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So I guess I'm going to write an "essay" of sorts on my Naruto OTP.
Damn, I think it's time for some serious business...
Format taken from "ship_manifesto"...

Intro

Gaara and Lee have only met a few times in canon (at least where I am). During the chuunin exams, the fight against Kimimarou, and during the "Rescue Gaara" arc, when Gaara was captured by Akatsuki. The most significant encounter, their fight in the chuunin exams, would be the definite opposite of a romantic relationship. And their next meeting isn't exactly romantically significant, either. When Lee helps Team Kakashi rescue Gaara, I'm pretty sure that they only exchange glances.

Considering the above, just how the hell do these two create a couple?

Obviously, the answer is that they don't. And they don't. At least, in canon. The whole point of shipping/fanfiction/fanon/whatever you would like to call it is to stem away from canon and create something new and different with whatever's been established already.
Well, at least to me. If fan creations have a deeper meaning, please inform me.

Gaara

Sabaku no Gaara, aka Gaara of the Desert, is one of the jinchuuriki housing the bijuu introduced in the series. In other words, he houses one of the tailed-beasts who hold an immense amount of chakra and the desire to destroy. This state of being has several consequences, but this is the main one: Gaara has an incredible amount of chakra under his control. This makes him one of the most powerful Shinobi to date.

Growing up with this monster in him has scarred him in many ways. Because he contains such a horrible creature, all the people around him had come to hate him. He wasn't raised with much love. He was originally created for war purposes, predicted to be their most powerful weapon. And he was, but his power was far beyond what they had imagined.

In short, he was feared from the very start. Children need love in order to grow to their full potential, not fear or hate. Gaara never received love in his childhood, only from himself. There was one person he thought loved him, but it was a lie, which only ruined Gaara's perspective of love and its intricacies. He was taught love was supposed to heal him, make him feel good. But the only "love" he experience cause such an emotional trauma he could not recover from it on his own, doomed to become a cold, heartless killing machine intent on making his existence known.

Until Naruto.

Naruto was exactly like him in the sense that he was also a jinchuuriki. They shared the same pain, the same dirty looks from everyone around them.

But Naruto was stronger. Naruto claimed that fighting for yourself would get you nowhere, that fighting for others is what gave you true strength. Naruto was able to prove his point by beating him in his Shukaku form, a lesser version of the demon inside of him. Gaara never let the idea escape him since, finally attempting to reach out to others to further prove his existence.

Gaara is emotionally stunted, to put it bluntly. He never had the need to learn social rules and the like, relying on intimidation to get what he wanted. He is silent most of the time, speaking only when needed. He has a true curiosity of human intricacies due to the fact that he has no knowledge of it whatsoever. He was always considered a monster, even by himself, when growing up and had no idea how to act like the ideal human being. He's slowly learning through the influence of the people around him, but still find it to be no priority of his to learn, only to protect those around him as the Godaime Kazekage.

Lee

Rock Lee was a "hot-headed dropout", as his classmates refused to let him forget. As a child, he was not a remarkable shinobi candidate, having no talent in ninjutsu or genjutsu. His taijutsu wasn't even that great, either. Not enough to compensate.

But he managed to become a genin out of sheer determination. He practiced until his body gave out, working from dawn 'til dusk, setting impossible rules for himself in order to improve.

His "way of the ninja" was to prove that he could be a great shinobi despite the fact he could only use taijutsu. Gai, his genin team captain, was very touched by his perseverance due to the fact that he was much like Lee when he was younger. Gai took Lee under his wing, teaching him forbidden taijutsu techniques and many other quirks that was the result of their father-son relationship.

Lee is very polite and is even considered the "epitome of a nice guy". He holds no grudges against opponents who have bested him and always uses proper language. The only time he swears, and even then it isn't very major, is when he is drunk. He has determination so great he has been given the title "genius of hard work" from his sensei and will stop at nothing to prove his way of the ninja.

Gaara/Lee

Considering canon, the possibilities of these two ever getting together is in the series is zero. They have only exchanged a few words and know almost nothing about each other.

The great appeal of this pairing, though, is that their personalities fit together extremely well, in my opinion. Lee knows what it's like to be alone, to have no friends. He also has sympathy and kindness to rival his determination. With these two traits, helping Gaara by befriending him is not out of Lee's grasp.

On Gaara's side, their isn't as much help. He has only really acknowledged Lee for his strength, going out of his way to attempt to kill him while he was hospitalized. The only result of this towards their potential relationship is that he probably singles him out in his head as the first shinobi to ever harm him physically. His eccentricity might also spark some curiosity in him.

The way I see these two as a couple is Gaara finally learning to love someone other than in a protective or a sibling-esque sense through Lee's own determination to help him through it. Lee would probably fight to be his friend, giving something they were both deprived of when they were young, and get through to Gaara through the sheer care and kindness this kind of act requires.

Conclusion

This pairing is borderline crack, to put it simply. It has no chance in canon. They simply don't have enough interest in each other in the first place.

But the potential for this pairing of being good is fairly high. Their personalities clash yet fit at the same time. Only someone as thick-headed as Lee would ever attempt to befriend Gaara of the freakin' Desert, even as the "new and improved" Kazekage, and only someone like him could ever truly get through to him.

Through each other they could find what they've been deprived of the most: love.

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