-1Author's Note: Love to all of my beautiful reviewers! Well, fans, I have a problem. Stupid evil Sasuke is worming his way back into my affections. So once again, I no longer know who Sakura's going to end up with in the end. Maybe I'll write alternate endings. The problem is I think I'd have to rewrite several chapters b/c I already have the next 10 chapters planned out. Not written, mind you, just planned out. Ha. I wish they were already written. Anyway, I've injected a little more humor into this piece than I'd originally intended, but I just can't get away from it. And I know Sasuke is really OOC in that last chapter, but I just couldn't resist. Jealous Sasuke is so much fun to write. And by the way, the title of this chapter was NOT inspired by Avril Lavigne's song, thank you very much.
POLL: So…I'm MAYBE considering writing a lemon or two for this story, possibly NejiSaku and/or SasuSaku, but that's a BIG maybe. Let me know what you guys think.
Disclaimer: Do I look like Kishimoto-san to you? I didn't think so. Which means I don't own Naruto or anything affiliated with it. You should know better.
Ama no Kagerou
The Shimmer of Heaven
Chapter 7 - Girlfriend
Tenten…well, there was no word to describe just how angry Tenten was. First, Neji had come charging into her apartment only to tell her that Sakura had broken her trust and told Neji about her pregnancy. But THIS…THIS was beyond what Tenten could ever have imagined Sakura doing. She just couldn't understand it. She hadn't even known that Neji and Sakura knew one another very well, much less had intimate feelings for one another.
What was Sakura thinking, dating Neji? And as for Neji…wasn't he still furious at her and Lee? What in the seven levels of Hell was going on!? Tenten growled to herself. The world must have gone mad, starting with her and Lee. Pretty soon she'd be in a nuthouse.
Ino was beyond flabbergasted when Shikamaru broke the news to her of Sakura and Neji's relationship. Her face turned a funny shade of purplish red before she exploded in a rant that sent everyone within a 4 block radius running.
"SAKURA DID WHAT!? SHE'S DATING WHO!? BUT WHAT ABOUT SASUKE?! SHE'S SUPPOSED TO BE HEAD OVER HEELS IN LOVE WITH HIM! AND NOW SHE'S DATING HYUUGA NEJI!? WHY DIDN'T SHE SAY ANYTHING?! THAT LITTLE WHORE, I'M GONNA KILL HER!"
And so it continued on like that for another 10 minutes before Ino finally ran out of breath and paused. To the immense relief of everyone else, Shikamaru stuck a shiny silver piece of duct tape over Ino's mouth, using his chakra so she couldn't peel it off. Chouji snorted into his bag of potato chips.
Poor Shikamaru's eardrums would never be the same.
Hinata squeaked in surprise when she saw Neji and Sakura walking hand in hand down the hall of the Hyuuga compound. Ducking around a corner so as not to be seen by them, her brain worked furiously. What in the world were Neji-nii-san and Sakura-chan doing holding hands of all things?
Hinata watched as the couple went into one of the sitting rooms where her father normally visited with guests and knew immediately what was going on. Neji had brought Tenten to the same room to meet with Lord Hiashi when they'd first started dating.
But when the heck had they gotten together? Neji and Tenten had only officially broken up three days ago! He was technically still on the rebound! There was no way Sakura didn't know that. Hinata was worried. What was Neji thinking? She knew he was still horribly angry at his teammates and that he was hell-bent on hurting them. But what did that have to do with Sakura-chan? Very anxious now, Hinata made an escape back to her room.
"I am so retarded," Sakura sighed. She was alone with piles of paperwork in Tsunade's office, and she was intensely glad for it. It was official. Everybody, and I do mean EVERYBODY, now knew that she was dating Neji. There wasn't a person in this village that hadn't asked her about it. And she was so tired of spouting the same lies over and over again. So for once, she didn't complain about the paperwork.
What Sakura was really afraid of right now was running into either Tenten or Lee. Mostly Tenten, because Lee wouldn't be out for her blood. But she still didn't want to see the disappointment and hurt in Lee's eyes. She was pretty sure that if she did, she would break down and tell them everything. And then Neji would kill her. What a wonderful scenario that would be.
It was funny, but when she was a genin she'd wished she was older and stronger and wiser, and now that she was she just wished she could be a genin again so life wouldn't be this complicated. Sakura knew better than to think that Sasuke would be jealous, but she still wondered if he even cared just a little bit about her dating one of his rivals. What if he got really angry at her and never spoke to her again? Or rather, never said "Hn" to her again. Because that would be such a devastating loss.
Maybe she should go visit the quarantine ward and pick up one of the extremely contagious diseases so she wouldn't have to go out to dinner with Neji tonight. After all, being a leper had to be better than dinner with her "boyfriend". Sakura giggled at the thought and stored that insult away for later.
Lee, instead of being heart-breakingly disappointed at the news of Sakura and Neji's relationship, was ecstatically overjoyed at the news. What nobody saw but Tenten, however, was the sadness that flashed in his eyes when he thought no one was looking. He loved Tenten, yes, and he had given Sakura up because he had accepted that she would never love him as more than a friend; however…
He may have publicly claimed to have given up on Sakura, but his heart still thumped erratically whenever she came near. It had grown even worse over the years, as he had come to discover the beautiful, kind, caring kunoichi that she had become.
Lee pushed those thoughts aside and thought of his beloved fiancé, Tenten. Now there was a spitfire of a girl if he ever saw one. It wasn't that he didn't love her, far from it. She was the sun in his sky, the light in the darkness that was in his mind. Despite being an enthusiastic optimist, Lee didn't know how he would have gotten through some days without Tenten. The only problem was…
…He just didn't love her the way he loved Sakura.
Later in the Evening
Neji stood in front of his mirror, surveying his appearance. He was only really vain about his hair, though he would never admit that to anybody. He and Sakura were having a dinner date in half an hour. He wasn't dressed to make an impression on Sakura, however, and she would know that. He was dressed to prove to Konoha that he was serious about his "courtship" of Sakura. He had proven it to his uncle, now he just needed their friends to believe it to.
The maids acknowledged his presence as he passed, heading out of the Hyuuga compound. He walked the long way to Sakura's apartment, knowing she would take half of forever to get ready. Speaking of Sakura…that girl was something else. She irritated him constantly, but she was incredibly attractive whenever she let her fiery temper get the better of her. Which, nowadays, was more often than not.
Neji dismissed his minor attraction to Sakura as teenage hormones. Sure, her hair was a beautiful and uncommon color, and her flashed the most stunning shade of jade when she was angry, and she had killer curves. But beauty faded. In a few years she'd be just as bland as the other women of Konoha.
As attractive as he found her, Neji was completely fascinated by her personality. If possible, she was even more stubborn than he was. She may occasionally give in to him, but he knew she was always plotting defiance in her mind. Even more vexing was her refusal to accept that his revenge was just. She just kept on insisting that he should forgive Lee and Tenten, when she very well knew he never could.
Neji mentally shook away the thoughts just as he arrived at Sakura's apartment. Upon knocking on her door, he heard a great crashing commotion inside. Neji rolled his eyes. Ditz. A moment later, the door opened and Sakura stumbled into his chest. He caught her before she could crash into the ground, catching a whiff of her shampoo. Funny, he wouldn't have thought of her as being a peony lover.
Sakura straightened herself, blushing madly. Well, obviously the rumors about Neji being completely ripped were absolutely true. She'd have to tell Ino later. She reached down and pulled the strap of her stiletto-ed heel over her ankle; what she'd been trying to do when she'd opened the door.
Neji's eyes bored into hers and she fidgeted. "Are you ready yet?" His voice was filled with impatience. Sakura blushed again, this time out of irritation. "Let me just grab my jacket," she mumbled. She stepped inside quickly to grab her black dress jacket, which matched well with her short, black strapless dress (the little Gucci dress, if you were a Spice Girls fan xD). She locked the door, and they began their walk to the restaurant.
Their walk through the village was short, as Sakura's apartment was located in the heart of Konoha due to its convenient proximity to the hospital. As they passed through the streets, people stopped and stared. It was hardly unexpected. Neji was incredibly handsome with his dark brown locks swinging freely behind him and an almost-smile on his stoic face. He looked gorgeous and intimidating in his white dress shirt and black slacks. His hitai-ate was still in place to hide the curse mark. Sakura herself looked stunning in her black dress with her carnation hair swept up into an elegant bun. Her dainty feet were clad in black stilettos and she had a silver chain bracelet adorning her wrist.
All in all, they made quite the picture strolling down the streets of Konoha.
A scarce ten minutes later, they had arrived at La Feuille de Danse, an extremely expensive restaurant located in the upper-class district in the heart of Konoha. Sakura sighed. Of course Neji would take her to the fanciest place he could Google. The Hyuuga clan probably owned plenty of stock in this place; Sakura recalled Neji telling her a couple of minutes ago how Hiashi-sama held all of his business dealings here.
The maitre d' greeted them cordially, showing the proper respect toward the Hyuuga and his companion. They were led to a booth situated dead center of the largest dining room they had. Sakura gritted her teeth. Of course Neji wouldn't want a private booth, he was showing them off. Fighting her growing irritation with her stupid gorgeous boyfriend, she sat down in the chair he'd pulled out for her.
The maitre d' handed them pristine embossed menus and bowed. "Is there anything else I can get for you, sir?" Neji looked at the back of the menu, considering.
"We'll take a bottle of your best wine, Hideki-san."
"Very good, sir. I'll bring it immediately." The maitre d' bowed again and hurried off to fetch the wine.
"Wine? Aren't we a little UNDERAGE to be drinking wine, Neji?" Sakura hissed. It wasn't the fact that they were underage that bothered her. What bothered her was the she had no tolerance for alcohol, and consequently would get drunk easily. She hated to think about what she would do if she were drunk, especially if she turned out to be anything like Lee and his Drunken Fist style. Neji just smirked.
"Relax, Sakura. We're shinobi. We could die tomorrow. Live a little." Neji sipped at the wine Hideki had just brought them, and held up his glass to her.
"To us?" He smirked.
Sakura glared. She was starting to hate that smirk. She chinked her glass with his and took the smallest sip possible. Why was it that impossibly beautiful men had to be such arrogant bastards? She honestly didn't understand it.
"You'll need to drink more than that, Sakura, or they'll think you're insulting their wine," Neji murmured.
Sakura glared murderously at him before taking a bigger sip. She just knew this stuff was going to go right to her head. A few minutes later, another waiter arrived to take their orders. Neji ordered a filet mignon, while Sakura chose the shrimp pasta with alfredo sauce. They were brought salad and fancy French bread and more wine than Sakura ever wanted to see in her life.
The food was rich and delicious and the wine made her heady. Neji was already attractive, dammit, and the wine was making it worse. Sakura squirmed uncomfortably in her velvet-cushioned chair. Inner Sakura, who was inebriated as well, was yelling at her to do things with Neji and the table that made her cheeks redden and her head spin.
Neji watched as the flush on Sakura's cheeks became more pronounced. She'd definitely had enough wine, he decided. He motioned to the waiter to take the remainder of the bottle away. When he returned, Neji handed him two hundred dollars for the meal and wine and told him to keep the change.
And now came the fun part.
Walking a drunken Sakura home.
Gods, she was a horrible drunk. Neji groaned mentally. Sakura was giggling and hiccupping and clinging to his arm like they were four. She kept rambling on and on about how ridiculously hot he was. Neji snickered to himself, he'd remember that for later. His snickering was abruptly cut off, however, when he was pushed up against a wall.
"Neji…" Sakura whimpered in a husky voice.
Oh. Shit. Mental note to self, Neji: NEVER let Sakura drink wine EVER again.
She was pouting sexily now, pressed flush up against him. Neji gulped. He'd never intended to explore the physical aspects of a relationship with Sakura, but right now it appeared Sakura had other plans in her inebriated state.
"Neji, why haven't you kissed me today?" She murmured, nibbling on his bottom lip.
Oh damn. Not good. Not good at all. And the stupid thing was, he wasn't pushing her away. He'd had a little more wine than was his usual limit, and between that and Sakura swiping her tongue across his bottom lip again, Neji was feeling light-headed. It was folly, but he reciprocated her kiss.
His hands gripping her upper arms, his mouth crashed on hers again, and this time it was HIS tongue at HER lips, pushing inside, tasting and exploring. His breathing was labored, and suddenly his clothes felt way too hot. Apparently Sakura was feeling the same way, because she was shedding her jacket.
He felt her arms slide around his neck, her body pressing harder against his. One of his hands was pulling her even closer at the small of her back, and they were exchanging moans. Tenten was screaming something at him, and Lee was standing there, looking for all the world as though someone had died.
And that, my friends, is a cliffhanger. Mwa ha ha. More NejiSaku-tastic-ness. But we shall also be seeing some SasuSaku loveliness soon. And the explosion of Tenten's head in the next chapter. Oh, by the way, La Feuille de Danse is French for "The Dancing Leaf". Or at least I think it is. I got if off of freetranslationsdotcom. Reviews make me want to update faster. So…and I can't believe I forgot this last chapter…
Review or else I'll lock you in a room with a Naruto who hasn't eaten ramen in seven months. 3