I'm going to have to start by making a full apology.

I have been very slack I admit in updating this story. I'm going to give my run of excuses though, to follow the trend!

a)I moved house after getting all of the crappy mortgage problems sorted.

b)It took a while to get the internet properly installed since we couldn't decide on which server to go with.

c)Depression set in, causing me to go to the doctors and get medication.

d)I got idea's for two other stories, completely different from this one which took precedence in my mind. (gonna ask your opinions on them later!)

e)lack of motivation.

f)reading other good fan fictions.

g)finally getting round to watching Naruto Shippuden.

Just your usual run of the mill problems. All I can say is I'm sorry. I'm also going to go through this story with a fine tooth comb and fix all errors, including some facts, spelling errors and honorific correction.

To everyone who reviewed this story, thank you so much for sticking with this and I hope this chapter is ok. Nothing really happens here but its something….



Chapter 19 - Who else knows?


Sasuke was experiencing sexual frustration in a desperate way.

When he had left Naruto behind by the trees, he had been calm and composed. Almost serene, even though he had been worked up. It had been two hours and now all that he could think of was Naruto. All that he could taste was Naruto. All that he could smell was Naruto. His hands twitched at the memory of touching Naruto. His thoughts were totally Naruto orientated.

He was going to kill Sakura!

He should burn the book. A quick Katon could have done that. If it would have solved his immediate problem, he would have done it. Finding the author and kicking their ass might resolve a small part of his frustration but he had no idea on who that was.

His hands were shaking!

He stared at his trembling limbs in disbelief. A shinobi's hands did not shake! They had to be as steady as a rock. Shaking hands were a sign of a mind in turmoil but Sasuke wasn't in turmoil. He was frustrated.

What he couldn't understand was why. Why Naruto? He was a loud, obnoxious eyesore, klutzy and irritating. Of all the people in the village, why did it have to be him?


Sasuke vaguely heard Kakashi's greeting, but he ignored it, pushing one of his shaking hands into his hair and gripping onto some of the strands, tugging on them non to gently. Maybe he had caught something? Yeah, that could be it. It would explain the shaking, the frustration and the need.

Sasuke. Are you okay?" He felt Kakashi grab onto his arm but he didn't flinch, too internally frustrated to worry about external distractions in such a way. "Sasuke!" Kakashi began to shake him slightly.

"What?" Sasuke glared up at his sensei, deciding to take focus on the here and now. Kakashi's concerned 'eye' looked down at him.

"Spacing out is kind of strange for you Sasuke. What's going on?"


"Nothing? Okay, sure. I believe you." Kakashi let go of his arm and took a step back. "You're never that distracted."

"I'm fine," Sasuke began to walk away, then growled in annoyance as he was followed.

"Seriously Sasuke, what's wrong with you?"

"Nothing. I'm just having a few personal problems, that's all."


Sasuke's hand found itself in his hair again, pulling on the strands in the same way as before.

"You wouldn't understand."

"Try me."

Sasuke turned around and stared up suspiciously at the taller man. "Who are you and what have you done with Kakashi? Kakashi is never this interested."

His sensei lost the worried look and suddenly seemed vaguely amused.

"Well, when one of my students suddenly develops the shakes and then begin mumbling to themselves, I think I should get interested."

"I was mumbling out loud?" Sasuke commented, then glared up at Kakashi. "Even if I was, its none of your business. Leave me alone." Deciding to remove himself from his Sensei's prying nose, he leaped up into the nearest tree and moved away.

After aimlessly moving around Konoha for a while, he finally made his way over to the Hokage monument and sat on one of the platforms above the Thirds image, overlooking the village. A gentle breeze was blowing from the east, shifting his hair slightly. He sighed and closed his eyes, trying to calm down his frustrated self.

"It's nice up here, isn't it?" a voice asked from behind him. Sasuke twisted around quickly in surprise, not sensing anyone creep up on him. When he saw who it was, his expression became questioning. What was she doing here?

"You look pensive but anxious, a peculiar look for you to be sure." Tsunade leaned her head on her and so that she was staring at him from a slight angle. "Are you okay?" She was dressed in her usual attire of top and pants, the Hokage robes nowhere in sight.

"Why wouldn't I be?" Sasuke asked warily, not sure how to take the Hokage's sudden apparent interest in him. She had never really liked him very much.

"Well, you know, relationship problems. Difficulty in expressing yourself?" she passed him a water canister, which he took and opened. "That's what usually causes the expressions that you are sporting."

"I'm not sure what you are getting at."

"What are your intentions against my little brat?" was Tsunade's sudden and blunt question. Sasuke nearly choked on the water he had just taken a mouthful of. "And don't you dare lie to me," she continued. I know what's been going on between you two so don't feed me any crap."

Sasuke stared at her, disbelief etched across his face. Tsunade knew?

"How did you…?"

"How did I know?" The Hokage grinned at him. "You think that I don't know what happens in this village, especially on the Tapestry Corridor of my own tower?"

Sasuke slapped a hand over his eyes in exasperation. Of course. Sakura. Surprise surprise. "What exactly do you need to know?" he sighed in resignation. He moved his position on the rock slightly, trying to make himself more comfortable. This was fine. He needed help but there was no way that he was going to ask for it. From what he knew of the Hokage, she was usually very blunt and often pointed things out without being asked. She was kind of like Naruto in that respect and also, he would rather talk to her than Kakashi. "Don't ask me to monologue it because I don't know what you want to hear," he snapped when he saw her open her mouth. "Ask a question and I'll answer it"

"Touchy much," she smirked at him, making him frown back. "Okay, for starters, why did you kiss him?"

"Start with the stupid ones," Sasuke muttered, then spoke slightly louder, "obviously because I wanted to."

"That wasn't a very informative answer."

"That wasn't a very specific question."

"You want specific, I'll give you specific," she growled. "Up in my tower, what were you thinking before you kissed him? What made you decide to do it at that moment? Have the two of you done anything else?"

"Okay, okay," Sasuke's hand found itself in his hair again, "if you must know, I wanted to touch him. I just had to and had been building up for ages. As for the other question, not enough to be satisfied." He looked over at the Hokage who stared back at him in contemplation.

"Was he happy with what you were doing?" she finally asked after a few moments of silence. "Did he want it?"

"I never forced him if that is what you're implying. Everything that we did was done with each others consent."

"Really?" an eyebrow was raised.

"Yes, really," a glare was returned.

Sasuke felt himself flinch when a small smile appeared on Tsunade's face and it began to grow until she was beaming at him.

"That's brilliant!"


"It's fantastic. Brilliant material. Who needs that pervert Sanin anyway!"

"Um…" was all that Sasuke could come out with. He had no idea what the Hokage was getting at. Females. He didn't understand them.

"Okay, lets get down to business," Tsunade pulled a scroll and pen from her robes and unravelled it. "Do you know exactly how Naruto feels yet? Does he take the lead? He must do occasionally. How did you both tell Ino? I bet she was upset."

"Hokage-sama," Sasuke interrupted, "Naruto hasn't actually told Yamanaka anything yet but I think she kind of saw us earlier."

"Saw you?"

"I… er, noticed that she was stalking me for some reason while I was out shopping with Sakura and Naruto. I was annoyed with both her and Naruto so I, um, purposely enticed him while she was hiding. I'm sure that she saw everything." Sasuke hesitantly looked up at the blonde woman and was surprised to see a thoughtful look on her face.

"Did Naruto know that she was there?"

"I don't think so. He was a little bit distracted."

"By you no doubt."

Sasuke looked away.

"Are you regretting it?" came the query.

"No," Sasuke ground his teeth, "but it seems like no matter what I try, I cant get it through the dobe's head that he needs to be more honest with himself. I know that he feels something but he is in clear denial."

"Hmm," Tsunade stretched her arms above her head and looked towards the sun, "I think I'd better go back before I'm caught again." She stuffed the roll of parchment back into her robe. "Before I leave though, a couple of things. One, let Naruto deal with Ino. If he's in denial like you claim, you wont be able to push him into admitting that he is not in love with his girlfriend."

Sasuke nodded. Tsunade held up two fingers

"Two, the best thing that you can do is give her some space," she stood up and brushed down her trousers, freeing herself from the dust. "The phrase 'absence makes the heart grow fonder,' is used for a reason you know."

"When you say absence," Sasuke stared at Tsunade, apprehension etched on his face, "you don't mean…"

Tsunade waved her hand in a dismissing gesture. "No, no. I mean stop approaching him about it. Act like nothing has changed." She stared at him for a moment, a sly smile on her face. "Treat it as a mission if you want. Do everything that you can without getting physical to make Uzumaki Naruto crack."

Sasuke stared at her, dubiously for a moment, then a smirk appeared on his face. His confidence in the situation was returning and thinking about it, riling up the dobe in this way could be fun!




"What is your opinion on your relationship Ino?"

Ino dropped her spoon into her bowl at the sudden question; hot tomato soup splashing onto her arm and she hissed at the spike of slight pain. Naruto held out a paper napkin and she took it gratefully, wiping off the congealed orange splat from her arm.

"Why do you ask?" she finally answered, outwardly unconcerned but inwardly worried.

"Do you think it is working?"

"Of course I do." Ino was vehement. She stared at her boyfriend, who had a serious expression on his face. "We are good together. I love you. You know this."

"I know," Naruto closed his eyes.

"So why are you questioning this?" Ino's voice raised. "Have you been talking to someone who doesn't like that we are in a relationship? Have you been talking to Sasuke?"

As soon as Sasuke's name was mentioned, Naruto stared at her with narrowed eyes.

"Sasuke! What has Sasuke got to do with this conversation? I was asking your opinion, not anyone else's."

Sasuke has everything to do with this." Ino stood up and slapped her hands down on the table, either side of her soup bowl. She was breathing heavily, on the verge of a panic attack. "He hates me and especially hates that I'm with you."

"I didn't want your opinion on Sasuke's thoughts; I asked for your opinion on our relationship."

Naruto spoke calmly, but his manner had become cold. "I most certainly didn't ask to start an argument."

"I… I…" Ino felt her eyes watering. What happened to her refusal of acceptance. She had denied what she had seen and now was acting suspiciously accusing. She was contradicting herself. "I'm sorry Naruto," she said quietly. She paused for a second, then continued on, wanting to explain herself. "The question scared me. I thought you were starting a conversation that ended up with you breaking up with me." Ino stared at Naruto and saw him flinch at her statement, although only slightly. 'No,' she thought angrily, 'I wont let him do that to me.' "I'm sorry," she said again. "I over reacted there."

"Actually Ino, I…"

"Mothers invited you over for dinner again, tonight actually," she said brightly. "Makoto keeps going on about how much he want to see you again. Dad too. She's going to cook a big family meal for us."

"But I…"

"And don't say that you cant go," Ino interrupted again. "I know for a fact that you don't have plans already and Mother has already been shopping for the ingredients. She loves you coming over." Now Ino hadn't lied although she had exaggerated just a little. Her mother had told her to invite him over but it wasn't the big deal that she was making it out to be. Mother had wanted to cheer her up. "That's okay right?"

"Sure, it's fine," Naruto replied flatly, seemingly giving up on the conversation.

Ino smiled widely.




The door to the apartment closed and Naruto slammed his head on the table. His forehead protector doing its job of protecting his forehead from most of the pain from the impact., but the clang of the metal hitting the wood echoed around the empty kitchen. He groaned. Not only had he failed to have a conversation about breaking up with Ino, he had also just made his headache flare up again.

After his talk with Iruka, he had thought that his worries had been sorted out. What he was feeling and what he wanted. His latest talk with Ino had twisted it yet again.

Family. To be precise, her family. He had been treated as a part of Ino's family. Arie-san was always fusing over him, making sure that he was dressed neatly, had enough to eat and was genuinely friendly. Ino's dad was gruff, but occasionally smiled at him and usually rapped his knuckles over the back of his head in greeting. Then there was Makoto.

Makoto was adorable. There was no other word that could describe him better. Naruto had always gotten on with younger kids, especially with Konohamaru and pals, but Makoto was nothing like the terrible trio, always smiling at him and demanding hugs. He was a very affectionate boy. Naruto really didn't want to give him up, but he would have to if he stopped dating Ino.

He shook himself out of his musings. If he didn't leave soon, he would be late for a sparring session with Neji. Since for some reason, Sasuke had made himself scarce, Neji had offered to practice with him. Working with Neji helped him with his long distance attacks which he was never too good at. With Sasuke it had always been hand to hand, with a little bit of fire techniques thrown in.

Grabbing the pack he had placed by the table before eating lunch, he made his way out of the apartment.



A short chapter I know but at least its something right? The next chapter will DEFINITELY be up faster than this one. Please, any comments you have, tell me, including constructive criticism but no flames.

Thank you