Disc: I do not own any of the characters, for they belong to the genius of Masashi Kishimoto.

A companion piece to my fic, Moonstruck.
Naruto and Hinata.


Sunbeams

39 - Wrong

Sum: Her best interest was at heart.

Hinata's skin had betrayed her. It had ripped itself open and shown all her mushy insides.

Not literally of course, but metaphorically enough so that she wanted to curl up into a hole.

She'd never felt so naked, standing there in front of Kiba Inuzuka and Shino Aburame as they bore their eyes into her body, plainly ogling her as though they really couldn't believe it. It was strange considering she was actually wearing a rather bulky piece of attire at the moment.

"It's...it's just..." She said pulling the edges of the offensive clothing closer around her. The shoulders drooped over her own and she hadn't bothered to stick her arms in the sleeves; rather, she was probably a bit too afraid for that. She was wearing an old t-shirt with a trademark swirl and a very familiar orange and black jacket.

Yes. Definitely. She was sure if she made any kind of movement to actually put on the jacket Kiba would have a conniption. His eyes were wide as he stared at her, as though he might just seize up at any moment.

Shino looked suspicious, and when Shino was obviously suspicious you knew there was a problem.

"Hinata..." Kiba started slowly, staring at the girl who's hair was fly-away, whose face was pink and whose eyes were almost as wide as his own. He raised his tan hand towards the seventeen year old girl with apprehension, as though he didn't really want to know the answer.

"Hinata...where is your shirt?" Hinata went apple red and stared at her feet.

"Well, you see, it got...and I...and Naruto and...well...it...was..." Shino felt himself sigh internally, but the rigid stance he held did not relent just because Hinata was embarrassed, on the contrary.

His whole mood seemed to darken because with her stuttering came the unpleasant feeling that she had done something with that boy.

Based on Kiba's finger still dangling unsurely in the air, eyes hazed and dull, he'd probably realize any second that the trigger to his basic instinct to fulfill his earlier promise of 'IF HE PUTS ONE GRUBBY FINGER ON HER PERSON I WILL SERIOUSLY EAT HIM. SERIOUSLY!' was about to be switched. Shino believed him; Naruto was as good as processed dog food. Seriously.

They were standing on the street outside of Naruto's apartment where they'd passed on their way to an older, less crowded training ground. Hinata had only recently been allowed out of the house, but it seemed every moment since her accident had been spent by a certain guilty and rather dizzy Naruto Uzumaki.

Shino wasn't saying he didn't like Naruto. He admired him, gave him his due credit, but Hinata was something else. This was Hinata. He supported her, loved her like a little sister and had silently vowed to be her constant caretaker after the shock at seeing her body so marred by blood he had to be told it was her.

Sure, by caretaker he meant unseen; a black dot on her clothing perhaps, but constant always, although this moment now was pure, shocking coincidence.

He'd sworn he'd never see Kiba look like that again. The boy he knew so well hadn't cried that way since they were young.

He'd never see her lie so motionless again. He'd never feel the lead in his stomach thinking that maybe, just maybe, he might lose his cool this time.

So, he'd said whatever equaled problem in Hinata's life would equal danger. He would eliminate the danger, although, even Shino had moments when his protective nature went a little too far. But then again, what was being a silent, shadowy, mysterious genius if you didn't have a little fun with being ignored? So it came as no surprise as Shino looked upon his best friend for a second time and gave him nothing but a small, simple push in the proper direction.

"Kiba." He said softly, and the poor, still horribly unsure, dog-boy looked his way pathetically.

"Yes?"

"She was in his apartment. Her shirt is still in his apartment." He turned his head slightly, "Do you understand what that entails, Kiba?" Kiba's brain seemed to turn slowly in his skull, the little mouse on the treadmill slowing to a swinging stop as it stared ahead, head cocked.

Shino rolled his eyes behind his sunglasses.

"What do you think Naruto was in Kiba, based on the information present?" He turned to the girl standing in front of the complex's beat-up doors watching them both with anxiety.

"His...apartment?" Kiba said and Shino blinked unseen.

"Who else was in his apartment, Kiba?"

"...Hinata?"

"Now, if Hinata's shirt was in the apartment, and Naruto was in the apartment, is the following statement true or false given your ninja tactics and logic at divulging information based on this given situation:"

Kiba looked perplexed and Shino took a breath, controlling his tone to a neutral drone that left Kiba looking puzzled. Shino had a real talent for confusing him when he wanted to.

"Naruto was in Hinata's shirt." The little mouth twitched and visibly it came out as a spasm of Kiba's right eye.

"Naruto...was in...Hinata's..." Shino watched in silent satisfaction as Kiba processed the mental image and with a final snap his face turned a dangerous shade of purple. Hinata, having watched the whole thing, instantly flung herself forward in distress.

"KIBA! SHINO STOP IT! THAT ISN'T TRUE! KIBA IT'S FALSE THE ANSWER IS FALSE!"

"Hey, Hina-chan, here's your shirt; you left it on my bed after you took it off!"

The following transaction was often displayed as legendary, and many poor bystanders said it took on the look of snapshots of a horrible trauma as Kiba Inuzuka leapt on the future Hokage of Konoha with enough ferocity it appeared he might in fact devour his face, given the chance.

What ensued left Hinata gaping, Naruto bruised and a bit worse-for-wear and a certain grape-juice stained shirt fluttering pitifully in the wind.

And only Shino smiled, knowing he'd been wrong.


Kiba and Shino are my favorite people to write for. I often think Shino likes to be a little conniving sometimes to get back at Naruto and Kiba can just be so adorably naiive until he finally gets it and then...well, he eats face. SERIOUSLY.

xoxo,
Spoons