Dislcaimer: I do not own Naruto. If I did, Orochimaru would rule their world.

Author's Notes: I want to apologize for how long it's taken me to get this chapter done. There were some problems with my computer, and in the end, I lost a lot of documents, including the entire fanfic. I hope you'll keep reading, and forgive me for the huge delay!

Chapter 8: How to Deal With Awkward Situations

Tayuya had always liked to claim she was heartless, so when the heart she supposedly didn't have nearly stopped the next morning she kept it to herself. There wasn't a trace of Kimimaro anywhere in the campsite. Silently, she crept over to where he'd been sleeping. Clearly, he had been gone for some time now.

The girl swore quietly and sprang up to the branch of a tree to get a better view.

"That bastard…." She hissed. "He did a damn good job of covering his tracks." Not quite good enough, however. She spotted a faint sign of his passing a few yards ahead, and darted after it

As the trail went on, it became easier to follow. Tayuya credited it to the fact that he was probably growing weak again. A body could only be pushed so far past it's limits.

"C'mon, it's not that big a deal! Don't get so nervous." Anko smirked playfully.

"A-Anko-san! I don't feel very comfortable about this…" Iruka protested, trying to squirm away.

"Chill out. You're not going anywhere." The jonin purred. "Not until I get what I want from you." She had a tight grip on the teacher's wrists, preventing him from escaping.


"You're getting pretty excited over this. Is it that important to you?"

"Yes, if you must know!" Iruka snapped. He knew he was blushing, and it made him feel even more uncomfortable about the entire situation.

"Oh, but you can trust me." Anko said sweetly. "It'll be our little secret!"

"No means no." The chunin answered firmly. "Now let me go!"

Outside the door of the apartment, four kunoichi were scarred for life.

"So….is this what they've been doing while we were gone?" Ino asked in disbelief.

"M-maybe we should stop them….Anko-san sounds l-like she's…um….v-violating Iruka-sensei in there!" Hinata whispered. She had covered Orochimaru's ears a few mintues ago, not that he would understand anything anyway.

"I thought he would've been able to defend himself, but…….nothing else makes sense..!" Sakura agreed, blushing terribly.

"Okay…..on the count of three…." Ino said, placing her hand on the doorknob. "One……two….three!"

"God, Iruka, just tell me how you got your scar—" Anko was cut off suddenly when the door slammed open and the girls burst in.

"What do you think you're doing to Iruka-sensei?!" Sakura screeched, startling both adults.

"Sakura!" Iruka said, shocked. "What are you talking about? What are you four doing..?!"

"And this is why I wish you guys would just cool it and think things through before barging in." TenTen sighed.

"C'mon! You heard what it sounded like!" Ino snapped, embarrassed.

"But obviously it wasn't what it sounded like." The brunette shot back.

"What did you think it was?" Anko asked, raising an eyebrow.

"Nothing. It was a mistake. I'm sorry for their behavior." Tenten apologized.

"It's alright. But in the future…just knock, okay?" Iruka sighed.

"Konoha……is that where he is…?" Kimimaro said softly. Every now and again he felt small traces of his master's chakra coming from the village. His condition forced him to stop briefly. No matter how badly he wanted to continue searching, if he didn't stop to catch his breath, he would probably die.

He was not, however, expecting any kunai to fly past his head. He automatically dodged, and whirled around to see his attacker.

"You fucking idiot!" Tayuya growled. "What the hell were you thinking?! Do you realize you could've died?!"

"Oh? Are you that worried about me?" The young man asked, smirking slightly.

The kunoichi blinked for a moment, completely caught off-guard by his comment.

"Of course not, you dumb shit!" She yelled. "I couldn't' care less about you! But if you die, Orochimaru-sama won't let us live either. I'm doing this for my own good!"

"Of course." Kimimaro smirked, but let the subject drop. "I can sense him in the village."

"Orochimaru-sama? But why wouldn't he have come back when he planned?"

"I'm not sure, but his chakra is very faint…" The male said, frowning. "Something doesn't seem right…."

"You're the leader. How do you want to handle this?" Tayuya asked, scowling at him.

Kimimaro fell silent for a moment, thinking over their options. The best choice was probably to go get the others first. However…

"You and I are going to search the city. But be careful. If you get injured, we'll lose any hope of finding him. And trust me, Tayuya. You don't want that to happen." He gave her an icy glare, making it very obvious what would happen if she wasn't careful.

"I got it. Get off my back." Tayuya snapped. "Let's go already."

"I didn't think they would ever leave." Anko sighed as she sat down on the couch.

"They're a lot better with kids than I expected." Iruka agreed. "But…maybe a little too helpful." It had taken the two upper-level ninja (and TenTen) over an hour to get the girls to leave. Now Orochimaru was fast asleep in his crib, and the adults were taking advantage of the extra moments of peace.

"It's strange, don't you think?" Iruka commented, looking thoughtful.

"What's strange?" Anko asked, feigning interest.

"That it's so peaceful."

"Well, the girls probably wore that brat out. He's probably tired." The jonin shrugged.

"No, Anko-san, I mean the village. We have one of the strongest criminals of the shinobi world in our care. The rest of the world probably thinks he vanished. Especially his followers. Why hasn't there been any movement yet? You would think they'd be searching for him…"

Anko sat up slowly. Iruka had brought up a good point.

"I'm not sure. Lord Hokage would've told us right away if his followers were looking for him anywhere near the village."

"And I'm sure they'd come here eventually." Iruka continued. "So why haven't we seen anyone yet? I don't' like this…"

"I can't believe those idiots.." Kabuto growled, glaring at the empty spots Tayuya and Kimimaro should have been in.

The other three ninja stayed quiet and out of his way. None of them wanted to be on the receiving end of his wrath.

"Pack up and get moving." The medic ordered sharply. "We have to find Kimimaro-kun. That's the top priority right now. Got it?" He turned to glare at them.

"Got it." Kidomaru frowned.

Author's Notes: Wow…short chapter. Sorry everybody! After losing the whole fanfic, and the huge delay, I was really close to just never finishing up. But then..people kept asking me to. And I felt kind of bad just leaving it, so I typed up this chapter. I guess it's sort of just a reminder that I'm still alive and typing over here. - And I'm not letting the story die yet. Please forgive the huge delay, and review!