Asuma didn’t even need a note to know who was going to be sending him a gift with such a pretty arrangement on top. Still, he was touched all the same, and chuckled a little at the gift inside.
"Practical but stylish," he muttered. Then another thought came to him - did he own a vase?
It had taken Kurenai a lot of thought to figure out what she could get for her lover’s birthday. Having spent so many years together, it stopped becoming an easy task around the time they hit puberty. There were certain things he almost always liked, so Kurenai decided to play it safe this time around. Let the surprises come the next occasion she needed to give.
Slipping wordlessly into his open window, it didn’t take effort to locate him, seated comfortably on the sofa. She hugged him from behind, placing the gifts on his lap, accompanied by a chaste peck on the cheek.
"Happy birthday, Asuma."
Asuma clocked Kurenai’s entrance, meaning she was being polite, not sneaky, but made no move to say hello. The gift she placed in his lap was heavy, sparking his interest and as her arms wrapped around him, he started to turn, only to be stopped by the kiss to his cheek.
"Happy birthday, Asuma."
"Happier now," he agreed, turning to kiss her a little less chastely, though only briefly. He lifted the neatly wrapped paper, weighing it. "Luckily, your only competition came in the form of a flask," he gestured toward the kitchen where it was now propped against his coffee pot. And then added, because he was an awesome boyfriend, "but then again I always end up liking yours best no matter what."
Which was true, the only other person who’d ever had her matched had been his older sibling and his mother. Both gone, now. Carefully, he peeled back the wrapping, grinning when he saw what she’d gotten him.
"Thank you, Kurenai, my collection’s thinned a bit since my move," he joked lightly, gesturing to the practically empty bookshelves. Unsure what else to say - eloquence they name was not Asuma - he settled for reaching up to tug her down for another kiss.
"It’s perfect," he mumbled, barely pulling away.
Today was one of the dates Shikamaru couldn’t forget even if he tried. It was easy to pick out a present for his once-deceased mentor, although he was sure the man already had a flask of his own. Multiples weren’t necessarily a bad thing.
As he did with all perfunctory gift-giving, he left it on the doorstep, knocked a few times, and headed off.
Though he felt a note wasn’t mandatory, it was only habit and courtesy to include one.
Asuma also stepped on the gift, confused and not quiet awake after decided his gift to himself would be sleeping in. He didn’t, though, and was glad. Sure, the gift was simple and the note somewhat non indicative, but Asuma knew his students.
Scooping it up, he waved it slightly and spoke to the empty air.
"Thanks kid, but I’m not sharing." Chances are he was long gone, but it never hurt to get out a possible parting shot.
Wanted: lost childhood. Reward: my job.