A/N: A little ficling that kind of tumbled out. Originally, I think was trying to write a Sasunaru or a Sasusakunaru, but it ended up otherwise. *shrugs* It's not much on plot, but I was mostly aiming for a mood piece anyway.

And God, I love flowers. *shivers*

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"The Flower That She Is"

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"If I had a single flower for every time that I have thought about you, I could walk forever in my garden."

~ unknown

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Spring is coming. Naruto cannot stay indoors, even though it is still often cold. He runs and runs and does not stop, because there is nothing to stop for.

Yet.

His eye is caught by a flash of bright pink and dark blue.

This is something.

Sakura, appropriately enough, sits in a cherry blossom tree. It is still bare, but the promise of tomorrow hangs on the branches far more beautifully than any leaf or flower could. Sasuke is on the ground beneath her and asleep in the new grass, for once looking as young as he ought to.

Naruto feels curiously excluded, and does not approach them, even as Sakura leans out of the tree and, hanging by her knees, drops a hand to Sasuke's forehead to brush his hair aside lightly. He cannot see her expression clearly, but her every move is accented with adoration.

Sasuke stirs slightly, and looks up at her with a face that Naruto has never seen him wear before. But it is easy enough to recognize the expression- it's one he's seen often enough, though almost always from a distance and never directed at him.

Well, maybe once at him.

But just once.

"Naruto-kun." A voice, soft and small, and he turns to face Hinata, who is slightly trembling and giving him a weak, nervous smile.

"Hinata-chan," he greets her, voice warm but lacking its usual exuberance. He's tired today. He doesn't feel like being happy.

Usually he is, or is at least putting up a front of being so, but today the cherry trees are blooming with tomorrows and Sasuke and Sakura are too close to each other. So he is quiet and for once speaks to Hinata calmly. It makes her blush, because she thinks he looks handsome when he is this serious.

She'd really like to be with him.

And today he seems so sad.

So she takes his hand and pulls him to her, kissing him gently. When she releases him, he does nothing for one long moment, but then leans back in and returns the favor.

It is still cold, but spring is here.

And Naruto would rather have the flower that is Hinata now than any promise of tomorrow's trees.

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* fin *

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. : the sun is laughing and so are you : .