All the important people in Sakura's life turned up to help her celebrate her birthday. Her team, her father, Tsunade and Ino. Ino had also brought along her parents and her two friends that had recently only started to like her. Even Shizune came. That had been a surprise in itself but she was glad she invited her at the last minute. the way the older woman smiled at her really showed that she wasn't as bad as she first thought.
"Here, open mine first," Shizune passed a neatly wrapped purple package with an orange bow to Sakura.
"Wow," Sakura said admiring the packaging. Ino rolled her eyes and shared an exasperated look with Naruto. Sakura glared at them and opened the present extra slowly to annoy them. "Oh," she gasped as she pulled out a full length dress that wouldn't look out of place in a palace. It even her favourite shade of red. "Shizune, thank you so much," she didn't say she shouldn't have because she liked the gift.
"Now Ino will have to take you somewhere nice to wear it," Shizune smiled and it was obvious she was proud of herself.
Sakura smirked at Ino and accepted another gift. It was in a brown paper bag and in messy marker her name was scrawled. She opened the bag that had been merely rolled downwards to close. "Who's this from?" she tired her best not to let her thoughts show on her face.
"That's mine," Kakashi said raising a hand lightly not at all embarrassed.
Sakura perked up and tore into the bag more eagerly. She pulled out the item and the whole table blinked.
"Sensei stole my savings to buy Sakura a banana?" Naruto fumed glaring at the silver haired man that smiled.
"You need to work on your stamina," Kakashi nodded also proud of himself.
"Kakashi-sensei!" Naruto raged "give me my money back!"
"The 'Come come paradise' movie had a convention," he explained.
Sakura laughed and didn't feel annoyed at all. Ino's parents didn't get her anything but offered to pay for the meal. She refused thinking that Mr Yamado not glaring at her was gift enough. And she had already made Tsunade promise to pay for the dinner. Naruto was still grumbling when he passed his present to her . She opened it and smiled. She took out the ocean blue pendant and put it on. It didn't actually go with her yellow dress that Ino got her but it made Naruto smile widely.
"I got it off the monks at the temple, they said that it will stop you going to hell and protects against those gay diseases!" Naruto chirped happily.
Sakura's smile froze and she shifted. "Thanks," she said knowing that Naruto was being clueless. He was amazingly perceptive, sometimes. Then other times he said things like that. She smiled at him "thank you so much Naruto."
He nodded proud of himself. Sai then eagerly presented his gift. It was a beautiful scroll tied with a gold ribbon. She smiled at him since he seemed so nervous. She opened it up then shut it quickly horrified and hoping no one else had seen inside.
"What's wrong?" Naruto asked.
Said frowned and looked hurt "did I do it wrong? Maybe if you touch them, the invoke word is 'nipan.'"
Sakura cast about furiously for an answer "it's not that. That was very…very…" she blew her breath out in shock. "Thank you Sai," and she smiled though it seemed a bit weak. She quickly tucked his gift away. Ino looked at her inquisitively but she shook her head ordering her not to ask. "Thanks very much everyone."
"Wait," Shikamaru said as Chouji sat a white square box in front of her "this is from us."
She opened the box with trepidation. She half expected to find a box full of apples but was surprised when she found many different bottles of hair care and bath products.
"Hey! That's my birthday gift!" Ino said outraged.
Shikamaru and Chouji shrugged "she's a girl we didn't know what else to do."
"Thank you," Sakura said touched. She hadn't expected them to get her anything. Chouji smiled at her then reached for another bread roll to chew on. Shikamaru just nodded. She didn't know if he had fully forgiven her yet but she was willing to hope.
Sakura ran up to Kiba who was unusually neat and tidy in his best clothes. He was figiting at a table with Hinata who looked equally as uncomfortable. When they saw her they both sighed in relief.
"Sakura where's the rest of the party?" Kiba asked.
"Yeah," Sakura said pretending to look disappointed "something came up and we have to go on missions. But the table and meal is all paid for so you shouldn't waste it! I'm really sorry guys, but have fun!" She then quickly ran away before she had to answer any questions. Kiba better appreciate this and not mess up his chance. She glanced back over her shoulder to see Kiba valiantly try and woe Hinatta. She hoped he got a break.
Now she only had one more thing left to do before she could go home and enjoy her birthday with Ino.
She found Lee in the training yard whacking away at a naked stump. His rhythmic thudding came to a stop when he saw her approach. She smiled at him and he grinned weakly back. "Sakura-san, happy birthday. I'm sorry I couldn't come to your party."
"We're still friends Lee, that is if you want to be," she said getting straight to the heart of the matter.
Lee clutched his arm and looked uncomfortable. He didn't meet her eyes as he responded "of course we're still friends…"
"Lee, come on tell me what's wrong? I know you don't like me in that way, not really," she said touching his arm. He stepped back from her and she covered her hurt.
"I always liked Sakura-chan," Lee said and Sakura took heart that she was back to 'chan' instead of 'san.'
"Yeah but not in that way," she said.
"Gai-sensei," Lee started but cut himself off.
"What bout him?" Sakura probed.
"He thinks I'm…" and Lee blushed bright "…gay."
"What?!" Sakura exclaimed in surprise. Then she thought about it and lowered her voice trying to be understanding "well Lee if you-"
"I'm not!" the other boy thundered angrily then quickly assured her "not that there's anything wrong with that! It's just I don't like men and Gai-sensei keeps trying to set me up with them! I thought if you became my girlfriend it would stop but then he saw me in drag that one day and it got worse!"
Sakura could feel her laughter trying to get out. She stuffed it down and ordered her lips not to smile. "It got worse?"
"Yeah, he tried to take me dress shopping," Lee moaned "no matter what I tell him he thinks I'm trying to hide in the closet. He gives me speeches about how I can still fulfil my boyish youthfulness with other boys."
Sakura couldn't help it. She began to laugh softly. She slapped a hand over her mouth to quieten the escaping giggles. Lee glared at her "it's not funny!" He yelled "he's set me up on a date with Sai this weekend!"
"With Sai?!" Sakura said her shock cutting through the giggles sharply.
"Yeah, apparently he got curious when you started dating Yamanka-san and now he wants to try it himself," Lee said rolling his eyes.
"I-I'll talk to him," Sakura promised.
"Please do it before Saturday," Lee begged.
"You know I'm pretty sure Ino could find you a date. She likes match making," and it would stop Lee from going after her which she thought Ino might like.
"Really?!" Lee creid hopefully.
Sakura nodded "that would be great Sakura-chan! Please thank Yamanka-san for me!"
"So are we okay?" She asked just to make sure.
Lee smiled at her and nodded "there's no hard feelings though you have one impressive right hook. You'll have to show me how you use your Chakra control for that."
"That's my secret jutsu!" She wagged her finger at Lee playfully "you'll have to beat it out of me!"
"I don't think I would survive your girlfriend," he grimaced and she laughed.
"I have to get back to her now but I'll talk to her about setting you up with a girl!" Sakura promise.
"Don't forget about Saturday!" Lee called after her but she didn't think she could get the image of Lee and Sai dating each other out of her head.
"So, what was it that Sai got you for your birthday?" Ino asked coyly as Sakura entered her apartment. "don't think I didn't notice you quickly stuffing it away."
"He drew me toys," Sakura said mortified and intrigued in a confusing way. She didn't think she would be able to look at the toys without thinking of Sai which pretty much killed any sex drive she had. She went over to her pile of presents and pulled out the scroll and passed it to Ino who sat on the couch.
Ino took it with a grin. The grin slowly flickered then faded as her eyes followed each carefully scripted line. Some of the drawings were very intricate. Slowly Ino looked up from the scroll and Sakura could see the beginnings of a flush crawl over her skin. She grinned widely. Without saying a word. Sakura turned and began to hum the happy birthday tune as she walked very nonchalantly into her bedroom.
"So, what did he say the release word was?" Ino asked following Sakura eagerly.
Sakura felt her grin deepen. For once it wasn't her begging for sex. She had the upper hand. "Oh, you know some nonsense word, I don't really recall."
"You're enjoying this aren't you?" Ino said.
Sakura's smile deepened and she nodded "oh yeah. How long did you dangle me on a string for? Five months? Six? No, eight long months."
Ino joined her on the bed and tried to seduce her by doing the sexy crawl forward. Sakura did indulge herself in the show watching Ino's breasts and ass sway enticingly. "Are you going to tell me the release word now?"
"I'm still thinking about it," Sakura said not looking up from Ino's half exposed chest "you still haven't given me my present."
Ino sat back and Sakura pouted but brightened when Ino took off her top. She knew it was sexy lingerie time! The deep cut of the bra teased the viewer with ruffles that looked exceptionally soft. Sakura bounced up and down in place. She reached for Ino and was pulled upward into a searing kiss.
"Will you tell me now?" Ino asked.
"Nipan," Sakura didn't hesitate as she pulled Ino back in for another kiss.
"I want to see what that horses head thing does," Ino said as they broke apart and she reached for the scroll.
"Yeah," Sakura said uncertainly "we can try that on you…"
"HOW DARE YOU!"
"What?! I only said that it didn't fit!"
"YOU CALLED ME FAT!"
"I did not! I'm just saying a bigger size woul-uff!"
"What's going on?" Temari asked watching as Sakura staggered out of the flower shop only to be hit with a bouquet of sunflowers.
"Oh?" Shikamaru looked to see Sakura hurl the flowers violently back inside "that? It's just Ino and Sakura."
"Ino and Sakura?" Temari repeated in confusion.
"Yeah, they fight a lot now," Shikamaru said with a shrugged trying to pull Temari along the street in case Ino came out and tried to drag him into the argument.
"Why? Are they fighting over another guy?" Temari said not moving. This was an interesting scene to her so she wanted to watch. The other villagers barely paid any attention having seen the same thing plenty of times before.
"You've been gone for awhile," Shikamaru replied instead. Temari looked at him in confusion.
"Did you just throw these at me?" Ino said, her voice deadly in its softness as she marched out of the flower shop the abused sunflowers strangled in her grip.
"Yeah I did. You're being irrational," Sakura glared back just as fiercely.
"Another fight?" Temari turned to see Lee coming to stand beside her also peering down the street.
"So it really does happen all the time?" She asked. Shikamaru liked to trick her to make her seem foolish.
"Oh, yeah. It's worse when they make up, they're so loud," Lee complained but then hearts darted into his eyes "oh, but its so romantic!"
"See? It's things like that that makes Gai-sensei think you're gay," Naruto joined the huddle with Sai in toe.
"No, its because your team mate won't stop asking me out!" Lee said furiously even as he edged away from Sai.
Sai smiled benignly at Lee and searched his backpack.
"What are you guys doing here?" Shikamaru asked not really caring but wanted the conversation to be over so he could drag Temari back to his place. He had made the effort to clean up so he was getting something out of it.
"We have a mission," Naruto said "that's probably what brought the fight on. They always have fights before we go away so they won't miss each other."
"How can you say that's not sweet?!" Lee cried.
"Because unlike you I actually am a man," Naruto baited. He loved to annoy Lee. Lee flushed and grew angry. He took a deep breath to launch his own tirade.
"Come on lets go," Sakura muttered as she grabbed Naruto's hand and walked between the group. Everyone jumped to see her but she didn't pay them any attention as she nursed the side of her scratched face. "Stupid women, I'm turning straight I'm not putting up with this anymore…" and she muttered on.
Naruto waved goodbye to the group as he was dragged away. Sai had finally found what he was looking for and passed a rolled up scroll to Lee. "I'm told that pictures are worth a thousand words," he said with a smile before following the rest of his team.
Lee crumpled the paper up "aren't you even going to look at it?" Temari asked.
"No, it's a hentai drawing of us. I have enough to make my own yaoi collection," Lee said wearily.
"Oh," Temari said watching carefully as Lee chucked the scroll over his shoulder and walked away. Shikamaru stooped down and picked it up. Without saying anything he handed it to Temari. She didn't move to take it and he raised his eyebrow at her. She snatched it off him in a huff. She turned away and greedily opened it "oh," she breathed.
Shikamaru took her hand and led her unresisting form to his apartment. Eh, he thought, whatever gets her in the mood.
Sakura threw her duffle bag down on the floor beside her bed with a sigh. It was good to be home. She smiled around their room and rolled her eyes as she discover Ino had stolen her pillow again. She reached over to return it to its rightful place. Ino was forever stealing her stuff, no matter how much she complained that the blondes big chest stretched her jumpers she never listened. Secretly Sakura liked smelling their scents mixed on her clothes but she wouldn't tell Ino that.
The door opened just as she straightened up. Ino flew into her arms and kissed her like a desperate man. She kissed back just as fiercely. She was roughly pushed down on the bed and her good mood fled at the gleam in Ino's eyes. "No!" She said pointing her finger accusingly at the blonde "no, I'm just back! I stink! You're not-whoa!" Sakura was shut up with a yank on her pants.
"No! Ino I mean it! I'm disgusting! I have three moths worth of hair on my legs!" she tried to scramble away but Ino dragged her back.
"I like hairy women," Ino said finally succeeding in tearing Sakura's trousers down to her ankles. She didn't even give the other woman time to kick her shoes off before she was on top of her.
"No! Ino-" Skaura tried to protest but its came out muffled as Ino squashed their lips together.
"Don't worry I'll let you keep your top on," Ino said pulling at Sakura's panties "there are some things even you can't make look cute."
"Just let me shave!" Sakura begged "I feel like a cave man! Ino! Ino! Ohhh, Ino…"
Sakura glared at the very satisfied blonde sitting across from her at the table. "You didn't even let me shower alone."
"You were gone for three months and I had only been back from a three week mission before you left. I missed you," she shrugged not caring that Sakura wanted to pretend to be upset.
Sakura stewed for a while but eventually gave up. She didn't have anything to be upset about except Ino saw her all natural for the first time. She would have liked to keep the illusion that she was born that perfect and hairless for a little while longer but at least she got some great sex out of it "I went to a fortune teller when I was away."
"Oh? Really?" Ino asked eating her ramen in a dignified fashion like she hadn't just made her girlfriend faint in the shower.
"Yeah, Naruto's going to be a teacher and Sai's going to get Lee," Sakura said laughing.
"And what's in your future?" Ino said semi serious. She put down her chop sticks.
"I'm going to be a wife," Sakura said staring at Ino intently.
Ino blushed and looked down pleased. "But you know those fortune tellers are a load of crap don't you?" Sakura laughed enjoying teasing Ino.
Ino's head shot up furious and her eyes glittered dangerously while Sakura laughed. She stood up and was about to shout something when voices from outside drew their attention to the window.
"Fine! I give up!" Lee cried in full view of the ramen shop window. He turned around quickly and Sakura thought he was going to punch the pursuing Sai. She gasped in shock as Lee grabbed the other boy by his shirt front and kissed him. She sat stunned, her mouth hanging wide open. Ino turned to her smugly and said "what's your ring size?"
A/N: And we're finished! I'm leaving it somewhat open in case I feel like writing a sequel but that might be a while since I'm busy with another Naruto fic called Baby hell. Check it out if you feel like some lighter Sakura/Ino after all this!