dedication: best friends and Harry Potter parties.
notes: if they don't put me away, it'll be a miracle.
notes2: for LJ's sasusaku_month. prompt was hello/goodbye under AU.
title: nightmares on wax
summary: It's 3AM and Sakura's contemplating disconnecting her phone. — Sasuke/Sakura.
The phone rings at 3AM. It's loud in her ears and Sakura reaches for it, cursing like a sailor.
If it's Naruto, she thinks, I am going to kill him. Kill him dead. Dead so that he can never do this to me again. Ever.
"H'llo?" she croaks.
Sakura's eyes are closed and she doesn't bother to open them. She knows Sasuke's voice like the back of her hand. "Why're y'callin'? S'like three in th'morning…"
His breathing is smooth and deep, so Sakura knows that he's not in trouble. The only times he's ever called this late have entailed a very drunk Naruto getting into a fight and then having to bail them both out of jail.
"I heard that—"
Sakura cuts him off. She can feel herself waking up and she mentally curses him into oblivion. "What did Naruto tell you?"
He ploughs on. "—you're dating someone."
Sakura sits up so fast, she's sure she's snapped something important. Maybe her spine. She can hear it pop. She's also completely awake, now, and this sounds like it's going to be a long conversation. There likely won't be any point in going back to sleep after it's done.
(Sleep? Who needs sleep?)
Killing everyone is the best option, right now.
"Stop. We are not seriously having this conversation right now. You did not seriously just ask me about my love life. I am going to hang up and go back to sleep and tomorrow I am going to pummel you. Are we clear?" she growls into the receiver.
Sasuke appears to be ignoring her.
"Sakura," he says.
Just her name.
And all the fight disappears.
Sakura flops back to her pillows and groans. He is going to be the death of her, she knows it, he knows it, everyone knows it.
"Fine," she grumbles. "Just this once. I'm still gonna pummel you. I'm not gonna be gentle."
She doesn't note the innuendo until she's finished the sentence. She can hear the smirk. Sakura hates everything.
"So," he says. There's a question that Sakura doesn't want to answer in his voice, but she figures that the faster she gets this conversation over with, the faster she can go back to sleep.
"Sort of," she mumbles. "Not really. We've gone on a few dates, I guess."
"Hm?" and she's already falling back asleep.
"With who, Sakura?"
To tell him, or to let him sweat?
"Neji," she says after a long time. It's pensive and true—she likes Neji. He's nice. A little stiff, but he's not—well. He's not Sasuke.
And that does make a difference, not that Sakura is getting going to admit it.
There's a hiss and a thud and a rattle. Sakura almost laughs. "You okay?"
"Hn," he grunts. "How was work?"
Sakura sighs into the receiver. It would be like Sasuke to keep her talking. "It was alright. I didn't get home 'til two."
She imagines the look on his face. His lips have thinned and his eyes have gone all dark, the way they always do when she tells him about her shifts. Eyebrows pulled down. and he's almost pouting—
"You work too much."
Sakura laughs. "Tsunade says that, too."
"Everyone says that, Sakura."
"I think I don't work near enough," Sakura replied. "And I could tell you the same thing, Mr. Works-Sixteen-Hour-Days. Do you even ever sleep? Ever?"
He chuckles over the phone. His voice is low and deep and sounds like gravel and glass. Sakura almost shivers. She catches herself and doesn't let it get to her.
"Not really," he says.
They both fall into silence, and Sakura listens to him breathe. She can hear strains of music over the phone, and the screech-beep-beep of traffic. She wonders where he is. Where he's going. Who he's going with.
"Can I back to sleep, now?" Sakura asks. Exhaustion hits like a brick in her stomach. She is so, so tired.
"No," he replies. "Keep talking."
"I hate you. I really, really hate you. I have work in the morning, you know?"
"So do I."
"What, hate me or have work?"
He snorts. "Work."
Sometimes Sasuke-speak is hard to decipher. Sakura doesn't know if she should take that snort as what are you talking about, I could never hate you or I've never liked you anyway.
She decides not to dwell on it.
"…Can I go back to sleep now?"
"No," he says again. "Is the window unlocked?"
Sakura stares at the ceiling. "Do you have any idea how creepy that statement is?"
"Shut up. Is it?"
"Of course it is."
Sakura never locks the window to the fire escape when she was home. That was usually her way in and out of her apartment—it would be silly to lock it. Especially because Naruto and Sasuke and Sai use it on a fairly-regular basis when they need a place to crash.
Sakura rubs her eyes and mutters ungratefully about idiots who don't pay rent and ruin her sleep. She was just going to stab them. All of them. Or poison them. Or something.
"Good. I'm coming up."
The line goes dead. He doesn't even had the courtesy to say goodbye.
This is when Sakura decides that she is going to kill him.
She slips out of bed. She doesn't really think as she slips her feet into a pair of fluffy pink slippers and toddles out to her kitchen. Hot chocolate is a definite investment, at this point.
The window rattles and screeches as Sasuke swung in.
Sakura narrows her eyes at him, green and flinty. "So do I get an explanation, or…?"
He just stares at her. Just stares. Nothing else.
"I'll take that as a no," Sakura surmises. She sighs. "Want some hot chocolate?"
He nods. His bangs fall over his eyes. Sakura shivers and thinks about how it's a loop, how Sasuke is a loop because everything starts and ends with him. She doesn't want it to be—she never wanted it to be.
But Sasuke's kind of different like that.
Sakura pours him a cup of cocoa. She hands it to him, careful not to touch his fingers. She wonders if he even notices.
When his brow crinkles, she thinks he does.
Sakura tilts head and they sit at her tiny kitchen table. Steam rises from the hot chocolate.
"Is everything okay?" she asks because she knows it isn't.
"Hn," he grumbles.
For a long moment, they look anywhere but each other. Sakura stares at the table, trying not to smile. Sasuke will never change. There's a part of her that's glad for it.
But then her heart hurts.
She hears him shift, and then his fingers touch her face. He tucks tangled pink hair behind her ear, and then doesn't move away.
Sakura freezes. Looks up.
He kisses her like burning.
It feels like falling and she clutches at his shirt because she thinks that if she doesn't, she's going to crash headlong into the ground and it's going to hurt. It's like a tightrope and Sasuke is the baton, the only balance she could ever need or want.
Sakura shivers with eyes closed. "This is pretty fucked up, Sasuke."
He chuckles, and Sakura can feel it vibrate against her throat. She almost smiles.
The hot chocolate sits on table, forgotten.
notes3: welp. that was interesting.
notes4: please leave a review! :)