Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto.
AN: My personal prompt for this little piece was 'culture shock'. With members from, literally, all over the map, something along these lines was bound to happen in Akatsuki at some point. Enjoy.
The first time Deidara had felt Sasori's wrath, it had been over something completely unexpected. It hadn't been for starting an argument, keeping him waiting, or for being too spontaneous on a mission; it had been for spending more than five minutes in the shower. The assault had come from completely out of the blue, with the puppeteer bursting into the bathroom, screaming obscenities and ranting all the way. Later, the boy would be quite embarrassed at the high-pitched scream he'd let out as the raging man had grabbed hold of him and bodily dragged him out of the stall.
The next few minutes of screaming and raging and violent shaking passed by in a bit of a blur, ending with Deidara cowering wet and naked behind a very bemused looking Pein. The Akatsuki leader pinned a blank look on the puppet master.
"Sasori…" he began slowly, as if trying to keep himself contained. "Had you been legitimately waiting on that shower?"
The offending man fixed his commanding officer with a blank look of his own, accompanied by an almost innocent looking head tilt. Pein groaned in exasperation.
"This again?" Still no vocal response. "How many times are we going to have to go over this?"
When the puppeteer continued to stay silent the Rinnegan user sighed in resignation before turning to the blond shaking behind him and lifting him to his feet with one hand beneath his shoulder.
"You, go get dressed." Satisfied that Deidara was at least capable of supporting his own weight, Pein turned back to Sasori. "And you, come with me."
With that he took the puppeteer by the elbow and led him away, out the front door of the safe-house and into the torrential downpour beyond.
Deidara wasn't the only Akatsuki member Sasori attacked in this way; anyone who used the showers in the same safe-houses as him was at risk. It was part of the reason why Konan didn't spend time outside of Ame unless she absolutely had to. At least at home she could bathe herself in peace. It was no coincidence that Pein first noticed there was a problem after her shower-time had been violently cut short. Not that she hadn't been capable of defending herself; the puppeteer had had to jump chasses for a few weeks afterwards in order to repair the extreme lacerations and replace the left eyeball of his preferred body. Honestly, he should have seen something like that coming, knowing it was a woman he was attacking.
"Sasori…" the Akatsuki leader began slowly, as if he was about to explain something to a child, or an idiot. "What's going on right now?"
The puppet glanced around slowly, blankly, taking in the sight of the water pouring endlessly from the sky.
Kakuzu had a small respect for Sasori's position on what the acceptable length of a shower was, but it was not for the same reasons. The former Sand-nin held that position due to an innate need to conserve water. The former Waterfall-nin held that position due to a derived need to conserve money. So, they were able to stay out of each other's way and avoid conflicts. This was the reason the stitch-nin was so shocked to come out of a three-minute shower one day to find the puppeteer waiting outside the door for him, grabbing him into a hug and whispering 'thank-you' the moment the older man appeared. Really, that had been just awkward.
"You'll find it does that a lot around here," Pein explained slowly, being very careful to get his point across.
Kisame, born and raised around water, found Sasori's obsession to be amusing, bordering on hilarious. He even found baiting the puppeteer to be a very entertaining game. He would wait in the shower until the safe five minutes were up, and by the time the raging desert shinobi burst in he was ready to douse him with a water jutsu. After that he could usually enjoy the rest of his shower in peace. He supposed he could just argue that because he could convert his chakra into water that his waste of it was negligible, but where was the fun in that?
"In fact, if you paid any kind of attention you would realize that it rains almost every day of the year in these parts."
Orochimaru had been the first victim of these assaults, and the ensuing skirmish had resulted in the loss of the particular safe-house it took place in. But because no one particularly liked the snake-sannin, no one cared about his plight or thought it might be a symptom of a larger problem. The pair was simply told to talk their "issue" through so that it would not affect their performance in the field. They never did.
"And if you noticed that, then you should realize by now that we are not running out of water."
Hidan was an unusual case, seeing as the shower stall was where he preferred to perform his frequent bloodletting repentance rituals. After he was done he would use the shower itself to clean up after himself. This could take a while, depending on how much of a mess he'd made. And so, the first time Sasori tried to interrupt him, he found the immortal standing rigid under the spray, cursing ceaselessly while trying to staunch the blood flow from a gaping hole in his chest. They had stared blankly at each other for a minute, before the puppeteer stoically proceeded to give him medical attention. Hidan always tried to keep his clean-ups short after that incident, because Sasori's bedside manner was worse than Kakuzu's.
"Can you do that for me, Sasori? Can you grasp the concept that you are no longer in the desert?"
Itachi was another Akatsuki member who liked to use bathing-time to unwind. But because he had noticed the warning signs as soon as he'd met the man, he knew better than to take a nice, long shower in Sasori's presence. Instead he frequented public baths whenever the opportunity arose. And so, he had never let the puppeteer catch him with his pants down. Not that he didn't cut it dangerously close when the avoidance option was unavailable.
The living puppet continued to look around blankly, almost as if marveling over the concept. His commanding officer did not take this as a good sign.
Pein and Zetsu didn't really do much by way of showering. In fact, Nagato usually vacated a body before cleaning it, for reasons even he couldn't explain. Not that anyone but Konan was aware of this fact; most of them thought he just used the same avoidance strategy as her. And no one was really sure what Zetsu did to maintain hygiene. Thus, neither of them ever came into conflict with Sasori's water saving obsessions.
"Why don't you just stand out here in the rain for a while," the Rinnegan user suggested gently. "Stand out here until you can grasp the idea that we will not be running out of water any time soon."
He knew this wouldn't do any good; they did this every time he attacked someone in the shower, but it never took.
"Just stay there," Pein instructed, backing away towards the safe-house. "Just stay there. I'll come let you back inside in ten minutes or so, okay?"
It never, ever took, but it still never hurt to try. Maybe one day he'd get lucky. And it would snow over Suna. The probabilities were the same after all.