You like Sasuke/Sakura?
yeah. it was my first real OTP when i was like 11 or 12
but i mostly prefer the pre-timeskip stuff b/c the post-timeskip stuff is just…… a trainwreck of epic proportions. but the pre-timeskip stuff was really sweet and built up their relationship really well
say what you want about Sasuke’s character, but he actually did give a shit about Sakura early on. here, Sasuke was the only one to notice she was depressed and even went out of his way to cheer her up. at this point, he had no idea that the Chunnin exams could only be taken by teams of 3, he just did it to cheer his friend up and give her some confidence.
seriously, look at how cute team 7 is here. Sasuke just says “Don’t pull me.” not, “Let go,” not “Stop touching me,” just “Don’t pull me.” he doesn’t mind Sakura holding his hand at all. And Sakura is even pulling Naruto’s hand along (and almost leaves during the 10th question to preserve Naruto’s dreams). that’s a far cry to the callous, shallow fangirl she was at the beginning
at this point, Sakura has already developed to the point where she and Sasuke are good friends. sure, she still has a crush on him (and is falling in love with him), but she can still have a convo and talk with Sasuke as an equal.
hell, she even calls him out
she’s not blinded by her love for him. rather, she seems very self aware.
and again, Sasuke does care about her.
he’s the one who grabs her hand in this scene, because he’s seeking comfort from her.
Sasuke’s curse mark gets fully triggered because Sakura is hurt. it was activating and stewing, but seeing her injured is what triggered it to come out at full force. the mark is triggered by anger.
he was so angry to see someone he cared about be hurt that he snapped.
and then the curse mark recedes because of Sakura’s desperate pleading. her voice is what finally broke through his angry haze and calmed him down.
Naruto notes the change in Sakura’s hair, but Sakura easily convinces him that it was just an appearance change. only Sasuke and Ino, Sakura’s closest friend since she was 7 who knows her the best, realize the significance of her short hair. the fact that Sasuke is included in this moment of contemplation, along with Sakura’s best friend, says a lot.
she was willing to fight Gaara to protect Sasuke. not just because she loved him, but because he was her friend. she knew there was no way she could win. she probably knew that better than anybody. but she was gonna damn well try.
and again, Sasuke did, in fact, care about her. he cared about her a LOT.
he, very clearly, thinks of her as one of his most precious people. whether you wanna take that comment romantically or platonically doesn’t matter. at the end of the day, she was someone extremely important to him, and he didn’t want to lose her like he lost his family.
he was willing to sacrifice himself if it would buy Naruto time to escape with Sakura, as long as it kept her (and Naruto) alive.
(also, please note: the curse seal awakens when she’s in danger again)
it’s interesting to note that Sakura and Sasuke often noticed things about each other that none of the other characters see. Sasuke noticed she was sad, Sakura noticed he was acting weird, Sasuke noticed she was lying about why her hair was short, Sakura was the only one to know where Sasuke would be when he left the village.
so yeah, i think the ship had a lot of really good development early on, and it had a ton of potential to be really well written and cute. but then Orochimaru showed up and……… things basically went to shit.
i am forever disappointed about this you don’t even know
tbh, i’m also pretty picky with how SasuSaku is presented. personally, i view Sasuke as asexual. (actually, i view pretty much the entire Uchiha clan as asexual, but that’s a different point entirely). i think he would’ve been extremely awkward in a romantic relationship. kid barely had any social skills, after all. but given time, he would’ve been more comfortable with the idea. public affection would be very embarrassing for him tho, but he’d tolerate it for her. if very stiffly.
as for Sakura, i think she might’ve been bi, but she only has eyes for Sasuke. i think she would’ve been more casual about a relationship. she already knew Sasuke very personally, and the only difference i could see with her treatment of him is slightly more physical affection (hugs, holding hands, kisses on the cheek, etc)
i guess you could say i “Disney-ship” this, where i only ever viewed it very pure and innocently. at least the pre-TS stuff, haha. they just had so much potential to be super cute and sweet and that all went down the drain when Sasuke left with with Orochimaru.
cries forever about the wasted potential that these two could’ve had