A.N. Okay, so I know you're all waiting for Kyuubi the Bitch to be updated, and it will, but life just swamped me and I've had no time for my fandoms. So Merry Christmas, and sorry that this fic is sorta made from epic fail.

Disclaimer: Bribes don't work well with a language barrier. 'Nough said right? So Masashi Kishimoto still owns all of Naruto. Also, the song is by Randy Travis, and I lay no claim to it.

Cultural note: In Japan there are things known as communal baths where members of the same sex bath together. It is common, that is why I have Sasuke and Naruto bathing together in this.

Meet Me Under the Mistletoe

The night was dark in the way that only winder nights could be, when clouds covered the sky and stars fell to smother the land in cold silver, and all the sound in the world faded away until it was as silent as the black heavens from which the stars had fallen. The night had seeped into the walls of the mostly abandoned home, and were it not for the faded glow of multi-colored lights that decorated the small, pathetic looking tree in a side room down the hall, it would have been just as sightless as the outdoor world.

He sighed as he leaned back against the door frame eyes slipping shut and blocking out the near blanketed glow from the side and the shimmering green of plant life hung directly above him in the archway. It was another reminder of happier, carefree, easier times, as well as a warning of the reality that left him alone beneath that small bit of clichéd tradition.

It didn't matter how long he waited, he wouldn't be joined. This he knew well enough. Sure he'd sent out his message, but it didn't matter how fast Gamakichi was, no one knew where Sasuke had escaped to—with the exception of the Hokage and she wasn't talking—what good could that spoiled frog do in this weather? Besides, the little ingrate had never liked the pale Uchiha.

Furthermore, He understood that no one could return to the past, not even him. Though he'd hoped to recreate the events, he understood that he'd already lost his chance, long ago, and he hadn't even known it then.

Drifting on his memories, Naruto allowed himself to be swept away from the lonely abandoned home with the presents that wouldn't be opened, under the mistletoe, waiting for one who would not return in time.


"Meet Me Under the Mistletoe,

Midnight Christmas Eve."

Mistletoe was the devil, Naruto decided, as he held his throat gagging and trying to throw up his tongue. He could still taste the light flavor of onigiri which tainted his lips from where they'd been assaulted by the sticky pare belonging to the—currently spitting—Uchiha.

Damn it that's twice! Naruto thought with a bit of bile crawling up his esophagus. He'd had to kiss his male teammate twice now in the last two hours because of the damn greenery hung over the doorway to Iruka's kitchen—and essentially the food.

Yes, the little plant was Satan incarnate and Naruto decided that his first new rule when he became Hokage would be to ban the thing from his lands. What a stupid custom… Naruto griped, sucking on his tongue to rid it of the reminder that Sasuke's lips had met his and stained him with the flavor he acquired in his mouth every time his tongue brushed outside his lips. Damn it, and I was almost rid of that taste too!

"Would think you two would learn." Kakashi stated from the doorway, sounding much too pleased for his own good, and Naruto shot him a glare that almost mirrored Sasuke's, the two rivals for once in total agreement that their Jounin teacher must die. "How many more kisses are you going to share I wonder."

Amazingly it was Sasuke who growled, standing up and stomping out into the living room where the brightly decorated tree was set with the presents lined around the bottom. Naruto had never celebrated Christmas before, and from the way Sasuke was reacting to all the new things, he doubted the Uchiha had either, but Sakura had seemed well knowledged if her loitering by the plant of doom for Sasuke was any indication.

Naruto pouted, toeing the wood floor a bit—for once having listened to his old teacher and removing his shoes, after all it was his good will that had invited team seven to participate in this western tradition, and being as Kakashi had made this a mission, he couldn't back out—unsure of why he felt so miserable.

Why can't she ever wait like that for me? Naruto pouted even more, his bottom lip poking out like a child's. Why am I always the butt end of some joke? Sadly, his moping caught the attention for his perverted teacher.

"Oh-ho, what's this? Naruto, are you upset by Sasuke's rejection?"

Naruto jerked his head up, confused, in time to see Sasuke's head whip up and his patented glare set on Homicide mode. Only the missing red glint of the sharingan told him he couldn't actually die… yet.

For some reason he blushed.

"No, goddamn it!" Naruto choked out, his voice sounding a little squeaky and even with the mask, Naruto could tell Kakashi was grinning like a mad man.

"You can say you want to kiss him if you want to Naruto." The other pushed, and Naruto began to wonder how much of that "special" eggnog the sliver-haired scarecrow had actually consumed. "It's Christmas, weirder miracles have happened this day. Like a virgin giving birth."

Iruka hit him with an aptly thrown spatula. "You mock my holiday again, and I'm throwing you out, Hatake."

"It was an example, nothing more, and it did happen, and it was weirder than Naruto falling in love with Sasuke—"

Sakura let out a little cry from the kitchen from were she'd gone to "burn her retina's out," and came flying around the corner all ready for battle. "There is no way I'm letting you get Sasuke! That kiss at the academy—" her words where cut short as Iruka tapped her shoulder a small smile on his face and pointed up to the mistletoe.

"Uh-oh, looks like it's claimed another victim." Iruka chuckled when Kakashi looked up as well, and lost his humorous attitude.

"… shit." Kakashi tired to evade the situation but the brunette cut off his escape route with that same damnable smile he'd used when making Sasuke and Naruto kiss.

"Ah-ah, Kakashi, rules are rules, now give your student a kiss."

"Isn't that illegal?" Kakashi quipped, still struggling to escape, and had it been anyone else, Naruto would have cheered Iruka on, snickering evilly all the way, but it wasn't just anyone, it was Sakura, and he would be damned if her first kiss was taken by that perverted old coot.

"Not if its innocent and in the holiday spirit."

Iruka was drunk as well, Naruto decided.

"NO!" Naruto cried, or, was going to cry out when he was cut short by a cool hand over his mouth. One that tasted curiously of Onigiri.


Naruto growled and started to twist free when Sasuke's voice penetrated his rage, his words finally reaching him in the form of a moist brush of air against his ear. "He has to remove the mask to kiss her."

Naruto froze.

The damn bastard was right. If Kakashi really had to kiss Sakura then that mask would be removed and the secret they had all been desperately searching for since summer would finally be revealed. But… Sakura's first kiss…

Blue eyes sought out green and realized that the pinkette had already deducted that as she shot a look at Sasuke. The two stared at each other, seeming to silently communicate, and it made Naruto squirm uncomfortably inside. Sure it was nice that Sasuke was becoming more of a team player, so to speak, but this new connection between Sakura and Sasuke made Naruto want to pout, scream, punch something, and cry all at once. Did it have to be Sakura that he bonded with? And did they have to make Naruto the odd man out?

He settled for pouting, the taste of Onigiri smothering him.

Sakura nodded Sasuke's way and turned to Kakashi blinking her eyes at him in a sweet innocent manner that made Naruto want to cry. Why can't she ever look at me that way? A part of him wanted to believe that that look was just false—which at the moment it was—and that it was only an expression she would wear when plotting something, but he knew better. That was the same look she'd used on him when he'd pretended to be Sasuke, besides that, the very becoming blush of embarrassment was true to her character as well. Sakura was a very shy girl by nature, kissing in public would be too much for her without a motivating factor. Such as, Kakashi's mask.

"Am I not good enough to kiss?" Sakura's question got the room's attention, and had the adults falling over themselves to reassure her young mind before any real damage could be done. "Sasuke and Naruto kissed, are you saying we're not family enough? I'm not family enough?"

Kakashi seemed to collapse as he sighed, his shoulder's slumping in defeat. "Fine, since everyone wants to see it so badly." He sighed, and knelt down a bit, his hands on Sakura's shoulders.

The whole room grew tense and Naruto felt Sasuke lean heavily into him as he unconsciously tried to get closer so as not to miss the big reveal. Naruto couldn't complain really as he too was focused on the event opening up before him. He was just slightly surprised his curiosity had rubbed off so fully on the raven-haired boy, but then again, when he removed the pole from his ass, he was quite fun to hang out with, though Naruto preferred to show his liking of the other through his fists, but Sasuke seemed to feel the same way so it all worked out.

As expected, Sakura blushed and fisted her hands at her chest, eyes locked on Kakashi's mask as he leaned toward her.

This was it, finally they'd see…

And placed a chaste kiss to her forehead through the material of his mask.

Sasuke sagged against Naruto's back, the only proof of his exasperation as their perfect plan, yet again blew up in their face. Though Naruto would have been lying if he said he wasn't also slightly relieved.

"Huh?" Sakura blinked, looking a little confused as Kakashi stood and followed a laughing Iruka into the kitchen.

"See? Now did that kill you?" Iruka could be heard teasing Kakashi who proceeded to—somehow—eat through his mask, a feat both irksome as well as baffling. How the hell did he do that.

"Damn." Sasuke cursed, releasing Naruto completely and moving back to his spot on the couch, staring blankly at the colorfully wrapped gifts.

The ass-hole could deny it all night long if he wished, but Naruto knew the Uchiha was just as crazy as he was too see what was inside those boxes. Though, at the moment, his attention was snared elsewhere, as two things occurred to him.

Kakashi had cheated


Mistletoe was both Satan and his guardian angel.

If I could get Sakura under the mistletoe… Of course this wasn't the first time he'd thought of it this night, but for once it didn't seem impossible, if only he could be certain that there would be no one else around. After all, Sakura was shy, as proven by that little escapade under the mistletoe, so the best time to truly ask her out would be in private, under the mistletoe, where words just weren't needed. Which was good, since he always seemed to fuck up when it came to talking about feelings.

He grinned broadly as an idea struck him.

"What are you grinning about moron?" Sasuke asked from the couch, his dark eyes staring at him suspiciously, and Naruto glowered, the hair on the back of his neck rising as he licked his dry lips, only to taste more of the Uchiha's favorite snack. Naruto cringed.

"Nothing, bastard." Naruto snarled, already seeing the brewing fight in Sasuke's eyes and cut him off before he could really piss him off—Kakashi had banned fighting after all. "Just wondering why Kakashi could get away with that if we had to… uh.. you know."

Again he was blushing.

When there was no immediate reaction to his sudden announcement, Naruto looked out from the corner of his eye looking for the dark hair that framed a pale face. Black eyes stared out blankly, as though he was dazed and it confused Naruto further wondering if maybe he hadn't spoken aloud after all—he had a tendency to do that after Kyuubi had opened up a mind link in an attempt to "keep-his-annoying-ass-alive"—when Sasuke seemed to snap out of it.

"… Why are you—"Sasuke shook his head, his eyes gaining an angered look as he promptly stood up and headed toward the kitchen door. "Perverted ass, probably gets sick satisfaction from this…"

Naruto grinned, already guessing what Sasuke was planning and ran to catch up.

Kakashi had never said anything about them teaming up to kick his ass.

"Hey, Icha perv! What the hell was that just now?" Naruto cried, attempting to shove passed Sasuke ignoring the startled yelp and curse the Uchiha cast his way. Kakashi was going to pay for that cheap shot.

"Idiot!" Sasuke gripped his sleeve, the tug suggesting he was seriously thinking of using it to throw Naruto back, and Naruto rolled into the action, making the effort useless.

"You have to—" It was only then that Naruto realized the grin covering both teacher's faces, and the moaning to his right.

His lower eyelid twitched.

"Dobe…" Sasuke groaned, as though physically ill, and Naruto's face turned blank.

"Don't tell me… mistletoe, right?"

Kakashi pulled out a camera.


"You're Sweet Kiss is the First Gift,

I'd Like to Receive."

Naruto slunk out of the bathroom, face warm and tingling in the cooler air and glanced both ways. Last thing he needed was for Sakura or Kakashi to see him leaving the bath early.

"Dobe, shut the damn door, you're letting the cold air in!" Sasuke snapped from across the bathroom, and Naruto shot him a dirty look, trying not to laugh at the image Sasuke made as he slunk further into the bath water attempting to keep warm. He looked like the four-year-old the group had been assigned to watch not that long ago. Wisely, he kept that bit of information to himself… for now.

"Not my fault you're a cold-assed bastard."

Sasuke lifted a wet hand with a proudly standing middle finger over the white porcelain side of the bath tub. Naruto scowled, and couldn't stop himself from retorting a quick, "You wish, teme." Before diving out of the room before the fireball could hit him, giggling madly all the way. He was slightly surprised that bathing together like they normally did when on a mission—or simply the times that Sasuke would stay at his place or visa versa before or after missions for reasons neither wished to discuss, about that time in the land of waves—wasn't more uncomfortable after having been forced to kiss so often, but it was like it never happened at all as they fought over the shampoo and soap bar like usual.

Naruto scrubbed at his cheek as he entered the room Sasuke and himself would be sharing—surprisingly enough, Kakashi had coaxed Iruka into sharing his room so as not to be stuck with the "children"—reminded of the feeling of Sasuke's slightly sticky lips on his face from their last kiss of the evening. It had been mildly shocking that Sasuke had just shifted over and planted that soft caress to his cheek as Naruto had been ready to complain about the unfairness of it all.

Though, if he hadn't, we probably wouldn't have been able to make our point… Naruto admitted to himself, as he shut and locked the door, throwing the pile of dirty clothes he'd brought out of the bathroom on the floor, not even glancing at the extra towel and set of clothing bearing the Uchiha crest which he'd swiped from the bathroom. Nor would I have such a good reason to finally attempt this very risky, suicidal, prank. Naruto thought with a grin as he changed clothes, shaking his wet head free from the clinging cloth of his blue PJ's and bounced back over to the desk Iruka had in his guest room.

Dragging out a blank paper and a pen, Naruto quickly scrawled out the message he'd been plotting since getting into the doorway with Sasuke that final time. "Can't believe that pervert, having the nerve to say we cheated after he used the same tactics on Sakura…" Naruto grumbled, his pen stopping as he looked over his words. His brow crinkled and he scribbled it out starting again on the next line. "What's with him anyway?"

Another scowl and crossed out words. "And what the hell did he mean, I wondered when you two would catch on… ass hole." Scanning over the lettering, Naruto grinned. "Yeah, that's perfect."

Grinning, Naruto folded the stark white page up. "Now all that's left is to—"


The happy grin turned evil.

"Hehe, finally noticed." Naruto snickered turning to Sasuke's change of clothes and towel that he'd "accidentally" taken out with him. For a brief moment he thought of putting them on, just to annoy the perfect student more, but thought better of it. Sasuke wouldn't have a problem with stripping him naked to retrieve his clothes, but then again, how would he even get out of the—

The door knob jiggled, and he heard another curse, before a dark killing intent rolled through the wood.

He wouldn't…

Naruto was stunned when the door flew inward, the frame ripping off of the wall to display a wet, naked Uchiha with sharingan blazing before him.

"Oh shit!" Naruto cried scrambling away as Sasuke tackled him slugging him in the side painfully hard, causing the two to roll across the wooden floor, Naruto's slowly dampening pajamas the only thing between them.

"You piece of ape shit!" Sasuke cursed colorfully, and Naruto wondered just where he'd picked up that saying, as another fist landed on his face. The blow stung and Naruto could taste the blood that his split lip gave him, still he couldn't stop grinning. Sasuke had just been forced to traipse through Iruka's house butt naked, only to find the door to his room locked, and thus forcing him to bust said door down. As far as Naruto was concerned this was his best prank ever. "I'm going to kill you!"

Naruto laughed, rolling suddenly and slamming Sasuke into the floor with a satisfying thud. The dark head bounced slightly and the Uchiha winced a bit before kicking out with his feet as Naruto hopped on top of him, attempting to pin him to the floor.

A foot caught him in the stomach, knocking the wind from him, so Naruto returned the favor with a head-butt, gaining a groaned out curse and a sharingan glare. Naruto smirked, knowing that Sasuke had little left to attack with, as he crawled atop of his legs, pinning those with some controlled chakra as he did the same to pin his wrists. Sasuke would have to admit de—

Naruto jerked at the moist feel on his mouth, the taste of onigiri assaulting him once more, this time tainted with the tang of rust.

Sasuke had just bit his lip.


"UAGH!" Naruto cried, not stupid enough to jerk back and rip his lip off, but lost control of his concentration allowing Sasuke to flip him hard into the floor, punching him in the temple and kneeing him in the gut at the same time.

Yes, definitely a suicidal prank.

"Dobe! Stupid fucking…" Sasuke's words dissolved into more bizarre cursing that Naruto could only guess he'd picked up from Itachi, but the mental image of Itachi ever calling someone a piece of ape shit was both amusing and horrifying.

"What the hell is all the—oh!" Kakashi's voice froze both their fists as well as their words as quite suddenly they remembered the no fighting rule along with the way they must look. Again Naruto blushed, realizing that his prank really had backfired on him. Now he had to explain, a wet, naked Uchiha straddling his lap, both their hands linked between them in a slackened, forgotten, tug-of-war. "I must say, I didn't know you were trying to rape him, Sasuke. Or is it just foreplay I'm seeing?"

The Jounin's eye became an inverted U shape as he smiled, and Naruto felt his blush darken. Icha Icha, Mistletoe, and pranks pulled on Sasuke were all against him, he decided as he quickly bucked Sasuke off of himself, jumping to his feet to point an angry digit at the silver-scarecrow.

"You sick fuck! We were just fighting, because I just beat Sasuke!"

"The hell you did Dobe, you stole my goddamned clothes and towel!" Sasuke snapped, grabbing said towel for cover now, his high cheekbones dusted a light color. Naruto was pleased to see that he wasn't the only one looking like an idiot in this situation. He still squirmed uncomfortably as Kakashi looked between them with that unreadable, perverted expression, eye sparkling with evil intent.

"Ah, I see." Was the simple statement as a heavy hand landed upon Naruto's back, jostling him slightly. "Finally taking matters into your own hands." A wise nod. "Steal his clothes and towel and then provoke him to straddle you. Had I known of your plans Naruto I wouldn't have interrupted, though I must say its easier to penetrate when you too are na—"

Naruto was certain all the blood in his body was currently in his face as he gaped like a fish, mind fried from the mental images that last comment had provoked. Luckily, Sasuke was still feeling pissed as a kunai wizzed through the room narrowly missing Kakashi and slamming into the doorframe with a clear, "THUNK!"

"Stop the gibberish nonsense before I give you a reason to have so poor a sex life." The threat was low and spoken in such dark tones that Naruto found it hard to believe the Jounin hadn't spontaneously combusted.

As the two shared a violent staring contest, Naruto turned his attention back to the door. The kunai was imbedded impressively deep in the wood. Iruka would be pissed when he saw that, and somehow, Naruto just knew he would get blamed for it and spend their next day off tacking it closed again.

This prank really didn't have any good outcomes.

His lower lip stuck out further than necessary as he thought over things. Kakashi was lecturing now, the words a sort of murmur that made no sense to his ears, and Naruto sighed. Yeah, anything that had to do with Sasuke never quite ended the way he expected or would have liked.

The sensation of being watched dragged his eyes away from the door jam and back to the other two. It wouldn't be shocking to find Kakakshi turning his lecture onto him, but it wasn't the jounin facing him. Sasuke stood with his towel securely around his hips, one hand holding the knotted cloth securely in place, pale skin exposed and slightly reddened in some places, as though rug burned.

A sharp shiver teased his back and made him twitch in response. Naruto had no explanation for it, as he wasn't cold, nor frightened, but his body felt hyper sensitive as those dark eyes focused so intensely on him. He had always assumed that look was a glare what with the intensity of it, but that wasn't really true.

It was simply intense.

Naruto shifted a bit, wishing he knew what the Uchiha was thinking as he stared at him like that. It happened far too often for Naruto's comfort, hell if he were honest, most of the looks he'd interpreted as glares and homicide stares were in fact just like this one. Sasuke seriously hadn't glared at him at all this evening except for when he broke the door down just now.

Naruto bit his lip and again chose to interpret the look as a glare even though he knew better. He simply didn't want to face what else it could mean, and so, he returned the look with a scowl of his own.

Thos dark eyes narrowed and he looked away and back to Kakashi his perfect Uchiha demeanor now a gnarled mask of contempt. It made his stomach feel sour but Naruto pushed the thought from his mind completely. He had other things to worry about right now.

He fingered the letter in his pocket and tried not to think about Sasuke.


"The Presents that we bought,

Will Have to Wait Beneath the Tree"

Naruto looked cautiously both ways clutching the envelope tightly to his chest. He'd opted not to write her name on the front as Iruka would recognize his hand-writing and would tell Kakashi and who knew what the pervert would do.

Naruto checked behind him just one more time before creeping down the hall toward the bathroom. Sakura had just been sent for her turn in the furo, which meant if he just slipped the letter underneath the door to the changing room she'd see it when she stepped out to get her clothes. It was brilliant, perfect even and as he slipped it under the door, Naruto felt his hear flutter a little in his chest. There was no way he could screw this up this time.

Without waiting to see if she found it or not, he ran back to the room and flopped onto the bed with the excess of energy. "I love Mistletoe!"

And at the moment he truly did.

It was nearly ten minutes later that Sasuke walked back into the room, dressed in his pajamas. Those eyes were boring into him again, that disconcerting look that seemed to want to consume him. He tensed and watched the other warily from his snuggled position on his futon, and the awkward moment stretched on into countless minutes.

"What?" Naruto snapped, unable to take it anymore. "You have something you want to say to me?"

Those dark eyes regarded him silently, slowly blinking but even that didn't dispel the uncomfortable stasis they had trapped them in.

"Spit it out teme!"

Sasuke blinked once more before laying back into his own bed pulling the blankets up to his chin, his back to the blonde. "Dobe."

"What the hell? God you are such an ass-hole!" Naruto threw the blankets from his form and stood up ready to rain unholy vengeance on the other's skull until he bloodied that proud face into minced meat, when a disembodied voice from down the hall—one sounding suspiciously like Kakshi's—chided them.

"Those had better be endearments your shouting, and the only attacking better involve bodily fluids swapped out of sexual passion and not fists."

"No they better not!" Sakura screeched from the room across from theirs and Naruto was slightly shocked that she was already out of the bathroom, but didn't have time to question it as her complaint was swiftly followed by Iruka's.

"No! You already ruined the door, no fighting or copulating in that room Naruto!"

Naruto felt his face literally flame.

"W—wh—what?" The words came out nothing more than a croak and he choked momentarily on them. "Why the hell do you all think I'm… I'm going to…"

"Shut up, Dobe." Sasuke sounded bored and it caused him to gape a little.

"Aren't you insulted at all? They are implying that we would… that we could…" His face ached from the burn of embarrassment and he hid his face in his pillow. God this was humiliating.

The shifting of bed sheets alerted him to Sasuke's movements and he peaked out of the corner of his eye to see the darker haired boy peering out him from the expanse of the room. Those entreating eyes were watching his every move and calculating him. It was unnerving.


"They only say it because they get a reaction out of you. Ignore them and it will stop."

"Yeah, easy for you to say…" He was not pouting like a child and was not pulling at the corner of his blanket in petulant stubbornness. He was just not up to being teased right now. He knew they didn't mean anything by it, but when most of the village thought he was deranged and held no morals, it was hard to take a little teasing in jest, especially when he wasn't certain what he actually felt for Sasuke, or what the other boy thought of him. Liking Sakura was easy, it was expected, just as it was expected of him to fight with Sasuke. Their teasing was made because it wasn't plausible and Naruto wasn't comfortable with the insecure feelings it brought about, not to mention the question he was going through. What did Sasuke mean to him? "… you don't have to deal with everyone thinking the worst of you anyway."

Those eyes sharpened and Naruto realized that he had said that out loud. "Er… uh… heh heh! Night Teme!" He flopped over and buried his head in the comforter. Maybe if he tried hard enough he could smother himself and escape his embarrassment. What the hell was that? Whining about my life, god how uncool…

Those eyes continued to bore into his back for nearly an hour before Sasuke finally rolled back over and fell asleep as well. Naruto relaxed if just barely into the bed, mentally counting down the hours until he had to go back out. A childish grin broke over his features and he squirmed happily at the memory. Soon, Sakura would understand his feelings and he'd get the best Christmas gift of all.

He tried not to imagine the events after the kiss, or the fact that something told him that once the rush wore off, the moment would be somehow less exciting, but that was normal. Once attained the desired object would become commonplace, it was natural, all the same, Naruto hoped it wouldn't happen, that maybe the stories he'd heard about true love and all that rot were true. That even after getting together with the one you desired, your desire would only grow and never fade.

He hoped, but he doubted all the same.

No, stay positive. Sakura is the one for me and we will be happy together. Naruto nodded and pushed all other thoughts from his head. Miracles happen on Christmas. Maybe one will happen for me…

Naruto closed his eyes to nap until midnight.


"So, Meet Me Under the Mistletoe,

Midnight Christmas Eve."

Naruto shuffled his feet and leaned further into the shadows of the room. Iruka had left the Christmas tree lit, its soft multi-colored lights leaving the front room awash with shaded colors. It was beautiful, like looking through a kaleidoscope, and Naruto couldn't help but grin at the sight. This holiday was something he could understand being sacred. The night really did seem magical with a full house, a good meal and warm bath. It was probably what having a real family would feel like.

Naruto sniggered to himself imagining the expressions on Iruka and Kakashi's faces if he were to tell them they made great parents. Iruka might take it as a compliment but Kakashi would probably give me another thousand years of pain…

Glancing at the window Naruto noticed that it was nearly midnight. He'd placed the meeting time as fifteen after the hour. Knowing Sakura, hell any ninja with proper training, she would arrive fifteen minutes earlier than the predetermined time, which would mean she'd arrive exactly on midnight when it became Christmas, and on the very dawn of that day, Naruto would kiss her and hopefully get his very first Christmas gift. Maybe even a miracle.

It was also too dark in the corner of the doorway he stood in, the Christmas lights not completely lighting it. It was perfect, this way he could get his message across to her before she could clearly see him, and he wouldn't lose his nerve.


Naruto breathed in and out slowly settling the last of his nerves. This was it, there was no turning back. His heart was beating so quickly its thrum was visible in the soft tissues of his throat and elbow. His stomach was in knots and his nerves were firing. It was quite uncomfortable but it was still thrilling. He just hoped this went better than the last time he'd attempted to confess to Sakura.

"You're annoying."

His good mood and excitement turned sour and he frowned. Am I just chasing her because of that? As an extension of being recognized, a way to prove myself to her? Naruto sighed. He didn't want to think poorly of himself or his actions, but he knew that even if he wasn't thinking like that then that one line would probably haunt him for the rest of his life.

That couldn't be healthy.

Damn it, I'm just over thinking it! Naruto shook his head and stood taller banishing all of it from his mind. It was too late to second guess his decision. This is what I wanted so why am I acting like this? Damn it, Naruto man up and go for it!

For some reason Sasuke came to mind then, but with the way Sakura acted around the Uchiha of course he would come to mind. What if she says no because of Sasuke? Naruto frowned at the mixed feelings that gave him and shoved them aside.

With that lingering worry Naruto noticed an outline arriving from the hallway beside the kitchen. With the set up, neither would pass directly by the tree, he wondered if that was for the best seeing as the tree really did set the mood, but it was already too late to rethink his choice. He needed Sakura to meet him under the Mistletoe, otherwise it would seem odd, he could morn the lack of a romantic setting later, besides maybe it wasn't really as romantic as he thought it was. He was really just moved by the significance the tree held at the moment.

Sakura moved with a silent grace through the kitchen, the soft muted glow hardly able to give her form a fuzzy outline as she drew near the doorway, but he could clearly see the sheet of paper in her hand. Swallowing hard, Naruto shifted a bit, no longer leaning against the door frame.

His heart was racing again and he licked his lip in his impatience. Well, this is it. Sakura was directly in front of him now, she was surprisingly quiet in the shadows. Then again, maybe the moment was overwhelming for her as well. His palms were sweating and they felt clumsier than usual, but he was still able to reach out and grab ahold of her shoulders.

She tensed under his grip, her breath hitched and the cotton that made up her pajamas was soft and worn. It clung to his damp, calloused palms and fingertips. He rubbed his thumb over the shirt enjoying the feeling of a warm body under equally warm cloth.

It reminded him of Sasuke for some reason, and his mouth fell open in shock. Why? Why is he ruining this moment even now? Snapping his mouth shut Naruto shook his head and felt Sakura's sudden indrawn breath. If she spoke now he'd lose his nerve, it didn't matter if she thought he was Sasuke, or if it wouldn't work out, he had to get his feelings across at least once.

Honestly, and without restraint.

Even if he was seriously starting to question if these feelings even belonged to the girl. No, I'm just messed up from the forced kisses from before! I don't like Sasuke! I don't!

Pulling himself together, and Sakura closer, Naruto stepped into her space and brought his face in close to hers. "We're under the mistletoe…" he managed to whisper. "… and… it is tradition, you know…" It was the rush of surprised hot breath that let him know where her lips were in the dark and with one last bout of insecurity, he let his lips fit over hers.

They were soft and thin, pliant under his own, slightly chapped. He moaned a little from the intimate feel and the erotic warmth that came from his close proximity. One of his hands slipped from a tense shoulder, up a smooth neck and into soft hair, thumb cradling the jaw and lobe of an ear. She twitched at the touch, and for a moment he feared she would pull away, but in the next moment she relaxed and arms came up and around him.

A hand fisted tightly in his hair the arm curled around him and under the one he had lifted to cradle her cheek. The other wrapped tightly around his waist and pulled them flush together as the mouth slanted and lips pated. The motion caused his own to part and a slick tongue slid smoothly inside his mouth.

Excitement uncurled in his belly and raced up his spine and tingled in the back of his skull and the low portion of his back where a strong hand held him possessively against a hard body.

A very flat body.

It was then his mind registered that the salty flavor filling his mouth was more than just pleasant, it was recognizable.

It was onigiri.

Shock made him freeze and his eyes flew open to stare at the close face of the other. It was still far too dim to really make out anything, but when those other eyes opened, he felt them.

Puling back, lips pulling apart slowly, mingled spit making lips moist and plump from the pressure, Naruto gaped unsure of what he was feeling. Sasuke's kiss had felt so good, his tongue in his mouth had been exciting but, now he was far too confused.

"S—Sasuke?" It was a panicked whisper, and he just knew that those eyes narrowed at his tone. "W..what are—how did you—?" The desperation in Sasuke's next movements made sense in the back of his head, as they mirrored his own from a few moments before.

He was fearing rejection and simply didn't want to hear it.

Sasuke pulled on his hair, hard, and Naruto let out a grunt, head angling back and Sasuke stepped in closer, one leg forced between his own, and then those thin lips were pressed securely over his own. This was rough and demanding, lips sliding and bruising and it caused the thrill to spiral higher.

Sasuke took his time, pulling Naruto's plump lower lip between his one and nibbling it with his teeth as though worrying it the way Naruto tended to do when frustrated. The sharp nips and soothing licks, and loving suckles made Naruto wonder if the other had thought of doing this for a long while, and the mere idea made him tremble and heat coiled tightly in his stomach.

His hands—still on the other boy's shoulder and face—pulled tighter, neither pulling him closer nor pushing him away. Sasuke took it as a positive sign though as he pushed closer, the hand on his lower back sliding down until his hand was pressed snugly over his rump, fingers cupping him low and dragging his hips closer.

Teeth bit down harshly on his lower lip in mimicry of their fight earlier in tandem with the hard press of arousal into the juncture of his leg and hip. It caused him to buck back in response even as the shock made him tilt backward.

The result had them tumbling to the floor in an ungraceful heap. His tailbone and elbows stung from the impact, and he was certain that the fall must have hurt Sasuke's knees—hell the other had bitten down rather harshly on his lip and was now suckling the skin like a kitten, his tongue laving at the wound, and it really made Naruto question his actions from earlier—but the Uchiha didn't let go. Instead the raven pressed closer, his hips rocking against his as his arms drew him closer, body weight keeping him down.

Naruto lay back, his head hitting the floor gently, too confused to really protest, and felt Sasuke push deeper against him. The kiss forced his head back as Sasuke finally released his lower lip to slant his mouth over Naruto's and shove his tongue smoothly into his mouth. No surface was untouched, unclaimed by the lingering sour taste and slightly salty tang of Sasuke's mouth.

The hand on his ass drove his hips upward and Sasuke maneuvered his other leg between his own, and suddenly he was cradled between Naruto's sprawled legs. Naruto attempted to protest the undignified position but could only manage a strangled whine when again Sasuke rolled his hips and pushed at his ass. The friction they made caused spots of white to dance in front of his eyes as the heat built deep inside and burst into an electric inferno. He wondered if this was how Chidori would feel as the sensation raced up and down his nerves causing his legs to trembled and spasm.

Of its own volition, one leg lifted to curl over Sasuke's hip and he pumped his hips against the other's. It felt so good; so insanely right, and he really didn't care to try and think beyond the moment. Sasuke's hand had left his hair and was now petting his face, finger tips trailing the scars on his cheeks, in a gesture that was almost tender as his lips parted from his own, just to breath heavily against and between them, their bodies still rocking together.

"N…Naruto…" His name, gasped in that moment, from those kiss swollen lips, in that hopeful and desperate tone, lit him up and scalded him straight to his toes. His arms looped back up and around the darker boy and clung tight gasping into his ear.

"S… Sasuke…" He paused to gasp as those lips started a trail of fire on his neck and earlobe. Nips, licks, and kisses igniting him further. "D…don't stop…" Naruto knew he'd regret this when he came to his senses, or that things would at least be awkward, but the moment was too surreal, too perfect, and too bizarre not to indulge. Besides, kissing Sasuke felt good, and maybe it was because they'd done it before, or maybe it was the lack of audience, but it felt natural and good, and dear god he wasn't going to question it.

He was the sole recipient of positive emotions, and regard. He wouldn't give it up for anything.

Sasuke let out a deep sound and pushed him harshly into the floor, his hips grinding against his own in harsh little thrusts, one hand gripping his hip tightly, the other still cupped to his cheek, his gasping grunts a hot, moist billow of air on the shell of his ear. "I won't."

And then he was lost.

The heat of their bodies, the crush and roll, the pressure and retreat as Sasuke slid against him, his hips sliding in and out of the circle of his thighs. Naruto grasped and arched, and moaned at the feel of the other—so familiar and close—in his arms holding him to the ground in a new manner, something even better than fists and fighting. Sasuke kissed his neck and ear and jaw and then demanded his lips once more in sloppy kisses that left them both gasping as the rocking continued until the heat coiled too tight, and bowing his back, Naruto couldn't ward it off any longer.

Naruto let out a high pitched keening sound as his every muscle locked and he gasped arching up once more, lips parting from Sasuke's as his head tilted back on a cry and lost himself in the feel. The hot sticky mess in his shorts and his sudden boneless state were lost as Sasuke sped up, his own breath leaving in hurried pants before he too tightened up.

Naruto could feel the sweat that coated both of them, could smell it, and even taste it on his lips where he too had kissed and nipped at pale flesh, and shivered. The fog was clearing a bit, and it was clear they'd just crossed that line Naruto had been too afraid to even acknowledge existed between them. It was scary, it was intense, and it was infinitely exciting.

Sasuke let out a muffled cry and shook against him, losing his load against Naruto's pelvis, while cradled in his legs.

For a while Naruto could do nothing but hold his teammate as he came down from his high, and he waited for the awkwardness to set in, or the thrill to wear off, but strangely neither occurred as he expected. Sure he felt a bit odd with how far things had gone so quickly but neither had really lost anything, and they both found enjoyment in it. It was like their own little secret, and it actually excited Naruto a bit. Maybe that made him twisted in some way, but he was willing to see where this might go.

Who knew, maybe when Sasuke came back to himself he'd demand they forget it ever happened, or maybe he'll ask to stay with him to see where this would go. Whatever the choice, Naruto found himself content with the moment. He wouldn't regret this secret.

Held just between them—

Light flooded the room.

"It's Christmas you two, can't this wait until—" Iruka's irritated voice broke mid rant and Naruto's eyes widened as he was suddenly able to see Sasuke braced above him, pale skin flushed and damp with black hair clumped and sticking to the flesh, lips dark and puffy covered in slick wetness, light hickies and bite marks littering his pale neck, and his night clothes rumpled and fisted in his own hands.

He didn't want to know what he looked like.

Naruto was embarrassed to be caught, certainly, but it was the widening of those dark eyes, and the fear and sudden regret that creased those features that crushed him. That look was far more devastating than the sudden shove that broke their tender embrace apart and turned what they had shared from a glorious secret into something dirty and sick.

Something wrong.

Naruto let his arms and legs fall to the ground and he tilted his head away to stare at the Christmas tree, lighted and glowing like star in the living room. The lights seemed fuzzy and indistinct and he knew he was tearing up, or already crying, but he didn't care; he was simply to hurt and humiliated to.

"Oh, my." Kakashi's drawl broke him from his stasis and he blinked feeling the liquid roll down his face, cold like the rest of him. "I do not believe the mistletoe is intended for that you two."

"Er… Kakashi…" Iruka stumbled before clearing his throat. "What are you two doing down here?"


And Naruto had had enough.

He didn't wait to hear what Sasuke might respond with, didn't want to listen to Iruka pretend he didn't know what had happened, and couldn't handle Kakashi's casual joking. Biting his lip he rolled to his feet and bolted from the room.

"Naruto!" He wasn't sure if it was Iruka or Sasuke or both that had called after him but he didn't wait, didn't stop, and certainly didn't turn around. He pounded up the stairs and down the hall slipping once and tripping harshly to the floor, but he immediately pushed himself back up. If anyone was coming after him, he didn't want them to catch up.

Sakura, sweet Sakura, poked her head out of the room, looking at him sleepily, her short hair a tangled mess upon her head, one pale hand rubbing at her eye, and he was disgusted to find not a spark of that desire he'd felt downstairs with Sasuke just minutes prior, and the vomit raced up his throat.

"Naruto? What the hell are you making so much noise for?" She sounded angry, irritated, and it only added to the hurt. He couldn't handle this.

He slammed into his room and quickly grabbed his bag. It took only a minute to escape out of Iruka's window and soon he was racing through Konoha, the cold bite of the air stinging his bare feet and face, but it felt good and gave him an excuse for why his eyes were watering, and why he was choking on air.

His cold empty apartment, void of soft lighted trees and warm voices and bodies helped to numb him further to the events of the evening, and when he slid into his cold bed, doors and windows locked tightly, he didn't think of the presents under the tree, of Sasuke's warm kisses and body, or the way his heart ached for the other boy in a way it never had yearned for Sakura. No, all he saw was a blur of colored lights and the fractured memory of a broken dream.

"I fucking hate Mistletoe." He sniffled into his pillow, hiding his face and crying until he knew he could face Sasuke the next morning without any reaction, and flirt emptily with Sakura, because he knew he didn't stand a chance, and he didn't mind it so much anymore.

Christmas, he decided, was a stupid holiday.


"Meet Me Under the Mistletoe,

Midnight Christmas Eve."

Blue eyes eased open back to the present and took in the sight of his own lit tree, decorated with popcorn strings, multicolored lights and hand-made ornaments, and smiled. It had been such a hard first Christmas, and the following morning dealing with his teammates had not been easy, but he had survived. They all acted like it had never happened, and a discussion with Sakura sometime later explained why t was Sasuke that had come down stairs in the first place. Seemed he'd left his Hitaiate in the bathroom, and Sakura was waiting for him to vacate the bathroom before her bath, so Sasuke had been the one in the room when Naruto had slid his nameless note beneath the door.

He'd laughed then, letting the whole event go as an accident, the rest of the holiday was pleasant, and the following years had been nice as well.

Iruka was always kind and Sakura and Kakashi really rounded out his little family. Sasuke had even grown on him as time passed and they put the whole incident behind them. Really, it seemed laughable now how silly they had been, letting a bout of hormones take them on an emotional roller coaster, when it could have all been easily avoided, but that was life. Even now, he didn't really even regret it all that much.

Naruto smiled and closed his eyes on another sigh. Besides, we wouldn't have come this far without that little mishap… He worried his lower lip again, recalling how Sasuke had returned his little entreaty the following year. He sappily still kept that frayed letter Sasuke had slipped into his pocket during one of their fights.

Things had worked out between them in the end, and Naruto was pleased to find that no matter how many years passed he never grew tired of the Uchiha, never stopped yearning for him even though he already clearly had him. It was a nice feeling.

But now, because of a mission, their tradition was broken.

"Guess Gamakichi didn't make it." Another weary sigh. "Or he was too far away…" He really couldn't complain. He knew the importance of their missions, and this holiday wasn't exactly celebrated by all of Konoha, it wasn't that much of an issue, he was simply being childish.

It was already long passed the deadline.

It was time to call it a night.

"Merry Christmas, Teme wherever you are." Naruto whispered, pushing himself up ready to stand and was suddenly embraced by something very cold and very wet. "Wah!"

There was a mocking laugh in his ear, as arms tightened around him and a familiar chakra embraced him close. "You are the next in line for Hokage, and you can't even sense my presence?" The deeper voice teased, cold hands pressing him close, stubble covered chin scraping against his cheek as lips claimed his earlobe in a tender greeting. "I'm not certain if I feel flattered or frightened by that."

"Piss off Sasuke." Naruto grumbled, twisting in those chilled arms, taking pleasure from the wet clothes. An Anbu was never so careless as to get soaked in so light a snowfall, the Uchiha had clearly hurried to return and that filled him with a kind of sappy joy that he would never admit to aloud. "I just know your Chakra signature isn't a threat so I block it out."

"Sure, whatever you say Dobe."

"Hey! I'll have you know that I can—" Naruto was forced to stop talking when Sasuke loomed closer and pressed him solidly against the wall under the mistletoe, casting them in the multitude of colors from their tree. Naruto had to admit, the Uchiha home was far more esthetically pleasing when it came to Christmas lights and trees, and he liked their doorway much better than Iruka's.

No interruptions.

"I believe there is a tradition that needs to be sated here." Sasuke whispered against his mouth, and Naruto took the moment to appreciate the wind chapped lips, and the gruff stubble on a pale face. Sasuke clearly wasn't perfect, and in this moment, covered in the evidence of his rush, Naruto thought he was never more appealing. It made him feel pathetically secure and happy.

He really was a sap.

"Is there? I really can't recall."

Sasuke smirked and lips came down to claim his own. The kiss was deep and tender, far more sophisticated than their first shared kiss, but their mouths and bodies had made love several times now, and knew exactly what the other liked and wanted, and they could appreciate the slow build up of passion and love that they couldn't indulge in before.

Naruto embraced his lover close, fingers tangling in dark hair. Usually he would fight for dominance, their rivalry having never quite died, but in this moment, the memory of that first horrid Christmas, Naruto didn't want to battle Sasuke for top. He just wanted to be loved, held and treasured, and in the security of his own home he didn't have to worry about his weak disposition and desires. Sasuke certainly wouldn't fault him for them.

Sasuke groan in appreciation of his submission and lips parted to progress to something hotter and far more passionate. Tongues danced and mapped out mouths, teeth, and gums before Sasuke pulled back to suckle on his lower lip.

The Uchiha had some weird obsession with those.

Not that Naruto really complained, it was flattering, Naruto just didn't get why he felt the urge to bite them. Then again, Naruto was quite partial to Sasuke's neck and marking that so he really couldn't talk.

"… I'm home dobe." Sasuke whispered, placing fleeting kisses to his lips. "Meet me under the mistletoe, midnight tonight." Sasuke quoted and Naruto felt his cheeks flush a bit hearing his written words voiced aloud. "Well, I'm here."

"Welcome home ass-hole, and its one in the morning. Not midnight." Naruto returned, though his smile probably ruined the chiding tone.

"Hn. Well that just means its Christmas day." A slow, lazy grin curled up Sasuke's lips as a wandering hand slid under his shirt. "Does that mean I can open my present now?"

Naruto nearly burst out laughing at the suggestive tone but held it back, if just barely. "Who said you were good enough this year? Santa may have just brought you coal."

"Oh, I've been a very good boy, Naruto." Sasuke literally purred his hands still undressing him in the middle of the front room, and the burn of desire melted his insides and ate away at his thoughts. "Let me show you how good I can be."

"You… are spending… far too … much time with… Kakashi." Naruto managed between quick kisses and his shedding of clothing, but didn't even struggle when he was dragged to the cold floor, Sasuke shedding Anbu gear and pressing against him with a grin, pulling the lube from his gear pack. "What the—you fucking had that there the whole time?"

"A good Ninja is always prepared." Sasuke replied calmly opening the bottle and Naruto did laugh then.

"You are banned from seeing Kakashi. When you start quoting him I know it's bad."

"You want me to stop?" Sasuke's threat was empty, but Naruto was willing to play along. After all, it was Christmas.

"No… Sasuke," Naruto drew the other close, his lips brushing the others as he whispered, "Don't stop."

A grin.

"I won't."

A.N. Right, this came out weird. Nothing like my notes and I honestly hate it. Sorry for this epic piece of fail, but I promised to post it, and well, there it is. Sorry for wasting your time.