Title: The Art of Surrender
Summary: In which Inojin learns that his girlfriend and her father are more alike than he thought.
Disclaimer: Naruto, not mine since 1999.
Note: Yeah, I know, this is way overdue. One more chapter after this. And then a prologue that I already wrote, but I feel like posting it last.
As soon as he'd realized that he was head-over-heels for Uchiha Sarada, Inojin had known that this is how he would die.
There is an unpleasant gleam in Sasuke's eyes as he presses the tip of the kunai into the juvenile's gut. Inojin sweats profusely, mentally apologizing to his mother and Sarada, and praying that they don't find his hand-drawn porn stash.
ChouChou will be pissed as all hell at him for dying, and Shikadai will find it troublesome. How can InoShikaChou continue without its third member? He's sure to be in trouble for that, even after death.
His mother will be devastated, and probably murderous. She'll probably kill Sasuke after extensive mental torture, and while Inojin finds slight comfort in the idea of being avenged, Sarada would hate him for it and curse his memory for the rest of eternity.
With that thought in mind, Inojin does the only thing left he can do. He begs.
But Sasuke is unamused and unimpressed, and his grip on Inojin's collar tightens. He opens his mouth, perhaps to deliver the death sentence, but he is interrupted.
"PAPA, LET HIM GO RIGHT NOW."
The real Sarada stands behind him, fuming, and very much resembling her mother when she's angry. Her chakra is palpable, whipping her hair around in fury. Arms crossed across her chest, she levels a glare at Sasuke that is pure Uchiha.
Sasuke scowls. "You are not to see this boy again, Sarada. Now go home, I'll speak to you when I'm done with him."
But Sarada is as stubborn as her father, and her feet stay firmly planted where they are. "No, you're going to leave Inojin alone, and we're going to talk now."
Her eyes narrow to dangerous slits, and Inojin thanks every god above that it's not him she's angry at. Sasuke draws himself up to his formidable full height, mercifully dropping Inojin like yesterday's trash. Relieved, Inojin scoots well out of arm's reach of the angry Uchiha patriarch.
"Sarada-" Sasuke starts angrily, but she cuts him off.
"No, Papa, you listen to me. This is exactly why we didn't tell you about us. You are such a drama queen. Worse even than Uncle Naruto."
Sasuke turns a peculiar shade of purple, spluttering incoherently.
Sarada continues, ignoring him. "We havent had sex, Papa, so you can get that idea right out of your head. And I'm going to continue seeing Inojin, because I like him, and you're just going to have to get used to it."
"Absolutely not," Sasuke's own eyes narrow back at her.
Sarada casually inspects her nails, completely unphased by his denial. "I can always tell Mama that you're being unreasonable. I'm sure she has an opinion that she'd like with you."
And that's how Sasuke knows he's lost. No matter how much he orders or argues, if Sakura thinks he's getting in the way of their baby girl's happiness, she won't hesitate to turn him into mortar. But still…
"Ino's kid?" He asks bleakly.
Victory sealed, Sarada smirks. And for Sasuke it's like looking in the mirror. "Yes, Papa. And the Yamanaka family is coming over for dinner tonight, and Mama and I expect that you'll be a perfect gentleman."
Sasuke gives up. His progeny is going to be the end of him. Silently acquiescing, he turns to Inojin, who straightens instantly under the Uchiha's gaze.
"If you break her heart, or hurt her in any way-"
"I'll break his face myself, Papa." She breezes past him coolly, taking Inojin's hand in hers.
Sasuke can't help himself, he smirks. Hr knows very well that she would, but he still would throw in his own two cents and a chidori should the boy ever hurt her.
As the pair walk away from the training ground, Sarada turns back to him and calls out, "Oh, and Papa, Aunt Ino was looking for you. Something about burning down her flower shop. I'll see you tonight!"
Sasuke has the ominous feeling that he may not live to see dinner.