I've been yearning for a good InoShikamaru story recently, having found none I decided to write my own. Enjoy :)

Disclaimer: Naruto does not belong to me.

"Lady Tsunade, Shikamaru's team has just returned."

"Very well, let them in."

The guard went and opened the door to let a dishevelled Shikamaru and Chōji enter the Hokage's office. As soon as she looked at them Tsunade knew her day was going to go from already crappy to super shitty.

"Where is your team-mate? If memory serves right I sent you on a three man cell, did I not? "She asked.

"In the hospital." Responded the slightly on edge Shikamaru.

"Again? Are you kidding me? This is the third replacement team-mate you've sent in the hospital. What the hell do you do to them? "She asked angrily.

"Well, with all due respect Hokage, it wouldn't keep happening if you would stop assigning us rookie team-mates. When the hell are you assigning Ino back on our team? "Shikamaru yelled.

Tsunade stared wide-eyed at the lazy genius, it was probably one of the first time she saw him loose his cool and get upset over something. A deep sigh escaped her lips as she responded.

"Ino Yamanaka is-"

She was cut off when the door swung open and an out of breath Shizune came barging in.

"Kakashi has finally returned!" She screamed.

"What? When? "Tsunade yelled as she got up from her chair.

"Just now, he is heavily wounded and appeared directly in front of the hospital."

"Shit, I'm sorry guys I have to go. That idiot is a month late returning from his mission. "

"Wait! What were you gonna say about Ino? "Asked Shikamaru.

"Go see her and ask her yourself; if you can't find her go find Sakura. Your team is off missions for a while; try to relax. "She said as she was leaving the room, before turning her attention back to Shizune."What's his condition? "

"Critical, but fortunately Sakura was already there and she already started to heal him."

"Wasn't it her day off today…"

And that was all the Shikamaru heard before the Hokage and her apprentice before they disappeared around the corner. He turned to his companion and saw him shrug his shoulders while munching a bag of chips.

"Sorry Shikamaru, but I have a supper tonight with Maria, I haven't seen her in a while…"

"It's fine, you enjoy your supper with your fiancée and I'll go look for our troublesome team-mate."

"Maybe you should go see Sakura first, would spare you a wild goose chase around the village."


And so they went their separate way. Each one with a girl on their mind; just not the same girl.

Shikamaru quickly got home, took a shower and changed into some more casual clothing. He left his house before his parents returned from wherever they were; his mother would keep nagging at him for hours if she saw him. He found his friends logic very good and so he headed in the direction of the hospital to meet with the pink haired kunoichi.

Why am I such in a hurry to find Ino? So troublesome… he thought.

It was the middle of the afternoon and when he arrived at the hospital it was even more packed that usually which only aggravated the young shinobi even more. He went up to the reception and asked for Hatake Kakashi's room; surely Sakura would still be there.

Sure enough as soon as he turned the corridor her saw Sakura sitting in a chair in front of a closed door looking extremely tired. When she heard someone approach the young medic-nin opened her eyes to see who was disturbing her rest, only to be very surprised to see Shikamaru heading towards her.

"Hey there Shikamaru! Back from your mission? How long you in town this time? "

"Just got back actually, Tsunade said she'll give us a break for a little while."

She nodded her head as he sat down next to her.

"So what brings you here? Surely not to see how you're most recent team-mate is faring? "

"You heard about that?" he asked a little embarrassed. "Nonetheless, you are right. I came to ask you if you knew where Ino was. "

Her face darkened a little before she asked. "How long have been going on continuous missions Shikamaru?"

"I'd have to say a little over 2 months."

"So you don't know…"

"Don't know about what?" He asked getting a little exasperated.

"Ino resigned from the force. She's not a leaf shinobi anymore; she's now a full time florist. "

"What? But why? "He asked socked.

"Well because of what happened a little after you left for your first mission a couple weeks ago. Ino's parents were killed. "

Shikamaru stared at Sakura with wide eyes and his mouth slightly open, unable to get the words he wanted to say out of his mouth.

"When…" he finally managed to choke up.

"It all happened a little over two months ago. They were gone on a romantic trip to celebrate their anniversary. From what I've heard they were ambushed on their way back by a group of rogue ninja. Apparently those ninja came from a small village in desperate need of money. They were hoping to capture Inoichi to get the bounty money; they weren't expecting him to be that strong. He was able to kill most of them before one of them attacked Mrs. Yamanaka; she wasn't a shinobi and didn't have the strength to defend her: they killed her. Inoichi lost his concentration and the remaining rogues were able to fatally wound him. Luckily a Konoha squad was passing by and killed the remaining rogue before they took the corpse; however since there was no medic-nin on the squad Inoichi died from blood loss. "

"I didn't know…" he muttered.

"She was pretty crushed and ever since that day she changed. After a couple days off she officially handed in her resignation saying she couldn't be a shinobi anymore. Ever since then she's been working at the flower shop, she barely sleeps and eat. We all try to take her out but she keeps insisting she's busy or she makes it so she's not there when we arrive at the shop. "She paused before starting again. "I asked her once if she missed being a shinobi and she said no. When I asked her why she said: Because I've been told that anyways I was a very bad shinobi and that I should just stick to being a florist. And that's that, we haven't talked much since then. "

"It was me…" he whispered.