Title: I Stare at You

Fandom: Naruto

Pairing: Gai/Tenten

Rating: PG-13

Word Count: 1,264

Summary/Description: Ten times Tenten wished she could sink through the ground.

Warning/Spoilers: No spoilers.

A/N: Exciting new pairings! (:

Dedication: For Ingrid, as a belated birthday present! This is what you requested for that meme a while back; I just sorta revised it a bit. I hope you like it! (hides) Like I said, I'm not very awesome at writing Gai. D:

Disclaimer: Insert witty denial of ownership here.

1. Tenten had to admit; sending her a new bra after he had accidentally destroyed one of hers while treating a wound that she'd gotten during a mission was a… nice gesture in and of itself. However, she quite wished that Gai hadn't signed his name on the package with large, bold green characters, and that she hadn't opened it in front of her parents.

2. Tenten was walking back home from the market when she heard her sensei's voice.

"Ah Kakashi, so you have an Uchiha, but the brilliance of my team far outshines yours, I am afraid, as vibrant as they are! For I have three geniuses: a natural genius, a genius of hard work, and a genius of weaponry! Aaaahh, but of course. She never misses! The vitality of her youth brings tears to my eyes; she does not allow herself to be left behind, not even when her team-mates are as commendable as they are! Indeed, she outshines them in many, many areas!"

Face flushed, she slunk back around the corner.

3. The one thought that kept running through her head was that he had specially recommended her for this mission.

"Lee?" was the first question. His eyes were dark and intent, and failure had never felt so acute to her.

"Stable condition." She didn't bother to mask the tremble in her voice. "Tsunade-sama does not think there will be any complications with the surgery."

Gai's relief was etched on his face, even if he did not voice it.

"And Neji? The specially assigned medic?"

It hurt terribly to swallow; she did it anyway.

"Neji is a bit worse off; Shizune-san says we will not know for sure until the end of the night. The medic… is dead." She hung her head low.

Gai was silent for a very long time. Then, he pressed a hand onto her shoulder.

"You should get some rest," he said before walking off.

Tenten slumped into the nearest chair. He had not said that he was disappointed.

He did not need to.

4. "…He cannot be serious." As she said it, Tenten didn't know whether to laugh or shriek.

Neji held up his own suit of vivid green spandex.

"He is an idiot, but he is seldom anything other than serious." In the background, Lee hugged his new suit to himself and made various noises of joy.

Tenten held the spandex to her body. It looked to be about three sizes too small; she couldn't imagine how it would grip when she actually put it on.

Not far away, Gai's teeth glinted ominously.

5. Gai's smile wilted as soon as Tenten came out of the dressing room.

"…Maybe this is not such a good idea," he said awkwardly. Lee turned bright red, and Neji turned away politely.

"What's not a good idea?" Tenten asked, looking up from where she was adjusting her dress. It was a deep, deep blue, and made of clingy material that moulded to her body and set off her skin. She slipped a sheathed kunai into her cleavage, and Gai coughed loudly.

"You being disguised as the hostess for tonight's mission… I think it would be better if we employ you as the lookout."

Tenten sidled her eyes to the side.

"Um. But. Then… who'll wear the dress?"

Gai brightened.

"Why, Neji, of course!"

6. Her mother had always told her that when she became a woman, it would be one of the most amazing things that she would experience in her teenage life.

Standing in the middle of the training grounds, however, feeling as if she was going to bleed dry, while Gai sobbed into her shoulder and Neji and Lee pretended to have an immense interest in the dirt, was not quite what she had imagined.

7. Tenten was in the middle of asking questions to the family of one the assassination victims when a man pushed his way to the front of the crowd excitedly.

"You're Tenten!" he exclaimed in her face. "Chuunin! Weapons specialist! Trained by Gai; am I right?"

Normally, this was a fairly orthodox occurrence; Gai was quite verbose about his team and their achievements. However, as she was in the middle of a small Rain village, miles and miles away from home, it left her bit perplexed.

"Um. Yes? …How you do know that, though?"

"Oh, your sensei passed through here a few years back," the man divulged cheerily. "He stayed at my inn when his mission was over. I happened to mention that my son was an expert in dealing with weapons, and my, he sure did put me in my place with stories of his young female student, and all of her strengths and accomplishments!" He grinned excitedly, and Tenten blinked. Once, and then again.

"Did he now," she said blankly.

"Oh yes. And he passed out pictures, too!"

Tenten felt faint.

8. Tenten answered the door to her apartment groggily. Having only gone to bed at four the morning, she was not pleased to find that it was only her old neighbour, Yamaguchi-san, and not something of extreme importance.

She tried to be cordial.

"Yes, Yamaguchi-san?"

The old woman peered at her over the tops of her glasses.

"Good morning, Tenten, my dear. I'm not sure if it's your shinobi friends trying to get in contact with you or anything of the sort, but for the past few nights, there has been a quite loud knocking sound coming from your apartment, and my dear, I'm afraid it's terribly disturbing." She frowned disapprovingly. "Terribly."

Tenten blinked in confusion before turning a very interesting shade of pink.

"O-of course, Yamaguchi-san, I shall be sure, to t-tell them, yes, right away, of course."

She couldn't close the door fast enough.

As she walked back to her room, she made a mental note to move the bed back from the wall, and implore with Gai (again) to at least try to be discreet.

9. "I'm sorry!" Tenten shrieked, throwing a hand over her eyes and stumbling backward.

The rush of the stream muffled Gai's words a little.

"…That is okay, Tenten! Honest mistakes are the best ones…!"

"Yes, I SWEAR, I didn't know you were there; I thought you'd bathed already—" Even though she was no longer in range, she kept her eyes clamped shut. Just in case.

"Please, do not trouble yourself, Tenten! The Springtime of Youth is often interspersed with these little showers of rain; but that is why we have umbrellas!"

Tenten cringed; she was half listening to him, and half trying to scrub the image out of her mind. Trying, but to little avail.

"Um, okay, Gai-sensei. I'll just… go now."

"Yes, I think… that is wise!" She heard a hand slicing through the air, and was sure he'd just given her a dynamic thumbs up.

As she stumbled through the foliage and back to the campsite, she couldn't help but think that everyone who said that Gai's spandex suit left nothing to the imagination was dead wrong. As it turned out, he had quite a bit more to hide under it all. Quite.

10. The kiss was soft, and lingered as long as she dared. She had to go on tiptoe, brace herself against his chest, and pull his head down to meet her, but it was worth every small movement, every bit of work.

Until he prised her lips away.

"No, Tenten," he said, and his voice was so soft, it was a shock. "No."

She stood there long after he walked off, head ducked, fists clenched.

A/N: I'm very interested to know what you think. I've never written GaiTen, and I've only read one, which was written by Ingrid. :D So! Feedback is nice.