A/N: This idea popped up around one in the morning and was finished at 2:10. I am now bone-tired and starving. This is unedited, but I will probably add more at my leisure. To those of you awaiting updates, they're presently being raped in the backseat by Northanger Abbey and a five-page English paper. Please have patience with me. And for those in it for Paper, Rock, Scissors: It's not dead. Please don't cry.
Disclaimer: Naruto isn't mine. Have you ever seen anything remotely like this in Naruto? Didn't think so.
I: Rubber Ducky, You're the One
The day that Gaara Sabakuno met Naruto Uzumaki for the first time, it was pouring down rain. He remembered: that morning, the weather woman—a large-breasted woman with bottle-fresh strawberry blonde hair—had mentioned heavy rain, holding one of those stupid little Barbie umbrellas over her head and doing her best to boost up her cleavage at the same time.
He looked up at the sky from his position under the awning, nearly hissing at the prospect of more frigid water soaking through his thin shirt. Admittedly, after suffering through that ridiculous weather report with his siblings—family bonding, they'd said—he could have made a few better wardrobe decisions.
Perhaps the thin, grungy maroon Henley could have been topped with one of his brother's army surplus jackets, but he didn't want to ask to borrow one.
Perhaps the old, ratty hand-me-down jeans could have been replaced with a thicker pair, but he didn't want to ask for the money to buy them.
Perhaps his old boots could have been replaced with something that didn't cause little tidal waves in each and every puddle, but they made his feet feel safe.
…Come to think of it, the steel toes were probably turning his feet into small lightning rods.
Perhaps he should have just brought an umbrella.
He sighed, a short, irritated noise, looking down at his lightning-rod shoes before looking back up—and nearly crying out.
There, above him, was the most obnoxiously yellow umbrella he had ever seen.
And it was shaped like a rubber duck.
He turned sharply, prepared to attack the intruder with a swift kick to the shin, but stopped short when he noticed an even bigger yellow monstrosity.
There, in front of him, stood a blonde boy, about his age, in bright yellow parachute pants, a stomach-baring t-shirt with a massive smiley on it, and a pair of rainbow-striped rain boots.
The man was like the poster child for 'Gay'.
And people called him queer.
"What do you want?" Gaara asked suspiciously, sweeping rain-swept bangs from his eyes to get a better look at what rather reminded him of a raving Big Bird.
"You're, uh, kind of wet."
"Oh, my," Gaara drawled in monotone, "I had not noticed. Thank you ever so much for letting me know."
The blonde snorted, blue eyes fixing on him without fear, as if he were used to this treatment.
He thumbed at the crystal pendant around his neck before shaking the umbrella slightly, drawing attention to it, "Would you like to share?"
"Sorry. I've been told not to talk to strange people."
"Strange?" The blonde grinned with wicked cheer, "I'm not strange. I'm eccentric."
"Did your mother teach you that word?"
"My mother's dead," The blonde seemed to deflate for a moment, but perked back up as he brushed his hair away from one ear, pointing to a rather pretty earring, "These were hers. My dad gave 'em to her, in high school. Pretty neat, huh?" He smiled.
Does this kid have ADHD, or what?
"Anyway, that topic kind of sucks. I'm not a stranger if you know my name, right? It's Naruto. I'm Naruto Uzumaki. I just moved here to stay with my grandparents again."
"Yeah. I was kind of living on my own for a while; even though they said it was a bad idea. It kinda was, too. I mean, living alone sucks. It was pretty hard to make friends and stuff."
"I can't imagine why."
The boy's a freak, that's why. Should I mention it, or would he just twitter on about that, too?
"Oh. That's easy. It's pretty hard to get back and forth from school and a night shift at a gay bar."
Naruto smiled as if nothing were out of the ordinary, "Surprised?"
Gaara glared at him, "I don't see why you feel the need to share this with me."
"You looked like you were scared of me, before. Just a little. But I'm not a stranger now, see?"
"All right, fine. Since you're so talkative…what's with the clothes?"
"I didn't want to be sad today."
Gaara arched a brow.
"Come on, Sabakuno. I'll walk you home. You don't even have to smile for it."
And there it was—as the boy stepped off the curb, still facing him, he saw it—a real, honest smile where there'd only been cheesy grins before.
"All right. …Fine. But if you touch me…"
"You can scream rape."
"I was going to say 'I'll kick your asshole into your lungs'."
Naruto laughed, and Gaara joined him under the umbrella, careful to stay on his side of the ducky.
A/N: Thanks for reading, and please review, if you can. Root for me, people! Updates come when I'm not having nervous breakdowns.