Title: Dancing Partner.
Genre: General – Romance.
Pairing: SasuIno. Others.
A/N's: This is new idea that occurred to me.. It'll be a multi-chapter fic, so look forward to the next chapter.
Also, please review but no flames.
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto, and sadly, I never will -.-
Summary: Sasuke is back on the village, and to welcome him back, Naruto organizes a party. The problem? You have to get yourself a date. What will Sasuke do when none other than Tsunade tells him that succeeding is the trick to being accepted back in the village?
The trouble started suddenly, and unexpectedly.
Everything was looking just fine; better than he would have hoped. But as always, something just had to happen. Or actually, Naruto always had to make it happen.
Really, he never asked for his help, and the reason was because he knew damn well that his ideas were always the worst of all—even when the blonde thought they were genius.
That morning, he had already been expecting him; after all, he came everyday, and this one was special. Three days, three more days and he would be out of that hell called Konoha's Secret Interrogation Departments Confines.
So, when the blonde barged in through the door and the two Anbus that usually guarded him left the two alone, he didn't show an ounce of surprise. Nor did he when he saw the extremely bright grin that the boy was wearing, or the odd glint that his blue eyes had.
But he certainly almost had a heart-attack when the blonde finally told him what he had come to say.
"Sasuke-teme! I have great news for your sorry-ass!"
Naruto sighed, narrowing his eyes and glaring thoughtfully at the ground, his hands folded at his thighs and his thumbs moving together in an almost Hinataish-fashion.
The blonde woman who was calmly sitting in the seat behind the desk merely looked at him fixatedly, studying every little detail in the boy's demeanor and appearance, taking in with most worry the dark circles under his eyes, and the worried creases that were starting to become permanent in his brow.
Sighing just like Naruto had done mere seconds ago, Tsunade leaned towards the blonde, placing her elbows on the desk and supporting her head on her hand.
"What do you want me to do?"
Naruto's brow furrowed even further, but then he raised his head. His determined and sorrow-filled blue eyes meeting Tsunade's golden ones.
"Anything. Anything would be better than this," he replied gloomily, his orbs shinning with contained sadness. And then, his voice lowered an octave and his eyes focused on the ground once again. "It's been two months already, and Sasuke is still in there. He's coming out soon, and I don't want him to face what's waiting for him outside." slowly, his fists clenched, and he closed his eyes. "No one seems happy to have him back, no one seems willing to forgive him. And I don't understand! How come they can be such hypocrites? They used to love him, for heaven's sake! He used to be the golden child of everyone in Konoha! How come they can't remember that anymore? How come they can't give him a chance?!"
Tsunade merely sighed once again, not at all surprised by Naruto's outburst. She was already expecting it, she had been all along. It was just a matter of time before Naruto finally realized what was truly going to happen when Sasuke came out of Konoha's department, and she already knew that when he finally found out, he wouldn't like it at all. She knew he would react like this.
"You've got to understand them, Naruto." She started, looking at the red-polished nails of her left hand with mundane interest.
"How can you ask me to do that?! They aren't giving him a chance! They just don't want to! They used to love him, damn it!"
"And that's exactly the reason why they're acting like this," The woman calmly stated, cutting him short before he got too hot-headed and out of control, like he used to all those years ago. Sighing inwardly, Tsunade decided that it was time to start taking things seriously and finally diverted her eyes from her nails and placed them onto Naruto's angry form, "They used to love him, like you yourself said before. They used to have him on a pedestal, used to see him as a prodigy and sympathized with him for the tragedy his family went through. They saw him grow and become strong, they saw him succeed, and they always supported him from the sidelines, always doing their best to be nice to him, always respecting him. And then, what does he do? What does he pay them with?
"He stabs them in the back; without any kind of consideration, without any kind of regrets. And really, can you blame them for being bitter about him?" She looks at him for quite a long time, letting her words sink in his brain, before adding, slowly, "You know how that feels better than anyone else, Naruto."
Once again he lowers his eyes, gulping dejectedly, but looking a lot calmer than he had been just seconds ago.
It was almost a full minute after Tsunade's words that Naruto spoke again.
"...And that's why I can't understand them, old-hag." She merely raised one eyebrow in slight amusement, getting a hold of herself instead of jumping on him and beating the crap out of his young body for even daring to call her such a thing. "He betrayed me, he tried to kill me. But I forgave him, I welcomed him back. I'm willing to forget and leave everything behind," he raises his head, and his eyes are deep and full of sorrow, just like his voice, "Why can't they do the same?"
After a few seconds, Tsunade spoke again, her voice softer but just as steady and commanding as it has always been, "Because not everyone is as big-hearted as you, Naruto."
The both of them lapsed into a peaceful silence after her truthful words, deep down, both of them knowing that they were true; not everyone was like Naruto, not everyone could forgive and forget just as easily as he did, and that was a sad fact that he would have to come to live with.
The woman diverts her eyes from the sunny blue-sky that shone brightly through the window, and places them onto her favorite shinobi. "What?"
Naruto's eyes are shining with determination, and his mouth is pressed onto a firm line before it contorts into a slight smile, then widens into a semi-grin.
"…I have an idea."
Raising both her eyebrows in surprise, the blonde leaned back in her chair, "An idea?" The boy sent a nod in her direction, and she arched her eyebrows further, slight interest present in her expression, "And that is…?"
Naruto waits a couple of seconds, before grinning openly, "A party."
This time, Tsunade blinks with utter surprise, "A party?" She echoes, not really understanding Naruto's idea.
"Yeah, not quite like a festival but kind of like a dance!" The Kyuubi-vessel exclaims, excited, and sends her one of his brightest grins, "Let's give him a welcome party! I'm sure that will have to make everyone gather together, and then they would realize that he has changed, and they will love him just like they used to all those years ago!"
It was ironic, really, that he out of all people seemed so eager to have Sasuke regaining his position as Konoha's favorite child; after all, he used to despise that aspect of the black-haired boy's life—Tsunade thought with mild amusement. But then smiled inwardly. It was true; friendship could do the weirdest of things to someone.
"So, what you're suggesting is that we lure everyone to accept him back, by making an event that would show them that he's worth the village's trust again?"
Naruto merely grinned, the excitement present in every inch of his face, "That's exactly what I'm saying! Do you think you could do it, baa-chan?"
"Well… I guess I could." Tsunade smirked at seeing Naruto's shout of victory, "After all, Konoha needs an excuse to be happy; we haven't had any celebrations since I was made Hokage."
"But, Naruto, there's also something that I'm thinking on doing…"
The boy paused in his animated dance, and looked at the blonde woman who was smirking at him from across her desk.
"… Let's organize a dance, yeah. But what's a dance without dates?"
Almost two minutes after Naruto had finally finished his excited relate, Sasuke was still looking at him from his seat at the window-edge. His obsidian eyes slightly widened in surprise and his eyebrows shot up so high that they were hiding under his raven-bangs.
"Well? What do think? Aren't you happy, teme?!" Naruto chose to ask at last, noticing the boy's lack of response.
At being faced with such a stupid question, Sasuke could do nothing but close his eyes; his left eyebrow starting to twitch with obvious annoyance, his fists clenching at his sides.
"Are you stupid, dobe? No, forget I asked that; of course you're stupid, but just how stupid you were I was never be able to imagine." Was Sasuke's annoyed answer, to which Naruto finally opened his blue eyes and stopped grinning, instead choosing to glare at his dark-haired friend.
"What the hell are you trying to say, Sasuke-teme?! I'm here trying to save your ass and you insult me!"
"I never asked you to save my ass. And if this is your way of saving me, then I'd rather die and be forsaken in this dammed place, dobe" The ex-avenger's tone was dead cold, and his glare was piercing Naruto's skull in a way that actually made the blonde slightly nervous.
"Don't say that, Sasuke." the blonde's eyes narrowed dangerously, but he didn't do anything else "This is the best way to do things, believe me."
"I don't care what the best way is, Naruto. I have never liked parties, and that's not something that's going to change anytime soon," Sasuke's eyes narrowed as well, "The last thing I need after all this damn time inside this hell of a place is a stupid dance, and much less one with dates."
Naruto looked at him intently for a long moment, his narrowed eyes steadily placed upon Sasuke's glaring ones, "Well, you don't have an option in this, teme. If you don't want to put any effort from your part, then I'll have to do it for you."
"The party is a fact, and there's nothing you can do about it." He added, cutting Sasuke off before the boy could be able to throw any remarks. "Now I gotta' go, I have to announce it to Sakura-chan and the others; I'll need help in arranging the dance," were Naruto's words before the blonde made his way to the door, opening it and giving Sasuke one last glance from above his shoulder, before closing it behind him.
"I'll come back later, teme."
Faced with silence and with no blonde to glare at, Sasuke could do nothing but narrow his eyes and lower his head, content with glaring at the ground instead.
The door opened for the second time that day, and Sasuke raised his eyes from the window to find none other than Tsunade closing the extremely heavy iron-door behind her with apparently little to no effort.
"I heard that you didn't like Naruto's idea too much." Was her stern salute, and Sasuke could do nothing but roll his eyes.
"So the dobe already went to you with the notice?" Tsunade merely snorted slightly at Sasuke's tired tone of voice.
"There's really nothing you can do to change it, kid. I already made my decision, and once I make it, there's no turning back." Said the woman, choosing to ignore Sasuke's previous comment and looking at him through amused eyes instead.
Sasuke sighed, rolling his eyes again. He hated it when she called him kid. Maybe that was the reason why she did it—no, in fact, that was the reason. He just knew she did it to annoy him. What a pain. "I don't want to go."
"Oh, but you are going." Tsunade was taking an odd pleasure at seeing the welling frustration of the boy in front of her, and she wouldn't stop whenever she was having fun with something; too bad for Sasuke that this time his irritation was the source of her fun. "This dance is in your honor, and you can't just decide to not show up."
"I can." Sasuke challenged, meeting her eyes with his obsidian ones.
"No, you can't." But his eyes didn't have the experience that hers held, and his opinion and whishes didn't have the priority that hers did; he was fighting a lost battle, and he knew it, but he just couldn't bring himself to back off. "You are going to that dance, and that's an order; you were accepted back as a ninja of Konoha against many people's better judgments, and you live under my rules, and you respect my wishes."
"And you going to this dance happens to be my main wish as of now" Her smirk only grew when she saw the glare that Sasuke was sending her way. "Understood?"
He took his precious time, probably cursing her and damning her to death inside that psychotic little mind of his that she still couldn't quite understand completely. But she already knew what his answer was going to be, so she waited for it with calm patience, taking sweet pleasure with each second Sasuke's mental torture prolonged.
"…Yeah." he murmured under his breath at last, not even his low-tone of voice being able to dissimulate the underlying anger behind his words.
"That's how I like it." Giving the angry and frustrated boy a wide grin, the blonde turned on her high-heels, "Point made, I'm going to go and take care of other things…"
"…I'm not going to take a date, though."
His new statement stopped the golden-eyed Hokage dead on her tracks, and painfully slowly, she turned towards him again finding the boy looking at her with his brow furrowed in clear stubbornness.
She chuckled under her breath, before bursting out into a laughing fit that had irony written all over it, and that made Sasuke furrow his brow even further, "Oh, kid, you never cease to amuse me." Brushing fake tears out of the corner of her eyes, she went on. More seriously this time, "I believe you don't properly understand what I just told you. You live under my orders, and this dance is with dates. Having you assisting to it is just the less important part."
Sasuke blinked a couple of times, before narrowing his eyes, folding his arms across his chest in a stubborn pose that reminded the woman of Naruto himself, "What do you mean?"
"I mean, Sasuke," Tsunade started, unfolding her arms and placing her hands on her hips, "That there's a reason of why I want you to take someone to that dance."
Lifting one slim eyebrow, the boy send her a questioning glance looking mildly interested in whatever it was she had to say.
Tsunade seemed to think it over, before choosing to explain herself; there was no point in hiding it from him, anyway. She was sure he would notice it, or maybe he knew it already. He wasn't as naïve and aloof as Naruto thought he was. He was no idiot. "I'm sure you already know that not much people want you here."
No reaction crossed Sasuke's features, but his eyebrow went down again. "You will not be treated nicely when you get out of here, and I'm actually doing you a favor at keeping you confined here. But I can't do that forever, and once you get out of here you're going to be screwed, boy."
His eyes narrowed, and he diverted them from hers, choosing instead to glare silently at the floor. "What has that to do with getting a date for the stupid dance?"
"Oh, it has a lot to do with it, kid. You see, if you find someone to go with, you'll be able to show them more easily that you have changed; if it is really true that you have, then welcoming you back will be easier."
He stared thoughtfully at the ground for a while longer, before speaking, lowly, "What makes you think it'll be so easy?"
"Oh, I'm not thinking it'll be, I'm not fooling myself, kid. I know it'll be hard, but it certainly will ease things up a little, and that's always a plus for the position you're in." She calmly explained, once again admiring her left hand's red-polished nails.
Once again, his response didn't surprise her.
He was an intelligent boy, even if he made all those mistakes before. He was weighing his options, that much was obvious from his expression.
At last, he spoke, sighing before grunting with obvious annoyance.
Once again, Tsunade turned around, slightly waving a hand from above her shoulder to say goodbye to the boy. "Alright then! Things settled, I'll be going!"
But just as she was opening the door, Sasuke's voice reached her ears again, making her stop.
"And how I'm supposed to do to find a date confined in this four walls?"
He hadn't even finished asking his question, when she was already walking again; her snickering response traveling towards him just as the door was closing behind her.
"That's your problem; the dance is in a week, you better have your date by that time."
Narrowing his eyes, and softly punching the wall at his side in frustration, he cursed loudly.
The door opened for the third time that day, several hours after the buxom woman left; which gave Sasuke enough time to think things over.
He was getting out of that room in three days, which meant that he would only have 3 days to get himself an appropriate date to go to that damn dance with. Something that, right then, seemed close to impossible.
Maybe before, when he used to be the most popular boy in all Konoha, it would have been as easy as breathing; he would only have to raise one finger and almost all the female population of the village would be there, lining up for him to make his choice.
But right now, after everything that happened, he would be lucky if he even got one of those girls to look his way again.
A fact that left him with only two options, which he didn't need too long to realize.
One of which was now standing in front of him, giving him a sweet and polite smile.
"Hi, Sasuke-kun! How have you been?!"
Asked the smiling girl, and Sasuke gave her a nod in appreciation of her worry.
After thinking about it for a while, he concluded that asking her to accompany him wasn't such a crazy idea; after all, she had been his teammate for more than a couple of months, and she was one of the few people that he could still trust. Besides, she used to have a deep crush on him all those years ago, and she was more mature now as well.
Also, she was one of the few girls that he saw frequently those days, and that along all the other things that he already mentioned before would make her the most rational option.
So to hell with it.
"I'm glad," Sakura said, smiling still, before pulling one of the two chairs that were in the room closer, placing it in front of his seat by the window and then sitting herself comfortably. "You're going to get out of here really soon, Sasuke-kun, aren't you excited?"
So yeah, maybe he didn't have any romantic interest in her whatsoever, but she was his friend and he was sure that he could ask her a favor without her misunderstanding.
"…I guess." The girl seemed pleased with his answer, because she widened her smile and opened her mouth, probably going to dwell further onto the subject. But Sasuke cut her short, mind set to go straight to the point and get it over with once and for all.
"Have you already heard about the dance, Sakura?"
The pink-haired girl blinked with surprise for a moment, before nodding her head, changing her surprised expression for a weary smile, "Yeah… kind of. Tsunade-sama told me a couple of things about that subject; heh, it's an interesting idea, isn't it?"
"Not really." Sasuke answered honestly, before quickly stopping Sakura from speaking again, "Do you know it's with dates?"
Sakura looked surprised for a moment and then diverted her eyes, focusing them on the wall above his head, before nodding quietly. "Yeah... that's what I've heard."
Sasuke looked at her for a couple of seconds, before sighing tiredly, bracing himself to ask her the one question he never imagined himself asking anyone—much less her out of all people. "Do you want to go with me?"
He sees the way she roughly raises her head, and sees the way her eyes widen and lay upon his, and then he hurries himself to explain his proposition a little better; "Tsunade told me that I have to get a date for the damn thing, and I thought you could do me that favor."
Her eyes slowly go back to their normal size once again, and Sasuke relaxes inwardly, glad to not have her misunderstanding his intentions. But then, to his surprise, she diverts her emerald-orbs once again, and a slight blush starts to color her pale cheeks.
"I... I'm sorry, Sasuke-kun… but I can't."
This time, is he who wants to blink with surprise, but he refuses the sudden urge and instead finds himself arching one eyebrow at her in amusement.
She understands his unspoken question, and blushes even deeper.
"I… there's someone I want to go with..." Is her quiet answer, and amusedly, Sasuke observes the way her lips curve up into a soft smile, and her eyes take in a dreamy look that he hadn't seen in her since her academy days.
And instead of feeling surprised, or frustrated at having one of his two options blown up, he couldn't help but feel curiosity welling up in him at seeing his childhood friend wearing such a look.
"Who?" He asks even though he has a good idea, and there's amusement present in his voice. Sakura looks startled for a second, as if she was waking up for a dream and just realized for the first time that he had been there all along; she then blushes embarrassedly.
"I.. y-you'll see later! I gotta go, Sasuke-kun!" She said hurriedly, quickly getting up and placing her chair away, almost running over on her way to the door. When she finally reached it, she turned towards him, giving him one last smile while still looking just as flustered.
"Sorry for not staying longer Sasuke-kun! But I have to go to met Ino and the others! Bye!"
And without even waiting for his answer, she closed the door behind her, and Sasuke could hear her hurried footsteps getting fainter and fainter as she made her way down the hall.
Alone again, Sasuke couldn't help but smirk. He had the slight feeling that he already knew who this person Sakura was talking about was…
And he allowed himself to chuckle amusedly upon thinking that possibility. But the chuckle and any mirth that could have welled up in him due to his private joke slowly died when the true consequences of what had just happened settled down on his brain.
He only had one option now.
…Damn, he hated having to depend on someone.
I hope you guys liked it, and please don't forget to review!