Sasori POV

I can't believe Pein is making us go on a mission when Deidara just had a seizure.

Does he lack that much humanity?

Is he just an empty shell?

And Deidara...

It was all my fault.

I should've realized.

I should've known.

How could I be so stupid?

After Konan left the bathroom and Deidara went to his room to get dressed, I cleaned up the mess I had made in the bathroom. It took five towels just to get the floor slightly dry. I realized there wasn't much else I could do except let the floor air dry now.

I headed to my room to get prepared, but was stopped.

It was Pein.

Pein rarely ever leaves his room, except to call a meeting...

"Sasori, there you are. I went to your room first but you weren't there." He said.

"No, I was trying to clean up the mess I made after Deidara nearly died," I growled.

"Yes, well..." his face showed some sort of emotion, but I couldn't discern what. "I assume Konan has filled you in on your replacement mission?"


My voice was flat and I could tell that he sensed my anger.

"It's nothing big, Sasori, so stop glaring at me." He was back to normal now. "You and Deidara are going to go shopping."

"Shopping?" I asked, a bit surprised.

"Yes, shopping." He repeated. "We need to restock the kitchen. We also need lightbulbs, batteries, bathroom supplies and... Ah, yes, wrapping paper."

"Fine." I said flatly and pushed past him. I was less angry with him now, but I wasn't going to thank him.

After dressing myself, I made my way to Deidara's room, which was three doors down from mine. I knocked on the door and waited a few moments before I got a reply.

"Come in," Deidara's voice didn't sound as weak as it had before, but it still sounded exhausted.

I opened the door to find Deidara lying on his bed, the towel still wrapped around his waist and his hair covering most of his face.

"You aren't even dressed?" I asked.

"Sorry that I inconveniently just had a seizure," he replied harshly. Then he looked at me, and his voice was a bit softer as he said, "Sorry. Just... really tired."

"Maybe you should take a nap," I suggested.

"We have a mission to do."

I laughed a little, which caused him to look at me with a confused expression.

"I was informed that our mission is to go shopping. I'm sure that can wait a couple of hours. It's not even light out yet."

Deidara rested his head back on the pillow again and said, "I doubt I can sleep anyway."

I walked over to the bed and sat down next to him. I could see on his face that he was feeling awkward.

"Then we can just lay here and rest."

He moved over as I laid down, not waiting for him to reply. I grabbed the blanket and covered us both.

"Did you want to put some clothes on, or stay in the towel?" I asked, realizing it probably wouldn't be that comfortable to sleep in a wet towel.

He paused for a moment, then shrugged and said, "I'm fine."

As I got closer to him, his face grew very red. I could tell he was thinking something, and that he was conflicted about something.

I want to help him, I thought. Pain pulsed through my body.

"What's wrong?" I asked finally.

"Nothing, un," he replied. I wasn't convinced, but I wasn't going to push the subject.

I pushed his hair out of his eyes before grasping his hand once again. He tensed up at first, but after a few minutes he seemed to relax. I stared at him, watching him slowly fade into unconsciousness. His breathing slowed, his eyelids drooped, and his mouth parted open slightly. Just before his eyes closed completely, I leaned closer and whispered in his ear.

"You are beautiful."

What was that? Why is it so bright? Wh... where am I?

I opened my eyes and realized I had also nodded off. My arms were now wrapped around Deidara and his head rested on my shoulder. I giggled quietly when I noticed that he had drool running down his chin again.

I laid there for a few minutes, letting my eyes adjust to the light. It was at least midday by now. Pein would soon get irritated if we didn't get out of the headquarters soon.

"Deidara," I whispered in his ear, "It's time to wake up."

He moaned and moved a little, but his eyes stayed closed.

"Deidara," I said again.

"Nnnn, huh?" he replied, barely cracking his eyes open. "What's... eh?"

"We need to go shopping, remember?" I said softly.

He groaned, pressed his head closer into my chest for a moment. Then his eyes shot open and he pulled away from me slightly.

He looked startled, confused and a bit flustered.

"I... I slept." He said finally.

"Yeah, for a couple hours, at least."

Deidara sat up, stretching. He threw the blanket off of him and crawled out of the bed. It wasn't until he was walking towards the closet that he realized the towel had fallen off of him.

I could tell he was uncomfortable, as his face once again became cherry red. He quickly grabbed the towel up and tried to cover himself.

It still hurt to look at his torso, to see the ribs protruding... To know that I was so oblivious for so long. How could I not have realized?

I grimaced and looked away, knowing he probably didn't want me staring at him while he dressed himself.

I got out of the bed and headed towards the door.

"I'm gonna go eat something," I said, rubbing my stomach. I saw the look of disappointment on his face. Did what I say upset him?

"I'm going to make you something, too, so come meet me in the kitchen when you're done."

He opened his mouth as if to protest, but closed it again. He nodded solemnly.

When I got to the kitchen, I looked through the fridge to try and find something to eat. Pein was right, we really did need to go shopping.

I found some yogurt on the bottom shelf and grabbed two. It wasn't much, but I assumed it would be the easiest thing for Deidara to eat right now.

Deidara walked in about ten minutes later. He was dressed in a black shirt and baggy jeans, his hair was pulled back neatly into a pony tail, and he had a sweatshirt over his shoulder.

I smiled at the fact that he had the will to make himself look presentable once again.

"Here," I said as I handed the yogurt and a spoon to him. I had already poured him a glass of milk. "This should be easier for you to eat."

I could see the hesitance in his eyes. He slowly peeled the top off of the yogurt and stirred it around with the spoon.

I stared at him, just waiting.

"Sasori... I can't..." He muttered.

I walked over to him, put a hand on his shoulder and said, "Please, Deidara."

He swallowed, grimaced and quickly shoved a couple of spoonful's of yogurt into his mouth. I could see how hard it was for him to force the yogurt down his throat. I suppose the fact that eating yesterday had caused him to have a seizure didn't make it much easier to eat now.

It took him about fifteen minutes to finish the yogurt. I stood with him the whole time, giving him encouraging looks every time he glanced at me.

When he finished it, I wrapped my arms around him tightly before he even had a chance to put down the container.

"Thank you," I whispered.

Tobi then walked into the room, completely dressed in his Akatsuki cloak. He rarely ever took it off.

"Sasori-sama, can you make me-"

"No," I cut him off; my voice was stern and sharp. He didn't argue, just stayed silent.

As Deidara and I were walking out the door, we passed Konan. I forced myself not to look at her because I knew if I did, I would glare at her and cause trouble. Deidara nodded at her though, and she smirked back.

"Are you guys friends now?" I asked once we were outside.

"Well... Yeah, I guess so," he replied, pulling the cigarette box from his pocket. He frowned when he saw he only had one left.

"You know, smoking is bad for you."

"I suppose it's a lot better than some of the other things I could be doing right now," he snapped.

I looked away, hurt by his comment. He was right, but I didn't expect him to snap at me.

"I... Sorry." He said quietly.

After a long silence, I finally broke it.

"Do you want to go shopping for our secret santa's before we get groceries?" I asked.

"I guess..." he muttered.

When we got to the store, Deidara told me he had to use the restroom. I went with him, just to make sure he wasn't going to make himself throw up. I didn't know if he had ever done that before, but I wasn't going to take any chances.

"I'm guessing Hidan is your secret santa, from the way you asked him to leave the bathroom yesterday," I said, a little amused.

He just grunted, then asked, "Who's yours?"

"Kisame." I said, the sound of disgust lingering on my tongue.

"That's not so bad."

I looked at him, taken aback.

"I'd rather have Hidan than him." I announced.

Deidara just stayed silent, but I could tell there was something he wasn't telling me.

"So... what are you going to get Hidan?" I asked.

"I haven't really thought about it..."

I thought for a moment. "You know, his room is completely bare- except for his shrine. Maybe you could get him some kind of furniture or something."

"Yeah, but how am I supposed to get that back to the head- uh, home," he corrected himself. We had to refer to the headquarters as home when we were out in public. We had to act as inconspicuous as possible; even act like we're not ninjas.

I nodded, realizing the problem there.

"What are you going to get Kisame?" He asked.

I grimaced before asking, "What do you think I should get him?"

"How would I know?" he said. "Maybe... I don't know. Maybe we should come back another day when we actually know when we're going to get them."

"We only have a few days left, but yeah. I guess." I replied, giving up. Neither of us had any ideas. "Now, time to shop for groceries!"

I smiled sarcastically. Deidara just stayed quiet.