Hello! Back with another AU fic. I usually don't like these, but I've been wanting to do one where I show what I think of all the characters and what groups they'd wind up being put into. This piece is actually sort of personal, since I draw out of real experiences and friends that I met along my high school journey.

Kiba: The kid was a nerd, though, and totally not a badass like Kiba. He was a kid who's mother drove him to school, who said good-bye to his dog for forty minutes until his mother threatened to drive off without the dog in the car.

Hinata: Eighth grade I transferred to a public school, so I had a lot of adjusting to do. In fourth grade I completely stopped talking except to the few friends I had, and this made my transition that much harder, since I had barely anyone to talk to. I wound up freezing up around people. Her experiences are my experiences. I felt they were fitting for someone as shy as Hinata. (Freshman year was hell for me.)

Shino: My penchant for wearing so many layers in 90º weather. Also, he's a total metal head. He sort of also reminds me of this guy I was always watching during class. (Yeah. I'm totally not creepy.) The kid always had this wicked cool trench coat and a fedora he wore everywhere. Dosu's also based on him, though he has more of a neo-Nazi feel to him.

Temari: Her dreads are an idea from my cousin. My cousin also has two younger brothers, one going into the military, and the other a theatre nerd. She wore dreads for a while because her hair was unmanageable, so I figured it would totally fit Temari's kickass attitude in this story.

Naruto: A friend of mine. He was really cool in that nerdy anachronistic way–he liked My Little Pony, Ronin Warriors, Power Rangers, DBZ, and basically the same old shit I did, but everyone hated him because he was always talking.

TenTen: Sort of based off of my Sempai. She's on the girl's basketball team and is always yelling at girls who think they're fat. AKA Ino. She gets kicked off for playing too rough. (She wishes she were on the boy's basketball team.)

Kankurou: Actually based off of a lesbian my best friend introduced me to. She was a theatre techie that looked exactly like a boy and was always wearing a cool hat and glasses. Kankurou takes on a more "emo" look, though. He wears things like striped polo shirts (not emo, but whatev), thick black-rimmed glasses and beanies of different colours. Purple is his favorite colour, naturally. (So yeah. Kankurou's a lezbanin for future reference.)

It's Gaara-centric (and Sand-Sibling-centric), though. Because Gaara was my first favorite character in this show, and I hardly ever write about him… I really think I should more often… Though, maybe NOT one that's terribly cliché that you see everywhere…

Sorry for the totally lame title. I hope I come up with something totally cooler. Any suggestions?

And because Gaara's character in this story wouldn't logically have a tattoo on him, let alone the kanji for love tattooed on his forehead, his little tattoo has been replaced by Tenderheart Bear. (Care Bears.)

A Quiet Mind
The Things that Go Bump In the Night

Temari swore, heading out into the hallway where her annoying little brothers were still stowed away in their rooms. She went into the room at the very end of the hall, knowing for sure this one would be awake.

"Gaara! Get out of bed! It's time for school!"

In the lair of the beast, Gaara moaned in response, refusing. She stomped in there, chuckling. "Don't pretend to be asleep! I know you stopped taking your medication! You've been flushing it before bed every night! Trust me–if you were asleep, I'd know, buddy boy!"

Her little brother finally rolled over, looking at her with the cruelest expression on his face. He merely grunted, and she gave him a bright smile. "I'll make sure we stop by McDonald's on the way to school. They've got those cool toys you're obsessed with…"

His face fell, and he sat up, mumbling something about "Hot Wheels". He looked at her, narrowing her eyes in suspicion. She rolled hers, putting her hands on her hips. "Gawd, you're so spoiled. You actually think I won't take you to McDonald's?" He merely looked at her, that same look of suspicion on his face, before she threw her hands up in the air. "You want Hot Wheels!? I'll buy you Hot Wheels, damn it! Geez! Why did Dad have to be so rich!?"

From the hallway, she heard the middle child mumble. "So he could indulge your obsession with Hot Topic, of course…"

She shot out into the hallway, pounding him on the head. "I don't shop at Hot Topic, you nerd! Maybe once or twice, but that was only because Sakura thought those earrings would look cute on me!"

Gaara shuffled out of his room, Tenderheart Care Bear plush in hand, and he witnessed his brother getting the beanie torn off his head. He watched with mild interest as Temari screeched, "Stop wearing these hats, Kankurou! They make you look even geekier than usual! Gawd!"

His older brother merely smiled pleasantly, pushing the non-prescription glasses up the bridge of his nose. "And those boots make you look like a cowboy."

She kicked him in the shin, remarking over his yelp. "All the better to kick you with, my dear brother! Why do you wear those dumb glasses!? I assume it's all the better to see me with!?"

Kankurou grumbled, rubbing his shin. "Sheesh. If you're the Wolf, I guess that makes me Little Red Riding Hood…"

"And I'm the Axmen."

Both siblings turned to see the youngest staring at them with a slightly amused look in his eyes and timid smile on his face. Temari laughed. "Better than being Little Red Riding Hood, eh, Gaara?"

Gaara just shuffled past them, toward the bathroom. "I doubt it. Little Red Riding Hood doesn't get hacked to death with an axe…"

As he shut the door behind him, Kankurou grabbed the hat from his sister's hands, sticking his tongue out. "He sure showed you…"

"I'd rather get hacked to death with an axe than eaten, Kankurou. Don't even try to twist that into a win for you… I'm not digesting in the pit of a wolf's stomach when an axe comes tearing through the abdominal wall, right into my dumb, ugly face."

She stormed down the stairs, and Kankurou bit his lip, watching her. "Y-Yeah…" He put his hat back on. "Well at least I'm not…" He sighed, knowing that argument was lost. He was cross-dressing either way–Wolf or Red.

Gaara came out of the bathroom, yawning a little. Kankurou ruffled the little fella's already mussed red hair. "Get all of that out of your system, Gaara? You should probably get some sleep more often… Don't want to fall asleep in class."

His brother swatted his hand away, shuffling into his room. "You'd just regret it, Cat-head." He slammed the door behind him, disgruntled.

Kankurou rubbed his face, walking down the stairs, mumbling. "At least we know about your night terrors… The poor teachers would probably think you were possessed by a demon…"


After a quick stop at McDonald's, the two oldest in the front got into a heated discussion. Gaara was in the back, barely listening–he was too immersed in playing with his new toy. It was the coolest one they had in circulation at the McDonald's, all small and black and sleek, with a silver streak down the side.

"Look, Kankurou, when are you going to realize you can't just do set design and be a techie if you want to be worth anything? Get a role in the next school play, damn it."

"I do work I'm proud of. I don't want to act. Do you know how far that would shoot me up on the popularity lists? I don't want that kind of attention…"

"Yeah, well it's obvious by the sounds in your room at night that you don't get enough attention. I'd hate to think what happens the nights I'm asleep. Poor Gaara. You do realize he hears it every time you masturbate, right?"

His cheeks flared. "Look, that isn't part of this discussion, Temari. What does it matter? All guys do it, and Gaara probably doesn't hear a thing!"

"I'm in the room across from you, on the very edge near the window, and I can still hear you when I'm awake working on projects. Gaara's in the room right next to you, and your bed is shoved against that wall. He has to hear something. Poor thing. If I didn't know any better I'd say you wanted him to hear it, you pervert."

"What, no I don't!"

"He masturbated last night."

Kankurou looked in the back, at his little brother messing with the wheels on the car, trying to figure out how they worked. "What are you talking about!? I didn't last night!"

Next to him, Temari cleared her throat. "Gaara, you should learn when to stop talking about things that don't need to be mentioned…"

Kankurou looked back at her, giving her a look of disgust. "Temari! You sicko! I hope Dad finds out!"

Temari stopped at a red light, steaming. "I wasn't either! For your information, I happened to have a boy over! You tell Dad that and I'll cram that hat down your throat so far, you'll be shitting yarn for a week!"

Back in the backseat, a low, ominous voice that almost didn't even sound like his came from Gaara's mouth. "Which boy?"

She turned to look back at him again, her eyes wide. "What does it matter, Gaara? What? You think you're going to kick his ass or something? Like you can." She turned back to the front seat. "He has friends in high places… I wouldn't try searching him out…"

Gaara's eyes glowered. "…It's Dosu, isn't it? You two have been flirting with each other ever since school started…"

She went red, looking back at him. "Don't be serious, Gaara!"

Kankurou gasped. "The skinhead!? Temari, be serious! That kid's a punkass! And his friend is even freakier than him! What is that guy's name again? Whatever; it's not important! What the hell, Temari!"

Her cheeks flushed. "What does it matter!? Get the hell off my back or I'll kick you out of the car!"

"I'll just tell Dad you were with a boy last night!"

"He wouldn't believe you!"

"He'd believe me…"

Kankurou glanced back at Gaara in the back before turning his head back to Temari. "Yeah. Dad would believe Gaara."

Her cheeks flared, and she looked back at Gaara. "Alright, Gaara! I'm sorry, alright!? I know you get extremely over-protective, but Jesus! It's not that bad! One of these days you'll find a nice girl that you want to have sex with!"

Kankurou chuckled, and she whirled on him. "What!? What do you think is so funny!? At least he'd get a girl! You're totally gay, Kankurou!"

Kankurou bit his lip. "You missed the turn-off for the student parking lot…"

She swore and kept going. "Just great. Now we have to go through the carpool lane just to get to the back of the school. Shit!"


Temari leaned her head against the wheel, sighing in aggravation. "When is this kid going to go inside? He's been saying good-bye to that dog for hours."

Kankurou cleared his throat, looking at his watch. "It's only been eight minutes…"

Outside of the car, the boy was rubbing his dog on the head, positively heart-broken, as if the dog was going to get put down while he was at school. "Be a good dog, Akamaru! I'll be right home after school, I swear!" The dog barked. "Of course I'll miss you! You don't realize how much, boy!"

His mother shouted at him. "Kiba! You step away from the car and close the door before I drive off with it open! Kiba! Are you listening to me!? Jesus, Kiba! Get that dog back in the car so I can leave!"

"But Mom! He's so lonely at home!"

"He has your sister's dogs to play with and mine in the backyard!"

"Those are too old…and way too big! Akamaru's more playful than them! He'll die without me!"

"He'll die if I drive off and he falls underneath the tires, Kiba! Now get to school! We've got a line forming behind us!"

He shut the door behind him and waved, and she started the car again. Temari and Kankurou both looked up with hopeful looks…until they saw the passenger's window rolling down. Kankurou spoke, unable to keep his eyes off it. "What the hell… I-Is that dog…"

The dog leapt from the open window, and the kid's mother slammed on the brakes, letting out the f-word as loud as possible. The boy–Kiba–whirled around, surprised to see the dog running after him. He grinned. "Cool! You learned how to roll the window down! You want to go to school with me, boy!?"

Kankurou's jaw dropped, as did his sister's. He turned to her, stunned. "Shit! Haven't they ever heard of child-proofing!?"

Gaara spoke from the back, sounding incredibly bored. "Too bad they never invented dog-proofing…"

Temari's eyes glowered, and she rammed her hand into the horn. "Fuck this shit. I'm going to be late to class if that kid doesn't move his ass." It started to blare, and immediately afterward all the cars behind her started in as well. Kiba turned, spooked, and the dog leapt into his hands, yelping. He glared at everyone in line as he stowed the dog back into the car and his mother rolled the window down.

The old bat drove off, and Temari gave a big sigh of relief. "Show this dillweed how we feel about his poor little puppy, boys." As they drove off, the three siblings gave him the finger, and the boy's jaw dropped. After they passed, Kankurou burst into hysterics, and Temari let a smile make its way to her face; however, Gaara just simply stared back out the window at him.

"I know that kid. His name's Kiba Inuzuka. He's in my Chemistry class…"

Temari nodded. "I'll bet he's just annoying as hell."

Gaara sat back down, shrugging his shoulders. "Most of the time he's doodling pictures of dogs on his assignments…"

His siblings found this extremely funny, and both of them started to laugh. Gaara just stared out the window bitterly. He knew they'd have it out for him if he told them the boy was constantly making him do his homework for him.


His first class–his very first class–was Chemistry, and he nearly skipped, had there not been one person in that class. That person was Shino, and he was one of the freshmen, one of Temari's friends at lunch. He was always wearing a trench coat no matter what the weather, and he was the only person that didn't annoy the hell out of him.

He went in, sliding into the seat next to Shino. The two almost never spoke, though there was some sort of unspoken kinship between them. He looked over at Shino, and Shino looked back at him, lowering his sunglasses ever so slightly. Gaara looked back at his desk. Shino always reminded him of that hit man in The Professional with that attire, though he doubted Shino took his advice and watched the movie. It had been the only thing he'd ever said to him, and he'd said it to him on Friday.

Shino leaned over. "Great movie."

Gaara looked at him, just slightly spooked. "Wh-What?"

"That movie you told me about. You remember? That one with the guy–Leon, the hit man. The one you said reminded you of me. Great movie, man." He nodded his head again, leaning back to his seat. He mouthed those words again, "Great movie," and went silent.

Gaara gave a forced smile, pulling out his folder. Shino was always…different…in how he spoke to people. He was much more direct, that was for sure. Though, at times he could be as cryptic as…as the Riddler.

Gaara stared at the folder, puling out his homework. He didn't want to come face-to-face with Kiba. He wasn't sure what would happen, but he wasn't sure he could take another day of Kiba's shit. He swore he'd probably kill him or something. That boy even touched his desk looking for the homework, the douche bag was going down.

Kiba walked in, looking peeved. He went directly to Gaara's desk. He stared at him for a long moment, arms crossed over his chest. Finally, Gaara looked him in the eye. "What?"

Kiba smiled. "That homework. I want it. The Balancing Equations packet you said you'd do for me."

Gaara looked down. "…It's gone… I lost it."

Kiba just kept smiling, kept pushing. "…Gone? Then what's that right there…?" He pointed to a packet sitting on the folder on his desk–the homework. "That certainly looks like the homework…"

Gaara finally looked up. "I didn't do yours. That's what I meant."

Kiba went for it. "I'll just take yours and erase the name then."

Shino grabbed his hand before it could even touch Gaara's desk, and Kiba froze. He turned his head to the boy, making a sound that seemed like some sort of…whimper. "What…"

Shino just looked at him through the glasses. "I wouldn't go near him if I were you."

Kiba just smiled. "What's this, Shino? Now you've replaced me? We used to be friends, you know. Way back in middle school. But then you had a run-in with him and his sister and now we hardly ever talk. Why? He replaced me, didn't he? Therefore, I want what's rightfully mine. I want his homework. As payment for being your friend now."

Shino smiled, ever so lightly. He let go of his hand. "Do what you wish."

Kiba looked back over at the desk, finding no packet at all. The folder wasn't even there. He glared. "What the hell, Gaara? Where's your homework? Where is it so I can claim it as mine, huh? You owe me! Especially after you and your piece of shit brother and sister gave me the finger this morning! Don't think I didn't know it was them! Don't think I didn't know you were doing it, too!"

Gaara stood in a hurry, his breathing heavy. He glared at him. "I didn't do your work. Go. Away."

Kiba stared at him for a moment, seeing the fury building in his eyes and the almost wild look forming in them. He took a step back. "…Alright." He turned and went to the opposite side of the room, next to one of his friends.

The teacher walked in and class started. During class, when the teacher's back was turned, Kiba rolled up a piece of paper and threw it at him. The teacher turned back around, suspicious. After a while he shrugged, turning back to the board. Shino just glanced at Gaara, staring at that wad of paper. He leaned over.

"Don't let it get to you. He'll stop if you leave him alone. He's just doing this to get you riled up so you'll get in trouble…"

Gaara looked back at Kiba, just in time for a paper ball to come flying right at his head. He flinched as it bounced off of his forehead, right over his left eye, and there were a few stifled laughs on the other side of the class. The teacher turned to that side of the room. "Hey. Quiet down."

Gaara's face reddened, and he unrolled the piece of paper, pulling out a red pen and a pencil. He scribbled in a quick picture of Temari's Jetta and then Kiba's dog behind it, X's for eyes. He opened the red pen, drawing a scribble of lines from the tires of the car, and finally all the way over to underneath the dog and all over its middle. He crumpled it back up, looking at the teacher. The teacher's back was turned, and he took a chance, tossing it at the dog-lover.

Nothing happened, and Kiba glared at him before looking at the paper, curious. He unrolled it, staring at the picture on it. He stood in a hurry, knocking over his desk and the empty desk behind him. "I'll fucking kill you if you lay a finger on my dog, you shithead!" He was screaming, but his eyes were absolutely terrified.

The teacher turned. "Kiba! I will not tolerate your little outbursts in this classroom! Go see the Principal! Now!" He went to his desk, taking out a slip of paper. Shino stifled a laugh as Kiba ripped the paper from the teacher's hands and went sulking out of the room, glaring daggers at Gaara. One look at Shino and his face collapsed, looking sorely betrayed.

Shino leaned over toward Gaara. "Nice one."

Gaara stared at the boy for a long moment, even after he'd gone back to looking at the front board. Something twisted in his stomach. This was why he hated getting close to people. They always changed their minds so easily, stopped being friends, stopped talking to them. He'd been bullied most of his life, so he never really had any friends…other than his siblings and one girl who happened to befriend him. But she was gone now.


Lunch was starting, and Gaara was lucky he'd gotten there early for his lunch. He barely ate any of the food he got, being much too picky for that, but the people he sat with always finished off the food. He was currently picking at a burger from the lunch line.

He sat with his sister. If he'd had a choice in the matter, he would've sat by himself. Instead, he got stuck sitting with her and her friends…who were weird. She herself had always been weird–choosing to wear weird fashions and boots and hoodies, short skirts she refused to bring down to knee-length so she could show off her fishnetted legs. Despite the fact that their father was rich, she'd gone out of her way to only buy things from second-hand shops, and she was always finding what she thought were the coolest things. The biggest oddity about her currently was the fact that she had her hair pulled back into pigtails…and she'd gotten dreadlocks.

Shino Aburame sat with them, and he was always wearing that trench coat and shades. He really only talked to Dosu, and the two seemed to connect very easily. He had a thing against Zaku, though, and Gaara felt it had something to do with the fact that Zaku was a bit arrogant, claiming how great he was all hours of the day.

Abumi Zaku was always piercing his face–though he had to take them out during school–and ears. He kept the earrings in…and the tongue piercing that the teachers rarely paid attention to, despite the fact that he was always flapping his mouth. He was also always wearing torn up clothes and studded jackets, dyeing his hair various colours–it was currently green, and had been for quite some time–and shaving it into a mohawk. His mohawk was growing back, since the teachers thought it was inappropriate…as if the green hair was. When he wasn't hanging out with Sakura and Dosu, he was hanging out with Kin, a girl in band. They were childhood friends, all three of them–Dosu, Kin, and Zaku.

Kinuta Dosu was a skinhead, as Kankurou had delicately put it. He'd shaved his head and pierced his ears. His hair was growing back ever since a few of the teachers were worried he actually was a neo-Nazi and told him to grow it back. He was always wearing a trench coat as well, though his were usually lined with fur. He also had a penchant for wearing cut off gloves everywhere, and he looked like a real punk–like he made sure they were black so the blood wouldn't stain them red. Gaara really wondered what that guy saw in his sister, and what his sister saw in him, apparently.

Another person who sat with them was Sakura Haruno. Apparently she'd been best friends with Ino Yamanaka–the head cheerleader–when they were younger, but they'd grown apart shortly after entering middle school…when they both met Sasuke Uchiha–the school's pretty boy. Sakura was always dyeing her hair and wearing things with pink in them. Pink was her favorite colour, and it showed with what her hair had been for the past four months–a record, for her. She, though she usually talked with Shino, was always hanging around Zaku. They would skip school and go to the arcade, though Gaara was pretty sure they weren't involved. They were together so often, most people just referred to them collectively as "The Watermelon".

Currently, Sakura was sitting down beside him, Zaku following shortly after. His sister showed up, and after that Dosu, then Shino. Temari was shaking her head sadly. "Gaara, you changed spots again. We had to go look for you…"

Sakura rolled her eyes. "Oh look, there goes Ino trying to talk to Hinata …"

All of their eyes turned to the girl sitting at the very end of the cafeteria, completely alone at one half of a table, her head buried in a book when she should've been eating. It was Great Expectations. That girl was Hinata Hyuuga, daughter of some guy that got rich after inventing a new type of contact lenses that could be worn up to three days without being taken out and without drying out one's eyes. She was very soft-spoken, short in stature, very pale and had soft-looking chin-length hair. Gaara had always thought she was a little bit cute.

Ino walked up, sitting right in front of her. Sakura grinned. "She probably wants her to go sit with them. Poor Pig-nose. Too bad she doesn't realize I've already tried that before… She probably thinks she'll get through to her when I couldn't and totally throw it in my face."

Zaku grinned. "Why do you call her Pig-nose again?"

"Because she's always got her chin upturned, looking down her nose at everyone who tries to talk to her. You can see straight up that thing!" Her eyes glowered bitterly.

Temari smiled. "We can't all be kind, Sakura, dear. At least, not as kind as you…"

Sakura gave her the finger, wanting to watch the entire thing playing out.


Ino walked over timidly, sitting down in front of Hinata. "Hey…do you like that book you're reading?"

Hinata looked up, her face flushing. "W-Well…kind of. I'm…reading it for class…"

There was a long silence as she turned back to her book, deep in thought, trying to keep her breathing steady.

"Do you want to sit with us?"

Hinata looked back up, surprised. "Wh-What? Oh…I'm…I'm fine…" She looked back down at her book, feeling the heat rise to her cheeks and trying to quell the urge to cry. She stared at it, hoping they'd go away. She was so nervous…

"Oh, I'm sorry." Ino chuckled. "I didn't see you were busy reading… I'm sorry for interrupting you."

Hinata looked up, suddenly desperate. "N-No. It's fine. You weren't…interrupting anything…" She looked back at her book, hoping Ino would go away, hoping Ino would stay and talk to her, hoping everything and nothing at all. She just wanted to stop feeling so nervous.

Ino gave a strained smile, standing up. She pointed back to her table with her thumb. "If you ever want someone to sit with, you know where to find us…"

She got up and left, back to the table right across the aisle. Hinata watched her go before she went back to her book, full of worry. They were talking about her–she knew it. They probably thought she was stuck-up and everything… But everything was fine…she was starting to feel the heat in her cheeks go down, the urge to cry diminishing, the anxiety dissipating. She took a breath she didn't realize she'd been holding and went back to her book, suddenly immersed in Charles Dickens's overly-detailed writing.


Gaara stared at her for the longest time, unable to keep his eyes off. Now that was terrible. He was glad his sister forced her to sit with him, now. If he had to go through that, he'd probably just die. He turned back to his sister's friends, who were on to some other subject. He glanced over next to him at Shino, who was still staring. He went back to his food, hoping Shino hadn't noticed.

After a few minutes, he looked over just in time to see Shino give another quick glance in Hinata's direction. He wouldn't dare say anything to him about it, but he stared at him a bit longer than he should have, and Shino looked at him, voicing the question in his mind.

"Why am I staring at her? When we were in middle school, me and Kiba tried to befriend her. He got our group together and sat down right around her. Things were going terribly. She was lost in some book, looking like she was avoiding us on purpose. Finally, Kiba accidentally threw a water bottle across the table and it landed right in front of her. The entire table went quiet, but she didn't move an inch. One of the boys grabbed it, waving his hand in front of her face, in front of the book. She tensed up even more, her eyes growing misty. One boy asked if she was a statue, and finally Kiba looked over at her. He asked her if she actually said anything, if she didn't want friends or something. She immediately got up and ran to the bathroom. I assume she cried. I never forgave Kiba for his stupid mouth."

Gaara went red. "Wait, that's why you're no longer his friend?"

Shino smiled. "Mostly. But there were other reasons, too."

"His dog sure is annoying…"

Everyone sitting there looked up to see Sakon and Ukon, the twins people swore had the same exact mind, standing side-by-side, watching them. Sakon spoke next. "We heard a rumor that you upset Kiba, Gaara…"

Ukon snickered. "We were outside Tsunade's office, and we heard him shouting about a drawing of his dog getting killed."

"Yeah. Great idea. His dog's annoying as hell. It keeps digging under our fence and barking at the back door."

"Once we kicked the crap out of it and placed it back in his yard. He was none the wiser. He got really mad."

Sakon started to laugh. "He thought his mother's one-eared Nazi-dog hurt it. He called her a bitch…"

Ukon began to giggle uncontrollably. "The name sure is fitting, right? They're obsessed with dogs…so his mother's a bitch… Then he accused his best friend of doing it."

Sakon grabbed his brother and started walking away, snickering. "Poor guy told his friend to go screw himself and went back to his dog… Sometimes I wonder if him and that dog are one in the same…"

"I wouldn't be surprised, brother."

The group watched them go, and Temari put a hand over her mouth, biting back the urge to laugh. "I wouldn't be surprised if those two were conjoined at birth…"

Sakura and Zaku burst out laughing, and Dosu snickered. Gaara just stared at his sister, lost in thought. People were always so cruel to people they didn't know. Even his sister was making fun of those two, even Shino and Kiba–who were friends at one point–now hated each other. Love, hate, sadness, anger. He really didn't want anything to do with them. The only one he'd ever felt any sort of connection to was Matsuri, and she didn't live here anymore. She'd left him, just like everyone parted ways eventually. That's why he didn't want to be a part of relationships, of love–of anything having to do with superfluous, ever-changing emotions.

After a while, Shino looked back over at him, face cold. "I wouldn't trust those two." Gaara just stared at him. He wouldn't trust anyone at the table, except for Temari. And after she'd gone and slept with Dosu, he wasn't even sure he could trust her

He eyed Dosu for a long, long time, bringing his can of lemonade to his lips. There was something about him he didn't like. Dosu caught eyes with his sister and leaned over, whispering something in her ear. She giggled, her cheeks flushing pink. His hand clenched, and the can was crushed, lemonade going everywhere. Shino was the only one who noticed.

He stood, taking his food and crushed can and tossing it in the trash. He left the cafeteria, unable to stay there any longer. He was having the hardest time suppressing the urge to kill that freak. He went immediately into the school library, hiding away in the reference section.