Best Laid Plans

(when dealing with the Kazekage of Suna)

Plan 5:

Don't get challenged.


It didn't look like Gaara had any plans of moving—except for his hand, of course. At the moment, said hand was still moving, fingers brushing under the skirt, on her skin softly, sending shivers down her spine and a certain wetness down her—


The sound of the loud voice was like a splash of cold water to her system. Abruptly, Sakura disentangled, and shot up from her sprawled position, immediately smoothing down her skirt and her hair and every inch of her clothes. She knew she was blushing, and it wasn't exactly helping her case. From beside her, she felt a shift, signaling that he stood up as well.

She ignored him, and turned her attention to the now-hurt-looking blond.

"I didn't lie to you," Sakura stated firmly.

Naruto looked at her as if she was insane.


Glaring now, the pink-haired kunoichi put a threatening fist in the air, and dared the blond to repeat the sentence—he wasn't exactly an idiot, because he kept his mouth shut now, and just went on rubbing his slightly-bruised head.

"I did not have sex with him," she growled.


Based on the stares, it seemed that nobody was willing to believe her.

"I didn't!" Sakura insisted, hands in the air in frustration. It didn't exactly help that her body was still tingling, and her blood was still roaring, and her insides were still craving that sensual touch on—

Her thoughts were interrupted when Naruto spoke again.

But not to her.

"YOU!" He yelled, pointing an accusing finger at Gaara. His blue eyes narrowed. "WHAT ARE YOUR INTENTIONS ON SAKURA-CHAN?"


Sakura opened her mouth.

Gaara cut her off.

"I intend to mate her."

Naruto's eyes bulged.

Sakura flushed.

Gaara folded his arms calmly, as if he never said the statement at all.

Trying not to be embarrassed (and to ignore inner Sakura's squeal of glee), Sakura whipped her head in the red-haired Kazekage's direction, and glared.

Or tried to.

"Stop it with that word," she hissed.

"...what word?"

"And stop playing dumb!" she shrieked. "I don't like it and—"

"Do you not want to mate?"

"It's not that—er, I mean..." Mortified, Sakura realized she did not know what to say.

Cha! Just go jump him and eat him and—


"Naruto, stop yelling!" Sakura pleaded, rubbing her own head. She stopped, however, when her green eyes locked with another pair of green.

"Do you not want my hands?" Gaara asked, his voice soft and blunt.

Yes. Touch me!

"I—you—well..." she stuttered.

"Or my kiss?" He inched closer, eyes focused on hers. Her breath hitched.


Yes. Kiss me. Kiss me good—


In an instant, she was snatched out of her reverie—literally. Naruto was holding on to her arm, and making gagging noises as he did so.


"Naruto, stop—"

Ignoring Sakura, the blond-haired loudmouth turned to Gaara again, and gave him the biggest glare yet—though with the now-pale face, it wasn't quite effective.


"Naruto! STOP YELLING!" Sakura hissed. "We're in the hospital, for Kami's sake!" By now, a lot of people had gone to where the commotion was—most of them the so-called gossipers—and were staring at the unfolding events. It was probably a good thing the Hokage herself wasn't there...yet.

She was so gonna be in trouble for this.

Embarrassed beyond belief, Sakura decided the best thing was to back off for a moment—and so she grabbed the loudmouth by his shirt, and proceeded to drag him off towards...well, anywhere but here.

He complied. But not before stopping for a moment, and turning back to Gaara again.

Everyone looked on in anticipation.

"It starts with a date first!" Naruto declares.


Unable to look anyone in the eye now, Sakura pulled Naruto harder, and stalked off, and—


He finally spoke again.

She flushed, and tried not to let his low, calm voice affect her.

"Gaara, maybe la—"

"Will you date me?"

She froze. Turned around. Stared.



And the Hokage appeared, in all her feminine glory.

"UZUMAKI NARUTO! My office! Now! That is no way to treat the Kazekage!"

"BUT BAA-CHAN, HE STARTED—OWW! Alright, alright! Don't be hasty!"

Naruto calmed down eventually, as Tsunade's one hand gripped his hair (quite firmly), and the other put up a threatening fist to everyone.

"Get back to your jobs, you gossip-mongrels!" she barked.

In an instant, everyone was suddenly scurrying off, frantic to get away from the Hokage's obvious wrath. Sakura, trying to be conspicuous, did the same, and was already tiptoeing backwards and into the safety of somewhere else—

"Sakura, where do you think you're going?"

She nearly jumped, but instead flushed, and turned to Tsunade with a seemingly innocent expression on her face.

"Oh, shishou! Hi! You see, I was just on my way to the—um—patient's room to check on his condition—"

"Which patient?"

She blinked. Panicked. "Er. Mister...Telakuvaki! Yes—him!" she chirped.

At this, Tsunade raised an eyebrow. "He was discharged last week, Sakura."

Sakura flushed again, and opened her mouth hurriedly. But before she could speak, Tsunade waved a hand, and immediately cut her off.

"No matter. Now that you're here, I'll give you your task, then—the Kazekage is staying for another week, so I'm appointing you as his guide once more."

Sakura stared.

Gaara remained calm.

...Naruto went wild.


Tsunade froze.

Sakura froze.

But before anyone could really react, a whip of sand whizzed by.

And Gaara and Sakura disappeared in a flash.


The unexpectedness of the happening had Sakura coughing, and her head spinning in circles—she blinked, and tried to clear her eyes, and tried to grip onto something to keep her balance. When the spinning stopped, she blinked a few more times, and stared at whatever it was she was gripping.


For the nth time that day, she found herself staring into mesmerizing jade eyes.

"Yes?" she murmured, breathless.

She gripped his shoulder tighter, and her lips unconsciously parted when his face came closer.

Then his mouth moved to her ear.

"Tonight. Eight. I'll be there."

He kissed her earlobe, delicately.

She shivered, and wished it was her mouth he kissed.

Then he suddenly vanished with a poof—leaving her all alone in the empty hospital room he had taken her in. Probably to go do his Kazekage duties.

And confuse her further.

With a sigh, Sakura sat on the hospital bed, and rubbed her forehead vigorously.

How on heavens was she going to explain all this to her mentor?


Naruto had made up quite a fuss before allowing the Hokage to throw him out—with multiple bruises on the face, of course. He supposed that was a given, considering who he had just defied—she really did have a mean temper, especially when deprived of her early-morning drinking spree as she was now.

But really...why couldn't anyone but him see the seriousness of this situation?

Wincing and rubbing his head, Naruto stalked to the nearest training grounds, to vent and train and—


He blinked.

Standing in the middle of the training grounds was none other than Gaara himself.

Naruto snarled, out of reflex. "YOU! WHERE'S SAKURA-CHAN?! WHY HER? LET'S SPAR—"

"Would you like some ramen?"

Naruto blinked. Then his mouth gaped open—also out of reflex.


"Ramen," Gaara intoned calmly, coming closer. Naruto blinked some more, then went on to stare suspiciously at the other.

"Then we will talk about Sakura-chan and your intentions," he snarled again, glaring.

Gaara nodded.

"And no more sex in the closet," Naruto warned menacingly.

Gaara nodded.

The blond loudmouth stared more suspiciously.

"...your treat?"

A pause.


"Of course. As many bowls as you like."

Naruto brightened. Then he grinned.

"Sure!" he chirped, rubbing his hands together—there were practically little ramen hearts dancing in his blue eyes. He raised a fist in the air. "What are we waiting for? LET'S GO, GAARA!"

Without further ado, Naruto dragged the other to Ichiraku, with only two goals in mind.

First, unlimited ramen.

Then, Sakura-chan.

Gaara better be prepared with his answers.


It was seven in the evening by the time Sakura managed to drag herself home—after all, just because she was assigned as the Kazekage's guide didn't mean she was already allowed to shirk her duties in the hospital. No siree.

It gave her something to do, at least.

She showered, toweled, combed her hair, got dressed—all the while still unsure whether she should be going on this date or not. It was stupid. It was irrational. It was just hormones and gossip and—

Tap, tap, tap.

The door.

Sakura looked at herself one more time, before finally going down (flying, more like) with one intention in mind. She opened the door, and got down to business.

"We need to set some rules—oh."



Sakura stared at her teammate standing on the door for a few seconds, before brightening up and giving him a warm smile.

"You're back!" she chirped. "How was your mission? Did it go well? I know it was only a day, but how was—oh-my-Kami-you-are-hurt!"

In an instant, her smile had become a very worried frown, as she ushered him inside and practically pulled him into her sofa. Once he was seated there, she hovered over him, her green chakra present in her hands. She fluttered said hands on his injured shoulder, and steadied it.

"I'm okay, Sakura," he murmured quietly—but he did let her heal him.

"You don't look fine," she insisted.

"It's just a scratch," he said. His onyx eyes were fixed on the flowing chakra, watching as it stitched up his wounds in a slow and careful process. Once it was over, and the wound was closed, said onyx eyes trailed to gaze at her.

She beamed at him.

He kept on gazing.

"What's this I hear about you and that sand nin having sex?"

She flushed.

He waited.

Finally, she cleared her throat. "Whatever you heard, it's a crazy exaggeration."

"Every single day?"

"I told you, it's—"

"The last one in the hospital closet, going at it like rabbits?"

Sakura shut her mouth, and promptly flushed darker.

"Not like rabbits," she muttered, in a barely audible voice.

A black eyebrow rose in silence, above an unreadable expression.

"It was an accident," she said defensively, folding her arms and stammering slightly.


"Stop looking at me like that!" she nearly yelled out. "It—it's just sex!" Then, realizing what she just said, she averted her eyes, and proceeded to fuss with her clothes needlessly.

"Did he say that?" Sasuke asked quietly. To Sakura's surprise, his voice had slightly taken on a tone of danger, before going blank again. She stood up, and went to the kitchen. He followed.

" Not exactly."

Let's mate soon.

More like not really.


"I don't approve."

Sakura whipped her head back at him in shock.


"Kakashi wouldn't, too. And the dobe."

Her eyes narrowed. "Are you forbidding me?"

His eyes narrowed back, slightly. "We're your teammates. We know what's best for you."

It was uncharacteristic of him to speak so many sentences in one go—very unSasuke-like, to be honest. He was always a man of few words, and that had been that, no matter what.

Her eyes flared in irritation.

"I know what's best for me, thank you very much," she scoffed.

"Not likely," he scoffed back.

Her head lifted up.

"It's none of your business."

"Like hell it isn't."

Her temper rose. "Why, you arrogant—"

Tap, tap, tap.

Her words stopped. Her eyes went to the door, then back to Sasuke. She glared.

"Don't you even dare make a scene."

"I forbid you to go."

And then, like a fuse, her temper exploded.

"You can't stop me," she snarled.

Without further ado, Sakura stalked out of the kitchen (she didn't even know why had gone there to begin with), and into the living room, her steps quick and full of energy. Her mouth was still formed into a snarl, as she fisted her hands, and kept on stalking. Maybe she was being delirious, maybe she was being crazy. It didn't matter. Her vision turning red, she yanked the door open.

Then she determinedly pulled the person standing there inside.

And she proceeded to put her mouth on his.

Take that, you meddling teammates.

She could feel his lips on hers, not moving. She could feel his chakra, no matter how subtle it was, how cloaked. She could feel her raven-haired teammate's chakra somewhere behind her, probably near, probably far. She didn't really care. All she cared about was proving her point, because she was a big girl now—they didn't have the right to tell her what to do, or what not to do, or—

His lips moved.

And suddenly, in the blink of an eye, every thought flew out of her head.

The red haze vanished, only to be replaced by a different kind of haze altogether.

The hot, churning kind.

She was backed into something solid, his hands moving. Touching. Sparks flew into her system—her knees weakened, turned to jelly. His tongue came out to taste, to fill her with something deep, something she had never expected.

His body began to move.

On a frenzy, Sakura let out a soft moan, her teeth pulling at his lips—his hungry mouth, his gentle tongue. Her hands went wild, and proceeded to grip on to his shirt. To glide down, under. Dimly, she began to realize he wasn't wearing his robe, because she could finally put her hands inside, and touch.

His skin was warm, so warm—all smooth and sleek, his muscles hard and mouthwatering.

She touched harder, faster, her fingers unable to stop.

She felt his stomach tremble, and suddenly, suddenly wanted to put her lips there. To taste.

She heard his sharp intake of breath, and his stilling.

In an instant, and with one final nip on her lower lip, he pulled away, and rested his mouth on the crook of her neck.

She called out his name, and tried to get her senses in order.


"Sakura." His voice was low. Hot.

"...what do you want?"


"To mate," he said.

She nodded her head, understanding. It was what he always wanted, right? It was what she wanted...right?

"Okay," she whispered, her hands starting to move again. "Okay. Now—"

Then he did the most surprising thing of all.

Gaara kissed her again—with no frenzy now, only gentle, sensual persuasion.

It was she who trembled now.

"...but not now. Not before one thing," she heard him say.

Her incoherent mind tried to catch up.


A pause.

"You need to fall in love with me first," he stated.

Her eyes widened. Her racing heart stopped.

Her hands stilled.

"And I will make you," he murmured. His fingers moved along her skin, feather-light. Her insides heated abruptly.

Then, in an instant, he was moving away, nodding to someone as he did so.

Somehow, Sakura forgot who it was.



He turned to her once more, his jade eyes pinning her frozen.

"Goodnight," he intoned, voice soft. "Tomorrow. Afternoon. You need to rest now."

And then he was gone, out of the door again, leaving her gaping, and trying to process everything.


A few seconds later, she willed herself away from the wall, and willed the images away from her head. She willed the tingles away, too—or at least, tried to.

She sat on the couch. Took a deep breath.

Then she looked up, and stared at the room's other occupant.




"Because you need rest, as he says."

She huffed, and tried to glare.


She folded her arms, and fumed. "Well...did you see that? Did you see what he did? What he—he said? Of all the strangest, most arrogant things to say—he's even more arrogant than you, Sasuke-kun! I—it's—you—unbelievable! It's—preposterous—delirious—illogical—"


She stopped her rambling, and prepared herself to tell him that he was right, she should not even consider it anymore, and—

"It's okay now."


"I'll tell the others not to kill him."

And then, with a nod, Uchiha Sasuke was out the door, closing it gently as he did so.

Sakura stared. Stood up from the couch. Sat back again.


All the while, she only thought of three things.

First, she was not going to fall in love with him. Ever.

Second, boys were weird.

And third...she needed a cold shower.

A really, really cold one. Now.

Damn stupid hormones.


Plan Status: Failed.


a/n: I'm back! Heh, just like I said. I'll keep writing now. Anyway...see you til' next chapter. Happy reading, and review if you can. :)