Rule 3

Chapter 20

Disclaimer: Guess what? I don't own Naruto.

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Uchiha family reunions are different for normal family reunions. At normal family reunions, there's always those two relatives that always fight (usually Seimei and me), there's the great uncle who's not against hugging complete strangers, the nagging grandmothers, crying toddlers, and the cheek pinchers. In one word, family reunions could be described as chaos. Uchiha family reunions are more like formal events. They stand around in nice classy outfits, sipping champagne, never raising their voices. Even the Uchiha kids were quiet. Sakura and I stood out like sore thumbs, with our non dark hair and eyes. I was just glad Itachi at least had the forethought to tell me that the reunion was a formal event. Sasuke didn't tell Sakura and as a result she showed up in a semi-casual outfit, much to her embarrassment.

Sakura gripped her champagne glass a little harder, "I'm going to murder that bastard for doing this to me." She growled. A few Uchihas standing nearby shot Sakura hard glances, as if they couldn't believe riffraff such as her were let in to such an exclusive event. I took a cautious sip of my own champagne, and immediately set the drink down. I had no tolerance to any alcohol, even champagne. I was always violently sick if I had more than half a glass of it. I had freaked Itachi out once during a conference when Hidan had spiked my water with vodka and I ended up vomiting by the end. It was one of the few times that Itachi ever lost his temper in front of the Akatsuki representatives. That day was also the day Itachi stopped being so distant and started treating me like a human being.

Someone flicked me on the arm, "Hey, earth to Ichigo. stop looking all dreamy off into the distance, it's starting to freak me out." Sakura said, waving her hand in front of my face. I flushed and glared at my friend, "I'm not staring off into the distance, dreamy or otherwise. I was just remembering the time Hidan spiked my drink." Among other things, I added silently to myself. Sakura snorted, "Yeah sure. You can't lie to me, Ichigo. I know that look anywhere... so who's the lucky guy?" I blushed harder and sputtered, "I-I have no idea what you're talking about!" Sakura smirked, "Yeah sure you don't. You've been sighing and zoning out ever since..." Sakura paused as if something dawned on her, then she whispered, "Actually ever since you and Itachi came back to work..." I made the mistake of glaring at her, proving her assumption right.

Before she could scream at the discovering, and no doubt killing me of embarrassment, someone crashed into me from behind, "I'm so glad you two are here! You don't have any idea how dull these things are." A girlish voice squealed in my ear. I looked over my should at none other than Kasumi, Shisui's girlfriend. Sakura's sea green eyes narrowed with distrust, I didn't blame her. I hadn't like?k Kasumi at first either, but she kind of grew on me at the skating rink when I blackmailed Shisui. "Any pranks up your sleeve tonight?" Sakura growled, glaring at Kasumi. The blonde blinked at her innocently, "No... Why would I?" I sighed, I could tell this was going downhill fast.

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An hour later I was still sitting in the same spot, fanning two very drunk girls beside me. I had never seen anyone get as drunk as fast as Sakura, nor did I ever see anyone put away so much alcohol without getting intoxicated as Kasumi. She and Sakura had come up with the 'brilliant' idea to settle their differences through a drinking contest. Who ever went under first was the loser, of course Sakura was out cold before Kasumi even looked buzzed, not that that stopped her. Now both girls were passed out, and I was left to make sure they were okay and no one came to steal them off.

Shisui sat down beside me, shooting an amused look at his girlfriend and her new friend, "At least I won't have be her drinking buddy anymore. I've been replaced in that aspect luckily." He mused. I glared at him, having to reluctantly note that Shisui looked very handsome in his police regalia. He laughed at me expression, "Hey, at least you're not designated driver, do you know how freaky that girl gets when she's drunk?" He asked. I rolled my eyes, "No, I'm just the designated driver of sick Uchiha bosses. You know how freaky that is?" I retorted. Shisui somehow managed to pull off a grimace as he chuckled and not look stupid, "Yeah, I heard about that... Sasuke said you handled that well though." I raised my eyebrows exaggeratedly, "You mean Sasuke actually gave me a compliment? I'm shocked." I said in mock surprised, pressing my first three fingers to my mouth.

The chief of police snorted, "I've always liked your dry sense of humor, Ichigo." He said. I resumed fanning my drunk and passed out friends, "Yeah well, seven years working with the Uchiha brothers and you have to develop some kind of humor, just to stay sane." I said dully, losing my humor. Shisui narrowed his eyes and me and leaned a little further, "Is that sadness I detect? What, did you finally admit to your feelings for Itachi?" My face flushed bright red, "What?!" I managed to squeak, the paper fan I was using to cool Sakura and Kasumi crumbling a little under my grip. Shisui laughed and sat back, "Oh come on, even Sasuke knows that you two are destined for each other. In fact, there is a betting pool going around on how long it will take for you two to start dating." I tried to fry the guy with my glare. It didn't work, he just smiled wider, "Yep, even Mikoto-oba has money on you. So don't disappoint everyone."

Mikoto saved me then, "Come Ichigo, you're not going to sit there all night. Come with me." The older woman said brightly as she lead me away from Shisui. By the smirk of Shisui's face, I was beginning to think that maybe I had gone from the frying pan to the fire.

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"Mikoto-san..." I sighed as she dragged me to yet another Uchiha relative and I had to play the polite assistant to the eldest Uchiha brother for the thousandth time. Mikoto diligently ignored me as she had been for the past eighteen introductions. She smiled at the current relative we were standing in front of and began talking. I felt like a child that didn't want to hang around while her parents talked to other adults. Sighing I gazed off into the distance where the exit sign sat glowing at me mockingly. If only I could escape this place. "...and this is Ichigo, my son Itachi's assistant." Mikoto finished, bringing me out of my fantasies of leaving.

I jerked my gaze to the Uchihas and smiled politely, "Good evening." The Uchiha relative scoffed, her nose a mile high in the air. I refrained from rolling my eyes at her obvious arrogance, at least Itachi didn't treat me like I was trash. He treated me like a decent human being who had feelings, though Itachi could never know how I truly felt about him. I flushed and closed my eyes in embarrassment, horrified how easily my thoughts had turned to my forbidden feelings. I wanted to kick myself, I couldn't even think about my boss normally anymore!

As if my thoughts called out to him, suddenly Itachi was in my view, talking with one of his cousins. I gulped and forced my eyes back to Mikoto and the pompous Uchiha woman as they politely and subtly exchanged insults. I mentally sighed, I would never in a million years understand how the Uchiha functioned as a family. At least me and Seimei came right out and said what we thought of each other (and usually ended with the Annual Dish War). I found my eyes roaming back to Itachi, as if he was a magnet. I stiffened when I saw him staring right back, his onyx eyes drilling into me, it felt as if his gaze alone was tearing down my walls I carefully constructed and reading my deepest thoughts. I had to look away, I needed to, but my gaze stayed locked with his, unable to move at all.

Itachi said something to his cousin before making his way towards us.

I flushed and looked down, angry at myself for acting like a lovestruck puppy. Fugaku hired me for my impassive feelings towards Sasuke and later Itachi; and Itachi kept me on because I did my work diligently and didn't let useless things like his physical appearance hinder me. Yet here I was, seven years later, having to forcibly tell myself not to fall in love with my boss. And here I was, not listening to the rational little voice in the back of my mind. I was breaking the third rule of Uchiha Corp: not to fall in love with the Uchiha.

^o^

Yeah... so I'm ending this because I just can't think of a single word to put next... It's a good place to stop the chapter, I think, and it's a decent length. Plus I know all your Rule 3 readers are going to kill me if I put the chapter off one more day. O.o

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