Konoha's Youthful Pair!

Neji's eyes narrowed as he stared at the couple sitting together at the bar of a noodle stand. He could not believe that Hinata would sink as low as this. She was smiling nervously at the boy at her side, who gave an exuberant smile in return. He looked pumped for their date.

Date. Neji thought, without failing to sound disgusted. With him. It had to be that idiot. Neji's eyes narrowed until they could narrow no further. What a disgrace.

He was surprised he hadn't seen it coming earlier. After all, wasn't it just the other day that he had asked Neji about a present? "F-for a woman! A youthful and beautiful woman!" Neji had merely brushed him off, telling him to look elsewhere. Why didn't that idiot tell Neji that it had been for Hinata all along? He let out a snort. If that had been the case, he would've given that idiot the telling off of his life. A loser like that with a Hyuuga? Please.

So, like any ordinary boy his age, Neji decided to hide and watch.

He snuck into the restaurant and quickly retreated to a table in the far corner of the room. He shielded his face with a large menu, hoping that they hadn't seen him come in. The idiot's blathering was heard throughout the restaurant; Hinata's nervous blush was hard to miss. Neji couldn't help but grimace.

This is sickening. But, as if he were watching a disastrous and horrendous accident occurring right in front of him, he could not tear his eyes away.

"Hinata-san!" the boy sitting next to her shouted, his voice filled with emotion. "I insist on paying for everything! Order anything you desire!"

Hinata seemed to shrink further into the stool. "A-ah, just a bowl of beef noodles is fine…"

"Two beef noodles, kind sir!" the boy shouted, saluting the waiter, who was taken aback. Neji rolled his eyes.

"L-Lee-kun," Hinata stammered. "You don't have to raise your voice so high…"

"A-ah," Lee said, a bit deflated. "Excuse me, Hinata-san. I guess we should just continue on with what we had planned then."

And with that, Lee plopped back down onto the stool to the right of Hinata and immediately engaged her into a deep conversation. Neji twitched. His view was completely obstructed by the idiot's back.

I guess I have to use Byakugan… He propped the menu up and quickly formed the hand seals behind it, when a bored voice interrupted him.

"May I take your order?"

"Give me some tea," he snapped. "And go away."

The waitress looked a bit miffed at this. "Alright then," she said icily. She reached out to retrieve the menu when Neji shot her a burning glare.

"Leave. Now," he said in a barely restrained shout. The waitress rushed away. Neji had to duck his head to avoid stares.

"Byakugan," he whispered, underneath the table. He slowly looked up to watch them through the large menu.

"Hinata-san! I'm so glad that you actually came!" Lee shouted again, already forgetting Hinata's meek comment from before. "I was scared that you might have forgotten!"

"N-no, I wouldn't forget…" Neji noted how Hinata's fingers nervously fidgeted. Obviously, she's never been on a date before, he scoffed, completely ignoring the fact that he had never been on a date either, being the anti-social son-of-a-bitch that he was. He felt the edge of the table press tightly against his stomach as he leaned forward. He glared at them through his menu, nearly burning a hole through it. Hinata, as if feeling this intensity, nervously glanced into his direction more than Neji would've liked. But he knew that his skill in spying was unrivaled and that she probably couldn't even guess who he was. He gave a small smirk at that.

"A-ano…" Hinata began, after tearing her eyes away from the mysterious customer hiding in the far corner of the room. "Lee-kun, why m-me?"

To Neji's agitation, Lee blushed. "W-well, you know… I couldn't exactly bring TenTen—she'd laugh at me and tell me I had better things to do. I don't know that other girl, Ino, very well, so that's a no… Of course, not Sakura, because… well you know, and everyone else—" He let out a dramatic sigh.

"What about," Hinata's voice suddenly grew very small, "N-Neji-niisan?"

Neji's eyes bulged.

"O-Oh," Lee said, flushing even further. "He's not into… this sort of… thing."

Neji restrained himself from hitting something.

"I-I see," Hinata said, though looking a bit flustered. "W-Well, I guess I'm f-flattered…"

"Here's your tea." The waitress suddenly appeared at Neji's side and placed a teapot and a cup onto the table, none too graciously. Neji would've jumped at surprise, since he hadn't detected her being so distracted with spying and all, but Neji doesn't jump. Especially out of surprise.

As soon as she was gone, he began to fume with anger. Lee and Hinata—together! The very idea! And Lee had even considered going out with him. The very idea! First off, besides the fact that Neji was not gay, Lee was an idiot. Secondly, Lee was a loser. Thirdly, his hair was dumb. Fourthly, he was so not interested.

And the sheer boldness of Hinata to even suggest such a thing! Neji's eye began to twitch wildly.

Control your temper, control your temper, Neji mentally coached himself. Don't let this get to you. They're nothing to you. So what if Lee was slightly attracted to you? Who could blame him? Who cares if Hinata-sama is hanging around with a whacko like Lee? It's none of my business. None at all.

He continued to glower at the two from his corner as he poured his tea. But despite all of Neji's efforts to control his boiling anger, the sight of Hinata's head leaning towards Lee's was all too much. He would've walked up to them right then and there… if it weren't for the fact that Neji had been pouring hot tea into his own lap for the past few seconds.

At first, Neji stared blankly at steaming, practically boiling, hot water that was soaking through the front of his pants. Then, as the first tendrils of pain began to invade his mind, he let out a deep howl and leapt up, knocking the table onto the floor. The sound caught everyone's attention, and Neji suddenly felt dozens of pairs of eyes burning into him.

"N-Neji-niisan?!" Hinata said in a near shriek, as she too got to her feet. "W-What—! A-Are you o-okay?!"

"Neji?!" Lee cried. Neji made a low feral growl. Suddenly, as he glared at the both of them with much intensity, he began to stomp towards them. They cringed simultaneously as the ground shook with the force of his stride.

"You two!" Neji said. Either Neji wasn't thinking clearly or the pain of the hot tea scorching his skin had completely blinded his judgment—whatever it was, Neji couldn't stop himself from lunging towards them and grabbing Lee by the throat. Lee let out a terrified noise as his feet hovered a few inches off the ground.

"What are you doing to Hinata-sama?!" Neji demanded. "Inviting her to a grungy, run-down place like this for a date?!"

"Hey!" the waitress protested.

"Neji, listen, it's not what you think—"

"N-Neji-niisan, Lee-kun wasn't…"

"I'm sure 'Lee-kun' wasn't doing anything," Neji snarled, tightening his grip on Lee. "Except making advances towards my cousin!"

Both of their eyes widened. "Neji, let me explain—"

"Did you think you had a chance?!" Neji cried, shaking Lee viciously. "And what is your infatuation with the Hyuugas?! And for your information, no-I-would-not-have-accepted-a-date-from-someone-like-you!"

"It's all a misunderstanding!"

"Not only that, but you have the gall to think you could get away with it! Once I'm done with you, there won't be enough of you to even fill a thimble!"

"N-Neji-niisan!" Hinata said quickly, placing a hand onto Neji's shoulder. "Lee-kun wanted my help in buying a gift for Sakura-san's birthday."

"I don't care what his excuses are, he's not going to put his hands on Hina—what?"

"That's what I've been trying to say," Lee said with exasperation. "I need to buy a birthday present to Sakura-san. But the only person I could think of asking for help was Hinata-san."

Neji's death grip slowly loosened. "Is that… true?" The two nodded. Neji reluctantly set Lee down. He immediately let out a gurgle and began to massage his throat. "Sorry," Neji muttered.

"N-neji-niisan, were you spying on us?" Hinata asked, a little stricken.

"No," he lied. "I was in here when you guys came in."

"Really?" Lee said. "Why didn't you say hi?"

Neji glared at Lee until he withered and dropped the question.

"W-Well," Hinata said nervously. "I think—"

"Wait," Neji said suddenly, his anger returning. "You tried to kiss Hinata-sama." Hinata and Lee exchanged scared looks.

"I didn't!" Lee exclaimed. "I would never advance on a woman without her permission!"

Neji's eyes narrowed. Lee gave him a look filled with all the innocence that he could muster.

"H-he was whispering to me b-because he didn't want anyone to hear what h-he was planning," Hinata said meekly. "Please don't be upset, Neji-niisan."

"Is this true?" he demanded, scrutinizing them closely. They nodded. Again. After staring them down for a good five minutes, Neji let out a heavy sigh.

Hinata, as gently as she could under the circumstances, eased her hand into his. "Neji-niisan," she said in her would-be soothing voice, "L-let's go home and get a ch-change of clothes?"

Neji winced as he looked as his soiled pants. "Fine," he said, walking away and dragging his cousin behind him.

"Wait!" Lee said, running after them. "What about Sakura-san's present?!"

Neji only turned to give him a Look.

"A-Ah, okay," Lee said, hanging his head in defeat.

"H-he meant well…" Hinata said meekly after they had a walked briskly away from the dejected boy. "H-he just needed a little help, that's all…"

Neji did not slow his relentless pace. "You should not hang around riffraff like him, Hinata-sama. Someone like him could tarnish your reputation. It's bad enough having him as a teamma—"


Neji didn't even have enough time to react.



"Lee-kun, I d-don't think th-that's w-wise—!"

"He'll be knocked out for a good ten minutes! We could easily find Sakura-san's gift in that amount of time! Follow me!"

Lee raced away, dragging Hinata with him. Neji lay motionless on the ground, completely stunned. He didn't know how long he was going to lay on the road, unconscious, but he knew that once he woke up, Lee was going to get the beating of his life.

"Sakura-san! I'd die to preserve your happiness!" Lee cried passionately.