A/N: Forgive me for not submitting anything for the past... year? And also, forgive me for being a complete jerk in my last fanfic (ECSL).

If I owned Naruto, I wouldn't be writing fanfics, now would I? Um, this is my third Sakura-Gaara fanfiction, which I hope will not be longer than five chapters, but more than two. Here, they are not ninjas. Just everyday people living ordinary lives.

Things that seem unclear will eventually be explained, just remind me what it is you want me to explain. Please, if you read, please review. Any and almost all reviews will be treated with gratitude. Thank you.

Oh, and this chapter is dedicated to my friend, and fellow violinist, AnimeSenko.

He walked into the tiny café, seeking refuge in the quiet atmosphere and coffee smell after wandering the streets at seven o'clock at night, in the frigid winter air. Taking the table at the back, he pulled out a book titled Sun Tsu and the Art of War from under his arm. Not too long after he had gotten comfortable, a woman came to him for his order. He looked up from his book.

She was a petite thing, perhaps a year or two younger than himself, and had bright eyes that spoke too much of inexperience in the real world. Her green blouse was unbuttoned all the way, revealing a camisole that revealed almost too much cleavage. Her apron was slightly askew, and her black pants clung a bit too much. At the moment, she was fumbling around herself, patting herself down for a pen. He gave her the one that he had tucked away in his jacket. Her gaze snapped up at the simple gesture with a confused look, and then smiled at him, although not looking at him once.

"Thank you," she said, taking the pen from him. Her nametag said Sakura, quite fitting for her messy bun of rosette hair. Finally composed, she asked him, "Are you ready, sir?"

Indeed, he was ready. Ready to puke at the absolute innocence that radiated off of her. But, he didn't say that. "A venti green tea latte."

"Anything else?" she asked as she wrote the order down.


"I'll be back with your drink." She began walking away from his table before realizing she stole his pen and hurried back to lay it on the table. "Gomenasai," she mumbled before rushing off again. He glanced up at this before re-engrossing himself into his book.

A few minutes later, she came back with the steaming drink in hand. Only after she set the cup in front of him did she actually look at him for the first time. His hands looked smooth—perhaps smoother than hers. The red turtleneck did nothing but exaggerate how wiry the man before her was, let alone the rings around his eyes, which clued her in on how often he slept. She noticed quickly how fast his jade eyes were skimming across the pages of his book, and her eyes widened at the shadow of a tattoo on his forehead, mostly obscured by messy red hair that begged for a comb. His hand snaked out for his drink and as he sipped, he looked up at Sakura, who was still studying him.

"Is there a problem, Sakura?" he asked rather gruffly, taking slight offense to her stare.

"Er, no, no." she said, flustered. "I was just wondering where you found your book. I've been looking for it in all the bookstores, and they've all been sold out..."

"I've had this book for a long time." He pointedly resumed his reading, and Sakura, mildly embarrassed, went back to work. Two hours, another latte, and many pages of his book later, the café was empty, and she came back to him.

"I'm sorry, but I'm closing up shop now." She smiled apologetically, and he regarded her with blank eyes.

"Of course." He placed the money he owed on the table, put on his jacket, and walked out of the door.

Sakura stared after her very silent customer, finally getting up to lock the door, turn off the lights, and head upstairs to the apartment above her shop.

The man kept walking along the lit sidewalks until he came to his apartment building, a good half an hour's walk away. The doorman greeted him with a nod, but the man continued inside without response. Up to the thirtieth floor, he continued, where his penthouse awaited him.

After a scalding shower and a cup of coffee, the red-head unpacked a very old violin case, inside, a Stradivarius. He unwrapped the four hundred year old instrument with reverence, set it on his shoulder, and drew the bow across a string, letting the sound reverberate around him. He frowned. The note was off, too flat, most likely because of the cold temperature. He sighed, beginning the slightly tedious task of tuning the old violin. When the strings were the correct pitch, he began playing a lullaby, a song that haunted his childhood. As he played, he walked out to the balcony, where he changed pieces to something more lamenting and beautiful.

Somewhere in the distance, someone accompanied the piece with the cello part, the sound mellow and barely audible to him. He picked up the sound of this anonymous cello and smirked. At the end of this song, he began a faster song, one meant for two violins to play, but the cello kept up, playing the second violin's part to perfection, with improvisations during the times when the specified notes were too high for a cello's range. The man, acknowledging the skill of this mysterious player, bowed his head, although he highly doubted he or she could see him. He went back inside his apartment, got himself another cup of coffee, and listened as the cello continued to play, occasionally joining in pieces he recognized.

Around eleven thirty, the cello's music stopped, and once more, the violinist frowned. It had been this way for the past year; he and this shadowy cellist would play well into the night, back and forth, likened to a battle of wit or a dance of skill. When he played in the day, however, he could not hear anything except his own instrument, and thus never found his playing partner. A few times, he thought he heard the cellist from an open window, but as he came upon them, the music was from a stereo. But he knew, that at night, it was the same person, the same cello, for no distant stereo could replicate any instrument's sound completely. And so the man waited every night to speak a language older than words to this enigmatic partner, hoping they would finally meet by some twist of fate.

A/N: A Stradivarius is a top-quality violin made by Antonio Stradivari between 1650-1700. A genuine Stradivarius can be worth millions of dollars, and the sound of one is supposed to be absolutely beautiful, as in making a stuck up music expert weep. I had Gaara own one so as to impart some violinists culture, seeing as I am a violinist myself.

Well, I am going to shut up now, and let you hopefully click on the review button.

-Lady Inu13