Disclaimer: The characters, items, places etc of Naruto are property of Masashi Kishimoto. These objects are used without permission for entertainment only, not for making money. No infringement is intended.

For BrandNewOrange.

Hold Your Colour

By Nanaki Lioness

Sunsets over the city were always beautiful in Sasori's eyes. The sun, too bright to see at first, would eventually journey down the sky and dissolve into a pool of glorious crimson on the horizon. The clouds around it would become tinted in all kinds of colours, from yellow to pink to eventually a darkening hue of blue that would settle across the entire sky and signify the coming of nightfall.

Not that it mattered, he felt. In that moment he would get off of the balcony, re-enter his apartment, and spend the rest of the evening attempting to mix colours. Hardwood floors were paint splattered from his evenings spent this way, but he liked it that way. His home looked like an artist's home, and he would never have it any other way.

He found colours difficult. It would take him months and months to paint something, because he would spend far too long attempting to mix the exact colour he had in his mind. It wasn't possible to walk into a store and buy a shade of 'sunset yellow' that didn't look like somebody had stuffed a dead canary into the tube instead, for example. That wasn't the colour of a sunset, because it had many colours that changed and morphed and made his life so much harder.

He loved every second. A tiny smile crept up onto his face as he poured paint into white mixing trays, slowly swirling them together in concentration and wondering offhandedly when his luck was going to run out. Money was tight- he was keeping up on rent payments, but his kitchen cupboards were suffering for it. He knew he was entirely to blame however, since he often found staying home to play with colours instead of going to work like a responsible adult should.

The only reason he still held his job at all was all down to Itachi, who had begged and pleaded with him to show up just sometimes before he got fired. He'd become fast friends with Itachi in college somehow, considering neither of them spoke much or were particularly sociable, but either way it worked in Sasori's favour since Itachi's family happened to own the biggest corporate business in the city. Itachi had walked straight into a job, and had secured Sasori one too.

Sasori had worked diligently in the first few months, only to blow three months of his wages on art supplies instead of something sensible, like food. With the studio of his dreams complete in his living room, he had begun to skip days, weeks, months- he'd given up keeping track. Itachi had admitted once he'd been clocking Sasori in on days he wasn't present, which was the only time he had felt marginally bad for his actions. He had hidden his card from his friend to prevent him putting his own job on the line any further after that.

As a result, he was down to his last hundred before he finally relented and put an advert in the local paper. He had a spare room. It was boxy small, but it would house a bed which was the most important part. Having to write the advert had cut into valuable paint mixing time, so he'd kept it short and sweet. 'Room to rent. Must be an artist'.

Being an artist himself, Sasori should have realised all artists were completely insane. However he hadn't bargained on meeting insanity himself in the form of Deidara. He'd come to view the room, giving Sasori a huge grin and stepping inside without being invited. He'd had a satchel on his shoulder, his hair pulled up in a high- half-ponytail and bangs in his eyes. Sasori had been more concerned about the dried paint on his hand when he'd offered it forward to shake.

"Sorry about the paint," he'd said, that ever-present grin widening. "I came from college. You wanted another artist, so I'm sure you understand."

Sasori understood. The moment their hands met, he had already made up his mind that the blonde haired man would be his new roommate. Deidara had walked into the room, flung his satchel onto the bed with a sigh and collapsed down next to it.

"I don't cook," Sasori had informed him flatly before leaving him alone. Deidara had emerged half an hour later and offered to buy them takeout, and thus securing his permanent placement in the apartment.

Sasori liked to think that for an artist, he was pretty normal. Deidara was absolutely nothing even remotely resembling normal. He put stickers on everything he could. He had moved his things in, which mostly consisted of art supplies and a ridiculous collection of stuffed animals for some reason Sasori didn't care to ask about. He decorated his small room by flicking paint at the walls (which wasn't all that bad, Sasori would admit to himself later). However, more importantly, he didn't get it.

Deidara used whatever was available to him to sketch and paint his pieces. Sasori couldn't comprehend why he would settle for the colours in the tubes, rarely mixing them unless it was to lighten one with white paint. Instead he would plaster the poor canvas in what Sasori felt was an insult to art- raw, straight-from-the-tube colour that said and meant nothing. The man was insane. That was all there was to it.

"Why do you spend so long mixing colours?" Deidara had asked one evening.

"Because I respect my trade," Sasori had told him sharply, sending Deidara into a sulk.

They clashed like oil on water, but when they wanted to they merged like the line between sunset and nightfall. In a fit of frustration one evening when Deidara just would not shut the fuck up about his stuffed animals and how he'd bought an otter that day and it was awesome, Sasori had kissed him into silence.

It wasn't planned. Then again, Sasori planned nothing in life unless it involved colours. Deidara had, surprisingly, melted into it without resistance. From that moment on they were... Well, Sasori didn't know. They weren't dating, but they weren't just friends. They were barely even friends in the first place, in fact, but that didn't stop them taking their frustration out on each other. Sex was wild and primal, conducted wherever they wanted and without a care for the world around them. On the balcony up against the wall, or on the hardwood floor surrounded by splatters of paint- Sasori didn't care, because he'd begun to notice something exquisite about Deidara.

He was made of colour. The pale flesh of his back would flush red beneath Sasori's hands, strands of blonde hair would clump with sweat and stick to him like the red and yellow of a sunset- within seconds Sasori would be hooked. He'd run his hands across that sunset, feeling in awe of such colour beneath his fingertips in a natural form.

And so, he had a new task. Every night he would watch the sunset on the balcony and re-enter his apartment, smiling as he mixed colour after colour in an effort to match the colour that was the canvas of Deidara.

-.-.-

Author's Notes: Inspired by BrandNewOrange, just for being who she is. Thank you for reading! :)