The Sooner It Will
Act 2-2: Take the Bull by the Horns


Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto in any way, shape, or form.

WARNING: KakaNaru, ie. YAOI, ie. Male/Male. Also, Naruto is 10.5~11 years old. DO NOT READ IF YOU DO NOT LIKE.

AN: This chapter hovers around semi-explicit to explicit towards the end, about two-thirds of the way down. The rest is fairly gen.

Acknowledgements: Thanks to Romantiscue, Wingwyrm, Red_Kitsune_Flames, Sony Boy, and sexykakashi99 for prompts and encouragements!


All in all it'd been a busy three months. Between the Academy, making friends with the clan heirs, planning and carrying out the stealth training runs, and the occasional weekend infiltration missions, he'd barely even managed to fit in the four meetings with Hibagon to actually start working on his taijutsu, one of which was entirely dedicated to getting completely checked over by the medics to finally give him the go-ahead on strength training. And while it doesn't really surprise him that it was difficult to get a glimpse of Kakashi, between their schedules, he would have thought that by the fourth or fifth time Naruto caught him that they'd at least get a decent conversation in.

And then he realizes that Kakashi's been avoiding him.

...and I know you're due for downtime, so we should hang out!

I don't really think that would be a good idea.

Why not? You'd even said yourself that you should 'get to know your sensei's son.'

But I shouldn't know you like-

Like what Kakashi?

"...AND THEN HE JUST LEAVES." Naruto yelled and flopped over on the couch in his office.

It would amuse Hiruzen how similar this conversation was to ones he'd already had with his teenage children except he's too busy trying to restrain his first and second impulses, which both involved locking the boy in a room for the next five years.

"Naruto," he tried, "How do you know he's interested? A lot of relationships fail because one party wants it more than the other, and you've only spent three days with him. For a mission."

The blond just shook his head, "We met up twice after, and the second time we didn't even do anything, really." He squinted at Sarutobi, "I don't think you could count kissing as anything much, right?"

See? Orochimaru says, Isn't it good thing that you didn't try to make this your lunch break?

"No, I don't suppose kissing is... much." Hiruzen said weakly. While he could well perceive that Kakashi was fond of the boy, from how violently he'd reacted when he came to Sarutobi on Naruto's behalf, he had no idea that the fondness translated into unprovoked kissing, let alone another sexual encounter. "Naruto, when did you even meet him again?"

"Well the second time was during the invasion on the base, and I thought you knew about the first time Jii-san! You told him where my apartment was!"

(Minato's student fucked his son in his own bed, Orochimaru murmurs, and almost at my associate's base, it sounds like. Is it me, or does the boy almost sound regretful that they 'didn't do anything much'?

Be quiet, he does not. Sarutobi hissed back.)

"I... did tell him." The Sandaime agreed, mind racing. Kakashi took advantage of Naruto when he was still 'shaky' after Yatomaru? He'd never thought that the young man would be the type. And Naruto didn't seem-

"Come to think of it, he kinda tried to push me away then too," Naruto said, eyes cast in thought. (So eager, his student crows.) "I'm glad he didn't though, I was kinda messed up."

Oh lord, he hadn't thought he'd misjudged the Copy Nin so badly. "Your sensei said you were 'startling' at things," he tried, cautiously.

"Geeze, does everyone know about that?"

"I think Kakashi heard it from your sensei's actually. Naruto did Kakashi—"

"Yeah, he totally helped!" There was a blinding beam on that child's face.

"'Helped'." So then maybe he was wrong about the silver-haired young man. The Professor has never felt so slingshot from one theory to another. And juggling his paying attention to Naruto, his divergent thoughts on Kakashi, uncovering more details about the situation, and attempting to ignore Orochimaru's comments was making him dizzy.

"Mmhmm. I really remembered who I was, after." And then the sunny smile fell a little. "He'd said to not 'ask him to touch me again', but like, he'd all kissed me when I was feeling bad, so I thought he'd changed his mind."

"It's probably your age," Sarutobi desperately said, "Its kind of inappropriate for him to date someone so much younger." Maybe he'd just kissed the boy on the forehead or something like.

"Huh," Naruto looked thoughtful, "You think so? I mean that's kinda weird 'cause it's not like there aren't married couples in the village with bigger age gaps."

"But you're young—"

"And it's not like we both haven't killed at my age and gone on missions and stuff." Naruto interrupted, and peered at him, "So I can die, but I can't have sex?"

"Naruto, do you even really like Kakashi?" Sarutobi felt like he was being run over by oxen.

"I really like his hands," the boy said with a leer, "Also his mouth. And his—"

Hiruzen let out a loud groan and waved his hands, madly, for the boy to stop, stop right there. And then covered his face with them.

"Seriously, though, Jii-san," Naruto let the leer fall away, "He's awesome and he understands me. And I want him."

(In bed, Orochimaru supplies.)

"In bed," Naruto added, grinning.

He really takes after his godfather, Hiruzen thought, and did not acknowledge how he'd mentally added those words as well. "But a relationship is more than just that; you'd have to be able to talk to the other person, to really get to know them and know their pasts, and their hopes and dreams." There, he thought, that should stump him.

"He doesn't like talking about his past much, and he doesn't really have hopes and dreams," Naruto shrugged, "We were in a boring room for three days, all we did was talk, when we weren't having orgasms."

"You got Kakashi to talk at all?" Sarutobi blinked as more of that sentence registered, "And how many times did you two have sex during that period?"

"Are we counting handjobs? Blowjobs? Fingerin—"

"Orgasms." He cut in, before the boy could get any more detailed.

"You expect me to count?"

"Really, it was that many?" the Sandaime asked faintly. (He activated the failsafe when his student would not stop pestering for details and Orochimaru is slammed into the pit of his mind.) That would make it so far beyond the minimum requirements of Kakashi's mission as to be absurd. He'd frankly been just a bit surprised, given the Copy Nin's initial reaction, that he hadn't been requested to supply an alternate, due to... ah... job performance issues. Clearly that had not been the case.

It looked like he will have to call in Ibiki after all.

"Kakashi's difficult to read, even for me."

He stared at the Hokage monument, not turning around. "That makes things complicated then, he's one of our best nin. But I'll pull him off active duty for a couple weeks and send him to your office." The Hokage blew out a breath. "The political fallout will be a mess." For Konoha to send one of it's most respected, and presumed loyal, nin into their T&I was a sign of deep division and weakness. On a personal level, it'll mean that his plans to groom the Copy Nin for the Hokage seat will have to be permanently shelved.

"Hokage-sama, if I may, not necessarily."

The Sandaime raised an eyebrow.

"He'll have to be primed, and it will take longer. But he wouldn't need to be detained for the questioning itself, and it shouldn't raise any major alarms among those who might be concerned."

"And this would be less... invasive than other methods?"

"Yes. The final interrogation should only take one meeting. I would ask for some assistance however."

Sarutobi motioned for him to continue.

As Ibiki outlined his request, the Sandaime looked at the debriefing scroll he'd just received from his seduction experts.

It should kill two birds, he thought.

I always liked killing birds, Orochimaru opinions.

"And we're to capture and retrieve Uwan?"

"Yes. This exercise is only limited by the village borders and strict non-lethality. You are expected to complete it leaving the citizens of the village blind to your purpose and intent, furthermore if you are spotted by civilians more than 5 times, or posted chunin more than 10 times, you will receive one-on-one 'attention' from Uwan until he's satisfied with your progress in stealth." Rakuda paused and eyeballed the group. "Trust me when I say that you want to avoid this."

"When do we know when the exercise commences?"

"Your enemies let you know when an surprise attack happens?" He snorted, "That's very generous of them."

The ANBU's posture was distinctly chagrined.

"They will also be testing and hoping to improve your reactions and your stealth abilities under emotional duress."

The team of four seemed to relax a little, confident. Rakuda rolled his eyes.

"Don't underestimate him based on his age. He will provoke you, and you will react; should you keep a level head, well, I haven't met a person yet who've fully kept their mental footing around him," he shrugged at their surprise, "It's a learning experience."

They all shifted now, seeming nervous, and he held back a cackle. They were not nearly nervous enough.

"It will be non-lethal, if annoying. Expect his one-on-one training to be more of the same. But more personalized."

"Um. Captain?" One of them spoke up, twitching. Actually, in fact, all of them appear to be twitching. "May I... be excused to go to the bathroom?"

Ah. Its started.

Rakuda nodded and the four all sped toilet-ward with shinobi-speed. From past experience, this version usually involved explosive diarrhea and something incendiary printed onto people's stomachs with contact dye, the same used for temporary tattoos.

At times like these he wished for a Byakugan. Rakuda remembered his first training run a couple months ago, when his underpants turned into soggy jello accompanied by the flash of camera bulbs, and he was sure that behind their masks the newbie's faces must be just as priceless.

Especially since the pranks had been especially brutal recently. He would wonder why except he figured the kid was just trying to outdo himself.

One of the first things taught to him was how to blend in, how to move with his surroundings and how hide in plain sight.

Naruto had spent almost a year working with Mujina on infiltration and going on short missions, before he'd aced his first solo mission and was allowed back into the Academy. It was just in time for him to be slotted into the spring class with all the clan heirs, and although he could've been introduced to the class mid-term, it was less suspicious for it to occur on a natural date. His sensei had also wanted him to appear more natural so the skills they'd later pounded into him during supplementary nighttime and weekend sessions were more specialized support skills on everything from traps and tools to stealth and evasion, rather than pure Academy basics.

It'd left him feeling oddly lopsided during classes, but it wasn't like his cover didn't allow him to sleep or skip through the parts he already knew, and he could always ask his sensei for tips on the new stuff that he had trouble with. Well, or that his Academy teachers didn't really help him on.

Naruto knows theoretically that, in a village so tied into military affairs, that pretty much everyone has an idea of how ridiculously strong shinobi are in comparison to a non-fighter. So if, say, a single something (like a tailed demon) cause entire elite squads to fall, that would be something to fear, universally.

It doesn't make things any easier. He still remembers not knowing why people look at him the way they do, and feeling angry and afraid and trying hard to please them and never succeeding, and then eventually thinking a version of, to hell with it, I'll be myself.

Knowing why he got those looks made things different, but not easier. Now he wants to shake them and shout, I'm not a demon!, and knowing that even if he did it wouldn't help. Knowing, for certain, that attempting to please them would only make them demand for more, until they fully carved their grief into him.

And Konoha's grief was endless.

Naruto, on succeeding on his first solo mission rewarded himself by infiltrating into the public library, where before he'd been banned. He'd wanted to research his birthday, to find maybe some famous person who'd also been born that day or a strange holiday. Something people celebrated so that he might find them and pretend that they were celebrating him, too.

What he'd found instead was the date of the Nine Tail's attack. A death toll longer than he was tall. An account of the Yondaime's heroic actions. And a clear picture of the man, who looked only passingly similar to his monument, which Naruto knew was mostly intentional on the sculptor's part, as a security measure.

I didn't know how *much* of a security measure it really was, he'd thought vaguely, shocked.

When he'd confronted the Hokage about his father, after requesting privacy since he'd figured a secret kept that well despite his looking so much like the Yondaime was kept secret for a reason, everything else came out. Mostly because Jii-san thought he'd been talking about being the demon's container rather than being the Yellow Flash's son; though to be honest he'd been trying to trip the old man up because he thought there was something fishy about the Nine Tails disappearing like that when all the other countries had trouble with theirs, even though theirs were tons weaker. Which he knew about 'cause demons were cool, if scary, and he'd read up.

In any case, the second weekend in August is the first that he'd had in a month that hadn't been filled with either short infiltrations out of the village or stealth exercises for the ANBU, and he plans on using it to track Kakashi down, properly. He'd looked it up beforehand and knows that the hospital forwarded their recommendation of forced downtime to the mission office, for mild chakra exhaustion, so the Copy Nin must still be in the village somewhere.

But at the end of Saturday he can only think, Damn the guy's good.

Even after finding him once, it's stupidly easy to lose track of him, and he doesn't even manage to find out where the man lives.

On the second day, after having that silver hair disappear from his sight yet again, he finds himself being spun into a small nook in a dim alleyway.

"Are you following me?" Kakashi asks, like he's expecting Naruto to say yes.

So Naruto singsongs, "Maaaybe."


"I wouldn't have to if you'd just spend some time with me."

"You know I don't think I should."

"You know I'm just going to keep trying." Naruto has a brief thought of being all pitiful and injured-looking to get Kakashi to agree, but then his self respect smushes the idea.

"Naruto," and even when it sounds so frustrated he loves the sound of his name coming from the guy, "You don't really want to just spend time with me, do you?"

"Am I that obvious?" he grins.

"You're..." and he finds himself pushed a little away, even in that cramped space. "Too young."

Naruto feels Kakashi's hands not wanting to let him go, "So Jii-san's right, you are hung up on that."

"You spoke with the Hokage about this?" The nin is all of a sudden very still.

"Yeah, why wouldn't I?"

"That explains things."

He frowns, "Like?"

"Like yet another reason why I shouldn't have anything to do with you," the firmness in his voice doesn't match the regret in his hands, but they both let go of him.

"Not even if I want it?" He's not begging, he's not.

"I'm not letting myself use that excuse," and Kakashi walks off like he doesn't care.

Uzumaki Naruto is very very experienced in hiding in plain sight; it's one of the first things he'd been taught as Uwan. But somehow he thinks that Kakashi has him beat.

Kakashi, as he left the boy, felt a great many things, most of which made him wince.

He'd just come back from Fire Country's north-eastern coast, from the assassination of a slave trafficker. It wasn't assigned to ANBU because the man hadn't ended up being a security risk, and the mission had been paid for by the Daimyo who'd wanted him dead more for economic reasons than moral ones.

There's a detail that they'd left out of the mission scroll however, almost pertinent to Kakashi but not really to the mission, except for the fact that the slave trafficker routinely left himself guard-less during such and such a time. He was fairly sure that the person managing the scrolls knew exactly what they were leaving out, and the Sandaime was in the room when the mission was handed to him.

Which meant that the Hokage himself had wanted Kakashi to confront the man while he was in the middle of raping a kid.

"What the—"

He'd yanked the bastard off the boy. "How could you?" He hissed. He didn't look at the child much beyond the first glance. A wrenching expression and the impression of tears.

"The fuck is your problem?"

"He couldn't have been more than ten." Kakashi wasn't sure who he was yelling at more. It could entirely be at himself.

"But he wanted it! He begged me for it!"

And Kakashi threw up a little in his mouth.

"Come on, how could I refuse that?" And the man gestured at the boy, but Kakashi refused to look.

Using the Chidori was probably overkill, but there was no need to pace himself for other battles this time and he'd thought that it would have been satisfying.

(It wasn't.)

He'd wrapped up the child into a blanket, Shushined with him eleven times to the nearest village, and dropped him off with someone who'd looked kind. It was the best he could do.

It was why he'd been so chakra depleted on a relatively straightforward assassination, he'd excused himself, during the debriefing. The Sandaime only nodded and began filling in the appropriate forms.

"Hokage-sama, he," and Kakashi has to ask this, because he couldn't stop thinking about it. "He said he was fucking them because they'd wanted it," he murmured, full of disquiet.

"That's usually what men of that type tell themselves," the Hokage replied, not looking up from his paperwork.

He knew, then, that the mission was either a test or a warning, or both.

Hibagon found Naruto in the ANBU lounge, fiddling with a drink, looking like a cross between a misplaced duckling and a guy drowning his sorrows in alcohol. He frowned and stuck his face inbetween Naruto and the drink and took a deep whiff.


Good, it's just fruit juice.

"What's the big deal?"

Hotei removed his mask and stared at the boy, "I should be asking you that. You've been a bit distracted during practice and now I find you like a dog had upchucked into your bed."

Naruto just sighed deeply, tiny and cross, and took a long pull from his juice.

"Seriously. Spill."

"You don't wanna know."

"Yes I do."

"No, you really don't." Naruto peered at him, then just stared out the window and sighed again.

"Argh, stop that, you sound like a girl with a crush," Hotei tested and was gratified to see the kid twitch. "Ah HA. So it's a girl!"

The large man was relieved. This was something normal and he quite knew how to deal with it; namely with some teasing.

"Don't worry! We all have girl problems! Though it's a bit different if you've fallen for a kunoichi, those problems involve getting your balls sliced off." Hotei ruffled the blond's hair, "Your balls are still attached right?"

Naruto snickered and nodded.

"Are you sure?"

The boy just punched at his thigh. Hmm, gonna have to work on his form.

"So then life's still good!" Hotei chuckled, and asked, "Is she pretty?"

He'd expected Naruto at this point to start waxing poetic about how awesome she was but the boy just turned his head away, shoulders a bit shaky.

"Well, maybe she's 'cute' instead!" He tried to say brightly. "They're different things you know, I mean pretty's more dangerous, but cute has it's advantages!" He changed his tone and said a bit seriously, "It's fine if you fall for a civilian."

But then he remembers how cruel the non-shinobi villagers were sometimes to the boy, nothing really that you can point to with a leg to stand on, but a tremendous sense of dislike, and hate beneath that.

"Did she hurt you?" he asked quietly. "Do I need to— I mean I'm not going to beat up a civilian, or like, a ten year old." Wait. "Oi. Kid, did you tug on her hair or some shit like that? Girls don't like that you know, they tend to cry and run away."

The blond head was still turned away, and the shoulders shook a bit more.

"I mean," he said, reminiscing, "You just shouldn't, no matter how pretty their hair is or how nice their ribbons looks or how— are you laughing?"

The boy had given up completely and was crowing into the tabletop.

Hotei grunted, "A guy tries to help..."

A small hand waved him off, snickers still escaping, "His hair is very pretty and I think ribbons would look awesome. And I tugged on his hair before, but he seemed to like it." Then he sighed, "he's still running away though."

"Er?" 'He'. Well, okay, not as normal as he was expecting, but it wasn't unknown. Also it presented a different set of problems. "Well maybe he's just not, um, attracted to—"

"Oh he is." Naruto interrupted

"But you can't be sure," the large man said. He'd been hit on by guys before, frankly to his own surprise because he wasn't that attractive (Mujina had just cackled when he'd complained to her and told him a bit too much about the concept of size-queens), and had to gently let them down.

The kid just stared at him thoughtfully, "I can trust you right? You'll stay quiet about this?"

"Yes." Hotei said immediately, putting everything into the word. After that mission with Yatomaru, there's nothing that he wouldn't do for the kid to try to make it up to him. Actually, he wondered if that mission may have something to do with the blond's preferences now.

"We've had sex," the kid said, like a brick to the head, "And I'm pretty sure he had a good time, but he's been kinda upset about the age thing."

From anyone else the sound Hotei just made would probably sound like a squawk, but from him it was mostly like a rock farting. Still embarrassing though.

"You two've had..." He tried to make his mind think of it, but it just kinda freezes up. When did the kid even get the time to meet someone? And 'age thing'? That means the other guy must've been older. Certainly couldn't have been any *younger*.

"Sex." Naruto supplied helpfully. "More than once; it was really fun too. But now he's all avoiding me."

Or was the boy taken advantage of? Who was he gonna have to kill? Hotei thought, and rolled his weight forward, at ready. Lightly asked, "It would help if I knew who we're talking about."

The blond just eyeballed his posture and snorted, "You're not allowed to squish him. And I don't think you can, anyways, he's pretty good."

"He can't be that good," the nin snuffled, pride stung. The mystery shinobi probably lied about his abilities to awe the kid into bed. The boy was such a sucker for strength and any sort of affection.

"He's totally that good," Naruto stated, "And he's Jii-san's 'most trusted shinobi'. He'd set us up that way even!"

"The Hokage-"

"Set us up!" Naruto confirmed. "And helped me realize that I liked him!"

What the *hell*?

"Actually I think you've met him, since you're in Combat and Tactics. It's Hatake Kakashi."

Hatake. Kakashi. he thought in disbelief.

The Hatake family name was famous ever since the Wars, and it has always been synonymous with brilliance; in the last two generations it'd risen to the earmark of genius. Sharingan Kakashi was widely regarded throughout the village with deep respect, from the wars and from his ability. Many remember that he'd been taught by the Yondaime, the fearsome Yellow Flash, and silently think that perhaps in a decade that the student will follow his sensei into that seat. Kakashi's skill, in general and for his age, was nigh unparalleled, his loyalty legendary, his sense of duty concrete; those who end up on his team come away from the experience being just as loyal in return, though somewhat shocky at the difference in their skill levels, which was usually so vast as to be frightening. Hotei himself, while very very good, was only barely in his league, and felt all due respect for the other shinobi's prowess.

Off duty though, the guy was a bit of a shit head. Hotei remembered trying to talk to the infuriating man when they were planning the siege, and tried to imagine Naruto ending up with much of the same, both in and out of bed, and it made his blood vomit knives. He barely recalled the rest of the conversation, just made commiserating noises when the boy started to rant and whine, and made his leave as soon as he could.

"Hokage-sama, a word. In private."

Hotei waited until the elder nin gestured towards the ANBU guards for them to leave.

"It's about Naruto," he said shortly.

"Oh?" The aged eyes sharply focused on him.

"And Hatake Kakashi." He couldn't help the vicious anger that leaked out.

The old man hummed. "You know then."

"I'd thought it was girl troubles when I'd confronted the boy."

"You'd think it was, from the way he talks about it. I'd been trying to discourage him gently," And then his village leader slumped wearily and rubbed at his head with a grimace, "because he will at least speak to me about it. I worry that if I outright refuse him, he'd break communication."

He blew out a breath, well at least his Hokage wasn't outright sanctioning it. "How did it even start?" he muttered.

"I'm surprised he didn't tell you at length," the Sandaime said with a cringe, "But essentially, Yatomaru."

Hotei felt all the blood run downhill from his face, leaving him chilled, "Because of his infiltration mission?"

His Hokage nodded and looked defeated, "I didn't want to send him in and have his first time be—" for the first time in his recollection the Professor stumbled over his words. Hotei didn't blame him, he felt shaky himself, and still sick to his stomach at having help come up with the plan to send the boy into Yatomaru's bed. "He didn't like the seduction experts. And they apparently didn't like him; they gave him just enough information for the boy to hurt himself with."


"But Kakashi caught it in time," the Sandaime said pointedly, "Naruto wasn't hurt during their encounter, and apparently liked it enough to keep pursuing him."

"But Naruto's ten," He screwed up his face, "He's at the age to have crushes, not sex."

"Believe me, I know; even though he is, technically, having a 'crush'." Sarutobi pulled off the hat and ran his fingers through his hair. "But having offered him that mission, and having offered Kakashi for his first time, well, the hawk's flown the nest, on that one."

"And Kakashi? He'd apparently slept with the boy more than once," Hotei still can't believe it, what the hell was the man thinking? And it's not like the guy didn't have other people throwing themselves at him left and right.

"It's being investigated."

"I don't think you under—"

"I know. In far too much detail. I've assigned Ibiki himself."


Ibiki. Well. Even the most dismissive of the foreign-nin, fond of proclaiming Konoha shinobi to be tree-huggers who piss honey and maple syrup, are pulled up short within two minutes of meeting the T&I head. What's fully remarkable was that the man can make you feel skinned without laying a finger on a blade, and he does this without even a bloodline to his name. The prior head, a Yamanaka, had relinquished his role with good grace and a great deal of laughter, proclaiming that Ibiki may not literally have his clan's mindwalking abilities, but it certainly seemed like it, or even a better version since it wasn't a jutsu.

The Yamanaka had always made shinobi nervous, but at least their hands could be watched. That Ibiki didn't need to make handseals, that he almost didn't even need to be in the same room...

Its not really that those who know of Ibiki are afraid of him; its more like how everyone's afraid of their childhood nightmares, because those nightmares are when you were most exposed and helpless, because they will not let you forget that you'd wet the bed and they will force you to be naked in public.

So he almost felt sorry for the Hatake, being thrown to Ibiki. But then Hotei remembered the kid moping and decided that he wasn't gonna bother.

"Do you have any idea how hard it is to track you down?"

Kakashi made sure not to start. He turned towards the doorway and stared at Naruto unamused, "What are you doing here?"

But the blond was totally ignoring him and was taking in his studio apartment, "Huh."


"My apartment's bigger than yours."

"Mine is cleaner," Kakashi snapped back. He really didn't want the kid in here, this room with not much else but his porn and his bed.

"That's 'cause there's nothing in it."

"There's a minifridge." He was trying to crowd him out the door but Naruto refused to budge so they just ended up far too close.

"Why are you being so-" Naruto broke off. "You're trying to distract me. To discourage me. From you."

"I don't want you," he said, slouching and looking perfectly bored, his voice completely steady and even a bit flippant, caustic.

Naruto yanked Kakashi's hands from his pockets and stared into his eye, and his heart stops. He tries not to breath too hard at the touch, tries not to either lean in or pull to the blond closer. He tries not to think about it.

"Liar," Naruto tells him. But that's nothing new.

He measures the boy with his eyes and decides to inform him. "I know."

"Then why won't you go out with me?"

"For one, I don't really 'go out'." Kakashi reminds himself, "And you're too young to really want to 'go out' with me."

"I am not."

"Are too," he sing-songs back, a lure.

"Am n—" And the boy stops at his pointed look.

There's a heavy pause.

"You should get to school," he said mildly, pulling his hands away, voice dismissive, "your classes are about to start."

"Aargh!" Naruto screamed in frustration, and then stomped out.

He told himself his fingers were cold because he was still indoors; he should maybe go out and get some breakfast. Perhaps with some miso soup.

It was a sunny early afternoon, and the sky blue and full of puffy clouds, when Ibiki appeared next to him and said, "Walk with me."

Kakashi had been strolling along and reading and enjoying the fresh air. It'd suddenly felt like he breathed water down the wrong pipe. He curled up his eye in what he couldn't prevent as being a slightly strained smile and did as he was ordered.

He knew it was an order. While Ibiki was sometimes seen around the village, he tended to keep away from shinobi who knew what he did. These shinobi were collectively very glad at the courtesy.

Ibiki was clearly not feeling very courteous right now, and Kakashi's balls tried to cower back into himself. More so when he realized the direction that they were heading. Kakashi had clearly marked out several places in the village in his head as areas he Should Not Go and they were making a beeline towards one, inasmuch as one could make a beeline while walking instead of roofhopping.

He wasn't sure if he was glad that they weren't going by faster means, because this gave Ibiki more time to study him. He wondered in an odd sort of way if it'd be easier to simply hand the man his liver and be done with it, and that was when he knew that the Interrogation Specialist was good. Kakashi didn't know what to do with the knowledge, if he should try to shield himself more and if that would be more incriminating. And then he remembered what he keeps wanting to do with Naruto and played with the thought that it might actually be best to let himself be castrated. Then he winced and already started missing his orgasms.

"Kakashi-san," Ibiki broke in abruptly, "Do I make you nervous?"

It was clearly a trick question, he blinked at the T&I head slowly in disbelief, almost nearly stopped walking, and then wondered what that said of him, and if it said what he thought it did, and if he knew himself as well as he thinks he does.

He was kind of giving himself a headache.

Kakashi was still trying to figure the tall man out when he noted they'd already arrived. His hand, holding open his porn, twitched, wavered a bit, then put his book away. He watched the clouds; they were shaped like whipped topping and almost blindingly white. There was the sound of the creak of chains and of high-pitched shrieks. He thought that the Torture and Interrogation head was very evil to bring him to here. He didn't want to look.

"Kakashi-san." Ibiki said firmly, and it was an order, and Kakashi dropped his eye to his. The Copy Nin felt like his mind was flayed open underneath the gaze that he met; it was an experience he'd only had prior to obtaining the Sharingan, but he was pretty sure the other man wasn't using a genjutsu. The torture specialist flicked his eyes to the side meaningfully and Kakashi followed them, if only to escape being pinioned by that gaze again.

And he saw the playground. (He'd been avoiding them, didn't want to know how he'd be if he went to one and saw—)

And he saw the children and. (It was bad enough with Naruto, he didn't want to want—)

And huh. They were only.

Only children. A little girl was crying over a scraped knee. Another girl was staring at a group and looking like she wanted to join in and they were pointedly ignoring her. The boys on the swings were competing to see who could swing the highest, and egging each other on to jump off at the top; none of them did. Two were bullying a third who was near tears and most of the brats were edging away from the scene.

They were all... he tried to imagine Naruto crying over a scraped knee, and couldn't. He imagined Naruto looking like an uncertain waif who was never asked to join, but then could only see the blond growing himself larger and louder despite being ignored. He thought of the fearless boy who nearly gave himself bone damage from training and knew he would have jumped. He remembered the look of the very very young man who would be Hokage, because he saw a problem and decided to step in, and knew that the playground would have been very different had the blond been there.

A knot loosened from his shoulders, but grew at the base of his skull. He didn't want these children, he wanted Naruto. The distinction was important somehow, yet no less damning, because Naruto was the same age. Kakashi darted his eye at Ibiki, who was staring at him thoughtfully.

"I'll give my recommendation to the Hokage." Ibiki said, at length.

"Aa." Kakashi paused. "And it would be...?"

"The Hokage will call you in."

The torture specialist turned and walked away, and he let him go because Kakashi didn't particularly feel up to questioning him further. Nor capable enough.

The day was singularly gorgeous and cheerful and the silver-haired man took a deep deep breath of that crisp autumn air. He decided to go back to his apartment and jerk off while he still can.

"Hey is it me or does Kakashi look... hunted?"

Gai agrees but does not say so. (He wags a finger in the chuunin's face and told him how unbecoming of springtime he was for gossiping, then recommended a light training program to improve one's focus. They'd hurriedly returned back to guard duty.) There are no apparent enemies about, but one never knows, and to make his Eternal Rival so wary, and so intent on appearing unwary, the silver-haired man must be concerned indeed. He doesn't move like he's worried for his team however; he moves like he's being personally targeted and is attempting to draw fire.

Gai mentally frowns. It's not right that the Copy Nin almost always chooses to sacrifice himself, as a first resort.

Kakashi plopped himself into bed and moved his clothes apart just enough to reach in and palm his cock. He'd regret how fast this was going to be but he wasn't sure how long Ibiki will take to give his report.

He tried to think of his favorite jerk-off material, bosomy chests and built bodies and they were...hmm, not enough. Then he catches a scent in the air, faint, warmth and ramen and sunshine and boy, leftover from when Naruto was in his apartment earlier that day, and he feels himself twitch as he remembers the tight welcome of that body, the sounds of pleasure, the demanding pleading look in blue eyes, and he pounds his head against his pillow.

May as well, he thinks, since it shouldn't be a problem in the future, and lets himself finally remember and desire.

(He hadn't really, for a couple months now, to let himself think about it.)

He wonders, daydreaming, pulling himself out and stroking, what if Naruto's in his apartment, right now? With the boy's Kakuremino he would never know. The blond would be watching perhaps and, knowing him, would climb in; and Kakashi would find a hand on his cock and then end up down that impossible throat again, and it'll make him lose all his words.

Maybe he might ask Kakashi to fuck him, to take him on Kakashi's bed. He would finger the blond slowly open and make him come twice from that alone; and then a third time, pounding Naruto's scent and screams of pleasure into his sheets, until he could never wash them out.

Maybe the boy might just crawl in close, and only watch, and Kakashi arches a little at that, overlaying the longing expression he'd seen on that face and imaging those blue eyes staring at him and touching himself too. Please, the blond might say.

Naruto, Kakashi replies, and means, anything you want. And the full scope of what that shameless beautiful creature might demand of him, laughing with him, begging at him, quivering around him, flashes through his mind and he comes with it, with the last image of Naruto, looking at him, wrecked with pleasure, and mouthing, "Kakashi," around his moans, pushing himself onto his cock as if to get just. a little. More.

But the room was empty.

Nothing moved as Kakashi's breathing slowed, except maybe his curtains from the light breeze. There was nothing surprising in his room, and Kakashi shouldn't have felt so disappointed.

A messenger bird tapped on his window.

Naruto could smack himself for getting so sidetracked.

Earlier that day he'd gone to Kakashi's apartment to thank the man for the gift he'd found on his kitchen table. The box had been dark blue and nondescript; kinda suspicious except for the pale blue bow stuck awkwardly on top, one of those cheap plastic ribbons shaped into a flower with a peel-off-able sticky spot. And the box seemed to be safe, except Naruto wasn't sure who would've given him the present and that made him wary. He'd brought it along with him to the training grounds where he'd met Ikiryou and Hibagon at dawn. Hibagon had a mission and Ikiryou had meetings so it was the only time they could get together, 'cause his sensei's didn't want to not wish him a happy birthday and hand him their presents personally.

He'd gotten the weights that he'd been planning to buy for himself and a detailed manual on chakra control tips, which were both awesome, and then he'd handed over the mysterious package to be checked over. And it was fine, so Naruto peeled into it to find a kunai, and at first he was weirded out 'cause it's not like he could throw them all that good yet and he'd thought that kunai came in sets, but then heard Hibagon suck in a breath like a gale of wind.

He felt Ikiryou place a hand on his shoulder and lean close.

"Is that-" the large man started.

"Yes," Ikiryou whispered, but then the guy always whispered. This time seemed especially quiet though.

"Huh?" Naruto asked.

"There aren't many of those left hanging around," something strange flickered through Hibagon's eyes then.


"Hey, what's up?"

"Naruto," Ikiryou sighed, and tapped the seals on the handle, "This is one of your f— the Yellow Flash's special kunai."

He'd froze. And stared down at something his father had once touched. Had once created the seals on. Hibagon was right, there weren't many of these left in one piece. Most were broken by Iwa whenever they found one, and the pieces themselves fetched a high price in the collector's markets. It was so stupid a price that you can make more money breaking an intact one and sell off the parts than to sell the kunai itself. Jii-san had told him once that he'd wished he had one to give to him.

"This must have been Kakashi's," Naruto said, wonderingly.

"I wouldn't have thought he'd given it to you," Hibagon snorted in disbelief, eyes all calculating.

"And why would Hatake Kakashi have given it to you?" Ikiryou asked, voice louder with his bewilderment. "How could he have known you? Where-"

"He would have, and he did know, and I don't know why," Naruto interrupted, throat tight, fingers tracing the seals. "Well I know why him, I just don't know why h— I— I have to go thank him."

"Naruto—" Ikiryou was interrupted by Hibagon's hand.

"You know where he lives?" the large man asked harshly.

"I finally figured it out yesterday, it's stupid how well that information's hidden," Naruto muttered disgustedly.

"They probably did that for a reason, Naruto." Ikiryou tried to point out, and eyed his other sensei, who's face was doing weird things.

He hadn't had time to figure it out though and, knowing Kakashi, he might slip out early. He'd quickly said his good byes, stashed the tri-pronged kunai securely into a bolt hole in his bedroom, and met Kakashi at his apartment. Then forgot all about thanking the silver-haired man when the blond's teasing somehow turned into an argument and he was being crowded out the door.

It'd taken him until lunch to stop being pissed off and then he realizes that he honestly should thank Kakashi for the gift even if he is being a jackass, so he decides to skip his afternoon classes to do so. And so, okay, maybe he is kinda stalking Kakashi and he really shouldn't have broken into his apartment, even though he could, 'cause it's kinda impolite. It makes him feel all squirmy inside as he looks at the tiny place, only a bedroom really: a bed, a desk, a minifridge, and a chest of what he guesses to be clothes. The walls are almost bare; only a single scroll of calligraphy and a bulletin board with post-its. There are books neatly standing in a row on the long shelf underneath a large window, and next to them, a photo.

It's the brightest spot of color in the entire place, and when Naruto peers at it his breath catches 'cause what must have been his father grins back. There is a very young looking Kakashi in it too, and two people that he doesn't recognize. He looks at the single lonely photo and feels both incredibly jealous of Kakashi, for having been there when that picture was taken, and ridiculously bad that he'd been gifted the kunai. It's something so clearly precious from someone who could ill afford to give things that he cares about away.

I— I should not be here, Naruto thinks. He tears his eyes from the photo violently and gives himself a shake. He will ask to see the picture of his father, maybe, later.

And he turns and walks towards the door.

The doorknob turns.

Naruto slams up the Kakuremino and the world turns purple and violet as he throws himself into the only empty corner, underneath the calligraphy.

Kakashi comes in, looking almost... almost upset?, as he locks the door and draws the left curtain closed, shielding the area of the bed from being viewable from outside.

He knows somehow that it would be awful to announce himself. It would break something, Kakashi maybe, if Naruto unhides. And more and more it seems like a very good idea to stay very still, as he stares from under the Kakuremino while Kakashi slides onto his bed and unzips, reaching into his boxers with an idle hand. There's a wandering, thinking look in the guy's eye as he touches himself slowly.

Naruto cannot look away. He wants to move closer but he's not sure he could hold the jutsu together considering the rate that his heart's pounding and he doesn't want Kakashi to know that he's there.

Something resigned flickers through the man's body and he lets his shoulders droop further into the mattress. Then he lifts up his head from the pillow and lets it fall, as if he was trying to hit himself. The dark eye closes and the hand pulls Kakashi's cock from his boxers and Naruto almost forgets to breathe.

Because even though he's seen it before, each time looking it seems like a new feeling comes up. This time he realizes, as he watches the flared head appear and disappear in Kakashi's fist, that that was mine, and remembers the overwhelming feel of it pushing up into him and his ass twitches in want. Kakashi's face clenches with what he's doing to himself, mouth open beneath his mask, his whole body shaking, fist stroking quickly now, and Naruto wants to be the one doing that to him so much that he couldn't move, because if he moved he would be on that bed covering Kakashi's hand with his own. He's hard enough to hurt from it.

It's agonizing to stay still, but he shouldn't be here so he has to.

Kakashi mouths something as he comes. It may have been Naruto's name, but that could have well been only his own wishful thinking.

His chest heaves and Naruto breathes with him.

There is a tap on the window, and when Naruto looks over he sees a messenger bird, and when he looks back Kakashi's already throwing tissue at the wastebasket and wisking himself into a different set of clothes. There's a jutsu that flutters the Copy Nin's clothes and hair, and then another that makes him disappear.

He waits ten heartbeats and lets down the Kakuremino, and color and sound and scent washes back into the world. The smell isn't as strong as it should have been, which must have been that first jutsu but—

Naruto walks, unsteady, to the bed, presses his face against the sheets and breathes, shoving his hand down his pants. He's barely done more than grip himself before he comes with a gasp.

He turns and slides down to sit on the floor, using the side of the bed as a backrest. Naruto looks at his cum-stained hand and thinks, stupid Kakashi. He thinks of the most awesome present that he's ever been given, pretty much a piece of the man's soul, and thinks, stupid *stupid* Kakashi.

He can't for the life of him fully decide that his birthday totally sucked.

(He should clean up at his apartment before he gets back to the Academy, there's an Inuzuka there.)

Naruto slips into his seat in the far corner just about the last hour of class. Chouji's disappointed that that he didn't bring them with him this time, but whatever it was looks like it didn't go well, so it's probably for the best.

Chouji shrugs mentally and considers the scarred kid. He thinks the blond looks hungry.

He offers the boy some chips.

...end chapter 7...

AN: OMG WHY DO MY CHAPTERS KEEP GETTING LONGER. D= Okay question, longer chapters, yay or nay? I'd be posting less often if they're longer. Is this chapter any good? Too bulky? o.0

Also, when did you realize the kunai given to Naruto was THAT kunai?

REVIEWS: If you leave a review, you can get a drabble of a future part of this fic!

Just write somewhere in your feedback, "Request: [write topic here]." Possible topics are porn, cuddles, argument, plot, drama, or maybe some keywords or something if you want something specific. Even just saying, "Thanks, great fic!" will get you a 100 word drabble. Granted, the longer the feedback, the longer the snippet! I will respond by pm, so please log in. One request per chapter. (This actually helps me write more, so don't be shy!)

Timeline - Occurs from July to Oct.

Prime - "To prepare a mechanism for its main work." It's also a psychological term for using certain cues to induce certain responses. For more info look up Priming_(psychology) on wikipedia.

Academy - Presumed to be a full time deal, 8am to 6pm, 'cause there's a lot to teach tiny minds when they're supposed to be trained to kill.

Rakuda - Camel

Slave Trafficker - same one that was mentioned in ch5. Dunno how obvious it was that his pedophilia didn't come to light until the seduction experts came back with their findings.

Rape language - "She's so pretty, I couldn't help myself," "He flirted with me, so he obviously wanted it," "They're crying, but they like it, they're just playing hard to get," "I couldn't resist him, he was flashing that leg at me," "She asked for it," while in a mutually consenting situation these phrases are both acceptable and sometimes quite hot, they become kind of appalling when in a rape/pedophile case. The rapist/pedophile is essentially blaming everything on the victim; they are shedding responsibility and blaming the crime on the one who was assaulted and wronged, injury on top of injury. It's essentially a variant of, "You deserved being raped," that may or may not be combined with self-delusion and an extreme case of misreading other people's responses. Given the nature of this fic, I couldn't not address this somewhere.

Hotei - Hibagon's real name, "God of happiness, laughter and the wisdom of being content." Since Ebisu's "God of the wealth of the sea, he is the patron god of fishermen and fishing", I figure I can use 'Hotei' for my OC.

Seduction Training - the full training mentioned in ch1 that Sarutobi mentions not giving Naruto is specifically how to seduce a guy, and never had anything to do with never getting them to take care of Naruto's first time. Losing your virginity to a rape can seriously fuck you up psychologically and sexually, and I'm assuming in this fic that Sarutobi knows this.

Kakuremino - for details of the skill, see ch3. It blocks visible light and sound, but I figure that ultraviolet might be able to peek through. Pretend with me that ninja can see ultraviolet light, yes? Yes.

Ibiki - he's kind of doing a hybrid of the scientific method, call and response, and a complicated version of Gai's rock-paper-scissor. A pedophile, whether feeling guilty or not, would react in different patterns than a non-pedophile. Except the current situation's muddled...

A Note on the Redbotton situation (moved here, ty lil-lo for the heads up!) - So apparently someone's gotten around to making an automated bot to shed this site of inappropriate fic. ::wry:: This fic in particular I know for being not only highly explicit, but extremely controversial, so if it gets taken off, I would be frankly very unsurprised.

If this DOES happen, I'll be having adultfanfiction dot net be the main host for current updates of this story (as of now it is simply the archive for when I finish an act), and it'll also appear under lock at dreamwidth as well.

As for updates on this fic itself, I'm working on it, tho slowly. My job got busy, and well, there's these several other fic up my sleeve that got me waaaaay distracted. XD They'll be posted in the future, no worries. time...


Ibiki tilted his head, "He is no danger." The Interrogation specialist shifted, however, and a look crossed his face that was the closest the Sandaime has ever seen him to surprise.


"But he might be," said slowly like the man was testing each word out in his head before saying them, more than once, "he might be, at least half, in love."

"'At least half'." Sarutobi echoed, disbelieving.

Ibiki nodded.