Thank you everyone for all your support! Especially to those who tried to cure my lack of inspiration and those who PMed me. I'll try harder now! :D
"Do you think it was the right thing to do Fugaku?"
It was dark, late into the night. Already in the early morning say 3 or 4 AM but the two grown adults were still up, sitting at the veranda of the Uchiha mansion enjoying the cool morning air. Minato reached for the bottle of blood red wine and slowly poured it out into his empty glass that contained ice-cubes as he waited for the older man to respond.
"...From that scene, we can only make out two things." Fugaku spoke, lifting a lighter to his lips, there was a click and the cigarette lit.
"Two things?" Minato urged, setting down the wine bottle on the beautifully carved marble table. Fugaku had not answered his question, but Minato knew the man better than that. After all, Uchiha Fugaku was always a rather indirect man.
The Uchiha inhaled, smoke filling his lungs before exhaling slowly, savoring the feeling before he spoke, "One: The fact that the two of them were on top of each other in close proximity suggests intimacy."
Minato cleared his throat, turning his attention down to the wine in his glass. "I'm surprised you noticed that first." He checked his watch, Naruto should still be sleeping like a log back home.
Fugaku ignored the blond man, bringing his cigarette to his lips again, "Two: However their positions indicate otherwise. In this case, it indicates violence. They were fighting."
It was quiet as the gravity of the situation settled. "Ah tch..." There was a clinking noise as Minato swirled the contents in his glass. "This only means one thing doesn't it."
The silence stretched out between them before Minato broke the serious atmosphere by lifting a finger and pointing to Fugaku with a blank expression.
"Since when did you smoke?"
The Uchiha inhaled one last time before he put it out, "Never."
The next morning
Naruto and Sasuke stood with their luggage beside them at the foot of the house before them, both equally speechless.
The silence continued until Naruto spoke, slowing and unsure. "Eh... since when did our families share a house?"
Dark eyes narrowed as he took in the house before him, not really with distaste but more of distrust. He shared Naruto sentiment. Since when did his and the idiot's family share a house? Why was he not informed of this until now?
Their fathers were playing dirty; he had come to that conclusion. Now it was becoming clear to him that Naruto and his father were doing all they can to make sure that Naruto and him could take over them without internal arguments.
Sasuke closed his eyes in irritation, of all the times their fathers had to 'drop by', it was when they were lying on top of one another trying to punch the daylights out of each other.
His eyes roved around the house, this time in distaste. The house was much, much smaller than the Uchiha mansion, and the other mansions that the Uchiha's owned. In fact, Sasuke would call this house... a commoner house. Trying to spot anything suspicious like a camera before he turned his attention to where Naruto who stood awkwardly in front of the house.
He scoffed softly, building bonds his foot.
"O-Otou-san?" Naruto whispered, not quite sure what to make out of this.
"I'm so glad that the both of you get along so well." Minato beamed, but his twitching left eyebrow might have given away how he felt. There were silent steps before Uchiha Fugaku stood beside him, his face expressionless.
Naruto opened his mouth only to close it again, what were their fathers doing here?
"W-What are you doing here?" Was Naruto's shaky question.
Minato continued smiling but this time, his smile cracked a little. "We decided to drop by and see how the two of you were coping without us."
"The question is," Fugaku spoke and Naruto swore the wind had turned downright icy. "what are the both of you doing?"
A look of pure horror crossed Naruto's face when the situation hit him. How did they look like, rolling around on the ground trying to kill each other? Sasuke apparently noticed the same thing before he scrambled to get off Naruto trying to appear as calm as possible.
The moment they were entangled from each other, Sasuke said in an unwavering voice, "Father, I can explain everything. We were-"
"Fighting." Fugaku said.
Naruto and Sasuke hid their shudders. It was kind of scary.
"Uh..." Naruto really didn't know what to say.
Minato sighed, "Honestly, I don't know how we're going to make this merging work if the both of you are-"
"No, no, no, no!" Naruto suddenly cut his father off, "Me and te- I mean Sasuke and I were simply having a little uh..." The blond struggled to find the correct word.
"Disagreement." Sasuke provided and Naruto nodded his head vigorously in agreement.
"Really?" The older blond put a finger under his chin and rubbed thoughtfully, "This isn't good. If fighting breaks out every time the two of you disagree then-"
"Noooo!" The younger Uzumaki started to laugh nervously, "W-We-We didn't exactly disagree! We just... just... we just-"
"Just?" Minato prompted amusement hidden.
"Just..." Naruto repeated and gave Sasuke a helpless glance.
Sasuke turned away, a gave the other a 'you dug your own hole dobe, so don't expect my help' look.
Naruto cursed the Uchiha silently as he struggled to find the word. He reached into his mind and pulled out anything he could find. "Boyish battle."
Fugaku blinked, "What?"
"B-Boyish battle." Naruto repeated, feeling more humiliated by the second. "Or a banter if you prefer."
"Battle and banter has two completely different meanings Naruto." Minato crossed his arms resisting the urge to laugh at his son. That would be too unprofessional.
"I-I-I mean... What I'm trying to say is that we're still teens right? So... we settle things differently than you adults. We... We look like we're in battle but we're just having a friendly argument!" He ended with a nervous laugh.
Naruto decided to just shut up after this. He could practically hear the silent Sasuke saying 'Hah, idiot', and boy that ticked him off, but he didn't say anything about it as he did not need to dig himself deeper into the hole he created the moment he had opened his mouth.
Minato raised an eyebrow, "Alright... I'll believe you."
Naruto breathed a sigh of relief.
"However, seeing that this partnership is going to be tough, I think Sasuke-san and you have to be better acquainted."
Fugaku and Minato shared a neutral look before they turned to their sons, "We want the both of you to live together."
Sasuke's right eye twitched in annoyance. That was that. The case was closed the moment Minato and his father had agreed to let them share this house. There was no room for argument, no matter how badly Naruto had refused.
Just a simple command from their fathers: Pack your bags and go to this address tomorrow morning, the two of you will be staying together for at least a month until you learn to work together.
Of course, unable to actually defy their fathers (not that Naruto didn't try to but it didn't work anyway), they both of them grudgingly obeyed.
With a sigh, Sasuke said, "Come on then dobe, let's not waste anymore time."
Groaning, Naruto followed behind Sasuke who had the keys to the house.
There was a turn of the keys before the door clicked open, revealing the interior of the house.
Naruto was the first to step in, crystal blue eyes absorbing everything. "It's not bad." He commented, "It has a very homely feeling."
Sasuke did not reply but agreed with Naruto. Though different from what he was used to which was expensive décor with artful opulent furniture, this house had a whole different feel to it. It was a feel that Sasuke had unconsciously welcomed. Uchiha Sasuke was a man, a grown mature man who could admit things (to himself) and he knew that he had always wanted back his home when the atmosphere was light and much more cheerful that it was today. Ever since his mother passed away, Sasuke had yearned, dreamt, hoped that things would go back to way it was. Unfortunately it didn't...
The Uchiha turned to watch Naruto who examined every inch and corner of the living room they had stepped in.
Ever since his father decided to merge with the Uzumaki's...
Sasuke was not blind, he could notice the change in his father's behavior. Whether this was good or bad, Sasuke was not sure, but he was sure that his father was happier and to him, really, maybe that was all that matters.
"Teme? What are you doing?"
The raven blinked out of his thoughts, silently cursing himself for spacing out right in front of the idiot. "Nothing."
The blond glared suspiciously at Sasuke before he took off up the stairs, dragging his luggage along the way.
Downstairs, Sasuke sighed as he heard Naruto's squeals of excitement, "I thought he was so against living together..." Rubbing his temples he muttered, "Honestly, how immature-"
"I CALL DIBS!"
Without his usual think-before-you-act attitude, Sasuke heaved his luggage and ran up the stairs, "Oh no, you don't dobe. I'm the one who was given the keys to this house, so I'm the one who gets to call the shots."
Sasuke scanned across the four rooms, wondering which Naruto was in. "I have the keys to the house, therefore I'm probably the one our fathers feel can look after the house, someone who is more mature-"
"Your maturity means shit to me, Uchiha."
The raven bared his teeth to no one in particular. Of course, never except him to do that in public. It was only when he knew no one was looking when he become loose. At least he figured out which room Naruto was from and tugged his bag to the room furthest away. He stopped at the doorway and leaned against it.
Naruto had already made himself at home on the comfortable and puffy light orange bed. It wasn't as nice as the one back home but at least it was his favorite color! Turning when he felt Sasuke's presence, he grinned. "Oi, don't tell me you want this room. I've already chosen it."
The Uchiha examined the room before his dark eyes landed on the blond. "Tch, you can have it." The room was a light yellow color with simple décor (such as closet, desk, nightstand etcetera) and the early morning sunrays came through the large windows, pass a semi-translucent flowing white curtain, lighting the whole room up brightly. It was the kind of room, Sasuke had to admit, that would suit a personality like Naruto.
Turning, Sasuke took a good look at the two other rooms (they were much too girly for his taste) before he stopped at the last room right across Naruto's and decided this would be his room at once. It was a good thing that Naruto and he had very different tastes. The room he had chosen was definitely the opposite of Naruto's. It had simple décor just like Naruto's, however the bed was a deep shade of blue (almost black) and of velvety material, the room was a ocean blue color and the windows were covered with heavy dark blue drapes.
Yep, completely different and completely opposite to Naruto's room indeed.
"Yo, teme chose your room already?"
Sasuke settled his luggage on the floor next to the bed as Naruto walked in.
"Whoa, what a depressing room."
"Really?" Sasuke cocked an eyebrow, "I find it quite likable actually."
Naruto slowly took a few steps towards the Uchiha, "I suppose to each its own..." Then he sat down on the floor next to Sasuke, "What are we going to do now?"
The Uchiha spared Naruto a glance and calmly took a few steps out his room. He paused when he heard a "Where are you going?" from Naruto and turned around. Their eyes met for a moment before Sasuke ran off, "I call dibs on the toilet!"
Blue eyes widened and Naruto immediately tried to get up, stumbling along the way as he ran after Sasuke. "TEME!"
"What do you mean there's only one toilet available?!"
Sasuke simply shrugged. He stayed planted on the toilet seat after he had put the lid down. He knew how utterly uncharacteristic of this was for him, but there was no way he was letting Naruto get dibs on the toilet, no way. Of course, he also knew that sitting on the toilet seat was no way to claim it (in fact this was probably the most childish way for him to do so) but it seemed to have it's desired effect as Naruto stood at the doorway pouting.
Naruto growled at the unmoving Uchiha. It was not fair! Not fair, not fair, not fair! The blond stomped down the urge to say something nasty to his inner 'demon' when said demon questioned his level of maturity. Instead, Naruto voted for glaring at Sasuke though his glare had little or no effect.
"Not fair bastard, I want equal rights to this toilet."
The Uchiha gave a smug smile and tilted his head up in a very arrogant way that made Naruto want to hit something. He knew what Sasuke meant, the bastard meant that the toilet was his and there was nothing Naruto could do to change that.
"Nuh-uh. This house belongs to both families so everything should be shared!"
"You chose your bedroom first."
"Whaaat!" Naruto felt like screaming, he had no idea that the Uchiha was so calculative. Perhaps that was how they had become so successful. "That was hardly counted."
Sasuke gave the impression that he didn't care and frankly, he didn't. He had every right to be at least slightly upset over this whole 'stay together thing'. That morning, his father had given him the keys to the house and had explained the basic things about the house. Such how many rooms and toilets there were, where the switches were when there is a blackout and how they (Sasuke and Naruto) were suppose to take care of the house, and that includes the chores. Preposterous, had been the first word that had come into Sasuke's mind when his father said that. No Uchiha had ever taken care of chores.
So deep in his thinking, it was only until he heard a soft 'click' sound then he glanced up. Naruto stood grinning a few feet away, holding his camera phone between his fingers. Oh he would make a mint out of this. Who wouldn't want to see the all supposedly powerful Uchiha sitting on the toilet seat, resting his chin on his hand, completely spaced out?
"You..." Sasuke's eye twitched, it didn't take a genius to figure out what Naruto had just did.
"Hehe." Naruto grinned cheekily but the smile dropped when the Uchiha slowly stood up, emitting murderous waves. The blond took a step back before he broke into a run, laughing all the way while Sasuke sprinted after him.
Naruto plopped down on his bed and threw a dirty glare at Sasuke who had deleted the picture from his phone and stood at his doorway. Finally, he let out a sigh and rolled on his back. "Come in teme, it's easier to talk when you're inside the room."
Sasuke frowned a little and almost replied that there was nothing to talk about, but thought better of it and took a seat on the chair at the desk. There was actually much to discuss especially considering their... new living arrangements. The Uchiha waited for Naruto to speak first and he didn't have to wait long.
"I can't believe our fathers! How dare they do this to us?!" Naruto muttered obscenities below his breath before he continued, "I mean, living together! Living together!"
"I heard you the first time dobe."
Naruto didn't even toss a glare at Sasuke and he continued as if he had never been interrupted, "How dare they? How dare they?! How could they?!"
"Precisely that they are our fathers." Sasuke said, crossing one leg over the other, "Therefore they dare and they can do this to us."
The blond groaned and ran his fingers through his wild blond hair. "It can't get worse than this."
Sasuke shook his head, "Dobe, it gets worse."
"What?" Naruto messed up his hair in frustration; his hair ended up looking like a lion's mane on a bad day. He looked up to the ceiling, "Why do I always jinx myself? Alright, I'm prepared; just tell me what it is."
Sasuke rolled his eyes. One word, 'Drama queen' went through his head at Naruto. "When my father passed me the keys this morning, he said we had to do chores."
Naruto promptly fell out of his bed (Sasuke hid a laugh). "What?!"
"Did I stutter?"
The blond glowered and got on his bed again, "Don't be a bastard now, I know that's who you are but right now I don't think I can stop myself from punching you."
His anger went up a notch, "I assure you, you wouldn't land a hit on me." Sasuke uncrossed his legs.
Naruto reached for his orange pillow and muffled a scream into it. He removed the pillow, "How about a truce until we figure out how to deal with this chore thing. I don't think our fathers would appreciate anymore fighting."
Sasuke felt a need to comment on Naruto's 'boyish battle' but decided not to. "Deal." It would be much easier to work this way, especially since he didn't want to get himself involved further in this mess.
"Alright." Naruto breathed a sigh of relief and covered his face with the pillow once again.
"Alright," Sasuke repeated, "I'll tell you now. If you're thinking that it's only our rooms that needs cleaning you've mistaken. My father told me that they actually had a cleaner to take care of this place."
The blond squashed the pillow and sat upright, "What?!" He's been saying that a lot lately. "We're both working adults. We have work to do! They can't suddenly force us to take care of everything."
"I suggest we hire someone as well. That way we won't have the chores to do and that takes care of our problem."
"Excellent idea, Uchiha." Naruto beamed, ready to plop back onto his bed to rest.
"However, we have another problem."
"Jeepers, what now?"
Sasuke tried to find the correct words to phrase his next sentence. "We're both working adults. From what I heard, you sometimes don't come home at all."
"That's right." Naruto replied confused, what has that got to do with anything?
"I am the same, and even if I do come home, the usual time I come home is earliest around 11 to 12."
"So the problem is..."
Naruto inclined his head to the side in confusion, "Is?"
"Our fathers want us to get along, if we hardly see each other-"
"Oh!" Naruto quickly saw which direction Sasuke was coming from, "We can always pretend?"
There was no hesitation in Sasuke's answer, "My father is very perceptive."
"Mine too..." The blond muttered dejectedly, realizing they could not fake it.
"And, apparently, our parents foresaw this problem." Sasuke closed his eyes and tapped his finger against the desk to quell his irritation at what his father had told him that morning, "They had decided to make us work only on a few selected days a week."
Naruto who had been idly tracing a crease line on his bed stopped abruptly, as he realized where this was going. "No. They didn't."
"They did." Sasuke said almost sulkily.
If Naruto had not been so utterly horrified about his current situation, he may have commented that Sasuke was a lot more open than before. There was silence for about a minute before Naruto said, "How do they expect us to bond anyway?"
"Our fathers apparently had filled one of the drawers in the living room with brochures and pamphlets of things we could do."
The blonde's jaw dropped and he stared straight at Sasuke. He blinked and tried to make a sound but it came out as a croak. He tried again, "Y-You mean they planned this?!"
Sasuke could only look away. "Hn."
"So... what's in that room there?" Naruto asked as he pointed a finger at the room right at the end of the hallway which was next to his and Sasuke's bedroom.
The problems faced just now were now temporarily avoided. They had decided that they would just march into their father's office and demand an answer to everything later on, right now Naruto had wanted to explore this house that supposedly belongs to both of their parents.
The blond tilted his head, "Eh! So we have another toilet?"
"No, that toilet is off-limits. My father said so." Sasuke looked thoughtfully at the toilet.
The Uchiha shrugged, "That's all I know. My father said the toilet is off-limits."
"How can that be?" Naruto marched towards the toilet and put his hands on his hips once outside. Ignoring Sasuke, he turned the knob.
It was stuck.
Cerulean eyes narrowed. "It's locked."
Sasuke frowned, "Maybe that's why it's off-limits."
"Why should anything in this house be off-limits?!" Naruto demanded angrily before he chewed his bottom lip in thought, "Unless... unless they have something to hide."
Both of them shared a look. Sasuke then stared suspiciously at the door, something his father wanted to hide huh. Damn that dobe and his ideas, now he wanted to know what was behind the door just as much as Naruto. It was preposterous to think his father was hiding something from him but what Naruto said made sense.
Naruto tapped his foot on the floor, thinking impatiently, "You know, my father wasn't at home in the morning."
Sasuke looked away from the door to Naruto, "He was at my house. That's how I knew so much about this house."
The gears in Naruto's head started to turn, "What time did you see him?"
The Uchiha thought for a moment, "7AM?"
Naruto blinked, "What was my father doing there so early?" A tiny portion of Naruto's mind also screamed 'What were you doing up so early?!' Naruto never understood how people could wake up so early on a Saturday.
"Hell, would I know?" Sasuke retorted but Naruto took no offence this time.
Something fishy was going on, and they (because Naruto was sure he'd be able to drag Sasuke into his plans) planned to find out what.
To be continued.
Hello everyone! Thank you for waiting so patiently for my update (or not so patiently XP). So anyway, this chapter doesn't have much plot, is kind of/sort of like a filler? Just to spread the SasuNaru interaction/love? I see many questions, don't worry, more will be explained later on the story.
Oh! Killbee and the eight-tailed demon, that's how Naruto and Kyuubi should be like! Seriously!
Important: I want to ask all of you whether I should change my title. Right now, I really don't know how much the story would be related to the title. Suggestions? Or should I leave it?
This poor lifeless author starts her new semester tomorrow. Please be patient about an update and give her support! 8D