A/N-This is the last full chappie….Thanks to those who reviewed it-OCQueen, Rangerette, KoeZ, devilsredemptionangelsfall, Hatake Sienna, Shadow miko, Sasusakuava, and Cheekydemon.
For my next story, I have a lot of fiction with original characters (as in entirely my creation, no Naruto or any anime involved.) that I wrote to amuse a friend of mine. I think I'm going to try switching them over to Naruto stories and see how they're received; however, I would like a general consensus for the pairing. Any requests??
Disclaimer-I don't own Naruto or When I said I Do
The water ran down her skin in icy rivulets as she leaned her forehead against the wall of the shower. The sensation of cold slowly worked to reverse the heat that had pooled throughout her body.
What on earth had she been thinking?? Letting him go after her like that. She couldn't deny that she had liked it-although the word 'liked' was probably the world's biggest understatement.
She, Haruno Sakura, had almost lost control. She was sure that if she hadn't pushed him away, he would have had his way with her and she doubted that she would've stopped him. Inhaling deeply, she felt her body shiver as it remembered the sensations of his lips on hers.
Adjusting herself so that she was facing the tap she decided. She couldn't let him take the chance to get hurt. And what she needed to do was distance herself emotionally from him.
She might escape from this unscathed-aside from the fact that she loved him- if she could manage to do that one thing.
Kakashi watched her go and then slumped down into a chair, muttering to himself, "What just happened?"
For the past week or so, ever since they had gotten married, he had respected her space, although at night, they slept in each others arms. He'd loved her for awhile-that he had acknowledged to himself and having her sleep right next to him every night had put him into the false illusion that she loved him back.
However, it had taken her pushing him away like this, as he finally acted on how he felt to remind him that how she felt wasn't necessarily the same. She was married to him-but she didn't necessarily love him. For her it was for convenience only.
He was well aware that he was incapable of making someone love him. But he could try.
And in her case, he'd do his best. But for now, it would be best if they didn't see each other.
When she came downstairs, dressed decently in a v-necked t-shirt and a pair of jeans, he was gone. He hadn't left a note, but if she assumed correctly he had gone to cool down, using nature to serve the same purpose that she'd used the shower.
It would be best, she decided, if she was gone by the time he got back. She didn't want to even imagine the awkwardness that would exist between them, now that she had spurned him. Looking around the kitchen for something to do, she decided that a little shopping was in order. This was still his home and it still looked entirely masculine. Some feminine touches were in order. She turned back to their room to retrieve what she usually left the house with-her purse, and her dagger (just in case), stuck into her back pocket and hidden by the hem of her shirt.
She decided though, to go see Ino first. Her best friend had helped her through this so far and to make it through the rest of this she'd definitely need her friend.
Shikamaru waited until Sakura had left before he went a different way. She and Ino had been sequestered in the couple's sunroom and as soon as Sakura had gone to the bathroom, Ino had come to her husband, pale.
"What I thought would happen has happened. She loves him, and she's realized it. She knows she's going to be hurt and she doesn't know what she's going to do." Ino was distraught, in a state that Shikamaru had never seen her, and he hated it.
However troublesome it was going to be to get his white haired blue eyed love back to normal, he'd do it.
There was something he knew that Ino didn't, something he hadn't told her because of all that had happened. He had been talking to Sasuke just after Sakura and Kakashi had gone to Lightning, and Sasuke had confided in him about asking Sakura out and her subsequent refusal. At the time, he had asked Shikamaru to help him get Sakura to say yes. Then she had come back, announced her engagement to and subsequently married Kakashi, and he hadn't been able to help.
If all went according to plan, Sasuke could offer her the second chance she needed once Kakashi dissolved the marriage.
Sasuke paced around the Uchiha mansion, debating with himself how to handle the information that he had been given.
Kakashi was going to leave her.
And yet how reliable was the source? 'A friend' of a drunken man was really nothing.
But was it worth the risk?
The doorbell rang. He abruptly stopped his pacing and went to go answer it.
Shikamaru stood there. "Hey Uchiha. I'll help you now, no matter how troublesome it's going to be…he's going to leave her."
Spending all day getting lost in various shops, she stopped off at their house once or twice to drop off her purchases, and then set out again, figuring that after all she'd been through in the past little while, she deserved some measure of splurging. She could move all this back to her own house when the annulment happened, but for now Sakura figured that she might as well make the apartment look feminine. After dropping off the last load she then turned towards groceries.
His apartment was fine for food-for a single male. There was bacon, eggs, canned beans, instant pasta and not much else. When she had first seen this, she had rolled her eyes and wondered how it was that men cooked so little and yet still managed to survive.
She spent about half an hour pushing a cart through the grocery store, picking up fruit, veggies, a couple different types of meat, and some spices.
And chocolate. That was distinctly lacking in his house, and needed to be rectified.
She finished up and began walking the 10 minute walk home but within just a little while, her muscles began to protest. She had picked up a lot of bottles of various things to drink too, and they were weighing down the bundle. Her fingers began to tingle as the bag's handle cut off circulation in her fingers.
Someone stepped out of an alleyway she was passing and held out his hand. "Let me help you with that, it looks so heavy." Before she knew it, one of her hands had been relieved of its burden, allowing her to shift her now uneven load to a more spread out position. She looked up and her light eyes met Sasuke's dark ones.
It was the first time they'd spoken since the wedding and Sakura was surprised that no resentment lingered in those dark orbs from the fact that she had rejected him and subsequently married so quickly. Her ninja senses, honed from so many years of fighting were immediately suspicious. When they had been younger, Sasuke had held a grudge against Naruto for over a year for beating him in a single spar, only because Sasuke used to be the one who always won.
After the hurt and anger that had flashed in his eyes at her wedding, she had expected him to be unwilling to talk to her for awhile-this was too soon.
Kakashi walked through the streets looking for his wife. When he had gone home and she still hadn't bee home (although the kitchen was peppered with different new appliances and accessories), and after a call to Ino, determined that she must still be out at the stores.
He paced restlessly through the grocery store, searching for her and when he came up short left and looked around outside. That's when he saw her, pink hair blowing in the wind, carrying groceries…with Uchiha Sasuke? Kakashi frowned to himself and followed them at a discreet distance. His eyes narrowed dangerously as Uchiha grabbed her wrist and pulled her between several bushes so that they were completely hidden.
It took Sakura approximately half a minute to determine that Sasuke had some ulterior motives. Instead of leading her back to her home, he shifted his packages and grabbed her wrist, leading her into a thicket. He set his baggage down and faced a thicker portion of the bush, shoulders hunched.
"Sasuke…" she said warily. "What are you doing?"
"Sakura I want to apologize for the way I acted towards you at your wedding. It was supposed to be your happy time but I didn't….I was a bastard. But Sakura," he turned back to her and his eyes were glowing fiercely.
"I don't love an idea of you, like you said. You've grown into such a strong young woman, and become even more beautiful then you were when you were young. I don't know why you married Kakashi, but I mean, you can't possibly have loved him. You've know him since you were a child, and he's never shown much interest in you either, besides as a fighting partner and a friend. And I've heard," here he hesitated before continuing. "I've heard that he's going to annul the marriage, which indicates that he might have had another reason for marrying you but whatever that was he's not going to stay with you."
Sakura flinched under what he said. She knew that this was the truth, and that Kakashi was going to leave her but him telling her as much felt like a slap in the face. She had to correct something though. "You're wrong Sasuke. I do love him, no matter what you might think. But what you heard-and if Naruto told you, I'm going to be very mad at her-is correct. I think that Kakashi is going to leave me and I'm ready to deal with that when the time comes."
"And are you ready to deal with the aftereffects?" he challenged. "You won't have a prayer for finding happiness or at the very least contentment in another marriage once he leaves you."
"That's something I'm willing to deal with. He rescued me from a bad place and I mean….I'll do what I have to do."
"I see. Well then, I'm here to offer you something. After this is over, and if- when -he does get the annulment… I know that you don't thrill at the idea of being with me but you don't have much of an option now… so will you date me when he leaves you?"
Sakura felt her muscles lock and she quickly set down her load of the groceries before she dropped them. When he had asked her the same question such a short time ago, she had refused him- she didn't love him, or any male for that matter, and dating someone who had hurt her would only create problems. Now she was married, she loved Kakashi, and she was considering accepting because it solved so much.
Her childhood fantasy was coming to life-Uchiha Sasuke was asking her out.
But in her fantasy she always loved him back.
And she wasn't married to the man she did love.
How would Kakashi react when he found out she was dating his other former student? She tried to picture it, and in her mind's eye he looked relieved. Relief that she had found happiness, relief that he was no longer beholden to her.
And she could be content with Sasuke.
"Yes." Her voice was barely a whisper. She looked him in the eyes. "Yes, I will Sasuke."
The dark haired man took a step towards her, and drew her into his arms. She rested her forehead against his shoulder, not embracing him back but merely standing there. Losing Kakashi was going to hurt but she could be content with Sasuke. And at least she wouldn't have to deal with being looked down upon for being a previously married, unmarried divorcee.
The brush behind them rustled. Sakura leapt to attention, pulled out of Sasuke's arms and whipped out her dagger for defense.
Kakashi stepped out of the brush, dark eyes livid. He stepped forward, tore Sakura out of Sasuke's grasp and pulled her close, a territorial look on his face. Sasuke glared back and then left, muttering for Sakura to call him when she got a chance. As soon as he was gone, Kakashi spun her to face him and lowered himself so that he was eye to eye with her. "Now," he growled. "Why are you stepping out on me with Sasuke."
Her eyes widened to the size of dinner plates at this reaction but immediately she hardened and gave her own reaction back. "Why do you care?" she spat back at him. She grasped at anger, knowing that it gave her an outlet instead of identifying why he was so jealous.
The last thing she needed was to get any closer to him.
His gaze because incredulous. "Why do I… Sakura you're my wife!! Why in the seven hells do you think I care??"
An uncomfortable emotion shifted in her belly. "I'm your wife now…and yes, I suppose you care about how it's going to look when your wife goes out with another man- but I was going to wait till after the annulment-and you don't have to deny it. Kakashi, you know how it is for women in this town after a divorce! Sasuke's offering me a second chance and quite frankly I'm going to take it! I should've listened to you; I never should've danced with Ryu that day."
His eyes widened with sudden astonishment and annoyance. "Who told you that I wanted to get an divorce?"
This stumped her. Because in reality, he had never brought up the idea of an annulment, that had been in her mind. "You…I…. I thought it was kind of…assumed. As soon as Ryu and Kuno were off my case, I thought that you would want to dissolve the marriage and you'd be free to marry someone you want."
"I asked you to marry me, Sakura, not only because I wanted to save you from Ryu but because I wanted you. I didn't know how you'd take being pursued by a man who used to be your teacher but when this arose I took it. I've loved you since last year. I wasn't going to let you go unless you really wanted it."
The ground beneath her seemed to fall out from under her. Air left her lungs so fast it was almost as though it had been sucked out by an outside force, while her mind attempted to work in overdrive identifying if what he had said was true.
He could see that doubt and incredulity written on her face. She was still close enough that he could feel the heat radiating off of her body, smell her scent, and read the uncertainty in her expression. It made him want to pull her closer and show her just how much he didn't want her to leave him for Sasuke.
So he did. He pulled her close enough so that she was fully in his embrace, and gently angled her face so that it was lined up with his. He leaned down, and their lips were almost touching before she put up her hand to stop him. "Kakashi…"
Her voice was filled with such uncertainty that it shook like a leaf in a fierce wind. His heart hurt as he realized that she was rejecting him.
"I'm not rejecting you outright," was the first thing she said. His forehead creased as his mind formed the question. Before he could give voice to it however, she answered it. "And I do believe you when you say that you care about me. But this is going to take some adjusting to…I'm not sure about my feelings towards you at the moment."
A bigger lie she had never told, although it was for his own benefit. She had to accept what he felt for her first, before she could him how she felt. He dropped his arms as though they were made from stone.
"Can you take the groceries home Kakashi? I need to go….think."
Wordlessly he collected the bags and walked out of the clearing.
She sat there, in the middle of the clearing and did just that. She knew that she loved him and now…if he was to be believed -and God help her, she did believe him- he loved her back. This was better news than she'd heard since she danced with Ryu. She was married, bound forever, to someone who wasn't going to let her go. She loved him back…
He was one hell of a kisser…
And she was sitting in a clearing while he put groceries away in their house.
Was she insane??
He was a fool. How could he have just declared himself like that? He wasn't sure if she loved him or not, only that she wasn't outright rejecting him. He loved her and only hoped that when she came home, she wasn't going to say 'I'd rather be with Sasuke.'
However, it was only about 5 minutes…he was still putting the veggies in the crisper, when the door slammed open, startling him. Footsteps ran through the front hall and he barely had time to put down the celery and turn before she skidded through the door of the kitchen and slammed into him.
He held her slender form for a second to assure that she wouldn't fall, until she was steady but she didn't let go once she was. "I didn't tell you in the clearing, and that was because at first I thought you didn't love me and I wanted you to be able to have freedom once this was over, no matter how I might feel. But I'd be lying to myself if I said that I preferred to be with Sasuke."
He stared at her, knowing what she meant but unable to comprehend her ramblings. She could tell from his face that his normally high level comprehension levels were short circuiting and broke out in an amused smile.
"I love you Kakashi."
Almost as if in reflex to her words, he wrapped his arms tightly around her and kissed her hard. Immediately every sensation that she had felt when he had kissed her that morning came rushing back and she felt the sudden urge to escort him up to their bedroom.
Their wedding night, although late, was the second best night of her life.
It was almost as if that one day had restarted this entire scenario. They no longer acted like friends, but as a tender pair of newlyweds inside the house and out. Kakashi danced attendance around her, and she doubted that there was a moment where they weren't touching in some way. They were constantly kissing, touching hands, or sneaking off some where to get a little more intimate.
About a week after they declared themselves, she was laying in his arms, in their bed, her hand that bore his ring resting on his chest. His arm held her close, and she traced random patterns in the silvery blonde down found there. "Kakashi, remember how I said that dancing with Ryu ruined my life?"
"I changed my mind. It was probably the best night of my life."
She sensed his mouth curve into a smile and snuggled deeper into his hold, closing her eyes.
That night, Hatake Sakura, fierce ninja of Konoha slept in her husband's arms and felt utterly at peace.
A/N-There's going to be an epilogue, a bit more with the Uchiha situation, although it's going to be more comic than anything. Read and Review!!