A Girl Thing…ch.3
The Girl and the Scarecrow
Sasuke had been experiencing the most wonderful dream…he had met with a terrible accident that left his face horribly disfigured, and Ino and Sakura were running in the opposite direction when he came into sight, his ugliness repulsing them. That had brought tears of joy into his eyes, and he found himself yelling mocking words at the two girls as he chased them, laughing hysterically.
"Ha ha…look at me now…hee hee, aren't I beautiful? Ino…Sakura…don't you like me anymore? Ha ha ha…" Sasuke giggled in his sleep, when Naruto suddenly burst into his tent and woke him up.
After a few curse words and a lot of persuasion, Sasuke found himself sitting in the dark, cold and miserable as Naruto sat by him, spying on their teacher's tent.
"What do you think they're doing in there…?" Naruto whispered to Sasuke, the two boys crouching behind a large log, Naruto's eyes focused suspiciously on Kakashi's tent.
"I don't know and I don't care!" Sasuke said irritably, trying to blink the sleepiness from his eyes. "Why the hell did you wake me up!?"
"Because of that!" Naruto hissed at him, pointing at Kakashi's tent. "There's no way Sakura would stay in there that long without being held against her will!"
Sasuke's eye twitched, and he could feel his fingers reaching for his shuriken, so he could silence Naruto and return to his bed.
"Oh my God…do you think they could be…?" Naruto started, only to be cut off by a disgusted look from Sasuke.
"You're messed up," Sasuke muttered.
"Shh, shut up! I think they're talking!" Naruto whispered, his eyes wide, as he turned his attention back to the tent while Sasuke grumbled in the background.
"Ow…" Sakura mumbled as she sat back up, rubbing her head after she had just face-faulted.
Kakashi was looking at her over his shoulder, a bemused look in his eyes. "What? Who did you think I was talking about?" He said as Sakura gave him a funny look.
"Never mind," she said with a disappointed sigh, flinching at the annoying ache in her knees. Her knees had begun to ache shortly after she started to brush Kakashi's hair, with her standing on them the whole time just to reach her teacher's head.
The Jounin noticed this of course, and glanced around until he found what he was looking for.
Sakura watched curiously as he grabbed two pillows and stacked them upon each other. Then he shifted so he could lean comfortably against them, his head now at a perfectly accessible height.
He glanced upwards at Sakura, smiling cheekily under his mask, both eyes crinkling into an annoyingly superior look.
Sakura cocked an eyebrow, and picked up the brush as Inner Sakura snickered evilly inside her head. Heh heh, just you wait. I still have those scissors! Nyah!
Smiling sweetly, Sakura sat cross-legged behind Kakashi, who lay there with his hands folded comfortably over his chest, once again waiting for her to commence.
"All right Master Kakashi, just relax." Sakura said in a sugary, soft voice, placing her brush once again within her teacher's silver hair. Unbeknownst to the ignorant Jounin, Inner Sakura was ranting conniving things as Sakura proceeded to run the brush through his hair, this time going deliberately slow.
Sakura watched interestedly at her teacher's expression, as she ran the brush gently through his hair.
Her green eyes widened when she noticed a significant droop in his eyelids, before he blinked and attempted to fight the soothing and sleep-inducing brush strokes.
Heh heh…Sakura thought inwardly, a plan hatching in her mind. He's like a big cat…if I keep this up, he's gonna be asleep in no time…and then I can use the scissors…
Smirking, Sakura started the first phase of her plan…
She started to hum.
Then, a few seconds after she began to hum…
She ditched the hairbrush.
And right after she ditched the hair brush…
She began the slow, agonizing torture of running her fingers smoothly and deftly through his hair.
Kakashi's eyes widened slightly when Sakura slipped her fingers into his hair, and began to comb through the thick silver strands, humming quietly all the while.
Almost immediately, he could feel his eyelids drooping downwards again. He managed to force them open…only to have them drift half-way over his eyes right after.
Sakura watched all of this keenly, noticing the Jounin's dying attempts to keep his eyes open.
All right…Sakura thought silently, smirking. You asked for it…
Sakura turned the pitch of her humming down an octave. Then gently, and almost painfully slowly, she ran the tip of her finger from his forehead, down to his temple, where she lifted some stray hairs away from face, and brushed it back so that they just barely dragged over his skin.
Kakashi twitched, eyes drifting to a total close as the tingling sensation rendered him motionless.
Then Sakura did a positively evil and cruel thing.
She did it again.
But this time with two fingers on either side of his head.
Her fingers wove warm paths through his hair, occasionally brushing against his skin and leaving behind a tingling sensation of pleasure.
Yes, Sakura was truly evil at heart.
Kakashi was fighting a losing battle, and he knew he wasn't going to be able to last much longer under the torture Sakura was putting him through.
"Sakura…" he said weakly, as she traced her finger down the side of his face. "Don't…"
"Getting sleepy?" She murmured in response, refusing to let up.
He never heard her, because his will snapped right then and he succumbed to the weight on his eyes.
Sakura giggled silently when she saw that she had lulled the Jounin to sleep. She withdrew her hands from his hair and watched him cautiously. The steady and slow breathing told her all she needed to know.
He was out like a light.
Resisting the urge to cackle triumphantly, Sakura quietly slipped her hand into her bag, keeping her eyes on Kakashi the whole time. She felt around inside the bag, until her fingers brushed against cold metal.
She closed her hand around it and pulled it out of the bag.
The moment of truth had arrived.
Holding her breath, Sakura parted the blades of the scissors and leaned forward.
Naruto and Sasuke watched, bug-eyed, as they saw Sakura's shadow leaning over Kakashi's through the tent, a pointy, sharp object clutched in her hand.
"Holy crap!" Naruto yelled.
"Sakura's gonna kill Master Kakashi!"
Kakashi didn't know what caused him to wake at that critical moment. Perhaps it was Naruto's loud shout, or maybe it was an aspect of the Sharingan eye he had yet to discover. But it didn't really matter, because as soon as his eyes opened, he found himself staring at a pair of scissors pointing down at him.
Sakura let out a gasp of shock when Kakashi's eyes suddenly flew open, his gaze aimed directly at the scissors clutched in her hand. The sudden sight of seeing his blood red Sharingan eye seemed to have momentarily paralyzed her, but she managed to whip the scissors behind her back a fraction of a second later.
Sakura blinked, smiling innocently as Kakashi slowly sat up, his wide-eyed gaze fixed on her.
"You…" he started, looking mortified for once. "…were going to cut my hair…"
Sakura pouted and brought the scissors out from behind her back, but then she smiled sweetly.
"I was just gonna even out the edges…" she said innocently.
"But…you didn't ask!"
"I didn't think you'd be so defensive."
"Yes, well, this is my hair we're talking about, Sakura. Of course I'm going to be defensive."
"Oh come on!" Sakura said, grinning a little as she playfully snipped at the air. "A little trim won't hurt!"
"No, Sakura. When I said that I'd help you get through your problem, I never said anything about letting you cut my hair," Kakashi said, as he kept a wary eye on the scissors.
"What are you so scared about, Master Kakashi? It'll grow back," Sakura said as she eyed his hair wistfully.
"You should go to bed now," he stated suddenly, abruptly changing the subject. "We'll be returning to the village in three days, and there you'll be able to find Ino and cut all the hair you want."
Sakura blinked at him, looking hurt. Apparently, the PMS hadn't exactly disappeared…
"I thought you wanted to help me," she said, feeling an uncontrollable urge to cry.
"I do, Sakura," he said, sighing at her expression. "But even I have my limits."
"Y-You promised that you'd help me through m-my problem…until we got back to the village," she whimpered now, tearing up, unaware of the panicky look on Kakashi's face.
"You s-said that until I met back up with Ino, you'd talk to me and take c-care of me…"
"Sakura, don't cry."
"Don't tell me what I can and can't do!" Sakura suddenly exploded on him, the decibels reaching an all new high. "I have the right to cry!"
Kakashi blinked, startled, wondering what he had done to deserve such punishment.
Please…he prayed inwardly. Don't let her cry…I'll give up Make-Out Paradise…just don't let her cry…!
His prayer went unheard though, as the first tear fell from Sakura's green eyes, soon followed by another. She couldn't help it. It was as if she were trapped within her own head, and despite her conscience telling her that it wasn't such a big deal, an unearthly trauma known by the name of mood swings let the tears fall.
Angry and hurt, she sniffed and wrapped her arms around herself, lowering her eyes to the ground as they burned with held in tears.
Kakashi, despite his usual laid-back attitude and nonchalant expression, could not fight the feeling that he had done something wrong, and he grimaced as guilt rained down on him.
The woes of being a pre-teen, especially when one was a girl…he had no idea.
Running a hand through his hair, he sighed and glanced at Sakura.
"Y-You don't even know why you're apologizing!" Sakura accused, sniffling again and refusing to look at him.
"You're right, Sakura."
Surprised, Sakura hesitantly glanced at him, her eyes widening to see a surprisingly tender look on his face.
"You're right," he repeated, running a hand through his hair again. "And you'll understand why."
"Why?" Sakura asked, slightly curious.
Kakashi smiled sheepishly.
"I'm a guy."
"You know what? I bet he's hypnotizing her!" Naruto whispered under his breath, unaware of Sasuke coming up behind him, a dangerous glower on his face.
"I mean, I know I made a mistake when I thought she was gonna kill him, but why else would she…?" Naruto trailed off suddenly, when he realized how silent it had become.
He turned around.
Sasuke smirked, staring tiredly at Naruto's unconscious body. His hand stung slightly, since he had just used it to knock Naruto out.
"You know…" Sasuke said quietly.
"I like you much better when you're not awake. Good night."
Then he turned and left, leaving Naruto lying slumped against the log.
"Is that all?" Sakura said blankly, staring at Kakashi in disbelief.
He nodded in return, that sheepish look still on his face.
Sakura wiped her eyes, feeling strangely hollow. She knew that his reason was unjust, and that it gave no implication of guilt…but strangely…it just made sense. He was a guy, and guys in general, after all, had no idea how to react in such situations, especially when the latter was a PMSing adolescent girl.
But…he had also admitted it, which surprised her. Naruto, for example, would continuously have attempted to gain her forgiveness, and his begging and pleading would have just made her angrier.
Feeling strangely calm, Sakura breathed deeply, her eyes on the ground.
Then silently, and without looking up, she crawled over and handed him the hairbrush, plopping down in front of him expectantly.
Kakashi sighed inwardly in relief, and gladly took the brush from her and proceeded to run it through her long pink hair, missing the small, modest smile on Sakura's face as peaceful silence replaced conversation…finally leaving the two in quiet contentment of each other.
3 days later…
There was an enormous feeling of relief the day Team 7 returned home, the relief emanating mostly from Kakashi, who after three days of spending "together" time with Sakura, felt as though he'd lose his mind if he'd see another hair brush.
Friday…the day to end all days.
A blessing from God.
Glancing around, he saw that the other teams were also arriving from their missions, and a squeal from Sakura told him that she had spotted Ino. He blinked, surprised, when he saw that Asuma looked as if he had been thoroughly harassed.
It didn't occur to him to wonder why.
The two girls seemed to have forgotten their rivalry for Sasuke's love, especially when something as important as their first intelligent conversation with another fellow female was present.
Sasuke, on the other hand, wondered hopefully if his dream was actually a premonition.
Exhausted, Kakashi slowly made his way to the Ninja Academy, dragged himself up a flight of stairs, and collapsed face-down on a sofa in the teacher's lounge.
"So Kakashi, how'd the mission go?" Iruka asked as he walked into the room, smiling at the motionless Jounin.
"Tired…" came the unintelligent, muffled response.
"That's a first," Iruka mused, looking surprised. "What happened? Naruto wear you out?"
The Chunin cocked an eyebrow.
Iruka didn't reply, but another voice found its way to Kakashi's ears.
"Um, is Master Kakashi in there?"
"Oh, you're Sakura, right? Yes, he's here."
"Could I have a word with him?"
Hearing Iruka's approaching footsteps, Kakashi managed to sit up, wondering if Sakura had lost one of her many hairclips inside his hair.
"A student is here to see you, Kakashi," Iruka said as he came back into the room, eyeing Kakashi with an amused look on his face.
"Want me to tell her to come back on Monday? You look pretty tired," Iruka commented.
"No, send her in," Kakashi replied, running his hand through his hair to check for any stray clips.
Sakura hesitantly poked her head into the teacher's lounge as Iruka nodded to her and left the room. A vibrant smile appeared on her face as she spotted Kakashi slumped against the sofa, his hand coming up to stifle a yawn.
"Hi Master Kakashi!" She said cheerily, walking into the room.
"Hello Sakura," he said wearily, rubbing his visible eye with his fist. He blinked the sleepiness from his eye, and glanced at her with a brow raised.
"Did you forget something? I thought you couldn't wait to go home and talk to Ino."
"Oh, Ino's waiting for me outside. I-I just wanted to give you something."
Kakashi blinked, noticing the sudden stutter in her sentence, her voice suddenly sounding small and shy.
"What is it?"
Sakura lowered her eyes, a small blush appearing on her face as she reached into her pocket.
"I made it for you last night," she said somewhat nervously, as she withdrew her hand and dangled something from between her fingers.
She took a step closer and held it up for him to see.
"It's…it's a friendship bracelet," she blurted as he reached out and accepted it from her, holding it in the palm of his right hand. The strings were blue, gray, and white, bound together in a neat criss-crossed pattern.
"The criss-crosses represent unity…"
He glanced up at her, only to see that her blush had become more vibrant and noticeable.
"I know it's childish and all…but I just wanted to let you know…"
Wordlessly, he placed the bracelet over his right wrist and extended his arm.
Sakura's face turned a pleased pink.
Reaching out, she tied the two ends of the bracelet together, keeping her gaze on the bracelet as Kakashi smiled at her appreciatively.
"Thank you, Sakura."
Sakura nodded mutely, stepping back and tucking a lock of pink hair behind her ear.
"Your welcome, Master Kakashi," she said quietly, clasping her hands tightly together as she walked backwards towards the door. "Well, I'd better go. I'm glad you liked it, the bracelet I mean…um, have a good weekend."
She gave a quick wave, smiling once more as he waved in return, before she bolted out the door.
Kakashi lowered his eyes to the bracelet again, smiling under his mask as Iruka entered the room again, accompanied by a cup of coffee.
"What was that all about?" He asked as he seated himself on an armchair, raising a newspaper in front of his face.
Kakashi smirked as he lay back down on the sofa, lowering his headband over both eyes and folding his hands behind his head.
"You wouldn't understand, Iruka. It was a girl thing."