So, it has been awhile (-understatement) since I posted an update or a new story. But, since it is our favorite blonde's birthday, I thought, what the hell, let's give this a shot. And I really liked how this turned out. I saw myself growing up as a writer in this story. And I'm quite proud of that. Ahihi. But not much has changed. Just my mind set, I'm not as shallow as I used to be. Also, there havent been any updates from the veteran SasuIno writers in quite sometime, I'd thought I'd pop up. And! I haven't seen a birthday dedication! Hello, we all love Ino here, don't we. Show some love, people! Okay. Enough rambling now. Get on with the story and I hope you enjoy!!! :)
Seriously. I'm so rusty, I haven't written in months!


Disaster Turned Present

The 23rd of September was marked red in the calendar's of everyone in Konoha. It was done so because it was none other than Ino Yamanaka's birthday. Forget Shikamaru Nara who's birthday was just a day earlier, he didn't care much for the lime light. But Ino would make damn sure that people knew it was her birthday.

Ino strutted along the sidewalk with her arms linked to her best friend, Sakura Haruno. In her aquamarine colored baby doll dress and her hair up in a messy ponytail, nothing could ruin her birthday shopping date with Sakura.

"Except this." Ino paused in disgust as she stared Sasuke Uchiha up and down.

"Nice to see you too, Ino." Sasuke quickly retorted as he eyed the blonde. "Sup, Sakura." He said casually.

Sakura jutted her chin in acknowledgement.

"I'll have you know that ever since you messed up my birthday party 2 years ago, I don't enjoy your presence during the date I was born!" Ino hissed.

Sasuke rolled his eyes.

"Aww, you have no right!" Ino groaned.

"Yamanaka, I've apologized to you about fifty times for that!" Sasuke argued.

"Not good enough! My 15th birthday was my Cotillion!" The blonde told him off angrily.

Sakura just kept quiet the whole time. She knew by heart that in situations like these, Ino shouldn't be disturbed. Sakura would only talk when she was asked to by Ino. They were best friends, so Sakura believed Ino could handle Sasuke on her own. And she pretty much always came out the victor in verbal wars. Or else she wouldn't even bother starting them.

"Yes, but you made up for that with your Sweet 16, last year, Ino!" Sasuke shot back.

Even Sakura had to admit that would be hard to recover from. Because, truth be told, Ino's 16th birthday party last year was one of the greatest parties she's ever attended. So much so that all other parties could have been forgotten! And so much so that Sasuke's tomfoolery from her Cotillion had been overlooked.

Ino bit her tongue; she knew her 16th birthday party was awesome.

If you must know, it wasn't the common My Super Sweet Sixteen type celebration. Sure it was a semi big event, where friends of friends of friends were invited—3 degrees of separation thing—but as the saying goes, the more the merrier, and Ino's party couldn't have gone better. She went for a Las Vegas casino slash Mafia slash the Godfather type thing and it was a huge hit. Girls in suits, some of those brave men in show girl outfits…it was an unforgettable night.

"Yes, yes, my party last year was amazing—" Ino began.

"—amazing is an understatement." Sakura mused quietly.

"But! That doesn't mean I still don't feel bad about that humiliating stunt you pulled during my Cotillion, Sasuke. It was mortifying." She said solemnly then shook her head.

"Ino, I'm really sorry about that. I was an idiot and I ruined your night."

"Yes, you were and yes, you did. I don't forgive you, but I do accept your apologies." Ino sighed.

Sakura looked at her best friend in a peculiar manner. I mean, they're best friends and everything, but sometimes the things that Ino say are not quite bright.

"Okay, sorry I saw you today, Ino. Happy Birthday." Sasuke said and walked away. Off to a different direction so there would be less of a chance of him bumping into Ino and Sakura again.

The two girls continued their walk to the mall silently.

"Don't you think you were mean to Sasuke earlier?" Sakura asked.

"What? No." Ino's eyebrows knitted.

"I mean, Sasuke was really sorry, you know? He knew what that Cotillion meant to you and the mishap with your dress was just a terrible accident."

"Sakura, stop right there." Ino paused her walking again and faced Sakura properly, "It wasn't just a mishap, S. He ruined my dress! Remember Cinderella after the ball?"

Sakura nodded.

"It looked worse than that! And it wasn't even on me!" Ino cried out loud, "I was so petrified I couldn't move."

"Shika was such a gentleman that night, wasn't he?" Sakura chuckled.

Ino nodded, "Yep. I owe him for so much already. He keeps me sane. And safe." Ino smiled.

"Hey! I do that too, right?" Sakura protested.

"Yes, but you aren't exactly a knight in shining armor, S."

Sakura chuckled. "Come on, let's get you a hot top and hot pants for your celebration later."

Ino laughed as well as she and Sakura speedily made their way to the mall, their hair blowing in different directions. No burden on their shoulders and completely carefree.

"I still can't believe you rented out a bar/bistro. That's damn awesome."

"What haven't I done."

And those were the last words of their conversation before they laughed their way into the mall.

--

"Okay, I, I'll meet up with you in 3 hours. Get ready pretty, okay?" Sakura winked and cheek to cheeked with Ino.

"Yes, S." Ino sighed. "Don't worry, I take care of myself pretty damn well." The blonde winked back.

"Later!" Sakura walked out the door.

"Later!" Ino yelled then shut the door.

A few minutes into undressing and getting into her silk robes her doorbell rang.

"Who the hell is that?" Ino wondered as she undid her hair off its messy ponytail. The doorbell rang again. "I'm coming!" She yelled frustrated.

"Yes?!" She opened the door swiftly not even bothering to know who was visiting her. "You!" She said venom in her voice.

It was Sasuke Uchiha.

"Ino, I know you don't want to see me, but I have a birthday gift for you." Sasuke held out a box.

Ino softened the expression on her face. "Why? I've been horrible to you." She looked away.

"Because," Sasuke started, "I did something really bad to you exactly 2 years ago." Sasuke continued. "And here." He handed her the box. Ino accepted it, but she had second thoughts about it. She supposed that she wouldn't open it until, well, until ever.

"Open it." Sasuke encouraged her.

She let out a sigh and opened the box. Inside was a gorgeous gown. "Oh my God," Ino gasped, "It's…it's my Cotillion gown! But…but it looks different." She looked from the dress in her hands to the boy in front of her.

"Yeah, I claimed the dress and had it fixed and a little re-structured…" He trailed off.

Ino was at loss for words. It was the nicest thing that Sasuke's ever done for her. The nicest thing anyone has done for her ever, for that matter.

It was her Cotillion gown only the straps that went around her neck were gone, the torso portion of her dress was the same except there were beads that accented it, and the gown itself was cropped until above the knees with extra layers added so it would 'poof' up more.

"It's gorgeous, Sasuke!" Ino said when she was finally able to take in the whole situation.

Sasuke smiled genuinely, "I'm glad you like it, Ino."

"I love it!" She exclaimed putting the gown back inside the box and putting the box aside giving Sasuke a hug.

"Am I forgiven?" Sasuke smirked.

Ino leaned away and looked at him with one eyebrow raised, "No." She says after a few seconds. Sasuke's smile drops. "Only if you accompany me to my party later." She smiled at him. Sasuke chuckled.

"You mean like a date?"

"Yes, exactly like a date." Ino smiled.

"You got yourself a deal, Yamanaka."

"I'll be looking forward to it, Sasuke." She giggled.

Sasuke was about to walk away when he decided against his instinct and went up to Ino instead. He wrapped an arm around the blonde's waist and spoke so close to her, she could feel his breath on her skin.

"Good." He whispered.

"W-why i-is that?" She said breathlessly.

"Because these past few years have been killing me, Ino…I can't have you angry at me." He put his forehead to hers.

The blonde knew what was going to happen if she didn't snap back to her senses, she leaned away a bit and exhaled, "Right. So we'll start with a clean slate, Sasuke." Ino nodded.

Sasuke chuckled, "You're a good girl, Ino." He said and kissed her on the cheek.

"You're not too bad yourself." Ino smiled up at him looking him directly in the eyes. She put her palm to the side of his face and stroked his cheek with her thumb, she did so admiringly—loving the way she got lost in his eyes. She finally saw Sasuke for what he really was and not the horrendous person she perceived him to be.

And man was he beautiful.


I hope you loved it! No, really. I hope you did! Aaaand. If you would like to see I's Cotillion gown (untouched by Sasuke!) it's on my profile at the VERY bottom. And then, you can imagine the edits he's done to it. Lol. Anyway, reviews please! It'll really make my day. Especially since I dont even know if I'm wanted back at this section. I think my OTP for SasuIno expired. :(

Much love guys!