2694/Infinite Embarrassment Feedback Loop

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Infinite Embarrassment Feedback Loop
Date of Scene: 22 May 2017
Location: Earth Court Frat House
Synopsis: Koji comes over with a present of goodies to apologize to Mamoru for Tyrfing having been rude, and Mamoru's glad he's there because he was trying to figure out how to apologize to him for having been rude, and Kyouko and Naru have to put up with this nonsense.
Cast of Characters: Kyouko Sakura, Koji Silvia, Mamoru Chiba, Naru Osaka

Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    Late afternoon-ish? Sometime after lunch, but before dinner. Kyouko worked the morning shift today, which is somewhat unusual for her but not unheard of. When she finished, a quick trip by her own apartment downstairs confirmed Momo was not in residence, probably out at her own job at the Thrift Store. There was also a lack of Naru, probably still at school. Never one to enjoy sitting around alone, Kyouko therefore went upstairs. To find another empty apartment. Le sigh.

    Oh well, she tried. Rather than go back downstairs, she has parked herself on the sofa with one of her trashy shoujo mags, wearing plaid pajama pants and a black tanktop and sitting with her legs propped up over the back of the couch and her head hanging upside down while she reads. She has a plate of cookies pilfered from the kitchen on the coffee table, and occasionally reaches out to grab one and transfer it to its fangy fate.
Koji Silvia has posed:
The remains of last nights dinner is most likely still in the fridge, as Rashmi brought enough to feed eight, but only five showed up... and then there's the box with 11 remaining gingerbread cupcakes with Sprite Frosting that were Koji's first present to the place.

But that is neither here nor there at the moment for the person eating cookies as someone knocks on the door. Not rings the doorbell, not calls up on their phone. Actually came up all the way, and then knocked.

On the other side of the door is Koji Silvia, with a fresh box in his hands and already bowing to the door as he trembles a bit. This place is still intimidating to him. He's used to the middle class style establishments. Older places... the kind of places you'll see when you drive through the older towns the further you get out from Tokyo. So this modern Shibuya-class opulence has him once more trying to get the dust from Kyudo practice, and the run to the hospital to drop off his weekly thankyou to the nurses.
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    How do you think Kyouko feels? She grew up in poverty and then was homeless for years! But she's had a lot longer to get used to the 'high life', and by this point is more or less accustomed to it, at least for this particular apartment. Still, she blinks in surprise as someone knocks on the door. That's honestly fairly unusual- more often, people just walk in. Often from the balcony.

    Curious (and being the only semi-resident in attendance, anyway) she puts her book down and gets to her feet, padding across to the door which leads to the interior hallway. She doesn't bother to peep through the peephole or anything, since you need to be on The List to get up the elevator, anyway. She just yanks the door open, half-eaten cookie in one hand, chewing laconically as she eyes the bowing young man on the other side.

    "Who're you?" She asks, sounding like it doesn't really matter but she'd like to know anyway. She is, compared to most other people who might have entered the door, perhaps less visually intimidating, being a good foot shorter than Mamoru and wearing what amounts to pajamas.
Koji Silvia has posed:
The boy at the door isn't much to look at either... though boy might almost be a charitable thing. Long black hair in a braid down his back, bangs framing his glasses with have an almost unnatural glow when the light hits them to obscure his almost teal eyes, and a pristine public school uniform. Nothing here that seems like it should be at the front door to the casual inspection. At the question, his mid-bow pose and the extension of the box with hidden delights is stalled, and he returns to an upright position.

Getting his first look at Kyouko, she can see the registration of emotions from the 'Who is this?' from 'Piercings?' even to 'Red hair?!' in all those details being processed before he gulps once, and then takes a deep breath, "I'm here to see Mister Chiba, Miss. If he's not in, can I leave him a message?"
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    Kyouko blinks. Then she straight-up gaffaws, a look of such joy briefly crossing her face as she laughs in startled amazement. "/Mister/ Chiba? Ahahahaha! That's.. oh man, that's amazing." It might be hard to interpret this, but it seems like either way it succeeds as a request to enter because, still snickering, Kyouko turns from the door (leaving it open) and gestures for Koji to enter. "Mister Chiba.. ahahaha."

    There's nothing particularly mean about her amusement- it more seems she's laughing at Mamoru than at Koji (which is entirely accurate, or more precisely, at the face he'll make when somebody calls him 'Mister Chiba' directly). She flops back down on the couch in a way which rather loudly proclaims "I live here" through body language alone (even if that isn't entirely the truth) and picks her manga back up. "He ain't here at the moment.. guess he's still at class? I dunno, he should be back pretty soon though I think, if you wanna hang out for a bit. If he don't show up before you gotta run, I can give him a message."

    She pauses, as if only just then registering the rest of Koji's greeting. "Also don't call me 'miss'. I'm Kyouko. And you still didn't tell me who you are."
Koji Silvia has posed:
Sparkling Yukata. Well-made men in clothing that could still be runway quality despite being casual. Magical women coming through the walls. And now... THIS. Yeah, this place is not doing Koji's nerves any good. But the blunt reminder about his rudeness over this, and he goes three more shades of red from neck to ears, he then nods a couple times, "Sumimasen. I'm being rude." He then rubs the back of his neck and looks away, as his brain adds 'What is she, some kind of bodyguard? I thought they wore suits...'.

Bowing a second time, holding his latest concoctions in front of him in a cloth-wrapped, "I'm Koji Silvia, I go to Seiyou Public School in grade 10. Mister Chiba contacted me last night because he was asking for my assistance in helping a friend. He said that anyone here would understand about.. special people."

It's right there that it's clear that the whole 'Magical Girl' concept has not really gotten into his lexicon, nor what to properly call it, so he straightens up once more and then adds, "Thank you for letting me stay, Miss Kyouko."

Once more he has to sit to take off the beaten up old hiking boots he has on under his slacks, and puts on a pair or slippers that fit neatly onto rather small male feet.

Honest to god, if he took the glasses off, let the hair down, you'd think you were talking to one of those shy girls who show up in the trash you're reading right now. Always the ones who sob and cry, and have their blouses ripped by the meaner male leads before running away!
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    "That so?" Kyouko says, sounding mildly interested while reading her manga at the same time. "Well, Koji-kun, if by 'special people' you mean magic an' crap, then yeah you're pretty safe. Nobody here, typically, is going to be ignorant of that kinda stuff so you don't need to worry about being careful with your words."

    She then looks up rather sharply, eyes of a rather unnatural shade of red narrowed slightly. "Don't call me Miss. Just Kyouko is fine. Kyouko-san if you absolutely must, but all that formality crap is wasted on me, I'll tell you right now. Makes me feel like an imposter in my own skin."

    She sighs absently. "But look, this is a safe place. You don't need to be nervous or worry about offending anybody here, as long as you're not an a-hole, and frankly you don't strike me as an a-hole, unless you're one that's really good at acting."
Koji Silvia has posed:
What Kyouko cannot hear is that Koji's partner sends to him...

<<Sie ist unhoeflich. Ich mag sie.>>

...which really doesn't help Koji's disposition for the moment, but the acknowledgement of the 'magic thing' is enough to get him to nod, "Yes, Magic... that's... one word for it."

Instead of sitting down, he moves to a spot to sort of hover in the middle of the room, not wanting to take a chair that could be claimed by someone else and they don't want anyone to sit in, and not wanting to make any more insulting comments about the state of things here, instead, he gulps once, and then adds, "Kyouko-san." It almost stumbles on his tongue, but he then rallies once more and tries a fairly charming little smile and a small laugh, "You sound a lot like my mother. She can be like that with Dad. He can be a little... stupid... around pretty girls."
Mamoru Chiba has posed:
"He's not an a-hole," comes a voice from behind Koji-- a familiar one, warm and laughing, if also the terrifying source of one subset of Koji's unfortunate and unintentional systematic intimidation yesterday. Chiba. "You can tell because he just called you pretty and he's not hitting on you, he really means it. Too honest by half."

He's dressed much like he was the day in the park with Norie and the justice speech, in casual catwalk couture, black hair ruffled artfully-- and as he toes his expensive shoes off carelessly, he ruins the whole thing by pushing his own glasses up on his nose by one finger on the bridge like a huge nerd.

"Sorry I got all stiff last night, Silvia-san. I knew you were uncomfortable-- and you still are, and I'm sorry about that-- and then that comment about hiring a maid was just... does he think that's what I'm like? What we're like? Just throw money at people until they clean up after us?"

He doesn't sound angry, just frustrated with himself and a little tired, and he musses his appearance by stages as he comes in. Like: cardigan off, hung by the door. Stupid masked slippers put on. Shirt untucked and unbuttoned, revealing op art of Mr. Spock doing the live-long-and-prosper thing on a worn t-shirt. "But you-- and he-- have no way of knowing what any of us are like, really, so I had no right to get butthurt. I'm glad you came back. I was trying to figure out how to apologize over text without sounding even worse. Kyou, did you try this guy's cupcakes? There were a couple left when Zoi and I left for class this morning-- they're the gingerbread ones?"

And he's off into the kitchen. And over his shoulder, "Sit down, Silvia-san, I promise there's no blood on the cushions."
Naru Osaka has posed:
The door opens again, without the benefit of knocking, and Naru catches just the very end of Mamoru's words. "Gingerbread cupcakes? That would /totally/ qualify as sugar."

Naru is kicking off her flats at the front door with the casualness of frequent visiting, her schoolbag still looped across her as she absently stretches a little. Her hair's still damp, tied back in a pony tail, and she's already changed out of her school uniform into a pair of leggings and a dress that hovers at that edge of tunic or dress.

Naru pads barefoot further into the apartment heading for Kyouko and waves at Koji. "Hi there."
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    "He did what now?" Kyouko asks, leaning up and peering over the top of the couch as Mamoru enters. "Because I'm pretty sure he just said that I was like his mom, which means I'm like an old lady." She grins, a lopsided expression that bares a single fang, before shrugging, and winking at Koji as she does so. "Guess I could consider it a compliment either way."

    She listens to what Mamoru says about last night without comment- she wasn't here so she doesn't know what went down, and doesn't appear particularly interested in pressing for details, since it seems it is in the process of being resolved. Though at the prospect of cupcakes, she sits up aghain and peers once more over towards the kitchen as Mamoru disappears into it. "Cupcakes? Um.. no, I dun think so. I grabbed these cookies off the counter and I didn't look in the fridge.."

    Then Naru appears, and Kyouko beams at her. "Naru! Were you downstairs? I didn't see anybody when I was down there earlier. Also, I thought you meant like, actual sugar when you texted.."
Koji Silvia has posed:
The mouth engages before the brain can catch up, "Actually, they're gingerbread cupcakes with crystallized ginger baked in, and then a lemon-lime soda frosting."

But then he bows a couple times, the new package bouncing up and down in his hands, before saying, "H-hello, Miss. H-hello again Mister Chiba. I'm Silvia Koji, and I attend Seiyou public school in the 9th Grade." Trying to be polite to Naru in passing as he then straightens up and looks at Mamoru directly, something in his demeanor changing a bit.

"What Tyrfing said was rude. Really rude. Honestly, you've got nothing to apologize for, Mister Chiba. He's lost a lot, and so sometimes he pretends to be gruff so that he doesn't feel vulnerable. So, you don't need to apologize at all for being offended. This is your home, and no matter what your circumstances are, there is never any call to insult someone over something so minor."

He then holds out the wrapped container, "Anyways... I brought these to apologize. I saw you like coffee, so I made you and your friends a batch of madeleines. They should last for a good week if kept in the fridge, and just need a little warming. They go great with coffee."
Mamoru Chiba has posed:
"Well there's two left," Mamoru calls from the refrigerator as he takes out the tupperware they'd been transferred to, so Koji could take home his after someone -- possibly Mamoru, possibly Kunzite -- had washed it. "So you each get one, and you can thereafter make eyes at Silvia-san to make more. Silvia-san, that's Osaka Naru, she's a good friend, frequently here, also magical, and I could tell you all kinds of awesome things about her but the important thing for you to know right this minute is that she's the most well-adjusted person that frequents the frat house."

The prince puts the cupcakes on the counter before putting on a pot of coffee and a kettle for Kyouko's picky mouth's desire for tea. "And I actually--" he starts, then stops, then stares at Koji in surprise for a second. "Wait. Insult--?"

He squints, and clearly goes through the progression of comments and the fluster that was going all around last night, and unerringly, his gaze finally travels over toward the 'dining room' table, covered in textbooks and half-finished projects. "OH."

Now Mamoru straightens up and takes his glasses off, covering his face with his other hand and laughing quietly, face red. "Kuso... no, listen, he's right, the place is not in guest-reception mode. But it's basically an actual frat house so... he can complain all he wants, that's fine, it's true. I thought he was-- I thought it was about something else entirely. I just-- I didn't grow up like this. In this life. It's complicated. But I'm not inherently a-- I'm not a snob. I thought he was calling me a snob."

And then he looks up again, and his darker blue eyes are full of chagrin and embarrassment, and -- and Koji baked him apology madeleines. And he can't cover his face again. So he manages a sort of strangled, "Thank you. Sorry? Thank you? I'm not sure what to say-- thank you, I love coffee and I love madeleines--"
Naru Osaka has posed:
Naru leans in to settle a kiss upon Kyouko's cheek. "I must have gotten home just after you came up here. I've been home just long enough for a quick shower and to establish that I was STARVING and unwilling to wait long enough to cook things before dragging my blood sugar up. Brick workouts are awesome." She leans over to snag one of Kyouko's cookies, if there's any left and then straightens.

"Gingerbread cupcakes? I might really /really/ need your recipe." Naru crunches a cookie and leans against the couch. "Grade nine? Cool. Do you know Tadase and all of them?"

"Are you making coffee, Endy?" Naru calls as she heads towards the kitchen, hoping for a glimpse of these magical cupcakes. Not Magical, just magical.
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    Kyouko smiles at the cheek-kiss, and willingly surrenders a cookie to Naru, shrugging her shoulders slightly at the fact that she just missed the other girl downstairs. "If you say so. Haven't been up here long anyway, just long enough to get through another few chapters of my book" (the term is used loosely) "and for this dude to show up." A thumb is jerked casually towards Koji.

    She glances towards the kitchen as well at the mention of cupcakes. "That good, huh? Well, I guess I can give them a try." She says with feigned reluctance, while at least two-third of the other people in the room know she is trying to hide the drool down her chin.

    She listens to the interchange between Mamoru and Koji regarding insults or the lack thereof, and sighs a little bit. "At least when I insult somebody, they know it." She says, with a bit of a grin. "But don't worry. If there's one thing I can definitively say about Mamoru, Koji-kun, it's that (whether you meant to insult him or not), he don't hold grudges. Ever. Even when he should." A bit of an (affectionate) glare towards the kitchen (which would be immidiately appended if she knew Mamoru thought of her and put a tea kettle on).
Koji Silvia has posed:
The words 'Brick Workout' Almost make Koji stumble, and with Mamoru apologizing and thanking at the same time, something curious kind of happens. It's as if he realizes in the engineer's diagram of this conversation that the pair of them are going to be caught in an infinite loop. So lowering his head, he then gives a short bow, raises up, and says, "How about we settle it at that, and not annoy anyone else?" Another small chuckle, "Sorry... I got kind of used to apologizing for my parents when they'd get in an argument. Usually over something Dad did. SOMEONE has to apologize, and Mom was usually too busy beating on him to do anything proper." He then goes a little pale, "Don't think badly of them, they really love each other... they just show it differently." Looking around, "I guess like your friends..."

A sigh of relief this time and he looks past towards Naru, "If you want, I'll show you how to make them, Miss Naru. They're really easy. Almost as fun as making carrot cake muffins." And then back to Mamoru, before saying a little low, "The nurses at the hospital love those. I think they use them for bribes."
Mamoru Chiba has posed:
"I-- okay. Yeah. I mean yes," Mamoru sort of fishes out, bowing back, then clearing his throat and holding a finger up and glancing out toward the living room again. "Naru: yes I am. Kyouko: you're still an asshole. I put the kettle on for you." He pushes the cupcakes across the counter, then lifts his hand to rub at the back of his neck and half-grin, turning away, then holds up a hand when Koji pales. "It's okay. I try not to judge without seeing for myself anyway, and even then-- well. Kunzite's dad is a massive jerk but he doesn't mean to be? And -- there aren't many people here who have great family stories anyway, so don't worry."

The last comment gets a much bigger grin. "They damn well should, they're amazing. You and Mako-chan and Naru-chan should all come here and bake all the time and we'll eat all the failures and all the successes with relish and gusto."
Naru Osaka has posed:
"I.. I am pretty sure I have never made carrot cake into muffins rather than cake, but I can totally see it." Naru agrees as she reaches for both cupcakes and then offers one of them to Kyouko, even as she chats with Koji.

"Mako-chan is an amazing baker, she works magic wiht food, and I'm not sure it's not literal." Naru sets her cupcake down to absently climb on the counter to retrieve out mugs for the coffee in progress. Why yes, she /is/ that short.
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    "Hey, we don't all show love through violence." Kyouko protests at Koji's comparison, and then pauses for a moment, before adding, "I mean.. all the time. But what Mamoru says is true- most of our family stories range from 'tragic' to 'abysmally depressing' so it's not like we're going to start judging your family. If they're alive and you like them then you're doing better than most of the people I know, honestly."

    She blinks at Mamoru at his call to her, scowling. "Hey, I ain't-" but then he mentions putting the kettle on, and she sighs, rolling her eyes, but grins regardless. "I swear to god dude, you're luck I'm oathbound to protect you or I'd kick your ass myself." There's a lot of affection in those words.

    Then she grins. "I am, however, in support of everyone baking all the time." She takes the cupcake offered to her by Naru, and bites into it. Chewing for a moment, she then exclaims, "Hey, this is good." She pauses, then looks at Naru. ".. but I still like yours best, of course, babe." Hurried addition.
Koji Silvia has posed:
Looking directly at Naru, Koji adjusts his glasses, and wavers one finger back and forth almost as if to demonstrate the degree of echo between his family life and what he's seeing before him. After which he then adds with a smile, "I don't have many friends at Seiyou, but it's allright. I suppose it's just because I'm always busy. If it's not clubs, it's homework or helping my parents out. They're environmental scientists for the government. Mister Kunzite and Miss Norie helped them out because we were all being drained by some kind of creature."

He blushes a little at the compliments on the taste, and then gives a short nod to all, "I'm glad you all like. I-.."

His phone begins chirping in his pocket, and he takes out a fairly modern smartphone, one of the flatscreen phones rather than a flip-up like most kids his age might have, and says "Excuse me... it's one of my father's co-workers. I should take this." And stepping back to a polite distance, he begins talking softly with someone, with things like 'Doctors agree' and 'stable condition'.
Mamoru Chiba has posed:
"Well-- only sometimes literal, and only as medicine sort of," Endy hedges in Naru's direction, slipping back away from the counter and out of her way. He wants a mug, after all. And he takes out cream and sugar because he can't for the life of him remember what Koji had last night-- and then he just gives Kyouko a shiteating grin, all of a sudden tension-free. "I never said it was an easy job. Nobody did. And half the time part of it is kicking my ass anyway, if I get too full of myself or do something stupid..."

Then Mamoru leans back against a different counter, heels of his hands on the ledge, elbows bent at his sides, and he nods quickly to Koji. "Well you can come here whenever. So can Terios-san. Sometimes there's actually people playing Mario Kart, I promise. Or Super Smash Brothers. Or whatever else."

And then Koji gets a call, and Mamoru smiles crookedly and nods again, looking politely away before zeroing in on the madeleines and unwrapping the box while Koji is there and everything which obviously means he considers it free game instead of Formal House Or Apology Gift or something. "I can't believe nobody else is home yet. Did those jerks go to a party without us?"
Naru Osaka has posed:
"If you keep hanging out around here, that whole 'not a lot of friends thing' is going to go by the wayside, at school and beyond. Getting drained sucks. I can give you some suggestions in how to cope for next time, if you'd like." Naru comments with a grin to Koji before leaving him be to take his phone call.

Naru passes Mamoru a mug, and there's one for Koji and Kyouko too. "I dunno where they are. I haven't poked Kunzite by text since end of class, but he didn't say anything about secret parties." She flashes a grin at the very idea of Kunzite and secret parties. He's such a party animal.

In spite of her 'starving', Naru is determined to save her cupcake for when she has coffee, glancing over to Kyouko and then starting to giggle softly. "Its okay love, you can appreciate other people's baking more than mine. I'll only worry if you stop eating mine."
Kyouko Sakura has posed:
    "Kicking your ass metaphorically," Kyouko notes to Mamoru, regarding her official job description. "But I'd feel like a bad Knight if I started whooping your ass around the apartment." She pauses, and then adds, with a grin, "I mean, unless you really deserve it. Luckily you've never gotten anywhere near that bad so far. However, the metaphorical ass-kickings, in the form of me calling you an idiot when I think you're being one, will continue, because yes, I fully agree that is part of the job."

    Then she pauses, as Mamoru wonders if everyone else went to a party. By the look on her face, she's clearly picturing Kunzite at a college blowout. "No." She says, unable to reconcile it outside of the setup for a horror movie.

    She finishes off the cupcake in short order. She laughs softly at Naru. "I can appreciate other people's baking, sure. But I think part of the whole relationship thing is staunch loyalty even when everybody knows you're lying. At least, when it comes to baking. But it'll be a dark day in the Earth Kingdom indeed when I stop eating anything you put in front of me."