Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto and Co. and therefore I do not make money from toying with them like they are my own personal and rather naughty action figures.

Summary: Later, Sasuke would realize just how much Naruto had done for him. This epiphany came, of course, after he'd betrayed the detective and destroyed his trust. Now, earning back that trust just might kill them both. NaruSasu Giftfic for Ivvymoon.

Author's Note: This story is dedicated to Ivvymoon, darling and ridiculously talented girl that she is. It's my own fault, I suppose… in retrospect, I see now that there is a reason why bribery is illegal. But, she did provide me with several spectacular chapters of "The Manly Art of Aerobics". She wanted NaruSasu (why! WHY!) and angst. And that is what she got… to the best of my chronically fluffy heart. (Happily ever after DOES happen… dammit.)

WARNING: NaruSasu implies a male/male relationship and that, at some point, sex will happen. Truth be told, I'm not even going to give you a chance to breathe before it starts. You have been warned.

Services Rendered

Hands. The human body has, barring the few and far between anomalies, only two. Twenty-five year old lawyer, Sasuke Uchiha, knew this. He knew this like he knew the sky was blue and the grass was green, but he was willing to allow that, maybe, he had found the exception to the rule.

His thought process was brought to a screeching halt when the black hair at the base of his neck was fisted, forcing his head to the side. There was one hand, he thought absently, and felt the other… everywhere. Warm fingers skimmed over his hipbone and up his ribs before a thumb ran over his collarbone and suddenly those wicked fingers were teasing his chest, twisting and pulling at the exposed and hardened nubs on his chest. When the hell had he lost his shirt? Fucking hands.

Throughout it all, an eager mouth nibbled and bit and sucked what was sure to be a glaring mark on the pale, sensitive skin on his neck. He growled low in his throat and the idiot chuckled. A strong hand grabbed his suddenly bare ass –where or where did his pants go?- and thrust their hips together. Hadn't that hand just been in his hair?

Circling his hips, and nearly quivering with the excitement the increase of friction sent shooting up his spine, Sasuke used his own hands to yank his tormenter's face away from his neck until black eyes met clear, sparkling, and intense blue.

Naruto Uzumaki, twenty-five year old detective for the Konoha Police Department, grinned back at him like a toddler at Christmas. "Did you need something, Sasuke? Because I am very, very…" The blond's head dipped once more, nudging his head to the side, and Sasuke knew he'd have torn strands of hair in his fisted hands. The pain didn't seem to register in the idiot's mind.

"Very?" Sasuke prompted and then his eyes widened when he found himself tripping over backward as his knees connected with a large bed. He blinked for a moment, his head and back cushioned by the soft white comforter, unsure how they had made it from the bedroom door to the bed. He was fairly certain Naruto's wicked hands, all ten of them, were somehow to blame. He looked up at Naruto with the intention of voicing his irritation when Naruto yanked his black, long sleeved shirt over his head and acres of glowing golden skin was exposed. All words died on his lips and Sasuke mouth became unbearably dry.

"Very…" The moron had the gall to lick his lips. "…deliciously preoccupied at the moment." The grin was back but Sasuke's interpretation of the gesture changed drastically. This was not the smile of a child. This was the smile of a predator, dangerous and sensual. Naruto's fingers threaded through his bright hair and then over the back of his neck before sliding slowly down his chest and resting on the waist of his low hung, black jeans. Sasuke couldn't control a very audible swallow when Naruto's fingers drummed momentarily on the button before releasing it, his zipper following slowly behind.

Naruto slid his thumbs into his waistband and pushed down slowly, so fucking slowly, until the tan, smooth skin over his narrow hips was revealed. And although Sasuke acknowledged the movement from the corner of his eye, his entire attention was on the blond hair dusting a trail from Naruto's navel, over smooth abs, and lower and lower and lower…

"You aren't wearing," he began but the words were cut off by the inexplicably gentle noise of Naruto's pants meeting the carpet and the detective stood in front of him in all his naked glory.

"I want you to know something, Sasuke," Naruto said softly as he stepped out of his pants and moved with more grace than Sasuke had even seen him exhibit toward the bed. "Normally, I am a firm believer in the necessity behind wearing my boxer briefs. God knows I don't want to be running five blocks after some asshole with everything near and dear to me flapping about all willy-nilly, but…" Sasuke, who had been holding himself up by his elbows, fell flat on his back as Naruto crawled, left hand, followed by his right, followed by a knee that brushed his thigh, until the golden man hovered above him. "Tonight, I knew that if," Naruto's head dipped forward and licked Sasuke's collarbone with the flat of his tongue. "If I got the chance to have you like this, I wanted the least amount of anything between me and you and…"

Naruto slowly lowered himself until his body covered Sasuke's, chest to chest, leg to leg, and, dear lord, groin to groin. Sasuke's neck arched backward at the feeling of Naruto so close, their erections rubbing together, burning so hot that he bit his tongue harshly and still didn't manage to stifle the low moan the action caused.

It was only after Naruto moved his head to the side and started nipping and licking the sensitive skin over his pulse point that Sasuke noticed that the trembling he was feeling wasn't his own, but instead, Naruto's.

Strong hands fisted into his hair and suddenly, Naruto was there, leaning in, and claiming Sasuke's mouth. His tongue trailed wickedly over Sasuke's lips, seeking invitation, only to take it a moment later with a deep growl. Naruto tasted like spring with an underlying tang of the drink he'd had at dinner and Sasuke found himself thrusting his own tongue into Naruto's mouth, eager to taste more.

Sasuke's hands swept over Naruto's back, feeling his muscles move with a fluid grace under his warm skin. He moved upward with the pads of his fingers only to reverse the movement, dragging his nails down Naruto's shoulders and lower back. He cupped Naruto's ass and thrust upwards, noting that Naruto's body was nearly humming over him, tensing impossibly.

"Fuck, stop!" Naruto hissed, pulling tightly on Sasuke's hair, forcing him to focus on the man above him. Sasuke had no idea how long Naruto stared down at him, his body pressing everywhere, and so tense that Sasuke thought he might break. Naruto blinked and pressed the smallest of kisses on the corner of his mouth. "Sasuke," he whispered and then he was sliding down Sasuke's body, pressing those deceptively simple kisses on his shoulder and collarbone before teasing Sasuke's nipple with his teeth and tongue. "I wanted this… you…" Sasuke's back lifted off the bed when Naruto's tongue swirled around his nipple and his free hand trailed feather soft down Sasuke's abdomen, stopping just shy of his hard cock. Just as quick as they were there, Naruto's fingers were gone and Sasuke felt the warmth of his breath tickle the skin next to his ear.

When Naruto spoke, Sasuke's eyes slipped shut and for a moment he was caught up in the dark, mesmerizing sound of the detective's words, like a sin-filled prayer to heaven.

"And now, I'm going to take you."

It wasn't until he heard the words with his own ears that Sasuke realized that he spoke out loud. "Oh, fuck."

Naruto pulled away after nipping the skin of his ear with a chuckle and a Cheshire grin. "Yep."

Once more Naruto moved down his body, lavishing attention over his smooth skin, twirling his tongue over pebbled nipples and scrapping his teeth down rippled abs. Naruto seemed just as fascinated with his trail of dark hair as Sasuke had been with the brushing of blond and he followed it lower and lower until Sasuke could feel Naruto's warm breath over his straining cock.

"Stop fucking around," he bit out and lifted his hips off the bed, pushing his need into Naruto's face. He wasn't surprised at all when Naruto's hands pressed his hips down into the comforter.

"Impatient," Naruto muttered and ran his tongue from the base of Sasuke's cock, slowly up the shaft, and wickedly around head, lapping at his slit like a damn kitten.

He bucked again and knew he'd walk away from this encounter with Naruto's fingerprints as glaring bruises on his hips. Sasuke's fingers curled into the white comforter beneath him and his eyes rolled back. Naruto sucked his cock deep inside his hot, wet mouth, humming and twisting his tongue as his head bobbed up and down.

"Ah, Naruto," he moaned. "You are…" Naruto pulled up, half Sasuke's arousal still in his mouth, before taking him deep, increasing the suction and pulling off slowly, only to repeat the action. "Oh god, amazing…"

Sasuke could feel his orgasm building and tickling at the base of his spine, each stroke of Naruto's tongue or teasing graze of his teeth, pushing him closer and closer. He released the comforter and his fingers found purchase in Naruto's golden hair. He pulled and pushed, not sure where he wanted Naruto… everywhere… and suddenly he was coming, arching off the bed, while stars danced behind his eyelids.

Naruto moved up his body, pausing to lick and nip along his way before settling half on and half off Sasuke's body.

"Fuck, you are gorgeous when you come, S'uke," Naruto purred in his ear and Sasuke grunted. "You don't believe me?" Naruto asked leaning up and looking down on him.

Sasuke ran his fingers over Naruto's strong thigh and up his ribs. He cupped the back of the grinning man's neck and pulled him down into a heated kiss, the clashing of teeth and tongues, wet, messy, and arousing enough that Sasuke's cock jerked up, half hard already. Breaking the kiss, Sasuke ducked his head and kissed a trail from Naruto's jaw, over his collarbone and just shy of a perk nipple. He bit and sucked and licked, causing the warm golden skin beneath his lips to turn a bright, angry red.

Smirking at his work, Sasuke looked up at Naruto. "I am more concerned with how you look when you come."

Naruto's eyes drooped, lashes covering lust filled blue, and he moaned. Using his arms, he pushed up onto his knees and held a hand out for Sasuke to take, pulling him up as well. "I have an idea," Naruto said, turning Sasuke around until he was facing the solid oak headboard at the top of Naruto's bed, "that will let us see both."

Suddenly, Naruto shoved Sasuke forward, forcing him to put out his hands to stop his fall and he blinked. There was a framed mirror behind Naruto's bed, hanging over his headboard. He looked and saw himself, hands holding the wood and Naruto behind him, grinning ear to ear.

Sasuke tried to force his eyes away, turn his head and watch Naruto's movements, but something kept his eyes focused on the mirror. Moving behind him, Naruto moved a hand slowly up and down his back while the other ran cautiously up his inner thigh, ghosting over his balls, and smoothly between his ass cheeks. The whole time, Naruto's blue eyes never left his own in the mirror. A thin sheen of sweat appeared on Naruto's forehead and Sasuke swallowed down a moan. The hand on Sasuke's back moved up high enough to grip his shoulder and the hand fondling his ass stilled.

"Sasuke," he breathed and leaned forward to lick a trail up his spine until his chest covered Sasuke's back. "Look at yourself."

Sasuke blinked, mesmerized by Naruto's face and body, but forced himself to shift his eyes to his own reflection. What he saw made him gasp. His cheeks were flushed, his pale skin glowing with sweat, and his mouth was parted, pulling in air like he'd over exerted himself.

"Like I said, gorgeous, and this is only the beginning."

Without warning, a slick finger pressed against Sasuke's entrance, pushing smoothly until it slid deep inside. A low moan yanked his attention away from his reflection and back to Naruto's. His blue eyes were cast downward, watching his own finger as it moved in and out of Sasuke's ass. "Oh, god," Naruto whispered and when Sasuke pushed his ass back, he added another finger.

This time they both moaned as Naruto twisted and scissored his fingers, stretching Sasuke's hole and searching, searching…

"There," Sasuke panted, his fingers white against the dark wood, and he watched himself in the mirror through half closed eyes. His face was simply wanton, flushed and needy. His pupils were blown wide and he couldn't get enough air. He looked, fuck, he looked so…

His head fell between his shoulders, unable to look at himself or Naruto any longer.

Without warning, the hand on his shoulder wrapped in the back of his hair and three fingers thrust deep inside him, stopping as soon as they were buried. With a tug, Naruto yanked Sasuke's face up until their eyes met in the mirror. Naruto looked like a god, golden hair curling at the nape of his neck, and blue eyes flashing.

"Head up, Sasuke," Naruto purred, his fingers curling deep inside, pressing against Sasuke's prostate and stealing his breath. "If I wanted someone submissive," he continued and leaned forward, kissing a patch of skin on his shoulder. "I wouldn't have chased after your pale ass." He punctuated the statement with a sharp bite, causing Sasuke to yell and buck backwards into Naruto's fingers.

"Fuck!" he yelled and twisted around, glaring at Naruto, but unable to stop the rocking of his hips.

Naruto stared right back, his eyes open and earnest. Without breaking eye contact, he removed his fingers from Sasuke's ass, a hiss escaping from both men, and wrapped them around his own cock. With his other hand, Naruto grabbed the lube and held it up.

"What happens now, Sasuke?" he asked and moved his fingers up and down his aching cock, now red and dripping onto the pristine comforter.

"Kiss me," Sasuke ordered and immediately Naruto was on his knees and at Sasuke's side, his tongue demanding entrance. Using one hand, Sasuke held the back of Naruto's head, forcing it to the side as he fought for dominance, pushing Naruto's tongue back into this own mouth while he tasted and bit every inch of Naruto he could reach. Naruto moaned deep in his chest and Sasuke felt his cock twitch in response. He yanked Naruto's head back and moved his hand back to the headboard. He looked in the mirror and realized that whatever look he thought he saw on his own face was mirrored on Naruto's as well. Flushed, needy, wanting… gorgeous. "Now, I want to see you come."

Naruto blinked and licked his lips. Sasuke smirked and arched his eyebrow. And then Naruto moved. Two fingers shoved deep inside him and Sasuke growled. "That's enough! I'm ready!"

Naruto nodded, purposefully skimmed against his prostate, and yanked them free. With one hand on his shoulder, Naruto's bite from earlier stinging at the pressure, and the other guiding his cock, Naruto thrust himself inside Sasuke, not slowing or pausing until he was balls deep.

"Oh god, so tight," Naruto panted over Sasuke's own, "Ahhh, Naruto."

Naruto rested his head against the middle of Sasuke's back and Sasuke growled, "Head up, Naruto."

Naruto planted a single kiss over his spine and then blue eyes met his in the mirror. "Are you ready?"

Sasuke didn't answer and instead rolled his hips, Naruto slipping out an inch before Sasuke pushed back, taking him in even deeper than before. Naruto bit his lower lip and moaned, the noise like liquid sex, hot and heady, and then, finally, finally, he began to move.

He moved slowly at first, like he wanted to feel and know every inch of Sasuke's velvety walls over his cock and then a little faster. Naruto's thumb brushed over the mark on Sasuke's shoulder and his other hand gripped his hip, pulling him back to meet each of his thrusts.

Sasuke could hear Naruto's breathing, rapid like his own, and feel it brush against his skin. Naruto moved faster and faster and Sasuke's fingers hurt from the hold they had on the wood but he couldn't let go, couldn't look away from Naruto's piercing blue eyes, his lips slightly parted, and his hair sticking to the sweat at his temples.

"Come on, Naruto," he coaxed, "Fuck, come on!"

Naruto dropped his hand from his shoulder and now had both hands wrapped around Sasuke's hips, shoving inside him, grunts of breath escaping between moans of pleasure.

"So close. Touch yourself, Sasuke," Naruto said and his thrusts lost their rhythm, hard and fast and wild, pushing Sasuke forward until he lost his grip on the headboard, his chest pressed against the wood and his free arm against the mirror. His other hand worked his cock, pulling and tugging, harder and harder, his palm rolling over the tip and his head fell back, liquid fire screaming through his body. Sasuke came, yelling Naruto's name.

"Gorgeous," Naruto whispered in his ear and Sasuke felt Naruto's body tense behind him, jerking and thrusting hard. He looked in the mirror and Naruto's eyes never left him, even as his orgasm ripped from his body, spilling inside Sasuke, he never looked away.

"Sasuke," he said falling forward, his weight pulling Sasuke down to the bed. Naruto pulled out and immediately rolled Sasuke until he had his face in his hands. Naruto looked down on him, his smile soft, blue eyes sedate and pleased.

Sasuke reached up his hand and brushed wet strands of blond hair from his forehead. "Gorgeous," he whispered and Naruto leaned in and kissed him.


Sasuke slipped open another drawer and froze at the loud scrapping sound that echoed throughout the cluttered study. A small lamp on the disheveled desk glowed muted orange and barely lit the corner it was shoved in to. Sasuke squinted to see the other three walls covered with framed commendations and degrees, miscellaneous newspaper clippings and photos, and what looked to be a large poster of a bowl of steaming ramen.

"Dobe," he muttered quietly and turned back to his search. Looking into the next file, his breath caught and his fingers turned white with the grip he held on the manila folder as he pulled it from its confines. He took a deep breath, his thumb catching on the corner to pull it open, when light flooded the room.

Sasuke slowly turned the old wooden swivel chair to see Naruto leaning against the frame of the door in nothing but his orange boxers. An amused smile curled Naruto's lips but didn't reach his hard, steel blue eyes. He crossed his arms over his chest and nodded at the folder in Sasuke's hand.

"Find what you were looking for?" he asked and Sasuke had to stifle a shiver that threatened to race up his spine. Naruto's voice was cold as his eyes and just as unnatural. In all of the time he had known Naruto, he'd never been on this side of the blond's 'detective' voice. Sasuke gave a barely perceivable nod and licked his lips to answer when Naruto continued.

"When you said yes to tonight," Naruto said conversationally, "I will admit that, in the back of my mind, I wondered if maybe you had ulterior motives. Who wouldn't? In the last year, you have said no forty-two times." The blond shrugged and ran his hands harshly through his hair before crossing his arms once again. "But I guess I was hoping that the forty-third time was a charm." All semblance of a smile slid from Naruto's face. "Whose name is on the folder?"

Without breaking eye contact, Sasuke answered flatly, "Zabuza Momochi."

Naruto gave a curt nod. "You know, I'd expect this behavior from a lawyer. Pretty scumbag thing to do, using someone to get information for your scumbag clients." Naruto's arms fell to his sides and his fingers curled into fists. "And if you had just broken into my house, I might have understood. It is who you are. But you didn't, Counselor, you used a relationship that you knew I wanted…" Naruto shook his head, blond spikes falling into his eyes and he crossed his arms tight against his chest in a move that even a small child would see as defensive.

Through the shadows covering Naruto's eyes, Sasuke saw hurt melt the icy blue before the wall came up once more. Sasuke moved to stand but Naruto growled, meeting his eyes, his lips curling.

"But, no, you…" Naruto visually swallowed and stood away from the door frame, facing Sasuke straight on, his tan face tightly controlled, expressive blue eyes frozen in their disgust. "You whored yourself to me for a fucking folder. For a client that took money to do despicable things." Naruto chuckled humorlessly. "I guess you have something in common."

Sasuke stood, words of denial that he knew were lies burning his tongue. Naruto stepped into the room and Sasuke had to force himself not to back away as his whole body tensed, awaiting the blond's next move. Naruto simply stood to the side of the door, his fingers wrapped so tightly around the bronze knob Sasuke internally winced. "Get out, Uchiha."

Naruto didn't even look at him and instead, looked intensely somewhere over his shoulder. He couldn't decide if he wanted Naruto's eyes on him or not. He was so used to Naruto watching him with laughter on his lips, sometimes, and in his eyes, always. Naruto calling to annoy him, his voice smooth over the phone and fucking addicting in person, the complete opposite of the Naruto standing before him.

With his back straight, Sasuke walked to the door, suddenly very aware that he had only pulled on his black pants, not even bothering with his boxers or to button the waist. He paused at the doorway, standing so close to Naruto he could see the man's chest moving up and down with each breath he took. Just above Naruto's left collarbone he saw a red bruise, stark against the golden skin, and closed his eyes, memories of leaving that mark only hours before assaulting his senses.

"Here," Sasuke bit out and held the folder he still had in his hands out to Naruto. He felt Naruto's fingers brush against his own and let out a breath he didn't realize he'd been holding. In the next instant, his eyes flew open when he felt the folder smack against his bare chest, Naruto's hand holding it in place and blue eyes blazing into his own.

"Keep it. I'll nail Momochi to the fucking wall without it." Naruto's face twisted into something so cold and foreign Sasuke tried to pull away, despite his pride, but Naruto's free hand shot out and grabbed his arm hard enough to leave bruises. "You worked hard for it, Counselor. Consider it payment for services rendered."

Naruto yanked his hands away and turned away from Sasuke. "Now, get out."

Sasuke silently moved past Naruto and steadily down the hallway. In Naruto's room, he coolly gathered his belongings, pulling the shirt over his head, and shoved his feet into his shoes. He let himself out without looking to see if Naruto was watching or not. He bypassed the elevator and moved rapidly down the stairs, pushing open the door and stopping on the moonlit sidewalk. His hands fell to his sides and he closed his eyes, willing his heart to slow down.

The silence of the night surrounded him and, with a sickening feeling closing off his throat, he realized he hadn't put on his socks. Sasuke's head fell forward and he ran his fingers through his hair. He'd forgotten to put on socks just one other time, a night similar to the one he currently stood in, only one year prior. The night he met Naruto, the night he closed himself off to everyone, the night Itachi died.

How pathetic.


Sasuke leaned tiredly against his apartment door while he loosened his red tie around his neck and groaned when his phone vibrated wildly inside his pocket. He locked the dead bolt, pulling his tie free and tossing on the side table with his keys before bringing the phone to his ear. Unsurprisingly, the caller was already talking.

"My title of star rookie is in jeopardy."

Sasuke smirked. "Hello, Itachi."

Phone calls were always like this with his older brother. Sasuke suspected that Itachi started the conversation before he dialed the phone, leaving Sasuke to play catch-up when he answered.

"Foolish little brother," Itachi snapped in lieu of a traditional greeting and continued. "His record is impeccable, he has a reputation of thinking on his feet, and, apparently," Itachi's voice came out bored as if he were discussing the weather in Zimbabwe or the migrating patterns of Nubian Woodpeckers, "he came out of the academy with gold stars and sunshine shooting out of his ass."

"Who?" Sasuke interrupted and toed off his shoes before collapsing onto the couch. Silence met his question and then he heard Itachi breath out a long, put upon sigh.

"We were discussing the brilliant new detective," Itachi said slowly, like a parent to a slow child. "Do try to keep up."

Sasuke rolled his eyes and let his head fall backwards onto the couch. "Please," Sasuke said, his own sigh dripping in sarcasm. "I don't believe for a moment that you think this moron is better than you and I meant, does he have a name?"

More silence before the line was filled with Itachi's dry chuckle. "I don't appreciate your tone of voice, little brother, but you're right, I don't. And the young prodigy is Naruto Uzumaki."


Sasuke heard the sound of a radio squawk in the background and assumed Itachi was in his car. When the noise faded, Itachi answered, "He just transferred today. I haven't had the pleasure of meeting him yet. I haven't even been into the station today. I have a lead…" Itachi stopped once more and crackled noises came over the line.

Sasuke bent his left leg and settled his ankle on his right knee before peeling off his sock. The right sock followed and Itachi was back.

"Which brings me to the point of my call."

Sasuke couldn't stop the amused snort. "Your point wasn't some young upstart trying to steal your glory?"

"Oh, he can try," Itachi said. "I'll enjoy watching the moment he realizes he'll never measure up. With that lofty goal in mind, I asked to be partnered with him."

Sasuke's eyes widened and his fingers curled tightly around the phone at his ear. Itachi hadn't had, accepted, or tolerated the notion of a partner since his last partner, Kisame, had died in the line of duty.

"Itachi," Sasuke said slowly, running a hand through his hair, asking without words if his brother was alright, if there was something Itachi needed or if was there something Sasuke should do or say.

Itachi made an irritated noise of dismissal that let Sasuke breathe freely. "We only accept the best."

Sasuke grinned into the dim light of his apartment. "Or, at the very least, second best."


The conversation lapsed into a comfortable silence and Sasuke stood, walking over the plush carpet to the kitchen. He opened the refrigerator and pulled out a bottle of imported beer. He listened to more noises from Itachi's police scanner and sat back down on the couch.

"So," he said before pulling a long drink from the bottle, "about that point?"

Sasuke heard a car door open and close, and feet crunching on gravel. "Sasuke, I need to go. I'll be by your apartment later tonight." Itachi said and his voice made Sasuke sit up a little straighter. He heard an underlying tension is his brother's cool words.

"Itachi, what is going on? Where are you? Does anyone know where…" he snapped out but Itachi cut him off with a sharp, low laugh.

"Baby brother, when are you going to realize that one of us has to be a big boy?"

Sasuke struggled to hold back the flair of anger. He knew what Itachi was trying to do, bait him into an age-old argument to distract him, but something was wrong.

"I'm hanging up now, Sasuke."

He pushed down his feeling of unease and reminded himself that Itachi always knew what he was doing. Looking at the clock, he read eight forty-three. "Don't bothering coming after ten, I won't open the door."

He snapped the phone shut on Itachi's chuckle.

Sasuke was jerked awake by the knocking on his door. He ran a hand over his face, wincing when his back protested to the length of time he'd spent sleeping while sitting up. He blinked rapidly and noted that the time read eleven seventeen. "Asshole," he muttered to himself and moved toward the door. He yanked open the door, colorful curses on the tip of his tongue, only to snap his mouth shut when he was met with a blond, blue eyed stranger and not his smirking older brother.

"Sasuke Uchiha," the stranger asked softly and Sasuke didn't even try to hide the way his eyes roamed up and down the man's body. He wore black slacks and a dark green henley shirt with a soft, black leather jacket. His face was framed by soft blond spikes and his cheeks had the faint brushing of three thin scars on each side. Intense blue eyes met his and he couldn't believe how mesmerizing their swirling depths were. The man cleared his throat and Sasuke's attention snapped back from his sleep induced fog and he glared at the stranger.

"Yes, and you are?"

The blond moved his right arm up to his waist, pushing his jacket aside so that Sasuke could see his department issued .38 against his hip and pulled a silver badge Sasuke was more than familiar with.

"My name is Detective Naruto Uzumaki," Sasuke's eyes widened slightly at the name but the blond pushed on. "Can we talk inside?"

Sasuke's fingers bit into the wood of the door he still held and he shook his head, his heart beating painfully in his chest. "No. What do you need?"

Naruto nodded and Sasuke nearly slammed the door in the man's face when he straightened his posture and caught Sasuke's eyes, his own deathly serious and filled with something dangerously like sympathy.

"There was a shooting tonight on the upper west side…" Naruto's voice was perfect… calm, caring, soft, understanding. Sasuke fucking hated it. "I'm sorry to inform you that your brother was found..."

Sasuke was only vaguely aware that he had walked backwards into the apartment or that Naruto had followed him, reaching out to direct him to the couch. "Mr. Uchiha, I need you to come down to the station with me…"

"You're a liar," Sasuke said, forcing the words past his throat that continued to tightened, the feeling pounding against his chest and stinging his eyes.

Naruto sighed and bowed his head. "I'm so sorry. I wish I was. I truly do."

"F-Fu…" Sasuke clenched his fists until his fingers bit into his skin and stood angrily, clearing his throat painfully. His emotions threatened to pull him under like the crushing wave and the more he fought them, the deeper he sunk. "Fuck you! I just talked to him. He said he was on his way here."

Suddenly the detective was kneeling on the floor, looking him straight in the eyes, a hand gripping his knee. Sasuke wanted to hit his perfect face, push him down, kick him out, at the very least, slap his strong hand and the warmth it provided away, but he couldn't even breathe over the emotions squeezing his heart and tearing at his composure.

"Mr. Uchi… Sasuke, we know you were the last person he talked to on his cell," Naruto explained, his voice like a whisper directly into Sasuke's ear. "But that was over two hours ago."

"No," Sasuke denied but even he heard how weak it sounded and the fingers on his knee tightened.

"I need you to come with me, Sasuke," Naruto said gently and stood, holding out his hand. "Please."

Sasuke nodded and, ignoring the offered hand, mechanically moved to find his shoes before moving toward the door. He held open the door and without looking at Itachi's would be partner, come replacement, said bitterly, "After you."

It wasn't until he was in the front seat of Detective Uzumaki's Jeep, blue and red lights silently screaming into the air, that Sasuke realized he'd forgotten to put on his socks.

How pathetic, he thought, but it wasn't his voice he heard. It was deeper, richer, and perfectly Uchiha. It was Itachi's. Sasuke leaned forward, his head in his hands while his world crumbled around him and didn't even feel Naruto push the car faster into the blackness of the night.


Sasuke bit his lower lip until the warm, metallic taste of blood washed over his tongue and the sting of pain penetrated his mind. He opened his eyes, blinded momentarily by the light of the moon, and straightened himself by tucking in his shirt and pulling on his jacket. He found his keys and ran a hand through his hair. With a deep breath, he pressed the lock on his keychain and moved toward his car, his headlights casting his shadow long and thin behind him.

This was good. It was better this way, he thought. He hadn't needed… wanted… Naruto anyway.

He didn't turn around, so he didn't see Naruto watch him leave out his bedroom window, the file forgotten on the crumbled and soiled sheets of his cold bed.


Sasuke tossed his gold pen on the desk and he turned his chair around to take in the view. His office was located on one of the upper floors of his law firm's building and the wall behind his desk was ceiling to floor windows. Unfortunately, the view was lackluster at best. Three silvery-black high-rises filled his vision and stood in such a way that no matter where the sun shone in the sky throughout the day, his office remained buried in the shadows of the neighboring buildings.

Sasuke thought it was poetic irony, really. His windows were completely shut off from the outside sun and since the night of his first date with Naruto, some three weeks ago, so was he. After Itachi had died, Sasuke did everything in his control to close himself away. He threw himself into his job and spurned any efforts his few friends and the men and women of Itachi's precinct expended to comfort him.

Surprisingly, at the time, the only person who didn't ease up, shake their head sadly, and walk away was the only man who hadn't ever met his brother. Naruto stood by him the night of Itachi's death, through the trip to the station, and to the morgue for identification. He'd glared angrily at Kakashi, insisting that Sasuke should be allowed to go home after three hours of questioning and slammed the Captain's door when he had been asked politely to take his ass outside. Naruto was waiting for him, coffee cup in hand, when Kakashi finally let Sasuke leave and walked him to the door of his apartment after taking him home.

Sasuke had shut the door and leaned his forehead against the cool wood. Forcing back the raging emotional storm that beat against him, he thought about how he would have enjoyed meeting Naruto. Someone had robbed him of his brother, but also the chance of meeting the blond detective under circumstances more in his control. Now, besides the occasional meeting over the witness stand, Sasuke didn't intend to ever see Naruto again.

As Sasuke had predicted, the rookie detective was pushed into his brother's place and top on the list of cases Naruto inherited, was the case of the murder against his predecessor. He should have been too busy with his job to think about Detective Uchiha's little brother, but, Sasuke was to learn with glaring certainty, Naruto Uzumaki was the definition of unpredictable.

Two weeks after Itachi's death found Sasuke back to work and Naruto seemingly… everywhere. He was at the coffee shop Sasuke frequented every morning, the deli he preferred at lunch, and in the court clerk's office for reasons boggling the poor man's mind besides it nearly always happened when Sasuke had a trial date. Most times, however, found the detective at the door of Sasuke's office with a cup of coffee, a grin, and a 'so… I have a legal question'.

The questions never concerned Itachi or his death, in fact, they were the most irritating snippets of stupidity Sasuke had ever encountered and they were always followed by a request for a date. Naruto would lean against the doorframe, huge grin making his blue eyes sparkle in the artificial lighting of Sasuke's office, and pose his quandary.

"So, this morning I was walking down the sidewalk and I tripped and now I'm wondering if I can sue the shoelace maker, you know, like that girl with the hot coffee and, speaking of coffee, are you free tomorrow night?"

Sasuke would look up from his work and in a voice that was nothing short of bored tolerance reply, "No, innate clumsiness is not grounds for legal action and no, I am not."

Sasuke felt there was a chance that he was imagining it but for a moment Naruto's smile would slip but before he could catch it, Naruto would rally and shake his head. "Alright, next time then."

With the typical response of 'hn', Sasuke would look up and Naruto would nod before walking away, hands in pockets, a smile on his face. Sasuke couldn't begin to explain why it hurt him to see Naruto's shoulders so squared, as if holding the disappointments of the world on his shoulders. In retrospect, which he'd had some time to analyze, he couldn't say what filled him with shame more, all the times he'd sent Naruto away in disappointment, or the one time he'd said yes, saw Naruto stammer with surprise and happiness, and then destroyed it all.

Since that night, Sasuke hadn't seen Naruto, not once. At first, he was content with that. It was what he wanted and after the words that Naruto had thrown at him, he wasn't eager to face the detective anytime soon. What the hell could he possibly say? The truth was he did say yes to Naruto's request because he knew Naruto was on Zabuza's case and the partners were expecting great things of Sasuke…

With a sigh, Sasuke turned his chair away from the window and stood, straightening his jacket and tie. That might have been the truth at the moment, but Sasuke knew now that he had said yes because he was tired of saying no. He wanted Naruto. Hell, he had since the first day he met him but he was too much of a bastard to give in. Fuck, accepting Naruto in his life would be accepting life and Sasuke wasn't sure he wanted to live a life without his brother, even with Naruto at his side.

Gathering his briefcase, Sasuke stepped into the hall, closing the door behind him. Naruto had done an amazing job of staying in Sasuke's life and now that the blond didn't want him, he was doing an equally amazing job of staying out of it. The onetime Sasuke thought for sure he'd at least get to see Naruto, not that he wanted too, mind you, was at Zabuza's trial. Two days before the start of trial, Sasuke received a notice from the DA, Iruka Umino, regarding a change of witness. The official wording behind the change had been Detective Uzumaki's willing acceptance of his removal from the case for a conflict of interest, detailed reasons unspecified. Sasuke didn't attempt to fight it, even when it raised a few eyes around the office.

Sasuke was nearly to the elevator and feeling the dull headache he tended to get when he tried to figure out why the idiot seemed to bother him more now that he wasn't actively bothering him when he passed one of the conference rooms on his floor. The door was slightly ajar and although he couldn't see who was in the room, he did hear what they were saying.

"… would be the third cop in three years."

"Coincidence… stranger things have happened."

"This one is the worst of them all, has his hands in everything."

"Little fucker is everywhere…"

Sasuke's heart raced and he stilled in the hallway. It's just talk, he told himself, people spouting off. It was no secret that DF&D Law Firm represented some of the more questioningly moral members of society. He tried to make his feet move, refusing to think about what they were saying or that they might be talking about Itachi and his partner and that maybe, the third, the one that was everywhere, was…

"Uzumaki… by any means necessary."


Sasuke closed his eyes and felt his fingernails bite relentlessly into his palms. Everything slowed around him and whatever the voices plotted behind the door was muted by his heart beating furiously in his ears. Naruto. They were talking about Naruto. He couldn't…

"Mr. Uchiha."

By the time Sasuke had turned to address the newcomer, his face and eyes were devoid of any of his inner turmoil, and back to his cool, stoic façade. Danzo, senior partner of DF&D, stood in front of him. His charcoal gray suit was impeccable and he pulled facetiously at his sleeve.

"Did I catch you on your way out?" When he was done with the adjustments on his cufflink Danzo stood in front of Sasuke with his hands held together in front of his body and his dark brown gaze sweeping over him before flitting to the door behind him.

With a barely perceivable nod, Sasuke looked into Danzo's face. Scars rippled over his skin from an accident before Sasuke's time and a black leather eye patch covered his right eye. He raised an eyebrow at the calculating look in the older man's exposed eye. "Yes, sir, did you need something?"

Danzo's look didn't ease up, but Sasuke was an Uchiha and Itachi Uchiha's little brother. Nothing short of spinning red eyes could scare him.

"No, Uchiha. Have a good night."

"Hn." Sasuke turned and walked toward the elevator. He waited for the door to open and moved inside. As the doors slid closed, Sasuke turned and saw that Danzo was gone and the door to the conference room was firmly shut.


To Be Continued…

Author's Endnote: For the time being this is unbeta'd, but when my beta of extreme awesomeness, aka Master of Rebels, looks it over, I'll exchange.