It had been a few months since she last saw him. A few months since she had revealed what she had hidden most deep within her heart. She'd convinced herself that it was already enough that he knew.
Then she became curious.
She wanted to know what he thought of her at least. It didn't seem like too much to ask. So she waited, wherever she knew he often ventured: the training grounds, the bridge, even Ichiraku's. It wasn't until she sensed a familiar chakra and turned to catch a glimpse of a flash of bright orange that she realized…
He was avoiding her.
At first she was mortified. She probably looked so pathetic, waiting for him. But as she pondered more, she suddenly felt anger. It wasn't like she was asking for him to love her back. She barely wanted to ask anything at all.
So she grew impatient.
She gave him a few more days to come to her… Then a few more weeks… Then months…
She waited so long that one day…
Activating her byakugan, she ran straight for the training grounds…where he was. She wondered how he had managed to evade her for so long but pushed the thought aside when she spotted an ever-growing spot of orange in her sight. He wasn't expecting her and had only enough time to turn around when she had pushed him to the ground.
Shocked blue eyes stared up into glaring lavender, and for once he couldn't be oblivious to what was happening. He could read every single emotion from her gaze: anger, accusation, confusion, and…pain. He cursed himself for loosening his guard when he did.
Both breathed heavily as the impact had forced the air out of their lungs, so all they, did for what seemed like eternity, was stare.
Minutes passed before she finally broke the silence.
"Naruto," she started and his eyes widened, unprepared for the sternness of her tone.
"Naruto," she said again, but couldn't bring herself to continue. Feeling the tears well up, she quickly moved off the blonde and sat up with her hands to her face, so he wouldn't see.
She'd tried to plan what would happen when she finally encountered him: she'd find him, ask him to answer her questions (maybe yell at him a bit), and then be on her way.
She wasn't supposed to cry.
Trying to wipe the tears away, she failed to see him standing over her, a hard expression plastered on his face.
It was silent again, aside from her stifled sobbing. He only stared at her weakened form. Not knowing what to do. Confused. Perfectly aware that he was the cause of her pain.
It was his turn to break the silence.
"Hinata," he murmured.
She looked up, forcing him to turn away, unable to face her tears.
"Here," he held out a hand to her and she let him help her up. The silence didn't last long before Hinata sighed and began to inquire about what she came to find out.
"Why?" was all she asked.
Even though it was just one word, Naruto knew that it stood for all the questions she wanted to ask. Why have you been avoiding me? Why haven't you come look for me? Why won't you look at me?
He hesitated and gave the only answer he could think of, "I don't know."
Now normally that would've been enough for Hinata. By this time she would have remembered how she roughly pushed Naruto to the ground and become horrified, running away to hide her shame.
But this wasn't that Hinata.
"That's not an answer."
He looked at her, unsure if he heard her correctly, "what?"
Her brows furrowed slightly and Naruto saw the most willful expression he had ever seen on the timid Hyuuga's face. She then spoke in the most unyielding tone she could muster, " That's not an answer."
He had to look away again, unknown emotions aroused by her sudden change in demeanor.
" What do you want me to say?" he managed to say.
Hinata then looked to the ground opposite of him, searching for the right words.
" I want…you to say the real reason," she looked up and stared until her gaze forced him to look at her too. " I want to know why you don't talk to me anymore, why you haven't come to find me, why you've been avoiding me."
She hesitated and the old Hinata was slowly returning, as her confidence seemed to drain away. "Do you…d-do y-you h-h-hate me?" she whispered.
Naruto's head snapped up at the question and without realizing, grabbed Hinata by the shoulders. "NO!" he yelled, " I could never hate you."
She glanced up then down again, "Then—"
" I don't know," he interrupted her. His arms feel back to his sides and again they stared at opposite points of the ground.
She looked for him to continue.
He let out a deep sigh. " I don't know. What you said back there…before you fought Pein…it really surprised me. No one's ever said anything like that to me before…but…it made me…happy."
Hope flashed in her eyes as quickly as she pushed it back down. He wasn't finished talking.
"But even so…I didn't know how to respond. What was I supposed to say to you after that? I didn't want to lie, but I didn't even know what I felt towards you."
He was looking at her now.
" I loved Sakura. I'd only ever felt for Sakura. Not anymore of course, but towards you I don't know what to feel."
She moved closer and as she did, she could sense the confusion radiating off of him.
He now struggled with what he was saying, " Towards you, I… I don't know… Hinata, towards you… towards you, I—"
His body stiffened as he processed the current position he was in. All he could see were a pair of tightly clenched eyes when he registered what was happening.
He was kissing Hinata…
Hinata was kissing him.
The realization caused a sort of stir deep down inside of Naruto. Passed all of the confusion and uncertainty, something finally snapped.
This time, Hinata's eyes shot open in shock as she felt herself slammed into a nearby training post.
The impact had knocked the wind out of her and she tried to pull away for air when she noticed that the boy in front of her had pinned her body and head between his and the post. Sensing her need for air, he allowed her a few seconds of breath before hungrily capturing her lips once more. He proceeded to push his body further into hers as his hands roamed freely about the girl before him.
In all the excitement, Hinata's hands had tangled into the fox boy's unmanaged, blonde hair. She felt a hand start to slide up her shirt and gasped, his tongue taking advantage of the opportunity and forcing its way into onto hers. They both fought for dominance in the kiss before they had to breathe again, and at that time Naruto took to attacking the girl's exposed neck. She sucked in air as he stopped and focused on what he gathered was a sensitive spot on her collar-bone.
She noted that, at some point, he had unzipped the top half of her jacket when a soft moan escaped her lips.
She felt him smirk and continue.
After successfully instigating a few more moans from the Hyuuga, the blonde spoke into her neck between kisses.
"Say it." He ordered.
" W-what?" she managed to stammer out.
"Say what you said before."
" I—" she hitched a breath when he started sucking on another part of her neck, "I lo-ove you."
She didn't have time to breathe when he crashed his lips on hers again. As he pressed harder and harder into her, she blushed as she could definitely feel 'it' pushing against her stomach.
Feeling rather bold, she tried to move her leg upwards slowly when her back hit the floor.
Now Naruto was on top of her, an arms length away with his hands on either side of Hinata's head. She found the rest of her jacket had become unzipped while his had started to go undone as well. They breathed heavily and stared at each other, deep blushes on both of their cheeks.
She saw something in his eyes that she couldn't place. Then he started to speak.
"What are you doing to me?"
She reached up and touched his cheek, never breaking their intense stare. He leaned down to kiss her again, more gently this time, then moved off of Hinata to sit up. She did the same and then another silence came over them as they reflected on what just happened.
She turned to look at him.
His face had gone completely red and he was trying to cover it up with his hands. He looked so embarrassed.
"I…I don't know what came over me."
She smiled to herself and coughed. "Um…i-it's alright."
"No…I promise I can control myself better…in the future that is."
Hinata nodded then stopped. Naruto was looking at her with a sheepish grin.
"I guess we found out how I feel towards you now at least."
Hinata blushed seven shades of red. "I-I guess."
He then stood up and held a hand out to her. "Why don't we go to Ichiraku's? I need making up for all the time I wasted by taking you out."
She smiled and gladly took his hand to stand up, only to find herself pushed up against the training post once again.
"But first…" he grinned mischievously before claiming her lips again.