Oh HAI GUYSS! Look who crawled out of her hole and finally updated! (I know, I'm an awful person for making you wait soooo long...feel free to bombard me with hate mail :/ ) ANYWAY...this is it for this story. This is the final chapter...because there's nothing left to do with it. I just cannot do more with this. I...I hate to say it but, I lost all interest in this story sometime ago (which is one of the reasons why it was so hard for me to just write a damn chapter..I'm so sorry) but yes, this is the final chapter (unlucky number 13...greeaat :L)
Anyway, I really am sorry for making the wait so long...so I won't keep you any longer! (Check out the author note at the end though, I got some stuff to say~)
Kiba was typing away at his computer when he heard a commotion behind him. Looking over, he saw Naruto standing in the middle of a crowd of workers, his head down and his shoulders shaking. Kiba felt the apprehension creep up as he got out of his seat and made his way over.
"Naruto? What's wrong?" he asked, looking at the grave faces around him. Naruto didn't look up, speaking through his hands as his shoulders shook.
"Sasuke...Sasuke got into an a-accident on his way back t-to work this morning..."
Kiba's jaw dropped in horror as everyone around them gasped or looked down at the floor with saddened faces.
"Is he...is he in ICU or something?" Kiba asked hopefully, placing a hand on Naruto's shoulder. He couldn't believe it; things had been looking up, but once more everything just had to crash and burn around Naruto. It was as if he was cursed!
"He...He..." Naruto's shoulders were up to his ears as the trembles grew worse.
Suddenly, the door to Sasuke's office burst open at the same moment Naruto looked up and yelled.
"HE'S A ZOMBIE!"
Everyone gathered let out terrified screams and yells as a very pale, very bloody Sasuke came running from his office, arms raised menacingly as he made a bee-line for the nearest person. Sakura dodged him while shrieking at the top of her lungs, almost knocking Ino over as the two of them tried to run. People everywhere panicked and scattered, trying to get away from the bloody man. Sasuke just turned to the next target; a frozen Kiba.
"Braaains," Sasuke-zombie growled, reaching towards him. He stopped inches away from Kiba, who was still from pure shock. Everyone had stopped running, standing fifteen feet away from them and watching with wide eyes and uncertain fear still caressing their features. Sasuke stared at Kiba blankly for a moment, blood dripping down his chin and neck from somewhere in his hairline. Abruptly he turned away, letting out a long moan.
"No braaaains," he moaned and then looked right at Shikamaru, pointing a bent finger at him. "Brains there."
There was a second of silence as the lazy genius just stared at Sasuke as he hobbled towards him. Then he smirked.
"My brains are telling me you'd like a towel to clean up all that fake-blood," he said. Sasuke reached him and slung an arm over his shoulder.
"And that's exactly why a real zombie would attack you first," the raven stated simply, smirking back. "And your brain's right. This stuff is sticky as fuck."
Another second of silence.
Then realization sunk in...and everyone started to laugh.
"Boss, you scared the living bejeezus out of me!"
"Nice comeback prank Uchiha."
"Naruto, you were in on it too!"
Kiba turned to see Naruto grinning and laughing, the shaking of his shoulders now making sense.
"Bastard!" Kiba yelped and then pounced, grabbing Naruto in a headlock and rubbing his knuckles against his head. "And here I was thinking he was dead and you were going to go into weeping-widow mode!"
Naruto just laughed and squirmed out of his hold, rubbing his head. "Sorry dude. It was all Sasuke's idea, surprisingly." Under his breath he grumbled "Bastard made me get up early just so we could get here before anyone else."
Kiba grinned, chuckling at his friend's grumbling. He leant on Naruto's shoulders, turning to watch as someone handed Sasuke a towel and the Uchiha began to wipe off all the fake blood. He'd really done a good job of 'zombie-fying' himself. Aside from the blood, he'd put white powder on his skin to give it a dry, pale countenance. There were also fake bruises on his arms, and he was dressed in tattered clothing. No wonder he got there early; that get-up would take time to get into, and he couldn't very well drive to work like that.
"So...is everything good?" Kiba asked softly, turning to look at Naruto again. "Did he remember anything? Did he forget again?"
Naruto smiled slightly. "He remembered, but not in great detail. It's more like, he remembered the epic plot points, but not all the scenery and dialogue, if you get me."
Kiba nodded. "But he still remembered that you two had history? What did he say to that? And what are you guys planning to do?"
"He was upset that I hadn't told him sooner. And what else can we do? Neither of us want to end what we have; we're just going to carry on and deal with any issues that arise when they arise. It's all we can do, really," Naruto gave a light shrug, brows furrowed up in a 'oh well' expression. Kiba just nodded again.
"Well...either way, I'm glad things are working out," he said, giving Naruto a hearty pat on the back.
"Yeah. Me too...me too," Naruto mumbled contently.
"Alright, pranks over. Get to work!" Sasuke yelled, and there were groans and sighs before everyone went back to work. But they were smirking too.
After all...the prank war was back on.
Sasuke stood in his office doorway, several papers tucked under his arm. He was simply taking a moment to observe the entire floor before going to deliver them, smiling as he took in all the people working alongside him. He still got headaches, some worse than others. But along with the headaches came small little memories. Like giving his mother a card on mother's day only for her to burst into tears and make him a cake as a thank you, or a memory of watching Naruto get into a shouting match with one of their teachers only for the two to end up in hysterics when their argument took a turn to a completely different subject that had everyone in the class butting in and making their observations.
Small memories; things that could be considered insignificant, but every time he got one it was like putting another puzzle piece into place and getting to see more of the mysterious image it would create.
"AH! AH FUCK! AAH!"
His head snapped around in time to see Shikamaru leaping away from his desk, shaking his hand furiously to dislodge what he identified as a mouse trap.
"HAH!" Temari roared, pointing at him triumphantly from her office. "PAYBACK IS A BITCH!"
"Yeah, and its name is Temari Sabaku," Shikamaru snapped back.
Then he was running for his life as Temari picked up her chair and chased him with it.
Ino laughed as she watched her childhood friend dodge a spectacular attack. "Oh those two; they should hurry up and get rid of all that sexual tension," she said with a light sigh.
"Sexual tension?" Kiba snorted, watching as Chouji acted noble and stole Temari's chair away from her, resulting in a chair fight as she grabbed his chair and started to duel with him while Shikamaru caught his breath to the side. "I don't know; that seems more like 'she really, really wants to mount his head on her wall' kind of tension to me."
"You don't know what you're talking about!" Ino protested with a wave of her hand.
Kiba just smirked. "Yeah, you're probably right. Unlike you, I'm not an expert on what sexual tension feels like," he said as he walked away.
Three seconds later, Kiba was running for his life as Ino chased him with a stapler.
Sasuke shook his head, watching his fellow workers run around like fools. But he couldn't help but smile at it all. He pushed away from the doorframe and headed towards the elevators, but not before glancing over at Naruto. The two managed to make eye contact, and Naruto gave him a bright smile which he returned with a smaller one and a slight wave.
He turned away and almost walked into Hinata, who fumbled to grab the stack of folders she was carrying.
"Shit, sorry," Sasuke quickly caught a falling folder while Hinata swayed, trying to keep the folders upright.
"KIBA!" Sasuke yelled, turning to look at the man. Kiba jumped up from his hiding spot, and Ino glared at him as she walked back to her desk.
"Come help your girlfriend carry these folders," Sasuke ordered through a grin. Kiba's cheeks reddened slightly as everyone laughed at him, but the laughter died when Hinata looked around the folders with wide eyes.
"H-How did you k-know we were t-together?" she asked, looking shocked.
"WAIT WHAT?" Naruto jumped to his feet, looking at Kiba with wide eyes. "Why didn't you tell me you guys were dating!?"
Kiba rubbed his neck. "Didn't really want to bring up relationships when you were so gloomy dude," he reasoned and Naruto looked a little guilty. The he hopped around and clapped Kiba on the back.
"I'm glad for you guys!" he said sincerely, sending a smile at Hinata. The woman had hid her face, realizing her mistake of saying it aloud. She gave a little nod before running towards the elevators to finish her work.
"So, how long?" Naruto whispered to his friend, grinning.
"Only a few days really. We met up for coffee a little bit after our fight ended, you remember?" Kiba said as he sat back down. Naruto hummed, sliding into his own seat and glancing towards Sasuke's retreating back.
Kiba scratched his head and opened up a new folder on his computer before reaching down and pulling open his drawer.
There was a bang and a burst of confetti exploded from his desk, making him yell while Naruto started to laugh hysterically.
"I am not cleaning this up!"
"Hahaha, I-I know! Ahaha!"
The rest of the day consisted of everyone trying to get a prank in. Kakashi sent an email out to half the office, under an 'urgent' subject; it turned out to be a link to a movie, opening up mid-sex-scene and causing quite the ruckus. Iruka was seen beating him with a folder, though the witnesses refused to elaborate on what happened next.
Ino had managed to put up a photo-shopped picture that showed Sakura's head atop a fat rhino on the notice board. Sakura hadn't seen it for a long time, but eventually she noticed the snickers sent her way and figured it out. The fight that ensued had been epic, with much hair pulling, nail-scratching and dark insults tossed back and forth before it ended with Naruto and Sasuke holding Sakura back while Shikamaru and Chouji held Ino back until the two of them had calmed down.
By the time it was the end of the day, everyone was grinning and laughing, talking about the pranks they'd pulled or witnessed as well as discussing possible pranks quietly to themselves or amongst their friends and brothers-in-arms.
Naruto was waiting for Sasuke to finish up a phone call, lingering outside his office. He waved goodbye to Kiba and Hinata, grinning when they left together and he caught sight of them holding hands in the elevator, blushing like school kids.
"No ma'am...Yes ma'am...No ma'am," Sasuke's voice was droll and bored. Naruto peered inside, seeing that he was resting his head on one hand, the other lazily holding the phone to his ear. He noticed Naruto and rolled his eyes in exasperation of the phone call. Naruto grinned and walked into the office, leaning against Sasuke's desk.
"No ma'am, all shipping orders have already been sent through for that particular product. You'll have to wait until they've been returned before I can send them through to you," Sasuke held back a groan as the woman on the other end, one of the higher ups, started to rant on some more. He noticed Naruto grinning mischievously, and raised a brow in response.
Naruto slowly lowered himself onto Sasuke's desk, carefully avoiding the picture frame and the phone, as well as some stationary. Sasuke leant back in his seat, still on the phone and having one ear murdered by the woman on the other end, but his attention was entirely on Naruto. The blond moved to lie on his side, one leg crossed over the other. He had unbuttoned the first button of his shirt and pulled it open, revealing a bit of his chest. Resting his head on one hand, elbow propped up, he slid his other hand over his torso slowly. Sasuke watched avidly. Naruto grinned once more, repeating the motion before he mouthed 'Draw me like one of your French girls'.
Then he pulled the most ridiculous expression of lust anyone had ever seen, and Sasuke couldn't stop the loud snort of laughter that broke free.
Naruto had to cover his mouth when the woman on the phone could be heard shouting, and Sasuke quickly tried to cover his laughter by coughing.
"S-Sorry ma'am, something...in my throat," Sasuke struggled to say, still trying not to laugh as he sent an attempted glare Naruto's way. The blond just shrugged innocently, but his eyes were alight with laughter. "Yes ma'am, of course. Sorry about that. As you were saying?"
Naruto groaned softly. 'He's still going to talk to her? Can't he feign illness or something?' he thought. Then he blinked and snickered as a wicked idea came to him. Getting off the desk, he grabbed the phone's body and placed it onto a confused Sasuke's lap. The Uchiha jerked a little as Naruto pulled his chair backwards, a little ways away from the desk. Mindful of the phone cord, Naruto started to spin the chair around, slowly at first but then picking up speed. Sasuke was clutching onto the armrest with one hand while the other struggled to hold the phone to his ear. He always got dizzy easily, and Naruto damn well knew it.
"Y-yes ma'am," he said with some difficulty as the room started to blur. He swayed, pressing himself back in his chair as much as he could. Naruto kept appearing and vanishing from his line of vision, but the bright and cheeky grin was practically burned into his retinas already. "No, ma'am, I don't-ugh," he broke off, sticking his hand out to try and grab onto something. He felt another hand grab his and came to a halt. Naruto was laughing silently as he held Sasuke's arm, letting the disoriented man gather his bearings.
"S-sorry ma'am, just feeling a little sick today," he said and swallowed thickly when the room continued to spin slowly. The woman said something else and Sasuke held back a sigh of relief. "Yes, that would be great. I promise to clear this up first thing tomorrow morning," he said and Naruto let go of his hand and started to hip-thrust a few times in victory. "Yes, thank you ma'am. Have a good day."
Sasuke put the phone down and slumped in his seat, groaning. "Make the room stop. I want to get off."
Naruto chuckled, rubbing the top of his head soothingly. "Can we go home yet? I'm hungry."
"You're always hungry," Sasuke sighed, pushing himself out of the chair and grabbing his jacket. He gathered everything he needed while Naruto chattered about the various goings on in the office that day. The two of them made their way out of the office, hands coming together once they were inside the elevator.
They decided to eat at a little cafe that was only down the street from their work, and so they left Sasuke's car in the garage and started to walk. The streets were rather busy since most companies closed down around this time, and the road was filled with light traffic.
They passed by several smaller shops, just talking aimlessly and sometimes throwing ideas for a prank around. They also passed by a small basketball court where a group of high school boys were playing a game. Naruto stopped to watch, grinning as he saw the impressive manoeuvres.
"They're good. The ball just seems to fly across!" he commented, watching as one spectacularly difficult pass was made. Sasuke tilted his head, also watching.
"It's because of that little guy with the white hair," he pointed. Naruto squinted before finally catching a glimpse of the kid. He gaped.
"...Was he always there?"
"...I don't know."
Shaking their heads the two continued on their way, heading down to the cafe and taking a seat by the window. Sasuke ordered a coffee and Naruto ordered hot chocolate before they both decided on some simple sandwiches.
"Itachi's going to be coming back soon, isn't he?" Naruto said thoughtfully, taking a bite out of his chicken mayo sandwich.
"On Monday," Sasuke nodded, sipping his coffee.
"So then the prank war will have to stop huh?" Naruto looked so sad at this fact. Sasuke smiled, reaching across the table and patting his hand consolingly.
"Don't worry. We'll have the memories and who knows? Maybe Itachi will get sent on another business trip, and we'll have another two to three weeks of pranking to enjoy."
Naruto grinned. "Awesome...but that also makes me feel bad for wanting him to be sent to all the corners of the earth," he frowned a little at the end before shrugging. "Ah well, he'll conquer them all anyway."
They ate in silence after that but for the occasional word or two about their meal. When they were finished and had paid, they started to walk back to the office, hands linked together.
It was as they entered the garage and Sasuke pulled out his car keys that Naruto suddenly clapped his hands together, startling the Uchiha.
"I'VE GOT IT!"
Sasuke looked at him with wide eyes, holding his keys tightly.
"...Yes dear, that's nice but...what have you got exactly?" he questioned slowly. Naruto gave him a glare for calling him 'dear' but he brushed it aside, grinning and walking right up to Sasuke.
"Well, sweetheart, we have to make a stop on the way to your place!" he said, clapping his hands on Sasuke's shoulders with a grin.
"...Where and why?"
Naruto didn't reply, but as they drove out of the garage, Sasuke couldn't help but worry when Naruto started to laugh to himself in the passenger seat, each chuckle promising more and more mischief.
Itachi Uchiha parked his car in his spot in the garage and climbed out, straightening his tie. He'd only gotten back from Kenya the day before, and had spent the entire day resting. But he would not miss a day of work; jet lag would not beat an Uchiha, oh no.
He started to walk towards the elevator, mentally going over all the statistics of his trip, what he might have to catch up on, how many meetings he would be able to fit in with the board of directors regarding their new chain in Kenya, as well as other things that held greater or lesser importance.
"Good morning Mr Uchiha!"
He looked up, seeing Sakura and Lee walking towards the elevator too, both of them smiling at him cheerfully. He nodded.
"Good morning, Ms Haruno, Mr Rock."
"Was your trip successful, sir?" Lee asked, stepping back to let Sakura enter the elevator first before heading in himself. Itachi grunted affirmative.
"We'll have a new chain set up within the next three months at the most. It was surprisingly smooth; they were rather eager."
"That's wonderful," Sakura said, her eyes sliding past Itachi to meet Lee's. The two of them stared at each other for a second before they both turned away, stifling giggles behind their hands or masking them with a slight cough. Itachi quirked a brow at their behaviour, wondering what it was that they were sharing secretly. He then shrugged it off, deciding it had nothing to do with him most likely.
The ride to their floor was silent, though Sakura and Lee still kept glancing at each other and sometimes him, and then hiding laughter. By the time they arrived, Itachi was starting to rethink his early brush-off. He allowed Sakura to leave first before stepping out, and all heads turned his way.
"Good morning boss!"
"It's good to see you!"
"Welcome back Mr Uchiha!"
The greetings and hellos were loud and cheerful, and Itachi smiled as he waved back at some people and nodded at others. He had, truthfully, missed this floor. Everyone was calm and pleasant, doing their work and keeping the peace. The people in Kenya, while certainly polite and lovely people, had been a little more boisterous than he had expected. When he said they were eager, he meant that they were very eager.
He turned, seeing Sasuke walking towards him. He'd spoken to him over the phone once he got back, but being as tired as he was he hadn't had time to really talk to him. Itachi looked over his little brother, taking in his pleasant expression and the way he just seemed to appear...happy.
"Little brother, I trust you're okay? How is your head? And your memories?" he asked, patting Sasuke's shoulder. Sasuke shrugged.
"The head hurts on occasion, like I said. Memories are still vague and fuzzy but coming back slowly," he raised a brow and smirked at his older brother. "Why, are you worried about me?"
"I'm always worried about you Sasuke; mental bills are a bitch to pay, I'd rather not have to send you to an asylum so soon," Itachi said nonchalantly and smirked when Sasuke grumbled under his breath.
Itachi looked up to see Naruto and Kiba running towards him, arms spread out happily and cheesy smiles on their faces. They got to within ten feet of him before abruptly changing course and tightly hugging each other instead of him, dancing around in a circle and singing in turn.
"The boss is back-"
"-He's back in black-"
"-As badass and whack-"
"-As a cop on crack-"
"YEAH, THE BOSS~IS~ BAAACK~!" they both chorused, arms linked as they leaned out in opposite directions, bellowing their badly-tuned song for the whole floor to hear.
Laughter erupted around them as they broke out into a harmonious-like cats fighting- melody, dancing together like complete idiots. Sasuke was smirking, arms crossed as he watched the two of them make fools of themselves while Itachi watched with an intrigued look on his face.
"...Did they start taking drugs after I left?" he asked Sasuke softly. The younger man snorted.
"No...at least, not that I'm aware of," he shrugged, a chuckle slipping out as the two clowns finished off their song by power-sliding towards Itachi, arms raised.
"Welcome back!" Naruto grinned, panting a little from all his movements. Kiba was grinning too, the two of them looking up at Itachi. He smirked down at them.
"Why thank you. I feel so loved."
"You should!" Kiba nodded and then groaned. "Because I'm stuck...Naruto, help me up!"
"I'm stuck too; I've never put my legs in this position," Naruto said, trying to get upright without hurting himself. Sasuke smirked.
"I beg to differ-"
"OKAY and you can stop right there," Kiba yelled, waving his hand frantically while Sasuke burst out laughing and Naruto snickered. "Hina, be a babe and save me?"
Hinata giggled, walking over and helping Kiba climb to his feet while Sasuke did the same for Naruto. They brushed themselves off, smiling and turning to their boss.
"Anyway, I imagine you want to get right to work," Naruto said and like a switch, everyone in the office was suddenly paying close attention to them. Itachi nodded.
"That would be ideal. Sasuke, I trust you didn't destroy my office?" he asked, starting to walk towards it. Everyone's eyes followed him like a hawk while Sasuke walked alongside him, his lips trembling.
"Nope...it's just the way you like it."
Sasuke stopped, standing back while Itachi approached the door. Naruto and Kiba had their arms slung over each other's shoulders, and the two shared a secret high five between them. Sakura and Ino had their hands over their mouths, Shikamaru was smirking and Temari had her phone out.
Itachi walked up to his office door, gripping the handle. He turned it, stepping back and pulling open the door-
Itachi stumbled backwards, shocked, as dozens upon dozens of balloons came tumbling out of his office. There were red ones, blue ones, pink ones, white ones, green ones, yellow, purple, orange- every colour available was there, tumbling around in his office and spilling out of his door. He stood, rooted to the spot, taking in the sight. His office was positively stuffed; they were touching the roof, squashed together and bouncing off of each other as if they were living creatures sluggishly trying to find a nice spot to rest in a crowded den. One of them peacefully floated out of his office, bumping against his shoulder before falling to the floor like a feather. The Uchiha just gaped...and then...
The floor erupted into hysterical laughter, people giving each other high fives, whistling, cheering and chuckling. Naruto and Kiba were using each other to stay upright as they howled in laughter at the look on Itachi's face. Sasuke laughed, walking up and slinging his arm over Itachi's shoulders.
"Hope you like the redecoration," he grinned and Itachi glanced at him.
"How long did it take you to do this?"
"Naruto and I started it on Friday afternoon, but over the weekend we got a handful of people to help us inflate all the balloons and such. Packing them in was a bitch, I'll have you know."
Itachi huffed out a weak laugh, lightly kicking at some of the balloons on the floor and watching as they slowly bounced away. He started to wade his way through them, pushing some more aside and trying to peer into his office. He caught sight of something and paused.
"...Is my entire office covered in sticky notes saying 'Welcome Back'?" he questioned blankly, and the laughter was renewed. Kiba was on the floor, pounding his fist against it while Naruto walked over, leaning against Sasuke and grinning wickedly.
"Maybe~" he sang.
The gathered employees continued to laugh, enjoying their prank on their boss. But slowly the laughter faded as Itachi simply stood with his back to them, and the first few nervous glances were cast. Had they gone too far? They planned to help him clean it, of course, but...well...pranking Sasuke had been one thing; what if Itachi was angry?
"You guys..." Itachi began, his voice low and dangerous.
All laughter halted, and the nervous looks increased. Kiba sat up, looking up at Itachi's back with wide eyes. It was clear he was thinking 'Uh oh', and the thought was mirrored by everyone. Sasuke frowned, trying to decide what the worst punishment Itachi could legally do to them all. Naruto simply squeezed him tighter, a contemplative look on his face.
Suddenly Itachi turned, looking up at everyone in the office. The balloons continued to cascade out of his office door as he graced the floor with a wicked, wide and very mischievous smirk.
"I hope you know that this means war," he stated, and Naruto grinned, meeting his eyes.
"Bring it on Boss."
That's it! *crosses arms* No more! I cannot, physically or mentally, squeeze out anything more for this story! I hope you all enjoyed it (I'm sorry for the lame ending chapter... Shoot me if you want to.)
Anyway...over the period of time that I didn't update, I noticed there's quite a few new people following me...so, HELLO and THANK YOU, to all those lovely people! :D
Anyway, to EVERYONE who's been reading, thanks you! I loved all the reviews, and I'm sorry if I let you down with the long waits and this chapter...I hope you'll be able to forgive me... (I'm not usually so unreliable with updates am I? :L What has become of me?...Blame deviantart =3= I'm VERY active on there...ridiculously so)
Also, just have to put this out there (shameless self-advertisement) But I'll be starting an original series very soon (on deviantart and fictionpress). Those who've followed me for a while, you should know those original characters that I shamelessly insert into my stories...well, there'll be less of them here. They've got their own series now! (well, they will when I start it by posting the first bloody episode/chapter) So...yeah, if you'd like, keep an eye out for that! :D *has no confidence on this matter*
Also...well...I started it ages ago, and even though I still haven't finished it...would you like me to post the first chapter of Cursed? It's been a long time coming, and I wanted to finish it before posting but I seem to have hit a mark...perhaps getting feedback will help me fight through it...This is entirely up to you guys! If you'd like me to start posting it, then I will.
Once again, thank you for all the comments, feedback and reviews! I love them all, I love you all and I shall try not to have a repeat of the long-waits this poor story had to experience! :(
Until next time~!