Categories > Anime/Manga > Naruto > Stumbling Blind Side Stories

Marriage: A Spectator's Sport

by Virgo 0 reviews

Because it can't always be smooth.

Category: Naruto - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Humor, Romance - Characters:  Ino, Shikamaru - Published: 2005-05-08 - Updated: 2005-05-08 - 4996 words

Marriage: A Spectator's Sport

Based off some clip of some old western movie that got caught in my mind (because it was pretty random and very funny) and some other humorous wedding fics. Which, of course, just snowballed into this monstrosity. Though there's no real time frame, Ino and Shikamaru are about 19 at this point. Because I don't know much about Asian weddings (and because most of this wouldn't work in an asian wedding, anyway), this is based on a traditional Western wedding. For the most part :P

It's a little rushed at the end, but then it was starting to get a little long, as well. And any insinuations about what happened at the bachelor party.... Imagine what you will^-^


Marriage is a very graceful ceremony. Beautiful, peaceful, full of traditions and hopes. Depending, of course, on who you asked.

Ino fidgeted. She'd been fidgeting since she woke up. And, seeing as after everyone fell asleep at her bachelorette party the full realization that she was getting married to her five-year boyfriend/two-year fiancé finally hit her, all thoughts of sleep were abandoned at 5 o'clock that morning.

Relax, her bridal party told her- consisting of most all the girls she ever felt comfortable around -she looked beautiful, the ceremony was going to be perfect and all she had to worry about was spending a week in bed with her soon-to-be-husband.

When she thought about Shikamaru it felt like her insides were about to fly off without her. It took Sakura and Ten Ten nearly half an hour to coax Ino out of the bathroom. They did everything from teasing to pleading to cajoling to threatening to even trying to get her pissed. It finally took Sakura taking a deep breath and asking Ino softly how Shikamaru would feel if his bride left him at the altar. There was silence, the sound of someone blowing their nose and the flush of a toilet. Ino slowly opened the door, wearing only her slip, garter and stockings, sniffling as the two girls escorted her back to the dressing room.

She didn't tell them why she was crying, but they knew. They were already well warned of the demon-imp called pre-wedding jitters. She asked to know how Shikamaru was doing- knowing full well the superstitions of a bride and groom seeing each other before the wedding. They had asked Kurenai and Anko (because she had nothing better to do) to check up on the males. They didn't see either of them until near two hours before the ceremony started.


"Are you sure they're here?"

"If they're not here, I have no idea where else they could be." Anko replied.

They stood in front of the building housing the local bar that had been taken over by the upper echelons of the shinobi a long while back. For some unknowns reason, it also doubled as the happening place for a bachelor party as well, though that morning it seemed a very dead, very uninhabited establishment.

Kurenai steeled her doubts. "Well, they're no where else and it certainly won't hurt to look."

The two kunoichi opened the door, casting light on the stained and sticky floor. Frowning into the dark, Kurenai groped for the light switch. There was a screech of a dozen drunken ninjas as the lights came on, all of them struggling for cover under the merciless glare.

"Turn it off! Turn it off!" They pleaded, hiding their splitting heads. Anko wondered how much they had to drink and thought it unfair that no-non- stripper-women were allowed to a bachelor party.

Kurenai, however, fairly exploded. "For the love of-are you aware of WHAT TIME IT IS!?"

"....please, don't shout...." Came the pitiful reply.

"The wedding is in five hours and none of you are ready!!"

"Oh, God... have mercy...."

"Get up!" She cried, pulling the nearest one out by the leg. It was Naruto, curling in on himself and praying to someone that they'd let him explode and end his painful existence. "We have to get ready!" There was a general groaning of a negative, but Kurenai was determined to have her way. Anko, however, was attempting to keep from laughing at the sight. She got careless, however, and one slipped around her fingers. In an instant, Kurenai had turned on her.

"Anko...." She said levelly with a humorless smile. "Would you care to help me?"

"Er, um...." the younger woman said. "Uh, maybe we should locate the fathers and Asuma?" She tried desperately.

The two looked around and realized that, indeed, some of the main names of the ceremony weren't around. Kurenai nodded. "Alright, let's go."

A majority of the partygoers were either curled on the cushioned chairs or snarling at the intrusive lights from under tables. Kiba was behind the bar itself, fallen when he could no longer play bartender, body wrapped around several empty bottles of alcohol. Akamaru, miffed at his owner's neglect, curled in the corner, front paws in a suspicious smelling puddle that his tongue dabbled in with every exhale. The two systematically searched every known room of the bar. The only closet in the building housed Lee, apparently crammed in with what once were janitorial supplies once he started getting violent. They found two people in the very back. The search in that room went rather quickly, though, when they established those two happened to be Kakashi and Iruka, both with a significant lack of decency. Ensuring no one else was there, Kurenai moved on to the next room, only to go back to drag Anko away from the eye candy. The last room was the bathroom and, sharing a grim look between them, the two women pushed open the door.

Slumped in what could vaguely be considered as 'sitting upright' was Asuma, stripped to his boxers and one wrist hand cuffed to a stall.

Anko's eyes widened. "Wow!"

"Anko...." Kurenai warned.

"You sleep with a bear!"


"Bet he saves you on the heating bill."

"Will you-" She cut herself off with a hand to her head. "Let's get him and the rest of the party up, okay?" Her teeth were grinding together.

"Right, right." Hiding a grin, Anko squatted by the sleeping beast. "Up, Asuma. Wake up!"

"Blargh." He said in reply, head rolling against the broad expanse of his chest.

"Asuma!" Kurenai gripped the edge of his ear between two knuckles, squeezing and pulling harshly.

"Ow! Ow!" The man flailed, handcuff keeping him immobile. "What?" His eyes were bleary as he attempted to recognize the two misshapen smudges in his face.

"What happened to you?" Ah, yes. Anko.

"Much partying." His words slurred as he reached a thick finger in his mouth, trying to dig out the ash that somehow got embedded into his tongue. He winced as his back protested. "The floor of a bathroom is not a good place to sleep."

"No kidding. Why didn't you free yourself? You have to have some sort of lock picking thing on your person."

"I did until the stripper took my clothes...."


Asuma's eyes went wide and surprisingly sober as he finally identified the other smudge as an enraged Kurenai. "Er, uh, I-I mean, it's all a blank! I don't remember a thing!"

"Yeah, right." She snarled, snapping the chain with a kunai. "You're lucky I don't have time to deal with you right now. Get up. We have drunkards to get prepared."

His feet weren't nearly as articulate as his mouth, getting tangled up, buckling out from beneath him and just generally getting in the way. Kurenai practically dragged him around, Anko snickering from behind the two. When the older woman looked over at her, clearly frustrated, Anko just pointed at Asuma's backside. Printed across his rear it said 'one way only'. His drawers apparently a gift from Kakashi. Kurenai shook her head and continued to move out.

When they reached the main room once more, Kurenai jostled Asuma a bit. "Where's Shikamaru?" She asked.

"Hm?" Came the tired reply.

"Shi. Ka. Ma. Ru." She shook him again. Asuma flopped in her grip. There was a pause, then a drunken chuckle when his face settled against Kurenai's exposed cleavage. She rolled her eyes, dropping him to the floor in exasperation. Reaching down, Kurenai dragged out the nearest person that seemed vaguely coherent. "Where's Shikamaru?" She asked.

Neji's eyes tried to focus on a spot that wavered in front of his face. It tasted like some animal left a present in his mouth and died in his brain. "I thought you had him." He said helpfully.


"You lost the groom." Tsunade paced before the ranks of men, attempting not to fall over each other. As Hokage it was her duty to sign the legal binding of marriage though her position also gave her power to legally preside over the ceremony. And, seeing as this particular marriage dealt with her most prized strategist (she'd call him her most prized possession, but Ino had dibs on that title long before Tsunade did), she was determined to make sure nothing went wrong. "Not only did you lose the groom, but both fathers and the rings." She stopped and glared. No one was drunk enough to not flinch. "If it were just the rings, we could've gotten them replaced within two hours. The father's we wouldn't be able to cover up, but we could still go on without them. But you just had to lose the /groom/! Did you think we could just go to the local convenience store and pick one up!?"

Kiba, fighting a headache and nausea and beginning to lose on both fronts said, "Er, they do sell blow up dolls-"

"I think she'd /notice/." Her voice was somehow freezing yet scalding hot. "Those of you in the ceremony, get ready. NOW. The rest of you, look for Shikamaru, he's our main concern." She stood, full height before the men, lifting her chin authoritatively. In response, the makeshift platoon all snapped to attention. "Dismissed!"

There was a race to the bathroom as a half dozen stomachs suddenly rebelled.


In an undisclosed location:

A great, high pitched whine filled the air as two figures exited a building.

They waved over their shoulders, making promises they all knew the men wouldn't keep.

"Bye! Maybe we'll see you again!"

The girls pouted, clad in very flimsy, very gauzy clothing that really didn't do much in the ways of clothing. "Come back anytime!" They cooed after the two, striking rather tempting poses.

But they had a duty to fulfill, neither would be swayed. At least, not today.

"Man, I really needed that."

"No kidding."

They walked back to town in silence.

"Uh, Shikato?"

"What's up?"

"Don't tell my wife about this, okay?"

"Not a word."


The town was just close of being torn upside down looking for the missing groom. They had tried to keep it a secret, but there's always someone that, for the life of them, couldn't keep their mouth shut.

Kiba looked horrified. "....."


"You weren't supposed to tell them that!" He hissed.

Shino blinked, still half swimming in alcohol. "....Oops?"

It was only by pure force of will and the iron rule of the bridal party that kept the news from Ino. She always stayed in the dressing room for some reason or other, watches posted on either end of the halls and in a five meter radius outside it to make sure no one was shooting their mouth off of the fact. Ino had enough things to worry about. This one didn't have to go on that list, too.

When they had found the fathers, they told them the situation. Shikato just let out a little noise of contemplation and told them: "Check the cemetery," before he and Inoshi went to get themselves freshened up for the ceremony.

Indeed, resting at his best friend's grave, was Shikamaru, sprawled on his back and snoring lightly. By his feet was one over turned glass, sitting in front of the marker, was another glass, still full of crystalline champagne. By them were three bottles of beer. One he had poured over the gravestone (it still glistened and still smelled of it), the other two Shikamaru had apparently guzzled down along with most the bottle of champagne.

The search party, after exchanged bemused and envious glances, hauled the drunken doomed-man-to-be between them, they prepared the long and awkward drag to the church...


It wasn't the ideal way to have the missing Shikamaru turn up, Tsunade knew, but they had little choice. While most of both parties were ready to go, they were down to two and a half hours until the ceremony was going to start and the groom was passed out and going suffer on impressive hang over while the bride was getting herself so worked up she had to have access to the bathroom in case her jitters got the better of her.

Damned if she was ever going to get married after this.

So, making the best of the situation, she instructed the men to deal with the situation. Stick him in a cold shower, try to wake him up anyway they could (though, judging from how Shikato decided to just watch and laugh at their attempts, she really didn't think waking the boy up would be easy). Once he got cleaned up, regardless of his state of consciousness, they were to put him in his tux. They'd drag his barely living carcass down the aisle if they had to. And if he did wake up, if there was anything that could cure his level of hangover, even a placebo, he was welcomed to it, raw oysters and all.

It was nearing go time, however, when Shikamaru showed signs of cognizance. Unfortunately, it was just him spitting out some deranged concoction Gai had cooked up ("It always worked on Lee!" Gai said, but then, Lee had the constitution of drunk asking for another drink, it was only natural a guy that got buzzed off the scent of alcohol could get sober off something that wouldn't work for anyone else with a hangover) all over the front of his tuxedo. It took a lot of frantic movement and begging and pleading the local tailor to give them another silk shirt and expect payment at another time.

Blearily, during a time when he staunchly had to not pay attention to the half dozen odd hands trying clumsily to take off his shirt, Shikamaru- for the most part -woke up. His eyelids did the Wave, trying to figure out who the closet person in his face was.

"Oi....." he slurred, body lurching a bit too forward when he tried to get a closer look. "Ssssssss'suke."

"What?" He asked, annoyed. For someone that should've been legal dead from alcohol blood content, Shikamaru was making it awfully difficult.

"What're you doin'? 'M almost a married man...."

Eye twitching, Sasuke had to refrain from smacking the groom upside the head. He was awake now, after all; the wedding may go off without a hitch, so long as he stayed awake. "We wouldn't be doing this, stupid," he practically tore a sleeve off of Shikamaru's arm, "if you didn't puke all over yourself."

Shikamaru's brow puckered. "I di'n't." Then he actually thought about the sentence. "'We'?"

"Just shut up, Nara." Kiba said from around his waist, having to prop said drunkard up while the other changed out his shirt. "This'll be over with quicker if you just leave it to us."

Lifting a brow, Shikamaru swayed backwards until he was practically lying across Kiba's back. "If you guys're feelin' this exp'rimen'l, ya shoulda tried it /earli/-hmph!"

Neji stopped that thought with an unused bow tie in the mouth.

With a grunt, Naruto tried to hold the groom's rubber-like, flailing arms to fit them into the new shirt. "Probably a good thing he doesn't remember what happened last ni-mph!"

That thought, too was rudely stuffed.


The crowd was starting to get irritated by the time Tsunade decided that it was do-or-die time. She felt vaguely sorry for Shikamaru because he'd be the person to do the dying should things get messed up. She sighed quietly at the altar. He was the best mind she'd ever seen. She'd certainly hate to lose him because of an unhappy wife.

The music started and the crowd looked at the doors at either side of the church. From opposite aisles came two parties: the groom and the bride.

Ino was beautiful, even more eye-catching than normal. Her hair, though still short, was curled for volume, pinned to her head in complex weaves with her veil. The collar of the dress- low cut for her ample bosom -drew the eye with a soft pendant that hung low, glittering like dew against her skin. The dress hugged tight against her slender waist and smooth hips. Skirts wrapped around her, billowing and trailing, the high cut emphasizing the length of her legs. She was stunning, a goddess in pale silks and flowers, leaving the scent of meadows and sunlight behind her.

The only thing that kept the congregation's attention off the bride, however, was the groom. Not only because his party was having trouble moving in a relatively straight line, but also because the groom was slowly sinking to the floor....

Careful not to draw attention, Ino's mother leaned over to her husband.

"You did say Shikamaru-kun hasn't been having second thoughts, right?"


"So why does it look he's about to fall over?"

Inoshi pressed his lips together as Shikato hauled his son straight on his feet.



The man cleared his throat. "We may have partied a bit too much."

The crowd tried to hide it murmuring at the odd behavior of the males, but it still rippled from person to person. While Sakura, Ten Ten and Hinata complimented Ino's latent grace, Naruto, Shikato and Asuma merely enhanced Shikamaru's lack of coordination with their own stumbling. It was a surprise that Naruto didn't drop the rings on their way to the altar.

It took all of Tsunade's will to keep from hanging her head.

That /that/, she thought, was Konoha's most prized shinobi? She was glad none of the other villages were here to see this.

Ino didn't seem to notice any of it, however, as she kept walking forward, blissful smile on her face. It was only until both parties stopped (and nearly crashed in the groom's party's case) at the altar that Tsunade realized that a part of Ino had drifted off. Probably imagining a more perfect wedding. She actually felt a little jealous.

Clearing her throat, Tsunade started: "Dearly beloved. We are gathered her today to witness these two in the bonds," her voice shifted slightly from their self-confident tone, attention being drawn towards Shikamaru. He seemed to be slowly sinking, his knees giving out on him. ".....of holy matrimony...." She let out a discreet sigh when Shikato reached over and set him up straight before his boy could fall on his face. Realizing that she had paused a little too long, Tsunade looked down to find her place in the book again.

The ceremony dragged on and Shikamaru was starting to sag at the knees again. When he began wilting dangerously forward, his father grabbed him tightly around the shoulders, straightening him out again. And, in attempt to keep him upright, he held onto Shikamaru's elbow. It didn't work as his knees buckled again, nearly sending both to the floor. After Shikato indicated with toss of his head, Naruto- after having a brief argument with his feet -moved behind the groom, supporting his other side.

Tsunade was impressed by Ino's bearing. Her smile hardly faltered but she could see glaciers moving behind her eyes, slow, cold and waiting to do some damage.

The rest of the speech went quickly, no one having to stop and wonder if the groom would faint dead away again- though there was one incident where Naruto had spaced out and began to sway on his own feet. Ino had made a show of shifting slightly, pressing the sharp of her elbow harshly into Naruto's side.

Tsunade didn't want to risk anything happening with the vows, skipping right towards the exchange of rings. Shikato- the most sober of the three men -had to take Shikamaru's hands in his in order to place the ring on Ino's finger.

In order to keep any other disaster at bay, the Hokage decided to end the ceremony. Closing the thick book between her hands, Tsunade smiled brightly. "I now pronounce you man and wife. You may kiss the bride."

A fresh wave of blush made its way to Ino's face as she turned anxiously at her new husband. Naruto and Shikato bodily pointed Shikamaru in the right direction and dropped their hands, confident he could handle the rest on his own.

After a false start, Shikamaru leaned forward. His lips barely brushed Ino's before he fainted. Ino squeaked, nearly bowled over by his sudden weight on top of her.

The hall erupted in a cheer, the women crying and cheering, hugging each other and wanting to get to the reception to offer their congratulations. The men roared, thumping each other's shoulders and wanting to get to the reception to tease the newlywed and get some more drink.

With Shikamaru eased off her, Ino and her new husband were swept up by the crowd, being pushed over to the reception hall and the feast that awaited everyone there. Drinks were poured and shoved in her face while Shikamaru sat (still unconscious) in his seat. Until gravity pulled his face down to the table in an audible and rather painful sounding thump.

Ino lost track of what was going on with all the questions fired at her, plates of food and cake and glasses of some drink or other constantly pushed in front of her. And the speeches. Oh, God. She couldn't remember what anyone said, really, just that they were drunk and were not things she really wanted to remember to begin with.

Rolling her eyes as someone started off some vulgar marriage-oriented drinking song, she looked enviously at Shikamaru, wishing she could spend their reception in a different plane of awareness like he did.

Ino was surprised, though, too look over at Shikamaru and finding him watching her, apparently having woken up somewhere in the loud commotion. He stared up at her, head still resting on the table, and smiled gently. She couldn't help but to smile back, seeking his hand with hers, liking the way his cool band felt when her fingertips slid over it.

She jumped in surprise, shocked when both their parents snuck up on them.

"Hey," Inoshi said, a drunk flush on his cheeks and nose, "you two can get going any time now."

The newlyweds looked up in confusion. "Huh?"

"You can leave without those guys making a commotion. Your carriage is waiting outside to take you to the most passionate locale money can buy." The blonde man said with great flare. "In Fire Country." He added off handedly.

"Yeah, yeah." Shikato pressed while Ino's mom giggled oddly behind the two men. "Get goin' or else those guys'll start gettin' on yer case again." Even his oft bragged about 'Nara constitution' was buckling under the amount he'd been drinking in the passed few days. His words were starting to border on completely incoherent.

Making almost as much racket as the rest of the congregation and shushing noises, they hustled their children out to the carriage, tackily decorated with a large 'just married' sign on the back. Complete with (for some unknown reason, probably Naruto's doing) tin cans on strings dragging behind it. They didn't give Ino a chance to argue, Shikamaru wasn't in any condition to say a word at all. Shoving them inside the plush confines, the three stood back, waving and shouting encouragement and advice as the carriage left until Ino leaned out the window and told them to shut up, face reaching an unpreceded shade of red.

She stayed leaning out the window, waving at whoever was on the streets until they had left the gates. After a moment longer, Ino began to wonder who exactly was driving them. She tried to lean forward and get a good view. When that didn't work, she routed through the duffel bags (which had so conscientiously been set up in the carriage) for a mirror. Angling it just so, she could see the silhouette of two people. She blinked. ANBU. Then sweatdropped. In tuxedos.....

Ah, well. She snapped the compact closed, setting it back in the bag. Safety precautions and all. Lord knew how many people would kill to get their hands on a head like Shikamaru's. "But they'll never be able to take you away from /me/." She said, shaking her hair out from where it had been pinned up. "From this day on, you're mine to do what I want with." And first order of business was punishment for the ceremony. She turned on her new husband.

Shikamaru had fallen asleep, slumped in his seat, head resting against the soft sway of the carriage wall. Ino huffed. Then, thinking better of it, settled against him. She smiled up at his relaxed visage. "Just because I'm letting it go for right now," she told him quietly, "don't think I'm letting you completely off the hook."


It was nearing midnight by the time they reached the resort. It certainly did take its title as the most passionate local money could buy in Fire Country. Very isolated, any little thing they could've done to enhance a romantic atmosphere they did. And still managed to not be amazingly tacky about it. An artificial waterfall falling into a large, man made lake, strings of lanterns criss crossing above docks with a clear view of the stars. They even managed to construct the area to get the maximum effect from both sunset and sunrise.

The ANBU stopped the carriage, driver discussing parking regulations with the valet while the other hopped down to help Ino out of the carriage. She tried not to look at the mask above the immaculate tux, afraid she'd start laughing if she did. The ANBU reached in, trying to steady Shikamaru as he stumbled out, just barely awake. The ninja grabbed their bags, prodding Shikamaru forward as the bellhop lead the way to their room.

After the two left her and her husband alone in their room, Ino looked around. This was supposed to be the deluxe suite, but Ino didn't see anything overtly impressive about it. A nice sized bar, a little kitchenette, large bed, curtains draped all over the walls. And the ceiling, too.... Frowning, Ino went over to the rope that hung down, giving it an experimental pull. The curtains pulled back, showing the room, lined floor to ceiling (every inch, couldn't even see the ceiling around the light fixtures!) with mirrors. She blinked. Then flushed.

She explored the rest of the suite. An oversized bath, Jacuzzi, stereo speakers in every room. The mini-fridge was stocked with all sorts of alcohol, the other mini-fridge stocked with all sorts of passion fruits. One closet was filled with chests of sex toys, another filled with costumes ranging from schoolgirl to different types of uniforms to S&M leathers (with chains and whips). Ino didn't even want to guess what was sitting in the nightstand that was maybe a little too close to the bed, now that she thought about it.

Ino turned to look at Shikamaru, still swaying slightly by the door, not having moved an inch since they were left alone. Trying to ignore how hot her face felt, she turned away, trying to dredge up anger because it wasn't nearly as mortifying.

"I can't believe you! How could you embarrass us like that! At our own wedding!" Enraged, Ino tore the wide skirt off her body. The layers of silk billowed somewhere in the corner. Without them, her dress clung almost indecently to her thighs, showing off enough leg to create wet dreams for an entire class of pre-teen boys. When she turned to let off another wave of righteous indignation, Shikamaru's weight fell against her for the second time that day. This time, though, it sent her off balance, landing in the thick, soft folds of the bed. Before she could protest his mouth was on hers, claiming, hungry and sucking every angered word off her tongue.

Ino wriggled her hands between them, enough to free her mouth, letting him wander along her jaw and neck.

"You're drunk." She said, shivering slightly when he hit that spot just behind her ear.

" 'm not." Came the rebuttal, one hand kneading her breast, the other snaking behind her back, trying to find the clasps to her dress.

Ino rolled her eyes. "You are." But she sighed against him, slipping his jacket off his shoulders.

He moved his lips back to hers with a negative sound. "Not." He repeated, pulling back to rest, forehead to forehead and grinned. "You just said you didn't mind my losing control."

Ino raised an eyebrow at him. "That didn't mean I wanted you passing out in the middle of the ceremony."

"Long night yesterday, long night tonight." Shikamaru kissed her again. "Just needed to rest up."

Giggling against the hand spider-walking up her back, lost in its mission, Ino asked. "You think that'll be enough rest for you?" She placed a light kiss on his nose, wrists crossed behind his neck and bringing him down toward her. "Prove it."

Shikamaru just grinned back. His hand had finally found the clasp.
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