This story has some of Masashi Kishimoto's characters from Naruto in a universe of my own devising. I do not own Naruto. I do not make any money from these writings.

Warning: This story features male/male relationships. If you are uncomfortable reading about gay male relationships do not read this story.

Any scene considered too graphic has been replaced by oo******oo

This story is set in a very different world to ours. In 'known space', different societies and communities are often very isolated from each other and have very different histories. There is no common shared knowledge of Earth's history; in fact all knowledge of Earth as the home of mankind is lost. There is no shared law, no shared agreement of what what is 'right' and 'wrong', no pervasive religion.

Warning: The views, standards, mores and morals of the different groups in this story, including those of 'spacers', are not those of our world. They are the product of a fictional future history. Many of the behaviours they consider acceptable we do not.

I would like to thank the regular readers of 'In the cold of space you find the heat of suns' who left reviews or sent emails. Special thanks to xxShadowheartxx for reviewing tales 1-9, Sable Scribe for reviewing tales 8 & 9 and kaname-luvr for reviewing tale 3.

Apologies if the characters have grown differently in their new environment.

Many thanks to 'Small Fox' for beta-ing.

You need to have read In the cold of space you find the heat of sun to fully appreciate this fic.

If you haven't...

...Sasuke's crew live in a space station called Tarrasade when they are not travelling. Kakashi has been sworn to Uchiha since he was a boy and was one of Fugaku's victims. Twenty standards before the start of this tale, at the age of eighteen, he was sent away to prepare a crew where Sasuke could be trained in utter secrecy. Iruka was recruited as a member of that crew. Want to know more? Read 'In the cold of space you find the heat of suns'.

Tales in Tarrasade 10 - Opening the cage

Two divs after the children's second birth anniversary

Kakashi lay staring at the ceiling of the room he shared with Iruka.

He had ignored the problem for divs, hoping it would go away. It was a strategy that had always worked in the past. Usually, in time, Iruka would go back to normal. On rare occasions Iruka would vent, Kakashi would listen and then they would continue behaving as they had always behaved. Once, and only once, the situation had been so bad that Kakashi had been forced to do something; he had confessed to Iruka that he loved him, they had exchanged rings and their relationship had settled into a new place that was slightly different than before but just as comfortable.

Never, during the twelve standards they had been fucking or in the ten standards they had been lovers, had Iruka been anything other than the most wonderfully responsive partner a man could wish for.

Now it was as if Iruka was not really there. He still displayed the full range of skills Kakashi had taught him, his technique was exquisite, but it was like someone had stolen his Ir-chan away and replaced him with a robot.

Kakashi was going to have to do something.

He spent the next morning considering whether he should ask Iruka what was wrong. However, after much reflection, he decided that the likely outcomes of that approach were poor.

Iruka might deny that there was a problem. It would then look like Kakashi was accusing Iruka of being an inadequate lover. Kakashi shuddered at the thought.

Less likely, but almost as undesirable, would be Iruka informing Kakashi that he ought to know what was wrong without being told.

Another frightening possibility was Iruka weeping. Iruka only cried with extremely good reason, like someone dying or when Naruto had told them that his life was almost half over when it should have only just started.

Kakashi decided to do some research before taking the risk.

He started with Jiraiya. It had been Jiraiya who had insisted that the unassuming, mud-coloured youth should be their next cat. At the time Kakashi had not cared enough to notice; he had still been reeling from the news that Fugaku-kyou, Mikoto-san and all the others had been killed by Itachi.

Kakashi had soon realised that Jiraiya was correct; Iruka had potential. He had empathy; Kakashi could see him caring for a motherless boy. He was also surprisingly resilient and tough. That he was such a sweet student in bed had been an unexpected bonus.

Jiraiya was living in Tsunade's apartment in the guest quarters. He saw Iruka regularly at the meetings held to discuss household business. Kakashi was hoping he had noticed something.

He took a bottle of Jiraiya's favourite whisky.

Jiraiya considered the question carefully when Kakashi finally posed it.

"No, he seems the same to me," Jiraiya admitted. "He is as particular as ever and he still nags." He frowned at Kakashi. "How bad is it that you are asking me? Do you think it is over between the two of you?"

The thought had never entered Kakashi's head. Now that it was there Kakashi did not like it one little bit. "No," he answered. "There is something bothering him. Once he's over it we will be fine."

"Good," Jiraiya declared, obviously relieved. "Iruka is the glue that holds us all together." He considered. "You need to keep him happy, Kakashi."

Kakashi said nothing.

"He's been helping look after Sasuke's children for over two standards. Maybe that is what is bothering him," Jiraiya suggested. "Maybe he wants one of his own."

Iruka looked at him as if he had grown another head. "A baby? Why in known space would I want a baby? We've only just got the ten of them out of diapers." He scowled at Kakashi. "Do you want one?" he asked, unable to keep the incredulity out of his voice.

Kakashi shook his head. "Just checking," he replied lamely and slunk away.

Next he went to Asuma. Asuma was his oldest friend. They sat at the table in Kurenai's kitchen and drank sake.

"I haven't a clue," Asuma admitted. "He seems perfectly normal to me. Maybe he's finally decided he's fed up of you taking him for granted."

Kakashi poured himself another drink. He had anticipated the lecture, Asuma always voiced it on the few occasions Kakashi gave him an opening.

"We could ask Kurenai," Asuma suggested.

"No," Kakashi replied quickly. "Iruka wouldn't like it."

"Ka-chan, you are going to have to talk to him," advised Asuma. He judged Kakashi's response and sighed. "You could consider speaking to Neji," he suggested. "Neji will keep his mouth shut and if there is anything wrong he should know. It is his job."

Neji's large, pale violet-grey eyes blinked at him. "You want my professional opinion?" he asked.

Kakashi tensed. Unlike Jiraiya and Asuma, Neji was not surprised that Kakashi was asking. It was a bad sign. "Yes," he answered. "Please," he added.

"I think Iruka-san has been depressed for between three and four divisions, possibly some time longer," Neji told him. "The signs are more marked within the last two. He is extremely skilled at covering it, so you should not blame yourself if you have only noticed recently. I have thought on the matter and I do not know the cause. I could speculate," he offered.

Kakashi nodded. At least he had started to notice as soon as Neji. It was some consolation.

"Depression can be engendered when someone has little or no control over his life," Neji told him, "particularly when he has a lot of responsibility. You have made most of the large decisions in Iruka-san's life for him. The only one he took for himself was agreeing to run Sasuke-sama's household and, if we are honest, you had spent standards manipulating him so that there was no chance he would refuse.

"Also, the people he loves no longer need him in the way they did in the past. Shikamaru, Sasuke and Naruto have grown up. Tayuya is doing far better than any of us would have predicted. He anticipated having a major role in raising Sasuke's children but, in reality, he is a back-up for Kiba."

"I need him," Kakashi admitted.

Neji studied him. It made Kakashi uncomfortable. "He does not believe that to be so, Kakashi-san. To be honest, I do not believe it to be so. I believe that you long ago made yourself incapable of needing anyone. It was an understandable response to your parents abandoning you and the abuse you suffered as a consequence of their decision."

Kakashi refused to acknowledge the accuracy of Neji's analysis. "I love him," he said.

"That I believe," Neji admitted. "Perhaps for Iruka-san that is not enough. He needs to be needed."

Kakashi thought long and hard about what Neji had said. He spent more time training and showering, because he thought best during those activities. After two days he asked for a private interview with Sasuke.

"This must be truly confidential," he began. "Even from Naruto."

Sasuke stiffened slightly. "I give you my word, Kakashi-sensei."

"I believe that Iruka is unhappy although I am sure that Iruka would deny it if you asked him," Kakashi explained. "I wish to be able to offer him real alternatives and give him the freedom to choose between them. That may mean you releasing us from our duties for a short or a long period of time. It may mean we change the timetables we have decided on and resurrect the idea of an academy. I am not certain."

"Iruka-sensei feels trapped?" Sasuke demanded.

"I think so," Kakashi confessed.

Sasuke scowled, obviously thinking. "He deserves to be happy," he decided. "If necessary, we will reorganise. Everyone will help because we all care for him. We are stronger than we used to be. It will be fine."

Iruka did not expect Kakashi to be waiting at the door of his office with a request that Iruka walk with him. Neither did he expect them to enter the old household, nor make their way to the private apartments of the ruling family. They entered a room that Iruka could tell had been an office and which he suspected had been Fugaku Uchiha's office. If so, it was astonishing that Kakashi should choose to visit it. Iruka waited.

"One day we were a normal family." Kakashi began. "We did not see my father much, but that was not thought unusual. My mother was lovely and we children were the centre of her life. There were five of us, three boys and two girls. I was the second boy and the third child. I was good at everything, my older brother resented me but no one else seemed to mind.

"Then, when I was eight, my father killed himself.

"He had been gambling and we were left with nothing other than his debts. Our life fell apart. Our home and all our belongings were taken by bailiffs. We were living in one room of my uncle's house.

"My uncle called me into the parlour and told me that my father had gambled our futures away. He said that my brothers and sisters would be put up for adoption and that my mother would have to serve the man who owned my father's debts, probably as a whore.

"He then said I could stop that happening. If he could obtain a lucrative contract with Uchiha he would pay off my father's debts and look after my family. He needed a sweetener to secure the contract. He had sent Uchiha my school assessments and they were interested.

"He gave me a choice. I could give up my life and have my family looked after or I could be selfish and see my siblings in an orphanage and my mother in a brothel.

"So I ended up here, in this room. Fugaku-kyou looked at me across his desk and asked me my name. I answered that I did not have one, that I had given it up with my life. He told me that my name was Kakashi, that Uchiha owned me and that he was the embodiment of Uchiha."

Kakashi looked directly into Iruka's eyes. "That choice my uncle offered me, it was not real. There was only one answer I could give." He took a deep breath. "And I think, Ir-chan, that I have done the same to you. It is a better cage, but I have caged you."

Iruka stared at Kakashi. Kakashi had never before spoken of his childhood. Iruka had not known about his siblings or the change in name.

Then, slowly, what Kakashi had said at the end sunk in.

Iruka eyes reluctantly went to the ring on his duty finger. He had been running the Uchiha household for less than three standards and, it was true, there were days when the knowledge that it was a lifetime commitment made his heart sink. He liked looking after people, not being a glorified quartermaster. Choza fed everyone. Naruto and Kiba cared for the children. Haku and C-san helped those who were damaged. Iruka held meetings, made lists, ordered supplies and checked that everyone did their duties. Even Tayuya no longer really needed him.

Kakashi put out a hand and touched Iruka's cheek. "When I was a child, I wanted to go to Centre and enter the Colonial Service," he volunteered.

Iruka was beginning to understand what type of child Kakashi had been. He imagined a slightly less brilliant but more athletic and extroverted version of Shikamaru.

"I wanted to teach children," he confessed, "but to be a teacher you needed the type of education someone like me could never afford."

"It's not too late," Kakashi reminded him. "You could study remotely, like Haku. There are enough schools in Tarrasade for you to gain experience."

Iruka's mind began filling with all the reasons it was not practicable. He stopped himself. Kakashi had brought him to this room, the place he hated more than anywhere else in known space. He had spoken about his childhood, something Iruka had thought he would never do. Iruka understood the message. Change was possible. Kakashi was determined to open his cage.

"Perhaps," he admitted.

Three divs later

Iruka woke before his alarm. It was a good sign. He considered slipping out from under the covers but decided to give Kakashi a cuddle instead. Kakashi gave a contented mumble, snuggled closer but fell back asleep rather than responding. Iruka did not take offense; Kakashi would never be a morning person.

Showered and dressed, he was, as always, first to the kitchen. He put the kettle to boil and organised his tea set on its tray.

The tea was brewing when the new door to the kitchen slid open and Ibiki entered. They exchanged greetings and then the big man began assembling his breakfast bowl of cereal, reconstituted dried fruit and yoghurt.

Once Iruka admitted there was a problem, that part of the solution had been obvious; Ibiki could run a third crew room. As well as adding Ibiki to the team that ran the household, it meant that they could spread the family out and make more space for the children.

Sasuke had also resolved the long-standing issue of Tsunade and the Silver Leaf. He had asked Tsunade to join Uchiha instead of renewing his invitation for her to do so, as he had so many times before. Once she was convinced she was needed, Tsunade had set her misgivings aside. She and Jiraiya now had an apartment within the household, like Kurenai and Asuma and Izumo and Kotetsu. That meant Jiraiya could assume a more senior position. The Silver Leaf had joined the Uchiha fleet and was being refitted by Izumo and Kotetsu.

Suzume, Shizune, Tenten and Moegi had also been recruited. Suzume, for all the limitations she had shown as queen on the Silver Leaf, made a superb quartermaster; she relished all the tasks that Iruka had particularly disliked. Another qualified medico was welcome and Shizune was skilled enough that even Rin was grudgingly impressed. Recruiting Tenten, a second female fighter, was another small step forward for the warriors of old Uchiha.

Iruka was not sure about Moegi, but she came as part of the deal.

The tea was ready. Iruka poured himself and Ibiki a cup. Ibiki sat down at the table and began eating. Iruka sipped his tea.

He had slowly settled into his new supervisory role. He held a team meeting every five days and was available in his office at set times. He still felt guilty about delegating so much of the work but Haku, Jiraiya, Ibiki, Kurenai and Suzume made a formidable team; the household was running more smoothly than ever before.

Radically reducing his workload had given him the space he needed to explore other options. He set up regular one-to-one meetings with each of the cats to review his or her progress. He was developing plans for an academy. He had signed on as a remote student at the University of Palance and was working his way through their foundation course; like most spacers his learning was deep in some areas and almost non-existent in others.

Iruka was careful to make sure that the changes did not to jeopardise the stability of the crew; he continued to preside over midday and evening meals and he was always in the kitchen in the early morning.

Naruto arrived next. He kissed Iruka on the cheek and settled into the next chair. Iruka smiled at him and poured him tea. After a few minutes Naruto asked him about the studying and Iruka talked about what he had learned over the last few days. Ibiki and Naruto both asked questions that made Iruka think, which was good. Iruka was about to ask Naruto about the HDL when Naruto's stomach rumbled noisily, making Ibiki laugh and Iruka smile. Iruka was just about to get up and make him some breakfast when the cats invaded.

Inari and Konohamaru immediately began preparing for the children's breakfast. They pulled the folding table from its housing, extended its legs and added five of the folding high chairs down each side. Konohamaru then fetched three adult-sized chairs from the main table and put one on either side of the table and one at the end that was not anchored in the housing.

Tayuya began cooking, prioritising Naruto's breakfast. Moegi made tea and coffee before assembling the breakfast food that did not require heating. Sumaru set the table.

Kiba's voice from the speaker gave a five minute warning. Inari set the children's table, taking care to get the correct coloured bowl in the appropriate place. Konohamaru placed the containers of food and jugs of milk down the centre. With less than one minute to go Naruto stood up and moved towards the chair at the head of the children's table, only for a slightly dishevelled Sasuke to appear. Naruto smiled and took one of the chairs at the side.

The children swarmed through the doorway from the crew room. Each rushed to and climbed into his or her chair. Kiba took the chair opposite Naruto.

There was a moment of expectant silence.

"Good morning, children," Sasuke said.

"Good morning, Papa, To-chan, Kiba-san," the children chorused. They looked towards the main table. "Good morning Iruka-san, Ibiki-san." There was a pause because it was Ryuu's turn and talking was not his strong point. Naruto smiled at him encouragingly. "Thank you for making our breakfast," he said shyly, looking at the cats.

Naruto decided not to insist that he list all four individually. "Well done, Ry-chan," he acknowledged.

They were filling bowls when Haku entered.

"Good morning, children," he said.

Every child sat a little straighter. "Good morning, Haku-san," they chorused.

"How are you today, Haru-chan?" he added.

"Very good, Haku-san," Haru assured him, "Very, very good."

Haku took a chair close to Iruka. If there had been an adult's chair unoccupied at the children's table he would have taken that. Iruka imagined that the children, and Haru in particular, were grateful that Sasuke had pulled himself out of bed.

The children finished eating and were herded towards the playroom by Kiba and Naruto. Once the coast was clear everyone else began arriving in twos or threes. Soon breakfast was almost complete and neither Kakashi nor Shikamaru had made an appearance. Iruka excused himself from the table and made two cups of real coffee. He snapped a lid on each and gave one to Neji, who smiled.

Iruka made his way back to his room. Kakashi was, of course, still in bed but there was movement when the door opened and closed. Iruka uncovered the coffee. Kakashi sniffed the air and sat up.

Kakashi ran his hand down Iruka's bare back, over his rump and along his thigh. His fingertips tickled the back of his knee. Iruka gave a small squeak of protest. He looked at Kakashi through his hair and smiled.

Being able to persuade Iruka back into bed after breakfast was one advantage of the reorganisation. More of Iruka's time was his own, to be used as he wished. Neither of them had a commitment in the first half of the morning; training or studying could be moved to later in the day.


"You are insatiable, 'Kashi," he murmured.

"As if you mind," Kakashi replied with a smile.

The End


The complete series

This is the order of the stories in this series

In the cold of space you find the heat of suns chapters 1-16

Can his spacer crew keep Sasuke alive and his identity secret so he survives to lead a new Uchiha? Will the fox-boy they acquire affect Kakashi's carefully laid plans?

Silver Leaf Tales: Tying the knot

Naruto and Sasuke were friends & rivals but now they are lovers. What does it mean to each of them? Will their differences stand between them?

In the cold of space you find the heat of suns chapters 17-91

Tales in Tarrasade 1 – The Cook and the Nursemaid

Can Choza break the bad habit of a lifetime and find someone who appreciates him?

Tales in Tarrasade 2 - Knives

Can Lee make himself extraordinary enough to counter Gaara's obsession with beautiful blonds?

Tales in Tarrasade 3 - Vacation

Shikamaru decides that Naruto needs cheering up.

Tales in Tarrasade 4 – Pas de Trois - Chapter 1 Partners in the dance

Can Haku circumvent all their problems and achieve his aim of melding him, Kisame and Itachi into a threesome?

Tales in Tarrasade 5 - Kiba's day off

Iruka persuades Kiba to have a day off while Sasuke and Naruto are away. Surely they can cope looking after Naruto's litter for a single day?

Tales in Tarrasade 6 - Friendship

Sometimes being friends is more important than being lovers. That's what Inari thinks but will Konohamaru agree?

Tales in Tarrasade 4 - Pas de Trois - Chapter 2 Kisame's miracle

Tales in Tarrasade 7 - Honour your parents

Shikamaru receives a message that sends him into a funk. Can the crew help him out?

Tales in Tarrasade 8 – Patron [2 chapters]

His relationship with The Last Uchiha has made Naruto the most famous hybrid in known space. Can he use his fame to help other hybrid?

Tales in Tarrasade 9 - Homeward bound

Gaara has decided to return to Kaze and Lee, of course, will go with him.

Tales in Tarrasade 10 - Opening the cage

Kakashi realises Iruka is depressed, but why?

Iteration Chapters 1-13

Continuing the space saga about Sasuke, Naruto, their children and their family. Enemies emerge as Uchiha thrives & Naruto champions other hybrids - a testing time for New Uchiha.

Tales in Tarrasade 4 – Pas de Trois - Chapter 3 First steps

Iteration Chapters 14-16

Tales in Tarrasade 11 - Medico

Rin through someone else's eyes.

Iteration Chapters 17-43

Tales in Tarrasade 4 – Pas de Trois – Chapter 4 Needing

Iteration Chapters 44-104

Tales in Tarrasade 4 – Pas de Trois - Chapter 5 Princess

Iteration Chapters 105 – 119

Real [11 chapters]

Set in Sasuke & Naruto's extended family. What makes someone real? Haru struggles with this and other issues as he begins to grow up.

Leader [107 chapters]

Follow Sasuke & Naruto's extended family. With Uchiha expanding, will opposition come from outside or within?