Routine Home Lies

The PI investigating Kunzite for his dad pays a visit to the Earth Court Frat House, and witnesses a performance of the Earth Court without realizing it's a Frat House.

Date: 2016-08-22
Pose Count: 22
Mamoru Chiba 2016-08-22 23:10:59 52053
"No best two out of three," says Endymion, pinching the bridge of his nose and slouched in the damn fancy wingback chair.

It's around sunset, and the apartment they're in is on the side of the building where the golden-rose rays slant in through the beautiful drapery and paint pools of brightness on the beautiful carpet, reflecting that color on the walls; everything about this apartment is beautiful. It's the one with the matching furniture, for example.

But for real it's richly appointed; it's the apartment with the piano and the paintings, with the delicate things, the fragile things. It's also the apartment that the PI had been given instructions to ask for 'later' when she was turned away earlier, and the concierge given the notice to please, even though she was preapproved for an appointment later, call ahead when she came back.


Time for these jokers to set up this nonsense.

Endy's in a navy blue and gold yukata that he'd gotten for himself after Usa started him on the yukata kick, sprawled in the aforementioned chair with his hair all just-so and whatever; there's a little end table set up next to him with a game of go that he's definitively losing, and there's the chair he said Kunzite had to sit in and act casual and okay maybe not casual but not like he's going to casually kill her with his eyebrows or whatever.

Which brings us to the present. Mako's already here; Jadeite's out stalking Naru probably; Kyouko is less subtle than Nephrite--

--and Endymion's cracked an eye open to look at Nephrite and Zoisite. "Seriously. She'll knock any second."
Kazuo Takeba 2016-08-22 23:27:31 52055
The woman found Naru Osaka first, through a news report on a different missing person, a girl named Misa Sakagami. That report had a photo in it that someone in the Crown had taken with their cell and passed on to the media; Naru had called Kunzite in to talk to one of the girls at her table, so he was caught in the picture.

The picture and the news report took her to Naru; Naru took her card, one stating that she was a Tomoko Nakayama working for Mitakihara Consulting, and passed that on to Mamoru.

("She said that he was violent, and a deliquent, and a druggie, and utterly unstable and off his meds, which considering she also tried to categorize him as a drug abuser was an interesting combo, and oh his father is so concerned and can she even just know he's got somewhere to sleep at night? ... I managed not to laugh at her.")

Motoki's mentioned a woman asking questions and talking with a gaggle of girls, but Motoki is Motoki and earnest helpless blinking fends off many things. Which gaggle of girls that was is an excellent question; it's not like Kunzite is going to school, and not like too many of the magical girls they know would be inclined to tell a stranger much --

-- but she showed up downstairs and spoke with the concierge anyhow. It was going to happen eventually.

There are specific gradations of non-expression that represent Kunzite looking uncomfortable. This may be the longest that he's been seen wearing one since -- okay, since Nephrite first had the idea of dressing up as Tuxedo Kamen. That incident is probably going to be the high-water mark for a long time. Other than that, though, it's usually required unwelcome company trying to physically cling to him to get something even resembling that look.

He is sitting. Where he was told. He is probably not actually praying that something comes along to consume out of everyone else's head the idea that he ever had parents.
Zoisite 2016-08-22 23:52:20 52056
Zoisite's hair is more tamed than it has been in a very long time, though worn in a way that looks very like he didn't even bother. There's even a subtle amount of makeup on his face-- a shade of lipstick just slightly pinker than his lips are normally, a touch of mascara, subtle liner, and his eyebrows groomed. He even has a very subtle dusting of blush on his face. He's dressed in a creamy-white and forest-green striped yukata with occasional goldenrod sakura flowers and sakura flowers in the same forest green as some of the stripes. His obi is two shadings of 'white' fabric, in a checkered pattern. All of this extra gravitas and dignity is ruined with him playing rock-paper-scissors with Nephrite and the two of them- fittingly- throwing rock at each other first, then scissors. Zoisite remains perfectly stonefaced, casually dignified. He's even a gracious loser, his lips quirking slightly up as he walks toward the door. He practically glides over to the door. This whole debacle has him practically howling with laughter inside, but the only indication of that is a lightly smug catlike smile.

He opens the door and bows fractionally to the woman, eyes glittering with contained amusement. "Welcome, come in and follow me." He turns to his Prince and the others, bowing. His voice is notably pitched into the 'could be male or female' range he can easily achieve. "Mamoru-no-kimi, may I present to you Investigator Tomoko Nakayama, working under the auspices of Mitakihara Consulting?" The bow he offers his Prince a much deeper bow than he offered the investigator. With that, he carefully and casually crosses the space between the door and his decided spot on on a couch. He sits with the pointed boneless grace of an especially lazy cat. He produces his phone, but there is a definite sense from the strawberry blond that his attention is lazily split between the game on his phone and Mamoru, the PI out of his interest as if she were utterly insignificant. It may not help that he's angled himself to be sitting in a patch of sun that makes the strawberry quality to his hair stand out beautifully, and accents his makeup well.
Nephrite 2016-08-23 00:11:13 52057
Nephrite is less dignified at winning than Zoisite is at losing. He smirks, brandishing his winning closed fist for all to see, but manages to refrain from expressing his delight out loud. As Zoisite heads to the door, he moves into position by the window, where he leans with all the bored ambivalence of a male model.

Nephrite does not own a yukata, and frankly, he's not so sure he can rock one like they can. He does, however, possess a navy blue Brioni suit that he had hand-tailored in Italy, the total cost of which, combined with his well-polished leather shoes, roughly equals the down payment on a very nice car. He wears the jacket open, his neatly-pressed shirt casually unbuttoned at the collar. He, too, has his phone out, but his dark eyes keep glancing between the Pidgeys on the screen, the window outside, and the visitor.

Is there a weapon concealed under that jacket? Who knows?
Mamoru Chiba 2016-08-23 00:23:43 52058
Glancing up from the go board, the black-haired teenaged boy doesn't rise at the woman's entrance and presentation. Instead, he inclines his head slightly, shifting in the chair to curl his long fingers into a loose fist upon which to rest his chin. The faintest smile graces his fine, sharp features. "Nakayama-san," he says in a polite tone, in lieu of a proper greeting. "I trust you'll forgive the delay in seeing you. Security reasons. I'm sure you understand."

He tilts his head a little to one side, apparently momentarily distracted by the play of sunlight on Zoisite's hair, and then his too-blue eyes fix on her like a pin to a butterfly. The weight behind his regard is immense, measured in geological years, astronomical units, and planetary mass.

There's a precisely calculated pause before the smile broadens ever so slightly. "What is it you wish to speak about?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-08-23 00:52:37 52059
The woman that Zoisite escorts in is of about the right age to be a mother to anyone in this room. Tomoko Nakayama is dressed with a pleasantly conservative and anonymous look, well-fitted black suit (skirt, not trousers) of good material, jewelry neatly chosen and elegantly understated. she is, in short, perfectly collected, perfectly prepared for this encounter.

The first suggestion that she may have been less than perfectly informed about what this encounter is comes when the door is opened to a figure that she does not have the faintest idea how properly to address.

She gathers herself subtly and follows bright hair and brighter eyes in, glancing around the room she's led to from the least important items to the most. Piano? Not a surprise. Gorgeous young man in hand-tailored Brioni? Is that Mamoru Chi-- no. No, that's not who her guide is addressing. She steals another glance at Nephrite, because 'age to be a mother' is not 'dead', and focuses on the centerpiece of the room --

Well. That's who her guide is naming Mamoru Chiba, anyhow.

She is not certain whether to be more unnerved that this entire chamber, rich and beautiful and full of beauty, is centered on a teenaged boy, or that sitting next to him the target of her investigation does not appear to have aged a day since the photo she was given taken before his disappearance.

Her bow to Mamoru is absolutely reflexive. "Of course, Chiba-san." There's the faintest of hitches in her delivery of the name, the substitution of one honorific for another before the staging can consume her good sense entirely. She straightens to take a breath, following his glance to Zoisite for an instant (flickering to Nephrite again), and then returning her attention to --

-- it might perhaps be to her credit that she takes half a step back rather than trying to make excuses and turn and flee.

Her hands fold neatly, and she bows her head again briefly. "We had been requested to look into a matter some years ago. The disappearance of a university student, one Kazuo Takeba. Recently certain evidence regarding him came to light, and suggested that perhaps you might be aware of his health and whereabouts."

Say, sitting across a gameboard from you.

She does not address this as of yet, only structuring sentences neatly and politely, weaving lacework around the elephant in the room. "His father has been concerned for some years; we hoped that we might be able to bring him some form of reassurance."

Kunzite himself has been instructed on a previous occasion to let Mamoru do the talking. And more recently not to attempt to commit murder via expression. Therefore he is keeping his attention off the woman, considering the board, considering Mamoru. Not risking so much as a glance at either Zoisite or Nephrite. Obviously there is no-one else in the room.
Zoisite 2016-08-23 01:03:48 52063
The impulse to bust out laughing at the idea of Kazuo's father being worried for his son's well-being is overwhelming. In compliment to Kunzite's solid ignorance of the other occupants of the room, Zoisite seems to be trying to ignore them as well. He can definitely feel the caress of his Prince's eyes on him, which is all well and good to him. His small smile twitches a little, a silent acknowledgment before he pulls out a 3DS XL, the default unpatterned cover skinned over with an aftermarket skin, a neutral black-and-white cherry blossom tree. "That's very interesting, Nakayama-san." His tone is bland, light, and airy, as if the topic were of no matter to him but he is being polite regardless. He pulls out his stylus, a snippet of the Majora's Mask theme coming from the 3DS for a moment before he turns the volume down. Sorry, lady, he introduced you, but he's not interested in your existence beyond that.
Makoto Kino 2016-08-23 01:10:16 52064
At this moment, as though in response to some silent cue, the door to the next room over opens with barely a whisper of sound and Makoto glides in.

'Glides' is not a term normally applicable to the way Mako moves, except under certain occasions usually involving ice skates or dance floors. This is a different Makoto, however, in her own yukata of pale green and paler pink, hair done up demurely and pinned with a garden-fresh pink rose.

(Zoisite did her hair. Zoisite did her makeup, too, understated and flawless. Mako's been half afraid to breathe since she finished getting dressed.)

The door drifts almost-shut behind her at the gentle and barely-noticeable nudge of a foot - her hands are occupied by a silver tray arrayed with someone's absurdly expensive tea service. Teapot and cups and saucers, sugar bowl and creamer, a tiered plate bedecked with two kinds of bite-sized cream puffs. It's got to be heavy, but the tray doesn't so much as quiver in her hands as she carries the whole business over to the small table set out for just this purpose. Silent, unobtrusive - as if it were possible to be unobtrusive when you're this tall, this graceful, made up to look like an ikebana flower arrangement - eyes politely downcast, not looking at Nakayama or Mamoru or anyone else in the room.

(If she makes eye contact with anyone she'll never manage to keep a straight face.)

The delicate fragrance of rose tea begins to suffuse through the room as she pours.
Mamoru Chiba 2016-08-23 01:53:28 52072
Endymion's expression doesn't change throughout what Nakayama says to him, there's only the polite expectant waiting for her to finish. When Zoisite speaks up, his gaze flickers to the strawberry blond boy--? girl--? and he gets a look that can't decide whether it's faintly disapproving or amusedly indulgent, and it settles somewhere between the two. There's only a 'tch', and then the prince sits up a little bit, arms moving to the arms of the chair. The investigator's respite from his gaze lasts a little longer, at least, and she can study him if she wishes, for that moment--

--because here comes an impossibly graceful tall girl with tea. The scent of roses is heady and sweet, and the freshness of the room's atmosphere brightens further: somehow, the sunset's rose-gold hues don't make it stifling, even if the overwhelming sensation is one of tranquil stillness. Cool and green and rose and beauty, and this room's occupants are timeless.

Its focal point looks up at the tall girl and smiles warmly, affection clear and deep, and he takes a moment before answering to reach for a chocolate creampuff and delicately pick it up. A quick shift of a glance toward Nakayama, and he gestures to the tea and cakes. "Would you like a bit of refreshment? It must be difficult work, searching for someone for years." His attention skips toward Nephrite and he says only, "Neph?" before nodding slightly in the direction of a spare chair, his eyes flickering to the investigator.

While the chair's being moved -- hopefully -- Chiba's very deliberately eating the chocolate creampuff held so carefully between thumb and forefinger, and very clearly savoring every crumb and bit of cream. He licks the chocolate sauce off his fingers, then leans to get a napkin and the cup Makoto's poured for him. Only then does he sit back, cup held between his hands with perfectly self-possessed poise, and glance once at Kazuo.

Okay, he's still distracted. "It wasn't a suicide move," he insists somewhat defensively, "unless what it was is what you're trying to figure. It was legal, though. You can't tell me it wasn't legal."

With a mild huff, he composes himself and looks back toward the investigator. "Obviously, Kazuo is alive and well, so you may report that to his father. What I'm interested in is where you acquired the information you were spreading about while you sought him." His fingers curl around the cup, and he brings it closer to his face, breathing in the scent of the rose tea. His eyes flutter closed for a moment before pinning Nakayama once more. "What was it? A violent drug-addicted delinquent, unstable and not taking medication--? Which doesn't really wash with the suggestion that he abused drugs, does it? If his father said these things to you, I'm hard pressed to find any desire to facilitate a meeting--"

He glances toward Kunzite, and there's nothing about his face which isn't serious. "--should Kazuo himself wish to entertain the idea." Then Endymion's looking at her again, and his focus is so heavy, so intense. "If these are things which you told my betrothed's childhood friend in an effort to intimidate her, make her fear Kazuo and thus give him up to you..."

He leaves the rest unspoken, but now his gaze doesn't leave her eyes.
Nephrite 2016-08-23 02:07:31 52077
Nephrite was allowed neither to touch the obscenely gorgeous cream puffs, nor risk messing up Makoto's makeup or hair, before the main event. Even knowing what is coming, though, it is still a struggle not to stare at her as she floats in like a dream. One indulgent glance her way has his brain shorting out, the phone going slack in his hand, a nearly captive Rattata taking the opportunity to make a dash for freedom.

Mamoru's prompt brings him back. He covers the momentary distraction with a bored shrug and moves to retrieve the chair for the guest. His movements are coolly polite as he seats her, like a waiter at one of his own restaurants. Thereafter, he chooses to stand /behind/ the guest, so she cannot see his utter failure at refraining to watch Makoto.
Zoisite 2016-08-23 02:19:20 52079
Zoisite doesn't snicker, but does look up to smile at Makoto winningly. He refuses to acknowledge the absolute shitshow that Nephrite is being, instead listening with one ear to Mamoru speaking to their visitor. For all intents and purposes, he seems engrossed in the game in his hands, even going so far as to hum the Song of Healing as he enters it in the game. After a moment, he closes the 3DS- not snapping it shut, but closing it gently, first around a finger, then slowly sliding the finger free. He takes tea and snacks from Makoto, thanking her softly in that impossibly androgynous voice, delicatley eating the snack in a way that makes the grace he consumes it with seem easy, effortless.

He gives Mamoru a slight tilt of the head, a hand going over his lips. "Oh, my. Is that really what's being said?" He asks, sounding only mildly concerned, his expression matching it. "Oh, /my/." His gaze slowly turns toward their visitor, his raised hand settling back on his closed 3DS, hands demurely crossed over it. He looks down, the loose curls framing his face sliding down as he looks at her from under his eyelashes. His eyes glitter, perhaps in upset at the nasty rumor...

...or perhaps, somewhere, in a tucked-away corner of his mind, Zoisite is absolutely screeching in laughter.
Kazuo Takeba 2016-08-23 02:40:31 52085
"Of course it was legal," Kunzite answers Mamoru steadily, continuing to ignore their visitor's presence entirely. "It will be interesting to see what you intended to gain by it." He doesn't look down at the board; the stone he places finds its home, apparently, entirely by way of proprioception.

He also does not look anywhere in Zoisite's direction, because one way or another, it would be entirely inconvenient to have to remove a corpse from the apartment. Whose corpse might be debatable.

The entire principle of Ms. Nakayama's choice of clothing was not to be the best-dressed person in the room, not even to be in the same league, but to be making appropriate effort in the league below. And right up until a moment ago, she was maintaining that position, not completely (Zoisite confused that issue rather effectively), but steadily enough.

Then Makoto came into the room, her blossoming presence given further leverage by Zoisite's groundwork.

Now their visitor knows what it feels like to be a molting raven at a garden party. That chair is simultaneously utterly necessary and ominously reminiscent of the one associated with death sentences.

Nephrite's choice of positions does not assist their guest in maintaining her own composure, for some reason. Which means that it's a little clearer than it would otherwise be when she blinks under Mamoru's interrogation, when her eyebrows knit just a little. Not entirely surprised by the words he tosses back at her; not entirely not.

"I am afraid," she offers, "that someone may have been ... exaggerating things to you. Some of the girls I've spoken with do seem to have a habit of doing that." Like the ones who were explaining to her that obviously Naru Osaka was terribly unhappy with the young man to whom her marriage had been arranged, who clearly would doom her to a lonely life with a domineering husband who wouldn't even permit her to speak. Perhaps she won't mention that. "Certainly the young man does have certain conditions in need of monitoring and treatment, as you must be aware. And he's had less fortunate acquaintances in the past than he seems to have now. But simply being acquainted with someone is hardly grounds for conviction."

She doesn't even attempt to find a way out of having described Kazuo as violent. Partly because there may not be a way out of that particular box that even she would believe.

"Certainly his father is concerned about these things. About his health, and his well-being. But so long as the young man is well, and living a quiet life, then there is no sense in upsetting that, is there?"
Makoto Kino 2016-08-23 02:55:37 52090
Makoto isn't looking at Ms. Nakayama - Mako is still determinedly not looking at anyone - but all the same, the precise moment that the woman sits down, Mako glides up alongside her seat to offer her a saucer and a cup of fragrant tea, the options of cream and sugar and perhaps a cream puff.

It's entirely possible that Nephrite at least, and maybe also Mamoru, can all but feel the silent inward 'don't you dare make me laugh I swear--' as if it were rolling off her. It may spoil the effect a little.
Nephrite 2016-08-23 03:13:24 52093
Makoto is bending over their guest, the scent of rose tea drifting with her, neck just barely visible between the collar of her yukata and the curls of her perfectly arranged hair. Nephrite is no longer certain that he can maintain his own composure /or/ stop himself from giving her a look that is guaranteed to make her laugh.

His phone buzzes--which may or may not be another Pidgey--and placing it to his ear, he brusquely begins speaking into it.

In German.

Nephrite marches from the room while explaining to his friend the Pidgey that he will be there soon.
Mamoru Chiba 2016-08-23 03:34:56 52099
The prince closes his eyes for a moment. It is probably, truth be told, precisely so that he can avoid even the corner of his mouth twitching upward. Either way, he can no longer look at Nephrite, Makoto, or Zoisite. Well done, guys. His attention is now solely going to be on Nakayama and Kunzite for at least a little while.

Eyes still closed, he takes a sip of his tea-- then sighs out deeply, very clearly enjoying it, very clearly completely at ease. His gaze only very briefly-- VERY briefly-- flickers toward Makoto as he leans forward to put his cup down in its saucer, and he says with admiration, "Mako-chan, both your tea and your pastries-- I'll never tire of them. Maybe I'll invent some sort of gastronomic tesseract someday~"

Then he gives Kunzite an arch look. "I guess you'll find out, won't you?" A beat, and then he shrugs one shoulder and smiles easily, mischief and a c'est-la-vie and deep affection all wrapped up in it. "But, probably lose. It's a gamble. I'll explain the intent later, after you completely devastate my defenses."

Then he sits back in the chair again, leaned over -- in Kazuo's direction -- with his tilted head propped on one hand and one leg crossed over the other lazily; once more, he looks to Nakayama. And damnit, there's that regard again: it's a weapon in and of itself, wielded with precision and flawless grace. "You spoke directly with her and gave her your card, which she gave me. She has a perfect memory and has proven herself a credible witness. I'll ask you again: were the accusations -- especially of drug abuse and instability, with the implication of dangerous mental issues -- from his father, or were they exaggerations or fabrications on your part? Be truthful."

He smiles slightly, and there's something about it--

--it's the kind of smile that might explain part of why people like these answer to someone like him. It's that heaviness, that ancient blanket of overwhelming presence, that regality and the responsibility and power that go with it-- and the sense that he very much protects his own. And yet, there is also noblesse oblige--

"I can tell when you're lying," the boy says gently. "If they were your idea, your inspiration, you'll certainly be forgiven, so long as you do not persist in saying such things. If they were his father's, I need to know."

Then he frowns slightly, and glances up at Nephrite leaving; he glances to Makoto. "If she's carrying a recording device, would you be kind enough to take care of it?"

His gaze flickers back to Nakayama. "If you are, it would be a good idea to hand it to Mako-chan. She'll give it back. It's just such an inconvenience to have to restore a phone from backup."

A pause. Then, helpfully, "She's a black belt, Nakayama-san. Among other things. I find it's startlingly helpful when friends are multitalented, don't you?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-08-23 04:04:35 52107
... tea. Rose tea. Poured in front of her. Yes, that would be appreciated, wouldn't it. Enough that she almost doesn't twitch at the voice speaking behind her in a language that sounds like someone took English and crosswired it with bludgeoning and a murder spree. Well. That would explain why he wasn't talking...

Then the other young man is talking again, and Ms. Nakayama straightens slightly in just the way she would if she were being politely, mildly insulted.

"Your young woman with a perfect memory," she says. "Would this be the same young woman who insists that the young man is intimidating a terrified Naru Osaka into cooperating with an arranged marriage, in order to gain control of her family's business?"

Kunzite's attention is pulled sideways toward the woman; he refrains from speaking, but his eyes have narrowed considerably.

Ms. Nakayama curls her fingers gently around her teacup, measuring the light pressure carefully. Something to distract her from being the target of that regard. "Someone, somewhere, is misleading you, I'm afraid. Though quite probably not on purpose. Young girls do sometimes imagine things. I made no accusations of drug abuse." Technically true. Very technically. "I did deliver a warning that his father requested we give, if necessary, to try to avoid any repetition of certain incidents."

... and then Mamoru mentions recording devices, and there's just the faintest flicker of nervousness in her expression. She pauses; reaches somewhat reluctantly for her phone, and offers it to Makoto.

It is entirely possible that Zoisite noticed that flicker, that not-glance, that tiny twitch of expression, focused toward her other side. (Who'd bring just one, after all?)
Zoisite 2016-08-23 04:12:06 52110
Zoisite takes a small breath in, willing his face into utter blandness. A his Prince's pronouncement, he stands and walks up to the PI, smiling thinly. "It would be such a shame for you to get on Mamoru-no-kimi's bad side. You were invited in, after all. It'd be boorish of a guest to ignore a request, to ignore a request when she's already imposing on hospitality... and I'm sure a classy woman such as yourself wouldn't want to gain a reputation for double-dealing..." He walks up, putting his hand on her other side, eyes full of sweet, near-innocent goodwill. It's just a light touch, and not something that'd be much remarked upon in contact-heavy Italy.

He's still invading her personal space, casually, gracefully, and looking down at their guest. "It is horrifically impolite, you know, especially after I went through all the trouble of presenting you to Mamoru-no-kimi." The warmth and sweetness in his gaze becomes brittle, icy, haughty disappointment. He radiates the casual power that comes with being upper class, head tilted upward and angled away to make the height difference more apparent, almost turning his face away while keeping those eyes laser-focused on her.
Makoto Kino 2016-08-23 04:39:02 52119
Anybody who might be watching Mako's face at around the right moment will be treated to the flush that colors her cheeks, a shade of pink or two darker than the blush that Zoisite so expertly applied. For a moment, she almost shoots a sidelong look at Mamoru, a wordless but perfectly clear 'omg stop'.

Fortunately Ms. Nakayama has plenty of other things to occupy her attention, at least until Mamoru brings up the subject of recording devices.

Smooth and dutiful, Makoto extends her hand. When Nakayama offers her the cell phone, for the first time since Mako came into the room, the woman will find the tall girl looking straight at her, and there is something looking out of those brilliant green eyes that does not belong to a normal teenage girl, no matter how beautiful. Her regard doesn't have the sheer weight of Mamoru's, nor the overpowering sense of noblesse oblige - not even the casual aristocratic power that Zoisite wields - but something, focused and clear, looking almost through her in a way that makes it all too easy to believe everything that Mamoru implied just now when he so offhandedly mentioned that this girl is a black belt.

The tips of Makoto's fingers just barely brush Nakayama's as she accepts the phone. In that instant of contact comes a jolt like static electricity. "Thank you," Mako says, inclining her head fractionally and lowering her eyes away from Ms. Nakayama's again as she straightens back to her full height. Taking the phone with her, she turns and leaves the room, moving as smoothly as she did when she entered it.
Mamoru Chiba 2016-08-23 05:05:25 52129
Makoto gets a smile from Endymion, who is in fact managing to keep a completely straight face throughout. There's nothing in his manner to suggest he's teasing or trolling in any way; it might help. It might make it worse. But then she's gliding out of the room, and his attention returns to the investigator.

"--and yet," says the prince mildly, faint amusement at the back of those eyes, "all I'm trying to prevent are my privacy and security being breached. Give the other to Izumi-chan, please. You will get your devices back, when you leave, and no harm done." He glances at Kunzite, lifting one hand lazily to tap at his chin for a moment. "Her classmates," he decides, then reaches for his tea, and sips it calmly. "She'll be wildly embarrassed to hear about this, but I'm sure she'd rather know and be able to quash such rumors than let them keep floating about."

Again his regard turns to the investigator, and he shakes his head. "It was Naru-chan. That is not important. This is important, Nakayama-san."

He leans forward now, intent and quite earnest, and he places his tea carefully back in its saucer. Now the sum totality of his focused regard is centered entirely on her. "I do not know Kazuo's father, but I know Kazuo. I know many of us have elements of our pasts we'd like to forget, and I know that sensationalism is a terribly tempting force, and I know that rumor is a living thing, and that things get blown out of proportion in the process, and sometimes it's with a purpose, and sometimes it's not. That doesn't matter.

"You have what you came here to find out: Kazuo Takeba is alive and well, gainfully employed as a bodyguard, as my head of security and operations, and as supportive care when my health is poor. He is living with people who love him. You will be able to collect your pay from his father for that information. Now, I will accept either answer as long as it is the truth, and neither answer will reflect badly on you. So once more makes three times I ask: did you elaborate on what was told to you, or did you repeat it in word or strict intent?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-08-23 05:15:00 52132
The phone is provided to Makoto without argument -- and yet Ms. Nakayama jerks back, quite abruptly, from that light touch of the young woman's hand. The scent of ozone and scorched plastic is quite faint, but then, Zoisite's very close.

There's an instant of silence, and then the woman lets out a breath and reaches up to fiddle with the button at her breast pocket, releasing it and reaching inside her jacket to remove the card that it plugged into. Those are offered to Zoisite. After that? She reaches into her small purse again, fishing out a keychain and unclipping the flash drive from it. That is offered to Zoisite. Carefully. Possibly she is concerned that Izumi might be equally as painful to touch as Makoto proved to be. Possibly she's concerned that Izumi will glare at her harder and she'll spontaneously combust.

Apparently she stopped with three, much as Endymion is doing.

"I relayed his father's warning," the woman says. She's not sure when the balance of power tipped so severely to the children's side. Possibly it was when the door was opened. "As was his request, for his son's safety and for the safety of those around his son. I added a few words to emphasize how many years it had been since any of his family had heard so much as a word from him. Nothing else."

She's about to try to stress once more that someone else elaborated on it, too -- but she glances Zoisite's way and decides that perhaps closing her mouth is a good idea. Perhaps it would have been better idea than ever opening it in here.
Zoisite 2016-08-23 05:22:27 52134
Zoisite smiles as he takes the devices, raising his eyebrows a bit. "It would also be poor form to lie to your host- even by omission. Mamoru-no-kimi has his ways of knowing." That chill is definitely hiding the potential for something to ignite. He walks over to where Mamoru and Kunzite are, offering the devices over. He then claims a seat still near Nakayama, resting his chin in a hand and watching her. As much as it is a stare of haughty upper-class disdain for an inferior who is clearly presuming to take action above their station...

There's something pointed and predatory, sharp in there. It's all claws clothed in silk and velvet softness, and he carefully sips at his own tea, still watching. The steadiness of his stare is likely unnerving in its own right, like a cat watching something that was acting like prey and may yet still be taken home as a trophy.
Mamoru Chiba 2016-08-23 05:38:21 52137
"I appreciate your honesty," says Endymion, and that's truthful, too. It's visible in his eyes, and audible in his tone. There is eye contact as he says it, and he wordlessly takes the devices from Zoisite, then places his hand over that of the beautiful blond but still doesn't look. Inaudible, but clear in Zoisite's head, Okay, she broke, you can stop being super mean because we got what we wanted. It'd be nice if she didn't go home and cry. Going home and wishing she'd never come here is fine, but crying's overboard. To Nakayama, still, "I'll only be a moment. Please, drink your tea: Mako-chan is an expert hand, and her blend is both delicious and calming. The pastries are also amazing."

Did his eyes just sparkle at her? It feels like a shared secret.

But then his attention's on her devices, which he dismantles -- only as designed -- with the deft hand of a savvy teenager. The flash stick and memory card, he gives back to Zoisite, then looks up at those green eyes, finally. "Would you give these to Neph? His laptop's in the other room. Kazuo can get them when he brings back her phone." It looks, to her, like a dismissal; Zoisite will know beyond the shadow of a doubt that it's an escape, because the fun's over and he's been very, very good.

Endymion looks back at Nakayama and he gives her a smaller smile than before, and it's almost apologetic. "How long have you been in this line of business? I can't imagine it's always as aggravating as we must be."