A/N: So how was my other one shot?? Shocking eh? You probably was surprised when I wrote First Frost...I was really bored and decided to busy myself into writing another story. Interesting. Yeah...I got lots of surprises from you guys when you read Dangerously Sixteen, I decided to throw that in to spice things up and keep my readers on their toes. Cliffhangers are the way to go! =P I hope you guys enjoy my other stories as well. I'm trying my very best to finish my other fics. What a Girl Really Wants is nearly done with 4-5 chapters more? Swept Away had just started and Dangerously Sixteen is 25% done. The whole drama had just began with Sakura with an arranged marriage. Well, I hope you like this one. Happy reading and happy review!!
NOTE: This one-shot will be a two chapter story =]
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto.
Summary: Sometimes the one you're looking for...is right in front of you.
"Ino pig! Where have you been? Naruto and I have been looking everywhere for you!" Sakura looked at the big oak tree where Ino sat inside within the big hole. The young blonde wasn't startled by her words. She was smiling. Confused by her response, Sakura took a final look at the dirt that surrounded Ino and then gathered up her courage and sat in the hole next to Ino.
"Ino...," Sakura whispered to her blonde friend as she sat next to her, "Don't you think that this dingy place isn't suited properly for your condition?" Ino had been sick lately however she tried to shrug it off like it's nothing serious; Sakura, being her close friend, knows the truth of her condition.
"Say Sakura...about Shikamaru..." Ino ignored Sakura's words and looked beside her to see Sakura's face expression.
Looking at her friend, Sakura could tell that Ino's eyes were full of fascination and asked, "What about him?"
Going back to her usual sitting position Ino shrugged off what she had just said with pink in her cheeks, "Oh...nothing Sakura,"
"Eh?" Sakura started to giggle and pointed at Ino, "Oh come on Ino!! I know you like him...do you??"
"SAKURA!!" Ino was about to land a playful punch but then stopped when she heard the question. Sakura was surprised that Ino didn't touch her as the blonde slowly went back to her original position. All Ino could respond was nothing but a kind look on her face as she closed her eyes to relive her past.
The room was nearly frigid as Ino shivered slightly in her sweater. Her breathe was as white as snow as she inhaled and exhaled in her small bedroom. The blonde took a glimpse out of her foggy window and wiped away some of the mist to receive a clear view of the activity taking place outside of her home.
She was quite surprised when she saw the face of the person who looked back at her. Blushing furiously Ino looked away and slipped beneath her blanket to keep warm. The voices from outside were muffled from the thick walls that surrounded Ino.
Wanting to eavesdrop, Ino opened her window taking in the smell of snow and giggles coming from someone familiar. She saw the short flowing pink hair she had always envied who had just been attacked by a snowball from an active blonde who just called out her name.
"Hey Ino! Come down here, you're missing out on the fun!" Naruto walked up to her door and rang the doorbell. He then turned around and was greeted by an unexpected snowball that Sakura had concocted while he called out for Ino.
"Take that Naruto! No one attacks me with a snowball," Sakura smiled with victory until she felt something hit her head. She fell over and looked at the person who threw snow at her.
"Shikamaru!! What are you doing here?" Naruto walked over Sakura who was still on the snow and greeted him. Right at that moment, Ino walked out of her door in her winter clothes and stopped when she and Shikamaru exchanged glances.
Noticing that something was happening between the two Naruto smiled and then helped Sakura up and bid farewell for the two with Sakura confused, "Sayonara Shikamaru! Sayonara Ino!" Not understanding what had happened, Sakura ignored Naruto and walked over to Shikamaru but was stopped when Naruto threw her over his shoulders and carried her away leaving the two alone.
"NARUTOOO!!" was all that was heard until it fell into silence.
Ino looked around her and took a deep breathe in as she felt her heart pounding furiously against her chest and Ino thought to herself if Shikamaru could hear the throbbing.
"So...Ino..." Shikamaru scratched his head trying to think of something to say.
"How was your day?" Ino threw in an icebreaker knowing that Shikamaru was running out of words.
"Oh, uh...good I guess...you?" Shikamaru stood still waiting for her answer.
"Well, I stayed inside all morning, and it was all right." Ino replied.
A short icy breeze came between them and Ino shivered beneath her jacket. "Oh, here you go," Ino blushed when Shikamaru offered her his jacket. When he took it off, Ino nearly found herself faint at the sight of him in his thin shirt with his muscles beneath the clothing.
"Thanks," Ino then sniffed as Shikamaru just stood still not knowing what to do, "well um, I guess I should go inside then, sayonara Shikamaru," as she walked into her place she felt Shikamaru hold onto her arm.
She turned to look at him confused and inside of her mind she hoped that Shikamaru didn't want her to go.
"Please don't let me go Shikamaru, I love you..." she thought as she felt the firm grip on her arm from Shikamaru.
"Uh...er...well...ok, sayonara Ino." with that said Shikamaru then ran away.
Ino was shocked and then called out to him, "Shikamaru! Your jacket!" however Shikamaru couldn't hear her and kept running. Saddened by the fact that Shikamaru didn't spend quality time with her, she then slowly walked into her home and closed the door.
End of Flashback
Sakura poked Ino and Ino woke up from her reverie. "Ino? You ok? You seemed to have drifted away for about five minutes, are you sick?" Sakura felt uneasy when she saw Ino's face paler than usual.
"I'm fine Sakura, I was just thinking of how long Shikamaru and I have been together, it seems so long that it could be written into a story," Ino thoughtfully said.
Sakura glanced at Ino and could tell that she was in one of her daydreams again. The pink-haired girl sighed and rested her head on her knees and closed her eyes. "When will one of the two ever have the courage to tell the other their true feelings?" Sakura thought to herself as the image of her friends Ino and Shikamaru left a permanent vision in her head.
"The two have been on the same team for how long? It seems like forever. Their constant bickering was a sign of affection towards each other whenever Ino and Shikamaru fight. It's silly how the two would never tell each other how they really feel, "Sakura turned her head and stared out from the hole.
"And why was Ino in this small hole in a tree?" Sakura questioned herself until a thought made her giggle, "nah, it's probably a little secret lover's place between those two. Aw, how cute! I wish I had that sort of thing with Naruto," when Sakura mentioned his name, she couldn't help but contemplate on how Naruto and her relationship is similar to the fighting and flirting events going on between Ino and Shikamaru.
"EEEEKKK!!!" Ino shrieked at the sight of a centipede that was found crawling on her leg when she was sleeping overnight in her tent.
Shikamaru and Chouji went over to her tent and asked what was wrong. "Oh, it's just a bug Ino. Nothing serious," Shikamaru sighed in disappointment because he thought that it was something serious.
He then left leaving Chouji looking at Ino, "Eh...I'm hungry Ino..." irritated Ino zipped up the tent leaving Chouji outside alone. "Fine, if they don't care about me as much as I care about them then so be it," she muttered to herself as she drifted off to a slumber.
End of Flashback
In the hole where the two girls sat in silence,
Ino opened her eyes and realized that Sakura was still by her side.
"Sakura...why are you still here? Aren't you supposed to meet Naruto at the
Ichiraku?" [is that the name of the ramen place? I forgot]
"Well Ino you seemed troubled and so I'm just here for you right now. Are you ok? You shouldn't be here, the doctor told you this," a worried face was written over Sakura.
"No Sakura, I'm fine. I just want some time alone..." before she could finish her sentence, she collapsed into Sakura's arms. Shocked, Sakura carried her on her back and called for help.
"HELP HELP!!! SOMEBODY HELP!!! MY FRIEND JUST COLLAPSED!!! PLEASE, CAN ANYONE HEAR ME??" Sakura was panting as sweat drops fell from her forehead as she carried an unconscious Ino on her back.
Sakura quickly carried Ino into the village where nearby some villagers saw the worried girl and didn't interfere with her problem. Some offered to help, but others scolded for butting into Sakura's business.
A familiar face heard them and asked what had happened. "SHE COLLAPSED!! SHE NEEDS HELP OR SHE'S GOING TO DIE!!" The black-haired young man offered to carry Ino as Sakura went to call for help.
"Thank you Shikamaru," she smiled.
"You're welcome, I'll try to bring her to a doctor Sakura," Shikamaru then left with Ino on her back to get some help.
"Shikamaru, congratulations on becoming a Chuunin, I'm proud of you!!" Ino squealed with delight when she found out about the news of Shikamaru's new title.
"Bah...it's nothing," Shikamaru then walked past her like as if it meant nothing by what she had said.
"Shikamaru? What's up with you? What's wrong with becoming a Chuunin?" Ino walked behind him as Shikamaru stopped. He then turned around and looked at her from feet to head as if evaluating her.
"What do you think you're doing?" Ino blushed, "don't look at me like that!" she covered her chest as if that was what he was really looking at.
Shikamaru gave a rude smirk and retorted at her, "Don't worry Ino, it's not like you have anything good to show me," he then walked away but Ino grabbed his arm and stopped him.
"That was rude Shikamaru, don't even say that!" Ino angrily shot back at him.
Facing her his back he then muttered something, "What? What was that I just heard Shikamaru? Don't talk back at me behind my back!"
Turning around, Shikamaru threw up his arms in defeat, "Fine, what do you want Ino?" he walked toward her as Ino, startled by what he was going to do, backed away. As Shikamaru kept on walking toward her, the more Ino backed away until she hit her back against the wall.
A few inches away from her face Shikamaru whispered to her, "What Ino? What is it that you want me to do?" Ino felt her face feel hot when she felt the warm breath from Shikamaru brush past her cheeks.
"I...I just want an apology from you," Ino whispered back.
Snickering under his breathe Shikamaru looked at her, "Ok then," he then put his hands on the wall as if blocking Ino to move away from him. The two were in such a position for a perfect kiss but Shikamaru whispered back at her, "All right then, I can see that you haven't been blossoming down under but it's ok," thinking that Ino was satisfied he then walked away. But before he turned his back on her, he was responded by a hard slap on the face.
Touching his left cheek Shikamaru looked at Ino. "Damn Ino, you didn't have to hit that hard,"
"You just don't understand how I feel Shikamaru! You always turn my words around as if making me the bad person here, but it's you that is! Gosh, I've mistaken you all alone haven't I? I just want an apology and you just make it worse! How am I going to deal with you?" Ino made a sniffle and blinked a tear.
"Oy, Ino. Don't cry geez, why do girls cry over little things?" Shikamaru rolled his eyes.
"Well since you're so thickheaded you don't understand how much it hurts when you hurt a person's feelings, especially if they--" Ino stopped shortly at her words.
Curious by what she was about to say Shikamaru held her shoulders, "Especially if they...?"
Facing away from him, Ino then said, "Nothing,"
Smiling Shikamaru then leaned closer to Ino, "Do you like me Yamanaka Ino?" Surprised by his words Ino blushed madly when she had heard his words. "Ahh, so you do like me," nodding with acknowledgement, Shikamaru backed away from Ino and started walking away.
"WAIT!" she called out to him.
Walking back to her, Shikamaru let out a deep sigh and asked her, "What?"
Startled by his tone, Ino shook her head, "Never mind,"
Shikamaru tried not to get frustrated with her and walked toward her and held his grip on her shoulders firmly eyeing her carefully, "If you like me, it's ok...girls your age should like guys like me," he then flashed his teeth at her as if to show some macho vibes from him.
Disgusted with him Ino rolled her eyes, "I don't like you, you're nothing but a filthy, egotistic, lazy ass!" Letting out an irritated grunt, Ino made her way away from Shikamaru.
End of Flashback
Shikamaru quickly carried Ino into a building. There were some ladies dressed in white who ran over to Shikamaru carrying Ino.
"What happened?" the first nurse called out to him as the second one checked for Ino's pulse while some ran to get the doctor.
"I don't know, I found her collapsed in my friend's arms, is she going to be all right?" Shikamaru asked when some nurses came back and carried Ino on a stretcher and brought her into a room.
"Don't worry, her pulse is faint, but she'll be all right, you can just wait out here. Are you family?" the third nurse asked him.
"No," Shikamaru sincerely answered back.
"Oh, then you're her boyfriend, well it's nice to see young men caring for their girlfriends--" the nurse smiled.
"Oh, wait...um...uh..." Shikamaru was speechless.
The nurse's eyes then gaped open and realized that she had made a "mistake" and then apologized, "Oh dear, I'm so sorry...it's just that the minute you walked in that door carrying her...well it looked like you really do care for her and that you two were dating," the nurse replied.
"Oh...uh...well...er...I..." before Shikamaru could finish his answer some other nurses called out to the lady who apologized to Shikamaru.
Struck by the nurse's words, Shikamaru felt weak in his knees and found a comfy couch to sit in as he tried to recollect his thoughts. "Her boyfriend?" he thought to himself. "Well Ino and I always fight..." he whispered to himself, "and she is a good arguer in my honest opinion, and yeah...I do enjoy our fights, it's what kind of brought us closer...in a way," Shikamaru whispered until her realized that he was blushing when he was thinking of Ino.
"INO!! INO!!! WAIT INO!!! INO!!!!" Shikamaru ran behind Ino who was leaving behind tears.
"INOOO!! PLEASE INO!! JUST LET ME EXPLAIN!!!! IT'S NOT WHAT YOU THINK!!!!" Shikamaru caught up to Ino and stopped her and embraced her tight within his arms.
"Shikamaru, no! Let me go!" Fighting against his hold only made Ino give into her desire to be with Shikamaru. When she got out of his grip, she ran to a place where there were trees surrounding the village. Reaching to a big oak tree, Ino was nearly out of breath and conveniently found that the oak tree had a hole in it.
Feeling the first drops of rain, Ino couldn't think of anything but go in there. When she sat on the dirt she shrieked when she found her clothes wet and muddy from the rain and mud. As Ino sat alone inside the tree, she couldn't help but cry. The pounding of the rain and her cries sang in harmony as Shikamaru was nearby trying to find her.
"Ino?" Shikamaru was nearby and Ino held her breathe.
When Shikamaru walked away from the oak tree Ino let out a small sigh of relief until she felt something crawling on her leg. She looked over and gaped open her eyes. It was a centipede crawling up to her knee. Shikamaru was still nearby calling out her name. She tried not to scream...
"Don't scream Ino," she thought to herself, "don't scream when this ugly filthy creature is UP ONTO YOUR KNEE!!!!!!!!" the insect was almost up to her thigh.
"AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!" Ino violently shook her legs as she screamed. Hearing her voice, Shikamaru went back to the oak tree and found a hole in it. He looked into it and found Ino in tears.
"Ino?" Shikamaru bent down to see her.
Ino and him exchanged glances and then she turned away, "Go away,"
Ignoring what Ino said, Shikamaru went into the hole and sat next to Ino to receive shelter from the rain. Feeling his arm touching her side when he sat down sent a jolt of energy in Ino. "I said go away," Ino looked away from him as Shikamaru wiped his face from the rain.
"Too bad Ino, argue all you want but I'm going to stay here," he smiled at her. When Ino heard him she blushed red and stared at the dirt.
The two sat in silence in the hole as the rain showered down.
Ino sniffed back some of her tears and Shikamaru offered her his jacket. "No thanks, I'm fine."
"Look Ino, I'm not here to pick up a fight ok? You're cold and shivering. Here, take my jacket." Shikamaru took of his jacket and put it on Ino.
"Don't we always fight? Isn't that what we only do?" Ino asked gazing into those dreamy eyes where she wished that she would never feel awkward looking at. For once, she wasn't uncomfortable gazing into his eyes.
"All right, so we fight all the time. But do we have to?" Shikamaru said.
"We have nothing good to talk about, and..." Ino abruptly cut off her sentence.
"What," he asked.
"Nothing," Ino shrugged off her idea.
"Ok then..." Shikamaru sighed and then the two sat in silence again.
As the rain began to pour harder, Shikamaru couldn't stand the silence.
"So what now? Are you just going to stay mad at me for what I did?" Shikamaru asked.
"Well, that is something I can do, you and her certainly had something going on!" Ino retorted.
"She meant nothing to me! And that hug didn't mean anything! She just wanted to congratulate me for becoming a Chuunin! Geez, what's with you lately Ino?" Shikamaru looked out to the rain, "is it what I did? If it is, I'm sorry if I offended you by receiving an innocent meaningless hug from a girl. Look, I'm a guy and I can receive any sort of things from a girl ok? You're not my mother and you shouldn't always be nagging on my back all the time! It can get kind of annoying from time to time!" Shikamaru told her.
"Sorry," tears strolled down her cheeks.
"Ino, don't cry. Come on, I'm sorry," Shikamaru sincerely whispered to her.
"Gee, that is something that I haven't heard from you!" Ino shouted back at him in tears.
"Oh? And what else do you want me to do that you haven't seen me do? Do you want to see me on my knees? Do you want me to hold you and kiss you madly?" Shikamaru exploded toward her.
"No. That's not what I want," Ino wiped her tears away from her eyes.
"Then what is it that you want me to do Ino?" Shikamaru shifted his position and faced her.
Ino turned to her side and stared at Shikamaru in the face, "I just...want you to...say anything...that is real and honest,"
"All right then," Shikamaru leaned closer to Ino until he was inches away from her face.
With his hand he brought it closer to Ino and ran his went hand through her tangled hair. Ino closed her eyes and flushed pink when she felt the smooth touch of his hands against her cheek. Shikamaru moved closer to Ino until the two gazed into each other's eyes and then leaned closer to share a kiss as the rain continued to pour.
End of Flashback
15 minutes later Shikamaru was still in the waiting room waiting for the latest news of Ino. In a few moments, a nurse came out of the door and walked over to him and smiled.
"You may see her now," the nurse smiled sweetly as Shikamaru went upon the invitation.
As he walked to the door he saw Ino awake staring out the window at her side. When he took his first step into the room Ino looked at the door and saw him. Unsure of what to say, the two traded nods as a greeting as Shikamaru sat in a chair beside her bed.
"Are you ok?" Shikamaru broke the silence.
"I'm feeling better, the doctor said that I should be able to leave in around a week," Ino sighed.
Shikamaru looked at Ino and couldn't help but think that Ino looked much beautiful without her makeup on and how her hair is let down in a wavy manner.
"I see," Shikamaru thoughtfully answered.
Silence fell upon them as both of them tried to think of something to say.
"I," both of them answered at the same time. When they realized that, they giggled and Ino tried to fight back from blushing.
"Listen, Ino..." Shikamaru replied as Ino gave him her full attention, "about what happened..."
"Oh," Ino flushed red in her cheeks, "Shikamaru..." the two made eye contact their eyes gazed at each other as if they were sending mental messages and knew what the other was thinking.
That was half correct.
"About what happened at the oak tree..." Shikamaru was interrupted by the blonde's sweet voice.
"...it was a friendly gesture...nothing more," Ino looked up and smiled at Shikamaru.
Shikamaru was surprised at her words and then tried to play along, "right...nothing more..." he was confused at what Ino meant.
"Friends?" Shikamaru asked to make sure of where the two stood relationship-wise.
"You idiot, we're already friends!" Ino laughed as Shikamaru felt a hint of warmth in his cheeks.
"Right...we're just friends,"
A/N: *sigh* PRESS THAT BUTTON!! =]