Last part of the story! Thanks for the reviews!

Part 4

Conclusion

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He didn't open the door for her yet, and kept his keys firmly in his hand – noticing how she eyed them hungrily. "Oyo-chan, what did my clone do to you exactly?"

The blue haired girl clutched her clothes and hugged the pillow tightly to her as she stood adjacently before the door. She stared at the ground, her vision becoming blurry by the passing second. Damn him, she thought. No-one had ever made her cry this bad before. Now she really felt stupid. She gulped, wiped at her face anxiously like a cat with her arms and hands, and her lips trembled. "You think I'm ugly, right?"

"What?"

"You think I'm ugly, don't you?(!)" She screeched angrily. "Well... Well that makes the two of us!" Then she began to sob, and she flopped onto the ground, amongst the shoes and the dirty 'Home Sweet Home' mat, rubbing her eyes until they became sore. "I hope you're happy… You seem to enjoy humiliating me that I almost cry – well now… I am! I'm leaving this village! I've had a horrible time since I've been here! I'm going home!"

She thought back to her mother; who was still at the homeland, hoping that Oyo would straighten her own life out and get herself a decent man, still waiting for Oyo's return. In fact, Oyo had never had a boyfriend before. The only reason Oyo had left the village was to get the job at the local fish market, and because her mother was annoying her about men, but now Oyo was working at a ramen stand and now involved with a jounin. Hmm, Oyo seemed to have accomplished some, although the relationship between her and the jounin wasn't the best at the moment.

He blinked. "Matte! Oyo-chan!" He moved beside her hastily and grabbed her arm, motioning her to look at him yet she refused to and screamed into the pillow. "You're not ugly." He said reassuringly.

"Well you said I'm not cute either!" Her voice was muffled against the pillow. Okay, that sounded quite wrong. "Then… Then that means I'm ugly…" She added.

"Is that why you wear sunglasses?" He asked. "Because you think you're… ugly?"

NO! I think they look cool on me… but... let's just go with that…! "Yes." She sniffled.

Kakashi blinked and decided to make a grab at the sunglasses back on the table and snap them. "Oyo-chan, don't be like that and don't take things so seriously. I'm just teasing you because you can be so susceptible and fragile at some point and – "

Oops. Wrong choice of words.

"So you think I'm a wimp too!" She cried unhappily, delving her face deeper into the pillow that she was going to make all the stitches that joined the bloody thing together twang off.

"No!" He quickly covered it up. "I didn't mean it that way – "

"Then what way did you mean it!" She croaked loudly like a frog between hiccups.

"That feeling –" He scratched his head. He couldn't believe he was going to say this, "That you need someone to watch over you… I…. er…. "

"I am not a baby! And I don't need a bodyguard either, bub!" She screamed in frustration.

"Oyo - Look at me."

"No."

"Oyo – "

"NO!"

"Oyo, please – "

"NOOO!"

"Still mad about the 'ugly' remark?"

"N – I mean, yes, I am!"

He sighed. "Fine, I'll take off my mask. You can see how 'ugly' I am. If it makes you feel better – "

Oyo stopped breathing and looked up from her pillow, a trickle of sweat falling down her cheek as she watched him slip two fingers under the rim of his mask, about to drag it down. She wiped her eyes. Kakashi – was he really going to take off his mask before her? Suddenly, she felt horrible. What if Kakashi wasn't ugly? What if he was devilishly delicious and extremely attractive under the mask? She swallowed – and what if he really wasn't? She had already pondered on this before, and now it was finally coming true! Oyo didn't want to know – it was probably better if he didn't unmask for her. She was beginning to get scared – Oyo's mind was reeling – why… why did she feel this way? It was so irritating!

"No - !"

As he pulled it down, she squeezed her eyes shut and looked away.

"Oyo? Look at me!" He interjected fiercely.

"NO!"

"Don't make me pry your eyes open!"

"You wouldn't dare!" She yelled back at him. Or would he? He might… she gulped, and added in: "Or I'll scream and get Gai here if you do!"

He sat back, still unmasked, staring at her wordlessly, "… Do you hate me that much…?"

Her clenched-shut eyes softened slightly, yet, she gritted her teeth and looked down. "….. No. But…Just… let me go. I-I have to go back to work." She muttered. She felt Kakashi stand up, then he sighed, and she heard the door click. Then, she heard something sliding.

"There. It's open."

Still unsure whether he was still unmasked, Oyo decided to feel her way out – her hand landed on the wall, then she shiftily walked towards the door and –

SLAM!

She crashed face-flat onto the wood, and as she bounded back, Kakashi caught her with his arms from behind her. "WHY YOU LYING, EVIL INCONSIDERATE JERK WITH NO MORAL STANCE!" (er… don't ask)

How dare he! He didn't even open the goddamn door all along! Grinning slightly, he dragged a screaming and kicking Oyo back down on the living room, sat down on the sofa, with her thrashing self still on his lap. He tried to calm her down, but what he done only made her shriek even more – he had held her tightly that she couldn't breathe properly.

"Oyo-chan." He said, trying to dodge her flying fists of fury. "You're not escaping me without settling things first. Calm down."

She was sweating, eyes still closed tightly, and she turned to some extent to him. "…Right now…?" She squeaked meekly.

"Yes." He said firmly.

She sighed, knowing that he would never let her go until they spoke to each other properly rather than argue. She swallowed. But what would she say? She didn't like their position – she could feel his breath on her ear – he was still unmasked – this made her heart soar up to MAXIMUM BEATING LEVEL and ULTRA BLOOD PUMPING PRESSURE. "Fine." Oyo said shakily. "I act obnoxious because I'm aware of the inevitable and I don't want to deny it."

"What's that?"

"The fact that I'm unappealing – especially towards the… opposite sex." She moaned. "I'm just like…. Salt."

"Then why don't you act more like… sugar?"

"It-It's not who I am…. I can't. It's too late anyway." She said quietly. "Have you… ever pretended to be someone you aren't?"

"Sure." He replied basically.

"Then I guess you'll… understand."

He nodded. She didn't know if he replied or not (and you can't hear a nod). Was he angry at her? Oyo frowned; she should be angry with him – but, she didn't really want to stay 'enemies' with him, so she turned round to face him fully, eyes still shut. "You're still there, right?"

"Yeah." He replied.

"….. Kakashi…?"

"Hmm?"

"I'm… sorry." She said wobbly – in fact, she didn't even sound sorry at all. "I'm sorry that we always… argue."

"It's okay…"

"Kakashi? I er… really want to see what you look like behind the mask … but... I think I don't have to see it anymore. It's the you you are right now. That's… the real you behind the mask… I think." Gawd, she thought. Why does this sound so lame? I don't even understand what I've just said! And why am I even saying these stuff? Like as if he gives a hoot.

He blinked. "Oyo-chan…"

"Maybe others can't see it. People can't see what's inside other people's heart … but I think I can. I can feel it – even though my eyes are closed. Are you… suffering? That story you told me … that boy… is it you?" She said – with eyes still closed. This is the right time when people want to put pillows over their faces and cringe in them upon hearing this (including me) – exactly what Oyo wanted to do.

He didn't reply.

She raised a slow and shaking arm up, and made sure her fingertips landed lightly on his Sharingan eye, just at the scar. "I noticed it before. D-D…Does it hurt?"

He looked down, remembering the loooooong story he had told her last night, "No, not on the outside."

What did that mean? Was he suffering on the inside?

"Where's your family?" She asked. "I've… never heard of you talking about them."

He took quite a while to reply. "They're dead."

Once he placed his hand over hers, she quickly retrieved her arm. Her mind was reeling. TOO MUCH COMFORT! "I'm sorry. I don't know what came over me. Sorry, I didn't mean to – " Then she stopped, unsure what to say. "…Sorry." She finished off pathetically.

"It's okay." He answered quietly.

"Oh."

This time, the long-term silence was deafeningly.

"Kakashi?"

"Oyo?"

She was actually glad he was still here. "…Yeah?" She said inaudibly.

She felt something.

Not directly on the lips (A/N - Because they're all dry and icky lol – and she hasn't brushed her teeth yet either), but on the cheek, very gently. As light as a feather. In fact, she wasn't even sure if he did kiss her.

But she did feel something. And she jerked back in surprise. "Wh-What was that for?(!)"

He shrugged. "I don't know. It just… felt like the right moment." He replied sheepishly.

She threw the pillow at him. "SCREW YOU!" And then she began to beat him over and over again with it until eventually, she became exhausted and slumped onto the plush sofa.

Kakashi recovered from the pillow that was being constantly thrown at him, and pulled his mask back up lazily. He stared at the girl who was still glancing at the left side of the room, trying to hear where he was now. "You can open your eyes now. I've got my mask on."

Oyo stopped, and then scowled. "I don't believe you." She began talking to thin air.

He sighed again, scooted her back over to him, lifted her hands up and made her touch the soft fabric of his mask. As soon as her fingers came in contact with it, she opened her eyes, fuzzy images in front of her. Kakashi with his mask on – yup, everything was back to normal. She blinked and rubbed her eyes tiredly.

"Feel better?"

She nodded considerably. "Yeah… can you please let go of my wrists now?"

He let go.

"Thanks."

More silence. Then, from the corner of her eye, Oyo spotted something that made her gape back at Kakashi, before she screamed.

And now…

Oyo almost broke the dish she had in her hands.

Naruto watched her idly from the counter, wondering what had happened to make her so mad. His gaze averted to his sensei, who was reading his book opposite Naruto on another bench, with Sakura and Sasuke beside him on each side. He didn't feel like ordering ramen today – Oyo didn't even say 'hi' to him when he came up, and she certainly didn't reply to him when he rang the bell. Instead, Ayame had to cover up. Oyo was clearly drenched in a foul, stinking disposition. Her eyes filled with more venom than ever behind the sunglasses.

Stupid. Kakashi. He. Is. A. Moron!

Crack!

The bowl in Oyo's hand finally broke as she scrubbed at it furiously with the sponge and clattered onto the floor.

"You're paying for that!" The shopkeeper shouted from inside.

Oyo grumbled and cleared the broken dish, then began scrubbing at another one.

Crack!

There goes another bowl.

"And you're paying for that one too!"

Fuming, Oyo dumped the sponge into the water and sighed. Kakashi swerved his eye from his eye and glanced at her, then quickly looked back to his book. Naruto pondered, and then slowly moved to sit beside his sensei.

"Psst. Kakashi-sensei. What's wrong with Oyo?"

"Oh, she's just having a mood swing." He assumed. Actually, she's angry that she got kissed by a log.

Back in the morning, Kakashi had split himself into three clones, the first one, Oyo demolished when she threw a lamp at it, and the second one went to check up on her when the doorbell rang, whilst, he, the real Kakashi, went out into the garden to do the laundry. He didn't realise what had happened, only to see Oyo gaping at the log that was lying in front of her on the sofa. He guessed his clone must've done something to her – why hadn't he been there to seen it? She stared at him, then at the log. Then, she screamed and marched out from his home.

"WAIT, OYO-CHAN!" He shouted at her from the doorway.

She glared at him. "What do you want now?"

"I really don't know what my clone had done to you, but whatever he did do, it's all based on what I would've done." He didn't know what her reaction would be like, and braced himself for the worst.

Instead, Oyo went extremely red, touched her cheek and quickly walked away muttering to herself.

Did his clone…. Kiss her…, perhaps?

Naruto scratched his head. "Ah… girls are weird."

Sakura heard this and a vein popped. "What. Was. That?"

"Hatake-san!"

Kakashi looked away from Sakura strangling Naruto in the corner and looked at the man wearing spandex in front of him. "Gai?" Indeed, the man with the bowl-shaped haircut and his one student (who had also taken the splitting image of his sensei, being his 'Mini-Me'), Rock Lee. Immediately, 'Mini-Me' here ran up to Sakura.

"Sakura-san!" Lee said happily. "So nice to see you again!" And he smiled.

Sakura put her hand over her eyes to shield from his utter-perfect white dentures, giving Naruto a chance to escape her clutches. "Uh… Hi, Lee-san."

Oyo stood up to look at the new customers, and glanced at Lee. "Hm. I thought you were a lot taller the last time I saw you – "

"Oyo-chan!" Gai ran over to her and smiled at her, just like how Lee did to Sakura a while ago.

"Oh… it's Gai-kun." Oyo replied, and she immediately stopped rubbing so fiercely on the poor bowl (which had been spared from being broken in half). "…. Nice to see you."

"Oyo-chan, I didn't know you were working here! If I had known sooner, I would come here every single day to eat your delicious cooking!"

"Uh… you're too kind." Yet, he's probably better than Kakashi in personality. "Unlike some people." She shot Kakashi a brief look, before glancing at Lee. "Who's this?"

"Oh, this is one of my students, Lee." Gai sat in front of her, Naruto glowered – that was his seat! So, now, Naruto ended up sitting beside Sasuke (rather reluctantly) who was watching the interesting scene. Sakura was stuck with Lee, and Kakashi had his nose stuck in the book, though, for the whole time, he was secretly observing Oyo and Gai.

"Ah, so what kind of ramen do you specialize?"

"Er… I would just say…. Just some chicken dishes and vegetable ones, basically. I'm not entirely gifted with the other, harder-to-make ones."

"I disagree, with Oyo-chan's perfect hands and personality; I believe you'll make a fine job in this stand." Then, from behind his back, he whipped out a bunch of flowers. "These are for you, my lady."

Everyone stared. Where'd he get that from?

Kakashi's eye twitched visibly as Oyo giggled at him, accepting the flowers gratefully.

"Thank you, Gai-kun. You truly are a gentleman." Then, she took one particular pretty and bright flower, sniffed it, and then – popped it into her mouth. "Mmm. I love Polyanthus in the morning and bit of Pyracantha for seconds."

Everyone ogled at the stems protruding from her mouth as she munched on the flowers.

"Thanks again, Gai-kun. I'll let you have a free bowl of ramen today."

"NANI?(!)" Naruto butted in – apparently he seemed to be the only one oblivious to the fact that she had just eaten a flower. "Oyo-chan, how can you let him have a free bowl, yet I have to pay all the time!"

"Naruto-kun… " She giggled, placing the flowers under the counter. "Gai-kun is a jounin. I should let him have ramen on my tab for today."

The blondie scoffed and sat back on his stool in a huff. "But I'm a little and cute growing boy who needs his nutrition to grow healthy and strong… " He fake-wailed.

Sakura shuddered. What an idiot.

"Okay, okay, Naruto-kun!" She said happily at Naruto. "You're my best friend – I'll let you have a free bowl of ramen today, but that's a secret between you and me!" She hoped Ayame or the shopkeeper hadn't heard. They didn't.

He beamed immediately. Oyo took Naruto's and Gai's order and went back into the kitchen. Gai turned to Kakashi. "So, my eternal rival - How's it going? Oyo-chan sure is a fine girl."

Kakashi grunted in response and kept his eyes glued onto the book.

"Kakashi-kun!"

Everyone winced and turned round. Kakashi gaped at Leiko who came bounding over. "Imagine seeing you over here!" She said happily. Then she turned and saw Sasuke, before giving him a tight hug. Sakura's fist clenched. "Sasuke-kun!" Leiko shrieked happily.

Sasuke immediately pulled her off him. "Nice to see you too… Leiko."

Naruto frowned at this Leiko woman – she was the one who gave Kakashi the kissy marks. Oyo should be doing that, not her! Meanwhile, Sakura was brooding portentously at her from behind Sasuke, and he joined her.

"Ah… Kakashi-kun. This must be your team." Leiko sat beside him and wrapped an arm around his arm.

"You're not… angry at me?"

"No, of course I won't be, ever!" Then she kissed him on the temple.

Sakura's and Lee's eyes popped. Naruto felt sick and Sasuke's eye twitched (ne, so many eyes twitching these days). Sakura put her hand over Naruto's eyes; Naruto put his over Sasuke's. The Uchiha boy quickly shoved Naruto away from him. Gai elbowed Kakashi with a grin. "Hey, didn't know you got a girl, thus, now I can now divert my attention onto Oyo-chan without acknowledging the fact that you will be jealous…!"

Did Gai really have to say that out? Kakashi deliberately ignored Gai and looked at Leiko in progress. "You've met Sasuke?" Kakashi asked with an eyebrow raised.

Leiko glanced at the Uchiha. "Uh... yeah. He's such a cute and nice boy! (Sasuke closed his eyes shut with a sweatdrop, Naruto stifled a laugh) Are you going to introduce me to your other students?" She pointed at a frowning Sakura and Naruto - then at Gai, and at Lee, who all blinked at her.

"Oh, these are my other students, Sakura and Naruto – This is Gai, he's another jounin, and his student, Lee." Kakashi replied.

"Ohayou, minna-san. I'm Leiko – "

"Are you a ninja?" Naruto asked uncouthly, pointing at her forehead protector.

"Why, yes, I'm a chuunin, or I used to be." Leiko replied. "Oh, you're adorable as Sasuke-kun!" She pinched at Naruto's cheeks; he writhed uncomfortably under her grip.

"Ano… thanks?"

She let go of him. Sakura looked at her enviously. "Matsumoto-san, how do you know Kakashi-sensei?"

Oyo came back out from the kitchen, and stared at the small crowd. Since when did the Ichiraku ramen become so busy? She stared at the woman latched onto Kakashi's arm. She was currently explaining to Sakura… something she didn't really want to hear, and shoved Gai's bowl of ramen to him. He thanked her and tried to engage conversation, but Oyo had already walked off; Oyo gave Naruto his bowl and he began to dig in, talking to Lee at the same time. Oyo recognized this woman from this morning….

"Oi, Ramen-Girl!" Leiko called at her, her arm still looped with Kakashi's.

Ack! Oyo sauntered over reluctantly – her eye twitched as she looked at their arms. "Uh, hai? How may I take your order?"

There was an indistinctive crackling force of electricity emitting from their eyes, and Kakashi believed that he could see it. Oyo glared at Leiko whilst Leiko glared back at her. "Chicken ramen. On the double."

"You got it."

What was going on between them two? If Kakashi could see it… he would've thought that they two were possibly… fighting over him? Heh, two women, fighting over Hatake Kakashi – who would've imagined it – that it's actually and finally happening. Kakashi - The one who sealed all his possible emotions within him until women entered his life. He looked tiredly at them, especially at Oyo, who never took her eyes off Leiko as she brought the ramen bowl in front of her. She was too preoccupied in glaring at Leiko to notice him.

"There. Enjoy your meal."

"Thanks." Leiko never touched her bowl, instead, she got a spoon and dipped it into the ramen, lifting up some soup, before she turned it – and it 'accidentally' spilt all over her clothes. "Whoopsie, I spilt some on my lap." She said - cheerfuly.

Then she smiled at Kakashi.

"Kakashi-kun! Help me wipe it!" And she grabbed his hand towards her lap but he jerked back as Oyo had turned round.

She frowned and turned back. That is so sad.

If Naruto had read her thoughts, he wouldn't know who Oyo was addressing to, either Kakashi, or Leiko?

As they watched Kakashi struggle with a small sweatdrop ("Leiko-chan, there's paper towels beside you."), Sakura suddenly remembered. "Hana-chan is looking for you, Kakashi-sensei." Sakura tugged at his jacket and gestured. "She told me to pass this message to you; she wants to meet you at the park."

This may be Hana-chan's time to be in the spotlight!

"Oh?" Kakashi looked up and Leiko let go of him. "Really, now?" He glanced at Oyo, who was washing the dishes, back still turned to him.

After a few minutes of explanation, Leiko had left with Sasuke, Gai and Lee walked off – leaving Sakura with Naruto and Kakashi at the ramen stand.

Sakura nodded.

Kakashi sighed, and got off from his stool. "Well, ja ne, Oyo-chan. Sakura, Naruto, you two can return home."

Oyo ignored him and began scrubbing at the bowl rigorously with half of her thin sponge, emitting a high pitched non-stop squeaking. Kakashi noticed this, and glanced at her for a few seconds. She was having a hard time resisting the urge.

Don't look back, whatever you do, just don't!

She did, unfortunately, ignoring Inner Oyo 1. "About time you left."

"Ah." Kakashi grimaced slightly. "Are you still angry that a log kissed you?"

Naruto and Sakura 'eep'ed when they heard that. Oyo burned red. "SHUT UP!" She threw the sponge at him, and he ducked, it hit someone behind him.

And that someone happened to be…

"Hana-chan!" Sakura squeaked. "Oyo-chan, watch where you throw things!" Sakura said angrily at Oyo.

"Hey, it wasn't Oyo-chan's fault!" Naruto defended her.

"Naruto!" Sakura exclaimed back at him fiercely. "Look at what your nom – " Then she stopped and quickly covered her mouth.

Kakashi observed. Naruto quickly shushed her and Sakura smiled nervously. They looked at Oyo. The blue haired girl seemed to have zoned out amidst the fighting and was just standing with wet gloves on her hand, mouth hanging open. She looked like a zombie… Kakashi turned to Hana who was smiling sheepishly, taking the wet bubbly sponge off her head and drying her ponytail. "Uh, hi."

"Are you okay?" He turned to Oyo, who still seemed shocked at what she had just done.

"G-Gomen." Oyo spluttered, snapping out of her trance, and then she ran back inside.

"Oyo-chan?" Naruto called after her.

No response.

"Hana-chan, are you okay?" Sakura asked tentatively at the brown haired woman.

"I'm fine, Sakura-chan." Hana replied, though she looked worriedly at Naruto, then at the door leading to the kitchen of the stand.

"So, shall we get going then?" Kakashi asked Hana. She looked at him, then back at the ramen before she nodded for a split second.

Kakashi had already led her away and the pink haired girl had the urge to follow them to the park, but stopped herself in time. Sakura looked at Naruto - Then at the kitchen door. "Hey… is Oyo-chan alright?"

"Why would you care?" Naruto asked her feverishly as he slumped on the counter. "You've acted like you didn't like her at all from the very start."

Sakura swallowed slightly and sat beside Naruto. "Sorry… It's not that I don't like Oyo-chan. It's – "

"What?"

"It's just… the competitive nature inside me." She replied with a slight cheesy smile. Not one of my best excuses… I just want Hana-chan to win. Then I can get extra credit from Kaka-sensei!

Naruto blushed when she smiled at him. Then, he smiled as well. "Ne, well I guess we could call this a competition. But I think Oyo-chan's really unhappy right now."

"What do you think happened to her and Kakashi?" Sakura considered.

"Well…. I sort of… set them up yesterday night."

"WHAT!"

Naruto laughed nervously. "Sakura-chan?"

"YOU CHEATER!" Then she stomped away.

"Hey, Sasuke cheated too! He didn't even tell us his nominee had already met Kakashi-sensei!" Naruto called after her.

Sakura stopped, and then looked to the side sullenly. She guessed… He was right.

With Kakashi and Hana…

Uh. This sure was awkward.

Hana had thrown her arms around him as they seated themselves on the park bench. She snuggled into his chest and had squeezed hr eyes shut. Kakashi was feeling very awkward. First of all, because little kids and other people were walking past them, and second, he kept thinking of Oyo.

That girl with the bad temper sure bugged his thoughts these days.

"Hana-chan?"

"What?"

"Sorry, but can you let go of me?"

"Sure… sorry. I was-was just – "

"It's okay; you don't have to explain to me. I know… " He began. Oh god, this was going to be very hard. No matter how much he tried to make himself like Hana – she was, after all, smart and lovely, but still… He felt like he was 'reserved' for Oyo, and for Oyoshi only. Funny – how much their odd interaction with one another could lead up this way, maybe it was just 'opposites attract'? The space in his arms should be for Oyo. "I know you like me a lot and – "

She started crying.

Did she know the inevitable already?

In that case, it would make things a lot easier.

"Kakashi-kun… I can't be with you."

He blinked. Ooh, this was so easy. She let go of him and sobbed to herself quietly. He didn't know whether to put a hand on her shoulder or not. People were now whispering, and staring at Kakashi – as if he was the one who had made her cry.

"Hana..?"

She stopped crying and looked at him, taking off her glasses and wiping them dry. "I'm so ashamed of myself. It's not you, it's me…"

"Hana-chan, tell me what's been going on."

"Well… I've… I've… I've been seeing a woman lately…"

He paused.

Oh.

Now that changed a lot.

Back to the Ramen Stand…

"Oyo-chan? Oyo-chan?" Sakura called, leaning over the counter so much that she was going to fall over.

The blue haired girl waddled out and looked at Sakura despairingly. "Ya?"

"I'm sorry about earlier on, Oyo-chan." Sakura said sheepishly, sitting back down. She felt a bit at ease talking to Oyo now; since Naruto had gone to check up on Sasuke. Now this was just girl-to-girl talk.

"Ne, Sakura-chan. It's not your fault. I probably shouldn't be like such a man-girl and – " She stopped when Sakura began to laugh lightly. "What? What did I say?"

"Man-girl?" Sakura chortled. "Oyo-chan, what do you mean by that?"

"I mean, I shouldn't be so gruff and rough towards people. After all, I am a girl." Oyo said glumly, pointing to her long hair and her clothes.

"Ne, Oyo-chan." Sakura began. "It's who you are, and you can't change it."

"And that's that I don't like about myself." Then she whispered to Sakura. "I scared away Kakashi – and Gai." She began to wipe her mouth, and she poured a lot of Sake from the flask behind the counter into a cup. "Sakura-chan, do you want a drink as well?"

"No thanks."

"Urgh… flowers sure taste icky." Oyo murmured. "Can't believe I had to do that to get Gai-kun away from me. Ne, looks like it hasn't really worked, has it? I wish I was different."

Sakura giggled and stuck her tongue out amiably. "Oh, Oyo-chan… you're fine the way you are. In fact, you remind me of myself. My 'Inner Sakura', I call her."

Oyo laughed as well. "Apparently, Sakura-chan, you aren't the only one. I have about… (she counted them off her fingers)… three 'Inner Oyo's'." She said with a smile. "But that's our little secret, ne?"

Sakura smiled and nodded as well. I guess… Oyo-chan isn't really a bad character. She just needs to be understood…

With Sasuke and Leiko…

"Who in the world is that girl?" Leiko huffed, at the same time puffing out her chest with her hands on her hips. "If she lays one hand on Kakashi-kun, I'll have her head!"

Sasuke leant off the tree with his hands in his pockets. "There's no point of doing that. Seeing Naruto's nominee is already a joke. She doesn't stand a chance."

The shrunken sliced a tree in half, and returned to her outstretched hand. She merely flicked at her hair. "I really don't know why I'm doing this for you. I've had over 20 boyfriends – I don't like to stick to people for long."

At that point, Leiko looked to the side as Sasuke began talking.

"You have lousy patience."

She snorted. "Well, at least I have dignity. Unlike that Sakura-chick. I can tell; she is all over you (Sasuke seemed to have looked up laboriously). And that Naruto boy – "

Naruto, who was sneaking behind a bush to see what was happening – was suddenly lifted from the collar and hoisted right up. He came face to face with dark, ruby red eyes. "Ho ho, speak of the devil. It's Naruto-kun."

Sasuke death glared at him. "Why are you here?"

Naruto crossed his arms as Leiko dropped him on the ground. "Just checking on you, Sasuke. Sakura-chan is awfully worried about you right now - "

Quick Scene Change at the Ichiraku Ramen Stand…

"Dorinku! Dorinku! Dorinku! Dorinku!" (Apparently, 'dorinku' means 'drink' by the way).

Ayame and Oyo were chanting as Sakura, standing on the ground, with one leg on the bar stool, hand on hip; tipped a huge flask of Sake down her throat, and when she finished it after a few minutes of non-stop gurgling, she slammed it on the counter.

Ayame and Oyo cheered when Sakura wiped her mouth and cheered as well. "Yoshaaa!"

"Okay! Whose turn is it now to drink the Sake?" Oyo sang, holding up a large flask. Then, she looked at an almost-drunk Sakura. "Hey, shouldn't you be looking for Sasuke by now?"

Sakura looked delirious and hiccupped. "Sasuke-who?"

Ahem, back to Sasuke, Naruto and Leiko…

"Heh. This blonde kid really is persistent." Leiko said prodding at him. Naruto squirmed away from her. She gave him the heebie jeebies for some reason, even if she was very pretty that Naruto had a hard time ripping his eyes away from her.

"Naruto, why exactly are you are?" Sasuke snarled at him.

"Okay, okay." Naruto replied. "I just want you to know, that Oyo-chan will not lose to her!" he pointed to Leiko was filing her nails against her shuriken, letting some of the dust fall onto the ground.

Sasuke and Leiko sweatdropped.

"Mark my words!" Naruto said proudly, and then he turned, and left.

"Overconfident baka…" Sasuke muttered.

Naruto marched back to the village. He couldn't believe now Sasuke was his rival just for this! It was just supposed to be a plot to get Kakashi hooked up with a girl so they could get better missions and other stuff. Now, it was a bit like a battlefield. Now even Sakura was becoming competitive against him with her nominee. How would Oyo compare to Leiko? Leiko seemed more mature than Oyo, she could fight and she even was a chuunin! And Oyo – a thief, got put in jail, now a ramen girl…. Naruto grimaced.

Back to the Park…

Hana… was attracted to the same gender as herself?

In other terms… she was….

Ahem.

You get the picture, right?

"The time I hugged you – that was a last attempt to feel something from the opposite sex, but it… it didn't work." Hana sobbed. "I… I should've told you earlier, then you probably wouldn't have gotten any wrong signals and… "

She broke down.

Kakashi calmed her down. "Geez, Hana-chan. It's okay, I completely understand." He told her with a smile. In that case, I can go and apologise to Oyo now.

"Kakashi-kun, you sure are really a good friend." Then she looked down wryly at her hands. "I'm really sorry if I've caused any problems."

"No, no… it's fine. Honestly. I understand."

"Y-You do?" She seemed to have a brightened up a bit. "Arigatou, Kakashi-kun! Well, I'm glad I told you this before the situation became even worse. Ja-ne!"

She leapt from the park bench, and ran back towards the road leading to the village square. Kakashi looked up at the sky, basking in the sun's warmth for a few seconds, before getting back up.

"Right… " He started, "Time to cheer up a pissed off Oyo."

Ramen stand…. Afternoon/evening…

Ayame, Oyo and Sakura were behind the counter, singing in front of customers – the three of them all drunk on Sake – or at least, they were drunk on some sort of Japanese beverage that made them all red in the faces, talking in a slurred manner, having smelly breath etc.

The shopkeeper who had been tied up and locked in the closet by the girls sighed (That's what I call girl power). "Women… they'll be the death of me..." The old man said.

He could hear the music – or more like, tuneless singing, mostly Oyo who was singing the loudest – after all, she did drink a lot during their break. And he could also hear the customers cheering and whooping.

This sure was a memorable night (more sarcasm).

Kakashi eventually reached the ramen stand with Naruto, whom he found sulking around the outskirts of town, and watched the three girls scream their heads off and sing any random song. Kakashi immediately went up to the stand, squeezing past the huge throng of a crowd, and arrived at the counter.

"Ne… and what does a big, strong man like you want?" Oyo slurred as she noticed him.

"Oyo, it's me."

"I already know who you are – " She blew a raspberry. "Kakashi – Hatake Kakashiiiii aka Oyajiiiii. So… whad oo want?"

"You're coming home with me." Kakashi said, he pushed the door leading to the inside of the counter open.

"Hey! Kakashi-sensei! What do I do?" Naruto leapt up and down from behind a tall, bulky man at the front, waving. He spotted Sakura, and quickly scooted over. "Uh… I think I'll take Sakura-chan home."

Kakashi looked at Naruto struggling with Sakura. He sighed. "What did these two girls do to you, Sakura-chan? Oi, Naruto, where does this baka live?" He pointed to an Oyo who was lolling around groggily muttering about 'flapjacks'.

Naruto shrugged. "I think she lives in this ramen stand." He left with Sakura, thus, Kakashi was left with a tough crowd, Ayame, and the old man locked up in the closet, who was banging his fists against the door. Kakashi kicked it open and the old man stumbled out. "Ah, arigatou, Hatake-san."

"No bother, now, where does she live?"

The old man shrugged.

"What? How could you not know?"

"She never tells us."

"Don't you have any employee records?"

The old man shook his head. "This is just a ramen stand, not some kind of office."

Kakashi rolled his eye, and then dragged Oyo out of the stand, leaving the old man to satiate the crowd and a drunken Ayame alone.

He sighed. With no place to go, he couldn't just leave her out on the cold dirty streets. She gurgled slightly in his grasp, eyes closed, before wrenching herself out from his grasp. She twiddled over to a corner, and retched. Kakashi sighed, walked over to her and rubbed her back soothingly. She stopped and slumped against him once he collected her.

"Oyo-chan, this is exactly what I was talking about this morning." Kakashi said. I feel like it's my duty to protect you no matter what. And the way how I see it, you really need someone to look after you.

He ended up taking her back to his apartment; as much as he was worried that Leiko might come barging down any moment. The house seemed very quiet. Kakashi unlocked his door, watching Oyo from the corner of his eye – she was busy sitting on the floor playing with a spider – then she picked it up, watching the icky hairy legs thrash around. Quickly, he swatted her hand free before she would do anything outrageous (not to mention, stupid) with it and the spider scuttled away from her.

He opened the door, then grabbed Oyo from under the arms, and lifted her inside, then shut the door behind him. He placed her down on the landing while he took off his shoes, switching on the light. Oyo flopped back and sprawled herself over the wooden floor – staring at the light – her sunglasses askew off her nose.

"Oyo-chan?"

She didn't answer him, except stare up blankly at the ceiling.

He dragged her inside the living room, and put her on his sofa, getting the same blanket from the cupboard. Sheesh, she's using it again, all in one day.

When he returned to Oyo's side, she had her eyes closed, and was drooling over herself. He sighed. "You just can't make this an easier for me, will you?" He muttered. She turned round to get herself into a comfortable position, but he turned her back, this time, she was lying on her stomach – and he untied her apron, before turning her back round to her back. He lifted the apron off her and discarded it into the lone corner. Right… now, onto her yukata. Kakashi hesitated.

This was sooo wrong.

But, she smelt horrible and her clothes were covered in drool, not to mention, she sort of… had splashes of vomit over it…. His hands clawed its way over and latched onto the rim of her robe. Kakashi closed his eye, and prepared.

……….

Oyo woke up.

"What? Where am I? Who - ?" She found herself in a familiar room – with the familiar lamp on the table, and she looked down from the sofa. Kakashi was there at the foot, lying in the same futon – she could tell he had his mask off – yet the lamp was too dull, she couldn't see his features, and she was glad. Oyo flopped back onto the sofa, sighing.

"What happened to me?" She moaned to no-one in particular.

"You became drunk." Kakashi replied.

She leapt. "I thought you were asleep."

"No. It's too early."

Silence.

"Where do you live?" He asked.

"N-Nowhere." She lied.

"You can't live in 'nowhere'."

"No, really… I don't have a home."

"Then where do you go to sleep?"

"…At this rundown temple in the suburbs of Konoha."

Kakashi jerked right up. "Are you crazy! You can't live there! It's not proper accommodation and - "

"Hey, it keeps me sheltered from the rain, that's all what matters."

"But isn't it cold, dirty and – just… unacceptable standards of living?" He questioned.

"Yeah, but – "

"You're even lucky you don't have pneumonia yet."

"Hey, it's only been about a couple of weeks since I came here."

More silence.

"I just don't understand you sometimes, Oyo-chan, why don't you just go back to your real home – "

Oops. More wrong choice of words.

Oyo went quiet. "You want me to go?"

"NO!" He shouted. "This time, really, NO. I don't want you to go. In fact - You're living here from now on."

"N-N-N-Nani!" She shrieked. "I can't live here! I don't want to live with you anyway."

"I don't care. Your belongings are just the clothes you wear on your back, right?"

She squirmed and noticed that she was free of her annoying yukata, only dressed in shorts and the t-shirt she had underneath. Hey… hey… where were her clothes? She was starting to get nervous. "Oh my god! You undressed me?"

"Someone had to do it. You were smelly and everything. Can't have that in my home." Kakashi said softly.

"I don't know why you're saying that, considering your home is already smelly and everything!"

Kakashi ignored that statement. "Look, you're still wearing t-shirt and shorts, aren't you?"

"Yeah."

"So why are you making such a big deal? I didn't see anything."

"How dare you!" She fumed. "I have dignity, unlike you."

He rolled his eye. "Whatever. Go to sleep."

Oyo was silently seething, but luckily, she held most of it in. for some reason, she always let go of things when she was about to fall asleep… Grrr… she hated that. It meant that Kakashi would get away with it… just for this night.

The Next Day…

"So, where is this temple?"

She pointed briefly to the edge of town, past the ramen stand, and Kakashi cheerfully walked towards that direction. When he realised that Oyo wasn't following him, he turned back round, she was standing solemnly, staring at the ground.

"Oyo-chan?" He walked back to her and put an arm over her shoulder. "What's wrong?"

She bit her lip. "I don't get why you're doing this for me." She said with her eyes closed, and then she opened them again and looked warily to the side. Oyo tugged at the clothes she borrowed from him (extra large black t-shirt and sandals) while her clothes were in the wash. "I'm nasty to you, yet you still help me. I feel like such a horrible person."

"You're not." He patted her gently and reassuringly with a smile. "Come." He led her by the hand. "We'll get your belongings, and you can move in with me." Although he walked her silently into the path, he kept a keen eye on the lookout.

Someone… is following us.

"Kakashi?" Oyo asked him timidly. "What's wrong with you?"

He scooted her into a bush and told her to hide there for the time being. Oyo shrugged, and sat back, watching the scene as she peered from the bush. Kakashi just stood in the clearing, lonesome.

"What is he doing?" Oyo asked herself. Then, as soon as her head sidled to the left, a kunai just narrowly missed her temple, cutting off a couple of her blue hairs and snapping her sunglasses - landed just centimetres beside her. "Wah – !" She slumped down, knocked out cold.

Kakashi pulled the branches down. "Oyo-chan!" he lifted her unconscious form up – there were (anime styled) swirls in her eyes. Oh, she was okay; she had just gotten a fright - that was all. Kakashi held her close to him. "Show yourself."

Leiko appeared in front of him in a poof of smoke.

"Leiko-chan?"

"Hmph. She really is a wimp." She retrieved her kunai and tucked it into her belt. "Where are you two going, Kakashi-kun? You didn't say 'hi' to me this morning."

He frowned slightly at her, and then glanced back at Oyo. "That's none of your business."

Leiko snorted. "Sheesh, I thought we were friends (or more than that)."

"We are friends. You're just not friends with Oyo." Kakashi lifted the unconscious girl up. "Now, if you would excuse me. I'm taking her back home."

She watched him turn away from her and walk casually back to the village. Leiko frowned. "Kakashi!" She called. "I don't get it! What exactly does that girl have that I don't?"

He turned round slightly. "A heart."

"Whu - ?" She said, eyebrow raised.

"Your heart." He murmured, "Oyo's heart is different than yours a lot. She may act intolerable and rude, like as if she really hates me, but inside, I know that she really likes me a lot, not depending on looks, but personality."

Leiko gawked at him. "What the hell are you talking about?" She launched her shuriken at his feet, but he stepped over it. "Kakashi! Come back!" She wailed desperately. "No-one's ever resisted me! Not my 20 boyfriends! I have a record, you know! No-one ever dumps me! Kakashi! Come back! I still have a batch of Prawn Bisque to give you!"

He didn't turn round. "We weren't even dating, and I don't like French food either."

She looked at him silently, her forehead protector falling down over her eyes. I guess he's… different than the rest of the guys I've dated…

He ignored Leiko who had stopped yelling his name and entered the village. Well, so much for getting her things. At this rate, she'll never wake up.

He set her down on the ground, and patted her cheeks gently. She whined and swatted his hand away, then opened her eyes. "Ah...What just happened?"

"Oh. A kunai almost cut the side of your head and you fainted."

She shrieked and checked the side of her head. She realised that her sunglasses were broken and strands of her precious hair was cut. "My hair (!) - My sunglasses (!)."

"Hey, the hair will grow back. I already told you - You look better without the sunglasses." He said, putting his hand into his pockets. He watched her rise up steadily, and helped her.

Oyo didn't look at him, but she still blushed slightly. Crap.

"Well, you seem okay now." He observed her and she stared back at him morosely. "Let's get your things again."

"WHAT? I was almost killed back there!"

"Don't worry." He smiled at her – the eye curling. She flinched. "I'll protect you." And he placed an arm over her shoulder and drew her close to him. "No-one will ever you if I'm here. That's a promise." Then he added a sleazy look to his face and she paled.

"Eurgh… I don't want you to protect me. I want Naruto-kun… or even Sasuke-kun… at least I trust them more than I trust you…"

He pretended to be sad with this remark, yet Oyo ignored him. They eventually reached the temple – it was rundown and extremely derelict. "You live here?" He said unbelievably.

She nodded. "Just at night time though." She added a cheesy grin.

They entered. It was damp – the straw on the ground was filthy and it smelt a bit weird. A few rats scuttled by. "Funny… " Oyo said as she sniffed the air. "It feels a lot cleaner than it had before."

Kakashi thought. If Oyo had been living here – had she even had a bath? He eyed her cautiously.

"A bath? Yeah, I have – there's secret hot springs over there behind some bushes, and I can even wash my clothes too."

He let out a breath of relief.

Oyo collected her stuff from the slab of rock near a statue of a god – a fishing rod, some pickled-preserved fish and duck eggs in an onigiri-keeping tin buried under a slab in the mud, a pair of worn out shoes, the trench jacket, the hat, some old newspapers, a towel, two toilet rolls and some planks of wood. He gestured to the wood.

"You… won't be needing that."

She frowned and dropped them from her arms. "Can I keep the eggs though? And the fish?"

He nodded. "Sure."

A Few Days Later, at the Ramen Stand…

"NE! What do you mean Hana-chan likes girls?" Sakura asked, totally gobsmacked. She stared at Kakashi, who was reading a new volume of Icha Icha Paradise, brought to him by courtesy of Hana-chan herself as a token of 'thanks'.

Naruto gave a hoot of laughter and rolled around in his stool. "Hah! Take that Sakura-chan!"

"Kakashi-sensei!" Sakura moaned at him. "Please tell me you're joking!"

"Sorry, but that's what she told me, Sakura-chan."

"But you two were so perfect together!" Sakura protested.

Sasuke sneered and clasped his hands together. And to think… even Leiko has told me that Kakashi doesn't like her.

With this news, Naruto smiled and tightened his forehead protector around his head once heard that news. "Then we know who the winner is!" He whispered to Sakura and Sasuke.

They both didn't look at him, and instead, looked the opposite direction of each other, frowning. Oyo came in with their ramen bowls. "Oh, what's going on here?"

Naruto grinned. "Congratulations, Oyo-chan!" He said happily to her, shaking her hand.

She blinked; this time she had no sunglasses: since they were still broken (she spent a few hours mourning over them in Kakashi's home). "Ah?"

He whispered into her ear. "We know already, you and Kakashi-sensei – "

Kakashi looked up slightly, upon hearing his name being mentioned. "What?"

"Never mind them." Sakura said, and then she offered Oyo and Naruto (mostly Oyo) a small smile. Kakashi shrugged and continued reading his book.

Naruto continued whispering, "– living together. He told us everything this morning."

Oyo flushed as she set the bowls in front of them. "Nani, Naruto-kun? We're just friends."

"Just 'friends'?" Naruto pressed on.

"Naruto, leave her alone." Sasuke said.

"Che, what do you know?" Naruto sat back in his stool, and Oyo silently thanked Sasuke, who smirked at her.

Ooh, he's a bit creepy…. Sure, he oozes 'cool', but his demeanour… scary…but cool. She smiled back at him.

"Oh yeah, we have a surprise for you, Oyo-chan." Sakura said happily, apparently, still recovering from the truth about Hana-chan. She elbowed Naruto, and he eventually remembered.

"Ah… here it is." He took out a small box from his pockets… and presented it to Oyo.

She blinked, and then looked at him. "Huh? A gift? That's okay, I don't – "

"It's from all three of us." Sasuke interpolated.

The whole team was thinking, Actually, it's from Kakashi-sensei. We don't have that money.

"Go on, open it." Kakashi said to her, smiling. He couldn't wait for her reaction.

Oyo looked at them all, bit her lip and bowed gratefully. "Thanks, I-I don't know what to say." She took it from Naruto carefully, and opened it, then gasped and smiled, looking back at them.

"A new pair of sunglasses?" She smiled gleefully at the team, and then pinched Sakura's cheek gently, then Naruto's, then at Sasuke who didn't seem to like it, but stayed calm anyway. He couldn't help but smile awkwardly. It didn't hurt at all. "You guys are so sweet; I'll let you have a free meal today, all of you."

"Oh, don't thank us, you should be thanking – "

Kakashi smacked a hand over Naruto's mouth before he could say anymore.

Oyo was busy admiring herself in a mirror at the kitchen with the sunglasses, but she didn't prop them over her eyes, she sat them on top of her head properly so they wouldn't fall off, and came back out. "I think I like it better sitting there, don't you?"

Everyone nodded.

Kakashi observed her the whole time… and then, his glance landed on Naruto.

Naruto… just what have you been planning all along?

Meanwhile… a Few Hours Later…

"Mmmmm…." Oyo said, licking her lips as she placed her pickle-preserved fish on the chopping board, about to behead itand cutit up into little slices to cram beside the rice in her bento forlunch, until -

"AAAAAAAAAARRRGGGGGHHHHHHHH!"

Oyo almost chopped her hand off. Furious, she held up her fish and the knife, and ran into the counter, about to slap the person (who had given her such a fright) across the face with the fish. She stopped when she saw a familiar person. "Naruto! What's wrong?"

Naruto and Hinata ran up to her. Naruto looked ghastly, eyes widened, teeth bared, he looked terrified. Hinata looked the usual.

"Kakashi-sensei!" Naruto spluttered helplessly.

"What about Kakashi?"

"He-He-He-He-"

"Spit it out!"

"He-He-He-"

"Argh, I don't need you, I'll ask Hinata-chan." She turned to the silent girl beside him.

"He's in trouble…" Hinata replied shakily.

"What!"

"Hewentfishingandhefellintotheriver!" Naruto said quickly.

"What do you mean he fell into a river!" She screeched back at him, she looked at her fish and just momentarily tucked it into her belt – then, grabbing his shoulders, she shook him to and fro. "TELL ME, GODDAMNIT!"

"Andicanthelphimbutyoucansogoandhelphim!" Naruto replied unsteadily once Oyo let go of him; His blue eyes swirling in their sockets. Hinata helped him regain his sense of balance.

"Which river? What way, Naruto-kun?"

He was sweating. Oyo was completely buying it. He pointed meekly (as told to), to the east. Oyo ripped off her apron and stuffed it behind the counter. "Ayame-chan! I'll be back soon! Naruto, Hinata – lead the way! Come on, go, go, go!"

Naruto and Hinata began running. At the same time, he was thinking; wouldn't Oyo think twice to think if Kakashi knew how to swim? Or how he could even 'drown' with a mask on anyway? Oyo was totally into this (!). Or maybe… Kakashi-sensei had taken off his mask…? Naruto smirked – he could now see his sensei's face! He led her to the supposed river in which Kakashi had fell into, and watched Oyo scurry around like mad –

"KAKASHI!" She yelled – her voice echoed around in the quiet woods.

He observed her. She really did…. Care about Kakashi, a lot. Even if she says she doesn't. He turned to Hinata, who was obviously thinking the same way; they both looked at each other and smiled.

"Naruto?" She turned to him. "Where did you last see him?"

He pointed to a really secluded area, and watched her run towards it, before running back out with Hinata. There, they met Sakura and Sasuke.

"Urgh, I can't believe Kakashi-sensei even dragged Hinata-chan into this." Sakura said.

"Well, he does seem to trust her more than the dobe." Sasuke replied.

Naruto clenched his fists.

"Did she buy it?" Sakura asked, quickly changing the subject.

The blonde boy nodded. "Totally."

"Well, that's our part done. Let's go back." Sakura said. "Hinata-chan?"

The violet haired girl looked at Naruto. Sasuke had already made his way back. "Sakura?" He called once he realised that the pink-haired girl wasn't following him.

Sakura called back to him, "Wait, Sasuke-kun, Naruto – "

"Sakura-chan!" Naruto smiled. "You can go first. I want to go back to check on them. Hinata-chan, do you want to come with me?"

"Sure…" Hinata smiled back at him, Naruto gave her his hand and they both quickly rushed back to the scene.

Back to Oyoshi…

Oyo looked around as she parted some branches away from her view. "Kakashi?" She called again. This was a very weird place to fish. The water was particularly deep nearer the middle, where she found a fishing rod, a piece of black fabric… and a familiar book floating beside it……

"OH MY GOD!" She screamed as she picked it up, then she dropped it in shock. "Kakashi's book! AIIEEEE! He must be in serious trouble!"

(Superhero-styled music plays) Oyoshi to the rescue (Not)!

She found a silver blob floating somewhat in the middle of the water, and immediately leapt into the water, and began shivering. Ee gawd! The water was freezing! She doggy-paddled over to him (swimming wasn't one of her best hobbies) – Kakashi was floating upside down, face lying in the water – he was in a dead man's position. For some reason, it seemed so comical; yet, she grabbed him by the collar and dragged him back to the surface. It was hard as well – considering Kakashi's weight over her once she dropped on the riverbank with his unconscious form draped over her.

She coughed and spluttered, then rolled out from beneath him. "Kakashi?" She said groggily.

No response.

Oyo eyed his back wearily while he lay face down on the bank. She noticed that there was nothing wrapped around his neck – he wasn't wearing the usual turtleneck under the jacket – which meant – eep! He didn't have his mask on! And Oyo quickly ripped a rough piece of fabric from the sleeves of her flimsy yukata, and quickly tied it around her eyes.

Kakashi could hear her fumbling around. What was she doing? Oyo blindly touched him – found his arms and moved him so his back on the ground. He opened his eyes – darn, his plan wasn't working. Oyo had deliberately blindfolded herself so she wouldn't see what he looked liked. He sweatdropped – she can't be that determined not to see his face, can she?

And how long was he going to fool Oyo into thinking that he had 'drowned'?

Flashback…

Having Naruto cornered in the empty classroom of the ninja academy, Kakashi's shadow covered Naruto's small form and he gazed down at him, "Naruto. Answer me. What have you been doing? I know all this was a set up."

"Hey, it wasn't just me! Sakura-chan and Sasuke done something too!" He pointed to Sakura and Sasuke in the corner, who quickly looked away innocently (well, Sasuke glared at Naruto). Kakashi also glared at Naruto. "Okay, okay. K-Kakashi-sensei. It was all my idea, I-I thought you might wanted a woman in your life so – " He looked at Sakura behind Kakashi.

"You dolt!" She whispered. "Don't tell him everything just yet!"

Naruto glanced back at his sensei and smiled cheesily at him. "Urgh…. I tried to set you up with Oyo-chan."

Sakura and Sasuke looked at Naruto, and then at Kakashi, who had gone quiet. "You… did?"

"Hai, Kakashi-sensei, don't hit me!" Naruto (sarcastically) pleaded, dropping to his feet in front of his sensei.

"Naruto! You – You – "

He braced for impact.

"You've done the most wonderful thing ever!" Kakashi exclaimed and he enveloped the blonde boy into a bone crushing hug. Naruto blinked.

"Huh?"

"Sakura-chan, you too, Sasuke, come over here. I want you guys to help me with something..."

End Flashback….

I never knew Kakashi-sensei could be so diabolical… Naruto thought, and he ran back with Hinata to find Oyo sitting beside Kakashi's body, her ear to his chest. They stopped running when Oyo held a hand up.

"Oyo-chan…!" Hinata cried faintly. She put her hand over her mouth.

"Is Kakashi-sensei alright?" Naruto asked. He tried to run towards them to see Kakashi.

She immediately turned blindly to where she thought Naruto and Hinata was, and looked to her right (when he was at the left). "Naruto-kun! Don't come any closer! He's still breathing… thank god."

Naruto remembered his lines (which Kakashi told him to say) once Hinata nodded at him. "Ano… maybe you should do – " He glanced at his palm where some words were written on it. "Uh… CPR?" What the heck is that?

"No." She said calmly. I can't do that to Kakashi whilst he is in this unconscious and helpless form without his mask. I cannot take advantage! And Naruto is also here… (The authoress at the side is giving her a weird look too).

Naruto blinked. What was she waiting for? Hinata was staring with slightly widened eyes.

"I have a better idea. Naruto, Hinata, step back." They hastily did so. Now what was Oyo doing? "I learned this during my survival training back in my village; Kakashi, breathe already, damn it!" And she clenched her fist, and punched him in the chest repeatedly.

Kakashi immediately jerked. "Argh! What are you doing, Oyo-chan?" He wheezed at her. Noticing that he had blown his cover, he flopped back down quickly.

"Kakashi? Naruto, Hinata, is he awake yet?" She asked. "I'm sure I heard him say something…"

If Oyo wasn't sitting at the side of Kakashi's upper body, Naruto could see his sensei's face…. But he could tell that Kakashi was still pretending to be knocked out. "No."

"Kakashi. Wake up."

No response.

"Don't make me punch you again."

Still nothing. Oyo turned to Naruto and Hinata, Naruto shrugged at her and ran off, Hinata tailing him closely. "Naruto? Naruto? Are you still there? Hinata-chan? I trust you! You can be my eyes – Hinata-chan?"

No response from Naruto or Hinata either (that's because they left!). She sat back and huffed, feeling around Kakashi's upper torso just to see if he was breathing or not – thankfully, he was okay. "What is up with people these days?" She turned round, trying to hear if anyone was still there.

Kakashi decided that this wasn't going on how he had planned. He had deliberately taken off his mask just so Oyo could see him maskless without him having to unmask in front of her, but she had been witty and wily too and had tied a blindfold over her eyes. He had the feeling that maybe Oyo didn't want to see him at all…. But still. He got up and grabbed her tightly from behind.

She screamed. "Kakashi?(!)"

"Thanks for saving me, Oyo-chan."

Somehow, she felt duped. The way how he had said that… it felt… fake… forged, false. Her eyebrows furrowed under the blindfold. "You jerk! That was another scheme of yours, wasn't it?"

Oh, so now she gets it.

She struggled feebly. "Let me go, you evil jerk! I have to go to work!"

"No way, not this time, I won't let go no matter. We need to talk."

"About what? Why don't you go and talk to that pretty woman? You seem very close with her."

"Who, Leiko-chan? No, I don't like her."

"What about that other woman? The one I threw the sponge at by accident."

"Nope. I don't like her either. I like you, Oyo-chan." He prodded his finger at the middle of her forehead and she squeaked.

Then she fell silent. "Wh-What?"

"I like you, Oyo-chan."

Oyo paled. Oh my god! "Shut up." She said wobbly. "SHUT UP!" (sighs, she's always saying that) Then she clasped her hands over her ears in a desperate bid to block out the sound. But it echoed in her mind.

I like you, Oyo-chan.

You, Oyo-chan

You.

"Come on, Oyo-chan. I know you like me as much as I like you. Why must you prolong the inevitable? And I'm right in front of you, maskless and everything. We're alone. You can tell me everything."

Darn it, she thought this was too mushy to come from Kakashi's mouth. She reddened and turned around to him, feeling thankful she was still blindfolded. This actually made her feel less embarrassed. "No, I don't like you."

He frowned. "Then you like Gai?"

"No."

"Then you like Iruka?"

She remembered who this Iruka man was, he sometimes came with Naruto only to the ramen stand; he was a chuunin, and also a teacher in the ninja academy. He was pleasant and all, but not what she was looking for.

"No."

"Then what about Asuma?"

Oyo remembered this man too; he had a mane of hair framing his whole face and head and a cigarette that puffed steam into her face each time she served him before pointing to the 'No Smoking' sign at the corner of the ramen stand. He reminded her of a gorilla for some reason, yet he was gentle and nice to her.

"No, and will you stop asking me these questions? Is it 20 questions or something? No, I don't think so, so give it a rest - !"

"Then you like Naruto?"

"No!" She growled. The only way to get Kakashi off her back was just to confess… But she didn't want to –

"Sasuke?"

"NO!" She shouted furiously, that's it. He had pushed her far enough! "Okay, I admit. I do like you. But – " Suddenly, she felt relieved, but still - Oyo clamped her hand over her mouth to stop any forbidden words to spill out from her (just in case she becomes careless).

"What?" He said, beginning to grin.

Oyo looked down and took her hand away from her mouth. "Okay, okay… Just… why do you like me? I'm immature and everything, I turn every man off and I'm not worth looking at. I've been put in jail and all that stuff. Heck, I even broke out of jail. What would people say… if they found out, and if I was with you…. What would they say?"

"I don't care what people say." He lifted up his sopping wet Icha Icha Paradise book.

"... Really?"

"Yup. You're so fascinating, Oyo-chan. You're different than everybody else. You're nice and friendly, not to mention weird but I like that. I can't understand that."

He thinks I'm nice? Pffft! She grinned foolishly, and then he grinned as well. "Wait." She stopped grinning. "How do I know if you'll be faithful?"

"Haven't you met Pakkun yet? My Summoning no Jutsus are all dogs; that shows you just how loyal I can be, just like how dogs are loyal to their masters." Kakashi replied firmly. She frowned. Darn, he had a point. "Now… how do I know if you'll… be faithful to me?" He grinned at her again (if only she could see, sighs).

Oyo made a look at him under the blindfold. "Uh… I can't flirt?"

"Hmm, that's very true."

She punched him hard – well, she attempted to, and ended up punching thin air as he dodged her blow with ease. She fumed, "I can change that!"

"Oh, really? I know your personality very well, Oyo-chan. You can't flirt at all, can't present yourself properly to others nor can you speak up in public without shying away or wetting your pants."

Oyo looked down. "That's not true– especially the 'wetting pants' thing! But I admit… I'm afraid of crowds… You don't know everything about me just yet." Is he trying to make me feel like an idiot again?

He raised an eyebrow. "Tell me everything about you now."

"Well…." She started, jabbing at his chest with her finger playfully, still looking at the floor, "You can find out yourself. You still have the rest of your life to find out more about me, and I have the rest of my life to find out more about you." Then she got up and dusted herself, "So…Now that we have discussed this matter, I'd uh… better go back to work. Kakashi, are you coming?"

"Sure. Aren't you going to take off that silly blindfold?" He stood up beside her.

"I don't want to see your ugly face." She said light-heartedly, sticking her tongue out.

He rolled his eyes as she continued ranting.

"It's probably better if I didn't see you without your mask, because, why, you ask? Well, it might have two effects on me. If you really are ugly, I don't care if another woman likes you. If you're beautiful like Gai (he rolled his eyes again), then I'll forbid you from walking around town without a mask on in case a woman falls in love with you – in case they go like "WHOOPEEE! It's Kakasheeee!" down the street and I don't want that happening- "

He rolled his eyes once more at her typical statement, then took hold of her shoulders, and spun her around to face him.

She continued. " – as you know already, no other man seems to look at me much, except Gai. Oh yeah, I'm joking about the Gai part by the way, in case you get jealous. I don't want that happening, although it might be common that I'll get jealous over any woman who even glances at you from the corner ofthe eye - "

He lifted the blindfold up over her eyes. This time, he had done it too fast that she hadn't had the chance to recoil and shut her eyes.

Kakashi smirked at her. Got her now!

She gaped at the him, and her eyes just… glued onto his face. She was sure she had heard heavenly music playing, and a white light shining down on him… very strange… and also…was it hot in here, or… was it just her? She gulped, croaked and swallowed, trying to get a word in edgeways but all she done was open her mouth, and close it, open it… and close it. And she didn't open her mouth again. Oyo became silent, in fact, she became so silent - that her face became blue.

"Oyo! Breathe!" He shook her fiercely before she suffocated.

She took a deep breath and stared back at him with widened eyes. "Oh. My. God; It's… It's worse than I thought! You're – "

Silence.

"You're hideous!"

More silence.

He frowned.

"Only joking!" She said happily, and then she used her fist to bonk him gently on his skull, over his tufts of silver hair. "You didn't really believe me, did you? Oh, come on, you'd know by now how much of a joker I am."

He turned away from her, and she waddled over to him to look at him, he turned away from her again. "Gomen… did I hurt your feelings?" She asked him softly, with a pout; she put her hand on his arm but he shrugged it off. Darn, never knew he was sensitive.

"Yes." He fake-sobbed, not looking at her. "I want you to make it up to me."

She blinked. "How…?" I've got a bad feeling…

"With a…. kiss…" He replied deviously, turning back to face her – another one of his famous slimy looks on his face to match.

She smacked him in the shoulder with a glare, not caring whether this time she had hurt him this time or not, "N-No way!" She screamed at him, getting red in the face. Then she ran back down the path to the village, with Kakashi tailing her in hot pursuit. Of course, this all was just one silly game of cat and mouse – right? No - Oyo didn't think so. She was screaming her head off and waving her arms frantically as she tried to head for home base (aka the ramen stand).

"Get back here, Oyo-chan! I want that kiss!" He yelled joyfully, and extremely loud too. It was echoing all over in the woods, and some birds flew out from their trees into the sky.

Damn, she thought. If I don't kiss him, he'll be tailing me all over town and at the ramen stand demanding that kiss. I'll never show my face around town! She stopped, and waited for him to catch up. When she realised that Kakashi wasn't there, she cocked her head to the side. "Ne? I thought he was – ah, well, who cares? At least he's gone…" She turned round, only to find something clamped around her right ankle.

It slithered up to her calf as she froze. The only things that were in this forest that would slink up was - "SNAKE!" She screamed and squeezed her eyes shut, and fell back, trying to shake her leg free.

"Oyo-chan, it's just me." A (way too) familiar voice taunted warmly at her.

Oyo stopped screaming and flailing her leg around, then opened her eyes. Kakashi emerged from under the ground just centimetres away from her. She stared at him with her mouth agape. He shook off his dust and dirt and smiled once he let go of her leg.

"Got you." He whispered into her ear as he wrapped his arms around her, nuzzling his face into her neck warmly. She shuddered uncontrollably at his affection, yet, she was trying to not to grin like mad – it was just too much.

I could get used to this. She thought, looking at Kakashi and then thinking back to how a cat cuddles up to its owner. "H-How did you do that?"

"Never mind, you're not a ninja so there's not much use of me explaining it to you. You wouldn't understand anyway." He replied, sitting on his haunches in front of her. Oyo was stuck sitting on the ground.

She frowned, shook herself out of his grip and got back up. She looked at him slyly as a small smile lit up on her face, Kakashi got up as well. "Okay, Kakashi. You 'caught' me - you want a kiss? You got it."

He immediately bent down.

"Wait."

"What?"

"How do I know….. if you aren't a clone?" She asked.

He rolled his eyes. "Do you really think that I'd miss out on this opportunity and let my clone have all the fun?"

She coughed, and Kakashi leant forward again.

"Eh - " She stopped him before his lips attached onto hers, "Close your eyes first."

"Why?"

"Just do it, or you won't get a kiss at al!" She hissed, attempting to throw her fist over his head again, but he caught her arm and put it behind his neck. Then his other hand scooped her around the waist and she let out a dodgy, surprised squeak.

She swallowed.

He closed his eyes.

Oyo bit her lip and began to sweat.

Now… How was she going to do this?

Her prayers were answered… when she found something behind her back… she was fingering the pickled-preserved fish which had been hidden in her belt for some time…. And she lifted it up to herself, and then she looked at Kakashi with his eyes closed. She snickered to herself quietly.

Hehehe… I am so evil!

"Pucker up, Kakashi!"

And Meanwhile…….

Naruto and Sakura were giggling insanely at the pair just a couple of feet away from them, as they hid behind a bush. Hinata didn't feel like looking, and Sasuke… he just stood against a tree with his eyes close (the visible sweatdrop there).

"Ne, if only they weren't standing so far away, and if Oyo-chan wasn't standing with her back to us, we could finally see Kakashi-sensei's face." Naruto complained.

True, Oyo was almost as tall as Kakashi, they could only see Kakashi's eyes and the rest of his head… just not his lower half of his face… and that was it. Perhaps they would never ever get to see Kakashi's face? They all watched Oyo protrude out the fish forwards, and seemed to have leant forward to get a better look. Apparently, Oyo did lift the fish up and –

Naruto burst into another fit of laughter, almost wetting his pants as he watched the scene progress. Oh, but what was this? Oyo brought the fish back down as soon as Kakashi opened his eyes again. She looked to the side, quickly hiding the fish in her sleeve, and then she turned back to him, and used the other sleeve to wipe at Kakashi's lips (if only they could see, sighs). They observed Kakashi's surprised reaction, before Oyo grabbed him by the chin and kissed him herself. They guessed it was just Oyo making up for Kakashi having to kiss the fish. It lasted for some seconds, before Kakashi fell back, and they both landed into a bush, legs sticking out.

Naruto and Sakura laughed again, Hinata was bushing like mad, and Sasuke just looked away with a small sigh.

"Sasuke-kun, don't you think that's the sweetest thing you've ever seen?" Sakura swooned again as they continued to watch.

"Feh." Naruto replied for her. "Sasuke has no feelings. I told you Oyo-chan and Kakashi-sensei would go together, nihihihi…"

Sasuke frowned to himself. "You just got lucky, Naruto."

"Aww, are you jealous?" Naruto taunted. "Now that I'll get all the credit?(!)"

Hinata smiled awkwardly. "Naruto…"

Sakura bonked him for Sasuke. "Don't get cocky there, Naruto. I'm sure Kakashi-sensei will get too caught up to think about giving us credit anyway, even if they do make a good couple. What do you think, Sasuke-kun?"

The Uchiha folded his arms again over his chest and looked to the side, yet his eyes werefocused on Kakashi and Oyo."Bah…They're just idiots in love."

A Week Later…

Leiko had made a sudden decision to move out of the apartment upstairs from Kakashi's to go travelling by herself ('soul-searching' as she described it) and left Konoha at the harbour just three days ago. Hana went with her lover and continued her part time job at Ino's flower shop, constantly meeting up with the gang and Kakashi, still talking about Icha Icha Paradise, which had been upgraded to a new version called Icha Icha Violence by Jiraiya, which had even more higher ratings than the first one.

Oyo just remained working at the ramen stand – she was too attached to the place to give up her job, even though she didn't like the old man very much. Kakashi never made her angry or cry anymore. She allowed him to continue to read Icha Icha Paradise as long as he didn't read it aloud at night, and as long as Oyo stayed away from them. To retaliate, Oyo began reading a new book called 'How to Treat Your Man Like a Dog', and also began writing a new book during her free time, called 'Hatake Kakashi Traits', although her new book was about a scarecrow and a farm girl; Her new found inspiration coming from long hours of observing the characteristics of a certain individual.

Naruto still got free bowls of ramen for the rest of the days in Konoha. Sakura continued to get the best Knowledge and Understanding grades out of the three, and still crushed on Sasuke, who still got the best Enquiry Skills and Physical Being skills, still being crushed on by Sakura and Ino and apparently as recent poll surveys had said – most of the female nin in every village who were his age. Hinata was still good friends with Naruto even though she still liked him, and Gai, his student Lee, along with the rest of their team would visit them at the ramen stand. The rest of the other jounins plus Iruka would also come for a treat and often annoy Kakashi about him and Oyoshi finally being together…

Kakashi had asked the landlord to lend the apartment Leiko moved out of to Oyo to live for the moment until she earned enough money; Oyo decided she would just live above the jounin for temporary. Since the building only consisted of the two houses, it just felt as if Kakashi and Oyo lived together. – they could both just go out to their balconies, Oyoshi at the top level, Kakashi on the ground floor, and talk like that. Her house remained furniture-less because she always went to Kakashi's house instead and often stayed overnight in a tent she put up in his living room. With a female's touch around; Kakashi's home became an animal sanctuary for injured wild creatures (Gai and Lee would occasionally bring squirrels over). Whenever he went to a mission for several days with the team she would miss him madly and wait for him. But when he came back it was like happy boo and egg on toast; they both began dating even though they never said they were yet they hung around together whenever they received the opportunity. Kakashi and Oyo lived happily ever after in Konoha with Naruto, Sakura and Sasuke - that is, until Oyo's moany mother decided to meet her new son-in-law….

The End!

It's finished! Yay! Thank you to all who reviewed (bows) and I'm glad you've enjoyed 'Idiots in Love' – to be honest, I think I've sort of ended it at a cliffie and I might write another one to it - like a short sidepiece, but until then, ja ne!