Walking Around (A Softer World), (2017-06-07)

on the paper, she had written “you”
and she told me “that’s a list of the people
who are standing too close.”
(I ain’t your pal.)

The strange thing about it isn’t that they’re opposites clashing–two conflicting ideologies or personalities at war–but rather that they’re so similar.

The children of famously powerful shinobi, both of them with the same potential for greatness, the new beginnings for clans that had been near to extinction. Beyond that, their keenness and desire to be stronger (even if it is outside of the Academy’s strict curriculum) ought to make them, if not friends, then friendly.

People had expected that, because their parents were legendary teammates, some tiny bit of that would trickle down.

At best they find each other mildly irritating.

(The first and only time the Academy teachers make them spar, they destroy the training hall. To this day, no one can say who won.)

///

If something seems too good to be true,

quick! put it in your mouth!
(before anything can go wrong!)

They are put on a team together.

It’s not the end of the world.

(But it sure feels like it.)

Still, if that’s the way Konoha wants to play it then fine. They can deal with it.

They only have to tolerate each other until they make chuunin and given that the next chuunin exams are hosted at home, that only means a few months at most.

But what a frustrating and bizarre few months they are.

Missions gone askew, far too many television appearances, new jutsu and kata and, briefly, a shared pet capybara.

They’re still not friends, but teammates? Well, that they can do.

(But it sure feels like it.)

///

Our love is like.

Our love is only like.
(I like you. I don’t LIKE like you)

Mitsuki is the first one to say it, eyes bright and smile sharp, the thinnest veneer of mockery on top so he can take it back if he needs to.

He does not need to.

Sakako is caught off guard but not terribly surprised–she feels the same way, too, only hadn’t thought to say it aloud. No one’s ever accused her of being particularly chatty, after all–and she returns the expression easily enough.

Boruto is stubborn, though. He flushes and sneers and storms off, shoulders hunched up around his reddening ears.

It takes another week before he admits it, grudging and gritted out between his teeth, and only because they ambush him with hugs and refuse to let him go.

It still counts.

///

I cannot help but notice we are sitting-in-a-tree.
So, you know, maybe we could think of something to do…
verb-wise.
(I want us to gerund, essentially.)

“We are frequently sitting in trees,” Mitsuki says, skeptical yet concerned glance sent Boruto’s way, “We are in a forest.”

Boruto huffs an embarrassed, exasperated sigh, turning away pointedly.

“He wants to kiss you,” Sakako calls from her spot in the tree across the clearing, because while she may be oblivious to most things, not even she is that dense.

Konohamaru-sensei chokes on a laugh, quiet, but just loud enough to give away his position.

His students pounce.

The matter of the non-kiss is set aside for now, trying to find and beat their jounin sensei more pertinent at the moment, but it’s not quite forgotten.

///

I think you are beautiful and I would like to kiss you.
I can think up some clever lines, if you’d prefer.
But I wanted to say that, first.
(None of those lines seemed to be about you or me.)

She smiles, flattered and amused. She can’t say the idea doesn’t appeal to her and she can appreciate the straightforward and sweet delivery, but for now she just reaches out and takes Mitsuki’s hand.

He intertwines their fingers together, his skin pale against her own, accepting the affection easily after the years of knowing each other.

“We will,” Sakako says, answer and promise both, “but not yet.”

Mitsuki tilts his head, curious but not plaintive, and lets her guide them towards their team’s training grounds.

“I think this is a talk for all of us,” she finally says, including Boruto–who hears the statement, glances at their hands, and internally dies a little.

(It’s okay. It’s just a misunderstanding.)

///

I know your weakness.
It’s kisses.
You are doomed.
(Don’t worry. We’re all doomed eventually.)

~
A/N: Some Walking Around ‘verse with poly!next gen!Team Seven. I don’t know if this is the actual way I want to go with this ‘verse, but I saw a lot of the unused a softer world prompts and kept thinking–this would be perfect for them.

So… for those of you who might be fond Sakako and her ‘verse, and kinda in response to this anon who wanted more feels (though looking more for the angsty sort than this fluffy nonsense, probably… I don’t know why, I just want to do fluff with them, but maybe that’ll change in the future). Please enjoy. 🙂

eatthemallplease:

Haha what who drew this? Is that Sakako and Boruto? How would I know?

@jacksgreysays

Yes, Boruto, quickly put your jacket on before anyone realizes you let Sakako use it as a blanket because you were worried about her. No one will notice your blushing at all >:D

Lovely as always!

Ask Box Three Sentence Fic, 6/? (2016-10-29)

(1 – anonymous – Shikako/Haku, Project Runway!AU)

“I could dress him in garbage,” Shikako groans from where she’s mashed her face onto the table, “and the judges wouldn’t even notice because he’s so damn beautiful.”

Kiba stares at her, unaware or uncaring of the bright fuchsia sparkles smeared across his face, “You have, actually, dressed him in trash; you won that week’s challenge.”

Shikako sighs wistfully, remembering the distressed vintage-inspired wedding gown she made out of discarded coffee cups: gods, Haku had looked so good in it, and he was so kind about her last minute meltdown when the zipper broke and she had to practically hot glue him into the gown–he’s so out of her league.

(2 – anonymous – Shikako/Deidara, fanboy-ing over Touch Blast)

Sasori glances at his partner: the irritation is normal, the embarrassment is familiar, but the bewilderment? That’s new.

“She touched my face,” Deidara sighs almost dreamily; the seal sequence is inert–Deidara is an S-rank demolitions expert, if he doesn’t want something to explode it won’t–but he’s kept the pattern on his face as if it were an autograph.

(3 – anonymous – Shikako/Gaara, youkai!AU… Inuyasha!AU?)

“Gaara,” she says as calmly as possible, though she can hear the wavering in her voice, “You need to give me the Gelel shard, please, I haven’t purified it yet.”

His green eyes, normally so kind, are clouded over, the markings on his face more vibrant and lethal.

The moon is full tonight.

(4 – anonymous – Shikako/Sasuke, Hades and Persephone!AU)

“He just needs a place to lay low for a bit,” says Naruto, god of tricksters, wind, and the only deity who regularly visits her home.

The Underworld isn’t exactly a welcoming place, but it is the last place people would think to look for the god of summer’s little brother, and she could do with some company.

If Shikako had known it would lead to a six month long literal cold war and a semipermanent roommate she wouldn’t have–well, no, she’s fond of Sasuke, the half year long siege was worth it.

(5 – anonymous – Walking Around ‘verse Team Seven, What Would Sakako Do?)

When Shikako was younger and needed guidance–needed to be wilder or braver or kinder–she would ask herself: What Would Naruto Do?

Over twenty years later, she’d be pleased to know, his son does the same with her daughter.

What Would Sakako Do?

~

A/N: Should I post these on ao3? And if so, as a separate work or as chapter(s) on Dreaming One Shots…

Ask Box Three Sentence Fic, 5/? (2016-10-28)

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(1 – anonymous – any!DoS, reality TV)

“Sensei,” Chef Uchiha hisses quietly, but not quiet enough that the cameras don’t pick it up, “we’re fifteen minutes into cooking and you haven’t told us the menu yet.”

“Maa,” says Iron Chef Hatake, in the classic blasé attitude which makes him a fan favorite, “I’m sure you’ll come up with something; I have very dependable and cute sous chefs, after all.”

And, as always at least once per episode: Chef Uchiha seethes, Chef Uzumaki shouts, and Chef Nara sighs, looking straight at the camera.

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(2 – anonymous – Kakashi as their teacher, modern!AU, playing favorites)

Every year, Professor Hatake chooses four students to intern at his law firm: this year’s a little different–not even counting all the murder and media and madness–because this year, he chooses five.

“I didn’t think he even knew my name,” Sakura says, a little bit in shock, “he just calls me Pinky.”

Tenzo–Yamato?–Hatake’s associate lawyer looks them over and says, “I’d offer congratulations, but I don’t think you know what you’ve gotten yourselves into.”

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(3 – anonymous – Shikako/Lee, fighting together)

It’s not that they complete each other,
two halves of a whole,
his taijutsu and spirit
with her ninjutsu and cunning.

It’s that they both share a rhythm,
an unbeatable upward climb,
no chakra, no chance,
every obstacle thrown their way.

They don’t need balance,
no grounding, no anchors,
they propel each other,
further, faster, forward.

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(4 – anonymous – Walking Around ‘verse Team Seven)

The first time they hear Boruto laugh–a bitter, vicious thing–Sakako and Mitsuki realize that good men do not always make good fathers.

The first time they hear Sakako laugh, bubbling quietly like a stream, Mitsuki and Boruto share identical expressions of victory.

The first time they hear Mitsuki laugh, a surprise for all three of them, Boruto and Sakako join in moments later, happy to be alive.

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(5 – @byebyebriar – even more 3.4, Shikako/Gaara, modern royalty!AU and beleaguered PR person)

Jinzo fondly remembers the years when Gaara-sama’s need for public relations was minimal and manageable: unfortunately, his job has become infinitely more difficult since Her Royal Majesty’s coronation.

He has an entire team now, which is supposed to make things easier but in fact just means more idiot children to wrangle–not even including the recalcitrant Leaf girl who started this whole mess.

Jinzo presses a hand to the throbbing vein in his forehead and bites out, reluctantly, “What do you mean you can’t find His Highness?”

~

A/N: Some Iron Chef for anonymous 1 and some How To Get Away With Murder for anonymous 2. And I guess some pseudo-poetry for anonymous 3? Anonymous 4 may not have been prompting for three sentence fic, but they get it anyway, and @byebyebriar you are awesome as always! 😀

D’awww, Sakako and Boruto bonding! This is the start of a beautiful relationship! I have to admit I was looking for a little more angst, maybe the /reveal/ of Sakako’s eye abilities (you said before she doesn’t like to tell people right??) Also the opportunity to see everyone’s reactions to SuddenlyFriends!Boruto and Sakako. Good job! Hope to see more soon, it was lovely!

Yeah, I was looking for a little more angst, too :/ But Sakako only wants to do baby steps when it comes to friendships and Boruto is more used to people pursuing him than the other way around so…

Diamonds and Spades isn’t so much the start of a friendship as it is Sakako realizing that friendship without the pressure of their parents’ epic bonds is a possibility. Like, realizing she doesn’t have to instantly click with him and vow to die/kill for him, she can just hang out with him every so often and slowly build up their friendship that way.

I’ll probably do another installment of next gen Team Seven bonding so that it’s more feels-y. This one was more like practice to figure out how that would even work, or foundation work.

But thanks, anon! I’ve been in a bit of a rut, if you can’t tell, so I’m glad someone liked it.

Walking Around (Diamonds and Spades), (2016-10-21)

About four hours into their first C-rank mission, Team Seven gets attacked and separated.

This is not entirely unexpected: Team Sevens are traditionally cursed with missions that go awry in the most bizarre manner possible.

What is unexpected is that it’s, somehow, all Konohamaru-sensei’s fault.

Teamwork is slow going–they’re not so much a team as they are a group of random peers shoved together and told to do their best.

Konohamaru-sensei doesn’t understand; after all, his genin team was made of his childhood friends and tutor.

Sakako is unused to cooperating with people who aren’t already dead, Boruto is unused to cooperating with people in general, and Mitsuki is just unused to people, period.

Sakako wakes up, sans weapons and shoes, on a cold cement ground three feet from an impatiently fuming Boruto, also sans shoes–sans jacket, too, which is odd.

“Tch,” he clicks his tongue, turns away, “Took you long enough,” he adds.

Annoyance or worry or both, she doesn’t know him well enough to guess, but when she sits up, cloth shifts and falls, black and red pooling into her lap–and that gives her some hint.

For all that Sakako has grown up on stories about her parents and Naruto-oji and their version of Team Seven–more like family than coworkers, that’s for sure–she doesn’t know Boruto outside the context of the Academy.

Just because their parents were friends, doesn’t mean they will be, and for years she was content to let their paths be separate.

Clearly, that is not what fate has in mind.

As Boruto hastily shrugs on his jacket, he gives her a rundown of the situation, which isn’t much: a solid cement room, no window, and a metal door that opens from the outside only.

Seal-enforced.

This is no storage room.

Mitsuki is easier to deal with, even if she doesn’t particularly like him. He’s a bit of a fanboy of her parents, and while she loves them, she doesn’t want to talk about them all the time like Mitsuki seems to.

Between her and Boruto is the weight of legends and an awkward lack of relationship to support it.

“Can’t you break it?” Boruto asks, tone grating and sneering–it’s taken her a while to realize that he isn’t actually trying to start a fight, that’s just what his voice sounds like.

Sakako examines the door, the complex scrawl of only half a seal–it only opens when the corresponding key half is nearby–shakes her head, they won’t be leaving through the door.

The walls, though, are a different story.

Sakako has geniuses on all sides of her family, can recognize it even when its hidden behind sleepy, lazy eyes and slouching shoulders. She can see it in Boruto, underneath his anger and bluster, that gleam of a genius trying not to give it away.

She knows if he’d just stop focusing on his dad and start believing in himself, he’d be an even better shinobi… and probably much happier.

“I know some Earth jutsu,” she tells him, hands pressed to the cement walls, “But not enough to completely tunnel through… If I had my pouch–ink or a kunai or even a senbon–”

“What do you need?” Boruto asks, stepping up beside her, yet again sounding more antagonizing than he actually means.

She bites back her irritation–he’s actually trying to help, after all–and traces a finger over the wall, “If I had something to write or carve, I think I can make an array essentially seal up a portion of the stone and make a tunnel that way.”

Some things they inherit from their parents; genetics and habits, nature and nurture combined.

Other things they get despite their parentage.

Maybe that’s how her friendship with Boruto needs to begin.

“Hey,” Boruto says, pulling off his weird necklace, and holding the pendant between his fingers, “Would this work?” With a flare in chakra, the metal begins to glow, a sharpened tip coming into existence.

“Thought of it myself,” he smirks, which she normally finds annoying but which she’s grateful for now, “Just tell me what we need to do to get out of here.”

It only takes a couple of minutes to carve out a modified storage seal–more vanishing than storing at this point–and another few minutes to follow the sounds of shouting and find their sensei and remaining teammate, fighting the guards of the casino they were assigned to investigate.

It takes even less time for them to join in the fray–even without their shoes or weapons, though Boruto finds those stashed away and tosses her her things.

Maybe when they get back to Konoha, she’ll teach him some fuinjutsu.

~

A/N: Some three sentence fic to fill this anon’s prompt–I originally started this as a next gen Team Seven fic, but it kept focussing more on Sakako and Boruto so…

It was harder to wrangle than I thought it would be, and I’m unsure if I got the feels across… and some of those sections are only “three sentences” if you’re being very generous. 😛

Hopefully next time will be better.

Can you do that one prompt on Sakako and Boruto bonding on a mission gin wrong please?

I’ll see about it, anon. I’ve already mentioned how I’m not that fond of Boruto–but I suppose that’s canon!Boruto and DoS!Boruto would be at least slightly different–but that is the logical next step for the Walking Around ‘verse so it’s on my list of to-dos.