Not Just Friends

BY : Sasunarufan13
Category: Naruto > Yaoi - Male/Male > Naruto/Sasuke
Dragon prints: 323
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto nor make profit of it. Kishimoto owns it.

Author's note: I debated between working out my frustration through another Not for Sakura fans oneshot or through a more light-hearted piece. I eventually decided that maybe I should be nice for once and go for the light-hearted option. (Sakura still doesn't get what she wants, though).

Warnings: Triple pov: Naruto, Ino and Sasuke; canon divergent after the war; slash; misunderstanding; attempt at humour; references to mature content; Naruto being surprisingly naive; Sasuke being the victim of said naivity (he ends up appreciating it in the end, though)

I hope you'll like this!

Not Just Friends

Finished with his training, Naruto dispersed of all his clones and dropped down on the ground, panting hard. He forced himself to crawl underneath the shadow of a large tree to avoid the piercing sunlight. Sure, he would heal if he managed to get a sunburn, but the irritating ache of the burn wasn't worth it. Bracing himself against the tree trunk, he stared out at the field and the small craters he had accidentally left behind with his Rasengan.

The training had gone well, but he couldn't help but feel a bit down that he had had to train on his own. Sakura was busy in the hospital, Kakashi was trying to get through the amount of paperwork every Hokage had to deal with and the rest of his friends were busy with missions. Truthfully, there was only one person he would love to train with the most, but he wasn't even in the village, hadn't been for a couple of months now.

"Maybe I should send him a note," he mused aloud, splaying his arms and legs open across the ground. There was some grit digging into his back, but he felt too tired to move.

After all Sasuke had never said he couldn't contact him and ask him to come back for a training session. Yeah, maybe he should do that, because it had been three months already since he'd last seen Sasuke and it would be good to meet up again. What would have been the point of their fight after all, if they couldn't see each other more regularly than just twice a year or so?

He was so in lost in thought that the sound of two women talking on the other side of the tree scared him nearly half to death. Ignoring Kurama's snickering he sat up a bit straighter and was about to stand up and leave when the women seemed to pause right behind the tree.

"Wait, got a pebble in my shoe, I think," one of the women sighed.

"Well maybe if you wore your regular sandals," the second woman said teasingly.

"Oh hush you, I like these shoes!"

"You mean, Asahi-kun likes seeing you in them." Even from Naruto's position, the smirk was audible in the voice of the second woman.

The first woman sniffed. "I don't know what you are talking about."

"Uhuh, still just friends?"

"I wouldn't call us just friends," the first woman giggled before clucking her tongue. "Finally got that damn pebble."

"What would you call yourself then?"

"Well, we're more than just friends, so friends with benefits of course!"

That set the two women off in another fit of giggles followed by a soft crunchy noise as they started walking away again. Naruto remained sitting, pondering about what he had just heard. He felt a little guilty for basically having been eavesdropping on them, but then again, they were the ones who had been talking so loudly in public! If they hadn't wanted anyone to overhear they should have waited until they were home to have this conversation. So, shoving aside the guilt, he thought about what they had been saying.

Friends with benefits … That one woman had said she was friends with benefits with that one guy, because they were more than just friends. Naruto tilted his head to the right and crossed his arms; a light furrow etching his forehead in two. So was friends with benefits a step above best friends or a step below it? Because if it was a step above best friends, wouldn't that term suit him and Sasuke as well?

He remembered the conversation he and Sasuke had had right after their fight, when Sasuke had asked him what the term 'friend' had meant to Naruto. Back then he had had a hard time explaining himself, because while he knew there was a definite difference between the friendship he had with Sasuke and the one he shared with his other friends, he hadn't really been able to explain what exactly had made it so different. That had frustrated Sasuke somewhat, Naruto knew, but it wasn't his fault he hadn't been good at explaining himself! What had the bastard expected, a whole damn essay?! Friends with benefits, though … That could fit them, no?

"Hey, Kurama, you think friends with benefits would be a better way to name what Sasuke and I have?" Naruto questioned curiously, staring up at the gigantic head of the fox demon.

Kurama raised an eyebrow and bared his teeth in an amused grin for some odd reason. Friends with benefits?, he echoed.

"Yeah, overhearing those two got me thinking, you know," Naruto said and crossed his arms behind his head. "Sasuke asked me once before what 'friend' meant to me, but he didn't seem happy with how I explained it to him. You think friends with benefits would fit us better?"

Kurama laid his head down on his front paws; his nine tails idly curling up in the air, waving slowly back and forth. And what exactly do you understand under the term 'friends with benefits', kit?

"Well, it's more than best friends I guess?" Naruto replied, slightly confused. "Going to be honest here: I've never heard of that term before, but that woman seemed to imply that it's like one level above friends, so maybe it's even better than being best friends? Because if it was just as good as best friends, she would just say they're best friends, right?"

Very good reasoning, you might not be a completely helpless case after all, Kurama heckled; his eyes glinting deviously.

"See, it's because of shitty replies like that, that people don't like you," Naruto pointed out with a huff.

No, I think it's the fact that I can wipe out entire villages that makes people not like me, Kurama answered idly. Either way if you feel like 'friends with benefits' describes your … relationship with the Uchiha better, then by all means go for it.

Naruto squinted at him, growing a bit suspicious at the smirk that kept lingering on Kurama's face. "Why are you so amused?" he asked warily.

Amused? Not at all. Can't a Bijuu be happy for its holder that he finally figured out how to best name his relationship with scum that could easily take control of him? Kurama retorted innocently.

"Sasuke isn't scum, Kurama," Naruto said irritated. Honestly, this pissing match between Kurama and Sasuke was getting old. "And he's never tried to take control of me!"

My bad. I must have imagined that time he entered your mind in the compound of that snake Sannin, Kurama snorted. The force behind it sent Naruto flying, landing on his arse.

"Entering my mind isn't the same as taking control over me," Naruto said annoyed. "You're still with me, aren't you? And Sasuke is now strong enough that he could attempt to control you if he wanted to, but he's not doing that, so nah!"

In fact Sasuke never even tried to gain control of his mind during the sparring sessions they had shared so far, even though he was in possession of the Sharingan. That wasn't to say that he wouldn't activate his Sharingan during their sparring, but he never once attempted to gain control over Kurama.

Well, why don't you go bother your precious friend with benefits then instead of bothering me? Kurama said bored.

"Aw," Naruto cooed and patted one of Kurama's paws, ignoring the snarl he received in return, "is someone feeling jealous? You want a friend with benefits too, Kurama?"

I'm definitely not in the market for a friend like that, was all that Kurama said before the small blast of his chakra sent Naruto careening out of their shared mental space.

Well, whatever. Naruto stood up, brushing the dirt off his trousers. Kurama always got a bit grumpy when Sasuke was mentioned, so that wasn't such a surprising end to their conversation.

But! Naruto grinned, clapping his hands in excitement. At least now he knew how to properly name their friendship!

"Finally done with your shift, Billboard Brow?" Ino greeted cheerfully when her friend dropped down on the grass next to her. She waggled a bottle of cold water at the pink haired woman, who accepted it with a relieved groan.

"Eugh, yeah, I thought there would never be an end to that shift," Sakura moaned. "Today was worse than when the flu broke out last winter!"

Ino grimaced in sympathy. She'd jumped in to help at the hospital back then and boy, that time hadn't been pretty. For every patient that had recovered from the flu, another two had taken their place and it had taken weeks before the influx of patients had finally slowed down.

"That many sick people or just that many injured?" she questioned curiously.

While the villages had agreed to cooperate with each other and no longer wage war, that didn't mean that everyone had become peaceful. Gangs still formed, trying to attack small towns and even the villages if they felt brave and stupid enough. Ino herself had been sent on three missions so far to deal with gangs like that. They were like weed, always popping up. Goddamn annoying.

"That many injured," Sakura sighed and took another gulp from her water before screwing the lid back on it. "Several missions ended today apparently and while only a few were severely injured, a lot of them required help."

"Well, the only thing we can do, is get rid of all those gangs and hope that eventually they'll stop being stupid," Ino said and swept her long hair back over her shoulder. She hoped they would stop being idiots soon, because it was getting pretty irritating having to deal with them.

She looked up when a shadow fell over them, blinking when she met light brown eyes. Honoka, a girl Ino had seen trying to flirt with Naruto before, stood in front of them; her dark purple hair glinting in the sunlight. A pout adorned her face and Ino barely managed to cover her grimace on time. God, if she was here trying to get their help so Naruto would respond to her flirt attempts … Not that Ino didn't want Naruto to be happy, but considering Honoka had so far failed in every attempt she had made to get closer to him, Ino thought it was safe to assume that Naruto simply wasn't interested. That or he was incredibly dense, but she didn't think he was that dense.

"Haruno-san, why didn't you tell me that Naruto-kun is no longer single?" she asked, drawing the question out in an annoying whine.

Sakura blinked. "He's no longer single?" she repeated bemused and shared a look of confusion with Ino.

Ino shrugged helplessly. This was also the first time she'd heard about that! Wait, had Hinata finally been courageous enough to ask Naruto out? Why hadn't she told them about that!?

"Well, maybe in a sense, but I'm not interested in being another playmate," Honoka sniffed and curled a lock around her finger.

Ino was officially lost already. "Playmate? What are you talking about?"

Honoka pursed her lips and waved her hand haphazardly through the air. "I was trying to see if he had time to accompany me to the festival in two days, but he told me he already had plans with someone, so I asked him who."

Personally Ino thought that hadn't been any of Honoka's business, but well, she was also the same girl who until today hadn't caught onto the fact that Naruto wasn't interested in her so …

"Apparently he's meeting up with Sasuke-kun! And get this!" Honoka widened her eyes. "I asked him if he was talking about Uchiha Sasuke, because you know he's been barely in town this year, and Naruto-kun said yes. So I asked him if that meant they're still friends and he told me they've got something better going on!"

"Best friends?" Sakura suggested dryly.

Ino grinned and nudged her shoulder. Everyone in Konoha – and quite frankly anyone outside Konoha – knew by now that Sasuke and Naruto were best friends and that Naruto had no qualms about declaring that whenever he thought someone was about to slander Sasuke's name.

What did Naruto meeting up with Sasuke have to do with Naruto no longer being single, though? Couldn't she just get to the point? Ino could already feel a headache creeping up and she couldn't blame it on extensive use of her jutsu this time.

"No, friends with benefits!"

Ino's brain short-circuited. Sakura screeched out something that might have been close to "What the fuck did he say!" before promptly fainting in shock.

Friends with benefits? Sasuke and Naruto? How had they missed that?!

"You know, you could have just said you were no longer on the market and I would have stopped flirting with you," Karin huffed annoyed, dropping the requested scrolls on the table in front of Sasuke.

"Or you could have just stopped flirting with the poor guy after the first time instead of humiliating yourself again and again," Suigetsu quipped and promptly splattered apart in millions of waterdrops when she punched him square in the stomach.

"What are you talking about?" Sasuke asked absently and picked up the first scroll, looking through it quickly. No, that one wasn't going to help him at all. He needed information that could guide him to the next place.

She sat down on the couch next to him and crossed her legs, pouting. Suigetsu slunk towards one of the remaining chairs, scowling at her. Jugo in the meantime was shaking his head, already used to their antics.

"About you and Naruto-kun, of course!"

The name of the Jinchuuriki had Sasuke pausing in his perusal of the scrolls and this time he did look at her, frowning. "Again, what are you talking about?" he asked somewhat annoyed.

"No need to take that tone with me, it's not like you've been that open about it!" she snipped and that took him aback, because she very rarely got truly aggravated with him.

"Karin, I really have no idea what you're talking about," he said again, taking care to keep his voice calm this time. Her flirting was as annoying as Sakura's was, but she had been a good teammate nevertheless and she still helped him out even now.

"The fact that you and Uzumaki are fucking," Suigetsu grinned; his eyes shimmering with unholy amusement.

"Suigetsu, don't be so fucking vulgar!" Karin snapped and threw a scroll right at his head.

Meanwhile Sasuke sat there, unsure whether he had actually heard him correctly. "Naruto and I are what?" he asked blankly; his chest feeling somewhat funny now.

"Well, we heard that you and Naruto-kun are sleeping together," Karin said a bit sheepishly; a light flush colouring her cheeks. She wrangled her fingers together. "Although apparently it's more friends with benefits? Which of course is entirely your right! I mean, who are we to say what you can and cannot do with Naruto-kun! As long as the both of you are happy, we're happy for you, really! Just wished you would have told us about this sooner, you know, because I don't want to make things uncomfortable for you two!" She waggled her finger at him, half in exasperation, half scolding. "Although I suppose it was only a matter of time before you two got together, seeing how close you are and all that."

"Though I have to say, boss, didn't know you had it in you," Suigetsu grinned lecherously. "Banging the Jinchuuriki like that without any hassle of a relationship, you go, man!"

"What he means to say is that we are very happy for you two," Jugo smiled gently, though his face was slightly red. "Naruto-san is always welcome here."

"Where the hell did you hear that from?" Sasuke demanded, ignoring the way his own cheeks were heating up.

Friends with benefits? Him and Naruto? Where the fuck was that rumour coming from? Who the fuck had had the balls to start such a –

"Naruto-kun's been telling people that when they ask about you," Karin said bemused and tilted her head to the left. "I heard it from a couple of shinobi who passed through Konoha and overheard others talking. Was this supposed to be a secret?"

"If it was supposed to be a secret, Uzumaki should have just kept his mouth shut. Maybe the boss has fucked him stupid already," Suigetsu cackled, ducking away from two scrolls this time.

"Will you quit being so goddamn rude about Sasuke-kun and Naruto-kun!" Karin hissed and threw a third scroll for good measure.

They all looked at Sasuke startled when he abruptly rose up and marched over to the door.

"Sasuke-kun? Where are you going?" she asked confused.

"Konoha! Someone has some explaining to do!" he growled and slammed the door shut behind him but not before hearing Suigetsu say, "Think they work their arguments out through sex now?"

He tracked Naruto down to his apartment where the blond man had just been about to change into his pyjamas; the setting sun painting the entire room in pink and orange.

"Why the hell have you been telling people we're friends with benefits?" Sasuke demanded the second he crawled through the open window.

"The hell, you bastard?" Naruto squeaked, whirling around to stare at him. He was still wearing his black trousers, but had got rid of his shirt and jacket already, standing half naked in front of his bed. "Ever heard of knocking?!"

"Naruto, focus!" Sasuke growled, putting his hand on his hip. "Why have you been telling people we're friends with benefits?"

Naruto blinked owlishly. "How did you even hear about that?"

"That rumour made it all the way back to Orochimaru's old hideouts, because people talk, you idiot," Sasuke sneered. "So?"

"Well, remember after our fight when you asked me what the term 'friend' meant to me?" Naruto said to Sasuke's utter bewilderment.

"Yes," Sasuke said slowly, not seeing what their conversation back then had to do with Naruto labelling them as friends with benefits now.

"I tried to explain it back then, but I know I didn't do a good job of it," Naruto said chagrined before he perked up. "But a few weeks ago I overheard some women talking about how one of them is more than just friends with a guy she knows and I figured, hey, if they were best friends she would have just called them best friends, so friends with benefits must be even better than that!"

Sasuke was starting to get a bad feeling here. "Naruto, what exactly do you think friends with benefits actually means?" he asked apprehensively.

Naruto cocked his head to the right, looking baffled as if Sasuke was the one being confusing here. "Well, it means a level above best friends, no? Like you have friends, then best friends, and best friends with benefits is like the ultimate level of being friends!"

Holy shit. Sasuke felt like he needed to sit down, which he did, the nearest seat being the bed. How could Naruto have been taught by two of the biggest perverts they knew and being the one to have developed the Sexy-no-jutsu, yet have no clue what friends with benefits actually meant? Was this actually happening right now? Was he serious?

"I asked Kurama whether the term would fit us and he basically agreed in his own way," Naruto continued, completely oblivious to the mini crisis Sasuke was currently experiencing. "Why? Don't you like it? You know a better term then?"

"Naruto, usuratonkachi, friends with benefits is not a level above best friends," Sasuke said in a strangled voice, dropping his head in his hand. Of course that bastard of a Kyuubi would have let Naruto believe that crap. Would any of the other Bijuu have fucked around with their Jinchuuriki this much? Sasuke liked to believe the others would have been more decent.

"Well, if it's not better than best friends, what is it then?" Naruto huffed and poked his shoulder. "And why are you acting so dramatic?"

Sasuke's head shot up and he glared at the idiot he considered to be his best friend. "Dramatic? You idiot, do you have any idea what other people are thinking right now? They're thinking we're fucking each other!"

Naruto reared back instantly, his mouth dropping open. "What?!" he squawked. "Why the hell would they think that?!"

"Because friends with benefits means exactly that: that you're friends with each other but also having sex with each other," Sasuke said through gritted teeth. "How the hell have you been taught by both Jiraiya and Kakashi, the two biggest perverts we both know, and having been the one to develop that useless Sexy-no-jutsu, yet you don't know what friends with benefits means?! Didn't you edit Jiraiya's porn books sometimes?"

"Well, yes, but he never used that term in those books!" Naruto spluttered wide-eyed. He fell down on the bed behind Sasuke and groaned pathetically. "Oh god, I've been telling that to everyone who asked about you!"

"Yes, I know. Karin told me that," Sasuke muttered and rubbed his forehead.

Of course this would be one giant misunderstanding. Of course Naruto would be that damn oblivious and naïve that he wouldn't understand such a simple term even though he had been taught by the two biggest perverts they knew. How was he real? How had he reached nineteen years old without even knowing something as simple as that?

"I'm sorry," Naruto said in a small voice. "I'll fix this, don't worry. I'll tell the others that it isn't true, that I was wrong about what the term meant."

Sasuke stared at the wall, thinking back to the conversation they had had whilst they had been bleeding out after their fight. Back then Naruto had indeed been unable to decently explain what the term 'friend' meant to him, even though friendship had always been an important cornerstone in who Naruto was. It had frustrated Sasuke back then, not having got an actual decent reply even after all that time that had passed. Time and time again he had asked Naruto what he meant to him and each time Naruto had been unable to give him a satisfying answer.

For a long time Sasuke had thought Naruto was just playing around with him, acting like he couldn't explain it to him for some reason, but now …

"Or we could just make it so that the next time you're telling people we're like that, you're telling the truth," Sasuke said, sounding more nonchalant than he actually felt.


Trepidation like a stone in his stomach, Sasuke turned around to look Naruto in the eye. The blond man didn't look ready yet to punch him in the face, which was good, because it meant Sasuke still had a shot at this.

"Although to be quite frank, I'm not fond of the title 'friends with benefits' either, considering it implies that we're not fully official," Sasuke continued and feeling brave, he reached out to link their pinkies together on the mattress. "I've never been fond of sharing, you see, so maybe we should just skip 'friends with benefits' and go straight for bo-partners?" He would not say boyfriend, that sounded way too goddamn juvenile, oh god.

Or maybe he should have just not said anything in general, should have just accepted Naruto's apology and be done with it, leaving before he could dig himself into a hole so deep not even Yamato's earth techniques would be able to recover him. Fuck, what the hell had he been thinking, basically asking Naruto out without even knowing what the other man felt for him? He'd just been basing it on the fact that Naruto had been unable to tell him why he had gone so far for Sasuke each time, but maybe that was just how Naruto was? Going to the extreme for everyone and just being unable to articulate properly how he felt about them. Now Sasuke had fucked it up completely and this was exactly the reason why he preferred not to talk, because if he didn't talk, he couldn't fuck up –

Dry lips covered his own in a shy kiss.

Sasuke stared shocked at Naruto who pulled back slightly; an even shyer smile on his face as he dropped his gaze down to their hands, which were still linked by their pinkies. He unhooked their fingers before grabbing Sasuke's hand properly, covering it between his own hands as he played with Sasuke's fingers.

"So … not just friends anymore then?" Naruto suggested nervously; his cheeks red by now.

"Not just friends anymore, no," Sasuke agreed, recovering quickly. "Even better than friends with benefits."

Naruto's grin grew even as the blush spread down to his neck. "I'd like that."

"Yeah," Sasuke murmured and bent towards him for another kiss, one that lingered longer this time. "Me too."

Guess Sasuke finally had got his answer after all.

The End

AN2: Remember, guys, don't ever use a term without knowing what it means. And no, trickster demon foxes are not a good, reliable source, no matter what they tell you.

Sorry for not having more updates ready. I'll do my best to finally update the other fics again, but my brain is being bitchy. Just know I haven't forgotten about the other fics!

Please leave your thoughts behind in a review; should you spot any mistakes, please point them out to me.

I hope to see you all back in my future stories! Please stay safe and take care of yourselves!



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