Time Refugees And Baby Bunnies


(Content warning: mental health.) Usagi consults Kunzite on matters of the soul, which inevitably brings up certain youma for which she has never before actually yelled at Kunzite. Further discussion of Sailor Earth turns up potential explanations and rather a lot of insecurities. (Hint: Usa will not in fact be the one with fifty cats.)

Date: 2016-10-25
Pose Count: 37
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 18:29:23 58695
There are sections of the Great Frankensteined Apartment that are not so commonly in public use. When Usagi asks to speak with Kunzite in private, he leads her through one of them -- the far corner of the building from the area presently in use. The arrangement of the rooms isn't entirely different; there's another living room with the great windows, with a balcony, with couches and chairs. It's the decorating that's different. The furniture actually matches, for one thing. The color scheme is subtle and elegant, the textures richer. There are paintings on the walls, and rather than shelves of video games, they pass an actual piano.

This, apparently, is where the guys go to be adult. It must not see much traffic.

The room that Kunzite lets Usagi into is a contrast to both the normal parts of the apartment and the better-decorated ones. It looks something like the guest rooms, except that the guest rooms have a more welcoming touch. Bed, neatly made. Desk and a wooden chair, and a set of shelves, mostly empty. There's a handful of actual physical books on one shelf; nothing at all on the deskdop; two human touches on the walls. One's a painting of Naru's, a European castle on a mountain. One's a piece of calligraphy that reads, "First, do no harm."

Once Usagi sorts out where she wants to settle them, Kunzite closes the door behind them, and locks it -- not that the lock will actually keep anyone out in a houseful of teleporters (and one reluctant teleporter who nonetheless has a key). It's more a signal to knock first.

He doesn't say anything; any inquiry he makes of Usagi is expressed more in the faintly expectant angle of his head than anything else.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 18:48:55 58696
Usagi hadn't really expected to be lead to the far corners of the apartment.

Heck, she didn't expect this part of the apartments to be furnished. Last time she'd been to this particlar one had been shortly after her home had been destroyed.

She wants to touch the piano.

She's a bit fidgety.

"Sorry about the tin cans on strings and everything, if you had to clean back here. I sort of...hid here for awhile."

She pauses before they enter what's likely his room with a wince. "Okay, I know I got the boxes out of there, but if you laughed at my cork boards and I find out, I'm gonna cry on you because I'm not a detective!"

Inside the room, she tries the chair at the desk first, resognizing and 'ooooo'ing at Naru's painting. (She's grown up with the girl, can recognize her style.)

She gets up, though, because the chair is very much not comfy. She sits on the bed instead, taking up the bottom corner, legs all apple sauced and crossed, and looking up at Kunzite.

She's nervous. Very nervous.

One part is because the subjectmatter is very much not her favorite. Two parts because she knows she's gonna end up hurting his feelings somehow.

But, well, this is Kunzite. He probably expected her to ask the question before she even realized there was one to ask.

Finally, she decides to go for a tried and true tactic: Dive right in.

"How did you do it?" That's...not quite right. "I mean, did you try to copy it first? I mean, why didn't you try to, or is it even possible to--"

She ugs and scrubs her face, hding behind her hands. "I'm talking about the whole Not-Mamo-chan-Coffee-Mug-Guy."
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 19:02:14 58697
"We noticed. The strings were a nice touch, all the same." She'd been trying. The entire time, she'd been trying so hard. And Kunzite adds, solemn promise, "I did not laugh at your cork boards."

Not where anyone else could see him. Not even if Mercury had planted a camera. Kunzite has a long history of managing not to laugh out loud.

He turns the chair around, once Usagi's found her place to settle, and seats himself facing her. At least it's substantially less looming. Not that that helps Usagi get herself in order. Her first question prompts a confused glance toward the painting she was concentrating on a moment before; he might have disclaimed it aloud, but he'd expect her to have recognized it as Naru's, not his --

Oh.

"Jadeite's power and mine," he says quietly. "He had the skill to sculpt a statue, and the alchemy to animate it. He didn't know what the plan was; I didn't tell him, even then. I was able to get hold of one of the roses, and distil it down to its essence. I added that to provide the proper energy signature, and a sample of Mamoru's blood to provide a link to his power, and a sample of my own -- or what passed for blood for me at the time -- to provide it with the ability to manipulate that power to a degree."

Not quite answering the question Usagi actually means to ask. But trying to reassemble it from fragments that don't include the most important part ... well, it's not a perfect art.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 19:12:15 58698
She relaxes a little -- just a little -- when he says he didn't laugh. Outloud.

She's heard the how before, from an apologetic (and subsequently comforted) Jadeite, from Mercury, maybe even from Kunzite. But it's still not...something she enjoys hearing about. Even now, when she needs to hear it.

She clears her throat, and the painting really is pretty. Naru's getting so much better.

"Right. But...was it intentional? The link to the bond thingy?" Idly, she rubs her chest at the phantom memory of sandpaper and barbed wire.
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 19:20:38 58699
To the bond.

Oh.

The faint traces of expression that flicker across his face now and then still; his voice loses the echoes of them. Quiet; matter-of-fact; calm. "Yes. If it hadn't been interfered with, your people would have been able to use it to trace him. Copying it was beyond anything that any of us could do, or all of us together. But I designed the youma so that it could steal it, could place itself between the two of you --"

The words cut off there, and his focus drifts a bare degree or two away from Usagi. Caught for a moment by a memory.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 19:42:47 58700
Usagi nods slowly. There's an almost energy to the painting. The clors are so very bright.

"So it's not something that can just be copied. At least not easily." And soon, this will bring some measure of relief.

But for now she's finishing his trailed off sentence. "So it acts like a satalite and when he's gone there's nothing to redirect and it breaks and--"

SLAP!!

There's no Sailor Moon power behind it but it's still hard enough for the palm of her hand to sting like a bitch but she doesn't even realize she's done it yet.

Because even though she's standing now and her hand is stinging like crazy, she's still ranting. "--how could you do that to him! To me! Until I knew he wasn't, I'd been terrified of being left alone so history wouldn't repeat itse-hrmph!"

Her eyes are wide and of course she's crying, but her own hands are firmly over her mouth.

"I am so sorry." And she really, really is, but she's been holding that in for a year. "If you tell him, I'll ignore you for a month."

Wait, seperate. "Tell him about the history repeating, you can tell him about the slap I probably will anyway..."
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 19:58:34 58701
"Not easily. Some people experiment with that kind of magic; it might be possible for them. But very difficult, if they didn't have the chance to study the two of you at length, to work with you on making it feel right." The theory is something abstract, something uninvolved, something that has no emotional resonance attached. Easy to talk about.

Usagi never touches on theory for long.

There's no resistance offered; his head rocks under the impact, but his hands don't lift from where his fingers are laced just above one knee. His focus returns to her around the words to me. His expression's still the same mask; he doesn't react, doesn't try to voice a defense.

"Why would I tell him?" he says finally, quietly, when she winds down and trails off. "He knows. Or he knows if he's ever risked thinking about it. He knows what it felt like when he lost you."
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 20:15:17 58702
And she feels really, really bad, because now his cheek is turning pink. Not the fun blushy pink, but the 'I just got slapped by an angry girl half my size' pink.

She fusses, taking a bottle of ice cold milk from her subspace pocket (she likes milk) and presses it against his cheek, holding it there, still really, really sorry.

"Because I don't want people," and by people she totally means Mamoru, "Thinking that's something I'd just swan off and do if something ever did happen."

She checks his eyes for sgns of concussion, even though she doesn't hit that hard. "That and it's not the best way to get reintroduced to yourself. 'Oh hey, modern day me, I'm past life you, and last time this happened, you offed yourself!' Which isn't, by the way, why I don't go arond introdusing myself as a suicidal princess."

Okay, she maybe does have some issues there, and okay, maybe they do hold some weight still in her mental princess block.

Her other hand is gentle on his unassaulted cheek and she kisses his forehead. If anyone chose that moment to ignore locked doors, they'd probably get very much the wrong idea.

(Not that Usagi hasn't thought about it, of course, but, well, awkward. That and Kunzite probably, at the very least, forces himself not to see her as GIRL.)

It's just an apology forehead kiss. And also 'even though I just slapped and yelled at you, I don't hate you' forehead kiss.

"So does that mean it's most likely Sailor Earth is a clone of sorts? Except from like a copy machine?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 20:31:02 58703
The bottle of milk actually does produce an expression again -- even if it's just a faint shadow of perplexity and bemusement. Apparently Usagi's idea of Appropriate and Necessary First Aid for Slappings is not something that Kunzite's personal worldview is capable of parsing easily. He selects 'ignore' rather than 'abort' or 'retry,' and says quietly, "We know you better than that. You're stronger this time. You have more hope."

If they lost Mamoru again, Kunzite is reasonably certain that the checklist of things to try before giving up includes 'storm the doors of the afterlife.' For starters.

Maybe Adopt-A-PreCure, given what Cure Gull told him. Or adopt all the PreCures, just in case.

The forehead kiss prompts him to touch the back of her left hand briefly; he leans back a moment later to look up at her. "Possibly. Mamoru also speculated that she might be like Homura Akemi, a refugee from another timeline. And that it's possible someone is clouding her thinking, wherever she's from. Or that the energy she's using might be doing so; it was unstable enough to make me regret holding on to it within a few minutes, and she appears to have been channeling it for some time."

He draws a breath and lets it out, slow, measured. "There's something else interesting. The mark on her forehead, the Earth sigil --" The corners of his mouth tug downward into a tightly confined frown. "You reminded me. When I set the bond in the youma. Mamoru showed that mark, too. The same place. Golden."
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 20:53:40 58704
The bottle of milk goes back in her subspace pocket, because she does't want it to get warm. That would be gross.

If they lost Mamoru again, Usagi would make Dante's Inferno look like a jaunty stroll through the countryside if she had to.

Usagi's face becomes a puffer fish. Sometimes she envy's Kunzite's ability to live here, meaning he had more opportunity to snag that guy of hers on the rare five minutes his brain wasn't all swiss-cheesey from studying.

"A time refugee?" She hums in thought as she sits back on the bed, criss cross with all the applesauce again. "That could explain why it's so muddled, too. You know, not quite the right frequency so it's all static."

Her eyebrows raise as she perks up, "A symbol? Like a senshi symbol?" And then she perks RIGHT up, all excited for a second. "My Mamo-chan actually is Sailor Earth?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 21:27:24 58705
Or possibly more opportunity to learn how to filter meaning and explanation out of actions like that risky and unlikely rescue-leap. Or, very likely, some of both.

"So you feel some connection to her?" Kunzite asks. "Did you notice it before you met her?"

And then there's an excitement at definite odds with the tears a moment ago. "Earth never had a senshi," he reminds her carefully. "For all I know, it may have been an effect of the bond - your power through the filter of his. But that they both have it is interesting."
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 21:48:56 58706
Usagi blinks at Kunzite for a moment. Then she slaps her forehead. "Ug, I gotta quit assuming you know stuff."

She sighs and shifts. "Yes. I didn't know exactly what it was, because it's not the same. But it is some form of bond. Not the same, of course. I don't know where she is, I don't feel stuff. It's not like with Mamo-chan's before we realized what it was, either. That's why I asked if it was possible to copy it. Because, well, it feels like someone snuck me some store brand soda when Mamo-chan's delicious, yummy Doctor Pepper. And that's why I kept calling her Nurse Cinnamon. But can you blame me? Did you see those legs?"

Of course, the physical attraction is ninety-nine-point-nine-nine-et cetera percent Mamoru. She's seen him as Minori.

"Now, it doesn't have a senshi, but that could also be because senshi are girls and Mamo-chan's the hottest guy ever to live ever, even more than you." Said, of course, with all the seriousness and bias of a very bias girlfriend. Who is also speaking the truth. "But that's for 'what-if' games later. As is picturing Mamo-chan, not Minori or Sailor Earth, in a fuku."

She trails off for a moment in happy hums. Then she blinks. "You'd make a very gorgeous girl. Almost as pretty as Minori and Rei."

She shakes her hands and her head. "No, no, focus. Okay, so if the symbol is nothing more than a link between the moon and the earth and she is a time refugee. It would explain how she was nicer to me? And she called me Rabbit. So maybe her universe had an even bigger scandal on their hands. After all, Endymion and Serenity could at least have heirs. Or hares. Eeeee baby bunnies..."

Oh my gosh stop thinking about the future like that right now! NO gushing over theoretical babies with your boyfriend while talking to his boyfriend!

"But yes. It could still be the same thing. Because if Mamo-chan had been born a girl, I know I'd very much still want to smooch her and...stuff."
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 22:11:39 58707
Possibly number one on the list of conversation Kunzite did not want to have: a discussion on his prince's princess's taste in legs. While alone with her in a locked room. Or, in fact, ever. He colors only slightly, but slightly is still irritatingly visible when it has hair that white to stand out against.

He forges on all the same. "Possibilities, then. A refugee, connecting loosely to you as Homura did to Madoka. A duplicate, using forged or borrowed connections. Someone with implanted false memories of her own, perhaps using her own powers somehow. Or correct in what she's saying. I don't think she's correct; her theories center around Mamoru, and it was you who broke the seal on my memories, not him. But it might be wise to keep track of that possibility, if only to accumulate evidence against it."

He really doesn't need to imagine Mamoru in a fuku. Even if the expression he'd wear would make Nephrite break a rib laughing.

... Usagi telling him he'd make a gorgeous girl almost breaks something in his brain, though the only outside symptom is a couple of blinks. Baby bunnies: that phrasing isn't much better.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 22:25:12 58708
Click!

What? Like Usagi making Kunzite blush isn't something to be documented with a camera!

Fortunately for his ever dwindling sanity, she doesn't send it to anybody.

...yet.

"Seal..? I did?" Go her! Maybe? "I think, even if she believes it, she's full of horse dooky." She taps her chin. "But even if she's right, then she's taking it out on a him from then, and not from now, and really, I'd choose him all over again even if he were some body snatcher from the fifth dimension."

More chin taps. "But you're right. We should also keep an open mind on that. If nothing else, we'll be able to rub his face in how wrong he is when he starts getting all mopey about it. And if, on the off chance he isn't wrong, we can rub in his face how much we don't care and choose him, anyway. Total win-win on the smug scale."

She is, of course, working under the assumption that the last part is true. Because, really, she can't fathom a universe where Mamoru isn't chosen.

She almost takes pity on Kunzite after it looks like his brain breaks.

Almost.

"I bet Naru-chan could create a very believable artist's rendition..."

Speaking of, how would she look as a boy? Usagi knows its possible, evidence Minori, but she's never tried it herself before. "I bet Mamo-chan would still be taller than me...but would Mako-chan...?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 22:35:37 58709
The question, of course, is whether Usagi also opts to document the narrowing of eyes after that click. It's not actually a threat. Not against her, of all people. It's just evidence that looking several years younger does not take away his ability to summon a Disapproving Teacher expression.

"I think we all made our opinions on that choice clear," Kunzite agrees. Possibly in accord with the universe at large.

On the other matter, though, not so much agreement. His eyebrows twitch upward. "Why would you do something like that to Naru?"

The entire mystery topic of Usagi's height is left untouched. He's getting an idea of what's good for him.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 22:41:23 58710
Of course she does.

Click!

She also giggles.

(And hides them, because she's not mean!)

"Oh yes. And if he doesn't believe it, we can annoy him until he does!" She does her best Mamoru impression. "Okay, Usako, I get it, you love me more, let me study!"

A preen and a happy wiggle.

And then she snorts and rolls her eyes. "Please. It wouldprobably make her day."

For a moment, she actually considers testing out her theory, but decides against it.

Probably best left for when she's alone. That way if she looks as bad as some of the boys in her class, she can die of shame alone.
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-25 22:48:16 58711
"Mn. Naru might need her days made even more than Mamoru does, lately."
Is that the sound of tacit permission?

That might be the sound of tacit permission.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 22:50:15 58712
Usagi cheers with a giggle and claps her hands. Then she wiggles.

Then, since her phone is right here, she texts Naru.

TXT: I challenge you to draw Kunzite as a girl! :D
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-25 23:11:27 58713
Usagi cheers with a giggle and claps her hands. Then she wiggles.

Then, since her phone is right here, she texts Naru.

TXT: I challenge you to draw Kunzite as a girl! :D
TXT Naru: ... What?
TXT: You heard me! He said you could! ...Sort of!
TXT Naru: <laugh> I don't even want to know how that came up.
TXT: Too bad~! I told him he'd make a very pretty girl and he almost twitched. That's how!~
TXT NARU: Hmmm. Duly noted. <3 I'm going to the gym.

"Naru-chan says hi." It was implied! "So, since we figured some of that out, what am I gonna do if she comes for energy? I mean, I promised, so obviously, but Mako-chan said she could use that and go after Mamo-chan while I'm as useful as a jellyfish on land."

A pause and a blink, and suddenly she looks horrified. "Oh my gosh that's the saddest thing ever why did I think that!"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 00:20:32 58714
"Hello, Naru-chan." Casual, straightforward: a few texts are enough time for him to regain his balance. Kunzite regards Usagi for several moments, then says, "First, make sure there's someone else there. Preferably more than one; she's strong. Second, ask her what she means to use it for. The more you can get her to talk with her, the better chance you have of her either exposing contradictions in her story, or getting to like you for yourself, not for her image of you."

Or casually admitting something horrible.

Or maybe all three.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 01:04:05 58715
"What if she comes with no warning? I already plan on poking the communicator if I can. Think that'd be good?"

Then she looks at him with some confusion. "How'd I get hert o like me better than image me?"

After all, all she can be is herself.

She looks up suddenly. "Oh, I won't be able to not twitch or yell at her if she says bad things about Mamo-chan. I did very well with it last weekend, I think."
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 01:11:18 58716
"That would be good," Kunzite agrees gravely. "The moment you know she's there." Could Mercury come up with something, as she did for Naru? Maybe. But if she can, she'll likely already be working on it.

The question prompts another mild blink from him. "People who know you better tend to like you," he says. "Hadn't you noticed?" Did that escape her entirely? ... maybe so. "And that's all right, I think. No-one's expecting you to be anything but yourself. And defending the people you care about is very much part of yourself."

If they need her to be someone else, they'll ... call on Zoisite. Or maybe Venus.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 01:27:15 58717
"Oooo or a heart thingy!" She taps her chin in thought. "Though it should probably be calibrated to allow Mamo-chan or Rei smooches, because that would be awkward if people barged in only to find that going on."

Usagi blinks at Kunzite a couple of times. And then she's giggling and hiding behind one of her twintails, all smiles and blushes! "Awww, heehee! You're so sweet!"

There were plenty of people who didn't like her! Like that Natsumi girl! And...all the youma they fought! And Taka-baka, grrrrrr.

"And okay, good. But maybe I'll let her know first, because if she didn't and I thought I did and I yelled at her, I might feel bad if I make her sad."

Hey, not trusting someone doesn't mean she wants to make them sad!
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 01:31:32 58718
Whether Kunzite counts youma as people or not is an excellent question. Certainly the glance Usagi collects from him this time is ... well. A good indicator that he's not particularly concerned about Sailor Earth's emotional state. But then, that Usagi is substantially nicer than he is has been established time and again, in both sets of lives, and probably will continue to be in future.

"You're probably right," he admits all the same. "At least in that it's likely best not to surprise her."

A lingering pause. "Do I recall correctly that you and Naru are in the same class with Mercury? That should at least resolve any problems if your hypothetical heart rate monitor reacted to a test."
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 01:42:18 58719
Usagi is probably nicer than a lot of people. Usually, this works to her benefit.

Like that time this grumpy cashier was swamped and was refusing to do returns to people before her, and when it was Usagi's turn she said 'two things, may I return this and are you okay?' and twenty minutes later she walked out with money in her pocket and tears in her eyes because oh my gosh that lady was having such a bad day!

"Oh yeah, right..." Then she clears her throat and straightens up. "Um, I mean, right! That's why I brought it up! For...logistics!"

A perky little wiggle. "Yup! And Mako-chan, too!" Curious eyeballs. "Why, though? What sort of test? You mean an actual test?" A flair of panic. "Oh no! Do I have a test?! Did Ami-chan say anything?! Naru-chan?! I swear, I didn't think I had one until next week!"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 01:47:02 58720
"I have no idea if you have a test. You can check with your girls if you're worried." Of course Naru is one of Usagi's girls. Kunzite lets out a quiet breath, and adds, "I only know when the people I actually live with are having a test if I overhear Nephrite laughing at Mamoru for trying to make him at least pretend to study."

Kunzite shows a brief frown, just for a moment. "Speaking of your girls. Do you know how Makoto is doing?"
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 01:59:34 58721
Usagi sulks for a moment. "Why won't Mamo-chan let me pretend to study? Actually making me study..."

Of course next time they have a study session, don't tell Mamoru, she's gonna study her brains out.

Then she perks. "Oh yes! We made up at lunch the day after I brought you food! Apparently, we both thought the other one was made at us! Hee! And even though I wanted to whack her upside the head for what she did (and Mamo-chan, too, you can tell him that), I got why she did." She leans forward, in full gossip mode. "Kids are buttfaces, Kunzite! Did yo know they actually believed the tall deliquent girl in a foreign school uniform was Mako-chan? Of course I told them it wasn't, but at the very least after the Sailor Earth thing, I was able to finally 'tell people I was with Mako-chan when we ran into the deliquent. Which made me even more right, which meant there's lots of eggs on lots of faces! Mweeheehee!"

She wiggles some more. "There may have been other issues there, but I think a large part of it was her worrying over how she was being percieved, but don't worry, whenever I hear kids being mean about her--"
PUNCH!'' And then ow because even punching your own hand can hurt, shake it off... "I tell them they're being stupid butt faces."

She blinks, suddenly more worried. "Unless...there was something else?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 02:05:47 58722
Things Kunzite will not, at present, say include: "Because Nephrite passes. Somehow." and "Because you can't ask the stars what the test questions will be."

"Because he cares about you," Kunzite says instead. "Nephrite can already support himself if he needs to. You're still learning."

She can tell Mamo-chan about any urge to tackle him with rolled-up newspaper herself. Kunzite's busy enough keeping up with her stream of words over Makoto -- some of which bring him to nod intermittently, recognizing trends. "Of course they did," he says. "Or at least they thought they could get something out of pretending they did. It's not so different from court, that way. Someone who's isolated and visibly different is vulnerable to such things."
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 02:17:13 58723
"Yeaaaaaaaaaaaah, I suppooooose." Sulk. And then a haughty sniff! "But if something happened and I couldn't finish school and Mamo-chan became broke, I bet you I'd work three jobs so he could go to medical school so there." Snooty nose!

And then she ugs and rolls her eyes. "Well, if that's court, I'm Mako-chan's high priced lawyer. Because there are so many holes in their case I could drive Tokyo through them."

Hmmm. A lawyer. She strokes her chin in thought...

Nah. She's watched enough dubbed episodes of Law and Order to know it's not a fun job. Plus, all those years of more school...ug.
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 02:24:50 58724
"You'd try," Kunzite agrees, amicably enough. "Your girls would team up with us to keep you from having to, though."

That is a line of attack he hadn't considered, all the same. Something else to talk with Nephrite about. Later.

"As for holes that size ... gossip always has them. That's why we call it 'gossip' instead of 'fact.'" Kunzite is once again uncertain he wants to know what Usagi is thinking. Her getting that expression is dangerous.

(Wait till he learns about Minako getting that expression.)
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 02:34:03 58726
Another blink, and another giggling hide behind her twintail. What she heard?

'We won't let you survive on nothing but two minute noodles and close to expired food items from Kyouko's conbenie.'

Usagi gives a sharp nod. "Right! And the fact is, they're all stupid butt faces for thinking that about Mako-chan."

Kunzite could be a good lawyer. "What do you wanna be when you grow up?"
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 02:38:19 58728
... accurate.

Well, the two minute noodles part, anyhow.

The question takes Kunzite mildly aback for the briefest of moments. The ceiling height would like to protest, after all, that there's not much more up he'd better be growing. So would his birthdate. But that's not the real question, is it? And arguing that he's had his job since he was younger than she is -- possibly since he was younger than Shingo is -- is not going to evade anything successfully. So he answers with the truth, instead. "Whatever Mamoru needs me to be."

True, but not necessariy helpful.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 03:02:42 58732
Suspicious eyeballs, for just a moment.

But she won't protect that, not outright. Because after all, if Mamoru needed her to be a nurse--

She'd be so miserbale in school...

"Okay, but. If you had a choice."

But then she sighs and fops on her back, wrinkling the poor bedsheets. Hopefully Kunzte's eye isn't twitching. "I don't know what I want to be either. Well, there's stuff I wanna be, but those all require like perfect grades since daycare or something. And even if 'house wife' was a thing still, I suck at cleaning. I mean, under my bed looks pretty scary, Kunzite. And don't open the bottom drawer of my dresser. It's like a can of those fake worms if you do."
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 03:21:33 58736
Kunzite opts, tactfully, not to point out that he's seen the inside of Usagi's room. Hopefully some of the terror was quietly removed by Mamoru or Makoto before he crawled out of the planter Mercury and Jadeite designed for him.

"I made that choice a long time ago, Usagi," he says instead. "We're not like you and your senshi. We weren't born destined for our positions. We chose to make this what we do; we may do other things as well, but keeping Mamoru safer and seeing to it that he has what he needs is always our first choice."

Well. Mostly always. Fortunately, Makoto is more companion on that route than competition for it.

"I do need to make up my mind about school next year, and soon," he adds by way of admission. "If I try to follow Mamoru into it, I'll need to take the exam with the others." Now there's a terrifying thought. Given the kind of school Mamoru is aiming for. "And even if I succeed, I won't be too near him. I could manage history, like Kazuo did; I might be able to manage physics; but neither of those have much to do with medicine. We might be better off if I concentrated on taking care of the household. After all -- we don't know what he'll need in future."
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 03:39:11 58737
There's a brief flicker of hurt but she tries to hide it. "Mako-chan is gonna be a world class chef and have the most beautiful garden ever. Ami-chan will probably build rockets while doing surgery on people's brains. Minako-chan will probably be on stage. For awhile, Rei will probably join her, or be competition, and then she'll probably become a world famous model. A-and maybe a housewife one day." She sighs up at the ceiling. "Whether they're chosen or they choose to stay, what I need for them is to be happy. And I hope their happy is always with me but." She shrugs. "I'm not saying you need to go away, because that's stupid. You need him and he needs you. And I think he also needs you -- all of you -- happy." She sits up. "You don't gotta decide what you want to be now, Kunzite. Just, whatever it is, whatever Mamo-chan needs yo to be, I just...want you to be happy doing it."

And then something he said causes her to freeze and she looks up at him with horror.

Sheer and total horror.

"Oh my god. You're a better housewife than I'll ever be."

And of course, there's that small part of her that's suddenly picturing them all ten years from now, her with fifty cats, and Kunzite and Mamoru happily married in America or something.

(Yes, even as she's mentally panicked, she knows this is stupid.)
Kazuo Takeba 2016-10-26 04:04:19 58740
"Usagi." There's something subtly different about the way he says her name, this time -- not in his tone of voice, so much, but in the consonants. A lessening of the s's hiss, a softening of the hard g. He leans forward to lay his right hand over her left -- it doesn't bring with it the effect it would if he did that to Mamoru, but it has something in its own right. "Usagi," he says again. "That difference was before. This time, all of us had the choice. And they all chose you. And if they all do these things --" though, granted, he cannot actually imagine Rei Hino as a housewife -- "then they will do them with you. Becase their lives would be darker without you. Because they love you."

He focuses on that, because he knows, or he tells himself he knows, that his reaction to some of the other things she said is only fed by his lingering reaction to Sailor Earth's energy; that when that influence passes, he will see more clearly, and the emotional overtones that he does not permit to color his expression or his voice will go with it.

And even that distraction vanishes at her expression of horror, and he sits up sharply, scanning the room (Naru's painting?) in reflexive alarm --

-- only to give her a sudden stare a moment later, as her horror makes its way into words.

Once again, he must. not. laugh.

"Only practice," he says gravely to Usagi. "You'll be better at these things in time, if you choose to be. Or you might choose to find someone else to do them. It will be your household in a few years, after all."

Maybe that last sentence will be reassuring instead of terrifying. Maybe.
Usagi Tsukino 2016-10-26 04:25:15 58745
It has an effect. A pleasant one. By the time his hand is on hers, she's relaxed and looking at him, fingers closing around his.

And even though she's smiling a little at the end, she crinkles her nose at him. "This was supposed to be a pep talk for you, you jerk."

She kisses his hand because she's an affectionate bunny and looks back up at the ceiling, somehow feeling like she's just had a deep tissue massage.

"And yeah. I love you, too."

Well, that's what she heard. Or hears, when he talks to her like this. And not in a romantic way, with hearts and flowers, but the way she loves her girls.

And it probably should reassure her that households will be hers in a few years, but that involves thinking about hows and whys, and heck, even though she's wearing a promise ring, she's still debating which plushie to get with her allowance tomorrow.

The future is so very big, and she is still so very small.