Aieee! The last chapter! This was a very fast movin story when read altogether, and I really do apologize if some people think it's not detailed enough. I've not had time to write anymore these days - or the inspiration. I'm so sorry! But I hope you enjoyed this story!

PS. Watch out for drama, and possible cheese. Yes, it's cheesy. But I don't care!

Chapter 10

Commitment

"Hi! Sorry I'm so late - it took me quite a while to get ready. You should understand - you're a girl too, after all, Mizuki."

She's baring at my teeth like a caged lion but I take no heed and barge in through her doorway anyway.

"Kakashi said that you were ill."

I hoot with laughter. "I was, I'm perfectly fine now." I enter the dining room where Kakashi is, who's eye bulges at the mere sight of me, with Pakkun in my arms.

"Natsumi?"

"Before you say that - I feel better now, so I decided I might as well attend!" I reply back, taking the only seat on Kakashi's right.

Mizuki follows me shortly. "That's my seat…"

"Sorry?" I stick a pinky in my ear. "I didn't hear that."

"Never mind…" she brings a stool from the side and rams it on Kakashi's left.

I frown. She's still at it. Fine, I'll show her what I can really do. As Mizuki makes her way into the kitchen, I grab Kakashi and kiss him on the temple. She notices, holds a clenched fist, then stomps into the kitchen.

"So…. What did you guys do?" I ask.

"Well, we just finished the starters, so it's the main course." He puts an arm around me and draws me closer to him.

"I'll say."

"Pakkun, you're here too?" Kakashi lifts his dog out of my arms.

He nods. "Forced to."

………………

I find every possible way to criticize her food. First, it was the gravy which I said was too salty. We're now served with meat-filled green peppers.

"I've made these once, you need more salt this time, and it didn't look this way."

Mizuki glares at me silently. "Oh, really, Yagami-san?" she says through gritted teeth.

"Yes, really."

There's a line of fantastic, powerful static electricity crackling between our eyes. Next, we have dessert consisting of sushi. I sniff it inauspiciously.

"Hey, are these light sesame seeds you used as an outer coating? No, no, you got it all wrong!! It's meant to be black sesame seeds, didn't you know? Oh god, you've ruined it all!"

From the corner of my eye, I can see that Mizuki has a crystalline glint in the corners of her eyes. Crying… she's crying. Crap, did I really go that far? As the dinner progresses, I ease up my criticisms. Next, the soup. Mizuki looks cheerful again and smiles sweetly at Kakashi. "I can't believe you made this for me!" she squeals like a little girl.

Kakashi, who I believe has been completely oblivious over the war that has been waging between Mizuki and I, smiles and then glances at me. "Actually, I have to be honest. It was - "

I kick him under the table. He grunts in pain, then gives me a surprised look. I shake my head, hissing at him fiercely.

"What?" Mizuki asks, waiting for him to finish his sentence.

"Uh… never mind."

……………….

When the dinner ends, Mizuki, looking all watery-eyed even though she swore that she was fine, sends out the door. Kakashi drags me back to the landing of our floor. "What's your problem?" He asks, irritated.

I blink innocently at him, as I wrench my arm out of his. "What? My problem? What's wrong?"

"I saw how you acted towards Mizuki-chan. You were so rude to her - you even made her cry. You said a lot of horrible things about her cookery skills. What was up with that?"

"Look, she was asking for it!"

"No, Mizuki-chan is a perfectly nice girl, you on the other hand, was the most - "

"Kakashi, she was making goo-goo eyes at you the whole time! I couldn't just sit back and let her take advantage of you - or sneak you away from me right under my nose!"

"She was not."

"You're a man, you don't notice these things!"

"Ho, you're being so sexist now."

"Me, sexist??" I laugh out loud. "Blow my toe, Kakashi! BLOW MY TOE!"

"What's supposed to mean?!" He's baffled. Clearly, yes. But it was just a figurative choice of an insulting remark.

"I just realised how dumb, slow and stupid men can really be to notice that two women are fighting over him!!!!" I sighed at him angrily.

"Why would you fight over Mizuki with me anyway? She has no feelings for me, plus you know I like you. You're my girlfr - " Kakashi stops in mid-sentence, then he looks at me with a frown forming. "I know what you're saying - you're thinking that I'm being unfaithful to you."

"Oh, now you get it. What was your first clue?"

"Why would you ever think that of me?" He looks helpless. "Why would I choose Mizuki over you? How could you not trust me?"

"Because, Mizuki's two years younger than me, she's known you longer than I have. Okay, I have to admit - she actually can cook, she's prettier than me, smarter than me, she has a job, and most importantly, she doesn't have a haircut like mine that sucks ass that she has to wear a wig!!!!"

"Natsumi, now you're being silly."

"Oh, am I? Or do I overreact over things far too much?" I bark at him. "I'm sick of it! I'm sick of people always thinking that I'm 'being silly'! I'm not! Stop treating me like a kid and for once, listen to what I'm saying and accept your mistake!"

"I never made a mistake."

"Yes, you did. You went to dinner with her - when I was ill. You never told me about her at all. You never told me that you knew her for a long time. Did you know that she even has relationship problems with her boyfriend? That's because she likes you! Doesn't that tell you something?"

Kakashi looks surprised. "…You said I could go. I'm sorry."

My jaw drops, and then I take a deep breath, then hold my arms up in defeat. "You know what? Fine, I give up, that's our disagreements over for today. I'm going home."

I stomp away from him and towards my front door. I jam the keys in the hole fiercely, unlock my door and march inside. You know, maybe it really is better if men lived on Mars and women lived on Venus. There's a boundary - I like that. There would be no contact between men and women. They know where they'll have crossed their lines, they'll be much better off without each other anyway.

"Goodnight, Kakashi."

Then I slam the door in his face.

I think he got the message.

………..

It's been a week since Mizuki's dinner and I've not spoken to Kakashi since. He hasn't said anything either. In fact, I rarely see him. I also haven't heard or seen Mizuki either. That's a good thing. If I see her, I'll be tackling her on the ground.

Argh, this is all my fault. I was being so sensitive and stupid. I was so afraid of losing Kakashi to some bimbo that…. I actually have. I'm so angry at myself. I was so stupid and rash.

In my hands, I have the invitation. It's for Kakashi. I hope he'll come, unless he's still not mad at me, that is. Hayato's wedding is in three days. I swallow, then post the invitation through his letter-slot, and then I can hear someone from the other side.

"Natsumi, is that you?" I can see the tiny dog leaping up and down trying to see me through the letterslot.

"Pakkun!" I exclaim in shock. "Where's… Kakashi?"

"He's out. You've best give him this yourself."

"No, please, can you give it to him?" I give him the most sympathetic look ever.

Pakkun sighs, then grabs the letter with his teeth and drags it inside. "Okay, I will."

………..

"Natsumi, you're drinking so much sake…"

I've been pondering so much that I don't actually realise that I'm sitting beside Mina at the bar and taking swigs out of the sake-bottle non-stop. It's only six o'clock, so me getting drunk at this hour is really pathetic.

"Meennnaaa… I'm such an bakaaaaa..." I drawl, letting my head plop on the table surface. My vision is blurry. I feel sick and nauseous again - just like last time - when I was with Kakashi. Ahh… Kakashi…. He hates meee….. Waaah!!

"Natsumi…."

"It's all my faultttt…."

"No, Natsumi. It wasn't. I'm sure Kakashi understands your actions…"

"Nooo, he doesn't… he thinks I'm stooooopid."

"Come on, let's go back home. You're really drunk…" Mina lifts me from the bar table and we both limp over to the exit. I'm drooling over her and my heads keeps lolling around.

"I want to go homeeee…."

"Yes, yes, we are, don't worry."

She escorts me back to our floor and tries to look for my keys in my bag while I slump over my shoulder. To make it easier for her, she lets me down and I egg roll towards my door, lying face flat on my mat (eurgh) Mina continues searching my bag, glancing worriedly at me. All she can find is secret photos of Kakashi asleep (but still with his mask on, or with the covers covering his face) and she sighs.

"You really like him, don't you?"

I'm already leaning against my door, half asleep.

"Yes…."

………………

In my dream, Kakashi came. My knight in shining armour. Hehe… I'm delirious. Why would he come and help me?

"Natsumi? Natsumi!!"

I can see Kakashi's face above me. What happened to Mina? I reach up to him and pinch at his cheeks.

"I'm not dreaming… am I…?" I rub my eyes tiredly. He's still there, with an arm on my shoulder.

"You're drunk, Natsumi." He picks me up in his arms and opens my front door.

"Where's Meenaaa?"

"I told her that I'd take it from here. Boy, was I right…"

I sniffle. "Jush leave me alone…." I slur at him, struggling to get out of his grasp. "Yoo hate meee…"

"Natsumi…."

"But right now… I'm cold and tired… and I really need you…." I wail out loud as Kakashi lets me down on the sofa.

He tries to pry my arms off his neck now.

"I'm such a bakaaaa…. I was soo scared and worried that I'd lose yooo….. I'm a bozoooo."

Kakashi blinks. "Natsumi, you - "

"I can't live without yoo……….!!!" Then I start sobbing. "It was such a stooped argument…. Call me silly…. I can live like that…..I gave yoo an invitation to Hayato's wedding….please come… I'll be alone and singleeee again…waah!"

"Natsumi…."

"Pleaseee….."

When I wake up. Was it really a dream? Kakashi is gone. And I'm a nervous wreck again.

………

I know now why Kakashi has heard of Hayato - it's because her future fourth husband is a jounin, who's invited all his jounin friends. Even Gai is here, and he's requested to be my escort, although I secretly hoped that Kakashi would be here. He wasn't. The wedding is set on the mountaintops of one of the main tourist attraction of Konoha - the ones where the mountain with the carved faces of the previous Hokages are. Its busy and filled with people, food and music, but I don't hear or see anything at all.

"Shujin? What are you doing here?"

"Eh, Hayato was a customer of mine a few months back…" The old lady claims, stuffing her face with food from the buffet. Then she looks at me up and down. "You look beautiful in that. But where is your partner, Kakashi?"

"Uh…."

"I told you you should've come to my counselling sessions."

"Thanks…. Excuse me, Shujin."

Mum and dad are crying in the corner when I approach them - actually, mum is. She can't believe how stunning I look, she says, and that it was a shame that Kakashi couldn't come. I bite my lip and smile anyway. Dad notices how teary-eyed I look now and tries his best to comfort me. He spots Gai who accepts to take me for a walk and drink.

"What's wrong?" Gai asks as he hands me a cup of sake.

"… Nothing…" I take one look at the sake and feel put off by it already.

The wedding goes by like a blur. I sit beside dad, who sits beside mum at the front row and watch, somewhat wondering when my time to stand at the altar would come. When Hayato reaches Tenka at the altar, everything is quiet. It seems to only last five seconds, not five. But I'm so happy for her. She accepts and hugs him tightly. Everyone cheers, stands up and claps their hands. We leave the podium site, everyone goes to congratulate her, and take photographs. So far, I'm featured in all of the photographs, smiling really awkwardly.

It's now Hayato's turn to throw her bouquet of flowers in the air. She has a back-up bouquet for the reception party, so she was eager to get rid of this one right now. She returns to stand on the altar, Tenka watching steadily beside her. She grins at him, then turns around - the remaining female guests and me, including Shujin - and pushing against one another to get ready to catch the incoming bouquet.

She tosses it without looking.

All the females go mad. I scream and try to calculate where it'll land. I want to catch it. I need to! I want to!

The bouquet is sailing back to earth towards my outstretched hand. Yes!! I've almost got it! My fingers touch the bottom of the bouquet. I look at my hand with a widening smile, then -

A brown flash flies past me and snatches the bouquet clean out of my sight.

My jaw drops.

Where'd it go??

Pakkun lands back on the ground, bouquet in his mouth. Everyone's silent for a moment, as Pakkun trots up to me and raises his head, wagging his tail.

"Pakkun?! What are you doing here? More importantly - You're not proposing to me, are you?!" I exclaim in shock - and worry.

"Behind you, idiot."

Who's behind me?

I turn around, to see Kakashi, who is walking up to me wearing appropriate attire for the wedding. He looks hot. I'm speechless and drooling somewhat, as he kneels down and scoops the bouquet from Pakkun's mouth and grins at me once he gets back up. The next thing I know, Kakashi has protruded the bouquet of flowers into my face.

"Yo."

All the girls swoon behind me. Even Shujin is banging her cane off the floor in anticipation.

"… You're…here." I breathe out uneasily. "I thought you were mad at me…"

"I'm really late though, sorry."

"It's okay…" I cock my head to the side. "Why are you here anyway?"

"I did a lot of thinking, and I can't live without you. That makes the two of us."

"Where you there…? At my house… when I was drunk?"

He nods. I cringe brightly. I ask the dreaded question, "Ahh - what did I say?!"

"A lot of stuff I wanted to hear." Kakashi grins.

I'm breathless. "Kakashi, I'm so sorry…"

"It's okay, really, Natsumi. I forgive you. Some of it was my fault, too. I wasn't paying much attention to Mizuki. I never do, actually. You're the centre of my attention most of the time - "

Aw gawd, this is so mushy-wushy. I don't care! I blush fiercely, Pakkun clears his doggy throat loudly beside us. Kakashi quickly adds to his sentence: " - and my dogs, I care about them a lot, too."

"So… we're okay, right?"

"Of course!" He grabs me around the waist and brings me close to him, then promptly hoists me in the air and I shriek, holding him tightly so I wouldn't fall off.

"Arghhh!! I do!!" I scream in glee. "I do! I really do!"

"Do what?"

"Get married to you, dummy! My answer's yes!"

"But I've not proposed - "

"You will soon!" I giggle.

We laugh, followed by the loud applause from Hayato, Tenka, my family and the guests. Even though Kakashi and I are in public, we don't have a care at all as long as we have each other, we're also lost in one other with no-one else around. I feel like the happiest person in the world. Just us. Me and Kakashi.

Can I imagine myself as Hatake Natsumi? Yes, I can!

The End!