WPS Charity Gala

WPS hosts a charity gala! Fancy clothes, corporate aggression, food, and intrigue occur!

Date: 2015-08-06
Pose Count: 77
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 00:17:56 6454
The WPS Gala is held at a swanky night club, a jazz lounge called the Blue Note. Everything is wooden, polished, and /very/ expensive. Catering has lots of expensive looking food, waiters and waitresses walk around offering champagne.

A live band plays quiet jazz, and already there's a ton of employees. Most of them seem to be either younger, bright eyed men and women of the office. Others are large, chistled ex-military types. A few seem to be around Miss White's age, and most of /those/ have the feeling of magic around then. The company has been growing.

There's also knots of older management types, with one particular grey-haired japanese man, tall, and with sharp features. He glares as Miss White arrives.

She's wearing a deep red dress, all silks with stiletto heels. Her scarring from her neck is oddly gone. Waving to a few people, she's notably avoiding the tall older manager. She doesn't need his crap right now.

The front of the club has several bouncers checking id's and taking charity payments. Many people get turned away. But it won't be that hard for bribery or magical shenanigans to get one in!

Miss White nabs a champagne glass, and is soon chatting with one of the mail workers, much to the young woman's blatant surprise. Her cane tonight is solid gold.
Kyouko Sakura 2015-08-06 00:29:26 6459
    Kyouko Sakura approaches the door. Her face is set in a stony mask of determination, her red eyes hard. This may be because she is entering enemy territory. It may also be because she is not quite sure what Mami has done to her.

    The redheaded Puella is barely recognizable, in that she's freshly scrubbed, and wearing makeup. Her long red hair is loose, rather than gathered in her usual ponytail, and it looks as though a curler has been applied quite artfully, her masses of hair having an artful twist to it as it cascades over her shoulders.

    She's wearing a fancy red dress, tight but modest up top, flaring over her hips into layered ruffles below the waist which are higher on her right side than on her left, showing that she's wearing stockings of a darker red underneath, that one leg bared to just above the knee while the other remains entirely hidden to the ankle. On her feet are a pair of fancy shoes with three-inch heels.

    She actually looks.. well, good. You'd hardly know this is the hobo who bums around burnt-out churches. Of course, the effect is ruined to a fair degree by the way she walks- unsteadily. In fact, she's walking next to Mami and clinging to the other girl's arm with a white-knuckled grip, as every step sees her nearly toppling over from not being used to walking in heels, or tripping on the skirts of her dress.

    "I'm not sure this is a good idea.." She hisses in a low whisper to Mami as they approach the bouncers.
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 00:40:07 6463
Homura Akemi is here as an official member of WPS, and a friend of Miss White. She has no problem getting past the bouncers. Of course her name is on the list.

There's no way she /wouldn't/ be here. She's wearing a very well-tailored dark grey suit, complete with a tie, white undershirt, dark grey pants, and Grief Seed shaped cufflinks. Around her purple eyes have the faintest hint of makeup, enough to look good but not too much. Her black hair is tied up into a long ponytail, still curly at the bottom from where it had been braided for so long. Earlobes are adorned with small purple star earrings. A silver chain hangs around her neck. The suit is cut to be very feminine despite being otherwise a somewhat tomboyish outfit, and the half-heels she wears accentuates that look.

Homura keeps an eye out for magical persons she knows. Miss White is here, of course. Homura approaches her with a smile and greets her with, "Hello, White-san. Quite a party you've got going here." Purple eyes dart towards the solid gold cane, and then back up at Miss White. "You seem to be doing well."

She's not just talking financially. Last time Homura saw her boss there were... health concerns.

Homura also takes notice of a pair of Puella Magi approaching the front door. Is that... is that really Kyouko? Mami's with her, so she must be, but... That's impossible, right? That couldn't really be Kyouko.

Homura takes a moment to lower her shades, studying the redhaired Puella from a far. "I should keep an eye on her. I wonder if she'll cause a ruckus."
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 00:47:34 6465
Why is Mami even he-- right. Kyouko. Today had been a certainly interesting one, the older Puella Magi forced to face a interesting conundrum in that she had to make Kyouko look fancy, and then look just as fancy herself. Her make up, like Kyoukos, is lightly done, and her hair is still in its' drills, just not so harsh of ones, with a red rosebud sitting where her hat and Soul Gem normally are in her hair.

Mami is wearing a sweetheart neckline sleeveless red dress. THe front comes up to her knees but then loops down to a full back that just barely reaches the floor, edged in light red lace. She wears matching opera gloves, with dark red ribbons around her waist, her chest, and on her gloves, accessorizing with a pair of ballet heels.

"We'll be fine. Come on, trust in your outfit and how fancy it is."

She strolls right up to the bouncers, and finds that both she and Kyouko are on the list. She hums faintly - that's either a good sign or a bad sign - but then she pulls her date into the building, smiling at Homura on the way.

Mami is /in/ her element tonight.
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 01:07:12 6469
She got no invitation, so it's safe to assume she's definitely not on the guest list. So how is Lena planning on getting into this fancy party? Well, she certainly has her ways, but right now she's on the roof of a building just opposite the club the gala is being held at, watching the goings on. She'd probably stand out if not for all of the activity happening on the street, what with some girl standing on a roof in a dress. Ascalon is silent on her arm, all of his attention focused on their previously set up plan. Time, she thinks, to make her fashionably late appearance, some twenty minutes after things kick off. Stepping to the side of the building, out of immediate sight, she jumps from the roof and, with a brief flash of violet light, a small magic circle lights up under her, slowing and ultimately halting her fall just before the ground. Making sure she's presentable, Lena comes out from the ally.

It's a quick glance around those coming and going that she finds a lone man, somewhat older, but dressed in his evening finery and holding one of those lovely invitations she'd seen so many people presenting. Lena approaches and gives him a pleasing smile as she reaches into her bag. "Someone like you just shouldn't be seen at a party without a date going in with you, you know? Especially when you didn't show up on time." The man, understandably confused at first until he finds a rather impressive stack of notes placed in his jacket pocket. At least one of those is a 10,000 yen note, but who can say what the others might be. It seems he understands her and nods. At which point Lena hooks her arm round his and they proceed into the gala. Who needs magic when good old fashion greed can serve you just as well?

Getting in wasn't too hard, and her 'date' seems ready to part with her once he has others to mingle with, leaving her to check her bag and then snag a glass to sip from while she looks around. A lot of magic happening in this place. She, herself, might show up as a faint ping on the magical radar, what with Ascalon accessing her Linker Core to maintain their previously placed spell elsewhere.
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 01:09:55 6471
Takashi Agera has neither the desire to make a donation (nor, frankly, the bank account) - nor does he have the magical power to get into the place without henshin'ing and blowing a hole through the door and the bouncers.

What he /does/ have is gold-shaded metallic ID card with a picture of a purple swirl behind a solar eclipse. It is, as you might guess, an Eclipse Employee ID card. But not a standard officeworker's ID card.

A card that denotes him, despite his age and looks, as somehow connected to the upper echelons of Eclipse's well-coddled R+D teams. It's the kind of ID card that says 'if you get in my way you'll have to answer to someone way above me.'

And when he shows it, there's a rather rapid shuffling of feet from in front of his way, and he's inside. The first thing he does is start looking for Hannah - because frankly, he knows few other people here and has absolutly no desire to talk to any of the stuffy corporate types. Unless Tomoe-Sensei himself showed up - but that'd be very unlikely.

He's dressed in a midnight blue suit jacket that is tailored expertly - and in general, though a little shorter and a lot younger than most of the executives here, doesn't look terribly out of place. Then he gets distracted by a traveling tray of hors d'oeuvres and plops a couple peices of particularly fancy snacks into his mouth.
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 01:14:10 6473
There's a little bit of a stir at the door. There's a tall black-haired and blue-eyed youth in evening dress: a white tie and wing shirt, tailcoat and pique vest, tuxedo trousers and inhumanly expensive dress shoes; he's accompanied by a short blue-haired girl in a beautiful ice-blue gown. Mamoru Chiba's name may not be on the guest list, but it's definitely in the Who's Who, and the absurdly generous check he donates at the door underlines it in glittery black gel pen.

For a young man who professes not to date, he certainly has a lovely not-date to the gala, and one with whom he seems fairly comfortable. But then, this is a society affair, isn't it? Nothing could ruffle his composure, his pleasantly polite expression.

There is the distinctly strange air about this couple, though, that seems to suggest that he is the night's arm candy.
Ami Mizuno 2015-08-06 01:21:26 6477
Said woman on Mamoru Chiba's arm in the ice blue gown is someone that had helped out recently. Only a select few would know, but she made sure that very few knew who she was. Dressed to the nines tonight, Sailor Mercury wasn't in her regular sailor fuku tonight, but the ice blue dress indicated. Her left hand slid into the crook of Mamoru chiba's arm, she looks about a little shyly, for this really wasn't something she was used to, but....she did have to investigate while she was there. Thankfully, the gown wasn't so stupidly tight that she couldn't hide her computer on her. The only drawback? The scanner.
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 01:22:46 6478
Homura gets a wide, friendly smile.

"Only the best for my employees! We are making out like /bandits/ in this town, Homura, and I do not mean just the ah...unusual side of our business." A wink.

Her face darkens for a moment.

"...You could say I saw a rather interesting specialist. He helped me out." Her tone is odd, a little respectful, a little annoyed, and definitely confused.

"Wait, do you mean they actually came?" She's smiling, and offers a camera over.

"Quick! Get a picture! It will be perfect for blackmail. What is she wearing?" Comes Miss White, already giggling at the thought of Kyouko in a /dress/.

"Nah, too many people. Even /she/ would not be stupid enough to start trouble. A bum needs all the free food she can get. Alright, time to be a good host. Keep a sharp eye out, Mr. CEO McGreyJerk is more likely to try to pull something." Meaning, of course, the grey haired man.

A little wave, and she cane-taps her way over to the pair of Mami and Kyouko.

"I was wondering if you two would actually show, Mami-san, Kyouko-san. Do not forget to donate! All proceeds go to a number of good causes. Feeling well I hope, Kyouko-chan?" Comes the woman, beeming /far/ too much cheer towards Kyouko. Her smile is obnoxious and smug.

"Have a good time, both of you. Just behave, okay, and /try/ to not be an embarrassment. Kyouko-san, feel free to eat as much as you like. You probably need it these days." A waiter comes by, and she drops off her empty champagne glass.

Meanwhile, the big tall russian Familiar known as Boris walks over to Homura.

"Grounds is looking good, black kitten. Nothing out of the ordinary. I do patrol or two, then switch off. Try to get time for fun tonight. All work no dance means black kitten's fur get all fuzzy and ruffled!" Comes Boris' warm voice.

Lena is met with another one of the many corporate types: a middle aged woman who smiles at the girl after she breaks away from her date.

"Hi there! I'm Yumi from accounting! Do you work for the Company, or are you here to donate?" Smile! She seems cheery, and a little tipsy.

Takashi is met by Boris as he makes the rounds.

"Ah! Is little tomcat! Welcome to party. White-san is entertaining guests, but I flag her down soon. Can get you anything?" Comes Boris helpfully.

Meanwhile, a passing waitress peers at the entering Mamoru and his decidedly blue date after offering both a glass!

"Champagne, Sir, Ma'am? Please have a good time tonight. White-san organized the party, feel free to ask her any questions you may have about the company."
Misa Sakagami 2015-08-06 01:24:24 6480
     Nin nin nin! ... Misa had heard about the large charity ball that was there to help people! And... well. She had been in an orphanage for a year, and only just semi-recently been adopted! So she had a little bit of interest in it. That and she was a curious young woman and the party looked interesting!

     She was small, and yet unassuming. And being a child... she managed to slip in, walking behind one of the families and pretending to be their daughter. Don't mind the little girl walking with her 'family', doot doot. After she was inside... Misa began to make her way away from her 'family' that she had snuck in through. Which... may or may not be Sailor Mercury and Mamoru Chiba! She hadn't actually taken their hand, just followed behind. Doot doot doot.

     Look out, there's a young child on the loose! Who was quietly exploring and beginning to look for ... whatever interesting things there were at this charity thingy!

     Meanwhile, off in one of the corners, a small slightly-damaged porcelain doll appears, just on the edge of Misa's vision. She's only there for maybe a minute, before she disappears. But not before likely giving one or two of the visiting patrons a look that gives them the creeps. One even maybe tries to draw attention to the doll, but when they look again to point it out -- the tiny cursed doll Maeko has moved to another area, similarly out of the way and out of sight...
Kyouko Sakura 2015-08-06 01:26:47 6482
    "Well, I do trust in my outfit," Kyouko whispers back to Mami, "It's these /shoes/ I don't trust! How do you walk in them, they keep trying to throw me off!" She offers her best 'I'm not a crazy monster' smile to the bouncer who.. surprisingly lets them in without a fuss? Kyouko's brow furrows slightly at this, but that furrow becomes a look of abject terror as they enter the club and find a short flight of stairs which lead up to the lounge where the actual event is occuring.

    "I can't do this, I'm leaving." She says, only to pause on the verge of turning around, and look back at Mami. She seems to stiffen her resolve, not wanting to embarass herself in front of her fellow Puella, and sucks in a breath before turning and /very gingerly/ placing a foot up on the first step. She has to grip Mami's shoulder the whole way, and it takes about six times as long as it should, but she finally makes it to the top and enters the party proper.

    "Damn, look at this fancy shiznit." She mutters under breath, looking around.. only to be approached by Miss White, almost at once. Her eyes harden at the sight of her nemesis, teeth pulling back into what /might/, in some twisted parody of our world, be taken as a smile.

    "Oh.. I'm feeling /just fine./" She says to Miss White, "I'll be sure to make my mark on the evening, don't you worry! You'll remember this night for a long time to co-" Her threatening ramble is suddenly broken off as she turns to track Miss White as the woman walks away and her heel goes out form under her. She gives a very undignified yelp and grabs onto Mami, nearly pulling them both to the floor before righting herself. "Seriously!" She exclaims, most unladylike, "What is with these shoes!"
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 01:32:17 6483
Homura thinks it's a /little/ strange to see Takashi here. Wasn't he just a normal, everyday classmate at Infinity? Seems a little strange that he would be here...

Her eyes catch a glint of gold color, and a strange emblem she's never seen before. Well. This certainly seems like a strange development.

When he approaches Hannah, Homura hesitates a moment to decide if she should hide or not. Well, she never has before, so why should she now? When he gets close, she addresses him. "Good evening, Agera-san."

Homura is distracted from this by White-san's disclosure. "An interesting specialist? I'll have to hear about it later."

At Miss White's prompting, Homura grins and accepts the camera. "Oh of course! And she's wearing a wonderful red dress, with ruffles. Her hair is loose and in curls. She actually has /makeup/ on... and are those stockings? Yeah, I have to take a picture. Have fun, White-san!"

What White mentions about the CEO gets a knowing nod from Homura. She nods respectfully to Takashi before heading over to harass Kyouko and Mami, walking next to Miss White.

"Smile!" Homura says, holding up the camera. After a moment, regardless of what faces Mami and Kyouko make, Homura takes their adorable picture. Possibly while Kyouko is still stumbling in her heels. She hangs back a bit when Boris approaches, close enough where he can talk as low as he'd like.

"Good," says Homura in a low voice. "I'll keep an eye on things here. I'm not expecting trouble, but we'll see." The all work and no fun comment gets a frown. She... doesn't really spend a lot of time on fun, does she? "I'll try to remember that," is all she can offer in return.

Mamoru catches her eye, because of course he does. Geeze, that guy. She'll have to talk to him later.
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 01:40:00 6485
"Thank you," Mamoru tells the waitress politely, taking one of the flutes and handing it to Mercury, then taking the other for himself. He clinks hers with his, takes a sip, and gives her a conspiratorial look-- and then they're swept into the room to mingle with the crowd. He's got his analysis goggles (metaphorical!) on, and watches the people sharply, taking note of familiar faces and semi-familiar faces alike. He switches his champagne flute to the side with Mercury's arm through his as he sees a wobbly Kyouko attached with a deathgrip to Mami, and hand suddenly freed, one white glove ducks into his pocket and comes out again, apparently empty-handed.

They pass by society folks, some of whom were regular donors to the orphanage in which he grew up, and so of course he has to make polite small-talk. He introduces his date as 'his friend Kuri' and is pleasantly vague: nothing like the intent Mamoru Chiba Ami's come to know from the strange situations she's found him in, nothing like the kind senpai he is to many students, nothing like the intellectual friend she's made.

When things start feeling a little weird, atmospherically speaking, he glances down and sidelong at Ami and lifts his eyebrows, then sweeps them off and away from the society people and in the general direction of Homura and Miss White, coincidentally taking a route that will breeze them past Kyouko and Mami.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 01:41:04 6486
"You're doing this, you're staying, we'll figure out a way to ditch the heels later." Mami is in elegant stiletto-ballets, and she doesn't seem to have any problems, but she does run around in heels in her Puella Magi form. (Small ones, of course, but you know). She shifts her weight delicately as they make her way down the stairs, and once they're down there, Mami slides her hand politely to Kyouko's back, to support her as Miss White comes over.

"It's a pleasure to be here--"

Kyouko turns, trips, and Mami goes down with her, but her grip slides around, effectively dipping the other Puella Magi before they get pulled back up. "Look, don't diss the heels, diss the fact you've got no practice in them."
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 01:44:33 6487
She's currently just looking around, making note of people that come in and what they're doing. Takashi and his flashing of that card gets a bit of a note, but mostly it's the reaction that other people have when he shows it that catches her interest. Someone that's important in some way? Well, she'll remember the face but otherwise doesn't bother with him. And that Mamoru Chiba, there's someone she knows, at least in name. You don't really attend school at Infinity without knowing him, right? But instead of interacting with people she's going to look around for Miss White, since really, that's what she's here for. A nice chat with a friend, right?

But Yumi cuts her off and she's forced to interact. She smiles and shakes her head. "Lena," she says, continuing to look around, though her attention comes right back to the lady when she clearly wants to chat. The scent of alcohol is not missed by the knight. "Oh, no. I just came here as arm candy for someone else, really. I can't think to afford donating money at something this fancy. I'm actually surprised that it's this big of an event. The company must really be doing well." Then again, this might not be too bad. She can ask directions! "Anyway, I am a friend of Miss White's, so I guess she might be expecting me. I was hoping I could talk with her a bit; you wouldn't happen to know where I could find her? Or would it be best if I just wandered around and hope I bump into her?"
Kyouko Sakura 2015-08-06 01:45:50 6488
    Kyouko, saved by Mami's seemingly magical (even when not in henshin) elegance. "I don't have time to practice walking in heels, I've never even owned a pair!" She complains in a low voice to the other Puella. "Also you don't have to be nice to Miss White, she only let us in so she could make fun of me." As if Mami could never not-be-polite.

    Homura takes a picture of them, and it may involve Kyouko sticking her tongue out while simultaneously almost falling again. That'll be one for the yearbook. After that little trial is passed, Kyouko seems to realize for the first time that she's been handed an empty champagn glass. "Well, I guess there's no reason not to take advantage while we're here, right?" She murmurs. She may be a blood enemy of the hosts of this party, but as far as she's concerned that's even /more/ reason to eat all the food.

    She walks over to a waiter holding a bottle of some sort. "Sparkling apple juice, ma'am?" He says, looking down his nose at her.

    "Yeah, fill 'er up." Kyouko agrees, with a toothsome smile, and then turns to return to Mami with a glass now full of bubbly, non-alcoholic beverage. She manages to only slosh about a third of it on the floor before getting there.
Ami Mizuno 2015-08-06 01:46:43 6489
Mercury nods her head politely, but allows Mamoru to do just about all of the talking, staying on Mamoru's arm and acting like she should, a very shy girl that doesn't talk much. So it's a normal day for Mercury, but she's in a very nice dress.

She lets Mamoru guide her around the floor as well. This was more of a Usagi or Rei sort of situation, but she had to see who all was here, but also wondering why Mamoru was guiding her towards Miss White and company....
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 01:46:58 6490
Miss White grins towards Kyouko and Mami. "Just be good. Glad to know you are feeling alright. Enjoy tonight. If you sign up with us, all of /this/ are things you could have. Two veterans would be very helpful." Comes the girl before she walks away.

"You should act more like Mami-san. Oh, and try not to kill yourself in those heels, Kyouko-san!" Gets in one more jab.

There's they're off, and Kyouko is getting applejuiced.
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 01:48:44 6491
Misa gets in easily! Her doll friend does get several startled people! One waiter drops his glass. One woman /faints/ and is carried off.

Misa herself is offered some apple juice by a waitress.

"Hello! Are you here with your mommy or daddy?"
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 01:52:43 6492
Yumi gives a big grin. "OH, you know the Director? Come on!" She'll take Lena's arm and walk her over.

"Oh, yes! Our earnings are /triple/ what we expected!"

Miss White is easily get-to able! She's on her second champagne glass.

"White-san, Yumi here! You have a friend? Umm what was your name honey?" Comes Yumi to Lena.

"Oh, hey Yumi! Nice job on the financial reports, real ace! Oh? Who's there?"

She taps her cane, and blinks. Ami and Mamoru get a warn smile as she hears them approach.

"Hi there! Enjoying the party?" Best to be polite until she knows who's around.

Notably, the tall grey-haired japanese man is walking over to the little group unhurriedly.
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 01:53:33 6493
Takashi doesn't spend a whole lot of time being distracted - when he finds Miss White, and Homura beside her, he smiles. And responds to Homura first. "Ah, Akemi-san. I suppose it is a small world - or a large, national conglomerate." he adds with the sly grin of someone who /knows/ the comment he just made was lame.

"Are you an intern of Miss Sharpe's, then?" he asks, picking up another small orderve from a passing plate. "We work in different departments now, but I know her from back before she took over the WPS divison."
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 01:57:19 6495
Homura catches the charming image of Kyouko's tongue sticking out. Better than planned. "Ah, Kyouko. You're such a bad apple."

She doesn't say much else. Homura knows what happens when you mash Kyouko's buttons too much. She's pushing it as is. When the two other Puella start to leave, she says, "See you around, Mami-san, Apple-chan." There might be a bit of a smirk when she says that.

To Takashi, Homura says, "Well, not quite an intern. I'm something of a consultant." The purple-eyed Puella looks him over, seeing him in a different light. Well, he's a friend of Hannah's. On the other hand, she knows how /some/ of Hannah's friends are. "I help her with some of her WPS projects. You know how it is."

Mamoru is coming to her? She doesn't move, waiting for him to approach. She accepts a drink from a passing waiter, sipping on it while she waits for the arrival of her friend and his date.

When he comes close, she says, "Mamoru-san. How've you been?" Homura asks.
Misa Sakagami 2015-08-06 01:58:20 6497
     Oh crap, Misa was noticed! She had just been exploring, looking at things... and then there was a waitress there. She blinks a few times, looking up at the waitress quietly. The offered apple juice is taken, and the girl sips at it for a few moments.

     "...No..." Is Misa's quiet little response, shifting slightly in place. Those that had magical senses could probably feel a small amount of it on Misa. And she currently had that incredibly innocently guilty look that only young children seemed capable of having. She looked around quickly for a few moments. She wasn't supposed to be here, and the woman would probably try to remove her -- and that would mean the woman would likely touch her. "...I'm here alone. ...More or less..." She murmurs.

     That 'more or less' appears again, this time sitting on a chair somewhere behind Misa, her arms resting on the top of the table she was 'sitting at', watching Misa and the waitress. But a blink or two later, and that doll was gone again. Those close enough might hear a subtle giggle. But that must have just come from someone's kid, right?

     Maeko seemed to be being more active, she seemed to like this place. And that was actually making Misa worried. She was shifting nervously in a somewhat obvious way for that waitress -- or anyone nearby -- to see, most likely. She was beginning to edge a bit more towards the entrance again. Maybe visiting was a bad idea...
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 02:03:06 6499
Miss White smiles warmly at Takashi!

"It has been a while, Agera-kun! How are you doing? The old department still in one piece? Oh, how's Annie, did she ever marry that manager?" Comes Miss White with the small talk as Homura and he chat.

Misa's little 'friend' has a few people finally backing off of the area wherever it appears. Some seem visibly spooked.

A tall, bulky russian man steps up behind Misa.

"Little girl is lost? Would not be naughty and sneak into big fancy party, da? Is being good girl?" Comes Boris, doubly huge compared to the tiny Misa. Notably, he actually turns to /look/ at Maeko when it appears, frowning.
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 02:04:20 6500
On the way toward Miss White and Homura, Mamoru -- dear god, Mamoru winks at Mami, and gives Kyouko a brief look of appraisal. "That's a good color for you," he tells her pleasantly, then keeps walking.

Maybe this is why he doesn't date: poor Ami, he apparently has zero idea what to /do/ with one.

Gathering bubbles at the bottom of Kyouko's fizzy apple juice glass is, after Mamoru and Mercury pass, a grief seed.

More people are gathering around Miss White, and he can't really say anything in front of Mercury anyway, but the obligation is nonetheless there: he approaches the group, Mercury on his arm, and finishes his champagne; the empty glass is left on a passing waiter's tray. "Good evening," he says reasonably cheerfully when they finally get there; he gives a perfunctory bow in greeting. And then he gives Homura a crooked smile. "Better than I was on Monday, thank you. Madoka-chan was instrumental in improving my state of mind. This is Kuri," he says, indicating Ami, "Kuri-chan, this is Homura Akemi." Seriously why does this guy know so many eighth-graders. "She goes to Infinity with me," he explains. And then he smiles over toward Miss White. "This is certainly a well-put-together event, especially so quickly. I'm certain the hospital will put the donations to very good use."
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 02:06:55 6501
Oh, well, that's certainly going to make things more helpful than just wandering around until she bumped into her target. "Oh, well thank you for that. We never get a chance to talk since she's always so busy with her work," Lena remarks as she's brought to where Miss White is. And she's surprised to see the girl looking so... well, in one piece to be honest. She'd have figured there'd be some lasting damage on her after the events with the Lost Logia, but oh well, questions for another time. Instead, once the girl begins introductions, Lena will step up beside her and over her good hand to Miss White, a smile that is somewhere between friendly and antagonistic, on her face. "Lena. Lena Reiniger."

She looks around and moves to take a place standing beside Miss White, but she keeps at a respectable distance. No need to seem -too- friendly, right? "I'm quite enjoying the party," she says, though leans in a bit closer to whisper to present company, that others might not hear. "Though I'd say your opsec is lacking seeing how easily I got in. Enjoying your Lost Logia?" And then she's back to smiling pleasantly. She hasn't touched her drink though.
Ami Mizuno 2015-08-06 02:09:17 6502
'Kuri' curtsies to Homura when she's introduced. "A pleasure to meet you." 'Kuri' says a bit softer than normal. She's apparently able to follow Mamoru, thankfully, since she's a pretty quick thinker and just as fast on her feet. "To Infinity? You must be incredibly smart to go to Infinity. Only the best of the best go there, don't they?" She attempts to make polite conversation with Homura while Mamoru talks to Hannah.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 02:10:54 6503
"Kyouko am I going to be able to leave you alone at all?" Mami murmurs into the other girls' ear with a grin. She's not mad. Actually she was figuring on that, so she just sort of trails after Kyouko like a red shadow.

Homura and Miss White are ignored although-- Mamoru manages to fluster Mami, the blonde going a little pink as she peers right back at him. Good lord.
Misa Sakagami 2015-08-06 02:12:16 6504
     There was a mild sense of impending doom when Boris steps up behind Misa. The sight of that massive shadow just kind of ... looming up behind her just gets Misa /freezing/. Oh goddess she was about to die, wasn't she? Yes. She had snuck into a party and now there was a giant man behind her and she was about to get killed in some horrible way.

     ...Could she even die now? She had to wonder about that, suddenly. When Boris began to speak at her, Misa's head just tilts baaaaack to look up at him. And she stopped like that for a while, just... staring at him. He wasn't just a foreigner, he was a /massive/ foreigner. "...Uhmm...." She shifted slightly. She was /totally/ being naughty. And she was being caught. And... somewhat terrifyingly... he seemed to look tright at Maeko. That put him potentially in danger! Crap! "...I was just curious. I heard about it because it was a charity ball and I used to be in an orphanage and I wasn't going to cause any trouble!" She says quickly. She was probably visibly trembling at this point.

     Out of fear for Boris. Yes. She was afraid for this man, because somehow, that little doll that had faded out was more terrifying than the giant russian man. Misa turned slightly, seeming to think on things... before quickly she began to dart for the door. Before she could /really/ get in trouble! Or make trouble by her presence!
Kyouko Sakura 2015-08-06 02:14:55 6505
    Kyouko scowls at Mami. "Look, I'm here for /recon/, Mami. I don't have time to muck around with all this 'etiquette' stuff. I- oh wow, is that really a cake buffet?" She asks, eyes widening almost comically as she catches sight of the dessert table across the room. "Quick, let's go over there. It's important for the recon." She seems hesitant to take her free hand off of Mami's shoulder.

    Then Tuxedo Playa walks by, causing Mami to blush which gets a snigger from Kyouko, before she responds to his compliment with, "'Course it does, it's the color of my soul."

    Then as he's walking away, she takes a gulp of her drink- Kyouko far too undignified to sip. This is followed by a rapid series of coughs and splutters as the grief seed nearly lodges in her throat, before she manages to spit it back out into her hand. "What the-" Her eyes narrow on it for a moment, before darting to the now-distant Mamoru.
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 02:15:41 6506
Takashi smiles a bit when Infinity is mentioned. "Only the best, indeed." he cuts in. "I scored the highest in the Three Wards, which is why I'm there." he adds, becoming a bit of an obnoxious academic snob when it was brought up, but also simply proud of his own accomplishments. "Some girl, Mizuno, from Juuban - she managed to tie me at the top, though. I guess she got lucky guessing on the ones she didn't know." he adds.
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 02:15:52 6507
Miss White turns on the charm as she recognizes the voice of Mamoru Chiba. She's amazed he can actually give her cheer like that right now.

She's impressed.

"Oh, I am glad you two are enjoying! It was a bit rushed, but I think it turned out alright. Thank you for your donation by the way! Yes, if things go well, there will be a number of improvements to the hospital's technology. Your money is saving lives! Have fun, both of you. Oh, and I demand at least one dance!" Grin.

Miss White then turns to Lena. "Oh, Lena-chan! Come here!" Cue White-san hugs! Touchy, this one.

"I am glad you came! Please, enjoy the food. The sandwiches are /wonderful/!"

And then she whispers, and it all snaps into place. Her eyes go wide, but she recovers quickly with a polite smile.

She whispers right back.

"Oh please, this is a Gala, not a military installation. Do you know how expensive that would be to keep /you/ types out? And I am enjoying it greatly. Along with my other toys. By the way, do not expect your little spell to work on me twice." All smiles, and a little fire in her voice.
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 02:18:58 6508
Homura nods to Mamoru and 'Kuri'. To Mamoru, she says, "Yes, Kaname-san has a way of doing that, doesn't she? I'm glad you're doing well. Stay safe, Mamoru-san."

As Kuri is introduced, Homura answers, "It's a pleasure, Kuri-san. Well, that's right, I do go to Infinity, but Mamoru-san and Takashi-san here are the smarties. You should've seen how they placed in the finals."

Homura's eyes dart towards Takashi as she hears the way he said that. Yeah, that's pretty much in character for him. He's proud of his accomplishments. Maybe a bit too proud.


Kyouko's coughing fit catches Homura's attention, and she recognizes the cause. So that's where that went. "I see you /are/ feeling charitable today, aren't you Mamoru-san?"
Madoka Akemi 2015-08-06 02:20:30 6509
It should come as a surprise to no one that Madoka dislikes being the center of attention. After all, this is a girl who considers tying her hair up with red ribbons to be the boldest fashion statement she can bear to make. The fact that she's hung around near the back of this party, quiet and mostly unnoticed, is entirely in character.

It's not that she can't socialize, of course, and it's not like this charity gala scene is new to her. Her parents have taken her along on these outings of theirs since she was small. 'Networking,' her mother called it. If these important businessmen knew who she was before she was even in high school, then she'd have no problems finding a good internship and, later, a good job. Never mind that Madoka's never been the sort to make a memorable impression. She can smile sweetly and small talk with the best of them, but in the absence of a friend to tag along with, she mostly sits at her parents' table, waiting for them to bring people to her.

(Her wardrobe doesn't do much to help this. She has a small collection of fancy dresses, and all of them are pretty, inoffensive things that don't do much to make her stand out. Tonight's affair is a multilayered white gown, falling to her mid-calf. There's a bow on the front, and fabric circlets on her arms for decoration, but the only spot of real color on her are the ribbons she's grown so fond of since returning to Japan.)

Madoka's thinking that she'll pass the night away here, nursing an (absolutely non-alcoholic) flute of sparkling apple juice, when her eyes catch on a familiar face. And another. And *another*. So many, in fact, that she wonders how she didn't see them in the first place. The two girls who 'kidnapped' her are both together -- thank goodness her mother never learned what really happened that night, otherwise the red-haired girl would have been arrested at the door. She conspicuously avoids eye contact, for her sake as much as theirs.

Wait, over there. Is that -- ?

"Mamoru-kun!" comes Madoka's happy voice from a few feet away, followed by the bustle of white frills that is her dress this evening. "I didn't know you'd be here tonight. I'd have invited you to sit with us!" She's all smiles -- curious for a girl who's encountered two Witches in less than a week. Still, better than her prior traumatized stupor, right?

Her gaze flits over to Homura a second later, where it becomes a bit more reserved, though still friendly. "And you too, Akemi-san. You look very...dashing." And she does, as the slight blush on Madoka's cheeks confirms. She just doesn't quite know how to approach the girl, after hearing everything Kyouko said about her.
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 02:20:54 6510
Boris laughs.

"Ahhh, is being naughty little kitten! Well then, we are going to have to punish you with delicious ham sandwi..." Then she's bolting away.

"Wait! No running! Is okay, girl can stay if just be on good behaviour!" Then he's running after her. He's actually really, really fast for such a big guy.
Ami Mizuno 2015-08-06 02:29:52 6514
"Or maybe she knew all of the answers and you had to guess at some of them." 'Kuri' snarks at Takashi before she turns back to Homura. "I saw how they placed in the finals. Mamo-san did very well....and he has nothing to be ashamed about." She's not telling about the fact that she's the one that keeps the best scores...even higher than Mamoru's. No need to have a 'situation' here.

It's right about that time Mamoru's name is shouted , 'Kuri' squeaks and gets out of the way of the stampeding Madoka, because her face doesn't look good with hoof-prints on it.....

Or shoe prints.
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 02:30:24 6515
Everything stops for Homura as she hears Madoka's voice. She's here? And running to Mamoru... she's coming here?!

The rest of the hall disappears as Homura notices Madoka. Homura doesn't usually get to see her when she isn't fighting for her life somehow, but now they're relaxed, at a fancy part.

Her dress really is gorgeous. Homura's shades don't hide her cheeks, but she's just too cold-hearted to blush.

Well, maybe not. There's a bit of pink there. Especially after the 'dashing' comment. "You think so, Kaname-san?"

There is a dance floor nearby. It's a Gala. Homura might not get a chance like this for a while. It wouldn't be that strange, right? She only hesitates for a moment before asking,"So, um, would you like to..."

Now would be a really mean time to cut her off.
Misa Sakagami 2015-08-06 02:32:36 6516
     Oh goddess why was that big man so fast?! Why was /she/ so small and wimpy?! Luckily, Misa was small and could easily wade through the people, compared to Boris who was much larger!

     "A-ah, no, I have to get out of here!" Misa calls back at Boris, continuing her quick dart for the doorway. She was a quick little minx, even if she didn't necessarily have much more than that going for her! ... And she seemed to fit through some spaces she probably shouldn't have. How did she even contort that way..? Something was /definitely/ strange about her. Then again, Boris could probably feel -- or smell -- the magic on her anyway. Something dark. It was probably good that she was going... who knows what that many dark people in one area could draw?
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 02:33:16 6517
"I'll be sure to do that, I haven't really had a chance to try the food. I was far too excited to actually chat with you since we've had so little time to catch up," Lena offers, and boy does her expression change when White responds to her, going from that pleasant smile to such a frown. No matter, she'll get down to just what's going on with Miss White and her business eventually. Instead her frown is replaced once more with her smile, a bit more vehement this time around, but still enough that those not in the know would think it was the most lovely smile shared between two friends. "I see," she says, placing her glass--still untouched--on a tray as a waiter passes by them. "To be honest, you look very good for someone that took a bombardment spell directly. I'd have expected you to be confined to a bed for weeks, so I'm wondering what your secret is." She motions to her own arm, "I could certainly use such quick healing myself."

But the poison does eventually drain from her expression and a look of worry falls on it as she looks directly at Miss White. "I don't know what you're trying to accomplish, but just know the world you've entered is dangerous and you might cause more harm than help," she places a hand on Miss White's shoulder, offering a slight squeeze to it. "Well, I guess I'll get back to the party." With that she nods and moves to leave Miss White's side, though she does look over her shoulder as she does. "I'd like to be your friend, since you seem like someone that's a lot like me," she smiles, though there's a hint of sadness in that smile. "But I'll be your enemy if I have to, to make sure you don't do something really dangerous." And there she goes, pausing long enough to wave to Mamoru and his date as she passes them. "Enjoy the party," she offers as she passes.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 02:35:23 6518
There's a cake buffet. Of /course/ there's a cake buffet.

"Right. Come on, then." She steadily walks them over to the buffett, handing Kyouko a plate even as Mami goes for a few small delicacies, frowning slightly at the snigger. She can't help it! She really can't, but she then peers at Kyouko's hand after the cough.

Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 02:36:36 6520
Takashi looks over at Mamoru's 'date', in the pretty blue dress. Unfortunantly, she'd just questioned his intelligence, which was not something he takes well. "Oh, don't be silly. Think about it - if she was that smart, she'd have passed the entrance exams into Infinity, or gotten a scholarship to Verone. There's just no way it wasn't a fluke, unlike my score - or Mamoru's." he adds, as an aside, a small nod of deference to the upperclassman from his own school.

And then his attention is drawn away to Madoka. Less so because of how adorably cute she looks (though even he can notice that) and more so because of the same reason that caused her to nearly be kidnppaed by him in that alleyway, the same inner potential that makes her a bit of a monster magnet.

And so, somewhat rudly, he steps in front of Homura. "Ah, Kaname-san. I'm surprised, but pleased, to run into you here - I really have been meaning to try to talk to you outside of the classroom, but I think we're both just so busy. But since you are here, would you care to dance?" he says, with a smile and an offered hand. He is, at the least, good at faking being a decent human being from time to time, and that's on full force now.
Kyouko Sakura 2015-08-06 02:41:59 6522
    Kyouko glances at the Grief Seed again.. resolving to track down Hat-Man and have a word with him sometime later. For now, she tucks it away somewhere in her dress, and then turns her attention to the most important thing in the room- the free food.

    She has a plate, handed to her by Mami. "Eff yeah," She says, a little loudly and a lot uncouthly, as she begins to pile desserts onto the plate.

    She's actually stuffed a cookie into her mouth and is chewing as she piles more and more things onto the inadequate plate. "Mmf ffm mmff ff." She comments to Mami, before swallowing. "I mean seriously, is this /caramel/? I have to hand it to Miss White, she has-whoop!"

    This last comes as she gets over-excited reaching for another piece of confectionary delight, and she, once again, loses her balance. But this time Mami isn't close enough to hang onto, as she is getting her own food. The result is a resounding crash as Kyouko literally falls face-first into the buffet table, then slides sideways onto the ground, gripping at the tablecloth to steady herself, and only resulting in pulling a plate full of tiramisu down on top of her. She ends up sitting on the floor with dessert all over and around her, looking dazed.
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 02:42:17 6523
Lena gets another low whisper from Miss White, and she has this most /smug/ of smiles.

"I have very good health insurance, and I am very stubborn. Dangerous? I am well aware. I am not some ignorant fool, Lena-chan. We can be friends. We can be enemies too. Stay out of my way when it comes to Lost Logia, though. I need them." Then off Lena slips!

Madoka's parents have no shortage of guests at their table. Quite a few of the stuffy upper echelons of WPS are making their appearance, occasionally complementing Madoka's dress!

Speaking of corporate types, Miss White turns and finds her greatest enemy in front of her.

"Director Terumi. How good to run into you." Comes Miss White with gritted teeth. The animosity between the two is palpable.

"Always a pleasure, Director White. How are you feeling by the way? It is /regrettable/ about that accident. You know, the rumors keep saying that you tried to kill yourself. Is that true? Too much stress on the job? Maybe you should try another position that is not so rigorous for a fail woman like yourself. Like a mail screener." Comes his silky smooth voice, dripping venom.

"I am quite fine, and you should know better than to listen to rumors. But I suppose your senility must be kicking in." Counters Miss White.

She smiles to those gathered. "Excuse me, I have a toast to make."

She walks up to a small podium, and clears her throat after tapping on a champagne glass.

"Excuse me everyone! Director White here, with a toast! First of all I would like to thank everyone for coming here and donating! It is all to a very good cause. Your money is saving lives, and supporting the good people at Mitakihara General Hospital! I hope you all have been enjoying the party!"

She continues on, and raises her glass.

"A toast, to everyone! I have had the honor of working beside the most amazing, intelligent, talented employees in the Protection field! Our start was filled with long hours, fretting over every penny, and at times it seemed like we would fall. But you all have perservered, and now, you reap the benefits! A toast, to honor, to strength, and to a brighter and safer Tokyo!" Cheers rise up, and glasses clink.

"I would also like to thank you all for your loyalty. Never before have I seen such hard-working and true companions as I have in this company. On that note, I would like to thank Takumi Takeda for his new promotion to head IT Specialist! Give Takumi-san a hand everyone!" There's claps, but one suited man yells out.

"What!? That's my position! What is the meaning of this, Director?"

Miss White smiles, like a shark.

"Loyalty. People who turn off security cameras and let a bunch of delinquents in to damage our company are the worst kind of garbage. You're fired. Officers?"

Two policemen walk in, cuff the man, and leadi him off.

"Now then, without any traitors in our midst, time to dance people!" Music starts up, perfect for dancing!
Ami Mizuno 2015-08-06 02:44:20 6525
"Or perhaps she's not old enough to actually take the entrance exams." 'Kuri' says, shaking her head at Takashi and tilting her head to Homura as she's asked to dance by Takashi. She looks towards the grief seed before Mister White calls for a toast...then a man is fired and summarily escorted out. Mercury uses this distraction to nudge Mamoru to step in front of her, while she presses her earring to get her visor up, to scan the man's face....THEN the grief seed.....and hopefully, Mamoru catches the hint.
Hannah Sharpe 2015-08-06 02:44:56 6526
The crash in the middle of her speech isn't unnoticed. Miss White smiles.

"Looks like someone had too much to drink! Take it easy everyone! Oh, and someone get that girl a towel!"
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 02:45:17 6528
Hannah should not be all that surprised: Mamoru, if nothing else, is a master of masks. The one he's obligated to wear to a society function is strictly polite, cheerful, pleasant, and easily brushed past by those who take an interest in people that don't fit in. He fits. Too well. "A dance you'll have, then," he tells her with a laugh. And then Miss White is occupied by Lena, and his attention flickers to Takashi and the conversation between Homura and Mercury that he's inserted himself into.

Perhaps maddeningly, he doesn't overtly react. "Oh, I know Mizuno-san quite well," he says mildly. "She never guesses. I'm sure an academic competition between the two of you would draw crowds. Perhaps it should be the attraction for the next charity gala WPS holds."

A glance back at the choking Kyouko, and Mamoru looks back to Homura before Kyouko can spot him looking her way. Only now is his smile a little tight. "I find it makes it easier to sleep at night, especially when the recipient has recently lost everything. Don't you--?"

But then. THEN. There is a fluttering Madoka calling his name, and it's Mamoru's first honest grin of the night. "Madoka-chan!" Unreservedly -- though he's wearing his gloves, which helps -- he bends to give the pink-haired girl a brief hug. "I didn't know I'd be here, either. Well-- I did, but it's complicated," he tells her with a laugh, making a face like 'you know how stupid keeping secrets can be'. And then he spots her blush, looking at Homura, and his eyes flash in pleased amusement. "Doesn't she, though?" he asides to Madoka, elbowing her a little. And then HOMURA is blushing, and abruptly, there is a Shipper On Deck.

And then TAKASHI.

And Takashi was still maligning Ami a second ago.

It's time for seriously drastic measures.

He gives Mercury an apologetic look and steps forward swiftly, reaching for Homura's hand. The look he's giving her is full of Plans. "Let's cut a rug, doll," he says in exaggerated 40s American English, because he is completely preoccupied by both Corporate Drama and Shipping Wars.
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 02:56:21 6532
Homura stammers as Takashi steps in front of her. No matter how tough (or dashing) she looks and acts, she's still pretty terrible at being a people person, and at this time she's just been completely shut down. She has nothing to say.

.oO(You have /time powers/! How could you be /too slow/?!)

She stares at the back of Taka's head for a moment, but Hannah's toast distracts her.

Well, not that much. Homura keeps one eye on Madoka, and only half pays attention to Hannah's toast. She raises her glass when it's time to, saying, "Here, here!"

Homura watches as a man is dragged away. She doesn't seem to even care, or feel sorry for him. She doesn't really consider herself the nicest person. She actually considers herself a very cold-hearted person who just so happens to like the kinder ones.

Kyouko falls over. Homura frowns. Well, that happened. To Mamoru, on the subject, she says, "I think it's a good. Helping others when they're in need. It's very noble. Pity it isn't always that simple, but sometimes it is, yes?"

Her hand is taken by a knight in shining armor. Someone else's knight, she reminds herself. Oh but what a lucky someone else that is. When a dance is offered, Homura looks up into Mamoru's eyes, sees the gears turning in his head, and says, "I'd love to."

What is he planning? Eh who cares. Time to dance with a prince.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 02:58:11 6533
Mami stares at Kyouko.

Then she delicately reaches out and picks a single piece of good tiramisu off of Kyouko's head, holding the redhead's gaze as she eats it, before she turns to head for the drinks.
Kyouko Sakura 2015-08-06 03:02:23 6534
    Kyouko flushes bright red, to match her dress, in the aftermath of that little disaster. Even she's not above being embarassed at looking like a total fool in public, and her cheeks burn as Mami proceeds to diss the hell out of her without even saying anything! Rrr, how is she going to live this down?! She takes the only reasonable course of action to mitigate her embarassment.

    She pulls off the offending high heels, stands up (desserts falling off all over as she does), glares at them, and yells, "To hell with these goddamned shoes!" Then she turns and throws them across the room as hard as she can, paying absolutely no attention to where they go.

    Then she turns and stalks away, barefoot (and much more graceful for it), exiting the club in a huff and letting the door slam behind her.
Madoka Akemi 2015-08-06 03:09:22 6535
Madoka respectfully quiets down for the speech when it's called for, applauding when appropriate and blanching when someone is fired on the spot. Wow -- if this is what her mother has to deal with everyday, it's no wonder she drinks so much. (Speaking of which, she looks over frantically to the mid-speech crash, just to be sure it wasn't her. And it wasn't. This time. So she's okay.)

Her attention is immediately drawn back to her immediate group as Homura starts to say something, but is cut off by a nearby boy who she definitely recognizes from somewhere. Where...

"Oh, Agera-san!" Madoka says when she places him, back to her friendly, open smile. "I'm sorry. I know I can be a bit hard to pin down at school. I just have to focus so hard to understand the material -- huh?"

Her eyes widen as he extends his hand to her, his invitation met with a much deeper blush. It's not that she hasn't danced before or anything; you can hardly avoid it at these events, really. She just never dreamed that a classmate of hers would ask. Someone people could think she's dating!

(Never mind that, a second before, a different classmate would have asked the same thing.)

"O-Of course," she replies, her hand slipping into Takashi's, allowing herself to be led to the dance floor. "I'd be happy to." And then she giggles, perhaps sounding a bit coquettish. In reality, she just heard Mamoru's English and couldn't contain her reaction. The pair of them receive a bright smile before she's swept into a dance with the totally chivalrous and trustworthy Agera-san.
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 03:15:18 6537
Takashi takes Madoka's hand and dances with her. It's not clumsy or awkward, at least from his side, but it probably lacks the definite elegance of Mamoru and Homura's pairing. He's specifically dancing her away from the crowd, and as they dance he leans in to talk with her.

"Like I said, I'm really surprised to see you here! This doesn't seem like much of an event for a girl like you - all stuffy and businesslike, when you're so bright and happy." he adds. "What brings you to a place like this - did someone drag you? I probably wouldn't be here if it wasn't expected of me." he lies. The whole time he's trying to keep eye contact with the somewhat shocked Madoka, and keeping a decidedly well-practiced smile on his face.
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 03:17:36 6538
She had said she would try the food, and so she might as well do just that, even as the speech is being given and someone is losing their job. Lena saunters on over to the table to see what there is to have, only to arrive right when Kyouko has her spill. Thankfully nothing gets on her dress, but just the sight of so much food meeting the ground causes her to frown. She was going to eat some of that, probably. But she's going to ask if Kyouko is alright, only to not have to! Since she's very much alright and taking her anger out on a pair of shoes that Lena ends up ducking as they go flying. Only after she's standing back up fully does she realize that those things are probably going to hit someone else. Oh well, not her problem.

So with no real food worth eating after the spill and Kyouko excusing herself, all she can do is reach for a drink, champagne being the drink of choice by chance as she grabs without looking, and moves around the mess to stand next to Mami while she observes the goings on. She sips her drink and blinks. Well, this was a mistake, but she's reasonably sure one glass isn't going to get her intoxicated. Finally she looks to Mami and, placing the glass down for a moment, offers her left hand, "Ah, sorry, I'm Lena. Um... was she," her head motions to the retreating Kyouko, "a friend? And... is she going to be alright?"
Madoka Akemi 2015-08-06 03:27:37 6543
Madoka's an acceptable dance partner, though she's also not the height of grace or elegance. For one thing, she's been in these heels *all night*, and they're starting to wear on her feet a bit. For another, her dress is much poofier in motion than it is when she's sitting down, and she's still getting used to its bulk swirling around her as she twirls. She hardly even notices that the pair of them are drifting away from the main crowd.

"I actually come to stuff like this all the time," she replies, happy that he still thinks of her as bright and happy. Her mood over the past week and a half or so is...not the best representation of her personality, to say the least. "My mom is a businesswoman, and she really wants me to meet her colleagues. Something about networking, I think?" She wobbles a bit as she lands on a heel wrong, nearly falling into Takashi as she fights to maintain her balance. Heels are the *worst*. "I don't know. To be honest, I don't think any of them ever remember me."

There's a bit of a pause, then Madoka ventures, "Why are you here tonight, Agera-san?"
Ami Mizuno 2015-08-06 03:31:51 6545
thankfully, the moment of distraction gives 'Kuri' the distraction she needed to get a scan of each that she needed, so she drops the visor and looks back towards the dance floor. She smiles a little bit and watches everyone dancing. She smiles as she watches Mamoru dance and chuckles a bit. She deosn't mind, since this wasn't her sort of thing. She mostly came here for....'stuff'.
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 03:33:03 6547
Elegant indeed -- the absurdly tall boy in the white tie and tails, white gloves, dancing with the equally dashing (and infinitely cuter) Homura, they're a striking pair by looks alone. But... they can also dance. Mamoru seems to be encouraging Homura to do it up Dancing With The Stars style, complicated ballroom competition moves.

(Swing in: 'I know he's sort of your coworker and all, but Mizuno's a friend of mine, and he seems like a tool.' Swing out.)

It makes conversation a little difficult, but it's getting a lot of attention: admiration, upping their respective coolness ratings exponentially in the eyes of onlookers; jealousy in some cases; updates to shipping charts in others (be real, the rumors about the two of them have been circulating for months, and they are absolutely not the only Infinity students at the gala, even aside from those named previously).

(Swing in: 'So first we are going to establish the rules of this battlefield and define the arena's expectations. This will also probably impress Madoka-chan even more. You do, after all, dance divinely.' Swing out. Whirl. Close for a moment: 'He's taking her off the floor. So let's clear the floor.' Swing out.)

The moves get wider, more daring still; more people are actively moving off the floor in order to both give Homura and Mamoru room and to watch -- there is increasingly less 'away from the crowd' to find that's not 'actually out there dancing where everyone can see'. Any minute now there will undoubtedly be an aerial manuever.

(Circle in close: 'I'll provide a distraction, and then on your honor, you will sweep her off her feet. Got it?' Swing out.)
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 03:35:00 6548
"It's nice to meet you, I'm Mami."

She glances after Kyouko. "She'll be fine. She'll just have to work her anger out. The dress, however..." Mami shrugs, a delicate motion as she shakes Lenas' hand. "The dress won't be so fine, but it'll manage."
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 03:36:29 6549
He smiles - it is a bright thing, a happy thing. A wonderful little lie of a facial expression, and the words that come with it are far more carefully chosen than they might seem. "Kaname-san, I am sure they could never forget someone like you. I sure can't - You light up the room when you walk into it." he says.

"But, if you're here to network, I can help with that, I think. I'd be more than happy to put in a good word - I'm an employee at one of the big firms in Downtown - and get you into something that might do better for you than just being a candy striper. You could work alongside us, do great things. I think you've got the potential."
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 03:44:55 6552
She nods, and returns to her drink while watching the sudden dance off that seems to be cropping up. Another sip of her drink while eyes scan those around. There's magic around, but it's really kind of difficult to detect extremely faint mana levels without Ascalon, though she's sure he should have stopped maintaining that spell by now, unless he's found something of interest to observe at their target location.

"Quite the party," she says off-handedly, "so do you work for WPS or were you invited, Mami-san?" Another sip while her eyes fall on Takashi. He'd been the one to flash that card. Something of some interest maybe? Didn't he go to Infinity as well?
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 03:51:07 6555
Homura, amazingly enough, keeps up with Mamoru's dance moves just fine. Her athleticism isn't just limited to her henshin, and the graceful stepping of ballroom dancing was safe and useful way to develop coordination. At the time she thought it would help her to fight Witches, but she'd never expected to use it in a situation like this.

It's been a while since she danced, but her feet, arms, and hips remember what to do.

Homura, after all, tends to not slack off.

Mamoru brings her in and whispers. She nods, in understanding. Takashi /is/ a tool. A lot of her coworkers are, she notes. Wait is this about...?

Several eyes are on Mamoru and Homura. For a moment, Homura ignores them, focusing her attention on Mamoru, his dancing, and his plans. As they sweep across the floor with grace and style, she not only keeps up with him, but does so gracefully and easily. He could probably push harder if he wanted. She wouldn't mind. The timestopper girl, it seems, knows her moves.

Tactics and strategy are discussed. She listens, starting to get it. With a smile, she says, "Why, that would be truly wonderful!" It's vague enough that anyone overhearing her would assume something else.

The floor clears more and more, cornering the opponent. Homura waits for her chance. She doesn't really deserve to hold Madoka's hand and dance with her, after what she's let herself become, but it's not like Takashi deserves it, either! Besides, whether Homura deserves it or not, it wouldn't be fair to leave Madoka all alone.

The magical forces and their intrigue escape her notice, for the moment. She's caught up in her own world of intrigue, with a different kind of magic.

"Ready when you are," she whispers. She is so down with this plan.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 04:03:48 6557
"Miss White has been trying to get Kyouko and I to join them for awhile, so we were on the guest list."

Mami frowns as she picks up a drink, sighing deeply into the glass as she takes a sip. "I have been turning her down frequently, but it's... not ideal for me." She glances out on the floor. "Now I do wonder what Fancy-San and Grace-San are planning." Uh, who, Mami?
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 04:09:28 6558
She can't help but laugh at the revelation. Though she is hurt to find that she wasn't on the guest list even though she got an offer for a job! "She made me a job offer too," Lena casually explains.

There's an understanding sigh in response. "I turned her down as well, though I might have agreed to it if not for seeing someone she works with. Something about that person just didn't sit well with me." Another sip from her drink, and then a questioning look before regarding the now only two couples dancing. "And which pair would that be?"
Madoka Akemi 2015-08-06 04:12:37 6559
Madoka lights up like a candle at Takashi's flirting, cheeks burning nearly scarlet. This -- this hasn't ever happened before! Boys have always liked Hitomi and the other, prettier girls in class. Never her, with her childish pigtails and quiet demeanor. How is she even supposed to respond?

He's not bad-looking, and he seems nice enough. But she's already so overwhelmed by magic and Witches and contracts. She can't throw dating into the mix! She'd probably explode!

"Um...th-thank you?" she finally says, smiling bashfully. Of course, the attention is flattering. Maybe she should stop being so jumpy about everything and learn to enjoy the moment. After all, she'd secretly wished for an admirer, hadn't she? While reading those gushy romance novels she's so fond of? "That's very kind, but I'm sure you're exaggerating." Madoka looks away, her mind trying (and failing) to think of a compliment for him in return. To be perfectly honest, she hadn't noticed him much before tonight. There's simply been too much else on her mind. Guilt sparks in her heart, dulling her cheerful expression a bit. She's really been a bad classmate, hasn't she?

Luckily, Takashi pushes right on ahead, not waiting for his compliments to be reciprocated. Madoka looks back over to her partner, jaw dropped ever so slightly. "You mean -- you already work somewhere?" She'd heard he was smart, but *wow*. "That's amazing, Agera-san!" If she's overcompensating in enthusiasm a bit, it's only because she desperately doesn't want him to feel that she's rejecting him.

Then he's offering to put a good word in for her with his colleagues, and that jaw drops even further. Yet another thing she wasn't expecting tonight: actual, successful networking. She should be over the moon -- but a cold feeling in her gut drowns out any satisfaction. She had barely talked with this boy at all before giving him this dance, and he mentioned her being a candy striper. It's such a small, innocent thing, and yet...

Madoka turns out for a spin, her pink eyes meeting his in a questioning silence. "How did you know --"
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 04:21:09 6561
One side of Chiba's mouth curls up, and his eyes are sparkling, his movements fluid and exuberant, matching Homura dare for dare, step for step. The song's beginning to ramp up, and the dancing ramps up with it; it's building toward a crescendo, and the dancers in darker colors are doing it credible justice. The thing hits its final rousing chorus, and the tall boy gives Homura a firm nod--

--and their steps take them right alongside Madoka and Takashi, and Madoka's being swung out at that precise moment:

Though it could, right here, time does not ACTUALLY stop.

Instead, Mamoru's cheerful, laughing voice interrupts the pink-haired girl's, and it looks like he's aiming to cut in, isn't he--?

"Pardon me--! May I cut in?"

And his back is to Madoka all of a sudden (that was another Wink, wasn't it) and he whisks Takashi away, taking the younger boy on the start of a surprise grand tour of the dancefloor for the epic final chorus of the song. Possibly even more maddeningly, Chiba is, in fact, leading.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 04:30:11 6563
"Mmm." Mami says, calmly. "She's doing things I don't approve of with things that I need, so I kind of don't think I'd be able to work with her as my boss."

At the question, Mami smiles, radiantly. "Homura-san and Madoka-chan are the grace, and the two men are the fancy. So both, really, but mostly the one with Homura-san. Those two have moves."
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 04:30:28 6564
As Mamoru leaves with his new dance partner, Homura immediately moves in. There's no hesitation this time. Homura doesn't have time for such things. Her hand takes Madoka's, and her other hand rests on Madoka's waist, as Homura smoothly transitions from following to leading.

"Ah! Excuse me, Kaname-san," says Homura, as if this were all a (happy) accident. The mischevious smile on her face says that this was anything but an accident.

Homura takes it a bit slower with Madoka, having noted her earlier difficulty with Takashi's lead. Let's face it, heels are difficult, and Homura pushes no harder than Madoka can handle.

She wants to make sure Madoka has a good time, after all.

"So how've you been? We haven't had much of a chance to talk recently. Enjoying the party so far?" Homura tries to make casual conversation while slowly dancing with Madoka. She wishes, for a moment, that she could stop time and dance a little longer.

She wonders if she could get away with it.
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 04:32:16 6565
Takashi is swept up by Mamoru - suddenly, his plan to get Madoka inside an Eclipse facility easily is, if not scuttled, delayed. That means that Mamoru Chiba - who is now dancing with him - and /LEADING?!?!/ - has gotten in the way of his curiosity, which is almost as bad as questioning his ability.

And yet, Takashi Agera would have been outed almost immediately if he hadn't been able to control his emotions, to a point. So it's only slightly behind the look in his eyes that his anger flares up, and it's probably only Mamoru Chiba who can see it.

"I don't recall asking to dance with you. Rudeness isn't a particularly appropriate trait for an upperclassman at Infinity, you know." It is taking a lot to keep this to words - to keep him from calling for his device and sending the smirking upperclassman through a wall or two. But he holds it together, for now.
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 04:37:32 6566
Again, Lena gives a knowing sigh. It seems Miss White is getting in the way of both of them, though the circumstances of why they need what she's going after might be different. "I somewhat know what that's like," she admits, finishing off her glass and placing it down. "I also can't help but think whatever she's getting involved with, she's in over her head without realizing it." That, she would freely admit, might not be true at all and instead be her bias concerning the natives of Unadministrated World #97 and their knowledge of magic.

As for the dance happening, Lena watches and finds herself smiling while she watches things play out. "They certainly do seem to know what they're doing, and Fancy-san seems to ha--" she begins to comment when Mamoru makes his move, and Lena is left without words to say at first, though her smile turns into the biggest grin ever. "To have executed his plan flawlessly," she concludes.
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 04:49:24 6571
"I was very polite! I asked Mado-chan if I could cut in!" the upperclassman says with a grin. He can't actually believe Takashi hasn't shoved him away yet, and he feels he at least owes the eighth-grader part of an explanation; his expression is still insouciant, but it's standard Top-of-the-Class Popular-Athletic-Rich High Schooler insouciance now, not 'I'm getting away with murder' smirking smugness.

The song ends and mercifully, Chiba lets Takashi go; the music segues into Homura and Madoka's slow dance, and the upperclassman crosses an arm over his stomach and rests the other elbow on it, pointing at the two girls with a fingergun up by his face. "I know you didn't mean to, but you interrupted something very sweet that'd been waiting to happen for quite some time. They're both friends of mine. I'm sorry to have embarrassed you, Agera-san."
Takashi Agera 2015-08-06 04:53:08 6572
Takashi hadn't let go of Mamoru partly out of sheer annoyance at the bluster of the upperclassman to 'cut in' on anything he was doing, and partly out of simple confusion. But once the song ends, and Mamrou gives his apology, a murmur sneaks out unbidden, low enough it could easily be assumed that it was misunderstood, but it sounds distinctly like 'You /will/ be sorry.'.

But after that, Takashi takes a different route. An entirely other tactic. "You interrupted something I'd been waiting a long time for as well, Chiba-san." he says, that anger still burning behind his eyes. "No matter what excuse you give, that was selfish and cowardly of you, to cut into my dance for your own gratification - or for the gratification of one of your friends. After all, Kaname-san was enjoying my company just fine until you moved in." he adds.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 05:04:52 6574
"Oh, that was brilliant. Homura-san is probably exceptionally happy with this, she's very fond of Madoka-chan." Mami says, giving Mamoru a thumbs up from across the room.

"Do you not dance, Lena-san?"
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 05:08:58 6575
"I can only imagine Chiba-san has made his partner furious. I'm half expecting steam to come out of his ears," she says, chuckling with a hand coming up to cover her mouth. It really was masterful, and if she didn't know any better, she'd swear she was watching politics playing out in some court back during the time of Ancient Belka.

But to Mami's question, Lena looks over to her and offers a shrug. "It was certainly something my father thought I should know, but..." she trails off and motions to the brace on her arm. "This would make it somewhat difficult, though not impossible. Why? Fancy a dance, Mami-san?"
Madoka Akemi 2015-08-06 05:10:38 6576
Her question doesn't get answered -- in fact, it's not even finished before there's a whirl of activity, and her tenuous grasp on Takashi's hand is broken. Madoka catches the wink sent her way from Mamoru as he dances away with her previous partner, leaving her baffled and (curiously) a bit relieved. There was just something so strange about that entire conversation.

But, before she can dwell on it, there's another hand in hers, and she's pulled gently into another dance partner's arms. Eyes still trained on Mamoru in amazement, she starts just a bit at the unexpected contact, turning her head to see who's swept her up now--

Oh. It's Akemi-san.

Madoka's blushing again, deeply, but not in the frantic, flustered way she'd been with Takashi. She can't figure out *why*, of course. Homura does look very dashing in her suit, and there is something terribly shoujo about the exchange that just happened. But why the sudden butterflies in her stomach? Why has her heart begun to beat faster?

Why does this feel so familiar?

"I'm doing well," Madoka finally replies once her brain catches up to her emotions and she realizes she can't just blush at Homura in silence. "I know I shouldn't be. What that white-haired girl did the other day -- I mean, that should be disturbing me just as much as the Witches do." She's actually dancing better with her than she'd been with Takashi. Something about feeling more at ease, in all likelihood. "It's just--"

...Oh. She was talking about the party. Madoka cuts herself off, embarrassed at oversharing.

"Never mind. The party's been good! I haven't ever had so many friends at one of these events. I'm kind of glad my parents dragged me along now."
Mamoru Chiba 2015-08-06 05:15:46 6579
"Sour grapes won't win you a friend in Kaname-san," Mamoru says, shaking his head. "And who are we to stand in the way of girls' friendship?" Then he stops even really looking at Takashi, just watching the two girls slow-dancing, a fond look on his face. "Look at them, they're in their own world."

He catches the flickering motion of Mami's thumbs-up in his peripheral vision as other people start to filter back onto the dancefloor, and gives her a conspiratorial smile. Like 'we'll remind Homura how to be a goodguy again, it's cool! Enable erryday!'

Something about good intentions and paving roads...

"At any rate, I'm sure you'll have another chance to dance with her," he says, waving a hand, "but it was incredibly rude of you to cut Akemi-san off in the first place. I see it as correcting a divergence from fate. Enjoy the rest of the party, Agera-san, I owe Miss White a dance."

With that, the upperclassman turns his back on Takashi and slips off into the crowd to find Hannah.
Homura Akemi 2015-08-06 05:26:14 6580
Homura smiles as Madoka talks, though her smile is a little sad at the mention of Miss White's actions. Well, if she'd rather talk about that, Homura doesn't mind.

Madoka seems embarassed. Why? She hasn't done anything wrong. Would Homura be able to notice even if she did?

Whatever. Dancing with Madoka. Nothing else matters right now.

"Miss White is playing with powers I don't think she fully understands. She's taking a big risk, and... doing some awful things, but I think she's doing it for..."

The right reasons? Was there a right reason to torture Kyouko? Revenge was something Homura could understand, but can she really look Madoka in the eyes and say it was 'right?'

"... well, I think she wants to make the world better. I just hope it doesn't end poorly."

She speaks low as the two of them dance. This is private enough for the two of them to speak about those kinds of things, if they want to. "... but I'm glad you're enjoying yourself. My boss went through a lot of trouble to set all of this up. I must admit, I was pretty surprised to see you. Maybe I shouldn't be, considering what a key player your mother is."

Junko Kaname will always have a bit of respect from Homura, though they very rarely interact. It's hard not to respect her, really.

"What is it with you and creeps trying to recruit you? Takashi isn't exactly an upstanding person either. I don't know what his involvement is in all this, but he's involved."

Homura's eyes focus on Madoka's, pink reflecting in purple. Homura wants to enjoy the moment, but... she also really wants to protect Madoka, no matter what happens. No one this kind should go through what Kyubey or Takashi would put her through.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 05:30:09 6581
"I do, but on the other hand, is that not the most precious thing?" Mami asks, nodding her head towards the pair on the floor.

There's a hint of pride, amusement, and, strangely enough, soft sadness in her voice. Homura has someone she's very much attached to, she's got her very best friend, and it... sort of hurts to see. Mami blinks a few times, quickly.
Lena Reiniger 2015-08-06 05:42:13 6583
The tone of voice is not lost on her, nor the quick blinking, as though Mami has something in her eye maybe? She looks over to Madoka and Homura, nodding. "It certainly seems precious, but I wouldn't know personally." Maybe she'd like to know, but social interaction like what she's seeing the two girls display, friendship and all that comes with it, weren't really something she ever had time for.

Eyes eventually watch Mamoru head off in search of something, and then to Takashi and his very obvious silent stewing over everything that's happened. Part of her is tempted to go chat him up, maybe steal a dance, and see what sort of information she can get out of him. Well, the thought is entertained at least, but Lena decides not to follow through on it. "I think I'll make my exit," she says, looking back to Mami with a smile. "It was a pleasure, Mami-san. Maybe you should go steal Chiba-san for a dance before you leave? He seems like quite the partner." With that she's off, heading to get her bag and leave to go deal with business of a much more magical nature.
Mami Tomoe 2015-08-06 05:50:53 6584
Mami considers Lena's words, gaze lingering on Mamoru....

... there will be time. Later.

For now, she fetches Kyoukos' shoes, and bails herself, leaving her two kohais to what they do.