Before I start, I got rid of the thanking and replying to anon reviews thing (even on my other chapters) as a few of you guys complained that the beginning of a chapter really isn't an appropriate place for that type of thing. I'm sorry for annoying you guys and I'm sorry for those who expected a review/mention. Thank you for all your support though. I thoroughly appreciate each and every one of you who has left a review on my story. I thank thee (yee) from the bottom of mee heart(ee).
Sasuke let his lips linger on the blonde's for a second, before pulling back. Coal coloured eyes stared into a deep azure abyss. The raven brushed his thumbs lightly over Naruto's scar ridden cheeks before whispering once again.
A small smile crept its way onto Naruto's face as he gazed at the pale, driven Uchiha. The boy was so impossibly beautiful. Ebony locks framed ashen cheekbones as several pieces of hair fell softly in front of his eyes. A sculptured jawline highlighted his pale face and made it seem as though the flawless, angular curves were the result of a direct touch from God. Two full lips, red and plump, had a miniscule twitch as they begged to have a taste of the blonde once again. Sasuke's nose was sharp curving lightly on the top. His two dark, tumultuous eyes hid away the majority of feelings but when allowed, were the most expressive feature on his face. Naruto could not deny the boy's beauty – being easily the most beautiful person he had ever seen.
"You're a bastard. Why did you say that?" Naruto slowly crept off the raven's body as he sat on a patch of grass nearby. His legs were pulled up against his chest as he eyed the Uchiha, wondering what those sometimes expressive eyes were hiding.
Sasuke pursed his lips as he regained proper mentality. The blonde had once again blown any ideas out of Sasuke's mind with sensual kisses. The raven had mentally prepared himself for what they were going to discuss and how he was going to explain his jealousy in layman's terms, but all thought subsequently disappeared when the blonde took control and gave him an electrifying kiss.
Naruto, on the other hand, took his silence to mean something quite different. His eyes narrowed at the sight of the emotionless Uchiha. Automatically assuming that the other had been producing meaningless apologies, he briskly stood and started to make his way to the gate of the mansion.
Sasuke's eyes followed the blonde before realising what exactly was happening.
The blonde paused, before turning to look at the raven. Sasuke sighed loudly as he ran a couple of fingers through his messy locks. Sasuke followed Naruto's movement before making his way to stand right in front of the irate blonde. Naruto crossed his arms with an angry – sad – expression on his face.
"Yes, you have told me many times," Naruto replied, looking at Sasuke with a slight frown on his own face.
"No, fuck. Naruto, I am sorry for acting like a douche before—"
"Hey, stop it with those comments okay?" Sasuke let out a sharp breath, "I didn't mean to insult your ninja prowess. You are a great shinobi and I didn't mean anything when I said stay away from Zabuza.."
Naruto's eyes contemplated the situation. "So what did you mean?"
"I was.. fuck.. I was jealous, okay? Hearing him say those things about you, I just got really jealous. And then when you said that we weren't together, I just couldn't handle it knowing that he was going to exercise the opportunity to get with you,"
Naruto's mouth dropped in shock. Whatever he thought was going to come out of Sasuke's mouth, it certainly wasn't that.
The boy in question pursed his lips as he observed the blonde. The raven's eyes locked onto Naruto's own.
"I don't know what's in the water, but since I've come back to this time I have been infatuated with you," Sasuke's voice held a monotonous edge, "I was jealous. Forgive me,"
Sasuke felt his pride crumbling with every word. Their relationship was ruined. Naruto's face depicted that of a horrified nurse. Sasuke closed his eyes in anguish as he sucked in a deep breath, trying to school the emotions that were daring to reveal themselves on his emotionless face.
"I didn't realise…" Sasuke could hear Naruto's shaky tone.
Sasuke felt like yelling. How didn't Naruto realise his feelings? Didn't the blonde just kiss him only a few moments ago? Why was Naruto acting like he wasn't actively participating in their hidden flirting?
"Sasuke.." Naruto took a step forward, aching to touch the raven's face.
Rage was building up steadily within the Uchiha's somewhat broken mind frame.
Sharingan stared the blonde down. Naruto subconsciously took a step back at the fierce sight, noticing several dust particles swirling rapidly above the ground.
"Sasuke, listen to me!" Naruto frowned, his heartbeat increasing in tempo. The air became thick in his lungs as he witnessed the sight of the troubled Uchiha.
Sasuke himself was trying to calm down to no avail. He should have expected to be disappointed. His whole life was a disappointment. However, Naruto? He thought that the blonde reciprocated his feelings to some extent. What the hell was that kiss then? Why was the blonde acting as though Sasuke having feelings for him was some atrocious nonsense?
Purple haze started to meld its way around Sasuke's lower body; the urge of the Susano'o willing to break free from its master's hold as though it was some sort of sentient being. Sasuke ignored the plight as he struggled to maintain sane thoughts, skimming through several memories of Naruto-flirting, each battering down his ego to a bare minimum.
He was mad. Oh, he was definitely mad. He didn't expect the blonde to string him along thinking that he was looking for some kind of fuckbuddy. However, out of everything, he was hurt.
Yet, before the raven could act—
A red chakra covered hand punched his purple skeletal frame, cracking its outer exterior. Sasuke's Sharingan blazed at the sight of the Kyuubi Naruto.
"Listen to me, god damnit!" Naruto growled at Sasuke. The raven seemed to take things out of proportion. He hadn't even said anything and the Uchiha was already assuming the worst.
Sasuke narrowed his eyes at the irritated blonde, the hurt in his heart blasting away any other emotion.
"I don't know what you are assuming right now, but fuck!" Naruto kicked his shoe on the dusty ground. "I'm not good with explaining my emotions either. I think it's something that's inherent in being human so, I think I'll just let my actions speak for themselves,"
Naruto took a deep breath once more before turning his head in the direction of the shocked Uchiha. Gently placing his chapped lips upon the other boy's, Naruto let his hands slither down as he pulled Sasuke closer to him, their bodies flushed with contact. Nudging Sasuke's nose slightly with his own, he traced circles on Sasuke's back, relishing in the fact that he helped instigate Sasuke's soft gasp. Tracing the other boy's lower lip with his tongue, Naruto gathered Sasuke's pale face in his hands.
Sasuke was shocked. Before he knew what was happening, Naruto pulled back and punched him straight in the face.
"You are a goddamn bastard who does not listen to anything, only assumes the worst and hides things from me!" Naruto yelled. "Just listen for once, you self-absorbed prick. I. Like. You. Too. I didn't realise that you were jealous, I thought you were just being your asshole-like self once again. And then you also had to blow everything out of proportion and in the end I had to punch yo—oh shit, Sasuke?! Are you okay?"
Sasuke had yet to open his eyes from the shiner Naruto laid upon his milky cheek. Once again he had overreacted tenfold.
"Sasuke.." Naruto sat messily on the dusty ground, a worried look plastered on his face.
Sasuke sighed loudly, his eyes still closed. "We're screwed aren't we?"
"Why do you say that?" Naruto poked the Uchiha on the arm as a crooked smile made its way onto the blonde's face. "I like you, you like me, we don't have to make this any more complicated than it already is."
"What does that even mean?" Sasuke scoffed.
"Well… We're here on a mission and despite how much I like kiss—uh, let me start again. We're here to save Konoha and its citizens. I've come to realise over time that I like you in a romantic sense – which is great and all – however, our priorities should be set on saving Konoha and fixing up what went wrong," Naruto mumbled, awkwardly scratching the back of his neck.
A tinge of disappointment lay deep in Sasuke's stomach as he sighed once again. The terms were fine, logical even, but Sasuke didn't have to like it.
"Hn, whatever," Sasuke turned away, stretching his muscles before facing Naruto once again. "So what's next?"
"Chuunin exam?" Naruto answered easily, surprised that Sasuke was able to change emotions in the blink of an eye, "I was thinking maybe we should keep it low, do some recon, spot out Orochimaru and perhaps alert him to some higher ups. We can always get Kakashi to report those Sound nins to the Kages, since I don't expect them to trust us mere genin,"
Sasuke brushed his knees before sighing once again. "The higher ups would just screw everything up. Besides, Sarutobi needs to die."
"No." Naruto's eyes flashed. "Do you think you're God or something? Believing that you can just pick and choose who lives and who dies? Why Zabuza and not Sarutobi?"
"If Zabuza lived, he would not have interfered with our future in any way. He was not a part of the Akatsuki; he didn't have any grudges against any Konoha nin, it doesn't matter if he lived or if he died, no matter how harsh that sounds. The only reason why we have an advantage is because we know what is going to happen. I know you and the Hokage have some relationship but think about it, if Sarutobi lives... Tsunade will never come. Sakura will never learn. He's old. He's not weak, sure, but it's more important that we keep hold of the future that we know." Sasuke stood up, "Come on, we need to train Sakura,"
"Wait a sec. I need time to process this. I know you and the Hokage didn't have any relations, but he was my grandfather. He was the only one who cared even just a tiny bit for me when I was young. I understand what you're saying, but it's still hard." Naruto groaned as he rubbed his hands across his dry eyes. Knowing the future sucked.
"When does Jiraiya come?" Sasuke asked. "I guess Kakashi won't need to train me now,"
"Kakashi… bitch put me with Ebisu so he could train you. I was so jealous, man. But uh, I think after the prelims. Before the final event, he came and trained me. Do we tell him our secret?" Naruto stood up and made his way to the gate.
"No. No more telling people. The less people who know, the less people who'll find out." Sasuke spoke sternly. He stared directly into Naruto's eyes, telling him how serious he was.
"But it's ero-sennin! He's most likely the only person that we can fully trust! Sasuke, we need help." Naruto reasoned, his voice strained from yelling.
"I said no, Naruto. This is final." Sasuke walked off, "Get Kakashi, we're training Sakura."
"Sasuke." Naruto's deep voice reverberated through the room. Sasuke paused, but did not turn to face Naruto. "You are not the leader of our mission. It is not your call who lives; who dies; who knows; who does not. Whatever we both agree on, that and only that will be our course of action."
Sasuke turned his head slightly to the left and looked at the blonde with piercing eyes. "Well you better suck it up and agree with me fast, then."
Naruto watched the Uchiha leave the room, an anger building deep within the blonde's chest. He ran a hand through his lump of hair, trying to calm down his budding fury as he thought over the situation. Sasuke was stubborn, but Naruto was sure that Jiraiya, no matter how immature he was at times, was the best possible ally they could have. Jiraiya had contacts in all of the nations, all eager to spread information on Akatsuki members and Orochimaru. Information like that was hard to come by without a reference from influential people – like the toad sannin.
Naruto sighed as he walked out of the eerie house. If only that stubborn Uchiha would listen to what he had to say before making assumptions and walking out, assuming absolute authority over Naruto. The blonde knew that their positions back in their Team 7 days allowed the Uchiha free reign to boss the blonde, and that his rogue team also required his firm decisions, but right now in their current situation, they were partners. Partners who worked together to decide what to do, especially in circumstances that decided whether or not a person should live or die. Naruto accepted the fact that he was dense, but in this case, he was not in the wrong. Sasuke was in the wrong, and Naruto was determined to prove himself worthy to Sasuke – one way or the other.
"Hokage-sama, you wanted to see me?" Hatake Kakashi bowed his head in the Hokage's direction, wondering why he was suddenly called to see the other.
"Ah yes Kakashi," Sarutobi blew his pipe before sitting up straight in his seat, a serious look in his eye, "I want you to keep an eye on those missing nin."
"I do not trust them or their intentions for our village. I know Naruto has somehow created a bond with them, but their eagerness to join our ranks is very… bizarre. I do not know what they want from us, but for now I would like you to just observe and report any suspicious behaviour."
Kakashi nodded. He was also wary about Zabuza and Haku. Kakashi trusted the blonde but an extra pair of eyes – or eye – to keep tabs on the situation helped immensely.
"Speaking of which. Ahh, Iruka come in, you have great timing." Sarutobi called out before standing up in front of his desk.
Kakashi turned around to face the door as Iruka walked in with his two guests.
"Thank you Hokage-sama. I have tested these two and obviously they passed with flying colours." Iruka bowed his head towards the hokage, as he turned to face the two newly-crowned genin.
"Thank you Iruka, you may be dismissed." Sarutobi smiled. "Congratulations on becoming Konoha genin. Our teams run in teams of three, with a jounin sensei. Unfortunately as we are in the middle of a school year there are no free genin available to join your team. However, I assume that you both are capable enough to survive without another teammate at this point in time."
"Yes, we would prefer it actually." Zabuza nodded. He knew that the Hokage was just going through the motions but did he really think that Zabuza and Haku needed a genin team mate? Or even a jounin sensei for that matter?
"Indeed. I have also appointed a jounin sensei for you two. You may refer to him by the name of Yamato. He is highly skilled and will be able to assist with any queries that you may have. He was not able to come and meet you today but he has scheduled a get-together to meet you. Here is the time and coordinates," Sarutobi passed a slip of paper to Zabuza who bowed his head in respect.
"Thank you Hokage-sama, we truly appreciate all you have done for us," Haku bowed before placing a hand on Zabuza's arm.
"Indeed. You are dismissed," Sarutobi ordered. Zabuza and Haku nodded before leaving the office.
"Tenzo? I didn't realise he was taking genin teams." Kakashi questioned.
"He isn't. No choice now. I'll tell him today." Sarutobi let out a deep breath.
"You haven't told him?!" Kakashi laughed. Oh boy, this was worse than when he was told that he had to test another year of genin.
"No… I need to retire from this," Sarutobi sighed, "Alright, leave an old man to his work, Kakashi."
Kakashi just shook his head in wonder before leaving the room.
Sasuke opened his eyes and looked at the figure bending in front of him.
"I am angry with you, but we have to work together. I can't just run away from you every time we have a disagreement," Naruto signed before taking the place next to Sasuke.
"I don't see why you should be angry. I am only suggesting the most reasonable and logical option. Did you get Sakura?" Sasuke turned to the blonde with an annoyed expression on his face.
"No. Don't boss me around like I'm your subordinate. I want to make one thing very clear, Sasuke. We are partners. We decide on things together and you will not boss me around." Naruto replied. He was pissed off. He and Sasuke had been working well with each other since they had arrived back in this time, but it all changed so suddenly.
"Tch. Useless," Sasuke rolled his eyes, "I only asked you to get Sakura so we could train her. I did not have any ulterior motive, idiot."
Naruto calmed down slightly. Okay, perhaps he over reacted there, but he was still angry. Maybe it would be better if he tried to at least get along with the Uchiha. He snorted.
'Confessed to each other only hours ago and already pretending like it never happened.'
Well to be fair, he did not expect their relationship to change much at all. He was kinda glad about that, he couldn't imagine being all lovey-dovey with the other – Sasuke just wasn't that type of person. And Naruto was far too insecure to act all lovey-dovey without the other also doing the same.
"Alright, sorry." Naruto muttered, "Sakura? What do you want to teach her?"
Sasuke shifted slightly, "Probably just taijutsu. She knows the regular academy taijutsu well enough, but we have to teach her how to make her own style – something that the enemy won't expect."
"Why do you want to teach her?" Naruto questioned. The blonde knew that the other wasn't exactly fond of their pink-haired team mate.
"She's part of team 7. And team 7 is… important to me," Sasuke muttered, his cheeks slightly colouring. "She needs to know how to defend herself. If we don't follow everything exactly, things won't go the same as last time. Orochimaru is a threat; Sakura needs to know how to defend herself against highly-skilled nin."
"Are we going to do the teaching? Or will we instruct Kakashi from the outside?"
"I think a team teaching exercise should be fine. Kakashi can do the main bulk of teaching and then we can just recommend things." Sasuke stood up, and leant a hand out to the blonde, "Come, let's tell Kakashi."
Naruto reached out and grabbed his hand before pulling himself up. "Thanks Sasuke," the blonde said, smiling at the Uchiha.
"Hn." Sasuke's hand brushed against Naruto's several times as they walked; a hint of a smile visible on the Uchiha's lips.
The duo made their way into the village, pausing momentarily as they felt an incoming chakra pulse.
"Our newest Konoha genin! Congratulations!" Naruto cheered as Zabuza and Haku walked into step with them.
"Hah, runt! Did you think that we weren't going to make it?" Zabuza ruffled Naruto's hair.
"So who'd you get paired with? The poor, unfortunate genin stuck with you lot. Oh no, sympathies are in order for that lone soldier," Naruto said as he tried to fix his mess of hair.
"We weren't paired with anyone, Naruto-kun. Although we have been placed with a jounin sensei, I think his name is Yamato?" Haku smiled lightly, looking at the piece of paper that explained the whereabouts of their appointment.
Naruto laughed suddenly, "Yamato? Oh boy, do they really not have any other jounin? What are the chances?"
"Is our jounin famous? I don't remember ever hearing about a Yamato of the Leaf before," Zabuza asked.
"Oh no, he used to be my old sensei back in the uh.." Naruto cleared his throat, "Back in the other time. He's great though, you guys have nothing to worry about. He's really patient, unlike Kakashi-sensei."
"What's unlike Kakashi-sensei?" A voice called out from behind. Naruto's figure went cold as he laughed unsurely.
"Ah nothing, Kakashi-sensei! We were just talking about how you're the best, is all!" Naruto scratched his head sheepishly.
"Kakashi… Naruto and I need to speak with you," Sasuke spoke, his voice gruff.
"Address your elders with respect, Sasuke. Kids these days…" Kakashi looked at Zabuza who was nodding sympathetically.
"Alright, Haku and I will catch up with you three later. See you," Zabuza gave a quick salute before walking off.
"So… what's there to discuss?" Kakashi asked, turning towards the pair.
"We were thinking of training Sakura, she needs to be more prepared for the chuunin exams. Taijutsu would be a good way to start. She knows the basic academy style, but Sasuke and I were thinking of helping her develop her own style – something that will be less easy to predict," Naruto answered, "If you did the teaching, Sasuke and I could add a few comments and help cement her training. Sakura needs to work on reflexes especially; she relies on brute strength too much."
"Understood. There should be no problem with that. Shall we start tomorrow? I will drop by Sakura's place to send her the message."
Sasuke just stared at Kakashi before walking off.
Both Naruto and Kakashi stared at him as Naruto regained himself. "Thanks Kakashi, well see you."
"Kakashi-sensei, you mean," Kakashi corrected the blonde who was already running off towards the Uchiha.
"Time-travellers, these days…" The jounin sighed, looking up at the sky, "No respect at all."
Naruto dodged Sasuke's foot, using the split second to aim a punch at the Uchiha's shoulder. The attack hit, throwing Sasuke slightly off balance. Sasuke used the momentum to turn and retaliate with a sharp jab into the blonde's abdomen. Naruto coughed, bending backwards, trying to escape Sasuke's assault. Sasuke aimed higher, planning on landing a shiner on the blonde's tanned face. Naruto, already predicting Sasuke's attack, deflected the attack easily. Grabbing a kunai out of his holder, Naruto slashed in Sasuke's general direction, hearing a loud clang as it was intercepted by a kunai that somehow mysteriously made its way into Sasuke's hand.
Naruto took a step backwards, stepping on uneven plain, his eyes widening slightly. For a millisecond, the blonde lost his balance and unfortunately it was at this exact moment that Sasuke made a slash at Naruto's arm. Blood started to spill, as a relatively large gash made its way on Naruto's shoulder. The blonde fell down onto the ground, the air leaving him.
"Shit. Naruto, are you ok?" Sasuke dropped his weapon before bending in front of his blonde team mate. The Uchiha grabbed his shirt and tore it, creating a long piece of fabric that would do as a makeshift bandage.
"Yeah.. ouch." Naruto sighed as Sasuke quickly cleaned the wound and took care of his arm. "Thanks. Sorry, lost my balance for a sec,"
"No need to apologise. Are you okay? Do you need any painkillers? Do you want me to get some real bandages? The wound was relatively deep, I can take you to the hospi—"
Naruto leant forward and placed his lips on the Uchiha, efficiently shutting off his endless worries. Sasuke softened into the kiss, placing a hand on Naruto neck, gripping onto the blonde's sweaty locks. Naruto nibbled Sasuke's lips slightly before pulling back, a smile on his face.
"I'm fine, Sasuke," Naruto grinned at Sasuke's soft expression, "The Kyuubi looks after me. You don't have to fret. He'll heal it soon,"
"Sasuke! Naruto!" A female voice called out as the duo turned towards Sakura who was running towards them. "Is Kakashi he—Naruto? Are you okay? You're bleeding!" Sakura bent on her knees as she inspected Naruto's arm and bandage.
"I'm fine Sakura-chan! Don't worry about me! The bastard and I were just sparring when I messed up a tad. I should be fine in a bit," Naruto smiled reassuringly at his team mate who was looking at his arm in worry.
"If you say so... So, Sasuke-kun! Do you know what we're going to be learning today?" Her attention turned from the blonde to her other team mate who was observing the two from afar.
"Hn. Taijutsu," Sasuke answered, "Sit down, dobe," he ordered Naruto who was struggling to stand up. "You're going to disturb the wound if you stand up now."
Sasuke walked to the blonde and placed a hand on Naruto's other shoulder, stopping him from getting up.
Naruto stopped struggling before sighing and sitting on the ground. He looked up at the Uchiha who was staring at him with a slightly worried look on his face.
"Alright team, are you ready for today's lesson?" Kakashi appeared, walking towards his genin as he took in the scene. "Naruto? Are you alright?" The jounin noticed the blonde's somewhat pained expression and the few drops of blood that scattered the grass.
"I'm fine, Kakashi-sensei. Let's carry on with our lesson," Naruto said as he stood up, gripping his elbow.
"Naruto… I don't think you should participate in today's lesson," Kakashi stared at the blonde.
"Oh no, it's alright," Naruto peeled the bandage off his arm. A long, thin, pink line shone in the light. Naruto grabbed the bandage and wiped any remaining blood off the area. "See, already healed."
"That wound could open up with any strenuous activity. You're not going to fight today, Naruto." Sasuke ordered. "Just shut up and learn." The Uchiha added when he noticed the blonde was going to argue.
"I agree with Sasuke, I think it would be best if you sit out today's lesson. I would feel much more comfortable," Kakashi agreed, "Alright. So today, we're going to learn taijutsu."
"We learnt taijutsu at the academy already, sensei!" Sakura butted in.
"Academy taijutsu is taught universally. All nations use around about the same technique and style. Today we will be learning a different type of taijutsu that hopefully over time you will be able to manipulate and make your own. The theory behind this is that the enemy will find you less predictable in terms of attacks and that with this you will be able to surprise them in terms of unpredictability."
Sakura nodded. It seemed like an interesting way to gain the upper hand in a fight.
"Alright, Sasuke. Can you help me with an example?" Kakashi asked. Sasuke walked up to Kakashi without a word and stood in front of him. "Alright for example, I can easily do a combo with the moves that you have learnt in the academy. Something that is already routed into your brains, but if I add something unexpected to the mix, it could surprise you and then jumble you up, allowing me to take advantage of the situation and win the fight."
"Sensei? Can you show us what can be used?" Sakura asked.
"Of course. Ready up, Sasuke."
"Good work today, Sakura," Kakashi nodded towards the girl who was breathing heavily on the side, "We just need to work on your reflexes a bit more, but well done."
Sakura brightened with the praise. The lesson was rough. Initially, Kakashi just kicked the shit out of both Sasuke and Sakura. However, after the first bout of fights, Sasuke somehow came back and started to go head to head with the jounin. Sakura knew that the Uchiha was good, but she didn't realise he was that good. The kunoichi knew that if she was the one who was facing Kakashi, she would've been defeated within two seconds flat. The surprise moves were really effective, she noted. A simple combo was turned deadly with a surprise addition of a kunai or a kick when one expected a block. The whole thing threw Sakura amuck when she realised that just the academy-taught taijutsu was not enough to hold her own against people of Kakashi's calibre.
Kakashi showed her the moves and then asked her when she would add a different move and what move that would be. Naruto, who was sitting on the side, offered a variety of different moves that she did not think of and was starting to think that maybe the blonde wasn't as dumb as she initially thought. He was also pretty funny in his own right.
"Sasuke, your hair is especially duck-ass shaped today. Is the wind your own personal brand of hair gel?" Naruto laughed as he whacked the Uchiha on the head.
Sakura giggled softly. He was pretty funny, not that she would ever admit it.
"See you tomorrow, Sakura-chan! I really enjoyed today's lesson!" Naruto yelled out towards his pink-haired team mate before making his way back to his apartment. Realising that he didn't have much equipment, he checked his drawers, only finding a minimal amount of shuriken and kunai. Taking out one kunai, the blonde noticed a light sheen of rust covering the outer surface and sighed.
'Guess I need to buy some more equipment.'
Glancing over his wallet and checking his money status, he figured that he had enough to buy a couple of weapons and a nice bowl of steaming ramen. Henge-ing into a strange brown-haired version of himself, he made his way into a weapons shop, browsing through their selection. Choosing a few different versions of kunai, the blonde-turned-brunette made his way to the cashier before hearing a crash. Naruto quickly swiped a kunai from the counter, turning around so fast, his sensei would have been proud of him.
"Don't mind me kid," A gruff voice spoke, "When you get to my age, it's hard to maintain balance with all these beautiful ladies strolling around."
Naruto's eyes widened as his grip loosened around the kunai. The stranger, or not so stranger, bent down and picked up the kunai, offering it back to him.
"You should be more careful with those kunai. They are really dangerous if you don't know how to use them properly," Jiraiya scolded before patting his head. "Are you going to pay?"
Naruto cleared his throat before answering. "Y-y-yes. I am. Sorry…"
Naruto let out a deep sigh before turning around, his heart racing fast. He didn't realise that Jiraiya came to the village so early on. Was this just a quick visit or was he just hiding in the village way before the chuunin exams even started? Naruto felt his pulse racing as his breathing started to speed up. He could hardly even remember the last time he saw Jiraiya – and that was something that annoyed him deeply. He wasn't prepared to see his former sensei, his godfather. Seeing him in a weapons shop of all places, that shook him.
"Kid… You gonna move? There are other customers in this shop," Jiraiya's voice echoed from behind.
Naruto shook his head before grabbing his bag of supplies and walking away from the counter. Making his way to the exit of the shop, he paused, looking at Jiraiya. He couldn't believe that he was alive. No, he could believe that Jiraiya was alive; he just couldn't believe that he had a second chance to make sure that the other didn't die so suddenly. Grateful for this opportunity to save one of the more important people in his life, Naruto smiled.
"Hey kid, you need something?" Jiraiya questioned, seeing the brunette still in the store, waiting at the door.
"U-u-uh! No.. nothing. Nothing at all," Naruto replied before making his way out of the shop.
"Alright then, see you around." Jiraiya said with a wave, before walking in the opposite direction.
Naruto grinned. "Yeah… See you around, ero-sennin."
Sasuke turned around towards the approaching blonde.
"You're at Ichiraku? Why'd you come here out of all places?" Naruto took a seat besides the Uchiha on the stool next to him.
"Is my ramen that bad, Naruto?" Teuchi smiled before placing a bowl of Naruto's favourite ramen in front of him.
"Oh no, Teuchi, both you and your ramen is the best! Thank you so much!" Naruto took a pair of chopsticks and started to twirl the noodles around. "Sasuke's just not usually the biggest ramen fan around town, that is."
"Hn. I guess after being around you constantly for the past, however long, you seemed to rub off on me," Sasuke sighed as he looked at his bowl of noodles.
"You know what else I'd like to rub off on you…" Naruto whispered before winking not so subtly at the Uchiha. Sasuke coughed in surprise, a noodle getting stuck in his throat. Naruto took out his arm and started to thump the Uchiha on the back, trying to help get the noodle out from his throat.
"Are you okay, Uchiha-san?" Teuchi asked, concerned about the way the boy seemed to be coughing.
Eventually, Sasuke's coughs slowed down as he turned to look at Naruto with a menacing look in his eye. Naruto managed to look sheepish as he rubbed his hand on his back.
"I didn't know you were going to cough so much!" Naruto exclaimed when Sasuke dropped the money on his table and made his way to leave. "Don't leave Sasuke! Don't leeeeeaveeee, meeeeee!"
The Uchiha sighed before turning to sit back properly on the chair.
"I'm going to take a quick dinner break, I will come back soon," Teuchi nodded at the two before leaving them alone in the tiny café.
"So what's next on our agenda? Oh! I saw Jiraiya just before," Naruto chirped animatedly. Sasuke blinked at him before assuming a thoughtful expression on his face.
"Did he come this early last time?"
"I have no idea. I was really surprised to see him though."
"Did he recognise you?" Sasuke asked, a suspicious look in his eye. Knowing the blonde, he may have even told Jiraiya about their time-travelling business without consulting Sasuke first.
"Nah, I was henge'd. Sasuke, I know that look in your eye. I still disagree with you, but I wouldn't go behind your back and tell him without talking to you about it first," Naruto sighed, as he played with his noodles, "I'm not that kind of person."
"Hn." Sasuke inwardly knew that the blonde wouldn't have done it, but it was nice to know for sure that he wouldn't.
"I could shadow him to check what he's up to?" Naruto offered.
"No, let me do it. I won't get caught up with personal affiliation," Sasuke said.
Naruto started to argue, "I wouldn't get distracted, not with something like this…"
"No Naruto. Plus, you were never the best stealth artist. I think for the sake of our mission, I would probably be the better choice." Sasuke snorted. He could imagine it now. A loud, orange maniac trying to lay low and sneak? Yeah, they probably had better chances catching that damned d-rank mission cat than Naruto ever managing to properly grasp the concept of stealth tactics.
Naruto grumbled. "Fine, whatever. It doesn't matter anyway. I assume that he's here for the chuunin exams, probably doing recon in terms of spies and such,"
"It's always good to be ahead of the game, Naruto. Come, let's head back and plan for the chuunin exams," Sasuke dropped a few more coins on the table, as Naruto placed a hand on his arm, effectively stopping him.
Naruto smiled, "You don't have to pay for me."
"What? So I'm not allowed to treat my boyfriend on our date?" Sasuke smirked slyly, before walking off, his hands in his pockets.
A warmth blossomed in Naruto's chest as he ran after the Uchiha and jumped on his back, hugging him from behind.
"Jesus, dobe! Get off!"
"You're so cute, Sasuke.." Naruto purred as he rubbed his cheeks on Sasuke's back, giving him a small kiss on his shoulder.
Sasuke smiled affectionately at the blonde's mewls; as they walked together, off into the distance.
(I'm so sorry for the wait. I replied to a few people today saying that I had only written around 2k words. Kinda got my inspiration back and wrote the rest of it today as well haha. Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoyed it )