I’m one of the writers at the KakaIru FormSpring, and I’ve created this for my own personal archiving of what I’ve written. It’s not everything I’ve written on the KakaIru FormSpring, merely the things I’ve liked and thought worthy of editing and posting separately. It’ll be updated alongside the FS if I post any more responses to questions.
Your mother and father was killed during the Kyuubi attack, do you have any other family members, Iruka?
Contrary to popular belief, Iruka did have a really big family. He had eight cousins on his father's side, and six on his mother's. In total, he had about seven uncles and three aunts by blood relation, and a whole lot more if you counted in those who were his family by marriage. Iruka was an only child, but during his earlier years, he never felt alone.
Then his parents took him away and moved to the Hidden Leaf village and everything changed.
What is your favourite fruit?
Iruka was fond of many fruits. Strawberries for their sweetness and the way their tiny seeds cracked under teeth. Peaches for the softness after you broke through the thin skin. Mangoes for the way the sticky juices would run down his chin and drip everywhere, fragrant like blossoms.
But he liked grapes best, even though they weren't as tasty and sometimes he bit down on the bitter seeds. It was because Kakashi liked to feed them to him when he was working or simply when they were lounging around, and normally were followed up by wine and laughter.
Do cell phones exist in your world? Do you use them?
Cell phones don't exist in Naruto-verse. But messenger birds do. Kakashi sent so many to Iruka while on "safe" graded missions that Iruka had taken it upon himself to always carry birdseed on him.
"It's hot here. Damn Suna desert."
"I want to see Leaf's wintery snow."
"The rain tastes like your skin."
"Dry air. Tired. Sleepy."
"You follow me into my dreams."
"I can feel your touch, sometimes."
"Sugar-pine tastes like your lips."
"I miss you."
"I want you."
"Don't forget me. I can't forget you."
He sent many, many little notes, but knew better than to write, 'I love you'. Those words were reserved to be said in husky whispers under covers in the most intimate of settings. Iruka collected the notes and sent a few responses back.
"It's cold here."
"Snow is overrated. So is ice."
"The pillows smell like you."
"Children sick. I'm sick. And grumpy."
"I can't close my eyes without seeing you."
"Sometimes I hear nothing and think you're there, trying to startle me."
"Your mouth tastes like apples."
"Come back soon."
"When you're home, you can have me."
"I can never forget either—I don't want to."
What does Naruto think of your relationship? Did he try to stop it from happening?
Naruto wasn't as stupid as he used to be. The Fourth Shinobi War had done wonders for him. He'd seen the errors of the world, of the ninja-system, even of his home village and the villages of other countries. He still wanted to lead them—is going to lead them—but now he did not fixate on the path to getting there, more on which way to take them since he'd finished what was there to be walked on.
The Fourth had paved the start of his journey, but the road was still left for him to finish. Tsunade's eyes were older than they'd ever been when she'd handed over the role of Hokage, but she still smiled like she was in the prime of her youth, a fresh graduate rather than a Sannin who'd seen it all and more.
He wished she was still here to mentor him and help him, and felt a pang of regret that he did not kill Sasuke earlier. It was destiny, written in the stars and the fabric of fate; it was already legend, the intensity of the seven-day battle, where Tsunade sparked the violence with her untimely death. While she stopped Kabuto, she incited Sasuke, and Naruto could not stop him shoving a Chidori down her throat.
Not many people could watch the fight head-on from the glare of pure, unrefined chakra leaking from the contenders' bodies in waves—it truly was a clash of powers where the full abilities of the Nine-Tails were pitted against that of a son bearing a cursed seal and advanced Sharingan eyes. In the end, the gods smiled down on the demon-child and not the demon-like child, and Naruto was given the chance to repent for hesitating in his fate.
He took the opening and boiled Sasuke's blood with black fox-chakra. The last Uchiha died from a clawed hand cooking him from the inside out.
So, no. Naruto had seen many things, many awful and wonderful things, and he'd learned to be more perceptive to life and what surrounded him. Neji would still laugh if you called Naruto a genius, but no one could deny that he was smart enough. Still, it surprised him how long it took him to notice the attentions his head-advisor gave to his head ANBU-captain.
Iruka had always been friendly, and Naruto supposed that it was empathy that gave Kakashi those extra smiles and concerned glances. It wasn't a secret that the Copy-Nin was fucking insane, especially since Sasuke burned the skin off Kakashi's back. In fact, Iruka had protested when Kakashi was nominated for the role of head ANBU-captain, but there were simply not enough candidates with enough field experience to get the job. At least Kakashi was the right kind of insane for the job.
As for his former jounin-sensei, it seemed part of his old nature, the way he bickered at Iruka like they had been best friends before the war. Now that Naruto's eyes were open, blown wide open with the knowledge of their relationship, he realised that he should've noticed that Kakashi hated socialising and talking to Iruka alone should've warned him. Maybe it was the fact Kakashi stopped wearing his mask that threw Naruto off balance, making him forget how introverted the Copy-Nin usually was since he'd thrown away his biggest shield.
War changed people. Before it, he supposed he might have complained. Rallied against it. He had no problems with homosexuality, (not since Jiraiya took it upon himself to teach him through books and hot springs the beauties of both genders), but the idea of two father figures getting together after being so long representative of separate factions of his life.
Now, he knew the true value of life when he'd seen so many fall. When he caught Iruka's eye after the advisor had watched Kakashi leave through the window, he smiled and nodded in what he hoped looked like acceptance. Life was too short to be petty over details, but he could wait for the pair to be comfortable enough in their own skin before they "officially" told him.
How did Kakashi react the first time Iruka was seriously injured after they became friends/began dating/became lovers?
Blood runs down his head. You panic and cry out in alarm. The noise that you choke out is weak and helpless and surprised and you never ever want to make that noise again. Iruka climbs awkwardly through the windowsill, and you don't need your Sharingan to see that he was running on sheer adrenalin, no chakra in sight. He'd drained his reserves, and instead of going for medical advice, he's come to you.
You don't know whether to call him an idiot or be touched at his actions. You decide to think about that later. You really start to panic now because Iruka isn't smiling, and he was always smiling. Instead, it was as if he was blind, the way his eyes drifted to the right without really seeing anything. Stepping forward, you hope to get some reaction from him, but there is nothing.
Then your fingers reach for his head and come back damp. But the damp isn't the safe damp of sweat, or the warm damp of fresh blood. It's the seeping wetness of cold blood, and you know that Iruka needs to get to hospital as soon as he can. The red blood is dark as wine on carpet, and it soaks into the neck brace of his chuunin vest.
That is not the only place where dark stains are blooming. Your hands, always steady when faced with life-or-death, shake in the face of HIS life teetering on the balance. You should move, you know you should, but you can. All you do is stand dumbly, eyes tracing every line on his face and the way arms trembled.
He mumbles a bit and sways on his feet. For a moment, your panic is swept away by the strength in his resolution to remain standing. How a lesser man may have fallen. While a line of scarlet drips from Iruka's lips, his eyelids droop, covering the unfocused gaze.
A part of you scorns the weakness you feel and it snaps you into action. It's as if a switch had been flicked on in your brain and everything becomes sharper--as if you'd summoned the pack and had the help of their senses. You smell the clotting blood and the undertones of vomit from Iruka's front. You see the paleness of the skin from underneath the dirt and grime. You hear how erratic and choppy Iruka's breathing is.
He's close enough you can count every eyelash and your hand brushes his jaw, creating another smear of red. Your touch rouses him though, and Iruka sends you a lazy, tired look; one that you recognise from long Sundays on the couch and days off work. Iruka always joked your hands were cold as ice, but they felt hot against the clamminess of the chuunin's unnatural gray-tinged skin.
It was hard to swallow, your throat's closed up and you fight to push down the panic. When Iruka smiles, his teeth are stained cherry red and you have to remind yourself the medi-nin of Leaf had worked bigger miracles with less life in the patient.
That doesn't stop you from hugging Iruka tight and teleporting him straight to the Hokage's office, regulations be damned. You do not pray or hope. You know he'll be better. Iruka had always stood by resolutely every time you're dragged in from God knows where from doing God knows what.
Since Iruka did that for him, you'll do the same for him. Watch him as the Hokage is wrist deep in his chest, glowing blue with chakra as she tries to start his heart. His warm brown eyes spark blue with the intensity of the chakra flares. You finally remember to breathe and all you can do is make that choked little noise that's so unlike you.
Of course Iruka couldn't—wouldn't—die. He couldn't. You care for him, and the gods be damned if they wouldn't let him keep and care for one special person? You think to yourself that even the gods aren't that cruel and try to calm your racing heart.
You always thought if it came to it, you could protect Iruka by protecting the village. But really, all you can do is watch him heal.
Sometime during the night, you convince yourself that it's enough, for now.
If you could describe each other in only one word, what would that word be?
No person could be summed up in a word, but Iruka liked to think of Kakashi as a puzzle, or perhaps an enigma. Something confusing and mysterious and several shades of indecipherable gray.
There was something enticing about not knowing the man behind the mask, not knowing whether the words he said in the passing were part of the facade or were genuine interest. It couldn't be called a lie, nor could it be called the truth. To accuse him of being false was another lie, because the cover was as much as a reality as his mask these days.
Sometimes Iruka wondered what Kakashi fought for when all he knew was dead. How could he stand the pain of loneliness? Why he didn't think giving up was worth it?
Then it hit Iruka that he knew that pain as well, knowing the crush of losing parents to war, friends in battle, and lovers from disease and plain abandonment. And he never gave up fighting. He kept trying and trying and trying. Even as his students died year after year.
So the next time Iruka saw Kakashi, he really looked, and saw that dull gleam behind the smile. The chuunin realised the Copy-Nin wasn't a puzzle. He was a kindred spirit.
Iruka, were you ever nervous or suspicious of Yamato?
If you asked someone to describe one of the better qualities of Kakashi, they'd say something along the lines of "loyal". If you asked the same about Iruka, you'd probably get "friendly, caring".
If you asked someone about their negative properties, Kakashi would get called "brooding" and Iruka would be "openly trusting". The jounin could not run from his ghosts, and Iruka had taken a giant shuriken to back from a once trusted friend as he defended the demon carrier.
So, no, Iruka never thought of Kakashi and Tenzou as anything other than good friends. He knew better than to rage with jealously over Kakashi. In the end, Kakashi always came back to him, he knew and understood that without question.
Alternatively, the Copy-nin watched those who orbited the chuunin with a piercing gaze. Iruka was too trusting, so caring and kind. He could easily lure in Shizune, the under-appreciated office worker; Anko, the traumatised jounin or even Ayame, the quiet girl at the ramen shop. There was an endless list of people he was caring towards, an endless amount of arms that would accept him.
But that was probably part of the problem--Iruka's heart was what made Kakashi love him (among other things). How could he ask him to stop being so friendly? He couldn't, and he wouldn't voice pointless concerns, so he watched, always anxious, always waiting, in case Iruka left him.
Kakashi wasn't suspicious of one person in particular of stealing Iruka away. More that he was always wondering how he, of all people, deserved the attentions of the chuunin.
Who fell in love first?
Iruka liked to joke that he had fallen in love with Kakashi from the first time he'd met him as a pre-genin, seeing the older boy with starry eyes as the elite, something to aspire to. It made a cute story for friends and they never changed it.
Except, truth be told, Kakashi fell first, and fell hard. It wasn't quite obsession, but it wasn't healthy how intense he was for those first few months. It was a consuming burn of want and need.
It was before Naruto, but after their joint mission. The nature of their relationship changed in the strange time in-between, like in the hazy pre-dawn light after the darkness.
So, if you asked who loved who first, they'd normally answer Iruka. Easy, more believable and less questions arose from that.
However, since you asked who fell first, it was Kakashi. He doesn't regret it for a second.
Do you both have arrangements made for what happens after you die? What are they?
Kakashi's funeral was pre-determined for when he died. He really had no say in what would happen. His Sharingan eye—if salvageable at the time of his death—would be removed and his remains burned to a crisp and then thrown to where the west and east winds met. He couldn't risk an enemy making use of his corpse. Especially now the Fourth Shinobi War was afoot. A general took no chances.
Iruka had no bloodline, no extraordinary jutsu, and his heritage was standard. He would be allowed to be buried body intact, a small blessing in itself. However, he wanted to be cremated wearing his chuunin vest and his forehead protector and have his ashes thrown where the north and south winds met.
If there was an "after" after death, Iruka wanted to know he'd meet Kakashi. Since Kakashi couldn't bend his back to fight his fate, Iruka would. They didn't speak of it much, but the night Iruka showed Kakashi his rewritten will, his vibrant blue eye lingered on the request to have his remains dance on the winds.
They swapped dog tags that night. Kakashi's life was a string of pre-determined events, and so was his death, but there were small blessings in every situation. Iruka was one of the few who moved to match Kakashi's set track and worked around it.
So Kakashi stop fighting his fate after death, set in stone by the Council, and breathed in Iruka and decided to live in the moment. Some times were brighter than others, after all.
Do you manly men like to cuddle?
Kakashi would never admit it, but he always felt cold. Cold in the summer, when the sun was at its highest. Cold in his bulky jounin vest and long trousers in the middle of a heat wave. He felt cold when fire and lighting travelled up and down his chakra paths and when flames danced in the middle of his palm.
Iruka was always warm, Kakashi thought. In his smiles, in his aura, in his touch that burned like the sun. It wasn't unreasonable he was attracted to the school teacher for that, was it?
And if Kakashi only felt warm, felt hot, felt anything remotely human when he was touching Iruka, was that so wrong? Was it wrong to enjoy the touch of another male? If it was wrong, well, Kakashi couldn't give a damn.
So, Kakashi would never admit it, but he always felt warm. Warm in the winters when he was curled against Iruka, their legs intertwined as their fingers curled around the nape of the other's neck. Warm in his own skin when brown hands danced across it, searching for sensitive skin. Warm under the covers, when they curled up together, breath fogging up the air, but entirely sated.
Has Kakashi have used any kind of food when you guys had TRAINING, Iruka?
Iruka looked at Genma and frowned. "Don't be silly. We only fight with hand-to-hand combat. Weapons occasionally. Jutsu, never."
Kakashi was always in a league of his own, but Iruka liked fighting him; for the challenge if nothing else. With the limitations of jutsu and weapons, (and the unspoken restriction of outright maiming and death), Iruka had occasionally won.
Genma thought over the reply before spitting out his senbon so that it embedded itself into a nearby tree. A bird was startled out of its nest by the whistle of the speeding needle and the following thunk.
"Well, you should try it out."
"You'd be amazed at how deadly some ninja can be with a handful of apples, really." With such a serious expression and tone, Iruka might have been inclined to laugh at Genma. But Iruka had been around long enough to know that it was better to provoke those who specialised in poisons when they were out of earshot.
"You challenged Shizune, didn't you?" was all he said, hands busy whittling away at a block of wood. It was starting to look like a scarecrow before Iruka threw it aside and picked another up to start afresh.
For a while, Genma spluttered before pulling out another senbon to chew on and sighed, "Yeah. I may or may not have taunted her about staying in the kitchen. In my defence, I'd just come back from a mission and she wanted me to go to the hospital!"
"So, you insulted her when she tried to help you."
A shrug from Genma as he said, "More or less."
"And then she proceeded to kick your ass when you were injured?"
"No," admitted Genma wryly. "She actually waited until I was healed and then destroyed me. With apples, oranges and some pineapples." He paused before smiling, "I think I'm in love."
"This is why you should stop pissing kunoichi off," Iruka laughed, unsympathetic. "They know how to hurt you in ironic and humiliating ways."
"Oh?" Genma challenged. "Don't act so high and mighty. How did you guess so easily that I was taken down a notch by Shizune? She's so ... non-threatening. Awesome, but you'd never immediately guessed it. Medic-nin always seems so unassuming..."
"Ha. Kakashi thought the same thing." Iruka smiled widely. "He still can't look at carrots in the way he used to."
Are you living together, and if so, in whose original place (or did you get a place of your own), and how did you decide this?
Kakashi liked to say he stayed at Iruka's house for convenience’s sake. He liked to say it was because Iruka's house was closer to both the school and the Missions Room and it was easier that way.
It wasn't because the place had a big backyard with all variety of Leaf Village vegetable and fruit growing (and some others from cuttings Kakashi brought home).
It wasn't because the house was always warm and felt more homely than Kakashi's apartment ever did. It wasn't because of the eccentric mix of furnishings that made them both chuckle warmly.
It wasn't because all of the rooms smelled like Iruka, that unique scent of pine needles and spring onion.
It wasn't because Kakashi's apartment had blood stains on the floor that brought back bad memories.
"No," Kakashi would say. They lived at Iruka's for convenience.
Iruka just smiled warmly every time he heard this. He knew better, of course he did.
What was the last photo you took of?
The last photo Kakashi took was of a mark for a special reconnaissance mission--who was now dead with no mark on his body to indicate why; Kakashi was always neat like that. The last photo Iruka took was one of his pre-genin smiling with three lost teeth and a bloody chin--victorious that he won the class wrestling competition; Iruka decided to let the minor cheating slide.
Kakashi and Iruka never took photos of the other, or of both of them together, bar one single photograph of them underneath a cherry blossom that Sakura captured. The reason why it was like that was because Kakashi had his Mirror Eye, better than any 2D image could hope to be--Iruka didn't need a camera or a Sharingan because he'd memorized the panes of Kakashi's face so many times over with greedy eyes and fingers.
They didn't need reminders of the other because they never would forget. Never COULD forget.
When Kakashi didn't return from a mission, Iruka wondered if it was a curse that he couldn't rid the images in his mind's eye of bashful smiles and soft gray eyes.
Have you ever seen a ghost?
Iruka knew Kakashi couldn't see the ghosts.
And he was thankful that he couldn't.
After all, Iruka had been seeing ghosts since he was little and he knew the burden of seeing the dead but knowing they couldn't hear you or see you only feel your presence and hope for some reassurance. He supposed there was some world beyond theirs where the souls of the departed lived before they were cycled for re-incarnation or eternal peace.
He wondered if when he died whether he could fear the blindness, the deafness, the muteness that came with the eventual darkness. Iruka saw how the gray shadows clung to Kakashi's presence and weighed him down. Why his shoulders always seemed slumped and why he took his time walking.
Their touch was like the burns of cold winds, their feel like a crush on the heart, and Iruka was so tempted to tell Kakashi about the ghosts. He'd never seen someone so cloaked by the deceased and the departed.
Maybe it was also because a part of him wanted to replace the touch of cold death with his warm hands. And remind Kakashi why he should live.
Until then, Iruka was thankful Kakashi couldn't see the ghosts and be reminded of death with his every step.
Can either you of you sing?
Kakashi had a smooth voice of a charmer, but really he couldn't hit a singer's notes like Iruka. You'd think with all the yelling he did at children, Iruka wouldn't be able to sing, but he could.
He sung in normal Konoha dialect, he sung in the strange warble of Lightning and the chirps of Mist. Though he couldn't play an instrument for the life of him, Iruka's voice was music enough, lyrics seeming pointless in the face of the perfect sound.
Iruka knew songs of the birds and the trees and the skies and the heavens and all the beauty of nature.
But he saved the songs of love and devotion for Kakashi's ears only.
How passionate are Kakashi's kisses?
Kakashi's kisses were hotter than the sun and the blaze of forest fires razing down acres of trees. They burned the tongue like some far-off spice that could never quite be re-created; they melted at the soul like lava on stone; they stung lips like salt on a wound.
Even so, they were as addictive as sin, and Iruka couldn't help come back for more.
Iruka's kisses weren't firey, but time-consuming explorations of tongue and taste. They were smooth and slow, like the trickle of melting snow down a riverbed; they were sweet, sweeter than pure sugar; they were luxurious and teased swollen lips and tongue until Kakashi was panting, demanding, begging for more and wanting, just wanting more.
It took an age to finish a single, proper kiss, but Kakashi needed that reminder that he had to enjoy every minute with his Iruka.
Can you two dance? If so, which styles do you like the best?
Shinobi were dancers, no matter what they claimed otherwise, Kurenai thought as she relaxed in the shade of a tree on the outskirts of one of the larger training fields. They would scoff and spout nonsense of it being a kunoichi art for the women-folk to learn, but they should see what she could see when the men sparred.
Asuma was helping Kiba train Akamaru to face off opponents with weapons. The trio was sublime in their movements, jagged and raw with exertion, panting as they were wearing out with the hour's work. Wiping off a trickle of red, her lover jumped up, over the small dog and nearly catching Kiba off guard, the boy's eyes diluting with excitement as his war cry sounded.
A small distance to her left, Shikamaru had somehow been coerced from cloud watching and was kicking up dirt as Neji lithely dodged and jumped from the touch of his opponent's deadly shadows. Their legs would brush as they dodged and attacked alternatively. The Hyuuga was so smooth and fierce, but the Nara moved like water in a stream, fighting nothing, but moving with the flow.
Gai had challenged Tsunade to battle, and her strength was devastating, even in the face of the Green Beast of Konoha. She agreed to get out of paperwork, if Shizune's aggravated expression was anything to judge by. Unlike the boys, their battle was hard and rough, and not at all clean and honest, but there was a certain art to the roughness and brutality of their movements. Tsunade had two fingers glowing with chakra at his temple; he had hands around her throat. A stalemate.
Two that seemed to move with a different grace altogether was Kakashi and Iruka, their bodies twirling and hitting with such force and fluidness it momentarily took Kurenai’s breath away. Their closeness was unconventional for usual hand-to-hand combat; their chests were brushed together as their hands glowed with chakra—Kakashi’s lit with the suppressed crackle of electricity—Iruka sinking to his knees to spin a smooth low kick, trying to trip the taller man on his back. Seeing it, the Copy-Nin jumped and aimed a glowing fist at the chuunin, only to be startled by hands gripping at his neck.
They were both sweaty and panting and stunning. If she’d blinked, Kurenai would have missed Iruka planting a kiss on Kakashi’s shoulder. And then their fight continued and the feet moved instinctively as their body jumped to ready itself for the next step.
Kurenai knew shinobi could dance, even if they couldn't see it themselves.
During missions in other countries, do you pick up little gifts for the other? Which was the most memorable one that was given to you by the other, if any?
The jounin collected glass figurines for Iruka. Not because they were expensive or rare, but simply because they were beautiful and so, so fragile. He usually got one from every new city, village, country, town, and area—pretty much every new place he went.
They made him feel big, he'd once said to the chuunin. Big, strong and amazingly clumsy. Truly, he had an eye for beauty, the works he picked always original and delicate and so intricately made that sometimes the little fingers and hands and eyes seemed real...
Every one reflected the light in that simply hypnotic way that mesmerized Kakashi. Little rainbows would flicker in-and-out and it was gorgeous, and so small, and it would make them both smile and the Copy-Nin would laugh and blush and stutter in his own cute little way—
The sound of tinkling glass shards was almost as beautiful as the sound of his laugh, but it was no substitute. Iruka screamed, but not because of the blood dripping down hands cut by glass, not because the moonlight created rainbows that reminded him of Kakashi, but because he knew, just knew he'd never hear Kakashi laugh again.
Mainly because Kakashi had been killed while running back to a village; to buy Iruka a glass figurine.
Who does the cooking in the household?
Neither man could cook. It was a shame that they couldn't really ever claim to share home-cooked meals together, but it wasn't entirely their fault.
Kakashi survived well enough on rations, and when safe in the village, he definitely had more than enough money to splurge on eating out regularly. His mother always said she’d teach him out to cook, but that was before she died in the cold with a spear through her gut.
Iruka had a more restricted financial situation, and he was always too tired at the end of the day to really cook anything more strenuous than rice and some steamed meat and vegetables. Ramen was a filling, cheap alternative that he’d indulge in, though less now without Naruto.
That’s not to say they didn’t try. Every Friday, one would cook a meal for the pair to share, the position of cook alternating on a weekly basis. It was lucky food always tasted better in company, or that tradition would’ve stopped long ago.
Do you guys ever give each other flowers? What was the occasion and what were they?
Kakashi had sent flowers to Iruka, once. Just once; and not for a romantic reason. They were sent before they were even dating. It was for a mission; the flowers had a coded message that needed to be sent back to the Hokage, and Iruka happened to be on desk duty to receive them. That was okay. Iruka didn't like receiving perishable gifts anyway.
Iruka, on the other hand, had given the Copy-Nin several dried, pressed flowers, over the course of their courtship. He'd hide them in the jounin’s book, as a game where the older man would need to figure out the meeting point, and time, of the date by the page number in correlation to the type of flower.
Ninja were nothing if they didn't find a little humour in over-complicating things.
Not to mention, by turning it into a small competition in its own right, Iruka ensured Kakashi was never late. The first and only time he was Iruka accused him of taking too long to decode the message. Kakashi never made the same mistake twice.
Doesn't Iruka feel intimidated by Kakashi always wearing his mask?
Kakashi wore his mask everywhere. Or so it seemed. The public certainly had no reason to think otherwise. On missions, on the streets, even in the hospital on death’s door, he'd insist on the fabric cover.
But of course, Iruka knew better. Kakashi didn't wear his mask at home, or in bed, or in the shower for that matter.
The man knew better than trying to put up a farce in front of his lover. Iruka saw through every mask anyway, and he saw the real Kakashi.
Since the real Kakashi didn't send the chuunin running for the hills, he never bothered to wear a mask in front of him, when they were in private.
He didn't need to.
Is there a subject that is taboo that isn't to be mentioned or brought up by either of you? What were the results if said subject was accidently brought up?
For both of them, it was their scars.
Kakashi always flinched when the subject neared how his eye was bisected vertically. Iruka knew, of course he knew, the hows and the whys behind the eye. The jounin eventually, in bits and pieces, filled him in. But Iruka knew he wasn't allowed to breach the subject. He had to wait for Kakashi to open up on his own.
Once, and only once, Iruka accidently veered the topic of conversation into dangerous waters without noticing. And Kakashi became very quiet and sullen for hours. It was a scarier barrier than the eccentric jounin's cryptic words, sarcasm and his mask.
Iruka, Kakashi knew, was very delicate about the scar marring his nose. Kakashi knew how Iruka got it, too. As a child, a wayward shuriken thrown by an angry, drunk father towards his screaming mother was intercepted by Iruka’s face.
The chuunin loathed to think ill of his parents since they were taken from him, and to talk about his scar was re-opening figurative wounds. Iruka preferred memories of his parents laughing and happy over recollections of when they were angry.
Towards Kakashi, Iruka had never expressively forbidden the subject, but the Copy-Nin could see it in his eyes how they would cloud with guilt and shame and worry. And at night, Iruka would sneak out to the memorial to talk to his parents and think of better times. Every time he climbed back into bed, he would be freezing and in the morning they’d both have to act like nothing happened.
However, they’d both still talk in bits and pieces about their scars when the feeling hit them. There wasn't anything 100% taboo between them, only matters that needed to be handled with care.
Ninja had too many secrets, after all. Iruka and Kakashi didn’t want their relationship built around them.
What was the first thing you noticed about the other?
The first thing Kakashi noticed about Iruka was his loud voice while waiting in the Mission Room lines.
The first thing Iruka noticed about Kakashi was his wild mane of silver hair as he briefly glanced to see how long his queue was.
Then Kakashi noticed Iruka's scar when Icha Icha wasn’t enough to hold his attention.
Iruka noticed Kakashi's mask and then recalled the name attached to the infamous mask.
They saw each other's eyes at the same time.
Iruka looked down only to look back up and yell at the man for the mess of a report he was given.
Kakashi barely noticed that, but he did see the red flush creeping up the desk-chuunin's cheeks.
The sensei realized that Kakashi's slouch made him slightly shorter than him, not including hair, because when he stood up to hammer his point in, he was looking down slightly.
Kakashi smiled when he shrugged, never having seen a man get worked up so quickly from nonchalance; he couldn't help but eye some of the loose strands of hair falling from a haphazard ponytail.
Iruka snarled some more, but a part of him noticed that Kakashi's lips were raised beneath the fabric hiding them.
Kakashi noted Iruka's long fingered hands as he gestured wildly about how children could write better than he could.
When Kakashi left the Mission Room with the orders to re-write his work, Iruka noticed the jounin was certainly easy on the eyes.
The reason they were together today after such a tumulus first meeting? Both of them couldn’t stop noticing.
Do you guys ever confuse each other’s clothes for your own? Is it a big problem for you guys? Those uniforms all look the same, you know.
“Yes, the bosom of my love?”
Iruka did a double take. “Yeah—wait, what?! ‘Bosom of your love’?” His irritated glance immediately changed to one of severe concern. “Did you take a beating in Gai's last challenge or something? Odd jutsu to the chest or the head?”
“No,” Kakashi mumbled, ducking out of the way of Iruka's hand currently trying to feel his forehead for a temperature. “I just felt that you deserved an endearing pet-name.”
“We're beyond the honeymooner’s endearing nickname stage, aren't we, Kakashi?”
An awkward pause. “Yeah, I guess,” Kakashi conceded.
“What brought that on, anyway?”
Kakashi looked away, and even though his mask was on, Iruka could see the flush spreading on his pale cheeks. “I saw my underwear...”
“Are you sure that you're alright?”
“Yes! Just, let me finish, okay?”
Iruka mocked locking his lips tight and throwing away the key. With his eyes, he indicated for the other man to continue.
“Well, I only just noticed the name tags sown in all of my clothes saying ‘Kashi, and I thought that was your subtle hint for me to up my game...”
Iruka froze for a whole thirty seconds before bending over with the force of his laughter.
“Silly, sweet, endearing man.” Iruka finally gathered himself enough to reply. “I put name tags on everything because it is so damned confusing which of our clothes is which, and I am sick of leaving the house with pants two sizes too big. We have pretty much identical ninja gear in the closet, and I'm tired of having to figure out which one's which when the sizes have been washed and faded from use.”
Kakashi's visible eye widened just the tiniest bit, and the red flush burned darker as Iruka continued talking.
“Why I shortened your name? It wouldn't fit on the tags otherwise...”
“Damn, I look like a giant idiot, don't I?”
“Actually, I think it's rather sweet you wanted to do something.”
“Yep. But please, don't ever call me ‘bosom of your love’ ever again.”
“Scout’s honour.” Kakashi's grin stretched and he pulled his mask down to kiss the smiling chuunin.
Does Kakashi really JUST read Icha Icha in public?
Kakashi really did like reading Icha Icha Paradise. But it wasn't always like that.
At first, he simply picked it up because the leery old guy behind the book store counter kept making eyes at him, and he grabbed the novel without really looking at what he was getting. It was before Obito died, and when he was still far too serious for a child.
When he went home, he finally opened the pages and read the first chapter. It lay dusty and abandoned for a long while after. Kakashi didn't like it. Love was irrational, still, and he rather stay far away from stuff like that. (He'd later learn that it was only about innocent love in the first chapter; things got a little more heated up after that, naturally).
He started reading the book for real when his superiors decided it was about time he took on seduction missions. Kakashi was smart enough, with enough looks about him to get away with the mission with a high success rate. Initially, he had looked at Icha Icha with a detached sort-of disregard; he didn't hate it, but he wasn't openly fond of it either. However, Kakashi liked to be prepared, and he could justify reading the book as research.
Surprisingly, to the young man, the cheesy romantic lines he memorized and paraphrased to his first targets, worked. Perhaps it helped Kakashi had a smooth voice, deepened by puberty, and whether consciously or not, dripped sex appeal.
When he became a jounin, he started walking around the streets with the book in visible sight. It was becoming rather popular, and its distinctive cover made it clear just what the Copy-Nin was reading. This time, he read it in public for the shock value of those surrounding him. Privately, he’d laugh at their scandalized faces, side glances, and quiet, awkward coughs.
In a world of blood, death and endless tragedy, all ninja had to remember to take a step back and find some humour in the wonder of life. Or they’d wither away and die; cold and forgetting of the warmth of laughter. Kakashi had seen that happen far too many times before.
Occasionally, he’d read another book with the Icha Icha dust cover slipped over it, but not often. Icha Icha was a book he'd read enough that he could enjoy it on missions and still be aware of his surroundings. He could keep his eyes on the words and his attention on what was happening around him.
These days, he didn't read the bright orange books that much. Instead, he'd read the small little notes littered inside the pages, hidden and written in a rough hand, occasionally easily coded for laughs.
Kakashi smiled as he walked the streets, mind full of the innocent—or not so innocent—words of his lover, Iruka.
I'd adore some comments~!
Pairing: Hatake Kakashi / Umino Iruka.
FormSpring KakaIru Masterpost.
Summary: Responses to several KakaIru related prompt questions.
Title: Thesaurus Bingo - 9 one shots.
Summary: Written for the mini-bingo round at kakairu_fest, from a prompt table.
Genres: Angst / Tragedy.
Warnings: implied character death.
Title: Nature Bingo - 9 one shots.
Summary: Written for the mini-bingo round at kakairu_fest, from a prompt table.
Genres: Romance / Humour.
Warnings: character death at one stage, but neither Kakashi or Iruka.
Title: Quotes Bingo - 9 one shots.
Summary: Written for the mini-bingo round at kakairu_fest, from a prompt table.
Genres: Romance / Humour / Angst.
Warnings: character death at one stage.
Title: Written, Erased, Re-Written.
Summary: It’s not enough to capture a man. You need to be able to break him. But how can you cripple something already so damaged? AU, still in Naruto’s world, but a far cry from canon events.
Genres: Drama / Tragedy.
Title: Peacetime Mornings.
Summary: A morning in the lives of Iruka and Kakashi.
Genres: Romance / Fluff.
Pairing: Gen. (None).
Title: Twenty Unknown Shortcuts Of Umino Iruka.
Summary: People are always so busy, busy, busy. Chuunin teacher, Umino Iruka, does everything to cut back his workload, to free up his time; a ninja's life's so short, you need to cherish every moment, right? Iruka-centric.
Genres: Angst / Tragedy.
Warnings: character death.
Pairing: Arthur / Eames.
Title: Three is for Reality.
Summary: Limbo overwhelms even the most prepared mind. A post-Limbo story.
Genres: Angst / Tragedy.
Summary: As time goes on, Arthur finds it harder and harder to see. So Eames sees the world for him. Post-canon.
Genres: Hurt/Comfort / Romance
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes / John Watson.
Title: Not Much Difference.
Summary: Sherlock Holmes in 1000 words. Canon. Introspective.
Genres: Character Piece.
I hope you enjoy!