AN: Hey, me here! You can go ahead and skip the rather long Author's Notes. They're pretty much pointless.
This is the first chapter of my newest ShikaTema fic. It's AU. It's high school. It's the terror most of wish would die. Granted, there's a lot (too many) AU high school fics, but I'm gonna be biased and say mine is the best. But it isn't. So that makes me a liar.
Anyway. This fic is going to be split between perspectives. So, while one chapter is Shikamaru's POV, the other will be Temari's. So, you know, no reviews going "ZOMG WTF I DUN UNDASTAND WHT S GOIN ON Y IS SHIKA TALKIN LYKE A GRL?" I will kill you. Really.
WARNING: THERE ARE LOTS OF CURSE WORDS. LIKE. A LOT. MORE THAN A LOT. I CAN'T HELP IT IF I DRAW FROM MY OWN HIGH SCHOOL EXPERIENCE WHERE NOT A DAY GOES BY WITHOUT CURSING.
Also, I'm basing the high school in this fic on what I know about Japanese high schools and my own knowledge of high schools. While schools in Japan have students sit in the same classroom all day, I said "TO HELL WITH THAT!" and invoked my own version of high school. Where they switch classes. Because yes, I am awesome. I'm also the writer. So, you know. I'm GOD.
Enjoy. Review. Love it. Because there's going to be lots more chapters after this one.
And yes, the title is a work in progress. Shikamaru dislikes thinking up such trivial things like titles.
Edit: After further research that I was too lazy to conduct before the writing of this chapter, I found out Japanese schools start their term in April. The October date has changed to April, and now since there has been a change, all chapters are being revised. Chapters that would have appeared earlier in the story are now appearing much later, and future scenes will now find themselves coming much sooner. Sorry about that.
She's just the girl I'm lookin' for
--Just the Girl, The Click Five
Nameless Chapter One.
The one great thing about being lazy is that, in the end, no one expects anything from you. They'll badger you senseless the first few times, but after they realize that you really don't give a shit, they'll go bother someone else more worthy of their time and who may actually take their criticisms and suggestions to heart.
The one great thing about me being lazy is that school is a breeze. While Ino constantly comes complaining to me that she's gotten a lower score than Sakura, again, I just have to manage handing in my late homework, an extra credit assignment, finish a quiz, and I have a passing grade that'll get me to the next level.
And it's not like I couldn't get a perfect score, it's just that the effort in doing so is far too troublesome for the likes of me. Now, if exams were shougi games and physical education was really a test of brilliance in the field of battle where every corner was riddled with traps, maybe I'd actually try (I prefer breathing, anyway). But since society has defined intelligence by one's ability to complete written exams and ability to memorize fountains of information, I refuse to stoop to such levels.
Nah. I'm just too lazy to try.
It's a shame, really, that the administration has realized that I, Nara Shikamaru, have more to offer than sarcastic comments and an irritated sigh at the mention of exams. What's even worse is that, without even giving me a test, they've bumped me up to the top class in my level. They'd probably have placed me in final year, but after my mother came in screaming like a banshee and demanding that they rethink their decision because she'd be damned if she had a social retard for a son, I think they put more value in their sanity than the publicity they would get with my smarts.
Not trying to sound conceited or anything. Too troublesome, anyhow.
But that's how I found myself in the top class. Try as I might to keep myself from ascending on to new levels of wisdom, society decides to grace this lazy ass genius with the opportunity of a lifetime.
Why can't they get it that when it comes to lazy ass geniuses, it really doesn't matter?
Ino and Chouji, probably the only two people I could ever form some semblance of a friendship with, came rushing to me at the end of the period, eager smiles on their faces, radiating happiness. And while I tried to carefully avoid them by jumping into the nearest rolling trash bin, Ino was fast enough to latch one of her perfectly manicured fingers on to my collar and drag me around with her until we reached her purple decorated locker.
"Our homeroom has decided that this year, for a humanity project, we should establish friendships over seas. You know, like pen pals."
I groaned. "Fabulous."
"I specifically asked for a guy in Brazil, but sensei said something about language barriers and the like…" She drifted off, staring into the mirror, completely absorbed by the fascinating image that reflected back at her as she smiled at herself, completely oblivious to Chouji's grimace at the mention of a guy in Brazil as he took his stance beside her, like an overprotective bodyguard ready to tackle any one suspicious.
Ino was a pretty girl. Well, I'd be lying to myself if I left it just at that. She was beyond pretty. She was the perfect blonde bombshell—the complete package. She came with the hips, the chest, the long, naturally blonde hair, the lips, and the flirty eyes. She moved with a sort of grace that was lost upon the other females in the school. And while she wasn't the smartest cookie (she was close, though), she kicked ass when it came to sports.
And beside her was her exact opposite. While she was slim, he was chubby and "big boned." She was beautiful, and he was handsome in the sort of way that you had to look at him twice before you noticed anything. Her hair was light, and his was fiery red, just like the red tattooed circles decorating his cheeks. And yet while she was vain and completely oblivious to others, he was kind hearted and pure.
Yeah, I know. How the hell did we become friends?
My brain cells drop dead rapidly every time I try to even stray down that path of thought.
"So what'd your homeroom decide?"
I groaned even louder.
Because I had brilliant Haruno Sakura in my class.
And while you may see my tone as sarcastic, she really is brilliant. Just annoying.
She'd been the clever one to suggest that, oh! Maybe the class should host the next foreign exchange students and therefore promote friendships with those that are different!
And while I'm all up for promoting tolerance and the like, don't place me into the tolerating. Because chances are the person will probably end up not being able to tolerate me.
"Foreign exchange students are to be dumped on us."
"That's so cool." One of Ino's hands gave me a thumb up sign and I caught her smile from her reflection.
Damn her. I'd easily go back to being in the lesser classes. Have her replace me anytime.
"Think about it this way, Shikamaru," Chouji said, thumping me—hard, may I add—against my back. "At least you don't have to write troublesome letters. Besides, you're not the only one in your class so the responsibility won't be placed solely on you."
I shrugged. "Knowing my luck, it probably will. As long as it's not a female from our species—"
Ino's disgusted sigh could be heard from a mile away, and the sound of her locker being slammed just further proved her irritation—at me, naturally. "You know what," she said to me, her tone dangerous. "I hope you do get a girl, and in the end, you fall madly and hopelessly in love with her and have her not give a shit."
Oh, troublesome girl.
You fuckin' jinxed it.
That either meant our headmistress had gotten yet another liposuction/Botox operation (she was in denial about the whole 'growing old' thing) or there was something important going on.
Though my brain liked to go for the first option, chances are that this time around (mid April, and not one of our headmistress' times to go 'youthful' on us, like Lee liked to call it), it actually had something important to do with the school.
And while Headmistress Tsunade talked away on the microphone (demanding that if she catches another sake bottle going around, she'll bash the responsible students' heads in with her pinky), I saw it.
My impending doom.
And it came to me in the form of a female.
She stood a little away from Tsunade-sama, back against the pillar that stood at the ends of the auditorium stage. Her arms crossed over her chest, and a tiny, condescending smirk graced her lips. She was tanned, unlike most of the girls around here, and her hair wasn't exactly blonde—more like sandy yellow to me. She looked around the student and faculty filled room, teal eyes (I can't believe I actually found the right color) sizing us up.
And maybe it was truly destiny, because when her eyes swept along my row, she stopped and stared at me.
And my heart quickened.
And my eyes twitched and suddenly I remembered that I needed to fucking breathe.
"Jiraiya, stop reading porn during assemblies. I don't care if you're part of the administration council as well as a teacher, you're not supposed to promote sex out in the open like that, and I will fire you if you—listen to me, you little—" She stopped midway as all our eyes widened and she chuckled nervously, covering the microphone with one hand and motioning for the girl with the other.
Said girl walked slowly, meticulously towards Tsunade-sama, arms still crossed, mean looking face still forced into that nonchalant look with her lips pressed thin. She reached the headmistress after a few strides and stood carefully poised, as if ready to spring into action.
"Holy shit," Ino whispered to me, and I could feel her breath tickling my ear. "She looks like a bitch."
Bitch or no bitch, she was pretty in that scary-looking way.
"I would like to give a warm welcome to our newest foreign exchange student, Sabaku no Temari."
There was silence before the deafening uproar of a few hundred pairs of hands coming together in that famous clapping motion people practice. But, since doing that would waste my energy, I opted to just staring straight at her.
By some strange twist of fate, she stared right back too, just like the first time.
Shit, shit, shit.
When I entered my classroom the next day for homeroom, I was surprised to find all the students gathered around a desk, eager whispers and furtive glances filling the room with a tension even in my laziest of moments could feel.
Upon further entering the room, and trying to overstep the backpacks thrown haphazardly on the floor beside desks, I found my eyes drawn towards the group, even as my legs took me further and further away to the last desk in the row beside the large windows. Over bowed, bobbing heads, I could make out four blonde ponytails defying gravity and all logic.
What. The. Fuck.
"Oi, Shikamaru! You're early!" Sakura's voice caught my attention. She was sitting beside the foreign exchange student, pink hair bunched up in a bun, a few stray strands escaping and framing her face to make her appear angelic. Sitting beside the blonde girl, she most certainly did.
It was strange to look at her so close up. Even on stage, she looked like a man killer, what with her pose and crossed arms. But only a few feet away, and surrounded by strangers that were probably younger than her, she appeared more like a crazed serial killer than anything.
She was glaring at me curiously, and her eyes stared directly at me, unflinching and unmoving.
"Come here," Sakura ordered lightly, a smile on her lips as she waved a hand at me. "I want to introduce everyone to Temari-san here since she'll be part of our homeroom for the rest of the year."
Glowering, I made my way to the two even as everyone dispersed and prepared to take to their appropriate seats. "Yo," I said as a greeting.
Sakura rolled her eyes. "Temari-san, this is Nara Shikamaru. Shikamaru, this is Sabaku no Temari. None of the upper classes had any space left in their homerooms, so Temari-san had to be placed in this one."
"You want to make her feel welcomed, Shikamaru," Sakura told me in the voice that Ino frequently used when she was really threatening me in a way no one else could identify unless they looked hard enough.
Sakura frowned just as the Temari girl cracked a smile and chuckled deeply, the sound resonating in my chest. She didn't have a soft laugh like the other girls—hers was rough and honest.
"Funny kid," she said when she finished her laugh, earning a surprised look from both Sakura and me.
Sakura because she must have been surprised for such a comment.
Me because her voice was just like her laugh. Honest, brutal, rough in almost a melodic way. It was strange to hear it come from a girl. Granted, she didn't look like all the other girls from school or any other female from the human species that I ever laid eyes on, but she was interesting. Interesting in the same way I found Venus flytraps interesting enough to look at but never dare come close to unless I had a death wish.
"She's taking quite a few of the same classes as you, Shikamaru," Sakura informed me, indicating the schedule lying atop the blonde's desk. "Show her around, will you?"
It wasn't really a question, and we both knew that. Sakura was just trying to appear polite. That and she knew from Ino's stories that I wouldn't argue, especially not in public.
I nodded. I didn't have much of a choice anyway, but I nodded for the sake of having something to do besides staring at the four ponytails.
As I was about to turn and make my way to my desk, I caught sight of that Temari girl staring at me, those glowing eyes narrowed slightly, her brows furrowed, creating a line in the middle.
But I ignored it and kept on walking away from Sakura, away from her, and away from any and all responsibilities that would find themselves thrust upon me.
But as I left, still feeling her eyes on me, boring a hole in the back of my neck, I could feel a sinking feeling in my stomach that this foreign exchange girl was spelling out trouble in bright bold letters.