A/N: I don't own Naruto. I love Gaara and I love Sakura and I love reviews. Please sustain my need for all. WARNING: Violence and sex. Do NOT read it you will be offended.

Or Something Like It

Sakura gasped as his fingers grabbed hold of her hips, as he slammed into her, viciously, furiously, as though he was drowning and the only redemption was found between her legs. She gasped and moaned and he snarled, but not too wildly. He still looked human, and Sakura thanked every deity she knew that Gaara didn't lose control in these situations.

His thrusting became more erratic, animalistic, and he shoved his face into her shoulder, his teeth tearing at her sweat-slicked skin. She could feel a pressure building up in her belly, forcing her toes to curl and her back to arch. She pressed herself as close to him as possible, her breasts flattening against his chest.

Her groaned and she felt him stop, his muscles tense, brittle and hard. His climaxes always came so violently, but he always stayed so still. He pulled out of her, and Sakura stared at the ceiling feeling vaguely disappointed.

Naruto grinned and threw an arm around Sakura's shoulders.

"Gaara will be here in a few hours, Sakura! Isn't that so cool!"

Sakura rolled her eyes and shrugged his arm off her, then stretched. They day was clear and brisk, and she felt more relaxed than she had in a long time. Lounging at the training grounds was one of her favorite pastimes. Naruto seemed to share this affinity. They could look over the field, silently, freely, and watch their own illusions and dreams do katas and throwing drills in clouds of memory.

At the mention of Gaara, Sakura had to force herself to remain relaxed, force herself not to react. A warm curl of heat lingered in her abdomen.

He ignored her in any social situation outside of her bedroom. Naruto invited him to a bar and they all squished awkwardly into a booth. Sakura cradled her sake, glancing at the stoic sand-user out of the corner of her eye. He pretended not to notice, though she knew he was perfectly away of her perusal. Naruto blathered on, completely oblivious to the tension curling through the air like a bad smell.

"This is the last time," she said, twisting her fingers awkwardly, "we shouldn't be doing this anymore."

He stared across the room, then got up, unabashed by his nudity.

"I mean it," she pushed, trying not to watch him as he gathered up his clothing, and slowly, steadily dressed. He never stuck around when he was done. He came, he went, he fucked her, he left, and she remained in bed to pleasure herself because she was always left unsatisfied. He didn't say anything as he disappeared out the window.

"Ah! Harder!" she screamed as he bent her over the kitchen table, pounding into her desperately. She grasped blindly at the table, the chair next to her, Gaara behind her. He pressed a hand against her upper back, keeping her front pushed against the cold wood.

She rocked back into him as much as he allowed, and he grunted and reached around her front to fondle her clit as he continued with his own pleasure.

Sakura almost cried when he finished, leaving her aching and unsatisfied. She escaped to the bathroom before he could get dressed, before he could avoid her eyes, before he could jump from the window and she wrenched the hot water of the shower on. She stepped in, letting the scalding water burn her skin a deep red.

Blood coated her face and neck and back and legs and fingernails and how did she get blood there? She felt haggard and warn and allowed a thin hope that perhaps she could stay in the hospital for the next few weeks because she was just so tired of killing children. It almost felt like betrayal--that she would rather watch her own die than kill the small genin and chunin the enemy kept sending to them for slaughter.

One of the ones she killed even had blond hair and blue eyes. Tsunade looked at her oddly when she reported in.

"I would have let you take a shower, Sakura," she said sarcastically, though Sakura knew it was said out of concern.

"I know, shishou," she replied, because she found that she didn't want to wash the blood off her. She didn't want to take a shower and know that so much blood had coated her drain, clogging it and choking it, until one day it would well up and her shower would be stained red.

Sakura went and swam in a pond.

She found he never smelled like blood, which was odd to her. She was positive she smelled more than him. His scent was that of cacti and wind and the beating sun. It made her nose itch.

Her sweat cooled as he relaxed on top of her and she remained loose and relaxed and unfulfilled. The blankets had been shoved off the bed and the blinds were shut so no interruptions could burst through, though she doubted anyone would interrupt Gaara in such a comprising position.

He let out a deep breath, almost a sigh, and rolled off her. He faced away, laying on his side, and Sakura allowed her eyes to rove over the contours of his back. She reached a trembling finger and began to gently trail an invisible line over his muscles and back. He tensed, and she paused thinking it was time for him to get up and leave, but instead her slowly relaxed and she continued tracing patterns of mountains and flowers and names onto his back.

He found her at the training ground, alone. He stood further away, watching her, stalking her, like she was his next meal. In some sense, maybe she was.

She didn't look at him, didn't make any motion that acknowledged him, because two can play at that game. The stiller she was, the closer the animal would come. After a good thirty minutes he settled tensely next to her and she leaned a head against his shoulder and breathed a deep sigh of relief.

She hesitated. She hesitated and that was why a kunai had twisted through her belly, that was why a child had gotten close enough to see her expression, and she had gotten close enough to his as she punched a hole through his chest. She was close enough to see his eyes fade and blank as he slumped against her and her eyes remained oh-so-dry as blood blossomed from her belly and down her legs.

She healed as much as she could and ran home as fast as possible because she was too weak and too shocked to do more, and she hoped that the boy didn't hit any vital organs, though she was pretty sure he did.

They admitted her with little fuss, but no grace, and she was rushed and healed by her furious shishou who glared at her with both fear and frustration. Tsunade ended up screaming for a good hour before stalking out of the room, and telling Sakura she was grounded in Konoha until she could do her job properly. Sakura tried to pretend consternation but could only feel relief. She was tired of killing children, and children trying to kill her.

She was half asleep when he came, barreling through the door, rabid and wild and about to lose control. She watched him through sleep struck eyes as he strode over and studied her desperately, eyes wide, filled with what she suspected was concern, though she forced herself not to assume.

"I'm okay," she whispered, grabbing his hand firmly.

"You're weak," Gaara replied, though without any malice.

"Perhaps," she mumbled with half a smile. She knew he was not talking about her skills. "Thank you for coming."


"You know... we don't mind, Sakura."

Sakura stared at Naruto bemused, "Eh?"

"We don't mind," he repeated, focusing on his ramen as they lounged contentedly at his favorite ramen stand.

"About what?" Sakura asked, swinging her legs back and forth and feeling childish and loving it.

"You and Gaara."

Sakura froze. "What about me and Gaara?"

Naruto slurped and turned to look at her, and she was struck by how blue and clear and true his eyes were, and she envied his beauty, his unbelievable goodness. He smiled his bright, goofy grin and shrugged, but Sakura knew what he was talking about. She offered her a small, genuine smile in return and they didn't talk about it again.

Gaara entered her bedroom. Sakura was awake as soon as his presence was felt from outside her window. Glancing at her clock, Sakura realized it was past midnight.

He stalked to the edge of the bed and paused. She listened to the thump of his gourd hitting the ground, and the rustle of his discarded clothes. She remained still and attentive as he slid beneath the sheets with her, and instead of immediately grabbing a breast, or snaking a hand beneath her thighs, he just settled behind her, molding his body with hers.

Sakura shifted a little closer to him and his arm wrapped around her waist possessively.

"Have a good trip?" she whispered, because he had been gone a few weeks and why was she so happy that he was back?

"Yes," he replied, nuzzling her neck gently.

And she was not quite happy and not quite sad, but she was in-between and perfectly content with that. He made her forget the blood and she made him feel wanted, and it was symbiotic in their give and take, like co-dependence and nature and damned biology.

Imperfection was beauty in and of itself, and when he left hours after they cooled and recovered through post-coital lethargy, she finally felt fulfilled.