Chapter 26

Disclaimer: Do you really need to ask?

Thanks to Fernlight, Kyoichi Amaya, Sally95 (guest) Chichi4mangaHero, Animefreak1145, Silent-Himitsu, ashala, and VKlover95 for reviews.

Sally95: lol why were you speechless? I'm curious.

More heated fluffles! Mwahahahahahaha... You know, I wonder how I ever wrote without fluffing up my chapters now...


"Hokage-sama, I wish to rejoin my team." I stated the next day. Lady Tsunade studied my face then glanced at my team standing at the far wall. Everyone but Karen seemed pleased that I was coming back to them. The blonde woman turned her gaze back at me, "I should have realized this would happen, but for some odd reason I had believed you would follow my orders." I grew angry, "And just give up? In the years you have known me, Tsunade-sama, you should know I'm not one to quit just because things don't go my way." Tsunade watched me for a few minutes before muttering something about Shisui being right under her breath. She spoke up again, "You have two hours to prepare for the testing. You will be fighting Lee in Training Ground Four to determine if you are ready to go on missions again." I bowed and left.


The only people surveying the fight were Itachi, Ame, Lady Tsunade, and Gai. They would determine if I was ready. I stood at the north end of the training ground, sizing Lee up. Lady Tsunade had informed both of us that we were to use only taijutsu and not to go easy on each other, it would defeat the purpose of this duel otherwise. As I waited for Lady Tsunade to give the signal to start, I watched Lee as he eagerly pranced in place, waiting to pound into me. My weakness was my advantage, and I was going to squeeze as much as I could from that advantage. I just had to be careful, if I acted too weak then Lee would ease up on his attacks. I didn't want that, I wanted to win this fairly.

Lady Tsunade looked between us, raising her arm over her head slowly. We both tensed, eyes on the Hokage. She dropped her arm and Lee shot forward, intending to end the fight quickly. I waited until he was within arms length before I sidestepped, letting the chunnin zoom right past me. Quicker than I expected, Lee changed directions and ran at me again. This time he didn't try to tackle me to the ground, instead he took a swing at me. I put both arms up to block him. Lee's fist contacted my braced arms and I slid back a few feet from the power of it.

I stared at Lee, I knew he was powerful, but this still took my by surprise. No one had been able to move me from my spot since I became a jounin, not even Shisui. I barely managed to duck his kick that he sent my way while I still stood there, stunned. I skipped back a few steps to put some distance between Lee and myself, but he wouldn't allow me to regain my composure. I quickly went on the defensive from there. I was barely able to keep to my feet under the flurry of Lee's attacks. Minutes went by and there was no let up from the youthful kid. With one last spinning kick to my side, Lee finally backed away. I bent over, dragging in large gulps of breath, trying desperately to catch my breath and stay on my feet. Lee made a fist, "You can not defeat me, Tora! I am stronger than you, and that makes me youthful!" He shouted. I couldn't help but to roll my eyes at his usual display of enthusiasm.

He started running at me again, his round eyes shining with determination to finish this fight now. I watched him approach from the corner of my eye, waiting for my chance. He cocked his right arm back, ready to deliver the last blow, when I saw my chance. Falling to one knee to give myself a better stance I slammed the heel of my hand into the center of Lee's chest. He stumbled back from the blow, his breath gone, and I stood smiling grimly. I cracked my knuckles, feeling renewed, "My turn..." I said and attacked.

The tables had turned, now it was Lee who couldn't keep his defenses up. All the pent up energy from two months was coursing through me, just begging to be used. I dropped to the ground and whipped around, my right leg out to trip Lee. He stumbled over my once injured leg and fell to the ground. I took my chance and leapt onto him. Burying my knees into his stomach I once again knocked all the breath from his lungs. "Yield." I said, pressing my right thumb against his throat, ready to cut off his air if he refused. Lee had tears shining in his eyes, "I am no longer youthful. I yield and must punish myself for losing." My cheek jumped and I scrabbled off of the guy before he could continue his no doubt long speech about how unyouthful he was.

I turned towards our observers in time to see Itachi smirk at Lady Tsunade and hold out his hand. The Hokage shot him a dirty look and dropped a small bag in his hand reluctantly. I frowned, but before I could approach them Ame tackled me out of no where. I yelped and stared at my team leader. She grinned, "Welcome back to Team Ame, Tora!" She said laughing at my freaked out face. I smiled at her, "Glad to be back. I can feel like my old self again." Ame laughed and put an arm over my shoulders, "Although, I bet you're going to miss all those training sessions with Itachi-san..." She mused slyly, her yellow-speckles blue eyes eying me. I frowned at her, wondering how she knew about that. Reading my expression Ame grinned, "Yuki kind of let it slip yesterday. Luckily it was only to me. Can you imagine what Mitsuko would do if she knew?" I sighed, "If Mitsuko ever found out the whole village would know within an hour or less." I said tiredly.

"So how are you feeling?" I asked, trying to change the subject. Ame shot me a look that told me she knew what I was doing and shrugged, "Pregnancy has it's perks and downfalls. One of which is Kakashi is more protective than usual. I threw a book at him last night because of it." Ame glared into the distance, probably remember the incident. I laughed, that was my team leader. She was the kindest person until someone said one wrong thing, than she was worse than Lady Tsunade, Sakura and Anko combined. Ame sighed, "Speaking of books, Kakashi wants me to pick of the newest addition of Icha Icha Paradise on the way home. Sometimes I think the only reason he reads them is to-" I threw up my hands to stop her, "I don't want to know!" I shouted, which caused Ame to laugh. She gave me a hug good-bye before disappearing from the training ground.

By then Lady Tsunade, Gai, and Lee had left, leaving Itachi and I alone. I turned to find the leader of the Uchiha clan had already joined my side. He smiled at me and bent down to kiss me. I hummed into the kiss, this was something I could get used to. Slowly I dragged my arms up to wrap the around his neck as I felt the familiar press of Itachi's lips against mine. He ran his tongue over my lower lip I pulled back confused, "What was that for?" I asked, blinking. Itachi chuckled and kissed my nose, "You're supposed to open your mouth when I do that..." He murmured. I frowned, wondering why he would want me to do that, but his mouth was on mine again before I could ask him.

When he repeated the action I hesitantly opened my mouth, still wondering what he was going to do. I gave a strangled gasp when I felt his tongue slide into my mouth, pushing against my own. My whole body shook with the pleasant feeling of his warm tongue exploring the depths of my mouth. Itachi pulled away and smirked at my expression. I could tell he was pleased by my reaction. He kissed my forehead, tightening his arms around my waist. I sighed at the feeling of protectiveness and laid my head on Itachi's shoulder, closing my eyes and inhaled his scent.

This was something I could definitely get used to.


Awwwwww! Tora's innocence is so cute! I'm smiling so big right now my teeth hurt! Sorry it's short, I just found a good place to end it.

Flamers NOT welcome! lol just kidding. This story has been Flame Approved.

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