A/N: Ah, after a pretty long hiatus, I'm back with ANOTHER CHAPTER! GAH! I wrote this instead of doing my homework (I've got warped priorities) but I'm so glad I finally finished this damn thing. I'm sorry you guys had to wait so long, but I hope this chapter makes up for it?
I want to thank all of you who reviewed because reading them all (especially the ones I got recently) really helped me get back into it. I love you all!
Disclaimer: I don't own.
Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, Sakura thought frantically, my life is OVER.
She'd just pushed the Uchiha Sasuke into his best friend, forcing them to kiss and it was being witnessed by other people. She highly doubted Sasuke was gay, there had been that awkward period for a year or two when she questioned his sexuality and the nature of his relationship with Naruto, but that had passed. She let a strangled sound rip from her throat as she watched the still surprised male teens. With the power he wielded, Sasuke wouldn't have a problem getting her kicked out of school, hell, she doubted she'd be accepted anywhere else in Japan after this fiasco and wondered if she'd even be able to find a job later on.
Kiba stared and stared, not caring that his mouth was hanging so low it seemed unhinged from his jaw. He'd never seen such a sight. Sure, he'd come across some people he didn't know making out behind the south building, but never his friends. It might've been an accident, but it was just the slightest bit disturbing in his mind. He suddenly felt his jaw snap, teeth hitting teeth with a loud click sound.
"You should close your mouth."
The dog lover turned to Shino, eyes wide. "You-I—"
Then there were clicking sounds.
Lots of them.
And bright flashes.
Neji had appeared, out of thin air it seemed, and he had a digital camera with him.
That shook everyone out of their stupor in an instant.
Sasuke roughly pushed Naruto off of him and was on his feet in an instant. "Hyuuga—" he said darkly, voice laced with dangerous intent. It was clearly a warning: Give me the camera or die, horribly and painfully. Sasuke started to advance but Naruto had gathered his wits and hooked his arms under his best friend's, preventing him from pummeling Neji.
"I have a project to start today so I won't be here," Neji said, ignoring the dark looks and curses Sasuke sent his way. He leveled Kiba with his pale gaze. "Clean up the floor." he commanded, pocketing the small electronic device. His message delivered, Neji promptly strolled to the double doors, turned and disappeared.
Tenten covered her mouth with her hand, trying not to laugh and hiding the slight tinge of pink on her cheeks as she walk/ran to keep up with Neji's long, purpose-filled strides.
"It's eventful in your club." she said brightly.
"I mean, it's not everyday you see Naruto and Sasuke kissing, right?"
Neji flew down the steps. "Don't tell me you enjoy that sort of thing." he replied, casting her an assessing glance out of the corner of his eye. "You don't strike me as the fan girl-type."
"On occasion." she answered slyly, jumping the last bit of stairs.
There was complete silence and Ino rolled her eyes, the first to break the ice.
"Well, that was interesting."
Sasuke turned his gaze to Sakura, eyes filled with hate. "This is your fault!" he spat. "Get out of here!"
The pink haired girl took two steps back and clutched the strap of her backpack, feeling the black nylon material nervously. "I-It was an accident!" she stammered. "I slipped! I didn't mean to push Naruto into you, I swear!"
"Talk is absolutely worthless." Sasuke snapped. "Tomorrow those pictures that bastard took will be sold to the highest bidder and I'll be the laughing stock of the entire school!" He elbowed Naruto in the chest, forcing him to let go and glared balefully at the blonde. "You idiot! If you hadn't held me back I could've gotten that damn camera!"
"But you would've killed Neji!" Naruto cried. "I can't let you get yourself thrown in jail for murder—"
"I'm an Uchiha!" the dark haired teen yelled in exasperation. "God dammit, Naruto!"
Of course. Uchihas were always above the law and with so much money at their disposal things like, say, a murder, could be cleaned up so that their reputations remained unblemished. He should've remembered, but now he was probably going to be treated to the infamous 'Uchiha Sasuke Silent Treatment'. The longest they'd abstained from speaking to each other was almost three years and that was because of a simple argument they'd had over Sasuke switching schools, but this time . . .
Naruto dared to look at Sasuke's face and received a dark glower.
"At least it wasn't something really embarrassing—" Naruto began, holding his hands up in front of himself because his best friend looked like he was about to punch him.
Sasuke's eyes narrowed to slits. "Say another word and I'll put that picture of you making out with the blowup doll on the internet."
"What!?" the blonde cried indignantly. "You said you got rid of that!"
"Shut up, dobe."
"You son of a b—"
"Well," Ino said, coughing loudly, "I feel Sakura and I have overstayed our welcome so we'll be going now." She grabbed the pink haired girl's sleeve and dragged her towards the door, eager to get away from all the testosterone encompassing them.
Naruto was about to say bye, but Sasuke karate chopped him in the stomach.
Tenten frowned into her Starbucks mocha, the words in her history textbook not sinking in. How did anyone ever remember all this stuff? She'd always thought that nothing really happened in the Stone Age, that cavemen invented fire and learned how to not go around naked, but apparently a lot had happened that she didn't know about.
"Is something wrong?"
She looked up and gave Neji a slightly confused smile. "I just don't get this stuff. I think we need to do something a little more . . . Recent for our project."
Neji glanced down at his book, then back up at her. "If that's what you want." he said, closing the textbook and retrieving a sheet of paper from his backpack. A pen magically appeared in his hand and Tenten was so glad that her partner was organized. "What topic would you like?"
"Well . . ."
He frowned. "You don't know?"
"We just got this project today!" she said defensively.
"We've known about it for two weeks already." he retorted, voice crisp and level.
She leaned over the table a little to glare at Neji because she found that glaring at close range was more effective that glaring at long range. "Not everyone is an overachiever like you, Hyuuga Neji." Tenten stated flatly.
He stared back into her eyes and found he liked her nearness. He found her slight anger attractive and briefly wondered if he was turning into an idiot.
Neji discreetly moved back. "We can't start unless you decide on something."
Tenten sighed. "I don't know . . ."
"Start by listing off things that interest you."
She glanced at him curiously. "Why me? Why not you?"
Dammit, Neji thought. Why wouldn't she just list off things that interested her? How was he supposed to find out more about her if she didn't talk?
"I'm sure you'd find all my ideas very boring."
Tenten smiled slyly. "Depends on what the ideas are."
"Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, oh my god—"
"She's been like that for the past couple minutes, Hinata. It's terrible."
The dark haired girl gazed worriedly at Sakura and poked her in the shoulder, trying to get her attention. "Um," she began, "Sakura . . . Are you alright?"
Sakura let out a strangled sound and shook her head.
Ino rolled her eyes. "It was all an accident! So what if they kissed?"
Sakura grasped the blonde's shirt, jade eyes wide with a mixture of worry and anger, and said, gritting her teeth together, "Uchiha Sasuke. Is going. To make my life. A living hell."
"You're exaggerating, Sakura." Ino replied.
"Are you kidding me!?" the pink haired girl screamed. "He's like the Prince of Japan and he practically rules the school with his little group of friends!"
Ino glanced at her skeptically. "Friends?"
"A loosely used term but what else are we supposed to call them?"
Hinata coughed to get their attentions and shyly pressed the tips of her fingers together. "I-I think we should give Uchiha-san the benefit o-of the doubt. M-Maybe he w-won't d-do anything to you, Sakura . . ."
Sasuke entered his bedroom and threw his bag onto the floor while he threw himself across his bed.
God, he was tired. Why was school so draining?
His cell phone rang and he dug it out of his pocket. He stared at the screen for a moment before stuffing it under his pillow. Hadn't Naruto talked enough today at school? Sasuke truly believed that the blonde dobe was going to talk him to death one day.
Sasuke turned his head to the door to view his least favorite person.
"Itachi." he replied curtly. His brother stared at him silently for a few minutes and Sasuke frowned. "If you've got nothing to say can you get out of my room?"
"I remember a time when you called me 'nii-san'."
"I liked you back then." Sasuke snapped. "And stop calling me 'otouto'."
"You don't like my nickname." the older Uchiha stated tonelessly. "We're going to meet mother and father at a restaurant tonight. A car will pick us up around seven. Dress appropriately. Most likely he'll talk about the upcoming dinner."
He nodded and Itachi left, closing the door behind him.
Sasuke got off the bed and went to his desk. His eyes were immediately drawn to a picture propped up on the desk of himself, Naruto and—he wanted to kill her at the moment—Sakura.
They were twelve in the photo and they had had the picture taken at the end of camp, which was actually just a one week gathering of rich and overly privileged children in a hotel at the very end of winter vacation. He narrowed his eyes at Kakashi, who had been their counselor, and remembered the silver haired man reading them 'stories' at night from his precious orange book. He could still remember in vivid detail the expressions on Naruto and Sakura's faces, and he could even remember his own shocking disgust, when Kakashi had told them about the main characters having sex.
Kakashi was smiling good naturedly and had a hand on both Naruto's and Sasuke's heads. Sasuke stared at Naruto's face and his own, letting a small smile grace his lips at the memory of them fighting constantly when they'd first discovered that they were to share a room. In the picture Naruto was glaring at him. Sakura was between the two boys, hands under her chin with a saccharine smile plastered on her face.
Sasuke slammed the photo down. He made his way to his bed and groped around under his pillow until his hand came in contact with the feel of his phone. He quickly dialed and waited for Naruto to pick up.
"Sasuke?" the familiar voice asked.
"I need you to do something for me, Naruto, and you can't screw up."
Sakura shook her head at her cell phone screen and decided that Ino was absolutely insane. There was a long text message awaiting her once she fished her phone out of her purse and it was entirely about Inuzuka Kiba and his best friend, Aburame Shino. There was actually very little on Kiba, only his birthday and the fact that he really liked his dog Akamaru, and there was even less on Shino, who apparently was an avid insect enthusiast.
She deleted the message and put her phone back in her purse while walking into the restaurant. She was supposed to meet Tsunade for dinner and smiled when she saw the blonde hair of her guardian, but frowned as she noticed the empty martini glasses on the table.
"Tsunade—" she began.
"Oh, sit down Sakura!" Tsunade cried, grabbing the girl's sleeve and dragging her down into a chair. "I've had a crappy day and I need another drink."
"You're setting a wonderful example for me, Tsunade-shishou." Sakura said sarcastically. "Now I know that to solve all my problems I should turn to liquor."
"Don't get fresh with me." Tsunade downed another martini and sighed. "I had a bug infestation in my desk and I need to find a way to punish Aburame Shino, though there's no concrete evidence that he did it."
Sakura shrugged. "How do you know he did it?"
"Have you met the kid? He's the Bug King, Sakura, I know it's his fault."
"Is he doing all this because he doesn't want to be in the Host Club?" Sakura asked.
"Most likely." Tsunade motioned for a waiter to get her another drink and sighed. "Maybe I should let him quit. It's not worth having spiders crawling out of my desk on a regular basis . . ."
The rosette smiled and opened up her menu.
Sasuke didn't know what was worse: having to eat dinner with his brother (their parents had urgent business to attend to at the last minute) or the fact that Sakura was eating dinner with Tsunade.
In the exact same restaurant.
Fortune wasn't smiling on him at the moment.
And that was the precise moment that Sakura decided to turn around, as if she could feel his eyes on her. Her eyes widened. She had the courtesy to flush heavily as she met his stony glare and Sasuke pointedly turned away to be led to his and Itachi's private booth at the back of the restaurant.
Thank god for that.
Sakura shook her head and tried to focus on her menu again.
Tsunade raised an eyebrow at her. "Sakura, you were never good at lying to me."
"I accidentally made Naruto and Sasuke kiss and now Sasuke absolutely hates my guts." Sakura looked up from her menu and was surprised to see that Tsunade was unfazed. "You're not surprised?"
"Why should I be? Bound to happen anyway with all those rabid Yaoi fan girls going to that club every afternoon . . ."
"He's going to make my life a living hell, shishou." Sakura replied dejectedly.
Tsunade swiveled her martini glass and sighed. "Sasuke will get over it eventually."
"Have you met him?"
"I'll beat the shit out of him if he hurts you, Sakura." she promised.
The pink haired girl rolled her eyes and smiled while Tsunade searched the restaurant for a waiter.
"The Elite Ball is a few weeks away." Itachi said absently while sipping some wine. "Start thinking about who you'll take, Sasuke."
He wanted to groan.
Every year the five hundred most prosperous companies and families in all of Japan gathered in Tokyo Tower for a night filled with dinner, dancing and, yes, drinking. Lots and lots of drinking. The ball always had a theme, this year's was 'Masquerade', and all attendees were required to adhere to the theme and bring a date, preferably another person who was part of the Elite or someone of high standing in the Japanese social circle.
Last year he'd attended with his supermodel 'girl friend', Hayase Yukari, but four months ago she'd gotten married so going with her once again was out of the question.
"Who are you going with this year?" Sasuke asked stonily.
"No one." Itachi replied, taking another drink. "I'm not going."
"I have to go to America that weekend and they have to France for a meeting with some company who's thinking of merging. You'll be the only one going from our family, Sasuke, so don't embarrass us." Itachi put down his glass and studied him. "Soon enough all the girls at your school will be asking you to take them, you know they're all going, so pick someone quickly or else you may be stuck with a simpering girl you detest."
"I detest them all." Sasuke snapped, wading his napkin in his fist.
"I suppose you could ask a boy. Naruto is free, yes?"
Sasuke was severely annoyed when Itachi easily dodged the napkin thrown at his head.
So far, nothing had happened. Absolutely nothing, and that's what scared her. Sasuke was the revenge-type, so why hadn't he done anything to her yet? Sakura held her textbooks closer to her chest and cautiously looked behind her. Nope, no sign of Sasuke. All day she'd been watching her back, waiting for him to get his revenge, but he just . . . Didn't. Even in English he hadn't said a word, not that that was unusual, but she was sure that's where he would've gotten her back for the kiss.
Maybe Hinata was right, she thought absently, maybe Sasuke wasn't going to do anything after all . . .
"Sasuke, I don't feel right about this . . ." Naruto said, biting his lower lip. They stood at the end of the hallway and Sasuke was busy putting a fully charged battery into Naruto's digital camera.
"You owe me." he stated flatly.
"I know! But—"
"Shut up, she's coming."
Naruto grabbed the camera out of Sasuke's outstretched hand reluctantly and hid in the alcove of the boy's bathroom, holding his breath as Sakura's footsteps grew louder. Any minute she'd step on the soaped-up hallway and . . . On cue there was a high-pitched screech and the sound of a crash and books dropping on the marble floor. He whipped out of his hiding place and took five pictures before Sakura realized what was happening. When she turned and got a glimpse of him he disappeared around the corner, but not before Sakura screamed, "I'm going to kill him!"
Inside the boy's bathroom, Sasuke smirked triumphantly.
Naruto dropped the camera and the pictures he'd printed on the table between them. Sasuke opened up the camera and took out the memory card, tucking it into his pocket.
"Are you happy now, you ass?" Naruto snapped.
Sasuke picked up the photos and flipped through them. "I never would've guessed." he muttered.
"Yeah," Naruto agreed with a shrug. "Who knew Sakura-chan wore thongs?"
Every picture was a nice view of Sakura, her ass exposed to the world and showing the hot pink thong she wore.
"Very nice, dobe."
"Don't ever ask me to do something like that again."
There was a crash outside the club room door and that was Naruto's cue to disappear. He grabbed his camera and raced to the side door and made it out before Sakura stalked in. She threw her calculus textbook at Sasuke's head and he smacked it away to the side while she steamed.
"Where are they . . ." she ground out, fists balled at her sides.
Sasuke held up the pictures with a flourish. "These?" he asked casually, watching her face turn red with anger.
"Where's the memory card?" she demanded hotly.
"You are a vindictive son of a—"
"That's no way to talk to the person holding your dignity in their hand."
Sakura resisted the urge to punch him. If she killed him now she'd never get the card . . .
She sighed. "What do I have to do, Sasuke?"
"I'm glad you understand your position," Sasuke put his hands in his pockets. "You'll be working for the club, doing whatever we require until I'm satisfied. I'll give you the memory card then. If I am," he gave her a cruel smirk, "displeased with any of your work, you'll find yourself plastered all over the school, got it?"
"You planned all of this." she said accusingly.
"I don't have time to go to the club every afternoon!" Sakura cried. "I have work, projects, other obligations—"
Sasuke cast her a cold glare. "Make time."
Sakura buried her face in her hands.
I knew it was too good to be true . . .
Don't mess with the boys.
But who doesn't love an avenger?
A/N: Please review. Reviews are my happy crack!
Can you see where I'm going? Pretty Ouran-ish, huh? Well . . . Minus the broken vase . . .