Title: Love is a Given
Do you remember Sasuke and Hinata interacting in the series? Me 'neither.
G ( K ) – as long as you ignore the bleeped out word immediately below the summary, that is. I hope the kiddies in the house don't know how to fill in the blanks.
None that I didn't create myself.

Summary: TwoShot. Mild/one-sided SasuHina.

Now you get to find out what the f!#ing teddy bear thing is all about...(See previous works: "Sexy no Jutsu" and "Birthday Wishes")

Though I had this planned out long, long, LONG before I'd even started the group, this has turned out to be a contest entry for DateMe. (December – Birthday.)

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"NO!" Sasuke shouted, tugging hard against the grip his mother had on his arm. "I don't want to go to some stupid girl's birthday party!"

With a sharp tug of her own, his mother brought her youngest son back in line. It was obvious that no matter how much patience she reserved for her children, she was getting a little tired of a certain, single-syllabled word. Sasuke hadn't stopped saying it since he had been able to talk, after all. "I know, Sasuke-kun, but this is important for the family. Won't you be good and be nice to Daddy's friends? I'm sure he'll be very proud of you..."

There they were; the magic words. As if independent of even his own willful nature, Sasuke puffed out his chest and stood up straight, the picture of the perfect little gentleman.

Itachi – ever the perfect eldest brother – rolled his eyes at the youngest Uchiha's sudden attitude change, but said nothing out of turn. He, as Sasuke was constantly reminded, knew how to behave properly in public.

Well, Sasuke wasn't going to take the bait! No matter how much he wanted to stick his tongue out at his super-mean older brother, it would have to wait until they got home later that afternoon. Then, of course, he would let the stupidhead have it! In the meantime, Sasuke would be on his best behavior – no, he would be on Itachi's best behavior and show him that he could do it, too.

The patriarch of the family led the group, as every good clan leader should, through the vacant streets of Konoha toward...wherever it was they were going. Sasuke was kind of sketchy on the details, but he knew that they were missing an even bigger celebration – one for the whole village, not only some stuffy little princess – just to go to a birthday party for his father's friend's daughter.

They must have been very important friends for his father to insist upon going at all because even Sasuke knew how much the head of the Uchiha clan hated "playing politics" (whatever that was). In fact, if there had been a stronger word than "hate" to describe his father's dislike for the activity, Sasuke probably would have used that one instead.

Yeah, this man (oh, and his daughter, too) who they were going to see must have been one of his father's best friends. That was the only explanation for skipping the village party, which Sasuke vaguely understood to be something of a big deal.

Then again, considering how Sasuke had never seen the two men doing adult stuff together, he figured they couldn't have been that good of friends; must've been one of those weird friendships that his mother insisted he would understand better when he grew up. Adults were so weird and confusing when it came to playing together! Sasuke was beginning to lose faith in all that stuff his mother and the nanny were teaching him about "playing nicely" and "sharing." If it didn't work for grown ups, why would it work for him?

"What are you going to say to Hinata-chan when you meet her, Sasuke-kun?" his mother asked for, like, the millionth time!

"'Hello, Hinata-san. My name is Uchiha Sasuke. Happy Birthday,'" Sasuke repeated in a monotonous voice. No matter how special this friend was supposed to be and how important his job was, he couldn't help but feel that this was going to be a long, boring night. What were girls good for, anyway? To three-year-old Sasuke – and every other young male in his acquaintance – girls were officially "icky" and "stupid."

"Good," his mother approved, bending slightly to hand him a baby blue teddy bear with a shiny silk ribbon tied around its neck. "Don't forget to give her this, too."

Sasuke received the gift by grasping one of its paws. He then dropped it down by his side, barely keeping it hovering above the ground. If any of his friends saw him with such a girly-looking toy he'd never be able to convince them he was cool again (which was imperative when using the patented Uchiha glare against the people who annoyed him)!

"Don't drag it on the ground, Sasuke-kun!" the Uchiha matriarch scolded, prompting her youngest to hold the bear (a little) higher. It was a little too late, though; the tips of the bear's feet were already dusty from the debris on the sidewalk. "Oh, Sasuke-kun..."

Luckily for Sasuke, his mother's speech was cut to the quick when his father announced, "We're here."

The three tagalong members of the party raised their heads simultaneously to view the large, traditionally-styled mansion that rose only a little higher than the stone wall that they were standing beside. Immediately up ahead and to their left was an ornate iron-wrought gate that looked anything but welcoming even though it was flung wide open for visitors. Maybe it was because it was decorated with spikes at the top, perhaps the bars simply implied a prison setting, but Sasuke figured that the two white-eyed armed guards outside were what primarily contributed to this feeling.

"Uchiha Fugaku and family," his father announced to the guards, indicating the three waiting behind him. Sasuke, who had been just about to duck behind the skirt of his mother's kimono, straightened his back in honor of Fugaku's introduction.

The guards said nothing, but one nodded. Taking this as a positive signal, Fugaku proceeded through the gates, clearly expecting his family to follow behind.

Sasuke, taking his silent orders to heart, took the lead for his mother and brother as he followed his father's footsteps through the gate and into the courtyard. He peeked up at the guards as he passed them, still slightly frightened of their pupil-less eyes, but emboldened by Fugaku's effortless confidence. Besides, he reasoned to himself as they approached the house, who would dare strike against an Uchiha? Everybody knew they were the strongest shinobi in the village!

Once they'd cleared the entrance, Sasuke was struck by...nothing. The yard encased within the outer walls was the perfect example of a zen garden and, even though there was supposed to be a child's birthday party within, there was a distinct lack of decorations. A few paper lanterns with yellow flames and orange rings were strung up along the edges of the porch, but that was pretty much it. Oh, and the bridge over the koi pond was lit, but that was all. Remembering his last birthday, – filled to bursting with streamers and balloons and games and cake and presents – Sasuke actually felt a little sorry for the kid he was visiting (even if she was a girl).

As they climbed the few steps up to the wrap around porch, warmly glowing from the light the lanterns gave off, the shoji screen magically opened before them (well, a servant from inside had opened it, but Sasuke didn't notice until later). "Come in, please," a soft voice requested.

"Welcome to our home," a deeper voice greeted as they respectfully removed their shoes in the foyer. When Sasuke looked up, he saw another man just like the two out front, only scarier. His eyes were milky white and hard, kind of like moonstones, and his smile looked fake as he bowed to his father. He reminded the youngest Uchiha of an ice sculpture.

Nevertheless, Fugaku returned the bow and introduced his family one-by-one, ending with Sasuke. "And this is Sasuke, my youngest."

The ice-man bowed to each Uchiha in turn, bestowing them all with the same unconvincing smile. "Welcome."

Just as he was taught, Sasuke bowed right back, though much deeper than the ice-man. "I'm honored to meet you," he mumbled, just like rehearsed.

"And this," the ice-man announced, stepping a little to his left. "Is my daughter, Hinata."

From behind the ice-man's leg, a round little face appeared. It was pale white and full, just like the moon that was currently hovering over the house, and framed by the midnight darkness of her hair. Just below the perfectly trimmed bangs, a pair of eyes like the ice-man's watched him through the thickest lashes he'd ever seen. They weren't scary at all, though, not like the stern man that had greeted his family at the door. Instead of hard and cold, they were soft and melty, kind of like a vanilla ice cream cone in the middle of July.

"Sasuke-kun," his mother called, nudging him lightly with her hand. "Give Hinata-chan your gift."

Startled, the boy jumped. He'd been staring so intently at the little face that he'd completely forgotten his rehearsed manners. Flinging the baby blue teddy bear out in front of him with both hands, the blushing boy stammered, "H-Hello, Hinata-san. M-My name is Uchiha Sasuke. Happy B-B-Birthday

"Thank you," she said quietly, accepting the bear with lightly trembling hands and clutching it to her chest. From up above, her father frowned disapprovingly.

"Hinata," the ice-man said, calling the girl's attention to himself. Why don't you take your...toy to your room and take young Sasuke-kun with you." What he said should have been a question, but didn't really sound like it.

"W-Would you like to go p-p-play?" Hinata suggested as prompted, twiddling her fingers shyly. When she tentatively turned her moon-like orbs toward him, Sasuke felt his little face begin to burn.


Author's Notes: I think I originally intended this to be longer, but...eh. I'm feeling exceptionally lazy this month. I think it's because I've been so busy with the end of my semester and the holidays that I want to slow down a bit. Thus, effort isn't my strong suit right now...I'll try harder another time, promise. In fact, I might even extend this story later by adding a second part in Hinata's POV (ie, the details that are vaguely described in "Stuck on You").

Anyway...this fic is also dedicated to juliagulia1017, who inspired this entire series. Haven't spoken to her in awhile, but she's a real sweetie and a funny fic writer n.n Happy Holidays, Jules!

. ( . Ms Videl Son . ) .

Love can be black and white. SasuHina.