What A Beautiful Night For The Fox And The Hound

The Kumo-nin cursed under her breath as Hinata gave out a bouncy called: "Naruto-kun! I'd like you to meet my friend Karui!" The look of fear that crossed his face would have been priceless to her when he arrived at the table, if it wasn't for the sudden chill that happened to be emitting from her friend's eyes.

"What's wrong, Naruto-kun?" Karui knew why he was hesitating as he approached the table. First, it was because he most likely hadn't expected to see her again, especially so soon. Second, and most importantly, it probably had something to do with the gentle and deadly glare his date was giving. Judging by his look of panic between the two women, he had encountered a look like Hinata's multiply times.

So for a moment, the two foxes caught each other's eyes. The Red Fox wore an uneasy and apologetic smile, while the Orange Fox had a worried grin stretched rather thin. "N-nothing, Hinata! Just surprised to see your friend here of all places."

"You've met Karui-chan already?"

"Yea! From a...previous meeting," Karui watched him wince slightly as he rubbed the back of his head. Oh come on, she hadn't hit him that hard! …okay maybe she could have eased up a bit but still! Her eyes went back Hinata, the scary yet gentle smile slowly melting into something much more geninue. The girl knew that there was a tension between her date and Karui, but she was just too excited to really care and pursue it.

"Thank you for keeping me company, I hope you enjoy your meal with Kiba-kun!" Karui almost—almost—snorted at the look of shock and disbelief that was written on the blonde guy's face. Naruto was looking around trying to spot his friend, and with the look of surprise that he had, a good idea for payback came into her mind.

Karui went to stand up, Naruto getting her chair for her while still searching, and strode back over to her table. Now with Hinata and Naruto's attention on her back, she grinned. Coming up short, she stopped before Kiba's seat. He lowered his menu at her appearance and gave her a confused look.

"What are you thinking of, thunder thighs?" Karui, despite her character, didn't retort but instead leaned into him. Her lace-sleeved hand caressed his cheek as their lips connected for a second time that night. Karui couldn't help but giggle internal at the thought of Hinata's gasp, Naruto's jaw-dropping and sputtering, and Kiba's ears turning red.

When they parted once more, Karui sighed. Kiba looked as if he was about to say something, with that goofy smile of his, when the waiter appeared to take their order. Karui took her seat across from him, ordering the chicken primavera and apple-cranberry salad. Kiba got a steak with a side of mash potatoes, Karui rolling her eyes at the obviousness of his choice. She took another sip of her drink waiting for his eyes to flicker back onto her. As soon as their eyes were locked, Kiba gave another lick of his lips a question in his eyes.

"Nobody steals a kiss from a Kumo nin," He scoffed a little, getting him a kick in the knee. He yipped at the sudden pain and she gave a bubbly laugh at the sound. "You got that, dog-breath?" Rubbing his knee as he flashed his clan's fanged smile with a nod, he then casted a glance behind her.

"So crisis averted with the lovely couple, then?" He reached for his glass to take a sip as she looked over her shoulder.

"As long as he doesn't—"

"She did WHAT?"

At the sound of hands slamming on the table, Kiba gulped and started choking on his drink. Karui groaned at this outcry, knowing this couldn't end well in the slightest. She knew all about how protective Hinata was of Naruto, the boy was the reason he was she was alive after all. Kiba's coughing suddenly stopped as did Karui's grimaced face as they seemed to morph into similar looks akin to that of fear.

They both let out breaths they didn't even know they were holding when Naruto placed a hand atop of hers. She looked at him with a worried face, but he shook his head. Then he gave her his brightest smile which in turn caused her to blush.

"You still owe me one more dance, let's go."

With that Naruto pulled her back to the dance. Kiba had to admit, guy new how to change a situation around rather quickly. He shook his head, starting to cut into his steak and for a few moments it was silent between them. Karui was absent-mindedly kicking him as she focused on the crowded platform, causing him to look up at her

"Are you really that curious about them?" He said with a smirk. She slowly turned back to him to see that smug look on his face!

"N-no! Not at all! What about you?"

He rolled his eyes, pushing away from the table and standing to stretch. "Well, I dunno about but I got a real sudden urge to hit the dance floor." He lifted his head off the table, placing it on Karui's head. As he walked by her, he extended a hand to help her up, which she so graciously took.

"You can let go of my hand, you know." She said with a smile after a few moments of just standing there.

He blushed, mumbling something incoherent as she was the one to smirk this time. He slid his hands into his pockets, Karui sliding arm to connect them like earlier that evening.

"Alright, so this will be the final dance of the night, Roo, so let's go."

Karui tilted her head the new nickname. Roo? Ooooohhh, she liked that one. She smiled as they entered to another slow song. Karui stepped in front of him, giving a tug of his tie, Kiba almost from the action. They eased into the proper positions, moving to in tempo with the music.

From where they danced they could easily spot the other duo. Hinata had clearly calmed down, with her head resting on Naruto's shoulder. Karui inched closer to Kiba so that way she could press her head against him.

"You know that once this night is over, the war's gonna be starting soon." Her voice was sweet with sadness.

"And you'll survive and we'll get to do this again." He growled. Anger was there at what she was implying. She gave a short laugh.

"It's not me I'm worried about, pup," Karui looked up at him, the light reflecting off her amber spheres. There was pain there, for what he wasn't getting. "Listen, I really like you. More than I have any stupid guy or girl in my village and—"

"Even more than your master?" He smirked at the annoyance that danced on her face.

"I'm tryin' to be heartfelt here, you numbskull."

Yeah, he got that much and yet.

"Sounds like," Kiba started as he brushed away a lose strand of hair out of her face, "You're tryin' to break up with me before we even get the chance to be somethin' to each other."

"Oh and we're not somethin' right now?"

"Oh we are certainly somethin', alright. You know what I mean, Roo."

That she did, which is why Karui sighed.

"Seriously, you insufferable prick, I just don't want something happening to you out there. I finally came around to liking that ugly mug of yours."

"So there's the truth! Only after me for my body!"
She didn't hesitated to sock him in the arm, Kiba laughing. He's expression did soften a bit though, before he spoke again.

"Nothing is gonna happen to me. If I remember the line-up they explained correctly, with your skill set we'll more than likely be in the same squad. So you watch my back and I'll cover your ass. Okay? Besides I'm one of the top ninja outta my age group. Have a little faith, foxy locks."

Karui realized that was his second good nickname of the night. Also his eyes were honest. He truly believed in his own words. Then, quite unexpectedly, Kiba dropped her hands to place his on her cheeks. He lifted her face so that way she would look at him.

"Inuzukas can't say things they don't mean. Dogs can't lie, so the clan policy is honesty and banter, never lies and slander. So believe me when I say both of will get to go on another date Karui."

She glanced at their feet, not sure what to do now. This was one of those situations she read about countlessly, and even though it wasn't that big of a thing, she could remember how she was supposed to reply.

He was a goof. He was boneheaded, crazy haired, and handsome, but still a goof. And she didn't want to think that, in such a short a span of time, she had fallen for him.

But when he said things like that, looked at her the way he did, Karui found it hard not think otherwise.

Karui pulled one his hands away and clasped her own over it. Then she began yanking him towards the exit, quickly. Kiba followed her and gave one last look at his friends. They were fine, he concluded, and everything would work out in the end.

They stepped out into the night sky, underneath humming lampposts and twinkling stars. The two walked for about two blocks, Karui having no real destination. Then she stopped short, sighed, and looked up at the sky.

He kept his mouth shut just so he could watch her. She was different. Karui was the easy-going, quick-tempered, but gorgeous kind of different. And he was afraid that he might have fallen for her hard. But when he watched her face soften in thought, recalled that smile she own shot at him, he could help but be okay with that.

"You know, you can let go of my hand at any moment." He said quietly. Instead of her letting go from embarrassment, she squeezed it a little before turning to him. Kiba froze at the smile she was giving him, a lump forming in his throat.

Karui closed the distance between them, so that way their chests were almost touching.

Kiba's cheeks colored a little and he foolishly closed his eyes as she leaned into him. He had been expecting another kiss, but when he opened his eyes with his lips still puckered, Kiba realized he was wrong. In his jacket pocket was a slip of folded paper.

"You better write me when this whole alliance war thing is over okay? I don't exactly know when I'll be able to come back, after all." Karui grinned, knowing well she perfectly teased him.

Kiba went slack jaw, not sure what to say. Before he could get a chance to, a certain voice could be heard in the distance.

"Oooh what a beautiful beeellllllaaaa noche!" Kaki was singing as she walked toward her master, Akamaru surprisingly not by her side. The vixen ran through Karui's legs before doing the same to Kiba. "You, my fine sire, have raised one hell of gentlemen. I haven't been treated that well in all my life!"

The fox then hiccupped and began to wobble. Karui shook her head.

"Kaki, where did you find grape juice?"

"Inuzukas have a very good collection 'hic' if you can get to it." The vixen hopped up and Karui instinctively caught her. Kaki gave Kiba a look, "Akie's fine by the way. Had him home a while ago so he could put the pups to bed. Not ours, a'course, at least not yet!" The summon gave a strange, drunk laugh.

Karui's face went scarlet at what that meant for Kiba and her, but Kiba just howled with mirth.

"Well, we are engaged, right?"