characters, CharlotteCarrendar, clubbing, dance, drinks, Kahue Miliani, Kazuhiko, Kyoko, Lucas Dray, Mirari, night club, role play., romance, SageWisdomce, Spotting Kazuhiko, The Capital, The Moss House Kazuhiko, Toshiro, writing
“Will SMS Ishara be joining us this evening?”
That was the first thing that Kazuhiko said when they got into the bicycle carriage, that was to take them to the Club that evening. Kyoko fiddled with her clutch and then took out the note that she had found in her apartment. She opened it enough so that Kazuhiko could see for himself that Ishara was joining them later.
“Yes, according to this note he left. I understand he will be there a bit later. He is always one for making an entrance.” Kyoko said quietly, folding the note back up again, and placing it into the envelope. She put it away quickly with a snap of her clutch, which she held with both hands. Kyoko had noticed that Kazu had dressed more semi casual for the evening, and she started to think maybe she was a little overdressed for this date. Would Kahue pick up on it, and tease her mercilessly? Kyoko didn’t know how she was going to take any banter from the girl tonight. Especially after the dinner party with Kazu’s mother.
The bicycle carriage ride was a pleasant one, and offered the chance for Kyoko to see the spectacular sight of the city at night. Such beauty in architecture, and this mode of transport, meant she could take in the cool night air, that cooled her down somewhat. In fact this was just what she needed. It calmed her in a sense, and she began to feel like she could get through this night, even if it was going to be cut short since she had her tests the following day. Every so often, she glanced at Kazu and offered him a smile, before going back to gazing out the side of the carriage, as they approached the club.
Kazuhiko, Lucas and Kahue
Kazuhiko helped Kyoko down from the bicycle cart and led her into the club. The Moss House was the premier provider of nighttime entertainment with bright lights and living walls. Upon entering you were left with a sense of euphoria, an effect the witches implemented through relaxation inducing mist. It was clear and tasteless leaving most people unaware that they were under its influences. Denizens of the club kept coming back without really knowing why.
Kahue and Lucas sat conversing with each other at one of the many tables set up around the room. Champagne sat chilling in a metal bucket in front of them. Spotting Kazuhiko and Kyoko, Lucas stood and called them over. Kazuhiko let Kyoko lead the way and took a seat next to Kahue so that Kyoko could be spared any backlash from Kahue’s anger toward him. However, surprisingly she seemed to be in good spirits. Kazuhiko wondered if she was drunk as he leaned forward to uncork the champagne. He poured four glasses until the medium sized bottle was empty and raised one to toast.
“To our new members… hopefully,” he said laughing and clinking glasses with everyone else. He drank a little letting his tongue get accustomed to the sweet fizzy liquid. The drink had a kick as if it were mixed with a stronger type of alcohol. The Moss House was the place to lose control, which was perfect for loosening up cadets who wanted to test into the Rise Arsenal. It was a notoriously difficult exam and not to be taken lightly, but nerves could get the worse of you just as much as being unprepared. A little booze and dancing would ensure a good night’s rest. Kazuhiko smiled at Kyoko. “I hope you can hold your liquior.”
There was an electric atmosphere to the club, with the special lights and fittings that gave off a kaleidoscope of colors that dazzled and entranced the patrons. The relaxation inducing mist coupled with the champagne that Kyoko was offered as she took her seat did help her relax slightly, as Kazuhiko went to make his toast. Kyoko raised her glass as did the others, then took a sip, before placing the glass down and folding her arms as she waited for Toshiro to arrive. No doubt he would be coming through the doors at any given moment, and was bound to cause a stir.
“I hope you can hold your liquior.” Kazuhiko said with a warm smile, to which Kyoko replied.“Well, I do have testing tomorrow, so I think I will go easy on it.” She knew that if she drank too much, she was bound to wake up with a killer headache and not be up to task for her testing.
Watching Kahue out of the corner of her eye, she noted that she seemed to be a lot more agreeable, perhaps it was the witche’s mist that did this, but who knew, maybe she just needed a night out.
Then right on cue, a dark voice was heard as a hand was placed on Kyoko’s shoulder, causing her to jump slightly.
“Hope I’m not late.”
It was Toshiro, dressed in a suit of all things and beaming at the group gathered.
“I’m SMS Ishara. But feel free to call me Tosh.” And so it started, with Toshiro taking a seat near Kyoko and then snapping his fingers for a waitress to bring another bottle of champagne. He winked at Kyoko, before extending his arm past her to shake the Prince’s hand.
“And you must be the lucky guy. I gotta tell you, Kyoko here is quite the catch. Hell, if it wasn’t for the fact she had been arranged to marry you, I would have put my cards on the table.”
Loud music played in the background as the group settled in. Kazuhiko respected Kyoko for her professionalism. She seemed like she was very serious about passing the test the next day, though he had no doubt that she would. Happy that his team seemed in good spirits, Kazuhiko sat back in his seat and relaxed. That was until Kyoko jumped in her seat next to him. A nephilim man in a suit who seemed to appear out of nowhere introduced himself as her Senior Master Sergeant. So this is the man, Kazuhiko thought to himself extending his hand to shake Ishara’s. Toshiro’s statement about Kyoko hadn’t been lost on him, but he chose not to show any sign of annoyance. “Kazuhiko.”
The man seemed rude and Kazu found his worry starting to ebb away. Toshiro didn’t seem like Kyoko’s type and he wasn’t sure he would make a good member of the Arsenal either. Would Toshiro be able to work on a team and not circumvent his authority? Kazuhiko sat back in his seat trying to unwind again while Lucas extended his hand to Toshiro. “I am SMS Lucas Dray. Nice to meet you,” he said with a small smile. Kahue simply nodded keeping quiet.
A female server came over with more champagne for the table. She looked slightly annoyed with being snapped at and made sure to place the bucket on the table as far away from Ishara as possible. “Enjoy your night,” she said and sashayed away. The lights dimmed as it was the hour for dancing. Kazuhiko thought about asking Kyoko to dance, but he worried about embarrassing himself. He took another sip of his alcohol and waited for someone else to speak. As if on cue, Lucas turned to Toshiro and began his usual smalltalk. “You ready for the test? It’s a doozy.”
Kyoko cringed as Toshiro acted out in front of her. Almost like trying to assert himself as someone important, when he hadn’t even been tested yet. He always was one that stood out, being crass and bold. Kyoko could only imagine what Kazuhiko was thinking, and she knew it probably wasn’t very good. Thankfully, Lucas interjected and introduced himself. Stretching out his hand to shake Toshiro’s, which he reciprocated.
“I am SMS Lucas Dray. Nice to meet you,”
“Hey…how’s it going man? Wow…whose the pretty girl you got there?” He was of course asking about Kahue, and showing off one of his trade mark grins. The kind you would expect to see his teeth sparkle. The waitress brought over the bottle of champagne, clearly not happy that Toshiro had acted so rudely, but he just tipped her and uncorked the bottle with much flair.
Kyoko reached for her glass of champagne, and nearly skulled it down, before placing it on the table, then turning to Kazuhiko and asking.
“Shall we dance?’ Her eyes practically imploring him to take her up on the offer, while Toshiro chuckled behind her. “Save one for me, alright?” Kyoko didn’t answer him, getting up and holding out her hand to Kazuhiko, as Toshiro returned his attentions to Lucas.
“Am I ready? You betchya. Got this in the bag…and who knows, might jump rank while I am at it.”
He was indeed cocky, that was for sure.
Kahue set her foot on the small table in front of them obviously not caring about being proper. She looked Toshiro dead in the eye making sure he understood her perfectly. “There was a reason why I didn’t introduce myself. And Lucas isn’t my keeper,” she said taking her foot off the table. She stood and went over to the bar for a stronger drink leaving the others feeling awkward. “That’s SMS Kahue Miliani. It takes her a while to warm up to people. I’m sure it’ll happen at some point,” Lucas said without much conviction. Kazuhiko almost laughed, but refrained wanting to keep his air of professionalism.
At that point, Kyoko took back most of her champagne and looked over at Kazuhiko. She asked him to dance and her expression was beseeching and serious. It was as if she spoke to him with her eyes letting him know there was no option of saying no. His heart involuntarily started to beat faster and when she stood and reached out her hand he couldn’t help but follow. The dance floor was crowded with people and he held her hand tightly so he wouldn’t lose her. A band of witches played live music on the stage while couples danced close to each other, grinding to the beat.
Kazuhiko put his hands on her waist and drew her to him. He started to sway to the music, making sure to move his legs opposite hers so that their knees didn’t bump uncomfortably. Their faces were barely inches apart and if he wanted to he could easily lean forward and kiss her, but instead he focused on not stepping on her toes. As the song played out the room began to feel muggy and mist was visible in the air. It wasn’t the same as the relaxation droplets that floated down from the ceiling in the rest of the club, but a different variant that caused heightened sexual hunger. His heart rate steadily rising, Kazuhiko found himself wanting to get closer and closer to Kyoko. He searched her eyes making sure she was on the same page.
Kyoko was so relieved when Kazuhiko took her hand, and she was able to lead him away from the oncoming dramas at the table, and out onto the dance floor, that was a sea of bodies, all gyrating to the beat of the music played by the witches. In the middle of the crush, it was a given to be dancing pretty close to each other, and when Kazuhiko reached for Kyoko’s waist and drew her in closer to him, she wrapped her arms around his neck, and fell into the dance rhythm that came naturally. Heady from the glass of champagne, and the feeling of being so close to Kazuhiko, without actually kissing, she felt the bond between them start to intensify. Maybe it was the witches mist that was starting to have an effect, but she started to smile as their eyes locked. He felt it too, he had to of. It was then Kyoko took a chance, and kissed Kazuhiko, letting her inhibitions go in public
All around them, the crowd was a melting pot of desire and sin. A seething mass of dancers, flesh touching flesh. The music was intensifying, and this only pushed the crowd harder. It was tribal like. Instincts awakened by the mist and free flowing alcohol available. But where would it lead Kyoko and Kazuhiko? It was clear now, that Kyoko had fallen for Kazuhiko hard.
Back at the table, Toshiro was watching the couple with a more serious look. So, Kyoko had taken to the Prince. The game was now truly on. Taking up his bottle of champagne and glass, he excused himself from Lucas, and sauntered over to Kahue, who had more or less given him the cold shoulder. Setting down the bottle at the bar, he mused;
“You got spunk, I like that in a woman. So…what’s the deal? Fancy the Prince? Bet Kyoko is giving you a run for your money. She just might pass the tests you know, and where does that leave you?”
He started to pour her a glass of champagne and pushed it towards her.
“Come on…you aren’t really an iron maiden are you?”
Something in the way Kyoko stared into Kazuhiko’s eyes caused him to come completely undone. No one had ever looked at him that way and even if somehow the mist was affecting his senses, he knew that the underlying feelings were very real. She leaned forward and kissed him and it felt nothing like the first kiss they had shared. There was no timidness or inhibition. He leaned closer and reached up and cupped the back of her head. His tongue slipped in and out of her mouth, exploring her buttons, figuring out what turned her on. He wanted to take her back to his room and strip her of the classy cocktail dress she wore so well. His excitement started to become unavoidably obvious, so he let her go, reached down and tried to discreetly readjust himself. He breathed deeply in an attempt to calm his raging desire.
This is crazy. We just met.
Kahue sat at the bar nursing a glass of gin and tonic. Playing nice with Kyoko was starting to really irritate her. She had been the only female member of the Arsenal since it had been established and she hadn’t wanted that to change. Women could not be trusted. Her own mother had left her to be taken care of by her father. That fact was the cause of all of her pent up animosity. Casimiro had been her stabilizer, but after his death she had felt even more emotionally out of control. Kazu and Lucas had been patient with her and she was appreciative, but all of the new changes were just too much,
Toshiro buzzed around her like a fly asking her about what she planned to do about Kazu and Kyoko’s relationship. She almost laughed at the absurdity of it all. She had never been interested in Kazuhiko romantically. During their school years, she had found his overachiever mentality particularly annoying. It took a long time for them to develop the quasi friendship they had now.
She looked over at Toshiro with a disarming smile before going in for the kill. “You should probably leave me alone before I crush your nuts.”
Toshiro actually laughed as Kahue shot him a smile that was as though looks could kill. This girl was a virtual fire ball, and he couldn’t get over the fact she really had some balls. With a cat that found a new play toy, Toshiro couldn’t help himself. How much more poking would it take for the scorpion to strike? That is how he viewed Kahue. All that pent up aggression in this moshpit of sin. He leaned on the bar and pouted, as though mortally wounded.
“Oh love…the very thought that you are a nut cracker, totally turns me on. Let me guess, you do the whole nine yards of BDSM in the back room, with the likes of old Lucas McCrusty over there.” He gestured back at Lucas, who was now seated on his own. “Subs more your style, Kahue?” It was clear he was more than happy to get under her skin, even at the risk of her carrying out her threat. He cast a look over at Kyoko and Kazuhiko, who were now lip locking on the dance floor. This was getting good, and he was about to stoke the fire.
“Don’t look now, but that wily Kyoko is getting some more brownie points with your Commander. I wouldn’t be surprised if he took her back to his room, did the deed, and tomorrow she aces those tests.” He then made a daring move. Reaching out and toying with a lock of Kahue’s hair. “I bet you hate women that sleep their way to the top, huh, Chicka?’ His voice was so smarmy and vile, it was positively dripping in artificial sweetener. The right corner of his lip curled up and he leaned in to whisper to her.
“We could dance around here all night long…but I want what you do, and I am willing to do anything to get it.”
The Dance floor
The kiss was literally sizzling, and left Kyoko breathless as Kazuhiko pulled away to adjust himself. She looked at him, thinking she had gone too far, and then when he communicated to her mind, she was sure of it.
I’m so sorry…I don’t know what came over me.
Kyoko then struggled to get through the crowd, and on reaching the table, she snatched up her purse all flustered. Her cheeks were red from embarrassment, and she apologized. “I gotta get out of here.” Kyoko then tried to find the nearest exit, before she did anything worse.
She stood out on the footpath outside the club, trying to hail down a bicycle carriage, to take her back to the palace.
Lucas had become the peacemaker between Kahue and Kazuhiko after Casimiro’s death. They had both reacted by taking their aggression out on each other. Kahue often blamed Kazuhiko for what had happened on that terrible day, but they all knew that it was a terrible accident that no one could have prepared for. Lucas looked over at the bar where Toshiro kept trying to talk to Kahue. He thought about getting up and telling the guy to back off, but Kahue was perfectly capable of handling herself. Not to mention, he would incur her wrath also if he treated her like a damsel in distress. There was nothing she hated more.
Toshiro tried to play with Kahue’s emotions. It seemed like an entertaining game for him, something that he thrived on. At the mention of BDSM with Lucas, she laughed and took another sip of her gin. Try again buddy, she thought to herself. She had never been interested in Lucas either as he always tried to play the mediator and be an over achieving boyscout. Next Toshiro pointed out Kyoko and Kazuhiko on the dance floor making out, which didn’t really bother her either. They could do whatever they wanted with their lips. But the next thing SMS Ishara said did get to her. The thought of anyone sleeping their way into the Arsenal made her seethe with rage. She took back the rest of her drink and tried to keep her expression unreadable. When he reached for a lock of her hair, she grabbed his wrist and held it tightly in her fist.
“I am quite sure you have never known what any woman has wanted in your entire life and you most assuredly don’t know what I want,” she said as she stood, paid the bartender and walked away. “Don’t follow me.”
The Dance Floor
Kazuhiko stood there dumbfounded as Kyko sprinted back to the table to grab her bag. He wondered if this was how it was going to be between them. Would they spend the rest of their lives tiptoeing around their feelings and unknowingly offending each other? Not if he could help it. “Kyoko, wait!” he shouted over the music trying to get her to stop her beeline for the exit. She either didn’t hear him or ignored him and he ran after her trying to catch her before she caught a bicycle cart back to the castle. He knew that if she got away, he wouldn’t see her until the next day for the test and that there would be an awkward tension between them.
He ran outside the club and his mind instantly began to clear, the effects of the mist quickly wearing off. There was a slight chill in the early spring night and Kazu worried that Kyoko would get cold. She stood out on the sidewalk in front of him trying to hail a buggy. He reached up and gently grabbed her arm and turned her around.
“Kyoko, please just hear me out. I don’t regret anything that has happened between us. When I said ‘this is crazy’, it was to convey how unbelievably amazing it all is. What were the odds that we would meet and actually feel this way about each other? The reason why I pulled away was because I felt like I was going too far. If you could have seen what I imagined between us in my head, you would understand.” He stopped talking feeling like he had gone on forever. He hoped that his words were enough to set her at ease and let her know that he was falling hard for her.