"Hai, sensei?" Hinata responded softly. She was in math, her least favorite class. IT felt even longer than her other classes, for the girls in her class scoff at her and make fun of her, for all the class to hear. And…

Naruto was in this class.

"Come and do this problem on the board!" her teacher boomed in a demanding voice. Did I mention that the math teacher was loud, strict, mean, controlling, and a total ass?

Of course, that made it all the worse.

Her ragged tennis shoes barely made a sound on the linoleum as she walked up to the board. The problem written there was 2n+4=5n-14.

Well, this is easy enough, thought Hinata.

The 2n was positive, so it was subtracted from the 5n, which equaled 3n. The marker squeaked as she wrote that down. That cancelled out 2n, so the equation was left as

4=3n-14. Because 14 was being subtracted from 3n, Hinata added the 14 to the four on the left side, which turned out to be 18=3n. Divide 18 by 3, and you get six. After writing out her work on the board, she wrote in large letters N=6, and circled it. Hinata looked up hopefully at the teacher.

He nodded. "Correct!" he barked. "Now, back to your seat!"

Hinata shuffled back to her seat. Just because it was her least favorite subject didn't mean she wasn't good at it.

Two of the most popular girls in school sat right behind her. They threw her scandalized looks before whispering insults about her.

"Oh my god, she is, like, a total freaking NERD!" One of them scoffed.

"Never mind that, look at her shoes! They're hideous!" The other whispered loudly, glaring at Hinata's old, scuffed-up shoes.

Pretending not to notice them, she stared up at the teacher, although not really listening to a word he was saying.

Although she wouldn't show it, Hinata was deeply hurt. She glanced sideways at Naruto, sitting across the aisle from her in all his happy, blonde glory. His chair was tilted back on two legs, and he was grinning at the teacher, even though the teacher hated him.

Hinata had had a crush on him ever since he said hi to her in kindergarten. How could anyone not like him, with his clear blue eyes, cute whisker marks, and perfectly spiked hair? This was someone who you would expect to be with the popular crowd, but instead was as much as an outcast as Hinata.

She envied him. Even though he was shunned, he was boisterous, funny, outgoing, and kind. Naruto was very much different from Hinata, who had low self-esteem, few friends, and a shy personality.

Undoubtedly feeling her eyes on him, he glanced sideways and caught her looking at him. Surprise showed on his face and a grin slid across his fox-like face. He raised his hand and waved at her.

Heat spreading through her cheeks, she gave a tentative smile and a little wave in return. Then she quickly turned back to the front, embarrassed at being caught staring.

Unfortunately, the girls behind her noticed this. They immediately sprung into conversation.

"Yeah, how perfect! The two little misfits pairing up! No wait, never mind! He's too GOOD for that little bitch!" one of them said in an unnecessarily loud voice.

The other one nodded in agreement. "You're right! That goddamn little math nerd doesn't deserve a demented toad!"

"Quiet in the back there, ladies!" the math teacher boomed. "Or else I'll have to write you up."

They fell silent immediately. Hinata felt like she was about to cry.

Wishing the ground would open up and swallow her, she sank as low as she could in her chair.

Naruto heard this conversation between the two girls, and was outraged. He saw when Hinata sank into her chair and squeezed her eyes shut. As he watched, a few tears escaped and fell onto her lavender hoodie.

Just when it was all he could do to keep from strangling the two girls, the bell rang. Hinata scooped up her stuff and swept quietly out of the room.

Naruto followed her at a fast pace, determined to somehow cheer her up. They both had Art next; maybe he would get an opportunity to do something then.

Hinata entered the Art room and headed towards her usual seat in the corner. Each table could seat six people, and Hinata was the only person who sat at this one.

The Art teacher closed the door behind the flood of students. She had black hair that was cropped short, and she was unusually small for a teacher. Even tiny little Hinata still had a few inches on her.

"Alright, class!" she called out, clapping her hands to draw the class's attention. "This semester we will be starting our pottery and clay unit. This will include pot making, sculpting, and towards the end of the unit, you will be making a landscape out of play dough. Today, however, you will just be getting the feel of things. Just sculpt anything you want to. Get started!"

There was the usual flurry of movement as people began chatting and grabbing supplies. Hinata seized a box of multicolored clay, and popped back into her seat.

She looked at the contents of the box. It was brand new, all the colors still in their neat little squares. Hinata grabbed a hunk of clay and started sculpting.

Naruto watched her deft fingers, and a lavender bunny was quickly starting to form out of the indistinct lump. In his opinion, however, she was making the bunny's expression quite depressed, and when she started making the body, it looked as though the rabbit was trying not to be seen, hunched over and looking over its shoulder glumly.

He had not realized his eyes were watering until a tear made its way down his face. Wiping it away quickly, he looked at the box of clay he had, trying to think of what to sculpt. An idea suddenly sprang into his head, and he began to sculpt…

45 minutes later, and Hinata was done with her rabbit. It wasn't exactly an awesome sculpture, but she was rather pleased with it. Her mood was starting to improve when she saw the two girls from her math class. Despair washed back over her, and the bell rang. Hinata got up to return her remaining clay to the display cabinet.

Naruto watched her get up. He had to act fast. Heart pumping loudly, he strode over to her table and placed his sculpture atop her books. Then he took his stuff and headed out quickly.

Hinata walked back to her table. She was surprised to see a statue that wasn't own sitting on her table.

Gently, she picked it up and looked at it.

It was a sleeping fox. The fox was very realistic looking, with whiskers and tiny little paws. Snuggled up beside it was a lavender bunny, also asleep. A fox's paw was curled comfortingly around the rabbit.

Thinking someone might have put his or her name on the bottom, she flipped it over. On the underside, there was a heart.

Inside the heart were the letters UN+HH 4ever.


A/N-done! Ok, not sure if I did the math problem right. Could someone check it and let me know, please? Anyway…… REVIEW!