Finding Peace

Chapter 5- Just Like You

It was Asami's day off again and though she had run a few errands in the morning she was packing a lunch and heading back to her favorite spot. She needed some quiet to clear her head and relax. Especially with the chunin exam in progress. All the visitors for the exam were making her stand very busy indeed. That was good for business but hard on her.

It had been a week since Asami had been startled by Kakashi standing outside her door and he hadn't stopped by again. Asami was more than a little disappointed but she wasn't surprised. Anko had come by and they had visited for a bit but she had not brought the subject of Kakashi up which had surprised her. Anko had been talking Kakashi up to her for over a month now and all of sudden- nothing. Of course Anko was busy with the chunin exam also, as the proctor of the second exam she had her hands full making preparations.

Asami made her way to the river, found the grassy spot that she liked so much and settled in. She thought again about climbing the tree but decided against it. The last time she had climbed a tree was when Kichirou had come with her 2 years ago. It had been just before he had moved out to live with some of the ninja that he worked with. It made sense since they worked and trained together and she knew he was doing a lot of missions but she missed him. He visited her a few times a month when he was home. The last time he visited he told her that he was going to start extra training in the hopes of being selected for the Anbu. He had gotten one of the Anbu guys who had studied under their father to agree to train him. He would be very busy. She knew that the training was in addition to his usual schedule of training and missions. She didn't expect to see him anytime soon.

Asmai was drifting off to sleep when she thought she heard footsteps and rustling behind her. She peered around the tree she was leaning on and saw Kakashi walking and reading at the same time. She smiled to herself, she had seen him many times walking through town and reading and didn't know how he did it without tripping or walking into someone.

She decided to jump at the advantage. "Oh hello there Kakashi!" she hoped that he would be taken off guard but was disappointed when he just looked up with one sleepy eye.

"Hello Asami! How are you doing?"

"I'm doing well. How are you?"

"Good. Thank you. You must have the day off." Kakashi actually knew this already because he had stopped by her stand in the hopes of visiting, but he hadn't known she would be down here by the river.

"Yeah. I take one day a week just to keep my head straight. It helps a lot. The stand isn't all that hard to run and the hours are great but I do need some time to myself. We've been so busy with all the visitors in the village for the chunin exam." She laughed and desperately hoped that he would sit down and join her for a while.

"Well that makes sense. Even ninja need a day off. Do you want to be alone or can I join you?" Kakashi wanted to just sit down but he hadn't talked with her in a week, since being discovered outside her door in the rain, like a stalker, and he wasn't sure he was welcome.

"Please! Join me! I'd love the company." Asami was nervous, she hoped she wouldn't embarrass herself but she did really want to visit with him.

Kakashi stuffed his book into one of his pockets and sat down on the grass laying all the way back to stare at the sky. He idly wondered what they would talk about and then decided it didn't matter, he'd be just as happy simply spending time with her. Preparing team 7 for the chunin exam had been tiring and he just wanted to relax and enjoy her company.

Asami broke the silence. "So have you been on any exciting missions lately? Or have they been so secret you'd have to kill me if you told me about them?"

"Actually, I've been preparing my team for the chunin exam. They'll enter the Forest of Death tomorrow."

"Oh! They must be so excited! Father used to tell us stories of his chunin exam but mother always said he was just exaggerating." Asami laughed at the memory, her smile filling her whole face.

Kakashi watched her from where he was laying. Her face was so beautiful and even more so when she laughed with such joy. She'd clearly had a good family life with her parents, something he'd never had.

"Oh but you probably don't want to hear boring old stories about my family." She worried that he wouldn't find her interesting and that he'd leave. His eye was closed so she used the moment to really look at him. He wasn't the most muscled ninja in the village but he was definitely the best looking one. He was lanky rather than being muscled but she knew from things her father had said that that made him fast. And she loved his silver hair, how she wished she could touch it and see if it was as silky as it looked. When he opened his eye to answer her she looked away quickly.

"Actually I don't mind at all. Your father is one of the hero's of this village and I'm honored that you would share a story about him with me. I only knew of him really. He and I spoke once and only briefly then. What was he like?"

Asami was surprised that Kakashi was interested in her father. "To be honest I don't know much about his work persona. At home he was an amazing father," she added sadly, "when he was there. He was madly in love with my mother and I and was so excited to have a son when he met Kichirou. It's too bad he didn't live to see the man that Kichirou has become. He'd be so proud. But away from home, I know he was a very different person. He wouldn't even acknowledge us if he saw us in the village."

Kakashi was surprised. He had been asking around a little about Asami's father Takeo and everyone that knew him described his as a hard-ass who would punch you first and ask questions later. This definitely didn't fit with the person Asami was describing. He'd heard of the story when her mother had fallen and Takeo had walked right by from Gai. His father Dai had been one of the ones to stop and help her. Kakashi was pretty sure he wouldn't be able to do that himself.

"Why was he so different at home than he was in public? Do you know?" He asked.

"I do. Mother explained it to me like this. He was a very good and powerful ninja" Asami faltered and blushed at the overt compliment she had given her father but Kakashi nodded in agreement and indicated she should continue. "He felt that if anyone knew how much he cared for us we could be used against him. As my mother put it, as far as anyone knew we were nothing more than a place to sleep, eat and get clean clothes. I sometimes wonder how mother lived with that but she never once looked unhappy or complained."

Kakashi rolled up on one side so he could look directly at her. "Indeed, your mother must have been an amazing woman, which explains you."

With that Kakashi sprung up to his feet. "I am afraid I must be off now. I have a meeting this afternoon. Can I come by again soon?"

Asami almost fell over. Had Kakashi just complimented her? She was sure she was blushing but she managed to look up at him and say "of course! Anytime. If you come a little later than your usual I can even cook you a real meal."

Kakashi smiled down at her. She really was beautiful and he supposed he didn't mind flirting with her. "I will keep that in mind" And with that he was off in a puff of smoke.

Asami pinched herself and then did it again. She was sure she had been dreaming. Not only had Kakashi been flirting with her he had accepted a dinner invitation!

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