Actions

Work Header

Speak in a roundabout way

Chapter Text

He was due two days ago.

Nothing happened, he’s just late. Like always.

But what if something happened, something very bad? Kakashi said it was a S-Rank, so things could and probably will go out of control.

Could you stop worrying? He’s very capable and his team will protect him.

Nevertheless the dark cloud hanging over your mind wasn’t lessening one bit. Exhausted to the very core and still dirty from sleeping for weeks in trees or on the muddy ground (fall was your favorite season, but not when you had to camp outside) you let the backpack slide to the ground and stretched until some bones popped loudly in the silence.

After one year of active duty outside of Konoha the following steps were well known. First a shower to get rid of the lingering scent of earth, leaves and sweat. To your annoyance you also found some mud dried in your hair and with a little growl you let your fingers rake through the strands until the hardness vanished under your careful motions.

Then a well-deserved dinner, consisting of real food, not the dried fruits, beef jerky and other easily transported and not easily soiled snacks for a long journey you lived off for the last three weeks.

You moaned blissfully around every bite, even though it wasn’t the delicious food your boyfriend would cook when he was home too. Instantly your mood dropped again and sluggishly you moved the last bits of fried rice and grilled fish over your plate before sighing deeply and dumping them in the trash bin.

Kakashi was since three weeks gone and you had accepted a mission one week into his absence. Now you were back from a scouting mission in the land of Grass and he still wasn’t here. Restlessly you continued with your routine without the scarecrow, did the dishes, slipped into comfortable and clean sleeping attire and started to write the mission report, but your thoughts kept drifting to Kakashi.

 

“One year…” you mumbled under your breath and glanced at the catnip sitting idly at the windowsill, “already one year, huh?”

One year of relationship with him. One and a half since he was changed into a cat and sneaked into your flat, one and a half since he woke up in your bed naked and snuggled with a silly smile into you. And… You sighed once more and shook your head.

The reality was far crueler than every nightmare could be. Mission after mission leaded Kakashi out of Konoha, away from you, while you stayed behind and worried endlessly. Gone for weeks or even months, while you were alone and lonely without him. Sure, your friends were always ready to come over and cheer you up, but you missed Kakashi, not Iruka or Anko or Asuma and Kurenai (he finally realized what let the brunette blush everytime and asked her out). You wanted to talk with Kakashi about your day, about your own mission, you wanted to hug the living daylights out of him, relieved he was well and not hurt, you wanted to drag his stupid mask down and kiss him, not somebody else.

Frustrated and melancholic you dropped the pencil. Tomorrow you could finish the report just as fine as today. Tonight you only would mop a bit more and crawl into bed, where a shirt with Kakashi’s unique scent waited.

Exhausted you flopped down on your bed, face forward burying yourself in the soft blankets and the increased amount of pillows (you and Kakashi more than often slept over in your flat than in his).

But just when you wanted to drift off into sleep, a hesitant knock at your door called your attention. Weak and pitiful, only a soft contact of knuckles with the hard wood, though you shot straight out of the cushions and jumped towards your entrance. The rhythm. The never changing rhythm told you who was waiting at your doorstep, the same rhythm which he used when he was a four-legged furball and when he insisted to sit on your outer side of the window.

 

With shaking fingers you disengaged the various protections around your flat (he insisted on them, as you were now the girlfriend of the famous copy ninja) and ripped the door open, not able to hide your relief and happiness at the sight of Kakashi Hatake.

The masked man stood in his usual slouched posture before you, the standard ninja clothes only the tiniest bit dirty and grimy. There were no blood stains tainting the dark fabric, but Kakashi was an expert in hiding those. In the same moment you checked for any injuries on this stubborn mule, he raised one hand and reached out to cup your cheek. His fingers were uncomfortable cold as Kakashi touched your skin, nevertheless you leaned in with a wide smile on your face.

“Hey.” you mumbled lowly.

“Hey.” he repeated hoarsely and stepped closer. He wasn’t limping.

“Any wounds I should know about?”

“No.”

“We both know you would also say that if you had to stuff your insides back into your stomach.”

Kakashi hummed wordlessly. There was a strange light in his eyes, you noticed, somehow empty and hollow, but at the same time desperate and needy for a bit of warmth. A bit of your warmth. Also his fingers started to drop lower, down your cheek, lingering at your neck and feeling your pulse beating fastly, before sliding to the neckline of your loose shirt, playing lazily with the edges.

Oh.

Your smile turned sad when you understood what happened. Gently you tugged him inside and Kakashi complied without any resistance, allowing you to slip his vest off his shoulders. The whole time his onyx eye was transfixed on your face and when you loosened the headband, his intense sharingan got revealed, also intently fixed on your actions.

 

“I missed you,” you whispered and slung your arms around his neck, “I was worried.”

“Sorry. The mission dragged out.”

His strained words told you exactly why Kakashi came late. To drag a dead body home, the dead body of a comrade on top of that was taxing and especially Kakashi was more than only a little bit affected by the loss. He out of all people would feel guilty over losing a ninja of his team, especially when he was the team leader in charge. He was already beating himself up over this, measured at the empty look of his eyes and the inability to smile.

“Don’t apologize.” Your fingers threaded themselves into his thick hair and you leaned in for the first kiss to his still covered lips. “You’re not at fault.”

The fabric of his black mask tasted a bit like blood. Maybe Kakashi bit with such force into his lips until the skin broke, maybe some blood of his enemies splattered on him and sank into the fabric. You paused, then curled with an asking look your fingers around the hems. Kakashi nodded sharply, so you dragged the fabric down. “You’re not at fault.” you repeated hoarsely and pressed the next kiss to his revealed lips.

First the male remained passive. He didn’t react at your tender hands running over his torso, he didn’t react at your lips moving against his, only his muscles trembled noticeably underneath your hands and on your body.

“I missed you,” he whispered suddenly when you retreated, “I still miss you.”

“But I’m here. I’m here, with you Kakashi. Right now. You don’t have to miss me. I’m yours.”

“Can I…?” His voice shook the tiniest bit. “Are you?”

After one year he still had to ask. As an assurance you let your hands wander lower, over his covered stomach and under his shirt. Even the skin there was cold, though it rippled under your curious touch. “Yes,” you answered lowly, “I am. Like I promised.”

 

A shallow inhale was everything of a warning you got. Then Kakashi kissed you, deep and demanding, pressuring you with his mere presence and his strength. His tongue prodded against your lips, asking for entrance and when you opened up for him, the jonin groaned weakly. Feverishly you answered, clinging to the man with every pent up emotion you had. The love you felt for him, the loneliness, the crave to protect him from the demons of his own mind, the warmth and security he granted you with.

Kakashi pushed you backwards, all the while leaving your mouth and sucking at your neck, even biting and licking the slowly bruising skin in his need to feel you close. You nestled with his clothes, trying to pry them off his gorgeous body, all the while his hands did the same thing, searching for crocks and nicks in your clothing to peel them off. His shirt was the first thing to go, followed by your tank top and his pants. Impatiently Kakashi ripped at the bandages around his ankles, while you eagerly stripped your yoga pants off. The underwear was only an insignificant hindrance, easy to get rid off, so after mere seconds you were back in Kakashi’s arms, stark naked and urging him forward.

He growled while throwing you on your bed and you squealed weakly in response, giggling a bit at the smug sparkle in his eyes. But he wasn’t smiling yet, only lowered himself again to mold his naked form into yours and let his mouth wander over your neck. He loved to press his face into the crook of your neck, if now during sex or in a hug.

“Love you,” you whispered into his ear as Kakashi nipped at your sweaty skin, “Love you so much.”

 

Kakashi nodded again. Only a nod, but he returned slowly to his usual self. After one year of relationship you knew which buttons you had to use to get him going, so you grinded your loins against him, moaning eagerly out when his hands clamped down at your hips, dragging you closer. They were still cold as ice, but you were sure to change that.

“Fuck me,” you begged breathlessly, “I need you! Do you know how much I missed you? Do you know? I missed you so much…”

Again you moaned out when you felt his dick scrapping over your lower lips and when he roughly snapped his hips forward and buried himself inside you, a little scream rippled through your lungs. Your fingers clawed desperately into Kakashi’s shoulders and drew surely blood, but he only chuckled at the pain you inflicted on him. He was returning, but that wasn’t enough.

You knew what he needed. So you opened up, your arms, your legs, your heart and let Kakashi do what he wanted, ravaging your body and pumping deep inside with your legs thrown over his shoulders. Sweat poured over your form and your weak moans echoed in the apartment as you clung with all your might to Kakashi, who mercilessly rocked you closer and closer to your orgasm.

“K-Kakashi! I’m close, please, I’m so close!” you whined out as he retreated. The muscles in your legs trembled and in your lower stomach coiled a hot knot of pleasure and desire, ready to explode anytime.

Wordlessly Kakashi shook his head, but his mouth twitched upwards and in his eyes a warm sparkle was born. Fingers danced over your skin, spiraled over your breasts and pinched your nipples, circled your navel and dipped lower to teasingly surround your clit, but never actually touching the sensitive nub. You arched into his hand, whining and letting out mewls of despair, until he gave in to the wordless requests and pressed his thumb to your clit, making you actually gasp out at the unsuspected pressure.

 

“Is that what you want?” he asked hoarsely. “Is that what you need from me?”

“No!” Torturing slow Kakashi moved his thumb up and down, his big hand splayed over your hipbone and thigh. The other hand hoisted your other leg up to his shoulder, caressing absent-mindedly the crane of your knee. You keened, high and needy, what made the man actually laugh out.

“I missed you too. I missed you so much (Y/N). You have no idea how much.” Tender love was edged into Kakashi’s voice and his words made you smile in return. With several deep breaths you massaged his cock deep inside you, what made him grunt loudly into the silence. His grip tightened and the ministrations stopped, only to get replaced by hard pounds and thrusts inside you. That was what you wanted, that was what he needed. An outlet for his pent up negative emotions, a release for your lingering loneliness.

It was hard, animalistic even. The raw force Kakashi used to make you scream, the despaired thrusts to concentrate himself on the life, the positive side of his world. He sunk himself into the task of bringing you to orgasm and you were more than willing to comply with his wishes.

Hard and deep. Every rock of his hips was a huge jump towards your peak, so you tried to make him follow as fast as you could. You teased his chest while Kakashi made your head spin, pinched his perked up nipples and inflicted the smallest bit of pain on him, to remind him he was alive and was still able to feel something. You touched his buttocks when you were close enough to cradle them and Kakashi’s breath hitched when your curious fingers cupped the perfect globes of his ass.

Feeling cheeky, you stuck your tongue out. Seeing this, the jonin broke into a warm chuckle and pressed a quick kiss to your leg on his shoulder. “I love to come home to you.” he murmured, a crocked grin on his face.

 

“I think I do too.”

Then everything became meaningless. Kakashi speed up, pounding hard and unforgiving into you and meeting with every thrust a special sensitive spot inside. Gasping for air you came, white and black stars exploding before your eyes and your spine painfully arched into the heat of Kakashi’s form, who came only seconds after you. Panting shakenly the man collapsed on top of you, burying his face again in the crook of your neck and nosing the sweaty skin.

With closed eyes you pressed a small kiss to his ear. “Are you alright?”

Kakashi nodded and in return let his lips move to the bruise he left in his earlier frenzy. Tenderly he nibbled at the oversensitive skin, teasing the love bite the tiniest bit more and making you tremble. Then he backed away and grimaced lightly at the rests of come dripping out of you. “Sorry for the mess.”

“No problem.” You propped your upper body upwards and watched how Kakashi stood up and walked blindly into the washroom. Then the water faucet got turned on and he returned with a simple blue washcloth in his hands. “You know I like when you’re rough with me.”

“Yup.” To your amusement he made finger guns at you and winked, making your heart jump in your chest. “I’m not a genius for nothing.”

Without any embarrassment you spread your legs wider and allowed him to clean your sore and a bit aching middle from his seed. A hiss escaped, but as Kakashi stopped, full of worry that he hurt you, you shook lightly your head. “It’s just cold.” you answered at his asking stare.

“Good.” Nevertheless the jonin was even more tender as he continued, carefully cleaning the mess he made up and quickly joining you in your bed after dumping the washcloth with an unerringly throw into the sink of the kitchen. You sighed satisfied when you felt how Kakashi deliberately pressed his naked front into your just as naked back and slung his arms around you.

 

You hummed approvingly. “You know what?”

His cold breath crashed into your sweaty skin. “What?”

“I should really give you a key. I mean, I was already totally comfy in my bed and you disrupted my well-deserved sleep. I also came just back from a mission, you know?”

His arms tightened. “Rank?”

“Lower A. Scouting in the Land of Grass. Don’t worry, I wasn’t harmed.”

“And?”

“Everything there’s calm. Orochimaru and his goons don’t peek out of their underground labs and no sightings either of Sasuke. I’m sorry.”

Kakashi sighed deeply. “Don’t be, it’s not your fault. It was his decision to abandon Konoha.”

The unspoken “And I failed him as a teacher,” hung heavily in the room. So you turned in Kakashi’s arms until you could poke his cute beauty mark. “Hey, it’s not your fault either,” you insisted gently, “you did everything you could to prevent that. As you said, it was his decision. His, Kakashi. Listen to your own words for once.”

“Easier said than done, (Y/N).” But his voice was noticeably eased when he said that and the nose poking into your cheek plus the low rumble deep in his chest told you everything you needed to know.

“Aah.” Carefully you reached up and cupped his cheek, tenderly letting your fingertips wander over his cheekbone. “There’s my little rascal again.”

That was your pet name for him, in the darkness of the night or the loneliness of your apartment. Never would you call Kakashi that out in the streets. It was yours, his and yours, a little secret only shared between you two.

The jonin chuckled warmly. “Only for you. Only.“ A small kiss to your forehead. “For.“ Another butterfly kiss to your snub nose. “You.” Finally Kakashi’s lips laid again on yours and hugged you closer, until you felt like you had to peel him off of you with a spatula. Snickering you returned the sensual kiss until there was no more breath in your lungs.

“I like it when you’re home.” you said with a yawn mixing into your words, what let Kakashi break into a giggle on his own.

“Me too.” he answered and dragged you closer until your forehead rested against his chest, rising and lowering with his deep breaths.

 

Still smiling happily you also closed your eyes, but then a scary thought slashed through your consciousness.

Wait. Waitwaitwaitwait! Didn’t I forget to take my pills over the last days? I mean, I didn’t really forget, I was out of them due to the mission, but still…

Kakashi just now didn’t use any protection. Since you visited the hospital and got the birth control pill prescribed and on top of that made sure both of you were clean, you simply didn’t use condoms anymore.

I only forgot them once, you told yourself, I’m not going to get instantly pregnant.

A bit calmed you relaxed into the hug of your already sleeping boyfriend and soon you joined him in sleep, enjoying his warm embrace more than anything.

You didn’t feel lonely anymore.

The next morning came far too fast. And unpleasantly you were alone when you awoke, the sun stinging in your eyes and the cats outside of your apartment mewling loudly (they forgot the lesson Kakashi taught them in his cat form after a few months). The other side of the bed was cold as you felt over the blankets and with a low groan you buried your face again in the pillow, which smelled still like Kakashi.

Where was he? Maybe out for a ridiculous challenge with Gai? Or standing in line for a new Icha-Icha-book? Or maybe he had taken the role of a supplier and was out to buy fresh buns for a nice breakfast?

As you finally managed to stand up -the ache between your legs was annoying, but bearable- you limped over to the small kitchen table and spotted a note sitting beside a long cold tea and some still delicious smelling scrambled eggs.

The neat handwriting of your beloved greeted you as you took the note and read over the words.

 

Dear (Y/N),

Sorry for not being there when you wake up, but Tsunade ordered me to go on an emergency mission. I wish I could spend more time with you, but my duty calls. Hopefully my humble try to cook will ease your surely bad mood. Thank you so much for yesterday, I needed that and I needed to be close to you. You’re amazing. I love you.

I’ll come back. Promise.

P.S.: You smiled in your sleep. You were so beautiful, I think my heart stopped for a moment.

 

“You cheesy fucker.” With tears in your eyes you shook your head and laughed, clutching the note in your hands. “You cheesy stupid fucker. How am I supposed to be ever angry with you?”

The loneliness was back, sitting in a corner of your room and watching how you tried to go on with your day like nothing ever happened. Because Kakashi visiting for merely hours only to get ripped apart again because the Hokage ordered him around like a dutiful dog –he needed time to mourn properly, did the blonde sannin want to let him drop dead at this rate?- was more painful than months of wordless absence.

More than once you had to keep the tears in, biting in your lower lip and hoping the mission wouldn’t last as long as the last one.

Hopefully.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Seriously, you wanted to strangle your stupid past self. Where did you have your head sometimes!? Forgetting to take an appropriate amount of birth control pills on your mission and instantly forgetting to take them after returning, but no! Getting roughly fucked by your sinfully sexy boyfriend and doing what was so much better? Nothing! You did nothing, for a whole month and two weeks you did nothing! And that was the reason you sat now with jitterish hands and a foul taste in your mouth in your bathroom and stared intently at a simple white stick which smelled of your urine.

Please. Just let it be one stripe, you prayed, one single stripe, that’s everything I’m asking for. I have no idea what I will do if the other possibility… Don’t think about it, it will be one stripe, okay?

Paranoia had spread when your over the top punctual menstruation didn’t come as usual. There were no other signs, but immediately the night of Kakashi’s visit came back to haunt your mind with ashamed guiltiness and self-accusations of being reckless and forgetful and so on and so on.

You didn’t dare to look at the pregnancy test. Fear tightened its grip around your heart, churned through your stomach and made you nearly wretch in your panic. What if there were two stripes? What if the test was positive? What if you were really…?

What if you and Kakashi…? What if…?

“Come on,” you murmured, still with closed eyes, “just… Do it.”

Your eyes kept shut.

“It’s nothing to panic over. Just a little test. Nothing else. It will be negative.”

Nothing. You didn’t even move an inch from your position, hunched over the toilet seat and your legs drawn to your chest, dressed in your loose sleeping attire and with warm socks at your feet.

 

Fall came to Konoha one week ago, inclusive the cold winds threading through the brown, red and yellow leaves. Automatically you counted the weeks since Kakashi was gone yet again and came to the same depressing resolve as last time. One month and a half. And now you sat here nearly crying and you needed him more than ever, but he wasn’t there to hold your hand.

He’s never here.

Tears piled in your eyes. You didn’t want to think like this. It was ugly, being envious of the long and gruesome missions, but… There was a tiny part of you who whispered about your insecurities, about the long and dark loneliness you suffered from and the short breaks Kakashi took between the missions.

But it isn’t his fault. The Hokage sends him constantly on missions, he just follows orders.

He could say no from time to time! Just a few weeks, that’s the only thing I’m asking for! Not hours, I want full days and nights with him!

Did you indulge yourself in this pointless discussion to avoid looking at the pregnancy test? Absolutely. But that wouldn’t solve anything, it was just buying stolen time on a loan. Sometime you were bound to open your eyes and look at the result, sometime you had to face reality. With several deep breaths you finally managed to crack your eyes the tiniest bit open, hesitatingly peeking at the object in your hands.

Two stripes.

Numbly your mind registered that you lost the grip around the test. The plastic clattered on the white tiles, but every sound was dulled out by the dead sough in your ears. The first tears slithered down and your teeth hurt from the force you put on them in your need to stay silent and not to cry, but it was useless.

 

The first weak sob was echoing through the bathroom like the howling of the wind outside, the one after that was noticeably louder. Then the gates opened and you slumped down on the toilet seat, your face buried in your palms and rocking yourself back and forth, reeling and weeping over the cruel beautiful chance.

You were pregnant. From Kakashi. Who was constantly absent. You were only one year together, for god’s sake! This came far too early, far too much responsibility, far too much weight placed on your shoulders! Sure, money wasn’t an issue currently, due to the extra missions and the regular work at the T&I department you were able to support a child and there was help for young mothers, but…

How would Kakashi react to the news? Would he be accepting? Would he back off? Or the worst of all, would he deny any involvement and break up? You never spoke about children, not even marriage or some more serious commitment than sharing a flat ever came up. How would he react to such a serious kind of responsibility and commitment?

A child. You slung your arms around your middle. A child. A baby, in this world. In this gruesome shinobi world, where their inhabitants were either cursed to die young or to live long enough to watch their loved ones die. Children dying before their parents or the parents leaving their children behind to survive on their own was terribly common among all shinobi villages and the orphanages in all of them were overflowing with parentless young and older children.

A child. Alone the thought of raising one and watching the small bean growing up to a genin, only to die on the first mission made panic rise up like bile in your throat. Helplessly you clutched your belly, where possibly a life had started to grow.

At that you perked up. Possibly. Sometimes the pregnancy tests out of the grocery store weren’t correct. Sometimes they showed false results. Maybe now too. With a heavy sigh you pulled yourself up and disposed the stick in the nearby trash bin.

You had to go to the hospital. You had to make sure if it was true or not, if you were really pregnant.

After that you could freak out or thank the gods (whoever was responsible for careless shinobi’s and their problems with sexual protection).

 

But just as you stepped out of your flat, cladded into your uniform and locking the door with shaking fingers, fate struck merciless and changed the direction of your steps.

“(L/N)-san?”

Startled you flinched at the sudden voice. An Anbu stood in the hallway, his rugged brown hair standing in little spiky tufts up from his head. The mask was painted in red and green and you couldn’t make out for the life of you what animal it should display.

“Y-yes?” you asked. Your voice edged to a higher tone, tensed and strained to the very limits.

“The Hokage requests your presence.”

“For what reason?”

The Anbu cocked his head. “You’re related to Hakate-san. Something happened during his latest mission. To elucidate the options, Tsunade-sama requested me to guide you without any disturbances to her office.”

What? Your mind spun in wild circles. To Kakashi happened something? The worry about maybe being pregnant faded into the background, instead you hastily followed the Anbu, who walked like a living shadow over the roofs of the surrounding houses. As quickly as you could you jumped after him, panicking not only because of the maybe fetus growing in your stomach, but imagining Kakashi half-dead in the hospital, unconscious and not able to do anything on his own.

 

Almost on instinct your bottom lip jittered and you bit down into the sensitive flesh to stop the next wave of tears. They wouldn’t help at all.

Come on, get a grip on yourself! Listen first to Tsunade, maybe it isn’t as bad as it seems!

Who again was saying: “It will be negative”? And look what the test showed.

This day was so utter shit.

The way to the Hokage tower was blurry and dazed by the different terrible pictures flashing into your brain (Kakashi in a coma, Kakashi missing half of his body, Kakashi covered completely in burn wounds and smiling crookedly at you, saying “It’s just a scratch wound, don’t worry.”) but when you stood in front of the bureau, your breath accelerated into new unknown heights.

“Wait for a second Anbu-san.” you whispered. The masked man stopped before he could even touch the doorknob, his lifeless face not one bit betraying what he thought about your strange request.

Your knees trembled heavily as you braced yourself against the next cool stone wall. You felt like a heavy flu was running havoc inside your brain, clouding your mind and letting your emotions on a crazy rampage. Fear, anger and a strange kind of hopeful anxiety settled down deep down in your guts, making you feel like you could puke any moment. But maybe it was just the promised morning sickness…?

“O-okay,” you desperately snickered and wiped your running nose, “I think it’s okay now.”

“Sure?”

“Not at all, but those bad news won’t hear themselves, right?” You tried to sound optimistic, but every syllable was tainted with deep sadness and you didn’t even had the nerve to think you could fool an Anbu about your emotional state. Kakashi was once one, you had seen the tattoo and he told you and he was able to tell what you felt sometimes even before you knew it.

 

“Maybe they aren’t as bad as you think.” With that the Anbu knocked gently at the door and opened it after a harsh “Come in!” from the female Hokage. He held the door open for you and like this, you stepped inside, not really wanting to see what was waiting for you.

There was Tsunade, sitting at her desk and cladded into her usual clothing, but not as usual the woman was trying to suppress a… a sneaky grin? She tried to hide it behind her hands, but from time to time she shook her hand that her blonde pigtails flailed around and like that her perking up lips were revealed. Also inside was a team of guilty looking and dirty ninja, namely Genma, Raidou and Aoba, who held a struggling and loudly mewling animal, who started to wiggle in Genma’s hands as soon as you stepped inside.

A well-known grey cat with a scar crossing his left eye and with the actual strength to claw and bite itself away from Genma and jumping excitedly towards you, pressing his warm furry flank to your leg.

Flabbergasted you first pointed at the loudly purring Kakashi, then looked at Tsunade, who was now snickering without any restraints, only to come to a stop at Genma, Aoba and Raidou, who only helplessly shrugged when you askingly looked at the cat Kakashi, who by now tried to catch your attention by mewling lowly and making incredibly cute big cat eyes.

“Someone better explain what happened,” you said weakly, “or I will fucking tear the walls down in order to find it out.”

Chapter Text

“So,” by now Kakashi was hanging from your shoulder and rubbed his furry cheek against yours, “he was stupid enough to jump into an unknown jutsu from an enemy to protect Raidou’s ass, not knowing what kind of jutsu he would encounter and it came out as the same jutsu as last year?”

“Pretty much.” At least Raidou had the decency to look ashamed.

You swallowed your anger once more and restrained your emotions the best you could, but you knew you had to calm down by the time you would go home, otherwise this would be a bad day for the first person who crossed your path and was stupid enough to piss you off. To piss me further off, you corrected and absent-mindedly scratched Kakashi's chin, or I don't know what I will do.

“What was the mission anyway?” you asked instead and hoped the answer would distract you.

This time Tsunade answered, still with a smug tone in her voice which made you want to strangle the woman. “One of our outposts near Kumogakure was ambushed. I needed a fast team who would be able to rescue any survivors and fight possibly any kind of shinobi they would encounter. If you’re interested, there’s-!”

“I’m not,” you interrupted sharply, what made Kakashi stop his affections and the others look surprised at you, “Interested in anything else. I don’t care. The only thing I want is that Kakashi gets his own body back, Hokage-sama. Did you already perform the First’s jutsu to change him back?”

Suddenly Tsunade’s mood visibly dropped. “Yes,” she growled and threw an annoyed glance at the far too happy cat, “but apparently he needs the right trigger. I don’t know what happened last time, but it had something to do with you.”

At the memory what exactly happened last time the blood still creeped up to your cheeks. Weakly you nodded, all the while Tsunade continued talking, her tone changed to the one of a leader and political, not longer amused by the situation. “We need the copy ninja. The village still needs the money for the last repairs Orochimaru caused last year and he’s one of our most profitable incomes.”

 

Hearing that, you nearly hissed at your superior. Only barely you managed to stuff those feelings into a box and put a tight lid on it, but it was a close call.

Too close.

“Hokage-sama, may I speak to you for a moment alone?” you asked and thankfully your voice wasn’t shaking like before. The cold anger made your tongue like steel, ready to be a sword, a spear or a shield for Kakashi and you were more than ready to defend him with everything you got. That your motive wasn’t entirely pure and altruistic wasn’t counting. It was about the physical and mental health of the man you loved.

Behind you the feet of the present persons shuffled, followed by the sound of the door getting opened and closed silently. Apparently the other ninjas had noticed the slowly rising tension in the room and preferred to vanish fastly before ending up in the battlefield which would enfold. Kakashi jumped down from your shoulder into your lap, purring and nosing your tightly clasped hands until you started to automatically stroke through his thick fur.

“Do you have any idea,” you started coldly, “do you have any idea how much he suffered from the last mission you send him to?”

Tsunade raised an eyebrow. “No. He didn’t go to the hospital, so I had and have no clue about his state.”

You threw a glare at the cat. We’re going to talk about this later, my friend.

He understood the message and stiffened beneath your hands.

With a low sigh you went on, busying your limbs by massaging the stiffness out of the lithe cat body purring in your lap. “He was devastated. Someone with his history always is when someone of his team dies. It’s cruel to send him right afterwards on a mission without time to properly mourn, with all respect, Hokage-sama.”

 

Kakashi tried to mewl, but you talked over the cat, not caring that he was by now nipping at your fingers, gently gracing the skin with his sharp teeth until the little bites turned a bit painful. “I understand that Konoha needs the money to make the last repairs, but in my opinion they don’t have priority. And Kakashi needs vacation from time to time. He’s one of the most hardworking shinobi, who goes on the most difficult missions with the highest risks. I’m not speaking here as his girlfriend, but as a friend, neighbor and shinobi of Konoha when I say: yes, we need maybe Kakashi Hatake, but not that desperately that he could drop dead of mental or physical exhaustion.”

Tsunade’s golden eyes squinted. “You’re right, you’re overstepping your boundaries here. Usually I don’t have to explain myself or my decisions to the shinobi under my command, nor the treatment I give them. But…” With a heavy sigh the female relaxed into her seat. “But I have to give you a point. I didn’t take the mental exhaustion of Hatake into my quotations. Fine, he may have his vacation, now that he’s turned into a cat.”

 

You gave her an empty glare.

Tsunade grumped. “Okay, okay. He can also have some when he turned back. Now shush!” She gestured around like she wanted to drive out some annoying insects. “Get your furry boyfriend and take him home. Just report if the brat decides to change back, that is everything I want to know.”

Kakashi hissed at her comment, but quickly you silenced the cat with a soft stroke over his back and a tug at his ears, followed by a gentle scratch of his chin. A rumble vibrated through the small body and eased, but not entirely relaxed you left the Hokage office, the now compliant animal safely secured in your embrace. Kakashi was hanging from your arm, his back pressing into your chest and the tail hanging down, the paws from time to time scratching against the bare skin whenever he moved slightly.

Again. At one hand you wanted to laugh at the hilarious situation. Again Kakashi was bound to stroll around your legs, purr and endure all the little nit-picking habits you developed and the man despised deeply, while you would happily tease and cuddle with the lithe cat.

And yet… At the other hand you wanted to be pissed at him. How dare he? How dare Kakashi didn’t immediately return to his normal stature the second the counter jutsu was casted on him! Didn’t he care about you? That you were worried after weeks of absence, that you wanted to check for injuries, to fuzz around him a little bit and sleep with him by your side? And not with a cat, hell no! You wanted to talk with the man, especially about the possibility of being… Of being…

You swallowed the sudden lump of nervousness. The possibility of carrying Kakashi’s child. You needed to talk with him about that, to assure yourself that he was…

Promptly you stopped in the middle of the street, your hands clenching oh so slightly around Kakashi, who mewled lowly when he noticed your discomfort. Absent-minded you stroked over his head, all the while staring blindly at a shop with (how convenient!) baby clothing on sale.

What a joke. What a cruel bitter joke.

 

Another mewl and a tentative lick to your thumb ripped you out of your thoughts. Kakashi was staring up at you, his tongue just returning into his maw and claws nipping at your sleeves.

“Don’t make this face,” you scowled and tried to build a serious expression, “we’re going to talk about your stupid rookie mistake when we’re at home. And I have no energy right now to make a scene in the middle of the street. Plus you’re a cat and the people would stare at me.”

He purred loudly.

“Just wait until we’re back home. You won’t purr for a very long time, my friend.”

That didn’t stop the cat from giving your hand another long lick and a short push with his nose.

Inwardly you melted at the well-known feeling, outwardly you only raised an eyebrow. But you couldn’t fool Kakashi. Not anymore, not after one year in which you spend almost every day together or at least every day he wasn’t gone to fulfill some orders. He glanced at you, the scarred eye closed and the other sparkling in the sunlight, then he snuggled quickly his head into the crook of your arm, knowing you wouldn’t scold him too badly.

“Furry butthole.” But the insult was weakened by the crack in your voice and the teasing small flick against his skull.

Overall you were so glad he was back, relatively unharmed and well. Overall you were happy you managed to gain some time with the man you loved. Overall you were able to suppress the unsettling sick feeling in the very pit of your stomach.

 

The rest of the way back to your flat was silent, only interrupted by snivels from the cat and undisturbed thinking on your part. The old comfortable homey feeling of having Rascal by your side was back, but something new mixed into it. A sliver of sadness, only a hint of negative emotion.

You never hid something from Kakashi before, but you wouldn’t talk with him about your maybe or maybe not-state when he was a cat and couldn’t make a comment back which didn’t consist of a snarl, a purr or hiss. So the surely wrong test had to stay in the trash bin and the confessions you had to make and spit out would stay in your stomach, unsaid and boiling until Kakashi owuld hopefully change back to his human self.

Automatically you took the stairs to your home and Kakashi started to excitedly wiggle around. His tail cricked in amusement, flicked against your skin and when you barely managed to open your doors and slid inside, the cat mewled cutely and jumped to the ground, not caring about the huff you let out.

“Okay,” you grumbled and watched how Kakashi flounced nearly through your living room, paws light and tail swaying around “guess I’m not that important.”

Instantly the single black eye flew towards you, followed by a shake of his small head and a silly hiss, obviously meant to counter your ironic statement.

Pouting, you crossed your arms over your chest. “What else should I think when the first thing you do in the split second we enter my apartment is to get away from me?”

Kakashi rolled on his back, crocked his head and presented his belly, like he wanted to say: I’m sorry, please forgive me for my rude behavior.

Seeing this dog-like gesture on a cat, especially considering Kakashi was the one doing that gesture left you giggling like a little schoolgirl, clutching to your stomach and bending over, all the while tears stood in your eyes and threatened to spill down your face.

 

He huffed into the pause between your giggles, what made you even laugh harder at the miffed expression on his furry features.

Just when you wanted to retort something, still snickering weakly, there was a knock on your door, heavy and thick in the light atmosphere.

None of your friends had announced themselves for a visit. Maybe it was again an Anbu for further instructions of something. Carefully you unlocked the door and what you saw there left you speechless.

A lithe man, a little bit taller than you, with a slightly crocked nose, dimples as he grinned with childish charm at you and silky locks in a rusty brownish-red color stood in the entrance. His Konoha shinobi vest was dirty and destroyed like someone dragged him over hundreds of miles through bushes, mud and thorns, same for his pants and sandals. The band with the Konoha insignia imprinted was bound around his upper right arm, which was hanging in a cast, indicating the limb was broken or at least bruised enough to need rest.

“Hey (Y/N),” he greeted and the smile widened, “long time no see.”

Your first instinct was to shut the door, activate all the alarms and protections for your flat and tug the curtains before your windows closed. Your second to scream full of rightful rage and anger at him. How dare he appeared out of nowhere on your doorstep, acting like nothing ever happened!?

“Yeah,” you answered coldly, “long time no see.”

“You moved quite a bit. I had to ask the Hokage where you live, otherwise I would’ve never found this place.”

“How come you think I appreciate your visit?”

 

The man had the decency to look ashamed. “I was… Uhm…” He rubbed the back of his neck. “Yeah, you’re right. Our last meeting wasn’t too-!”

“Remember who made it unpleasant,” you interrupted, “Remember who was the one walking away with his head stuck in his ass, claiming he was better off without me.”

Apparently Kakashi had eavesdropped, because suddenly the slender cat was strolling around your legs, pressing his flank to your calf and growling lowly at the visitor. His ears were almost molded against his skull, the fur on his back standing upwards in crazy tufts and his tail swished swiftly around, from side to side.

The brunet threw a short glance at the growling animal, then chuckled. “I see. A cat, huh? I would’ve placed my bet on a dog.”

“What do you want Gin?” you asked, a scowl tugging at your mouth. “What do you fucking want from me?”

Naturally you had told Kakashi at one point about your childhood friend, who had abandoned you just because you picked a job at the T&I. His first reaction had been a menacing glare, then he had drawn you in a long hug, silently grumbling about “stupid pricks” and how “some people didn’t deserve any kindness”. So you weren’t amazed when the cat first stilled, then the growl vibrating in his chest grew louder until he was hissing and spitting at Gin, the claws showing and nipping at your feet.

“Ssh. It’s okay.” you whispered and nudged Kakashi gently.

One last sharp hiss and he was silent again. Though you could feel how the cat snuggled close to your legs, almost like he tried to protect you from the visitor with his mere small body.

Gin had watched the little banter with interest. “Seriously,” he pointed at the man in the form of an apparently harmless animal, “where did you pick her up?”

Him. From the streets.”

“You’re not scared of any kind of rashes or such?”

 

You snorted in disbelief. “Out of all people you lost the right to worry about diseases or rashes I could get from my perfectly clean and parasite-free pet, who showed at his first evening in my flat more manners than you at our last meeting. And he stole my dinner from right underneath my nose. Gin, you’re not welcome here. Go. Go and do whatever you have to do to not step into my sights again.”

Kakashi growled approvingly, followed by a well-known caress of his tail over your ankle. Same old furry charmer. You were so close to smile at the cat, but kept your façade for Gin up. Sternly you watched him stutter around and satisfied you noticed that your childhood friend averted to look at you. Instead his silvery eyes were glued to the ground, focused on his own dirty toes.

Then, after an eternity, Gin nodded slowly and turned away, his head still down-casted and visible regret edged into his face. But he threw an insecure glance back, how you stood in the entrance, the silver cat protectively leaning against your legs and hissing when the glance got noticed.

“I’m…” Gin coughed awkwardly. “I’m staying at the shinobi barracks close to the Hokage tower. Just… Just in case.”

“Just in case?”

Gin smiled pitifully. “Just in case you want to talk about… About us.”

Your nerves were strained to the maximum today, so maybe that explained your extreme reaction to his words. Hissing through your teeth, you stepped into the hallway and pointed full of outraged satisfaction at him. “Fuck off Gin. You made pretty clear what you think about me and my job, at what I’m good at. Did I ever call you out that you actively kill people? No, because you do your fucking job, just like I do mine! If I ever want to speak with you, I would’ve contacted you. I don’t care what you have to say, I don’t care that you’re probably sorry about your bratty behavior, because I don’t want to hear anything! Just leave me the fuck alone.”

 

“Is there a reason? Like…” Gin gestured warily around. “Like a…”

At that Kakashi mewled. And you just knew he had puffed his chest out in pride, the little smug rascal he was. So you rolled your eyes, but the first real smile since your old friend had knocked at your door crossed your face as you looked down at the cat, who started to purr rusty when he noticed your adoration. “Yes. I’m heavily committed. But that’s not the reason why I’m sending you away. It’s my decision, my own decision not to talk to you, because I don’t give a single shit about you and your well-being. Even if he wouldn’t be a part of my life, I would send you away.”

The cat again mewled, purred and rubbed his head against your foreleg. Absent-mindedly you bend down and picked Kakashi up, what he quitted with an eager lick to your hands before snuggling his maw into the crook of your neck. His whiskers tickled your skin. Obviously the man inside the cat was happy to hear that exclamation.

In return, Gin’s expression only grew more distressed. He fidgeted on his feet and grimaced, but maybe his bruised arm was the reason for the painful edge in his voice. “Good. But… Please think about my offer. I really regret what happened, what I did and said. Let… Let me explain, okay?”

Wordlessly you nodded at the stairway. An unspoken order and surprisingly Gin followed your wish quickly, stumbling and limping, but he vanished.

“Ssh.” Your next deep inhale was shaking and to ease your mind you kissed gently Kakashi’s flank. The body in your arms rumbled lowly and a warm, slightly rough tongue licked over your neck.

 

For a few more minutes you cuddled with the grey cat, burying your nose in his fur and breathing in the familiar scent of weapons oil, dog shampoo and faint lemon. While calmly walking into your apartment and closing the door with your foot, Kakashi was busy purring eagerly. His nose prodded against your cheek, tickling you with his whiskers and you had to laugh. But when you were seated at you couch and remembered the serious speech you wanted to give this stubborn mule, the happy expression made place for the stern look you needed. “So,” the cat stiffened suddenly at the sharp undertone you used, “and now getting back to you.”

Knowing he would try to escape, you tightened your grip around him. And really, the second your words completely sank in, Kakashi hissed and squirmed hectically in your arms, his one eye desperately fixed on the merciful darkness under your bed. His sharp claws dug into your forearms and breasts in his hurry to get away. When he was a man, he would treat you with the utmost care and kindness, except both of you would were down for some fun between the sheets. But apparently the kindness was reserved for the times Kakashi was able to properly grasp the romantic novel of his and not when he owned the tail and claws of a slippery cat.

“Oh no,” you growled and pressed the squirming and loudly mewling ball to your chest, “you knew what was coming for you the very moment we stepped out of the Hokage office! You’re not getting away Kakashi, or else I’m preparing a bed for you!”

A pitiful low snarl escaped him. But the cat wasn’t struggling anymore, his paws lodged into your thigh and tail brushing over your cheek. The small trickles of pain where Kakashi’s claws drew bright red lines into your skin were bearable, so you waited calmly. Sometime, your fingers went over to playful tug at the longer strands at his stomach, Kakashi gave in. A low huff was everything as a warning you received, then the cat suddenly collapsed into your lap, muscles trembling and his breath crashing in moist warm waves against your hands.

“Thank you for not clawing into my flesh any longer. And now…” You breathed deeply in before releasing your pent-up anger over the poor fur ball. “Do you know how dangerous that was, to just jump in front of a jutsu you don’t know? You stupid donkey! I thought you were experienced, but that was a rookie mistake only genin make!”

 

His ears flattened, but Kakashi stayed dead silent.

“Or even worse, you knew the jutsu wasn’t deadly and still jumped in front of it. Means you were willing to let yourself transform back into an animal, not knowing what a second transformation would do to you, what it would do to your mind or body! Hell, I’m not against you saving your subordinates, I love that part about you! But would you please consider me from time to time when you recklessly charge into an enemy?”

A swish of his strong tail, warningly tapping against your forearm.

Annoyed you brushed the appendage aside, ignoring Kakashi’s soft hiss as you did so. “I’m just saying. You still act like you have no one to come home to, like you expect I’m just fleeing, running away the moment you turn your back to me. I’m not going to run away, just keep this in your stubborn mind for once!”

Instinctively you bend down and cradled the cat to your chest, his head tugged away under your chin and feeling how his whiskers tickled your sensitive skin. Kakashi mewled softly and you just had to smile at the begging ring in the single sound.

“Please remember. I promised to always be there for you, to come back and be a place where you can feel safe,” you murmured into the thick fur, “and I will not flee. I love you, Kakashi. I’ll still love you at the end of the day, no matter if you wear smooth, pale, scarred skin or the thick and hairy fur you spot currently. Even when you’re a dumb idiot and turn into Rascal for a little while.”

The purr following your words was mighty enough to rummage even through your chest, wandering straight through your veins and warming every inch and every little nook. You felt how the cat snuggled closer, pressing his wet nose into your neck, paws digging into your soft breasts and ears twitching against your chin as you chuckled warmly at the motion.

 

One look out of your window to check the time and you groaned internally. The sun was too high, not even attempting to lower its position in the coming hours. And still, you felt tired enough to just fall into bed, throw the blankets over your head and be done with the day in its entirety.

So many things happened. So many, so important things.

You were possibly pregnant.

Kakashi was again a cat.

And Gin returned, saved ironically by the man he apparently saw as a competitor for your attention.

In reality he wasn’t even worth to waste another single thought on. Nevertheless a more forgiving part of yours was thinking shortly about a meeting and the possibility how it would feel to talk things over, then you shook your head and tried to focus again on the present.

“Let’s see…” you mumbled into Kakashi’s twitching ears and grinned widely when you heard the low mewl, “how about some shopping? Since your last time as a furball, my rations of canned cat food dwindled… Ouch! That was uncalled for!”

Glaring at the cat, who hoped up on your shoulders and innocently licked the small trickles of blood off of his claws, you got ready for some grocery shopping.

 

Naturally you didn’t buy any cat food for Kakashi. Instead you picked a new installment of one of your silly romance novels up, knowing he would love to read it together with you, all the while lying in your lap and tapping with his tail at your thigh whenever he was finished with a page.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

The routine of living with a cat in your flat came back quickly. It wasn’t that much of a change, just some tiny things. Like reminding yourself of not expecting Kakashi to help you in the kitchen. At the second day of his return, you washed the dishes like so often and he sat beside you on the kitchen counter, watching intently every of your moves. Out of habit you had just tried to give him one of the freshly washed plates and nearly dropped it before the realization that there was no way the cat would actually grab the fragile porcelain settled in.

The amused purr which vibrated through Kakashi’s small cat body was also a great hint.

Or the sudden silence in your flat. Sure, the copy ninja was not a great talker when he had a mouth and tongue to form words, but he liked to joke around with you or asked silly questions which would lead to surprisingly serious discussions. Now you would throw a simple comment into the room and would receive nothing but a purr or a husky mewl.

Or even worse, nothing.

Unlike the first time Kakashi changed into a cat, he didn’t stay inside your flat that much. Every night he would be a loyal bed partner, cuddle to your side and bite gently into your fingers, but during the day he would stroll through Konoha, tail standing upwards and eager to find new, undiscovered places. More often than not you would watch him walk into the general direction of the memorial stone and you would let him, knowing if he would wish your presence, Kakashi would let show something, even as a cat. Or he would meet up with his eternal rival Gai, who knew from the copy ninja himself about the last time Kakashi transformed into an animal and who shouted out in excitement as he got to know that his “hip and cool” rival yet again wore a fur.

 

You hadn’t imagined those days like this. Certainly not. And you couldn’t explain the melancholy weighing you down whenever you entered your flat and Kakashi wasn’t there. You couldn’t explain the little flashes of frustration when you watched him walking away on his four legs, not even looking back over his furry shoulders and obviously eager to go to a meeting with Gai. Over the days the meetings increased, until at the end of the first week of Kakashi’s return the green-loving man even dared to pick the cat up from your flat.

Hiding the sudden flash of sheer rage behind a kind smile, you waved them goodbye. At least Kakashi mewled lowly and rubbed his head against your ankle before he flounced away and Gai gave you a more than exaggerated thumbs-up.

“Don’t worry!” The wide smile thrown your way left you blinking like you had taken a direct look into the sun itself. “I, Mighty Gai, the beautiful green beast of Konoha will personally make sure that nobody will take away Kakashi, just because my eternal rival seems to be unable to protect himself!”

The cat at his side hissed sharply, ears drawn close to his head and obviously not happy to be called defenseless.

Immediately Gai started to profoundly apologize to his rival, but you had no time for this. Actually today it was good that Kakashi was out of the house and not in your close proximity. Nervously you started to nibble at your bottom lip, all the while you watched over Gai and Kakashi, who had started their way out of the building. Gai’s voice was loudly echoing in the staircase of the apartment complex, accompanied by the hisses and mewls of his companion.

 

Today was the day of an appointment at the hospital to get clarity of your… state. Unconsciously you clutched into the fabric just above your lower stomach, panic and a strangely hopeful spark rising in your chest. If it was true… If the test had been right… Then you were… Then you would…

“No time for this,” you mumbled determined and grabbed a light bag, “before you worry unnecessarily, just get over with the check-up. Nothing else, but a check-up.”

Right, a check-up. Totally not something to get nervous over. You also had scheduled the meeting as such, not wanting to spread rumors about your state and Kakashi’s possible and absolutely not happening fatherhood. Only when you entered the hospital and Tsunade immediately noticed you, her pink-haired student right on her heels, the anxiety in your stomach grew to a raw flood of panic.

“(Y/N)! Thankfully you’re punctual. Good to see your boyfriend hasn’t affected you… too much.” A wide grin was splayed across the Hokage’s features.

“Hokage-sama. Sakura-san.” You nodded at both medics. Naturally you knew Sakura. Kakashi had introduced her to you three months into your relationship and the girl had looked with such hopeful and awed bright green eyes at you that you couldn’t handle it. Blushing like crazy at the admiration of taming her lazy and always slouched teacher, you had stuttered your way through the talk and afterwards Kakashi had teased you endlessly with your painfully obvious embarrassment.

Sakura smiled nervously and strangely also with an embarrassed flush crossing her features at you. “Hello (Y/N)-san. How are you?”

“A tiny bit nervous. But I’m in your and Tsunade-sama’s hands, so I think I don’t have to worry, right?”

“But it’s a…”

 

Despite your own nervousness you just had to laugh at the pink haired student’s oh so obvious discomfort. “A very private examination? It’s okay, at least for me. Actually, I’m honored to serve the Hokage’s apprentice as an exercise task.”

You really were alright with Sakura seeing your lower half. Only for the possible… other test the girl had to leave the room, but considering her troubled state she wouldn’t need much persuasion.

Tsunade interrupted the friendly banter with a sharp click of her tongue. “Are you two finished?” But her mean words were lessened by the little smile tugging at the corners of her ruby red lips.

They leaded you to a private room, on the way the blonde held a lesson about the difficulties of mending broken bones with chakra. Sakura scribbled all her words on a clipboard down, eagerly nodding all along. In the back of your mind you also listened to the indeed very descriptive explanations, but mostly you were still thinking about Kakashi and his staying away from you.

Maybe he was sick of your attention. Maybe he didn’t like to be suffocated by you. Maybe he just wasn’t in the mood to spent an extended period of time in your flat. Maybe he was bored and out of his mind, maybe he preferred Gai’s exaggerated speeches over your talks. There were so many things you had to consider, so many things which suddenly awoke doubts in you.

 

Over your growing worry you missed a lot of the way and only when Tsunade opened the door with a smirk and lead you inside, you woke up from your daze. With a nod you entered the clinical room, your eyes instantly drawn to the center of the place. A big chair, the surface covered in greenish fake leather, wide rests for the legs of the patient installed at the sides, so the medic in charge could sit between them and examine the female patient without having to crane his neck.

“You know how this goes,” the blonde woman said and pointed at your pants, “free yourself. Please.”

 

With a little side glance at the pink-haired girl, who had started to blush from head to toe, you shrugged and popped the button of your loose pants. The fabric ruffled in the silence as you stepped out, followed by the even weaker sounds of your underwear following suit. Butt naked, you walked towards the chair and sat down, arranging quickly your legs on the rests and trying not to think about the fact that you were used as an exercise for Sakura.

It’s just a check-up. Nothing will be discovered, the test was wrong, everything will be alright…

During the check-up you closed your eyes and tried not to listen to Tsunade’s soft comments about your most private parts. It was already unsettling enough to go through that particular examination, but knowing that two people were watching while you spread your legs was…

Not the most comfortable feeling in the world.

At the end, the Hokage just told you to cloth yourself again, you dared to raise your voice. “Tsunade-sama? I… I have a request.”

Sakura had her hand raised like an overly diligent student and her teacher, cleaning her hands with antiseptic soap had been about to answer her, but with your question, the eyebrows of the blonde wandered higher. “What request?” she asked.

“A private one. Excuse me Sakura-san, nothing against you…”

“Ohh, no, it’s-it’s really…” If you had thought you had seen the brightest of her blushes, you were so wrong. Sakura’s cheeks grew red, red as the color of a freshly plucked strawberry, bright and almost so cute that the urge to tweak her nose became nearly unbearable. The girl fidgeted on the spot, glancing from time to time at her teacher and only when the blonde gave in with an exhausted nod, she stormed out of the room, the clipboard pressed to her chest and her short pink locks flying in her ninja-speed.

“Sooo…” The first female Hokage drawled and crossed her arms below her chest. “What is this special request?”

Now or never. “I want confirmation.”

“For what?”

“For this.” Quickly you opened the bag you brought with you and tugged the conserved pregnancy test into the cold light. Holding the stick out for Tsunade to see, you continued, watching how her whiskey-colored eyes first squinted, only to grew wide when the realization sunk in. “I need a confirmation for this. Otherwise I need to pay the one who made this test a thorough visit and try out all kinds of different interrogation techniques I learned from Ibiki-san.”

 

(…)

 

“Good and bad news.”

Tsunade just barged into the room, her green coat fluttering behind her. The tests she forced upon you had taken a little eternity and getting the results as fast as possible even longer, so it was already evening when you snapped out of the nap you had taken while you waited. Surprisingly the medical chair was apparently comfy enough to not get cramps or any neck pain, so no aches or flashes could sway your attention from the Hokage.

“Good and bad news?” you repeated.

Tsunade nodded. “Well, technically it’s only one and from your point of view, it can be both, good and bad.”

“So what is it now, good or bad?”

“I already said it’s both, okay!? Children these days…” A last angry glare into your direction, then the blonde clicked her tongue in badly hidden annoyance. “Apparently you get to torture nobody. You’re pregnant, (Y/N)-san. I let you decide if the news are good or bad.”

Chapter Text

Pregnant.

But… Why…? I’m not… I shouldn’t… Kakashi has…

A child. A little boy or girl. Another sacrifice for this world. Thrown into the devil’s den, to the wolves, to the unforgiving shinobi who wouldn’t hesitate to kill a child.

A child. In this world. In this fucked up, goddamn world.

Will he or she have my eyes or his?

Pregnant. Me. I never thought… Never believed…

How will Kakashi react?

Like a puppet you thanked Tsunade, grabbed your bag and walked slowly out of the office. Your head was dark, still wondering and questioning yourself, turning the revelation over and over again, but your feet were automatically carrying you out of the hospital and into the streets. Above you shone the bright fall sun, crumpled leaves crunched beneath your feet, all the while you mindlessly wandered around, not knowing where to go and not really wanting to go back to your lonely flat, where nobody waited for you.

No Kakashi. Neither in his cat form or his human body. No one waited.

Unconsciously your hand flew to your covered stomach. Was it your imagination or did something flutter beneath your fingertips, soft and tender like the wings of a butterfly?

You’re the only one with me, huh?

It was too early. There was no way you would be able to feel something from the fetus, not this early in your pregnancy. Nevertheless you continued to feel your own lower belly for any kind of foreign movement, hoping for and just as much fearing any kind of motion.

 

A child. A little Kakashi, a little (Y/N), mixed traits and mixed characteristics. Anxiously you straightened the edges of your shirt, then tried to retract your hand from the very suspicious place of your lower belly, but the stubborn limb wasn’t obeying the orders. It stayed there, rubbing absent-mindedly the skin underneath the fabric, caressing the unknowing life inside of you.

What will Kakashi say? Will he be accepting? Will he be happy? Or will he be… angry? Disappointed? Disgusted?

Suddenly your vision blurred and your free hand rose to wipe the fresh tears away. For a second the liquid lingered on your skin, but then you dried them off. There never had been time for such a serious conversation. The first months after you two became a thing were spent in an idle lovey-dovey state, filled with whispered words, secretly shared smiles and long, dragged out sex. Then Tsunade remembered Kakashi’s duty again and started to send him on more missions. First only three days, then five or six. Days became weeks, easy missions became harder and the results would end more often than not in a gruesome mess, leaving Kakashi and new cracks in his emotionless masks behind. You still worked at the T&I, still took on missions when your schedule allowed it and still the time you were able to spend with him lessened significantly. And when he was in Konoha, he would mostly only stay for a night, at most a day or two, then Kakashi was on the road again, dirtying his hands for the sake of the next generation, soaking his fingers in blood, bearing the hate of thousands of enemies so the children protected by the walls of the village wouldn’t be threatened further.

When he was in Konoha, you mostly only saw a shadowy silhouette in the night. A hoarse voice, whispering sweet nothings or short stories about his missions, not even the most important details. His body, pressing into yours, a black and a red eye blinking in the darkness, hands grabbing your waist and pulling you closer into his cold front.

 

Anything closely affiliated to a future together, to a shared flat or a home, to marriage or children never came up. You had no idea how Kakashi thought about those things, had no idea how he would react when you would tell him one of those things was on the way, a small little bundle of… of…

Of joy. The saying goes: a little bundle of JOY.

I know how it goes, thank you very much!

No need to be prissy. I’m just telling the truth.

Shut the fuck up! I don’t need this!

Those are the facts. You’re pregnant and possibly a future single parent. Live with it.

Before you knew it, your lips trembled and a new wave of grief crashed into the shore of your mind. Tears stood in your eyes, burning and unbearable heavy. The uncertainty, the not knowing was the worst. Not knowing what Kakashi would say, how he would look like when you told him, not knowing how he would react.

 

You were so concentrated on your worries and fears that you didn’t notice the person stepping in your way or the arm flying towards you to stop you in your mindless track.

“Woah there!” Dully you looked upwards and met Gin’s silver eyes. He flashed a little smile at you. “Good to see you. Maybe you’re here to talk with me? Or am I just getting my hopes up?”

The shinobi barracks. Somehow your feet had decided to bring you into the same place where Gin would be and the obnoxious person he was, he interrupted your rightful brooding.

His arm was still in a cast. But he had lost the destroyed Konoha chunin uniform from last time. Instead he was wearing casual clothing, loose trousers made of cotton and a wide t-shirt, perfect for the warm fall day. On his feet were old-school sandals, worn-out and nearly paper-thin from the years of usage. Over the cast different letters were sprawled, from the occasional “Get well soon, you stupid fart” (obviously a male friend) to a simple heart (an admirer? A female acquaintance?).

Wordlessly you tried to brush past him. You weren’t in the mood to talk, couldn’t he see that? Were a dull expression and dead eyes not enough of an indicator? But again, Gin held you back, clear worry standing on his face.

“Hey.” Unasked, he placed his index finger underneath your chin and tilted your head up- and sideways, checking your features for any kind of injury. “What’s wrong? You’re pale as fuck.”

 

Quickly you brushed his fingers off. “I’m fine,” you hissed, “no need to worry about me.” The skin burned uncomfortably where he had touched you and you resisted the urge to furiously scrub over the tingling spot.

Gin’s bright eyes dulled like he knew what you were thinking. “(Y/N)… Listen, I’m… I regret what I’ve done to you. This is no lie, this is no joke for me. While I was in Kumo, guarding day for day this damn fort, I had a lot of time to think. I just want to explain my reasoning to you, I’m not even expecting your forgiveness. I just want to explain.”

You had no idea what caused your next actions. Maybe it was the way how Gin looked into your eyes, full of honest regret, of shame and guilt, of hesitant painful hope. Maybe it was the way how he carefully touched your elbow, only the barest hint of fingertips trying to hold onto your sleeve. Not made to completely stop every single one of your movements, you could easily break out of the grip. A single reminder he wanted you to listen. Maybe it was the examination you went through, the cold metal digging into the flesh of your thighs and calves, the humiliating vision you gave a girl who looked up to you, Maybe it was the revelation you were pregnant. Maybe the worry and fear, caused by the insecurity Kakashi’s re-transformation, finally took enough of a toll on you that you gave in.

But maybe only the first wave of annoying, reputation destroying hormones ran havoc in your body.

One moment, you stared full of anger and rightful hate at Gin, ready to fight and scratch and argue. The next, tears streamed down your face, suppressed sobs spilled from your lips and your knees were shaking from the force of your grief. Embarrassed to the very core, you wanted to flee, but when you felt Gin’s healthy arm quickly sliding around your shoulder like a snake capturing an innocent mouse, your last barrier broke down.

 

Sniffling and sobbing loudly, you buried your face in the chest of your childhood friend and cried to your heart’s content. And it felt so good to just let go of your emotions, to allow yourself to weep and cry, to have someone who was there, with you and not strolling around Konoha with his tail held high and not caring about you.

A new wave rushed over you, forming jumbled words and stuttered syllables. “Jus’-! ‘S such mess an’ I don’ have ‘n idea what’s-s-s goin’ on, he’s never here, I jus’ wan’ ‘ome t-ti-time with ‘im, to t-al’ an’ li-li-is’n some-tim-mes-!”

Gin’s warm voice was brushing over your ear shell, comforting and reminding you of long gone times of childish laughter and running away from your parents whenever you two had stolen some cookies from the windowsill. “Hey. It’s okay. Sssh. It’s okay (Y/N), everything’s alright. I’m here.”

He’s here. He’s here with me.

But I want…

I know. But he isn’t here.

… I want him here.

Me too. Believe me, me too.

“Let’s get you somewhere calm and peaceful, huh?” Gin’s single hand was stroking in a soothing manner over your back, but still you wished for someone else to do the same, to whisper gentle, sweet nothings into your ear, another scent wrapped around you than the sharp and spicy smell your childhood friend emitted, another warmth trying to comfort and ease your mind.

 

But Kakashi wasn’t here. He strolled around Konoha, not caring that you missed him dearly, not caring about the time you two had spent apart, not caring about the fact that you needed him with you only sometimes, not even all the time.

A weak nod was everything of an answer Gin received, but due to the fact you were so close to him that your face was pressed into the crock of his neck, he noticed immediately. A flare of chakra, the feeling of leaves brushing over your skin and the short and terrible pressure of nothing around you, then the effect of the teleportation jutsu vanished. Still sobbing and drying your tears in the cotton of Gin’s shirt, you clawed into the present man, desperately wishing he would change to another man, but your hopes wouldn’t be met.

 

(…)

 

You had no idea how much time passed by while you cried into Gin’s embrace. The only thing you knew with absolute certainty was the low stand of the sun as you slowly crawled out of the black hole you fell in, raising your swollen eyes towards the sky and sniffling through your blocked nose.

Gin had transported you to the training field number 9. An old, from the forest protected clearing, far away from the village and other living beings, perfect for a calm talk or enraged screaming if you felt like it. Years ago you had trained here with Gin, your best friend, fantasizing about your future and your careers, talking about your wishes and hopes, sparring with each other and trying out new nin-jutsu or new tai-jutsu moves. And the scenery for your last fateful talk. Automatically your eyes flew to the spot where you had stood as you revealed to Gin what you would be doing for the rest of your lives, wearing a proud smile on your face because Ibiki Morino himself had offered you a position in the T&I department of Konoha. Then your eyes slid further, towards the place where Gin had leaned against a training post, now old and broken from the years of usage. Back then, he had his arms crossed over his chest, the gentle smile more and more fading the longer he listened to your rambling and enthusiastic descriptions of what you would do for the village.

“Better now?” the aged boy asked weakly.

He was smiling, the same gentle lopsided grin, tugging the right corner of his mouth higher than the other, crinkling the skin around his eyes slightly and lifting the tiniest bit his nose with his soothing ease. The same grin you knew throughout your childhood and into your teenage years.

Sniffling weakly, you nodded and loosened with much effort your cramped-up arms around his shoulders. “It will be,” you mumbled and wiped with the sleeve of your shirt some leftover snot off your nose, “just thought about back then.” Warily you gestured to the training post.

 

“Oh.” His silver eyes darkened as the memories washed over him. “This back then?”

“Yes.”

With a wary sigh the redhead lowered himself to the ground. His knees cracked into the silence as he folded them underneath his body and a pained hiss escaped him as he unconsciously strained his broken arm more than he should.

Quickly you stepped closer, your hands already stretched out to help him, but Gin only shook his head, features clenched and nevertheless a little grin on his mouth. “It’s alright. Was dumb of me. I forget the break sometimes.”

“Do you take painkillers?”

“The pretty assistant of our dear Hokage offered me some, but I declined. The pain means I’m still alive, right?”

At his boyish expression you just had to chuckle. “Right. And what a lucky bastard you are.”

Gin raised his hands, his silver eyes sparkling in mischief. “Hey, I didn’t ask to be saved by the copy ninja himself, okay?”

Unconsciously you held your breath. Kakashi. He personally saved your childhood friend, not knowing it was the man who installed some of your insecurities inside you. The irony of the fact that your current boyfriend saved the man which he detested to no ends for hurting you couldn’t be missed.

“And what about back then?” you asked weakly and watched only with a shimmer of satisfaction how the light expression on his face fell apart, leaving nothing but regret and shame behind. You weren’t here to sugarcoat the mean words of the past. You were here because your hormones went on a rampage, deciding it was a good thing to fall apart in Gin’s arms because he showed the care and friendliness you wanted from Kakashi. A convenient substitute and when you were already here, you could also use the opportunity to listen to him.

Not to lighten his ashamed thoughts. No, you just wanted to know his reason to be a little bitch, being scared and frightened of something he didn’t really understand and didn’t even try to understand.

 

Gin sighed loudly. Crestfallen, the man sat in the soft grass and stared blindly at the training post, like his mind replayed the same scene before his eyes like yours did. “Back then,” he shortly scrubbed with his free hand through his hair, making it stick up in some funny ways, “Back then I was an idiot. I’m not even trying to sugarcoat my behavior. I was a fucking idiot, dumb, stupid, a lame excuse of a friend. I… I always thought you didn’t really mean to go to the T&I.”

“Were my words that unclear? Did I ever add “Ha, jokes on you,” at the end of my exclamations that I would join the forces under Ibiki-san?”

“No.” The man closed his eyes. “No, they weren’t. And no, you didn’t. I just… I just thought we would go together to the border patrol, you know? We did everything together, so why not the border patrol?”

“Because the border patrol wasn’t and isn’t suited for me. Because my skills are more in the range of the T&I unit than a combat-orientated one. One or two missions up to A-rank, I can manage too. But I want to help my home, my village to the best of my abilities and patrolling at the border to Kumogakure isn’t, Gin.” Sighing lowly, you settled yourself down beside Gin and looked around the clearing. The sun was setting, throwing an orange hue over the whole sky and painting the white clouds into a pretty red and yellow. With a hoarse voice you continued, remembering the hateful mask he wore back in the day. “Gin… Why did you think we would stay together for the rest of our lives? Nothing indicated that. Nothing I said or did hinted at anything longer lasting…”

Gin chuckled. But now a hint of something swung within the sound, something painful and painfully obvious. So obvious, you closed your eyes as your brain caught up with the long gone past and the missed opportunities and possibilities, so stupidly obvious. “You never thought about me this way, huh?” he sighed out, “Seems like all my flirts and attempts to invite you on a date went unnoticed.”

“Gin…”

“Oh, don’t patronize me. It’s fine.”

That… actually explains a lot of things.

 

A breeze ruffled through the trees around, claiming also your hair and Gin’s long tresses. Unnerved you tried to get a grasp on the flying and whirling strands, but the wind was stronger. The red hair of Gin was shining brightly like a fire in the weakening sunlight, fiery threads, woven into the air and mixing slightly with yours, so close you two sat together.

“How long?” you asked, your lips dry and throat even dryer.

Gin hummed nonchalantly.

The click of your tongue however startled him. “Gin, I’m not playing games. For how long?”

“Fine. My god, you became brittle over the years. Since the academy stuffed us into a team, not too long.”

“That’s almost twenty years by now.”

“Seventeen.”

“Whatever.”

Yet again silence reigned on the clearing. Only the wind was howling above you, capturing single leaves and letting them rain into your lap, where you lazily played with them, your fingers caressing from time to time your lower stomach, stealthily and making sure Gin wouldn’t notice anything.

Then he stretched with a grunt, the white cast hanging before his chest and the silver eyes trained on your profile, while you pretended not to realize he was staring at you. “How is he? Your boyfriend?”

You shook your head. “We’re not talking about him.”

“But I want to talk about him.”

“He isn’t a subject right now.”

“So do I have a chance? When he isn’t a subject?”

He is. But at the same time, he isn’t.

 

Just when you wanted to answer, you felt a warm hand gliding over your lower back, circling your waist and coming to a stop at the opposite side of Gin. Shocked, you went stiff, eyes wide and your thoughts not knowing what to do. Your body trembled, not being able to decide what to do. Fight or flee? Flee or fight? What was the best thing to do in such a situation? Blood rushed loudly in your ears, but still the ruffling of the leaves around you could be heard, loud and obnoxious. Behind you a stronger breeze ruffled through the bushes, quickly leaving the clearing, but you were still frozen in your spot, your spine hurting like someone shoved a massive iron pillar through your back.

Gin took your silence as acceptance. Humming a happy tune, he slid closer and had the audacity to snuggle his face into the crock of your neck, huffing in victory when you didn’t push him away or reject his advances.

At least, not immediately.

Nausea crawled into the back of your throat and made you finally act according to your desires. Slowly and endeavored not to touch his casted arm, you pushed Gin off. He didn’t fight, just nodded in defeat and grit his teeth.

“I’m sorry,” you said, “but even though he isn’t here currently. I would never do this to him. And when you have only a tiny bit of pride and knowledge about me in your body, you would know that.”

A deep sigh, then Gin nodded again. “Sorry for that. I… Just sorry.”

“Noted down and accepted.” Drawing your knees to your chest, you breathed out and felt how the weight of the week lightened a little bit. Not enough to actually not be a tiny bit angry at Kakashi anymore, but the weight lost the sharp edges digging into your back. Apparently Gin’s confession a week ago had an effect on you, even though you had tried to erase his words from your brain.

 

Gin took your rejection with dignity. You threw a quick glance at him, how he sat beside you, maybe looking hurt and he probably was, but there was also defeated acceptance and even... Yes, you would say it was relief dawning on his face, maybe weak and hesitant, but still... It was relief.

Maybe Gin needed to hear and feel your rejection after all those years. To move on, to continue to grow, not caged by the unanswered feelings a child had harbored for another child. Maybe he felt those restraints break and unconsciously he recognized today's happenings as something necessary, as something needed. Hopefully he could now move on and find someone who would love him, despite his quick temper and the hasty behavior Gin could show.

Suddenly a grin claimed your lips. “Hey, Gin.”

He looked at you, his silver eyes squinted in suspicion at your cheerful tone. “Yes?”

“Ask again.”

“What…? Oh. Ok. Who are you dating?”

“Kakashi Hatake.”

His reaction was priceless. For one second, dim understanding was on his features, simple and easy. But then the shock set in and his jaw fell, while you couldn’t contain the cackle in your chest anymore and laughed out loud, your head thrown backwards and the happy giggle echoing between the trees.

“(Y/N)…” Gin whispered, full of disbelieving awe and badly concealed shock, “You want to say… The… The copy ninja…?”

You nodded. “The one and only.”

“Dude! He saved my ass! He grabbed me right here,” Gin pointed at the neck of his shirt, “and threw me over his back like I weighed nothing!”

“That sounds really like him.”

The redhead continued to ramble, all the while not caring about his casted arm which he flailed around in his obvious excitement. “It was totally awesome to see him fight! You should have seen it, his Raikiri looks so cool, especially at night!”

He feels uncomfortable whenever using it. The lightning prickles in his veins, makes his hand and arm numb. He remembers how it feels to bury his hand in the chest of a friend and teammate.

“And when Hatake uses his eye, my god, you should’ve seen it! It’s totally awesome to see him copy every movement the enemy does and how confused they are!”

It hurts. It hurts him to know he let his friend die and to wear his eye like it is his own, even though it was a present. When he has a nightmare and I can’t wake him up, the sharingan cries for him, cries for him and his pain.

“And, oh man! His tai-jutsu is fantastic too! Every kick a hit, every punch knocking an enemy down! Nobody could beat him and he saved so many people!”

Sometimes his bones ache when he trains. He feels the strain of too many injuries, feels how old scars and scar tissue are tugging at his muscles, making him slower and training harder with every passing month.

 

New tears dwelled in your eyes. Hearing the obvious admiration in Gin’s voice for Kakashi was pure torture. You knew that side of the copy ninja, knew how dedicated he was to protect his fellow comrades and shinobi under his command. You knew how much he trained to keep up with his growing age, even though he was still relatively young in comparison to other ninjas. But with every praise Gin sung about Kakashi, the famous copy ninja of Konoha, the more you remembered the secret things, the little things which made the person behind the mask; behind the various masks Kakashi had created to protect himself from personal pain. That he liked to snuggle, to cuddle in the darkness of the night, his body spooning yours and not caring about inconveniences like clothing or distance. That Kakashi hummed unconsciously while he cooked, not even realizing he did so until you would tease him about it. That he loved to laze around, to take naps in your flat, to lie on your bed and chatted with you about everything and nothing at all.

The gentleness in every of his movements when he held you. The obvious admiration, the loving glances, the stealthy hand taking yours out in public, the not so stealthy hand tugging your body close to him and not letting go, no matter how much you playfully struggled. The blushes forming on his cheeks whenever you whispered some loving words back at him, the knot in his tongue when he tried to answer or give you a compliment, the surprised awe in his eyes when you dragged him into a hug and the desperate force he used when he had to leave on a mission. Not enough to hurt, barely enough not to bruise, but painful in its own right, ache resonating in your heart every damn time.

Suddenly you knew what to do. Suddenly the possible rejection wasn’t too bad anymore, because there was no way Kakashi would leave just because you were pregnant. From him on top of that.

Because he promised to stay with you, no matter what would come.

 

“Thank you,” Gin stopped in his praises for Kakashi and looked with wide eyes up to you, “I think I can make now a decision. No, I made a decision and you helped me with that.”

Confused your childhood friend cocked his head. “Decision? Maybe the reason why you cried?”

“That…” You winked at your old friend. “That is still my secret. See you around, Gin.” Then you left in a whirlwind of smoke and leaves, listening to the faint grumble of the redhead.

“Dating the copy ninja and leaving me behind. You better make up for that, got it?”

 

(…)

 

“Kakashi? Hello?”

The sun had set and the moon rose on the night sky, the first stars sparkling in the darkness. You didn’t teleport immediately into your flat, instead your first instinct leaded you to Ichiraku’s, ordering some take-out you knew Kakashi would like, even though he couldn’t hold a pair of chopsticks currently. Whistling through your teeth and a newfound swing in your steps, you had decided to walk the short distance to your apartment complex, enjoying the fresh night air and the gentle breeze dancing around your nose.

With the realization that Kakashi wouldn’t leave you, the whole night became more lively, a lot more colorful, the buzz of the people around you a pleasant background noise, made to accompany your steps. But when you reached your apartment and flicked the lights on, no excited grey cat jumped out of his hiding spot and rubbed his furry head against your ankle. Placing the bag with take-out noodles on the kitchen counter and peeling your shoes off, you searched with your eyes for your four-legged boyfriend, but he was nowhere to be seen.

“Kakashi?” you asked again, kneeled swiftly down and peaked underneath your bed.

Nothing. No eye blinking sheepishly at you, no gentle purr, no fur bristling over the ground, nothing.

A wrinkle appeared between your eyebrows. Usually Kakashi was back by nightfall, no matter how long he had been gone for the day. The night belonged to you and him, to cuddles underneath the blanket and whispered words and low purrs. And until now, that had been enough for the man, more than enough if you interpreted his eagerness to hop into your bed right.

Where was he? Again you kneeled down and tried to pierce through the darkness under your bed, but there was still nothing but a few dust bunnies and a forgotten branch of cat nip he broke off a few days ago.

“Kakashi?” you asked again while standing back up. Uncertainty crawled back into your stomach, making the knot reappear and harden until you felt like puking. “Kakashi, are you here?”

Nothing.

Where was he? Absent-minded you stored Ichiraku’s noodle-soup away, all the while your eyes still flew around the room, searching for a tiny clue where your cat-boyfriend could be right now. But not to avail. No tail peeking out from underneath a pillow on your couch, no cocky mewl and rustles of blankets from your bed, no grey fur suddenly appearing at the top of your bookshelf.

 

A cold rush of night air invaded the room. Shuddering slightly, you glanced at the opened window, just a small opening, but a smile grew on your face as you saw the dark silhouette, shaped like a cat sitting at the outer windowsill.

“Silly rascal,” you said, “do you want to watch me while I run around my home like a headless chicken? Now come in, it doesn’t look like it, but the temperature rapidly declines during the night-!”

Your hands reached out to open the window completely and tug the cat inside, but just as you had touched the handle, Kakashi spun around and bared his teeth in a dangerous hiss.

You blinked in confusion. Slowly, your hand dropped again to your side, while the other clawed unconsciously into the fabric of your shirt, right above your lower stomach.

“Kakashi…?” you asked again. Dread sneaked up on you, sitting on your shoulder and growing heavier with every second. “What is going on? What is wrong?”

Another hiss. His tail swished around, more whip than a part of him. His ears were drawn to his head and both of Kakashi’s eyes were dangerously squinted, the red sharingan swirling in his anger. Unconsciously you stepped backwards, away from the window.

Fear send goose bumps over your back, ice cold shudders itching in your veins. What was wrong? What happened? Instantly the just buried insecurities came back to live, rose their heads at the smell of panic and loss, at being left by Kakashi and dug themselves out of their graves.

What is wrong? Why are you doing this? And why are you still a cat, when I need your words more than ever?

“Kakashi-!” you tried one more time, but the cat hissed, cutting your words off. No, he growled, his small body vibrating and claws extending as he sneaked through the window inside your home. The room felt more and more like a cage, air growing hotter and thicker with every second the animal wandered up and down, the fur at his back bristled and making him look bigger, less friendly than before. Less like the person he was on the inside, less like the man you learned to love, less like the private Kakashi he only showed with you.

Tears dwelled in your eyes, acid on your cheeks as the fell. “What…?” You sobbed, now openly clawing into your lower stomach, “What is wrong? Please, K-Kakashi, speak w-with me…”

 

The cat bared his teeth. Cold and impersonal, not caring about your tears and your begging to tell him what was going on. “I d-don-don’t underst-stand, please, Ka-kakashi, speak with me, why are y-you like th-this…” you whimpered.

From one moment to another, Kakashi stood right in front of you. Hissing and spitting, his claws nipping at your feet, the tail raised and back bend in a hump. Forgetting the fact that he was currently not even reaching above your knees, you jerked backwards. His aura was enough to let you know what was going on inside him: he was angered beyond measure, betrayed, hurt like no other person ever made him feel. But the reason behind his wild and unrestrained emotions wasn’t clear, so you tried again, reaching out with shaking hands to the grey and soft fur right in front of you.

And yet… So far away.

A flash of claws, pain and a surprised scream ripped away from your lungs. With growing horror, you flinched backwards, staring blindly at the four blood-red marks on the back of your hand, oozing your life on your skin.

“Y-You scratched me…” you mumbled, “How… Why are you doing…”

Kakashi cackled, at least you thought he did so. It was hard to tell and still you believed he sounded bitter as the retching sound left his maw. One last menacing growl, then he pranced back to the window, a grey lightning in the darkness.

Paralyzed, you watched the cat, your boyfriend jump out of your life, not caring about your silent tears and also not caring about your need to know his reasoning, his reason to suddenly break up with you.

As a cat. A cat broke up with me. Kakashi broke up with me, as a cat.

Kakashi… Why?

Crying never felt so hollow. Wailing never felt so useless. The tears streaming down your cheeks never felt so unbearable heavy before, never so cold and full of disbelief. Slowly, hugging your own body tightly like the child growing inside you could fall out any moment, you sunk to the ground, staring into the air and not seeing anything but the disappointed glare Kakashi gave you before he vanished.

 

Chapter Text

A few hours were left of the night as you managed catch your first conscious thought since eternities. The darkness hadn’t vanished completely, but the first rays of the sun creeped over the sky, weak and still shy, but growing stronger with each passing minute. Dully you watched how the dark blue sky turned slowly a more vivid blue-grey, then into a bright range of shades of red, orange and yellow, indicating it would rain later that day.

Your eyes burned, your mouth was dry and nose even dryer after the hours and hours of silent and unmoved crying, right there on the carpet of your flat. You didn’t even care about the coldness seeping into your bones, only curled tighter into yourself, your arms protecting your middle from any harm.

Except for the harm which was already done.

There were no more tears left. You cried them all, accompanied by the cracking and falling apart of your heart. A constant ache settled in your chest, nested there like a bunch of snakes, coiling and squeezing the beating organ with every beat.

Your spine hurt. Spending a night on the ground was apparently not that healthy. A little groan lingered in the air as you tried to sit up, failed and fell back again into your original position, curled up and knees drawn to your chest like a child trying to protect himself.

It’s no use. Just laying here until I feel better.

But when would that be? When would that terrible feeling of being left behind disappear? In a day? In a week, a month, maybe a year? When would you not feel so bad anymore, this uncertain sick fur in the back of your throat, making it hard to swallow and hard to think clear?

Only when the first rays of sun crawled into your apartment, you sniffled one last time and propped yourself up. Carefully, like your bones were made of glass. Every movement felt like you could shatter and your breath was heavy when you finally managed to sit.

 

Slowly you rubbed your eyes, wiping the last bits of halfway dried tears away. A part of you, the part full of despaired grief and disbelief (This can’t be happening, this isn’t real, Kakashi loves me and wouldn’t leave me like this!) urged you into the direction of your bed, telling about the warm comfort of your blankets and the blissful forgiveness of sleep waiting. But the other part, the part built by years of duty and rules, the part who needed an order and a red thread leading you through the day, insisted on taking the challenge of getting through the day head on, without any restraints and not caring about your feelings.

Remember. You’re a shinobi, a ruthless killing machine, formed by mission after mission and countless interrogations. Something pitiful like a breaking-up shouldn’t faze me like this!

I don’t want to. I don’t want to be strong, I can’t act strong.

Get your ass off the ground! I don’t care about a broken heart, just keep going and deal later with it!

I don’t want to… My bed seems like the best choice I could make today.

I DON’T CARE! DO SOMETHING!

Under a lot of effort and “encouraged” by your strict and unwavering self-control, you stumbled onto your own feet. There you stood, confused and dully staring holes into the thin air, arms protectively slung around your stomach even when there was still nothing, however…

You loved it already. Whatever was growing inside of you, if now boy or girl, you loved your child. Yours, your baby, your own flesh and blood. It was yours and even the ugly break-up couldn’t cut the bond between you and your child. In fact, it was the only thing keeping you halfway sane, a small string of certitude in your life. With a heavy sigh you loosened your grip and stumbled over to the kitchen counter, skipping through the contents of the fridge and in the end tugging out yesterday’s take-out from Ichiraku’s. If you were really going for a “normal” day and a “normal” routine, then choosing your own breakfast was your first step to suppress more tears and crying. Together with a hot and blessed shower, a new set of clothes and a round of brushing your teeth.

 

Cold noodles and stale soup never tasted so sour. Nevertheless, you choked some of the noodles down, until you could literally feel even the small spurs of oil clinging to the back of your throat. Disgusted to no ends, you threw both packages away and continued your morning routine.

With every familiar step you took, with every action you indulged yourself into it became easier to forget about yesterday. Especially the hot shower helped to get rid of the dark thoughts, washing them away and cleansing your mind. When you exited the shower, you could almost convince yourself that everything was fine, that the day would be like any other day when Kakashi was on a mission and away, that there was a chance of him returning to you…

But then the claw marks at the back of your hand would burn, reminding you of the absolute disappointment in his eye and the cold fury in his sharingan, embedding themselves into your memory with a clarity you detested. Somehow you managed to function like a normal human being, towel yourself dry and cloth yourself into your chunin uniform, but just when you were about to slip into your sandals, your eyes fell on a forgotten fingerless glove which could only belong to one man who slept on a regular base in your home and would be thoughtless enough to forget some of his clothes in one of your sandals.

Before your fingers touched the durable material, your eyes had been dry and mind blank. But as soon as you raised the glove to your nose, drowning yourself in the familiar scent of weapon’s oil and dog shampoo, they couldn’t stay dry any longer.

Maybe you overheard because of that the first knock at your door. But the second knock, loud, fast and demanding startled you to the point of abruptly stopping your renewed crying and staring through your blurry vision at the entrance.

Maybe…

Sniffling, you scrambled upwards and nearly fell over your feet as you stumbled to the door, fiddling nervously and with shaking fingers with the locks and through the deactivation seals. When you pushed the door open, a nervous energy had gotten a hold of you, though deep down in your stomach comfortable warmth blossomed.

It has to be Kakashi, you told yourself, the urge to smile rising slowly into your throat, he has to stand outside! He wants to clear things up, he wants to listen to me!

 

“Good morning. Just wanted to drop by to look how you’re doing and how your-! (Y/N)! What’s wrong?”

Desperately you shook your head as the tears rolled down. Seeing Gin at any other day would’ve been relatively good, but after yesterday it was somehow both: good and depressing. Good because it meant he was willing to be your friend, only your friend. And Gin always had been a wonderful childhood friend, always down for a prank on your teachers or for talks. Depressing because… Because he simply wasn’t the one you had hoped for.

Tongue-tied, you shook your head, hands already raised to hold in the sobs crawling out of your mouth and still, they echoed in the bare hallway and in the tiny entrance area, loud and pitiful. Unlike you, so unlike your usual calm and collected nature, unlike your usual levelheadedness and the accompanying logical decisions.

“Woah.” Full of worry Gin first looked at you, before turning left and right to check the surroundings. Then, after a second of complementing and intent thinking about the consequences of leaving you unwatched in such a fragile state, your childhood friend shoved you gently inside. “Why are you always crying when I see you, huh? Am I that ugly?”

The joking tone stood in contrast to the obvious concern which was clearly depicted in his face, the eyebrows drawn together and his mouth curled into a slight scowl.

You wanted to laugh, but only a wet snort and another pitiful sniffle came out.

A gentle hand at your shoulder, Gin guided you to your couch and tenderly forced you to sit down. “Come on,” he said, “just sit for a moment and drink some tea with me, alright? Where are the tea leaves?”

Warily you gestured to the drawer hanging above the stove. There were a lot of different tea leaves, some brought back by you out of foreign lands, some imported, some Kakashi gifted you with because he knew…

New, hot tears ran down your cheeks and you didn’t make the effort anymore to mask your pain. Openly you sobbed, cradling your middle and rocking your upper body weakly back and forth, until you felt Gin’s soothing presence in your back and a hand gently squeezing your shoulder. “Don’t you want to tell me what happened? At least the outlines.”

A shake of your head.

Gin sighed deeply. “I’m just saying. It isn’t healthy to keep all your problems to yourself, especially if they make you cry on a frequent base. But I also understand if you don’t want to tell me anything. Just… Speak with somebody, please. For your sake.”

 

For my sake. For my sake and for the sake of my child.

Another squeeze of your shoulder, then Gin let go and returned to the by now nearly whistling tea pot. Anxiously you tried to control the tears, tried to control at least a tiny bit of the unbearable urge to cry further and when your old friend returned to the couch, in his hand balancing with ease two cups of tea, the wetness on your cheeks was drying slowly.

“Thank you.” you said weakly and nodded as Gin offered you one of the cups.

A smile was thrown your way, understanding and patient, then the man settled down in a nearby armchair, grunting as he tried to stretch yet again his casted arm and failed, hindered by the pain and bandages.

For some long minutes, the two of you sat in silence, occasionally sipping at your hot beverages and staring blindly into the air. But you felt the glances Gin gave you, still patient and full of unbearable understanding.

Sometime, your breaking point was reached.

You sighed deeply. “It has been a year,” you said and watched out of the corner of your eyes how Gin leaned slightly forward, “since I met him. Though the circumstances of our first real meeting seem a bit… unnatural to you.”

 

(…)

 

“…and the furry asshole isn’t staying with me, no, he prefers to stroll around Konoha with Gai and I still have to tell him I’m pregnant and yesterday I wanted to do so, but,” you sipped at your cold tea, “before I could explain anything at all, he snarled at me and left and I don’t know what happened? Did he break up with me? Or is it just our first fight? But because of what? I seriously have no idea, because it’s damn hard to understand a cat who can only mewl, hiss or snark at you, you know?”

Biting your lip, you stared at the carpet to your feet, fiddling with the fabric and reminiscing over last evening. The glare Kakashi gave you with steely eyes, one black and bottomless, the other red and furious. The bared teeth, white flashing in the darkness and maw drawn back in a cruel resemblance to a loving mewl he loved to give you. His soft fur, standing upwards in crazy tufts and ruffling even further and as you had tried to pat him. And foremost the obvious dislike for every single of your actions, if now the words spoken, the tears falling or the movements done.

Gin groaned loudly, what caught your attention instantly. He was rubbing his forehead, but the wrinkles in his face wouldn’t disappear that easily. “So, you want to say Kakashi Hatake changes on a regular base into a cat, what lead to a relationship with him and now you’re pregnant, but can’t tell him because he doesn’t want to switch back into his human body?”

“Except for the regular part you got everything right. It’s only his second time.”

“Right, right.” Absent-minded the redhead gnawed on his lower lip. “The great Kakashi Hatake. Strolls around Konoha as a cat.”

“Told you.”

“He effin’ snarled at me!” Strangely enough Gin didn’t look like he minded the obvious dislike your… Kakashi harbored for him much. Instead he nearly beamed at you, clearly appreciating the negative attention his idol had given him. Then, like a curtain was closed, a shadow fell over his features. “If I ever find out why he left you and if the reason is a stupid one, I’m going to punch him. Right in the dick.”

Logically you knew there was no way Gin would be able to lay even a single finger on Kakashi, not even speaking about a full fist meeting the most sensitive area of a man. And you knew that your childhood friend knew that too, but the comforting and supporting words were nevertheless calming you down. Foremost, they made you smile slightly, just a single tug of your lips upwards. But Gin noticed that too and the relieved grin dawning on his face told everything you need to know.

 

For a while, the chat between Gin and you was light. Years laid between you and him, years of happenings, good or bad dates, made friends and lost friends, new apartments and changed imaginations of the future. Catching up with him was easy, taking your thoughts off of the dark clouds waiting in the distance. Still, a part of you was wondering where the hell Kakashi had sought refuge to avoid you like you had a deadly plague.

Wandering around Konoha would be out of the question. He would calculate that you would search for him, therefore also wander through the streets. Too much danger of being found. Maybe the memorial stone? But that would be too obvious and Kakashi was too smart to be found that easily. A bookstore? No, also out of the question. You knew his favorite ones, knew where he liked to only stroll through and page through various books or where he would more likely buy some additions for his always growing collection. And he knew that you knew.

Like the back of my hand.

That was the problem. Kakashi knew you and you knew him, practically inside and out. Only a few minor parts of yourself were hidden from him and the sneaky ninja he always had been, he surely hid also some parts of himself. Not intentionally, but to protect the very core of his being. Just in case something would happen. Unfortunately, he was better at reading people, but you had the skill to predict his movements to a pretty high degree.

It was a high-level game of cops and robbers. The only question remaining was, who was a cop and who a robber?

I hope he’s fine.

He’s absolutely not fine. Something must be wrong with his head.

I thought about his emotional state, not the state of his obviously damaged brain.

Sure, sure. Emotions. Kakashi, the masked enigma of Konoha, unreadable for anyone and not knowing where to put all those confusing emotions.

 

Who could read the first move of the other better? On most days and some unknown stranger on the receiving end, you would say Kakashi was able to win that bet easily and without breaking a sweat, but now you were on the other side, raking your brain up and down, left and right, just to end up in the same place over and over.

The memorial stone. The goddamn memorial stone. Kakashi could stand there for hours, possibly days, soaking his mind with shame and the guilt of the survivors, the overbearing guilt of not going with Obito, of not being able to save Rin, of not listening to his sensei. That habit hadn’t changed over the duration of the last year. It only lessened, lessened because of you. Because you would stay with him, even when his nightmares wrecked his body and mind to the very core, even though Kakashi woke sometimes up not knowing where he was or that the past was long gone. He woke up with Obito’s name in his lungs, his red eye swirling in a wild frenzy and tears streaming down his face, not recognizing you for some terrible moments and crying with silent sobs into your shoulder when he finally did. Because you would stay with him, even though Kakashi threw himself into the most dangerous missions with the true heart of a Konoha shinobi: emotionless and prepared to give his life for the village and his comrades. Even though you would scold him thoroughly whenever he did so, but you would always make him feel cherished and loved afterwards, by a small kiss to his masked mouth or a hand stroking gently over his cheek.

Telling him it was okay. It would be alright. You had sworn to stay with Kakashi, one year ago and yesterday. And you would hammer your resolution into his thick, furry skull, scream it into his large and sensitive ears, draw it into his soft flanks until he had to understand that nothing happened, no matter what happened in his opinion.

When he still wouldn’t listen and denied you any explanation you deserved… Well, then it would be time to really get pissed.

 

Sure, you were still feeling like weeping and curling up underneath your blanket, chasing relief and sweet forgiveness in the darkness and sleep. But another, stronger part of yourself broke free, howling and screaming bloody murder, demanding explanations and defending wildly every action you consciously fulfilled. How dare Kakashi didn’t even show his true face to you when he wanted to end your relationship! How dare he snarled and spat out, instead of using real words and understandable sentences! How dare he scratched you, not even attempting to hold back the strength of his cat-body one bit!

How could he? This stupid, incredibly stubborn, perverted, arrogant, self-righteous bastard!

A sudden flare of anger was born in your chest, unbearable hot and scorching your insides, but at the same time, you welcomed the feeling with open arms, gritting your teeth around the urge to smile full of evil mischief. Kakashi had never seen you angry. Never he had seen what a force of natural annoyance you could be. In most situations your first reaction would be defensive, not aggressive. It was part of your nature to not seek a direct confrontation but play longtime games with your enemies in battle and that behavior also fit for the rest of your lifestyle. Being angry to the point of willingly stepping into the spotlight and act on every whim and fleeting thought, no matter how stupid those thoughts could be… Even your longtime friends rarely saw that particular side of you and regularly Anko bought up the once-in-a-lifetime story about an unlucky, escaped prisoner who had dared to cross your path when an especially bad week took a heavy toll on your more than stable nerves.  

Poor guy. A bruised eye is never funny, swallowing his own teeth isn’t either and two shattered kneecaps? Well… I guess he had better days.

Only now you noticed the silence in the room. Confused, your eyes flew to Gin. The redhead was frozen in his place, his silver eyes widened in a comical expression of horrified pride. “Man,” he said and a flash of white teeth underlined his small smile, “So long since I’ve seen you like this.”

“The last time should’ve been…”

“Yip. My trip of stupidity and total idiocy.”

“Right.” Relaxed you stretched in your seat, then sat up straight and rolled your shoulders. Both cracked loudly, releasing small strains and points of tension. “But he deserves it.”

“I bet. And (Y/N)…”

You cocked your head. “Yes?”

An unusual aura of seriousness surrounded your old friend. “Thank you. For letting me in.”

 

He didn’t talk about your home.

Slowly you lifted yourself up, aware of his asking look and the uncertainty which radiated in unnerving waves from the man. Before you really knew what you were doing, your body reacted, stepping in front of Gin and exactly knowing what you had to do, despite the fact that not everything was cleared up, that there were still things to speak about and misunderstandings to throw out of your bond.

“No problem.” Like you would touch the wing of a butterfly, you reached out and settled them on the lily-white cast, tracing absent-mindedly the line of the bandages before reaching his free fingers. Squeezing them lightly, you searched for his eyes and smiled at him when you found them. “My door is always open for friends.”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

The first station on your road to find your missing cat-boyfriend was Anko. Not because you expected him to be there, in fact it was the most unlikely of all possibilities that Kakashi, who loved a calm and peaceful environment without being disturbed, would seek shelter in the home of one of Konoha’s wildest and craziest kunoichi. No, it was for the preparation of the final confrontation.

Cold fury had been your steady companion on the way to Anko’s apartment and the emotion resounded also in the knock at her shabby and somehow still sturdy looking entrance door. On the hallway of the apartment complex were piles of trash, junk and other unidentifiable things and things you didn’t want to think about. In the back of your mind you wondered how it was possible that no flies were annoying the inhabitants, but then the purple haired woman ripped the door open.

With gritted teeth you smiled at her. “Hey there.”

Anko was grinning evilly even before you could finish your sentence. A spark stood in her eyes and any other time you would freak out over the raw craziness, but today that particular trait was playing into your hands.

“Alright.” Excited beyond measures, the woman wiggled her eyebrows. “What do you need?”

 

(…)

 

“Make him beg. Anything else will not be sufficient.” Anko munched on a dango stick, sprawled out over her worn-out couch. The still comfortable cushions nearly touched the old wood of the ground, which creaked with every step, even when a shinobi dared to walk over them.

Darkly smiling, you dug another fishnet-shirt out of her wardrobe, considered it for a short moment, only to let it drop to the others at the floor. “There’s nothing else on my mind. You know, he never gifted me with flowers, but this time, he at least,” another fishnet-top was falling to the ground, “has to put that much effort into our relationship.”

Her muffled words made your grin grow wider. “Make sure it’s from the Yamanaka’s. And he has to cook for you. Every day, one month.”

“I call two months.”

“Breakfast in bed.”

“Absolutely.”

“And he has to buy you alcohol whenever you want.”

You hadn’t told her about the fact that for the next nine months, alcohol would be an absolute no-go for you. Instead of revealing your state to Anko, you hummed nonchalantly and reached deeper inside her drawer, where more of her scandalous, revealing clothing waited to shock and arouse at the same time. You had no idea how she would react if you told her about you being pregnant.

Besides, even though Kakashi was currently an asshole, he deserved to know before you would declare it to your circle of friends. To more of your friends.

Thankfully she hadn’t picked up anything strange about your behavior. Anko continued to talk and spin the revenge-fantasy further, the last dango-stick in her hands waving around like a weapon (in her hands, it was). “And he has to buy you your books. Doesn’t he get discount in the small bookstore anyway? You know, the one Iruka’s girlfriend owns?”

 

You smile in triumph as you dig out one of Anko’s old and colorful party pieces. It’s more modest than most of her clothing, still showing off the curves of the wearer, but also elegant and fitting you perfectly. You knew because you already used it for an infiltration and information gathering a few months ago (another mission to pass the time between Kakashi’s own tasks). A dress, deadly and sexy and perfect for making the stupid donkey realize what he had done. And you already had a pair of shoes in mind; shoes which would make him gulp and fidget out of other reasons than the big, fat scolding you would give him.

Even in his cat form, he would drool all over you.

Maybe because of his cat-body.

Chuckling, you quickly slipped out of your own clothing and changed into the dress. “Yes. But she paid the money back.”

“Iruka is still head over heels for her, huh? Is proud and showing her off like a peacock whenever he can.”

“Don’t you know?” You turned around to Anko and presented yourself, arms outstretched and feeling how the cold anger in your stomach eased a bit when she gave you a thumbs-up. “He bought a ring. I think next month he will bring up the infamous question.”

For a moment Anko paused, her lips curling around one of her sweets. Then she rolled her eyes and swallowed the round sugary treat whole, while you buried yourself again in her drawer and begun your search anew, this time out for a pair of shoes. “Why doesn’t anybody tell me anything here? Just let me in the gossip, then I won’t pry into your business, as simple as that!”

“I believe he thought you would tease him endlessly about it. Besides,” with a deep sigh you tugged out a pair of matching high shoes and slipped into them, “possibly you would’ve spilled something to her, be honest with yourself.”

“Alright, alright.” With a deep sigh the purple haired woman slouched back into the cushions and nibbled on the last dango, clearly fake-pouting. Her eyes sparkled too much in pixie-ish mischief to sulk for real. “When you’re finished with Kakashi-idiot, give me his fur, understood? I want to make a hat out of it.”

Grimly smiling, you slipped into the killer high-heels, knowing it wouldn’t take much time to adjust to their impressive height. “Not when I make a beautiful rag out of him first.”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

The second stop wasn’t planned, but when you passed by a cute café with a beautiful display of sweet cookies as large as your hand, you couldn’t stop yourself. Being angry wasted a lot of energy and sugar would replenish your reserves more than enough to be fueled for the next hours.

The third stop was Kurenai’s home. Her apartment was by now filled with little nick-nacks you could easily connect to Asuma, like a forgotten package of cigarettes or the lingering smell of his aftershave in the air. You didn’t make a comment on it as your friend invited you in, still clothed in a long and silky morning kimono, her bed hair gently falling around her face and her impressive red eyes still hazy from the aftermath of sleep. “What do you want?” she asked, a little slur in her voice as you brushed past her.

“I need your steady hand and vast variety of make-up.” you said and only threw a little glance into her bedroom. Yes, there was Asuma, sleeping on his stomach and snoring like his life depended on it. “Kakashi possibly broke up with me and I have to wash his head before I consider taking him back. And for my surely impressive speech, I have to look as stunning as possible. Can you help me?”

Not waiting for the brunette, you stormed off into her bathroom, where her really wide range of different make-up brushes, lipsticks, eyeliners and hundreds of other things waited to let the face of someone appear rounder or thinner, lips bigger or smaller, noses more petite or longer, cheeks higher or lower and the edges of eyes brighten in the colors of the rainbow. You were always impressed and even though you were no fool when it came to make-up, this time you would fully trust Kurenai to apply yours; her hands were in that regard steadier and filled with years of experience.

Swiftly you turned around and glanced all over Kurenai, who yawned behind her hand and still was able to pull of the stunt of being a goddamn beauty. “A story for some make-up. How does that sound?”

 

(…)

 

“And he did what?”

“Scratched me. He fucking scratched me.”

Bewildered Kurenai shook her head. Despite the hasty motion, her hand which held the lipstick to your mouth was calm, coloring your lips in a natural rosé. “That doesn’t sound like him.”

You waited a second until she was finished, then you spoke up, hissing through your teeth at the confusion in her words. “Surely it wasn’t him. The animal spoke, was more present than the human even though he should’ve changed back a week ago! A goddamn week, Kurenai! I don’t want Rascal, I want Kakashi!”

“So, you aren’t angry he scratched you, but that he didn’t change back?”

“No!” One moment of reconciliation, then you sighed tiredly and massaged your temples. “Maybe, yes. It’s just… It’s frustrating.”

“Frustrating to see he’s drifting away or that he gets angry without any apparent reason?”

To see him leaving every morning with Gai, not looking back once. To want his presence near me, but not daring to say anything. To fear his rejection so much that I smile blindly at him, even though I want to cradle him close and never let him go.

Suddenly a wave of tired resignation washed over you. You closed your eyes, feeling the by now painfully familiar burn behind them and the tickle in your throat. Kurenai used the chance and started to apply color to your eyelids, her strokes soft and confident at the same time.

“It’s frustrating,” you whisper finally, “to need him so close. I… I don’t want to be clingy, but… I haven’t had him for such a long time to myself. Only days and hours, not weeks and months like you and Asuma. I… I want to be with him, not wait for him endlessly only to be ripped apart.”

 

“And you don’t want to be so…”

“Selfish. I’m feeling selfish. ‘Cause I know the village needs him, the fire country needs the copy ninja and our forces need Kakashi Hatake. But I need him too.”

Not only need. I want him, want him more than anything. I crave his warm presence, the way he talks and laughs, how he fills the walls of my flat with care and satisfaction. It’s stupid, it’s selfish, it’s so damn egoistical and feels so right.

With a light tap to your shoulder Kurenai allowed you to open your eyes again. For some seconds your vision was blurry and shortly you thought new tears were at fault, but then your vision cleared, breaching a path for the brunette’s little, knowing smile.

“Don’t worry (Y/N). Love is meant to be selfish.” She was still smiling as she reached out, raising your chin to get a better angle for the next step in her preparations. “Love is ugly, love is brutal and first and foremost, love is incredibly selfish. Just remember to let him also get a word in. More like, allowing him to get a snarl, hiss or mewl in.” Kurenai added.

Deeply in thought, you allowed your friend to finish the styling. All the while your brain was drawing circles around her words, settling in and infecting your anger. Infecting your previous resolve with your usual calm attitude, your usual care and calm.

A raging fit wouldn’t solve anything. Furthermore, it would only drive Kakashi away and the fact he was a cat would only make it easier for him to vanish from your life. Your words had to be chosen carefully, your behavior had to be calm, but cold, your motions well-thought and planned-out like you would plan an ambush.

 

Not an easy feat. But also not impossible.

“Okay,” Kurenai checked your face one more time, then started to carefully clean all the different tools she used, “I think I’m done. And just in case, everything I did was done with waterproof make-up.”

That’s why you had two friends. Anko was the destructive one, respecting each and every idea, no matter how destructive they could be. Sometimes that was everything you needed, an outlet and strong supporter. In comparison, Kurenai was incredibly patient and understanding, though she would always try and give you a small push into the best direction. That didn’t mean she was always right. Still, the brunette had a high success rate, so your trust in her was immense.

“Thank you Kurenai,” you said and stood up, “for everything.”

Your friend shrugged like it was her everyday business to bear a raging female in her flat, doing her make-up in exchange of a sad story of a nearly fallen relationship and giving hidden advice. “No problem at all. Just be silent on your way out, I want to surprise Asuma with breakfast in bed.”

Measured at the sparkle in her ruby-red eyes, the bearded man wouldn’t get only scrambled eggs and bacon. Useless to say you managed to sneak out of their little love-nest in record time, all in all only stumbling once over your own high heels.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

The last step before you were able to really confront Kakashi was the Yamanaka flower shop. You wouldn’t visit the memorial stone without honoring the ones protecting your home with their lives. Then you were ready as you could be, wearing a dress as armor and make-up as your war paint, the words in your head sword and shield, softly raging and calmly demanding. And you were proud the flowers in your arm were only the tiniest bit shaking as you stepped into the dim sunlight of a fall sunset, the orange hues lightening up  the polished edges of the black memorial stone.

Only one thing of your so deliberately made-up was missing.

Kakashi.

Quickly you scanned the clearing again, not believing your senses. But no, still no grey cat, curled up in the grass and staring at the name of Obito Uchiha, the tail twitching from time to time.

Well… I was pretty sure he would be here, sulking and licking his made-up wounds. That honestly destroys my whole evening.

“Shut up,” you growled at your own silent remarks, “just shut up.”

Thankfully the voice didn’t answer.

A sigh dwelled deep in your chest, but you suppressed the sound. When Kakashi wasn’t here, where could he be then? You forced your unwilling brain forward, trying to think of Kakashi and his habits, but except for the memorial stone, nothing else came to your mind. Except…

Except for my windowsill. Except for my bed. Except for my home, which I willingly opened for him.

Like the Seven Swordsman of the Mist in person were chasing you, you left the clearing, not caring about the flowers which you pressed to your chest and destroyed while you ran. Ran towards your own home, a vague instinct telling you to go faster, to be as soon as possible at home, to be there and let go of all your plans, to find Kakashi-!

 

Your breath trashed in your chest, whistling out of your mouth when you reached after an unbearable long way your apartment complex. You didn’t care about the civilian norm and rules, just hopped hastily on the wall, chakra already swirling in the soles of your feet and continuing your dash as soon as your balance had adjusted. Four steps, then you reached the small window which you called your own, opened out of bad habit, opened for Kakashi, the stupid, sappy donkey he was-!

And there he was. Incredible relief flooded your heart as you spotted the afterimage of a small silhouette vanishing underneath the bed, his favorite place to hide whenever uncomfortable things were waiting for him.

One last inhale. The slightly crisp air burned in your lungs, still you savored the calming effect it had. Only then you reached inside, fiddled a little bit with the lock and opened your window fully, until you were able to climb inside without destroying either Anko’s dress or the various flowerpots on the other side.

No sound betrayed Kakashi’s presence. Not one sniffle or ruffling of his fur, but you felt his presence lingering in the room, tensed up and ready to flee at the first opportunity. Not leaving your bed out of your sight, you leaned backwards and closed the window with a reassuring clank. You especially liked the rustling of the lock, deep and final.

Nothing. No movement. But Kakashi was still there, hiding and waiting, a hunter not knowing he was about to become the prey.

There was no use in pretending you hadn’t seen him. So, you walked over to your armchair opposite to your bed and sat down, crossing your legs elegantly. From his angle, the cat would see your naked and smooth legs, the muscles rippling underneath in badly concealed feelings, the dress taunting him with illusions of more and the deliberate way how the high heels hugged your feet.

Inwardly you mused if Kakashi noticed why you had chosen that particular pair of shoes. Maybe he would realize sometime, after all he had nearly begged you once to wear a similar pair while he would fuck you from behind after seeing Anko parading around in those.

 

“I know you’re hiding,” you said after a few more minutes of waiting, “but I don’t know why you would come back into my flat when you were the one to leave in the first place.” You gave him a chance to come out, but Kakashi was a stubborn one. Nothing could be heard and with a sarcastic snort you continued. “I hope you’re glad to hear your little reminder of your pain doesn’t appear to be infected. Not that it is of interest, but I’m sure you’re interested as far as I’m not dying of some kind of blood infection.”

Still nothing.

Despite the rising tension, you pushed further, proud your voice showed nothing but cold indifference. “I don’t understand what you did. Sure, logically I understand that apparently you were angry. How couldn’t I? But your reasoning, your feelings behind your anger aren’t clear to me. Currently I can only assume something I did made you feel that way. And you should know that I came to the conclusion, born out of your actions, that you want to break up with me, measured at the quick vanishing and dismissing of my tears and feelings.”

Finally. Fur rustled, then a small grey snout peeked out of the shadows, twitching and sniffing. Thin whiskers moved alongside the nose, testing the waters and trying to determine if your words were true or not. Patiently you waited, your arms crossed over your chest and watching how a pair of eyes followed the snout, one black, the other red and trying to read you.

You raised one eyebrow. “And? Am I speaking the truth? Do you want to break up with me that desperately?”

With a huff Kakashi laid down, burying his chin in his front legs.

“Apparently you came to the right conclusion. Now I want to know why you were upset. Could you please change back into a human so we can talk?”

His sharingan rolled around, showing clearly what he thought of your sharp words.

“See?” Agitated you gestured towards him and Kakashi’s whiskers flinched harshly, only to vibrate one more time before he was growling lowly. “This isn’t the time to sulk. I want to fix this, Kakashi, and right now I’m getting the impression you’re taking things serious between us.”

He outright hissed at you, what forced you to laugh coldly. “You have no right to hiss,” you said, “you have absolutely no right to say anything. You lost that right in the same moment you decided to stay a cat to get away from this talk. Now it’s a time for you to listen, to listen only to me and not the stupid insecurities which still seem to hunt you.”

Another deep breath in. “I want to have you by my side, Kakashi. This isn’t a flimsy one-time thing for me. I want you, with your dry and terrible humor, with the love for sappy romantic comedies, with your passion for cooking and love to laze around in my bed. I thought you knew that, but apparently, I missed to assure you. Otherwise you wouldn’t behave that way.”

 

A grumble rumbled through the cat. His small body was vibrating with the sound, accepting your words for once instead of opposing them. Calmed, you unfolded your legs and bend forward. His reaction was more worth than diamonds to you. With your motion, your cleavage came into his view and for a very short moment, his sharingan flickered to the soft skin, to the spots where he had kissed and licked you, which he had teased long enough to leave bruises and breasts he simply adored, measured at the attention they received every time you slept with him.

“I thought it’s clear that I love you,” you whispered hoarsely, “But apparently, you don’t believe me. Don’t try to deny it. Your actions have spoken louder than words. Or would you injure someone who says she loves you and doesn’t understand what is going on? I always thought higher than that of you.”

His reaction was even more encouraging. Clearly ashamed, his ears hung low and with his front paws and claws extended, Kakashi crawled forwards, more into the light and closer to you.

You weren’t fully smiling, but the shadow of something resembling a smile hushed over your lips, only to die just as fast. “I wanted to tell you something important, for a whole while now. But if you still insist on breaking up with me over something I have no clue off, then I’m going to do that anyway. Because it surely hits me more than you. Because I have more to lose, more to fight for when you decide to end this. And as long as you can’t form human words and I have to read your thoughts out of your body language, I will not clear that misunderstanding between us, because that’s what it has to be.”

Knowing what meaning the gesture held by now, you leaned backwards and pressed your hands to your lower stomach. “I’m pregnant, Kakashi. I’m bearing your child. And someone has to be an adult, because our child needs an adult, who thinks level-headed and does want to clear out that stupid misunderstanding. Understood? I want to speak about this, with real words, to decide what are we going to do. But I will not accept any advance in form of cuddling into my legs, rubbing your head against my knees or big, cute cat eyes. I want you back, Kakashi. Is that so hard to understand?”

 

Maybe you should have stopped after the big revelation. First, Kakashi hadn’t reacted at all to your words. Stiff and frozen he laid on the carpet, his snout still buried in the crook of his front paws and tail lying beside him. Then, when the realization had sunken in and you had finished, he jerked upwards, eyes big and round and asking; asking when, what, how long, how could you keep this a secret, WHAT, are you sure, WHAT, ARE YOU SURE, IS IT REALLY MINE and thousands of other things. His jaw dropped in a comical manner, underlying the panicked expression in his eyes, his fur suddenly ruffled, making him look bigger and a little bit like a big fluffy sponge and when the cat dropped to the side, spreading all of his legs on the carpet and appearing to be short-circuited, you just had to laugh.

“Yes, it is yours,” you told him, not without a gentle undertone in your voice, “because I never would any other person touch me in that way while I’m still together with you. I’m a faithful person and before I would hurt you that way, I would come to you and talk about it.”

Kakashi ignored you again, but not to abandon you suddenly. A grey flash of fur and he was upon you, pressing his flank to your leg and purring loudly, the rusty sound vibrating through his whole body. His tail cricked and rubbed full of himself against your other foreleg while the cat tried to melt with you, pushing his nose towards your stomach like he tried to smell out the gender of your child.

A warm wave of relief washed over your mind. Kakashi accepted the fact you were pregnant, that this was apparently But still. He was just assuming, ignoring your wishes and declarations you made earlier, just because he was overwhelmed by the fact he was going to be a father?

No. Not like this, not like anything happened.

“I thought I made myself clear.” Gently, but clearly you pushed the cuddly cat away. “No big, lovey-dovey cat-eyes or cuddles. I want to hear your voice, nothing else. Until then, please go.”

Desperately Kakashi mewled, a sound which tugged at your heartstrings with enough force to send pain through your whole body. Still, as soon as he tried to latch himself again to your leg, you caught him and raised him into the air, avoiding the pure wave of mewls, purrs and poor, poor, pitiful struggles as much as you could. “No Kakashi,” you said and headed for the door, “just… No.

This wasn’t about false pride. This was about making yourself clear, to announce your needs and wishes for your relationship. This was selfish, egoistical in its own right. For the child growing in your stomach, for the new life being on the way, but also for Kakashi. He needed to understand what he did and you needed to show him some borders and red lines he shouldn’t cross.

 

For example, not jumping to silly assumptions. That was a big, fat red line.

Kakashi still tried to struggle out of your grip, but you had far too much practice to be outsmarted by him. Patiently you opened the door with one hand, the other cradled the desperately squirming cat to your chest. Thankfully he refrained from stretching his claws out while clawing and pawing into you, otherwise you would’ve had a whole new series of red scratches on your skin.

“Good night, Kakashi.” You weren’t able to resist the urge. For a short second, you kissed his flank, then you threw him into the hallway. Cats landed always on their feet, Kakashi too and if you wouldn’t act so harshly, he would wiggle his way through your legs and door back inside.

With a loud clap, the door fell closed, followed by a ridiculous howl of agony and insistent scratching at the wood.

Sighing, you dropped into the cushions of your bed. Good thing you had stolen some ear plugs from Kurenai. You didn’t want to imagine when you would give in if you hadn’t had them on hand.

Because your heart was already bleeding from the pitiful sounds Kakashi made. You were already on the edge of opening the door and letting him inside, not caring about your own pride and the respect he should give you.

As fast as you could, you ripped the bright yellow plugs out of a cleverly hidden pocket of the dress and stuffed them into your ears. Instantly only the sound of your own blood rushing through your veins was the only thing you could hear.

Still. It would be a long night.

Chapter Text

The ear plugs were good. Really good. Probably the best sleep you ever had, long and undisturbed, even by the cats which had started their usual howling and mewling punctual with dawn. But they couldn’t blend out the persistent knocking at your window or the silent, yet unmistakable callings of your name ringing through the glass.

“(Y/N). (Y/N), wake up. Please.”

For a moment, your mind didn’t register what was going on. The tone was so familiar and calming, you just wanted to slip back into sleep and cuddle into a larger body beside yours. But then you felt the ear plugs shifting slightly as you rolled around, what caused your memories to rise like the tide.

Instantly you jumped out of bed and swiveled to the window, your eyes hungrily searching for the slouched figure which waited at your windowsill. And you nearly whimpered out as you really spotted him.

Kakashi sat perched up on the outside, one hand already raised for another knock, the other slightly stretched out to keep his balance. He was in his usual clothes, but they looked like he stripped them over his head in a wild hurry. One glove was missing, the bandages around his ankles were askew, one of his sleeves was rolled up and the other not, the edges of his shirt dangled loosely in the wind and revealed sometimes slivers of his pale skin, all the while his forehead protector and mask were constantly on the edge of slipping down. Also, his hair was standing upwards in crazy tufts; even crazier tufts than usual. And wasn’t that a leaf you spotted in the grey strands? Did he sleep in a tree?

When the man saw that you were awake and up, he renewed his endeavors to catch your attention, in his black eye shining a new light you had never seen before.

“Let me in. Please, I beg you, (Y/N). Please, I want to talk.” he said, his dark voice easily crawling through the glass. His long, slender fingers tapped once against the glass, twice, only to fall in the familiar rhythm you knew by now so well.

 

Even though you were happy to see him finally in his human body again, even though you were happy Kakashi was back, just because he was willing to talk now with you didn’t mean you would immediately jump into his arms again. No, Kakashi deserved to suffer a little bit, to simmer in his own juices so to speak, before you would be grateful enough for this poor idiot to take him back.

“You want to talk?” Unimpressed you allowed one of your eyebrows to slip higher than the other. “Now? When I just woke up?”

“(Y/N), please.” He flattened his hand until the whole naked palm pressed against the glass, sheer despair and raw begging in his voice. “I understand you completely. You’re right, I should’ve changed back the moment I was able to and I apologize for that, but I had my reasons for doing so a-and if you want, I c-can explain th-them to you-!”

This time both of your eyebrows wandered into new heights. Kakashi hadn’t stuttered and blushed in months since you two had started dating. Only occasionally, when one of your loving words or gestures surprised him, a certain soft blush would creep up from underneath his mask and paint the rest of his face, but now the famous and usually stoic copy ninja went full out with his blush. Red, hot blood instantly colored the visible part of his face, from his upper cheeks to the forehead and even the ears went bright red.

A blushing and stuttering mess. Your blushing and stuttering mess.

I will listen, nothing else.

“Fine.” With a sigh you stepped to the window and opened it, allowing the man to jump into your flat. A silent ruffle of his clothes was everything telling of his entrance and when Kakashi straightened fully in front of your feet, his bones popped in the silence.

You still wore the elegant dress and the high heels. Beside Kakashi’s uniform, you felt strangely naked and defenseless. Automatically your hands flew to your lower stomach, searching for comfort in a by now familiar gesture and his eyes followed, widening a fraction as he realized what exactly you were doing. Like flies glued to a light he kept staring at your stomach, in his eyes such a bright longing burning that your heart grew warm.

No mistaking. He wants that child.

“Is it…” Kakashi coughed to get rid of his overly hoarse voice. “Can you feel it?”

“No. It isn’t so old yet. Just a month and a half.”

You could see how the copy ninja calculated, the numbers and days running around and finally settling on the right evening. “When I came back…?”

“When you came back. Yes.”
“Didn’t you take your…?”

“I was also on a mission, remember? Unfortunately, I ran out of birth control pills due to the length of our stay in the land of grass and when you suddenly came back, I forgot to take one.” you said. Then you sighed deeply. “Listen, Kakashi…”

He immediately perked upwards at your words. “Yes?”

“If you don’t want a child, I could understand that. It would be a weakness, an opportunity for your enemies to hurt you. But for myself, I decided to carry my child until the end, to raise it and care and love it. If you don’t want to take part in this, then-!”

“What are you saying?” Kakashi interrupted, growling nearly as he stepped closer, “For sure I want to have this child. It’s ours, yours and mine. What kind of person would that make me if I would run away and leave you alone?”

 

“A cautious one.”

“I would call him a fool.” With an asking glance, Kakashi reached out towards your stomach, stopping only an inch apart from touching you. Both of his eyes were intense, pleading and begging you to let it be, to let him feel what the future would bring. You breathed in, nodded slowly and Kakashi’s eyes crinkled in a light smile which the mask still hid.

When his fingertips stroked slightly over your belly, you had to bury a weak moan inside your chest. So long you hadn’t felt his touch, the months where he had been out to save Gin and his colleagues, then the week he spent entirely with Gai not only cutting you off of his words, but his physical presence too. Now it was like Kakashi dominated the whole room, while standing completely still in front of you, his half-masked face displaying dawning awe and his hand softly caressing your stomach. There was even nothing to feel, your stomach just as flat as it had been a month ago, but the sappy man acted like you were already heavily pregnant.

“There’s nothing,” you told him, “nothing to feel, nothing to fondle.”

Kakashi only hummed nonchalantly. His fingers were by now wandering higher, over the silky fabric of the dress and circling the slight dip of your belly button, resting shortly between your breasts and caressing absent-mindedly your sternum, only to slip higher and feeling for your pulse. You were pretty sure he couldn’t count the beats of your heart; so fast and unsteady it grew under his fingertips.

“Can you maybe,” you breathed out and nevertheless leaned into his hand, “can you maybe not be so damn charming and cute? It’s hard to stay mad at you.”

“My plan all along.” Kakashi smiled warily, but still kept his distance and you let him. Because even though he seemed to accept the child, that didn’t explain nor excuse his constant disappearances or the sudden fight.

 

Uncertainty was in the air, tensing and coiling around you and him. You bit your lower lip, feeling the edges of the pain running through your system. It wasn’t right to just allow Kakashi back into your life, that resolve you had decided by yourself, and you should be damned if you would give in like that.

Slowly and making sure that your gesture wouldn’t be seen as a rejection of his advances, you slipped your hand underneath his and plugged it off your skin. “No… just not now.”

His eyebrows creased slightly, but Kakashi accepted it without a fuss when you stepped backwards. “And when then?”

“I don’t think I have heard your begging long enough.”

“What do you want to say?”

You sighed deeply. But despite your visible annoyance you couldn’t help yourself but to smile smugly at the thought what would be going on for the next weeks. “I want to say,” deliberately you walked over to the door and laid your hand on top of the cold handle, “that you have to earn the right to sleep in my bed again. Just saying.”

Kakashi had never properly wooed you. Alone the attempt at wooing seemed ridiculous, just because of your chance meeting and the way how your relationship had grown. And honestly, being wooed by a cat? What could’ve he have done; bringing a bouquet crunched up between his teeth? A box of chocolate, decorated with some tufts of grey hair? Yeah, ridiculous.

Time to settle that the right way. Don’t worry Kakashi, I will take you back. The only question is, to what lengths you will go to win me over?

 

You had never seen Kakashi scandalized. But now he stared at you, full of incredulity and disbelieving shock. “What?” he repeated, his voice meek and strangely shaking at the end. “What do y-you w-want me…?”

This time, you couldn’t hold in the laughter any longer. It rippled pleasantly at your lungs, bubbling in your stomach and warmed your limbs. Suddenly the world was brighter than before, the atmosphere more comfortable than the strained, happily faked aura you had carried with you the whole week. “What I want you to do?” you asked back, with tears in your eyes and a grin splitting your lips. “Just be yourself, Kakashi. Not a cat, not the copy ninja. Be the man I fell in love and had a relationship with for the last year. Just… add flowers. Chocolate, clothes, jewelry, hell, be creative! I don’t care. Just convince me to wear those shoes,” you extended your leg towards him and felt his eyes wandering hungrily over your naked skin, “when I decide to accept you again in here. Until then… Well, better get ready for some lonely, cold nights.”

“But (Y/N)…”
“You scratched me. I deserve a bit more than some begging.”

“But (Y/N)…” Kakashi whined weakly. Though he was already coming closer, walking without a sound past you and out of your home, accepting your wishes and boundaries. Guilt radiated from him and you nearly felt bad for playing that card, but you stayed strong. A longing glance and the little hopeful reaching out of his hand towards you as he passed by, like he expected a hug or a short kiss betrayed him, betrayed his feelings and that he also had missed you. Well, too bad. He had a whole week of being with you, but no, he preferred to spent the week with his eternal rival. Not your fault.

But you were as cold as ice and as unwavering as stone. “Remember,” you said as Kakashi stepped into the hallway, the pleasant smell of dog shampoo and weapon’s oil still coiling around you, “until you convinced me, nothing will go down. Only then, I will hear you out about your absolute stupid raging fit and the reason behind it. Alright?”

Not waiting for an answer, you locked the entrance again.

That went better than anticipated.

You breathed out, slow and watching out for every little motion. How the exhale crashed against your teeth, how the air brushed over your dry lips, how your chest moved against your clothes and how your heartbeat slowly declined after the soft confrontation with Kakashi.

 

Then, suddenly…

A weak knock at your door. Right in your back while you leaned against the wood, the vibration pressed into your spine and skin. Another harsh inhale and you tuned around, pushing down the handle and opening the entrance with an exaggerated motion.

You could definitely admit when somebody managed to impress you. And the speed Kakashi showed in cleaning himself up and tugging out some clothes which weren’t some varieties of a ninja uniform was definitely worth the wordless whimper and your jaw dropping.

He looked stunning. Really good. His hair wasn’t as roughed up as usual, a little bit more tamed than before. A tiny bit, not completely tamed by some gel or a comb. The black mask he wore now wasn’t crumpled and wrinkled, indeed it seemed he had exchanged the entire thing for a new, washed one. And the rest of his clothing…

Harshly you breathed in. A beautiful navy-blue kimono, interwoven into the blue of the sea were some grey and almost white flashes, resembling the crowns of waves. At each of his sleeves the Hatake symbol could be spotted, a small, red crest; delicately accentuating the paleness of his showing skin. As Kakashi fidgeted on the spot, you could hear the telltale clanking of old, wooden sandals on tiles.

“Hello.” His voice was a purr, his stance just as confident as his tone. If not for the blush rising on his cheeks, you would’ve nearly bought the act. “Care to join me for some lunch?”

“Kakashi, it’s only ten. In the morning. I haven’t eaten breakfast yet.”

“O-oooh.” The man blushed further. “W-well… U-uuuhm…” The carefully arranged picture crumbled. His fingertips fiddled with his wide sleeves, uncertainty oozed from his body with every second he stood there in the hallway and despite the fact that both of his eyes were uncovered, they couldn’t meet yours, always flying around and not daring to set anywhere near your body. “M-maybe some-some dinner would be f-fi-fine then?”

Amused you smiled at Kakashi. “Now?”

By now Kakashi was sweating, eaten away by his nervousness. “No,” he mumbled and lowered his head, “la-later tod-today.”

 

I should let him suffer more.

Definitely.

But he made an effort.

The first effort. The very first.

Yes. The very first of many.

The only question left is…

“Alright.” Wickedly grinning, you cocked your hips and leaned against the edge of the door. “If you’re paying…”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

The evening came and went by, pleasantly easy in comparison to the rest of your confusing life. Kakashi picked you up at your doorstep, with a single daisy holding in his trembling hands. You teased him a little bit, just for good measure, but proudly allowed him to fasten the flower in your hair. His face came impossibly close, almost irresistible in his nervous happiness and you nearly gave in to your weaker urges, but you were able to resist.

Otherwise he would have a way too easy game with you.

From there on, it would be a daily ritual to at least see Kakashi somewhere near your flat, but not inside it. Mostly he asked you out, to a walk through the forest or to the memorial stone, up the Hokage mountain or into his favorite bookstore. If he didn’t ask you out, Kakashi knocked at your door with flowers in his arms. More daisies, daffodils, beautiful flowers you had no name for. Not one was bought at the Yamanake flower shop. All of them were personally selected by him as Kakashi wandered around and searched for things which would please you. Soon you had no space left for all the colorful wild flowers, which took almost all available flat surfaces for themselves. Sometimes he didn’t show up, just a love letter or a small gift left on your doorstep was a reminder of his presence. A beautiful stone, glimmering under the sunlight, a new flower pot, crafted in another country and therefore looking rather exotic, a book he knew you had wanted to read for a long time but hadn’t the time to buy it.

Only after two weeks you allowed him back in your flat. Nearly stumbling over his own feet, the silver haired man had wanted to jump immediately at you, but you had averted his outstretched and very inviting embrace with a quick sidestep.

The look he gave you was teary-eyed and resembled more a kicked puppy than anything else.

“Not yet,” you had whispered, seeing with satisfaction how Kakashi’s stature relaxed when hearing your words, “but soon.”

“Promise?” he had said, his voice only the tiniest bit wavering at the prospect of possibly not being forgiven.

So, you had smiled and cocked your head to the side, your fingertips stroking oh so softly over your lower stomach. “Promise.”

 

Not watching him any longer, you stepped further into your flat and flipped the lights on. You knew what Kakashi saw when he came after you. All of his bouquets, draped and displayed in your living room. His presents, already in use or also on display for others to see, for example the book he bought for you. It laid on your nightstand, a mark signing where you left off the story, the very intriguing, expressive and foremost explicit story. All of his efforts, treasured, loved and accepted.

If he would’ve been a dog, his tail would’ve rotated at maximum speed.

“Do you want tea?” you asked, already heading for the water cooker in your kitchen. In your back you heard how Kakashi settled himself on the couch, his kimono which he used again for another date night in a private and cozy restaurant in the outskirts of Konoha flowing like water around him.

His warm chuckle vibrated in the air. “Sure.”

You didn’t need to ask which sort or how much sugar. Green tea with a hint of lemon, no sugar, but with a little bit of milk. A strange combination for a strange man.

The air was filled with the scent of the tea and the dawning premonition of tension. Not on your side. You were as relaxed as one could be, humming to yourself while preparing the mugs, adding to yours a little bit of sugar. No, Kakashi was the nervous one. He was fidgeting in his seat, restlessly changing his position, ruffling through his hair and coughing the tiniest bit from time to time. He was seemed almost to die out of impatience.

The mighty and always indifferent copy ninja. Was impatient. Good riddance, how hilarious. You chuckled to yourself, grabbing the tea mugs and handing the silver haired man one. “Here. Watch out, it’s hot.” you warned him.

Clearly embarrassed, the man mumbled something inaudible and took the cup out of your hands. A shy, quick glance into your face, and his own features reddened yet again, before the black eye dropped again to the ground, staring intently at your old and faded-out carpet like it was the most interesting thing in the whole world.

 

You wouldn’t deny your own anticipation to this talk. Your stomach quivered, eager to finally hear what had been going on in this complex and yet so stupidly straight-forward brain of his. But Kakashi decided to go down the hard way. Stubbornly he stared at his folded hands, not even removing the dreaded mask, like you were still strangers.

With an unnerved sigh you sat down in an armchair and folded your legs, waiting for your tea to cool down and to be enjoyed.

“So?” you asked after another three minutes of empty staring at Kakashi’s part and patient waiting at yours. “Cat got your tongue?”

He actually snorted. “N-not really. No.”

“Then why are you hesitating? After all the weeks of spending money on me you certainly earned the right.”

Kakashi’s head flinched upwards at your words. “You say that like it was an inconvenience for me,” he said, “but it wasn’t. It was the best investment I could make with my money, to spend it for you and for our child.” His masked face lost the edges as he took the words “our child” in his mouth. And unconsciously, his eye wandered again to your stomach, longing and soft love so clearly visible that it nearly took your breath away.

Carefully you lifted the hot tea to your mouth and cooled it off a bit. “Then why don’t you start talking? I must say, I’m dying to hear your reasoning why you saw the need to snarl at me since weeks. And please,” your warm chuckle rung in the air, “please for god’s sake. Take your mask off.”

The last weeks you hadn’t seen Kakashi’s face. A far too long time. And the warmth rising in your chest as his slender fingers coiled around the edges of his black mask and dragged the fabric over the bridge of his nose and further down, revealing his pale cheeks, the kissable lips and the cute black mark right underneath them was proof for that.

 

“Thank you very much,” you said, “and now please. Enlighten me.”

You surely didn’t expect him to explode like he did only split seconds after you closed your mouth. “I saw you,” Kakashi hastily said, his fingers paling as his grip around the porcelain tightened, “I saw you with your friend, the one I saved in Kumogakure. You-you were hugging.”

Your answer could’ve been far more intelligent. “Huh?”

The man nodded wildly. “Yeah. On the training field. I was close and smelled your scent, so I wanted to pick you up and walk home with you, because I found-! Because I finished my business with Gai, but there you were and that-that ass hugged you!”

“And?” Calmly you sipped at your tea. Just the right temperature. “I pushed him away and made clear I wasn’t available.”

The blush rising was hilarious. Simply hilarious. You had to suppress a laugh at the sight of Kakashi blushing in embarrassment, biting his lips and thinking over his next words with the same care he would use on a battle plan. “It-it didn’t look like that to m-me,” he admitted weakly, “at that moment I couldn’t th-think straight. I-I-I j-just saw Gi-Gin hu-hugging y-you…”

“And you became jealous.”

N-no!”

“Please, don’t try to joke with me.” Satisfied you finally found the reason why Kakashi had acted like a little child whose candy had been stolen, you leaned back into your armchair. “You were jealous. Not only that, you were furious. To the point of starting a fight with me, you, the unmovable copy ninja, not swayed by fleeting emotions like the rest of us mortals.”

“Th-that wa-wasn’t wh-what I-!” Frustrated Kakashi shook his head. Tension radiated from him in harsh waves as he abruptly stood up, his usually so graceful and swift motions strained and trembling. With growing worry, you watched how the man threw a desperate look at you, his black eye widened and full of everything he couldn’t or didn’t dare to say. When he reached up and stripped his headband off, you jerked and your tea spilled slightly over your fingers. Kakashi’s eyes were intense, always had been, but now you feared they would burn a hole into your shirt and soul.

 

Carelessly Kakashi dropped the Konoha headband to the ground. Then the shinobi covered his face and muffled an almost unbearable groan in his palms, before speaking up, whispering his emotions through his fingers. “I thought you broke our promise. I thought you would leave me. I knew I was long gone, knew I hurt you with my absence. I thought it was enough to push you towards someone else, someone who deserved you more, someone who isn’t a monster like me. Someone who could give you what you need, attention, time, passion…”

“Kakashi-!”

“No. No excuses. No empty phrases, nothing to hide myself.” You had the distant feeling he tried to tell that himself. Kakashi lowered his hands, slowly and not daring to look at you, but his voice was secure, not stumbling in nervousness over his own tongue. “That evening… I wasn’t angry at you. Expected that much after a while with me. That you would turn away. I was angry at me, for hoping and believing, that you could stand one more mission, one more month, one more cruel leave…”

“Kakashi.”

“I told myself: “Just one more time, she understands me.” You understand what I have to do, that my loyalty will always lay in the village, that everything I am and everything I’ll ever be belongs to Konoha. At least I thought so.” Kakashi breathed in and raised his head. And wasn’t there a little smile playing around the edges of his mouth? “But when I heard you were pregnant (Y/N), when the mere possibility of being a father entered my mind, something I wouldn’t even dared to dream of… A family,” he pronounced, the disbelief in the two syllables showing how much of a surprise was it still for him, “a family, my family, somewhere where I truly belong, people who will wait for me… When I heard that, everything changed. I want to be someone you can rely on. I want to be someone who can call himself proudly “father”, not someone who runs away and leaves you behind with nothing else but scratches on your hand and pain in your heart.”

 

“Kakashi.”

The silver haired man raised a hand and simply ignored your demand. “I completely understand. That wasn’t enough but a beginning, right? Well, seems I have to work harder than that. Thank you for hearing me out, my star.”

My… star?

You were too stunned to say anything. Too stunned to stop Kakashi as he stepped to your side, leaned down and nuzzled your cheek, his masked lips leaving a kiss on your cheekbone. You were too stunned by the pet name, by the loving and incredibly cute pet name that you completely missed to tell Kakashi that it was alright, that it was okay now. He explained himself and even if you couldn’t understand some of his reasons (maybe only he understood, in the deepest depths of his heart and hidden by the shadows of his past), you forgave him for his rude and stupid behavior.

But before you could do that, Kakashi had left again. Not crestfallen and hopeless, but with a swing in his steps you had missed over the last weeks.

“Unbelievable,” you murmured and stroked over the still tingling cheek, “this man. Unbelievable.”

He didn’t even drink his tea. You only noticed later, when the dazed state had weakened and you tried to clean up the slight dismay in your flat. The cold porcelain looked like nobody had ever touched it, the beverage like nobody ever drank from it. With a weak, but resolute shake of your head you emptied the insides of the delicate mug into the sink, not without throwing an annoyed glance at the wall which parted your flat from Kakashi’s. “Unbelievable.”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Kakashi’s pursue continued over the next week. Determined and full of knowledge he had gained with his ANBU instincts and over the last months spent with you, he set off to another round of courting. Even though it was unnecessary. Even though you were already calmed down and ready to take the man back. But it was hilarious to see Kakashi, which you hadn’t seen working this hard for… well, for as long as you knew him, spinning around himself in his attempt to please and serve your every whim.

What you naturally didn’t tell him. You enjoyed his undivided attention far too much.

What came especially in handy when your cravings had started. Cravings for food in all varieties, for impossible combinations, for normal peanut butter-jelly-sandwiches or extravagant creations like steak with a layer of chocolate spread on top, fresh out of the pan. Together with the annoying morning sickness which hit you with the reliability of a certain blond genin sprinting after a mission to Ichiraku’s ramen shop, the week was partly really enjoyable and partly annoying the hell out of you.

Apart from his by now usual attempts of wooing you, Kakashi left now constantly notes in your flat, sometimes really obvious ones, sometimes he hid them in the most impossible places. One you fished out a heavy rice package, another one you found at the very bottom of a cookie jar you had tried to refill. You didn’t even have an idea how he managed to break into your flat. The notes… were sweet, you wouldn’t deny that. Incredibly sweet. And they grew longer with every day, grew more intimate and private with every day which passed and you didn’t react to them.

 

I’m sorry. I knew I’m stupid. Hopefully you can forgive me one day.

 

I dreamt of you. You were already heavily pregnant, protecting our child with your hands and arms. And you smiled at me, happy to see me again. Maybe you can forgive me for my stupid and childish behavior.

 

I miss you every day. I know you noticed I watch over you, you had to. Just wanted to let you know I don’t sleep well since you rightfully threw me out. But I’m waiting patiently, waiting for you to be alright with me. I’m sorry I injured you. I’m sorry I snarled and hissed at you. I’m an idiot.

 

It’s far too early for that, I know. But what do you think will it be? Boy or girl? I hope it’s going to be a girl. Another you, running around and wickedly bewitching all of the people with her beautiful eyes and an even more beautiful smile. Like you bewitched me. With your gentle fierceness, your care for a homeless cat, your love for the little things and details. I’m so sorry. I can’t count the times I sat awake at night and stared blindly at the wall between us, wishing I would’ve reacted otherwise.

I’m so sorry, (Y/N). Please forgive me.

 

But you didn’t expect at all to which lengths Kakashi would go with his notes, just because it was so much easier to write things which would send him otherwise into a wild stuttering fit and make him redder than a tomato.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

“Seriously,” despite your annoyed tone, a smug smile tugged at the corners of your lips, “how many of those do you want to write?”

You stood in front of Kakashi’s door, waiting patiently with the last note in your clenched hand for him to react to your prior wild knocking. But nothing. Rolling your eyes, you knocked again, deliberately slow and ringing even in your own ears. “It’s been a week, you know?” you tried again.

The door unsurprisingly didn’t answer.

“Kakashi, if you haven’t noticed,” you leaned your forehead against the cool wood and breathed out, “I forgive you. Okay? I forgive you for being a stupid donkey, for being blind and obvious to the most obvious thing in the world.”

Still nothing.

Just in the moment you wanted to hit the frustratingly silent door with the sweet and soft note Kakashi managed to sneak into the pot of your treasured red desert flower, Kakashi’s voice resounded through the hallway.

Maybe you should’ve checked if the man was there, in his flat before knocking frantically at his entrance.

“(Y/N)? What’s wrong?” And right in the middle of the slightly dirty, but overall light and clean hallway he stood, in his arms two paper bags filled with food and ingrediencies for more food. Kakashi, the trickster and absolutely…

“Nothing is wrong,” you said and waved with his note, “I’m just fed up with your negative attitude.”

Kakashi blinked slowly. Then his head cocked to the side, in his only visibly eye clearly standing how much of a mystery you were currently to him. “Pardon?”

“You know exactly what I mean.” With a little cough and hasty motions, you walked up on him. Kakashi jerked backwards and you would’ve been surely angry with him for that alone, but his written words were standing in the room, those damn sweet and unbearable cute words. “What is this?”

“Oh.” Instantly Kakashi’s face went red. “That…

“Yeah. That.”

“I don’t know.”

“What!? You don’t fucking know? Then why write it?”

He had the audacity to shrug. “Felt like it.”

“Don’t lie. Someone talked you into this.” you said and knew you hit just right when Kakashi averted your eyes. “Don’t misunderstand, it’s still cute. So, who was it?”

 

Stubbornly, the jonin stared at the ground and his toes, like it was the most interesting and exciting thing to watch right now. Fine. Two could play a game. You gave him one more moment, but as Kakashi continued to act like a little child, you raised his note back into his sight and coughed, before breaking into an evil grin. “A lot of my letters,” you read out loud and watched with satisfaction how the pure horror grew in his black eye, “started with “I know”. I know you’re an incredible person. I know I made many mistakes. I know I’m far from perfect, far from what you deserve. I know for sure you’re the best thing what ever happened to me. But what I didn’t know was how painful my own decisions would be, how much I would hurt myself. And I don’t want to hurt myself any longer, not when I hurt you along the way too. Because you deserve better. So much better.”

While reading his note, you tried to catch his eye and when that didn’t work on its own, you reached out and cupped gently his cheek. The cool fabric in your palm heated instantly up. Kakashi finally looked at you, a rabbit in the halo of a bonfire.

“So, I’m going to try to be better than before,” you continued, voice hoarse and weak, “to be a better person and partner for you. In order to become a father, the best father I can be for our child and maybe, some day in the future, even someone who is worthy being called “your husband”. I’m sorry for hurting you that way, for making it difficult.” And, just for good measure, lower than the sentences before: “I love you.”

Every apology and every written, looped sentence of the last week had built the stage for this letter, you were sure. Just to make an even bigger impact on you, Kakashi had written down every weight on his soul and tried so hard to be more open and not as insecure. He tried so hard to become someone worthy being by your side. And on top of that, he had offered a proposal, not yet, but in the future. At the mere thought of being his wife a warm light lit up in your chest.

Not. You aren’t. You don’t know what will happen from here on.

But it was a start, a small and weak start, but a start.

 

You were dimly aware of the fact that Kakashi’s groceries fell to the ground, creating a big mess of noodles, rice, glass and milk. Then his arms askingly slid around your waist, careful and hesitating, but when you didn’t protest against his embrace, Kakashi buried his face in the crook of your neck. The most familiar hug of all.

Hushed words reached your ears, just as much as his warm breath brushed in harsh waves against your skin. “Am I forgiven?”

Chuckling, you pressed a small kiss to his cheek. “If you still haven’t figured that out, then I officially question right here, right now your intelligence.”

Kakashi’s only answer was a warm chuckle, deeply vibrating in his chest and a sneaky hand stroking oh so softly over the side of your stomach.

Chapter Text

After all the drama and wooing Kakashi had done for you, you surely didn’t expect the man to continue his advances any longer. Now, when he was again allowed to sleep in your bed, his body pressing into your back and his hands protectively folded over your stomach. As you awoke slowly in the early morning, the sun didn’t even dare to send its first weak rays over the dark-blue sky, you felt Kakashi slowly running his hands over your flank, humming weakly a well-known melody. Only after a few seconds of sleepy guessing you recognized the tones, soft and low vibrating in his chest.

A children’s lullaby.

“You’re early up.” you mumbled.

His movements didn’t stop for one second. Instead they grew even gentler, single digits gliding in streaks of possessiveness over your ribs and soft stomach. “Mhmm.”

“What are you thinking about?”

“Our family.”

“What especially?”

A rumble in the back of his throat told you that he didn’t want to speak about it. Maybe he thought his images of your future were embarrassing, ridiculous for the ears of someone else. However, those images were also your life now, your future and before Kakashi would again clam up, you would use everything you had in your arsenal to hold these usually tightly locked doors open.

“Hey.” You scrambled in the blankets until you had turned in his arms, staring into his relaxed and yet so sharp features. “Don’t do that to me. Just don’t.”

“I’m not…” Confused the man closed his eyes. “Right. Sorry.”

“Are you going to tell me what you were thinking about now?”

“Give me a few seconds.” You knew the expression which grew on his face as Kakashi paused. It was the same Rascal had shown whenever he tried to decide if he was fast enough to escape with one of your cooked meals, one he knew he couldn’t have at all costs. He went through all possible routes, possibilities and eventualities, chose his words with the same care he would show before entering a battle and only when he formed the first one, you understood completely why the man had been that hesitant about voicing his fantasies.

 

“I just thought… Thought about…” The first hint of red creeped over his neck and cheeks. “How our lives will change. How a child will affect our routine, the way how we interact. I’m asking my-myself if we-we’ll be alright. Or if we will break-up after some months or years, because it was too early or too much…”

“Are you scared?”

Kakashi sighed weakly. “Yes. No. Both. I’m… I’m not scared of having a child. I’m scared of failing you and her.”

“Did you just assume…?”

A little, crocked smile flashed over his lips. “Yes,” he said, “I did. There’s not a hint of doubt in my mind.”

“And what if I want a small boy with black eyes and silver hair like his gorgeous father?” Despite your teasing tone, you snuggled closer and buried your nose in the side of his neck, breathing in the warm and familiar scent of weapon’s oil, dog shampoo and something which just screamed Kakashi and home at you. It was just so much better than to cuddle with a cat’s body, the safety and soothing breathing rhythm of someone who cared deeply about you and the life you carried surrounding your body and mind.

Kakashi’s next sigh was deeper, but just as teasing as your statement. “If you’re happy, I’m happy. But still… A small girl, with your hair and your eyes…”

“Old, sappy charmer.”

“At your service.”

Chuckling lowly, you nipped at his neck, just a gentle reminder of sharpness at his pulse point. His breath hitched, then accelerated and his hands which had continued to stroke over your flank inched lower, into other, more interesting zones.

But then you wiggled out of his arms.

Kakashi whined, a high and needy sound and when you again looked at the man, both of his eyes were opened. Still fogged over by the last remains of sleep, but open and both were transfixed at your face. “Why?” he asked and the physical pain in his voice made you nearly giggle.

With a low grump you rearranged your sleeping shirt to your satisfaction, even though a certain heat had started to settled down in your bones, urging you on and howling full of righteous pride at you. “We maybe made up, but for this special treat,” his sharingan twirled a little bit as you said that and a pleasant shiver wandered down your spine, “you have to work harder than you did before.”

The kicked puppy-expression in his unmasked face grew stronger. “But why?”

 

“Why? Because it’s my goddamn right. My body, my rules and currently I’m not in the mood.”

A big, fat lie. But not so secretly you had enjoyed his advances over the last weeks, how every single of his actions was done with you in his mind and how careful Kakashi had acted. And the fact that you were still a tiny, little bit hurt over his ignorance as a cat still stood in the room. He maybe took a big step forward, tried to open up like he never did to anyone else and talked openly about his feelings with you, but Kakashi should really understand what he had done by plainly ignoring you while he was in the village.

Spread out on your bed, Kakashi mustered you. His eyes slid over your face, down to your shoulders and the barest hints of skin showing, lower to your clothed stomach and his look suddenly became a lot softer. Even lower his eyes wandered, where your sex was insisting on giving in to the raw promise of orgasm over orgasm and down to your legs which slightly twitched when you felt the intense look sliding over them, even though they were covered by your warm and comfortable blanket.

Then Kakashi looked again into your face. “You think I deserve that?”

“No. But you need it.”

For some long moments he turned your words over, tried to find another hidden sense in them. But there was none, so you waited patiently until Kakashi figured that out. You knew he understood you when his body slumped into the cushions, a long and dragged out sigh leaving his mouth and rising into the air. “Alright. But cuddling is still fair game?”

In his weak hope, the man opened his arms, pouting and again with the puppy-eyed look on his face which always managed to bring a smile on your face.

“Always.” Instantly you slid over the bedsheets, directly into his embrace. How could he ever think he wouldn’t be a good father? Sure, every male in the history of humanity was a little bit scared of such a huge burden but seeing Kakashi so insecure and full of doubts was a true shame. So, you leaned over and whispered again into his ear, the single syllables melting into each other. “Don’t worry, I will be there with you. Together we will manage. And even when I have to go away for a while, I will come back. Like I prom-!”

 

Suddenly there was a pair of soft lips on your own, desperate and longing, promising and begging, an oath of trust and still scared. Kakashi kissed with the force of someone who was about to lose everything important to him, like he tried to prove to you and himself that he could be worth something in this world.

There was no hesitation in your movements. Carefully you answered him, moaned into his mouth as your tongues touched, your hands travelling over his body. His own were plastered to your hips, clawing almost into the fabric of your shirt in their attempt not to stroll from their position. Only when you slung one leg over his waist and grounded against him, Kakashi broke the kiss, his breath crashing in hard and constant waves into your face. “God,” he groaned, “you will be the death of me.”

For a short second you thought you saw a hint of a plan in Kakashi’s eyes, but then he buried again his face in the nape of your shoulder and you were too busy carding with your fingers through his wild hair than to care about a possible plan the mischievous shinobi could come up with.

He was back in your arms. That was everything what counted.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Slightly amused you watched how your boyfriend fidgeted on his seat, more nervous than you would ever be. His single black eye darted around the room and still they always returned to you, how you sat with spread legs on the same stool where you had received the confirmation of your state from Tsunade.

“Relax,” you said and Kakashi glanced at you, “it’s nothing but a routine examination.”

He nodded only and returned to his earlier behavior.

Men. Partly amused, partly annoyed by the constant ruffling of his clothing, you closed your eyes for a second and felt for the slight bump of your stomach. Nothing more than that. Other people could think it was just a result of too much food and too little training. After all those weeks of insatiable cravings, the following countless meals and the unpredictable mood swings the first physical sign of your pregnancy showed. Kakashi had been the first to notice. How couldn’t he, when the first thing he did in the morning was touching your stomach, drawing every single curve and soft skin like it was the biggest treasure he would ever see in his life?

But when you mentioned a visit at the hospital, just to make sure and maybe gain some insights about the new life growing inside your body, the usually uptight and unmovable copy ninja was reduced to a nervous and fidgeting mess. He went along with your wishes, but somehow even now while you two waited for the blonde Hokage Kakashi managed to look as fitting into this room as a child in the middle of a battlefield.

Not one of your best comparisons.

Then the worst happened. The worst of the worst.

Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap.

“Kakashi.”

Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap.

“Kakashi.”

“Yes?”

Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap.

 

Your breaking point was reached. Your eyes snapped open, at the same time you turned around and screeched at Kakashi, who just slowly settled his foot down with which he constantly had tapped against the metallic leg of the chair he was sitting on. “Can you stop this shit!? My god, I’m also nervous! But at least I’m not getting on your fucking nerves!”

And it was true. Who wouldn’t nervous, in the face of another humiliating examination?

Foolishly he cocked his head but the accompanying smile underneath his mask was strained. “Sorry.”

You snorted. “You’re totally not.”

“Right. You know me too well.” Kakashi shrugged nonchalantly.

You watched him through squinted eyes. There was something suspicious going on, you just knew it. The man was a little bit too nonchalant in his gestures, a little bit too nervous for your taste. Out of instinct you grumped at him, already regretting your outburst at the shinobi. “I’m also sorry. So, what do you want?”

He raised an eyebrow. “My. How do you get the idea I want something?”

“Because I know you. And Rascal also made a lot of noise when he wanted something. For example, food. Tell me the truth Kakashi.” Gently you smiled at him. “What do you want?”

You would have never guessed what was on this stubborn mule’s mind. As soon as your question dropped from your lips, Kakashi stood up and moved his chair closer to yours. One meaningful glance, then he settled again down, taking in the movement your hand in his and squeezing it tightly.

Warmth rose deep down in your stomach. “Really?” you asked weakly, “That’s it? You sappy, sappy man.”

The skin around his single eye crinkled as Kakashi threw a grin at you, a real one this time. “Are you complaining?”

Quickly you pressed a kiss to the back of his hand, directly at the metal plate covering his hand from any harm. “Never.”

 

That was the position Tsunade found you in when she finally entered the examination room, Kakashi sitting closely by your side and holding your hand while you two talked lowly about everything and nothing. She stopped on the doorstep, one hand sitting on the door handle, the other nearly breaking a clipboard she had worked on.

“Well, well, well…” At her tone a cold shiver wandered down your spine. “What do we have here?” To your luck Tsunade’s whiskey-colored eyes were transfixed on Kakashi, who waved cheerfully at his Hokage.

The door fell close. Somehow you got the feeling that she was up to something, pacing over like a wolf on the hunt. Suddenly nervous out of totally different reason, you fiddled with Kakashi’s slender fingers and the edges of his glove, feeling how his muscles reacted to your cautious touches.

Kakashi… Don’t tell me you didn’t…

“You have to imagine my surprise,” she started and sat down on the chair between your legs, “when I heard some gossip about one of my most invaluable shinobi wandering around town. Since two weeks. When the last thing I saw of him was a certain furry ass, tail raised high in pride with the order to call back when he returned to his original form. Immediately.

Kakashi’s hand around yours tightened oh so slightly. “There were circumstances which hindered me from returning immediately to my duty.”

A sharp wrinkle appeared between Tsunade’s eyebrows. “What. Circumstances?” she hissed, straight through her teeth.

“It’s… Private.”

You knew instantly the blonde’s already short fuse was done even before she started to scream and shout at Kakashi, something about “nothing is private in the face of your Hokage and village, do you have no shame, what are you even thinking in that empty brain of yours” until you decided to close off your ears and mind.

Kakashi bore the shouted speech with nothing less but dignity. Not one inch of him moved, no matter how loud and scary Tsunade screamed, not even a muscle twitched. Only his fingers moved, started to stroke carefully back and forth over the back of your hand.

Only when Tsunade needed to take a breather in between, you managed to get a word in, knowing Kakashi would never speak up against the leader of his village. “Tsunade-sama. I apologize on his behalf. We both know he may be a great strategist and fighter, but his social skills hit the rock-bottom and keep dropping.”

“Hey!”

Absent-mindedly you cradled Kakashi’s hand in your own, trying to lessen the edge in your words. “But this time, it wasn’t his fault. At least, not entirely. When I managed to give him the right trigger, he also angered me and in my… for the lack of a better word, hissy fit, I brought him into a situation where he had to decide between two impossible choices. He isn’t at fault, Hokage-sama” you lowered your head, laying as much respect as possible into the title, “but I am.”

 

You kept your eyes low and waited. In the tense silence, Kakashi’s presence was the only thing keeping you calm, even though only minutes ago he had been the epitome of a nervous wreck. But the hand clasped between your palms was warm and not sweaty at all, squeezing yours and holding you in place.

Tsunade stared all the while at you, her face a mask of sheer annoyance and unwilling softness at the defense of your boyfriend. Your entwined hand drew more than once her eyes in, just as much as the obvious overly protective stance Kakashi was in and the slight bump of your stomach, tenting oh so slightly the shirt out you wore.

Then, after eternities, the blonde sighed lowly and shook her head, causing her twin pony tails to flail around. “Fine,” Tsunade grumped, “you won. I’m accepting the explanation only this time. Is that understood?”

“Yes Hokage-sama.” Kakashi bowed his head.

“Yes Hokage-sama.” you echoed and pressed quickly another kiss to his fingers, before coughing and blushing at the little, knowing grin flashing over the features of your leader. “So… Can we start now? My legs are close to fall asleep.”

 

(…)

 

Still hand in hand, Kakashi and you left the hospital after half an hour of examination and explanation what would happen and what was from now on forbidden for you. Understandable you weren’t in the best mood, especially after hearing Tsunade hinting at your sex life with Kakashi and that it was still okay to “go a little bit overboard, if you know what I mean”. Together with her strange winking and the mocking twinkle in her eyes it was enough to send you blushing like crazy, while Kakashi was his usual stoic, stupidly smiling self. Only the hand tightening around yours had kept you calm and foremost attentive enough to listen to the Hokage’s explanation in earnest.

Suddenly the silver haired man spoke up, his voice casual like he talked about grocery shopping or the weather forecast. “You know, we should start thinking about a shared home.”

The sudden change of topics was too much for you. Flabbergasted, you stopped in the middle of the street, causing the man to also stop. “What?” you asked weakly.

He shrugged. “I said, we should start looking for houses or such. The baby needs a room and each of our flats are too small. Even a crib won’t fit in there and with two people and a newborn in such a small pace we’re bound to butt heads sooner or later.”

Did he realize what he was talking about? “Kakashi… You’re thinking about…?”

“Yes. Moving in together. I realize that,” the sight of the man resting in himself made you smile slightly, “And? What are you thinking?”

Your head spun wildly. Blindly you searched for a handle and found it in Kakashi’s body, leaning heavily against your boyfriend and scrambling for more hold, more warmth, more certainty that he was really mentioning what you were thinking to hear. “I don’t know what to think…” you said.

You felt a kiss breathed to the crown of your hair. “We don’t have to decide immediately,” he whispered, “just… start th-thinking about it, okay?” Another kiss, then Kakashi loosened the embrace, his visible face just a tiny bit redder than usually.

 

What caused the sudden plan for the future? The interest to plan ahead, to make further amends for later and thinking about an everyday life with a child? Why, so suddenly…?

You had no idea why. No matter how good you knew the copy ninja, no matter how many masks you had ripped off of him over the months, this time you weren’t able to decipher his words nor his gestures.

A shared home. Instantly your head was filled with a lot of pictures. How Kakashi opened the front door of a small house with his own keys, disarming a few security traps with a practiced seal and greeting you with a quick kiss, before dropping his mask fully on a small table beside the door. How you came home after a long day at the T&I, tired and hungry and Kakashi waiting for you with a warm dinner, one of his aprons bound around his middle, oven mittens on his hands and his hair just as roughed up as always. How you two slept together in one bed, a wide bed with sot cushions and cuddled together, sharing warmth and stories about your days in a hushed tone. How you two would hurry in the mornings, working around each other in the kitchen because Kakashi needed his black coffee to wake up while you swore on black tea with milk and sugar. And, even sweeter and cozy, thoughts about the life with a child came to life, rose up like the ocean and for the first time you really realized what was going to happen.

But not like the other times, the ominous panic in the back of your head didn’t act up. This time you thought about the child with a warm, fond feeling, loving it without any fear or questions unanswered or running around. Consciously, you reached out and stroked softly over your stomach, feeling the small bump for all what it was worth.

This was yours. This was Kakashi’s. This was yours, you two. Maybe the child was an accident, but the love you felt at the moment wasn’t accidental at all.

 

“We could start tomorrow,” you heard yourself say and added after a glance at Kakashi, “I mean… Looking for a fitting house.”

Lately the copy ninja had smiled a lot. Usually he wasn’t the kind of guy to show his emotions out in the open. But every single one of his usual restrictions was forgotten when he suddenly picked you up and spun you around, in the middle of the street, his soft laughter brushing against your ear and his arms holding you safely.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

As a future mother, you were naturally excited about shopping for baby clothing and furniture. Occasionally you met up with Kurenai and sometimes Gin and Iruka joined in for some casual looking through stacks with cute children’s shirts, but only on the rarest occasion you would buy something. But if that was even possible, Kakashi was worse (or simply more excited?) than you. It seemed like the man only went out to stroll through the closest bookstore but always managed to land somehow in the most expensive store for children’s clothing or for special furniture.

At the beginning, it was only a small plush toy in the form of a dog. Then, when you didn’t immediately object against his purchases, Kakashi started to go really overboard. One cute onesie here, a hilarious hat with cat ears there, which made you laugh loudly when Kakashi tugged it out of his bag with a triumphant sparkle in his black eye and some more toys and plushies in various pastel tones. But that wasn’t the end.

Furniture was his next step. In the morning, Kakashi claimed to be going to a challenge with his friend Gai but arrived in the late afternoon with a full crib in a light baby-blue. Next time, you sent him on the way to buy some eggs for lunch and he returned with various buckets of all kinds of colors, from a beautiful sunshine-yellow to another pastel blue-shade. He had also bought the eggs, a whole package even though you had only needed three or four, but that wasn’t the point.

Your boyfriend was so excited and so full of happiness at the chance to have a family and foremost a child that he was going overboard and threw his hard-earned money out with both hands. You couldn’t deny it was cute to Kakashi loaded with packages over packages, grinning stupidly and not caring about the strange looks he received on the streets. He had lived a hard life, so who you were to forbid him to follow his most innocent wishes and little dreams? However, it became that much of a space problem you had to place your foot down sooner or later.

You favored sooner. But your body had other plans.

 

One evening, when Kakashi once again entered your stuffed flat with another tightly filled bag in his hands, the satisfaction radiating from him, you took the bag out of his hands without looking what was inside, let it drop to the ground without a care in the world and threw your arms around his neck.

“Can you tell me,” you started lowly, “why the hell you try so hard to stuff my flat with things the baby will only need if you want it to become the most spoiled brat in the history of Konoha?”

To your frustration Kakashi only winked. But when he touched you, slightly stroking over the sides of your slowly filling out stomach, the by now all too familiar heat crawled through your veins and settled in your lower stomach. The whole day you had been kind of restless and giddy, but you couldn’t quite put a finger on it. Now the familiar lust was sneaking back into your system, stronger and with force, slowly driving you crazy and making oyu nearly forget about your earlier objective.

With your teeth you caught the edge of his black mask. The tip of your nose brushed over his temple, down to his cheek when you tried to drag the fabric down with you, your hands too busy stroking over the muscles in his shoulders to bother with the mask. “No, seriously. Tell me.”

“Don’t wanna.” he answered, though his hands wandered lower. He also recognized where this was going. It wasn’t too hard to figure it out in the end. You grounded your hips against him, your soft, round stomach was pressed against his hard abs and in your despair your teeth nearly ripped his mask into pieces, before you peppered kisses along his jawline. The first signs of almost invisible grey stubble pricked your lips, but the slight flashes of pain were even heightening the lust coiling inside.

Kakashi’s chuckle crushed against your ear shell, followed by his teeth gently biting into your earlobe. “Now it’s my turn. What are you doing here?”

“Shut up,” you growled, “I’m not in the mood.”

“For what exactly? Because you’re obviously in the mood for something…”

“I said: Shut up!”

Suddenly there were hands on your clothed thighs, groping and stroking, dragging you closer to the man and pure torture for your lately overly sensitive skin. An involuntary moan escaped you, ridiculously loud in the small space of air between Kakashi and yourself. “Don’t be like that my dear,” he said, “let’s make a deal, okay? I tell you why I buy so many things and you tell me why you’re in this… very special mood. Sounds good?”

“Fine.”

“Alright.” A kiss, as tender as the wings of a butterfly. Nothing more than a quick pressure, leaving you nevertheless lightheaded and strangely dizzy. “I’m simply… Content. For the first time… In years, I guess. With myself, with the future I’m going to have, with the vision of myself I can see, in five, ten or twenty years.”

 

You surely would’ve reacted to his words more. You would’ve surely been in more awe of his mental healing, of his ability to adapt so quickly to a new and certainly also slightly scary situation. You would’ve told him how impressed you were, how proud you were and how much you loved him. If you weren’t that distracted by Kakashi’s experienced hands, knowing exactly where and with how much strength to stroke you to get a reaction out of you.

Damn. Cheating. Idiot.

“And I buy so many things,” he whispered hoarsely into your ear, making you shiver in his arms, “because I can’t stop myself from wanting to care for my loved ones. Call it stupid manly pride or whatever. Seeing you standing at the crib I selected, seeing you fiddling with the plush toys I brought home… Gives me so much satisfaction.” The last word Kakashi basically purred, while his fingers slipped right between your legs and started to rub you through your pants. Whimpering you arched into his palm, desperate for any kind of friction and it still wasn’t enough. Not enough of the man you loved and who cared so damn much.

Since you had made clear there wouldn’t be going anything down until Kakashi proved himself, he had been the friendliness in person and a perfect boyfriend on top of that. No remotely perverted comments, no vague innuendos making you blush and giggle, just loving hugs and kisses, not made to arouse but to show how true his feelings were.

Time to end the drought.

“And what is your reason?” His hoarse voice was thick with badly hidden lust. “To come up to me like this?”

“Don’t know anymore. Please Kakashi, please… Just…”

Some lines of Tsunade’s monologue came to your mind, floating underneath the forceful arousal letting you forget anything but Kakashi. Your hormones will maybe cause your sexual drive to amp up a bit. Means, along the pregnancy you may show some bursts of sudden… need.

“Ssh, my dear.” His fingers bend, knuckles rubbed sinfully over the sensitive skin between your thighs. “Talk to me. I want to hear you.“

Instead of a coherent answer you again whined in desperate need as the man slipped his hand into your loose pants, immediately going to circle your clit in torturous, slow cycles.

 

But then Kakashi stopped suddenly, leaving you hanging so close to the wonderful cliff. One last, lingering kiss to your mouth, then he retreated fully. Missing his warmth, you tried to chase and stumble after him. Kakashi had to back up against the closed entrance door where you caged him, hiding your burning face in his chest while your hands eagerly travelled over his muscular arms, his shoulders and further down to his waist. “Annoys me,” you growled, “because we haven’t even decided on a house. There’s no place for those things in here, okay? I can’t enter my own bathroom without having to climb over a myriad of bags and packages.”

His chuckle vibrated through both of your bodies. “So that’s it? But we already singled out that no house was really fitting for us.”

“Have to search further.” you said and nipped at his neck. Did he always taste this delicious? Quickly you let your tongue follow, licking over the already marked skin until Kakashi let out the first and weakest of possible suppressed groans.

“There’s- F-fuck! There’s one h-house I-I haven’t… Oh god… Haven’t mention-ed.”

Kakashi talked too much for your taste. Mischief bloomed in your mind and you sucked a small patch of his pale skin into your mouth, sucking and licking until you could feel the man arching against you and your rounded stomach. When you let go, the bruise already started to form, a wonderful blueish-green mark in the form of your mouth at the height of his pulse point. “Which one?” you whispered and Kakashi trembled when the cold air brushed over the freshly formed bruise.

He shook his head, more desperate in keeping his voice low than to answer your question.

“Which one?” you asked again and grounded against the bulge in his pants. “I swear Kakashi, I can stop right here and take care of my needs without you. Tell me which house you have still up your sleeve.”

“It’s the… the Hatake compound. Eastern district of Konoha,” Kakashi bit his lower lip, an incredibly arousing motion, “big garden, way to the Ninja academy is only ten minutes, neighbors are nice, lots of space for dogs and children, rooms are spacious… Only needs some dusting and maybe renovating.”

 

The Hatake compound. His childhood home. By now you would’ve guessed the original house had been destroyed, with all the attacks Konoha had suffered under, but according to Kakashi’s thick words it was still intact.

And he offered to open the doors for you and your child.

“We’ll see…” you leaned forward and let your fingers wander over his clothed torso with the expertise of a well-taught shinobi, “but that’s really nice of you.”

His weak laugh made you also chuckle. “Just to satisfy you, my dear. M-maybe we can take a look tomorrow?”

“Sure.” With a wink you grabbed one of his wrists and tugged him into the direction of your bed. Your other hand was already reaching for the edge of your shirt, ready to strip it over your head. “Now come. I let you wait long enough.”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Groaning slightly, you lifted yourself up and were already on your way into the kitchen, but then Kakashi picked the empty mug out of your hands and dumped it quicker than lightning into the sink, before returning to reading for the untempt time “Icha-Icha-Paradise”. Just in the moment the man was trying to find his earlier position on the couch again, his eyes never leaving the page, you stared still at your empty hands, then pouted in faked annoyance at him.

“You know, I’m still capable of standing up.”

The look he gave you was amused and worried at the same time. “Sure.”

“You don’t need to do everything for me.”

“I’m not doing everything.”

“Look,” you gestured to your rounded stomach, which couldn’t be disguised as the result of a weekend of constant binge-eating anymore, “I’m not heavily pregnant. Only five goddamn months. I can still walk, I can still do the dishes, I can still walk over to the sink and drop my empty mug there. It’s an empty mug, goddammit!”

Kakashi rolled his head over you’re the backrest, glanced at you and smiled, his eyes closed and the beauty mark lifting with the motions of his lips. “But you don’t have to. I’m at your command, my dear.”

You placed one hand over your round stomach, the other was resting in your waist, ready to teasingly scold the man a little bit (he knew what you were up to, the mischief was radiating from Kakashi) but then…

Underneath your palm something fluttered, moved, pressed against your hand and this time it wasn’t a product of your overly active fantasy. For a second, you didn’t realize what happened. Blindly you stared into the air, waiting maybe for another movement, another sign that you didn’t-!

There. Another flutter, weak and yet so strong. Before you knew it, a weak gasp fell from your mouth, what caused Kakashi to instantly jump to your side, worried and asking numerous questions. “What’s wrong? Are you in pain? Did something happen? Please (Y/N), tell me, I will do everything I can to-!”

“Ssssh.” An unbelieving smile tugged at the corners of your lips as you got a hold of one of his hands, gently splaying the appendage over your stomach. “Just… wait a few seconds.” First, Kakashi was clueless. Then, slowly he understood and a just as disbelieving little grin as yours flashed over his face. He was warm, the pressure of his hand against your skin gentle and careful like you were made out of glass. His eyes found yours and locked, waiting for the wonderful little fluttering. You felt and heard when it happened. There were his fingers, dipping a bit harder into your skin, the flutter, so light and still so mighty, a muffled gasp from the silent man and his words, slightly trembling in awe. “Can’t believe it. This is… Is ours.”

“Yeah. Ours, ours alone.”

 

“Sure you don’t want to know the gender beforehand?”

A hopeful glim came to life, but like always when it came to that particular topic you were as hard as iron. “Yes, I still don’t want to know.”

It was a decision you had taken the moment the first examination with Kakashi by your side had started and the decision only hardened with every item the copy ninja purchased. There was no way you would try to get to know the gender of your future spawn if it resulted in another shopping spree of the man. From time to time Kakashi tried to not-so-sneakily change your mind, though you didn’t give in. No matter how much he wanted to know what gender your first child would have, you wanted it to be a surprise and that was the end of every discussion the silver haired man tried to bring up.

Around you the flat was in a dismay of boxes, packages and stuffing material, so you maneuvered your immobile body into the couch next to Kakashi, still pouting and still one hand feeling up your own stomach, hoping for another movement, another flutter to coo over.

Like it was second nature to him, Kakashi reached casually over and patted your stomach, the tips of his fingers brushing against yours, while he continued to read his beloved book. “When are we moving again?”

“Like you don’t know it,” you answered instantly, “Only two more days in here.”

He hummed weakly and flipped a page. Meanwhile his eyes quickly glanced over you, checking your state, then returned to the text in front of him. “Who again wanted to help with the furniture?”

You suppressed a little sigh at his attics. “Iruka, Asuma, Anko, Gai. Kurenai is on a mission. And yes, Gin still wants to come. Live with it.”

“I’m totally fine with his presence. As long as he is at least always in another room than you.” A hint of disgruntled jealousy had creeped into his voice, so you leaned over and snuggled to Kakashi’s side. Automatically he slung his free arm around your shoulder, allowing you to lean against him. A familiar position before the second transformation and one of your personal favorites.

 

“Listen,” you said and felt how the man tensed up at your overly gentle tone, “Gin is not a problem. I rejected him before and I will reject him again if he ever makes a move on me once more. I will not run away. I will not leave you.” You snuggled closer. “Promise, my little rascal.”

Kakashi grumped nonchalantly but looked all the more pleased with himself and the world. Inwardly you rolled your eyes at his possessive behavior. If you would tell him about Gin flirting with a nurse he met during his healing process and that they moved to the state of casual dating, Kakashi would still worry endlessly. His pride and shame were still gnawing at him, deeply within.

“I will stay with you,” you told him silently, “if you want or not. If you push me away or drag me as close as possible. You’re not going to get rid of me. I will-!”

With a resolute ‘snap’ Kakashi closed “Icha-Icha-Paradise”. Before you even realized what was going on, he turned around and dragged you into his lap. In the back of your mind you registered his book falling to the ground, but then there was Kakashi’s hoarse voice in your ear, whispering and breaking nearly, while one hand entangled themselves in your hair, the other gently circled your waist. “That I nearly threw you away so carelessly… I can’t believe it. Sorry (Y/N). I’m sorry. I… I love you s-so m-much. You have no idea how m-much.”

As you said, Kakashi was a master at beating himself up. Especially when it concerned his personal life. So many things happened in his life, so many, terrible things. And for the first time he felt like he could have at least a kind of normal life, not tainted by his work and blood he had on his hands.

Kakashi hugged you with the force of a dying man and maybe you also felt some spurs of tears soaking into your shirt while you held him and were being held by the man, who couldn’t believe how many good things finally happened.

A small smile flashed over your face. You would show him, with every day you two were together.

Like it wanted to agree, the fetus inside your stomach fluttered yet again.

Chapter Text

Patiently you waited until Gin and Anko had lowered Kakashi’s old couch to the ground of your new living room. Sweat stood on their foreheads and their mouths were now constantly in a snarl or scowl, but no one had said anything yet to your gentle remarks and orders. Just when both brave shinobi straightened again and reached their hands out for a high five, you put on a thoughtful face. “Mhmm…” Gin’s happy expression froze and Anko’s shoulders jerked upwards. “Maybe again a little bit to the side?”

“Oh, fuck off!” The purple-haired woman flipped you the bird. “It’s the third time! Get your head and eyes checked!”

“Alright, alright!” Laughing, you raised your hands in defeat. “It was just a little joke, calm down. That’s the only thing I have left!” To underline your point, you gently cupped your rounded stomach.

The motion didn’t miss its purpose. Instantly Anko’s hard features softened to a sappy, cooing mess while Gin was nearly swooning over the possibility of being an uncle to the “small, chubby kiddo”. For the untempt time, actually. But you didn’t mind at all, if it meant to get away with a little bit of teasing and messing around with your friends without fearing any consequences.

Future mothers really had a lot of free room to fool their surroundings.

Satisfied with the state of your living room, you allowed your eyes to wander around, taking in what was already done and needed to be done in the next hours. Kakashi hadn’t lied when he said the old Hatake compound needed a little bit of renovating. Only a little bit. The style of the entire house was kept in the original Japanese theme. The ground was made out of tatami mats, the walls consisted of paper-thin, light doors and wooden barriers, beautiful ornaments drawn all over them. From time to time you could find the Hatake clan symbol interwoven into the patterns, which Kakashi’s mother had drawn over a time span of months.

 

Unusual was for such a house to have a second level, where Kakashi’s old room had been located and also the fateful place where his father had taken his own life. But after a quick and meaningful exchange between you and Kakashi you two quickly made up your minds.

Also, the garden in front and behind the house itself. Wild and overgrown with weeds, but even after all the years of no one caring about the fruitfully earth you could spot some beds meant for usable plants and herbs, even some leftovers of once green plants and flowers. A small way made of raw, grey stone lead farther onto the compound and in the distance, one could spot a little fountain between the trees. The wooden veranda was probably the only spot where a thorough renovation was necessary. One step on the groaning and moldy wood and the underground had given away. A hole of the size if Kakashi’s foot reminded you of the probably most hilarious sight the man had ever shown you.

All in all, it was perfect. Spacious, peaceful, comfortable. Simply perfect. You loved the house from the very first moment you laid an eye upon it. And now the day of moving Kakashi’s and your combined household to the new home came.

In the early morning, the sun even hadn’t risen on the horizon, your little troop of happy helpers had knocked at your door. Gin was as chipper as always, grinning brightly when you opened the entrance. His grin only wavered when Kakashi stepped into his sight, chest naked and his legs only covered by thin pajama pants. Then there was Anko, holding onto a plastic cup filled with the strongest coffee you ever smelled and yawning widely, Asuma, his beard a little bit roughed up from a long night and Iruka, perfectly clothed and looking like he was already awake for a few hours.

Now it was midday and before you decided to jokingly interrupt Gin’s and Anko’s work, you made sandwiches in all varieties, a light snack and yet full of all necessary nutrition’s. With a smile you presented them a plate overloaded with the carrying sandwiches and watched how Gin and Anko almost instantly started to drool all over your hands.

“Here, as an apology.” you said but then it was already too late. Both shinobi dug in, stuffed their cheeks with sandwiches and even licked their fingers after finishing the first one.

 

Like some wild animals, starved after a long winter. Fondly smiling you held out the platter a little bit longer to give them the chance to grab a second sandwich, but then you retracted the food and clicked your tongue at their crestfallen expressions. “There are others around here, you know?”

“But did they have to deal with your attics?” Gin mumbled around the last bite of bread, salad and chicken. Anko nodded only, still busy with trying to stuff the sandwich into her mouth, her cheeks puffing out from her eagerness.

“Alright, that much I give you. Now go on, the armchairs won’t position themselves.” It was just too funny to see Gin roll his eyes and Anko curse around the sandwich, nearly coughing up when she accidently swallowed a tiny bit. Laughing, you quickly vanished from the comfortable, wide living room and pointed absent-mindedly at the spots where you wanted to place the chairs when you came back: directly in front of a small, open fire place, surrounded by tiles that the tatami mats wouldn’t catch on fire as soon as one spark would fly on the sensitive material.

Even in that regard, Kakashi’s parents had great taste.

Whistling to yourself and one hand protectively cupped over your round stomach, you entered the hallway, an open and light-filled room where a stairway leaded to the second level. Gai worked here, carrying all alone with his inhuman strength the small shelves for shoes and jackets.

As soon as the green-cladded name saw you, he settled the package he held on the ground and run over, cheerfully booming at you in his familiar manner. “Oooh! The blossomed love of my eternal rival! Good to see you!” Gai’s big hands grabbed your free one and before you knew it, he spun you around in a small circle. “I have to say; your pregnancy lets you shine more with every passing day! So youthful, to carry a new life and to think that my eternal rival found such a great partner makes me also want to embrace those passionate feelings!”

“Uuuuhm… Thanks?” Before he had the chance to start another speech about youth and love and “passionate feelings”, you held the plate out to the man. “Sandwich?”

 

Gai was the friendliness in person, you knew. But unfortunately, you didn’t have that much of an opportunity to spend time with the best friend of Kakashi. His open, boastful nature, the energetic movements, the exaggerated speech… It was just a little bit… too much. Maybe you should start to plan a meeting with him, considering the silver-haired man was at least once a week out for another ridiculous and yet hilarious challenge with Gai.

You wanted to get to know the man better.

One just couldn’t dislike Gai, who was again swooning over “the most youthful meal he will have this week, filled with love and care of the beloved partner of his eternal rival” and when you climbed the stairs to the upper levels, Gai was back to carry the heavy packages to their destination, with a new-found swing in his step.

No, no one could truly dislike such a passionate man. You hoped one day he would find someone who was able to look past the shell of spandex-bodysuits and the outdated bowl cut to see the man beneath those unimportant things. The man you knew out of the stories Kakashi told you more than once.

The second level was a little bit darker than the entrance area, due to the still present blankets covering the windows. Only little light was able to break through such thorough shields, but when you stopped to rip one of the heavy white curtains down, the sun immediately painted the wooden ground into a wonderful warm, mahogany-brown color. You loved it and enjoyed the feeling of the smooth ground against your naked feet as you ventured further, stopping at each room to see if either Asuma, Iruka or Kakashi were inside.

The first man you found was Iruka. He stood in the middle of a future gust room, bent over some boxes and hellbent on finding something, ruffling occasionally through his tightly bound hair when he again pressed a child-friendly curse through gritted teeth.

One glance at the black label at the side of the packages and you had to suppress a giggle. Kakashi’s books. Sure.

“Found something interesting?” you asked. To his defense, Iruka didn’t squeal. He only jerked around, humiliation and shame painted in a bright red across the bridge of his nose.

 

“(Y/N)… Wh-what a-are you do-doing here?”

“Checking on everyone. What are you doing?”

If possible, the teacher blushed even further. “What am I d-doing? Exactly… Th-that’s what I’m asking myself too…” Not so secretly, he tried to close the box with his feet, hands fiddling with each other and nervous to the point of fidgeting. The simple, golden engagement ring on his left hand reflected a ray of light, throwing golden sparkles all over a dusty carpet.

You allowed one of your eyebrows to raise a fraction, showing off your disbelief. “Really? If you want to, I can lend out some of them. They’re anyway a few of mine mixed into the mess.”

Not waiting for him to recover from the sudden revelation, you offered him the plate and after Iruka coughed a few times, he grabbed a sandwich, his eyes averting yours.

“Thanks,” he mumbled, “And…”

“What?”

“I didn’t have the opportunity until now.” The brunet smiled for the first time since you entered the room. “Officially my marriage is next year, though I don’t want to wait any longer. Before the official invitation hits you unprepared, (Y/N), would you do me the honor of coming to my wedding? Kakashi-san and your child,” his eyes grew sappy, “are also welcome.”

“Thank you so much, Iruka.” On instinct, you hugged him tightly until he hugged you back, his natural warmness sneaking into your clothes. “Sure, I would love to come to your wedding. Someone has to tell the story how you managed to color your hair in a shiny pink for a month!”

His whining and begging not to tell that particular story meet deaf ears. And when you purposefully dropped your hand to your stomach, Iruka stopped entirely to whine about the possibility of being embarrassed in front of his soon-to-be wife.

Being a pregnant woman was really helpful in messing with your friends.

 

The next one you found was Asuma. Surprisingly he had experience in repairing the old and glued together pipes of sanitary facilities, therefore it was no surprise to see him in the upper bathroom, inspecting the wide and ancient bath tube for any damage. Gruffly he scrubbed his beard as you offered him a small snack, asking under his breath how you were doing and what the little brat was up to.

You needed a moment to actually process what he said. Then you chuckled and told your friend about the liveliness of the indeed little brat, keeping you awake for most of the night with its antics.

Asuma was obviously a bit overthrown by the huge amount of information you passed on to him, but he nodded and even managed to grump a low “Good to hear that”, before he relieved you off some of your burden.

Since he and Kurenai were a thing, Asuma worried endlessly whenever the brunette was sent on a mission without him. They were used to see each other every day, if now as friends or lovers and that was one of the many reasons why you forgave Asuma his not-so-enthusiastic questions and answers. He was worried about his partner, nothing else. And you understood that more than other people.

There were two more sandwiches on your plate and only one room left where Kakashi could be. Silently you entered the hallway, now sun-flooded and friendly, only to knock gently at the very last door of the corridor.

Kakashi’s former room. The future room of your child.

No answer. Nevertheless, you pushed the door carefully open, prying inside and entering silently when your eyes fell on the back of your boyfriend.

It was a medium sized room, not too large and not too small either. The walls were dark, still a bit dirty, but both of you agreed on first moving inside the Hatake compound before actually trying to fix everything else. Painting and remodeling the rooms was on the way. There were a few things which told about the presence of a child; a small futon in one corner of the room, dulled training kunais embedded into the wall, perfectly tracing the shape of a human body, an abandoned container full of colorful pencils, directly in front of Kakashi’s feet.

 

As you closed the distance between you and him, the man cocked his head to the side, noting your arrival. Gently you hugged him from behind, leaning your forehead against his shoulder. “Hey.”

Kakashi lowered one of his hands to your entangled arms, the other held something in front of his face. “Hey. How are you doing?”

“Good.”

“And our small bundle of happiness?”

“Also good.”

“What means…”

Chuckling, you nosed Kakashi’s shoulder. “It means,” you said, “that he or she is still calm. The best time to annoy me with strong kicks is after all in the night when I try to sleep, you know?”

“Right.”

Automatically you furrowed your eyebrows. Something was bothering him. His voice was a tad bit too casual, a tad bit too relaxed. You had no idea what was up, but you would do everything in your power to make Kakashi open up to you.

“What’s wrong with you today?” you asked weakly. The question didn’t come easily, in fact you were almost scared. The unnamed anxiety rose in your stomach, pressured your lungs and made breathing hard. Closing your eyes, you bit your bottom lip and waited. Underneath your hands you felt how Kakashi’s muscles tensed and relaxed, coiled and rolled as he tried to decide what to say or if he should say anything at all. Then, finally, after long, cruel minutes he spoke, his hoarse voice even rougher and his hands shaking slightly when they touched yours, folded over his stomach. “It’s… strange. To be here again. In… In a good way.”

Weakly you squeezed his middle, urging him to continue.

Kakashi inhaled loudly. “I remember waking up in the middle of the night. A storm was brewing over us, lightning rolled over the sky. Back then, I was still scared of loud noises, so I sought out to my father. A light was on in his private rooms, like that I went in, thinking he was still awake. But he wasn’t.” He paused, only to mumble: “He wasn’t anymore.”

 

For a long time, no one said anything. You tried to convey your sympathy for him through your touches, knowing words wouldn’t be of any help. Kakashi was still staring blindly ahead at something he held in his free hand, trembling faintly under the pressure which built inside.

He shook his head and papers rustled. “The scent… Was the worst. He laid there for hours, the blood had time to sink in. Copper everywhere, copper in the air, copper on my tongue, copper in my lungs. Together with his piss and… other things… It was the worst. The worst a child could experience.” Finally, he turned in your arms, gently cupping your face. Despair shone out of his eyes, the headband lost somewhere around the house and sharingan swirling lazily as you looked up to him. “I don’t want to let my child see something like this,” he said, “never. I will protect it, I will be there for him or her, if it wants I will train it, I will do everything in my power to return from every single mission I have to go on, just because I can’t stand the thought of my child looking down at my dead body and seeing what I had to witness.”

“I understand,” you leaned in for a kiss, “and foremost: I will help you letting that come true. I will be there, by your side, kunai and shield. Like we promised. Because I also can’t stand the thought you have.”

A lopsided grin flashed over Kakashi’s face as his hands dropped to your stomach. “Our brat will be the most spoilt and protected brat in Konoha.”

“I already mentioned that.”

“I know. Just wanted to underline your more than truthful comment, my dear.”

 

“Then may I ask what brings you to think about such dark topics when we are just moving in here?”

Kakashi blinked, then sighed lowly. His warm breath fanned over your face, followed by a cooler breeze as he raised his until now invisible hand. A bunch of papers sneaked into your sight, filled of childish drawings of death and blood. More than once a body of a man with long, silver hair was pictured, lying on the ground and a big splash of red pooling around him, while a distinct smaller person with a mask was standing aside, apparently staring at the corpse.

You quickly shuffled through the drawings. With each one more melancholy assembled in your stomach, a heavy stone in the pit of your guts. Meanwhile you felt Kakashi’s eyes on your figure, trying to read you and figure out your reaction before you would even have the chance to react.

But he surely didn’t expect you to drop his depressing pictures, which showed how broken he had been as a child and how big his mental scars still were, when they affected him so bad. Papers fluttered around you to the ground, but you leaned into the man and slung your arms around his neck. “This will be a home for you again,” you whispered, “a home for you, a home for me, a home for our child. A home for our family. And we will both give our best and worst to make this work, because that’s how we are. You will bring me down when I have my head in the clouds again and I will cleanse your mind when you’re not feeling well. Together, alright? Kakashi, we’re in this together.”

His hands on your stomach tightened the tiniest bit. “Right. Together.”

“My little rascal.” Teasingly, you wiped one of his wild strands out of his wrinkled forehead. And again, just to straighten the still present wrinkles until Kakashi didn’t look like the sky would break down any moment. “We’re together, alright? I will be here, with you. And you will always come back to me and to our beloved child.”

“You already said that.”

You placed your hands on the curves of your hips, faking a pout just for Kakashi. “Excuse me that someone decided to have a little mental breakdown! I wanted to cheer you up, but if that isn’t sufficient, then I’ll-!”

 

Suddenly a laughter shook the silver haired man and before you realized what was going on, he buried his face in your shoulder, muffling his rolling laughter in your clothes and body.

“You’re amazing,” he whispered after some more seconds, “you’re goddamn amazing. I knew it from the very first evening you allowed a soaking wet cat in your flat, feed him and offered him a bed. And the knowledge how amazing you are only grew over the months, if now as a cat or a human. (Y/N), you’re the best person I’ve met until now.” His fingers softly caressed your flanks, slid between your bodies and came to a stop right on top of your rounded belly. “And this… This is everything I ever wanted. Maybe not under the same circumstances, though I wouldn’t change a thing right now. And even when my mind is sometimes… somewhere else, somewhere in the past, I know now you will always be there for me.”

Kakashi had mumbled those sweet nothings into your shoulder. Slowly he raised his head, both eyes closed and rested his forehead against yours, inhaling deeply when he felt how you breathed a small kiss to his masked lips. “I-I just want to say,” he stuttered, “I’ve ne-never wanted any-thing more in my li-life.” His eyes snapped open, soft and warm and gentle. Everything you loved about the man. “(Y/N),” he continued weakly, “I wanted to ask you f-fo-for a lo-long time. Would y-you-!”

“MY RIVAL!” Instantly Kakashi flinched away, a strange, tense anger radiating from him when Gai’s loud voice boomed through the whole house. “BE PREPARED FOR ANOTHER GLORIOUS CHALLENGE TO PROVE YOUR HIP AND YOUTHFUL SELF!”

“Are you fucking kidding…?” Kakashi growled. Agitated he roughed up his already wild hair and threw a partly despaired, partly amused glance at you before shaking in badly hidden aspiration his head. “Sorry, I have to go. Otherwise he will never shut his mouth.”

Giggling, you waved your boyfriend goodbye. “Just go, my little rascal. But be finished around 2 p.m., alright? I want to unpack our clothes and nick-nacks for the bedroom and no one else needs to know how many naughty toys you hid underneath your bed.”

The enormous blush rising on his cheeks and coloring his entire face was worth the unsatisfied curiosity about the question he had wanted to ask you so desperately.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Being pregnant had been fun. It had brought pleasure, eating binges, resources to tease your friends and boyfriend, more time with Kakashi than you ever dreamed of and a whole new place to live in. Not only physically. Sure, after almost four months of moving into the Hatake compound, decorating it and making it into your own house and home, however also you and Kakashi grew closer. Especially Kakashi made huge improvements.

He tried so hard to be more open with you. When he woke up from a nightmare, he woke you up too and told you about it, needing some sleepy hugs and depending on them to find back to some merciful rest. When he bought some new furniture for your child, Kakashi first talked with you, not purchased another plush or another onesie or brightly colored toy on a whim. Together you had selected a warm green to color the walls of the child’s room in, together you had picked out playful carpets in red, dark green and brown to decorate the room with, together you had moved the bed and shelves around, finding the perfect spot to place them.

And not only that. He was there, with you, not absent like before. Tsunade still sent him on important missions and you would never stop him from serving the village he loved, but his injuries were now reduced to the absolute minimum. Kakashi’s reckless behavior was toned down, a circumstance you were incredibly grateful for.

When Kakashi was home, his caring behavior was almost overbearing. Whenever you tried to move your heavily pregnant body around, he was instantly there, helping you getting up and walking by your side. When a massive back pain plagued you, Kakashi would give you a massage, leaving you moaning in satisfaction at every worked-out kink and strain. He cooked you every meal you desired and more than once also some weird creations he had no name for, just because you lusted after some steak with cheesy sauce or whatever came to your mind. If you wanted to cuddle with him, Kakashi complied happily, often sought you more out than the other way around, spooning your body and stroking softly over your rounded stomach.

Kakashi cooed to your belly when he thought you were asleep. Low murmurs and whispers were constant accompanies when you napped and the man was close by, telling about his day or what wishes he had for the future, descriptions of the cozy house and the garden, stories about Gai and the latest challenge they had. In short, simply everything he could come up with. Once you even caught him lowly singing to your stomach, stroking all the while over the massive bulge.

He loved the baby. Kakashi loved the life growing inside your belly already, without ever seeing it or even hearing how it would sound. Alone the picture of him, looking at your stomach with a little, knowing smile on his uncovered lips, like he and the baby shared a secret you had no idea of, was almost too much for your heart.

 

Yes, the pregnancy had been fun and relatively easy-going. Until the dreaded day came. The day Kakashi feared and looked forward too, the day you didn’t want to think about at all costs.

It was a late afternoon. Rain drummed gently against the windows of the living room, a fire was whispering in the fire place and occasionally a strong wind would howl around the house. The last days of a windy and stormy spring were passing by. You were sitting in a single armchair, a light blanket thrown over your legs and in your hands a by now lukewarm green tea. A pair of comfy shoes adorned your constantly cold feet, not that you would see them. Nine months went by faster than a blink and by now your round and large stomach hid your feet from you.

Kakashi stuck his head out of the open kitchen, one of his simple, blue aprons slung around his body. “How are you feeling?”

“Not bad, not bad.” A hand on top of your stomach, you toasted to your boyfriend. He smiled at the gesture. “Could be better, actually.”

When Kakashi walked over, a whiff of dinner came with him. Cheese, chicken and vegetables. Carrots and tomatoes, if you weren’t too far off. “How come?”

“It’s just… I don’t know. He is lively today.” Like an answer, the baby kicked against your hand and only barely you managed to suppress a groan. “He’s a strong one.”

Kakashi kneeled down, directly in front of you. While he placed his own hand on top of your own, his eyes sought yours and locked, creasing slightly in a little smile. “You believe it will be a boy?”

You shrugged. “I mean, it also could be a girl. Measured at the stubbornness it shows, it’s even highly possible. But I would like to have a little boy.”

“With my hair and eyes?”

At his sarcastic undertone you raised both eyebrows. “Yes, your hair and your eyes,” helplessly you gestured him to move over and kissed Kakashi on the masked cheek, “because I love those two special features about you.”

 

When you leaned back, another cramp wandered through your lower stomach, but you masked the pain with a little cough. He saw what you were trying to do, noticed more than he should, like always.

“You’re hurting.” Kakashi said. Worried he let both of his hands slide over your stomach, checking for anything unusual and down your sides, until you stopped him with a nonchalant hum.

“It’s nothing.” At his disbelieving glance, you laughed quietly. “Really. I said so, the baby is lively and stretches a little bit. No worries.”

“You know that the due date was three days ago, right?”

A grimace came to life on your face. Right. The other thing Kakashi could worry over. The due date Tsunade estimated really had been a few days ago and since then the man was even more obnoxious with his care and questions about your state. Every stretch of the baby was over-interpreted, every little kick or hit a possible sign for Kakashi that the birth was just around the corner.

Like that, you hadn’t told him about the constant up and downs of pain-waves since this morning. Sometimes they subsided, sometimes they returned and sometimes like right now you even were able to completely ignore them, until a sudden movement made the cramps and strains reappear.

“My dear…” The warning tone in Kakashi’s tone made you cringe inwardly. Ashamed you glanced upwards, peeking through your eyelashes and hoping the scolding wouldn’t be too harsh. Kakashi used his most irritated rascal-look: the one he always had used when you tried to search for flees in his spotless fur. Full of annoyed acceptance, this time though there was a hint of righteous anger mixed into it. “Since when are you in pain?”

You mumbled under your breath and tugged your blanket higher.

His look hardened. “Since when (Y/N)?”

“…Morning.”

“Morning?” His hands clenched the fabric of the armrests. “Since this morning?”

“Yes.”

“And since when you leak onto your favorite seat in our house?”

What? Confused you looked down and really, there was an ugly dark spot on the soft dark-red material, right where your legs were. You moved and the squishy feeling of liquids seeping fully into your clothes let you grimace.

“That’s new.” you mumbled ashamed.

For a few more moments, Kakashi grit his teeth. His whole body was rigid, trembling slightly while he planned his next steps with the care of a true tactician. When he abruptly stood up, you flinched in surprise, too occupied with cupping your stomach than realizing what his commands were.

 

“We’re going to the hospital.”

You cocked your head. “Huh?”

Kakashi shook his head, all the while untying the knot in his back. The apron landed in a little pile right in front of the fire place and you stared at the rough fabric like your life depended on it. Then you glanced back at him, how the man walked away from you. “Kakashi, what do you mean?”

Your boyfriend was already in the hallway of the entrance area. You could hear rummaging and shuffles of his feet, also the opening and closing of the wardrobe. “I’m saying we’re going to the hospital.”

“I think I smell something burnt…”

“Doesn’t matter.” Brash steps, then he returned, a small bag in his hands and stuffing a few more things inside. Clothes, a pair of shoes, a light morning coat. “Hospital. Now.” Despite his hastiness, Kakashi offered you a hand when you tried to stand up, supporting you even when you started to walk into the direction of the entrance door. On the way he also performed a small water-jutsu, putting out the fire in the fire place.

Another cramp hit you, stronger than the ones before. A little grunt escaped and in reassurance, Kakashi squeezed your hand. “I hope it is what it is…” he mumbled, too loud to hide the obvious fear and happiness from you, “I really wish it is what I hope it is.”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

“Well…” With a smug smile Tsunade walked into your vision. “It seems like your little brat decided it’s time to pop out, huh?”

You would’ve given her a more or less polite answer, if you weren’t occupied to suppress more spasms or screams, caused by the by now immense waves of pain washing over you. Instead you threw a hateful glance at her, what caused the blonde Hokage to giggle louder than before and concentrated again on breathing.

In and out. In and out. Slowly… In and out.

Surprisingly it was hard to concentrate on a regular breathing rhythm when it felt like someone had fun feeding your lower body into a press. Tsunade’s teases weren’t helping either. At least Kakashi’s tries, consisting of offering his right and weaker hand to your death-grip, were at least partly successful in calming your strained nerves down.

Until now, he hadn’t winced under the strength you used every time the pain became almost unbearable. Nor had he complained in any form, if now jerking backwards, flinching or even loosening a tiny bit the grip of his hand. Kakashi sat obediently by your side, not caring your doubled strength was on a good way to simply pulverize the bones in his hand. Watching, caring and whispering soothing sweet nothings into your ear whenever you needed it the most.

Like now. Unaware of your surroundings, you squeaked out when suddenly his mouth nibbled through the fabric of his mask at the shell of your ear, breathing meaningful words out. “You can do it, my dear. You can do everything. You’re amazing, a miracle, the most beautiful being I ever saw, someone I look up to. I’m here, with you.”

You nodded, unable to form words. Another clash of pain and your back arched upwards, while a whimper escaped your tightly pressed together lips.

Desperate Kakashi turned to Tsunade. “Can’t we give her some painkillers?” he asked. His worried voice cut through the mist of pain like a knife, crystal clear for you to recognize.

“No.” Tsunade’s words in comparison were almost non-existent, blurry and hazy in your daze. “It’s too late. They wouldn’t help her anymore. She has to go through the rests of labor and birth without them.”

 

“But…”

“I’m the doctor and experienced far more births than you have, kiddo. No shut up and stay by her side. Your presence is everything of a painkiller (Y/N) has.”

A door was opened and closed, hasty steps came closer. The soft voice of a girl flew through the air, uncertain and painfully nervous. “Tsunade-shishou, I brought everything you wanted. Should I go or…?”

The blonde laughed quietly. “If your former sensei allows it, you can stay.”

“…Fine.”

“Forgive him Sakura, he’s stressed. Like every father-to-be.”

“Thank you, Kakashi-sensei, Tsunade-shishou. I won’t disappoint.”

“You won’t. As my student, you gained a lot of knowledge and I depend on your help for this birth. Is that understood?”

“H-hai, Tsunade-shishou! Thank you very much!”

Another groan fell from your lips, followed by more deep in- and exhales.

In and out, in and out, in and out you stupid, fucking-!

A hand stroked softly over your sweat-stained forehead. “Ssh. I’m with you, alright? (Y/N), do you hear me?”

Just when you wanted to answer, the next wave rolled over you. Surprised by the sheer force, you screamed. The waves came faster now, rolling like the incoming tide in and out of your lower body. Riding your mind and frame, bringing you up and down, higher than the clouds and deeper than the stones itself. You shuddered violently, more mumbling than anything else, realizing the people around you were talking, but only snippets of sentences made the long way to your brain.

“…hurts her, we have to-!”

“Not safe-!”

“I don’t care, she’s dying!”

“…don’t be overdramatic…”

 

Enough. It was enough. You whined weakly, ridded by the always present lava burning a path through your stomach. “Kakashi…”

His hand squeezed yours. “I’m with you.”

“Hurts…”

“Not for long. It can start any minute now.”

His lips were pressed to your forehead. Even though your eyes were closed, you could sense his nervousness, the faint tremble of his hand, the sweat collecting in his palm. Kakashi was utterly horrified. You would’ve never thought you would be the reason for the man to finally lose his precious composure, but here he was, not caring about the presence of a former student and his Hokage, gently wiping your sweaty hair out of your face and holding your hand, all the while whispering more and more encouragements into your ears. “You’re doing great. Not that much longer, do you remember? We read the book about birth together, soon you have to push… Then our beautiful daughter will be born and she’s going to look exactly like you, I know… A baby girl, another (Y/N) running around and bewitching the people. You’re doing fantastic, just stay calm and breathe for me, can you do that?”

You nodded hastily.

“Okay. Okay.” His rough voice was trembling too. “Then breathe. In and out. With me, alright? In…. Out…”

In and out. Yes. I can do that.

“Remember. When you feel the urge to push, don’t fight it.”

Shaking your head, you breathed loudly in, held the breath and pushed it out.

 

“Good. You’re doing so good, my dear.”

Whimpering out, you rode the next wave of pain, guided by more hushed whispers and gentle touches. Was it only your imagination or did they come more regularly now?

“The contractions stabilize.” Tsunade said. Shuffles around your already spread legs and when her warmed-up hands cautiously tapped against your calf, the legendary medic ninja was ready to help you through your birth, if you wanted her help or not. “Sakura, bring me some warm and sanitized cloths. Get some charts and the official documents for birth and registration too. And where is my sake, goddammit!?”

Just when you were about to politely object to her unhealthy habit, another wave of pain crashed into your mind. You grit your teeth, words jumbling around on your tongue, until you spat out: “For fuck’s sake, I will fucking kill you if you dare to even look at A STUPID BOTTLE OF SAKE, you old, fucking hag!”

Terrified silence, only interrupted by your gasps and pained exhales. Then…

Tsunade leaned backwards and sighed out. “Can’t you be a little bit creative? I mean, old hag? The blond dwarf called me that at our first encounter. And I got called worse in the various births I assisted in.”

Before you could start to truly curse her out, an unidentified feeling rising and lowering into your lower body made you forget about possible ways to keep the sake away from the blonde. Like a lifeline you clutched to Kakashi’s hand, whimpering and groaning, not knowing what to do and so utterly scared you actually cried out when Kakashi tried to loosen for the first time his grip around your hand.

“I’m not going away, my dear,” using his other hand, Kakashi pried your fingers open, one by one, “I just need to sacrifice my other hand to your strength.” And really, only seconds later your blindly searching appendage found another hand, just as warm and just as big as the previous one. Just as reassuring and so wonderfully familiar you sighed out in relief.

 

The little exchange was everything you remembered from that time. From there on, it was only pain, screams of pushing and breathing and Kakashi’s presence by your side. Not even his words stuck to your brain, only his mere rough voice resounded deep inside, calming you despite the terrifying situation.

You followed the instructions, detached and deaf to other things, pushed when they asked you to and breathed when they told you. Sometimes there was a soft and small hand wiping away some sweat of your forehead, but otherwise…

Nothing.

Then, after hours or maybe minutes, maybe even whole days, Tsunade’s sharp voice cut through the mist of confusion and pain.

“Alright, only two more times. I can see the head.”

Aaaah. That was the growing pressure on your lower stomach.

“You can do it.” Kakashi sounded the tiniest bit excited. “Only a few more times, only a little bit more.”

And so you did. Whimpering in pain, you pushed, pushed and rested for a few seconds, waiting for another command. Tsunade said something to Sakura, who hurriedly arranged some white, soft cloths in her arms, before looking at you with a small, earnest smile. “Alright. One more time. One more time (Y/N). Can you hear me?”

Unable to form words, you nodded.

The Hokage’s smile widened a fraction. “Good. Then do it. Push. Come on, push!”

Another daze fell over your vision. Maybe you even blacked out for a second. The next thing you saw was Kakashi’s masked face, filling out the field of your vision with worry and hasty movements. “You did it,” he whispered proudly, “you wonderful, crazy, amazing person.”

“Is it…” You breathed in. “Is he…?”

 

A chuckle disturbed the rather intimate moment between you and your boyfriend. Tsunade, the omnipresent pain in your neck. She held your baby in her arms, but instantly stepped closer as soon as she noticed your angered expression. “It’s a little girl.” she added.

A girl. Kakashi was right.

Didn’t matter. Eagerly you reached out to the bundle which weakly moved in Tsunade’s arms, whining a little bit. You wanted to see her, you wanted to look into her cute little face and see what she looked like-! Without further ado, the older woman placed with a gentleness you hadn’t expected your child in your arms.

Oh. Oooooh. The moment you held her, a warmth unknown to you clogged your throat. Speechless you watched how you automatically cradled the small human, carefully supporting her head and looking for the first time at the life you had created.

For others, the small potato nose would be disturbing. For others, the chubby cheeks would be a little bit too chubby. For others, the closed eyes would be too big, the small patch of dark hair on her head would be too fuzzy, the thin, rosy lips would be too thin.

To you, she was simply perfect.

“Kakashi. Look.” Helplessly smiling, you glanced at the paralyzed man by your side. “She’s so…”

“Beautiful.” He touched with trembling fingers her small hands, the unbearable tiny fingers instantly closing around his index finger. Kakashi blinked hectically, then rubbed with the back of his other hand over his eyes. “She’s just as beautiful as you.”

“Are you crying?”

“No. Just... Got something in my eye.”

“Sure.”

 

Tsunade coughed. “Alright kiddos. As lovely as it is, we need a name to fill out the boring paperwork.” By her side, Sakura had a pen ready, waiting and glancing from time to time with rosy cheeks at your daughter. When you caught her, she flushed even more and quickly looked again at the clipboard.

Months before you had a lengthy discussion about that particular topic. It wasn’t even a real discussion, just a small talk about what names floated through your heads at the time.

“Rin.” you said. Kakashi closed his eyes and only you saw the small tear dropping from his right eye. “Her name will be Rin.”

“Just as good as another.” Tsunade gestured to Sakura, who instantly scribbled the name of the newborn down. “And her family name?”

“Uuuh…” You didn’t talk about that topic. You stared at Kakashi. He stared back, just as helpless as you. Her family name. Indeed. Hatake or (L/N)? In all the chaos and hopeful preparations, that little detail completely went over your head. In all its destructive nature. It just hadn’t been an urgent matter, between baby clothing and moving preparations. Like that, it slipped from your mind and apparently also from Kakashi’s.

When you two continued to stare at each other in stunned silence, Rin moving in your arms and mewling like a small cat, Tsunade threw in good-natured annoyance her arms in the air. “Really? Two shinobi of mine and both too dumb to think about marriage!”

Just when the blonde woman said that, a steely glint came to life in Kakashi’s eyes. You watched how he glanced at the two present women and nodded at the door.

“Five minutes. Please.” he added after Tsunade glared at him.

In the back of your mind, you were aware both of them left relatively quietly, considering their natural peskiness. But most of your attention was on Kakashi, who sat down by your side, one hand still holding onto Rin, the other fumbling in the inside of his vest, searching for something small in there.

You attempted to smile, but somehow you had the distinct feeling it came out as a little grimace. “Kakashi?” Even your own voice displayed clearly how flabbergasted you were. “You’re… you’re not taking her serious. Right? I mean, we don’t have to, it’s optional and having a daughter is already a huge commitment-!”

 

“Right.” Kakashi’s eyes creased in a meaningful grin. “You’re absolutely right. A child,” his features softened when he laid his eyes upon his daughter, “is a huge commitment. In comparison a marriage has a little bit less weight.”

“But-!”

“No buts, not this time. What I want to say is… I already thought about it,” on cue Kakashi tugged a small casket out of the depths of his vest, “and that was even before Rin was on the way. The… the reason why I kept away when I was a cat was simple, yet inexcusable. I wanted to really think about us, about the possibility of marriage and when I came to a conclusion… Well…” He raised the casket higher.

You tried to swallow the lump in your throat. Unconsciously you cradled Rin harder, what caused the newborn to mewl in protest out. With a soft “Sorry,” you loosened your hold yet again and stroked over her still a bit wet cheek, before daring to meet Kakashi’s eyes. “You want to say you kept away because you were thinking about marriage?”

“And buying this ring. With the help of Gai, of course.”

You chuckled. “Right. A cat can’t go into a shop and demand to see a selection of their engagement rings.”

His chuckle joined yours. “Indeed. Even though a lot of people tried to take them away from him whenever he tried to show them to me.”

“I see.” But your attention was swallowed by the casket. Kakashi’s long fingers played with the edges, nearly opened it, only to let it snap close when a hint of black velvet was revealed. “So….” You dragged the word longer than necessary. “Care for an exchange? A beautiful, little bundle of joy for a ring?”

This time, the silver haired man was freely laughing. “She’s only a few minutes old,” he joked, “and you already try to exchange her for a mere ring? God, what a cruel, cold-hearted woman you are. If I would’ve known…”

“Now it’s too late.” Carefully you raised Rin a little bit towards Kakashi, who glanced at his daughter with the sudden realization standing in his face how small she actually was, “And? What do you say? A baby for a ring?”

“You’re… You’re saying yes?”

With a soft laugh you gestured the man to lean down. When his face was close enough, you quickly pulled his mask down and pressed a kiss to his exposed mouth. Your hand rested at his jaw when you retreated slightly, your breath fanning over Kakashi’s lips as you answered. “That you still have to ask is ridiculous, my rascal.”

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Night fell over Konoha hours ago. A storm rattled at the windows of the hospital room Kakashi sat in, but he didn’t mind at all. Together with his fiancée, he laid in the wide hospital bed, a pillow in his back and watching out for any danger. Some of his trained instincts were hard to kill and especially today the former ANBU felt the need to stay awake and watch over his family. Especially while he held his daughter for the first time, one of her small hands wrapped around one of his fingers, her grip so light and still so strong around his heart.

His family. His small, yet perfect family.

The wonderful warmth filled his chest as he gazed down at the woman who did so much for him. Right now, she was sleeping, exhausted from the miracle she gave birth to. Even now, sweaty and with deep, black circles underneath her eyes she was probably the most beautiful person he ever laid his eyes on. Curled up against him, one hand thrown over his lap and her head on a pillow next to Kakashi, she snored slightly and he watched over her like he had watched for so many days when she didn’t allow him to enter her flat.

His thoughts drifted to the break they took and the warmth in Kakashi’s chest died down. With a sigh he leaned back into the cushions, always aware of every movement and sound both of his family members made. (Y/N) was everything, patient, understanding and still. And he nearly managed to destroy their relationship by being uselessly distrusting. Ignoring her needs and wishes, thinking she would be better off without him and waiting for an opportunity to say: See? What did I tell you?

For so long he had seen himself as a monster, as someone not worthy of love, that the sudden close connection he had with her scared the hell out of him. Not in a negative way. But what if he screwed up? What if an enemy found out about his weakness and decided to attack her when he wasn’t present to protect (Y/N)? What if one of his long missions was finally too long for her and she gave her heart to someone else? Someone who deserved it more?

 

When Kakashi saw her and Gin, the other male hugging her intimately… He had lost it. Even though he told himself so many times (Y/N) would be better off without him. In that moment he realized, no matter how many times he tried to tell himself, he didn’t want to be left alone again. He didn’t want this to be his reality. The fearless copy ninja of Konoha actually feared something now. To be left alone in the dark by the same person who dragged him into the light.

And then the ugly fight. Even today, after almost seven love-filled months Kakashi still blushed at the stupid hissy fit he threw. Because that’s what he had been, stupid and filled to the brim with guilt and hate for himself. Gently he raised the hand he injured back then and kissed her soft finger tips, lacing their hands together when a cute little grump floated through the air.

How stupid could someone be to willingly destroy something so grounding? Incredibly, Kakashi mused, and glanced at his peacefully sleeping daughter. Thankfully (Y/N) set him straight and thankfully they both forgot the importance of protection. Otherwise he wouldn’t be able to hold this little miracle in his arms, warm, alive and nibbling in her sleep at his vest.

Rin. His Rin, named after his long dead teammate. When Kakashi had brought up the name, (Y/N) didn’t even think long about it.

“What did you exactly say…?” Carefully the male wiggled in the bed, trying to find a slightly better spot to sit in. “Wasn’t it something like: thank god, I didn’t have one good idea…?”

Rin. Right after her birth he wasn’t able to tell, but with the silvery light of the moon shining outside, Kakashi nearly believed his daughter inherited the typical silver hair of the Hatake’s. How fitting she would wear his family name. Just like (Y/N), who agreed in her typical, teasing way to his more than rushed proposal.

 

With a little, happy smile on his face, Kakashi allowed his tense body to relax a little bit. The cushions were really soft for a hospital bed, when he was in here, they were a lot more itchy and stiff…

His chin touched his chest as his thoughts drowned in the sea of a long day. But still in his sleep, the once lonely man held tightly onto his daughter and to the hand of his soon-to-be wife, the simple golden ring on her ring finger glistening under the moonlight.

He wouldn’t be alone anymore.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

“Mom?” Rin looked up from her breakfast, a droplet of golden syrup clinging to her chin. “Can I ask you something?”

“Go ahead kitten.” Absent-mindedly you wiped the blotch away and ruffled in passing by through her silver, shoulder-length hair. The next to receive your attention was Kakashi, who smiled fondly at his “favorite daughter”. Whenever he said that, the six-year-old would exclaim she was the only daughter he had, what he would counter with a laugh and a long hug.

You leaned down and kissed him on the cheek, already in a hurry. Ibiki wanted you to interrogate two new prisoners and there was still a lot of paperwork to do in the T&I. But for a quick question of your firstborn was always some time left.

Her black eyes creased in a light smile, so incredibly similar to her father. “Actually, I have two questions.”

Kakashi cocked his head. His usual apron was bound around his middle, a small bowl of baby food in his left hand and a small spoon in his other. “As your mother said,” he said and tried to feed Obito, your two-year-old son and baby brother of Rin, “go ahead.”

Rin’s smile grew wider. “How did you and mom meet? And why are you calling me “kitten”?”

Two things happened. First, Kakashi froze and paled, the spoon with the baby food mid-air between Obito’s babbling mouth and his own body. Second, you broke into a little, hysterical giggle, nearly spitting out your black tea when you saw how confused Rin grew at your attics.

“What’s so funny?” she asked. The serious worry in her voice made you only laugh harder, bending over and gasping for air, while Kakashi slowly lowered the spoon back into the bowl, his black eyes fixed on his shoes like they were the most interesting thing in the whole world. Not what you expected of the sixth Hokage of the famous Leaf village, but you already knew beforehand how strange and socially awkward he could be.

“I guess I still have time that,” you said between two waves of laughter, sat down beside Rin and carefully placed your cup on the wooden table, “Alright, my oh so curious kitten… Once, I lived in another building and your father was my neighbor. We didn’t talk to each other, until one fateful day, a cat sat in front of our apartment complex…”