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Here's the next installment, which has been sitting in the dark files of Banira's computer. Upon discovering it, she quickly finished up this short drabble and sent it off to Hikari for the finishing touches. It's been a while, but Saika isn't completely dead!


The fiery red haired woman observed the little pieces of clothing with irritation. They were lying there innocently, scattered loosely around the room. Some were either black or blue, but mostly they were white.

With a scowl, she bent down and picked one up between her forefinger and thumb, hold the small article of clothing as far away from her as possible. Idly, she noted that it was half inside out. Letting her scowl fall, she sighed and dropped the clothing on the ground. She adjusted her glasses and stayed still for a moment.

"Sai!" she let out a shriek. Her calm composure had faded, and was replaced with an angry one.

The summoned person popped his head through the doorway, into the burgundy room. His face was curious as to what was his roommate yelling about this time. There were a few lines of red across his face, and a mix of various colors coating his hands, showing he had been in the middle of a painting.

"Yes?" He inquired. It came out partially cautious. Then again being too cautious was never a bad thing, if not necessary, when it came to Karin. With only one wrong word she would flare up and attack. He had learned this through unpleasant experiences.

"Why," she closed her eyes to keep from shouting again, "are your socks scattered all over the floor…again!"

He blinked, as if it were still processing through his mind. His eyes then traveled around the room, particularly the floor. The cream colored carpet was dotted with socks. His simple bed had one sock hanging over the side and then his cherry wood night stand has the little foot covers bunched up at the bottom of one of the legs.

"I though I told you that you weren't supposed to leave them everywhere!" she lectured him. Ever since she had moved into his tiny apartment, fitting in no where else seeing as the Uchiha she came with wanted nothing to do with her, she pestered him about neatness nonstop. They equaled each other out in a way. She was too neat, but his messy habits kept her sane, reminding her that not everything had to be perfect. In return, her cleanliness kept his apartment from becoming a garbage disposal. Never was it too clean or too messy.

"I apologize, Karin-san," he smiled with the tilt of his head. She only huffed in reply. They both knew it would happen again, this was only one of the many times she had yelled about his habits. It wasn't always his clothing, sometimes it was his paints or dishes. It was only a matter of time before the cycle began again and she would once again clean and proceed to bother him about it soon after.

In a way he sometimes did it on purpose, he wasn't always sure why. He knew it had to do with making her mad, though that was always an entertaining hobby, but mostly because it kept her from reverting into insanity. She had this issue, everything had to be perfect, everything had to make sense, or it caused her already complicated mind to go completely haywire. It was probably because working under that twisted snake had scarred her to a point she had to know what exactly was going on.

Though when he left these little things around, it not only gave her something to do since she was allowed no weapons or training under strict orders of the Hokage, but it helped her. Even something as small as misplaced socks let her know, she was in reality, a place where perfection did not exist. Back with Orochimaru, her life had revolved around perfection. Anything less was unacceptable.

She bent down, crouching down on the front of her feet. In a futile attempt to block out the irritating man behind her, she began picking the socks up. As her hand was about to pluck one up distastefully (she had a slight phobia of germs, and who knew what were on those horrid things), another hand, sickeningly pale, beat her to it. She couldn't help but notice the heat radiating off his hand, inches from hers.

"I figured I'd help," Sai said quietly, answering her unvoiced question. In a way, she couldn't help but think that he was implying something, a double meaning perhaps. Something clicked in her head, and suddenly the offensive socks weren't all that bad.

"Thanks," she mumbled, smiling slightly. Her head was turned down; no way would she let him see it. She was thanking him for helping her pick up not only his messy and misplaced socks, but those scattered fragments of her life.

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