Blue Skies, White Eyes

I stared at the clouds lazily, letting my eyes droop slightly. Shikamaru seemed to watch clouds the very same way, I understand why now. It's one of the most relaxing things in the world. Staring at the great blue expanse, watching ships or wisps of white drift along the sea in the sky. My hands are behind my head, it's a natural position for someone who wants to lie on the ground. Heck, it's generally the position people take when they don't have a pillow.

The sun is cooling, but it's still warm. The breeze is the best, it's cool, but not too cool. It totally counters the sun's heat... perfect weather.

I'm not the relaxing type, most people know that. Most of the time, I'm jumping around, excited. That will never change about me, but sometimes, it's nice just to watch the clouds pass. I was supposed to train today, and I did, but I guess lying down to gain my bearings lasted a little longer than I thought. About two hours longer, actually. This is nice, but two hours is a bit extreme. I suppose I should get up, but I don't wanna. It's just one of those days...

This is the best kind of thinking atmosphere, your mind tends to wander...

I wonder, what's Sakura-chan doing? She's probably swooning over that jerk, Sasuke... Ugh! What a jerk...he thinks he's hotter than that extra spicy, super hot, six alarm wasabi I slipped into his ramen. It was kinda odd when the jerk had a change of heart and decided that he'd bought the food on a whim, and wasn't hungry. Luckily, Lee happened to come along. He's not the wasteful type, so he offered to take the ramen for Sasuke. I was surprised when Sasuke offered the ramen to me first, knowing that I'd like it. I'd declined, knowing about my little prank. He just went "Whatever" and left it to Lee. I'd felt like an asshole because I saw that Sasuke wasn't such a jackass all the time and that an innocent person was about to lose the use of their taste buds for a good week if they were lucky. I had to stop Lee, but I also had to save face in front of Sasuke. So I waited for him to walk away.

Sasuke took a bit to get out of hearing range, so I couldn't do anything as Lee picked up the bowl, put it to his lips, and took a big sip of the broth. I winced at the figurative and, god forbid, literal flames about to shoot from the guy's mouth. When I opened my eyes, he'd put down the bowl and with a big grin, he said

"Wow! That's good! Mr. Ichiraku! Did you change your recipe?"

"No... Why, was it better than usual?" The ramen stand owner responded.

"Yeah! There's a strong tang that wasn't there before!"

"Really? Here, lemme get a sip of that..."

Mr. Ichiraku took a clean spoon from a cupboard and dipped his spoon in the bowl, drawing out some steaming broth. He sipped the liquid, dropped the spoon, clutched his neck, turned red, went stiff, and said something like "gurgle gurgle Gasp" before falling to the floor.

Lee looked puzzled, but quickly shrugged it off. He finished his ramen. I gawked at Lee, switching back at the twitching form of Mr. Ichiraku from time to time until Lee finished his ramen.
When Lee was about to get up and leave, I put half the contents of my wallet in the hands of the still-twitching Ichiraku, and then ran over to Lee. I gave him the rest of what was in my wallet and handed it to him. I figured that this would wash out my guilt. He tried to refuse, but I firmly handed to him. He went on about how it was his lucky day and how he was getting free stuff. With a thanks and two goodbyes, we parted.

That happened yesterday...funny world.

That kinda looks like Hinata-chan... She's a shy girl, acts kinda funny around me. She fought well against Neji, and she could've won too. Oh well, what happens, happens, I suppose. I haven't seen her in a while...I guess I've been busy. I should talk to her sometime, that would be nice. It would be a waste if I didn't talk to her again...

She's almost as cute as Sakura-chan. I like it when she does that thing with her hands, and she feels smooth, like other girls. And she smells nice, not like Sakura-chan though. Her scent is almost barely noticeable, there, but not there. She smelled like the lightest smelling flower at a distance, the kind you almost think you're imagining. The kind you smell somewhere and search for, you but never find, only smell. That's how Hinata-chan smells.

Sakura-chan smelled like flowers, the nicest ones. I can tell she wears perfume, probably to show off to that jerk, Sasuke.

Hinata-chan has nice eyes. I thought that they were weird when I saw them from a distance, but up-close, they're very pretty. They were kind, gentle. They were kinda like the color of milk, or cream. Unlike her cousin's who seemed to have the color of packed ice. Hinata-chan...her eyes are...comfortable. I could stare at them for a while... She's nice...

Whoa! Where did that come from?! Eh, whatever. I suppose cloud watching does this to ya. Still...I wonder what Hinata-chan is doing now?


I lazily tilt my head to look at the source. Whaddaya know, it's Hinata-chan, right there in front of me! She must've found her way this clearing as well. Oh well, so much for a secret clearing, huh? Maybe I could convince her to not tell anyone, make this our secret spot.

"Hi Hinata-chan!" I say as I give her a small wave.

"Naruto-kun what are you doing here?"

She's doing that thing with her hands again, and she's blushing. Her eyes are kinda down. Wow, she might be cuter than Sakura-chan after all...if not, then she's close...very, very close.

"I found this place, it's really nice. I was going to make it my secret spot, but since you found it, it's not so secret anymore."

"I'm sorry"

Hinata-chan looked sad when she said that, her face became sad. I don't want to make her sad. Making her sad would make me feel sad...

"Don't worry about it! I suppose we can make this our secret, right? After all, what're friends for, huh?"

She seemed to brighten up at that. She smiled, I could almost see teeth. Her blush seemed to increase.

"S-sure...I don't mind."

Her face was still down, but she wasn't sad anymore. Maybe she's trying to hide her blush from me....

"Hey Hinata-chan? You don't wanna stand there all day, do ya? C'mon, lie down here, the grass wont bite."

I patted the grass next to me to show what I was talking about. If it were possible, she grew redder. She nodded and walked to where I patted the ground. She sat for a bit, before lying down and putting her hands behind her head. I did the same. We were quiet for a bit, just seeing how nice the sky and the clouds were.

"Naruto-kun...thank you."

"For what?"

"For sharing this place with me."

"No problem... So... Do you feel better? Neji hurt you pretty bad..."

She turned her head and looked to away from the sky.

"I-I'm okay"

Her voice seemed...different, like she was sad.

"Hinata-chan? What's wrong?"

She sat up and kept staring at the general direction of some trees. She held her knees to her chin, I could've sworn I saw her shake...

"N-nothing... it's j-just that... I'm sorry, Naruto-kun..."

That was odd...what could she be apologizing about?

"Why are you sorry?"

"I'm sorry b-because... I failed you..."

Failed me?

"Failed me? What do you mean?"

"You cheered me on, believed in me, put your faith in me when all others didn't. And...and I failed you, I couldn't beat Neji-nii-san... I didn't even hurt him. And worse of all, because of my own weakness... I-I couldn't even see your m-match because I'm so weak!"

She bowed her head down against her knees and then...sobbed? Her body shook and and...yes, she was definitely crying...

"Hinata-chan...are you...crying?"

"I-I s-sorry, N-Naruto-kun... I don't want to trouble you...I'll leave now"

With that, she got up. I had to do something! I couldn't let her leave! Before she even took her step, before I even knew it...

I hugged her.

This was something that Iruka-sensei did for me whenever I was sad... And she was I did it. I put my arms around her and hugged myself to her back. She stiffened, but didn't pull away. Soon, she loosened up. No one really spoke, instinct took over and I found myself making 'shhh'-ing noises and rubbing her soft hair. She calmed down, her sobs got softer, she stopped shaking.

"You shouldn't be sad at something like that, Hinata-chan... You tried your best, that's all anyone could ask for... I'm not angry at you, I have no reason please... Stop crying..."

"I-I'm sorry, Naruto-kun..."

"Don't apologize, no one's gotta be sorry here..."

I pulled away, and was about to stand, but she glomped on to me. I was surprised. My hands held me up, so I didn't fall on my back.

"P-please, Naruto-kun... Just...hold me a little longer..."

And so I did, we stayed there for a while. I just held her, I didn't fall asleep, and I'm pretty sure she stayed awake. I ended up lying on my back, since I had to hold her. Our breaths synchronized eventually, it was a comfortable sound. It mixed perfectly well with the feel of the breeze and the cooling sun and the occasional caress of her hair.

The breeze and the sun, when they're just right, the mind tends to wander. The conditions are right now, but my mind stayed right where it is...


A/N: And there it is, my debut into the world of Naruto Ficwriting... You like? I usually write Love Hina stuff, but I'm a huge fan of Naruto, especially Naruto and Hinata. If ya like, then review. If ya hate, review. My only request besides reviewing is to not flame mindlessly, or to praise mindlessly. Tell me why you like it, or why you hate. I'm hoping to write more for Naruto, and chances are, I will....

Till Next Fic,

Shadowed Moon