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Snow Day (Team Yellow Flash, #45) - Over A bowl of Ramen
A themed challenge naruto community

User: 50_shinobi (posted by orodruin42)
Date: 2007-06-17 22:59
Subject: Snow Day (Team Yellow Flash, #45)
Security: Public
Tags:#45 - ribbon, [orodruin42], arashi/kakashi/obito/rin, fanfic, team yellow flash
Title: Snow Day
Author/Artist: Orodruin42
Characters: Team Yellow Flash (Kakashi, Obito, Rin, Yellow Flash)
Theme: #45, Ribbon
Rating: PG (for one word that's a bit inappropriate.)
Disclaimer: I do not own persons or places which were thought up by Kishimoto Masashi.

“Oh... Wow...” Obito breathed, nose pressed against the foggy window as he stared outside with wonder.

“Obito, are you listening to me?” His mother asked, slight irritation finding its way into her tone.

“Yeah, yeah,” the boy confirmed absently, “Can I go now? I’m going to be late.”

“Just a minute, Obito, this is really important,” the woman pressed, “Are you sure you won’t forget?”

Obito sighed with exasperation, turning away from the window, “I won’t forget, kaasan, but I really have to go!”

“Hold on, Obito, I have an idea,” the woman said with a smile, reaching into her pocket.

The boy followed her movements with his eyes, leaning in curiously, “Well, what is it?”

“This,” the woman responded, drawing a length of purple ribbon from the pocket. Obito stared at it blankly for a moment, then made a face.

“You don’t want to tie that thing in my hair, do you?” He asked distrustfully, hands going to his head, “I knew you wanted a girl!”

The woman laughed, “I’m not going to tie it in your hair, sweetie, I’m going to tie it around your finger. Now, give me your hand.”

Frowning, Obito held out his hand, “What’s that for?”

“To help you remember,” his mother said concisely, “Now, who told you I wanted a girl more than my lovely baby boy?”

Obito scowled, “Fusaku.”

“Well, your cousin was just teasing you, Obito,” his mother assured him as she tied the ribbon, “I love you just the way you are.”

“You have to say stuff like that ‘cause I’m your son,” Obito mumbled dubiously, regarding the small ribbon as his mother pulled back, “Can I go now?”

The woman laughed again, standing, “Yes, you may,” she agreed, “But please remember. Every time you see the ribbon, repeat it to yourself so you don’t forget.”

“Okay, kaasan! Bye!” The boy called hurriedly, practically running from the house, out into the cool morning.

Fire Country had a fairly warm climate all year, ranging from mildly warm in the winter, to scorching hot in the middle of the summer, except during those rare occasions when the prevailing wind came down from Snow Country. It had been growing cooler for the last week, and had finally dropped down to around 0 degrees last night. The cold weather had brought with it a blanket of snow.

It had only snowed in Konoha once before in Obito’s twelve years of life—and that had been ten years earlier, when he was only two. Therefore, it was understandable that this morning he was a bit distracted, eyes lit up as they took in dripping rooftops and snow drifts, the way his sandals left imprints in the white covering of the sidewalk behind him. It was only eight centimeters deep, but that was plenty to entice the children of the village—and even many of the adults—into snow games that they so rarely got to play.

“Oi, Obito!”

The Uchiha skidded to a stop to look around for who had called for him, only to feel something cold and hard hit him in the back of his head. Scowling, the boy brushed snow from the back of his head and turned around to find one of his fellow Genin standing across the road from him, a packed ball of snow being tossed up and down lazily in his left hand.

“Genma, you jerk, what was that for?!” Obito demanded.

The brunette shrugged, “Just to get your attention,” he drawled, “Anyway, a bunch of us are meeting at the Academy for a snowball fight; you’re coming, right?”

Obito hesitated, “But... I have to meet with my team,” he said reluctantly.

Genma rolled his eyes, “Obito, this is a once in a lifetime experience—are you really going to pass it up just so you can please your little prodigal teammate?”

“Easy for you to say,” Obito retorted, “You don’t have to work with him. He gets angry when I’m late and—”

“He’s always angry,” Genma sighed, “I heard that when he was born, he killed the doctor when he swatted him instead of just crying.”

Obito raised a skeptical eyebrow, “You don’t really believe that... do you?”

“If anyone was freaky enough to have done it, it’s that Kakashi kid,” Genma retorted with a shrug, “Anyway, I’m going whether or not you’re coming.”

Obito hesitated again, watching the other boy take off for the Academy. Mentally debating, the twelve-year-old decided to throw caution to the wind—he was going to be late already, what was another half an hour?

“Oi! Genma, wait up!” He called, running after him, the purple ribbon around his finger flapping a little in the wind.

Kakashi stiffened as yet another snowball hit his back. He spun around, shovel in one hand and eyes livid, “Sensei!” He shouted, “Will you stop that?!”

The blonde Jounin blinked back at him, an expression of complete innocence on his face, “What do you mean, Kashi-kun?”

The white-haired genius glowered, “You know what I mean,” he growled, “Stop throwing snowballs at me!”

“Me?” The Jounin asked in surprise, “I would never do something like that, Kakashi! It must have been someone else!”

“... There’s no one else here besides us, sensei,” Kakashi pointed out dryly.

“It was probably Rin,” his teacher reasoned, “She’s a very sneaky girl.”

“Sensei!” The girl broke in, “Don’t try to pin your blame on me! Besides, you’re the only one who’s not working!”

“I am too working,” the Jounin countered, “I’m supervising.”

“And throwing snowballs,” Kakashi grumbled.

“Kakashi! Stop goofing around and get back to work!” The Jounin snapped with a mock-frown on his face.

The Chuunin rolled his eyes, but did get back to work, keeping half an eye behind him as he continued to shovel the sidewalk leading to the Hokage Tower. He and Rin worked together in relative peace for several minutes before Kakashi spun around again, catching another snowball just before it hit him.

“Sensei!” He snapped, crushing the ball in his hand and glowering at his teacher.

“He’s just doing it to get a reaction from you, Kakashi-kun,” Rin pointed out, “If you ignore him, maybe he’ll stop.”

Kakashi sent the girl an irritated look, “That kind of stuff doesn’t work with sensei,” he commented darkly, “He’d just keep throwing bigger and bigger snowballs at me until I was completely buried in snow.”

“Why do you keep blaming me, Kashi-kun?” The Jounin moaned, “I didn’t do anything!”

“If you weren’t grinning I might have an easier time believing you,” Kakashi pointed out dryly.

The Jounin chuckled as his students shot him distrustful looks before going back to work.

There you guys are!” Kakashi and Rin paused to see their third squad member running up to them, face and hands flushed red from the cold and clothes considerably wet. A small purple ribbon tied around one finger on his left hand drooped miserably.

“You’re so late that we already got our mission,” Kakashi said bluntly, glaring at the other boy.

“Ah, Obito,” their teacher greeted pleasantly, “You finally decided to show up—was the snowball fight any fun? I wanted to go, but Kakashi was being a stick in the mud, as usual.”

“You’re just as bad as him, sensei!” Kakashi snapped, “Don’t encourage him to skip meetings!”

Obito and the Jounin exchanged guilty looks until Kakashi turned back to his work, then Obito started talking excitedly, “Yeah, yeah, it was so fun, sensei! We started a fight with the Genin against the Academy Students and we were creaming them until the Academy teachers decided to come to their rescue! Jijiro-sensei has an awesome hook throw! But we had to stop early when Genma got hit in the face with one of Chiriko-sensei’s ice balls—I think it broke his nose! There was blood everywhere! It was so cool!”

“Ah, man,” the blonde Jounin sighed, “I wish I could have been there... I had to settle with throwing things at Kakashi, but it just isn’t the same because he doesn’t throw anything back at me.”

Obito snickered, but abruptly cut himself off to gape as a large ball of snow suddenly hit the side of the Jounin’s head, knocking him over.

“S-sens—” Obito’s concerned question was broke off as a second snowball suddenly hit him.

Grinning, the Jounin jumped to his feet, eyes burning with passion as they landed on his other two students, “Well, I’m glad you’re finally getting into the spirit of things, Kakashi, but this means war!”

The white-haired Chuunin turned to look at him with a dull expression, “What are you talking about, sensei?” He asked coolly.

Obito jumped up at his teacher’s side, pointing an accusing finger at his younger teammate, the right side of his face a bright red where the freezing snow had struck. “Don’t try to play innocent with us, Kakashi!” He shouted, “You just threw two snowballs at us!”

“Don’t involve me in your delusions, Obito,” Kakashi retorted coolly, “I’m not involved in your stupid game.” He turned back to his job of shoveling the sidewalk.

Obito looked up at his teacher in confusion, “Do you think he really didn’t do it?”

The Jounin had narrowed eyes and a small smirk on his lips, “Oh, he’s good,” he commented, “Don’t let him fool you, Obito, only Kakashi could throw a snowball well enough to hit me.”

His student nodded, a determined expression on his face, “Let’s get him, sensei,” he said, squatting down to get a handful of snow.

“Hold on a minute, Obito,” his teacher interrupted, “We can’t do something as obvious as that. We’ll need to be just as sneaky and cunning as he is to get him back for this.”

“So what do we do?” Obito asked, eager to hear his teacher’s plans.

“... Where did Sensei and Obito go?” Rin wondered a few minutes later, pausing in her work to look around for their missing members.

Kakashi shrugged, “Who knows? Probably off doing something stupid. I don’t really care as long as they aren’t here, bothering me.”

“They’re probably plotting something to get you back,” Rin commented, “Since you threw those snowballs at them.”

The boy shot his teammate an annoyed look, “Not you, too,” he grumbled, “I didn’t throw anything at them! Why would I want to involve myself in their dumb games?”

“Even if you didn’t, they think you did,” Rin pointed out.

Kakashi shrugged.

“Aren’t you even a little worried about what they’ll try to do to you?” Rin asked.

“They aren’t going to do anything to me,” Kakashi replied coolly, “I didn’t do anything so there’s no reason for them to.”

“Here they come!” Obito reported excitedly, scrambling over to his teacher’s side.

The Jounin grinned, “Alright, help me get this ready.”

The two ninja struggled to lift a tightly packed snowball that was bigger around than the Hokage’s hat, all while standing dangerously close to the edge of a roof. The Jounin twisted his head to see around the huge ball.

“Here he comes,” he whispered, “On my mark, Obito.”

The Uchiha nodded seriously, anticipating the look of surprise his rival was sure to wear when this huge snowball fell on his head.

“Easy...” The Jounin advised, easing the snowball back into a more easily thrown position, “Get set...”

“Hey,” Obito interrupted in a frantic whisper, “Where’d he go?”

“Huh?” The blonde hefted the snowball awkwardly, searching for his student that seemed to have suddenly disappeared.

“Ah!” Obito cried as a snowball suddenly hit him in the face. He stumbled away from it, only to back into his teacher.

“O-Obito!” The Jounin cried in alarm as his already precarious balance on the slippery rooftop became compromised. He reached out for the Genin in an attempt to balance himself, but Obito was still jumping around in an attempt to get the freezing snow off his face.

The next thing either of them knew, they were falling.

“... What are you two doing?” An annoyed voice questioned. Kakashi looked disdainfully at the pile of limbs and snow his teacher and teammate had become, sprawled in the snowdrift on the side of the road. A small, violet ribbon was waving around a little like a miniature flag, attached to said teammate’s hand as it jutted out to one side.

“Like you don’t know, bastard,” Obito muttered weakly, twitching slightly but otherwise not moving.

“How would I know what stupid things you’re doing?” Kakashi asked, “Unlike you two, I’ve been working to complete our mission.”

Suddenly the blonde leapt to his feet, “This is unforgivable, Kakashi!” He exclaimed dramatically, “You might have gotten the best of me this time, and the time before that, but our next plan will be unstoppable! Right, Obito?”

“Sensei... I can’t feel my cheeks,” Obito moaned, rubbing at his red cheeks with equally red fingers.

“That’s the spirit!” The Jounin exclaimed, “We’ll get you yet, Kakashi!”

Kakashi watched dully as the two ran away, his teacher dragging along his teammate. Rolling his eyes, he turned back to Rin, who had just walked up.

“What was that all about?” She asked, leaning against her shovel.

Kakashi shrugged, “Something about me being unforgivable. Where have you been?”

The girl jerked a thumb back at a shop they had just passed, “Tunaki-san asked me to shovel a path around to his service door.”

Kakashi nodded, “Whatever. Let’s get this done with so we can go home.”

“I still say we just ambush him with snowballs,” Obito supplied, rubbing his hands together viciously in an attempt to warm them up.

“No... no... he’ll be expecting that,” his teacher advised, “Kakashi’s smart... we have to be smarter.”

“Right,” Obito agreed, “Like no standing on the edge of icy roofs.”

The blonde man nodded in agreement, “Correct, that was our downfall last time. This time, we’re going to have to make sure we aren’t even near our trap when he triggers it.”

Slowly, the Uchiha nodded, “So... something that’s triggered when he walks by? Like a trip-wire or something?”

“Exactly,” the Jounin confirmed, a malicious smile crossing his lips, “Kakashi won’t even know what’s hit him.”

Obito wasn’t sure whether to be worried about that grin or just thankful that his teacher’s plans weren’t focused on him. The boy’s hand twitched nervously, ribbon jumping along with it. Hopefully, this plan wouldn’t turn out like the last.

Rin paused, wiping a hand across her brow. The afternoon sun was dimmed by the clouds overhead, but even so all the shoveling had built up a sweat.

“Just down here now, right, Kakashi-kun?” The girl asked, motioning with her shovel.

Kakashi nodded, “There should be other teams taking the rest of the village,” he confirmed, “We just have to go as far as the sushi shop.”

Rin sighed in relief, “I can’t wait to get home and have some hot chocolate.” Tilting her head at her teammate, she questioned, “Do you like hot chocolate, Kakashi?”

“... I prefer tea,” the boy stated blankly.

“Oh.” Rin said. She remained silent for a few seconds as they worked, then, “Well... would you like to come over for some tea after we’re done here? Kaasan makes a delicious Gyokura tea.”

“Hn. I prefer Matcha,” Kakashi stated.

As the two conversed, neither was aware of the four eyes watching them from the shadows of a nearby alley. A pair of dark, beady eyes, narrowed in the dim light as though his thoughts might force the two shinobi to move faster. A pair of sharp, blue eyes, watching every move they made intently.

“Just a little farther,” Obito whispered anxiously, watching the pair. He felt a little guilty—Rin could very well become caught up in the crossfire of this trap. However, it was a sacrifice they would have to make. He was sure she would understand.

“Something’s happening,” his teacher whispered back, frowning deeply as his two students paused, looking back up the road where they’d come from.

Rin shortly walked back, and Kakashi returned to his work. The two hiding nin tensed in anticipation.

He was mere centimeters from triggering their hidden wire when he paused suddenly. Obito didn’t dare to breathe, waiting for him to continue, but after a few seconds, his white-haired teammate began stomping grumpily back the way he’d come. The Uchiha let out a groan of disdain.

“Now what?” He asked with disappointment.

“Just be patient,” his teacher advised, “He has to come back to finish the job.”

Obito nodded silently, turning his eyes back towards the sidewalk.

Kakashi nimbly jumped out of the way just as another drift of snow was pushed off the awning overhead. He tilted his head back, shooting a glower at the girl grinning cheekily down at him.

“You’re doing that on purpose,” he accused dubiously.

“What else am I supposed to do with the snow up here?” Rin returned innocently, though the mischievous smile still on her lips belied her motive.

Kakashi rolled his eyes and went back to scoop up the fallen snow while Rin pushed the remaining snow from the awning before jumping down beside him.

“Done,” the girl announced cheerfully.

“Me, too,” Kakashi intoned, pushing the last shovel full of snow off to the side of the booth.

“Thank you both,” the man behind the counter said, “I’d have done it myself, but my leg’s been acting up in this weather.”

“You don’t need to thank us,” Kakashi replied dully, “It’s our job.”

“Still, it took extra time for you to clear out my booth,” the man replied, “Now, let’s see...” He frowned thoughtfully, leaning against the counter of his bar. Suddenly, he brightened, “I know! To thank you both, how about I make each of you a large helping of ramen?”

Rin lit up at the offer of a warm meal, especially since she hadn’t eaten since breakfast and was getting quite hungry with all the work. That and she was pretty sure her fingers were numb, and that was the reason it didn’t feel as cold as when they’d started.

Kakashi, however, had different ideas. “No, thanks, we wouldn’t want you to go to any trouble,” he offered, polite in his indifference.

Rin smiled anxiously and told Kakashi, “But, it would be rude to refuse his offer!”

The man grinned, “Listen to your girlfriend, Kakashi, I’ll make it just the way you like it—shoyu ramen with tofu, right?”

Rin looked at the boy curiously at that, “Kakashi-kun, you come here often?”

Kakashi had different priorities and ignored the girl’s question, his face almost flaming around his mask, “She’s not my girlfriend, Ichiraku-san, we’re teammates.”

The man laughed loudly, obviously unrepentant for his comment, “Very well,” he said after his hearty laugh, and turned to Rin, “And what would Kakashi-kun’s teammate like to eat?”

Rin blushed a little at the insinuation in his voice and answered meekly, “Miso with pork is fine...”

Kakashi sighed in resignation as the cook turned to preparing the meal, loudly commenting on the two orders he was filling. The two shinobi took seats on the stools at the bar and Rin returned to her previous line of questioning as the cook’s rambling died down.

“So, Kakashi, you’ve been here before? I didn’t know you liked ramen,” she said.

“It’s not horrible,” Kakashi huffed with irritation, “But sensei likes to eat it every night for dinner and I get tired of it.”

It didn’t occur to Rin to question the boy on how he knew their teacher’s eating habits. After all, she’d only been on the team for a few months now, but Kakashi had been with their teacher for a lot longer, she’d heard.

“Sensei, it’s been kind of a long time,” Obito pointed out, wiggling impatiently, “Maybe they went somewhere else. What if something important happened and we missed it?”

The Jounin regarded his student for a moment before nodding, “It has been a while,” he agreed, “Let’s go check. I’ll go first, just in case he’s waiting around the corner.”

Obito nodded in agreement and the two of them took off quietly through the alley. Once they reached the mouth where the back road opened up to the main street, the pair paused, the Jounin leaning forward to peer carefully around the corner. What he saw couldn’t have surprised him more.

The man gaped, releasing a scandalized gasp. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing!

“Sensei?” Obito asked, looking up at the man’s face curiously and beginning to inch around him, “What is it? Is something happening?”

“They’re...” The Jounin’s words failed him and it took him a second to compose himself again to continue, “Kakashi...!” Third time was the charm as he finally blurted out, “They’re eating ramen!”

Obito, who had finally managed to get around his teacher enough to see the familiar pair of backs at a small stand almost a block down the road, frowned in confusion. “Oh. I hope they hurry up!”

The blonde looked down at his dark-haired student, looking almost more scandalized than before, “That’s all you have to say, Obito?” He demanded, “You hope they hurry up?”

“Er... yeah,” Obito offered awkwardly, further confused.

“But... they’re eating ramen!” The man repeated, gesturing widely in the direction of the other pair.

Obito blinked, “So?”

“Without me!” The Jounin exclaimed, sounding affronted.

“Anô...” Obito started uncertainly.

“Kakashi never eats ramen without me!” The Jounin blurted, “He doesn’t even like ramen! How can he just sit down there and eat ramen without me?” His eyes narrowed, “He probably knows we’re watching and is doing it just to spite me. Clever little runt.”

Obito shook his head slightly to clear it, deciding to simply clear his head of the strange distraction his teacher had presented. “So what should we do now, sensei? Just wait for them to finish?”

The man had a calculating look in his eyes and a slight frown on his lips. “It’s strange, though, for Kakashi. Would he really shirk his responsibilities on a mission just to get back on me...? I couldn’t possibly have annoyed him that much or else he would have said something...”

“Sensei...” Obito started—he really wanted to see Kakashi trip their trap!

The Jounin nodded firmly, mind made up, “Let’s go, Obito. First he attacks us twice, then he ignores his duties, then he eats ramen! Kakashi-kun clearly needs a firm reminder from his sensei about just who’s the student here!”

With that, the man walked purposefully from the alley, Obito right behind him, only to freeze suddenly, an all too familiar sensation of some obstruction deflating under his shoe. Obito ran briefly into his back and a bead of sweat trickled down from the man’s temple as dreadful anticipation hit him.

Before the Uchiha could even open his mouth to question the man’s actions, the Jounin had valiantly shoved him to the side with a quick warning of, “Move...!” If he’d meant to say anything else, it was cut off at a sudden assault.

The Jounin twisted and ducked, dodged and jumped, but there was no way he could avoid the hundreds of tiny white balls that shot at him from every direction at once. Dodging quickly turned to hiding behind upraised arms as he attempted to shield his face from the worst of it.

Obito was gradually backing up, eyes wide as he watched his teacher slowly become buried in an ever-growing mountain of snow. It was terrible, he told himself, who would do such a thing?

At last the assault ended, leaving a disheveled Jounin half-covered with snow and lying raggedly on his back in the street. Obito took an uncertain step forward.

“Sensei...?” He began hesitantly, only to cut himself short as he felt a small resistance against his shoe. His eyes widened in horror as he looked around his position with dreadful realization, but he had no time to dodge the sudden rain of slush that flew at him.

“Augh!” The boy barely had time to scream before a secondary trap triggered a multitude of snowballs to hit him from behind, sending him sprawling on the snowy ground. As a final precaution, a camouflaged net of snow turned over on him from above, almost covering the twelve-year-old completely.

Obito groaned, the ribbon on his finger just about the only thing that wasn’t buried.

“Sensei! Obito! Are you two alright?” Rin cried, running up to the two fallen shinobi and staring at them uncertainly.

Kakashi, who had arrived a few seconds before her, scoffed, eyes narrowing, “They look fine to me,” he said disdainfully, “More of their idiotic games, no doubt.”

“Ah, Kakashi,” a voice said from somewhere inside the pile of snow to their right, “You really are as clever as ever, my treacherous student.”

Kakashi frowned, annoyed, “Who’s treacherous? You’re the one who left me and Rin to do all the work.”

“Creating a second trap for your hunters,” his teacher was saying—still buried in snow, “I should have expected as much, from you. We were playing right into your fiendish plot the whole time, weren’t we?”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about, sensei,” Kakashi retorted coolly, watching as the two downed ninja slowly began pulling themselves from their respective snow drifts.

“...” The Yellow Flash looked up at his youngest student, not sure whether to take his words seriously or not. He frowned, “Weren’t you the one who set up this trap here?”

“No,” Kakashi replied concisely, “I told you, I don’t want any part in your childish snow games.”

“But!” Obito turned to his teacher in confusion, “You said he was the only one who could have been doing that stuff!” Still confused, he turned back to Kakashi, “Hey! You’re lying, aren’t you?!”

Kakashi said nothing, looking dully back at the other boy.

The blonde man rubbed the back of his head, dislodging a shower of snow, “Kakashi... if it wasn’t you... then who...?”

“Ah-ha!” A loud voice behind him caused the Jounin to turn very slowly, eyes wide with trepidation.

There, standing in the middle of the street, bare feet raised above the snow on an abnormally tall pair of geta, and dressed dramatically in a dark blue hahori with a bright red over-vest, short, white slacks, stood a man with a frighteningly familiar head of white hair. A wide grin split his face, crinkling the red stripes painted down both cheeks, and his dark eyes were narrowed keenly.

“It was I! The unbeatable and roguishly handsome, the one and only, Jiraiya-sama of the Densetsu no Sannin! Never in more than thirty years has anyone managed to best me in any manner of snow warfare! And you, my student, have once again fallen victim to my awesome tutelage!” The man declared boldly, laughing uproariously.

Even Obito’s ribbon seemed to stare in disbelief of the figure before them.

It was hours later when Obito finally returned to the Uchiha complex, and night was slowly setting over the village. He was exhausted, and his cheeks remained rosy no matter how many times he tried to rub new life into them.

A tired smile still lit up his face, though. It had definitely been a good day. Even the battle with Kakashi—which had turned out to actually be with that other weird guy—had been enjoyable, despite the horrible defeat of himself and his teacher. All in all, he couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day! Especially when he’d been invited over to Rin’s house for hot chocolate afterwards... although, really, it would have been better if the living board that was Kakashi hadn’t been along.

With a satisfied sigh, the twelve-year-old slid open the front door of his home, toeing his shoes off in the entry just inside.

“I’m home!” He called out, pulling his goggles off over his head.

“Welcome back,” his mother’s voice was soon followed by her face in the doorway, and the smile froze on her lips as she paused, looking her son’s disheveled appearance up and down before resting on the miserable excuse of the purple ribbon on his finger—or what was left of it.

The woman sighed, “Obito... you forgot again, didn’t you.”

Obito blinked, “... Forgot what?” He asked.

The woman pointed and he looked down at the ribbon on his finger. He stared at it dumbly for several seconds before his mouth opened in an O of horror, eyes wide.

“I forgot!” He repeated incredulously.

His mother shot him a skeptical look, one thin eyebrow raised artfully over her eye, “What did you forget, Obito?”

The boy opened his mouth and closed it several times before hanging his head with a sigh, “I... don’t remember,” he admitted reluctantly.

With a soft sigh of her own, the woman’s smile reasserted herself and she walked over, lovingly brushing back the boy’s wayward hair and resting warm hands on his cheeks. She softly kissed the top of his head, silently forgiving her son in the way only his mother could.

Obito stirred slightly, mumbling in embarrassment, but otherwise endured it.
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