Disclaimer: If I owed Naruto, I would be rich and it would be a Yaoi, but since neither of those things are true, then it is safe to say that I am not the creator of Naruto or any of its characters.

Warnings: This fic is Strictly rated Mature for violence, sexual content, adult situations, and strong language. And it is Yaoi, which means MalexMale relationships, so if that offends you please don't read. I accept criticism but not flames. Flamers will be burned at the stake for all to see!

Chapter One

Always The Underdog

The sun had long ago set behind the horizon, but some light still refused to retreat to another needy land. The sky was stripped in torrents of orange and red, and all that wanted to watch this wonderful spectacle, had gazed out of their windows or sat outside. But a few villagers were unable to admire such beauty when they were still required to work and protect these carefree civilians.

A crumpling of leaves was the only sound in the forest as a pink haired girl made her way from branch to branch. She kept quite in order to maintain her position in the original plan for this mission. But thins may not have gone exactly as they had all planned. "Blossom-picker to Raven-avenger, the target is heading directly for you." She whispered into the small headphone against her cheek. She crunched down quickly as their target progressed passed her.

"Roger Blossom-picker." Sasuke whispered back, his eyes narrowing as the ninja in black ran stealthy pass his checkpoint. Suddenly as if without ease, coal eyes turned into a furious red as he examined the form for any hidden jutsu he might have been using. It would be unfortunate for them all to have followed just a clone rather than the real criminal. He smirked brilliantly as his Sharingan proved to him that this person was in fact the original target. "Raven-avenger to Orange-Buffoon, the target is heading toward you, make your move." Sasuke ordered quietly as he sank further to the ground beneath the bushes. "Orange-Buffoon?" Sasuke repeated. He received no response from their other teammate.

Naturally this could mean anything. But Sasuke was always the first to suspect the worse of the stupid blond. If he wasn't replying, then he must have been caught or just playing on his own lame terms. The idiot would often try to take a mission into his own hands only to have it blow up in his face later. Despite how much Sasuke loved to see that result, he wasn't going to let Naruto ruin yet another mission with his stupidity. "Blossom-picker, Orange Buffoon is not responding, we're on our own now." He replied testily to Sakura.

The girl immediately went into a silent fit, which was only the case when she was on a mission, otherwise she would be screaming her head off. "Again?! I'm going to kill Naruto if the target hasn't done it already." She hissed, popping out of her hiding spot to go after the ninja Naruto apparently wasn't going to help catch. Sasuke, too, rose out of his hiding to go after the guy.

Everyone already had their suspicions Naruto was just fooling of again, but the blond had intentionally left his post to screw up the mission. In fact he was only three feet away from his appointed check point, because of...bodily issues.

"Urgh. I knew I shouldn't have drunk that seventh helping of Sakura's tea." he moaned, shakily obsessively as he rushed over to a nearby tree. "But I just couldn't let her down and not drink it all." He told himself as he unzipped his pants. It was only recently he had come out of his crush on Sakura, but that didn't change how he did things for her. Being the loving friend he always tended to be, he couldn't bring himself to deny the pretty-demanding female. He quickly zipped back up after he finished relieving himself and tried to get back to his post before Sasuke and Sakura noticed he was gone. Of course he had left his headphones there; who would want to hear someone's voice while you were, well you know?

Just as he was approaching his comfortable plot near the ground he heard hasty footsteps. "Oh, man! He's already here." Naruto mumbled to himself, wondering why Sasuke and Sakura hadn't given him a warning earlier. Seeing as how he was alone with this, Naruto thoughtlessly jumped out of the shrubbery, hoping to pounce right on the escaping ninja. "Gottach!" He yelled, wrapping his arms around the guy's neck.

Immediately the ninja snarled at the boy. "Get out of my way you brat!" He demanded, not taking Naruto too seriously with his approach on capturing someone. Without any warning, the guy quickly grabbed one of Naruto's thin arms and twisted them right over his shoulder, pulling the boy over and onto the ground. Before Naruto had a chance to sound his surprise and pain, the ninja pulled him up into a head lock.

"Hey! Let me go!" Naruto shouted boisterously as he flailed his arms and legs repeatedly. he had thought this was nothing, at least until he heard other voices and footsteps. This couldn't be good. Either this guy had partners or it was his teammates here to ridicule him on his failure.

"Shit." The man growled under breath. With easy speed, he drew out a kunai and pressed it against Naruto's neck, instantly causing Naruto to stop his fidgeting for fear of being cut by accident. Not moments after, Sasuke and Sakura both appeared. They came to a halt the moment they spotted Naruto clasped tightly in the man's grip with a blade to his throat. "Another step and your little teammate here is dead!" The ninja yelled out, stepping back and pulling Naruto along with him.

Naruto was already in full panic mood. This was so unfair! When was his moment to shine? Instead of becoming the hero he was hoping to be, he was yet again the victim or problem. As if this wasn't enough, Naruto had little fair in his friends simply from looking at the expressions on their faces. Sasuke, as usual held his stoic, 'I don't give a crap' frown as he was glaring at him with pure hatred. Why was Sasuke made at him?! Shouldn't those dagger eyes be directed to the enemy, not your comrade. And Sakura, oh Sakura. She was snarling and looking as though she was about to erupt into one of her common everyday bitch fits about him being a total idiot and worthless to this team. Of course she didn't mean it as much as she did before, but it still hurt to be talked to like that.

"What makes you think we care what you do to him?" Sasuke replied calmly.

"What?!" Naruto screamed out in shock. His eyes had widened three times their normal weigh and he was now fuming a vicious read in his cheeks. "Teme! How could you say that?!"

Sakura rolled her eyes. Obvious Naruto still didn't understand the concept of gloating. Such a simple mind for such a simple blond, it was rather sad. Sasuke also showed little concern for the active blond. "We don't care what you do to him, we just want the scroll you stole from Sand!" For the most part he was acting his role too well. In truth he really couldn't care less what happened to Naruto because of his own stupidity. All he cared about was completing this pointless mission for he could get back to his hefty training schedule.

Of course the thief didn't believe a word of it. "Do you think I'm an imbecile?!" The man shouted out, seeming to be offended by their weak attempts at illusion. "If I slit his throat right now, you two would be in a raged stampede over your own carelessness." He explained. This only succeed in worrying Naruto further, and his panic was quite evident on his face.

"Care to try us?" Sasuke offered back with a smug smirk. He was inwardly laughing head off as soon as he saw Naruto's dead expression. It was as if the blond truly believed he would let him die like that. Sasuke may have not cared, but he sure as hell won't be blamed for another person's death. He had better things to do than wallop on a guilt trip.

The man snarled and was eager to test that theory. "Alright then." He replied, anxiously pressing the cold blade against Naruto's neck. Naruto couldn't held but gulp deeply as the surface of his throat stung a little with the tiny cut being produced from the contact. He couldn't believe Sasuke would actually toy with him like this, it was so cruel. Well more cruel than usual anyway. Naruto's eyes suddenly slammed shut as the blade moved to the side quickly.

But to his surprise, he felt no further pain than that of being rung around the neck by the guy's hand as it seemed he was being shoved aside. Naruto's eyes popped open as he saw Sasuke standing to the side of him. His lips silently fell as he was transported into a blind stupor. Sasuke was amazingly fast. He wasn't even sure if he had saw between the time Sasuke had stabbed the guy's hand with his own kunai and elbowed him in the gut so that he was off of the blond. But apparently it had all happened because the guy kneeled on the ground as he cupped his gut, but not for much longer. Sasuke had stamped his head into the ground, immediately knocking the guy out.

"You are so awesome Sasuke!" Sakura squealed the next moment, dashing over to fawn over him while Naruto still watched in his petrified state. He wasn't at all sure Sasuke had really done that to save him. He could have sworn Sasuke was just going to let him die.

There was a brief moment Naruto felt his heart flutter, when Sasuke turned to him with his usual arrogant smirk. For some reason it was just more intimidating than before. Just that thought brought an uncomfortable warmth to Naruto's cheeks. Cerulean orbs shamefully fell to the ground and a self-hating frown appeared on his lips. Naruto wasn't sure if he was blaming himself or blaming Sasuke for how he felt now. It was just...Sasuke was the hero...again. He was always the hero, always the person everyone wanted and could trust.

"Oh Sasuke!" Sakura cooed, cupping her hands together as hearts appeared in her eyes. "Wait until everyone hears how you took this guy on single handedly!" The girl had not been careful with her words, and hadn't noticed what affect they would have others. But Sasuke's eyes seemed to twinkle with a spark of interest when he saw how stiff Naruto went after that reply. He was tempted to rub it further in Naruto's face. Scratch that, he did rub it in Naruto's face.

"It was no big deal Sakura, he was just another weakling. Anyone could have taken him down easily." Sasuke gloated, his smirk widened. He was expecting Naruto to burst out into his usual fits of rage, but he was surprised to see the blond actually quite about it. he was definitely mad, that much Sasuke could tell, but he wasn't letting it out like he always did. Sasuke's jaw dropped a little when he saw Naruto actually turn his back to him and start to walk back towards the village. Did he just take that?!

"Hey idiot!" Sakura yelled. She raced over to the moping blond, striking Sasuke's curiosity as to what she could possibly say to make Naruto feel any worse or even better. Before either boys had a chance to contemplate that choice, Sakura proved which side she was supporting as soon as she punched Naruto right on the head. "You better thank Sasuke for saving you lazy, pathetic ass!" She ordered furiously. "He gets really tired of making up for all the crap you start! It's because of Sasuke that you are even in this group anymore." She hissed.

Naruto sneered at Sasuke, though it was all Sakura's words. "Well I'm sorry if I'm not up to par with the great ass-kissing Sasuke!" He suddenly screamed, though his voice was a little more high pitched then usual. "Next time you think about helping me out-don't! I can take care of myself without your stupid help SASUKE!" In a heated fury, Naruto dashed off into the woods, heading back for the town, leaving behind a baffled Uchiha and a proud Sakura.

What was this feeling of regret that Sasuke was suddenly hit with? His brows knitted together and he held a cold and intense glare with the ground. He didn't see why Naruto had to be so sensitive all the time, they were only joking. As much fun as it was to constantly tease the exaggerative drama queen, Sasuke could easily tell when something was take to far. Apparently these were one of those times. By why now of all times. He had saved Naruto's butt plenty of times and the blond never exploded like this. He usually sucked it up with the typical 'I'll be saving you next time teme'. It seems, Sasuke got guilt even when that was what he was trying to protect himself from.

"Dobe." Sasuke growled lowly as he started walking for the village. He had a feeling this wouldn't just blow over during the night. He might as well go fix the mess he for once had started. Sakura was left behind to return the scroll to the Hokage and report to other nins of the thief that was still unconscious in the forest. Sasuke sighed dryly as he came into the darkened town. Everyone was retreating back into their homes for the night and only a few stragglers waved at him as he passed by. Being that he was Sasuke and was too good for that, he simply threw them a serious glance before proceeding. Finally he came to what he remembered was Naruto's apartment. he had only been here a few times. But only to wake up the blond when he was late for training with Kakashi.

He knocked politely on the door of Naruto's room, but heard no response. After awhile, Sasuke was filled with a little worry. What if Naruto got attacked on his way back to the village? That idiot would manage to be taken hostage two times in the same night. Or he could just be engorging himself in the unhealthy substance of ramen. Then again, he might be stupid enough to try suicide if he was made enough. Naruto was always drawn to do dramatic things when he was upset. Even if it was as pointless as hurting himself. Sasuke recalled it wouldn't be the first time Naruto hurt himself on purpose.

"Naruto?" Sasuke replied softly as he knocked on the door once more.

"What are you doing here?" The growl made Sasuke turn around quickly. He saw Naruto standing behind him with a grocery bag in his hand as well as a temperamental glare on his face. "Should you be turning in the thief so you can get all the credit for his capture? Or do you need my presence so you can feel better about yourself?" Naruto grumbled angrily.

Sasuke could seriously feel those heated eyes burning a hole into his chest. Despite himself, Sasuke was actually a little nervous about having to face Naruto when he was like this. "I just wanted to check on you." he explained. Sasuke quickly caught himself as soon as he realized this could actually be interpreted as concern for the blond. "I had to make sure you such a delicate thing like you didn't die from blood lose on the way home." Sasuke mocked, pointing to the small cut on Naruto's neck that was still fresh with a string of blood.

"Well you see I'm fine, so go home now." Naruto stated in a cold voice. Without any reason or acknowledgement, Sasuke suddenly felt his whole heart plummet into his stomach the moment Naruto turned such an intense gaze from him. Sasuke all too sure it wasn't the sudden appearance of the moon now in the sky that illumined the sapphire eyes just now. A shiver went straight down Sasuke's spine when he recognized those usually lively eyes trembling with some sort of despair or regret. And almost immediately, Sasuke wished he could have taken back those words. But why? He had never really wanted to before?

"Naruto..." Sasuke hesitated, unable to say the words that were on the tip of his tongue.

"Just leave Sasuke." Naruto hissed. "It's late and I rather not hear any more of your bragging before I sleep. I'll see you in the morning...that should give you plenty enough time to come up with more ways to humiliate me. You seem to be good at that." Naruto said in an almost deathly tone. He walked past Sasuke, their shoulders brushing against each other as he opened his door and let himself in. Sasuke was unable to say or do anything before the door was slammed shut again.

"What was that just now?" Sasuke asked himself in a soft whisper. At the moment he had nothing better to do than head home.

Meanwhile, Naruto had carelessly dropped his bag in the middle of the floor. "Jerk Sasuke." He murmured childishly as he plopped down onto his bed. "I'll show him. I'm not just a screw up. He's going to regret ever messing with me."

To Be Continued…

A/N: Yay, I started my new fic! I hope you all liked the first chapter! I will update as soon as I can! And I appreciate reviews! This fic is a SasuNaru/GaaNaru, but I'm not exactly sure who I really want Naruto to end up with in the end. So whoever is the closest by the end of the fic, I guess.