A Busy Life @lonewolf153
The Next Tempting Day

Hello everyone! I can't even begin to express my sincerest apologies for being so late so I gave you guys a huge long chapter that was originally going to be two.

Sasuke: So the story has changed a bit again hn?

Yes. As a result though, editing this chapter took me way longer than expect and with current events, I also did not have the time write as often and as much as I wanted, which lead to this super long wait.

Sasuke: Hmph. It's understandable.

I hope so. I'm sure we can all agree 2020 was an...interesting year. I hope everyone is safe and well, but I also understand the wait has been long. Over a year in fact.

Naruto: INTERESTING?! MORE LIKE INS-

Sakura: LET'S GET ON WITH THE STORY! You guys have waiting well and long enough.

Yeah, and once again everyone, I'm sorry I couldn't update sooner. I hope this nice and lengthy chapter satisfies you all enough and earns your forgiveness. Please enjoy!

Naruto: TO THE CHAP!


"Mmmmmmmggghh…" Sakura moaned lengthily. She awoke slowly, her eyes lazily blinking up at her ceiling. The daylight was a slither through her red curtains of the only window in her bedroom. She gave a soft sigh looking to her side and finding herself alone in bed to her dismay. Her hand grazed the side of the bed, where she could have sworn she felt the warmth of a body before. Speaking of bodies, hers felt blissfully euphoric as well as exhausted, but her mind didn't care in the slightest. As a matter of fact, nothing mattered in the slightest. She stared softly at the empty side of her bed. Only this feeling of ecstacy and joy. Only this warmth in her chest, was the only thing she could possibly bother to care about in this moment.

Dazed, she stared at her ceiling. Last night felt like she had the perfect dream. It was a dream she had before, but this time had felt so real. Before, it had always been a fantasy. It had always been a fantasy, that she felt would never happen. Her body felt almost like a feather, except she was weighted. She could feel him. His touch. His kisses and tongue. She gave a slight stretch, and the moan that came from her was more than it normally would have been. Her blood rushed, making her moan again.

Last night, Sasuke came to her and then—

"I love you more. So much more."

Her half lidded and dazed eyes widened with realization. Sakura flashed up in bed, a red blush on her face and gasping. She looked down at herself slowly and she blushed harder when she realized she was still naked. With a quiet squeak, she clenched the bed sheet against her chest and an embarrassed flush enveloped her. Last night...it was real. She could feel the ache of her body from it all and the area between her legs felt particularly numb though she couldn't call it a bad discomfort. She blushed harder, clutching her sheet to her chest as she remembered Sasuke's touch again and again. She remembered every last word and feeling.

"I want you...Sakura. I want to be your only one…"

Her blush worsened. Each time his voice rang in her ears, she could feel his hands touching her body. His heavy panting and groans weren't left out in these flashbacks either. Even the look in his heated eyes was remembered with detail, in the dim lit room last night. She couldn't forget his eyes. His fierce stare-down of her body, the instant it was entirely revealed to him, sent shivers down her spine even now.

Even now, she could feel his eyes. As if he were staring at her right now.

She wasn't sure what to feel. It was a mixture of emotions. Ecstatic was definitely at the top of the list. She was beyond happy and relieved about this, considering her unspoken fears from last night. She and Sasuke had confirmed their feelings for each other. The overwhelming burden that was trying to hold back how she felt for him and her hope that the, definitely out of her league, Sasuke Uchiha could ever reciprocate that feeling, was finally lifted from her shoulders. She was absolutely relieved, in her state of smitten adoration.

Yet, she couldn't help but note, last night seemed to be a relief for him too. Neither one of them was holding back anymore, the way it had always felt they were. In their connection, she could feel his desperation for her. He was dominant and sure as hell greedy, but he was gentle and loving at the same time. It was almost like he was overloaded with his desire for her and he couldn't hold back, all while trying to have as much of her as he could. All of last night was a release of his pent up emotions and want for her. As in control as he was, Sakura felt as if he was equally relinquishing all sense of himself to her. She relished in it, panting breathlessly and falling back against the bed with a shy look in her eyes as she curled towards the still warm side.

She wished she woke up to him. Roughly estimating the time from the sun's rays through the window, she assumed he had long since went to work. She wondered why he didn't bother to wake her, though the answer to the question was probably because of last night. Did he think she'd be too tired to work? Well, he was somewhat right. Her body felt heavily weighted and weightless at the same time. She wanted to stay in bed. Leaving bed at all today was going to be a challenge.

Besides, there was no way she would be able to focus, being in the same space as him after everything that happened between them last night. She was thankful for having the day off.

She had a million things racing in her mind, but she was sure it all would have gone quiet if he was here. She would have opened her eyes, either to stare into his beautiful resting face, or to be lost in his dark eyes. He would have stared into her eyes, and made her forget everything about herself. In his eyes, she was the most precious thing he could have acquired. She was everything to him, and she felt just as heavily; and it was the greatest feeling she ever had in her rather stressful and disparaging life.

A small theory suddenly came to her; his eyes were hypnotizing. Or maybe it was more than that. Maybe they had some kind of power to take over her mind and senses. Dark abysses staring back, and taking her soul along with it as if it was where she belonged. And she didn't mind. She could lose herself to the abysses that were his eyes forever.

Even now, she couldn't forget them, as if they had entirely consumed her mind and heart.

"All of you, belongs to me. Me and only me."

How could she forget those eyes when they had commanded her very heart and mind? In each touch, kiss, groan and whisper, he claimed her and Sakura could only shrink into the bedsheets, so only her eyes and hair were uncovered. If it wasn't for the slugged feeling of her body after a night of euphoria, she'd be squealing and freaking out. Instead, she just wanted to lay here. She wanted to wait for Sasuke to come back. She couldn't quite recall what exactly his schedule looked like for today with the haze in her mind, but the sooner he came back to her the better. Hopefully, he wasn't to busy. Hopefully.

She wanted to be beside him and nothing more. And if he wanted her again, she would gladly give herself.

The next thought was not as pleasant. Her eyebrows knitted together and she felt a vein grow on her forehead. Somehow, someway, Ino was psychically smirking down at her like an unashamed madwoman. Of course, she and the girls had a long talk after being caught by Ino in her apartment with Sasuke.

"You're entering the world of sex, Sakura! It's best to be prepared!" The blond had smugly said back then. Sakura had vehemently fought the three girls Ino had called over—save for Hinata who provided lots of loving support; thank goodness—only to be thrust into a loud conversation of contraceptives and safe-sex. Sakura knew it all, of course, but where she drew the line was when Ino, Temari and Tenten proceeded to layout presents of birth control pills, emergency contraceptives and, of course, condoms. Temari was next, giving the same smug look right next to Ino.

"Sure as hell is a win if you get pregnant though. Talk about being set for life!" Sakura felt a few more veins burst in her forehead and her eyes were glaring holes into her wall. That's not what she wanted at all. She wasn't with Sasuke for his money. She wasn't ready for a child either.

Her mind blanked at that last one. She liked children. She loved them, really. They were sweet and fun. Sure they could be a bit hard at times, but that is life. Nothing in life was easy and the care and attention required for a growing, learning and innocent human being was another ball game altogether. The children from the clinic had brought the thought of motherhood to mind from time to time, but back then, she wasn't in pursuit of a romantic relationship. Most guys before Sasuke weren't to her liking and were either chased off by Naruto or she promised to be friends with. She wasn't entirely against having a child at the moment. She didn't mind being the mother of at most, three children. She had all the love in the world to provide for a child. However, there was still the trauma of her past.

Sasuke was the only man she had ever met, who had made her feel safe and protected besides her close friends. Besides Naruto, Shikamaru, Temari, Hinata, Tenten, and the rest she loved and cared for; Sasuke, from day one, showed he would protect her. Maybe, psychologically, that's all she wanted. Where she fell in love, was where she realized his reactions were to her and vice versa. They were somehow already aware of each other, without having known much about the other and Sakura realized it, with each and every misstep and makeup they had. They were connected in a way she couldn't explain. And last night, giving herself to him was even further proof of that.

Still, she wanted a home. Whenever she thought about it, she swore her children would live better lives than hers. With love, family, support; they would have a home.

Not just four walls and a bed. A mysterious food donor that stocked her small fridge with minimalistical meals every now and again, that she never saw. Her children would have both a mother, a father and love in their warm house. They would never feel alone the way she and Naruto and so many other children did. She didn't even want to live lavishly. She just wanted comfort. Not struggling, nor did she need riches. Just her, the man she loved, in the home they made, with the children they cared for.

She would not bring a child into this world until she could be certain, those requirements were met.

'Sasuke-kun would provide that...all of that and more…' Her own voice said in the back of her mind as if to rationalize such thinking. She felt it was true...but…

No. A child now would just be way too fast. What would Sasuke think? Did he even want children?

She closed her eyes in defeat, recalling she had angrily stashed the contraceptives in her night stand drawer. She had taken the birth control yesterday—just in case, and she was right to do so—but she figured she should take the emergency contraceptive just in case. She was so caught in the mood last night, she didn't even think to tell Sasuke about putting on a condom. Sasuke didn't bother to stop and reach for one himself, if he did have any on him in the first place.

Nevertheless, she was not irate or worried about it either. On the contrary, did this mean Sasuke didn't mind having children with her? Or was he just too lost to his desires to think about protection? She wasn't sure if there was any meaning behind it at all, but she figured she'd shove all thoughts of that to the side. There was no need to go thinking about that.

It wasn't meaningless, making love to Sasuke, but she was just as much as realistic as she was euphorically in love. As she had learned constantly in her life, people were not constants. There were the few she had; Naruto, Shikamaru, Ino and so on. But she also knew people came and went in life. Ino had had almost seven to eight boyfriends by now, "looking for Mr. Right" and as in love as Sakura was, she wasn't going to blindly assume she and Sasuke would last like this forever.

They weren't ready for a step like having kids together.

She reminded herself, Sasuke was a busy man. He would be gone a lot. People change. Things change. She would do everything to make things work with Sasuke-kun, especially with all the love she had for him now, but she couldn't change another's feelings. She could cry and scream to Sasuke that she loved him all she wanted, it wouldn't fix things between them if things had become so broken, Sasuke didn't want to be with her anymore.

"Will you love him if he breaks your heart?"

It was true, she didn't expect a happily ever after with Sasuke. Real life was not so kind. But anything other than the comfortable and happy times they had together would break her heart, after giving her body and heart to him. She wasn't sure if she could really gauge an estimate of the pain it would cause, but she could only hope that it would be as Temari and Hinata said. She could put her trust and faith in Sasuke and his actions. They could take this a day at a time. They would move forward from this. They were close and connected.

She just wanted to be by Sasuke's side.

KNOCK KNOCK!

Her drowsy and contemplative eyes shot wide with surprise. She thought she was alone.

'Who could be here?! Not the girls, not the girls, not-the-girls, NOT THE GIRLS!' Sakura thought frantically and quickly sat up again, looking towards her closed bedroom door, only for it to open. Sakura was about to shout, until her eyes fell upon a familiar, plump old woman.

"Oh! M'Lady! You're finally awake! Good morning!" Mari, as Sakura remembered her name to be, came hastily waddling over, a tray in her hands and kicking the door closed behind her. Sakura spotted a cup of coffee on a silver in her hands, which Mari handed to her after placing down the tray over her legs. She took it slowly, absolutely baffled and confused as to why the older woman was here in her apartment. She was Sasuke's maid, if she recalled. She stiffened slightly with that realization.

'Did he...Don't tell me he...'

"Uh…good morning. Mari-san, was it?" Sakura hesitantly responded. She was going to follow up with the question of what the maid was doing here, but Mari chuckled, effectively stopping her in her tracks.

"I'm so happy you remember my name, M'Lady! Sorry for just barging on in like this! You look absolutely confused, dear. Not to worry. Young Master Sasuke sent us with instructions to take care of you until he arrived!" Mari's sweet and gentle voice was excited as she relayed her employer's orders. The sixty-something year old was smiling brightly and her chestnut brown eyes glowed with merriment. Sakura would describe her as care-free and jovial. She had only spoken with her briefly at Sasuke's surprise party preparations and had seen her once or twice the last time she left.

Then, she finally clicked together that Sasuke had sent her with someone.

'He did.' She thought and smiled in embarrassment, a sweat drop animating on her temple. Sasuke sent his servants again.

"U-Us?" Sakura inquired worriedly. The old maid only nodded with a delighted smile.

"Yes M'Lady. Young Master asked Sebastian to be here as well and to accompany you for the day once you have fully awakened. It was him that made your coffee and I made your breakfast." Mari informed, continuing to give her jolly smile. Sakura gave an appreciative but disconcerted smile. This was the second time Sasuke had sent his help to her and she could only feel hesitant about it. She wasn't used to being waited on and though they weren't very pushy about treating her with spoils, she could only see Sebastian—and now Mari—as the elderly, who should be resting and tired. She should be serving them, not the other way around. Did Sasuke not push them towards rest and retirement?

"You don't have to be so formal with me, Mari-san. I'm not of the upper class. You can just call me Sakura. And thank you. You two really didn't have to do such a thing. I—" Mari was already lifting the silver dome cover of the silver tray over her lap, revealing a beautifully crafted breakfast plate. A fluffy egg and cheese omelet, seemingly seasoned with salts and black pepper—was that also parsley?—graced the side of the porcelain plate that definitely did not belong to her. Two slices of bread, toasted to golden perfection and buttered was on the other side, and in between was a generous amount of bacon and home fries. Sakura was astounded. The meal looked absolutely to die for. She didn't even cook for herself like this. Hell, she couldn't even make an omelet as perfect like this. She either screwed it up while flipping it over, or it got totally stuck to her cheap, sticky pans and she would end up grudgingly making scrambled eggs.

"Now, now, M'Lady! Drink up your coffee now, so your breakfast doesn't get cold! It's a little past eleven already." She urged cheerfully and Sakura placed the coffee cup in her hand onto the tray. Eleven? She slept almost all morning? It was not common of her to sleep in so late, and even while in bed, she felt so tired. She was exhausted.

"Mari-san, please. I can't accept this." Sakura quietly claimed, looking down at the dish. Mari stared, now just as bewildered as Sakura was the moment she had walked in. She inspected the plated food, her cheerful eyes turning serious with scrutiny at the meal. It was as if she was analyzing every detail of the well ordained plate, only to show absolute confusion when looking back to Sakura.

"Is something wrong with the food M'Lady? Oh! My word! Are you vegetarian, M'Lady? Or Vegan?! Young Master said nothing of the sort so I took liberties with making it! Sebastian was right! I should have checked with Young Master. I can remake it for y—"

"No! No, Mari-san. I didn't mean it like that! It looks delicious!" Sakura quickly halted the woman's fretting rant. Reading the distress on the old lady's face Sakura's humble nature instantly racked her with guilt. She was being annoying, wasn't she? She didn't mean to cause more trouble, or seem bratty. She only had the best intentions at heart.

"Then, what's wrong M'Lady?" Mari asked with concern. Sakura bit her bottom lip insecurely, looking back down at the food.

"I-I just...I'm sorry, Mari-san. I'm not used to this. You and Sebastian should be taking it easy. I don't want to be a burden. I'm not someone of the upper class and I shouldn't be receiving thi—"

"M'Lady Sakura. Please, do not say such words." Mari's suddenly sharp tone caught her off guard. When she looked back up to Mari, she was met with unmoving serious eyes, that quite frankly, frightened Sakura a bit as it contrasted quite sharply to the women's usual and seemingly imbued complacency. There was no room for argument in those eyes and she was quite certain, that look could shake even Sasuke to the bone. Maybe that's why he was so fearless of others. Why fear another man when he had a rather terrifying maid? Sakura unconsciously gulped. Mari seemed to notice, because her features softened from her stern look. Next, a humbled look reached her eyes. 'No wonder Young Master Sasuke chose her.' She couldn't help but think. The woman didn't have a single shallow bone in her body. Mari could tell just from looking at her, the lady chosen by her Young Master was full of sincerity and generosity. There was not an ill bone in her body.

For that, Mari only found more dedication to who was obviously the chosen Uchiha Matriarch.

"Forgive my tone, M'Lady. My most sincerest apologies. I mean no disrespect." Sakura's eyes lowered. She was about to apologize herself, until Mari beat her to her words.

"I can tell you are not used to receiving such luxuries and spoils, M'Lady." Mari chuckled. Sakura's eyes cringed and an embarrassed blush coated her cheeks. Of course, such a thing with a person like her would be obvious. The affluent and the prestigious would never turn away such service. Or so she assumed. Either way, it was true. It's what they were used to. For herself, No matter what Sasuke felt, to Sakura herself, she would never be up to his standards. She couldn't help but bite her bottom lip and starting question being with him. Was she the woman he needed, in his world? What made her so special? Why was she...?

"You are precious to the Young Master, M'Lady. Sebastian and I do not mind being in service to you at all, if the Young Master treasures you so much. If it helps you better, consider us family. You can even call me Mari-baa-chan!" Sakura's eyes widened at the wording and Sasuke's voice came back to her.

"You are beyond precious to me."

Instead of acceptance, her wretched mind could only bring forth more questions upon the answers it received. Why did Sasuke even feel such a way about her? There were plenty of women more attractive than her. More affluent than her. Hell, she was even sure there were women out there who could understand his business and how those things worked; probably even well enough he could trust them to take over the company for any reason.

"A man like him can get anything he wants and you decide he wants you because he told you so? Think about it Sakura! He grew up the same way I did."

Her eyes shut, in hopes of blocking out that terrible noise Indra spouted. It was wrong anyway...it had to be. Why was she continuing to doubt claims of Sasuke's love when they were even made by his own maid? He wouldn't go that far to deceive her would he? Would anyone?

"Why would he want someone of your status?"

Why would he...

"I love you more. So much more."

Instead of acceptance, her wretched mind could only bring forth more questions upon the answers it received.

"M'Lady, Sebastian and I have dedicated our lives to the Uchiha family and its bloodline." Mari's voice cut into her insecure thoughts. She opened her eyes to look at the woman, only to see a look of understanding. Sakura's brow lifted and Mari chuckled.

"We take great pride in that, M'Lady. Nothing brings us more satisfaction than to aid the Masters of the Uchiha House and we have been in service for years; Sebastian's been in service to the Uchiha House as a child long before even the late Master Fugaku was born. It continues to be a true honor." Mari explained gently. Sakura watched and listened carefully as Mari chuckled reminiscently. Something grabbed her attention about the old maid, and the secrets she held; even if Sakura was not too eager to gain insight on what would be "Uchiha Secrets". She wasn't sure what she would discover. Even so, she only desired to understand Sasuke. She only wanted to be able to give her all to him, so that she didn't make the mistakes she did last night; whining and complaining.

"You're so annoying." He always said that; he did so, even last night. She didn't want to be annoying to him. She didn't want to be a burden.

"I helped raise both Young Master Itachi and Young Master Sasuke. They are like sons of my very own and it is because of that, that I continue to service the Uchiha bloodline wholeheartedly. To fulfill the wishes of the Uchiha is part of our happiness and we will do anything to fulfill those wishes. Even if Young Master Sasuke asks for the impossible, we shall be sure to get it done! Failure is an insult and a dishonor for us. Me and Sebastian's only wish is to please the Young Master and to provide him with the comforts of home that he doesn't get often." Mari continued and a bright smile glowed on her face. Sakura's eyes lighted slightly. The last sentence struck her. Provide Sasuke the comforts he doesn't get often? She knew Sasuke was a busy man, but she never thought that maybe he'd rather have a comfortable life. Like she wanted. To be put at ease when the events of the day were too much. As his secretary, she knew the stresses of his work and the constant need for everything to be perfect or else everything went awry.

He wasn't home often. He didn't eat home cooked meals in his home. She didn't understand why she was just realizing why Sasuke always opted to stay with her here at her place. Because here they could just sit on the couch and watch a movie. Eat home cooked dinner or order a pizza. He relaxed in comfort. His home was probably the reminder of work and his life that was full of bombardment.

And last night; the relief she sensed from him, had he always been so neglectful to himself? He was still a man, full of needs and Sakura suddenly understood why he seemed so gluttonous.

'What about his parents?' The question crossed her mind and for some reason, she felt she shouldn't ask. The last time she referenced his family in front of him, he got quiet.

"Mari...I..." Sakura trailed, unsure of what to say. She felt like a selfish brat. She felt like an absolute child now, for being so demanding last night. Yet, Mari's next sentence seemed to see right through her; and her words did bring some comfort.

"M'Lady, for today, the Young Master has a very simple wish for us. He wishes for you to be taken care of! We are at your service and you are not a burden! Please, allow us to give you the hospitality of the Uchiha Family as per Young Master Sasuke's request." Mari jovially exclaimed, before giving a bow with a hand over her heart. The woman was lively for her age, Sakura thought only to show such servitude as if it was done all her life. The prideful maid gave a gentle smile at Sakura's flabbergasted stare.

It was obvious that the woman before her was not used to the treatment now. The Young Master had chosen a humble, light bringing woman as his fancy and Mari was not surprised. The late Lady Mikoto was the same way, when she captured the heart of the late Master Fugaku. As a matter of fact the Young Master Itachi had a similar female as well, years ago. The Uchiha were indeed men of patterns and some kind of shared genetic code.

"Please understand, the Young Master, treasures you greatly, M'Lady. And the Uchiha always take care of their treasures." Sakura stared with surprise and bewilderment, before an understanding blush came to her face. She shifted to look down at her coffee, a tingling feeling in her chest. It was Sakura's turn to chuckle now, and she gave another appreciative but this time, gleeful smile. She was certain now that Mari's frightful glare was one Sasuke would have given her, albeit with more irritation and annoyance. He would have scolded her already.

"Just eat already." He probably would have grumbled. Where she was acting out of pure humility, he would have called her annoying. She felt so lucky to be with Sasuke. Sasuke made her the luckiest woman in the world and she was in absolute heaven.

If this would be the future she had with him, then she hoped for nothing but a happily ever after.

"I'm sorry if I insulted you, Mari-san. Thank you for taking care of me." She smiled in the face of defeat. Once again, she had no way to fight against Sasuke and it wasn't going to matter if she did. It seemed like for every win she had with Sasuke, he found some way to get another one over her. This time, it was in the use of his servants. She blushed, touching a gentle spot on her forehead, where she was sure Sauke would poke for some reason. She still never got an explanation for why he did that gesture.

"Looks like I lost to Sasuke-kun again." Sakura sighed and Mari seemed to read her, eyeing the woman she could already feel would be the future matriarch to the House of the Uchiha. It was pretty much given, the moment both she and Sebastian had received orders to care for Sakura from their Master. The Uchiha men, as Sebastian put it, knew what they wanted in their partners. They loved with the highest regard and when that love was obtained, they kept it close. They were hardwired in their blood, quite monogamous, private and passionate lovers.

Sebastian had even remarked, that no matter how powerful the Uchiha men were, they were completely weak to their spouses. Mari herself had similar experiences with the late Uchiha predecessors. With that thought in mind, Mari chuckled at the irony of Sakura's claim.

Even if she did not know it, Haruno Sakura had full power here. Lady Mikoto did not know it either as wel

"You may not know it, M'Lady, but…" Mari giggled again, giving the confused Sakura a knowledgeable grin.

"The Young Master has lost to you, now and until the end of his days." The maid claimed, bowing curtly to Sakura and taking her leave. Sakura remained, a bit confused with the statement.

"What do you mean Mari-san?"

"No worries about it, M'Lady. Please enjoy your meal! I'll be preparing your bath! Should be nice and warm by the time you're done." She sang and left Sakura to be. She could hear Mari's and Sebastian's muffled voice from her apartment dwelling.

"Sebastian! Lady Sakura is awake now! I'll be preparing the bath!"

"Excellent. I am off to run a quick errand. Please inform Madam Sakura if she wishes to go somewhere I shall return shortly to chauffeur. If she must leave before I return, you go in my stead. A fresh batch of coffee shall be prepared as well." She heard. Sakura stared for a long moment, thinking of Mari's statement.

"the Young Master has a very simple wish for us. He wishes for you to be taken care of, M'Lady!"

"The Young Master has lost to you, now and until the end of his days."

Sasuke lost to her? How? That wasn't possible. When could he ever lose? A man with loyal servants, handsome, rich—

—amazing in bed—

As Sakura mentally berated herself for that lewd thought, she was certain there was something that totally flew over her head and she was too clueless, in all her intelligence to understand Mari's saying. Were the girls right? Calling her dense even though she was brilliant? She didn't understand.

"Where is Sasuke the loser here?!" She certainly grumbled out loud and mentally spazzed out. She felt her eyebrow twitch and her face had deadpanned. She was the one who felt like a loser.

She had doubted Sasuke again. Then, not only did he silence her insecurities, he took her heart, body and mind. Now, he was giving her a new life that she was not used to. He was taking over her world. She was being treated like a Queen, when all she did was question and doubt him. When he only showered her in love and tenderness, she was always questioning his motives. Was it really that hard for her to accept that, maybe, someone in this world saw her worth and wanted to make it known? Still, she wasn't so narcissistic to believe she deserved such treatment. It was...different to what she was used to.

She deadpanned again. She was overthinking. She was thinking way ahead and everyone told her to stop doing that.

Feeling defeated entirely and finding it pointless to further fuss about her current situation, Sakura began to eat. Everything was delicious. Even her coffee. Sasuke said she made amazing coffee but now she wondered what kind of standard he was holding her to. The coffee was great.

"My coffee from home is fine." He had once shrugged off when she asked out of curiosity, during one of their late talks. As if it was nothing. What made her coffee "amazing"?

After she finished eating and managed to remove the tray over her legs, slowly she moved to stand from bed. She was doing fine at first, only for her knees to buckle when she fully stood. She winced, feeling a bit of pain, probably due to last night. She held herself up just barely with the nightstand and clenched her teeth as she sat back down on the bed.

That bath she could hear Mari preparing now, was definitely needed. Sakura noted she would need to use actual strength to stand and possibly even walk. She really didn't want to do anything today.

She blushed again, knowing the discomfort she felt came from a night of pleasure and love. Sasuke had even tried to ensure he didn't hurt her, yet Sakura knew today was going to be a slight struggle. Women really did get the short end of the stick in all things, as Tsunade would grumpily put it. From painful puberties, to sex and childbirth, women never got it easy.

And yet, she gave herself. She gave herself to him so wholeheartedly, and for her it was both terrifying and exhilarating. For some reason, it was easy. Discomfort and slight pain aside, Sakura only knew to do what she had been taught to do. Push on. Move forward. She slowly paced herself into standing again. She sifted through her closet languidly, thinking of what to wear. She had the day off and nothing particularly planned. With Sebastian and Mari here with her, did that mean she couldn't leave the house? Maybe a walk would do her some good. She hadn't been to the children's clinic in a while. It would be nice to see them even if it was just for a little while. She also wanted to check their progress.

'I don't want to walk...' She mentally grumbled, whilst going through her closet. Wrapping herself up in a robe, she grabbed her clothing and walked into her bathroom where Mari was...checking the temperature of her water?

"Uh...Mari-san?" Sakura called out, making the plump woman jump.

"Oh! Dear me! You gave me a start M'Lady! You're right on time! Your hot bath has just finished cooling to a nice temperature. I'll leave you to it. Is there anything you wish to do at all today M'Lady? Young Master Sasuke has instructed Sebastian to accompany you if you wish to be driven somewhere." Mari asked, stepping to leave the bathroom. Sakura smiled politely to the old maid, eyeing the roses and bubbles in the bath. She had no such products in her apartment. Had they really brought things from the mansion here, just to take care of her? First the plate now this? She really would be driven anywhere she wanted to go? That sounded better than taking public transportation or paying for a cab.

Sasuke was spoiling her. As flattered as she was, she wasn't sure she would get used to it. What if she hadn't gone for the bath after all? Or if she hadn't wanted to eat? She had told him before she didn't need him to send Sebastian or any of his help and he did it anyway. Would he ever listen to her commands outside of anything she verbally needed or wanted?

Sakura thought back to Mari's words when being served breakfast. She was "precious to the Young Master" and the Young Master wished she'd be taken care of. Sasuke truly was a spoiled man who did whatever he wanted. Yet, Sakura found it just as laughable that she could find no complaint nor wrong in his rather blunt and insistent manners. She didn't necessarily want to be spoiled and Sasuke's answer to that was this.

"What's the big deal?" She imagined him grumbling with an irritated look in his eyes. He'd most likely be annoyed. What kind of woman doesn't want to be spoiled? With that, Sakura gave another defeated, but appreciative smile.

"I haven't thought of anything yet. But, maybe, I should go visit the children's clinic today." Sakura said genuinely. Mari bowed her head.

"I will inform Sebastian. Enjoy your bath, M'Lady." Mari said and exited without another word and shut the door behind her. Sakura slowly removed her robe and caught her reflection in the mirror above her sink. Her hand slowly reached to graze upon the red marks on her neck and chest. A blush that matched the shade of the hickeys Sasuke made came to her face. Mari had certainly noticed these, didn't she? She said nothing about it. If she did go see the kids at the clinic today, it might be best to wear a scarf of some sort. Or a turtle neck...in August. She eyed the navy blue t-shirt she was going to wear today. It was a v-neck. That definitely wasn't going to cover her up. She didn't wear makeup and she was not calling Ino to borrow any to cover this.

Now that she thought about it, she was certain she had a red sleeveless turtleneck somewhere.

The moment Sakura stepped into the specially prepared bath she instantly gave into the obviously used bath salts in the perfect warmth of the water. She couldn't help the moan that escaped her. The aromatherapy being danced around her nose pulled her into a state of content. She had never had a bath like this. This was some form of sorcery! Sasuke was absolutely bribing her with the spoils of luxury and she did not mind it one bit. She totally disregarded herself earlier. She wanted to be spoiled with baths like this every morning.

'Don't get excited, Sakura. Nothing lasts forever.' The voice in the back of her head spoke and snapped her out of the spell that was Uchiha Sasuke. Sakura's closed eyes slowly opened and everything from before that spellbinding night came back to her.

"I know who he's supposed to marry."

Indra was lying. He had to be. It wasn't like that. The secretive, troubled looks and vibe Sasuke gave off had nothing to do with that, did it? Then why did it seem like Sasuke was hiding something? Why did he seem afraid of something? Was it really just his stress over Danzo? Or was she reading too much into things?

"I want to love you more, Sakura. I want to love all of you."

He was genuine and sincere. She didn't detect any lies or falsehoods in his words at all. He looked her in the eyes. Throughout the three rounds of love they made he looked her straight on, with that adoring look of his and proclaimed he loved her.

"I love you more."

Sasuke loved her. It meant he loved her, if he wanted to spoil her, right? She was valued and wanted by him. He didn't want another woman. Had she been misreading his demeanor last night through anxiety alone…? Yet, she never got a straight answer from him last night. She was certain, before they had become lost to each other's love, something was wrong and Sasuke never told her. Her eyes lowered to one of the rose petals in her bath. Her gut feeling told her Sasuke was hiding something, even now, after the best night of her life and she didn't know what to do. Her mind was a damn curse sometimes. She soaked and bathed for almost thirty minutes, pondering about Sasuke.

"You have no idea how much I've wanted this."

Sasuke wouldn't say and do such things if he was to be with another woman for the rest of his life. He wouldn't look at her with such passion and fire if he had another woman he was promised to. She didn't necessarily have to worry about that after everything that was said and done between them last night...right?

"You are beyond precious to me."

Even as he said those words though...as true as she felt they were, he had obviously been troubled. He dismissed it as tiredness. Was it really just that? It didn't feel like that was just it. There was a difference between being tired and being troubled. And his face at the time, was looking for solutions to a problem she knew nothing about. It worried her.

"You have no idea...how precious you are to me…"

Those words were so entirely true. Still, before he could say them, he was troubled enough that he didn't face her. He turned his back on her. She still remembered the shrinking feeling in her heart the moment he turned away from her; it even wrenched at her gut. The same gut that felt omitted from the truth in some way. Like always. It didn't escape her how those sweet words came out when she had become visibly upset—another thing she was now chastising herself for. She acted like such a child. She even cried.

But he was so comforting. He caressed her and tried to reassure her, yet she could only act upon her anxiety. The fear of losing him without having a chance to fight for him would pain her to no end. It would be different, if there was nothing they could do about it. She could accept that—if he talked to her about it first. That's all she wanted. She didn't want to be walked out on suddenly out of nowhere and she sure as hell didn't want Sasuke to be with another woman behind her back.

She didn't want him to be with another woman at all.

"Me and Sebastian's only wish is to please the Young Master and to provide him with the comforts of home that he doesn't get often."

Mari's words hit her again as they did earlier and she sank further into the bathtub. She stared up at the white ceiling, conflicted. It would just stress Sasuke out if she brought up the flowers and meetup set by Indra; along with the things he said. Confronting him about it would probably spark a needless fire.

She only wondered...why Indra would say something like that…? After obviously meeting with Sasuke…

It could have been a lie, right? Some ploy to get her to distrust Sasuke and trust him more? Would Indra go that far? Especially after she told him her feelings. Why should she trust Indra's word to begin with?!

'Because you know somewhere deep down, you still trust his word. You believe in him.' Her own mind answered and she didn't like it. Indra was the past. An old friend who betrayed her and abandoned her, no matter how much he insisted that he went to get help. It led to a dear friend's death in the end. She could not forgive that. He abandoned them in unfamiliar terrirtory, defensless and open, when she had sheltreed him when it was the other way around. She rantowards him and he ran away. That's how she saw Indra. That was her thoughts on it, no matter how profusely he claimed otherwise. Her eyes pained, understanding what she was saying to herself. Even despite all that...she didn't know why part of her was accepting of Indra and forgiving of him. He did get into her head with those lillies and the quiet meet up at Yota's grave...and it made Sakura glare. She didn't like him, for sure, but—

She gave a frustrated splash at her bath water. She hated her mind. Why did she have to contemplate everything?

'STOP IT SAKURA!'

She should focus on the now; her relationship and feelings with Sasuke. She would focus on giving him those comforts of home he couldn't have because of his busy life. The simple things he seemed to enjoy.

Just this once she would disregard her gut. There was no reason to stress Sasuke further with accusations of another some silly thought of a sudden marriage arrangement. It was ludicrous! She could be absolutely wrong...even if her gut was never wrong before. It could be that she was wired by Indra's accusation. That had to have been it. Sasuke would tell her if there was something she needed to worry about. He told her from his very lips she had nothing to worry about. She let out a sigh, calming her nerves and attempting to dash her thoughts.

Sasuke loved and cherished her—and only her. She had nothing more to think about in regards to that. Maybe, he would even tell her if it was something actually bothering him. She just needed to t\be patient. She only had to worry about providing Sasuke anything he needed. To help with anything she could for him.

After getting dressed in her jeans—also, after choosing a red sleeveless turtleneck instead—she was greeted by none other than Mari, once again and Sebastian between her living room and kitchen. The maid was dusting her living room shelves while the butler stood at attention upon her reveal. He gave her his usual, pleasant smile and Sakura couldn't help but smile back. There was something about Sebastian that comforted her always whenever she was around the butler. He gave her a respectful bow, as always and Sakura was still unsure if she would ever get used to such a display towards her.

"Good morning, Lady Sakura. Did you enjoy breakfast?" He asked, the gentle look in his eyes completely disarming any instinctual guard she had around almost everyone. Sakura found she was at complete ease with the butler in her presence. It was as if he could break any defenses she had. She could feel him reading her but it was more for her benefit. If Sebastian thought something was wrong he was would find it with just his sight alone. Even despite that, she didn't care. Sebastian was a kind, old gentleman. She enjoyed his company for sure the other times he was called here. Mari, she remembered; was kind also. Even this morning Mari was wonderfully pleasant. Maybe she didn't really mind if Sasuke sent the two of them her way after all. It was pleasant company.

And them being around made her feel close to him. If they were near her, Sasuke would come back soon.

"Good morning, Sebastian. Everything was amazing. Thank you." She replied, closing her eyes in delight.

"Wonderful! Did you enjoy your bath, M'Lady?" Mari turned, cheery eyes filled with expectation. Sakura rubbed the back of her head sheepishly. She really wasn't one to use such products herself and her body felt great from whatever salts Mari had used.

Her legs still felt a little weak, but she definitely felt better.

"It was lovely, Mari. Thank you both for treating me." She said softly.

"Mari has informed me you wish to visit children today, Lady Sakura?" Sebastian inquired. Sakura walked into her kitchen, the butler following with his hands behind his back and watching as she grabbed a coffee cup from her cupboards. Reading her mind, she turned and Sebastian was already standing there, her coffee pot in hand and waiting to pour for her. She accepted, holding her cup out as the butler poured the caffeine into it with poise.

"I haven't seen them for some time and I need to go over their files. I was going to do it this weekend but since I have a free day today, I guess it's not so troublesome to get the jump on things." Sakura informed, taking a sip of the wonderful black coffee. It was so soothing.

"Very well, Madam. I will be at your service until the Young Master has arrived from his day. I must also inform you my Lady, that the Young Master has also ordered me to remain at your side while off the premises at all times." Sakura's brows lifted. All day? If she remembered right, Sasuke's meetings would go on until late tonight. He had really ordered that?

"All times? Don't you need a break? That isn't necessary at all Sebastian. You don't have to stay by my side the whole time." Sakura said, completely flabbergasted at Sasuke's request. He wanted her to be followed by his butler? What was the reason for that? Sebastian wasn't given that order the last time. He gave a warm smile.

"Do not worry about me, my Lady, though it humbles a simple servant like myself to have your concern. Thank you." He said, closing his eyes and giving a curt bow of his head, whilst placing a hand over his heart.

"If my sons find a nice woman, please care for her as you did for me, Sebastian. But she must be nice! Protect my sons first and always, Sebastian! Be sure she is someone I would like!"

Lady Mikoto would indeed be ecstatic with her youngest son's chosen one. As he had long decided, the moment his Master had shown interest in the woman, she would be treated as though she were already his Matriarch. Young Master Sasuke had always been so reclused, so the moment he mentioned her name was the moment Sebastian had decided she was the candidate for that title. Just from her presence this morning, that mandate was further validated. Especially with how interesting the talk with Sasuke was this morning, upon his arrival.

"You two have your orders. Here are the spare keys. Mari, you will tend to Sakura personally, until she has fully awakened and dressed." Sasuke said, handing the butler Sakura's spare keys. The two eyed each other briefly, while Sasuke checked his watch. He had to leave soon and the two servants could see the reluctance in his furrowed brow.

Yet, despite dawn not yet having fully lit the sky, the youngest of their proud House was...glowing?

"Uh...Young Master?" Mari spoke. His eyes flickered to her and she gave a light blush of embarrassment, before fiddling with her fingers.

"What, Mari?"

"W-Well...I had been wondering, why exactly you sent me along with Sebastian? I'm sure he is capable of taking care of the Madam himself. I-I'm not complaining or anything like that Young Master, but...won't Lady Sakura feel overwhelmed?" Mari questioned, rightfully with concern. His eyes narrowed, before the two were taken aback. Sasuke smirked and chuckled and it was certainly a rarity. Moreover, Mari was fully expecting to be berated and scolded by her strict employer who despised all questions to his commands.

"Do as you did with my mother, Mari. Tell her it was my request. After she is refreshed and ready, Sebastian will take over and you can return to the mansion." Sasuke vaguely responded, not addressing Mari's confusion on the matter. The two servants looked at each other and Sebastian handed Mari the keys so she could go up first, understanding their employer's want. Mari bowed to Sasuke. The moment she had departed inside, his smile dropped, looking over to Sebastian. A seriousness came to his gaze.

"You know what to do." Sasuke stated expectantly. Sebastian bowed as well.

"Of course, Young Master. I will not ever fail you." With those words, Sasuke walked towards where he parked his car down the street. Sebastian eyed him for a moment, before a knowing smile came to his face.

"You are in a good mood, Young Master." Sebastian spoke before Sasuke had gotten out of earshot. The Uchiha stopped, silent in his step. Sebastian stared at the young man he had raised and just like his father before him, despite the enigma of a man that he was, he understood perfectly. No human on this Earth is a mind reader, but as the butler of the Uchiha Estate, it was a talent Sebastian had developed well.

"Have your worries over Lady Sakura been officially put to rest?" He inquired and from the slight shift of Sasuke's head, the longtime butler knew the answer.

"The only thing to worry over, is you protecting her. Stay by her side until Itachi has completed his preparations. Report to me throughout the day." Sasuke ordered without turning around. Sebastian gave a knowing smile.

"Of course, sir."

Knowing the man since his birth, it wasn't hard to put things together. Proving things further, poor Mari was red and flushed when he entered the apartment only two minutes later. When he was going to check the room for her, Mari was quick to remind him, their Master had made her Sakura's personal aid until she was awake and ready.

As cryptic and untelling as Sasuke's answer had been, the experienced butler already knew what it actually meant. Just from the sound of his calm and at ease voice, he could tell, his Master's worries over loving the woman he did so reverently, had been quelled. The Young Master was officially declaring her as his own.

'Like father, like son.' He couldn't help but think in amusement.

The only worry was as his Master had spoken. Protecting and caring for her, as though she already bore the Uchiha name was his task as head butler to the Uchiha Estate.

And he already gave his word to the Young Master.

"Please, do not feel so concerned, Lady Sakura. This is my duty. It is my honor to serve you, my Lady. I—" Whatever else was going to be said by Sebastian was stopped immediately. She watched a look she never saw before flash in Sebastian's eyes and it gave her pause. For the briefest of a moment, Sebastian's friendly blue eyes had sharpened and his head turned ever so slightly towards the kitchen entry. His ear, she noticed, twitched. The look was gone just as fast, so much so, Sakura wondered if she had been seeing things.

"Are you expecting company, Lady Sakura?" She raised her eyebrow. Not long after he questioned it, she heard keys enter her apartment door. Sakura was taken aback. Did Sebastian hear footsteps or something? She didn't hear anyone from outside her door while standing here with him. Was her hearing bad?

But, since it was someone entering with keys, she simply sighed. To be fair, she hadn't checked her phone yet, but she still had a rule to call first before coming over like this. She could only wonder who it was.

If it was Ino, she was going to have a headache.

"SAKURA-CHAAAAN! YOU HERE?! SAKURA-CHAN!" Her ears were assaulted and she deadpanned. Sebastian's amused chuckle and Mari's very startled shout reached her ear, to further fan her ire.

"Oh dear." The butler mumbled in amusement and Sakura now felt even worsley irritated.

Naruto really was the brother she never had, but he was no lesser a headache than Ino. In fact, he was more of one. In no less than two seconds he was in the entryway and Sakura was already glaring, though she stopped upon seeing the slightly panicked look on his face.

"There you are! I was super worried!" He exclaimed, before eyeing Sebastian.

"Eh? What are you doing here old man? Does Teme know you're here?" Naruto questioned without considerate thought. Sebastian's eyebrow twitched, but Sakura watched as the old butler somehow maintained his perfect composure, even while she could sense he was agitated with Naruto's obnoxiousness.

"Young Master Sasuke has ordered that I cater to Lady Sakura's needs for the day. I am to not leave her side until the Young Master has rejoined her." Sebastian explained curtly. Sakura sighed again, taking a sip of her coffee. Naruto raised a confused eyebrow.

"But, isn't Teme working late tonight?" Naruto questioned.

"Indeed, sir." Feeling ignored by the man who had barged into her house, still without an explanation, Sakura felt a vein above her temple throb.

"Ahem! What are you doing here, Naruto? Do I have to teach you a lesson again about calling before barging in my apartment?" Sakura growled out dangerously, gaining his blue eyed attention. He gave a sheepish and scared grin, scratching the back of his head just as fearfully.

"Sorry Sakura-Chan. I tried to call and text you but your phone went straight to voicemail. Teme was really busy so I couldn't ask him and I didn't see you at work…" Naruto explained, rubbing the back of his neck and looking off to the side. Sakura's gaze softened, already catching on to what her brother was saying. The pained, secretive look in his eyes showed her more than they would ever show even Hinata and Sakura painfully understood. It was the usual. Naruto's anxiety was off the charts and it was proven by the way he entered. The slam opening of her door and the worried call out for her; she had worried him and she felt terribly guilty about it.

It probably made it worse that she apparently let her phone battery die. He had no means to contact her and he probably drove well over the speed limit to get here. He always checked on her everyday, at least once. She didn't recall her phone being near death last night, but she certainly didn't have the time or thought to put it on the charger either.

"...I just wanted to make sure you were alright." He murmured quietly. Sakura walked over, placing her coffee cup on the table. She had already forgotten about Sebastian being there. The only thing she wanted was to comfort Naruto, whose pain she could feel and knew all too well, because she felt the same before in the past. They protected each other and always would protect each other. It was how it always was. She worried about him too, whenever he did something stupid. And if Hinata ever called, she was just as frantic to find him as he was.

The moment she reached him, she wrapped her arms around his neck and pulled him into a tight embrace. He didn't move at first, quietly taking in her scent and like they practiced as kids, relegating his breathing to hers. His hands slowly wrapped around her waist and though Sebastian was forgotten, he watched Naruto's eyes become suddenly guilty—or was it just simply relief? Sebastian's brow furrowed slightly when Naruto shifted his head closer to Sakura's hair and closed his eyes in content.

'Young Master Sasuke...would be displeased.' The old butler couldn't help but think.

"I'm sorry. I forgot to charge my phone." Sakura apologized, her voice reaching his ear. Naruto's embrace grew tighter and a tender smile came to his face. They pulled away from their embrace and Naruto placed his hands on her shoulders. Sakura knew now was inspection time. He was looking into her eyes, searching for anything that might be wrong. This was routine whenever Naruto thought she had been in danger or something had happened. The slightest detail that indicated foul play would set him off, but he promised years ago not to be as rash as he was before.

The look and sigh of relief that came from him filled her with her own sense of relief for some reason. If Naruto was calm, she most certainly could be calm as well. He gave her a gentle smile.

"It's alright. If you're okay, then it's fine." Naruto said, releasing her shoulders. Sakura smiled back, giving a light punch to his shoulder.

"I can take care of myself, baka." She chuckled. Sebastian cleared his throat, actually reminding the two he was still here. They turned to him and Sebastian gave them a cordial smile.

"Am I correct to assume you will be joining Lady Sakura, Young Naruto, sir?" The butler asked. Naruto gave a grin.

"Well, I am off for the rest of the day, so I don't see why not. Hinata-chan is actually out of the city so…if it's not a bother..." Sakura's eyes grew slightly at the received information. Hinata was out of Konoha? That meant he would be alone right? She never wanted Naruto to be alone. They had felt lonely for far too long.

"Of course, Naruto. You can spend as much time as you need here." Sakura openly invited, as she would always to Naruto. She would always lend a stay to her brother. Naruto was one of the few people she could not say 'No' to, unless he was being an idiot.

"Very well. Lady Sakura mentioned the children's clinic was on the agenda for the day." Naruto's eyes lit up like a child's and a big grin came to his lips. That cheeky smile that never changed at all, no matter how much taller or manlier he became. Sakura couldn't help but feel reminiscent. Naruto had grown into a fine young man, but Sakura had moments like these, where she saw the seven year old boy who became her protector. Those were the very same eyes he had the day they met.

She was just a couple of months over four years old. The older kids were punching her while the younger ones were pulling on her hair. She had no idea who they were, but they approached her with the promise of food. She hadn't eaten since a week prior and she was so happy. Next thing she knew, they pushed her to the ground. She tried to fight back, but she was too small to truly defend herself. They were so much bigger than her.

"PICK ON SOMEBODY YOUR OWN SIZE!" She heard suddenly, in the midst of crying and the wailing.

"It's Demon-boy!" It was five against one, until he came along. Yet he beat them all back. The little pink haired girl had watched in what was both surprise and fear, staring at the back of a blond haired boy with a patchy orange jacket. On the back was a red spiral.

"Shit! Let's go! Might as well leave the Freak with Demon-boy!" The leader of the beaten group of slum kids growled. Then she watched the kids who were beating on her run away. She trembled as he turned to look at her, only to be met with a whiskered face and sky blue eyes.

"Are you okay? Did they hurt you?" Young and big blue eyes stared down at the shaking and crying little girl. He approached, making her shrink back and hug her knees. She buried her face away into them, hoping he wouldn't begin hurting her like the others had, making him pause. He eyed her carefully. He was older than her, definitely—especially if he was going off size—but the pink haired girl remained frightened, not daring to lift her head. Kids in the slums could be cruel, when trying to make a name for themselves. Usually, it was an unspoken law here in the slums, that violence undeserved was frowned upon. And though most people in the slums abided by that rule, that didn't stop the several bad eggs who appeared and did what they wanted to feel better about themselves.

They probably targeted her because she was so small and frail. No wonder they left when he showed up. His hands clenched.

'Bunch of cowards.' He thought.

He slowly lowered to her, watching her flinch from fear and hug her knees tighter to her chest. She was being attacked by some other slum kids until he came over and beat them back. He was now even angrier. She was so small and frail. She sat against the alleyway wall, her face covered in her hugged knees. He noticed scrapes on her elbows and a bruise forming on her arm. Her viridian green sundress, decorated with pink cherry blossoms was dirtied, and had the telltale signs of being overused. A typical child of the slums but the boy was certain he had never seen one so young, alone.

"P-Please d-don't...h-hurt me…" She whimpered.

"Hey, it's okay. They're gone. I won't hurt you." He spoke.

"Th-They...called you...demon-boy…" She quietly and timidly spoke. She heard him give a sad chuckle after a moment of silence and from between her strands of her hair, she watched him scratch the back of his head.

"Yeah. I'm a demon to them...but I won't be one to you." He said softly and watched her slowly lift her head. Something about the pain in his voice spoke to her—called even. She somehow, already trusted him and her trembling stopped. He was met with crying, scared and beautiful emeralds that made his sky blue eyes light with awe. He gave her an understanding and gentle look, tilting his head and reaching slowly to wipe her tears.

"There, there. You're so pretty! The prettiest girl I've ever seen! You're like a pretty flower! Pretty girls like you shouldn't cry!" He proclaimed excitedly. The little girl stared in surprise, having just been beaten up, because of her appearance. She looked down in insecurity, a tear coming to her eye.

"T-They called me a f-freak..." The boy gave a laugh and grinned.

"Some people want to put others down when they're jealous. Don't listen to them. Besides, I don't lie! I always tell the truth and you are the prettiest girl here! I bet you're the prettiest girl in this world! Dattebayo!" He continued to grin and Sakura stared in surprise and bewilderment. His gentle smile stayed, though his eyes pained a little with hesitation.

"Are...you all alone?" He asked slowly.

"Y-Yes..." She whimpered quietly; the answer of most kids here and even his own. His blue eyes widened, before they saddened. He knew what being alone was like, in this unforgiving environment. Alone in a place; left to survive or just...Which is why he dedicated his days to making as many friends here as possible. He kept his smile.

"Where are your mommy and daddy? I'll take you home!" He offered cheerfully. She looked back down shrinking back into her knees.

"I-I d-don't...have a m-mommy or a-a daddy…" This time, his eyes widened with disbelief and shock, his teeth gritting in disdain. Why was a little girl like her alone? Why was she completely alone like he was?! He seemed to notice the fright his look gave her, because he sighed and gave her a smile again, closing his eyes with delight. Such pained, sorrowful delight.

"Hey...it's okay. I don't have a mommy or daddy either…" Her cute eyes widened and she watched as he gave her a big grin.

"You're way too pretty to stay alone out here! Well, when I see a pretty girl, I think I should protect them! So, I'll protect you!" Her young doe like eyes widened at the sudden proposal.

"What's your name, pretty flower?" He asked, standing and offering his hand to her. She stared up at him, tears filling her eyes and she hesitantly grabbed his hand. He lifted her softly to her feet.

"S-Sakura…" She murmured timidly, looking down at her tattered and dirtied white sandals.

"A pretty name! A pretty name for a pretty flower!" He exclaimed. The young five year old looked at the slightly older boy with surprise. He took the surprise on her face delightfully, giving her a joyous grin that glowed so bright, she forgot they were in a rather dark alleyway despite it being the afternoon.

"My name is Naruto! I'll protect you always, now and forever, Sakura-chan!" He declared, squeezing her hand to secure his hold.

"Let's patch you up! Come on, Sakura-chan!"

And ever since then, he had been her brother.

"Alright! It's been a while since I've seen those kids. Come on, Sakura-chan!" He said happily, grabbing her hand and pulling her to run off, ignoring frantic cries of protest from the rosette. Poor Sakura wasn't ready and the weakness of her legs caused her to stumble and fall to the ground.

"Ugh! Naruto! Not now!" Sakura whined glaring up at him. Naruto's eyes widened with panic as he realized what happened, and he dropped to his knees to address her. Sebastian rushed to her side.

"My Lady! Are you alright?!" Sebastian asked worriedly. Mari hurriedly rushed to the scene with a gasp.

"M'Lady! What's happened?!"

"I-I'm fine…I just…just wasn't expecting that. It caught me by surprise." Sakura excused. She blushed in embarrassment, and was being helped up by a worried Naruto and a disdainful Sebastian.

"Sorry, Sakura-chan. You're usually on your toes even with me. Are you sure you're okay?" Naruto asked with concern filling his blue eyes. Sakura ran a hand through her hair giving him a teasing smile.

"Oh, noooo. I broke a bone!" She sarcastically and jokingly proclaimed, placing a hand over her eyes. Naruto's eyebrow twitched, confusion and a feeling of unsettlement rising in his stomach.

"Eh?" He sounded. Sakura looked over and gave a devilish grin.

"Looks like you have to take care of all my affairs today, Naruto!" She sneered, giving Naruto his worst case scenario. Paperwork that he couldn't push on to anyone else. Sakura's work was confidential and while he helped from time to time, he still didn't understand a majority of her stuff. Even so, he was just as much as invested in her work with the kids as she was. Naruto was always a child at heart and dud his best for the kids and the clinic. Even if he hadn't had the slightest idea of how to manage it. His face paled and after a brief moment he quickly gave a guilty grin.

"W-Whatever you need Sakura-chan. I-I'll do my b-best…" He said, shakily holding a thumbs up. Sakura stared in amusement before she chuckled and shook her head.

"Naruto would give the world for you, Sakura." Shikamaru had said once, years ago. She never really thought about it, but she always did consider how quick he was to drop things for her. He'd come running if she was in distress and she always hoped to break him out of that instinct. Her brother in spirit, was always so protective and stubborn. He should act that way with Hinata, but for as long as she had known, Naruto did not fret over the Hyuuga heiress the way he fretted over her.

"I'm kidding, I'm kidding. You'd probably screw everything up anyway." Sakura chuckled, punching his shoulder. Naruto grinned back at her sheepishly, not even denying the premonition she made. There was a moment of humble pause, before Naruto's voice cut through.

"Anywaayyy, got some ramen Sakura-chan?" Naruto asked grinning. Sakura rolled her eyes, deciding she would very much like to sit down. She sat at her small kitchen table and placed her hand in her palm. That bastard knew she kept a stash just for him. Still though, it was a terrible habit of his. She was certain he probably had his fifth cup already.

"You know it's unhealthy to have a strict diet of ramen right?" Sakura asked with her eyebrow raised.

"It's not the only thing I eat!" He said defensively.

"How many cups have you had today? Before you answer, what time is it, Sebastian?" Sakura asked, shooting Naruto a daring glare. The color left his face.

"It is now five past one, my Lady." Sebastian answered.

"So, that means this will be your sixth cup, am I right?" She stated knowingly without even glancing at the butler. Sebastian stared, impressed and also reminded of a certain man he had raised. Her eyes narrowed with already known accusations towards her long time friend and his face dropped in dismay in response. So, her free nature could change into one of iron and fire; Sebastian felt a bit giddy about it, oddly enough.

It was always amusing to watch Uchiha Matriarchs put their foot down—current or future. Women who were usually of grace and loving warmth turning into Goddesses of Wrath that the Uchiha frantically scrambled to appease gave Sebastian a lifetime of cherished and amusing memories he hoped to see more of between Sakura and Young Master Sasuke.

"U-Uhhh…well..." Naruto hesitated and scratched the back of his head in sheepish guilt. She rolled her eyes at the obvious admittance that she was right. She sighed.

"Naruto, it's not healthy for you to—"

"Pleeeeeaaaaassssseeee, Sakura-chaaaan? It will be my last cup for the day, I swear! I'll eat anything else you want for the rest of the day! Even if its spicy! Please, please, pllleeeeaaaasssseee!" He was suddenly kneeling in front of her, his hands pleadingly clasped together and giving her the best puppy dog eyes and pout a fully grown, adult man could give. Sakura twitched. The man was begging for ramen. He had a great job, a beautiful fiancée, he paid bills and rent and here he was whining over ramen. She and Hinata had forcibly bought groceries to fill his fridge every month with something other than ramen, and he still ate nothing but that stuff even if they cooked him a hearty meal and he ate it. Sakura sighed. If it wasn't for the fact that she was used to this she was sure she would have been more annoyed.

Probably also due to the fact that she was immensely relaxed right now, whether it be from Sasuke's love making last night or her bath today, she was willing to dismiss most things she'd usually be irritated with. She could still feel the salted suds on her body just as vividly as she could feel Sasuke's touch. Her mind, body and soul, was way too at ease to object to trivial infractions. Why bother with such things after an eventful and pleasurable night/day?

"Yeah, yeah. You know where it is. But that is your last cup for the day." She dismissed drinking her coffee. He sprung to his feet the instant he received her approval. Like an excited child, he rushed to the stash she allowed him to hoard here—no matter how much she objected—and continued to work. Sakura only continued drinking her coffee. She sighed. Sebastian chuckled beside her.

"It appears he holds the same brashness with you, as with the Young Master, my Lady." He said smiling. Sakura looked at Naruto who was happily singing what he called "The Ramen Song" ever since they were kids.

"He never changes." Sakura chuckled.

"Today will be a good day, today's gonna be a treat! This is my sixth bowl of ramen, and it's almost time to eat! Dattebayo! Dattebayo! Ramen; it's time to treat! Dattebayo! Dattebayo! Alright, it's time to eat!" He childishly sang out. Sakura's eyes warmed. She was right. His sixth.

Sebastian eyed the interaction and held his reservations, as a butler should. They had appeared to be close friends, yet there was something about them…or maybe he was just reading into things. Sakura appeared to care for his Master. He was certain she was fond of his Master, and she would make a wonderful addition to his side. A woman of strength, warmth, love and devotion. She was a worthy successor to the Uchiha Matriarchy.

Sebastian found himself contemplating the beauty of the Uchiha women. The men of the Uchiha family most certainly chose the most attractive and exquisite females. Sakura was indeed beautiful and might even have rivalry with the late Uchiha Matriarch in that context; as well as her humility and warmth—her air of freedom. To allow for her dear friend to simply waltz into her house and next use her kitchen as if nothing happened, was something amusing to watch, yet, it was...expected. She did as she pleased and allowed others to do so. In fact, maybe it was the reason for his Young Master's sudden change of character. Such spirit of liberty and freedom seemed to attract the ever strict and possessive Uchiha.

Mikoto and Fugaku had been similar. A strict and reclusive man, enchanted by a light-bearing, beautiful woman.

"If you are well with Young Naruto for the meantime my Lady, I will be going to take Mari back to the Mansion. I will return in just about an hour to collect you and chauffeur you to the children, as you wish." Sebastian said, bowing as any servant would. Sakura gave a wary look, still unsure of how to react to such luxurious treatment. Naruto noticed, watching her facial expression twitch with the slightest discomfort. He smiled tenderly, before giving a big grin to the butler he had known for a long time.

"Thank you for being here Sebastian-san." The blond thanked. Sakura flushed, realizing that had been the right response to such a gesture. Sakura berated herself for not having manners where Naruto did.

"Yes. Thank you two, for everything." She said with a kind smile. The butler smiled back and walked away, calling for Mari.

After talking with Naruto for a bit, Sakura made the excuse to leave to her bedroom—with a glass of water—and opened the drawer she had thrown the contraceptives in. Finally finding the plan b pill Ino had so graciously gifted her with, she stared at the small pill in her hand with hard consideration and thought. It was a prevention. Nothing more.

A child with Sasuke, as much as she wanted it, was not in the cards for her. She couldn't provide the care needed for a child. Not now. Her and Sasuke didn't have a sound foundation for a home. Not yet, anyway...

She took the pill, unaware Naruto was standing in the doorway.

"What was that?" He questioned, damn near scaring the life out of her. Thank goodness she already swallowed.

"Kyah! N-Naruto! I told you to stop doing that!" She shrieked. Naruto rubbed the back of his head.

"Sorry, sorry. I just...wanted to check on you." Sakura raised an eyebrow and rolled her eyes.

"Naruto—"

"I've been worried about you all day, alright! You're acting off! It worries me. And now I catch you taking some kind of medication. How am I supposed to feel Sakura-Chan!?" He asked with full concern. There was that look in his eyes again. That brotherly and protective stare that showed he was going to keep pressing until he got some kind of truth from her. Sakura twitched looking away and grabbing the small box the pill had come in as discreetly as she could.

"I already told you I'm fine! Geez, Naruto, we're not kids anymore! Stop fussing over me." She berated with frustration and an embarrassed blush made its way onto her cheeks.

There was no way she wanted to openly tell Naruto about her and Sasuke's active night. She did not want to tell him anything like that. Sheesh; what would he even do, hearing such a thing? Would he be alright with it? She had no clue, but part of her—a large, grandiose part—saw him freaking out. The other part, hoped he didn't.

"Are you sick?" He asked, despite her retort. She walked past him with the covered box in hand. She knew how to handle Naruto in these situations. She knew how to keep her own secrets in a "normal" situation—except this was not a normal situation. She lost her virginity and there were only two reactions she could see Naruto having to such a development. The first, she was certain would be pure, unadulterated rage. The other, she pondered to be in between hysteria and interrogation. There might be the wildcard third that was him going straight for Sasuke. She very much preferred to avoid all outburst. Especially from Naruto. Especially when this morning and last night were amazing for her.

"It's nothing to concern yourself with!" She dismissed, shoving the box as deep into her kitchen trash bag as it would go and tied it up. Evidence discarded. She lifted the trash bag out of the bin.

"That always means I need to be concerned!" He yelled adamantly. Sakura shoved the bag into his hands. She was already shoving him toward the door.

"No, it doesn't. Now go take this out and stop questioning me! Leave me alone for at least a little bit!" Naruto of course, yelled out in protest but she was already slamming the door in his face. She placed her back against the door the moment it closed and sighed when she heard Naruto's disgruntled groan and footsteps walking away.

She wished Sasuke was here. She wondered if his day was going as smoothly as he made hers to beminus Naruto's intrusion that was obviously not by his design.

And she wondered if he was just as overloaded from last night as she was.


"When I give you a damn order, you listen to that damn order!" Sasuke snarled.

"M-My ap-apologies Uchiha-sama. I thought you would be pleased." The man in the video conference spoke. Sasuke's eyes narrowed, his gaze most certainly killed the employee a thousand times even through a computer monitor. The effect would probably be literal, if the man were indeed in the same room with the now livid CEO.

"Fantastic. Now, I can expect to pour more time into a deal that is four months early."

"Apologies again, Uchiha-sama. Shall I make contact and tell them it was an err—"

"Uchiha Corporations does not. Make. Errors. Let everything proceed as it is supposed to now, thanks to your inability to follow directions. I'll handle it." Sasuke growled and ended the conference call.

"Damn it!" Sasuke's furrowed brow twitched for the first time today, whilst rubbing a hand down his face. Kakashi, standing from his conference seat next to him, gave an amused chuckle. The advisor had been one of the first to see the CEO this morning and there was no denying the lightness that surrounded the man's aura and overall being. At work, save for Sakura who he always softened up for, Sasuke always gave his usual demeanor of power and even a bit of arrogance. It was how the Uchiha operated; stoic and in control. Collected, composed figures of influence and affluence.

This morning was quite different. It was a pleasantly different morning, that was an extreme rarity, especially in the stiff and strict atmosphere of Uchiha Corporations.

Sure, Sasuke was composed of course, but today, he was placid. Nuisances and irritants that usually would anger the bossman of Uchiha Corporations, appeared to now be inconsequential. Most to all infractions that would have earned the infamous Uchiha glare were pretty much pardoned. Latenesses, errors to documents that had been found, even most of Naruto's shenanigans were like water off a duck's back. Normally, Sasuke's patience would have long been gone. Instead, it was simply dismissed. But, nothing lasts forever. It seemed this meeting was finally the straw that broke the camel's back and the irritation was probably setting in now. Kakashi was curious and intrigued though. Something wondrous and remarkable must have happened to have the Sasuke Uchiha in such a good and unbothered mood and Kakashi wanted to know what it was.

Work was always easy when the boss was happy. If Kakashi could give Sasuke an unlimited supply of whatever it was that had him so laid back, he'd spend all of his own income on it.

Checking his watch, it was just about four-thirty in the afternoon. That was quite the record for an Uchiha. A new one in fact, beating Fugaku's by a good five hours. If Kakashi remembered right, Fugaku's longest record was because Sasuke had graduated on to highschool.

After that, Fugaku's mood seemed to darken. Something happened, that Kakashi himself would never be able to figure out, no matter how deep he looked into things.

"Sasuke will be the next successor to Uchiha Corporations. Shall the day come...please look after him for me, Kakashi." He said that almost fifteen years ago and Kakashi knew something was off. Prior to that declaration, it was common knowledge Itachi would take over after him. Kakashi did his own digging at the time, worried for the man and family he called his friends, but found nothing. Fugaku and Mikoto Uchiha, two people who had shown him genuine friendship and generosity, passed away in a fatal car accident. A drunk driver slammed right into them and lost his life as well. Sasuke was only fifteen when they had passed. Itachi was just turning twenty-one.

Yet, it never left Kakashi's mind, that while Itachi's face showed sorrow, there was never an expression of distraught, as displayed by Sasuke. The younger Uchiha didn't believe his parents were dead when Kakashi broke the somber news to them both, with Sebastian in attendance.

Itachi only had a somber look...one of knowing...

"Fucking moron." Sasuke's grumble snapped Kakashi from his thoughts; the Uchiha was rubbing his forehead from the irritation. Kakashi closed his eyes and rubbed the back of his neck lazily and in contemplation. The youngest Uchiha and CEO of Uchiha Corps had no children so it obviously wasn't the source of his docility.

A twenty-six year old man, seeing a beautiful woman often...Kakashi had already put two and two together the moment he looked at the glowing Uchiha this morning. Sakura never came in today either. He only hoped he was a gentleman. That woman was like his daughter. Or maybe he was reading too much into things. The thought of Sakura, doing such things bothered him of course, but she was a grown woman. She could take care of herself.

Still, he would forever see Sakura as the same, shy, smart, beautiful little girl he held a particular favoritism for whenever he made his visits to the slums. Not too mention, he took as much care of her as he possibly could when she was in the A.E.F. He had always been aloof to most of the kids in the slums. Besides providing aid where he could to those detestable streets he also grew up in, it was best to help from a distance. The slums were never kind, even to their own. Children learned to survive, not to trust. Most came out as their environment had nurtured them to be. Distrusting, defensive and aggressive. Sakura had always been his little ball of sunshine; she was the proof, along with Naruto and even Shikamaru, that nurture and nature were two warring creatures that could go either way. Seeing them, and especially little Sakura who was the youngest, grow and instead want better for themselves had restored hope for the slums he had long been losing hope in.

Sakura was indeed his little princess...and she would become a Queen, he supposed, at the side of the King standing before him. A King he knew had been lonesome for some time without realizing it through his rigorous duties. He deserved such happiness and the luxury of love.

It would ease his heart as well, if Sasuke would finally give his favorite student the life of leisure she deserved.

"To think, you came in today practically glowing and now one meeting has you sour. For a moment there, I thought I was staring at your father whenever he got bad news about company stocks." Kakashi commented teasingly. Sasuke scoffed, having already lost the patience he had.

"I told that bastard from the Korean branch, there was to be no negotiations in the deal with London yet." He gruffed out, closing the laptop he had just finished his video conference on, with a slight slam. The residual high he had felt from his euphoria last night had faded the instant the branch manager told him he had gone forth with said negotiations after he explicitly said not to. He chewed the guy out, but the explanation the manager gave was a true and influencing one that he could only blame himself and his father for. He had drafted the negotiations with the London branch already. Things were set in place and as an employee of Uchiha Corps, the Korean manager took initiative the moment he was able to get in touch with London. It was, in retrospect and consideration, the correct and expected action to take.

Still, Sasuke was angry. He drafted the negotiation. Keyword; drafted. His explicit order had gone ignored because of a programmed whim, drilled into his employee by his father and himself. He glared at his laptop.

He wanted to punch something now.

"Well, it is true that it might be a little early to move forward with that merger, but from the looks of the reports they sent, it will indeed increase the revenue by thirty-seven percent. You shouldn't think so negatively of it." Kakashi tried to lighten. Sasuke gruffed in disapproval and his eyes narrowed as he began standing.

"I don't give a damn about the revenue. This just means now I'll have to travel to London, sometime after the goddamn cruise." Sasuke snarled, his tone becoming exceptionally bitter, at the mention of traveling. His brow furrowed even more at the thought of it.

London. He would be thousands of miles from Sakura. He'd be a whole continent over. If anything happened with Sakura, he'd be agonizing about it for a least a day, and that was if he could even get a last minute flight back to Konoha. No preparations were readily available yet to take her with him so suddenly either, and his very soul was screaming against leaving her for any reason. The only reason he was at peace with leaving this morning, was because he knew where she'd be at all times and he could get to her quickly when he could. Thirty minutes was nothing. Being on a cruise for three weeks would be a struggle, but it would pass quickly and he'd be back soon enough.

But, being a whole timezone away, with no clear indication of when he would be able to return to her...the very thought drove him mad. Why was it so torturous?

Just as he mentally asked himself that, he heard her voice. Like a siren's call, he heard her whisper as clear as day in his ears.

"Mmm...stay...stay…"

'Aa. That's why...' He subconsciously thought, as if he had forgotten and his eyes softened with pained understanding. What was most likely the Uchiha blood within him, he already decided on his course of action because he had been ordered. She had commanded something of him and going off to London conflicted with that order. She, through the rosy lips he had ravished and her tired, seductive murmur, told him to stay and it was exactly what he wanted.

"Come back to bed…"

He couldn't, if he was so damn far away. His brow creased even more and his eyes closed to calm himself. He felt a headache coming on now.

He was going to be gone for three weeks and now, there was the possibility he would have to fly off to Europe, just as soon as he got back. Six more days, after today, he would leave for three, hellish weeks without Sakura and there was no telling how long he would have to be in London. This was fate's doing again. He wanted to be with Sakura more and because of that, whoever wrote out his life decided he must suffer the torment of giving him his greatest desire, whilst taking it from him as well.

"Is that what's really bothering you about it? The travel? You're never usually bothered about that. You're used to it, in fact." Kakashi questioned intuitively. Sasuke's teeth clenched and his lips formed a scowl. He was right. It wasn't his first time being gone. He could be gone for months at a time. The longest he spent traveling ever before was a whole seven months and he was just fine.

But, that was before. That was before he had acquired his new world with Sakura. He had claimed her and now his mind was screaming obscenities at the thought of leaving her. And there were still the matters of Danzo and Orochimaru. Even if he could rest assured by Itachi's word that she would be protected and safe, he still didn't want to leave her for so long. He wanted her at his side, within arm's reach!

He was considering taking her with him on the cruise now more than ever. Ever since he left her apartment this morning, he thought about buying her a few necessities to pack her bags with and she'd be within a reachable distance from him. He'd be torn away from her for a few conferences, meetings and venues on the ship; if she didn't feel like attending the parties he had to. In that case, she could stay in his designated suite on the boat. She was his woman, after all. No one there had to know she was his secretary.

Except the Otsutsuki's. That was the one and only factor that still gave him hesitation. He couldn't hide Sakura from them on the boat and the men of the Otsutsuki lineage had seen her personally as his secretary. He could hope Hagoromo would have nothing against it, but every lesson of life he had learned so strictly screamed in objection. The last thing he wanted was for him and Sakura to be seen as a scandal. There would be no reparations to either his name or hers if this came out as a scandal on a business cruise. It was an infamous fact that any trouble or scandal caused or brought to the eyes of the Otsutsuki's while in their hospitality was met with harsh scrutiny. It had been the destruction of many lives before that had given the Otsutsuki's even more power than they already had. They were the standard for elite families like his own.

He'd rather suffer the agony that was her absence, than damage Sakura's.

"Tch." Was the only response he bothered to formulate, considering his frustration on the matter. Kakashi couldn't help chuckling at what was obviously, Sasuke's form of a yes. This earned him the infamous glare the Uchiha were known for. Kakashi had finally pushed him into full contempt and anger. Everything today was fine until now and with all this thinking and frustration, now all he wanted was Sakura and Sakura alone.

Did this world want him to become insane?! Sasuke was pretty sure an aneurysm was not too far behind, in his mind full of madness.

"No need to give me that look. I know it can be strenuous." Kakashi waved off. Sasuke's eyes rolled, sighing deeply through his nose and checking his phone for messages. Sebastian had kept him updated all day today, though he gave pause at a certain text he received.

Accompanying Lady Sakura

to visit children in a clinic

3:54pm

He could leave now…maybe he could push off the later meetings for tomorrow and just spend the rest of his night with Sakura. With this new development, he'd rather spend as much time with her as possible. He could take her out to dinner. Or they could stay in for the night, snuggled on the couch and watch a movie.

If they stayed in, maybe he'd see what more his fingers could make her feel. He could hear what other sounds she could make with his touch. He was looking forward to that. He could use the stress relief right now. He could use the bliss she gave that made him forget everything.

It was their deal, after all. A contract between him and her, signed through her body last night.

"Going to see Sakura now? You have some time to spare don't you?" Kakashi broke him from his thoughts. Sasuke looked over, placing his phone in his pocket. The fact that her name came up just as he had that rather lewd thought meant there was no stopping the flashbacks of last night coming to his mind. Oh, he could go see her all right. If he closed his eyes, he could see her right now; all of her. The real thing would be a million times better of course.

'Please…take me. I can't take anymore. Please...please, Sasuke-kun.'

He didn't have to imagine touching the real thing. He could touch the real thing all he wanted, as far as he was concerned.

"Hn. I still have a few meetings tonight. Spending only two hours or so with her would be bothersome."

"Bothersome? You don't seem so bothered anymore now that I've mentioned her." Kakashi smiled behind his mask. Sasuke walked to the exit. Two hours with her only? It would be beyond bothersome. The day spent without her had been more than irritating and he had only managed to keep calm anytime he remembered last night and what he had waiting for him later. Sakura was waiting for him. He could feel it. She was calling him and he had already long lost his ability to resist her. Sakura had broken every last one of his restraints and he still had the insatiable appetite for her.

His mind made up itself.

"Aa...so, how about you take care of those meetings for me, while I get Sakura for dinner." Sasuke waved without looking back. The words left his mouth without thinking. Kakashi didn't see it, but Sasuke's eyes glinted at the thought. Sakura for dinner. He remembered last night, thinking that she was a meal fit for a king. He was hungry for her all day today. He thanked any and all divine deities above that he had his back turned to Kakashi as he felt himself unconsciously lick his lips.

Damn, he really was out of control. Worse, Sasuke didn't give two flying fucks and he liked it. Despite the slight frustration earlier he felt so freed. He could relax. Sakura could ease his stress. She was all his.

'I'm yours! I'm all yours!'

He couldn't hold back his smirk. His eyes lowered. She said so herself too.

"You don't mind, do you, Kakashi?" Sasuke questioned, continuing to walk. Kakashi's eyes widened and he reacted with shock.

"Wh-What? But your meetings are running until almost eleven o'clock tonight." Kakashi complained lightly while following Sasuke towards the elevator.

"See why it's such a bother?" Sasuke questioned whimsically and pushed the elevator button. Kakashi cleared his throat, composing himself.

"Well, I suppose you're right boss. I'll explain that you had...an emergency?" Kakashi suggested. Sasuke thought for a moment, smirking to himself again. Emergency? Hardly. He'd prefer to call it an important appointment that would take up the rest of his evening. A stress relieving appointment. The elevator opened and they stepped in.

"It's important. Report to me about the meetings tonight and I'll handle the rest." Sasuke said, catching Kakashi off guard. He was pushing off his work, to be with Sakura and that was important? More important than work? Behind his mask, Kakashi slowly smiled and his eyes warmed. To himself, the advisor couldn't help but think it was about time Sasuke acted without responsibility for a change. The man had never acted with immaturity in his life. It had led him to become the CEO they all feared and appeased.

This lighter side to Sasuke was definitely something he imagined, if the youngest of the Uchiha hadn't been forced into his strict life. Quite laid back. Subtle and calm.

Kakashi was just realizing now, how much pressure it must have been on a fifteen year old being expected to succeed an entire international company. To be raised from childhood with the duty to fulfill his father's expectations. Yet, not once did he ever complain.

"By the way, if you're taking Sakura out for dinner, I have a few suggestions." Kakashi brought up, shoving his hands into his pockets and closing his eyes. Sasuke paused, bringing a pensive fist to his lips. He wasn't talking about taking her out to dinner at all, though he thought about it. Either way, it was probably best Sakura's father figure didn't catch his hidden innuendo.

"Aa. Where would that be?" Sasuke asked, listening, although his interest in Kakashi's suggestion was feigned. Kakashi smirked underneath his mask. Slowly the older gentleman pulled out a small book, one Sasuke knew he carried around and read quite often. The book's cover was always shielded with a plain, black cover. Sasuke slowly took the book handed to him, just as the elevator doors opened.

"What's this? Isn't this the book you read all the time?" The two men walked out of the building.

"Think of it as a restaurant directory." Sasuke raised an eyebrow. A restaurant directory? Didn't the man just say he had a suggestion for him? What was Kakashi doing reading restaurant directories all day?

"And Sasuke…" Kakashi paused, the man looked back.

"Be a gentleman with Sakura, will you?" Sasuke raised an eyebrow.

"What do you mean by that? Oi! Oi!" Sasuke yelled back. Kakashi was already walking ahead of him and bidding him farewell with a dismissive wave of his hand; probably to go prepare for all the meetings he had been tossed onto. Sasuke glared at the man's back, looking back down at the black covered book in his hand. Sasuke scoffed, walking to his car and tossing the book in his passenger seat while getting in. He really didn't know what Kakashi meant. Be a gentleman to Sakura. He always tried his best to be…

Although...was last night's loss of control very gentlemanly? He was as passionate as he could be. Sakura knew it, right? She knew now, how much he loved her and she reciprocated his feelings back.

No matter how much he reimagined it, there was no changing the outcome. He would become a slave to his desires and lose all sense of restraint the way he did last night. He closed his eyes, leaned back and sighed in exasperation, only to see the image of Sakura's sprawled out body in bed. Her pleasured eyes were pleading for him, in the same manner as last night and when his eyes reopened again, his onyx eyes were filled with smoldering heat. He wasn't seeing the interior of his car right now.

He was seeing her. Her body. Her eyes. Her lips.

'I'm yours! I'm all yours!'

His lips parted. 'Mine and no one else's.' He almost murmured out loud. He probably did say it out loud without realizing.

With a blink, he was back to realizing she and he were not anywhere he had just fantasized. He felt a lot better now though. He'd figure out the London crap later. Maybe, Sakura would like a trip to Europe. He'd have to hope she had a passport already. They might get a little attention from the press, seeing as he would arrive with a woman at his side for the first time ever, but he wasn't concerned. Besides, he had his ways to suppress information he didn't want leaked to certain sources when out of the country. If they were far away from Konoha, he could flaunt and be with her all he wanted.

And he most certainly wouldn't have to worry about Orochimaru and Danzo in the slightest, a whole country away.

With that he called her phone, expecting to hear her voice and be completely washed of all irritation he felt towards his employees and Kakashi. He was also up for a little teasing maybe. He could only imagine what she felt about everything that happened between them. He bet all his wealth, she would be flustered just by the sound of his voice. What was she going to do when they were face to face, alone?

To be honest, he had no idea what he would do either. He could take a wild guess, but not even he knew how far he'd actually go. He was already imagining her sprawled beneath him in bed again. That same submissive look, waiting for him to ravish her was still too prevalent. He could taste and feel her already. He was starting to glare with impatience.

'Fuck. She's driving me insane.'

It was the biggest understatement he had ever made in his life.

"HEYYY TEME!" The worst possible voice that could have come on answered the phone. Sasuke's eyebrow twitched though it did not go amiss that he heard the giggling and laughing of children. Sasuke scowled. Should the idiot really be talking like that in front of kids?

"Dobe. Where's Sakura? Why do you have her phone?" Sasuke grumbled, now completely annoyed. No amount of remembering last night was going to cool him down now. He forgot Naruto had left work early today. The email said something about an emergency. He was too aloof to care about the details so he just approved it without a bother. If he remembered right, Sebastian had informed him he had joined Sakura as well, but the butler said nothing about the blond being at the clinic with her. Why couldn't the blond idiot just be with Hinata or something?

What the hell did he take the rest of the day off for in the first place?!

"She has a meeting with some guy who funds the children's clinic. She asked me to hold her phone for any calls and took Sebastian with her, since someone apparently ordered him 'Not to leave her side.' Or something along those lines." Naruto informed, teasing Sasuke no less of course. Sasuke's eyes rolled. He was just being considerate. He was sure Sakura was going to be tired today after last night. She did leave pretty late so maybe she needed time to recover. Sasuke smirked to himself.

Sakura's durability was admirable. He had hoped she would just lay in bed all day until he got there. He underestimated her. Then again, that was to be expected, wasn't it? His Sakura was a bucket of surprises. Looks like he would have to pull out a lot more measures to get her to stay in bed. What would it take, he wondered, to ravish her so much she couldn't walk? He'd leave her in bed, spend a whole day at work and come back to her in bed. His smirk grew and a mischievous glint came to his eyes.

Sasuke now had a new goal in life.

Moreover, there were his alternative reasons for having Sebastian at her side. Itachi said he needed the day to get his team together to be her guard. All preparations would be made by tonight or tomorrow and from then until he dealt with Orochimaru and Danzo respectively, Sakura would have eyes on her, "at all times", as Itachi had promised. Sakura would be protected. Ordering Sebastian not to leave her side was the best a guard he could get without having fears over loyalty or competence.

Sebastian may have given the appearance of a kind, gentle, old man, but there were certain requirements to being the head butler of the Uchiha Estate. Sebastian's skill was sharper than ever at seventy years of age and brought him enough ease from his worries. And because Sakura was his, Sebastian would be sure that no one would be within arm's reach of her, unless they wanted broken bones. That was the meaning of the order; "take care of everything precious to me."

To think, to this day he still couldn't beat the old man in a spar. Neither could Itachi. His eyebrow twitched. One day, he'd knock down that old fart.

"Aa. Will you be there long? I'm finished for the day." Sasuke inquired.

"Really? I thought you were gonna be busy all day."

"Things change. Kakashi will handle the rest for tonight." He, rather smugly, proclaimed. Yes. Things changed. He wanted to see Sakura. He wanted to be by her side. There was no reason he couldn't do such a thing and he would be damned if anything stopped him. That's what employees were for.

"I guess they do." Naruto chuckled on the other end. Sasuke stayed silent and his eyes lowered. How long had he ignored the freedom to be an actual friend to Naruto, he suddenly wondered. The blond haired, knucklehead had always been by his side, and so much so, he gave him an important and high paying position for work when he took over the company. He always made sure himself, Naruto knew what he was doing when he hired him, but it was hardly necessary. Naruto had always been a great friend. Yet, only now was Sasuke more than grateful to him; he pushed him towards Sakura and even when he was unsure and fighting himself, it was Naruto who always urged him on.

He owed that idiot. Honestly. Maybe they could have a few drinks this , long as he made up his damn work from today.

"So, will you leave soon?"

"I think we'll be here for a while. We just got here not too long ago and Sakura-Chan wants to spend time with the kids to make sure they're doing alright. The moment we got here, apparently the guy was waiting for her." Naruto idly said but that triggered something in Sasuke. His dark eyes narrowed into a glare. In business, that was a power move—an intimidation tactic. Who exactly did that man think he was and why would he force Sakura into a sudden meeting like that? His eyes narrowed. He would not stand for such a blatant disrespect. She was his woman after all. Any disrespect to her was a disrespect to him.

He wouldn't be an Uchiha if he were to let that slide.

"Where's the clinic?" Sasuke growled.

"What's with that tone? Something wrong?" Naruto asked densely.

"Give me the address to the clinic dobe!" Sasuke snarled, turning on his car.

"Okay, okay! Place is called Lady Katsuya's Children's Home. It's on the corner of Byakugou Street and Senju Avenue . It looks like an old church." Naruto sighed out in defeat, seemingly not wanting to get into it with the Uchiha on the phone in front of kids. He inputted the name of the clinic into his phone's GPS system.

"Hn. I'm on my way." Sasuke said and hung up on the blond friend. He sighed, completely understanding that whatever lewd thoughts he had before were null and void now that Naruto was around. It would have to wait until Sakura and he were alone again. That was actually an old business lesson.

'All good things to those who wait, right? Patience.' His own mind spoke for him in a murmur. He sighed again, looking over at the small black book with a raised eyebrow. Kakashi...read restaurant directories all day? Slowly, he picked up the tossed book in his passenger seat and opened the first page. In an instant, his eyebrow raised. This didn't look like any restaurant directory he saw before.

"Icha Icha: Paradise?" He mumbled the title out. He turned the page and after a quiet five minutes, Sasuke closed the book with a slam.

An angered and embarrassed crimson covered his entire face. He palmed his face. He probably would have laughed if this happened to Naruto, but rather than amusement, he felt slight humiliation. He had been transparent again? How did Kakashi figure it out? He thought he had covered himself, but it looked like Kakashi saw right through him. And why in the hell would that bastard give him a damn book like this?! That bastard was reading perverted books like this the whole time?! While in meetings! For years! What kind of damn pervert had his father hired?! Did his father even know?!

'Think of it as a restaurant directory.' He sighed. That old bastard was being sly and the worst part was that he had no right to be angry. He was being just as much a sly bastard as the man he called his advisor, mentor and friend, with his innuendo earlier.

Karma's a bitch.

Shifting into gear and pulling out of his parking space, Sasuke full on convinced himself he was only keeping the book to give it back. That, and only that reason, was why the book was not flung out his car window this instant. If Kakashi read it, surely there was more to it than that.

Also, as an employer, he should comb through the entire book and be sure that he knew the true contents of his employee's true "work ethic".

As if he needed such influence…with all the ideas and fantasies he had swirling in his head now.


Sakura smiled kindly and hopeful towards the pale man before her. She had just finished her report on the progress of her patients—the kids, and was relatively excited to relay her projected outcomes. It wasn't the first time she had a meeting with the suited man before her, but she was surprised when arriving today and finding out he was here. He'd usually call. Sebastian stood outside the door thankfully, rather than join her for the meeting out of consideration. She was grateful for that, considering what he had said earlier.

"Young Master Sasuke has ordered when not on home premises to be by your side at all times, my Lady."

She hoped Sebastian didn't get into trouble over standing outside one of the office rooms in the building. He was right outside the door and the poor old butler seemed extremely reluctant to leave her side, even for professionalism's sake. Mari said earlier that they only wished to abide by Sasuke's wishes, but Sebastian's inner turmoil surfacing made her remember, they were still Sasuke's employees. Sebastian seemed so stressed when she asked him to wait outside. Maybe she would talk with Sasuke about being more lenient with his orders. Surely, they didn't have to fuss so heavily over his commands the way they have been. That's what she believed anyway.

"I must say, Haruno-san, your progress exceeds my employer's expectations. When we first began funding you, we were certain this would be a risky venture, but you have most certainly turned this into a future integration of child care." The man spoke and gave her his usual thin smile. It often disturbed Sakura, even if the man didn't seem to mean anything by it. Sakura had to remind herself often, with the proof of her own experiences, that the smile held no sinister intent. She glowed a big smile, of course elated that her work was being praised.

With this project, that took her years to even start, she had long hoped to change the lives of many children in the slums. The clinic ran similarly to foster homes, except they ensured psychological, mental and behavioral wellness with the children before they were available for adoption. Sakura hoped, in Lady Katsuya's Children's Home, these kids could relearn and relive being the children they were supposed to be. She wanted them to obtain their own self construction, even with the A.E.F evaluating the difference between the providing of psychological and mental health services and those without.

For Sakura, it always struck a chord. She was once one of these kids. She was once one of these kids from broken homes, or hurtful ones were their past here and they could put it behind them, by being allowed to be the children they are. To the A.E.F, they were potential prospects, simply because it was where they found gems like her and Shikamaru.

She wanted something different for them. She hoped to help treat and help children who had nowhere to go—to find their own dreams. She hoped to help them find their passions and interests...not through pressurized forced like her and Shikamaru. From there, they could change the world. It was the least she could do, coming from the same place as them, and following in Tsunade's and Jiraiya's footsteps.

They could walk right in here, alone, if they didn't feel safe. There was not a single child facilitated in the small building currently, that she did not meet with open and warm arms herself.

Her hope and theory for the clinic was that by providing care and needs to the abandoned children of the slums and/or otherwise poor states of living, would give them a chance to grow up in a relatively normalized, happy environment. Given they were at least ages five to nine, they were given cleaning duty, and taught to care for one another, as Naruto and Shikamaru had taught her growing up. The kids responded so well to games and singing, they were interested in learning when before they had no future to begin with. The children were treated as a big family with a few regular volunteers, including herself and Ino. Sometimes Hinata came by as well.

Temari fervently claimed she was allergic to children.

Sakura's motives were simple. No one was there to help her, Naruto and Shikamaru when they needed it. They had no place like this to go to. Her conception of this facility was born from that thought. They didn't have a place to go to feel safe, send them to school, feed them hot meals and protect them. If there was one thing she was going to do in this world, it would be to help the child she could've been. Ino, who had grown up in a well off middle class family was sympathetic and wanted to do her part, helping in donations and fundraising. The moment Sakura obtained her doctorate, she fully intended to work full time in her clinic.

"Thank you, Zetsu-san!"

"Is that all for the progress?"

"Yes. Moving on, I am hoping the rehabilitation process of the children will continue to push the kids a bit more to a fifth grade level, before they get sent into the adoption system. Their grades prove better than the students released at fourth grade levels, and they are proven to be mentally driven and functional. The kids also integrate with the families better than the statistics shown in your average foster care system. I believe with the integration of continued care and providing of education, the kids have the same chance at life than those more privileged. I'll continue putting in as much as needed of me, for more results but it is astonishing how children with such trauma could be able to function normally again. Some are even better than normal children." Sakura answered, feeling bittersweet and lucky. Some of the kids were worse off than she and Naruto were.

Yet, they all still smiled. They played and acted like children. They cried. It took a bit of time and patience but the kids eventually opened up. They trusted her and the others and they became a family. That is how she wanted it to stay and she hoped it was a special, close-knit operation that could be replicated in many cities and countries the world over. She hoped anyway. The man was silent and Sakura couldn't shake the feeling this wasn't going to be a good meeting.

"I see…"

"You usually call before having a visit, Zetsu-san. I'm sure you're not here for just a report on the kids and/or the clinic."

"I'm sorry to say...you're right, Haruno-san." His monotonous voice spoke. Sakura did her best not to grimace. In meetings like this she knew not to show her emotions but damn was it hard for a woman like her. Especially when she had worked so hard to achieve everything here. This was her project to help a cause she deeply cared for.

"I see...so, what is it?"

"Haruno-san, your work is admirable...but unfortunately my sudden visit brings some bad news." Zetsu's voice was as genuinely remorseful, as much as his placid voice could be. Sakura's smile dropped and her face filled with concern.

"What is it Zetsu-san?" She asked, her brow lifting. The man sighed, pushing his hands into his brown slacks.

"My employer has taken a terrible hit due to an error somewhere in our accounts. Regrettably, we have been cutting costs and spending. Unfortunately, Haruno-san, this includes the funding we have been giving to your clinic." His tone was somber, while trying to be cordial. It was obvious her features had shifted just slightly, though Sakura tried to fight it. To think...she had the best night of her life last night and now she felt like crying. Sakura knew what was coming next. This always happened. When companies don't feel they made enough money, prospects like hers were the first to trash. No matter that it was for helpless children. She did her best to bite her tongue, not speak her thoughts out loud and scream "Corporate scumbag!" This level of control and restraint would have made Sasuke impressed.

Still, she couldn't stop the fierce look that came to her jade eyes. She was only able to minimize it as much as possible.

"I see. Will you be cutting all of your funding for us?" Sakura asked, keeping her voice calm. She couldn't let her emotions get the best of her. As disappointing as this was, the clinic would be fine for now. There were other sponsors funding it, but this particular funder was rather generous. The kids had been flourishing with the latest payments and now she was going to have to rework the budget with the financers at the A.E.F.

She hated meeting with them. Even as a child they were always asking for more. Thank the heavens for Kakashi and Shikamaru, for keeping her grounded.

"I am pleased to say no; we're not cutting all the funding. We are cutting back only sixty-five percent of it."

'Only?' Sakura mentally berated. She was sure if she said it outloud, it would have come off as cheerfully sarcastic. She had to admit, this was upsetting. She was going to have to go through the sponsors at the A.E.F. Again. They had many expenses to cover and this chunk being lost was going to prove challenging to replace if they had bothered to care for this place at all. Hinata said she was going to try to get her father to release funding, but according to Neji, it may have had to wait until the next quarter's quota. What was she going to do now? Get a loan from the bank?

She wasn't going to just ask Sasuke for it. However wealthy he may be, she didn't want his help out of obligation and/or because she was his girlfriend. She didn't want special privileges because she just so happened to be dating a wealthy man. Everything she had built, she had made her own and she wanted to keep it that way.

"Please, try to understand Haruno-san, it was a very tough decision on my employer's behalf and he wished to not have to cut funding with you at all. He made a hard effort to continue to fund you as much as he could. Please forgive us." Sakura's brow lifted slightly with guilt. Damn. Whether or not what he was saying was true, it didn't change the fact that they still kept some funding aside for her clinic. She shouldn't be so critical...

"When our accounts are better suited for it, we will give you back the funding we missed out on, as well as increase our budget for your funding. I've left a folder here on your desk, detailing our future prospects." He stated, giving her a curt bow. She bowed back. That made her feel a little better. She could hold onto the hope that what he was saying was true. Not all was lost, at least. She now mentally berated herself herself for thinking like an angry child. Things like this happened. She didn't need to call him a corporate scumbag, especially considering the outcome of the matter was not in his hands to begin with. She suddenly wondered; how many times Sasuke had declined or rescinded from something or someone in his business affairs. They probably felt the same way she did. She didn't know how much or the reasoning for those rejections, but it was simply a part of life. She believed that to be true anyway. She needed to often remind herself that life could be truly unfair sometimes.

"I understand Zetsu-san. Extend my regards to your boss as well as my thanks." She did her best to sound cordial. She really did. The man straightened upright along with her and shook her hand.

"I will, Haruno-san. And once again, I deeply apologize. This should not happen again." Sakura sighed, feeling guilty now for thinking so badly about the man before her. It wasn't like he had a say in things concerning their funding. He was a representative, nothing more.

"Don't worry. We'll make ends meet. Thank you." Sakura smiled. The man she only knew as Zetsu, began walking and Sakura followed him to leave the office they were in. She looked over to see Sebastian, still by the door standing at attention with his hands behind his back. She eyed as Sebastian and Zetsu shared a glance, before Zetsu walked away and he gave her a curt bow.

"Until next time Haruno-san."

"Is everything alright, my Lady?" Sebastian asked quietly. Sakura's face dropped a bit. She had told Zetsu she would make ends meet but it was a fact that his employer, whom she had never met, gave her the bulk of their funds lately. She was going to have to look at their monthly budget and tweak things.

"Yes, Sebastian-san. Don't worry." Sakura started walking down the hall with Sebastian beside her.

"May I ask you something, Lady Sakura? If you cannot answer me, I understand and ask you to forgive me for prying." He spoke cordially and something about his tone bothered Sakura. It wasn't Sebastian himself. She liked the old butler. But his tone of voice had indeed changed ever so slightly, to one that concerned her. He sounded...troubled? Upset?

"What is it, Sebastian-san?" She asked, looking at the old man. The butler shifted his silvery blue eyes to her—she was just now noticing they were icy blue, compared to Naruto's sky blue ones and they were serious, in contrast to the usual tenderness Sebastian often showed her. Her gaze became worried. That was the second time today, Sebastian seemed off. Did it have something to do with Sasuke's order?

"Have you known that man for a long time, my Lady?" Her eyes widened slightly with surprise.

"Zetsu-san? He and his employer have helped fund the clinic for the last year or so...I've never met his employer though." Sakura answered, giving Sebastian a wary look. Something was definitely wrong, especially with the way his grey eyebrows furrowed.

"I see...thank you for obliging my question, my Lady." Sebastian said, shifting his gaze from her. Sakura's brow furrowed this time.

"Is…something wrong Sebastian-san? Do you know Zetsu-san?"

"...No, Lady Sakura. I don't know him very well." Sakura's eyebrow raised, catching the phrasing. Sebastian said he didn't know him very well.

So did they have history before? She decided not to pry. Between Sebastian being obviously unsettled by her meeting and her bit of frustration from the loss of funds for the kids, she wasn't in the mood to probably receive vague answers, if she got any at all. Maybe she could give one of her paychecks to the place. It should help for the week. Her bills and rent were paid and she had food; though she would have to cook. She could ration it out for a month. They made a turn.

"Did something troubling happen, Lady Sakura?" Sebastian's voice rang through her thoughts. She looked at him with an apologetic smile. She was always easy to read...wasn't she? She didn't want to bother him about it. Besides, she was certain he would tell Sasuke and she really didn't want him to feel obligated to help, even if he had the funds for it. She would figure things out. Sakura turned to look ahead.

"Well, it was a bit upsetting. But everything will work out. I'll manage." She answered. Sebastian's lips frowned with despair and his brow furrowed. He had heard the abysmal percentage of loss. Surely, Lady Sakura would need some kind of aid, but as a servant, he dare not call out such damning evidence. Lady Sakura was to be respected and he did respect her greatly.

Even so...he could already see, she would struggle before even showing she needed help. Sebastian could tell, she was quite independent.

And that independence came from a lack of being able to rely on others.

"If you ever need any kind of aid, Young Master Sasuke will provide you with anything you need, my Lady. Please, trust in that." Sebastian proclaimed, hoping to steer her to the aid of his Young Master. It would surely bring them closer. Sakura looked down at the statement. Sebastian said it so matter-of-factly, as if he had read her mind or knew what the meeting was about. She knew Sasuke would. Hell, something told her, if she asked, he'd probably just buy the building and fund it all himself. But she didn't want that. He stressed enough already.

"There's no need. Besides, Sasuke-kun has enough on his plate as is. He doesn't need to worry about my troubles."

She turned her head to him and gave a gorgeous smile that threw away any doubt or worry she may have previously shown on her face. Her delightful features made everything glow. It was at that moment, Sebastian fully understood how she had gotten his rather reclusive and solitary Young Master to fall head over heels in love, as he was. That smile promised sunshine and rainbows. It promised that everything was beautiful. And just from her smile, you had no choice but to believe such a fairytale. His Young Master must have been absolutely taken aback and blinded by such light, not often seen in the Uchiha household.

Uchiha or not; who wouldn't fall for such a beauty?

"It's nothing I can't handle Sebastian-san. Everything will be fine." She opened the door to the children's play hall, a large room of the renovated building where the children laughed and played. Her face gentled, watching Naruto get chased by the kids here; their laughter, their smiling faces, the children eased her from her troubled thoughts. While she stared at them she found a new determination, one that showed through a warm and loving look on her face.

She was going to make sure she made things work. She'd do whatever she could even if she had to starve. She was going to make sure the children kept everything they needed and she hoped to give them whatever they wanted.

"Sakura-nee-chan!" She heard, surprising her from the scene. There was a light thud against her abdomen and she looked down to see a few of the younger little ones. The four and five year olds before her held children's books in their hands.

"C-Can we-we read the-the U-Ugly Duck-ling?" One boy asked. A girl stomped her foot.

"B-But! I wanna read Green Eggs and Ham!"

Sakura chuckled and kneeled on the safety padded ground, and gave the small group a beautiful smile.

"Now, now. What do I always say when it comes to books and reading time?" She asked cheerily. The kids grinned at her.

"We can read them all!" They all cheered in unison. Sakura chuckled and stood. They walked to another padded area in the hall, where the kids could chase Naruto without interfering with their reading time. Sebastian watched as Sakura sat cross legged and was surrounded by the adolescents who were eager for story time, with humbled approval.

Although she didn't know it, of course he heard the entire meeting. It was part of his duty to keep her safe and a simple qualification as head of the Uchiha House. The butler brought out his phone and walked to the hall. Sakura was secure. It would be fine to distance himself for the moment. His silver brows furrowed at the first message he saw on his phone.

Young Master Sasuke

I will be arriving shortly.

4:57pm

Sebastian eyed Sakura again. She was safe for now; surrounded by children, Naruto, and an unnamed volunteer who was also doing drawing activities with the children. It was time to attend to his duties now, considering an undesired deplorable was just waiting for his Lady in her office.

His silver blue eyes sharpened again as they did earlier. He put his phone away, and with elegance, the butler began walking back to her office down the hallway. Upon reaching the door, he gave a tug to each of his white gloves, and further grimaced. His already sharpened eyes narrowed to glare physical daggers. His Young Master trusted that his Lady, his most precious, was taken care of. Sebastian had long since decided, without being told, that he would do so to the fullest extent of his honor as head butler to the Uchiha.

It was Lady Mikoto's wish, after all; that he'd protect the next Matriarch of the Uchiha House as fervently as she had been. He had also received an order from his Young Master to protect her.

'I'd best clean up my Lady's office. Quickly.'


Sasuke stepped out of his parked car. He had to park around the corner much to his dismay. He hoped he wasn't too late to make an entrance on Sakura's surprise visitor. He had many things he wanted to establish and of course, normally he wouldn't be so involved in someone else's business. He'd probably be less angry as well, if it wasn't for the fact that she was his.

But this involved Sakura. Anything and anyone that imposed themselves on Sakura would answer to him, as he swore months ago. As he thought earlier, a disrespect to her was a disrespect to himself. He never stood for such actions against him and it certainly wouldn't fly with his woman.

Sasuke calmed himself. Sebastian was with her. He'd know and tell him everything, even if he just so happened to miss whoever dared to intrude themselves upon her.

"It is my duty to know and protect all, surrounding those important to the House, Young Master." The old butler used to say. And with one incident, Sasuke never doubted it. Sebastian was stellar in almost all trades, from acting, to combat, to reconnaissance and more, besides the more simple skills required of a butler.

"How, you ask? Well, I'm simply one hell of a butler, sir."

He had nothing to worry about. Sakura was in the one pair of hands he trusted most in this entire world.

Walking down the block, Sasuke never realized he passed the person he was so eager to reprimand. The man didn't catch his attention and therefore bypassed him with ease...and was watching his movements. Zetsu stared in observation as Sasuke stalked by and brought out his phone.

"I have interesting news, sir. Quite interesting it is."

Sasuke eyed the exquisite building when he reached it. Like Naruto described, it looked like it was once a centuries old church. On the outside at least. He shoved his hands into his slacks and strided to the large wooden doors, antiques almost from centuries ago. The moment he entered the building, there was a pleasant reception like area. There was a receptionist desk and of course, Sebastian was there to greet him the moment he entered the doors.

"Welcome, Young Master. I shall escort you immediately to the Madam." Sebastian addressed him first as always, bowing with his head down and a hand over his heart. Sasuke gave a curt nod.

"Lead the way." Sasuke ordered nonchalantly, but the truth was he was impatient and he knew Sebastian caught it. Why else would he give such a command when already told he would be guided immediately? Sebastian stood back up straight, smiling politely.

"Of course, sir." He began to walk with Sasuke following closely behind.

"E-Excuse me!"

"U-Uhm...n-name, please?" The receptionist quietly asked. Sebastian for him, only to excuse his employer as a guest, as politely as usual.

"He is Uchiha Sasuke, madam. Here to see My Lady who I accompanied. I shall sign in for him." Sebastian explained for him, to the receptionist, while Sasuke waited anxiously for approval to enter. He gave an annoyed glare as the woman gave the usual heart eyed look he always got and looked at the rather nice brown wood floors. He needed to be by her side. He needed to see her and he was so close he felt like he could sense her. She wasn't far from him. But where in this building was she? He couldn't tell exactly how far she was.

Damn, she really did make him feel insane. Was this some sort of new sixth sense?

"Sakura-Chan is so popular! Go on in!" She chimed and squealed. Sasuke scoffed beneath his breath, rolling his eyes and his butler chuckled. Sebastian then wasted no time leading Sasuke. While Sebastian led him towards where he was looking to be, there was no way he was going to exclude his butler from questioning.

"Your report, Sebastian." Sasuke ordered, hands in his pockets and staring at Sebastian's back from his short distance behind the long time and trusted butler.

"Lady Sakura is currently having reading time with some of the children, while Sir Naruto engages in physical activities with the others. Another volunteer is there, but nothing of pique interest. She is painting and doing arts with the remaining children. Lady Sakura just finished having a meeting with who appeared to be a funding partner to this promising institution. Lady Sakura's intentions are exponentially pure, as she facilitates treatment and education to the children." Sasuke's eyes narrowed, an instinctive tilt of his head revealed his particular interest in the last part.

"You were present, were you not?" He questioned expectantly.

"With respect to Lady Sakura's affairs, I remained outside the office. She asked that of me." Sasuke glared at the answer. He couldn't refute the reasoning, especially if Sakura had personally asked Sebastian, but Sasuke also was not pleased.

"So you know nothing about his intentions?" The butler gave an amused chuckle at Sasuke's accusation of incompetence.

"From what I gathered sir, he was simply a delegate, here to discuss an issue with funding the clinic." The butler said.

"Hn. Without warning nor an appointment?" Sasuke snarled.

"I see you spoke with Young Naruto before arriving, sir. Yes. It was obviously unanticipated by Lady Sakura. In fact, Lady Sakura's decision to visit the children seemed solely based on having a free day off. She had no intention of discussing financial affairs. When we arrived, Lady Sakura was then informed that he had awaited her not too long after she informed the staff she would be in attendance." Sebastian confirmed further. Sasuke glared as he put the scenario together. So, he came and asked if Sakura was in the clinic first and insisted on waiting when he found out she was on the way. He didn't like that one bit. Why would a businessman act such a way...unless out of desperation and urgency?

"You said it was to discuss funding and Naruto claimed he was here waiting for her. Am I correct to assume he canceled funding like a coward then?" The head butler of Uchiha Estates looked back at his Master, a telling look in his silver blue eyes that indicated he was absolutely correct before he even answered.

"Your eyes see all, even when they cannot, sir. Indeed, Young Master. Due to some accounting issues apparently, they are cutting sixty-five percent of funding to the clinic. However…" Sebastian added and Sasuke raised an eyebrow.

"Please do not address Lady Sakura about this explicitly. She does not wish to burden you with her burdens. I suggested her to ask for your aid, but that was her simple response. She also does not know I listened in on her meeting." Sebastian faithfully informed. Sasuke's eyes widened. If he was understanding Sebastian already, the butler had already offered aid to Sakura and she denied it on the premise of being a burden. His brow furrowed. Even after providing her the day of his spoils, she still refused his eager provisions. He was willing and able to give her anything she wanted. Why didn't she just take it…?

He gave a tired sigh when the answer came to him on its own. Leave it to Sakura to refuse a handout and want to do things on her own. Sebastian made a left down the hall and Sasuke followed while giving a grudging rub to the bridge of his nose.

"How do you suggest I go about that?" Sasuke grumbled. Sebastian chuckled, gaining the attention of the Uchiha successor. The butler stopped and turned to his Young Master. A gentle smile expressed through his wrinkles and he tilted his head towards an open doorway. Sasuke followed Sebastian's lead, and instantly set his sights on the object of his desires. The world disappeared.

"I will ensure some of the finances that you can spare goes to the clinic, sir. Shall I ensure it receives the entire sixty-five percent?"

"...Aa."

The words fell on obviously deaf ears with such a limited response. He didn't even remember what the topic was, that Sebastian was addressing and he didn't care either. His hands were in his slacks, and they were already wishing to be free. There she was. She sat, surrounded by children; a book in hand and lips moving as she read to them. Her face was smiling and glowing, animated features as she read the book in an engaging way for the children.

Such beauty, and all of it was his. He had never been a snobby or arrogant man. Prideful and powerful, yes. Wealthy and handsome, he knew that for sure, but he never flaunted it. Having her was like having the ultimate treasure and whether it be his inflated ego or just the insurmountable desire he felt for her, he wanted to brag. He wanted to be an arrogant, egomaniac; he wanted to take her into the nearest tabloid offices so the whole world would know that she was his woman. He wanted other men to look at her with despair because their desires and fantasies for her would always be the reality he lived. He wanted their jealousy.

For heaven's sake, she was surrounded by children and he wanted to be closer to her. He wanted to feel her body again. His urges of desire were growing and now that Sakura had given herself to him, he was all too eager to act upon his wants. He was itching for her.

He wasn't staring at her for very long. In about twenty seconds of his daydreaming, she suddenly flinched. Sakura felt his eyes. She stopped reading and without her meaning to, her gaze shifted around until her emeralds finally fell upon him in the entrance of the play hall. And the instant their eyes met, he watched those gorgeous emerald gems glitter and sparkle brighter than any gem he had ever laid eyes on. Time slowed into eons. Those emeralds he loved; he wanted to stare at them and appreciate them for longer than eternity. A gentle blush came to her cheeks and her lips parted in surprise.

Sasuke understood; Sebastian and Naruto must not have warned her that he was on his way. Sasuke felt his eyes tingle, and a warmth filling him as she seemed to lose just as much track with the world as he had. He wondered if that blush on her face meant that she wanted him just as much. Damn, if he knew being in her presence after last night would be this damn torturous, he would have waited until she was alone and all to himself. He would rather be through all those meetings he forced on Kakashi tonight. It was unfair. Not just to himself, but to her as well. He shouldn't have done this. He was already tensing from holding back and she was giving him that shy, yet temptive look. It was like she was daring him, even though he knew she wasn't. Or maybe she was and he had no idea whatsoever. Either way he was powerless.

For the first time ever in his life, he was absolutely powerless and it made him impatient, frustrated and angry. What he wouldn't give to tell everyone to get the fuck out and leave them alone, right now.

From Sakura's end, she lost her breath when she was met with smoldering and enticing onyx orbs from the perfect face of the perfect man, standing there with his hands in his pockets. Her heart was pounding in her ears as just from his smoldering look behind his bangs, everything from last night slammed into her again. She forgot about the kids sitting right in front of and around her. He was standing across the hall and yet, he might as well be heavily panting in her ear, groping and grabbing her as firmly as he had done. She could feel his hands already. Her body was tingling with anticipation; as if she had been waiting for him all this time.

She had, but she was also distracted here and there. By Naruto, the meeting with Zetsu, the kids, she had taken her mind off him until now, and it suddenly felt like a crime. How could she toss him to the back of her mind when she belonged to him?

The answer was, she didn't. Not really and the small lift of his lips into a haughty smirk told her so.

"Do you want me, Sakura?"

Yes. She blushed. It was an involuntary answer that her mind brought to her conscience, as if to tease her. As if already decided. As if Sasuke had just asked her that same question now in front of Naruto, the other volunteers and children. And her answer was yes.

He must have read her thoughts, because his dark eyes glinted with fire and lust whilst that handsomely devilish smirk grew on his lips. His eyes gave that same flare from last night and it made her blush deepen even worse. Just one look and he had her. How did he do that? How could she feel so close to him while they had a clear distance from each other? Was he hypnotizing her? How could such a powerful man look so gentle? How could a man look so deeply into her the way he was? She questioned it over and over as they locked eyes; that is, until she felt a gentle tug on her shirt.

"Sakura-nee-chan?" A little voice reached her. Before she even had the time to pull away from his stare;

"SAKURA-CHAAAAAN! SAVE ME FROM THESE LITTLE MONSTERS! PLEASE!"

"GETTEEEEMMM" Children screamed. Sakura snapped out of Sasuke's enchantment, turning just in time as Naruto was toppled over by a bunch of kids and the toy he had stolen was retrieved. He was then ganged upon by the "soldiers" armed with pillows who proceeded to wail on him.

Sasuke watched the sight with intrigue. An amused smirk replacing his rather lecherous one, and a small, short but genuine chuckle escaped his throat. Sakura rushed over, excusing herself from the readers and nervously trying to get the riled up kids attention, all of who were on an official warpath and beating on Naruto with pillows.

Sebastian watched his Young Master with a gentle and delighted smile. He had not seen him glow or make such a wide range of expressions, maybe since his very early childhood. It was always an astonishing feat, to watch the Uchiha men break down and metamorphisize into these beings full of love and devotion. He watched Sasuke walk in, apparently comfortable with the environment. The longtime butler never would have imagined the youngest Uchiha would feel comfortable enough to walk into a play area of young children, without being urged or told to. Changes like this were joyous and Sebastian had humble memories of when Fugaku was the same way. Even that rather telling stare he gave to Sakura.

Such subtle actions were a huge deal for the Uchiha men to show. It only increased the butler's awareness.

"Alright kids! Break!" Sakura yelled over and clapped. The instant she clapped, they all halted turning towards her just as Sasuke had reached her side. Sakura was all too aware—sensing him the moment he was behind her. They exchanged quick glances, making eye contact that seemed to take them to their own world, no matter how brief it was.

"Sakura…" He mumbled her name with warm regard. The tone of his husky voice made her blush even more. It sounded like a purr, and his gaze was one of fondness. It made her blood rush, and her heart race. She couldn't stop the light pink blush that spread on her cheeks and quickly looked down timidly.

"Sasuke-kun…" Her voice was a shy, secretive whisper. At the sound of his name, his body twitched. Sakura looked back up just in time to see his gaze heat with the slightest flicker in his onyx eye, and she saw his desire. By the Gods, he wanted to grab her. She was just inches away from his grasp. It wouldn't be out of hand to grab her wrist and drag her into a room somewhere for a bit, would it? Just for a moment...

Be a gentleman with Sakura, will you?

His mind paused. He really needed his control back. He just needed enough restraint until he could get her home—and alone.

"Oi! That's chickenbutt from the park!" Hearing Naruto laugh at the sudden insult burned a fiery anger within him that would not cease until he hurt the blond man he called a friend. For now, for the sake of not creating a bad light of himself in front of children, he snapped a deadly glare to Naruto.

"Niko-kun! That is not polite! No name calling!" Sakura laughed, rather than scolded. Sasuke shifted his eyes to her and smirked with opportunity.

"So, that is funny to you. I'll keep that in mind for later, Sakura." Her name he said with an undertone of flirtation. That stopped her from laughing, but instead of protest, he was met with her twirling a strand of hair timidly. Sakura's mind went straight to the gutter. Later...she had no idea what they would do later but her heart was racing at the thought of them alone.

"I-It's not like that, Sasuke-kun…" She flushed, adorably. He kept his side glance on her and though his heart was fluttering, he also found himself angry all of a sudden. He should be able to grab and kiss her. They should be together and alone. He should have her all to himself. His eyes shifted away to glare elsewhere. This was blasphemy! Being so close and yet so far was more cruelty than he could stand! She belonged to him for crying out loud. He didn't care if he was being a spoiled brat, he wanted to be with Sakura damn it.

Or was it that even the world of his fantasies, were to be tainted by real life. There would always be something to segregate him from her. Somehow. Someway, he'd be torn from her, no matter how much he strived for the opposite.

How infuriating.

"Have you been taking care of Sakura-Chan like you promised chickenbutt?!" Niko suddenly growled and snapped him from his thoughts. He looked over to the glaring boy, and then, Sasuke gave a rather teasing smirk. He needed to get rid of this anger. A bit of teasing for his amusement wouldn't hurt. He had always been an opportunist, and he saw opportunity right before him to get a small bit of his want. It wouldn't be a lot, but it would be enough.

"Of course. I've taken care of her in many ways." He haughtily replied. He heard Sakura give a slight squeak at his remark. His smirk grew. She caught what he meant. The jab on his arm with her elbow proved it. The blush of embarrassment on her face pleased him. Teasing her was apparently going to be ten times more fun now. She cleared her throat.

"Now, what was that for? Have I not?" He smirked again, watching Sakura grow even redder.

"What the hell is that supposed to mean, Teme?!" Naruto yelled, squinting his eyes accusingly at Sasuke. The blond teleported in front of him, both arms full with the kids he had dangling from his grasp. Another two were on his back. Sasuke smirked arrogantly. Finally his hand was released from his slacks. His hand temptatively snaked Sakura's waist and gently pulled her against his side. Sakura was sure her heart stopped in that instant. That belief was disproven, as he fully encompassed her waist in a firm but tender hold and her heart skipped over itself. He looked over to her, with that smoldering gaze in his onyx irises to make her melt right where she stood. Sakura Haruno died right there on the spot, went to heaven and now looked upon his heavenly face; the face of an angel.

'Finally.' He couldn't help but think. She was in his grasp. He wished he could kiss her now, eye-locked like this. Damn, he was holding back but he could already feel his hold getting tighter. Her body against his was making him relive last night all over again. The rest of the world was already going black and his sight remained only on her.

"Don't I take care of you Sakura?" He asked for confirmation. Sakura swallowed hard and did her best to answer.

"Y-Yes…" Her confirmation was noted with his stare on her lips. His hand gripped tighter when her voice from last night echoed in his ears just from her one worded answer.

"Yes. Yes! M-More!"

Damn it all. He was just making himself all the more impatient. As always, teasing her was just as much a torturous tease to himself; if not more of one to himself than to her.

With that, he managed to tear himself away from her gaze and control his thoughts to look down at Niko. The boy was still glaring up at him with an enormous amount of envy. It didn't help, but at least he had something else to focus on, other than the lips he wanted to claim with his own.

"See?" The boy harrumphed.

"You better be." Niko grumbled, too young and too innocent to catch on to Sasuke's actual meaning and tone. Sakura giggled and lowered to the boy.

"You don't have to worry Niko-kun." She promised lovingly. Niko's brows furrowed.

"B-But...you're sure he won't be the way my daddy was to my mommy to you? He...won't hurt you?" Niko asked. Sakura's eyes widened. Niko's frown scowled even further than what it was and he glared at Sasuke.

"N-Niko-kun, he's not like that. We talked about this." She called softly, but was ignored. The boy pointed at Sasuke who was taken aback by the look in the boy's blue eyes. A look of pain, anger, resentment...and fear. The boy was trying to come off as brave, as much as he could. And Sasuke understood. She said these kids had something traumatic happen to them one way or another. Niko's mentioned mother and father was obviously the reason for his apprehension around him.

"If you hurt Sakura-Chan in any way, I won't forgive you!" He yelled and stopped his foot. Sakura's brow furrowed. Niko was regressing again. Then again, he came from quite the broken home. He saw things from his own parents no child should be subjected to. Sakura was about to intervene, only to watch Sasuke kneel to the boy. His onyx eyes looked into the young boy's glaring, glacier blue ones. Sakura watched silently. Niko didn't trust men except for those she introduced. Even still, he was often standoffish with Naruto from time to time.

"Niko…" Sasuke started, meeting the boy's gaze straight on with stern promise.

"I would never and will never hurt Sakura in any way, shape or form." Sasuke spoke honestly and calmly. In the way he watched Sakura talk to him before. He watched the distrust in his young eyes grow and his small hands were balled up into fist. Sasuke lifted up a pinky, and gave a promising smile.

"I promised to take care of her, didn't I?" His dark thoughts surfaced slightly. He would never hurt Sakura...but others had no qualms about it. So, he gave the next add on to his promise. A vocal declaration from what he had vowed last night when she was asleep against him.

"And I'll always protect her if someone else tries to hurt her. With everything I have. Even my own life." Sakura's eyes widened at Sasuke's statement. Sasuke wasn't staring at her, but his voice rang with so much truth it made her heart skip. Sasuke, giving his life for hers? She never thought of such a thing...and she didn't want it. She never wanted Sasuke to risk his life for hers. She wanted no one to do no such thing. If she was in a situation and couldn't take care of it herself, she would be damned before he or Naruto or anyone gave their life for hers.

Their lives...were worth so much more than hers.

And yet, she was still happy to hear that Sasuke deemed her life worthed more than his own. She didn't agree but it gave more confirmation for her that they were connected. That he loved her and there was nothing for her to fear. Everything would be just fine; she told herself.

"I promise Niko. I give you my word, as Sasuke Uchiha and as an Uchiha, I cannot break my promises." Sasuke affirmed. Niko stared, with his still distrustful glare for just a moment. Suddenly his blue eyes, as if having seen through Sasuke, gave way to realization and wary hope. It was obvious to Sasuke, the boy had no idea how to put his trust in others.

After a few more seconds he gave a shyly accepting smile, and clutched his pinky with Sasuke's much larger one.

"Your hair still looks like a duck's butt!" He suddenly laughed and stuck his tongue out. Sasuke chuckled. Not too bothered at all. The kid already kind of grew on him he supposed. Or he was just too concerned with the kid's dark thoughts. Either way, he meant what he said. He would never hurt Sakura. Not intentionally.

"Aa. I thought you said a chickenbutt."

"Both!" The boy grinned.

Sakura watched and blushed lightly at the cute display. A smile came to her face. The dark hair of the two caused them to resemble each other a bit. She didn't expect Sasuke to be so easy with kids himself. Maybe those business tactics of his caused him to read the boy, since Sasuke seemed to know exactly what to say.

'He would...make a good father…' She couldn't help but think.

"Stop being mean to Sakura-nee-chan's boyfriend, Niko-kun! Let's play!" One of the other girls yelled at him bossily. She glared at him with a pouty frown and Niko harrumphed again. Sakura blushed. Kids had no filter at all.

"Maybe I don't wanna!" Niko growled.

"TAG! NIKO, YOU'RE IT!" The boy Sasuke recalled to be named Jin grinned and darted off.

"HEY! I'M NOT IT! GET BACK HERE!" The boy yelled and ran after the other kids. The kids Naruto held, squirmed out of his grasp for the newly started game of tag. The three watched.

"Does that mean I can call you duckbutt now?" Naruto cheekily grinned, nudging Sasuke's side. Sasuke glared, and stood, shoving his hands into his pockets.

"Just wait till we get outside, Dobe. Because I will not do what I want to do right now in front of children." His mind traveled to Sakura the moment he said that. He shifted another glance to her, watching her laugh at some of the kids who hadn't joined the game of tag and were avidly questioning her about their relationship. Weren't they just children? Mostly girls too, with one or two curious boys. Why did they want to know about this stuff?

"So he really is your boyfriend?" One little girl asked.

"Are you guys going to get married?" His eyes softened at her smile. She obviously adored them. She deflected the answers to their questions; even so, she was blushing and laughing with them.

Fine. Maybe he was being a bit of a spoiled brat before, thinking he should have her whenever he wanted. Her entire world didn't revolve around him, even if he wished it did.

"Who knows? Maybe one day." He heard her say. He felt his cheeks burn a bit. Like last night, he had already thought of what they could be in the future. He wanted to permanently cement her place at his side, making her his for the rest of time. Giving her his name, would do so. Sakura Uchiha. He already loved the sound of it. His woman with his name.

If she wished it, he'd marry her right now.

Suddenly, Naruto threw his arm over Sasuke's shoulders, giving an all too innocent grin he knew Naruto only gave when he figured something out. What the hell was he doing? The blond covered his hand and spoke into his ear much to Sasuke's dismay.

"Easy, teme. You're damn near drooling over her." His dark eyes widened slightly. Sasuke scoffed and shrugged him off.

"Shut up, dobe. I'm not in the mood for your idiocy." Sasuke scowled and shrugged him off. Naruto chuckled and smirked.

"I know that. You're just in the mood for something else." Sasuke glared at him. It was one thing when the blond teased him before he had ever even touched Sakura's body. Now, he just found it enraging. It resurfaced his selfish and eager desires to have her right now, and it was all the more angering that he really couldn't even scold the idiot right now.

'Not in front of the kids. Not in front of Sakura. Maintain the little control you have left, Uchiha.' He reminded himself.

"Sakura…" He called, deciding to ignore Naruto completely. She looked to him, and he had already forgotten the kids were right there. His eyes couldn't help but soften. He really wished he could at least kiss her right now...

"I'll go wait for you in the diner I saw down the block. Let me know when you're ready." He spoke, his voice tender and almost purring if you listened close enough. Sakura's cheeks flushed a light pink and she gave a timid smile.

"Alright. See you soon."

He said nothing else. He turned and walked away in an instant because he was certain if he spent one more agonizing moment in her presence, the other inhabitants of the room were not going to matter before he dragged her to the nearest, empty room. He approached Sebastian, passing as the butler bowed.

"Your orders, Young Master?" Sebastian inquired. Sasuke continued walking.

"Patrol the area a bit. Ensure this place is secure. Any weaknesses, let Itachi know and you may take your leave to the mansion. I am here for the rest of the evening."

"Understood, sir." Sebastian went off to carry out his orders ahead of him. He stopped to stare at Sakura for just a moment, seeing her already turn her attention to the children and Naruto playing tag with the others. His eyes softened once again before he walked away.. He turned the same hallway Sebastian had led him down. If he remembered right, it was just another hallway to the left and he would be back at the administration area. Yet, something told him to walk slow. Take his time. He moved slowly, a step every three to four seconds.

It was almost like he was waiting for something. He could feel it.

"S-Sasuke-kun…" He heard behind him and he stopped on command. He turned slowly. There she was. It was just them in this hallway. She was panting just a bit. Did she jog to reach him? Seeing her pant like that, his heart was already pounding. He was now looking at her heaving chest. His eyes lifted back up to hers, and he felt nothing but anticipation.

She didn't know why she rushed after him. She told Naruto and the kids she would be right back after a moment and without seeing Sebastian at all, she followed him. When she didn't see him outside, she found herself jogging and there he was, around the corner. And now, she didn't know what to do.

'Don't get closer, Sakura. Don't do it.' He silently begged. Because he was going to lose his last, little bit of control if she did.

"Sakura..." His tone, instead, came out as a soft calling, against his better judgment. He kept his hands in his pockets and with a mix of elation and turmoil, watched as she walked towards him. She had been drawn to him. When she was close, they stood there for a moment, unmoving and eyes locked to each others. Nothing was said. There was only this mutual understanding, that only the two of them knew. Her hands then placed themselves on his chest. His hands had no choice but to release from their confines. She lifted to up to the tip of her toes. The moment her lips were within an inch of his, his hands wrapped around her waist and hastily pulled her in to claim her lips heavily.

'Fucking finally!' His inner voice screamed, whilst twisting his head to kiss her deeper. He could feel her body against his again. Her hands glided slightly to wrap around his neck and a little into his hair. All the memories from last night came rushing back to the both of them. He had already pushed her against the wall. Where Sakura was in a dreamlike state, Sasuke was going absolutely insane. He gripped her tighter, and she tried to hold back a moan.

"Sasuke-kun…" She panted and he ignored her. He just kept on kissing her. She came to him on her own accord. Just as he was sulking about not having her. She even still had her hands in his hair. He figured that was fate itself throwing him a bone. Why stop—

"N-Not here...Sasuke-kun…" She panted again between their kisses. He opened his eyes to see hers, glimmering and hazed emeralds. He just now realized they were still in the hallway of her clinic. He couldn't go too far yet. And here she was against the wall. They were both panting and his hands had moved to pull her hips against his. He placed his forehead against hers, still panting along with her. His eyes burned with fire and she stared into his. He shifted down, so his nose sniffed the teasingly exposed skin to sniff her. He already knew. Now was not the time. He had his little piece of heaven for the time being. This would have to suffice. For now.

Still, she had to know...he missed her so much already. He wanted her so badly, he hated that everything else existed to separate her from him.

"Later." He murmured. She turned into him, accepting his closeness. She rubbed up one of his shoulders and he purred.

"I want you all to myself." His voice took on a life of its own; husky and low, yet so full of confirmation she understood that it was now the law. He would have her to himself, by his decree, and Sakura could barely resist him now. She shyly glanced to make sure they were still alone. Thankfully they were. He pulled back up to meet her gaze, looking down at her from his height.

"I won't be too long." She whispered. He couldn't help but look to her lips again. His hand caressed her face and he kissed her one last time. Gentle and calm; his kiss told her he expected her to keep her word. He didn't need to be so greedy right now.

He'd have her all to himself soon enough. Then he gave his usual playful smirk.

"Hn. See you then." He mumbled against her lips, and recomposed himself in an instant. With elegance, he turned and walked away with his hands in his pockets. Sakura blushed wildly, staring at his back incredulously. He was fine after that?! She was having a mental breakdown. She didn't even know what came over herself. She just wanted to talk to him one on one before he left and the next thing she knew she approached him the way she did. And he kissed her the way he did. Her body was screaming.

'Get a grip, Sakura! Get it together!'

Taking a few deep breaths and trying her best to compose herself and her sanity, she turned to quietly walk back. All the while still feeling every single touch she felt before. When she turned the corner and bumped into the chest of none other than;

"N-Naruto?!" The blond looked back down at her, a confused look in his eye. Sakura swore all the color left her face.

"What's wrong? Everything alright?"

She instantly walked passed Naruto, without a word. And Naruto watched her, before a mischievous grin came to his face.

And as composed as Sasuke Uchiha was, he felt nothing but absolute impatience and a teased appetite for his growing hunger. He walked steadily in pace, deep in recollection for obvious events. His eyes were low and where he was exhilarated from kissing her, he still wanted more. He could still feel her lips. She made soft hics, trying to hold back moans. Yet, her fingers had crawled into his hair, and just thinking about it made him suppress shivers.

If he didn't know any better, that kissing session told him Sakura wanted him just as much as he wanted her, right now. She was just as eager. She simply was able to still grasp their surroundings, while he obviously couldn't.

He had never been a very patient man to begin with.

"E-Excuse me! Uchiha-san! You need to sign out please!" A voice snapped him from his thoughts. He turned to the source, eyeing the receptionist. He walked over and signed where she indicated.

"U-Uhm...so...w-would you ever h-happen to be free sometime? For drinks? I'll definitely—"

"I decline." He cut her off short.

"O-Oh! S-Sorry. Of course, you must be taken." He smirked this time.

He was taken. Absolutely. Heart, body and mind all stolen by a single woman.

"Hn." Turning to exit and leaving a clueless receptionist.

"Hey! Teme, wait up!" Sasuke turned to face Naruto who was coming out the building with his hands behind his head.

"Dobe." Sasuke regarded. Naruto gave a cheeky grin.

"So, had fun?" Sasuke raised an eyebrow.

"What are you talking about?"

"Sakura-Chan rushed after you, so I got curious and followed. I saw everything." Sasuke's brow twitched and he began walking away.

"And the way you were kissing her. Did you forget you were in a hallway?" Sasuke rolled his eyes and kept moving forward. He could hear Naruto following and then a mischievous chuckle. Sasuke stayed quiet. He wasn't going to deny that he did. He wasn't going to confirm it either.

"You did, huh."Naruto smirked. Sasuke shot him a glare. He didn't know where the dobe was going with this, but the idea he had was not one he wanted to be true.

It was bad enough Kakashi had noticed...

"Great. So you saw me kissing your supposed 'sister'. That's the second time now. Did you take a video this time? I'm starting to think you're voyeuristic." He grumbled in expert deflection. They walked side by side now, the diner was not too far down the street.

"Just wanted to confirm my suspicions." Naruto snickered. Sasuke gave another glare, only moving his eyes to Naruto from the side.

"Suspicions?" Naruto looked back at him, his eyes glinting all too knowingly. Sasuke knew that look. Damn it, that was the look he gave the first day he met Sakura. The blond put his hands into his pockets.

"Well, yeah. It's odd enough that Sakura-Chan wasn't at work today. And the brief minute I saw you today, I have never seen you so chilled out before. Dude, I had money you were gonna spaz on that newbie for being late today. I lost forty bucks because I didn't believe what Suigetsu said about you being chill today!" Naruto whined the last part. Sasuke scoffed and looked back ahead. He was not unaware of the bets people placed around the office on his reactions. Funny enough, while he didn't care, he had come to find intrigue whenever he overheard someone expecting to do the opposite of whatever he did.

"She had the day off and I let him off with a warning. Not my fault you betted wrong." They walked into the diner.

"He just got hired yesterday! Usually, they'd be more fired than the lake of Hell itself. I swear you burn people alive sometimes with your eyes when you fire them." Naruto laughed. Sasuke sighed, ordering a large coffee with the waitress at the counter before addressing Naruto again.

"So I cut someone a break. No big deal. Why the hell did it make you suspicious?" Sasuke grumbled, and propped his wrist under his chin, not bothering to look at the obviously grinning fox.

"Dude, you haven't even hit me once today! Sakura-chan hasn't hit me either! Most I got was a push which is a miracle!" Naruto exclaimed. Sasuke shot a glare.

"Want me to change that?"

"Hehe. No. But I bet Kakashi even noticed." Naruto chuckled all too knowingly in his ear. His heart paused. He instantly turned his head to observe the opposite side of the diner as an immediate distraction as nonchalantly as he could. He was begging that his earlier premonition was untrue.

'Don't you fucking tell me the Dobe…'

"Noticed what, idiot?" He forced his tone to be monotonous and it made Naruto laugh. Naruto saw right through both of them. And Sasuke knew it.

"Geez, man, do you think I'm blind? I've known you both practically all your lives." Sasuke finally received his coffee and paid. He lifted to drink. His best course of action was to not entertain this conversation as much as possible.

Naruto, however, decided against that.

"At first, I thought you were just in a good mood today, but then I went to go check on Sakura-chan this afternoon and she was acting even weirder. She looked like she wanted to hide something and she was being so careless about it. And I'm certain she only wears that top during holiday parties." Naruto spewed out his supposed evidence. Sasuke's brow furrowed even further.

"What's your point idiot?" Sasuke sighed out. Naruto's eyes suddenly lowered.

"Sakura-chan really loves you, you know...I can tell." Sasuke turned to him, his eyes filling with awareness. It was that secretive look again. He was definitely starting to catch those looks more often between Naruto and Sakura and it was making him feel a bit more guilty for not being a better friend. This time however, there was an uneasiness. Sasuke could have sworn, for the first time ever in the many years of knowing Naruto, he sensed distrust.

"I don't mean to overstep my boundaries. Everything between you two, is between you two...I just...don't want the first time she lets someone in, after such a long time...to..." Sasuke's stared at Naruto's conflicted face and he understood. For the first time ever, Naruto's trust was wavering in him, and if Sasuke was right, he knew why. He worried for Sakura, more than anything else. In that moment, Sasuke understood wholeheartedly that Sakura came first—and he did not disagree with that thought process. For himself, Sasuke had already decided Sakura was more important than anyone else. He was more than grateful that if Naruto had to chose between the two of them, he would choose Sakura in a heartbeat. That did not bother Sasuke one bit. Sakura was the most precious, even if Naruto didn't know just how precious she was.

"Naruto—"

"You...do love her too, right? You wouldn't betray her. I'm not wrong...am I?" Naruto asked hesitantly and looked his long time friend in the eye. Sasuke stared back and rather than being shocked at his questioning, he simply accepted it. His dark eyes filled with understanding.

Naruto did know. He knew they went all the way...and he wanted reassurance. It was the only reason he could imagine Naruto questioning him like this. Especially with how it was Naruto who read so deeply into him, it was he who figured out he loved her. Long before Sasuke knew and could confirm it himself, Naruto knew. His eyes shifted down to the coffee cup in his hands. He stayed silent, before the words came out of him in secretive honesty.

"Naruto...I love her more than I can express with words." His voice was so tender it made Naruto's entire body freeze. He had been staring at Sasuke the whole time and while he couldn't see his eyes currently, his voice told him all he needed to know. It was certain. It was honest. It didn't try to hide a single thing, like it normally would. After all these years, he was able to tell when Sasuke was bluffing, or when he was using his corporate tactics to get his way and this was neither of those. Naruto had always thought Sasuke would always be honest with him, but this exact moment, could not be more truthful than the sun rising daily. He meant it.

"Whatever suspicions you have...whatever you may think...you were always right. From day one...I wanted her." Sasuke continued before his eyes shifted, uncomfortably, to look at Naruto's. Despite their apprehension, in them was a promise from best friend to another.

"I'd give my life for hers. I'd give her the world if I could and the moon along with it. And I love her so much, I can barely contain it." Naruto's eyes stared in awe. Never in a million years did he ever think Sasuke would so openly say such a thing. And sure enough, a warm smile came to his friends face. He grabbed Sasuke over the shoulder, laughing like a giddy child. Sasuke's brow twitched.

"Dobe..." He growled.

"Who would have thought? You're a hopeless romantic!"

"Tsk! Don't you dare tell anyone I told you that." He gave an annoyed glare elsewhere, and turned his head to hide the embarrassed blush. Naruto chuckled again.

"I won't. I promise. I won't even tell Sakura-Chan. At least, not until I make the toast on your wedding day." Sasuke ignored that one.

"Hey, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to make you feel bad. I'm...relieved and I trust you, Teme. Just...take care of Sakura-Chan, will ya?" Naruto grinned, eyes shut with cheeky delight. Sasuke sighed, and sipped his coffee. He didn't shrug Naruto off.

"If you trusted me, you would know you don't need to ask that of me." Naruto snickered.

"I know and I do trust you...I always considered you a brother, but now its like you're my real brother. You know what I mean?" Naruto said, releasing him and looking down happily.

"Whatever. By the way, why the hell did you take off half a day today? Doesn't seem like you had an emergency." Sasuke grumbled with an accusatory glare. Naruto chuckled sheepishly.

"Well, I check on Sakura-Chan everyday, so I got worried when she wasn't texting me back. Then plthe others said they weren't getting in touch with her either, so I kind of...panicked. I went straight to her place to make sure she was alright." Naruto admitted, and Sasuke noticed his voice was reluctant. Again, that look of secrecy came to his eyes, and this time, Sasuke noticed Naruto's hands tense just slightly on his forearms against the diner counter. Sasuke's lips frowned and his brow furrowed. So, Naruto was just as affected by the past as well. There was still so much he wasn't aware of, first; from the woman he loved, and now his one and only true friend. He didn't know of all their pain and trauma, nor how to quell it and it made him feel like the most incompetent man on earth.

All his riches and influence, and he had yet to ease the burdens of the people who mattered to him most. Two people who loved and cared for him; two people who showed him how to live without work and he could barely pierce the surface of their strifes. He should have been able to protect them. He looked away from the blond knucklehead, filled with complete guilt.

And that reminded him...

"Why...didn't you introduce Sakura to me, when we were younger?" Sasuke hesitantly asked the question that had weighed him for a while. Naruto's eyes lighted with surprise, catching Sasuke's opposing dark irises when he looked back to him with concern. He was probably being selfish, asking this question. There really was no need to ask it, but it bothered him. If he had met Sakura sooner, maybe he could have followed a different path. Maybe he would have been a better friend.

Or was it that he should have been a better friend? Did Naruto not have trust in him back then? Was it because Naruto felt he need to protect her from Sasuke? Whatever it was, the Uchiha wanted to know.

"We were together often...and you've known her for so long...so, why didn't you introduce us until I met her?" He asked again. Naruto looked away, a somber look coming to his face. And another one of secrecy that suddenly made Sasuke suddenly and slightly disbelieving.

"It wasn't really a thought at the time. You barely let me in, so I figured introducing you to others was more trouble than it was worth. Besides, Sakura-Chan was usually traveling with the A.E.F when we were in our teens, so, I was more thinking about her coming home, than her meeting others...and you were always pretty busy yourself." Naruto answered and for some reason Sasuke felt like it was a half truth. There was more to it than that. Sasuke found the truths in him being busy and in him probably not taking kindly to a sudden stranger, but there was something else. There was another reason Naruto wasn't telling that he didn't introduce them.

"I wish...you had..." Sasuke mumbled, low enough to not be heard, but loud enough that Naruto himself heard it. Naruto's eyes lowered, filling with guilt.

"I'm sorry. If I had known it would have turned out like this...I would have made sure you guys met sooner." Naruto said quietly, and in Sasuke's ears that rang as one hundred percent true.

The was a moment of silence between the two. One that of course, didn't last with the blond knucklehead of a best friend that was Naruto Uzumaki.

And of course, it was as Sasuke was swallowing his coffee.

"By the way, I slipped some condoms into your pocket. Seriously, you were staring at her like a dog looks at meat. Dude, don't be in such a rush to get her pregnant."

Sasuke never choked and coughed so harshly in his life ever before. Naruto never laughed harder in his life. Or maybe he had. Sasuke had know clue. He could barely breathe currently. He was too focused on not dying. Naruto just might be the death of him one day.

"You okay, Teme?" Naruto laughed, obviously unconcerned and lightly slapping Sasuke's back. Sasuke snapped his glare over to the blond bastard.

"I hate you." He spat with so much acid it burned. Against Naruto, it was ineffective, as he only grinned.

"I love you too, Teme!"


'It's just us now...' The words crossed Sakura's mind as Sasuke drove and she felt her heart rate shoot up to near heart attack levels.

Sakura suddenly felt all too aware of the fact that they were alone. Sebastian didn't join them when he accompanied her, Naruto and Sasuke to the car. Naruto had left. Now it was just them. In his car. It was nothing new. She had been alone with him in his car several times. And yet, now, she was nervous. She felt her heart beginning to pound in her chest. She wanted to say something. But what should she say right now? Then she felt the car beginning to move. She gave him a glance, watching him make a turn. Sakura mentally slapped herself.

'Get yourself together. You're not a teenager! You and him are grown adults! Just say something!'

Then, just as she was mentally freaking out, his hand stroked hers ever so tenderly and Sakura felt her breath hitch in her throat. She looked to his careful fingers, feeling her hand act on its own as hers grabbed his. His hands were really so soft and always warm. She wondered what her usually rough hands felt like now. She tried her best to moisturize them all the time, but they were long worn by antiseptics and antibacterials, along with scrapes of the past. Her mind trailed, beginning to stroke his fingers back.

Suddenly, Sakura felt like nothing needed to be said. Just by holding and touching his hand, she could feel their connection to each other. Her emotions and thoughts calmed. She was here with him. She was at his side, holding his hand and that was enough for a simplistic girl like her. She was elated he had grabbed her hand first.

"Did Mari and Sebastian treat you well?" She suddenly heard. His voice was tender and when she looked to him she met his side gaze; ever so expectant and inspecting. She could already tell, in that minuscule glance he was looking for the slightest hint of dissatisfaction, of which she had none. She gave him a teasing smile.

"I was treated with the utmost hospitality of the Uchiha Estate." She chuckled with the paraphrase she made of Mari's statement. She looked back down at his hand in hers, that gentle look he still couldn't dissect gleamed in her eyes. He smirked, looking back to the light, which had turned green. He drove on.

"Which means absolute perfection." He stated as though it was pure fact. It was a law of the universe. Sakura giggled at the air of complete arrogance that radiated off of him, before blushing again. He really expected for her to be taken care of with the degree Sebastian and Mari were so diligent of. They may have over achieved Sasuke's order in her eyes. Instead he saw her well being and care special enough to use his own personnel for. Suddenly, she watched an insecure look come to his eye. He looked so worried.

"Was it...to your liking?" He asked slowly, as if the question held the weight of a thousand tons and his eye moved from the road to her. She knew he was watching every inch of her reaction. He was over concerned and while she wanted to laugh at the fact that a billionaire was so worked up over how her day was, she knew Sasuke would just get irritated. Instead, she gave him a promising smile after a small chuckle as she recalled her day and squeezed his hand.

Besides that dumb meeting today, absolutely nothing was wrong. In fact, she really did have the perfect day today; the only thing that was missing was him.

"It was lovely Sasuke-kun...a bit much, but it was perfect. I couldn't have asked for a better day. Thank you. You really didn't have to send them for me, but I am still grateful." She said sincerely, and with a lighthearted tenderness that made her voice sound like an angel's to him. He didn't even mind the "a bit much" comment. He was just happy enough to hear "it was perfect." Of course, her humble nature would say something like that. She had always taken care of herself. He wondered if this was the first time she had been pampered and spoiled like this.

But that would be life for her every day if she stayed with him. He was working her into giving her the life he told her he would. She would be treated as his Queen, the way his mother was by his father.

He remembered as a child, the glowing joy his mother displayed when his father came home and wrapped beautiful necklaces around her neck in surprise. His mother always had the most lavish of dresses and jewelry. The only rings she wore on her left hand, beautifully subtle diamonds, that had cost a fortune or two. His mother, as gentle and warm as she was, was spoiled more so than her children were.

"Look, Sasuke-kun! A gift from your father!" She once beamed at beautiful roses she had received. His mother was a beautiful woman, but never did she shine so divinely than when his stoic and collected father displayed his affection towards her. She was taken care of around the clock, from when she awoke to when she was putting them to bed. He was sure it was beyond that as well. His mother was the ultimate treasure of the Uchiha household and his father made it a point to make sure everyone knew she was of the highest importance. Even to his own sons.

Sakura would be treated the same. As a matter of fact, he was going to push for her being treated even better than that if he could help it. He wanted her to be treated as more...so he could never lose her. So that she'd never be put into danger, accidental or not...

Like his mother...

"Hn. So long as you were taken care of..." She chuckled.

"Mari and Sebastian were unwilling to fail you." She informed with giddiness. He smirked, an approving hum coming from his chest in response and he gripped her hand tighter. There was a comfortable silence. Sakura started to massage his hand. She felt his hand relax almost instantly.

"How was work?" She questioned, still staring at his hand in hers.

"Annoying." He stopped at a red light. Sakura lifted her head, just in time to catch his eyes. She watched his eyes grow tender on her and she felt her heart melt.

"As always…" She whispered in a slight daze. He leaned in and she followed suit only to go into a heavy makeout session the moment their lips met. His hand had lifted from hers and found its it's way into her hair. His tongue entered and instinctively his hand curled into a possessive hold on her hair.

He wanted her now. Damn it.

But as if she was synchronized with his thoughts, she kissed him back just as heavily. Her hand placed itself on his chest and Sakura moaned against his mouth. That sound was enough for his slacks to feel real constricting now. All day he was tortured by her. As relaxed and stress free as he was, his body was itching for her. He wanted to feel her warmth again. He wanted to hear his name moaned from her lips over and over, again. He wanted to touch her.

All of her.

"You were all I could think about today." He murmured against her lips, panting a bit. Sakura blushed, remembering the words he said to her last night. That she made him forget about everything. That he was crazy for her and that she took over his mind. She didn't know what came over her when she kissed his lips again, at least until he kissed back just as passionately. She missed him. They had been apart for mere hours, and she missed him so much.

So much so, she whispered the next three words.

"I missed you." Sasuke stared at her lips as she said it and made sure he could remember it, in detail, down to the very way her luscious lips moved.

'Don't say that now, Sakura.' His inner voice warned her against saying such things to him. He would have shuddered, if it had not been for his wanting of this action when he first set eyes on her today. While he loved hearing it, those words from her lips were proving dangerous to his mind. He needed to stop himself, before he drove somewhere secluded and took her right here, right now, in his car. He had dark tinted windows, so no one could see inside his car unless from the windshield. Most luxury cars these days, the one they were in also included, were soundproof as well. The acoustics of her moans would just surround his ears and damn it, his pants felt tighter. Nevertheless, he couldn't hold back his smirk. His lust was starting to take over.

If she missed him so much, who was he to deny the obvious wants of them both? He wanted to know just how much she missed him, and he wanted to show her that he missed her just as much, if not more. His hand caressed her face, brushing their lips together. Then he brushed his lips along her cheek, and to her ear.

"Is that so?" He huskily questioned against her lobe and sent shivers down her spine. Her hand rubbed his chest, traveling to caress along his neck. He gave a small and pleased groan at her touch, feeling her fingers along the bit of exposed skin he had. This was a damn tease. He should have had her earlier, so it didn't matter to him at all if he had her here and now. Of course, his impatience would be unwarranted considering they were surrounded by children earlier, but what did that matter now? He restrained himself then, what the hell did she expect now? His hand in his hair moved to her lips, caressing her bottom lip with his thumb and he watched her blush.

"I...I was waiting for you. Sebastian never said when you were coming back." She stated, but her tone was more of a complaint than a statement. He wasn't wrong earlier with the way he felt. She had been waiting for him, and it only gave him more impatience than before. That was it. He'd had it. Just her fingers burning on his skin had unleashed his desires. He had waited all this time. From morning, through work, until now. He had tolerated people, children, Naruto, and all other obstacles in his path. All he wanted was her.

He wanted to touch her now. Right now. It was his official right.

His one hand lowered, grazing down her shoulder and forearm before finally caressing her inner thigh. He heard her breath shakily hitch in her throat. She turned to look down at his intentful hand, inadvertently giving him a bit of access to her neck, just between her jaw ear lobe and turtleneck. He started giving smooches and then nips. Her damn turtleneck annoyed him. Yet another barrier in his way. She gave a pleasured sigh, watching his thumb rub her thigh. Sakura was losing to her body's state of heat and her hand around his neck started trailing downward. He couldn't hold back the shiver down his spine and he moved his hand to palm closer to that special place he claimed as his. Her breath hitched again and her body reacted to his touch the moment he palmed her thigh.

"Sa-Sasu—"

HONK!

She jumped. In an alternate universe and in an instant, he manifested a giant spirit, and it cut down all the cars, buildings, and even mountains behind them. Mountains were a whole three cities in Konoha away though, so the damage he had in mind was massive.

'Of fucking course.' His mind seethed. The World—it existed. They retracted from each other and he glared viciously at the green light that didn't deserve to exist. He drove angrily. He was just about to hear his name. She was about to say it in that sweet voice he was addicted to and he was beyond aggravated their moment had been interrupted. He drove angrily. He was a mess of profanities, both mental and verbal, however beneath his breath it may have been. It was official. He did not like being interrupted when with her. That was just proven a thousand times over, with the irritation he felt. There was this rise of murderous rage within him...until he heard a small giggle beside him. In that instant, everything negative faded away.

"What are you laughing at?" He scoffed out, though his tone was amused and a smile was on his lips. Sakura was blushing hard. She was reeling from her body's screaming wants but she couldn't help but laugh a bit. She and Sasuke were truly connected. Because the moment he angrily scowled, unbeknownst to him, so did she. She was loving Sasuke's affection and to have it disturbed angered her.

Yet, between them, she wasn't sure who was angrier. Sasuke's eyes were malicious, and his hands were gripping the steering wheel very tightly. He looked beyond tense.

She reached over and gave a peck kiss to his cheek. It calmed him down before. She wondered if it would now. It did. The effect was instant, though minuscule in detail. His tense hands on the steering wheel had relaxed. He let a quiet sigh out his nose, like he was taking a breather.

She suddenly wondered if Sasuke was stressed all the time. His usually calm and collected composure suddenly seemed like a big front to her. He was a man. A human being with limits and Sakura wondered for how long he had pushed them. And she hoped she could ease it all. She hoped she could wash away his burdens. She could give him the comfort of an everyday normal life. She sat back down properly in the car seat and rubbed her hands together into a fold.

"We...can be together tonight, right?" She asked, looking at him. His eyes warmed, glancing to her for just long enough to say his next words.

"There's no place I'd rather be." He looked back to the road, barely catching the gleam that shined in her eyes, before she gave a bashful smile down at her folded hands.

"When we get home, do you want to eat? I've been out all day so I didn't prepare any meat to dethaw." Sakura said shyly and in truth it was to alleviate herself from the tense air. She and Sasuke were calm, yes; but she was still holding herself back from her body's wants. The spot on her thigh he had teasingly touched was still tingling. Unbeknownst to Sakura, her invitation for food to Sasuke's ears was a whole different invitation entirely.

He could eat now; if it was her on the menu.

"We can order out. It's no big deal." He dismissed deciding it would be too much for her if he said what he actually wanted to say. Sakura nodded.

After another moment of silence, Sasuke reached out and grabbed her hand again, already missing her touch. With a blush and a smile of glee, she grabbed back and the rest of their ride was enjoyed, all the way back to her apartment.

They decided on ordering a simple pizza and after changing into comfortable attire were intent on lazing together on the couch with one of Sakura's favorite cooking shows. She enjoyed those a lot, but honestly, he found himself irritated with her favorite show. Two chef teams battling it out in a competition, for the favor of working at high end restaurants determined by a world class master chef. He thought that was the worst business practice ever. Hiring a competition winner meant nothing if they weren't also excelling or have already excelled in other skills.

Like arriving on time, for one. He was absolutely certain one of the finale winners would not last two weeks at her "new restaurant".

Sasuke had decided on a simple white tank top and his dark sweats. Sakura wore a cropped t-shirt and shorts, sitting right beside him. He couldn't help eyeing the hickies all over her neck. No wonder she wore that turtleneck earlier. He had made quite a few and some a deep cherry red. She sat beside him eyeing his stare.

"Sasuke-kun?"

"Hn?" He looked into her eyes. It took her aback a bit and she blushed.

"Y-You were staring...so I was just curious…" He gave a soft smirk. He widened his legs, and lifted her to sit in between them, much to her surprise.

"Kyah!" She yelped. He chuckled, nuzzling into the space between her neck and her shoulder.

"You're too far. I thought you said you missed me." He mumbled into her skin. He heard and felt her breath hitch against him, before she slowly and fully relaxed against his frame. As he innocently wrapped his arms around her waist, it dawned on him. This was actually real. This warm feeling in his chest felt like a relief. He got her. All the insanity she had made him feel from day one, now had become this joyous feeling in his chest. Now that they were together and alone, the world meant nothing to him. He was happy to be with her like this.

He could hold her how he wanted, all he wanted. She really was his woman and it damn near felt like a dream that had continued on from last night. Having her like this made it so much more real. His fingers gently caressed her forearm, to the palm of her hand where he watched himself trace the lines in her palm mindlessly; because he could. The proof of that revelation happening now, with the way Sakura surrendered to his grasp gave him a high he had never felt before. He had never touched a drug in his life, yet this must have been what it felt like. His hand entwined with hers and she grasped back. His eyes closed quietly in contentment. Peace. He wanted to stay just like this.

"I did miss you, Sasuke-kun…" She confirmed quietly, and placed her hands on his arms. Sakura was just as content as shown by the gentle smile she gave. After the initial flustered embarrassment she felt, from being swiftly lifted and placed between his legs, then came the butterflies in her stomach as always. She stared down at their entwined hands and she remembered her thoughts earlier, as she soaked in the lush bath prepared for by his help. Her eyes lowered.

He was tired all of a sudden. This was just so comfortable. He kept his eyes closed. She smelled like roses today. Such a pleasant scent. It made him reminiscent. He suddenly remembered himself as a child. Walking through his family's large garden behind the mansion. Different placements of different flowers. His mother; smiling and calling to him through a field of roses that lead to a cherry blossom tree. The very same image blurred and flashed; in place of his mother was Sakura herself. Hands out just as his mother had. A big grin and closed delighted eyes. He had never seen Sakura with long hair, but he imagined it just as vividly as he remembered his mother. The same wind blew through their locks. The same joy he felt back then suddenly filled him.

His mother used to read to him beneath that cherry blossom tree. They had once tried to count the petals that blew with each wind from lying in the grass. His mother always seemed so much happier the more she was in the garden.

"Sasuke-kun! Are you sleeping?!" His mother's voice laughed out. The young seven year old snapped his eyes open in surprise. He jolted from his mother's lap, where his head was laying in comfort and looked around frantically.

"M-Mother! When did I…?" The seven year old questioned with ashamed guilt. He should not have fallen asleep for any reason. His father was always awake. And besides that;

'An Uchiha must be able to withstand all fatigue.'

The young boy bit his bottom lip. Last he remembered, he and his mother were here, counting the cherry blossom petals that flew as she had so eagerly urged him to do. He had questioned why this was important. He had questioned what laying in the grass and counting petals had to do with father's business and their lives. She said it would be fun. She said it would be a good exercise. He didn't know how long they spent, losing count of the cherry blossoms. He must have dozed off.

"I have to go, mother. Sorry. I can't count the cherry blossoms with you." The boy said rather sadly, and turned to stand. The Uchiha Matriarch gave a look of surprise and confusion, grabbing her youngest son's wrist.

"Sasuke-kun, what do you mean? Of course you can. I know there are many, but we can't just give up!" She laughed out. The boy glared at the ground.

"Father says...Itachi-nii-san and I can't just lay around and be lazy! As an Uchiha, we have a lot of responsibilities...so..." His seven year old self worried, turning away from her. His face was one of concern; a look a seven year old had no business showing over falling asleep in the grass beside his mother. Her eyes lamented and her raven colored brows furrowed. She sighed, pulling him back to her lap.

And his mother responded; with a gentle smile and soft, warm eyes that could only manifest in her onyx orbs.

"Oh, Sasuke-kun...life is so much more than what your father says." He pouted, obviously not understanding what that meant.

"But...Father said...an Uchiha should be able to not fall asleep, even when they're tired."

"Sasuke-kun…" She chuckled, raising her youngest son's chin up. He stared into matching, beautiful onyx eyes and a gentle wind blew through her silk, raven locks.

"It's okay to rest, Sasuke-kun. Resting is the reward for working hard. So rest, whenever you want to, my darling Sasuke-kun."

Why did he remember that now all of a sudden? He had forgotten that memory for years. He nuzzled closer to her skin. It was okay for him to rest here. It's all he wanted for now. His mother said resting was the reward for working hard and he had gone through a rollercoaster with Sakura; on his end anyway. Late nights of losing his mind over her, the literal breakdown of himself that he initially thought was his true self, only to find that it was a mask of implanted instinct. Conditioning from his father and upbringing. She shattered that for him.

He deserved this rest.

"Sasuke-kun..." She suddenly called. He didn't move.

"Hn?"

"I...wanted to say, I'm sorry." His eyes opened immediately, and he lifted his head from her shoulder. Concern reached him as she turned to face him and his brow furrowed. His fears surfaced slightly. What was wrong? What had he done? Did she regret last night? Had he been so gluttonous? Was he making her uncomfortable without knowing?

She didn't want to end things with him...did she?

"What for?" His voice sounded calm. In second nature, he put on a collective and cool front but his mental state was being torn apart at the seams. His face only showed inquiry, but inside he was a frantic mess. This is exactly what he meant when he felt she broke him. He never had been fearful of simple words coming out of someone's mouth. His world stopped for her, always and it both awed and frightened him. His hands tensed around her as her eyes lowered and a look of guilt came to those emeralds he adored.

He panicked even more, all while his mind readied him for as many responses that might come next. Even with that preparation made in seconds, he couldn't perceive how this was going to go. He didn't know exactly what to say. His teeth clenched a bit behind his closed lips.

"Last night...I was acting childish. I kept on pushing and pressuring you, over my own anxieties and it wasn't fair to you. I-I mean...b-before...y-you know…" A blush painted her cheeks. It took him a moment to register what she was talking about. What about last night was unfair to him? He got to live out even a small fraction of his greatest desire. What about before? He got to hear her feelings of love towards him. He got to tell her he loved her. He made love to her for hours in the night. When he pieced it together, he gave a soft chuckle—towards himself—which grabbed her attention. He simply understood that he had panicked for no reason. Once again, without meaning to, she made him lose it for a second. She was obviously talking about everything that transpired between them before all of that.

"E-Eh?" He placed his forehead against hers, the softest smile he could ever muster coming to his lips.

"Sakura, don't apologize for anything that happened between us last night. Not one thing." He said tenderly. She gave a look of surprise before her eyes lowered. She thought again how Mari claimed they wanted the best for him; even the impossible—and it made her feel all the more guilty. She shouldn't have pressed him so much. He shouldn't have been questioned at all. Especially by her.

"I have to. I was being a burden...and annoying. You deal with so much, all the time. You are always working and I didn't mean to stress you out further than you already are. I just...I don't know what came over me…I felt scared..." She continued to apologize and give her reasoning. The truth was, Indra had gotten to her head. As she had decided earlier, from now on, she would focus on Sasuke and Sasuke alone. To provide him the comforts of normalcy he barely achieved. She shouldn't even have allowed Indra to get to her like that. She fell for nostalgic and reminiscent memories of the past.

"I'm sorry Sa—" She was silenced with a kiss. It was a kiss so passionate she forgot what she was just saying. When he pulled away, Sakura found herself astounded by the gentle look Sasuke gave her once again.

How could a man look so beautiful? How could one look make her forget about everything bad that ever happened to her? To Sakura, he looked like an angel. An absolute angel, who came to finally save her.

'He's the closest to heaven I'll ever be...' She thought.

"There's no need to apologize, Sakura." He said, caressing her face.

"You were telling me things I needed to hear. Don't apologize or feel that way." He continued. Sakura's eyes dropped with even more guilt. Of course, he was perfect. Not only did he gracefully deflect her apology, he apparently felt that the way she acted was warranted. It wasn't. She had no reason to damn near interrogate him the way she had.

"That's not true...I got emotional and I...I was questioning you for no reason. I was out of line." She spoke with solemnity.

"Sakura, look at me." She did. When she looked back up at him, he gave her that poke to the forehead she still questioned. Even now, her eyes grew wide with confusion. Butterflies were fluttering in her stomach. Her heart raced as his smile warmed further to her reaction of his poke.

"You can question me for anything. You can question me for no reason at all. You can ask me for anything and everything you want. You will never need to apologize for it." His fingers trailed to the side of her forehead, and placed her hair behind her ear, simply out of affection. His eyes looked back to hers from the strands once they were secured from her face.

"I call you annoying for my own reasons. I don't mean it maliciously. Don't ever think you are a burden to me."

"You are the woman I love. Anything you want from me, Sakura, you need only ask. Any fears, any doubts, any needs or wants that you have, just tell me, and if it is within my power, I'll do what I can to ease your burdens." He promised. He hoped his words would open her even more to him. She still had her secrets that he had yet to uncover and he was eager to know everything about them. As readable as she was to him, there was still an air of mystery. Questions he had himself about her life before he entered it.

Like what else happened to her that created this mysterious barrier he could still feel between them. It covered over her like a thin cloth and all he could see was the shadow of her silhouette. Something told him he couldn't just outright ask yet. Not just yet, even when they had been joined body and heart alike. But he still wanted to know why, even when someone was willing to help, did she seem to always turn away.

"I told you before; ask anything of me and it will be done. That includes answers to your questions...if I can provide them." He added the last part with the perfection of a businessman. He instantly felt it was wrong. He was both admitting to lying and promising her the truth, yet with just looking at her, she fell for his wording. If he did not provide answers he could refer to this same conversation. It was quite a deceptive maneuver...on the woman he undoubtedly loved more than anything he had ever loved before.

Just because he wanted to protect her…

"I'm...just trying to protect you...little brother."

'Just like fucking Itachi.' He scolded himself mentally. If she ever found out, she would be completely justified in being angry with him. He was just as angry Itachi never told him anything. Itachi always hid things and made excuses. He was obviously no better and he hated himself for it.

"But…" She bit her bottom lip with insecurity. He hated himself even more in an instant. She really did fall for it. Reading her, she had seriously fallen for his deception. His heart felt torn. He didn't want to keep her in the dark like this. He didn't want to make her feel like she was in the wrong. She wasn't wrong last night.

"But what?" He asked softly. As he promised to himself in the very beginning with her, he wanted to be thorough. He needed to make sure there were no faults between him and her, because the last thing he wanted was to lose her after having just truly gained her—the way he wished for all along. She was everything he desired; everything he wanted. He'd be damned if he lost her over a mistake he could have prevented.

"I annoyed you...and I didn't mean to. I...was just afraid. It was my own insecurities, but it is the same for me. As you said, any worries or troubles you have, I'll do anything to help. So, you don't have to hide anything from me." He stayed silent. She sensed him and he could barely hide from her without giving in to his love and desire for her. She was absolutely and positively his one weakness, proven by everything that happened last night. The moment someone in the press found out about their love, he'd have to be even more on alert and he had been clear, for now. There would be so many others to try and threaten her, just because of his status if the press was to find out.

It was the last thing he wanted and keeping her in the dark—lying—to prevent her from getting involved like he knew she would, was his only form of protection against that. As he recalled, the very thought of losing her brought on an anxiety to him that made him want to cover her, at all angles, at all cost. Had she questioned him any further last night, he most likely would have caved. He was never going to stop stressing over finding her protection. He was fearful of losing her at any cost and his father taught him very well—status like his is just as dangerous, as it was rewarding.

"People beneath you will always envy you and as an Uchiha, you are indeed above almost all of them, Sasuke. They will want to take from you. An Uchiha does not get robbed. An Uchiha is always alert and observant and if someone does take from you...you will take back what is yours, and double of what is theirs."

There was always going to be someone ready to take from him. There was always going to be someone who envied what he had. He treasured her so much, he didn't want anyone to take her away from him as well. It's why he was going crazy about Danzo and Orochimaru. Danzo already tried to take from him once; his company and her, before he could even love her.

Now, the stakes had never been higher. No doubt, Danzo would try to take her away from him again. Someone out there would try and he'd take on the sleepless, crazed nights that were spent fretting over her, if it meant he got to see her smile in the morning. If he could still see her smile, hear her laugh out his name, hold her in his arms, it was all worth it.

So long as he never saw her in a hospital bed again due to something he could prevent. So long as he never heard her scream in pain from an injury she should have never had because of him and his enemies. So long as he protected her from everything he physically could, he only cared that she remained by his side, with him. Because the only thing he could see outside of her was his same old dreary life that he did not want to return to. He already knew he didn't want anyone else. Anyone else would be an obstacle or hindrance to his goal that was Sakura.

"Sakura, forgive me." Her eyes widened and her face lifted.

"What for?! You didn't—" Her beginning retort was cut off.

"For making you feel that I was lying. For making you distressed." He kissed her cheek, and rubbed his cheek against hers softly. His eyes lowered. She deserved some kind of validation. He had made her distressed and she felt the need to apologize. That was far from what he wanted. She didn't need to apologize to him at all, especially when everything was all his fault.

He had to be more careful.

"You weren't wrong." He admitted quietly. Sakura tensed upon his confession and he felt it. He lifted to look at her in the eye.

From here on out, he'd be extremely careful.

"Last night, there was a lot on my mind. I didn't want you to worry. I am handling it as we speak. I just...I need you to understand a lot is going on in the background. Just, trust me. Believe me. I'll handle it." He stopped, and his brow lifted a bit with hope this would suffice. That was as far as he wanted to explain. If she pried further, he'd have to lie. Sakura stared into his eyes, and the two shared a moment of silence. She still held the guilt of being such a brat the previous night. This made things all the more clear. Of course, he was dealing with something else she didn't know about. 'He is stressed.' She thought with dismay.

'Me and Sebastian's only wish is to please the Young Master and to provide him with the comforts of home that he doesn't get often.' She remembered Mari say and it spurred her to act upon that wish. She wanted to comfort Sasuke. She wanted to keep him from his stressful life and if it was with her that he found solace, her heart saw no other option other than to yield to him.

That's when she leaned in and kissed him. She wrapped her arms tightly around his neck and welcomed when his hands wrapped around her.

Then she straddled him.

"Sakura…" He whispered almost as a warning, when they pulled away. Her lips brushed against his and he lost all conscientious thought. This was just like that night. The first night he almost had her. Did she know what she just did? And thanks to Kakashi's despicable book—for God's sake she wanted him to go insane. He was fully convinced of it. Didn't she feel the way his hands tensed against her body? Could she not hear the pounding of his heart in his chest going thousands of miles per second?

Without a doubt, he had to have her now; just like this.

"You don't have to ask for forgiveness from me. I'm so sorry you're stressing out. I love you Sasuke-kun and I'm always here if you need me." She whispered softly. Her tone sounded so sweet, it would have moved him to tears of rejoice if it hadn't been for their positions right now. Their half lidded eyes met and she gave him a smile.

The guilt stabbed him in the heart.

"And I trust you. I know you'll figure it out, whatever it is. Until then, please rely on me. For anything you need or want. I'll do my best for you, always. No matter what, Sasuke-kun." She ended. His heart fluttered, both painfully and with relief. He stared at the woman who showed him the sky and made him appreciate the stars. He stared at the woman who made him want to be so much more; so much better than he already was. He wanted to be the best he could be. He had so much to learn from her; about life. What it was like to simply live...and not be consumed by the corporate machine that was his existence. He had been so conditioned all this time, without even realizing it. His life, besides being wealthy and the CEO to one of the world's leading businesses, had so...little value. He had so few happy memories, as sparse and between as they were. She had changed all of that, just from the first day they met. She made him question what else he overlooked. He wanted to experience so much more.

He still didn't know what it was exactly, that drew him to her. He didn't know why she spellbounded him, that day he saw her in Cafe Blanche. But he was starting to believe that it was because she was so free and he, without realizing it, never had been. She had been humming back then, and when she approached she showed no fear, nor hesitation. To her, he was simply a customer, and to him, she was a server he could not pull his gaze from.

Was it coincidence after, that she slowly broke him the way she did? She was placed in his path to make him feel free, for the first time ever in his life. Truly free. No more expected perfection. No more grand luxuries he didn't even want. For once, he couldn't plan ahead and it taught him how to simply enjoy the moment, rather than prepare for the next one. He knew she didn't know, but she had given him so much more than just her love. She had given him life.

The least he could do to repay her, was love her as much as possible. Take care of her and protect her. An Uchiha always takes care of those important to them. It was probably one of the only lessons he fully agreed with. He leaned in, brushing his lips against her neck tauntingly, as well as to display his ever growing desires. One of his hands grazed up the arch of her back, and he felt her gasp and flinch.

"Is that a promise?" He asked huskily against her neck. He had to ask, because it was growing increasingly obvious he needed her, right now. The hand on her back lowered to beneath her crop top. He ran only his fingers along her spine and felt the clasp of her bra. It made her flinch. His other hand went to her thigh. He was losing his mind with her like this. He felt her hand rub into his hair. He couldn't hold back anymore. He started to smooch and nip at her neck. She gripped his hair just slightly from the pleasure. She gave equally pleased moans.

"Yes, Sasuke-kun. I promise." She said with that sweet voice of hers. She gasped, feeling the hand on her thigh move up towards the swell of her hip. She moaned as he commenced on making another mark on her neck. His hips were grinding, trying to create friction.

"S-Sasuke-kun…" She whimpered in pleasure, upon feeling him move a bit lower. His hand on her hip slipped into her shorts to palm and grip her rear. She gasped, not even realizing he had unclasped her bra until he lifted her shirt along with it and licked her peak. Sakura's pleased blush deepened as she watched his tongue slick over and around her teat.

"S-Sasuke-kun...hah. T-The pizza...we…" She tried to remind him, only to be ignored and he moved to her other nipple. He gave another squeeze on her rear.

'Pizza is not what I want to eat right now.' His mind scoffed, since his tongue was busy. The hell did he care about pizza for at this moment. They still had a little bit of time before the delivery should be here anyway. Maybe enough to hear his name moaned out with her climax. Once he was sure he doused her teat the way he did last night, he moved, licking at her neck.

"I told you, you were all I could think about today, Sakura…" He whispered against her skin. Her damn shirt and bra were still in the way. Everything was in the damn way. He lifted it over her head with her help and tossed the damnable garments. She panted as he palmed at her breast. His eyes traveled, taking all of her in. So curvaceous. So beautiful. All his. He licked his lips.

"And now...I finally have you…" His voice was a feral purr. He had become a lion and she, his delicious gazelle. His eyes sharpened with hunger and pierced through her, while she stared back with anticipation. Sakura knew there was no going back. There was no saving her from Sasuke when she was in his claws. She knew he'd have her to the fullest extent he could. He pulled her closer, licking her chest.

"I can't stop. I can't—" He was about to continue, until;

RING RING

He damn near growled into her neck at the sound of the phone ringing. Anything and everything that separated her body from his grasp needed to be torn apart and scorched. The phone. Her damn clothes. His damn clothes. The damn pizza. The rest of the World. All of it! Hell no was he about to stop now.

"The pizza, Sasuke-kun." She reminded, with a shy moan. His other hand shoved down into her shorts to touch her womanhood. When she gave out a louder moan and he felt her moist area, his lusted eyes watched her pleasured face. She gasped when a finger slid in, drilling inside her before he added a second.

"A-AAah!" She cried out, breaking their kiss, her hips bucking with each ram of his fingers. He went back to suckle on her teat, and had only one thought when she desperately held his head against her bosom.

'To hell with the damn pizza.'

Surely, she was thinking the same, with the way she was holding and rubbing against him.

"S-Sasuke-kun—" He moved to the other again.

"I need you, now, Sakura." He mumbled against it, already pumping his fingers faster. He looked at his phone with annoyance from a side glance, seeing a phone number, but not one of his contacts. As if understanding his glare, it silenced, and he continued on to her breast again while enjoying Sakura's moans.

"S-So spoiled. Haven't y-you had enough?" She panted, though it wasn't a tone of irritation. It took on its sensual pleasure with a tinge of lighthearted amusement. When he looked up to her, the smile on her face showed one of playful merriment, while the pleasure in her eyes gave a temptation that challenged him.

His head tilted with acceptance of that challenge along with his usual devil like smirk. In an instant he flipped her so she had her back against the couch, just the way he had her before. He looked into her eyes and placed his lips against hers. He rubbed her up and down her folds and gave her a loving kiss in spite of her moan.

"I'll never have enough of you, Sakura." He spoke nothing but the truth against her lips; a truth apparently etched into his very soul. She was everything to him in a way he wasn't sure others would ever comprehend. It was like they were bound together by fate itself and he was all too consciously aware of it. His mind and body threw away all logic when it came down to her and instead, that logic was diverted to suit her needs instead. He had to take action to grab her heart. Because he had to make her his. He had to be the sole owner of her heart, because the cosmos screamed through his blood that she belonged to him and vice versa.

He was meant for her and she was meant for him. All other impulses and instincts he had were thrown out the window with this simple fact. All rational logic was not needed. It led to this. What rational logic said to give her a job based off body language alone? What logic made him so invested in her that he'd show up to her preferred bar over the jealousy of hearing another man's name? What rational logic made him kidnap a man from prison, just to get revenge for hurting her?

There never was any. Itachi's quote from their mother rang true. The Uchiha love to the point of insanity.

"I love every bit of you…" He whispered, pulling down her shorts and panties in one rushed pull. After getting them from her legs, they were tossed somewhere, and within that same minute he had her on top of him again. They shared an intense moment, staring into each other's eyes while he shifted to take out his member. He hadn't changed his mind about having her like this.

"Inside and out...and it drives me crazy." He continued, caressing her face in one hand and positioning himself with the other. She was already panting and her back arched. It confirmed all his feelings before. She was already prepared to take him. Her heavy breathing and grinding her hips when he moved his helmet against her proved it. Moving his hand down her face to the bridge of her neck and shoulder he slowly eased her down.

"That's why…Sakura..."

His body heated up in an instant. He felt his breath stop when she started sheathing him. His hand that originally was holding his member grabbed her rear again, gripping tightly as she slowly descended upon him. Just like last night, she felt so good he gave a shaky shutter of breath. His lower half couldn't help but move to ensure he was buried inside her.

Then, he watched her throw her head back and the moan she gave;

"Mmmmmmnnnn! Haaaaaaah!" His eyes glazed. He caressed her face and brushed his lips against hers when she lowered her gaze back to him. He fell in love all over again.

"I'll never get enough of you."

Was he even deeper than last night like this? Sakura was seeing Heaven and all the stars of the universe. With a slight grind of his hips, she started moving. He groaned when she moved, grinding slowly, and she panted. He slouched a bit using his hands to move her up and down on his length, while she instinctively rolled her hips. She had never been on top of a man like this before, but when she insecurely looked back to Sasuke, his eyes were hazed. He was staring at her and adoring her in his very eyes.

'How does she move so lusciously?' He couldn't help but question with awe in his mind. It felt so good like this, he couldn't help when he started meeting her movements with thrusts.

"Sakura…" His throat groaned huskily. Even his voice, so soothed and velveteen, it sounded like he was dreaming to her—of her.

"Oh, Sasuke-kun…" She moaned, and he gave a pleased smile. He looked like a man in a dream world, staring at her like that. As if this was his heaven and Sakura lowered down to kiss him. Through the kiss and her body, she promised to be his safe haven. With her, she promised he would not experience or even think of the stresses of life outside of themselves. She promised, to love him just as much as he loved her.

She wanted him to be free.

His thrust started getting harder, making her body jump more. A few slow, hard thrust and Sakura couldn't control herself as her head arched back and she gave a loud cry of pleasure. His hands gripped even tighter and his teeth clenched.

"Sasuke!" She even left out his suffix from sheer exhilaration and he saw it all. Her mounds bouncing, her pleasured face. He carved it into his mind and the more he watched, the faster his thrust became. Seeing her like this made him damn near feral. One of his hands entangled themselves into her hair and he pulled her to look back at him in the eye. He wanted to see her face. He wanted to remember it.

"Look at me." He was already close to becoming feral. A pleasured blush painted her cheeks. Her emerald eyes were glossy and hazed. She was now biting down on her bottom lip, bouncing up and down on him like that. His eyes became smoldering charcoals. He wanted to make so much love to her, he couldn't stand it. He was about to kiss her when—

RING RING

Sakura gasped and her movements stopped. And just like that, someone in this world deserved to die, by Sasuke's hand and his hand alone. He really had no care for who it was besides Sakura; he just knew death was warranted. Her head turned to eye the phone on the couch beside him, and he was glaring bloody, gruesome murder at it. His teeth gritted, even while they panted like this.

'Shouldn't have ordered the damn pizza. I should've just picked it up on the goddamn way!' He snarled mentally as he reached for the phone. He stilled himself, nuzzling his nose against hers while answering the phone. Sakura clasped her hand over her mouth much to his approval.

Those noises were only for him to hear. No one else. He'd kill someone before they heard her say his name the way only he was supposed to hear it.

"What?!" He snarled. He almost broke his own phone, the way he was squeezing it out of pure rage and the only reason he didn't give in to his rage and hatred was that she was in his grasp. She was still on top of him and he was losing his mind, the longer he had to deal with the damn phone. His length was still throbbing inside her and each twitch was causing agony.

Sakura didn't know what came over her from there. All she knew was she needed him to move and if he wasn't going to do it, her body would. She wasn't even thinking, before she started grinding her hips without his urging. He grunted and his teeth gritted looking up at her. She kept her hand clasped and her eyes closed from the pleasure. He slouched a bit more, placing his free hand on the swell of her hip. His eyes copied every single movement obsessively.

"Errr...h-hello sir. I'm calling from Luigi's Pizza. Your pie will arrive in about fifteen minutes." He barely heard, with her doing this to him. 'I don't give a damn!' He wanted to scream, but that was not possible with what Sakura was doing to him right now.

"Hmm! Hmm!" She was muffled and it pissed him off that he was holding onto a damn phone and not her body.

"Forget it." He growled out instead and hung up. He made up his mind. Screw it. If she was hungry still after, he'd take her out somewhere. It wasn't that late. They could find a restaurant or something. He moved to kiss Sakura, only for her to give a small laugh. He looked at her with aggravated questioning, before her beautiful face smiled back down at him and brushed her lips against his.

"So spoiled." She moaned out temptively, her hazed eyes showing love and delight. He smirked, almost pridefully. He moved to thrust into her again, gripping her body tight with his now two free hands and turned her to lay on the couch. He just remembered another lesson his father had taught him.

'An Uchiha always gets what they want.'

"Aaah! Haah!"

Well, he wasn't wrong.

"Only for you." He whispered, claiming her lips, and relinquishing all of his senses to her.


Sebastian sighed, having finished his tasks of the Uchiha Mansion for the night. He had made sure all budgets had been balanced and finalized. Unfortunately, the Accelerated Education Foundation, as the butler had found out was the main source for Sakura's clinic, could not be contacted at the time. Researching further into the A.E.F, as he always did if his Master was to be involved with them, Sebastian found it rather odd.

The program, apparently funded and founded by the government of Konoha, boasted "creating the future with the brightest" and "increased opportunity for all accepted". So, why did it seem their help to Sakura was limited? Surely, as bright as she was, she should have been given some kind of excellent position whenever she had become affiliated with them. Or at least when she had become of age. The missions of the A.E.F were rather vague, and in his experience, such a large entity giving a vague appearance did not mean well and lacked legitimacy.

So, why did it appear that Lady Sakura had no grievances or such with the A.E.F. As limited as she seemed, it didn't appear that she was bothered with the A.E.F either. Was it part of paranoia that he thought there was more to it? Why, for all the brilliance the A.E.F claimed to find, did they lack in any figures of authority and power. The only one he knew who came out of it with such a position was Kakashi Hatake, and his position, though high in status, was nowhere near the power held by the Uchiha's he worked for.

A coincidence? Or something more?

For now, he'd simply keep his suspicions of the A.E.F to the back of his mind. Sebastian's face dropped, hearing the other line pick up. His blue eyes narrowed and glared at the ground.

"Young Master Itachi…forgive me for disturbing you at this hour. Thank you for answering if you are busy."

"Is everything alright, Sebastian?" The eldest Uchiha spoke over the line.

"It's about Lady Sakura, Young Master…" The butler spoke of the beautiful pinknette. His grip on the phone hardened a bit. Of all the coincidences...or was it even a coincidence to begin with?

Sebastian could never tell with that man and Zetsu was a telltale sign of that man.

"What is it?"

"I fear…" Sebastian swallowed hard and hesitated. Sakura had said they met a year before. Quite some time before meeting with his Young Master Sasuke. It had to be a coincidence...or something else entirely.

"...we must stop your disobedience with him, sir." Sebastian said, knowing the emphasized mention of a man needed no other context. Itachi was silent for a moment on the other line.

"...Why?" He asked hesitantly.

"I'm unsure if it is innocent or not, but it seems he is somewhat connected to Lady Sakura. Worse...the actions you have taken have caused more trouble than we thought as well."

"How so?"

"He is a funding partner for her sir. She's never met him apparently, but...Zetsu himself was there. He was there to cut off a percentage of funding to her. He did indeed lose quite of bit of his finances from the previous plot." Sebastian said the last part worriedly.

"...If he sends Zetsu to her...then…she is of some importance to him."

"What should we do sir? As we suspected he would, he is quickly repairing any damage caused to him. Zetsu will no doubt have already reported she is connected to you and Young Master Sasuke. He witnessed me at her side."

"It will be fine. I am in good standing with him, for now. I'm sure he doesn't suspect me. If anything, it sounds like she is simply one of his legal fronts. He won't harm her. It will bring him too much attention to do so and he hates that."

"But, sir. What if he uses her against you? He is still too powerful and has too much influence within the Union. Even the police answer to him..." Sebastian sighed and his silvery blue eyes lowered. Itachi was silent. Sebastian sighed.

"Lady Sakura...means the world to Young Master Sasuke. I have already seen for myself. If she is harmed…he'll be destroyed..." Sebastian spoke the truth. His eyes shut from pain and remembering.

"Sebastian...please, don't let the next woman to enter this House end up with the same fate as me."

He made a promise. He promised the next Matriarch would be protected. It was his sworn duty as butler of the Uchiha House.

"Sir…maybe if we reason with him...if we talk to him first maybe we can renegotiate your terms. Things can be better...and neither Young Master Sasuke nor Lady Sakura need to be involved."

"You know yourself, more than I do, it is not that simple Sebastian. He won't stop until everything is in his hands and I made a promise to father."

"But—"

"I'll see to it Sakura is protected. I promised that to Sasuke. And I'll see to it Sasuke is protected as well. I promised that to father."

"Sir—"

"Don't worry, Sebastian. I'll sort it out. He will not lay a finger on her. Continue your work on Orochimaru and Danzo. There will be nothing to fear soon."

Itachi frowned, hanging up on the phone call instantly and he glared at the red carpeted floor. He shoved his hands into his slacks and his eyes narrowed the more he thought about the newly received information. It was truly a coincidence. He would have to look further into it, but Sakura was involved with the enemy and with the way she acted, it wasn't trickery.

Unless...it was...

Kisame walked out from the room he excused himself from to take Sebastian's call, dressed in a fine suit, with a dark blue satin shirt beneath his black blazer. Itachi turned only his head, his look changing to one of calm and stoic nature.

"Itachi, the meeting is about to start."

Itachi kicked off the wall he was leaning against and walked without a word. When he met Kisame at the shoulder, the shark like man stopped him.

"Everything alright?" Itachi's eyes narrowed.

"The project for my brother…" Itachi spoke lowly. Kisame turned to look at him.

"What of it?"

"Get double the men. And were you able to get to Sasori?" Itachi asked.

"Yeah. He's "bailed" out."

"Tell him, change of plans. He's going to meet me instead of the job." Itachi turned to walk into the meeting room.

"We are speeding up my plans." Kisame's eyes widened and he turned to Itachi.

"But, I thought we were far from ready—"

"He has his eyes on her." Itachi stopped and his eyes narrowed. Kisame froze.

"It's time to put an end to him. Before he decides my services are not enough. We'll just have to take the next steps as carefully as possible." Itachi walked inside the meeting room. Of all the coincidences, this was one that could favor him quite well, if he worked fast enough. No doubt the man had already gotten word that Sebastian was there. But if he struck first and struck in a fashion that left no room for error, Itachi would finally fulfill his promises to his father.

'Take care of Sasuke.'

"Is everyone here? Save for Sasori, of course." The man at the head of the table asked. Everyone in the room took their seats.

"We're all here, Pein." Itachi answered soullessly. From his dark area of the room, dangerous eyes shifted to him, and gave an aura of malice.

It was still a little too soon to act. Itachi would very much like to have proceeded with his ten year long plan much later, but now, time was of the essence. One mistake however, could be fatal. Their current deal would be null and was going to have to be a risk that he would have to take. If he didn't act soon, and he found out about Itachi's plots against him, he would surely come for him.

'And he'll go for Sasuke as well.' The elder brother thought with fear.


That's all folks! Once again, I'm very sorry for the wait and thank every single one of you for your patience.

Sasuke: Hope you enjoyed. -smirks at Sakura- I know I did.

Sakura: -blushes- A-Anata...

Naruto: -running around outside- MY EYES! MY EYES!

I hope to update the next chapter way sooner than over a year long wait. I hope you guys can sympathize and understand how it has been quite difficult to even right. Until the next chap, I hope you are all safe and well.

Sasuke: Hn. Stay safe.

Sakura: Stay healthy!

Naruto: MY EEEEYYYYEEESSS!!!

We'll see you next chap everyone. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year.

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