Title: Learning to Love

Summary: Itachi is the Uchiha prodigy, and Temari is basically a warrior princess. Whoop dee doo. That doesn't mean they have to marry each other! But with two forceful fathers and a signed contract, their destinies are kaput. ItachiTemari.

Author: Bibliophile Nincompoop


True love comes quietly, without banners or flashing lights. If you hear bells, get your ears checked.

~Erich Segal


Chapter 1: Hello

"Son, I wish you'd dress more formally for this special occasion. You only graduate from the Ninja Academy once." Mikoto smiled at her son, propping her barely two year old on her hip. "Sasuke ask your brother, say please."

The infant smiled, his innocent obsidian eyes went big with excitment at the sight of his older brother, "Peas."

The Uchiha prodigy sighed in defeat, his adorable little brother was his one weakness. "Fine. I'll put on the suit." He walked gloomily up the stairs.

"Hurry honey, the ceremony starts in an hour!" The slim woman called up the stairs. "We are meeting your father there!"

The seven year old, walked down the stairs with fluid grace. He adorning a low pony-tail, one which his father had tried to convince his son to cut, and crisp black tuxedo. "I feel like I'm going to a funeral, no one else in my class is going to be wearing one."

"Well like your father always tells you, your..."

"Your not like everyone else. I know." The prodigy interjected.

The woman smiled lovingly at her son, "Plus we are going to meet the Kazekage and his children afterwards, they traveled all this way just to meet you, and talk to your father."

Big whoop. Many of nobles all over the world had come so see him, he felt like an exotic zoo animal on display. Itachi groaned as his mother latched onto his hand with her own and lead them off the Uchiha grounds.

A group of girls gushed at the sight of him, squealing in delight and pointing in his direction, but didn't dare come near though. They never came near him because they were to nervous or to scared, either way he was happy they kept their distance. Itachi had very little friends, ok to be truthful, excluding his brother, he had no friends. Because of all the girls going crazy at the sight of him, many of his male classmates instantly hated him. And the others disliked him because he was better than them. Not that Itachi rubbed it in their faces, he'd never do that. But his academy teacher made it a daily ritual. Itachi is five years younger than all of you and five times better! And other such comments. At first it made him slightly bashful, then it just got flat out annoying. It wasn't his fault, he didn't ask for this. He just wanted to be a regular kid.

They stepped into the auditorium of the academy, Itachi spotted his father immediately, who was talking to another man dressed in a white robe.

"Mom." He said pointing in his father's postion as she still scanned the crowd. She smiled and dragged him over there.

"Hey there's my boy!" Fugaku said aloud, rubbing the top of Itachi's head. The slim woman grunted and motioned her head towards the boy on her hip, "Oh, and Sasuke."

Itachi loved his father, just as any young boy did. But what his father did to Sasuke was disgusting, distasteful, but mostly unforgivable.

Before his father could introduce him to the other man, the Hokage appeared on the stage. Konoha's new Hokage was originally going to be Jiraya the toad sannin, but he refused. So they brought back Tsunade, even though she was kicking and screaming. "I need all graduates to come up onto the stage."

Itachi politely bowed and got onto the stage with his peers. The prodigy couldn't help but smile when he saw that all the other boys mothers' had made them dress up too, much to all their disdain. Most of the girls, which there weren't many, were wearing fancy dresses that made them look more like pageant queens than ninjas.

The academy teachers came up onto the stage and called off their student one by one, giving them there new headband and certificate. Please don't let them make a big deal, please don't make a big deal...

"Last but not least," an older teacher beamed. Dang it. "a student who excelled much farther than his older classmates, being first in his class, and fully living up to his title as the Uchiha prodigy. Itachi Uchiha."

Itachi sighed as the other students glared at him. He went over and accepted both of the items, and returned back into his place in line. The crowd erupted in applause, as all the students made their way off the stage. He was quickly swept away by his parents and out into the streets. The streets were cold, as the wind howled into their faces. Mostly everyone in town was at the ceremony, so there were but a few on the roads or in the shops.

"Where are we going?" He asked.

"To my room at the embassy." The Kazekage smiled forcefully. His smile was fake, only the keen eye could tell it though. His father didn't seem to notice, surprising for being chief of police. He's supposed to point out that kind of thing, sort of like a hunting hound to a hiding pheasant.

"Son this is the Kazekage from Suna." Fugaku said as he opened the doors to the extremely large building.

"Pleasure to meet you sir. I am Itachi Uchiha." He said with a bow.

The Kazekage gave his phony smile again, "Pleasure is all mine."

They filed into the elevator and went to the top floor, of course the ruler of a distant country gets the penthouse. The doors opened into a one way hallway and at the end was one open door. Which they heard loud female yelling.

The Sunan man sighed, adding a sarcastic, "My sweet mild tempered daughter."

"Keep your hands off my brother you big buffoon!" Came the angered delicate voice, Itachi wanted to see this girl. "Men I swear."

Mikoto covered her mouth as she giggled. The group entered to see two little boys on the floor playing, and a young girl shooing a bodyguard away from the boys.

"Temari." The Kazekage's deep voice boomed in the room. The young girl spun on her heels gaping at her father, noticing the company she bowed politely. He turned to the Uchihas and motioned to the pristine white couches, "Please sit. Temari get the boys."

Itachi sat between his parents, but was unable to take his eyes off of the blonde girl. She was strange, well at least different. Her golden hair was pulled up into four pig tails, her skin much tanner than most of the people he knew, and rather than a cute dress like most girls would wear, she wore a white kimono embroidered with silver butterflies with a red obi around her small waist. She's kind of cute.

Temari returned holding a redhead in one arm, and a brunette latched onto her other arm. All these children looked so different, too different to be siblings.

"These are my children Gaara," he directed to the redhead, "Kankuro," he pointed to the brunette, "And of course you know Temari." The blonde blushed at the comment and let her brothers go back to playing while she sat beside her robed father. Sasuke wiggled from his mothers grasp and went and played with blocks with Gaara.

"Temari this is Itachi, my son." Fugaku directed her attention. Itachi went wide eyed, when she looked at him.

"Hi." The young boy said fighting the urge to stare at the girl.

"Hello." Her voice was soft but strong. Temari's eyebrows knitted together as she looked at Itachi hard. She stood up and walked in front of him looking at his face. "Are you tired?"

"Wha what?" Itachi studdered, his face felt so hot! What is this girl doing?!

"Temari." The robed man scolded. "Where are your manners? That's rude."

The blonde stuck her face nearly centimeters in front of his with a huge grin on her round little face, "You don't mind, do you Itachi-kun?" He shook his head quickly, his face still getting hotter. "See father, he doesn't mind. Come on Itachi-kun come play with me."

Before the prodigy realized what was happening, the small girl grabbed him by the wrist and yanked him along with her over to where her brothers were playing.

"I apologize for my daughter, she is quite high strung surprisingly." The Kazekage took off his large head dressing.

"I've never seen my son so bashfull in his entire life." The ebony haired woman smiled gracefully.

Both fathers looked at the two children talking, well Temari was more than Itachi. But he was soaking it up like a sponge, smiling. Fugaku had only seen his son smile like that very few times. At the same time the Kazekage looked at his independent daughter who had that rare and beautiful twinkle in her eyes, the one she lost when her mother died. The light bulbs flashed above their heads as they turned to stare at each other, they grinned in agreement.

"Oh no what are you thinking?" Mikoto asked worriedly at her husband.

"Sorry about taking you away like that." The five year old smiled. She didn't speak her age, she spoke as if she were older just like Itachi.

The ebony haired boy shook his head, "No thank you, I don't like my father showing me off anyways."

Temari nodded, "Me too. Umm I don't really know how to play any games, I'm not allowed to at home."

"Me too." Itachi sighed.

"So are you tired? You have little lines on your face, you can hardly tell, they are so ity bitty, but I can see them. My littlest brother Gaara is what the doctor calls an insomniac, that means he has a hard time sleeping. That's why his eyes have those light rings around them. My other brother sleeps like a fat cat, you could kick him as hard as you can and he wouldn't wake up. Trust me I've tried. But if you put hot food in front of his face and he'll wake up just like that." She snapped her fingers. Itachi smiled, listening to her rant on and on. Hardly anyone talked to him, it was nice. "Oh look at me talking faster than twister. What about you Itachi-kun?"

"I uh." Itachi couldn't think of a single thing to say to this girl. So he blurted out the first thing that came to mind. "My favorite color is red."

Temari smiled from ear to ear, and Itachi's little heart fluttered. "That's my second favorite color! But only dark red or maroon, anything else is blah. I don't really like it. But my favorite color is purple. Well all shades of purple, especially light purple, like on those pretty but messy trees you have here Konoha. In Suna we don't have any pretty flowers or trees like you do. But I also like dark purples, like royal purple that you see on fat old queen ladies wearing. Oh oh and in between purples. I just like purple."

She giggled, and couldn't help but to laugh too. "Why do you have such long hair? Everyone at home has short hair."

Itachi grabbed his low pony-tail, "I guess I just like it. Do you?"

Temari scrunched up her face in thought, "Yeah, I like it. But I'm jealous, your hair is longer than mine!"

"So when she turns eighteen?" The Uchiha clan leader triumphantly smiled.

The Kazekage nodded, "Yes. I'll bring her every couple years, whenever my schedule permits it."

"Great I'll get the paperwork tomorrow." Fugaku shook hands with the foreigner. But his wife beside him frowned, shaking her head in hopelessness.

I hope he learns to love her.

Mikoto yawned and looked at her sons, Sasuke was asleep beside the two other Sunan boys, and Itachi was still listening to Temari jabber away. It had been the most she had ever seen Itachi smile, it did her soul wonders to see him happy. Her son had been born into a title he didn't want, and was cursed by it. But the light was finally breaking through. "Honey, it's very late, we should take the boys home."

The Uchiha elder nodded, shaking hands with the Kazekage again, "It was great meeting you and your family."

"Pleasure is all mine, I assure you." The robed man saw them to the door.

Temari and Itachi had run to the elevator first, the flaxen haired boy took her hand in his and almost desperately asked, "Will I see you tomorrow?"

"I am leaving tomorrow." Temari said sadly, but perked up. "We leave at two in the afternoon, after my father's meeting with the Hokage. If you meet me before.."

"Yes." Itachi said a little to quickly. "Eleven, meet me outside the building."

"Ok." She smiled and hugged him. The boy didn't know how to respond, he was in shock, but his arms moved on their own accord wrapping around her lithe frame. "I'll see you tomorrow."

The adults chuckled at the two. Puppy love.

They said their goodbyes and the Uchihas disappeared down the in the metal contraption. Temari was soaring, her body felt as light as a feather riding the winds. For the first time since that fateful day, she skipped and danced around. She scooped up Kankuro's sleeping body, mentally wishing she went for the lighter brother instead, and danced with him around the room. The blonde laid her brother in the bed the three were sharing. And went to twirl with the other, the light sleeper immediately woke up after his sister picking him up, but went into a fit of giggles as soon as as she twirled holding him close to her chest.

"My little ballerina go to bed." Her father demanded in a soft voice, she stopped in shock. The man hadn't referred to her by that in years, let alone call her by an endearing name by any fashion. This day was just getting better and better.

"Yes.. dad." She ran into her room and laid the little redhead between her and the other snoring boy. "Goodnight boys."

The next morning Itachi woke up at seven, the blonde beauty still stitched into his thoughts. He went through his morning routine as usual, though he was up two hours earlier than usual. He even let his mom sleep in and took care of Sasuke putting him in his high chair and feeding him some cheerios. After the slim woman walked down the stairs, Itachi ran up to take a quick shower, and even tried a squirt of his father's cologne. It smelt like old man. Why did it smell so much better on his father?

He looked at the clock on the kitchen wall, It's only nine-thirty.

"Mom I'll be back later." The prodigy announced before closing the front door.

"Wait!" Mokoto called after him but he was already running down the street, she gave a great big huff but chuckled, "Boys."

When Itachi reached the embassy he was still an hour early. "I am going to have to wait for.."

"Itachi!" He looked towards the front door. Temari was wearing another kimono, this one purple but the same red obi tied around her waist. Her two favorite colors, which were becoming Itachi's two favorite colors. Her golden hair was strung up in their usual four pig tails, and her turquoise eyes danced with giddiness. "Did you wake up early too?"

He nodded, and smiled as she looked at him and blushed. "Want to go get a ice cream?"

Temari's face scrunched up, something she obviously did often, "What's ice cream?"

Itachi wasn't often surprised, but this nearly shocked him right out of his shoes. His jaw opened and closed his words lost completely, so he sufficed with snatching her by her slender wrist and pulled her off into the midst of town.

They got to the tiny little hole in the wall shop in record time even though this was the busiest time of the day, one because they are small children who have the ability of squeezing into tight spaces, two because he is Itachi Uchiha everyone parts like the red sea for him, and three... because he had a short cut that bypassed all traffic.

Once inside, Itachi signaled to the shop owner, who came over with a great smile on his face. "What can I do for my best customer, and his lady friend."

Itachi cleared his throat at the last comment, "I am here for the same reason I was last time, the initiation."

"My goodness, how old are you young lady?" The shopkeeper looked at her astonished.

"I am five turning six very soon." She turned to her companion, "What is so special about this ice cream?"

"You'll see." Itachi said with a little smirk on his face.

The man in white returned with cone with ice cream on it, accompanied by a platter of circular balls of what looked to be rice.

"Try the cone first." Itachi watched amusingly.

"What do I do with it? Bite it? Lick it?" She stared at swirly brown and white that had started to melt slightly.

The flaxen haired youth grabbed her a napkin and put it around the cone, "Lick around it, so it doesn't melt on your hand."

Temari hesitantly did so, "It's cold."

The man behind the counter laughed, "It's supposed to be."

"We don't have this ice cream in Suna, we have a hard time keeping the freezers cold." She licked it again and warily took a bite from the top, holding it in her mouth. "It tastes like chocolate and vanilla."

"Those are the flavors. There are many more different flavors." Itachi answered. Then saw her take large bite from the ice cream, "Wait Temari, there's something I should tell you..."

The blonde quickly put her hand to her forehead, "Oh my brain is cold, ow, did you poison me?"

Itachi couldn't help but to laugh, the last time he was here Sasuke did the exact same thing with less words. "You have to eat it slowly or the cold will go to your head."

"It tastes good, but ow." She kept her hand to her forehead. "What is that one?"

The prodigy picked up the strange circular ball with his fore-finger and thumb, "This is called Mochi ice cream. It's basically ice cream wrapped in rice flour."

The Sunan girl followed suit and grabbed the strange Mochi ice cream and took a bite. "It's kind of squishy, but it's really good. Is that green tea?"

The owner nodded, "Yes it is young lady."

"I like it much more than other ice cream that froze my brain." Temari smiled.

"It's called a brain freeze." Itachi sighed, "I've had many in my day."

The blonde scowled at him, "You're only seven, you're not old enough to say things like that. Trust me, my father says that a lot, and his stories are from when humans still looked like monkeys."

Itachi held in his laughter, but the shopkeeper busted his gut laughing, "My you are an interesting little girl."

"Thank you." She smiled, showing off her pearly whites. "Itachi-kun aren't you going to have some, you can have the rest of my cone, or we can share."

"No, you eat it." He said sheepishly.

But being Temari, she stuck the ice cream cone directly in front of his face, "Eat some, I don't have cooties. Just don't ask Kankuro if I do... he lies a lot."

Within the following two hours Temari had tried every flavor of ice cream in the entire shop. And Itachi had to hand it to her, she had good tastes, well sometimes. She hated anything too sweet so all the cotton candy and bubblegum and such flavors. The blonde claimed that coffee flavor made her feel older. Vanilla was simple but good. Strawberry was an ugly color but tasted pretty good. Chocolate was amazing by all means necessary, what would you expect from a girl? She extremely liked peanut butter for some reason or another, and when she found that it was mixed with chocolate she was in heaven.

"Hey kids here's your bill, and its almost one-thirty, so you," he pointed at Itachi with a great big grin, "better get your young lady back to her father safely."

Temari quickly swiped the bill looking over it as if she were an adult, and pulled a coin purse from her obi.

Itachi grabbed the bill, "I don't think so, I am the boy." He said firmly.

"And what's that supposed to mean?" She huffed, giving him a cold glare.

It made him feel as if he were a puppy being swatted at for going to the bathroom in the house. Itachi straightened, he didn't cower to anyone, especially not a girl! He stared back with menacing eyes, but was taken aback when her glare tripled his. She's scary.

"How bout' you two go dutch." The poor man behind the counter offered. Not wanting the two kids to ruin a perfectly good day.

"What's that?" They asked in unison.

"Going fifty fifty. Itachi you pay half, and Temari you pay half." The two looked at each other, with inquisitive eyes.

The Uchiha nodded in approval, "Sounds reasonable." He grabbed out his wallet and they paid their halves, though Temari thought she should have paid more since she practically ate the store out of ice cream. Or at least she felt like it.

"Do you have any containers that I could bring home to my brothers?" Temari asked as she got on her tippy toes to look over the counter.

The man nodded, "What flavor?"

"One vanilla, and that yummy peanut butter and chocolate one." She said with a delightful smile.

The blonde reached inside her obi once again, but the ice cream man stopped her, "Don't worry about it, it's on the house."

He handed her the bag , and Temari peered at the ceiling for a moment but shrugged, "Thank you!"

They walked silently back to the embassy, the streets were still a little crowded, but Temari made sure to stay close to her new friend. Itachi didn't want to say goodbye to her, it almost felt like someone was taring out his heart with every step, he didn't want to feel alone. But finally, the building loomed before them, making them both sigh.

The duo stared at one another not knowing quite what to say, so Temari grabbed him like she did the night before and hugged him with all her might. And so did he.

She whispered a sad, "Goodbye."

"Bye." The young boy said as he turned an made his long trip back home, looking back every step of the way.



"Ahhhh!!!! My head is frozen!!!!!"


Author's Note:

Yes, I do realize that this is out of Itachi's regular attitude, a bit oc. NO HE IS NOT AND WILL NOT BE, for the most part, DEVOID OF EMOTION. This is him growing up, becoming a different person than the one we currently know. But you have to realize he is still a child, in later chapters he will be kind, boring, and badass. Just like his regular self for the most part. I hope you enjoyed, will be updated next Saturday. Don't you hate it, especially us girls, when our mothers smell so good so we decide to wear their perfume but it never smells as good on us as it does on them?

Anyways, I ment to post this yesterday but I was at the beach soaking up the rays, I will update this story on Saturdays or Sundays nearly (if I can) every week.