A/N; I wrote this for Neji's birthday and posted it on deviantArt a looong time ago (or so it feels). Enjoy!

Disclaimer; I do not own Naruto, nor am I making any profit from this work of fanfiction.

In the Dark

"Make a wish!"

Neji heaved a long-suffering sigh and chose wisely not to waste his valuable facial expression milage on giving both Tenten AND Lee glares, so he settled with just glaring at Lee.

"Doesn't one make a wish AFTER blowing out these pointless candles?" he asked unenthusiastically, not really caring one way or the other. Lee slapped him on the back, eliciting another valuable glare from the Hyuuga.

"Neji, you are right! I believe that Tenten and I were just caught up in the excitement your birthday gives!!" He gave a large grin and thumbs-up. Neji scowled.

"Oh, stop looking so negative, Neji. It's your birthday!" Tenten smiled, waving a spork in the air. "Now, hurry up and get this over with so we can eat CAKE!!"

"YOSH!" Lee added while Tenten smothered her giggles with a gloved hand. Neji sighed. Why were his teammates so...

"Come on!" Tenten said, prodding Neji in the side with her spork. He glared in return.

"Don't spork me, Tenten."

She pouted. "Fine. But hurry up! I'm hungry!"

"Then you should eat something nourishing."


"- Is not nourishing. It's junk food."

"Right! The good stuff!"

Neji sighed.

Why were his teammates so childish?

"Neji!" He glanced at his female comrade, who scowled. "You're stalling the inevitable with all of your logic. All you have to do is exhale on the fire. Before the WHOLE CAKE is RUINED by the candle wax!"

"The whole cake won't be--"


Neji nearly flinched. FLINCHED!! "Hn." He leaned forward slightly and blew. The fire disappeared, and the whole room was thrown into darkness.

"Ack!!" He heard Tenten say somewhere to his left. "LEE!! This is what happens when you take us to a secluded, windowless room and turn out the lights. So what are you going to do about it?"

Neji leaned forward, resting his elbow on the table and propping his chin in his palm. "Lee, I want to know, too. This is your house. Turn on the lights."


"... Lee?" came Tenten's voice. Nothing. Neji heard her curse under her breath. "Damn him..." He silently agreed. He heard the sound of a chair scrape across the tiled floor, and knew that Tenten had left her seat. A rustle of fabric brushed passed him, and a hand felt around his face for a moment. "Neji, you have a really weird-shaped shoulder."

"That's my nose."


After a few more seconds of her poking and prodding his body, he gave a frustrated sigh and grabbed her hand. "You're irritating."

"Thank you."

"... And childish."



"... I'm sticking my tongue out at you."

"Thank you for proving my point."

"You're welcome!"

Neji pinched the bridge of his nose with his free hand.

"This is getting us no where. Let's find our way out of here."

"... Yeah. And it's not like this is a big room or anything!" He felt her tug at his hand and stood abruptly. Big mistake.

He felt himself bump into something solid, and then Tenten's hand was suddenly non-exsistant in his.

"Ow!" she cried a second after he heard a 'thump'. "That was my ass!"

"... I apologize."

"To me or my ass?" she asked snappishly, and he felt her hand grasp the material of his pants. "Now help me up, you bastard."

He reached down and she blindly groped his shoulder, yanking him down.

On top of her.

"The hell?! What are you doing!?" she cried, wriggling under his weight.

"It was your fault!" Neji said exhasperatedly, rolling away from her.

"Wait! Don't leave me!"

"I'm right here." He put out his hand, and felt the soft material over what he thought was her shoulder.

A looong silence ensued, until...

"You... PERVERT!!"

It was then that Neji realized that he had done something very, very wrong.

His hand flew back as though he had been touching fire, and he was thankful to the dark for it hiding his blush.

'Blush? Since when do Hyuugas blush?!'

"Never mind! I'll get out of here WITHOUT your help, you perv!"


"Sure you didn't."


"Don't you take that tone with me!" she snapped. And, as though some freakish reflex took over, she kicked at him.

... And she hit home.

Neji bit back a moan of agony and balled into a fetal position. 'Hyuugas don't cry... Hyuugas don't cry...'

"... Neji?"


"... What did I hit?"

He squeaked.

"... Oh. Oops?" She got on her hands and knees, shuffling over to him slowly. "I'm sorry! I was just... kicking in your general direction!" When her hand touched his knee, he flinched. "We can just call this payback for you feeling me up."

"That was an accident!" he wheezed.

"Yeah, well, it was an accident that I kicked you... there."

"If I never reproduce, it will be all your fault."

"If you never reproduce, people will thank me."

Ah, touche.

"... if there's anything I can do..."

"You've done enough, thanks," he rasped. She shook her head, and sighed.

"Fine. Okay. Then... I'll find the door, and you just... sit there." Her warmth left his side, and he could hear her scoot across the floor. "Okay... door... door... door? No, not door. Door... door... doo-- cat? The hell?? Gah, focus! Door... door... door...? Door...!"


"Ow... definitely NOT door..." he heard her whimper.

"What happened?" he asked. And, no, that was definitely NOT concern in his tone. It was... curiosity.

"I hit something painful... I think it might have been a vase... and it's definitely not getting any lighter..." She groaned. "That's gonna bruise..."

"Any serious injuries? You know, like, ones that will effect your reproduction system?"

"No. It's just breaking my ribs is all."

"... Was that sarcasm?"

"I hate you."

"It was all your and Lee's fault for insisting on giving me this ridiculous birthday party."

"... I know." He was surprised. She was admitting to their childishness? "We just think you need more fun in your life... and it was your birthday..."

"... and you wanted cake."

She smiled slightly. "That played a big role in it, yeah."

Neji sighed and, with small, delicate motions, he crawled over to where her voice sounded. Immediately he felt a large, smooth piece of pottery, and hefted it from her torso.

"There," he said, feeling around for her hand to pull the both of them up.


Silence. Neji froze. 'Not again...'


"Why, my youthful teammates, I hope you did not finish without m-" Lee's form stood in the newly-opened doorway. He blinked down at them, his hand still on the light switch. "Neji... why are you feeling Tenten up?"