The Boy Who Cried Kyuubi

A/N: Phew...this one just kind of *popped* at me LOL! I honestly don't even remember what happened to make me come up with this. Also, I'm not really sure how good this first chapter is. I wrote it over a course of several days so if it sounds a little choppy, I apologize in advance. 3 It's basically just a set-up chapter, getting you ready for the rest of the story soo...yep! I hope you like it :D

-Chapter One-

(Timeline: Pre-Chuunin exams)

"Naruto!" Sakura and Sasuke shout as their teammate flies through the air, only to smash into the side of a tree and tumble to the ground. He lands with a heavy thud. A thin trail of blood leaking down the corner of his mouth.

"You'll pay for that...!" Sasuke snarls. The raven lunges toward his enemy, a rouge ninja who had managed to sneak up behind them and attack Naruto. He spins, driving a well-placed kick into the rouge's gut, causing him to double over in pain. "Ha!" Sasuke slips below him and uppercuts the man's jaw, knocking him to the ground. The young Uchiha nudges his opponent to make sure he is uncoscious, and surely enough, he is out like a light.

"Ughh..." Naruto pulls himself off the ground, lifting his eyes just enough to see the crumpled form of his attacker on the ground, below Sasuke. He blushes like mad. Great...now I have to deal with his ego for the rest of the day.

As if on que, the dark-haired boy turns to Naruto, who was still trying to pull himself together. A little, humorful smirk creeps over Sasuke's pale lips at the sight of his rival's shaken expression. "Hey," He calls. "You're not hurt are ya'?"

Naruto flinches at his condenscending tone. After all, Naruto had been caught completely off guard, something a ninja never does.

"Scaredy cat."

"Sasuke!" He jumps to his feet, charging toward the Uchiha like an angry bull. "You jerk! I oughta-!"

"Knock it off, Naruto!" Sakura barks. "Sasuke-kun just saved your life!"

Naruto stops in his tracks. No way! I coulda' stopped that rouge...! He tells himself, desperately trying to patch his own ego before it cracked any further. The teme just got to him...a little before I did...that's all.

It's only then that Sakura catches up to them. She flashes a dirty look at Naruto. "You really shouldn't be so reckless, especially in enemy territory! You're lucky it wasn't worse."

"Hmph." Naruto turns away from them, trying to hide his blush. Covering the attempt by folding his arms and huffing, angrily.

"Tsk," Sasuke suddenly begins to walk away, apprently bored with harassing Naruto's dented self-esteem. "Loser, always getting in the way..." He grumbles, one final time.

But that one insult was the straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak. Naruto's eyes widen and he spins around. "Sasuke...!" He snarls. "DON'T ACT SO HIGH AND MIGHTY YOU JERK!" He shouts. The level of his voice is so high it scatters a flock of birds nesting in the next tree. They all squack and leap into the air, temporarily abandoning their young to escape the boy's yelling.

"Hn." Is all Sasuke says in response.

Naruto tears across the small clearing to get right in Sasuke's face. An evil little smirk now occupies the blonde's lips. "Admit it, Sasuke!" He snarls, boldly. Even though he has to almost get on his tip-toes to get eye level with the Uchiha. "You act like you don't give a crap about me-"

"Becuase I don't."

"Shut up." He snaps. "But you'd be lost without me!"

"Ha!" Sasuke turns away from him, folding his arms and shaking his head. "That's pretty presumptuous of you."

What does that mean? "Pff! Yeah, keep talkin' big! You'd be worried if anything happened to me!" Naruto challenges him again, even giving his shoulder a little push to get the message across.

"Don't touch me, Dobe!" The other boy snaps.

"Stop avoiding the question, Teme!"

"I already told you! I wouldn't care at all!" Sasuke shouts.

"You're lying and you know it!" Naruto growls.

"Quit being a pest, you-"

"That's quite enough, you two." The collected voice is enough to instantly cease the back and forth between the two rivals. Kakashi frowns at them from where he'd landed beside Sakura. "Honestly, can't we have one mission where you two don't fight over something?"

Neither boy answers him. They both stand their, glaring hatefully at each other.

The Jounin sighs, dramatically and approaches them. Manually prying them away from each other and shoving them forward. "Come on, we've got a job to finish, remember?"

-xXx-

After a full day of tracking down rouge ninja and defeating them, Team 7 is finally able to return home. Despite a few bumps and bruises, they are mostly unhurt. Which is a new prospect for them, seeing as how Naruto always seemed to get hurt in some way. But after his run-in with the surprise attack, he'd managed fairly well.

Even Sasuke couldn't complain. Although he would never admit it. Hell would freeze over first! He was almost, almost, impressed with how much his annoying little teammate had grown since his days in the academy. He was almost a productive member of the team now...almost!

But what was really new, was that after defeating a handful of rouge ninja on his own, the blonde ball of sunshine hadn't cried out in some form of arrogance or cockiness. He'd simply checked to make sure no one else needed his help before chaining up the ninja he'd defeated and waiting for everyone else to finish up.

That's what disturbed Kakashi first. Naruto wasn't acting like himself...and frankly, neither was Sasuke. Both were far quieter than usual. And they hadn't even looked at each other since Kakashi had stopped them from fighting before. What had they been fighting about, anyway?

-xXx-

Team 7 stops at their usual place on the bridge. Sakura looked rather stressed, as she always did when her teammates argued like that. And Naruto and Sasuke just looked peeved.

Kakashi sighs and runs a hand through his silver hair. Sometimes these three are like little children! "Alright, guys. Be here bright and early tomorrow for training. Got it?"

"Yes sir..." Sakura mumbles, her head lowered.

"Mm." Naruto nods in consent but doesn't move his gaze from the spot between his feet.

Sasuke remains silent but shifts in a way that said he'd heard.

"Dismissed."

-xXx-

"Stupid Sasuke...arrogant jerk!" Naruto grumbles as he fishes in his pocket for his apartment key. "Stupid...cocky...idiot..." Honestly, Naruto couldn't remember the last time he'd been this mad. Sure, the two had had their fair share of arguments and yeah, Naruto always got a little angry. But never had it been this bad. Had Sasuke really told Naruto he didn't care at all about him? That couldn't be true! After all, if he didn't care, then why risk his life to save Naruto from Haku? Why save him from those rouge ninja? Why help him the countless times before that?! It just didn't make sense! The only explination was that Sasuke was just being a stupid, arrogant, prideful JERK!

Naruto throws the door open and stalks into his bedroom, flopping onto the bed without bothering to change his clothes or even get anything to eat. He was too peeved off to eat. Closing his eyes, he continues to mutter hateful insults to the other boy.

But just then...his eyes fly open again. And an evil grin crosses his face. "You don't care, huh Sasuke?" He sits up, still smirking like a murderer. "Well..."

"Why don't we just put that little theory to the test, eh?"