Kakashi sat alone at the counter of the bar, waiting for Tenzo to show up. His friend wasn’t late, per se, but Kakashi didn’t often show up early or on time for stuff. So as afar as he was concerned, Tenzo was late.
But that was okay, Kakashi could get a headstart on unwinding even if the first drink sucked. His mask was left to bunch around his neck as he nursed a drink called Thunder Struck (a weird concoction from Lightning Country) that was promised to be electrifying.
Spoilers: it wasn’t.
Kakashi would much rather try and electrocute himself with a Raikiri (it wouldn’t work anyway).
The Rusty Shuriken was in full form tonight, but given that it was 7:00 PM on a Friday, that wasn’t too surprising. It was loud—people were talking loudly almost yelling, laughing, someone was even bawling—and the volume on the music was turned up; the bass rumbled through the establishment. If he didn’t walk out of here at ass o'clock in the morning with a pounding headache to complement his drunkness he’d be extremely surprised.
Kakashi knocked back the rest of his drink and signaled for the bartender. This time he got sake.
He was on his fourth saucer of booze when someone dropped into a barstool a few places down. There was brief recognition—they had to be chuunin; there was only one jounin he knew that wore their hair up like that, and Shikaku didn’t come to this bar. Kakashi also might have done a mission with him, he was the former teacher of Kakashi’s genin team if he remembered right. The alcohol was doing its job, so everything was getting a little fuzzy and he wasn’t too sure about the details, but their name started with an ‘I’, or maybe and ‘U’.
As he started on his second flask of sake, the noise and people didn’t bother him too much. And Tenzo still wasn’t here.
Kakashi debated on tracking down his kohai, but that would mean giving up his seat. The bar was really starting to fill up now, and he was quite content where he was.
Or so he thought.
As he filled up his saucer again, he spotted Genma pushing his way through a few groups of boisterous drunks trying to get to the counter. For a split second, they made eye contact. Kakashi knew better too, as the man had a sixth sense about people staring that easily outclassed Kakashi’s.
To make matters worse, Genma was his ex.
Genma wasn’t a bad guy, Kakashi had enjoyed his time with the on-again, off-again relationship they had shared, he just grew tired of it after a while. He certainly didn’t want to fall back into it either.
Quickly Kakashi looked about, hoping to find Asuma or Gai. Where the fuck was Tenzo? Then he spotted the chuunin he had vaguely recognized earlier.
“I’m gonna go find Izumo, see ya later Iruka!”
Iruka’s friend stood up and clapped Iruka on the shoulder before disappearing into the swarm of drunken shinobi.
Oh, Iruka. That was it. It was definitely his genin team's former chuunin-sensei.
Well, it’s better than nothing, Kakashi thought to himself as he spared another glance in Genma’s direction. He was closing in now.
Kakashi quickly abandoned his mostly empty sake flask and hauled himself up, b-lining to the now empty barstool at Iruka’s left. He dropped himself into it and leaned into Iruka.
“Help me out and I’ll buy you as many drinks as you want,” Kakashi murmured into Iruka’s ear as he wrapped his arm around the chuunin’s waist.
Iruka stiffened and glanced at Kakashi, then looked just beyond the counter and relaxed.
“Problems?” Iruka asked, flagging the bartender for another round.
“You could say that.”
“Hey, Hatake! On a date?” Genma greeted him and draped an arm across Kakashi’s shoulders. The man really had no idea what personal space was. “And with Iruka. Who’d’ve thought.”
“And what’s that supposed to mean,” Iruka bit out, leveling Genma with a venomous look. It’d probably curdle milk.
Kakashi’s lips twitched and threatened to break out into a grin.
Genma released Kakashi and raised his hands up placatingly, “Don’t get mad. I just meant that it’s been a while since I’ve seen you with anyone. Not since Mizuki.”
Oof, Genma was really putting his foot in it. Kakashi unconsciously pulled Iruka a little closer, in an attempt to comfort the man. Kakashi didn’t miss how the chuunin tensed up at the mention of the Mizuki.
Genma withered under Iruka’s fiery glare. “Fuck—I mean it’s good to see you with Kakashi. He’s a good guy, and you deserve nice things Iruka.”
Iruka still looked pissed, but he turned back to the new drink the bartender left while Genma was making a fool out of himself.
“If that’s all, I’d really like to get back to my date. If you don’t mind.” Kakashi said, looking pointedly at Genma.
“Oh, yeah, sure! I don’t mind at all.”
Kakashi took great delight in watching his ex scramble away, clearly forgetting why he was going to the counter in the first place. He smiled then.
“I apologize for that,” Kakashi said, releasing Iruka and taking a quick sip from his own drink. “And I appreciate the help.”
Iruka leaned away from Kakashi and rested his arms on the counter. “Glad I could be of service. And I finally got a chance to see beneath your mask. I’ve always wondered.”
“I don’t come here often, and I’m not going to drink alcohol through my mask,” Kakashi huffed a laugh, “So what’s the verdict? Am I too ugly?” he teased.
“Try drop-dead gorgeous,” Iruka smirked.
Kakashi was surprised by how easy it was to talk to Iruka. The banter was rather fun.
“You’re pretty hot yourself,” Kakashi remarked.
Iruka, not expecting his reply, blushed. Maybe it was the alcohol doing funny things to him, but he could have sworn Iruka shivered.
And then Iruka seemed to lose himself in his thoughts.
After a minute of what Kakashi assumed was a heated internal debate, whatever it was Iruka was thinking about, he seemed to have made a decision about it if the determined expression on his face was anything to go by.
Iruka shifted in his chair to face Kakashi. “You can buy me drinks later, how about we get out of here instead?” he said, nodding in the direction of the exit.
“Maa, Sensei, it’s our first date and already you want to take me home?” Kakashi quipped.
“I wouldn’t classify this as a date, but we could discuss the potential of future dates back at my place. Or yours.”
“Well, when you put it like that, how can I possibly refuse?”
Kakashi stood up, and when Iruka followed suit, he settled his hands on Iruka’s hips, bringing Iruka close—close enough to kiss—as he built up chakra for a two-person shunshin.
“Friends don’t let friends drink and jutsu,” Iruka murmured against Kakashi’s lips.
“Don’t worry, Sensei, I’ve gotten really good at it.”
Any further thoughts about where the fuck Tenzo was were dropped as Kakashi formed the tiger seal and shunshinned them away.