Theme #71: Cobaea/Gossip

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto.

"Ino, do you like Shikamaru?"

Ino nearly choked on her lollipop, "What?! Definitely not. What would make you think that?"

Temari shrugged, "I've heard things, that's all."

Ino considered the Sand nin carefully. "You've heard things? I wouldn't peg you as someone who listens to gossip, Temari-san," Ino replied, a devious smile working its' way onto her lips.

"Sometimes it can't be helped. Besides, you never know when what you hear might be useful."

"Like a rumour about me and Shikamaru? Bet that must be pretty useful," Ino said cheekily.

Temari rolled her eyes but didn't respond.

Ino grinned, 'I can't believe the two of them actually think they're fooling people.' To Temari, she said, "Don't worry - there's nothing going on between me and Shikamaru. So you can have him."

Temari's eyes widened and she looked away, her frown deepening, "Don't be ridiculous! Who said I want him?"

Ino smirked, "I've heard things too, you know."

"Well, you heard wrong."

Ino rolled her eyes, 'Yeah right.' Then she spoke, "You wouldn't believe some of the things I heard about you two."

Temari didn't even glance her way - she wasn't about to be baited, "Doesn't matter - they're not true."

"Oh, but I heard them from a very reliable source," Ino rejoined, watching Temari intently.

When Temari didn't respond, she continued, "Shikamaru can be very talkative when he wants to be."

A small smirk appeared on her lips as she saw Temari tense. Now to see what she would say.

"Well, whatever that lazy bum told you," Temari said, standing up, "it's not true either."

"Where are you going, Temari-san?" Ino asked, radiating faux innocence.

"I just have to kill someone - I'll be back soon," she replied, forest green eyes narrowed and fingers twitching.

"Well, I'll be here," Ino answered, although Temari was already at the door. Temari waved a hand in farewell and then disappeared, obviously about to go deal with one lazy genius.

Ino grinned as she leaned across the counter and picked up a purple, bell shaped flower - her favourite. 'And that is why you shouldn't listen to gossip,' she thought, tucking the flower behind her ear, 'someone always gets hurt.'

A/N: I am on hiatus! Really! I'm not a big fan of this but I wanted to write about Ino so here you go.