"I don't like your tone, yeah. What?"

Itachi gave him a tiny, mildly nervous smile from the living room doorway. Deidara frowned- the other had gone to fetch sugar half an hour before, so why was he now standing in the doorway like he'd done something wrong and was waiting to be scolded?

Itachi stepped aside and let Sasuke enter the room and quite suddenly, it all made sense in Deidara's mind.

"A word of warning," Itachi remarked, grabbing Sasuke's shoulder as he stepped forward. "No violence in my house. You two will get along, do you hear me?"

"Of course," Sasuke replied smoothly, his tone indicating he might just disregard that warning. Deidara met his eye cautiously, shrugging in defeat after a moment.

"What did I do?" He asked tiredly.

"You left," Sasuke responded easily, glancing over his shoulder as Itachi wisely left the room and closed the door behind him. Deidara felt like calling out to him not to go, but pride kept his lips sealed. He wasn't scared of a teenage kid!

Sasuke stepped towards him and he took the thought back rapidly- okay, yes he was, how did he manage to look so intimidating like that?!

"I left so your brother could get his head straight," he explained coolly, his voice betraying nothing as Sasuke sat beside him on the sofa. "I know you and I both agree the complex isn't working out for him, yeah."

"Agreed," Sasuke nodded, sighing heavily in defeat as he realised he had no more he could say on that particular matter. "If you hurt him I will hurt you back, hear me?"

"Loud and clear, yeah."

"Do you want my cinnamon cake recipe?"

Deidara's eyes widened, looking stunned. "Do I what?"

"Are you hard of hearing as well as stupid?" Sasuke snapped, rolling his eyes. "It was a simple question, yeah."

The sarcastic teasing of Deidara's speech riled him up immediately, causing the artist to clench his fists in annoyance. "I'm sure I can make cinnamon cake without your recipe."

"Itachi likes my recipe," Sasuke taunted. "Are you sure?"

Deidara faltered for a moment, turning his eyes to the floor. "Fine," he muttered. "I'll take it."

Sasuke smirked and reached into his pocket, pulling out the recipe he had written out already as though he had known the other would agree. "It's our little secret," he explained, his voice in a whisper. "Don't let even Itachi see this, alright?"

"Sure," Deidara agreed, taking the paper and giving the younger Uchiha the smallest of smiles.

"This is an acceptance of your relationship, just so you know," Sasuke explained, shrugging awkwardly as he looked at the floor, cheeks tinged just a little in embarrassment.

"Do you want a pat on the head for it?" Deidara responded airily, narrowing his eyes to the paper in front of him as he attempted to make the words out. "I don't know what we would have done without your consent, yeah." He paused in mock thought. "Oh yes, I do- we'd have done it anyway. But thanks for the thought."

"I'm going to physically put you back on that train myself, even if it means tying you to the damn seat," Sasuke responded, a murderous look in his eyes. It went by completely ignored by its recipient.

"Your handwriting it atrocious," Deidara replied instead, finally pulling the paper away from his gaze in frustration. "Am I supposed to understand this?"

Sasuke scowled at him and glanced over his shoulder. "What's wrong with it?" He argued sharply. "What can't you read?"

"Any of it!"

"Then you'd better add English to your college curriculum!"

From his post outside the door in the hallway, Itachi smothered a soft chuckle behind one hand. Perhaps the two would never be firm friends, but there seemed to be potential on the horizon. It all sounded reasonably light hearted, after all.

"My English is just fine, it isn't my fault your handwriting looks like a spider crawled on the page and died, yeah!"

"Do you want the recipe or not because I'm this close to just shredding it and smacking you-"

"Is that a threat, Uchiha?! I swear the only reason I don't rip your throat out is because I respect your brother-"

"The only reason I don't rip out yours is because I can't stand the idea of him moping about like he did when you left. Hear me- when you left you fucking jackass, I have no idea what he sees in you-"

Itachi breathed deeply and tilted his head to the wall, banging against it softly in frustration. Alright- maybe not.


Fun facts and trivia:

Well, they might not be fun. But you might be interested, so here we are :) So much changed in the editing and planning of this story that I wanted to include and didn't get the chance or opportunity to! Now I want to include them here, for completeness sake.

# Deidara and Sasuke were originally going to get along but after writing my other fic, 2fast2uchiha, I decided I wanted tension. It's a nod to their canon fight as well, since they clearly didn't get along there!

# Sasuke wasn't originally going to have such a large role but alas, I'm a brotherly Uchiha sibling fangirl at heart. That, and he's proved to be popular with you guys!

# The car Itachi drives is dark red. I have no idea what model, but something resembling a Fiesta would be close.

# Itachi changes the amount of sugar he puts in his coffee depending on his mood. When he's depressed it goes up to as many as three spoons, but when he's neutral it's one.

# Deidara's habit of not sleeping much is a result of always sleeping lightly at home, thanks to his circumstances.

# Itachi is studying law, which is 100% his father's influence. If asked he would liked to have studied geography.

# Sasuke and Naruto are dating only if you want them to. If you don't, they are just good friends. I was deliberately ambiguous enough for either path.

# Chapter 13's handcuff scene almost got cut completely. It survived by the smallest margin. I wondered if it was too over the top but hey, that's Deidara!

# The misspelling of reluctance made me want to scream every time I flicked past it editing. I hold a little of a complex in such areas myself it seems!

# For all Deidara's messing around with colleges, he never withdrew from his original one 'just in case' he decided to stay on his own accord. It worked out in his favour since he was able to return after a single missed day he finally got to blame on the poor metaphorical cat.

# The time passed from start to finish is somewhere in the region of nine months. I tried to hint the passing of time through weather changes (hot in the first chapter, stormy and cold in later ones), but it's possible I wrote it mostly cold throughout. I live in England after all, and our weather is a terrible gauge to write by!

# Chapter 14: Deidara only travelled one stop on the train before turning around. That's right, one stop. He spent the day in the town finding a new clock and the night in Itachi's tree. All of Itachi's problems would have been solved that day if he'd have simply looked up before leaving, but in retrospect Deidara is glad he didn't.


Since this was Itachi-centric, we didn't see Deidara's point of view the vast majority of the time. Below are a few hints- just ask if you'd like me to point them out in more detail ;)

# First small hint Deidara felt the same way: chapter 4. Yes, that early!

# First major hint: chapter 8

# From chapter 5, the big question! What was Deidara going to say?

"You're my first-"

Deidara cut himself off . . . Itachi waited patiently for him to continue but the moment passed.

His complete sentence? The last word he cut off was 'attachment' :)


Author's Note: Well, there we go! I feel a little empty now, and I'm sad it's over- this has fun for me, and I hope for you too. Thanks so much for your support- especially when I was having a tough time about halfway through- and also for reading this, adding to c2s and favourites, reviewing, or for even reading my terrible little notes here at the end (did you? Tell me if you did and if you found it interesting!) Thank you all so much. It means a lot to me to have people enjoy my work- so much more than words can say. Oh god, I'm getting sappy now!

If you have any prompts for these guys you'd like to see, do let me know! I'm almost completely decided on using this universe again now they're in a relationship but it would be a new fic. Any prompts or ideas you may have or things you want explored (Itachi's father's reaction is one that I definitely will) could end up in said fic, so feel free to PM or review them, and I will credit if used! I'm milling over where to take it if I do since as fun as it would be to just write about them kissing all day, I like plot. Cursed plot! Damn you! ;) Keep an eye on my profile if you're interested, I'll post there with details about when it's likely to start being posted. Either that or put me on alert (thanks in advance if you are interested enough to do either thing).

Thanks for joining me on the ride, it was great fun!