ITS...ITS ALIVE! OH MY GAWD. Thank you all of my reviewers for gettting my ass back on track!
Though...I don't really like this chapter-does it seem too forced or something? The problem is- when you get 160 reviews (YES 160 WHAT THE HELL) on how good your fic is (which made me blink a few times in confusion), you worry. Well i do. As its been, what, YEARS since i last updated of even thought on this fic, my style has obviously changed, and im worried that it wont hold a candle to the earlier chapters. So, can I ask for some feedback? How different is this chapter? Was it even funny? Should I just stop and commit suicide right now for my fails?
Also! Please do review and give your opinion on the story! You have been so far, and that's what gets my inspiration and writing juices flowing! Srsly.
THREE DAYS LATER
Naruto ran a hand down his clothes as he waited outside his team's room. He had been able to get Iruka to pick up some clothes for him (after cunningly pointing out that the kimono showed too much skin for his protective teacher's liking- Iruka then agreed without any trouble.)He looked down at what Iruka had given him, lips twitching in slight annoyance.
"Darn you, Iruka! I refuse to conform to the NORM." He muttered to himself. He had rather liked wearing skirts. They were cool in the summer heat, and made it so EASY to get discounts for things.
Sakura walked through the doorway, tying up her hair. "Sasuke-kun's just sealing up all his things, then we'll go. It's not like we're going to be-" She finally looked up, and froze. Naruto gave her a sour grin.
"Something wrong?" He asked. She looked him over, shocked.
"Y-you're not wearing girl's clothes!" She said in a half-whisper. Naruto shrugged in a 'well, what-are-you-gonna-do' way.
"Iruka." Sakura looked him over. It had been a long time since he'd worn guy clothes, besides when he slept. Now he wore a short orange tank top that stopped above his navel, and a black chainmail shirt on top. He also wore odd black trousers, that, on one leg, were a baggy trouser leg, while on the other it was cut to the length of quite short shorts, which were bandaged and the end. The rest of the leg was covered in chainmail. Naruto huffed, swishing his ponytail over his shoulder. "I don't look like a girl at all now." He pouted. "There was an actual point to it, you know..."
"Err, you sort of do, the uncovered leg makes you look more feminine..."
Sasuke walked out, looking down at his holster, putting the scroll in.
"Sasuke-kun, Naruto still looks like a girl, right?" Sasuke looked up blinking.
"What...?" He saw Naruto, and looked him over. Naruto crossed his arms, waiting. Sasuke realized he had been staring a bit too long, and coughed, looking down the hall. "He'll still pass for a girl. Many kunoichi bind themselves to make it easier to fight." He smiled slightly and Naruto started to grin.
"You look good in male clothes, too." Sakura commented, as they started to walk towards the main room for the third part of the Exam. "But now who will I have to go clothes shopping with me?" Naruto deadpanned.
"I never went clothes shopping with you." Sakura ignored him. "ANYWAY, I'm going right back to good, old, wholesome, pure, NORMAL crossdressing," Sasuke rolled his eyes. "-After the exam."
"Uzu- Naruto-kun." Neji greeted, as Team Seven met his team on the way. "You're wearing something new again." He observed. Naruto smirked.
"Well, thanks, Obvious-san. I hope that didn't take the Byakuugan to figure out." Neji gave him a semi-annoyed look, and Lee walked briskly along with them, as Tenten had a conversation with Sakura. The closer the group got to their destination, the more determinedly the blonde boy's eyes flashed.
Sasuke noticed Naruto's smirk. "So now you'll show us your techniques, right?" He asked, and Naruto glanced over at him, before grabbing his arm, and increasing his speed, making them go faster.
"Hells yes." Sasuke grinned.
"Good. I want to know what this 'blizzard' business is about. Hurry." They moved ahead of the group, turning a corner.
"You're so impatient sometimes, Sasu-kun!" Naruto laughed.
The others watched them go. Tenten placed a hand on her hip.
"Uh...do they know they're going the wrong way?" She asked. Sakura sweatdropped.
"They have no sense of direction..."
Lee shook his head vigorously, making an 'X' with his raised arms. "I'm sure they went there on purpose! Naruto-kun surely knows what he's doing!" Neji sighed.
"Volume, Lee. Volume." He reminded, and Lee blinked, before rubbing the back of his neck sheepishly.
"Eh, sorry minna-san. I got overpowered by my youth...Hehe.." Sakura was looking back at him, studying him. Lee finally noticed, and cocked his head to the side. "How can I help you, Sakura-chan?" He asked, grinning.
Sakura straightened, before turning to walk again, a soft smile on her face. "Nothing, Lee-kun..."
Lee and his team mates started to walk, and he bounded ahead to catch up with Sakura, walking alongside her. "So how are you feeling about the preliminaries, Sakura-chan?" He asked, striking up conversation.
Sakura closed her eyes. "...Youthful." She said, before giggling a bit. Lee's eyes sparkled, as he raised a fist.
"Of course you are! With your radiant beauty and skills, you shall be a perfect rose, with deadly thorns!" Sakura blinked, before looking to the side, away from Lee, in an attempt to hide the blush that rose on her cheeks.
"That...was poetic." She said after a moment. Lee chuckled.
Tenten and Neji watched from behind. "Huh...Odd." Neji looked over at the girl.
"What is?" He asked, shortly.
"Well...aside from the fact that Naruto and Sasuke-san are still not back? Lee's actually...not...not-normal."
Neji stared at her. "'Not not-normal'?" He repeated, slightly incredulous. "Lee is never...not not-normal."
Tenten was silent for a while, frowning slightly.
"What is it now?" The Hyuuga asked, noticing the expression.
"Hold on...I've confused myself with all the negatives." She sweatdropped, laughing at herself good naturedly.
Neji smirked, as they walked into the chamber in which they were to prove their right to become chuunin...and to show off.
A quick glance told them that the teams were lining up, waiting for the Hokage. Neji led his team to the space between Team Eight and Ten, while Sakura stood beside Hinata on the other side, arms crossed.
"...Where is Naruto-kun, Sakura-chan? Or Sasuke-kun?" She asked, looking around, concerned. Sakura blew out, annoyed.
"Either lost...or...no, there's no other option. They're lost. This has happened so many times. I don't know what the hell it is about this building." She whispered, twitching. Ino leaned back, into sight, behind Hinata, and smirked.
"Naruto's gotten them lost, I bet." She giggled lightly. Sakura just shook her head.
The Third Hokage walked into the room, slowly, and composed. He smiled as he saw the promising new generation of could-be chuunins. His eyes then caught Sakura standing all on her lonesome in her line, and only two people in Sabaku no Gaara's line and frowned slightly.
"It seems some of us have yet to arrive." He commented, walking past them. Sakura sighed.
"They're probably lost, sir..." She muttered as he passed her. He chuckled.
Temari, on the other hand, scowled. "Damn it...where is he? He said he'd be gone only a few minutes..." Her brother was silent, paying attention.
Hayate cleared his throat, coughing for a few seconds. "We can wait for a few minutes longer. The preliminaries aren't supposed to start ye-" He descended into a fit of coughs. Iruka gave him a few pats on his back, attempting to help. Hayate waved him off, straightening. "I'm fine."
Sakura sweatdropped. "Sure. And I'm alive." She muttered, and the teams next to her gave her questioning looks.
The group heard running, and turned to see Naruto and Sasuke being pushed into the room, faces red, sweaty, and clothes ruffled. Kankuro walking in behind them, glaring.
"Ah, they've joined us." Sarutobi said happily, ignoring the annoyance in the atmosphere. Sasuke straightened, pushing Kankuro's hand away from him.
"Hands off, paint-face." He growled. Kankuro twitched, still holding up a blinking Naruto by his collar.
"That's a great way to thank the guy who made sure you weren't late!" Naruto huffed.
"We would've found our way back on our own!" Kankuro rolled his eyes.
"You wouldn't have done a good job- you two were just love-doving against the wall!" He snorted. The two went red again.
"Wh-what?" Most of the Rookie genin and Sasuke himself asked, bug eyed.
"What the hell kinda things does that perverted brain of yours think up?" Naruto managed, struggling from the older boy''s grip.
Kankurou gave him a dry look, but under it, there was real annoyance. "The Uchiha had you pressed against a wall!"
Sakura raised a hand slowly, before slapping it to her face.
Ino gaped, Kiba coughed, looking off. Shikamaru and Shino's eyebrows raised, and while Temari copied Sakura's action, Gaara watched the interaction intently.
Naruto crossed his arms. "He just being a bastard! He said I got us lost!"
"I was stopping you from going the wrong way, again."
The two glared at each other, before laughing.. "D-Damn it Sasu-kun, why does this place keep getting us lost?" Naruto giggled, trying to catch his breath. Sakura walked closer, tapping her foot on the floor.
"Both of you-THE LINE. NOW." The boys stiffened, and then sighed.
Naruto elbowed Kankuro in the side, to get his attention.
"What?" He grunted, looking down at the blonde.
"I'm sorry I was close to Sasu-kun and got you jealous." He said softly, pouting a little and fiddling with his hands. Kankuro blinked, taking a while to register what Naruto was saying.
"E-eh, what are you talking about, leaf nin?" He muttered, looking over the blonde to the other people. Naruto smirked, leaning against the taller boy, closely. The sand nin stiffened.
"It's okay, I totally understand." He led them to the lines. "I get it. It's completely natural. He is incredibly sexy."
Naruto nodded to himself, hands running along his ponytail. "I don't blame you for having a thing for Sasuke-kun!" He assured. Now that they were next to Kankuro's team, his siblings heard. Temari snorted.
"The Uchiha, huh?" She asked, voice heavy with amusement. Kankuro flushed.
"So, see ya! I'll put in a good word for you!"
"What the- blondie, that's not it, damnit!" But Naruto was already walking off, grinning triumphantly.
Temari continued to smirk. "So why did you go after them?"
Kankuro scowled. "We needed the Uchiha in the open...yeah?" He said quietly, sounding annoyed. "Also, I assumed Gaara would want the blonde in the exams." He glanced sideways and the redhead, who was shifting between watching Naruto and the Hokage.