AN: This is a one shot piece inspired both by the holidays and by a short piece I read on DeviantArt. I tried to keep the holidays generic because religion in Konoha isn't something a know a great deal about. ;) Thank you for reading, and enjoy!
It was time for the annual Winter Festival in Konoha. It was a collection of multiple celebrations that over the years had been clumped together and termed the Winter Festival. For the younger attendees is was about the excitement of the Day of Giving which was shortly after the conclusion of the festival. It was with barely suppressed excitement and anticipation that the children grouped together, discussing what they hoped to wake to find waiting for them on the morning of the Day of Giving. Some of the slightly older children, already showing signs of growing to adulthood would interject from time to time about some wonderful present they were clever enough to come up with for some beloved friend or relative. To the older kids, it was just as much about the giving as it was about the receiving. For the adults, the festival was mostly for the kids, but they took advantage of the opportunity to mingle with friends they rarely saw. Especially among the ninjas. This was the only time of the year that ninjas weren't given assignments so that they could gather at the heart of the village with everyone else.
For one ninja, the sight of all those families and friends happily spending time together was enough to keep him away from the festival every year. Sasuke hadn't had a family since he was very young. His attitude tended to keep most people at bay so that he didn't really have any friends either. Sure, he had his old teammates from his genin days. But, Team 7 had split up long ago, now all jounin. Naruto even had his own team to train now. Just the thought of that knucklehead training young ninja was enough to make Sasuke wince. The Hokage had confidence in him, so Sasuke left it up to her and just kept his mouth shut. He didn't see Naruto as much since he'd started with his young team back in the spring, but Sakura still came by to see him when their schedules allowed. She was so busy with her training under the Fifth Hokage to be a medical ninja, that even those visits were becoming fewer and fewer. This was fine with Sasuke. The older he and Sakura got, the less comfortable he was with her. It was easy enough to ignore the crush she had on him when they were kids, but they weren't kids anymore, and her interest made him uncomfortable. He didn't know how to tell her that he just didn't see her in that way. Not without hurting her. Whether he was willing to admit it out loud or not, Sasuke didn't want to hurt Sakura. Her, Naruto and Kakashi were the closest thing Sasuke had ever had to friends and family since his family was butchered all those years ago.
Wandering how through the booths that crowded the streets around the heart of the village, Sasuke felt his mind slip back to Sakura's last visit. He'd come so close to telling her then how he felt. But, at the last moment, he decided against saying anything. The look in her eyes, so bright and happy, and so completely Sakura, was something Sasuke couldn't bring himself to dim. He did nothing to encourage her feelings, but he did nothing to stop her either He'd noticed that she'd seemed to be slowly changing, becoming less forward with her attentions, but he'd just assumed she was picking up the little hints he was giving that he truly wasn't interested. But, that last visit she seemed almost back to the way she'd been when they were both still children, training to become ninjas. He'd been so caught off guard by the sudden, unexpected change in Sakura that she'd easily tricked him in to coming to the festival.
Sighing, Sasuke looks around the snow covered booths and the rosy cheeked people that surrounded the booths, all smiling and happy. Frowning, Sasuke keeps moving through the crowds, wondering where Sakura was. He was supposed to meet her, but she'd yet to show up. He'd run into Naruto and his young team, talking with Hinata and her team once, but neither of them had seen Sakura. He'd spotted Shizune in the distance once and started to move through the crowd to see if she knew where Sakura was, but had decided against it. If Sakura didn't show up, he didn't think he'd have to stay. He had come at her insistence after all, and if she wasn't here to see him, then she'd now know that he'd come and left early. Still, he kept wandering the crowds looking for her.
As the day crept toward darkness and the fireworks display set for that evening, Sasuke ran into more and more people he knew, but never Sakura. Stopping under an arch, decorated for the festival, Sasuke peers around him at the crowd that was settling in for the fireworks display that was set to begin soon. Leaning to the side, Sasuke frowned to himself, wondering where Sakura could be. It wasn't like her to not show up and not send word if something came up. Sakura was meticulous about keeping her word and being on time for everything. Too many years working with the chronically late Kakashi had taught all three of the former Team 7 that habit. He didn't think there was anything to worry about, because if something bad had happened to Sakura, he'd have heard about it. He'd seen Shizune and the Hokage as well, and he didn't think either of them would be out and about, enjoying the festival is something were wrong with Sakura.
Hearing boisterous laughter behind him, Sasuke glances back over his shoulder just as Guy came strolling through the crowd with his former favorite pupil at his side. Lee peered at his former Sensei, listening intently to everything he said, a look of pure adoration on his face. There was something in that look that tugged at Sasuke's heart and made an unexpected heat creep up his cheeks. Shaking his head, he turns his attention to the crowd around him, trying not to think about Guy and Lee and what may or may not be happening between the two men. Unconsciously, Sasuke's own thoughts turn to his former Sensei. He hadn't seen the man in months, but thought nothing of it. Ninjas led very busy lives, it wasn't unusual to go for long periods of time without seeing one another. Still, Sasuke felt a deep ache beginning in his chest, and he found himself searching the crowd a little more closely now. Not for Sakura, but for Kakashi. When he realizes what he's doing, Sasuke frowns and hunches his shoulders, staring down at the snow covered ground in front of him, trying not to think too deeply about what he'd been feeling.
Sasuke is so busy trying not to think, he doesn't notice when the twilight becomes full dark. The sputtering of lanterns replacing the thin light of the sun going down. Lifting his head at last, he glances around, blinking at the amount of time that had passed. Feeling a bit embarrassed about how he'd stood out in the open, unaware of anything around him. That's certainly not the way a jounin should be acting. Frowning, he glances around the crowd and thinks he catches sight of Sakura and Kakashi standing a short distance away, Sakura pointing in his direction and saying something while Kakashi watched him. Standing up straight to get a better look, Sasuke strains to see them, but can see only shadows. Frowning, he slumps back against the wooden post of the archway he stood under, wondering if he'd actually seen them, or if it had just been his mind showing him what he wanted to see.
Sighing, Sasuke crosses his arms over his chest and stares down at the snow covered ground once again. When most of the lanterns are turned off, Sasuke glances around, seeing that he was standing in a very faint pool of light under the arch now. most of the rest of the village was in the dark, and everyone's face was turned up to the sky. Sasuke glances up just as the first sparkling burst of color lights up the night sky overhead. Sasuke watches the display for a few minutes, then hunches his shoulders and turns his gaze back down to the snow in front of him, trying to decide if he should go look for Sakura, or if he should just go home. If he'd truly seen her before, he should try to find her. Of course, if he'd actually seen her, then she knew where he was, and she wasn't coming to see him, so maybe she'd changed her mind about wanting to spend time with him at the festival. Frowning, Sasuke stands up and starts to turn toward home when someone steps up behind him and places a hand on his shoulder.
Sasuke turns to see who was behind him, but was caught up in a whirl of motion as the hand on his shoulder spun him around and pulled him slightly forward, catching him off guard. Sasuke lifts his hands to brace himself against the chest of the man that had turned him around so quickly. It was clearly a man's chest under his hands, but that was all he knew before he felt the unexpected warmth of lips pressed against his. Too stunned to react, Sasuke just stands, letting himself being kissed. Just as he starts to relax against the chest of the man kissing him, the other man pulls back. Dazed and panting slightly, Sasuke turns his head to look up at the person that had kissed him, but a trick of light and shadows hid his face from Sasuke's view. Sasuke starts to take a step back, wanting to lure the other man into the faint light that surrounded the decorated archway, but is stopped by a hand on his shoulder.
Leaning in, the man whispers in Sasuke's ear, too low for Sasuke to be able to place his voice quickly. "Look up, Sasuke."
Rather than thinking of who it was that had just kissed him, Sasuke looks up as he was told and sees that he'd been standing under a bunch of Mistletoe. He'd been so preoccupied, he hadn't noticed where he was standing. This was one of the archways sets up for shy young lovers to lure in the one they loved so they could share that first kiss without needing to ask for it. Feeling heat burning up his face, Sasuke lowers his gaze to the man in front of him just as he steps forward, moving Sasuke back far enough so that he was no longer standing under the Mistletoe. Distracted by embarrassment, it takes Sasuke a moment to realize that the one who'd kissed him was now not only standing in the soft light, fully visible to him now, but he was also the one standing under the Mistletoe now.
Kakashi smiles and pulls Sasuke forward, but makes no move to kiss him again. Sasuke is so stunned, his mind whirls with thoughts that threaten to leave him completely senseless. Shaking his head, Sasuke stares up at Kakashi, smiling down at him. He wonders briefly if he'd dreamed this whole encounter. It would explain how he'd been able to move about the village so senselessly all day long, totally unlike himself. Reaching up his hands, he places them on Kakashi's chest again, and he knows, this isn't a dream. Lowering his gaze, Sasuke looks at his hands resting on Kakashi's chest. Slowly, he slides his hands upwards until they rest on Kakashi's shoulders. Leaning in, Sasuke presses his lips to Kakashi's, tentatively at first, then with more confidence, sliding his arms around the older man's neck as he kisses him. Feeling Kakashi's lips move against his as he kisses him back, Sasuke relaxes into his former sensei's chest, enjoying the warmth of that kiss.
As they kiss, Sasuke's mind clears and things begin to click into place for him. He'd known since he was in his mid-teens that the reason he didn't share Sakura's interest was that he was gay, but he'd never sought to find love with anyone else. He'd been attracted to Kakashi from the moment they first met when Team 7 was formed. It was thoughts of his Sensei that kept Sasuke from ever pursuing a relationship with anyone else. He never consciously thought about it, but deep in his heart he always knew that the reason he didn't look for love was because he wanted Kakashi to love him. He'd been waiting for Kakashi, unconsciously. The only thing Sasuke didn't know was how Sakura figured it out. Drawing back from the kiss after several minutes, Sasuke looks into Kakashi's eyes, feeling as if he were floating, a blissful happiness he'd never know warming him.
"That Day of Giving is coming up soon, Sasuke. I was thinking on what I should get for you, but I couldn't decide what to get."
Sasuke smiles at Kakashi and leans a little closer, whispering against his lips, "That's ok, you've already given me what I wanted the most."
Kakashi smiles and whispers back, "Good, because this is exactly what I wanted too," before he closes that last breath of distance between their lips, kissing Sasuke again.