Disclaimer: If I owned Naruto, ChoujiKonan butt(erfly)sex would be canon by now…okay, maybe not canon. But it's still pretty hot.

A/N: An odd, metaphorical drabble times three that I wrote to de-stress from that MinatoKushina…thing I'm working on. I'm not really up on Japanese symbolism, so forgive any errors, although some of it is definitely right and some is almost certainly wrong and lifted from China because I needed an excuse.

Yeah, whatever. Enjoy.


She keeps her eyes fixed on his as she raises the glass to her mouth. It clicks against the stud in her lip, echoes through the kitchen because there's nothing soft left to muffle the sound.

The tea burns her tongue as it's going down.

She tells herself that mutual respect is the only thing holding them together. She doesn't like him, doesn't need him, and for people like them, love is only another word for fanatical, foolish devotion. She will love something that keeps her head above water, not a man who provides solace to those who have already drowned.

Her butterflies cannot fly far when it rains; they will melt into the earth as if they never lived at all. They say that fire destroys everything—true, but it is water that will kill them slowly.

He is the flames of the sun, and she the sea. If they ever met, she would douse him and he would boil her away; it is only natural that they keep their distance.

The bells will ring four times for death.

Butterflies will burn away and cover the grave with glittering ash.

The world will be bleached white, and she will wear white chrysanthemums in her hair.

Her metal-pierced lips move excruciatingly closer to his face; when they meet the air will explode with the sound of a thousand bells, ringing in cacophony. Still, she will hear them—one, two, three, four.

Her body turns to paper, and the heat of him reduces her to dust. White butterflies crinkle as they draw near the sun, wings shriveling, crumpling into a rain of white ash.

All around them is death, and yet they see only each other as they destroy themselves.

She sets down the glass without making a sound, the vibrations still ringing in her ears. Slowly, so that it seems she is moving in a trance, she leans across the table towards him. Her face scorches, her eyes, even closed, fill with light.

When their lips meet, she can hear their death-knells ringing. She is given a moment of clarity to tell herself this is not quite love

—and yet.