I’m going to be honest, anon, I don’t see how I’d write this without it being massively OOC or in a completely separate AU. Because whether it’s friendship or rivalry, I can’t really imagine canon Shikako devoting more brainpower to a member of the Akatsuki beyond how to defeat them.
And, well, Deidara views explosions as art–Shikako is more utilitarian than that. She likes explosions but not inherently? They’re efficient and impressive and exciting, but she’s not going around blowing up things for the thrill of it. It’s like… a lot of people are mesmerized by bonfires, but only a small percentage of people are arsons.
And then, on top of that, my interpretation of Gaara’s character is a little incompatible to a scene of romcom-esque misunderstanding leading to jealousy at an inopportune time. Especially not post-Deidara-attacking-Suna, you know? Like, Konoha (and Shikako and Naruto in particular) is Gaara’s standard of what good people do–there’s not way he’d think that Shikako would approve of such a person who would be part of Akatsuki and attack Suna. Deidara’s fixation/admiration of Shikako doesn’t even factor, I think.
That being said: now that I’ve covered how that wouldn’t work in an in-character canon ‘verse, the basis of this prompt could lead to an interesting plot in an AU.
Off the top of my head, I can see this working pretty well in the modern royalty!AU that came up during the Ask Box Three Sentence Fic event. I mean, obviously, in this AU Shikako doesn’t know what’s going to happen next since… AU… but maybe she does know canon so she recognizes people but not their context. There’s no ninja, no chakra, so a lot of her knowledge doesn’t really apply, so maybe she gives people the benefit of the doubt.
She meets Deidara and, hey, he’s just a performance artist and that’s not inherently bad. An artist with slightly anarchist tendencies, yes, but Shikako has frequently been on the wrong side of bureaucracy that she can understand the appeal. Maybe, without the bijuu and ninja, he really is just an artist.
Hahahahaha, lol, nope. Turns out Akatsuki does exist and is an anti-monarchy terrorist group.
So you can get the Shikako and Deidara as friends/friendly rivals without it being OOC for Shikako, while still maintaining the whole… Deidara has attacked Suna and attempted to assassinate the Wind Country royal family. And probably it’d be more of a “Gaara feels betrayed because he thinks Shikako is part of Akatsuki” than a “Gaara is jealous/possessive of Shikako.”
I guess, if I were to make an outline of this fic it would also have a sprinkle of university!AU too because the timeline I have is something like:
- Shikako is a university student and Deidara is an alumni/grad student of the same specialty/major (ie, explosions). They meet, become friends, etc.
- During a break, Shikako goes home–Shikaku brings up the whole “the clan needs to send a representative to the coronation of the crown princess of Wind Country,” and Shikako is conscripted.
- Coronation! Shikako and Gaara meet–paparazzi turn them into the fairy tale romance of the century.
- Over the weeks of trying to manage the media, Shikako and Gaara do actually begin to fall in love (I’m a sucker for epistolary fics).
- BUT THEN–Akatsuki attacks Suna/attempts to assassinate Her Royal Majesty, Temari the First! Security is tightened around the Wind royal family. Gaara is, understandably, rattled, Shikako is worried.
- The authorities discover that Deidara is part of Akatsuki, Shikako is revealed to be a known associate.
(Unsure how the following events are organized but considering this is the emotional/dramatic climax of the non-existent movie it’d make sense for it to be a flurry of scenes but basically):
- CONFRONTATION: Gaara, feeling betrayed, accuses Shikako of being a part of Akatsuki or possibly a patsy and endangering his family.
- SCANDAL: The media, constantly on both of their tails considering the whole “fairy tale romance of the century” jump all over the drama.
- FALLOUT: Akatsuki (or, specifically Deidara and Sasori), seeing the opportunity of having their actions highly publicized, kidnap both Shikako and Gaara?
- RECONCILIATION/BADASSERY: Gaara apologizes, argument resolved, the two of them (despite being “pampered royalty/nobility”) totally break out as the authorities do a rescue mission. Media is back to being all over this “fairy tale romance of the century” except now when they say “fairy tale” they mean more the slaying dragons kind.
Hell yeah! 😀
It fulfills my need for complex political ramifications and dramatic machinations of public versus private relationships and also my desire for I JUST WANT MY OTP TO FALL IN LOVE, PLEASE AND THANK YOU.