Hey all! I just had to write something and heaven forbid I should update anything already in the works. (sigh) So, here's a little something fun and light-hearted. It was meant to be a one-shot but ran away from me and is looking like it might end up with three or four chapters. Dang it. Anyway, hope you enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or any of its characters. No copyright infringement is intended and this fic is made purely for entertainment purposes and not monetary gain.
Dream A Little Dream
Chapter 1: Mission
There were two things Hatake Kakashi feared within Konoha's borders. One: was a one-night stand telling him she was pregnant. Two: was an enraged Haruno Sakura. Unfortunately for the masked ninja, the two were meeting this morning, minus the pregnancy.
He had woken up that morning to an incessant pounding on his door. Normally, he would be rather quick with answering. However it felt like someone or something was trying to rip his head into two pieces from the inside out and he could tell from the slight shaking of his hands that he was dehydrated. "I knew I shouldn't have had so much to drink." The copy nin grumbled as his groggy mind tried to piece together the previous night's events. He remembered heading to the bar with Genma, indulging in a few beers and then... 'Oh well that figures. I knew he'd be in there somewhere with a hangover like this.' Gai had challenged him to a drinking contest, which his already buzzed self accepted.
Just then he realized someone else was in bed with him. Doing a quick mental check, Kakashi breathed a sigh of relief as he took notice that his clothes were still on and he didn't have that boneless feeling a night of sex provided him. He hated sex he couldn't remember. The relief intensified as one of the ugliest kunoichi he had ever seen peeked out from the sheets. He had enough self-control to not recoil from the woman, but he had to consciously work to stop his grimace. 'Damn, those must have been some strong beer goggles. Thank god we didn't do anything.'
As he was looking for the words to get the woman (whose name he didn't recall) to leave, his front door burst open and an angry Sakura stormed into his room. "KAKASHI! What the hell is your problem? I've been knocking for five minutes out there! Get up, lazy ass!"
The twelve year old Sakura would have probably blushed and run out of the room seeing her former sensei not only in bed, but in bed with someone else. Actually, twelve year old Sakura would have never burst into his apartment, either. However, twenty-one year old Sakura was not so easily embarrassed and merely arched an eyebrow at the woman.
The kunoichi sat up in the bed and fixed Sakura with a look that clearly said 'get out.' When that didn't work, she wound her arms around Kakashi, who looked at Sakura with a stricken 'help me' look. "Look, little girl. Maybe you should go. Kakashi and I have some unfinished business to attend to. Little kids have no place here."
Sakura crossed her arms, trying to seem unaffected by the 'kid' remark. She took a good look at the features that were simply too small for the wide face, all of them centered, leaving tons of empty room on the woman's face. She then turned to her team leader. "Rough night, Kakashi?"
At a loss for words since he didn't want to hurt the woman's feelings, Kakashi merely shrugged and addressed the creature that was practically suctioned to his side. "Maybe you should go…uh…yeah." He just couldn't remember the woman's name!
The nameless ninja stood up, fully dressed herself, and pointed an accusing finger at Sakura. "So, she's more suited to your needs than I am? Ridiculous! She's barely got any curves!"
Sakura felt the jealousy she had been feeling slip away. She had developed a crush on Kakashi that had blossomed into something deeper over the past year. One-sided of course, since Haruno Sakura was oh so unlucky in love. The tight pangs of jealousy had filled her chest as she noticed a woman in bed with Kakashi. However, they were both dressed, shoes and all, so nothing had happened. The woman wasn't attractive in the least. And Kakashi obviously didn't want her there. Yes the jealousy was gone, but Sakura wasn't about to let this woman's insults slide.
Kakashi groaned. 'Boy, do I know how to pick 'em. This one seems a little off kilter. And Sakura's about to kill her.'
Sure enough, the pink haired young woman was practically vibrating with anger. "I'll show you who's more woman!" she muttered venomously as she marched forward, grabbed the woman by the hair and dragged her to the front door. "And stay out!" she bellowed as she shoved the woman out. For a split second, Kakashi thought it was incredibly hot to see Sakura manhandle the woman that way, until the fact that it was Sakura slapped him in the face. 'What the hell is wrong with me? It's Sakura for heaven's sake!'
When Sakura returned, Kakashi looked sheepish as she stared him down. She took note of his appearance and felt satisfaction that his mask was still in place. She'd feel unimportant if he showed some fling his face before his trusted teammate. "I take it the night didn't go as planned?"
Kakashi rubbed at his forehead. "It was dark in the bar and I had way too many drinks." A thought struck him and he gave Sakura a strange look. "Why are you here?" He and the young woman were friends, but she rarely came to his apartment.
"We have a mission."
"Okay, but why are you here? There's usually a chuunin aid that brings mission scrolls, unless it's ANBU and then one of their operatives delivers it."
Sakura smiled at him. "I'm on a pre-mission mission right now." At Kakashi's puzzled look she continued. "Tsunade-shishou asked me to make sure you arrived on time. She's very busy today and doesn't have time for your shenanigans."
He couldn't help the wide smile that cracked through. "Shenanigans? You've been planning to say that word for a while haven't you."
Sakura shrugged. "It's a fun word. Now get showered and dressed. You reek of alcohol and smoke."
After getting ready, Kakashi and a stormy faced Sakura headed to the Hokage Tower. One leisurely strolling along, the other stomping ahead slightly and turning every few seconds to make 'hurry up' motions to the one behind. How he had managed to not only be late himself, but make Sakura late was a mystery. Especially since the pink haired medic didn't even realize it was happening.
They finally made it to Tsunade's office and found Naruto and Sasuke waiting for them. Tsunade glared hard at Kakashi. "About time. It's bad enough that you're late to everything, but don't you dare corrupt my apprentice, Hatake."
"Wouldn't dream of it, Hokage-sama." He gave a friendly eye crease and hoped that would be the end of any reprimands he may receive.
Tsunade folded her hands and rested her chin against them as she prepared to address the ninja in front of her. "As you all know, I've summoned you here for a mission. This is important as it's the first mission for Uchiha since his return to Konoha. His probation is finally up and his shinobi status has been re-instated. It is C-Rank and will take a week. Luckily for the four of you, it is within Konoha so you won't need to travel."
Naruto had his hackles up at the 'C-Rank' bit. "Tsunade-baachan! Why just C-Rank? You know we can handle something more than that! We're four of the best ninja in the village!"
"Brat, you and the Uchiha are still technically genin. Hatake and Sakura are involved because they volunteered to be the jounin in charge of you and the Uchiha until you can be promoted to chuunin. As genin, C-Rank is the best I can do."
Naruto looked at Sakura, hoping that as the Hokage's apprentice she could do something. "Sakura-chan."
The medic looked at him and smiled. "I prefer Sakura-sensei, actually."
Kakashi couldn't suppress a snicker as Naruto and Sasuke looked at Sakura strangely. She continued. "Hey, it isn't my fault you two left the village for a few years! I think I'm entitled to enjoy my status above you." But she gave them a wink that said she was joking and they turned their attention back to Tsunade.
Naruto wasn't done trying to get a better mission. "Maybe you could give this mission to Konohamaru's team and give us something more challenging."
Oh it just got sweeter and sweeter for the Hokage. "They're taking the chuunin exams. All three are in the finals. Seems your little follower will be a chuunin before you, brat." Naruto always managed to make her life more difficult, so a little 'rub it in his face' was fun for the busty blonde.
After a shocked expression and a, "WHAT?!", Naruto pouted and turned his attention to Sasuke. "This is all your fault, teme."
"How is it my fault, dobe?"
"If you hadn't left the village and made us save your sorry ass we could have taken the chuunin exams years ago."
Sasuke scowled at Naruto. "I didn't make you wait for me to take the exams. That was your decision, dobe. Don't blame me for it."
Tsunade put her hands up. "That's enough. Here's the mission scroll, Hatake. It's mainly for the two boys. You and Sakura are merely there to supervise."
He opened the scroll and chuckled. "You have to baby-sit the orphanage for a week."
The quartet went out for dinner that night, their weekly get-together. They had all forgone their ninja gear in favor of civilian clothing since they were attending a nicer restaurant than normal. Sakura giggled as she approached the restaurant. Sasuke and Naruto would have been extremely handsome in their button up shirts and slacks if they weren't sulking. "Upset about the mission boys?"
The two turned to Sakura behind them and then both jaws dropped. She was wearing a black sleeveless dress that hugged her torso and then flared at the hips and flowed down to her knees. Her shinobi sandals had been traded for a pair of strappy black heels and free of her headband her hair fell in silky, straight strands to just below her shoulders and her bangs just dusted her forehead. "Uh…boys?"
Sasuke snapped out of his trance first and gave her a smirk. "You look nice." Had it been anyone else, Sakura would have smiled and said 'thank you', but since it was the stoic Uchiha it was her turn to drop her jaw.
After a second her gaze softened into a small smile. "What I would have given for you to say that nine years ago."
Naruto was still a little dazed from Sakura's appearance when a puff of smoke alerted them to Kakashi's presence. "Yo." The phrase snapped Naruto out of his daze and he looked at Kakashi in disbelief.
"You're on time?"
Sakura snickered. "Only because I told him our meeting time was an hour ago."
Kakashi turned to her to give a friendly eye crease and compliment her craftiness, but as he turned his visible eye went wide and his gaze slowly traveled from her feet up to her head. 'Holy shit. When did that happen?'
Sakura would have noticed if she wasn't doing her own perusal of his appearance. The troublesome mask was still in place, but the forehead protector was gone and a simple eye patch was in its place causing his hair to fall around his face handsomely. He was dressed in a black suit with a light blue shirt and Sakura had to remember not to drool. 'Was Kakashi always this hot?' Inner Sakura had hearts in her eyes before melting into a puddle of goo.
Naruto and Sasuke exchanged a glance and smirks before breaking the spell their two teammates were under. Naruto hid his chuckle as a cough. "Well, let's head inside. Our reservation time is 7:00 and its 6:55 now."
They were led to their table and Kakashi held out Sakura's chair as a gentleman would, which surprised the younger kunoichi greatly, before taking his own seat next to her. Naruto and Sasuke exchanged another glance at that and decided to do a little digging.
Naruto started up after their drinks were ordered. "So, Kaka-sensei, been seeing anyone lately?"
Sakura choked on her water and started laughing and Kakashi narrowed his eye at her. "No, I'm not seeing anyone. Why? You interested?" Kakashi winked at Naruto and the kyuubi container shuddered in revulsion.
"Eww. No! Just asking. Sheesh!"
Sakura spoke up. "So, that woman this morning was nothing?" The amused smirk on her face told Kakashi he wasn't getting out of this one as she propped her chin in her hand, watching him and waiting.
The two boys were immediately listening intently. "What woman?" asked Sasuke.
Sakura smiled and winked at Kakashi, who was determined not to elaborate. "This stud over here had a woman in his bed when I went to get him this morning."
Kakashi was practically growling. "We were both fully dressed, so you know nothing happened."
"Really, Kakashi I was surprised at you. You could do much better than her. She wasn't pretty at all." Sakura was clearly enjoying herself.
Naruto was hiding his mouth behind his hand, trying to muffle his laughter. "You picked up an ugly chick?"
"In my defense, it was dark in the bar and I was more drunk than I have been in a long time."
Sasuke huffed behind his glass. "Excuses, excuses."
"If you're all done picking on your poor old sensei…" Kakashi sniffed indignantly.
The green-eyed woman next to him snorted behind her menu. "Poor old sensei my ass." She stole a glance out of the corner of her eye to see his eye crinkling merrily as he perused the menu. 'I wonder what he looks like without the mask.'
Naturally, it wasn't the first time she had wondered, and truthfully she had stopped trying to de-mask him. It wasn't about his physical appearance to her. Kakashi was Kakashi and she loved him no matter what he looked like. But with him looking delectable in the suit, her interest was renewed.
The rest of dinner went off without a hitch, mainly since no one brought up the subject of their upcoming mission. That would have undoubtedly led to angry shouts from Naruto and sulking from Sasuke. Or brooding, since Sasuke insisted he didn't pout or sulk. They parted ways just outside the restaurant, Sasuke and Naruto headed toward their homes while Sakura and Kakashi lived in the other direction.
"So Kakashi, when will you let your dear friend here see your face?" Sakura gave him her most winning smile.
With a chuckle Kakashi replied. "Since you all want to see it so bad, I don't want to show you."
Sakura pouted. "But I really want to see you without the mask in your suit." She wasn't playing this time. In her nine years of knowing Kakashi, this was the first time she had seen him in anything other than the regulation jounin uniform. Who knew how long it would be until she had the chance again?
Kakashi took note of her downcast expression and sighed heavily. Really, who would it hurt to show her? He trusted her with his life, why couldn't he show her his face? He knew why he hesitated. It had taken years to construct those solid walls he used to keep others out. The mask was one of those walls. Letting people get too close was dangerous. He had lost too many already. If he let another in and lost them, it would break him. However, as he looked at Sakura again he realized he was too close to his team already. If any of them were taken, he would be just a shell. Somehow the little brats of Team 7 had wormed their way under his skin and he loved them all dearly. "Sakura."
Her pink tresses shifted as she slowly lifted her head. "Yes?"
Hearing the dejection in her voice only steeled his resolve. "If it means that much to you, I'll show you."
He watched in interest as her face changed completely, bright smile and excited eyes growing on her face. "Is my face really that intriguing to you?"
"Well, you wouldn't show us. That only made us want to see it more."
"And you wanting to see so badly made me not want to show you. Sort of a catch 22, don't you think?" He smiled at her beneath the mask. "Let's go to my apartment. I won't take my mask off out here."
Sakura practically bounced and skipped next to him as they made their way to his tiny apartment. Once inside, Kakashi closed all the curtains and made sure the door was locked. Sakura quirked a brow at his behavior. "Paranoid much?"
"Sakura, you're the first person to see my face in ten years. I don't intend to make this a habit."
After he was satisfied that no one could see or walk in, he lifted the eye patch and set it on the table next to him.
"No sharingan, Kakashi! You use that on me and I swear I'll-"
She didn't get to finish as Kakashi shook his head. "I promise. You have my word."
"Alright. I'm ready then." Sakura stood across from him, watching intently, heart pounding as the moment she had been waiting for since she was twelve took place.
He opened his sharingan and the intensity his eyes held when both were opened caused Sakura to tremble slightly in anticipation. He slid a finger under the mask and tugged down swiftly.
Sakura didn't have much reaction for a second, just stared, taking in the straight nose and full lips, strong jaw line and high cheekbones. Once she took in the whole picture instead of just certain features, her eyes widened and her jaw dropped. 'Holy cow. He's gorgeous!' Inner Sakura promptly fainted.
Kakashi smirked and quirked a brow at her reaction. It broke the trance Sakura was in and she murmured quietly. "You're beautiful."
Not used to compliments that had nothing to do with fighting, Kakashi's cheeks turned a slight pink and he smiled brightly, eyes crinkling in the manner Sakura knew so well.
"Oh god. Don't do that." Sakura had to grab the back of the chair she was next to so her wobbly knees wouldn't buckle on her.
Kakashi's eyes opened and he bit his lip, beginning to get uncomfortable with her staring. He noticed Sakura grab the back of the chair with both hands and immediately released his bottom lip. "Are you done yet?"
"Only if you promise I can ogle you again." She had overcome her shock, but she wasn't exactly ready to give this up. She smiled teasingly at him.
The copy nin pulled his mask back up and then grinned behind it. "I suppose on special occasions you can see it again."
Sakura went over to give him a hug, something she always did with her boys before parting. "Thank you for trusting me enough." She pulled back and gave him a bright smile before her sakura petals engulfed her.
Kakashi stood dumbstruck for a moment. Why did that hug, that normal hug, affect him so? Why did he pull her tighter than usual? Why did he linger longer? Why did her warm whisper in his ear send a shiver down his spine? Was it just because of her reaction to his face? He knew she found him handsome, actually beautiful was the word she used. No one had called him that before. It put a silly smile on his face as he recalled how she looked at that moment. A glance at the scroll on his desk reminded him of the next day's mission and he sighed. There was no time to ponder his questions since they had to be there early tomorrow. And he sure as heck didn't want to miss a second of Sasuke and Naruto trying to baby-sit.
Sakura sank onto her bed, dreamy smile on her face as she pictured Kakashi's maskless face in her mind. Inner Sakura had come to just before the hug and was currently posting Kakashi pin-ups all over the walls of Sakura's mind, humming happily.
"Is it just me or was Kakashi different tonight?" Sakura wondered quietly.
'Oh, he was different alright. Has he always been that hot? And if so, why the hell haven't we been drooling over him?' Inner Sakura demanded.
Sakura sighed. "I was probably imagining things."
'No, you weren't. He held you tighter and longer than usual. And correct me if I'm wrong, but we enjoyed it. He better do it again.'
"No use pondering now. I have an…amusing mission tomorrow." She fell asleep with a mischievous smile in place. Watching Naruto and Sasuke would be one of the funniest missions ever, she was sure of it.
They all met up at Kakashi's apartment the next morning. The three former students figured he wouldn't be late if they all teamed up on him. However when they went to knock on his door, it opened and Kakashi stood there ready to go. At their stunned looks he grinned. "Hey, I'm not missing this."
Sakura and Kakashi were practically beaming on the way to the orphanage while Naruto and Sasuke looked defeated.
"Sakura-chan, I don't know how to take care of kids. What the heck am I going to do?" Naruto looked truly lost.
Sakura frowned at him. "How am I supposed to know? I'm an only child and don't have any kids of my own."
"Well, don't girls usually baby-sit at some point?"
"Naruto, when the hell did I have time to baby-sit? I was either training with you guys, on missions, or having paperwork dumped on me by Tsunade-shishou."
"Geez, sorry I asked."
Sasuke sighed. "The dobe does have a point. Neither one of us knows how to deal with kids."
Kakashi smiled brightly, since nothing seemed to affect him. "We'll figure it out, I'm sure. How hard can it be?"
How hard indeed. When they reached the orphanage, they heard a woman yelling inside and a loud crash. "Keisuke, you little brat! I'm taking that vase out of your hide, young man!"
"NOOOOO! You'll never catch me, hahahaha!"
This time they heard a little girl shouting, trying to be the voice of reason. "Keisuke-kun, she's going to catch you and it'll hurt a lot more! Just take your punishment like a man!"
"I'm not a man yet, Akane-chan! Hahahaha!"
The four shinobi, now very apprehensive, opened the orphanage doors to quite a sight. An older woman, apparently the head mistress, was chasing a laughing little boy while a little girl stood on the coffee table in the middle of the room, shaking her head sadly.
The woman finally caught the little boy, presumably Keisuke, and proceeded to smack him on the rear with a wide stick of wood, the word 'Punisher' etched into the surface. "That'll teach you, you little punk. Now go to your room!"
He wasn't crying, but he was rubbing his tender posterior and glaring at the old woman as he obediently went to his room. At the top of the stairs, he turned to stick his tongue out at her and when she took a step forward with her paddle raised, he shot off to his room like lightening.
She turned to the four stunned ninja and smiled slightly. "I'm guessing you're here to watch the kids while I'm on vacation?" When the ninja nodded dumbly she continued. "Well, it isn't always this bad. Keisuke gets into these moods and then all hell breaks loose. Keep him in control and you should be fine. There are seven children total. Two infants: one month old twins. Three toddlers: ages eighteen months a two year old and a four year old. And two that are seven, these being Keisuke and Akane-chan. She's my little helper." The old woman smiled warmly at the little girl who was clutching a battered teddy bear in one arm.
"Pleased to meet you." Akane smiled slightly at the ninja and then approached Sakura and pulled on her sleeve to get her to bend down. "I'm glad there's a girl here," she whispered. "Boys are yucky."
Sakura giggled at Akane. "Too true, Akane-chan."
They noticed the older woman had disappeared, but she soon came down the stairs, Keisuke in tow. She smiled widely at the ninja as she grabbed her bags. "I'd love to give you more information, but I've got to go! Akane-chan can tell you whatever you need to know. Bye!" And as they watched the cloud of dust form behind her, they could swear they heard shouts of 'I'm free! I'm free!' coupled with mad cackling.
It seemed the head mistress's departure was the signal for pandemonium. One infant wailed which woke the other one and Sasuke sauntered off to collect them. Their crying woke up the three toddlers, who were filled with energy after a good night's sleep and proceeded to race through the house. And Keisuke started to jump on one of the couches while Akane sighed.
Naruto was trying to coral the toddlers into the living area, all the while yelling at Keisuke to stop jumping on the furniture. Sasuke re-entered the living room with the two infants, a bewildered 'what the hell do I do' look on his face and Sakura gave a long sigh. "I knew I'd end up helping with this mission. And I so wanted to just watch and laugh." She threw a playful pout Kakashi's way and he chuckled.
"You have a plan?"
"I've substituted for Iruka-sensei before. If I can handle those monsters, I can handle this." She rummaged around in her pack a second before withdrawing a little silver whistle. After a loud and drawn out squeal from it, the house was silent. Even the infants were startled enough to stop their fussing. "Alright you lot. Form a line, now!"
The boys watched impressed as five kids lined up in front of Sakura. "There will be ground rules while the head mistress is gone. We are in charge now." Sasuke and Naruto came to stand behind Sakura while she talked to the little ones. "If anyone lies to any of us, Sasuke will see it." She motioned for Sasuke to activate his sharingan, which made the children gasp. "No one will disobey unless they want Naruto to use the paddle on them." Naruto took off his jacket and flexed an arm, causing the t-shirt to stretch tight on him. The kids looked like they were beginning to sweat. "If you start to backtalk, I'll let Kakashi deal with you." The silver-haired jounin narrowed his visible eye at them and they backed up slightly. "But, if you need something, we're all here for you." She smiled at the children and they relaxed. "You all behave, and we'll have a good time. I promise."
A/N: Alright. If it wouldn't be too much trouble, reviews would be greatly appreciated. There's probably OOC-ness because no matter how hard I try, it usually sneaks in there somewhere. Hugs & Kisses!