They really needed to start preparing for these things; Nara Shikamaru thought incoherently as his hand desperately groped at their bedside locker drawer and wrenched it open, hoping the search wouldn't take long.

His other hand he kept stationed on her outer thigh, occasionally skimming the length of her hip and waist before returning to its original position. His head and mouth she kept occupied very well although given the current search it might have been helpful to have been able to use his eyes, but Kami help him, she was just too good at distracting him with her lips.

When no small, square and plastic objects could his hand find, Shikamaru pulled the drawer out further, his hand now making an audible amount of noise whilst he felt her smirk against his lips.

"Someone's impatient," she breathed huskily although he could tell from the waver in her voice that she was equally ready to begin. Or continue rather.

At any rate, having been married to her for five years and sleeping with her for ten, Shikamaru could tell easily from the glaze in Temari's eyes, the sound of her voice and the redness of her cheeks that she was as impatient as he was. That and the way she was tearing off his boxer shorts and dragging him towards her.

Rather than replying and risking the ensuing tussle of words, Shikamaru continued to search and all but swore aloud when it persisted in being fruitless.

Finally, having reached his limit he allowed himself to break away from the lips that owned him and add a visual aid. The move turned out not to be hugely disadvantageous as the same lips gravitated towards his ear and latched on to the lobe, hotly pulling and sucking although this in itself merely increased the fervour in his search.

Another curse was the response when his eyes confirmed what his hand already knew. They were out. Usually, Temari took it upon herself to ensure their supply of protection remained high and this was the way it had been ever since they had moved in together. Prior to that, he'd maintained it out of some chivalrous idea that it was his job and since neither of them wanted to increase the chances of an accident back in those days, he was never really too put out about the system.

He had however forgotten to maintain the levels twice in their relationship's history and both times the result had been almost disastrous albeit the first markedly less so than the second.

His first slip up had occurred purely due to his own laziness and no other ulterior motive but when he thought back on it, it had been the catalyst for their finally regarding themselves as a 'couple'. They had been in a position not unlike the one they were in now, he remembered, only it had been at her apartment in Suna.

He'd travelled there for no other purpose than to get her into bed. He wasn't ashamed to admit it; after all they'd been casually sleeping together for at least six months. There was no verbal commitment between the pair of them but now that he recalled the incident, he did acknowledge that there was some discreet part of his brain that regarded her as 'his'.

The time had come, much as it had now, and he was once again searching through his back pockets for a condom. He found none.

"Right, well, we'll just have to wait until we get some."

"Can't you just go get the morning after pill tomorrow?"

He shuddered to think he'd actually suggested that option but his seventeen year old self was less patient than his twenty-seven year old self, which wasn't saying much.

She laughed.

"I'm not taking the chance of an S.T.D., Nara, not even for you."

He nearly fell off of the bed.

"I'm not sleeping with anyone else."

She blinked.

"Aren't you?"

He swallowed.

"Are you?"

He thought he'd mentally blocked out her answer to that question, but given the unhappy lurch his stomach gave when he remembered the incident, there was obviously a part of him that could recall the nature of her answer regardless.

Either way, after that moment, they'd proceeded to have the 'conversation'. He basically told her to cut out whatever else...or whoever else, it was she was doing. It had been a gamble, that one. He remembered feeling ill when he issued the ultimatum, knowing that the likelihood of her telling him to get lost was high indeed.

Thankfully, as it turned out, she complied willingly. And with somewhat of a large smile on her face.

That incident, whilst awkward, was still useful in that it cemented them as 'them'. He realised in that moment that if he didn't go about making her his, then the likelihood was that someone else would.

It was that same thought that propelled him to get down on one knee in front of the troublesome woman, like his seventeen year old self had sworn he would never do when he first felt his heart thump desperately at the thought of another man touching her, and ask a little clumsily for her hand in marriage. Having her identify herself as his girlfriend just wasn't enough anymore.

Naturally, she had said yes. Or they wouldn't have been in the same position they were in now. Temari, being Temari had responded physically as she always did. Thankfully, it had resulted in his underwear all but hanging from the ceiling light as opposed to a knee in the groin as it once did when he accidentally referred to her as 'his' in her presence.

Seemingly, she wanted to belong to him even if she wasn't going to admit it aloud.

Nevertheless, he had been about to reach for his bedside locker drawer to draw out the condom, when his hand stalled in the process.

They were engaged. They were getting married. Suddenly, protection didn't seem like such a big deal anymore. Suddenly, the aforementioned 'accident' didn't either. So what if that happened? They would be man and wife, right? In fact, it was going to happen at some stage in the future anyways so why not move the process along?

That had been his somewhat disjointed reasoning at the time; but again, he could plead mental incapacity. It wasn't just lips that were distracting him that time.

He had grasped her hips, readied himself and...

"What are you doing?"


A laugh.

"You don't think you've forgotten something?"


"So what? Doesn't matter about those anymore, right?"

Out of the corner of his eye, he could see the diamond glinting on her finger.

A nip at his neck.

And suddenly, he was sitting beside her instead of on top of her.


A confused grunt.

"I don't want children."

Those four little words had been the catalyst for an eight month termination in their relationship. The ring was returned to the jewellers; he bought a new set of kunai with the refund and embedded them all in the nearest tree with an uncharacteristic vigour, and she returned to Suna and quit her job as diplomat.

Around three months in he had decided that as much as he loved the thought of hypothetical children, he loved her more and wasn't prepared to give her up purely for non-existent possibilities. The five month extension in the break up had come about when he went to tell her all of this and found a half naked man in her apartment.

That particular image had taken weeks of carefully chosen words from her to get out of his head.

And so they'd gotten married. Sure his mother had all but committed suicide when she learned that there would be no grandchildren and Ino had done nothing to help the situation when she gave birth to his second godson, but surprisingly, Shikamaru found that he didn't care.

His two godsons and as the years passed, five godchildren altogether- he started to think people were playing a joke after the fifth request from Neji came in- were more than enough to keep him happy. They babysat regularly and whenever he was feeling particularly paternal, he just went out and bought his children by religion presents.

He could honestly say that he had never thought of Temari having children, apart from the one recent occasion when Ino brought Chouji junior over and he came home from work to find Temari singing the boy a lullaby. Apparently it had been one she used to sing to her brothers. That one moment aside, which Shikamaru had quickly put out of his mind, their life continued as normal.

So when his hands and his eyes continued to search and search and he found nothing and he suggested that he might have a spare one lying about downstairs, when his beautiful wife uttered a soft "leave it" into his ear, Shikamaru was certain he had misheard.

"Sorry?" he attempted to clarify, lurching forward when she grasped him with her hands and pulled him in between her legs.

"I said leave it," she repeated, positioning him almost inside of her and when he tried to pull back again, she locked him in place with her legs around his hips.

Not wanting to sound patronizing and well aware that if he didn't complete the act soon he was going to punch something, Shikamaru feigned calmness.

"You do realise that if we...?"

"I'm aware of the consequences," she responded quickly, licking at his ear again and he knew she was trying to hurry him along by going for his weak spot.

His stomach lurched and his heart panged with something that felt like hope. But his head told him it was too good to be true and he wondered if he was dreaming about her again.

If he wasn't, it meant that she...?

But then she had told him, in the clearest possible terms that...

But his mother always said that she might change...

Although, she had assured him on several occasions that she wouldn't...

His hesitance resulted in her grasping him from behind and pushing him inside of her and all of a sudden, Shikamaru couldn't care less whether she had changed her mind or not. His only thought was that this particular way of doing things felt so much better and he wondered why no one had told him this before.

He finally regained consciousness a few seconds after the act was complete; his head wedged securely in between her sweat drenched neck, both of them breathing heavily, her moans only just subsiding in his ears.

Usually at this point he would tell her he loved her, maybe double check to make sure she'd enjoyed it as much as he had and then proceed to wait for her to begin to shuffle out from underneath him and all but crawl on top of him as they prepared for sleep.

But this time, as he regained consciousness, the realisation of what had just happened...what they had just done...flooded back to him and he opened his eyes to find her looking at him warily, clearly waiting for the onslaught of questions.

"If...if something does happen..." he began in a weak attempt to reassure her that if it did it was no big catastrophe.

"Shikamaru," she cut in, her palm coming up to grasp his cheek as he remained on top of her.


Even he didn't not miss the hopefulness in his own voice.

"I changed my mind."

Those four little words started a beating in his heart that all but yanked his jaw off in a teeth breaking grin.

Although he managed to contain it.

"Why?" he asked, not wanting to sound desperately confused but knowing inwardly that that was how he felt.

She looked uncertain, her eyes no longer meeting his.

"I told you I didn't mind," he added, hoping against all hope that she hadn't done this just because she felt pressured. "I said it before; I'd rather have you than ten kids with somebody else."

She swallowed.

"I know..." Temari began, almost kissing him once more before pulling away. "I saw the look on your face the other day...when you saw me, with Chouji."

A frustration overtook him as he let his head fall down, his forehead pressing on her shoulder as he tried not to let anger flood into his veins.

"That is not a good reason to take this risk," he gritted out and he felt her stiffen against him. "...You shouldn't have done this...not to please me. There is no reason why you should have done this."

"It is a good reason," she said softly, grasping his face once more to force him to meet her eye to eye, and his frustration disappeared as quickly as it had come when he saw the gentleness in her expression. "What's wrong with wanting to give you a child?"

"What's wrong is that you didn't even give me a chance to talk about it with you," he clarified evenly, finally allowing himself to sit up, as she moved to be near him again. He knew now that she was nervous. She only ever went to him when she was afraid she had angered him. "You just did it. You took advantage of my...situation."

She allowed a small smile and he knew it was at the thought of him being taken advantage of. Really, it was his own fault too.

"I knew if I gave you even a moment, you would over-think it," she stated plainly, taking his hand. "I could see it even when I suggested that we leave the condom. A thousand thoughts flew through your mind and if I gave you the chance to talk about it, we would be waiting for weeks before we made a decision."

"What's wrong with waiting?" Shikamaru countered, the desperation leaking through. "Neither of us is going anywhere and it's not as though you're turning forty. We needed to talk. To plan. To discuss the ramifications at the very least!"

"I didn't want to do that," Temari corrected him, gathering their bed sheets about her, the twilight now in full bloom. "I wanted to...if I had suggested that, you would think that I was somewhat unsure. This way you know that I am sure."

He shook his head.

"No you're not," he sighed, lying back when the mental process became too much. "You're only doing this because you think I want you to."

"So?" Temari queried with a shrug. "I still don't see why that is a bad reason...besides, you do want me to. You have ever since you proposed. I don't understand why you're denying it."

"It's a bad reason because someday when our unplanned child is running around the house, I'm going to be watching you get stressed out and knowing that you never really wanted him," Shikamaru bit out shakily, feeling more stressed then ever as the reality continued to hit home. "You think I want that? You think I want a child to be brought into this world knowing that all the way through your pregnancy, all the way through his schooling, his training, his life that you would rather he had not existed?"

He stood and began pulling on his clothes because the thought of what he had just vocalised meant that if he didn't get a shot of sake soon, he would be vomiting as a result.

"You told me you didn't want kids!" he continued, pacing as his hands ran through his own hair. "You told me you never wanted any and I was fine with that! I told you I was. We got married anyways. And you broke the deal."

It didn't escape his notice that she was watching him with a small amount of amusement and a great deal of exasperation. When he finally stopped speaking, she regarded him expectantly.

"You finished?" she questioned cattily and he would have stormed out if they hadn't have been actually fighting over something important. So he swallowed his natural urge, and nodded to show she could talk.

"First of all, you are not fine with it," Temari began, folding her arms as his jaw stiffened. "I've always known you weren't fine with it. I can see it when you go out Christmas shopping for presents. You wish you were buying presents for our kids instead of everybody else. When Chouji comes to stay the night, you spend it wishing it was our son playing with him instead of you and me. Kami's sake, you think about every time you reach for a bloody condom! I can see it pass through your eyes, Shikamaru!"

He sat down on their bedroom chair.

Had he really been that transparent?

The thought went from his head as soon as it came; of course he hadn't. To anyone else it would have looked like nothing. It was only because she knew him so well.

"Secondly," she continued, sounding calmer and leaning back on the head board, "I told you when I said that I didn't want kids that it was because I had spent my younger life raising my brothers and I hated it."

"It was hell. I'm not lying, it really was. You've met my brother right?"

"Gaara had Shukaku inside of him, Temari! It's not like our kid would!"

"I'm talking about Kankuro, Nara! That little shithead nearly drove me to suicide!"

"But I always knew I could raise a child, Shikamaru," Temari went on, calling him back from his reverie. "The reason I didn't want one of my own was because I would have to take at least two years off active duty and even then my professional life would never return to the way it was."

Her explanation was doing little to calm him; he had heard all this before.

"So what changed?" he cut in, hoping for some reassurance.

She shrugged.

"I don't know," his wife answered honestly. "It's not really that I don't want a child anymore than I used to," she proceeded as he resisted the urge to punch the wall. "But I suddenly realised that if I got pregnant, I wouldn't be having a child."

He furrowed his brow.

"We would be."

He had to admit, she'd always been good at saying things that travelled right to his heart.

"I had only ever been thinking about what would happen to me if I had a baby, but then I started to think about what would happen to you if we didn't," she explained, somewhat quietly. "And that lead to me thinking about the look I always see in your eyes when you're watching the kids at the training academy. And then I started to think about how happy you would be...and how I wanted to be the one to make you that happy."

He couldn't figure out how he felt. Which wasn't a good sign.

"I didn't want to be the woman who withheld that from you just because I don't want to work for two years," Temari said naturally, still looking at him as he found it was now easier to meet her eyes but he knew he still didn't look convinced when she pressed on. "Don't you see; it was different when it was your mother and Ino and social convention saying that I should get pregnant. For once I realised that it wasn't to all those people I'd be giving a child would be you."

Despite the sweetness and honesty with which her explanation sounded off, it still did nothing to dissuade his earlier objections.

"You still don't want a child though," he repeated lowly, his anger having been replaced by sorrow. He couldn't help but think of a different way this could have gone; them discussing it calmly before he actually took the time make love to her, instead of the rushed fumble that this event had been. Then the excitement after when they waited to see if they'd achieved it; instead of this- an argument.

She sighed.

"I was never going to want a child, Shikamaru," Temari replied with equal slowness, as his nausea came back. "When I say that I mean I was never going to ask you to have a baby with me," she clarified when she clearly saw the look on his face. "I would never have come to that decision just by thinking of myself. Because when I think of me and a child...all I can see is my mother and what having a child did to her."

"Doesn't it bother you?" he asked weakly, the possible future events forcing him to stay sitting. "The idea that there will be a child around here that you don't love?"

Before he knew it she was kneeling in front of him, hands grasping his again.

"That's what you think?" she asked with a quiet incredulity. "That I wouldn't love our baby?"

He nodded imperceptibly.

She let out a small laugh.

"Shikamaru, I raised my brothers and they drove me crazy and I all but killed both of them...but I still love them don't I?"

He almost let out a snort of sarcastic proportions. She more than loved them. She'd die for them. She almost had on three separate occasions.

"I love them more than myself and all I did was raise them," she continued earnestly, rubbing her thumbs over his fingers. "I can't even imagine the sort of love I would feel for something that I grew inside of me."

He found that it was this plain sentence that brought him back from the brink of illness and despair. He allowed himself to watch her again and her sea blue eyes staring up at him with a ridiculous ferocity and yet somehow an unknowing gentleness, brought home the actual reality to him.

They might have a baby.

She might be pregnant.

He might be a father.

Seeing the softening in his eyes, a small smile crept onto her face.

"I think you've realised that we're going to be parents," she whispered, kneeling up to kiss him as his arms latched onto her with a surprising elation considering that he felt as though he was frozen.

"You're sure this is what you want?" he asked slowly, kissing her in between just to let her know that even if she changed her mind, he wasn't going to be angry.

"I want to make you happy," Temari said, hugging him, her head leaning on his shoulder. "I want you to know that I would do anything for you..."

He felt a fierce wave of love for the woman before him wash over his being and it staggered him how with such little sentiments, she could make him realise that he would do anything for her too, even if it meant giving up the children that the thought of which was currently making his heart beat with an indescribable feeling of happiness.

"...and I will do anything for our child, Shikamaru," she finished softly, her reassurance complete. "After all, the three men that already exist in my life know better than anyone else how immovable I am when it comes to giving them what they want."

He smiled lightly at her last sentence, kissing her again and the smile grew as he thought ahead to all the moments in their future; even the closest ones when he could tell his mother...tell Ino, tell everyone...

He wondered if it would be an overreaction to shout it from the top of Hokage Mountain.

All these thoughts and more filled his minds' eye yet he was brought suddenly back down to a much baser piece of earth when he felt her fingers begin to trail down his chest towards his hips.

And quite quickly, her lips were back on his ear. "You do realise we double our chances if we do it twice?"

Shikamaru had noticed after all these years, that no matter what feeling he had been experiencing before she touched him- even if he had been howling with sorrow- she always managed to throw them all out of his head and force him to remember that he was married to Temari of the Sand; the girl he had been having ridiculously graphic dreams about since he was fifteen. And when that thought crept into his head, he had to do something about it, even just to remind himself that only he could touch her.

"Just do me a favour," he breathed as she led him back to bed and he grabbed the bedside locker drawer and threw it in their bedroom bin.

She kissed him but he knew she was listening.

"In six months time when you're waking up in the middle of the night to be sick and thinking very seriously about divorcing me...remember; this was your idea!"

Okay, so this fluffly little piece originally started out as an Anecdote but it became a little too long so I decided I'd post it as a one-shot. I actually quite like it; I think it is an extremely Shikamaru/Temari situation to be in. Either way, I've always felt that Temari would be a little skittish about having children so this is my response to that thought.

In story progress update mode; The 30,000 one shot; I'm 85% happy with it, but I just can't figure out the ending. I absolutely love love love 85% of it but I don't want to post it before I'm 100% happy with how its turned out cause I feel I'd be selling myself short then.

As far as the Gossip Girl goes; still WIP- I should emphasize to anyone who might be nervous about it, I'm not actually just going to plop the Naruto characters into the GG storyline- it will be an original story line but just within a GG setting. Hopefully this should help anyone with fears and I would ask you all to get voting! It's fun to read the results :D

Either way, thanks as always for reading; I always appreciate every review and as always, from now they will be replied to :)

So you know what to do :)