This could be considered as a sequel to another one-shot I've written, entitled "Someone Other Than Him." It could stand as its own story, however.
I've had a lot of requests for a sequel to S.O.T.H, so I thought why not? Enjoy!
Warnings: OOC, more fluff than usual from this particular author.
Standard Disclaimer Applied
It was a beautiful, clear, sunny day in the hidden village of Konoha.
The flowers were blooming, the birds were chirping, everyone was enjoying the wonderful afternoon…
Well…everyone except for one certain very loud blonde, who just happened to be currently causing an enormous racket inside Ichiraku Ramen.
Eighteen year old Konoha shinobi Uzumaki Naruto was shaking his head vigorously from side to side, pausing occasionally to give his best 'I can't believe you' look to his best friend seated beside him, fellow Konoha shinobi Uchiha Sasuke. "I mean, you've always been Mr. Cool, Calm, and Collected, and all of a sudden, I hear you've snatched yourself a girl? And what's even more shocking; you know who I hear that girl is? Sakura-chan! My Sakura-chan!"
"You'll get over it soon enough," Kiba, who had also accompanied the boys, gave Naruto a firm whack on the head. "Everyone could tell it was going to happen sooner or later." He paused, and sneered. "Well…everyone but you."
"Not fair!" Naruto whined again, pouting much like he did when he was twelve, and crossing his arms over his chest to show his disapproval. "It's too sudden! Not to mention, what's going to happen to Team 7? There'll only be Sasuke and Sakura, Sakura and Sasuke, and Naruto will disappear!"
"My, what's all the ruckus here?" an amused Kakashi entered the ramen shop. "I could hear your complaining all the way down the street.
"Sasuke-teme and Sakura-chan are—" the blonde shuddered. "—are dating!"
It took a few moments for the words to register, but when they did, Kakashi had to take a step back from the shock, and then the corners of his eyes began to crinkle, and everyone could tell he was smiling under his mask. "Really now?"
"Gaara told me himself!" Naruto cried in dismay. "He was leaving for his meeting with Tsunade baa-chan and he saw them on the street and he told me they were—were—" Another shudder. "Hugging!"
Naruto would have continued with his ranting if Kakashi, as well as Kiba, had not burst out laughing.
"This is just too wonderful," Kiba was clutching his stomach. "Uchiha Sasuke—hugging? I guess wonders never cease to exist!"
"So, Sasuke," Kakashi took a seat next to the silent Uchiha and gave him a congratulatory pat on the back. "Is it true? Were you and our dear Sakura-chan….hugging, based on what Naruto is saying?"
"I'm leaving," Sasuke grunted, before standing up rigidly from his seat and marching out the store. He was never accepting another invitation to Ichiraku's Ramen from that idiot blonde ever again.
Behind him, Kakashi, Kiba, and Naruto watched with stunned faces, until…
Kiba leaned into Kakashi. "Do you think…he was blushing?"
A snort. "Definitely."
More bursts of laughter.
And then one very annoyed voice from one very peeved blonde, "This isn't funny!"
Outside, Uchiha Sasuke was storming away back to his household. It would be hours later before he would truly sit down and replay the conversation just held in the ramen shop. It would be then that he would truly realize what Naruto had said.
Sasuke and Sakura…
…I kinda like the sound of that.
Not far away from Ichiraku Ramen, a group of girls were currently huddled together in the backroom of Yamanaka's Flower Shop.
"Wait, so you're saying he told you he was jealous?" Ino, daughter of the owner of said shop, couldn't contain her giggles. "Uchiha Sasuke specifically said that he was jealous of Gaara because you were showing him around town?"
Haruno Sakura, seated across the table from her best friend, could only nod meekly has she tried to hide her blush.
"Wow," Tenten, famed weapons specialist, leaned back in her seat. "That's amazing. To think he'd say that. So let me get this straight, in a 'moment of insanity,' as you put it, you decided to hug him to reassure him that you only had feelings for him. And then, much to your shock, he actually embraced you back and you two stood there for a good five minutes in that posture."
Again, another nod.
Tenten and Ino exchanged glances, before smiles began to form on their faces.
"So, does that mean what I think it means?" Ino leaned forward in anticipation, Tenten copying the action.
"Duh, silly," Tenten winked. "You're dating Uchiha Sasuke. Congrats."
Now this piece of information almost knocked Sakura out of chair. "W-where'd did you get that idea? It's ridiculous!"
Ino frowned. "How is that ridiculous? According to what you just told us, you revealed your feelings for Uchiha Sasuke and he returned the feelings without hesitation. Therefore, I would say the reasonable conclusion out of all this would be that you two are now an official couple. I mean, I had already begun to hear from the village gossips that you two were an item and everything, but I dismissed that as rumors. Who knew it was true."
"B-but—"Sakura was speechless. "That's impossible! There's no way Sasuke would…no way he would…it can't be…" she trailed off and lowered her gaze to the ground.
Ino and Tenten watched with worried expressions.
Sakura took a moment to gather her thoughts. When she looked back up, her eyes were sad. "Sasuke and I hugged. That's all we did, and I highly doubt it will lead to anything. I know Sasuke-kun, and he's the type of person that would dismiss what we did by the next day. There's no point in getting high hopes for something that isn't gong to happen."
"Besides, I like the way our relationship is right now." She smiled. "We're friends, and I don't want to jeopardize this friendship by reverting back to the fan girl I was all those years ago."
"Are you sure about this?" Ino asked. "I mean, perhaps if you talked with him, you would be able to—"
Sakura cut her friend off with a shake of her head. "I'm not going to take that risk. Uchiha Sasuke and I are not dating. Now about those rumors you heard, Ino, I would like it if you two tried your best to put them down before they get out of hand. If the gossip reaches Sasuke, who knows how he would react."
"If you say so…" Tenten seemed reluctant, but she soon nodded in agreement. Ino mirrored her gesture. "I'm not so sure about your decision, but if that's what you want, we have no right tell you what to do."
"Thanks," Sakura smiled gently, a bitter smile, and rose from her seat. "I've got to go now. Thanks for the tea, Ino. I'll see you guys again sometime soon!"
The two watched as the pink-haired kunoichi exited from the shop.
"You think she made the right choice?" Ino looked at Tenten.
"No…" Tenten shook her head in disappointment. "But like I said, I'm going to respect what she's chosen and do as she requested." She gave Ino a sharp look. "I expect you to do the same."
A wistful sigh. "Yeah."
Inuzuka Kiba was on his way to meeting with the rest of Team 8 when he heard voices coming from behind a group of trees.
"I don't know where you've heard this junk, Neji, but I'm telling you that Haruno Sakura is not dating Uchiha Sasuke. She told me herself."
Curious, Kiba snuck a peek to see what was going on, only to see Hyuuga Neji and Tenten. Neji was leaning against a tree, and Tenten was sitting under a human dummy filled with various kunai in critical areas.
"Seriously," Tenten scoffed. "I always thought you were above all that gossip stuff."
Neji's eyes narrowed. "I was merely confirming whether or not this information was true. Am I at fault if I am curious once in a while, too?"
Tenten rolled her eyes. "You're only interested because this concerns Uchiha Sasuke, aren't you? Well, I'll tell you once again, that Haruno Sakura and Uchiha Sasuke are not in any sort of relationship other than teammates and friends. Sakura told me only about an hour ago at Ino's shop. Whatever rumors that have been going around Konoha are all rubbish, you hear?"
Neji grunted in reply. "Enough talk. We should begin training once again."
From his hiding spot, Kiba quickly backed away. So everything that happened this morning at Ichiraku Ramen's had been false? He couldn't believe it. I wasted an entire morning believing that crap.
He would go meet his team, and after, he was going to go have a little talk with a certain blonde.
At least Naruto won't have to worry anymore.
"He's left." Neji deactivated his Byakugan. "Are you satisfied now?"
"Yes, very," Tenten gave him her best smile. "Thanks a bunch, Neji."
"Tell me why you wanted me to play along with your little act again."
"Well, I assumed that if rumors about Sakura and Sasuke had reached your ears," she ignored Neji's scowl at this, "then the rumors must have reached ears like Inuzuka Kiba's. And now that he knows the truth, I'm betting that he'll surely go tell that Naruto."
"We wasted training time doing your silly little stunt," Neji's scowl went deeper.
Tenten stuck out her tongue. "Well, Gai-sensei and Lee are late anyway."
"Hmph. They're probably running 1000 laps around Konoha or something."
The sun was setting, and night was quickly approaching.
Sasuke stood outside the Hokage's office, having just handed in the report for his completed mission. He hated being assigned tasks like this, where the level of skill needed were far below his ability. But he wasn't completely trusted yet, so for now, simple jobs such as these would have to suffice.
Great, just what he needed at this moment…not. Holding in his annoyance, Sasuke turned around to see just what he expected, a grinning fox-boy bounding towards him. So I see his bad mood has disappeared…quicker than I estimated.
"Guess what, Sasuke?" Naruto smiled. "Kiba told me everything. Sorry for being such a pest this afternoon. I mean, if you had just cleared the whole mess up sooner, well, then I wouldn't have to have worried so much, you know? But then again, I suppose if it were true, I wouldn't really mind anyhow, now that I've thought about it."
"Sakura and you are my best friends so I want you guys to be happy and everything. But I guess I just felt that I was being left out of something important, missing out. It's always been the three of us…well, maybe the three of us and Kakashi. But now I'm just blabbering. Besides, it isn't even true."
"Naruto," Sasuke cut him off. "What exactly isn't true?"
Naruto blinked. "Don't act stupid, Sasuke-teme. You and Sakura-chan aren't dating."
What? "And where did you hear this from?"
"Uh…from Kiba, of course."
Dog-boy is dead. "And what did he tell you?"
Naruto was giving him a weird look now. "You're acting strange, Sasuke. Kiba told me that he heard from Tenten who heard directly from Sakura-chan that you two weren't, you know, an item. From what I've heard, Sakura told Tenten that all the rumors were false and you two had no feelings for each other." He smiled. "I can't wait till Kakashi hears about this. I can only imagine his reaction—Sasuke?"
"Sasuke-teme, did you ditch me? I can't believe this! You bastard! How dare you leave your friend hanging like this?!"
Uchiha Sasuke had disappeared.
Sakura collapsed on her bed the moment she got home. It had been an exhausting day. After leaving Ino's, she had gone to the hospital to help out, only to find herself being bombarded by numerous clipboards and emergency situations. Who knew there could be so many injured and near-death patients in Konoha?
She looked around the small one room apartment. Boxes were still piled along the walls, and Sakura made a mental note that she would have to clean out all the clutter one day when she had the chance. Only recently had she moved away from her family and bought her own home. She was already eighteen, after all, so she couldn't depend on her mother and father forever.
Perhaps I should unpack some of the stuff now…? She thought, but then she felt the ache in her back and the soreness in her legs. Never mind. I'm going to sleep.
Sakura jolted up from her bed. She had heard a noise, she was sure of it. Mentally, she groaned. Why can't the world just let me have my sleep?
Grabbing a kunai, from her beside table, Sakura grabbed a robe and hurried to the living room, eyes scanning the darkness. The door remained locked, and the windows were all shut. But wait…where was that breeze coming from?
The bedroom! Whipping back around, Sakura rushed back into her quarters. She had only put one foot through the door, when an arm shot out and grabbed her. It pulled her flush against the intruder.
Male. Sakura immediately accessed. She breathed in his scent, before her eyes widened. Wait…
"Sakura," it was a whisper against her ear. The grip loosened.
She pulled away. "Sasuke-kun?" she hissed. "What are you doing here? Can't you just use the door like a normal person?" She quickly went to turn on the lights.
"I thought you were asleep," he shrugged. "I didn't want to wake you."
"And you think you breaking into my house didn't?" she sighed, before seating herself back onto the bed. "What are you doing here?"
He leaned against the wall, dark eyes watching her for a long time before he finally spoke. "I've heard the rumors."
Sakura's heart sunk. This can't be happening. "Oh really?" she feigned ignorance. "What are you talking about?"
He watched her some more, face betraying no sign of what was running through his head at the moment. "They said you and I were in a relationship."
"I see," Sakura was panicking. How was she going to get herself out of this mess now?
"And then Naruto told me that you were saying these rumors were false."
So there's hope, after all! He can't be completely mad at me, if he knows that I've been trying to stop the gossip. "Well, that's good then, isn't it? I mean, that way, all confusions will mostly be cleared by the end of tomorrow. I'm sorry that you're going through all this trouble, Sasuke-kun, when we're clearly not involved with each other at all." I'm beginning to rant! "I mean, it's very obvious that you don't have any feelings towards—Sasuke-kun!"
He had moved faster than she could possibly perceive. One moment, he had been against the wall, listening to her rattle on and on, and the next, he had pinned her down against her bed, leaning over and still staring down at her with those beautiful eyes of his.
"Sakura," he seemed agitated. "You're a liar."
The words struck a chord in her heart. "W-what?" she whispered, a bit stunned by what was happening. Why did he sound pained?
"You said you liked me, right?" he muttered. "You told me you still do, and I believed you."
"I do, Sasuke-kun, what are you talking about?"
He shook his head, more so to clear his thoughts than to deny what she said. "Perhaps, but it's clear that you don't…feel for me as much as you did back when we were younger."
That's not true! Sakura looked up at the young man before her. "What are you saying, Sasuke-kun?"
He let her sit up. "I-You told everyone that we weren't dating. I…assumed…"
"You thought we were?" Sakura covered her mouth with her hands. She couldn't believe this. "But I thought you wouldn't want to, I mean, you don't have any feelings for me even if I—"
"And who told you that I didn't?" he was getting frustrated. Damn this all. He didn't want any more misunderstandings between them. He didn't want to keep going back and forth and circling and guessing. This was going to end tonight. "I thought I told you how I felt when I—hugged you."
He scoffed. I can't believe I'm doing this. "Don't get all teary, okay?"
Much to his surprise, he felt himself being toppled down onto the bed as a pink blur tackled him. "The heck—"
"I love you, Sasuke-kun!" A kiss on the cheek. "I love you, I love you, I love you!"
"God, get off me," a tinge of pink on his face. "You're heavy."
"Sasuke-kun," a punch. "That's for making me stress and worry all these years." Another punch. "And that's for every other bastardly thing you've done that I've forgotten about at this moment."
"Crazy woman, I already told you to get off me." I'm never telling her anything mushy ever again.
"Wait," Sakura peered down at him. "Does that mean we're together?"
A sigh. "It would seem so."
A kiss on the lips. "I'll say it one more time, and then I seriously need to get some sleep. I love you, Uchiha Sasuke, with all my heart."
"Hn. Now could you please get off of me now?"
There, it's done. A bit too mushy for my tastes, but I thought, the heck with it, I'll give it a go. Perhaps it turned out well. Hope I've satisfied all those who wanted a sequel. I had fun with this. Heh.