XOXOX

XOX

Paparazzi

XOX

XOXOX

Sasuke Uchiha was not happy.

As many of his friends knew, Sasuke was a very possessive person. Especially when it came to Sakura Haruno, the girl they all knew he had fallen hard for. But with her sparkling green eyes, long bubble gum hair and curvy yet not too voluptuous figure, what guy wouldn't want her?

She wasn't vain, either, like some girls were. Sakura had her head screwed on right. she knew what she wanted and how to get it, and she was funny and bubbly and just fun to be around. She was full of personality, something the stoic Uchiha seemed to be lacking.

Maybe that was the reason he had yet to confess to her. Maybe Sasuke just had to much pride to admit such a thing. If Sakura had one flaw, it had to be her obliviousness. She had no clue the effect she had on guys, and carried on without a care in the world.

But that didn't stop Sasuke from wanting to strangle Kiba for flirting so shamelessly with her when he had met up with them at the water park.

"Kiba-kun, don't be such a pervert!" Sakura laughed, lightly swatting Kiba's arm. Sasuke ground his teeth together.

"Hey teme, Sakura-chan, let's check out some of the rides!" Naruto shouted from his place near the concession stand. He was waving one arm in the air frantically, attracting the attention of manny passerby.

"That's sounds like a great idea! I'll come with you guys!" Kiba grinned, knowing full well what he was doing to Sasuke. It was just so much fun to piss him off, and it wasn't like flirting with Sakura was something he reluctant to do.

Sasuke's hands itched to toss a towel over Sakura's exposed body, but instead he sighed and gave a grunt of agreement to Naruto's idea. Sakura grabbed his hand and skipped in the general direction of the rides, Naruto and Kiba in tow.

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From: Kiba To: Neji

guess where i am

From: Neji To: Kiba

if you say another dark closet with Hinata, i will personally rip your balls off.

if you have any in the first place, that is.

From: Kiba To: Neji

jeez. i was gonna say at the water park with sasuke naruto and sakura. no need to get all lord protector on me.

From: Neji To: Kiba

sakura haruno?

From: Kiba To: Neji

the very one.

she looks amazing in a bikini, btw.

From: Neji To: Kiba

ill be there in ten minutes.

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Itachi watched Sakura bound into the line for the Toaster Coaster, enviously taking not of the way she held onto his younger brother's hand like it was a life-raft.

He sighed, knowing full-well how Sasuke felt about the pink-haired beauty. If Itachi was in his position, they would already be together. But he knew that even if Sakura felt the same way that Itachi did, they could never be together.

Itachi loved his younger brother too much to steal his first and only crush.

He watched fondly as Sakura whispered something to Sasuke, a blush forming on his cheeks. Sakura remained blissfully unaware of that and laughed at a comment Kiba-he thinks that was the name of the dog-like boy following them-made. Naruto thunked Sasuke on the back, saying something obviously teasing from the way his blush darkened.

"Something wrong, Itachi?" Kisame asked, taking a seat on the bench next to him.

Itachi shrugged, not taking his eyes off the group. Now another pale boy had joined them, sacrificing his high place in line to come stand with their group. He greeted Sakura politely, but must've said something to anger the girl because her face turned red and she slapped him.

Kisame followed Itachi's gaze, sighing when he saw what he was staring at. "She's stunning."

"She is." Itachi agreed.

"Do you think he'll ever tell her about-" Kisame started to question, eyes on Sasuke, but was cut off by the dark-haired college freshman next to him.

"I don't know, but if he doesn't, someone else will beat him to the punch." Itachi stating, taking note of the lovesick way Kiba and Naruto stared at Sakura as she laughed and chatted on.

Kisame looked at him, his face darkening. He knew how Itachi felt, and how the rest of the guys Sakura met felt. Hell, even he was smitten by the pink-haired beauty. "That's not what I meant."

Itachi ignored his question, instead opting to change the subject. "I think we should just give up on the bet. I'm not really feeling it anymore."

"Yeah," Kisame agree, leaning back against the bench, "me neither. We'll talk to Pein about it later."

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Sakura was having the time of her life.

At least, until she spotted Sai a little ways ahead of them in line and called his name.

"Hello, Ugly."

"Go to hell!" She snapped after giving his cheek a well-deserved hit. Behind her, Kiba growled his agreement, and Sasuke's grip tightened on her hand.

Naruto, however, actually went as far as to grab the front of Sai's shirt and threaten to rip his balls off if he ever called her that again.

"Then I'll be dickless like you." Sai commented, fake smile still plastered on his face.

"I HAVE A DICK! DO YOU HAVE TO SEE IT TO BELIEVE IT?"

"Naruto, keep it in your pants, please!" Sakura laughed, reveling in the memories of the four of them. Naruto and Sai had always been like this, from the moment they met back in grade school. Sasuke had stayed with a relative of his that year, leaving Naruto and Sakura all alone.

Well, not really. They had each other and the rest of their class, but still.

And then Sai moved to Konoha, and Sakura thought he was so strange with his pale skin and fake smiles. The rest of their class thought so too, and Sai was soon left all alone, isolated from the rest of the students.

Sakura could still remember perfectly the day they became friends.

"What are you drawing?" Sakura asked, sauntering in to her elementary teacher, Kakashi-sensei's classroom. It was empty save for her and Sai, as the rest of the class went outside for recess. Sakura wanted to ask her teacher if there were any spare jump ropes for double-dutch, which is why she came back in.

Sai, doubled over a drawing notebook that was wider than his head didn't even look up. "A picture." He said.

That was weird, Sakura thought. Normally Sai would at least muster a fake smile in her presence. She hated the way he never smiled for real, which was the reason she tended to avoid him. But it seemed like he was always so lonely now, what with the rest of the class isolating him.

"What kind of picture?" Sakura asked, sauntering over to him confidently. Even in grade school, Sakura was that girl everyone admired and liked. She always stood up for what she believed in, and walked right over walls people put up over themselves to keep others out. She was the one that finally made Sasuke-kun open up, after all.

Sai frowned down at his work, obviously not satisfied with with something.

Sakura couldn't understand what, though. It was a beautiful crayon drawing of the swing set outside, way too good for any non-prodigy to draw. The only thing was that it was completely bare, nobody was on the swings, but one still flew up into the air as if someone was pumping away on top of it.

"Wow," She breathed, "that's so good!"

Sai looked up at her, something akin to pride in his eyes. "You really think so?"

"Yeah!" Sakura cheered, "it's beautiful!"

Sai gave her that fake smile of his, "unlike you, Ugly."

Her jaw dropped. "You-!"

Just then, the bell that signaled the end of recess rung, and the sound of voices flooded the hallway.

Sai smiled, for real this time. "Just kidding." He stood up and gathered his art supplies in his arms. "You should let me draw a picture of you one day."

Sakura returned his smile, "How about tomorrow at recess? Will that be enough time?"

"You'd miss recess for me?" He asked incredulously.

"Of course!" She shouted as their class rushed back into the room, chatting excitedly before the teacher came in and demanded silence. "In fact, you should meet my friend Naruto! I'll bring him, too!"

And that was that.

Naruto and Sai had the same kind of love-hate relationship Sasuke and Naruto had. Sometimes, Sakura even wondered if Sai harbored a small crush on Naruto. She was proved wrong when right before leaving Konoha and moving away for middle school, he gave her a light kiss on the cheek.

Naruto had been furious, stating that he wanted to do it. Sakura laughed it off though, and gave him, Sai, and Sasuke all a kiss goodbye. She had promised to keep in touch and to not let Suna change her. And for the most part, she did.

For the most part. Sakura sighed. She was so bubbly back in Konoha, but nobody in Suna thought of her that way. The kids at that school thought of her as 'Spicy Sakura.' Everyone but her true friends knew her as the girl who always stood up for her class. The cool girl.

But really, Sakura was just too nervous and shy about going to a new school to be herself. That was why when introducing herself to her new classmates, she had said' Nice to meet cha'." And strut to her seat with confidence and ease that make people think she was too cool for them.

Yeah, everyone loved her there, but they were too afraid she would laugh at them if they tried to be her friend.

"Everyone, we have a new student." The teacher, Kurenai-sensei told her class. The students diverted their attention to the girl standing in front of them. Sakura took that as her cue to introduce herself.

Say something, you baka!

But what if they don't like me!

Play it cool!

Sakura did as inner said (Geniusly-Unique! This is for you ;), slinging her bag over her shoulder with one hand and placing the other on her hip. She stuck out a knee and balanced her weight on her other leg.

"Haruno Sakura. Nice to meet cha'."

And then, still trying to play it cool, Sakura strut to the only empty desk by the window with confidence. She placed her case on the desk and pulled out her seat, at down and flipped her hair over he shoulder.

From the seat in front of her, Sakura heard a girl whisper to her friend "She's so cool!"

"I know!" The girl whispered back. "I mean, just look a her hair! It's like she's making a statement! Like 'I don't care what you think!'"

"I bet her parents are famous actors or something!"

"Really? Wow, I heard they were doctors!"

"She must be really smart!"

Sakura stayed quiet, afraid to say something and have them think badly of her. She stayed like that until that summer, when she met Ino, Hinata, Karin, Tenten, and Temari at the Suna beach. They hit it off immediately, and Ino said they didn't care how she was in school, as long as she was herself around them.

They even got in the same class that following year and made a name for themselves. Everyone knew them as the popular girls, the ones who created trouble in schoo land got payback on bullies and unfair teachers. And Sakura was the one who stood up to adults in front of the entire class and protected kids from bullies, though she was still 'Spicy Sakura.'

In reality, they were just a groupd of friends who wanted to have as muc hfun as possible. And of course they did. It was just the way they rolled.

"That was the greatest roller coaster ride ever!" Naruto declared, stumbling away from the ride dizzily. Sakura herself wasn't feeling too steady on her feet, and had to lead against Sasuke for support.

"Are you ready to go home yet?" Sasuke grumbled. He obviously wasn't having a good time, even if Sakura was clinging to him.

"What?" Kiba looked at him like he had lost his mind. "We're just getting started!"

"Aw, just a few more hours, Sasuke! Please?" Sakura looked up at him pleadingly, pushing out her lower lips for emphasis. Sasuke sighed, knowing he couldn't deny her.

"Fine. But I'm not going on anymore roller coasters."

"Deal!" Her and Naruto both grinned.

"Well, look what the cat dragged in."

Sasuke's head snapped up, just in time to spot his least favorite person heading towards them.

"What are you doing here?" Naruto growled, beating his best friend to the punch.

Neji Hyuuga smirked, tossing his long brown hair over his shoulder just like he had done for that Pantene commercial. "I just thought I'd stop by."

"Well, you can leave now." Sai smiled.

Sakura rolled her eyes at their antics, "Oh, c'mon guys! I haven't seen Neji in forever! Hey!" She said, remembering something, "I met your cousin in Suna! We're like best friends now. How come you never told me about Hinata?"

Neji shrugged, enjoying the way all of Sakura's attention was focused on him. He ignored the jealous glares from the rest of the boys. "It didn't seem important."

Sasuke's arm tightened on Sakura's waist. "That's nice. We were just going back to my house to change and hot the boardwalk." He said, knowing full-well that Neji couldn't stand the boardwalk because of the smell of the greasy food.

"I'll come along, I've been wanting to check out some of the surf shops, anyway." Neji replied with a glare of his own.

"You don't surf!" Naruto accused.

"Now I do."

Sakura rolled her eyes at their childish behavior. "Let's just go, guys."

"Fine." But they didn't stop glowering.

Sakura sighed, realizing that she had a long day ahead of her.

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From: Pein To: Itachi

i see no sakura

From: Itachi To: Pein

thats because she left.

btw, im calling off the bet.

From: Pein To: Itachi

you whoremuffin.

and only i hold the power to call off bets!

From: Itachi To: Pein

SMD, ho.

From: Pein To: Itachi

sleep with one eye open, uchiha.

From: Itachi To: Pein

hn.

bitch.

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Yes. I did just call off the bet.

DON'T HATE ME!

It's just I've got alot on my plate and this fic is going to come to an end soon, and the bet would just add more useless chapters!

Don't worry, though. There at least five more chapters left. I know not much happened in this chapter, but I needed to put in background information about how Sakura was after she moved away!

And yes, Sakura did move TO Suna FROM Konoha, just to make that clear. It should be stated in other chapters, but that's just a reminder.

Get ready, the end of summer ball is coming! I'm going to put up a poll of dress choices for Sakura's ballgown, so be sure to check that out on my profile and vote for the one you like!

Now review!

(please :)

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