A/N: In a weird Kakashi and Naruto phase right now, lol! Kakashi and Naruto fluff, YOSH! Enjoy!
The one year old was tiny, too small for the size he should have been. Kakashi stared at the little boy, staring at, for all intents and purposes, his teacher reincarnated. The child was crying, little sobs, obviously hungry and underfed. Kakashi swallowed past the nervous lump in his throat, and cautiously approached the crib, trying to dispel the sudden tears and the tightness in his chest as he caught sight of his dead teacher's child with thin ribs and a pinched, hungry face. Picking up the baby bottle, the Jonin awkwardly held his hand stiffly in place as the child immediately latched onto the pro-offered sustenance, guzzling the high-protein milk as though it was the first time he'd fed that day.
'Which', Kakashi thought, 'It probably was'.
As Kakashi stood over the baby, far too stiff and rigid to be called quite comfortable, he couldn't deny the strong, sudden protective streak that ran through him. He flinched as the baby's fingers brushed against his, then slowly allowed himself to relax.
The two year old was trying desperately to walk, standing on wobbly knees and shaky legs only to fall down seconds later. The adorable, scrunched look of concentration was almost too much to bear for Kakashi, and he physically restrained himself from ruffling the child's stupidly soft, wispy golden hair. Naruto had been trying for a while to walk properly, but the malnourishment from his first year had continued into his second year; he was still on very shaky, unstable legs.
The silver-haired man sat, crouched on the floor, and, sighing lightly, murmured a single name. "Pakkun."
The dog came immediately, grunting in his usual rude manner. "What, brat? I was sleep-" An extraordinarily excited shriek cut through the air and both owner and summon turned to watch as the blond waved cheerily towards the dog, tiny white baby teeth visible as the child smiled. Pakkun gave Kakashi a withering glare as the man helplessly shrugged in Naruto's direction, and sulkily sat on his bottom. "Here, Naru-chan. Come to Pakkun, here Naru." He intoned boredly, just like the past thousand times. Damn his stupid owner. Kakashi didn't miss the sudden worried look in Pakkun's eye as Naruto nearly stumbled to the floor again in his over-eagerness, nor did he miss how the nin-dog allowed himself to be squashed into an exuberant hug when the jinchuuriki triumphantly made his way over.
Naruto turned to Kakashi, his smile blinding, the adoration in the blue eyes obvious. Kakashi softly snorted, and gently stroked Naruto's hair, lips twitching in amusement as the young child nuzzled the hand in affection.
"Do…do… you love me?" Naruto asked softly, not wishing to break the quiet of the night. He and Kakashi were tumbled together on Kakashi's futon, Naruto tightly hugging his protector, his dad, best friend, and brother.
Kakashi, who had been lightly dozing, froze internally, becoming wide awake in seconds. A thousand thoughts swirled in his head. Love. Foreign concept to him. He was the White Fang's son, the infamous Sharingan Kakashi. People didn't ask if he loved. He stared at the top of Naruto's sunshine yellow head, absently lifting long, pale fingers to card gently through the messy locks. He was a killer. An assassin. Naruto was used to him coming home blood-soaked, was already quickly becoming proficient in the use of basic weapons at barely four, Naruto knew what he was. He had never lied to Naruto, about his job, his past, anything. Did he love Naruto? Did he even feel love anymore?
Kakashi's eye closed tiredly. Love…
"I loved you the moment I saw you."
Naruto's soft- wonderfully soft body pressed against his own in a hug. Although the small grip was surprisingly tight and almost claustrophobic, he felt his heart soar peacefully.
Then the arms loosened, and he felt the body on his chest go slack. Just as he thought Naruto was asleep, and he was about to follow soon after, he heard a quiet voice reply.
"Love you more. Love you loads."
The ninja- the killer, the assassin, the torture expert and special weapons and tactics advisor bent down, kissed Naruto's cheek, lay back against the thin pillow and didn't bother trying to stop the tear sliding down his right cheek.
"Love you more." He mouthed silently into the darkness.
Love. Something he hadn't felt truly in years. Trust this annoying little ball of yellow and orange to coax it out of him.
"Kashi-nii, must you wear that dumb mask?"
Kakashi's eye twitched. "Yes."
Naruto, who was seated on the ninja's shoulders, swung his legs happily, uncaring to how his zori-clad feet slapped against Kakashi's chest.
"Naru, stop it, you idiot."
Naruto snorted, and placed his hands over the silver-haired mans eyes. "Can we go get ramen? Pleeeease?" Naruto's voice, childishly innocent yet well articulated, had the unlikeable effect of making Kakashi's resolves weaken dramatically when it came to the boy.
"No." The man continued casually walking through the crowded market place, even though the small chubby hands were still jammed stubbornly over his eyes.
Naruto pouted, and swung his head down right in front of his current mode of transport. "Pleeeeaaaasseee, Kashi-nii?" Kakashi rolled his eyes as he felt a sloppy kiss placed on his covered nose.
"Fine. Ramen today, tofu all the way till Friday. Deal?" Naruto grinned, hugged Kakashi so hard another ninja may just have been strangled to death, and slumped happily against the shoulders.
"Why am I the only one allowed to see your face?"
Naruto was eating strawberry yoghurt; so naturally, the kitchen table was entirely covered in it.
Kakashi was cooking, expertly dicing and slicing his way to a healthy dinner. He wouldn't have bothered before, but now…these past few years, he thought wryly, glancing at the still too-small child in nothing but a slightly baggy t-shirt and some shorts, and he'd had to learn quite a few things.
He casually slipped some soba noodles into the pan, and then walked over to his son.
"Because you're special to me."
The brilliant, blinding, utterly adoring smile that Naruto sent him was enough to have Kakashi cross the room in less then a stride, to crush the boy in a tight hug, stopping only when the soup on the stove began to boil over.
"Jesus Kakashi, that weird demonic kid takes up so much of your time. I mean, the freak is always with you! You never bother to train with u-"
The punch, charged with lightening, was so forceful that Kakashi's entire fist and arm went straight through the other ninja's shoulder.
"Call him that again, and the punch will be through your heart. Got it?" Kakashi hissed, anger swirling in his hoary eye. He had never lashed out like this to anyone from his own village, ever, but for Naruto…for his little fox, he'd kill anyone who dared call him a demon.
And as the tomoe of the Sharingan- Kakashi wasn't sure when he'd unveiled it- slowly stopped spinning and he turned to walk casually away, he was glad that every single ninja in the mission's room was either looking at him in awe, or staring at the gasping ninja with the hole in his arm with disgust.
Demonic kid indeed.
"I'm going to have to sew it up, Kashi-nii, okay?"
Kakashi glanced over his shoulder only to see spiky blond hair obscuring his vision. He had come back from an ANBU mission, and, littered with deep gashes, he had decided to let his young charge get some first aid training in.
Of course, usually he wouldn't have bothered with healing the wounds at all- his accelerated chakra allowed him to heal a little quicker then normal, but then how would Naruto learn otherwise?
So as his son delicately tenderly and quickly sewed stitches into his back, Kakashi merely allowed himself to relax and whip out his latest copy of Icha Icha. He was overdue a read anyway.
"Okay Naruto. Whatever you think is best."
"Why didn't you tell me?" Naruto's eyes were wide and dark and lost, and though he was sitting casually enough, Kakashi could plainly see the violent tremble in the boy's fist.
Furious, the man tore off his ANBU jacket; a true feat since the jacket was actually a sheet of solid metal armour, and stared at his child.
"Who told you?" he demanded icily.
Naruto's eyes welled up with tears, and he turned his head to the side slowly, towards the wall. "No-one had to tell me. They all whisper about it behind my back in school. I kind of figured it out."
Kakashi's mask slipped off, as did his katana's and he swiftly picked up the little blond, to hug him tightly against his chest.
"You're not the only one. You hear me, Naruto? You're not the only one."
Kakashi wasn't aware of when his voice turned so suddenly rough, but he suspected it was around when the sobs had started issuing from his Naru-chans mouth.
"There are demons in all of us, Naruto. Okay? In every single one of us."
He clenched his son to his chest, head bowed, hating the unfairness of it all.
"Even the Hokage?" Naruto whispered tenuously, into Kakashi's hair.
The assassin nodded. "Especially the Hokage's. Don't ever let anybody tell you otherwise."
"Not a demon?" Naruto mumbled quietly.
"Definitely not." Kakashi assured him.
Naruto clenched a piece of Kakashi's strange quicksilver hair, and allowed the man to gently rock him to sleep.
"Who's that?" the children, still young and on the very first day of the Ninja Academy, crowded around Naruto, who was standing closely, nervously, to his Kaka-nii. Nearly six years old and as shy as a deer, Kakashi thought amusedly.
"Naruto." Naruto murmured quietly.
"Naruto, eh?" a loud, obnoxious voice called. "You're that orphan kid, ne?"
Just as the blond was starting to stiffen, he felt a warm, strong, familiar hand settle heavily on his shoulder.
"And you must be that stupid kid everyone talks about, hmm?" Kakashi's voice was light, but appropriately serious. Smirking as the annoying boy in question flushed an ugly colour, Kakashi pushed his son forward proudly.
Naruto smiled slightly as a group of children, all his age, crowded round him, chattering excitedly. "Ne ne, Naruto-kun, who is that cool guy your with?"
"That's just my dad." Naruto looked up, and bright blue eyes met – stony- to everyone but Naruto- grey, but the boy could quite plainly see the affection and pride and love shining in the single gaze.
The bell rang, and suddenly children were swarming to their parents, giving them hugs, listening to last-minutes lectures of "Be good." Naruto tugged Kakashi's arm. "Love you." He said brightly, before turning to scamper into line.
Kakashi stared after the head of gold. "Love you more." He murmured, then turned to go back to the mission's room, small smile behind his mask.
Maybe they'd have Ramen tonight.
A/N: I tried very hard on this so if you have any thoughts/comments/critique, I would love to hear it, they are always so helpful and inspiring! Thank you!