A/N: Hello all, I bring you a Christmas fic to get into the spirit of the holiday's. Based on the twelve days of Christmas, however my version is a bit backwards. Can you figure out the identitiy of the mysterious gifter?

Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto

First Day

It was a mere twelve days until Christmas, and yet Sakura couldn't seem to lift her spirits from the peeved state they were in currently. She wasn't being a very good shopping companion, she knew, but it wasn't her fault Ino had dragged her along.

"There are only twelve shopping days left before Christmas, Forehead! There isn't much time!"

Sakura rolled her eyes at the panicked blonde; it was as if Ino thought the stores would all just close for good on the 25th. She really hadn't wanted to go, and she had said as much to Ino earlier.

"It's not like I have anyone to buy for," Sakura said grumpily. "I've already gotten your gift and Tsunade-shishou's, and Naruto and I already worked out Kakashi-sensei's gift. Sasuke said he didn't want anything but I got him something anyway, as well as Sai. It's not like I have to get anything for Naruto seeing as how he's on a mission."

It wasn't that Sakura wouldn't get Naruto a gift merely for being absent however, it was just his usual request was for a date with her which he sort of needed to be present for to receive.

Luckily for him, Sakura had grown out of the notion that going on a date with someone meant instant marriage. Anymore she was rather happy to grant her teammate this wish because it was an easy solution to the whole gift issue. She wasn't particularly good at picking out presents for her boys; anything she bought for them seemed to get destroyed quite easily or she later received as a re-gift.

If all Naruto wanted was his favorite food with his favorite girl then she would of course grant him that.

But because of a sudden mission, it seemed this year would be different. Sakura felt her mood souring further just thinking about this, which Ino seemed to notice for she looked at her friend with raised brows.

"Won't he be back in time?"

Sakura snorted and pretended to be interested in the clothes wrack in front of her and replied doubtfully, "No, this mission is supposed to take over three weeks."

Taking out one item, Sakura glared at the orange shirt before forcefully returning it to its spot.

Ino shook her head. "It's not his fault he was given a mission. You know Naruto, I'm sure he was looking forward to Christmas with his Sakura-chan." Winking, Ino scrunched up her eyes and gave a fairly close impersonation of Naruto.

Sakura didn't seem to find it funny however as a pink eyebrow ticked in annoyance. "Very funny Pig," she said dryly. "But at least with Naruto here I have someone fun to spend the holidays with."

This of course the real reason she was upset.

She just needed a friend to drink hot chocolate with, and make fun of all of the couples that seemed to pop up around the holidays, and someone to sing Christmas carols with at their sensei's doorstep.

She needed someone to just…be there.

It didn't necessarily have to be Naruto. No, no, almost anyone she was really close to would do. It just so happened that everyone else was usually predisposed.

For instance, Ino would spend the holidays with Shikamaru. Sasuke liked to ignore holidays, while Sai just didn't get it. Tsunade would spend the holidays with…her sake. And then of course Shizune would spend the holidays with Tsunade and the sake because someone had to be the adult and make sure the Hokage didn't do anything too foolish.

Really, Naruto was the best choice because he enjoyed this time of the year and he would not be busy with boyfriends or sake or drunk Hokage's. At least she hoped not.

No Naruto meant no mistletoe pranks, no surprising Kakashi-sensei at odd ours in the morning with gifts, no Christmas boxers that Naruto shamelessly wore only during the holidays, no…fun.

Sakura ground her teeth. He would have to take that mission! He probably didn't even realize how long he'd be, that baka! Well fine, I'll show him! I'll have a wonderful Christmas and be sure to tell him all about it when he gets back!

Oh yes, that was a good plan.

Dark thoughts still swimming in her head, Sakura decided she had had all she could stand of Ino's fierce shopping and told her friend she was going home.

"Fine, go on then," Ino replied with disinterest, flapping a hand towards the pink haired kunoichi. "Your heart really isn't in it anyways, and I can't have you holding me back!"

Sakura stuck out her tongue and the expression was returned by Ino before she turned on her heels and left.

On the way home Sakura tried to plan ways to salvage her holiday time. She still had a few days of work left which would keep her busy, but after that things were up in the air. Perhaps she should call around and see who was hosting holiday parties. That could be fun, or at least she hoped it would be. The least it would do was take her mind off of an absent hyperactive ninja.

Nearing her apartment, Sakura looked to see there was a box sitting on her doorstep. Fishing out her keys, Sakura unlocked her door and brought the box inside. Setting it down on her kitchen table she felt herself lighten considerably. Who didn't like to get packages in the mail?

Tearing open the lid, Sakura found a bouquet of flowers and a note. From what she could tell the flowers were a mix of roses, daises, and lilies, and they came in pinks, reds and yellows to make a very cheerful looking arrangement.

Taking up the card she opened it excitedly, wondering if maybe her parents had sent her a Christmas bouquet. But what she read made her frown in confusion. The note held only three lines of text that read:


On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me…

12 friendly flowers

Flipping the card over, hoping to find more on the back, Sakura was disappointed to find it was blank.

No name had been given.

Bringing the bouquet out of the box, Sakura held it under her nose and breathed in the fresh scent of the flowers.

"You wouldn't be trying to trick me would you, Ino-pig?" Sakura said thoughtfully, a smirk on her face. Ino did work at a flower shop after all. It would be just like her to try a prank like this; try to get Sakura's hopes up over some 'admirer' only to rub it in her face later.

That Pig, I bet she thought it was really funny trying to trick me! Well, I'm not going to let her get the best of me.

As Sakura prepared a vase and set the flowers inside, she had to admit it was a beautiful bouquet, and it had managed to bring a smile to her face for the first time since she had said good bye to Naruto two days ago.