Disclaimer: 'Naruto' and 'Naruto Shippuden' is the works of Masashi Kishimoto.
Welcome to the family
There comes a moment in every girl's life that defines cherished memory.
There comes a moment in every boy's life feared more than anything.
"This is my boyfriend."
Meeting the parents.
Silence. Complete and utter silence.
Sakura almost melted into the floor as her father squared his shoulders and tapped his balding head. He was trying to compete with her boyfriend and felt intimidated by him.
Oh no. Oh god-strike-him-down no.
The worst was yet to come. Her mother was looking at the love of her life with a flabbergasted expression, bugging eyes and all.
"Mum," Sakura said under her breath as her mother outright pointed at her boyfriend like an accusing witness in court. Then without a word ran down the hall and out of sight. And her parents were freaks and she had warned (prepared, drilled and braced) her boyfriend but that didn't stop him from raising an eyebrow. She pulled at her hair when her father offered to shake with kung-fu grip.
Then her mother stormed back in.
"Mum what are you-!"
A photograph (Sakura's 7th grade class photograph to be exact) was held up against him, eyes darted from one to the other.
"I was right! It is him!"
"Kenji! Quick look at this! It's Uchiha Sasuke! That's him right there!"
"What?! It can't be?"
"That boy she used to follow home! Look Uchiha Sasuke!"
Sakura almost burst into tears from the sheer embarrassment as her (ahem stalker) past was exposed. Her father shot a violent fist in the air, a battle cry for a man hunt, search and destroy mission. "Uchiha Sasuke!? The boy that broke my baby angel's heart seven times!"
"Ah! Uchiha Sasuke!"
"Uchiha bloody Sasuke!?"
Sasuke looked to the Haruno's in subzero fear, backing off. "Nice to… finally meet you?"
"You are being so good about this," Sakura said resting her hands on Sasuke's shoulders "So, so good."
They had ducked into the kitchen as her parents went to get their bags. Sasuke felt their knees knock together rather symbolically. He was going into the mountains, to her parents summer house where there was no escape, possibly no clean running water, dust mites and probably smarter than your average bears for a whole week.
"I'm being more than good," he decided.
"And by high heaven you will be justly rewarded," Sakura said with a nod and Sasuke gave a killer smirk, one of his many lethal assets. She got ready to leave, hearing the car boot close. "Now remember what we talked about-"
She gave a light squeal when strong arms wrapped around her.
"Tell me exactly how I am going to be rewarded," Sasuke said friskily and she shut her eyes. "Tell me how the man that apparently broke you're heart seven times is going to get his due."
"No dirty talk," Sakura said, trying to remove his hands. "Remember we went over this and-"
"So it involves dirty talk," Sasuke deduced and her smoking hot boyfriend needed to keep his mouth shut and hands off. Or she was going to maul him on the kitchen floor, the good unwholesome way.
They started kissing and Sakura's clarity slipped away. She was madly in love with Sasuke. They'd been having nothing but great times together (ahem great sex) and he was devoted enough to spend an entire week with her parents and buy her that 350 dollar pair of red stilettos she had been drooling over.
Sasuke lifted her up on the counter. He couldn't be crazier about her. He didn't think it was even possible for him to be this crazy about Haruno Sakura, a girl that up until graduation he had considered nothing more than a friend. It felt like his heart was clinically insane.
They continued to kiss heatedly, completely oblivious.
Sakura jumped, eyes widening when she noticed her parents leaning against the door. Her mother was not impressed and her father looked murderously at Sasuke with the clear intent to kill.
And there goes the children Sakura thought miserably. So much for my good Sasuke first impression.
"Sakura we do eat off that counter." Mrs. Haruno huffed at the unsanitary contamination of her nice clean kitchen. "So kindly get down."
Sakura scrambled down, stepping away from Sasuke in damage control. "I…I lost my earring and Sasuke he was just helping me find it."
"And let me guess; you dropped it in you're mouth? Down his pants? Please Sakura give us some credit here."
Sakura blushed in humiliation. Sasuke tried not to mirror the look he was getting from Mr. Haruno for that would be unwise… and murderous.
Sasuke found a need to appear diplomatic before his judges. "We were discussing a problem and-"
"Honey what you were 'discussing' is a whole different kind of problem and I suggest you not to go into any more detail around my husband if you want to keep your manhood."
Sasuke screwed up his face.
"Sakura it's a station wagon, a soccer mom station wagon."
"Sasuke don't be such a snob."
He almost shuttered watching the beastly father creature repeatedly slam the car door, trying to get it to close.
"Can't we just take my car?" Sasuke pushed. He couldn't stand to be cramped in the back seat like he was 15 all over again. Not when he could be driving (Sakura sitting pretty in his passenger seat) "You, me… the top down…"
She shut her eyes as he brushed her rosette hair back with his fingertips. "I know how much you love the wind in your hair…"
He failed to sway her when she argued, "As tempting as that sounds Sasuke, you promised. It may not look like it but my parents are having some serious marital troubles and given three hours in a car alone they may rip out each others throats."
She finally let go of Sasuke's hand walking towards the car. He was frowning in deliberation when she looked back.
"Have you ever considered just letting them finish each other off?"
Sasuke was going to have nightmares about eyes and rear-view mirrors. Familiar green eyes constantly glared at him but the father fiend's shade was so unlike Sakura's (more nuclear run-off than emerald).
He pretended not to notice but it was beginning to tick him off. Three hours in he decided enough was enough. He placed his had on Sakura's knee and smirked back into the mirror with a clear 'what was once yours is now ALL mine' look.
His shoulder impacted with the window closest to him and he glared tenfold at Mr. Haruno's little car maneuvering skills, successfully separating he and Sakura.
"Kenji! What on earth did you do that for?!"
"What are you talking about woman?!"
"Are you trying to kill us by swerving like that?! You are a terrible driver!"
"It was an accident Hana!"
"Ha! No way was that and accident!"
Sakura and Sasuke decided after the epic all-the-damn-way-to-the-cabin argument on safety, driving and that broken dinner plate set that it would be a VERY long time before they even thought about marriage.
Sasuke was pleasantly surprised when he entered the cabin. It was clean, it was furnished (although in his youth he had been dubbed 'nature boy' he really had been fantasizing something more upscale on this first holiday with Sakura) and it most definitely would have warm water.
"This is a very nice house," he spoke and Sakura smiled as her mother paused mid-step at the compliment. Sasuke was doing well-
"Where's the bedroom?" he said deviously to Sakura.
Scratch that. Scratch out its eyes.
"Your bedroom is down stairs," Mr. Haruno snarled "My wife, my daughter and myself are going to be upstairs. Up my stairs that I paid for!"
"We paid for, it's not all about you," Mrs. Haruno said curtly stalking up the stairs.
"What?" Sasuke protested. They were being separated? Separated like they were at a school camping trip? Please. "Sakura and I live together. What do you think that we don't sleep in the same bed back home?"
"Not under my roof you don't!" was flailed unceremoniously.
They may as well have divided a line down the middle of the room.
"You are insufferable-"
"Infuriating when you think your right."
"I am right Hana!" Kenji snapped looking in the mirror critically. He once had a thick, full head of hair like Sasuke. What happened and when did it happen?
"Tsk. You couldn't be more wrong,"
"Go midlife crisis somewhere else," Kenji cut in vehemently.
Hana faultered. She was rather sensitive lately and in Kenji's words 'doing too many dammed teenage things' like getting hair extensions and her nails done on a regular basis. She looked hurt before she darkened.
"Say's the man obsessing in the mirror."
Glower. "I am not obsessing."
"Mirror, mirror on the wall, who has the biggest beer gut of all?"
And. That. Was. it.
"I am taking a bath!" was announced with daggers, tipped with poison set on fire!
And a ginger pat of the beer belly… he used to have such a flat stomach too...
"Hmm whatever dear. Don't forget to flex your butter biceps in the mirror while your there."
Sakura stared at the door on edge. Even though she had been intimate with Sasuke many times before she still felt naughty. She knew her dad would try and pull something stupid like this. Which was why she had organized with Sasuke before the trip (way back in their apartment) to sneak into her room in all his stealthy glory so they could have their fun and have him disappear back downstairs by morning. No one would be the wiser.
She was a genius.
That was until she heard the scream.
In his defense it had been dark and Sakura and her mother were likened in height, weight and hair colour.
Mrs. Haruno had turned away when a body got in the bed next to her. No matter how tired she was, she would not fall asleep facing her neanderthal husband. How degrading.
"Why are you being like that?" was said in a deep voice that even in her hazy lethargic state she knew did not belong to her husband.
Her eyes widened as she was pulled back into a young, hard and overall muscled chest.
Where the hell is the beer belly?! She panicked. She gave a yelp only to have her mouth covered.
"You can't be mad at me," Sasuke breathed. He needed to do this. He had the perfect opportunity. He set himself milestones. 'At graduation I am going to hug Sakura back' and 'after her first year of med school I am going to ask her to move in with me.'
And as hard as it was to say out loud the milestone on this trip was…
"I love you Sakura."
And he felt so unimaginably open but good at the same time.
That was until he was kicked in the shin.
He lost his grip, flipping her flat on her back before clambering on top of her to look her in the eyes-
And he screamed.
Sakura ran into her parent's bedroom. What she found managed to be disturbing and hilarious all at once. Her mother was sitting up in bed looking stunned, her father, in a towel, hollering at the top of his lungs with rapid arm movements to match. The object of his rage (her dear Sasuke) was on the floor and repeating 'I thought it was Sakura, I thought it was Sakura' horrified.
And it didn't take a rocket scientist.
"You thought it was my daughter! That is even worse! You stay away from my daughter! Stay away from my wife!"
"It was an honest mistake Kenji."
"Honest. How is- honest?! Stop defending the blind manwhore!"
They all looked at Sakura when she erupted into laughter. Hana followed suit and Sasuke eventually loosened up to a sheepish look instead of upset/angry/scared for life. Kenji just went back to the bathroom, slamming the door.
Sakura chuckled all the way to her room, teasing Sasuke as he headed back down stairs.
"Don't get lost again now."
Three things greeted him in the dining room.
He scowled at that.
Mr. Haruno hissed.
He pursed his lips at that.
"Good morning Sasuke!" was greeted flamboyantly. "How was your sleep?"
He blushed at that?
Hey he was still embarrassed from last night and seeing Mrs. Haruno alone could decorate his cheeks in a pink hue. He blinked as Mr. Haruno quickly stole the seat at the breakfast bar next to Sakura and he would (much to his horror) have to sit between the parents.
Sakura immediately gave him her plate as she insisted she was on a perpetual diet. It was a good set up for him as he constantly had leftovers.
And hell had good pancakes.
"Planning to starve my daughter are you?" Mr. Haruno seethed. "You little bloodsucking leech."
"Dad!" Sakura said indignantly. She was ignored.
"What kind of message are you sending Uchiha! My baby angel will have poor body image!"
"Daddy! I'm on a diet!"
"Gah! It's already started!"
Now ordinarily Sasuke would have input (and it would get him into trouble) but he was to busy trying to stop himself from going bright red as Sakura's mother looked at him.
Mrs. Haruno looked at Sasuke with an almost science project interest. He was trying to look away but kept looking back. She was having quiet the effect on him. She tried not to laugh remembering how he proclaimed his love to a complete stranger. She figured that was torture enough and besides, she may still be unsure if he was right for her daughter but he certainly did love her. He had spoken from his heart last night.
So she cut him a break. "Would you like some more pancakes Sasuke?"
"Okay," he murmured hiding behind his fringe but offering his plate up. She couldn't help but think it was juvenile, hiding from the world behind bangs.
He happily chewed away at the delicious food and noted Mr. Haruno wasn't eating. He figured anyone would eat these up as quickly as possible.
"What a healthy appetite," Mrs. Haruno said proudly. She had secretly wanted a son as well as a daughter and had a good I've-done-my-job feeling seeing an empty plate instead of slim pickings.
"Well these are good," Sasuke spoke really wishing Sakura wasn't so small as to be completely hidden by her father. "I don't think I've ever had pancakes that are this inspired. Sakura said you work in a restaurant right?" he tried to recall.
And. He. Was. Not. Prepared.
"DID YOU HEAR THAT YOU TWO!"
He almost jumped at the shrill sound. "Hallelujah someone here actually appreciates my cooking! Yipee!"
"You hear that Kenji! Inspired! Inspired!"
Sasuke didn't flinch when he was kicked under the table and the beastly father demon hissed, "now look what you've done."
"Well Sasuke," was said with incredible cheer "I am a chef, not that these two appreciate my skills. Sakura hardly eats and Kenji hates my cooking."
There was an almighty pause and oh no. They wanted him to say something. He had sides to choose. The overjoyed mum he basically copped a feel from or the dreaded protector of 'baby angel'. It was a loss either way, getting caught up in marital trench warfare.
People didn't call him smooth for nothing.
"I keep telling Sakura she should eat more," Sasuke said smugly. Oh yeah, he was so the player. Daddy dearest and Mummy most darling all in one critical shot. Dad wanted her to eat more and a mum orientated cooking compliment to boot.
...An indignant huff from Sakura but that could so be smoothed over later.
He was rewarded with lovely pancakes and lovely silence. He was going to pull out all the moves to leave a good impression.
"So Sasuke, what is it you actually do?" broke the silence rudely. Sasuke turned to Mr. Haruno.
"I'm a stunt double."
Both parents blinked at him.
"A stunt double?" was processed slowly in disbelief.
"Yeah," Sasuke said trying to get Sakura's attention. Did they not approve of this occupation? They didn't talk about this…
"You can't be serious," Kenji said incredulously as conjured scenes of Sasuke on a movie set, sitting on a foldout chair floated into his head. The boy really had more of a desk job look (one where he would be miserable and depressed 9-5 because it was something tedious like spreadsheet programming) because that was justice. Sasuke didn't deserve anything glamorous. No way.
"He is daddy," Sakura sighed impatiently. It dawned on Sasuke she was in fact a daddy's girl by the whining tone and the way her father said 'of course sweetheart' caving to her immediately.
"Tell him about all the blockbuster movies you've been in Sasuke," Sakura said. She liked to brag about him but he preferred to keep to himself. It was awkward as he was gawked at. Why did she have to say blockbuster?
"We are waiting."
Sasuke swallowed. He was not used to parents or happy families for that matter. He finally got the sense to soldier on.
"Have you seen 'Silent Warrior'?"
Kenji responded immediately with a flat, "No."
Sasuke worked mainly on martial art movies, most b-grade straight to DVD pieces but 'Silent Warrior' was recent and in cinemas. Sakura saying blockbuster movies really only constituted one… and his biggest playing card just got shot down in flames.
He tried again hopefully with one of the movies he had really enjoyed.
"Umm… 'Mercury fall out'?"
"What a stupid name."
"But it is darl-"
"I can't believe you just said that!"
"Honey… don't be upset now."
"You're just jealous!"
"Apologize to Sasuke! Now!"
It was a scary bossy side of Sakura that was new to Sasuke. His girlfriend showing no fear in the face of Haruno Kenji. He couldn't be more thankful she was on his side.
"I've heard of it," Mrs. Haruno cut off impressed. It was actually an unconcious save so her husband wouldn't have to suffer in his apology to such a junior man. "A prominent indie movie with a lot of good reviews. I myself liked it. I guess you were stunting the leading role, you look very similar."
"Yes," Sasuke said in relief. He really didn't understand his relief… they were just parents. Maybe it was because he didn't have any.
"Now don't take this the wrong way…" Hana said slowly looking to Sakura for some kind of allowance "but you are much better looking than the lead actor. Why didn't they just cast you if you can do your own stunts?"
Sasuke was taken aback and Sakura piped in with an "Isn't he just mum. I keep telling him to go into acting."
There was a scrapping noise as Kenji's grinded his knife into his (no wait their) nice black marble counter top. The flux of jealousy he felt from his wife's compliment to the (ugly just ugly) pretty boy hit harder than expected.
"No," Sasuke said shaking his head rather gruffly. "I lack emotion. Besides I like the idea of one day getting my choreography in a film."
"Well maybe you should think of modeling as well then, because it is a waste of talent if you ask-"
Everyone looked to Kenji as he stood in a rage. He looked at Sasuke territorially. This was his wife and his daughter giving pity compliments and these were his women not this flashy Hollywood wanabee intruders. This was his family and Sasuke was going to have no part among them. Ever.
He was going to break his lovely daughter and this thing up. His angel could do much better and he was going to remove the annoying nagging envy that seemed to surface whenever his wife looked at the misfortunate excuse of a young man. He didn't like Sasuke. Period. The boy simply had to go. His announcement was a ground out;
"Who wants to go camping?"
Because out there in the wilderness there are plenty of good places to hide a body.