Cultural Festival Finale
Naruto just smiled brightly at the dumbfounded pair facing him.
Sasuke was looking away uncomfortably.
"S-so you guys are really…?" Temari didn't know how to say it.
Outright saying: 'You guys are gay?' sounded WAY to confronting, but how else would you ask?
Naruto laughed, "Yeah…well…I guess we were hoping to keep this to ourselves a little longer…but oh well. Sorry Sasuke, but I guess the cats out of the bag now!"
Sasuke paused, "Well, I guess if it had to be anyone, it would be Shikamaru, though I suspect you've been suspicious about us since a while ago, right Shikamaru?"
Shikamaru grinned, "I guess the only empty ramen bowl, the hand holding and not to forget the way you just act Sasuke is a bit of a give away"
"Wh-what do you mean by that?" Sasuke stuttered a tad embarrassed.
"So what should we do now Sasuke?" Naruto asked
Sasuke thought for a bit and then grinned, "We aren't quite found out yet. Wanna make a deal Shikamaru?"
Shikamaru cocked an eyebrow, "I'm listening…"
"Ok, if you and Temari keep our little relationship a secret, then we'll keep a secret of your own little relationship" Sasuke ripped off their embarrassing haunted house photo off the board, "Unless you want this picture posted all over the net"
Temari gasped. If that reached Suna, it'll be bad.
Shikamaru sighed, "Fine, you have a deal. So troublesome. Now let's get rid of these pictures…"
They started to tear down the picture of themselves from the board. They received a few complaints from the people from behind looking at them, but once Sasuke looked them in the eye, they either swooned or felt threatened and stopped complaining.
"I don't get it…" Temari started to talk continuing to tear pictures down and stuffing them in her bag, "Why don't you say anything? I don't think anyone will diss you for it or anything…"
"It's a lot more complicated than that" Sasuke started
"You're aware of our rank and how we're seen at school right?" Naruto continued.
"Temari, they aren't afraid of being badly thought of, but you have to have realised by now that they have 'fan girls' and a hell of a lot of them. If they found out, they would be devastated and it'll be the end of the world as you know it. The last thing you want is to be interrogated and surrounded by angry fan girls…" Shikamaru finished.
Temari made an 'oh' shape with her mouth to show that she understood.
Just when they finished stuffing the picture in their bags and ripping a few in the bin, the rest of the gang came.
"Oh Sasuke! Where were you all this time? I've been looking for you everywhere~" Ino crooned.
Temari wanted to block her ears. She almost forgot how annoyingly high-pitched Ino's voice was.
"Hey Temari, everyone!" Tenten called out.
Kiba and Hinata as well as Lee and Sakura came up to them as well and the whole gang was back together again.
"You'll never guess what happened!" Ino cried out, "Chouji and I won free tickets to go to some luxurious Hot Springs!"
"Huh? Me too" everyone else said out loud in sync.
"What?" everyone questioned looking at each other.
"Huh? Don't tell me all of you guys also won tickets?" Ino complained
Everyone else nodded their heads in agreement.
"How did you get yours Kiba, Hinata?" Ino asked
"Akamaru won the 'Top Canine Award' and one of the prizes was Hot Spring tickets" Kiba answered.
"Neji, Tenten?" Ino continued to ask following the circle.
"We won in a tag team Martial Arts competition" Neji answered with no expression.
"Treasure Hunt" Sasuke shrugged, "As well as Shikamaru and Temari". Sasuke added looking at Shikamaru, proving that their deal was still in effect.
"How did you guys win?" Temari asked Ino
"Eating competition" Ino answered pointing at Chouji
'Figures' Temari thought.
"Funny how we all won Hot Spring tickets in the end? I kinda wanted it to be just me and Chouji who won to make us look good, but it'll definitely be more fun with all of us together. Are you guys also going during Golden Week?"
"That's what it says on our ticket" Temari answered looking at the date printed on the ticket.
Everyone murmured in agreement checking their tickets as well.
"Oh my god! I can't WAIT!" Ino squealed.
"Same! It going to be so much fun, yet relaxing!" Sakura agreed
"I-I hope so" Hinata stuttered
"You have to be more positive than that Hinata! It's the Hot Springs, of course it will be fun!" Tenten cried out giving Hinata a pat on the back.
Akamaru barked in agreement.
"Well, shall we go off and have some fun together?" Ino asked
"Yeah" everyone answered and they walked off into the centre of the festival.
They all started to play the multiple games around the area.
It was more of a carnival than a School Festival.
Kiba and Hinata were playing Kingyo-sukui (where you catch a goldfish with a paper net).
"Dang it! My net broke again!" Kiba yelled out for the forth time
"It's ok Kiba…" Hinata consoled, "I want to have a try"
"Ok" Kiba handed Hinata a paper net.
Hinata closed her eyes for a second and flashed them open, quickly scooping a fish up into her bowl without breaking her net.
"Whoa Hinata! You're awesome at this!" Kiba cried in happiness hugging her in excitement.
"K-Kiba!" Hinata started to freak out feeling a bit dizzy.
"Oops, she fainted" Kiba quoted still holding fainted Hinata in his arms.
Meanwhile, a crowd started up around the Archery Club.
"Wow, they're so good!" a random girl called out
"Do you think they're experts?" said another
"The guy's really hot" another one swooned.
Sure enough, Tenten and Neji were competing with each other winning stack loads of prizes.
Unfortunately the show had to stop because the Archery manager was about to run out of prizes.
Not too far away you could hear a squeal when Ino successfully pulled the correct string and won a little pig soft toy; while Chouji won a butterfly one for Ino.
Naruto and Sasuke were playing the cork shooting game with much success and had a little pile of their own toys.
Lee and Sakura were fishing water balloon yoyos out of an inflatable pool. Lee got a green one and Sakura caught a pink one.
"Well, it looks like everyone's having fun…" Temari commented watching her friends with Shikamaru.
"Yeah…" Shikamaru replied, "Did you want to do anything?"
"I don't know…to tell you the truth, I haven't really been to a festival like this before"
"Are you serious?" Shikamaru looked at her a bit dumbfounded
"Yeah, I remember going to one when I was really young with my mother. It was really fun"
"What happened?" Shikamaru asked
"My mother died and my father couldn't give a rat's ass about me or my brothers" Temari looked down at her feet.
"Oh…sorry. You have brothers?"
"Don't worry about it, I'm used to it. I have two brothers, Gaara and Kankurou. They're both younger, but Kankurou's in the same year level"
"I never knew…"
There was an awkward silence.
"Well that's enough of the depressing atmosphere! We're here now to have fun, so where should we start?" Temari smiled trying to cheer up the mood.
Shikamaru thought for a bit, "Come here" he ordered grabbing Temari by the wrist dragging her along.
"Where are we going?" Temari asked
They reached a ring tossing stall.
"Ring Toss?" Temari questioned.
"Yeah. I've always liked it"
Shikamaru lifted his hand and bought a hand full of rings.
"Here" Shikamaru handed a couple of rings to Temari. "Just throw it at what ever target you wish".
Temari eyed a weasel soft toy. She readied one of her rings and threw it, hitting the target, but it didn't catch or knock off the toy.
"Drat!" she cursed
"Have a look here Temari," Shikamaru beckoned her. He got a ring ready, "You have to throw it a little softer with a bit more glide" he threw the ring and it perfectly rung around a toy deer.
The man at the stall handed the soft toy to him.
"Ok" Temari took a deep breath and threw another ring, missing yet again.
Shikamaru laughed clearly amused. "Let me help you"
He handed her another ring, but this time he held onto her hand.
"Wh-what are you doing?" Temari questioned a little surprised at the sudden move.
"Calm down and let go of the ring when I say so"
Temari closed her mouth shut. She could feel her heart starting to race a bit at the sudden contact.
Shikamaru guided her hand back and then swiftly moved it forward, "Let go" he whispered in her ear and she did what she was told.
The ring successfully caught the weasel.
"Yay!" Temari smiled with glee, happy with the reward.
"See, all it takes is the right technique" Shikamaru grinned
"Thanks" she whispered under her breath
Shikamaru grinned even bigger.
The man handed Temari the weasel toy.
"Here" Shikamaru said handing over his toy deer.
"No, you won it, so you keep it" Temari answered pushing the deer back even though it was very cute.
"I want you to have it" Shikamaru kept his calm tone.
Temari flushed a bit and took the deer hesitantly. "If I'm going to take your deer, then you have to take my weasel"
Shikamaru smiled crookedly, "Deal".
They exchanged toys with a smile.
Everyone continued to play the many activities with joy until the sun started to set.
"Hey Shikamaru, Temari! When you're done, meet us at the mask stall. We're gonna go buy one and then watch the fireworks" Sakura called out to them.
"Ok" Temari called back and they headed towards the masks.
A crowd was starting to build up and Temari was getting lost in it. She was about to grab Shikamaru's hand, but she hesitated.
Since when did she become the type of person who depended on others?
Why did she miss the hand contact she used to have so much?
"Temari!" Shikamaru called out and he quickly grabbed hold of her hand with a firm grip and guided her to the destined stall.
Temari stood close to him not wanting to let go; though she knew she had to once they arrived at the stall.
There were many masks in all different shaped and sizes.
Sakura got a slug shaped one, Lee got a tiger, Neji and Tenten got an ANBU shaped mask, Kiba got a dog, Hinata got a mouse, Sasuke got a snake, Naruto got a fox, Ino got a pig, Chouji got a butterfly, Shikamaru got a deer and Temari got a weasel.
They all bought ramune (Japanese soft drink), cotton candy, konpeito (Japanese star-shaped, colourful rock candy) and all sorts of sweets.
Then they all sat down in a grassy area waiting for the fireworks.
"No matter how good they are, they won't be as good as our fireworks!" Naruto commented
"Yes, we will always beat them with extreme youth!" Lee cried out
"Geez, not so loud you two! I want to stay OUT of trouble" Sakura remarked
"It's ok, what can they do?" Kiba stated
"P-Please don't encourage this Kiba" Hinata mumbled
"I wish it would start already!" Ino complained
"Just be patient Ino, it will start soon. We're just a bit early…" Chouji mentioned trying to calm her down.
Shikamaru was laying down watching the stars.
Temaru lied down next to him a little further away from the group. "When is our school festival on?" Temari asked
"Mmm…sometime soon after Golden Week"
They continued to lie on the grass watching the stars in bliss and content.
Temari continued to look up, "The stars are nice here, but not as good as Suna's. It makes me miss home a bit."
"Were their more?"
"Yeah, MUCH more. Even though our school was a prestigious one, we were in more of a country side than this"
"They sound nice…"
"They're beautiful. You should come and see them some time"
Shikamaru gave it a thought, "That would be nice…though I still prefer clouds"
Temari wasn't sure if he rejected, accepted or just didn't realise her offer, "Why do you like clouds better?"
"I guess it's because they move freely without a care in the world, constantly changing with the wind; while stars are sort of just stick on the sky"
"True, but their twinkling bright light is much prettier"
Then suddenly someone over the P.A. system spoke, "Ok, let the fireworks show begin!"
There was a cheer and fireworks flew into the sky, covering it with bright lights.
Many different patterns came up and everyone 'ooh' and 'aah-ed' at the sight of them.
It was definitely a night to remember.