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It's a Slow Burn

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It’s a Slow Burn

 

“Hey, Shika!”

Shikamaru turned, hands in pockets, to find Naruto gaining ground on him. The other was grinning, and seemed to have sought him out specifically.

“Naruto.” He responded, wondering when Naruto started calling him ‘Shika’.

Joining him in his walk towards the Academy, Naruto threw his hands behind his head.

“I need some help, Shika, and you’re the smartest guy I know!”

Mendokuse.

Shikamaru knew it had to be something, nobody sought him out for companionship save Chouji. That’s how he liked it too, imagine having so many friends, all expecting to hang out, do things, be social…man, it was his worst nightmare.

“I’m not your personal brain, Naruto,” Shikamaru said dryly.

“I know!” Naruto looked affronted, “But since it kind of pertains to you, I thought you’d like to be included!”

Inwardly, Shikamaru wondered if Naruto always spoke with exclamation marks, or if it was just an affectation to get people to listen to him. Or the result of a naturally loud voice. Also, he didn’t know Naruto knew what the word ‘pertains’ meant. However, this was starting to look like he was being subscripted to something more involved than a simple math question gone wrong. Having already been a little testy, the sun was too bright to watch clouds, Ino having screeched at him earlier, his mother having screeched at him earlier, and having to substitute for a teacher at the damn Academy, Shikamaru wasn’t feeling very helpful.

“I’d rather not, if it’s all the same to you.”

“Figured that,” Naruto replied with the same amount of dryness, surprising Shikamaru because he didn’t think Naruto had that kind of humor in him. “What I mean is that I’m asking for your help, I’ll owe you a favor later. Tsunade-baa-chan wants me to start taking higher level missions on my own, but can’t without having an approved ‘supervisor’.” Here, he used air quotes, nearly knocking an elbow into Shikamaru’s face.

“Why not Sakura?” Shikamaru raised an eyebrow. Why did Naruto think of him when he had so many other people collected around him, most who were in higher positions?

“She’s basically a part of the hospital now, her work and training are too involved.”

“Kakashi?”

“He’s a big name, baa-chan has him out and about reminding everyone that the Copy-nin still lives and can still murder people.” Naruto rolled his eyes.

“Jiraiya?”

“Out of the village.”

“Iruka?”

“Teaching, duh.”

“Neji?”

“Again, jounin, he’s got his own business to deal with.”

“And I don’t?” Shikamaru grumbled. “Why me? Why not literally anybody else?”

Naruto was quiet for a long, long moment. It was long enough to make Shikamaru uncomfortable. A glance told him that Naruto was staring carefully forward, face blank, not even that sparkle in his eyes present that usually meant he was smiling on the inside. Not one to break silences, Shikamaru let it grow. Eventually, Naruto sighed, strangely defeated and by then they had reached the Academy doors, Shikamaru’s destination.

“Nah, don’t worry about it, Shika!” Naruto grinned at him hard enough his eyes squeezed closed, and smacked his shoulder with a friendly palm. “I’ll find someone. See you around!”

“See ya.” Shikamaru watched him leave, jumping across the roofs until his bright hair was out of sight. It felt like he had missed an opportunity, as though he’d made a mistake in a shouji game and wouldn’t realize it until several moves later when it was irreversible.

Who would be Naruto’s supervisor then? Had he already asked all those others Shikamaru had named and had to resort to him? Or had he actually wanted Shikamaru to be his supervisor, for some unknown, Naruto-oriented reason? Whatever.

Grunting, Shikamaru went on with his day, convincing himself that it wasn’t his problem.

Except, it didn’t leave him alone. His mind turned over and over around the question and the feeling of loss that Naruto had wanted something from him, and he’d failed to provide. He didn’t owe Naruto anything. Naruto shouldn’t have expected anything. And yet, Shikamaru felt more and more like an ass as he tried to ignore how that snapshot memory, of Naruto grinning so tightly his eyes were shut so Shikamaru couldn’t see what he felt, played over and over in perfect detail.

It annoyed him. It kept him from sleeping. It made his mood grouchy and his days irritating because his mind was fixated on a certain blonde that wasn’t even around in order to be glared at.

00

00

In fact, Naruto had been studiously avoiding the Nara for several days.

“I don’t see the problem here,” Tsunade raised a graceful brow, eyeing the way the other blonde had sunken into despair across the table. Naruto wasn’t usually so pitiful, where was the kid that never gave up? “Tell him that it’s a mission, like I told you. It is actually a mission, I have the scroll right here.” She waved it at him, knowing that the contents was a B-ranked mission for Nara Shikamaru to oversee and supervise Uzumaki Naruto’s progress towards Chuunin leadership. 

“No…” Naruto whined into the wood of her desk. “He’ll hate it more, he’ll hate me more. This is a shitty mission, baa-chan, why do you need it? Can’t I just become a chuunin? You’re Hokage you should be able to do that.”

“Don’t call me that,” She grumbled under her breath before rolling her eyes. “You know it’s not me who’s asking for this, right? It’s the Ninja Council, and you know they’re anal about their precious rules and regulations. As Hokage I have to listen to my councils, disregarding their authority turns me into a tyrant, and you know what happens to tyrants?”

“They get overthrown.” Naruto mumbled, looking off to the side. He’s overthrown a few himself.

“So the issue here, is what?” Tsunade just didn’t get it. “Aren’t you friends with that Nara kid?”

“I thought so.” Naruto’s voice was low, quiet in a way he never really was.

He thought so? Tsunade understood a second later, and softened.

“Oh, brat.” She sighed, standing to round her desk and clasp his shoulder. He hid his face in his arm, minutely leaning closer. She raked a hand through his hair.

“You can’t be this sensitive about these things. He might have been having a bad day.”

“Yeah,” Naruto sighed, leaning back into her petting. “It’s always been like this though, he’s not really friends with anyone except Chouji.”

“Whatever.” She’s at her limit of adolescent drama. The brat looked better after an affectionate pat, and this Shikamaru was just going to have to deal with it. “It’s a mission, regardless, so you take this damn thing.” She pressed the scroll into his hand, “And you go beat that brat’s face in. It worked for the Hyuuga, didn’t it?”

Naruto smiled, “Yea.”

“Good.” Tsunade allowed herself one soft smile before kicking the blonde out of her office through the window.

“Baa-chaaaaaaaan!” Naruto’s squeal on the way down was music to her ears.

For his part, Shikamaru was on his way to the Hokage’s office to grudgingly put his name forward to be Naruto’s supervisor. Nearly there, he heard the most curious thing.

“--aa-chaaaaaaaan!” And it was getting closer, from above.

Naruto twisted in midair like a cat, falling with a muted thump to the ground in front of Shikamaru, poised on all fours. Mildly astonished - because who the hell survived a straight fall from the Hokage’s window like a damn cat? – Shikamaru noticed Naruto freeze at the sight of his feet, his head turning until he could see up to Shikamaru’s face.

Looking like a strange human crab-beast, Naruto froze in that awkward position, staring at Shikamaru.

Already feeling odd for nearly being squished by the object of his ire, Shikamaru also didn’t like the way Naruto was looking at him, as though the blonde was three seconds from running away. Coughing, Naruto drew up his boundless courage and stood, cracking out his knuckles and dusting himself off. He seemed to be squaring himself for something awful, so Shikamaru had to head whatever that was off at the pass.

“I’ll be your supervisor.” He drawled at exactly the same time as Naruto said: “It’s become a mission!”

A beat of silence where they decoded what the other said.

“It’s a mission?” Shikamaru’s eyebrows drew down while Naruto’s eyes brightened: “You’ll do it?!”

Naruto beamed, looking half a second away from hugging him. Instead, Naruto took in his question and handed over the mission scroll he had hidden in his jacket, a little shame-faced.

“Yeah, sorry. Ninja Council things.” Naruto mumbled.

Grunting, Shikamaru skimmed the scroll, noting how nothing in it suggested Naruto was going to be promoted at all. Poor kid was still a genin, and yet they wanted him on higher grade missions?

“Well, at least I’ll get paid.” Shikamaru sighed, tucking it away. While it was almost too fast, Shikamaru caught how Naruto seemed to flinch, and that angry bubble of feelings in his chest quivered and broiled. Why did he care so much about what Naruto felt or didn’t? Naruto was already smiling though, babbling about the types of missions he’s done, that he also wants to do, and did he really have a bridge named after him?

“Come on,” Shikamaru tugged half-heartedly on Naruto’s sleeve, before walking off. “Let’s get some food.” It would be a good opportunity to observe what exactly made the orange ninja tick, and why everything regarding him seemed to weigh heavily on Shikamaru’s damn soul.

That was the plan at any rate, but Shikamaru wasn’t anticipating how good Naruto was at dodging questions.

“Why do you always eat ramen, and why only here? I never see you at any other restaurants.”

“What do you mean?! Ramen is the food of the gods, and Ichiraku’s is their most glorious temple!”

“Why doesn’t the Ninja Council want you to be promoted? Your track record is miles beyond anything a chuunin has done, let alone a genin.”

“I’m just too awesome. They don’t want to promote me ‘cause I’d have to be promoted straight to Hokage!” Cue loud, ugly laugh.

Frustrated, Shikamaru let it rest, hoping to get some kind of visual cue that could explain the way his mind seemed to chase its own tail when Naruto was involved. He let the last half of his broth cool as he watched Naruto pack away bowl after bowl, his orange jacket unzipped to show his mesh guarded chest and the crystal necklace Shikamaru vaguely recollected used to belong to Tsunade, and to the Shodaime before her.

“That’s a nice necklace.” He commented.

Naruto dropped his last bowl on the counter with a please sigh and looked down at it as well, a small, softer smile curling his lips. Stunned to stillness, Shikamaru watched a tan hand come up to grip it, lifting it to Naruto’s pink lips in order to kiss his own knuckles.

“Yeah. It’s something special.” Naruto turned his smile towards Shikamaru, eyes still glowing with that soft, unknown feeling.

Oof, Shikamaru thought at the sudden leap of his heart. What the hell was that?! Blinking, he leaned his head on a hand and watched Naruto interact with the ramen chef and his daughter. They acted like old friends, or family, as the girl, probably eighteen years old, leaned over the counter to plant a sisterly kiss on Naruto’s cheek.

Hmm. This was troublesome. Shikamaru didn’t want a new pastime, cloud watching was enough for him, but now he had one and it wasn’t going to leave him alone.

00

00

Two months later found the two battling a goddamn hurricane.

Why,” Shikamaru bit out, one of Naruto’s arms thrown over his shoulder, “do your missions always turn out like this?!”

Naruto, beaten down from his fight with the damn ghostly samurai that had been haunting a small town. What should have been a c-rank, if not a b-rank turned a or higher when the killed samurai caused a hurricane the kind this part of the world had never seen before. Likely Konoha would be getting a handful of refugees soon, as most of the village had been washed away.

Naruto had exhausted even his enormous reserves in getting the villagers to safety, and yet of course it left the two Konoha ninja in the direct path of murderous winds and rain.

Shikamaru was not happy.

“It’s not my fault!” Naruto hollered over the sound of the wind, wincing from the driving ice attacking his face.

“Yes it is.” Shikamaru hissed to himself, noticing a niche in the rock face that was high enough to be out of the floods, but shallow enough that the mountain hopefully wouldn’t come down on them. Clutching Naruto tightly to him, Shikamaru leapt up to it and sent a shadow pulse through, checking every nook and cranny for any previous owners. Thankfully, it wasn’t inhabited.

“Third one in a row, third!” Shikamaru muttered to himself, fussing about with their storage scrolls to find that one that had the firewood.

“Third what, Shika?” Naruto asked, wary yet endearingly oblivious.

“Third mission that turned into a shit-show!” Shikamaru bit out, swearing when the wet scroll ripped in just the wrong place to make the seals useless. He dug out their reserve and tried to be gentler in unrolling it, eventually finding and poofing out the wood they desperately needed to stay warm.

“They don’t!” Naruto tried to say, but Shikamaru wasn’t having it.

“They do.” He began getting the fire started, sopping wet and angry. “That first one could have been luck, we didn’t know the casino was bugged by those missing nin, nor that they had a grudge against our client about something that happened decades ago. Sure, mission rank was upped to B. Eventually we defeated the missing nins and discovered they had been hoarding the whole town’s money, all of a sudden, you’re their new messiah for saving their city’s economy. Fine.”

Naruto opened his mouth to interrupt. 

“Ah, ah—“ Shikamaru waggled his finger at Naruto. “First one I understood. Second one’s just a coincidence right? The little girl we were protecting, actually a lost daimyo’s daughter, thought dead with an angry old ninja nursemaid after her, wanting to kill her out of jealous need for revenge. Alright, but then, you swear, you promise, the little girl will be safe and battle through a damned army to get said little girl to her father, defeating the ninja nursemaid on the way. Hurrah, hurrah, lost princess found and returned, you’re a hero, all is well.”

Naruto was sitting against his side of the cave, wide eyed and shaking. Shikamaru took it in with a glance and figured it was the cold, or maybe just the shock of seeing him like this. When Nara’s get worked up, they tend to leave a warpath behind them and become shockingly unobservant. Shikamaru decided Naruto damn well deserved it now, after all the ridiculous shit he’d dragged the unwilling Nara through.

“Now third, yes, third, where there’s not only a ghost, but a samurai ghost tortured to insanity because of some unresolved honor debt. Even killing the ghost, a weird gooey mess of chakra and memory, didn’t fix anything because we caused a hurricane that destroyed the village we were supposed to save, and yet the villagers still think you’re their god given savior even throughout mission is effectively over. Once is a surprise, twice a coincidence, but three times is a godforsaken pattern.”

Drawing in a deep breath, Shikamaru rubbed his face violently, annoyed with the fact that he already felt better after letting off some steam, ranting at Naruto.

Groaning against the noise of the hurricane outside and with the fire burning low in front of them, Shikamaru waved a hand in Naruto’s direction, already halfway asleep.

“Go to sleep, it should blow out by the end of the night if not the morning.” Shikamaru laid down and hid his face in his arm. “Goddamned freak of nature that it is.”

If he had been paying attention, Shikamaru would have noticed Naruto’s full body flinch, and the wide eyed, destroyed look on his face. 

Now, the ranting was frightening enough, Naruto hadn’t thought Shikamaru even had a breaking point but apparently it involved threes and patterns. He wanted to stop him, to explain that none of that was his fault, it just happened, but Shikamaru looked like he needed the rant. Except, Naruto felt spectacularly ripped apart by the end of it, like every private and precious thing about himself had been dug out and looked at, spat on, and then thrown away.

That wasn’t so bad, no worse than he’d ever felt before, but then Shikamaru had lied down, mumbling to himself and Naruto had caught only a few words out of his sentence.

“--Goddamned freak—“

And Naruto’s heart cracked.

00

00

The morning when Shikamaru woke up was frighteningly still. Jerking upright, he found Naruto asleep across from the fire, back turned towards him, and the hurricane outside had died. Trying not to groan to loudly, Shikamaru stretched and stuck his head out to see a new world, the winds and water having redecorated the area until it barely looked like it did before.

Waking Naruto, Shikamaru gently shook his shoulder and called his name, and knew he was awake when the blonde stiffened into stone.

“Come on, we should start heading towards Konoha.”

Naruto obeyed, and eventually that was what clued Shikamaru into the fact that something was wrong. After a day of Naruto barely speaking, obeying every order Shikamaru gave, the Nara was beyond concerned.

“So, what’s the matter?” He asked, as they walked for a short time to let their bodies and chakra replenish.

“Nothing.” Naruto turned his face away.

“It’s not nothing, you’ve been off all day.”

“Don’t worry about it.” Naruto tensed, and Shikamaru knew he was edging closer to the problem. Whether it would be explosive was less important than the fact that Shikamaru wanted Naruto to look at him.

“But I am worrying about it. What’s wrong?”

“Nothing!” Naruto bit out, jaw clenching turning his head enough that Shikamaru could see his profile. It wasn’t just anger there though, what was it? Something in Shikamaru’s stomach swooped uncomfortably.

“I don’t believe that. Tell me what’s wrong with you.” Now that was the wrong thing to say. Naruto turned on him, fists clenched and for an instant Shikamaru thought he was going to get punched. It wasn’t just anger though, even if it was the most prominent, there was a shaky kind of rawness to Naruto that Shikamaru had never seen before. He shook with the barely contained urge, not just to lash out, but because of what built up behind his eyes, what caused the swooping sensation in Shikamaru’s stomach to deepen until he nearly felt sick--

Oh. Naruto was hurt, and hurt beyond any kind of petty reason. This was bone deep, heart torn kind of hurt, and it was because of Shikamaru.

“Why do you care, aren’t I just a freak?” Naruto hissed and yelled at the same time, eyes clenching shut immediately after he said it, face scrunching into this terrible mix of rage and pain. Then, he whirled around and leapt away, rushing through the trees on all fours to get away.

Shit.

Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit. Shikamaru was only delayed a moment because of the shock of understanding, the poisonous way Naruto had shot that back in his face. Naruto had thought… he’d heard…. and….

God, he’d thought Shikamaru had called him…

Shikamaru’s brain, the thing that so many people knew him by, had turned off. In a heartbeat he was racing off after Naruto, following the scratch marks in the wood and the bursts of leaves. He wouldn’t be able to catch him running normally, Naruto was too fast.

But if he pushed outwards with his shadow, reaching, he could pinpoint where—there!—and pull like so, harder, harder, come on, hah!

Shikamaru melded into the shadows and reappeared directly in Naruto’s path. He leapt on him, wrapping his arms around him and his legs around his to that he couldn’t get away. They fell with a crash, Naruto biting out a swear through watery tears and angry red rage.

“It wasn’t you!” Shikamaru shouted, grunting as his back hit the forest floor. “I didn’t mean you, I called the hurricane a freak of nature! I would never call you that, you aren’t.”

“Stop it,” Naruto nearly blubbered, fighting to free himself from Shikamaru’s spidery hold. “Stop lying, you were so angry-“

“I was angry, annoyed at the situation, and like an asshole I took it out on you, but I would never be that cruel to hurt you. Not you.” Shikamaru rolled them, because Naruto was a slippery little bugger, and the other thing that was keeping him down was the strands of shadow tying their legs together.

“All those mission things, though, that’s just me, that’s what happens to me, and you hated it, and I knew you hated me, just don’t—“

Pinning him, Shikamaru yelled into Naruto’s face. “I don’t hate you, I’ve never hated you!” Naruto flinched at the loudness, but after a second realized just what had been said. He stared at Shikamaru, shocked and that made Shikamaru angrier.

Although this time, Shikamaru was going to channel it away from Naruto.

“What makes you think I hate you?” He asked the blonde, staring intensely.

Naruto tried to turn his head away, to break their eye contact, muscles tense in order to utilize any break in Shikamaru’s strength and get away. Shikamaru wasn’t going to let it slide.

“Naruto!” He hollered, gaining the blue eyes back. He softened his voice. “Why do you think that?”

“Because--” Naruto burst out, biting his lip, “you didn’t want to be my supervisor, and you had to be paid to spend time with me, and you’ve never ever shown that you liked me at all so I figured it would be like everyone else, but I really liked you so I kept trying and that made it worse—“

“Shh.” Shikamaru hushed him, gratified when Naruto swallowed any more of that vitriol. That angry bubble of emotion that had taken up residence in his chest warmed and Shikamaru suddenly realized that it wasn’t anger or irritation inside him but something entirely different.

“For one thing, I’m insulted you thought I was like all the other bigots in the village” Shikamaru noticed Naruto flinch but kept on, this wasn’t going to be ripping Naruto apart, this was going to be ripping himself apart, “but I never gave you reason to suspect otherwise. I hid behind my antisocial tendencies even though I wanted to know you. You’re interesting to watch, but I was a fool and never did something. I guess my laziness got a hold of me.”

“Yeah, but your laziness is part of you. You wouldn’t be Shikamaru without it.” Naruto tried to say, small and quiet.

“Hm.” Shikamaru grunted, not convinced. “Just as your activity is part of you. As is your extraordinary luck, your strength, your heart that makes your missions so interesting and fun and challenging. I complained, but I shouldn’t have. I was comparing our missions, our team, to my old one and that was wrong.”

“We’re a team?” Naruto asked, almost shyly. It was amazing how much of his loudness was stripped away when they were close like this, their noses almost touching.

“We’re a team.” Shikamaru confirmed. “And you are not a freak.” Naruto looked down and away, and Shikamaru was blown away by how damned cute that was.

Cute, right.

“Okay. Glad we sorted that then.” Naruto tried to joke, grinning a little awkwardly. “Now, could you get off me?”

Cute and still pinned. Hmm. Shikamaru eyed him, taking in the dusting pinkness in his cheeks and the way his eyes were so blue.

“No.” He decided, that little ball of emotion swelling up and taking hold of him. He was going to do something. He wasn’t going to sigh and let go and give in and avoid it, he was going to do something.

 “Why n--” Naruto started, petal pink lips open and ready, and was muffled when Shikamaru surged down and kissed him.

Right there in the forest.

It wasn’t electric or lusty or anything else Icha Icha made it out to be, not yet at least, but it was something. Something really nice too. Shikamaru’s lidded eyes watched as Naruto’s widened, and softened, and closed. They kissed gently, taking in the feel, highly aware that their own lips were kissing another’s lips in a kiss that was happening right now, right here. Naruto made a noise, and that’s when everything started buzzing for Shikamaru.

Shikamaru let one of his hand go where they were keeping Naruto’s pinned, and trailed it down to cup Naruto’s cheek, thumbing the small scars that gave him his whiskers. When he reached back and grasped the back of Naruto’s neck, pushing and pulling Naruto’s head into position, that’s when Naruto shuddered, body feeling charged and aware.

They released it, Shikamaru moving back just an inch to take in how Naruto was doing. Naruto stared back up at him, breathless and pink cheeked.

“Hmm.” Shikamaru hummed, pleased.

“Uh huh.” Naruto replied, shocked.

00

00

When they entered the village, Shikamaru was highly aware of every cute, shy glance Naruto sent his way. He wasn’t acting any different, still swaggering in, yelling a greeting to the gate guards, but now and then those blue eyes would flicker over to where Shikamaru slumped beside him.

Shikamaru had never really liked being the center of attention before, hated it really, but if it was Naruto’s attention, Shikamaru had a feeling he would hoard every scrap of it. Indeed, after the kiss he had felt exceedingly smug with himself, brain fired up and creating plan after plan to somehow make it happen again. Mission debrief went well, they went straight up to Tsunade’s office to do it too, as anything that changes in rank had to go through the Hokage rather than the mission’s desk.

Shikamaru doubted Naruto had ever debriefed at the mission desk, every single one of his higher rank missions tend to change in the middle.

“A hurricane” Tsunade said flatly.

“Yep.” Naruto didn’t notice her expression. “In about three days you’ll get their refugee caravan coming in. Their village was totaled but they seemed super pumped with living in Konoha anyways.”

“Mhm.” Tsunade sent Shikamaru a look and he raised his palms up. It wasn’t his fault Naruto inspired loyalty everywhere he went.

“Right, get out of here.” Tsunade waved a negligent hand. “Nara, I want a mission report within three days, preferably before we have a hundred new mouths to feed.”

“Thanks Baa-chan!”

“Yes, Hokage-sama.”

Outside in the bright Konoha sun, Shikamaru took in how Naruto awkwardly pinched the bottom of his jacket. Throwing an arm over his shoulders, happy he was still an inch or two taller, Shikamaru directed them away.

“Come on, let’s get something to eat. Your ramen place is always open isn’t it?”

Naruto stared up at him, before a wide, beautiful grin broke his face in two. “Of course it is! All day every day ramen!” He grabbed Shikamaru’s hand and ran off, dragging him behind.

“Ugh, come on!” the Nara complained. Naruto laughed at him, and the world was alright in Shikamaru’s books.

What shocked Shikamaru the most was how easy it was to slot himself into Naruto’s life. It wasn’t like Naruto sought him out every day all day; that would have been exhausting for both of them. No, they hung out, went on missions, went out to eat, as they normally did.

Only now, Shikamaru was letting someone else into his life in a way he never had before. And he had become part of another’s life in a way he’d never experienced. There was so much to know about another person, their habits, their dreams, the places they loved, the things they refused to do. Shikamaru introduced Naruto to the Nara herd, which roamed the lands which the Nara family had left to grown naturally, wooded and quiet in the outskirts of Konoha.

Naruto loved it, because he said he now understood why so many Naras were ‘lazy’.

“It’s because you see the world from this kind of place, from a peaceful, natural place that has no worries or need to rush. Things happen as they need to, and the Naras will be there when it needs help. But otherwise, the world can turn and you’ll be there to watch it. Right?”

Shikamaru was silent a while, because this was a perspective that had never occurred to him. He was too close to it to recognize, but when Naruto said it, he suddenly felt like something special.

And Naruto let him into his home, his small apartment that had been his since he was six.

“You moved in when you were six? Alone?” Shikamaru asked.

“Yeah, the orphanage got too full or something, so Hokage-Jiji set me up here. It’s got the best view!” Naruto puttered around watering his plants. That was another thing that surprised the Nara, Naruto enjoyed the company of a wide selection of exotic plants.

Something rang wrongly about a six year old living on his own, but the view was quite nice, the Hokage Monument over the village, at an angle to catch the sunset as well.

“New appliances too…” Shikamaru noted, the stainless steel fridge and dishwasher conspicuous against the peeled paint.

“Tsunade-baa-chan visited once. She opened the fridge and it sort of…splooshed.” Naruto looked like he was remembering something frightening, and Shikamaru couldn’t tell if it was because of whatever ‘splooshed’ inside his fridge, or Tsunade’s reaction to it.

“Gross.”

“Yeah.”

Naruto collapsed on his bed with a smile, barefoot and only in his mesh shirt. Shikamaru found him quite attractive, and the bed was calling him, so he stood and crossed the single room apartment. Naruto didn’t see him coming until Shikamaru was toppling over top of him, and the resulting squeak and giggle was rather satisfying.

Shikamaru seized him from squirming off the bed and kissed him, turning Naruto into a noodle. Tan arms snaked their way around his neck to reach a hand up into his hair, the rubber band falling by the wayside, and Shikamaru felt like he didn’t have bones anymore. They cuddled and kissed for most of the night, until the darkness and the blue of Naruto’s eyes in the starlight grew into too much temptation and Shikamaru had to leave, dropping kisses while he backed up.

“I’ll see you tomorrow.” He whispered at the door, leaning down to kiss Naruto softly once more.

“See you.” Naruto whispered back, the silence of the night making it seem like they lived in their own little world. It was a challenge to turn around and leave the warmth of the bed, of Naruto’s strong, flawless limbs and mouth, but Shikamaru did and walked off towards his home.

His dad was awake when he cracked the door, slipping in to drop his sandals. He didn’t say anything, but the look on his face made Shikamaru fight down a blush. Scowling, Shikamaru chugged some milk out of the carton and then climbed the stairs to finally go to sleep.

Of course Shikamaru knew this sweetness couldn’t last, not with Ino as his teammate, but he thought it could have lasted a little longer.

Sure they didn’t try to hide their relationship or anything, sitting as they were out in the open watching clouds. Naruto loved cuddling, having never gotten it when he was young, and Shikamaru didn’t have the heart to deny him, especially when the other crawled into his lap and curled up against his chest.

Leaning back against the tree, Shikamaru tugged Naruto tightly to him, resting his chin on the blonde head. He was a welcome weight, and a warm presence, and while he didn’t sleep really, Naruto did try to keep his mind and hands occupied so that he didn’t bother Shikamaru over much. Screwing around with his seals was a compromise, as he couldn’t do anything that would end in explosions (wasn’t that a nice wake up) but he needed to do something otherwise the hyperactive blonde would go nuts waiting for Shikamaru to have his fill of sitting still.

There was a violent and dramatic gasp behind them, and Naruto turned to see. Shikamaru already knew.

 “Are you two dating?!” Ino, of course it was Ino, the greatest gossip on earth. With her was Sai, pleasantly blank faced as usual.

“Ino…” Shikamaru groaned.

“I mean, I knew you hated women, Shika, but to go from Temari to Naruto, is just…”

“Just what?!” Naruto cried, two seconds away from jumping up.

“Yeah, Ino,” Shikamaru copied, turning his head to spear her with a dark dangerous eye. “Just what?”

 Ino swallowed what she was going to say, taking in the look Shikamaru was drilling into her.

“It’s just surprising is all. But super, super cute, oh my god, Sakura is going to love this!” Ino sped off with her arm looped through Sai’s, Sai having not been able to get in a word edgewise.

“Ino.” Shikamaru groaned into Naruto’s hair, already knowing that this was going to blow up and become some great big thing, with friends, and activities. Even in his complaining, Shikamaru noticed how Naruto was quite still in his arms, unusually still.

He looked, and yep, carefully controlled doubt and fear in his beautiful eyes.

“What is it?” Shikamaru asked.

“Not much, just…is it so bad?” Naruto’s shoulders hunched protectively, but Shikamaru dug his chin into the tendon until Naruto laughed, letting him cuddle tighter.

“No, I’m just whining.” Shikamaru pressed his face into the breadth of Naruto’s neck, unable to help his grin. He smelled like sweat and sun-warmed skin. “I’m glad they all know, even though it will be a huge dramatic mess. Ino’s involved after all.”

“They’ll be happy?”

“They will. If they’re not, then it’s no matter, because I’m happy, and you’re happy.” Shikamaru twisted so Naruto fell back a bit, dipped slightly in Shikamaru’s arms. “Right?”

Naruto grinned, “Right.” His cuteness earned a kiss on the nose. Shikamaru was glad Naruto couldn’t hear him thinking, otherwise the other would probably be pretty unhappy with how often Shikamaru noticed his cuteness, how pretty he could be, how beautiful he is when angry (so long as it’s not at Shikamaru himself).

00

00

“So who’s going to be there?” Naruto asked Sakura, bouncing along beside her.

“Oh you know, the rookies, team Gai, the senseis, Tsunade-shishou, Shizune, Iruka-sensei, some family members, all ninja of course, and I think those three brats you like.”

“Konohamaru corps?”

“Yeah, them. With their perverted jutsu’s and all.” Sakura glared at him, shoving him bodily into a store.

“Not my fault!” He squeaked, “They did that one on their own.” Then Naruto thought about that list. “That’s a pretty…large party.”

“Ino’s not one for subtlety.” Sakura turned him around to face and mirror and then squinted at him, holding her hand out in front of her to block out his clothing. It was then he noticed they were in a small tailor’s shop, with ceremonial clothing, formal clothing, and special occasion clothing hanging on different walls.

A crotchety old woman sat behind the desk, watching from the corner of her eye as Sakura basically ordered Naruto to undress and stand there.

“What! Sakura-chan!”

“Oh hush, I know you’re gay it’s no big deal.”

“I’m not gay!”

“Really?” She sounded incredibly doubtful. “You’re dating Shikamaru.”

“Yeah,” Naruto utilized his favorite tone of voice, the one that indicated that she was missing the point. He’s so used to hearing it directed towards himself, it was nice to use it for once. “And I still like girls, Sakura-chan. You can like girls and boys at the same time, you know.”

“Oh. Right.” Sakura took on a thoughtful face, before throwing something into Naruto’s.

“Then try this on.”

“What! It’s so boring though!” It was a smoky grey kimono.

“You’re right, it doesn’t work with your hair.” Sakura threw something else at him. “Try this.”

“Why are we dressing up anyways?” Naruto pouted, trying to ignore how the old woman was cackling to herself.

“Ino’s orders.” Sakura tilted her head. “No, not quite. Here I was thinking I could finally get you into something that wasn’t orange, and yet you look absolutely ridiculous without it. Like you’re dressing up in your dad’s clothes.” She turned around and scavenged a moment, before coming up with a nice deep royal blue kimono, and a burnt sienna orange sash from the clearance bin. Naruto only got a glance at them, and he thought it wasn’t so bad, it was still orange, before it hit him in the face. 

“Would you stop throwing these at me?!”

Apparently the venue was owned by Chouji’s family, and they had booked it out for the night. When Ino wants to celebrate, she wants to celebrate. Arriving behind Sakura, Naruto felt particularly out of place in his brand new fancy clothes, even though everyone else was wearing them too. He couldn’t run really well in them.

Spotting Shikamaru, or at least the back of his head, Naruto made a bee line for him. The Nara was playing shouji with his father, staying out of the kerfuffle that was Ino directing Sai and her other minions, mostly Konahamaru, with the decorations. For one thing, decorations, and for another, why were they all here anyways?

Appearing behind Shikamaru, Naruto tried not to tackle him, wrapping his arms around his neck and shoulders and leaning over him bodily. Dramatically sighing, he put his full weight down on the Nara, ignoring how the other muttered.

“Mendokuse.”

“Shikaaaa,” Naruto whined. “I nearly died today.”

“You went shopping with Sakura.” Shikamaru kept playing as though he didn’t have a blonde limpet attached to him, steadily falling forward beneath the weight so his back bent. Shikako raised an eyebrow but continued cornering his son’s pieces.

“And I nearly died. That old woman kept feeling me up. But at least it’s somewhat orange.” Naruto pouted, plucking at his sash. Shikamaru grunted when his father finished the game with a quick succession, taking over Shikamaru’s pieces with a cascade effect of movement.

“Shit.”

“Hah. Still got it.” Shikako smirked, picking up his sake bottle and lumbering away towards his teammates, where Inoichi was trying to appease Ino from her decorating frenzy.

Shikamaru bumped his shoulder up, and knocked Naruto head first into his lap, landing awkwardly over the table. Bursting out laughing, Shikamaru fought back Naruto’s flailing limbs and ended up falling off his own cushion.

“I win.” Naruto grinned at him from the tabletop.

“What did you win?” Shikamaru shook his head. A devilish look entered those blue eyes, and a naughty smile curled his mouth.

“A good angle.” Naruto honest to god leered, and from Shikamaru’s position on his back, with Naruto on all fours above him, albeit on the table, he could see what he meant. That didn’t stop him from blushing though, or from his embarrassed laughter.

“Mendokuse.” Shikamaru hid his face, listening to how Naruto started giggling, probably as embarrassed for saying it as Shikamaru was for hearing it.

“On your feet, Nara!” Rough hands grabbed his shoulders and pulled him upright. Kiba was a big guy, tall and broad, and he had personality to match. “I’d heard you had got together with someone, I never would have expected Naruto! At least you get to bang this sweet peach hey?” He punctured his words with a quick, startling smack to Naruto’s ass, as he was getting down from the table.

Naruto froze, eyes wide, and Kiba laughed uproariously. Blinking, Shikamaru was split two ways, either engrossed in watching the red seep up into Naruto’s suddenly very, very interested face, or in viciously murdering Kiba for unearthing something Shikamaru would have preferred that he had.

“Ah. Kiba-kun…” Hinata had arrived, dressed impeccably to the nines and looking like an angel on earth. Her lavender eyes went from Kiba to Naruto to Shikamaru, and she tugged on Kiba’s sleeve. “Let’s get some drinks, how about?” She sent back an apologetic look over her shoulder. Sweet girl.

Naruto cleared his throat, rubbing his ass cheek.

Shikamaru’s blood pumped in his ears and he was suddenly very aware of every move he or Naruto made. Stepping closer, Shikamaru kept a pleasantly annoyed face on, his regular expression, and put his lips next to Naruto’s ears.

“If we were alone, I’d be making sure that the only handprint showing up on your skin was mine.” He whispered against the shell of Naruto’s ear, one hand curling around Naruto’s opposite hip to tug him in tighter, “It’s going to be a lot of effort, and normally I’d be against doing anything that takes effort, but this is something entirely….worth it.” He squeeze the blonde’s hip tightly, listening to the barely there intake of breath and then, walked away.

Naruto gaped after him, entire face red as it has ever been.

Tenten sidled up to him. “So, what did he just promise you?” The grin on her face was dangerous.

“What?!” He squeaked in a high pitched voice.

“Well your teasing escalated, Kiba interrupted, then Shikamaru had to lay his claim so that everyone could see. And anything that could make your tanned face this red has to be juicy.” She giggled, hiding her smile behind a hand.

“You were watching?” He coughed, and then cleared his throat again, straightening his clothes. Most everyone had arrived by then, but thankfully, few had noticed his shame. 

“I was just in the right place to see it.” Tenten laughed, and linked their arms. “Come on, peach-boy, let’s get you a drink.”

The party was a wild hit. At some point, Jiraiya crashed the place only to kick it up a notch, Tsunade was as drunk as anyone had ever seen her, and Anko had shown up at some point and was enjoying some tit for tat with Kakashi across Iruka’s blushing head.

Kiba had invited his sister Hana, whose ninken kept going around stealing the food from people’s unwatched hands, just to race back to Hana and look innocent when someone noticed. Neji kept a close eye on both Hinata and Hanabi, who had hunted down Konohamaru for a ‘rematch’ or something, and Shizune was quietly enjoying some feminine talk with Kurenai. Ino was holding court with anyone who was caught in her web, and Sai was his own ever present shadow on the edges of the room, drifting from one clique to another.

In the center of it was Naruto, who went from group to group with little to no lag time, falling from an impromptu wrestling match with Lee to scouting under the tables with his Konohamaru Corps., to swinging an arm over Sakura’s shoulder and singing a dirty drinking song loud enough that half the room joined in, and rescuing Iruka from Kakashi’s arm and Anko’s lusty chest.

Shikamaru barely moved in contrast, he sat and waited for people to revolve by him, mostly conversing with Chouji and snacking on the Akimichi’s unending pile of food.

“So, you wanna date my teammate, do you?” Sakura was going the way of her shishou, tipsy as she was. She pointed at Shikamaru’s forehead, a smile around her lips.

“I already am dating your teammate.”

“Well you’d better treat him right, or else I’ll…I’ll… hurt you.” Sakura slurred a bit, wavering, before putting her fist on the table and leaning forward, grabbing the front of Shikamaru’s robes. Her voice got really deep at the end there, threatening him, and all of a sudden her drunkenness was no longer a factor to the fact that yes, she could probably destroy him down to the last atom.

“Ah, Sakura-chan, don’t hurt him!” Naruto suddenly appeared, prying her off delicately just to find her collapsing onto him.

“It’s just not fair!” She wailed, “If you were going to fall in love with anyone, it was going to be me or Sasuke!” The room was suddenly charged at the mention of the traitor’s name, although no conversation actually stopped, Shikamaru knew everyone was listening in. Ninja were good like that. He felt particularly unhappy with that thought process too, as he remembered how close the Uchiha and Naruto had been, and how much his betrayal had damaged Konoha’s favorite genin. 

“Uh, Sakura-chan?” Naruto looked exceedingly uncomfortable. Sakura sniffled and patted his chest where she was crumbled.

“Sorry, I’m not supposed to mention him.” Her bottom lip trembled and her eyes filled with tears. As always when Sasuke was mentioned, Naruto’s own eyes dimmed and his jaw grew tense.

The awkward moment passed when Ino, from across the room, decided to save the atmosphere. She climbed atop a chair and cleared her throat, effortlessly grabbing everyone’s attention. Basking in it a moment, Ino gave Lee time to appear at his somewhat-girlfriend’s side, to peel her off Naruto and into his own arms.

Crossing his arms, Naruto tried to shake off the sudden depression that had sunken into his shoulders. Knowing how the other must be feeling, Shikamaru slipped beside him as Ino started talking.

“My good friends and family, comrades and friends—“ She beamed.

“You said friends twice.” Sai contributed with a pasty smile. She unsubtly kicked him in the head from her vantage point.

“You okay?” Shikamaru asked lowly, slipping his arm around Naruto’s back. Naruto leaned into him slightly, mouth still twisted into an unhappy frown.

“I thank you for coming out this glorious summer night—“

“Yeah, but it was like a kick in the gut.” Naruto replied lowly, sadness a pale ghost around his face. “I hate seeing Sakura-chan like that, and its cause I failed and I keep failing…”

“—our great Village Konoha, so I want to bring attention to two of my best—“

“You’re not failing. The Uchiha’s a prick and a lost cause and I’d rather you thought good things about me now than bad things about a guy who you’ll drag back kicking and screaming later.” Shikamaru matched Naruto’s grin with his own and leaned in, kissing Naruto’s mouth, cheek, then sinking his teeth into the corner of his jaw.

 “Uzumaki Naruto and Nara Shikamaru!”

“Ack- Shika!” Naruto laughed, twitching to fight him off but not trying very hard. There was an awkward pause as everyone turned to look at them, and caught the sight of Shikamaru chewing on Naruto. Cue blushes all around and a few wolf whistles, and a death glare from Ino because they weren’t listening to her lovely speech!

“Congrats you two!”

“Better keep him in hand, Nara!”

“Maybe Naruto will rub off on you, hey? Hey?!”

“Kiss!”

“Kiss!”

“Kiss!”

The chant grew until Naruto was bright red but smiling, and he turned in Shikamaru’s grip, reversing their holds so the Nara was dipped, and laying a big kiss over his mouth. Cheers rang out, and that was when the alcohol really started flowing.

Towards the end of it, Kiba was half naked, Hinata and Hanabi had taken refuge with their cousin, who was a solemn, immovable wall, Lee had snuck in a sip and was now laying waste to both Gai and Kakashi, Shino was playing strip poker with Tsunade, Hana, and Shizune, and winning, and Ino had been by to kiss both Shikamaru and Naruto on the cheeks. She had dragged Sakura with her as well, who wrapped her arms tightly around Naruto and whispered in his ear.

“Sorry for being such a downer. I’m happy for you, regardless.” She ruffled his hair even though she had to reach upwards to do so.

Everything wound down an hour or two after midnight, and Naruto and Shikamaru left together. Shikaku saluted his son with an embarrassing smile, a bit unsteady on his feet.

“That was fun.” Naruto sighed, smiling up at the sky.

“It was.” Shikamaru yawned. “Busy, loud, just how you like it.”

“Yeah.” They walked in silence a minute before Shikamaru felt a curious side-glance from Naruto. A quick look let him catch a strange expression on the blonde’s face. It was a cross between hesitant and what Shikamaru would have called cunning on anyone else. It ended up looking like Naruto was planning a prank, devious and mischievous as he was.

Normally, Shikamaru would be a little wary about such a face, but the little hint of heat in Naruto’s blue, blue eyes made every nerve ending in his body stand to.

“Walk me home?” Naruto asked, shyly taking Shikamaru’s hand.

Fingers twitching in their hold before tightening, Shikamaru nodded. There was an intense feeling in the air, an anticipatory breathlessness that was given life by the moon, quiet and powerful in the way all moving things are.

They gravitated towards one another, until on every step they brushed, tingles and fire racing down their arms from the contact. For some reason, Shikamaru’s heart was pounding, and he took a calming breath to quell it. Sooner than anticipated, and it was anticipated, they arrived at Naruto’s place and there wasn’t even a discussion outside the door. Shikamaru watched as Naruto unlocked it, and followed him in.

Closing the door behind him, Shikamaru didn’t turn on the lights, letting the moonlight fill the room from the balcony windows.

Naruto had never looked so beautiful, standing there hesitant, unsure, but wanting.

“Shikamaru—“ He started, before biting his lip.

Wanting to groan, Shikamaru swallowed it and stepped forward, drawing Naruto into his arms like he was the most precious thing in the world. Right now? He was.

“Shh.” Shikamaru murmured, bending close to kiss Naruto at the tail end of the sound, inhaling deeply at the first press of sweet, sweet lips.

Naruto moaned against him, the sound vibrating both their lips and against his chest where they were tightly pressed. Kissing slowly, Shikamaru took his lime to really feel out Naruto’s mouth, stretching them both to discover every, single, secret. After it, that very first kiss, Naruto was slumped against Shikamaru with the most delicious of noises coming out of his mouth, eyes half lidded and hazy, cheeks pink enough to see in the night.

Turning them so he could press Naruto against the door, Shikamaru sucked in a Naruto-tasting breath, boldly pushing until he had a knee between Naruto’s legs and the blonde forcefully pinned between him and the plank of wood.

“Shikama-“ Naruto cut off his own words by kissing him again, hands coming up to hold desperately at Shikamaru’s hair, roughly undoing his ponytail so he could grip.

“Mmh.” Shikamaru replied, too busy with the feeling of Naruto from head to two to make words. Their kiss grew more and more heated as they stood there, and with only one instinctive buck, Shikamaru discovered they were both hard and Naruto was straining to press every inch of himself against him.

“You’re so good.” Shikamaru slurred, dropping his moth from Naruto’s to mouth and lave at his chin, his throat, his neck. Naruto trembled, arching, and Shikamaru pressed his thigh in closer so Naruto was on his toes, legs spread.

“Ngh!” Naruto panted, hands trying to decide between pulling Shikamaru’s hair or fighting to push his kimono off his wiry shoulders. Approving this notion, Shikamaru’s exploring hands also went around Naruto’s back to tug and pull at the shash holding his kimono closed, dropping down to grip the fullness of his ass when the sash loosened and fell.

“Shika—please.” Naruto lifted one leg off the ground and wrapped it around Shikamaru’s hips and that made everything so much better.

Shikamaru couldn’t help himself, he ground their hips together, grinding his cock against Naruto’s through the fabric of their fancy new clothes.

“Naruto” he groaned against the blond’s cheek, distracted when the other turned his head to connect their mouth’s again. With his grip on the blond’s ass and Naruto nearly wrapped around him, Shikamaru nearly forgot where he was trying to go with this. “Naruto.” He broke off, panting and forcing their foreheads together so Naruto would open his eyes. “What do you want?”

“What do I?” Naruto scratched his nails over Shikamaru’s skull and that caused a chain reaction that occupied them for a long minute. Kissing him, Shikamaru growled lowly into his mouth and rut against him, hips moving in time with Naruto’s who squirmed and shuddered delightfully at every single press.

Their hearts were pounding loud enough to hear, and Shikamaru left a bright red bite mark on Naruto’s neck.

“What do you want?”

Naruto moaned into his ear when Shikamaru managed a really awesome angle, cocks hard and leaking between them and their kimonos in shambles. “You,” The blond groaned, “I want you, Shika, please!”

Shuddering because that’s all Shikamaru needed to hear to die happy, the Nara wrapped his arms around Naruto’s back and whirled away from the door. So drugged by their actions, Naruto stumbled and let Shikamaru walk him backwards towards the bed. But Naruto wasn’t done.

“I want, I want to suck you,” he confessed in a panting whisper, “I want you to suck me, I want you to do that, that thing that Kiba did to make you so angry, I want to have you, have you in me, I want all of it, Shika.” His near rambling might have made Shikamaru hemorrhage something out of his ears, but when he came back to it he found himself pinning Naruto to the bed and kissing him within an inch of his life, hands scrambling to remove his last few articles of clothing.

“Naruto, yes, I want that too.” Shikamaru whispered into his tan collarbone, loving how Naruto’s hands seemed unable to release him, roaming his back, hair, and face like they had minds of their own.

Naruto’s legs parted and his knees drew up so Shikamaru was cradled above him, only their underwear left to separate their bodies.

Breathing lowly to try and stem the blood flow south, Shikamaru drew himself up onto his knees and gripped Naruto’s boxers, drawing them down his legs with no resistance. Naruto looked back at him, wide eyed and panting and finally naked on his bed. His cock was hard, resting against the fuzz of his blonde hair and screamed the evidence of Naruto’s arousal at him. Naruto, the blonde blue eyed boy next door that it seemed everyone wanted and everyone loved, was aroused because of Shikamaru.

The Nara dived before Naruto’s boxers were even off his feet, licking across the wet head of Naruto’s cock with singular purpose.

Naruto cried out in shock, kneels shaking from where they were spread. A hand immediately came down to hold Shikamaru’s hair up, seemingly frozen between pulling him closer and pushing him away.

“I’ve wanted to do this to you for ages,” Shikamaru said into the tight skin of his hip, nipping it with his teeth so it snapped back. He brought a hand to Naruto’s cock and wrapped around it, loving how Naruto shuddered and twitched at every single touch.

“Shikamaru!” Naruto’s voice was muffled because he had stuffed his other hand into his mouth, staring down at him with wide eyes.

“Naruto.” Shikamaru growled, going in again to taste Naruto’s flesh and suck him into his mouth, bobbing with the instinctual need that all men knew by heart.

Naruto’s hips trembled and his legs jerked, making Shikamaru put his elbows out and down to pin him in place better. The blond was repeating his name, over and over, voice going higher as his cock filled with more blood. Shikamaru’s head moved, and while he couldn’t really hear everything Naruto was babbling, cock-sucking took a lot of work after all, he did hear Naruto’s warning.

“Shika—too much, I’m gonna blow!”

Shikamaru pulled off and went onto all fours, knocking Naruto’s grip off him so they were no longer touching.

“Not yet, “ Shikamaru ordered roughly, eyes wide as they took in Naruto’s trembling form. “Not yet.”

Naruto’s legs jerked and he whined at the command, but somehow after a few deep breaths and eyes squeezed closed, he got himself under control.

“Right.” He panted, licking his lips. “Your turn.” Shikamaru surrendered to the blonde’s pushing with a happy groan, all for ‘his turn’.

Naruto didn’t go about it the way Shikamaru did, he slipped off the edge of the bed to take the last of the Nara’s clothes. Refraining from making noise, because Naruto looked very, very good down there, Shikamaru leaned back on his palms and spread his knees.

“See, what did I tell you?” Naruto breathed into his skin, edging in closer with one hand gently cupping Shikamaru’s sack and his mouth already open. “This is a great angle.”

Whatever half-choked agreeing noise Shikamaru made was lost to him, as his eyes rolled back in his head when a hot mouth wrapped delicately around the head of his cock.

“Naru-to.” He slurred, and his legs twitched like they wanted to warp directly around Naruto’s head and keep him there forever.

A slurp and suck was his answer, and the very tips of his fingers tingled with it. If his hair wasn’t so thick and hanging around his shoulders and face, Shikamaru thought the sensation of Naruto gobbling him down like a treat would make it stick straight up like his usual ponytail. He understood why Naruto had gotten so close to the edge so soon, he himself was nearly there. He’d never felt anything like this, even with Temari; she’d never done anything to him like this, and most certainly hadn’t made such a beautiful picture doing it.  

Pulling back, Naruto laved his tongue directly over Shikamaru’s slit, making an odd little surprised noise when liquid surged up and dotted at the top. It was sucked up with a sweet smile and a sigh, and Shikamaru thought he was going to die. Only Naruto could make sucking cock look innocent.

“Enough, enough, too close.” Shikamaru rasped, putting his hand on his own cock to follow Naruto’s mouth as it glided off. He slipped his thumb into the blonde’s mouth and leaned down to kiss it there, tasting an afterthought of his own slick and never before wanting to surge and do something before.

“Shika-“ Naruto moaned, climbing up the edge of the bed to perch in Shikamaru’s lap. He wrapped his arms around Shikamaru’s shoulders and happily made the same motion sand slurps against his lover’s mouth as he had with his cock.

“You’re beautiful.” Shikamaru mumbled into Naruto’s pink lips, interested in getting his hands over every inch of his skin. He ended up with two juicy handfuls of what Kiba had so accurately called a peach, squeezing almost harshly.

Naruto snickered into his mouth.

“Shut up.” Shikamaru answered, landing a light smack on one cheek. Though he tried, Naruto couldn’t hide the hitch in his breath, and the clench of his own fingers in Shikamaru’s hair. Licking his lips, Shikamaru smacked him again and growled at the combined feeling of Naruto flinching from the sting and the blonde’s delighted little gasp.

“You’re a lot more… active than I was expecting.” Naruto said into his forehead, knees slipping slightly apart and letting more of himself rest against Shikamaru. Naked as they were, it was a remarkably intimate embrace, their erections knocking gently together and causing many jerks and hissed breaths.

“What were you expecting?” Shikamaru mouthed along Naruto’s collarbone, fingers gripping their way tightly towards Naruto’s crack, running a nail lightly across his entrance. Naruto shivered in Shikamaru’s arms, and he nudged the blonde with his chin towards the half-hidden bottle of lube beneath Naruto’s pillow.

Naruto stretched out to grab it without really leaving Shikamaru’s lap, so Shikamaru got the whole undulation of his body across his front and an unimpeded view over his ribs to where his own hands clutched at Naruto’s ass, teasing at him. A finger pushed itself harder against the hole it had found, not pressing in but making its presence known. Naruto whined something unintelligible, his body urging backwards and Shikamaru found the lube being pressed into his hand. Shikamaru carefully gripped Naruto’s cock with a dirty grin, eyes darker than they’d ever been.

“Thought I was gonna have to do all the work.” Naruto scrawled his nails up Shikamaru’s back at the firs wet press of a finger, causing the Nara to grit his teeth. Hooded blue eyes weren’t looking at him, Naruto’s whole being focused on what Shikamaru was doing with his hands, one in front and one behind, and Shikamaru loved watching every movement he made be written out in the other’s expressions.

“Hng,” Shikamaru grunted, engrossed. “Some days, sure, I’ll be perfectly content to lie back and watch you ride me to infinity. I don’t even care whose dick goes where. Other days, though, I’m going to be looking for that high.” Two fingers now, Naruto takes them without even a wince. “The same one I get when I smoke, the same one you get when you’re buzzing on too much chakra. The one that makes everything melt down into just one, beautiful fucking thing.” Shikamaru twists his hand and curls his fingers, striking and dragging across that one spot—

Naruto tried to cry out and gasp in air at the same time, jerking and squirming as if he was trying to dig closer and get away from Shikamaru’s questing fingers. His blue eyes widened, his mouth dropped open and hi head went back in reaction, and his groan was so deep it rattled in Shikamaru’s bones.

That feeling.” Shikamaru breathes and leans forward, striking his fingertips against Naruto’s prostate again and biting at his nipple to suck at it.

“Shit on a stick.” Naruto breathes once he has air again, hands cupping the back of Shikamaru’s neck to keep him on his chest. “More, gimme more of that.” His hips move back to get more of that and his squirming does lovely things to Shikamaru’s cock trapped between them.

“Demanding.” Shikamaru grumbles but lets a third finger join as best it could, stretching at Naruto’s muscles. His other arm releasing Naruto’s painfully hard cock to wrap around Naruto’s back and keep him close.

Naruto humps at him, rubbing his leaking cock along Shikamaru’s stomach and hitching back to get more of him inside.

“I can’t handle much more of this.” Shikamaru grits his teeth and jerks his arm, fingers working themselves as deep as they could. Naruto gasps and curls from it, mouth an open hot hole against Shikamaru’s shoulder.

“Me neither.” Naruto groans, pushing fitfully at Shikamaru until he was lying down so Naruto can reach backwards, shuffling so he could get a hand on Shikamaru’s cock and direct it towards his lubed hole. Almost bucking at the press of soft, sucking skin against the head of his cock, Shikamaru allowed him his efforts for a few minutes, letting Naruto becoming frustrated at his angle and the way his knees kept threatening to slip off the mattress.

When Naruto pouted at him, eyes bright and focused with arousal, directed at Shikamaru, that’s when he grinned and flipped them both. Stunned both by the change in position and the look on Shikamaru’s face, intent and vicious as he’s ever seen him, Naruto laid there and could only squeak when Shikamaru hitched both his legs over his arms, grabbed hold of his cheeks to pull them embarrassingly apart and lean forward to direct his cock straight into him.

Naruto’s head fell back at the feeling, and as Shikamaru breathed out a hot, tight breath and pushed further, Naruto sort of forgot about words in general. He was centered down on the feeling in his ass, of the invading presence, the stretch and burn, and the pushback of wanting that deeper for some reason he couldn’t name.

“Sh-shika-“ He yelped, hands unable to clutch at the other and falling back to grab the bedspread just to have something to hold on to.

“Bear down.” Shikamaru grit out between his teeth, drawing back just to hump back in tightly, that focused look on his face bringing his eyebrows together. His hair hung around his face and Naruto absently wondered what it would feel like when Shikamaru was fucking into him close, if his hair would tickle or make a small little world for themselves.

“What even-“ Naruto tried to bite back, not quick getting it logically what that meant but then his body was just doing it, and Shikamaru was sliding in wetly until his boney hips pressed into the flesh of his ass.

“G-god.” Shikamaru bit out, arms shaking from holding himself up even through that deliciously tight slide.

“What the fuck.” Naruto whispered, knees twitch against Shikamaru’s shoulders. He looked mind blown, gaping and wide eyed as he was, hands clenched tightly on the bedding.

“You okay?” Shikamaru gasped out as best he could, focusing all his substantial mind power towards not blowing too soon and ruining this whole thing. He took hold of Naruto’s flagging erection and pumped, hand still sticky with lube. Each pass of his thumb seemed to bring Naruto more and more into the feel of it, and the blonde’s hips gave an aborted, weak little thrust.

Shikamaru growled and couldn’t help his automatic fuck in, the wetness between them squelching loudly. He broke off his gasp to pant, hands clenching on their holds on the blonde. The noise of them should have been disgusting, but all it did was fill their ears with that echoing filthy squelch.

“Yeah,” Naruto replied tightly, licking his dry lips and shivering from a strange combination of the cool of the evening and his own desire. “Yeah, I’m good, fuck me.”

“Shit, holy shit,” Shikamaru stated up his thrusts like he’d never been doing anything else, and his gritted teeth turned almost into a grin. Because there’s that feeling, that flying feeling like everything behind Shikamaru’s eyes was focused with pinpoint accuracy.

It’s like they’d been fucking forever. Shikamaru knew just how to touch Naruto to make him squirm, to get a reaction, and Naruto’s reactions were always physical.

Naruto’s hips started moving in time with Shikamaru, his body undulating. They were both starting to sweat, and as Shikamaru resettled his grip on Naruto, he flicked his dripping hair back to see him better.

Cock leaking, Naruto was twitching with every pass of Shikamaru against his prostate, and his head rolled around his neck like he was searching for something.

“Shika.” Naruto panted, scrawling his nails down Shikamaru’s chest this time, catching on his nipples. Shikamaru grunted at the feeling, and his rhythm broke for a few sharper thrusts that made Naruto’s face twitch. “Shika, please, go harder. Faster, I want it.”

“Want it hard, Naruto,” Shikamaru spoke, lowly, slowing so he could roll his hips deeply, digging his cock as far into Naruto as he could and pushing for more. Naruto shuddered and pulled at his shoulders, dragging him down for a wet, open mouthed kiss. Shikamaru welcomed the breather and collapsed partway atop Naruto, still embedded within him. Naruto put a hand in his hair and clenched, and Shikamaru hissed through his teeth into the other’s mouth with the feeling.

Hips ground in harder at the rush of sensation down his spine, and Shikamaru hitched one strong tan leg higher up his side so he could get a hand on a thick cheek. Pulling so Naruto’s entrance was more exposed, Shikamaru slowly moved in and out and concentrated on every slide and press of the slice of heaven wrapped around his cock.

Naruto whined, sucking a little on Shikamaru’s tongue. Dazed, Shikamaru wondered if sex with Naruto would always be this good, and found himself looking forward to extraneous physical activity for the first time in his life.

A short deep thrust made Naruto cry out and jerk.

“That good?” Shikamaru rumbled into sweaty tan skin, teeth leaving marks. He repeated the motion, and Naruto jerked the same way.

“Yesss.” Naruto grit his own teeth and his thighs flexed around Shikamaru’s narrow hips. Licking his lips and leaving a trail of spit behind on Naruto’s shoulder, Shikamaru reared himself back on his hands and spread his knees wide enough that Naruto’s legs went with them. Wide eyed, the blonde grasped at his forearm, but their sweat made it hard to hold on.

Shikamaru started up a revolving thrust, grinding forwards and then back with little swivels of hips that Made Naruto’s eyebrows scrunch and his mouth open in a little ‘o’.

“Shika--that’s not enough--” Naruto squeezed out, shuffling and trying to kick his legs over or push Shikamaru himself on to his back. Shikamaru wasn’t having it.

“Later, Naruto, this is what you’re getting the first time.” Shaking his hair out of his eyes, Shikamaru put spread knees over his elbows and leaned forward so he could piston perfectly inwards, slapping his bony hips up against Naruto’s firm ass with every push. He was getting in deep, Naruto perfectly stretched and positioned to accept all of him and want more.

“Hng, you bastard, Shika-maru!” Naruto flung his head back and one of his arms stretched up to press against the wall above his head. That was some good leverage, and Shikamaru couldn’t help his gut instinct to go harder, to fuck himself into the other so that he’d be bruised and sore tomorrow, forever feeling him, wishing he was still inside.

God.” Shikamaru threw his head back and gave it to him, knowing that his orgasm was rising up from the deepest pit of his stomach to press behind his eyes, driving him mad. Naruto couldn’t speak anymore, could barely breath because his mouth was wide open and his gasping breaths seemed like an afterthought to the way his body was tightening in pleasure.

Freeing one hand for the blonde’s cock and balancing himself, Shikamaru thrust in perfect sequence to his grip and Naruto twisted, almost popping straight off Shikamaru in the crest of his orgasm. Chasing him, because if he lost the tight, hot, hot grip around him, lost Naruto from their connection where he was inside the other, Shikamaru would really lose his mind. Or murder someone. But it was perfect, an especially hard and fast thrust made Naruto’s cock jerk harder as it spilled, the veins pulsing in his neck and his hands digging nails into Shikamaru’s pale skin. And Shikamaru dropped when he started to come, falling to his elbows and grunting a strangled cry into Naruto’s face, grinding harshly deeper into Naruto and loading him up with his own slick.

It was hot, their hearts were beating fast and hard and every inch of their bodies was touching in some way. Shikamaru grinned against Naruto, head spinning yet so clear, so calm. He wasn’t thinking about anything but how Naruto drew in harsh breaths against him, how Naruto experimentally clenched down on Shikamaru’s cock to both their hissing reactions. How Naruto whined when Shikamaru attempted to pull out.

Drawing himself up further, keeping them perfectly slotted together, Shikamaru sought out Naruto’s mouth and spent a while kissing, uncaring that he couldn’t taste the difference between them anymore.

The night was still buzzing, their arousal sated but their presences charged and reacting with one another. Shikamaru met Naruto’s blue eyes and raised an eyebrow at the besotted look in them. Then, he melted, because that soft look was replicated in his own chest, rising up to smother him in a bewildering bundle of possessiveness, love, desire, and contentment.

Shikamaru groaned when he finally peeled himself off Naruto, rolling sideways so he became one with the mattress. Naruto didn’t really move, but his leg flung out sideways to keep Shikamaru on the bed, though he had no intention of leaving.

“That was exhausting.” Shikamaru mumbled into the pillow and Naruto’s hair.

“You’re the one who refused to let me up.” Naruto mumbled back, eyes drifting half shut.

“Yeah, well.” Shikamaru couldn’t really argue with that.

“Honestly, how did you hide a sex beast like that all your life?” Naruto smacked him with a weak hand, the arm falling to rest in exhaustion on Shikamaru’s hip.

“Whatever.” Shikamaru yawned into his ear and couldn’t help his sated smile, hand questing downwards to draw a gentle, light line down Naruto’s pinked and softening cock. It jerked under his hand, and Naruto gave a worn out, but beautiful whimper.

They kissed lazily, before Naruto fell asleep, his body wrung out. Shikamaru watched him for a while, wondering how he managed to bag the most important ninja in their village, if not the elemental countries. Well. Now that he had him, Shikamaru wouldn’t let him go, even if it took extensive nightly physical exertion to keep him sated and happy.

His eyes gleamed in the dark as his hand drifted lower. What a hardship that would be.