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Good Morning, Starshine

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When Shino wakes up, Tenten's head is snugly tucked in his right armpit and her face is pressed into his side. Her hair's unravelled and there's a little smear of eyeliner or mascara or something underneath her right eye. He tries not to disturb her as he fishes one-handed for the bottle of Gatorade on his nightstand, and successfully manages to pop two aspirin without waking her. He knows that reaching for his sunglasses is pushing his luck, but the light creeping in from the window is particularly unbearable this morning and he really doesn't have any choice. The sunglasses gambit fails, and he feels her smile against his ribcage. Her eyelashes tickle a little but he doesn't laugh because it doesn't really tickle that much.

"You smell awful, Shino." She's smiling full-on now, murmuring, and between her breath and the hum of her voice and her eyelashes and her hair in his armpit he's going to start laughing, and that's not a thing that can possibly happen right now, because if he laughs his head might shatter and he's far too busy to be dead this morning.

"Tenten. I need you to lift your head," and when she does he scoots down a little and she rests her head on his chest and slides her right arm across his chest. This is better, because it doesn't tickle, and if he cranes his neck he can kiss the top of her head, so he does. He feels her smile again, this time against his collarbone, and she brushes the edge of his jaw with her thumb. This is a really good position for mornings like this; her head on his chest, her right arm across his stomach. It's comfortable.

Shino thinks he'd like to lie in bed like this all day, being comfortable and hungover, but Tenten has a hard time keeping still and she wiggles away after a few minutes. Shino asks if she'd like some of the Gatorade, and she takes a sip, but gives the rest to him. "You look like shit!" she says brightly. "Drink the rest of it, you need it more than me." As he gingerly sips, Tenten scans the room and finds their scattered clothing. She struggles into her t-shirt and underwear, and tosses him his boxers. Pulling them on is a process that sends lightning bolts of pain through his temples, but he manages it and feels proud. He did it. He put on his underwear all by himself.

Tenten bounces back onto the bed and straddles his legs. She braces herself with her hands and starts kissing his navel. "Last night," (kiss) "was so," (kiss) "much fun!" (kiss, kiss kiss.) "We need to go dancing more often!" She always says that, and it never happens. They've got responsibilities and obligations and they're lucky if they manage to get together once a month. It's worth it, though.

"I enjoyed myself thoroughly. We are excellent dancers."

"We are the best dancers! Did you see how everyone cleared the dance floor for us?" It's true. They are the best dancers.

There is a knock on the door. It's probably Gaara; he usually wakes up early. "If you are not occupied, I'd like to come in."

"We're decent!" Tenten sing-songs. "Be careful, though, there are knives all over the floor."

Gaara opens the door. "'Decent' is a word. It is perhaps not the word I would have chosen, though." He picks his way gingerly through the weaponry and sits on the edge of the bed. "I had a dream about my father."

"Oh, baby, was it bad? Come here." Tenten rolls off Shino and and pats the bed. "Come on, get over here." Gaara lies down stiffly next to her, and flinches a little when she starts hugging him. "It was bad, wasn't it?"

"It was," and Gaara's hesitation speaks volumes, "not good." Tenten's face is pure concern and care, she's got the worst poker face Shino's ever seen. She broadcasts every emotion, and he sometimes envies her expressiveness.

She pats Gaara's hair like he's a golden retriever, and he slowly starts to relax. Shino takes the opportunity to gingerly creep out of the bed and head to the bathroom. On his way out he picks up his shirt and gives it an experimental sniff - it reeks like cheap booze and cigars, which is odd, because as far as he can recall there were no cigars last night. He might ask the bugs about it later, if he's still curious.

After he brushes his teeth and puts on deodorant he feels un-disgusting enough to return to the bedroom. When he enters, he finds his friends sound asleep. Gaara is on his back, mouth open, snoring. Tenten's on her side, curled up next to him, drooling onto his arm. Shino feels a rush of fondness and gently lies down next to them.

They all sleep until the afternoon. When they wake up, Hinata and Kiba have eaten all the leftover pizza.