Secrets, Sake and Fun-Loving Teammates
"You know what? I've never heard of Shikamaru getting kissed before."
How the topic had gotten to that point, Sakura would never know. She and her best friend (most of the time), Ino, were spending their Saturday night at Konoha's most popular shinobi hangout – a place where dancing, drinking and well-rounded conversations were very-much appreciated, especially by their kind. Sakura didn't really go to that place, not when there were so many hospital duties and training sessions and other things to be busy about – but she mostly conceded when it was Ino who dragged her butt off, and she had no excuses left to fend off the blond.
Tonight, apparently, was one of those nights. With Hinata, Tenten and Karin in tow, the five had drunk their share of sake (except for Hinata, who usually got very dizzy even after just one cup) and retold tales of love and adventure.
But back to the topic at hand.
"Maybe that's because he doesn't like to talk about it," Hinata replied to Ino's outspoken thought, sipping her orange juice daintily.
Ino raised an eyebrow at that. "Excuse me? Him, not tell me? I'm his teammate, for Kami's sake. He tells me everything."
Tenten laughed. "You're his teammate, so he tells you everything? So not the case, Ino. I'm Neji's teammate, who's every bit as closemouthed as Shikamaru is when it comes to his private life, and I don't even know if he's dating right now or—"
"You mean you're really scared of finding out," Ino interjected, "because your heart will break and you'll fall into depression and—"
"Shut up, Blondie. I am over him. Lee is my man now."
"Your man-slave," Karin corrected slyly – to which Tenten only blushed, proving how true it was.
"You know, I think he's really just keeping it a secret," Hinata said again.
Ino shook her head vehemently. "Uh-uh, I don't think so. You know what I think? I think he hasn't found the one yet."
"The one," Ino continued. "You know – the white picket fence and children running around the front yard. The loving housewife, who knows how to cook and clean and comfort him every time he comes home from a mission…no, wait. Erase the mission part. I think he's planning to retire early, anyhow, the moment he decides to settle down. Anyway…if you're into that sort of thing, I guess it's pretty romantic."
Karin scoffed, flipping her bright red hair for effect. "Romantic, my foot. You know what I think? He's gay. Gay. Plain and simple."
Ino gasped, not believing the girl had the guts to say that. Then she glared. "He is so not! I've known him for years! I would know if he was!"
Karin merely rolled her eyes. "Like you would know our beloved Sasuke-kun would go mental and reject all of us here, right? Puh-lease. It would be a hundred years before he would repopulate his clan – if he would ever get to that point at all, given his emo-and-angst-mode as of late. But back to the point – Sakura, what do you think? You can't tell me you don't really think the Nara is not gay, can you?"
Sakura, who had been silent during the whole exchange, took a huge gulp of her sake before replying. "He's not gay."
Ino "Ha!"ed triumphantly, smirking gleefully at Karin.
"And he's dating someone," Sakura continued.
Ino's mouth dropped open.
"That is so not true, Forehead! If he was dating someone, he'd tell me!"
"He knows how much you love gossip, Pig – of course he's not going to tell you," Sakura pointed out.
The blond glared at that, crossing her arms and pouting. It was true, though – there was nothing in the world that excited her more than juicy, juicy gossip (except for a bout of really hot and incredible sex, of course). But still. They were teammates. Teammates. Didn't anyone understand how absurd it was not to tell her?"I can't believe it. That stupid jerk. He is so gonna get a lecture from me, he can't exclude me from important stuff like that. Who's the girl, then? And why do you know?"
Sakura shrugged. "I have a source. And all I can say for now is…the girl's here."
"Where?" Ino, Tenten and Karin exclaimed at the same time.
"Looking at him, for that matter."
All five heads whipped towards the pineapple-headed genius, who was sitting at a stool on the opposite corner of the bar, nursing his sake quietly.
"Liar," Karin snorted. "We're the only ones looking at him. You are definitely lying."
To which Hinata's eyes only widened, her mouth nearly dropping open in shock. Composing herself quickly, she stared at the girl Sakura mentioned, comprehension dawning. Keeping her mouth shut, she quietly sipped her drink.
"Yes, you are!" Ino declared, nodding her head fervently. "You can't even prove it!"
"Sorry, Sakura, but I'd have to agree with them on this," Tenten said.
Sakura sighed. "You guys really should just leave him alone. He wants his life that way."
"Not until you tell me who it is first. Or it's definitely a lie," Ino remarked.
"How would you like me to prove it, then?"
At this, Hinata smiled. "Why don't you walk over to him and kiss him? I'm sure that the girl will be jealous, and will finally reveal herself. Then everyone will be satisfied."
"That is a brilliant idea!" Ino exclaimed. Karin grinned. Tenten nodded.
Sakura merely looked alarmed.
"What are you talking about? No!"
"You started it, now you continue it!" Ino pointed out.
Sakura glared. "Well, what if I don't want to?"
"Do it or I'll tell everyone how you tried to seduce Sasuke-kun and how he rejected you so brutally," Karin threatened.
"Like he didn't reject you, too," Sakura retaliated. "And the Pig as well. And that was a year ago, you nerd. You telling everyone won't make me care."
"Do it or I'll tell everyone about your secret stash of Icha-Icha in your office," Ino threatened.
"You have a secret stash of Icha-Icha in your office?" Tenten asked, delighted at finding out about this.
"Pig!" Sakura hissed in warning.
"And that you have an outfit that is an exact replica to the one on page 67 where the nurse tries to give the patient some—"
"Okay, okay, fine! I'll kiss him. Just shut up."
"You are so brilliant, Yamanaka," Karin complimented loudly.
"You're welcome." Ino beamed.
"I said shut up, both of you. Ganging up on me like that when I was the one who made you two stop bickering in the first place. Jeez."
Still grumbling, but without further ado, Sakura stalked off to do her task.
Ino and Karin winked at each other.
"Now we'll definitely know who this mystery girl is!" Tenten proclaimed excitedly.
"What mystery girl? What's happening?"
At the sound of the male voice, the remaining four heads turned to look up at Hinata's fiancé, who had rested his hand comfortably on the Hyuuga heiress' shoulder.
"We just dared Sakura to kiss Shikamaru in front of everyone so that his secret girlfriend will stand up and approach them and scratch her eyes out," Ino supplied.
"Which we know is not going to happen, because anyone who would scratch Sakura's eyes out would end up in the hospital with broken bones after being beaten into a bloody pulp," Tenten continued.
"Which we know is never going to happen, because duh – the Nara's so-called girlfriend is non-existent. He's gay and probably secretly fantasizing over Sasuke-kun, as we all used to do. And Pinky is just being an arrogant know-it-all, as usual," Karin finished.
Naruto blinked, trying to absord everything that was being said. After he was done, he grinned, showing mischievous side-fangs and sitting beside Hinata, putting his whole arm on her shoulder now and giving her a sound smack on the cheek.
"This, I can't wait to see," he declared.
They all waited, eyes ready to catch the culprit.
When Sakura had finally reached the corner where the still-quiet Nara was sitting, she cleared her throat, eyes shining with determination.
He glanced at her blandly, not saying anything.
"Roll your chair over and face me," she ordered.
"…it's a stool, not a chair."
"Roll your stool over and face me," she repeated.
"Just do it," she insisted.
Sighing, utterly confused, Shikamaru did as he was told, until he was facing her. "This is annoying. What do you want, lady?"
She didn't answer his question. Instead, she stepped closer until she was snuggled in between his legs, her hands clutching his jacket and her face inches from his.
"I'm going to kiss you," she declared, saying it as easily as she could say, "I'm a girl" or "I have pink hair".
His eyes widened. "What—"
"I'm going to kiss you until you forget about everything else," she interrupted. "And you have no choice but to go along with it."
Before he could protest any further, she closed the space between them, and touched her lips to his.
And it all started out gentle, really – almost mechanical, with him stiff and unresponsive and her feeling very clumsy. Then his posture loosened, and his mouth opened, and it was all she could do not to keel over as his tongue came out and prodded her mouth open. To say Shikamaru was a good kisser was an understatement – with the way his lips were practically tasting every piece of her flesh and making her come up with strange, strange noises from her throat and making her knees weak and everything in her body heat up like molten lava…her brain cells fizzled, rendering their function utterly useless.
He broke away first, taking a deep breath before his mouth stayed just at a spot below her ear.
"Was that what you wanted?" he murmured huskily, his voice rough and low.
Which made her nearly melt into a puddle at his feet. Nearly.
"Y—yes," she stammered.
Smirking, he pulled her closer, arms wrapping around her and lips nibbling her earlobe as he did so.
"So…what made you change your mind? About revealing all of this?"
"I—" She cut off, squirming a bit as he massaged her hair subtly, almost sensually. "They dared me."
He raised an eyebrow at that.
She huffed. "I have my pride! You know how it goes!"
He smirked again.
As if remembering something, the pink-haired kunoichi frowned, suddenly looking glum. This made him frown as well, and worry a bit.
"Hey, what's wrong?"
She remained quiet.
"Will you still love me if I'm not the housewife and picket-fence type of girl you've always dreamed about?" she blurted out.
He looked at her in surprise, momentarily speechless. Then his eyes softened as he pulled her into his lap, nuzzling her cheek as he did so.
"What brought this on?"
She bit her lip. "It's just something they mentioned, and I don't know…"
He stopped her words by bringing his thumb to her lower lip and rubbing it affectionately. Then he rolled his eyes.
"Yare, yare. They are such annoying women. Planting that in your head when you know it's not true."
"Really? You'd better be sure," she muttered.
"You seduced me, lady. And so boldly at that. And so relentlessly. Do you think I would so easily give in if I wasn't that hooked on you?"
"Oh, really?" she teased. "So you're hooked on me?"
"You're going to be my personal medic-nin for a long time. For years and years to come, in fact. That beats a boring housewife any day."
Brightening at the thought—and trying not to blush at the underlying meaning his statement was implying—she gazed at him happily, green eyes twinkling.
"You so are hooked on me," she announced proudly.
"Want me to prove that to everyone here?" he asked bluntly.
She smiled sweetly, turning red again as she did so. "Why, Shika-kun, you really can't resist me."
"I'm only trying to keep you in place. Don't be too flattered," he murmured.
Knowing that was not true, because she knew how he really felt, she touched her lips to his, anyway.
He only brought her closer.
Four mouths (three girls, one guy) dropped simultaneously open.
"Oh. My. Freaking. KAMI." Tenten.
"What the hell. It's like reading an Icha-Icha episode that's about to happen! HELL!" Karin.
"That jerk! THAT JERK! Why didn't he ever tell me? AND THAT PIG!" Ino.
Hinata simply smiled.
And finally, Naruto. "Hey, hey! Why is she still kissing him? I don't get it, I really don't! They should stop! He's taking advantage of her! The girlfriend will see and poor Sakura will be embarrassed and Shikamaru is gonna end up battered and dead…"
A pause. Then comprehension, slow as it was, dawned.
"OH HELL HELL HELL! NO WAY! MY SAKURA WAS STILL A VIRGIN! INNOCENT! UNTOUCHED! HE CORRUPTED HER! I'M GONNA KILL HIM! I'M GONNA PUMMEL HIM TO THE GROUND!"
The rest of the night was spent placating the pink-haired kunoichi's ever-protective brother-slash-teammate.
In a dim-lit portion of the bar, watching the whole affair with extreme amusement (four girls trying to hold down one very angry blond loudmouth and a couple kissing like there was no tomorrow), sat four unlikely friends who always went to this place when their Saturday nights were free.
"Man. That genius is gonna be ka-pooch when Uzumaki's done with him," Suigetsu said, relishing the idea.
"It's a surprise, to be honest," Kakashi stated, speaking for the first time in quite a while – after the surprise wore off, anyway. He put his little orange book down, tilting his head in observation.
"Is what Sakura doing to him called seduction? I read that in the book you let me borrow, Senpai." Sai beamed.
Sasuke scoffed. "Don't let him read too much of that stuff, Kakashi. He doesn't get it."
Sai pondered this over, before beaming again. "Then it must be that other book Ino-san lent me. Symptoms of Love."
To which Suigetsu guffawed, thoroughly entertained. "You do have a point."
"And why do you say that?" Kakashi asked, a bit curious.
"Well, in case you don't remember, I am that Nara dude's next-room neighbor. I can hear their declarations of love, alright – right in between the moans and groans of pleasure. And it lasts pretty long, I tell you – several rounds of declaration, in fact."
The three remained silent.
"And how do know all this in detail?" Sasuke asked quietly.
"Why, I was listening in, of course," Suigetsu boasted. "Who wouldn't listen to hot stuff like that? You should hear her, you know. She's sounds so hot and wicked, especially when she's screaming his name – and the naughty things they do are so incredibly—"
He was on the floor, unconscious, before he could continue.
And the three ever-protective teammates went back to being quiet, sipping their drinks and plotting on how to get back at the so-called Konoha genius who rendered their girl not-so-innocent anymore.
He was going to pay. Most definitely.
a/n: Um...I'm back? Heh. Well, not really. This just popped into my head and would not go away and had my fingers practically itching and...you know the rest. I haven't written anything in about a year (rusty? most definitely!), and I feel relieved (sort of) to get this out of my nagging mind. Tell me what you think. :)
As for Slave Driver and Best Laid Plans...I'm getting there. I just need to get the plot bunnies moving. They've been hibernating too long. Lazy bums.
Dedicated to Karen, aka karenina143. (who is my personal nagger when it comes to going back to this stuff) You rock, girl!