Author Notes: Hello everyone! Welcome to my first attempt at tackling the Akatsuki. *hangs head and sighs* Yes, the Akatsuki. I've sunk to an all time low if I'm trying to make villainous villains sound... nice LOL There's bromance if you squint. Enjoy :)

General Warnings: Spoilers for Naruto Episode 82 (Eye To Eye, Sharingan vs. Sharingan!) Words in italics are taken directly from the episode.

Rating: 'T'

Disclaimer: Naruto belongs to Masashi Kishimoto.

- Chapter Start -

"Kurenai, get Kakashi to the Medical Corp," Gai ordered. "Asuma, you'll be my backup."

"Got it," Asuma said with a nod.

"Alright, I've sent word to the Anbu Black Ops, but until they get here, we'll hold them off just you and me," Gai said, turning to face Itachi and Kisame.

"Interesting," Kisame remarked with a feral grin. "I'll give you credit for guts."

"No, Kisame," Itachi vetoed. "We're pulling out."

Kisame turned to him in surprise.

"We're not here to fight a full scale battle," Itachi explained. "Tempting as it may be, it's not the way to do this. Let's go."

"That's too bad," Kisame said. "It was just getting fun. They don't know how lucky they are."

The two of them vanished.

- o -

When they reappeared, it was at a hilltop overlooking the Leaf Village, the wind blowing back their robes and Itachi's long hair.

"What a letdown," Kisame complained. "Getting me all excited and then - phft! Nothing."

Itachi regarded him with a hint of exasperated amusement.

"You will get your chance to fight Might Guy another day," he said.

"You mean that mighty stupid looking guy?" Kisame scoffed, refusing to be appeased.

"He's a jonin and he's strong," Itachi cautioned. "He won't be easy to take down."

"Piece of cake," Kisame said with a careless shrug.

When no reply was forthcoming, he turned to see Itachi frowning, one long fingered hand splayed at his neck where his Akatsuki robe collar was still open.

"What?"

"It's... it's gone," Itachi muttered.

"What's gone?" Kisame demanded. Other than his chance for a fight, that is.

Itachi turned to him, his face unreadable.

"My necklace. It's gone."

Kisame's forehead wrinkled as he peered at that bare neck. Ah yes - Itachi used to wear a delicate chain with small circles on it.

Pretty little thing. Wait - what?

"How should I know where it is?" he snapped.

"I have to find it," Itachi said. "I can't - I have to find it!"

Kisame squinted at what looked like a flash of panic in those dark eyes. Then he frowned, thinking.

"Well, it could've dropped off earlier when we confronted - hey!"

A strong hand grabbed his arm, Itachi's dark eyes narrowed with resolve. In the next second, they were back in the Leaf Village, standing beside that canal as before.

"Which means it's got to be somewhere here," Itachi said, continuing their conversation. He released Kisame's arm and looked around. "I think... yes, perhaps when Kurenai tried to put her Genjutsu on me."

Kisame noted there was no one around this time and his lips turned down. Too bad those four shinobi had already left. Seeing Itachi scanning the ground, he rolled his eyes and folded his arms across his chest. So much fuss over one little trifle!

"Well, you go ahead and look for your bauble," he drawled, his voice taking on a mocking tone. "I'll just-"

Itachi's head whipped around to him.

"Kisame. We need to find that necklace. Now."

"Huh-uh. You lost it, you find it," Kisame said and reached over his shoulder to caress Samihada's handle. "Perhaps that Gai fellow will return and I can have my fight after all."

When Itachi took a step closer to him, eyes narrowing, Kisame acted on instinct, squeezing shut his own eyes at once.

"Don't you use that trick on me, Itachi!"

Silence strung out for a long moment and then a soft sigh sounded.

"No Sharingan, Kisame. I promise."

Slowly, Kisame opened one eye and then the other.

"Help me look for my necklace. Please," Itachi requested, an underlying note of desperation in his voice.

Kisame pressed his lips together before rolling his eyes again.

"Fine."

- o -

Ten minutes later...

The two of them must look like idiots, Kisame groused to himself as he and Itachi continued to walk up and down the pavement, heads down and hands clasped behind their backs. If Pein could see them now, he would whip their uniforms right off of them.

Kisame scowled. The security in this village was all kinds of lax if no one had noticed their presence up until now. Straightening up, he rolled his head from side to side to ease his neck muscles. Then he saw it - a glint in the water about fifteen feet away. Without a word, he climbed over the wall and onto the water, walking towards the source of that sparkle.

"Here it is!" he called as he held aloft the necklace in one dripping wet fist. Then he blinked; Itachi was at his side almost before he had finished speaking, a soft exhalation brushing his cheek as the necklace was plucked from his fingers.

"You found it," Itachi breathed, his eyes warm as his other hand gripped Kisame's shoulder with almost bruising force.

An instant later, they were back at that hilltop, the speed at which they traveled almost making Kisame sway when he was released.

Itachi tried to fasten the necklace around his neck with trembling fingers, but it fell to the ground instead. With a frustrated sound, he bent down and picked it up. Again he tried to fasten it around his neck and again he failed.

Kisame stared at him. It was a novelty and an amusing one at that, seeing Itachi, the cool and collected Itachi Uchiha - fumble with so simple a task, but well... Kisame cleared his throat and stuck out a hand.

Itachi turned his head, staring at his hand before looking up. Very slowly, he proffered his necklace with the air of one offering his most precious possession.

When Kisame took it, Itachi turned around. He pulled up the front of his Akatsuki robe so that it hung lower at the back to expose his neck before lifting his ponytail out of the way.

This time, it was Kisame's strong fingers which trembled as he looped the delicate chain around that long pale neck. Faced with such an intimate task, his fingers slowed automatically as they worked the tiny clasp, trying not to notice how soft Itachi's skin felt against his calloused fingertips.

If the two of them had looked like idiots before, they must look even more so now, he thought with grim humour. If Pein could see them now, he would whip their uniforms right off of them and stomp on them for good measure.

"There you are, the two of you," said White Zetsu in his soft, sing song voice. "I'll just report to Pein that you... what are you two doing? Oh, playing with jewelry."

With those languid words, Zetsu slipped back into the ground, leaving Itachi and Kisame staring at that spot and then at each other in horror.

"Zetsu!"

"We're not playing with anything!"

"Get back here!"

- Chapter End -

A/N: Thank you for reading! Please leave a review if you enjoyed :)