A/N: My god! It's an update! I'll grant you that it's very short but it is indeed such a rarity these days! I'm really sorry that I haven't updated in ages! But I have had exams and lots of crap to do recently. And I had writer's block. And I'm far more interested in my other story Cathartik right now because I like that one more. Sorry.
Disclaimer: I own nothing whatsoever. The lyrics in here belong to their respective artists.
After the incident at the karaoke bar, Gaara was even more determined to bring his father to justice. Perhaps, he reasoned, if he could just make his father pay for his crimes, then he could banish any sense of guilt he still carried. Sometimes, even though he knew it was stupid, even infantile, he found himself somewhat resentful of his friends. They didn't have to wage a war on their own parents; they didn't still feel guilty for their mother's suicide; they didn't know what it was like to be abused, day after day, for the majority of their life. As petty as it was, Gaara felt misunderstood and hard done by. But at the same time, he felt truly pathetic and sad for being such an angsty teenager. The combination of these emotions was infuriating, and Gaara found himself becoming tenser and tenser every day.
The only person who could really relieve Gaara's built-up frustration was Neji. With a single embrace, he could have Gaara calm and compassionate once again. But when Neji wasn't around, he became distant, apathetic and scornful. It was beginning to grate on Haku's nerves.
"Gaara, if you're going to behave like a moody teenager, you may as well just go and sit up in your room. I really don't have the energy for it," Haku informed Gaara wearily after Gaara had made another comment about how annoying Naruto was being. Gaara turned to face Haku with a blank face.
"I'm sorry to be such a burden that you don't have the strength to deal with," Gaara replied bitterly. Haku muted the television and turned to face Gaara properly.
"Gaara, I know everything in your life is quite difficult right now, but don't you dare take it out on us," Haku's eyes were sharp and analytical, and it was as if the boy could see Gaara's every thought plastered on his face.
"You're right, I should go scream into a pillow, or go for a long run, right?" Gaara smiled quite unpleasantly at Haku, who stared coolly back.
"Oh, grow up," he snapped irritably. "You've been through a lot of shit in your life, but get over yourself. You're not the first person to feel misunderstood, in fact, every teenager feels that way at some point. I've been quite calm and reasonable about this whole business recently, because I know you're having some difficulties in life, but even I have my limits. Either start behaving like a mature adult, or I'll put you into a coma; it's your choice." Haku turned the volume back on the TV and turned away from the redhead. Gaara fumed at how he couldn't even reply now, as Haku had clearly ended the conversation. He settled for storming out of the room and slamming every door on the way up to his room.
Once there, Gaara grabbed his iPod and turned it on, looking for some sort of song to calm his nerves. How dare Haku say that bullshit to him?! He had no idea what Gaara was going through! Where did he get off pretending like he understood?! No one understood! Not Haku, not D'gani, not Zabuza, not even Neji! He was completely alone, with no help. Nothing and no one could even reach him. He was alone. And it was with these thoughts that Gaara began to cry. He cried silently, with no great wracking sobs or shaking. He merely curled into a ball, music blaring and tears falling as he tried desperately to release his pent up anger. The frustration of being unable to control his emotions; the anger at himself for being so pathetic; the almost painful desire to be warm towards his friends once again; the yearning for a cure, all of this came spilling down Gaara's cheeks.
After what seemed an eternity of hot tears streaking his face, Gaara finally stopped weeping and took note of the song that was playing on his iPod. It was I Know It's Over, originally by The Smiths, but this one the cover by Emilie Autumn. He truly felt the words for some reason. They were not especially relevant to his current situation, but he still connected to them deeply. When the song was about a third of the way through, Gaara felt someone lay on the bed next to him and then curve their body until it fit to his own foetal position. The familiar warmth and scent embalmed him in happiness as the other sang along with the song blasting Gaara's ears.
"It's so easy to laugh; it's so easy to hate,
It takes strength to be gentle and kind.
Over, over, over, over
It's so easy to laugh; it's so easy to hate,
It takes guts to be gentle and kind," Neji crooned softly as Gaara snuggled backwards into his comforting embrace. This was the place Gaara wanted to be right now; surrounded by his love; his life; his Neji. "I've heard you've been quite grumpy recently," Neji murmured after the song ended and Gaara's iPod had died from low battery. Gaara laughed at the summarisation of all his angst as grumpy.
"That's quite the euphemism in this situation," Gaara replied nonchalantly. Neji smiled against Gaara's neck where his face was nestled.
"I think the others might just agree with you on that," Neji concurred lightly. "I just don't get why I'm spared from this nasty Gaara. I've never seen, even for a moment, a side of you I didn't like. It makes me kind of jealous of the others; they get to see you like I never have." Gaara rolled his eyes. That was so like Neji to want Gaara to be mean to him, just so he could prove he loved every part of his redhead.
"Bloody masochist," Gaara responded gently. Neji chuckled and drew the other boy closer to him, placing a relaxing pressure over as much of Gaara as he could reach.
"But, in all seriousness," Neji continued soberly. "Can you explain to me what has you so upset? I need to know who to massacre." Gaara knew this was meant as a joke, but still it disturbed him just a little. Only because he knew Neji would massacre anyone for hurting him. Whilst terribly romantic, that idea was more that slightly ludicrous, let alone illegal.
"You can start with me," Gaara replied self-deprecatingly. Gaara felt Neji frown into his skin, but spoke again before his lover could protest. "I've been quite revolting the past week. I was self-involved, apathetic, sulky and scathing. I also have only washed my hair once in all that time, so it's starting to get greasy. And the reason for the former, and perhaps the latter, is that I feel weak. I feel weak and scared and helpless. I can't help but worry about the trial with my father, even though it won't go ahead for another two months. I still feel guilty about the fact that I couldn't stop my mother from killing herself, even though I know it's not really my fault. I feel alone and vulnerable and misunderstood. But most of all, I feel angry and frustrated with myself for being such a hormonal teenager."
"You're not weak," Neji said firmly. "You're one of the strongest people I've ever met and anyone who tries to say otherwise is an idiot, especially if it's you." Gaara grinned widely at this and felt Neji do the same.
"Gee, thanks," Gaara replied sarcastically. "I feel so much better now that I've been ruthlessly mocked by my boyfriend. I'm shocked at you, Neji. Shocked!" Neji snorted and Gaara felt a warmth pass between them that had nothing to do with how closely together they lay.
"Why'd you have to go and make things so complicated?" Neji asked with a sigh and mock severity. Gaara froze, paralysed by fear. "I see the way you're acting like you're somebody else gets me frustrated. Life's like this you, you fall and you crawl, and you break and you take what you get, and you turn it in to...Honestly, you promise me I'm never gonna find you faking. No, no, no." Gaara leapt away from his boyfriend as if he had been burned.
"Were you just singing Avril Lavigne?" Gaara demanded furiously. Neji laughed and sat up, resting on his hands and knees. Gaara had, by this point, backed himself away to cower in the corner of the bed by the window with the wall behind him. Neji slowly began to crawl towards Gaara.
"Hey, hey! You, you!" Neji whispered as he slowly made his way closer to his redhead. "I don't like your girlfriend! Hey, hey! You, you! I think you need a new one!" Neji stopped within reach of Gaara and leaned back on his heels, rocking his hips outrageously. " Hey, hey! You, you! I could be your girlfriend!" Neji pounced on Gaara who squealed and began to giggle uncontrollably as his boyfriend commenced to tickling him.
"Ah! No...Hahahahaha! Stop it! Nejiiiihehehehehehehe! Fwahahahahahahahaha!!!" Gaara, it transpired was incredibly ticklish. Neji, it transpired was a sadistic tickler. Thus an hour was lost, until Gaara couldn't move and Neji relented, satisfied with his efforts. The brunette pulled his lover on top of him and held him close, gently stroking his hair.
"It really is getting greasy," he said at length. Gaara laughed and playfully slapped Neji's chest.
"That's the second time you've mocked me. I'm starting to get an inferiority complex." Neji merely chuckled and squeezed his redhead closer. "What am I going to do? The only time I'm happy is when you're around, other times the pressure just builds hugely and I can't control it at all! I'm not even explaining things properly." Neji kissed the crown of Gaara's head warmly.
"Why don't you just think about what makes you happy? Whenever I get angsty about stuff, I think about you and listen to music. That always makes me feel better," Neji frowned in thought for a moment before continuing. "Then again, seeing as you have dealt with so much over the last few weeks, maybe the only solution for this problem is for me to be with you...all the time." The last three words were whispered softly, yet resounded with hidden seductions. This was all the invitation Gaara needed; he fell upon Neji's lips hungrily; desperately. Neji returned Gaara's need with his own passion, as they tore each other's clothes off and entwined their naked bodies together.
Their sex was slow, loving and soft. It was also desperate, passionate and lusty. And with Neji all around him, Gaara felt himself let go. He let go of the anger and resentment of his friends. He let go of the guilt that tore at his soul. He let go of all the weights in his life and just felt. He felt Neji inside him, around him and with him, full of love and carnal expression; one form desperately needing; the other willingly providing. This time, no tears fell. This time, he expelled his angst and pain through a much louder method. Gaara laughed. He laughed and laughed and laughed until all of his apathy, scorn and frustration just flew out the window, leaving serenity, compassion and love in its place.
"So, feeling better, are we?" Neji enquired as they lay naked together on the bed, exhausted but content.
"Much, thank you. I think I owe some people an apology...but I really don't want to move," Neji gently stroked his lover's cheek and smiled.
"You don't have to, my love. You're not alone, and we're not going anywhere. You can stay as long as you want." And with those comforting words, the two fell into a well-earned slumber.
Later that night, D'gani was forced to sleep on the couch downstairs as no one was quite sure if the two lovebirds were decent or not. Naruto had gone to check, but had returned blushing furiously and muttering about an invasion of his innocent vision. Nobody was quite brave enough after that to ask Neji to leave. Or at least put some clothes on. What a pervert.
A/N: I think I need to work a little on my ending of chapters. But oh well. Hopefully i'll be able to write more soon, for anyone who cares.