Gaara       [source: Naruto]

Canon played out about as shown until after Naruto and I became Kage, at which point we did fix many of the problems. The Chunin Exams became only accessible when one was at least sixteen, the nations were forced to cooperate more and isolate less. I spent a fair amount of time in Konoha, working with Naruto on potential reforms and how to implement them.

At one point, the inn was full on account of there being some sort of festival, and Lee offered for me to stay at his house [as Temari and Shikamaru’s were too close to the festivities for rest, and Shikadai was a baby], built into the trees, with his adopted son, Met. Despite the council’s disapproval, I agreed, wishing to reconnect with Lee, as we’d hardly spoken since Madara. And we did, stayed up half the night talking and laughing.

When I did sleep, I awoke quickly from a flashback of nearly killing him. He let me check him over, and told me to lay next to him. I didn’t expect to sleep, but I did, with him insisting he’d stay awake to be on guard if Shukaku started acting up. Instead, I awoke to him peacefully making breakfast for me.

From then on, I stayed with him while in Konoha, and we had to admit that we were in love. We decided that during the Chunin Exams, I would request that Met become my bodyguard, and they would move to Suna.

In the meantime, Kankuro adopted Shinki, though I was his father on paperwork, so that the council would leave me alone about finding a suitable heir. I was a very involved uncle, but make no mistake, he was Kankuro’s child, through and through.

Shinki was just fine not being heir to the Kazekage role. He was better suited to be an ambassador or royal guard, he figured, though I assured him it could still be his title if he wanted it, as he was the oldest. He may have accepted eventually.

At some point, there was a boar summoned to kill me that Lee, Tenten, and I had to fight off to protect Met and perhaps Shikadai? Lee opened the gates again to destroy it when it slowed down to turn a corner, and was in a coma for a week. It wasn’t as bad as the first time, but I was so distraught, I refused to leave his side. It was then that the council discovered our relationship, though they were too afraid of me in that state to argue it or try to convince me to leave.

When the time finally came, Lee got heat exhaustion and a twisted ankle on his first mission in the desert. After recovering, the people covered him in desert clothing, all immediately fond of him and his demeanor as he hobbled around the markets. He looked like a walking rug market when I saw him again, but he was certainly more prepared. He learned the desert, and we all lived a long and happy life.

Canonmates--Cicero [Kankuro]; Kakashi; Karliah [Temari]; Lee; Maito; Varric [Shikamaru]; Met