Alrite well this is my first time writing this pairing and this anime so i hope that its alrite, and Lolly i hope you like it cos this was done for you and your bloody birthday haha. You know i love you no matter what.

Dedicated: This is for Lamanth, aka Lolly because its her birthday, 22 damn girl your getting old haha.

Disclaimer: NO! i don't own Naruto or any of its affiliates so don't go sueing me over stupid legal crap.

Twisting she moved lithly out of the way of the oncoming attack and struck him swiftly in the throat with the kunai she was holding in her left hand, striking out with her right knee at the same time she caught him in the stomach before moving out of his reach and ducking around another attacker striking him in the back of the neck.

With the last of the ninja squad dead Ino sighed as she pushed sweaty bangs out of her eyes and surveyed the small clearing. Not the best place for a fight, but she had learnt to deal with any enemy swiftly and deadly, no matter the size of the space you were in.

She lightly kicked one of the dead ninja rolling him over until she saw the ninja headband across his forhead. "Sound ninja." She sighed heavily as she was instantly reminded of deep onyx eyes and dark black hair that was closer to blue than any other colour.

Shaking her head vehemently she set off back through the forest at a slow pace. She was determined not to think of him, it had been three years since He had abandoned the village and gone over to Orochimaru.

Her hands automatically curled into tight fists as she remembered the third hokage and what he must have gone through at the hands of his former student.

The thing that disgusted her most was that He had gone out in search of Orochimaru. She hated him for leaving the village behind, for leaving her. Tears threatened to burst from behind the walls she had built to keep them and everything else out.

Breathing deeply Ino meditated as she walked, blocking everything out around her and everything inside her until she was relaxed and in tune with every movement around her. She had learned to quiet her mind yet still search for disturbances in the immediate areas.

Sensing nothing she continued walking slowly, no need to hurry. It was almost a chore to live in the village, to wake up, to get up, to train, and go about everyday life knowing that He was out there doing who knows what and getting into all sorts of trouble.

She had contemplated many times, going out in search for him. But everytime she said she would go, she would only get as far as the entrance gates before wussing out and going back home to her lonely single apartment.

She almost envied Billboard Brow, who had gone off and gotten herself involved with Rock Lee. Sighing she automatically stepped over a protruding tree root .

She had to admit, without Him to fight over and compete for, she actually liked Sakura's company and they did get on well enough. As long as they steared far far far away from the subject of their 12 year olds infatuated crush.

Their were times when she thought she saw him, but by now she had learned to dismiss it when she saw an image of him perched in a tree watching her. Like she was seeing now in the tree to her right. Ino figured it was just some weird hallucinating she was having, it always happened after a fight. She put it down to dehydration and fatigue.

The hallucination moved, more of a subtle shift. She had moved beyond the tree now and couldn't see it, but she certainly felt the movement in the back of her mind. She had learnt to always trust her judgement, it was either that or get killed.

Freezing in her tracks her entire body tensed up as she slowly turned about to face the boy she hadn't seen in years. No not boy, he was a man now. Not knowing weather this was a hallucination or not Ino took the chance to drink him in incase this was the last time she would see him. Real or not.

He must have stood at over six foot now, his features sharper more defined. The blue shirt he was wearing showed off his defined and muscled arms. His shoulders were broad his waist narrow. He still looked the same, just older and more filled out.

The onyx eyes she had come to know just as well almost better than her own blue eyes, stared at her sharply. That glare he had permanently worn when he was younger, was now solely directed at her.

Swollowing nervously she took a step forward, when he didn't move or give any signs of life she cautiously approached his still form. Still unsure of weather this was a hallucination or not she raised a hand and placed it on his chest.

Startled she almost let go and stepped back, but at the last minute regained herself. She could feel the subtle rise and fall of his chest as he breathed, feel the regular rhythm of his heart as it beat under her fingertips. He was warm, something she never thought he would be.

Raising her eyes she stared up into the face she would have given anythign to see one last time. His eyes had softened ever so slightly, the corners of his mouth tilted upwards softly. And when he spoke it was a low rumble that sent shivers down her spine. "I've been waiting for you."

Ok so there it is sweetie, Happy Birthday and i hope you have a good day. So did you like it? I hope it was ok.

Luv Phoenix