A/N: Sorry for the super beyond late update. School has been killing me.
Disclaimer: I own nothing
"Tonight I'ma give it to ya harder / Tonight I'ma turn ya body out / Relax, let me do it how I wanna / If you got it, I need it, and I'ma put it down / Buckle up, I'ma give it to ya stronger / Hands up, we could go a little longer / Tonight I'ma get a little crazy, get a little crazy, baby" - Robyn Rihanna Fenty
Succumb to Me
Hinata was pleased to discover that breakfast was actually edible this morning. She would have made a beeline towards her own room but the delectable scent of cinnamon rolls convinced her to stay and enjoy breakfast in the company of the two shinobi she woke up next to. She was so wrapped up in enjoying the sweet confectionary that she didn't even notice a messenger bring Temari a scroll until the older girl was already paraphrasing it to her and Shikamaru.
"So apparently," Temari began, "Kumo has appealed to have the exams in their village this year. Dammit, it would be them making everything so complicated."
Shikamaru looked rather appalled at the news, "We've spent so much time organizing the exams to take place here. Such a change would be troublesome and a downright pain in the ass."
"We can probably overrule them," Temari walked across the room to pull a blank scroll out of her drawer, "Let's get this refusal written up."
Hinata decided to drown out the two shinobi as she downed the rest of her milk. She had no idea what they were talking about anyway. With the other two distracted, Jiraiya revealed himself to the young girl.
"Hey, kiddo. Did you sleep well?" Jiraiya cheerfully asked, earning a halfhearted nod from his charge, "Good, good."
Hinata blinked at him expectantly. Realizing she didn't plan to speak, Jiraiya decided to just get straight to business, "Well, I'm guessing you didn't get much information on the Kazekage last night, right?" a nod, "Luckily, you have a good amount of time for this one so don't stress too much. I trust you'll find a way." a smile, "Maybe you can get blondie to help you out," a hesitant look, "I'm sure she would be glad to help you! From my research, I know she's constantly concerned with her little brother and if he's stressing himself out. And what's the best stress reliever, eh?"
Hinata couldn't help but giggle slightly at the way the Sannin suggestively wiggled his eyebrows. She nodded to let him know she understood what he meant. Jiraiya opened his mouth to speak again but stopped as Shikamaru rose from the floor and addressed Hinata.
"I want you at the convening today," he spoke seriously, "Konoha's voice against this appeal will be stronger if both of us speak.
Hinata dutifully nodded her head, "Just let me know what I need to say." Jiraiya dissipated before the girl could even turn back to him. Her seduction mission would have to wait since her immediate responsibility was to the Leaf Village.
The trio placed their breakfast platters back onto the silver tray and promptly collected their respective belongings to prepare for the day. Hinata mumbled her plans to go shower and had to skillfully evade any suggestion of either of them joining her. She silently wondered when they would get out of this 'doing inappropriate things with the shy heiress for fun' phase.
Hinata quietly observed as the Chuunin Exam conference got a bit…rowdy. Eventually the Kazekage himself showed up and threw in his own two cents, effectively sealing the deal that the exams would most definitely be in Suna. No one dared speak against him. His mere presence demanded power and Hinata couldn't help but flinch slightly when his sharp gaze cut to her for a moment. She looked down with a demure expression and once again began planning her own funeral.
Shikamaru and Temari were in a cheerful mood as they walked back to the residential complex. Temari kept recounting the part where a Kusagakure-nin shed a silent tear when the Kazekage pressured him to give an unbiased opinion. Hinata confessed how she emphasized with the shinobi. The Kazekage was a scary man.
"Aw, c'mon, Hina-chan." Temari smiled as she spoke to the Hyuuga, "Gaara's not that bad. When he isn't making crybabies crap their pants, he's a cool guy."
Hinata weakly crossed her arms, "If you say so, T-Temari-chan." The indigo-haired girl already knew that if Jiraiya was here, he would be pressing her to use this opportunity to get information out of the blonde kunoichi, "I guess I shouldn't make assumptions since I don't really kn-know him."
"I think you two would get along actually," Temari looked forward as she continued, "Believe it or not, he doesn't actually mind his fangirls' company but he wishes they were quieter. You'd be the perfect fangirl. Pretty and silent."
"Tch," Shikamaru threw Temari and incredulous look, "You can't seriously compare Hinata to one of those…cretins."
"All I'm saying is that he would like her!" the Sand kunoichi pointed a finger in the Nara's face, "Don't think I forgot about how much of a crybaby you are. I'm surprised you never crap when Gaara enters a room."
Shikamaru gritted his teeth, "That is completely irrelevant."
Hinata almost walked into Temari's back as the pair paused to argue. After about three minutes, she decided to intervene, "M-Maybe I should just meet him then!" the two shinobi turned to her, "I mean, if he isn't too busy." Hinata blushed intensely at the thought of seeing him again.
Shikamaru mumbled his favorite word as Temari mischievously spoke to the chuunin, "Ohh, I see. You want to do him next, don't you?"
"Uh," Hinata bashfully turned away, "I…uh."
Temari pumped her fist in the air at the new development, "I knew it! Better him than Kankuro, anyway." Hinata shifted her eyes nervously at that last part.
"Let's not get carried away," Shikamaru straightened his posture some, "Hinata is still my teammate and I would prefer if she didn't recklessly pursue your brother. It's a safety issue."
"You jerk," Temari shot him a death glare, "Gaara isn't homicidal anymore, okay? How's about I prove it to you by introducing Hinata to him!"
"Hinata?" the pair looked at the Hyuuga for her opinion.
"Ano…" Hinata slowly looked back and forth between the two of them, "I think that would be…fine."
Temari grinned while Shikamaru tilted his head up, closed his eyes, and sighed as he placed a hand on his forehead. Hinata rallied up a smile as Temari excitedly began to talk.
"I wouldn't mind if you….you know," she made a motion with her hand.
Hinata blushed once she realized she was talking about sex, "I think he's a bit out of my league, Temari-chan."
"I'll be frank," Temari once again stopped in her tracks and gave Hinata a grave look, "My brother needs to get laid."
Shikamaru groaned and stomped far ahead of the girls. Hinata blushed furiously and stammered as Temari grabbed her arm to catch up to the Nara.
Hinata laid down on her bed and stared at the ceiling. She didn't know what to think of her current situation. Gaara is scary, Temari wants her to have sex with him, and Shikamaru keeps bringing up safety and political issues. She sighed before summoning her guide.
"Jiraiya-sama…" She whispered. Only silence greeted her for a few moments.
"Hey." Jiraiya phased through the floor and sat on the edge of her bed.
"Where are you coming from?" she asked, confused as to why he came from below instead of just appearing in front of her.
"I was doing research," the Sannin informed her with a mellow look. Hinata's eyebrows furrowed causing the spirit to wave his hand dismissively, "Don't worry about, kid. I didn't find anything useful anyway. So, how are things going with you?"
Hinata sat up in the bed and explained to him everything that happened. He carefully observed her facial expressions before he spoke again.
"I had a feeling fear would be your main obstacle," he confessed.
"Wh-What?" Hinata's eyes widened as she frantically tried to refute his statement, "You're wrong! I'm not afraid. I don't fear anything…"
"You don't have to put on a brave act," Jiraiya tried to comfort her, "You're still young and only a chuunin. I don't expect you to be fearless." Hinata still had a hurt look on her face but otherwise looked placated, "That's why I'm here anyway! To help you."
Hinata smiled at him before responding, "You're not the only one helping me this time."
"You got blondie hooked?" he looked at her excitedly and smirked when she nodded, "Good. So when do you make your first move?"
"Um," Hinata's eyes moved upward as she recalled the conversation she had with Temari before entering her room, "Temari-san said she's going to introduce us. Something about having a sit down dinner."
Jiraiya made a 'hm' sound before nodding approvingly, "I guess that beats having your meals delivered to you. It almost makes you an actual guest to be invited to the dinner table."
Hinata looked at him with no particular expression, "I guess."
"Wear something nice," he suggested, "First impressions are everything."
"First impressions…" she looked down nostalgically, "I wonder if he remembers my pitiful defeat at the Chuunin exams that y-year…"
Somewhat concerned that her stutter came back yet again, Jiraiya patted her on the back the best he could and gave her words of encouragement, "That's the past, princess. Him holding that against you would be the same as you still holding him to his reputation of being blood crazed."
The Hyuuga agreed with her guide, "You're right. I'll try my best, Jiraiya-sama."
"I know. If you need any assistance, you know how to reach me." The Sage said before dissipating. Hinata decided to wash up then read over some protocol scrolls until it was time for dinner.
Two and a half hours later or so, a servant knocked on Hinata's door to announce dinner. She diligently slipped on her sandals before observing herself in the mirror. Satisfied with her reflection, Hinata walked out and made her way to the family dining room.
The Kazekage's dining room was nothing spectacular. It had the same rough walls and brownish flooring as the rest of the complex. Hinata took a seat across from Temari and Shikamaru sat on her right with Kankuro across from him. The head of the left and right end of the table were empty so she wondered which seat was the Kazekage's.
"He'll probably sit here," Temari indicated to the seat nearest them, as if having read the Hyuuga's thoughts.
"Oh…okay," Hinata lamely said with a smile. She felt a heated glare from her right and turned to meet her teammate's gaze.
"You're still going to try, aren't you?" The Nara questioned, earning only a shrug in response, "I was afraid Temari would rub off on you. How troublesome…"
"Ack!" Hinata yelped as something hit her knee. Temari immediately looked guilty and started ushering out apologies.
"I was trying to kick that bum next to you! Sorry!" she spoke over the table in a hushed tone, trying to prevent Kankuro from hearing her.
Hinata was still hunched over in pain when servants began bringing out the meal. A yelp from Shikamaru alerted her that Temari obviously met her intended mark and the male also doubled over in pain. Kankuro, who had previously been tinkering with some handheld puppet, brought his attention to the guests.
"What the hell is wrong with these two?" Kankuro lifted a hand up towards them, "Did I miss something?"
Temari laughed and slapped her brother on the back, "You and your jokes, Kankuro!" She turned back to the chuunin in front of her, "I hope you two enjoy. Everything here is loaded with spices found only here in the desert!"
Hinata's face twitched into a smile while Shikamaru grimaced. After a few seconds, Kankuro lost interest in them again allowing Temari to sigh in relief. She didn't want him knowing about her plans for Gaara. The blonde then looked up to greet said brother as he walked in.
"Gaara! I'm so happy you're joining us for dinner," Temari's velvety voice rolled out as her sibling took the seat next to her and Hinata.
The redhead's expression was blank as ever as he responded to his sister, "You were so persistent, Temari. I figured there was no harm."
"I'm happy too, little brother," Kankuro spoke with a smile, "It's usually only me and Temari but now you're here and even the Leaf ambassadors."
As if just becoming aware of their presence, Gaara looked to the right of the table and nodded at the two chuunin. The throbbing in Hinata's knee was nothing compared to the beating in her heart as she locked eyes with the Kazekage. Shikamaru was nowhere near as effected as he spoke for the both of them.
"It is our honor to join you for dinner, Kazekage-sama," Shikamaru respectfully remarked as Hinata nodded in agreement. The table fell into a silence after with Gaara and Kankuro turning their attention to their plates. Temari had obviously expected Hinata to say something so now she was giving her a hard look from across the table.
Hinata bit her lip and purposefully avoided the older girl's gaze. The Kage's mere presence was so unnerving that the girl contemplated forgetting the whole idea. As if sensing her inner turmoil, Jiraiya appeared next to his charge.
"How's it going, kid?" Jiraiya didn't expect an answer as he observed the scene in front of him, "Well, I can see nothing spectacular has happened yet." Hinata cut a piece of her unidentified meat and chewed it slowly, not sparing the Sannin a glance.
Temari brought her ceramic cup to her lips and took several sips before looking forward to address Hinata, "So, how's Konoha this time of year?" Hinata stopped chewing momentarily and gave the blonde an exasperated look. Seeing her expression and current inability to speak, Shikamaru answered for her.
"It's great. You should know since you've visited recently," he said matter-of-factly.
"Oh," Temari stared at him through half lidded eyes, obviously displeased at his interference. It's not like she had a set plan anyway, "Anyways, how's the family, Hinata?"
Hinata blushed a bit as numerous pairs of eyes fell on her. She was half thinking up a response as Shikamaru once again intervened.
"The Hyuugas are terrific," he said nonchalantly, "One of their members has recently been promoted to jounin."
Temari now looked borderline pissed, "Are you going to give her a chance to speak for herself, smart ass?"
"Maybe," Shikamaru was now smirking, "Hey, Kankuro, can you pass the rolls? Hinata wants one-"
"You don't know what she wants!" Temari impatiently informed the male.
"Ano…" Hinata finally broke her silence, "Sh-Shikamaru-kun is only teasing, Temari-chan."
Temari visibly calmed and smiled at the younger girl before continuing her banter with the Nara, albeit quieter. Hinata pushed her hair behind her ear and caught her Ecchi Spirit Guide's eyes. The Sannin looked to be in deep thought but eventually responded to the girl's silent question.
"You have to interact with him. Blondie gave you several openings but now it's up to you. Just strike up conversation," Jiraiya instructed his charge. Hinata ate a few more spoonfuls of the somewhat spicy mush on her plate before shyly turning her towards the Kazekage.
"You have a v-very beautiful village, Kazekage-sama," Hinata spoke quietly.
Gaara looked at her impassively before giving a silent nod. Temari turned her attention away from the shadow user to give this new conversation some depth.
"Oh, that's right," the blonde grinned, "This is Hina-chan's first time in Suna."
"….Hina-chan?" Gaara had an almost inquisitive look on his face.
Temari nodded her head, "That's what I call her. She's just so adorable, don't you think?" Kankuro laughed a bit too enthusiastically from her right.
Gaara looked at Hinata for an extended period before responding to his sister, "I suppose it fits."
"I know," Temari gave an uncharacteristic giggle, "You should be proud that a Hyuuga is admiring your village, Gaara."
"Oh!" Hinata snapped back to the conversation, "Y-Yes, I really d-do like it. My visit has been made even more wonderful by being in your presence, Kazekage-sama." She bowed her head.
Gaara waved off her formality, "You are a friend of the family. It is my pleasure to have you here. You and Nara."
Shikamaru looked up mid-chew and gave something akin to a grunt in appreciation. The table once again fell into silence as everyone finished their meals. Gaara was the first to excuse himself.
Not even five minutes after finishing her meal, Hinata found herself being pushed down a hallway she could only assume belonged to the Kazekage. Temari was talking a mile a minute and Shikamaru had a bored look on his face.
"Hand him that," Temari gestured to a random package she had shoved into Hinata's hand, "tell him it's from me, then make conversation instead of just walking out. I swear, if you walk out you're going to feel my wrath!"
"I-I-I-I don't know what to say," Hinata stuttered as she kept her feet firmly planted in one spot in the hallway.
Shikamaru mumbled under his breath before stepping forward, "Look, Hinata," he continued after she met his gaze, "You have several options here. You've chosen to pursue the Kazekage so that has eliminated any option that involves you walking away and going back to your room. You've had several hours to properly strategize for this moment but since you haven't, you're only left with options that involve improvising.
"For this strategy, you have two distinct options. Go in his office as direct as possible and hope he accepts your advances or be subtle and stretch this out for much longer than optimal. If you decide on straightforwardness-"
"You're complicating this too much!" the blonde kunoichi impatiently snapped at him, "This isn't an assassination!"
During Shikamaru's rant, Jiraiya appeared before Hinata and gave her somewhat more useful words of encouragement.
"Look, kid," the white-haired Sannin began, "Think of this as a true test of your valor. You want to become a great shinobi, right? This is a piece of cake compared to the things you will face in the future of your career."
Without a word, Hinata shook herself from Temari's grasp and walked towards the door leading into the Kazekage's office.
Hinata had no idea what Temari expected her to do once she got in her brother's office. It was ridiculous really. She saw no possible way for this to end successfully. Jiraiya gave her words of encouragement but it was all much easier said than done.
With Hinata out of earshot, Temari turned to her fellow ambassador and spoke slowly, "Do you really…have faith in her, Nara?" Shikamaru only glanced down the seemingly endless hallway without acknowledging the blonde for about thirty seconds.
"No," he finally turned to her, "I don't think the Hinata Hyuuga I know is capable of this. However, the Hinata Hyuuga I know has a way of surprising people," Shikamaru looked down with a smirk, "and she's kept herself alive for this long, hasn't she?" Temari couldn't help but smirk as well as she followed the chuunin back to their now shared bedroom.
"I'm happy Hinata can keep her soul and all that but let's not forget the equally important factor here. My little bro is getting laid!"
Hinata repeatedly fingered the edges of the package in her hand before she reached the large oval door with 'Kazek….ma" engraved into it. She only had time to briefly contemplate why the words were so faded before the door suddenly creaked open. The kunoichi's heart began pacing, 'of course he would immediately know he had a visitor, why am I so surprised!'
Hinata strode into the room, refusing to get caught looking like a deer in headlights. Gaara's eyes never left his paperwork. It didn't take the Hyuuga long to realize his eyes were scanning the page without even blinking, 'creepy…'
The Kazekage's eyes suddenly shot up as if hearing the silent insult, causing Hinata to feel as if someone shoved a kunai right through her. His piercing gaze was unlike anything she ever experienced, even more chilling than the look of hatred she received from her cousin for all those years.
Gaara cleared his throat, bringing Hinata out of her stupor, "May I help you, Hina-chan" the name rolled awkwardly off of his tongue, effectively allowing an awkward moment to pass between them. After about half a minute, Gaara's eyes dipped down to the package in the female's hand.
"Oh!" Hinata lifted the package as if just remembering she had it, "Te-Temari-san sent this for you," she hurriedly bowed while reaching the package to him, "she told me to wait until you opened it before I took my leave." Gaara took the package and began to open it. With the Kage preoccupied, Jiraiya appeared before his charge.
"I have no idea what blondie's point in giving you that was but she seemed persistent. Any ideas?" he had a curious look on his face that dropped into annoyance due to the Hyuuga's nonchalant shrug, "Well, kiddo, I hope you're ready for this. Just give a signal and I'll give you lines to repeat if you ever draw a blank."
Hinata suddenly felt despair at the fact the Sannin wasn't his usual goofy self. It made her realize just how dire this situation was. She began to frown and felt stinging behind her eyes as she and her mentor shared a silent moment.
"Hinata," the young girl snapped her attention to the young man who was staring at her from across the desk, "I understand."
Jiraiya and his charge stared at the Kage with mouths agape, "aye kid, what's this guy on about?" Hinata didn't even bother shrugging.
"My sister informed me some time ago that she would select a partner for my first…date", if Gaara wasn't emotionless, Hinata might even believe he was blushing, "like a fool, I accepted."
He looked at the indigo-haired girl expectantly.
Hinata's spirit guide suddenly lightened up substantially, "alright, princess! We're in business! Blondie really hooked you up here!" Jiraiya grinned, "Say something!"
"Of-Of course, Kazekage-sama!" Hinata's posture straightened, "I'm your date for the night!" She ushered out a genuine smile that fell was she noticed Gaara's frown.
"I apologize, Hina-chan," the red haired man stood and walked around to her, "It will have to be tomorrow night. I have much work to complete."
The dead Sannin gave an exasperated sigh as Hinata spoke, "I understand, Kazekage-sama. I'll take my leave now," she waited for a nod of approval, "Goodnight."
Once a fair distance away, the chuunin turned to her Ecchi Spirit Guide in excitement, "I have a date with a Kage! My father will be–"
"Whoa there, kid," Jiraiya interrupted her, "The Kazekage isn't going to remember any of this, did you forget?"
"Well…I figured he would only forget the…sex," she looked away in embarrassment both of the word 'sex' and at her uncharacteristic 'fangirling'.
The gray-haired spirit looked at her and put his best smile on once again, "Hey, you know this stuff works mysteriously, even I can't tell you what to expect exactly. Maybe he will remember. Maybe he'll even fall in love with you, princess!" Jiraiya got louder, "Imagine your father's reaction if raccoon boy were to ask for your hand!"
Hinata's eyes widened before she walked away quickly with no response. She suddenly didn't want him to remember anything at all. However, she couldn't help but giggle as she heard her guide's boisterous laughter slowly fade away, 'Jiraiya-sama seems much more at ease. Maybe I can do this. Just maybe…' The Hyuuga heiress smiled to herself as she finally got to the guest corridor. She placed her hand on the doorknob to her assigned quarters before she suddenly stopped, much to her own surprise.
Hinata stood in that position for a moment more before decidedly turning around and making her way to Temari's bedroom instead. The Suna kunoichi's bed was much more comfortable after all, that's the only reason she decided to go there. It had nothing to do with the fact she grew to enjoy sleeping with her fellow ambassadors. After all, Temari had a somewhat masculine snore and Shikamaru slept stiff as a log but anything beats that dreary guestroom. Yep, that's exactly what Hinata told herself as she stepped into the bedroom and took in the unsurprised faces before her.
"Back this soon? It couldn't have happened that quickly, no way. How troublesome…"
"You mean he actually went along with the date? My little brother's growing up!"
The trio only chatted for five minutes more before settling in bed together. Hinata had a big day tomorrow. An extremely big day. However, the combined planning of an heiress, a jounin, a genius, and a dead man should be more than enough to reach mission completion.
End Chapter 6
Sorry to end it there, this chapter's only bout 4,000 words compared to the 7,000+ of the last two. Also, no smut :( I'm disappointed in myself. But this has been sitting on my computer so long, I just had to publish it.
Next chapter's gonna be really fun to write :P thanks for all ya'lls reviews. Much appreciated.
Bye for now - lilacblossom