of cases. Standing on the boundary between legal and illegal had its repercussions and the ones that she heard most of the time did not sound good.
She drew circles on the back of his hand in an attempt to soothe him. They sat like that for a few more minutes with her wondering if it was okay or not to laugh at the jokes that were made by one of the comedians. She wanted to act like she did not realize how different he was acting but with his face buried in her hair, it proved to be difficult. The final straw was when she felt his lips grazed over the back of her neck.
"You know," she started. She forcefully removed his arms around her but when she tried to turn to look at him, he wrapped his arms around her again, forcing her back into her initial position. "If you need someone to talk to, I can definitely lend you an ear."
She wanted to just say that she knew that something was definitely on his mind but she still had a headache and she did not want to push him if he did not want to talk about it.
"Hn," he replied, neither a yes or a no. Fortunately for Sakura, she was already a pro at identifying what that grunt meant after years of knowing Sasuke.
"It's not fun hanging out when your mind is somewhere else, Itachi." She realized that she was almost whining but she did not care at the moment. "It's been a while since I saw you and I was hoping that when I finally see you, we would be able to talk about everything that we missed out on each other." She could almost hear her anger slipped into her voice but really, he was driving her crazy.
Normally, she would really like it if he was acting intimate with her but this time, something was different. His attention was not with her and his movement was almost… she could not find the word to describe it. However, it irked her and that was enough for her to call him out on it.
She could feel Itachi's stare on her. "You were out last night," he started.
Sakura was relieved that he finally stopped thinking about whatever he was thinking. "Yeah, I told you, didn't I? I went out drinking with the others after our exam and –"
"Did something happen?"
Okay, maybe not.
Sakura was getting more weirded out and a bit upset. "Itachi, I've told you. You can relax when you're with me. And to answer your question, and I hope that you won't be asking anything work-related again after this, no. Nothing happened. I managed to get home safe and sound, if that's what you're worried about."
There was a subtle change in his breathing before he chose to speak again. "That's good." He replied curtly but the tightening of his hold on her told her that he had not really got his mind out of the matter.
"I'm sure it's only a one-time thing, Itachi. I don't know why you're so worried."
Itachi did not say anything. Sakura was distracting herself from her boyfriend's worry by focusing on the screen. Itachi rarely worried about her. He always knew that she would be able to take care of herself. To see him this worried was a bit worrying.
Acting against her thought, she turned her head sideways and called out his name. "Itachi?"
Itachi hummed in response and as soon as he looked at her, she pecked him on the lips.
She could see Itachi's eyes went in and out of focus at her action as he leaned a bit forward expecting something more than that. She smiled, glad that she was able to distract him. "Do you want to go out today?"
"I was hoping that we could just stay at home today," he murmured.
"Oh?" Sakura asked, a bit surprised. This was probably the first time that they actually did not spend their time together out. Thinking of the possibilities of what could have happened, Sakura could feel her face flushing as the thoughts in her head got more and more lewd. Trying to rid herself of those thought before Itachi caught on to them, she questioned, "Why?"
Itachi looked at her, amused. "I don't think it's a good idea for you to be out in this weather."
Sakura silently agreed. It was quiet sunny out today. It would not do any good to her hangover.
"We'll order in. We can watch movies too. I'm sure Sasuke has some movies that we can watch."
Sakura raised an eyebrow as she looked at him, noticing that he was practically implying that he knew that the television set was all Sasuke's. She only received a smirk in return but the growl from her stomach stopped her from asking any further question. She could feel her cheeks warmed.
Sakura sighed and made him release her. "I guess I'll go look for some open deliveries right now."
Itachi felt some kind of a weight pulling down on his feet as he made his way down the stairs to the apartment. Something was tickling his senses and his eyes betrayed his seemingly composed self as he fought the need to look back up at the floor where Sakura apartment was.
Trying to hide the things that he knew from her was hard. He had been on the verge of revealing everything to her every single time he met her. He had always been a very private person and Sakura was the only one who managed to make him unwind enough to tell her things that he had always kept prisoner in his mind. The only thing that kept him from blurting it all out to her was the trouble that he would be bringing her into if she knew just what he was getting into.
He knew that he was not doing a good job at hiding things away from her. She was way too observant for his own good. However, for her sake, he would try.
He went to his car and with a final glance at Sakura's apartment, he drove away to where he should have been hours ago.
AN: I will not give any excuses. I know I'm late in uploading this, lol. Anyway, please let me know what you think of this chapter!