Chapter 22- Sometimes Peace Finds You
Asami regained control of herself and wiped her eyes. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to break down like that. It's been so long since I thought so much about them. Thank you for telling me that. You were right, I am glad to know it." She smiled up at Kakashi.
Kakashi pulled her closer into his arms as if to protect her from more pain. He had grown up with pain and pushing the feelings away came a little too naturally for him, he hoped he could protect her. "It's ok. I understand."
When she was a little calmer they stood and headed back to her place. When they got there Asami looked up at Kakashi. "Now it's my turn. Will you hold me tonight?" She was nervous asking him to spend the night but she really didn't want to be alone with her thoughts.
Kakashi was surprised but he sensed that, just as he had needed her that night that Sasuke and Naruto had fought, she needed him tonight. "Of course."
Asami was forming onigiri and thinking about the previous night. She had been so upset last night and it had felt so good to fall asleep with her head on Kakashi's shoulder. He had been so comforting and sweet. He'd left early to go train but said he'd be back.
The day passed quickly with so much on her mind. She had honestly never thought about how her parents had died and it had been a shock to hear that they had died in each others arms. In a way it was comforting to know that in his last moments her fathers love for her mother had won out against anything else. She finished up the last of the dishes and turned to go home.
Kakashi had been at the Memorial most of the day. He had finished training and then checked in with the Hokage to see what she might have for him. He knew Asami would expect him for dinner but he wasn't sure what do after. He had now spent the night twice with her. They had simply held each other both times, both of them needing the comfort of the others presence but he knew that if their relationship was going to move forward that would change. It wasn't a problem for him but he wasn't sure if Asami was ready for that yet.
He headed over to her place around the time he knew the shop would be closing. They would have to talk this out soon.
Asami got to the top of her stairs and realized that Kakashi wasn't there. She wondered if he was planning on being there or if he'd had enough of her tears last night. She promised herself that she would try to seem stronger. She heard someone climbing the stairs behind her and turned.
"Oh. Hi Anko. How are you?"
"Hi Asami. What no Kakashi? I thought he was moving in." Anko immediately felt sorry for teasing her friend when she saw the look on her face. "Oh! I was just kidding! What happened?" She put her arm around Asami and steered her towards the door, and then the kitchen.
"Oh Anko! I think I messed everything up! And the truth is I don't even know for sure what I did!" She shared the story that Kakashi had told her about her parents death and how she had cried so much and then asked Kakashi to hold her.
Anko interrupted her, "Wait a minute. Are you telling me that Kakashi slept here, in your bed last night?"
"Yes." Asami looked at her oddly. "He stayed here the night of the fight between Sasuke and Naruto also."
Anko looked at her carefully. "Wow. I had no idea it had gotten that serious. You really will have little ones soon, won't you?"
Asami blushed fiercely. "Anko! It's not like that! We just held each other. And now I'm worried that he thinks I'm weak and not capable of taking care of myself."
Anko looked at her friend like she was stupid. "Really? So you cried because you missed your parents and he held you and you are more worried that he'll think you're weak?"
Asami regarded her friend with suspicion. "Yes. Why what are you thinking?"
"I'm thinking he's trying to figure out a way to move things along a little. I don't want to be crass but he is a man."
Asami thought about what her friend had just said. "I understand that but do you think he's really interested in a girl who loses it and needs to be coddled like a baby every time the subject of her parents come up? I mean it happened almost twelve years ago! And here I'm telling him that I can handle it! What a pansy I am, huh?"
Anko looked at her incredulously, "Oh yeah, a total pansy! You lost your parents, how old were you? Twelve? And without a further thought you took over the business that your mom ran and raised your brother who was four at the time into the amazing man, and member of the ANBU, he has become today. I hardly think that Kakashi is going to give up on you because you cried over hearing how your parents died. And if he does..."
She was cut off by Kakashi's voice from the door, "If I did then I wouldn't be worth much would I?"
Asami was embarrassed and wondered how much of their conversation he had heard. "How long have you been there?"
"Long enough." He looked at her, she looked so vulnerable right now. He crossed the kitchen in a few long strides and gathered her up into his arms. "I don't think anyone could accuse you of being a pansy Asami. Least of all me. Not when you're willing to put up with me."
Anko decided this was a good time to disappear. "Well, I think I'll be off now. See you soon Asami." She was glad that Kakashi had shown up and defended himself.
Asami broke free of Kakashi's embrace to hug her friend goodbye and said quietly, "Thank you for listening Anko. I appreciate it."
When Anko had left she turned back to Kakashi. "Didn't anyone ever tell you that it's rude to eavesdrop?" She playfully punched him in the arm.
"As someone who has actually eavesdropped I hardly think standing in the doorway and listening to a conversation between the woman you love and her friend as eavesdropping. I never tried to hide my presence."
Asami was dumbfounded that she had missed his arrival. "So how much of the conversation did you hear?"
"Oh I came in around the time Anko suggested that we would have children soon." His eye crinkled in amusement at her blush.
Asami was furious with Anko for saying that now but she did see Anko's point. Kakashi was a man and he probably wanted to do more than just hold her when he was sharing her bed. "I'm sorry. Are you hungry?" She went for the old standby.
Kakashi laughed inwardly. She was clearly trying to figure this out and he decided to let her squirm a little. "Actually I was hoping you had dinner planned. I am hungry."
Asami set to making dinner. "Do you want anything while you wait? Tea?"
"I was going to take a shower, if you don't mind. I stopped at my place and grabbed a change of clothes."
"Not at all. The towels are in the closet in the hall." She was glad to have a few minutes alone while she gathered her thoughts and courage.
She knew that she wanted him to stay and for their relationship to move ahead but she wasn't sure how to let him know. She had no experience with dating at all and no one but Anko to ask. And in reality Anko probably wasn't the best person to ask for advice, she wasn't known for her subtleties.
Kakashi appeared back in the kitchen, in sweats and a t-shirt, no mask and no headband, using an eyepatch instead to cover his sharingan, just as dinner was ready so she served them. As they ate they talked about their day and the people they had seen but the discomfort of the conversation Kakashi had overheard hung over them and made them both feel awkward, something that had never happened before. When they were done Kakashi offered to wash the dishes for her.
"No Kakashi. Leave them. We need to talk."
"You're right. We do."
Asami's heart sank. She wondered where this would go, she felt like she had messed up and she wasn't sure why. She looked at him as they settled in their usual place in the living room. They were close to each other but he didn't pull her into his arms like he usually did.
"Asami. I need you to trust me."
"I do. Completely!" She was confused.
"Then why were you worried that a few tears had pushed me away?"
"I don't know. You. You're so tough and capable. I felt like maybe my weakness was repellent to you."
Kakashi caught her face in his hand and turned her so he was looking into her eyes. "Asami. Did I indicate that to you in some way?"
"No." She felt a little stupid now. Here she was in love with him and she didn't even trust him with her feelings? "I guess I was being stupid, huh?"
"Just a little. I forgive you. You told me, not too long ago, that if there was ever anything I wanted to tell you I could. That I could trust you with anything. Do you think I trust you?"
She looked back at him. Here was a man who had worn a mask everywhere for as long as most people could remember sitting, maskless, in her living room. He'd held her in her sadness without question and on top of that she had been the one he'd turned to when he needed holding a few months ago. Maybe she was an idiot after all. "Of course you do. I'm such an idiot."
"I don't think you're an idiot, Asami. Inexperienced maybe but not stupid. Your innocence is one of the things I love most about you. You have no ulterior motives in anything you do. You simply do things to be kind. I find it very attractive." At this he pulled her into his lap and kissed her deeply.
Asami knew this was where their relationship would change and she was going to make sure of it. "Kakashi..." She was nervous. "Will you stay again? With me?"
Kakashi heard what she said but wanted to be sure. "You aren't asking me because of anything Anko said?"
"No, silly. I am asking because I love you and I want to share my life with you. My whole life."
Kakashi answered her with a kiss.