"Really, an Iwa nin gave you a love letter?" Ino asked mouth agape.

Sakura nodded half embarrassed. "Yeah, I was pretty shocked, really..."

"Judging by the look on your face, you said no?" Her friend stared into her eyes ridden with guilt now.

Sakura only stared down at her tray, giving away the answer. Ino didn't want to touch the food either, but that was from the lack of flavor. Gingerly, she nodded, already knowing as to why her friend would decline. Sasuke was turning into a regular Madara Uchiha- with his he-who-should-not-be-named status- within the ear range of any Team 7 member. Ino was perfectly fine with not bringing him up, he only brought affliction with his memory.

"And here I thought I was going to congratulate you," Ino sighed. "You really are hopeless, you know that, Sakura?" She shook her head arrogantly and it worked in lightening up the mood like she hoped.

"She up Ino-pig, I don't see you receiving any love letters."

The Yamanaka's forehead twitched "Yeah, because I'm out on the field fighting, I'm not in one place long enough for the boys to give me the letters."

Her frenemy smirked in victory.

What was the good of making a friend feel better if it only made you feel worse?

"One day my prince will come and just you wait, he's going to be perfect." Sparkles surrounded her and she was already imagining her dream guy in her head. "He's gonna be tall, dark and handsome, probably leader of a clan or son of a kage or something great."

"Ino.." Sakura spoke up- but she ignored her.

"I mean, we're allied with all nations now, if I'm going to meet a hot foreigner, now is the perfect time!"

"Pardon me..."

Ino looked up from her monologue and was met with Captain Darui of the First Division standing at the head of the girls' table. Sakura was already staring at him, he had probably been there some time waiting for Ino to shut up.

Ino muffled out an incomprehensible word and stared at him abashed. The possibilities of why he would be standing there were coming up short in her mind.

"Sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt your conversation," he began with one muscled arm behind his head.

"Not at all, please have a seat." Sakura said across from Ino, speaking on her behalf.

Darui sat down beside Ino, facing her. "I heard you and Shikamaru were on the same team in Konoha, right?" he began.

Ino dumbly nodded, focusing more on the sparks of Darui's looks instead of what he was actually saying.

Sakura looked on slyly, noticing the obvious admiration for one another right away. She stepped up from the table with her tray of uneaten food and headed for the trash can. Ino and Darui never noticed.


A/N: Pardon the lack of updates on my Pre-Konoha fics... ever since they appeared in the manga, I've put them all on hold. You know, in case my head canon is officially disproved xD So here is a random fic to help me keep sharp with my writing. The more I think about it, the more InoDarui would be epic. I may write more on these two if people like them as well!