My NejTen mood commences (is it weird that I call it NejTen?). Though I have a drabble-oneshot thing in my profile now, I want to keep anything I do for hypheniated separate. This is for her eighth theme. I hope you like it!
Disclaimer: Don't own Naruto.
A Series of Indecent Proposals
by Pleasantries and the Aftermath
When Tenten first meets Neji, it is in the classroom. It is their first day of high school and they are waiting for Iruka-sensei to arrive and for class to begin. She sits in the third row of the third column, right in the middle of the room, and as laughter and paper airplanes soar through the sky, Tenten tries to block out Gai's booming voice from her head. Scary how the man she heard shouting youth into the microphone is supposed to be her counselor for the next four years.
Suddenly, the room falls quiet and she looks up to see Iruka-sensei at the front of the room. The chairs are being tidied back into their orderly rows, and behind her, she can hear a chair being scraped across the floor as someone sits inside. She wonders who is sitting behind her for a brief moment before looking up to copy the math problem on the board.
A voice behind her sounds not-too-gently. "Move your head. You're blocking the board."
Tenten whips her head around and glares at the boy behind her. His long chocolate hair frames a handsome face and at the sight of his milky-white eyes, she wonders if he's blind before dismissing it. She's too pissed to care.
"Well?" he prompts.
In response, Tenten not-so-gently chucks her eraser in his face and faces the board once more. Serves him right.
When they first become friends, half of the year has already passed. They are still freshmen and have fallen into their schedules and routines easily. They find comfort in their routines, of seeing the same faces in the same places, and while they rarely speak, they do know each other by name.
Tenten stifles a yawn as she sits in her seat in the cafeteria. She's eating lunch alone today since Lee is helping their counselor (and his apparent idol) Gai. The room is loud and the line is obnoxiously long and she wishes she had to foresight to bring lunch. Her stomach growls, but she doesn't feel like getting up and waiting in that fray for food when the thought is broken by another yawn. As she wipes the tear from the corner of her eye, she thinks hazily that maybe it wasn't such a good idea to juggle soccer with her baby-sitting job.
Suddenly, a shadow falls over her and her vacant circular table. "Let me borrow some money for lunch."
Tenten looks up in surprise. "Neji?"
She continues to stare in stunned amazement. Even if they sit near each other in class and do the occasional class assignment together, she is still stunned that the school's number-one idol is talking to her, but she's even more stunned that he's borrowing lunch money from her. The last time she heard, he was part of the affluent Hyuuga family (which explained the eyes) and never ate the school food.
"Well?" he prompts, echoing back to when they first met.
"Sure, but why? You never eat cafeteria food," she says as she pulls out her wallet and slips a few bills in his hand, ignoring the heated glares of his fans. Neji merely grunts and walks away without a word.
Ten minutes later, he returns and drops a tray of food in front of her. Peering down, she realizes it's her favorite. She looks up at him questioningly as he gracefully places the change by her hand.
"You've been looking thinner and more tired. You should eat more. Starvation diets aren't good for you," he explains before walking out of the room to the sounds of fangirl sighs. Picking up the change and letting its weight sit in her hand, she plays with it in her hand experimentally as she toys with the idea that Hyuuga Neji might have just extended his hand in friendship to her.
The first time he kisses her, she slaps him so hard, she leaves a welt. It is the spring of their sophomore year and they are close friends. Tenten finds him fitting in nicely with her little group of her and Lee, and finds she enjoys his quiet, soothing company. He still does not speak much, but he is a good listener.
They are walking on the path behind the side of the school. It's a cement walkway meticulously cared for by the groundskeeper. The building it runs beside is the old library, so few people come here and Tenten loves the peacefulness as they walk. On that day, Tenten is rambling about some article she read about last night. She notices Neji's steps are quicker than usual; he's edgy and she can see it. She asks him what's wrong and he pauses in front of her. Her concern spikes and she opens her mouth only to feel lips on her. Erratically, her brain realizes it's Neji kissing her and suddenly, her hand lets fly and collides with his (tragically) handsome face. On his cheek blooms a perfect imprint of her hand and on his face, she can see him attempt to process what has just happened.
Granted, she probably shouldn't have done that, but still! Even if she kinda sorta has a crush on Neji, this doesn't excuse this kind of behavior. After all, it's his fault for acting so strange, she reasons. Who randomly goes up to people kissing them? His strange behavior is to blame for her slapping him, but even this sounds half-hearted and jumbled like the rest of her brain as she tries to hide the bright blush on her face and process the fact that Neji—the Hyuuga Neji—likes her and has kissed her.
Shyly, she glances up to see what he's doing and if he's an appropriate distance away from her. Their eyes meet and a nervous 'Eep!' squeaks from her lips before she runs away from him, leaving Neji to wonder if he's just been dumped or not. He finds his answer the next day when there is a bandage and a homemade chocolate heart on his desk the next day. Tenten refuses to look at him that day and to himself, he holds the box holding his chocolate and smiles.
The first time they have sex, they are twenty-two. They are coming back from a date at a fancy restaurant. Neji is slightly tipsy and Tenten is a little buzzed from the wine they drank. Sometime around eleven, they stumbled into their shared apartment, lips messily crashing, clashing, and sucking as they make their way to the bedroom with her plastered against him.
With minute effort, he plucks her from his body and throws her onto the bed as he pins her to it. Tie dangling between them with the collar of his shirt partially open, he slides his hands up her sides, pushing up her black dress as he kisses and pants harshly against her exposed skin. "Sex. Now," he demands as he unbuttons the rest of his shirt and undoes his belt and pants. If she wasn't so used to him being emotionally-stunted, she would've killed him. However, his eyes glow eerily in the moonlight and the lust in his eyes makes him seem unreal, and with a cheeky smile, she looks up at him.
"Fine," she replies.
And she's almost sad to see that stunning suit gone.
When Neji proposes, it's on a Tuesday. Defying all logic, the club is packed, and the music is blaring obnoxious bass beats loud enough to shake the floor. Strobe lights shoot neon colors around the room, coloring hair and faces. Tucked away against the wall in a booth is Tenten with her college friends Ino, Sakura, Hinata, and Temari filling the seats beside her.
Sipping her drink as she leans in to hear Ino's latest juicy gossip, two men approach the booth asking to dance. Ino leans over her lap to flirt, despite already having a boyfriend ("what's the harm in flirting? It doesn't mean anything.") while Tenten politely refuses. Still, the men are adamant and ask again as they throw in compliments and coos of "sweetie" and "baby." Tenten politely refuses as she has been taught when a voice cuts through as cold and sharp as a knife.
"Back off. She's mine."
The two turn stunned to the man now glaring daggers at them. From the booth, Ino giggles. "They always got a plan to be her one and only man," she purrs teasingly into Tenten's ear who flushes in embarrassment and smacks her friend's hand in reprimand. "Quit it," she hisses.
Neji is still glaring daggers at the two men, and while they are still stunned by the intrusion, grabs Tenten's hand and leads her through the crowd. As they walk through the mass of bodies, she is not surprised when he bypasses the dance floor. Neji doesn't club-dance after all, and Tenten wonders not for the first time this night why Neji has brought her here. After all, it's usually a miracle if she can convince to come to a club with her, and oddly enough, it was he who suggested this night out with their friends.
He leads her to the bar, just out of reach of the gyrating bodies. Under the yellowed light bulbs by the wooden countertop, Tenten places an order for a drink before turning to her boyfriend. "You know, I could've handled them, Neji. I mean, I did take all those martial arts classes and even you say I'm a good sparring partner and—"
"Marry me, Tenten."
Tenten stops mid-ramble and stares up at him with wide eyes. Her mouth opens and closes as she struggles to find something to say. When she finally does, she smiles a patient and indulgent smile. "You have a strange way of doing things, Neji," she begins, "but yes, I accept."
And for the briefest of seconds, Neji smiles bright enough to drown out the sun. The bartender smiles and shakes his head, and from the booths against the side wall, their friends cheer as Naruto's sharp whistle pierces the music. Tenten watches happily as the dancers suddenly stop to offer their congratulations and join in the cheering. She flicks her gaze to Neji, who seems oddly out of place in this sea of dancers in his dark suit, but the look on his face makes it seem like he's right at home. Catching her gaze from the corner of his eye, he smiles at her warmly, lovingly and leans down to her ear.
"Thank you," he whispers gratefully before warning her about when he asks for children, since his proposals have always been strange.
At this, Tenten throws her head back and laughs. "I can't wait."