"You may now kiss the bride."
Temari sucked in a breath. This was the moment she'd waited so long for, the moment nobody thought would ever come. Just give up on him! Her siblings had said, so long ago when she and Shikamaru had just started dating. They told her he was lazy, that they would never last and he'd only break her heart. Of course, they were as wrong as any over-protective siblings could ever be.
Shikamaru didn't break her heart, he gave her his. And as he lifted the veil up over her head, and a hush rippled through the crowd in the small Suna alter, a thousand memories swelled up inside her. From the moment they met to the moment he proposed.
Old lady Chiyo had once told her that love took time.
But Temari had known the moment she'd seen Shikamaru that he was the one. At least, that's what she would tell their future children if asked.
The real story is a lot less appropriate for innocent ears.
"Hey!" I yelled, finally spotting Shikamaru talking to some old geezer with white hair. That asshole! He was supposed to be my guide tonight, but of course he ditches me in the middle of the party.
"Ugh..." Shikamaru groaned, throwing an apologetic look at the geezer, "sorry Jiraiya, but I'm supposed to be that chick's guide. So troublesome..."
A vein throbbed in my forehead. Had he really just called me 'that chick'?
"I have a name, you know!" I shrieked. Shikamaru was so infuriating!
"Don't be such a prude!" Jiraiya boomed, patting him on the back. "Feisty women are always the best!"
Okay. We're going somewhere else, like, now. I grabbed Shikamaru's sleeve and dragged him out of the dimly lit Hyuuga estate. He could do with some fresh air.
As soon as my feet touched the porch, however, Shikamaru plopped down on the steps and took out a pack of cigarettes.
"You have to be kidding me!"
He lit one of the cigarettes and took a drag from it, looking up at me with bored eyes. "What's wrong now?"
My cheeks flushed. How did he not get it? "For starters, I'm tired, I want to go home, and I smell like chlorine thanks to when that idiot Kiba pushed me in the pool!"
"He didn't push you; He slipped and tripped you."
"Like I give a shit! He still ogled at my chest!"
"Maybe if you hadn't worn a white kimono..."
"I'll wear whatever the hell I want!"
Shikamaru sighed, obviously thinking something like 'FML' or whatever. Hm. He could fuck his life all he wanted, so long as I got home safe and happy and clean-smelling. Like, now.
"Let's go." I reached down to yanked him up by the shirt front, but abruptly stopped. Instead, I sat down on the steps across from him, legs splayed out on the cold wood. Not that any of this was of my consent.
"Asswhole." I spat. He was obviously using his shadow jutsu on me.
Shikamaru smirked lazily, reaching over and cupping my cheek. My hand reached out and did the same. Traiter! I glared at both him and my evil hand, which currently rested on his cheek. Surprisingly, Shikamaru was quite warm. I wondered if he had a fever, or if that old geezer Jiraiya had forced some sake down his throat.
"Go to hell."
"So I guess that means you won't go out with me for ramen later?"
I blinked owlishly, caught off guard. "Huh?"
"Troublesome women..." Shikamaru sighed. He traced a pattern on my cheek, and I had to force myself not to admit how good it felt. "Do I really have to repeat it?"
I blinked again, and he seemed to take the hint.
"Fine," Shikamaru sighed. He locked eyes with me, brown clashing with blue. It really was such a warm shade...like firewood before it got burned. "Will you go out with me?"
Part of me was tempted to say yes, but I told that part to STFU. Shikamaru was sweet, and cute, and sometimes funny...
Wait. What was my point?
"...because obviously you like me, and I don't want your sibling to come after me. That would be troublesome..."
Oh yeah. He was an ass.
"I wouldn't go out with you if you were the last male on earth." I hissed, trying-and failing-to break out of his jutsu.
Shikamaru sighed, but leaned back in content. "Then I guess we'll just stay like this until the male population dies out. I can wait."
"Huh?" For the second time that night, I found myself totally caught off guard.
"We're just going to sit here until you agree to go out with me."
"...go fucking die, Nara."
He smirked, "If you agree to go out with me."
I hate rain.
Really, I do. It just sucks the life out of you. It's so much better when it's warm, like in Suna. The sun is always shining bright overhead, like a halo in the sky. No icky wet rain to stop me from going about me day. No sirree, it was all pure sand and sweat.
I love dojos.
Seriously, I could stay in here forever pummeling the shit out of the poor punching bag. It was already broken open, stuffing falling out onto the clean wood floor. I should feel sorry for it, but what else was I supposed to take my anger out on?
Now that I basically destroyed the bag, though, I would need something else to punch.
Hello newest victim.
I scowled, turning on my heal to glare at the owner of that obnoxious voice. "What do you want now, Nara?"
Shikamaru lazily raised an eyebrow at me. "Well, I came to see the Kazekage, and I figured since you were his secretary..."
"Ugh!" I gave the bag one last good punch, then stomped over to Shikamaru and dragged him out of the dojo by his sleeve.
"What's got you in such a mood?" He asked, making no effort to break my grip on his arm. I was sure it would leave a bruise, not that he didn't deserve it.
"I'm mad because you wouldn't let me leave on time last night, so I got a shitload of paperwork to do tonight! I'm never letting you take me to a party again, Nara."
"You don't mean that," Shikamaru sighed. "Why are all women so troublesome...?"
I came to an abrupt halt. Did he seriously just say that?
"Go to hell." I snapped, snatching my hand back from his sleeve as if it were poisoned.
Shikamaru rubbed his arm, smirking lazily at me. He grabbed my wrist and pulled me flush against him. "Only if you come with me."
No, I did not just shiver.
And even if i did, it was because he was whispering in my ear and his breath was cold.
"Ugh!" I shoved Shikamaru's chest. He didn't budge. "I hate you!"
"Seriously, go to hell!"
"If I say you look nice, will you refrain from attacking me?"
I eyed Shikamaru suspiciously. Why was he always my guide when I came to Konoha? Weren't there nicer, more compatible citizens willing to take the job?
"I won't touch you if you don't touch me." I declared. Tonight, I would try to act civil. If only for the fact that the festival was in honor of the jinchuuriki who had risked their lives to stop the Akatsuki, and Gaara happened to fall in that category.
"So troublesome," Shikamaru sighed, "do you need some help with that?" He asked, motioning to my kimono. It was sliding off my shoulders, even thought I tried desperately to keep it in place. The last thing I needed was to flash Shikamaru, who was horny enough without the help.
Face a deep shade of red, I nodded and looked away stubbornly. It was impossible to reach the tie of the orange and red kimono without it sliding down my top half. I would just have to suck it up and hope Shikamaru wasn't into surprise butt rape.
"What a drag...c'mere." He motioned me over to the other side of the inn room.
"Why can't you come over here?"
"Nara..." I said warningly. He sighed, but came over to me and grabbed one side of the red ribbon around my waist in each hand.
"How tight do you want it?" He asked, hands on my upper back. Well, he wasn't groping me, which had to be a good sign.
I fought down another blush. "Um...really tight, so it won't fall off."
"Can't say it would be disappointing if that happened..." Shikamaru mumbled. I stepped on his foot, effectively cutting off any other comments.
I was almost sad to loose the warmth his hands brought, but the tinkling sensation his fingers left behind was so much better...
OH SHIT. I did not just think that! Shikamaru is an ass! I could never remotely like anything about him. Shikamaru is an ass, Shikamaru is an ass...
At least, that's what I was chanting in my head as he grabbed my shoulders and spun me around so we were face-to-face. Once again, brown met blue. The blush I had been fighting finally won over.
"Temari..." Shikamaru whispered, caressing my cheek with his thumb.
I was at a loss for words. This time, I had no reason to run. I wasn't caught in his shadow jutsu, he wasn't being an ass, his hands weren't on places I could kick him in the groin for touching. I had no excuse to hide.
And yet I still found myself pushing Shikamaru to the floor, making a hasty escape out the inn window like the motherfucking ninja I was.
Looks like I'll just have to show up to the festival by myself.
"Hello?" I asked, picking up the phone. How in the world I had convinced Kankuro and Gaara to waste money on a house phone, I couldn't tell you. But now I could call Sakura whenever I wanted, and we could talk about girl things without freaking out random passerby at the Konoha hospital.
"Temari? It's Shikamaru."
"Nice talking to you, please leave a message after the beep."
"So troublesome...listen, I was wondering if you'd like to go out for some ramen tonight."
"Did the whole 'pushing you and running away' thing I did last week not penetrate your thick head? I said no, and I mean no."
"...Look at it this way, you left me without an escort to the festival, which means I have every right to tell Tsunade or Gaara and let them call you on it. But here I am giving you this opportunity to make it up to me. Do you really want to pass this up?"
That may have been the most she had ever heard Shikamaru say.
"I said it once, and I'll say it again; go fucking die, Nara!"
"I'll pick you up at seven tomorrow night."
"Go shove your face between a hungry Naruto and a bowl of ramen, you prick."
"Admit it, you had fun last night." Shikamaru said, completely relaxed as he gazed up at the early morning clouds. Temari hovered above him, hand on her hip, looking for all the world like the irritated girlfriend she was.
"We've been over this," She stated, glaring down at him as he stared up at the sky, "just because I shoved your face in a bowl of ramen, and then took you to the hospital for the burns, does not mean we're dating."
"We're dating because you said you'd go out with me again next weekend."
"Only because I felt guilty!"
"Face it, Temari," Shikamaru smirked up at her lazily, "you love me."
"No way in hell."
"We're not in hell."
"I am when I'm with you."
"How troublesome," Shikamaru sighed. "I supposed I should escort you home..." He said, making no move to get up.
"Yes. You should." Temari tried very hard to hide the frost in her voice, but of course he detected it. He always did.
"But it's such a drag..." Shikamaru yawned, as if to emphasis his point.
There was that vein again. Popping up right on the side of her forehead.
"Get up before I go get another bowl of ramen and shove it down your pants."
"...How troublesome." Shikamaru stood up and slung an arm around his girlfriend, placing a light kiss on her lips before she could stop him. Blushing, Temari looked away.
"You're such a pain in the ass." She said.
Shikamaru smirked, "Love you too."
Temari could remember the time he kissed her in the rain, the time she found out Kankuro was in the E.R. with Sakura operating on him and Shikamaru had held her hand, trying to made her feel better in his own down-rated way. The time he had carried her bridal-style back to Suna when she had sprained her ankle on a mission.
They were perfect for each other, two peas in a pod.
Which is exactly why she kissed him, out of her own free will, in front of hundreds of Suna and Konoha citizens and friends, finally making their life together official.
"I love you." Temari whispered against Shikamaru's lips as they parted, a grin breaking out across her blushing face.
Shikamaru sighed, "How troublesome."
Temari laughed, because she knew that was his way of saying 'I love you' back.
Happy Birthday to Cream-Dream17 :)
Now review, dammit.