He stood in front of the puke green wooden door, staring at the tiny paint cracks that ran from the door knocker and fanned out in each direction. This was ridiculous, it shouldn't be this hard to just give someone a gift.
Except he wasn't. Just giving someone a gift, that is. Well, that wasn't entirely true. It could very well be considered just a gift, but there was no way to mistake the gift itself. He sighed again and resisted the urge to bang his head against the wall.
He took another deep breath and raised his hand. Then dropped it again, his breath huffing out in a cloud of steam. He needed to do something, he was starting to get very cold. Even with the vest, scarf and gloves he had on over his uniform, he was beginning to freeze.
Finally, he managed to lift the brass knocker and let it fall. He waited impatiently, but when the door wasn't answered right away, he decided he'd just leave it. He set the box carefully on the welcome mat and transported away in a puff of smoke before the door could be answered anyway.
* * *
Kakashi heard the telltale “poof” just as he opened the door. So he knew better than to expect someone to be standing there. Instead, he looked down to find the box on his doorstep. He picked it up and turned back into his apartment.
It was a near perfect cube, wrapped in bright green paper with a silver bow on top. He set it on his kitchen table and stared at it a minute. It could be something he should be suspicious of, but he didn't want to ruin a gift from someone and there were a number of people, he realized, who might just want to leave him one.
Deciding he could probably get away before it could do any real damage to him and, if not, he could get Sakura to heal him, he pulled the paper away on the side. He carefully turned it over to peel it back from the bottom, then set the box back down. Finally pulling the last of the paper off of it, he opened the box and stared at the carving inside.
He lifted it out of the box carefully and turned it around in his hands. It was a very detailed, intricately-done wooden sculpture of himself. He was leaning against a tree, his Icha Icha book in hand and the nin-dogs sprawled in a pile around him on the ground.
He set it in the center of the table - probably the safest place in the room, and continued studying it for another few minutes. Then he grabbed his vest, scarf and gloves, locked his door and took off.
He had a feeling he'd know where to find him. There was only one person who could have made that for him, he was sure of it. And there was only one reason he could possibly think of that the artist would know him well enough to be able to make it so accurately. And if that was the case, he may have wasted a lot of years. Shaking his head at himself, he walked a little faster.
The ninja bar was always crowded, even on a holiday. Too many of the ninja had no family and so it was a lot easier to spend it getting drunk instead of dwelling on that fact. He, himself had been contemplating a trip down there when the knock came earlier.
He let his eye roam over the room. He spotted a drunk Naruto and Sai in one corner and had to do a double-take. He was fairly certain Sai's hand was not in a place he wanted to know about. Deciding that he really didn't want to know, he moved on. He saw Genma and Shizune getting cozy in a booth, Gai looked like he was getting a little too close to Tenten for her comfort and to his complete surprise, Iruka was sitting in Raido's lap at the end of the bar.
There must be something in the water. That's all he could figure. He shook his head and as his eyes traveled down the bar, they landed on his target. He threaded through the tables, waving and nodding as he moved through the room and finally took the seat next to him.
He signaled to Aio for his usual sake and turned to Yamato. He didn't seemed to have noticed him yet. He had two empty bottles in front of him already and was currently working on a third. “Hello.”
He fought the urge to smile as Yamato nearly jumped out of his skin. “S-sempai.”
Aio brought his drink over and he paused to take a sip. “I had the strangest thing happen to me tonight.” He said, conversationally.
“Oh? W-what's that?” He asked, finishing off his third bottle. He waved to the bartender for another round.
“Someone left a gift at my door.” He continued, sipping at his drink.
“Really? Who would do something like that? Leave it and not wait?” Yamato asked. Apparently, the alcohol was kicking in.
“I wondered that myself. The gift was beautiful, by the way. I can't imagine them not wanting to see my reaction to it.” He glanced sideways at Yamato, who was staring down into his drink.
“Maybe they did, but were afraid of your reaction.” He sighed and finally managed to shift his gaze back to Kakashi.
“I can't imagine why. They'd have to know that I would love something like that.” His eyes met Yamato's. Yamato swallowed and dropped his eyes. “I did, you know. Love it.”
Yamato looked back at him. “You did?”
Kakashi nodded. “Yes. Why didn't you wait?”
Yamato swallowed again and downed the rest of his sake. “I...” he took a deep breath. “How do you know it was me?”
Kakashi just raised an eyebrow. “How long have we known each other, Tenzou?”
“Yamato.” He said, quietly.
“What's that?” Kakashi leaned a little closer. The noise in the bar was getting louder in direct proportion to the amount of alcohol consumed.
“Call me Yamato. I know you know me as Tenzou, but I like it better.” He smiled weakly, then picked up the new bottle that Aio had delivered.
“Okay, Yamato. How long have we known each other?” He asked. He knew perfectly well. Eleven years, five months, two weeks and four days. Give or take a few hours.
“Eleven years, five months, two weeks and four days.” He finished, then blushed and mumbled something.
“What was that?” Kakashi blinked.
“And eight hours.” He said and downed the rest of the bottle. When he set it back on the bar, Kakashi noticed just how carefully he did so. Yamato was officially drunk.
“Eight. Right.” He stared at the man he'd always thought of as his best friend for a few minutes, not saying anything. Then he said, “Yamato, if I didn't know who'd left that for me, I ought to be drummed out of the ninja corps and flogged in the public square. And not for pleasure.”
Yamato blushed bright red at that, then he cleared his throat, but said nothing.
“Why didn't you wait, Yamato?” Kakashi asked again.
Yamato looked up at Kakashi again and sighed. “I...was afraid of your reaction.” Having used up his alcohol-induced bravery, he turned away again.
“Why?” Kakashi asked, genuinely puzzled.
“I...” Yamato hesitated and blushed again. “I didn't...” He sighed and finally looked back at him. “I think...” He stopped and signaled to Aio for another bottle. With a raised eyebrow, the bartender set the bottle in front of him. Just as Yamato reached out for it, Kakashi picked it up instead. “Hey, that's mine.” Yamato glared at him.
“You'll get it back. When you've answered my question.” He said, calmly, though Kakashi was anything but calm. He had thought he knew what was on Yamato's mind, but now he wasn't so sure. What was so bad that he couldn't tell him?
Yamato sighed and swallowed hard. “I was afraid you wouldn't take it. That...you would see what it meant and wouldn't want it.”
Kakashi stared at him. “Wouldn't want it?”
Yamato nodded. “Yes.” He plucked the bottle of sake out of a stunned Kakashi's still fingers and sipped at it. He decided sipping wasn't fast enough and downed it in one long drink, instead. That turned out to be a bit of a mistake because he was having a very hard time trying to find a spot to set it down on the moving bar. “Stay still.” He said to the bar.
“What?” Kakashi asked, then peered closer at Yamato. He was having trouble setting the bottle on the bar. “Okay, you've had quite enough.” He said. Time to get them out of there. Any further discussion could be had when they were both sober, or, more sober and not in a public place.
“I'll decide when I've had enough.” Yamato said and hiccupped. Kakashi watched Yamato try to focus on him then apparently come to the same conclusion Kakashi did. “Okay, I've had enough.” Then, with exaggerated care, he climbed down from the bar stool and turned toward the door. “Shit,” he said as he took in the crowded room. Kakashi figured he was wondering how to get through all the tables without embarrassing himself.
Kakashi fought the laughter. He didn't think Yamato would appreciate it at that point. “Come on, lean on me, I'll get us out of here.” He pulled Yamato's arm over his shoulder and wrapped an arm around Yamato's waist, then they headed through the bar. Kakashi got a few knowing looks as they passed, but with a glare from him, they turned away.
When they were outside, he turned toward his apartment. It was closer than Yamato's small house on the other side of the village and Yamato didn't seem too capable of putting up a fight. He was grateful for that fact at the moment, because every ninja in the corps seemed to be out that night, all of them heading toward the bar. And every one of them saw them pass.
So he was grateful when they got to his door. He propped Yamato up against the wall and pulled his key out. After pushing the door open, he once again pulled his friend's arm over his shoulder and helped him into the apartment. He left him on the couch, then closed and locked the door behind him, unwinding his scarf and pulling his gloves and shoes off.
He went back over to the couch and perched on his coffee table in front of Yamato. “It wasn't worth getting this shit-faced over, you know.”
Yamato raised an eyebrow. “Yez sou.” He cleared his throat. “Says you.”
Kakashi had to stifle the sigh. “Stay there.” He said and headed into his kitchen. He drew a large glass of water from the tap and brought it back out. “Drink.”
Yamato stared at the glass a moment. “If I do that, I'll start to sober up.”
“That's the idea. I could call Sakura over to make it faster.”
Yamato shook his head quickly, then put his hand up to stop the swaying. “Bad idea,” he mumbled. He took the glass from Kakashi's hand and drank it down. Then he sighed. “Damn.”
“Hm?” Kakashi raised an eyebrow.
“I gotta go to the bathroom now.” He sighed again and Kakashi helped him out of the couch and toward the bathroom. At the door, he made sure he could stand and waited patiently for him to finish. When they got back to the couch, he seemed a little steadier.
“Better?” Kakashi asked him.
Yamato nodded and frowned.
“Now, Yamato, have I really been that unapproachable?” Kakashi asked him.
Yamato shook his head. “No. But then again, I wasn't trying to tell you before that I think I'm in love with you.” His eyes widened at that and he slapped his hands over his mouth. Kakashi winced at how hard he hit himself, but apparently he'd had enough alcohol to not feel it.
Well, it was out there now. Kakashi stared at his friend for a moment before pulling his hands away from his mouth. “How long, Yamato?”
Yamato just shook his head.
“No? Not long? You don't know?” He asked, taking Yamato's hands into his own.
“I...don't want to say.” He swallowed.
“Well, if it's as long as I think, I expect it's about as long as I've been in love with you.” He stood then and moved over onto the couch, sitting sideways next to Yamato.
Yamato couldn't have moved in that moment for anything. He simply sat there on the couch and watched as Kakashi unwound the scarf from around his neck and set it aside. There was a huge lump in his throat and his stomach wanted to revolt over all the alcohol. He hadn't eaten a thing at dinner, he'd been too nervous thinking about dropping off the gift.
It would just figure he'd ruin this because he didn't eat or because he drank too much. He tried to take a deep breath, but that was impossible, his chest was too tight. All he could do was stare at the other man, this person he'd loved for so long. The one who'd just told him he loved him.
Kakashi still held his hand and he glanced down at it now. He felt his hand squeezed slightly and when he looked up, the mask was down and he was leaning toward him. Yamato stared at the bare face for a few seconds, then he simply couldn't think.
He'd imagined what a kiss with him would feel like, when he'd been alone late at night with nothing but his own thoughts for company. He could almost feel it, but it had, of course, always fallen just short. So when Kakashi's lips moved over his, he couldn't have restrained his response for anything. His mouth opened, his tongue lightly ran over the other man's lip and he barely suppressed the moan when he really tasted Kakashi for the first time.
His hands threaded through the silver hair and he held him there as the kiss deepened even further. He felt the arms come around him and pull him even closer and he did moan quietly this time in the back of his throat as he felt the hard planes of Kakashi's chest against him. Even through their vests, it was something, feeling that against him. They broke apart, then, both more than a little breathless and mismatched eyes met dark ones. Yamato never noticed knocking Kakashi's headband off, but it was gone, somewhere, nonetheless.
He paused and ran his fingers lightly over the scar. Then he kissed it gently and moved his lips down over the rest of the face until their mouths met again and the heat exploded once more. He felt the zipper being lowered and then his vest was gone. He struggled briefly with Kakashi's. He was used to taking it off himself, but then he managed, just barely and it was gone, too. The arms came back around him and their lips crashed together again, tongues warring.
He couldn't get enough, couldn't taste enough, couldn't feel enough. Everything he'd been wanting, everything he'd been needing was here. So, when they paused for breath, he didn't waste a chance. Their eyes met again and he started unbuttoning Kakashi's shirt.
But Kakashi himself was impatient. He wanted them naked now. He'd convinced himself all those years that he was the only one thinking it, that he was the only one with those feelings. He'd even seen Yamato with a woman more than once and had just assumed he didn't go that way. They'd have to talk about that later, but right now, all he could think about was the other man's body, feeling it against him, showing him just how he felt for him.
So he didn't let him finish unbuttoning the shirt, he simply yanked it off. And, after taking care of just the first couple of buttons on Yamato's, his shirt was gone, too, yanked over his head and tossed aside. He pulled at the other man's undershirt as Yamato tugged at his and then their chests were bare and he could feel him, skin against skin.
Nothing he could have imagined could have felt nearly as good. He laid back with him so that Yamato was stretched out on top of him and he stared up into the dark eyes of the person he loved. He brushed a bit of brown hair back off of his face, then leaned up and ran his lips lightly across Yamato's.
This was soft nibbles, slow tastes. Kakashi took the time enjoy the feel of the bare skin under his hands. He ran them slowly over his back, feeling the muscles, learning the dips and scars. He moved his lips down over Yamato's chin, tasting now, learning the little spots that would make him moan. He found one of these spots at the base of his neck, right above the collarbone and he exploited it, teasing him.
But he was getting frustrated with the couch. He wanted to be able to move more, touch more, and his pathetic piece of furniture was not made for it. “Let's move.” It was little more than a whisper, but Yamato sat up, letting Kakashi get up. As he stood, he took Yamato's hand and drew him into the bedroom with him.
He stopped just shy of the bed and turned again, unable to resist, even for that little bit of time, the urge to kiss again. There were no more soft brushes. It was heat and need now. He needed to feel him, needed to taste him and so as their tongues once more danced, he flicked the button of Yamato's pants open with one hand.
With a twist of his wrist, the zipper was down and he slipped inside the pants and cupped the bare behind in his hand. He pulled Yamato closer to him and he could feel his arousal against his own. His eyes met brown ones and he started kissing his way down the broad chest in front of him. As he made his way down, pausing to run his tongue lightly around the belly button, he pushed the open pants down off of his hips to pool on the floor.
And then he was there, and Yamato's sex was right in front of him. He looked up at him and placed a very light, very gentle kiss just on the tip. Hands threaded through silver hair and a hiss escaped the lips above him. Encouraged, Kakashi's tongue darted out and ran it lightly up the underside.
He watched Yamato's face, reveling in the expressions. His eyes were closed, lost in what Kakashi was doing to him. He took him into his mouth slowly, savoring this first time. The very first chance to taste. “Oh God, Kakashi...”
It was music to his hears, to hear his name from those lips. He moved his mouth, licking, sucking, anything he could to give pleasure. And in only a couple of moments, Yamato's hips started moving. “I can't... Kakashi, I'm going to...” he tried to give the warning, tried to pull away, but Kakashi was determined. He wrapped his hand around the base of Yamato's cock and started stroking it as he moved his mouth over him. A moment later, he was rewarded with a shouted, “Kakashi!,” and his mouth was filled with Yamato's seed.
Kakashi stood and wrapped his arms around Yamato who looked up at him. He trailed kisses along Kakashi's jaw, then their lips met again. But Yamato wasn't happy, he could feel Kakashi's arousal against him. “Do you want to take me?”
Kakashi swallowed, then nodded. Yamato reached out and, his eyes never leaving Kakashi's, unbuttoned his pants and pushed them over his hips, letting them fall to the floor. He wrapped his hand around the other man's sex, stroking it gently before letting go and backing up to the bed.
Kakashi remembered himself enough to get the bottle out of the top drawer of his dresser that he'd put there in the hope that maybe, someday, he'd have this chance. He tossed it on the bed, then captured Yamato's lips again and he felt the light tremor go through him. “Is...something wrong?”
Yamato shook his head. “No. But, um, I've never actually...”
Kakashi's eyes widened. “Never?”
He shook his head again. “No. I...” he cleared his throat and looked away. “I was too in love with you. I didn't want anyone else.”
Kakashi frowned and ran his fingers down Yamato's face. “All that time wasted.” He kissed him again and their lips only broke apart briefly as they settled on the bed. Then they crashed together again and Kakashi did everything he could to banish his lover's nervousness.
He kissed him everywhere he could reach, running his lips over his skin, pausing to tongue his nipples. Yamato hissed out a breath, one hand going to Kakashi's head, the other fisting on the sheet. But he wasn't done with him yet. He continued moving over his body, kissing and nibbling, tasting everything. And when he paused next to Yamato's cock, he dropped a kiss on it's hard length.
He picked up the bottle then and sat back, spreading Yamato's legs wide. He poured a bit of the liquid onto his first finger and, watching the other man's face, started by simply touching him there. Yamato's eyes closed on a moan and, taking it as a good sign, Kakashi eased the first finger into him.
This moan was much louder. Kakashi worked him with his finger, watching the play of emotions across his face, the pleasure he was giving him. He leaned down, capturing Yamato's lips, needing that connection, too. Arms came around him, holding onto him as their kiss grew more heated with the movement of Kakashi's finger.
When they broke apart, he stared into the brown eyes and knew it was time. He added a second finger, watching carefully to the reactions of the other man. Yamato tensed slightly, but as Kakashi started moving them, his eyes closed once more and the sounds he made were unmistakable.
It was killing him. Kakashi desperately wanted to be inside of him, but the last thing he wanted or needed to do was ruin this for him and possibly their sex life for a long time. And he planned to have a long one with him. He grabbed a hold of his control from somewhere and waited.
As he worked his fingers in him, Yamato opened his eyes and looked up at him. “Please...let me feel you. Now.”
And with that, Kakashi couldn't wait anymore. He wanted, needed, desperately to feel him, too. He opened the bottle again and coated himself well, then added a bit more to Yamato for good measure. Then he moved up and got into position.
Yamato watched him and as Kakashi started to push into him, and they couldn't seem to look away, could do nothing but clasp hands and thread their fingers together. Slowly, carefully, he kept at it until he was finally buried completely inside. Yamato was so tight, it nearly killed him. He leaned down and their lips met, softly, gently, and there was a wealth of meaning, of emotion behind it. Kakashi paused to give himself a moment. “God, you feel incredible. Are you okay?”
Yamato nodded. 'You...feel good, too.” He ran his hands over Kakashi's back, pulled his legs up and wrapped them around and kissed him again.
As Kakashi started move, he knew it wasn't going to take long. He didn't want to rush this, didn't want it go fast. But there wasn't much he'd be able to do, it felt too damned good. He started pumping slowly, determined to draw it out, make it last. He wrapped his hand around Yamato's cock, stroking him, wanting to give to him, too, if he could.
“Oh, God. I won't last like that.” Yamato moaned and Kakashi's resolve wavered. The need to give outweighed his wish to make it last and he sped up just a bit.
He, too, was close. “Come, Yamato. Come for me.” He started moving faster, stroking him faster and a moment later he was rewarded with an answering shout from Yamato of Kakashi's name and the warm fluid that spilled over his hand. He let himself go, then and thrust once more hard, into him and came, his orgasm more intense than anything could ever remember feeling.
Yamato's arms came around Kakashi as he collapsed on his chest and he dropped a kiss on the top of his head. They lay there a moment, stunned, breathless, hearts pounding. Kakashi looked up at his best friend, the person he'd been in love with for so long...the one he'd just made love to. “I...” he had to clear his throat. “I thought... all this time, I thought you weren't...you didn't.” He shook his head at himself. “I thought you didn't like men.”
Yamato gave a sad half smile. “I don't know if I like men. I know I love you. I've been in love for so long, I don't remember what it is to love someone else.”
“But I saw you with women.” Kakashi said, still confused.
Yamato sighed. “I thought that, since you didn't show any signs of being interested in anyone, much less other men well, I'd try to forget. It didn't work. They didn't. So, I gave up on that, too. But when I got the...idea for your gift, I thought maybe it would be a chance.” He chuckled at himself. “And then I chickened out.”
Kakashi smiled and ran his fingers gently over the blush on Yamato's face.. “We're here, aren't we?” He eased back and held a hand out to Yamato. At his confused look, he said, “let's clean up. We have some lost time to make up for. Including a lot of showers.” His smile turned a little wicked at that.
“Oh.” Yamato blushed and took his hand. He closed his eyes briefly, savoring just the simple ability to touch like that.
“You know, I didn't get you a present.” Kakashi said, on the way into the bathroom.
“Oh yes you did.” Yamato replied. At Kakashi's raised eyebrow. “You came after me. That was present enough.”