Summary: When little Misaki gets a bad cold, Kakashi takes a break in his busy schedule to pay his daughter a visit. (For KakaSaku Week 2016, Day 3: Under the Weather.) One-shot; shameless fluff ahead! Oh, and Misaki is around 6 or 7 years old.
"Do you think she'll be all right?" Sakura asked. "She hasn't been sick in ages."
"I'm sure she will. Children get colds now and then. It'll pass," Kakashi said. Misaki came home yesterday complaining of a headache, and her temperature had slowly climbed throughout the evening. By bedtime, Sakura had declared her too sick to even attempt going to the Academy. Her fever finally started to dwindle in the last few hours, but she was still fading in and out of a restless sleep.
"I hope so," Sakura sighed. She was sitting at Misaki's little desk, which was littered with all kinds of sick supplies - tissues, children's cough syrup, and a very germy thermometer.
"Try not to worry too much," Kakashi said, rubbing her shoulder. He needed to get going soon (Tenzou had only offered to cover him for an hour or so), but he figured it couldn't hurt to stay a little longer. Sakura looked tired - she was up helping Misaki with her cough in the early hours of the morning, and he had taken a lunch break at home to try and help.
"Why don't you go downstairs and relax a while? I'll stay with her in case she needs anything." Kakashi took her hand, gave it a reassuring squeeze.
"Are you sure?" Sakura asked. "If you need to get back now..."
"It's all right. I have some extra time." Kakashi thought of the enormous stack of paperwork on his desk, but it would simply have to wait.
After her reassured her a few more times, she finally acquiesced and went downstairs to make herself a cup of tea. The room was quiet except for the hum of the vaporizer. He thought about opening a window to let out some of the germs, but then he remembered the chill in the air and reconsidered.
"Dad? Why aren't you at work?" He heard a tiny voice say beneath the covers, followed by a damp cough.
"Ah - look who's finally up," Kakashi said. In all honesty, it probably hadn't been the best idea to take his mask off before coming home, but it was too late to do anything about it now. He carried her chair over to her bedside so he could sit with her.
"You look funny," Misaki laughed, sounding a little hoarse. "You're way too big for that chair." That he was - he hoped he wouldn't break it, actually.
"How are you feeling?" Kakashi asked. "Need anything?"
Misaki shook her head. He was relieved to see that while her cheeks looked pink, they weren't nearly as flushed as before.
"Not really. But I like it when you keep me company."
"I'm glad I could see you," he agreed. Getting to spend time with his daughter during the middle of the day was a rare treat.
"I'm sorry I made Mom get up this morning," Misaki said. "I didn't mean to."
Kakashi smiled sympathetically and reached out to hold her hand. "It's fine. Your mother didn't mind in the least." He hated to see her unwell, let alone feeling guilty for being sick. He saw so much of himself in her - he never found it easy to ask for help when he caught cold, either.
"I hate being sick," Misaki sighed. "It's so boring." She looked at her desk longingly. He could tell how much she wanted to go back to school. Like her mother, she already had a love for academia at a young age.
"It certainly isn't fun being under the weather," Kakashi agreed. "But, I'm sure you'll be back to normal soon."
He leaned in a little closer, faking a whisper. "Besides, you can eat all the ice cream you want without Mom giving you a hard time. Right?" He winked. She nodded and smiled. Whenever she wasn't feeling well, he always snuck her an extra treat long after her mother declared the kitchen was closed.
"Can you tell me the story of how you and Mom met?" Misaki asked.
Kakashi sat back, contemplative. "Well, let's see...in all honesty, your mother and I met when she was in the Academy."
"You met when she was little? Like, my age?" Misaki's eyes widened.
Kakashi rubbed the back of his neck. "Well, no. She was older than you are now. Around 13, I think. I was her teacher."
"You started dating Mom when you were her teacher?" Misaski asked. "Can't you get in trouble for that?"
"Actually, I didn't so much as hug your mother until she was 20," Kakashi laughed uneasily, trying to spare his dignity.
"You guys are so weird," Misaki giggled. "Can you get in bed next to me? Please?" If he did, he knew it would be all over, but when she began to pout and tug on his hand he supposed it couldn't be helped. Kakashi crawled in under the covers; he grimaced when she coughed into his vest, but held her close to him all the same.
"I wish we could do this every day," Misaki spoke into shoulder. "But with me not sick."
"So do I," he agreed. (He agreed about the sick part, too - it was blazing under the blankets, and he was starting to sweat.)
As they lay together, Kakashi began to massage her scalp with his fingertips, something he used to do when she was small and woke up with bad dreams. He hoped this would lull her back to sleep so he could make a quiet exit.
When he heard the slow, even sounds of her breathing, he carefully maneuvered himself out of her grasp. He was halfway out of bed when he suddenly felt a tiny hand grab his sleeve.
"Daddy?" For whatever reason, she hadn't called either of her parents 'Mommy' or 'Daddy' in months. Kakashi had chalked it up to her wanting to seem more mature, but he'd never admitted how much he'd missed hearing her say it.
"Yes, sweetheart?" He asked. The mattress creaked as Misaki snuck up behind him. She wrapped her arms around his back and rested her chin against his shoulder.
"Thanks for taking care of me," Misaki grinned, kissing his cheek. She always knew just how to pull at his heartstrings.
"Always," Kakashi said softly, smiling. Nothing brought him a greater sense of peace than knowing his daughter felt cared for. He gave her a pat on the head as he stood up.
"Make sure to get some more rest," Kakashi said. "Or, you might just have to stay home tomorrow, too." Misaki nodded and quickly threw herself back under the covers - Kakashi knew that would do the trick. He walked downstairs and found Sakura resting on the couch, immersed in what looked like a good book. He felt a sudden burst of gratitude for his wife - it wasn't easy taking care of an ill child around the clock, and she'd been doing it flawlessly.
"How is she?" Sakura asked, setting her book down on the end table.
"Oh, she's fine," Kakashi said. "In fact, I think her fever went down a little more already." He leaned down and gave Sakura a quick kiss. "You've taken good care of her. Thank you."
"You haven't done too bad yourself," Sakura smiled, giving his hand an affectionate squeeze. "Now, you'd better hurry back to work, Hokage-sama - you're already half an hour late."
Mysteriously enough, the Hokage came into work two days later looking a little under the weather; by mid-afternoon, his office smelled like chicken soup and vapor rub, and he wanted nothing more than to slink home into bed.