Old fic. Just finally decided to post it. I also wanted to try a different tense usage. Still no beta. Any volunteers? D: (Btw, if you do volunteer...make sure your account accepts PMs )


The two blondes eye one another.

"I don't know what he sees in you," Temari says snidely.

"You're no prize either," Ino shoots back.

The Suna nin sneers at the pretty little Leaf nin before her, her teal eyes sharp and observant at Ino's angry flush and nearly imperceptible angry tick. She casually leans against the counter top, her hand brushing reassuringly over her iron fan. If she really wants to, she can break the little blue-eyed blonde and never have to worry about anyone ever being interested in her…

It'd be such a shame too.

...


Ino is nearly furious.

How dare this foreigner come in here looking like she's just so superior or something and eying her like she's a butterfly pinned to a wall? Sure she isn't the strongest looking ninja around, but Ino is perfectly capable of taking care of herself, so she has no qualms about aiming for the jugular—verbally or physically.

The young Yamanaka straightens her spine, blue eyes snapping in fury, but then a sly smile crosses her face and she casually leans across the smooth counter top as she eyes the wind mistress. From up close, her eyes are kind of pretty, but with that strong jaw and that attitude…

"Hmph, for all your confidence, I bet you don't even know how to kiss."

Taken aback, Temari furrows her brow. "I do too," she automatically retorts, even though technically the only kiss she's ever had was with a man who'd drunkenly groped at her lips before he'd realized she was the sister of Sabaku no Gaara and promptly run screaming… "Just because we can't all be little flower-hugging princesses doesn't mean we can't have gotten a man."

The Yamanaka girl snorts in disbelief, eyes narrowing on the telltale sign of discomfit that crosses the other kunoichi's eyes. "You're so butch and awkward; you probably scare all the guys off before they even entertain the idea of liking you."

There is a subtle flinch, but Temari isn't just going to take that from the little blonde wench. Her hand darts forward and she grips the other girl's collar in her fist, bringing their faces painfully close.

Now it was getting a little too personal.

"And you're probably one of those cockteasing little bitches who'll end up marrying some rich guy that Daddy has all set up for her while she whores around on the side because her life is so unfair," the older girl mocks. The flare of excitement in her blood for a fight warms the pit of her stomach, and the rush of battle-ready adrenaline is heightening her senses, allowing her to feel the smooth silk bunched in her fist and smell the overwhelming scent of something decidedly girly and froofy practically oozing from the girl in front of her.

Indignant, Ino gasps and blushes hotly, her outrage making her blue eyes even fiercer. Ignoring the warning bells going off in her head, the younger kunoichi grips the wrist tangled in her clothing. "You don't know anything about me!"

"Likewise, " Temari grits out, nostrils flaring at that annoying scent practically invading her senses. "But I've heard about you little miss gossip. Pining after the traitor Uchiha, and then leaning on Shikamaru like sloppy seconds when the loser up and disappears."

A sharp intake of breath punctuates the verbal barb hitting its intended mark. Hurt flashes through those pretty blue eyes before Ino turns her head and Temari feels something that's suspiciously like regret swirl through her as that flushed face pales considerably. Recognizing that she might have gone too far, the Suna nin slowly unclasps her fist before straightening from the countertop. "Look, I didn't mean—"

"Get out," the Leaf nin manages to force the words out through her clenched teeth. First the bitch takes verbal potshots at her and now suddenly she wants to play the good girl? Fuck that.

A sneer crosses Temari's face, the blundered apology dying before it had even had a chance to be born. Obviously this girl was proud enough to stick up for herself, something the Suna nin can in fact respect and identify with. Plus, it wouldn't do for her to pick trouble too many fights while they're trying to help get support from the Leaf by teaching their brats.

"Fine," she says quietly, and abruptly takes her leave.

...


"What the hell, Temari?"

"Stand still, idiot!"

"Gross! Stop it! Get your grubby paws off—ow! What the fuck was that for?"

"…" Gaara watches the scene with a faint air of bemusement. This was one of the rare times he's glad his siblings are still too afraid to be open with touching him.

It wasn't unusual for his sister to come in from somewhere angry. What is weird, however, is her suddenly grabbing Kankuro and trying to hold him still long enough to kiss his cheek while the puppeteer tries his best to bitch at her and wriggle away.

"Do normal families do this?" he wonders to himself aloud.

...


The next time the two meet, Ino is talking animatedly with Shikamaru while he has his eyes closed and pretends to ignore her. They're sitting at his favorite cloud-watching spot because everyone knows where to find him, and Temari has been looking for him to solve a problem that had been plaguing her for the past two days.

"What's up, Temari?" Shikamaru asks, cutting through Ino's whine about Choji gaining back all the weight he'd lost.

Miffed, Ino opens her mouth to tell the intruder to buzz off—and upon seeing who it is, abruptly snaps it closed to glare at the other kunoichi. "Oh," she says primly after a moment of blatant staring. "It's you."

Temari sneers back. "Yeah, me."

Catfight in the making, Shikamaru's brain helpfully supplies, before assigning potentially entertaining imagery of torn shirts and pulled hair. He's not averse to letting them fight…but then again, explaining why they had leapt at each other's throats to the Hokage would be troublesome since he has no idea why they are so hostile with one another in the first place.

Not to mention, he doesn't really want Ino to die because she'd upset Gaara of the Desert's sister. It isn't like he can really stop them from snarling at each other like two lions over a fresh kill, but maybe making himself a target would be a more acceptable option.

Fucking politics.

"Ladies, ladies," the chunin says, letting one eye crack open after a long yawn. "No need to fight, there's enough of me to go around, y'know?"

"Shut up, idiot!" two female voices shout in eerie unison.

"Tch, women," he says, turning his head to the side in feigned annoyance.

Oh well. He'd tried.

The two women once again find themselves eyeing each other.

"What makes you think you're a better kisser anyway?" Temari suddenly demands.

Ino splutters. "What? I'm just better, okay!"

The sand nin's eyes narrow on the other kunoichi. "Prove it," she hisses, her teal eyes nearly slitted in her sudden glee.

Bet she's never kissed anyone before either, Temari gloats.

Baby blue eyes narrow. "Fine. Come here."

Temari falters. "Huh?"

"I said, come here."

Suddenly, Shikamaru is interested again. An eye peeks open.

Scoffing at the other girl's hesitance, Ino marches right up to her and reaches out for the older grl's face.

Temari splutters and tries to rear back from those grasping hands, but Ino is known for her persistence; she firmly grasps that firm jawline between her hands. Temari's skin isn't dry or roughened, like she imagined a desert dweller to be. Her eyes narrow as she takes in the green tinted blue eyes and watches in amusement as the other kunoichi nervously wets her lips.

"Y-you're going to—mmph!"

Shikamaru watches in dazed disbelief and amusement as his teammate practically molests the sand kunoichi. He is pretty sure that red spot on Temari's cheeks is no rash and that the hands Temari had reached up with to push Ino away with have instead settled on the other girl's arms.

After a moment, the leaf kunoichi releases the other girl and licks her lips, eyes devious and thoughtful, even as her own cheeks are fairly flushed. "How was that?"

Her only response is a stunned blink. Ino snorts and glances at her teammate, noting the intent expression and unusually alert stare. Ino feels her lips curl into a sharp smile as she grasps at Temari's arm and begins to lead her away.

"Don't worry, I can teach you. We'll have you kissing like a champ in no time."

Ino always has been proud of her meddling skills.