Kyouko and Naru are chilling in the ECFH. Kunzite, unsurprisingly, is also there.

Date: 2017-09-01
Pose Count: 53
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 14:29:43 82138
    Kyouko seems to be considering something. You can tell because she's pacing around the ECFH living room, barefoot and in PJ pants and a white tanktop, frowning faintly to herself. Back and forth. Back and forth. She's the sort who can't think sitting still, as if the kinetic energy of movement somehow translates directly into thought for her. She has a cup of tea on the table, but it looks like it's going cold, as she pauses to look out the sliding glass doors onto the balcony and out over the city beyond.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 14:35:14 82139
Naru has been a relatively rare sight in ECFH of late. School and training and vacation and art and and and.. she's been a rare sight anywhere, truth be told. Still, some bits of her hermitage are sloughing away. A race last weekend. Emerging out to the Crown to be social. Now? Baking in the ECFH's kitchen.

Today's muffins are lemon poppyseed, and the smell of lemon permeates the apartment as she grates zest into the batter. "Your tea is cold." She notes, out to the living room.
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 14:46:33 82140
    Kyouko paces. Pace pace pace. She's glad Naru is here- she hasn't missed the fact that her girlfriend is.. not avoiding her, exactly, but always seems to have stuff to do recently. It's the sort of uncomfortable space where she doesn't want to call Naru out on it, because it might just be coincidence and then she looks like a clingy insensitive jerk, but it still can't help but be noticed. Therefore, a relatively nostalgic afternoon of both of them spending time int he ECFH is welcome.

    If only she could stop dwelling on.. stuff. Other stuff, not even related to Naru. Not more important, just more at the forefront of her mind, currently. Hearing Naru's voice, she turns and pads over to the other side of the counter, resting her hands on it and frowning. Rather than addressing the state of her tea, she comes out with, "Am I unreliable, Naru?"
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 14:50:39 82141
The pacing gets to be pacing, and Naru mixes batter while Kyouko paces. There /is/ something nostalgically comfortable about just hanging out in ECFH, with just a tiny hint of wary on Naru's part. Well hidden under muffins, at the very least.

"What?" Naru blinks up at that question. "Unreliable? No. Not in the top five of adjectives, even narrowed out to publically acceptable adjectives, I'd use for you."
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 14:56:20 82142
    Kyouko narrow-eye-gazes at Naru. Part of her wants very much to ask about non-publically-acceptable adjectives. But that would derail her from her current train of thought, most assuredly, and she's not quite willing to let that happen at the moment. She files the question away for pursuit at a later date, and in a more suitable location.

    "It's just that, y'know, Kunzite wants us to do this team training and stuff.. and I think its a good idea, I really do. But I'm wondering how much of it has to do with the fact that I almost killed Mamoru the other night. Y'know, the guy who like, granted me power and money and a place to belong in exchange for protecting him? Which is the exact opposite of stabbing him in the face, which I came a hair's breadth from doing. That combined with our um.. fight a few months ago and I'm starting to wonder if the guys are.." She mentally flails for a moment- she doesn't want to use the word 'regretting', because she doesn't feel that vibe from them at all, and eventually settles on, "..becoming concerned about my ability to.. not accidentally kill people who are supposed to be on my side when things get rough."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 15:02:24 82144
"Conversations about team training have gone on for.. I wanna say about a year now?" Naru points out as she finds the muffin tin, and gets to greasing each cup. The papers are convenient, but such a waste. Greasing is eco friendly. "Which kinda completely and utterly pre-dates both our fight, and whatever happened with you and Endy and Neph on the balcony. The girls really should train together too, but the guys are more organized."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 15:08:26 82147
"Besides." Kazuo's voice, from the hallway, holds a trace of amusement. "I've almost killed him twice. Maybe three times. You still have some catching up to do."

He paces in after, drawn most likely initially by the lemon zest. Or maybe he's just had insufficient coffee, but that's the everyday reason. "No. This is the plan you and I came up with when we talked a couple of months ago. The timing is only because if we were doing this, we needed Nephrite to be doing it, and Nephrite wasn't going to have his feet all the way under him until he'd settled matters with his memories and with his aunt. If nothing had happened that weekend, I'd've asked him a few days sooner."
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 15:18:49 82148
    Kyouko is just opening her mouth to reply to Naru when Kunzite makes his usual sudden appearance, and she whirls slightly at the sound of his voice. To her credit, and not undermining the current point, she does not grab one of the various sharp utensils sitting on the counter. Though her hand does twitch.

    Then, when her mind catches up with her body and she recognizes the not-unwelcome intruder, she snorts faintly. "Yeah, but how many of those were when you weren't evil?" She says, with a faint smirk. "Besides, you've had at least two lives in which to rack those up. I've only known the dude for a little over two years." Hard to believe, but it's true.

    She sighs then, but nods to what Kunzite says. "I guess that makes sense, yeah."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 15:26:12 82150
Naru absently climbs the counter to retrieve a couple of mugs. The coffee is on, and now there are mugs sitting next to the coffee maker. She holds one up in offer to Kunzite, but waits for confirmation before pouring.

As their conversation moves to Neph's getting himself together, Naru stays quiet on that topic, scooping batter into a muffin tin instead.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 15:37:08 82152
"Two." Kazuo's tone is typically dry. He inclines his head to Naru, after, the first little for 'yes' and the deeper a moment after for 'thank you.'

After that, he finds a piece of wall to lean against, one that lets him see Kyouko but leaves only part of the kitchen visible to him -- letting Naru slip in or out of his field of vision as her tasks or her whims take her. "Don't think it's just about you, either. The rest of us aren't made for idleness any more than you are, despite what Nephrite's habits might suggest. If we don't have a job to be doing, we get unsettled. On edge. And at the same time ... if we did the same things we did before, we'd lock ourselves into making the same mistakes. So we spent a year with nothing scheduled, just putting ourselves back together and figuring out who we were. That's long enough to start causing trouble. We needed something. But something not inherently martial, and something that someone who wasn't me was organizing. This works out for all of us."

He glances toward the kitchen, and adds, "You included, if you like. Or you're welcome to sit on the sidelines and laugh."

And observe, always, knowing Naru. Who has probably noticed that Nephrite is Nephrite today, to Kazuo, when he was Neil last night.
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 15:42:18 82153
    Kyouko might ask for more information on Kunzite's 'two' sometime, but that time isn't right now. Instead she listens to what he has to say, before giving a mild, perhaps slightly uncomfortable shrug. "I know that. That's in all of us," She says, including Naru in her statement with a flick of her gaze. "Nobody lives this kinda life who's happy sitting around doing nothing." She shrugs her shoulders slightly. "It just.. well. I guess it's for the best." Kunzite's words don't come across as patronizing, but that doesn't stop Kyouko from perhaps hearing a bit in there, whether it exists or not.

    She walks back over to finally claim her now-cool tea, sipping from it. Tea is pretty good cold or hot, luckily. "But I dunno why it needs to be someone other than you. Organizing is what you're good at." Certainly not what she is good at. She walks back to the counter, watching Naru scoop batter. She reaches out and steals some from the bowl with a fingertip, which then goes into her mouth.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 15:47:55 82154
A coffee for Kunzite is poured and set on the counter near to where he's loitering. Handy, but not in the way. Naru returns to what she's doing, her spoon coming out to half-heartedly swat at Kyouko's swiping of batter. It's a familiar dance, and she only minds when Kyouko eats ALL the batter.

"Team building with extras feels not quite right." Naru points out at the offer to join. "So it'd depend on secondary goals on if I'd be in the way or valuable." She gets the muffin tin into the oven before Kyouko gets her fingers in it again.

A pause to pour herself a coffee, doctoring it up with cream and sugar.. not quite to dessert level, but extra calories are still welcome in whatever form she can get them in.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 16:02:25 82157
"Thank you," Kazuo says to Naru, and takes the coffee. And actually drinks some of it before answering Kyouko. "For one thing, Neil's the one who's most experienced with team sports; he's the best suited. For another -- part of the problem, back then, was that Beryl didn't have to trick all of us. She had to trick me. And then use the others' habit of listening to me to silence their second thoughts. So. We build new habits."

And if the sacrifice Kazuo has to make in order to make certain none of the others have any doubts about calling him out is ultimate frisbee ... well.

To Naru, he says, "Depends on the team. We'll be the core of it, yes. But we fight alongside a variety of people, and some of them may move in and out. I'll be very surprised if none of the senshi join in. I'd like Silvia involved, at least part of the time; he needs more information about how we move and think to be able to make his own plans."
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 16:08:50 82158
    Kyouko sticks her tongue out at Naru in response to the half-heared spoon-swatting. A familiar dance indeed, and it makes her smile a little bit in spite of herself. Some things, at least, are entirely normal.

    "Well, there's a decent chance that if shit ever does hit the fan in a violent way, we'll be together." She says to Naru, "So working on our teamwork in that sort of situation is probably not a bad idea, even as a secondary goal." It's just statistics- the two are dating, and even if Naru has been busier lately, they are together a decent chunk of each day, which ups the chances of someday needing to fight together, or at lest in tandem.

    To Kunzite, she merely quirks a brow. "Yeah but back then, you didn't have me around, either." She grins. "When's the last time you ever knew me to follow directions if I didn't agree with them?" Teasing. But also true.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 16:16:42 82160
"Mmm." Naru huffs quietly at the further information about the team. "I'll think about it. Let me know when it's going on, and I'll see if my schedule plays nice." She leans against the counter, enjoying a few sips of coffee before she gets to cleaning up the baking dishes while the muffins are in the oven.

"How likely is another situation like Beryl?" Naru asks, simply enough as she sets her coffee down and moves to go run water into the sink to start doing dishes. "I think I've asked this before, but it feels like its an answer that isn't static."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 16:28:08 82162
Kazuo sets down the coffee to permit himself to bow solemnly toward Kyouko without fear of spilling it. "One of the many reasons for which we prize your company," he tells her.

... given the amount of backtalk he lets Neph give him, probably not lying.

Naru gets a tilt of his head, and Kazuo picks up his coffee again. And drinks. He may actually finish it before it's cold, for once. "Clarify your question," he says. "What kind of situation like Beryl? Someone who wants, for their own reasons, to do things that would end the world? I can give you five current problems like that off the top of my head. Someone intelligent and initially well-meaning who makes the wrong decision and allows himself or herself to be used to that end? We have Agera active right now. Someone intelligent and well-meaning, whom we already trust and care about, whom we'd be inclined to listen to, who believes they're doing either a harmless thing or the right thing or a necessary thing, but whose actions escalate to threaten the human race? If we live long enough, that's inevitable."
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 16:33:58 82164
    Kyouko flutters her eyelashes at Kunzite in a way which might threaten to make Naru jealous, were Naru inclined to jealousy and were the target not Kunzite. "You flatterer." She says in a faux-embarassed tone, then laughs and drinks from her tea again. "I suppose it's nice to hear someone call my pigheadedness a strength, for once."

    She falls silent as Naru asks about another Beryl-type threat, listening with undisguised interest to Kunzite's reply. She doesn't speak, but she does nod her head head a few times.. as if in agreement, though exactly what she's agreeing to is not immidiately clear.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 16:38:23 82165
"It is challenging for me to clarify, as everything I know about Beryl and what happened around her, and that situation, I know second hand. I was not there when it started, I wasn't aware enough of what was going on when it ended to be able to give you that level of nuance." Naru rinses a mixing bowl, setting it in the drying rack as she answers.

Naru mms softly and nods. "Yes. I suppose it rather is." She considers again. "I only get to two, not five at the moment. My list is out of date."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 16:46:52 82167
Kazuo counts off, "The Phantom Empire. The Nightmare Prince. Riventon. The White Flower. Whatever the source of Shadow Witch Shiniko's power was; we had a similar manifestation recently."

He glances across at Naru; his voice acquires the toneless quality that it often does when talking about a certain deceased Queen. "Beryl was a lady of the court, a sorceress of some power, who had a fondness for Prince Endymion. That fondness extended to animosity toward the Moon Kingdom when Endymion began to spend time with Princess Serenity. She was contacted by something that offered her power to do something about that. All she wanted in the beginning was for a boy she liked to look at her, instead. Everything else grew out of that."

... pigheadedness against that is very definitely a strength.
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 16:54:19 82168
    "There are probably countless people and organizations and whatever out there who'd happily kill us all." Kyouko says, in an unconcerned tone. "My official policy is not to worry about them until they try." SHe pauses, and then adds, "But to always be ready for somebody to try. There's a difference between confidence and carelessness."

    She knows the story of Beryl's beginnings, more or less, and certainly knows the story of her ending. But even aside from that, the way Kunzite puts it reminds her that Beryl in being a person with weaknesses which can be exploited. It makes her turn somewhat pensive again, as she cradles her tea, wandering back over to the couch and flopping down again.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 17:04:39 82170
"Neither the Phantom Empire, nor the Nightmare Prince are meaningful to me in those terms." Naru points out. She certainly doesn't protest the other three, however. Two were on her list already, the third is only a minor blip in realizing that it is back on the radar.

"It always starts somewhere." Naru agrees thoughtfully as she washes measuring cups and spoons, setting each in turn into the drying rack. "Minor things that nudge from one reality to another, and the two can diverge so dramatically."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 17:13:59 82171
"The Phantom Empire was loosely allied with Beryl," Kazuo says, filling in further details on Naru's list. "Didn't they target you once? The mirror business, I think? The Nightmare Prince was behind that series of incidents with Ariel and her mothers this spring."

He inclines his head couchward. "Kyouko has a good general principle for dealing with these things. That there is undoubtedly somewhere a force for evil and corrupt baking is no reason to forgo muffins for all time."

He studies Naru for a moment after that, then finishes his coffee and comes around the counter, through the actual doorway into the kitchen. Apparently, it's time to consider what to do for dinner. Apparently, after a look over the fridge, dinner is going to involve something simmering for a good long while.
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 17:20:10 82172
    Kyouko sits on the couch, her feet up on the edge of the coffee table, toes with red-painted nails curled over the lip of it as she sips at her tea in silence for several minutes, listening to Naru and Kunzite speaking in the kitchen. At one point, she turns, sharply, and shoots a narrow-eyed look at Kunzite for some reason that isn't entirely obvious. She watches him closely for several seconds.. then turns back to her tea without comment, the glance perhaps not even noticed by those in the kitchen.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 17:23:53 82173
"Targeting me doesn't generally narrow it down much." Naru points out as she reaches for a tea towel to start drying. "If you're thinking stew or something, I could bake bread." There's time, if barely, to have bread for dinner.

Dinner asides fit in perfectly with discussions about who is trying to kill everyone. "The mirror business was early enough that I didn't really grasp entirely the bigger picture, but it's ringing a bell again now. I wasn't involved with Ariel's incidents at all, unfortunately."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 17:31:32 82174
"The RPG," Kazuo provides to that 'not involved' comment. "With the skeletons. But you may have woken from that one before we encountered the Prince's influence. Bread would be appreciated in any case."

Bread is always appreciated.

Kyouko's narrow-eyed looks might also be appreciated, but if Kazuo caught that one, he's being very careful indeed about not showing it.
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 17:34:56 82175
    "I'll second the vote for bread." Kyouko says from the couch, her tone lacking any indication of her momentary unease. She stays where she is though, her eyes wandering to the window to look out of it. Reflecting on some things that are better to remain unsaid, at least for the moment, but appreciative of the company of people she cares about nearby, regardless.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 17:39:25 82176
"Any particular bread requests? I suppose specifics depend on what's for dinner." Naru gets muffin implements dried and put away before she starts gathering up bread requirements. Yeast. Honey. Warm water and set to proofing.

"The RPG with the skeletons was part of that?" Naru frowns a little as she holds her hand under the tap to ensure the water is warm enough, but not too warm. Yeastiebeasties are delicate things. "I must have woken up before the Prince's influence was clear." She shakes her head a little, as if willing her brain to get its index back in order. "How is Ariel?"
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 18:06:35 82178
Kazuo glances over at the yeast, considers it, and then says, "Alternatively, dinner's specifics depend on what you feel like doing with the bread. Aside from saving Nephrite from my experimenting too much tonight. There's some chicken we should use up. Cream stew, maybe."

If he's trying to figure out ways to fortify the Tokyo-born crowd against the cool gray rainy weather lately, that's probably one of them. Another support for the general home-smells of baking.

He goes on with the conversation as if he hadn't in the slightest been considering a few minutes ago things that would have triggered potentially lethal levels of stubbornness in Kyouko. And in Mamoru. For good reasons. Not even to mention Usagi. "That was a dream that the Prince sent one of the people he'd corrupted to attack, yes. But we only found that out near the end. He sent one of Ariel's mothers, in fact. Some of the others managed to crack her armor, and we were able to take advantage of that later to get her loose. Ariel was fine last I saw her, and spending a good deal of time basking in having her family back together. I should check in on her, really. I need to talk with Akashimaru anyhow."
Kyouko Sakura 2017-09-01 18:15:55 82179
    Kyouko, for all her potentially lethal stubbornness, seems quite comfortable at the moment, though she rises from her seat, teacup empty, and walks over to deposit it on the kitchen counter. It isn't laziness which prevents her from trying to put it into the sink instead- it's just that Naru and Kunzite are both already in the kitchen, and trying to get in there to do so would probably put her in the way of one or both of them more than a cup on the counter.

    "I'm gonna run back downstairs and take a bath before dinner." She says, with a faint smile. "All this talk of food, with no food yet ready to be eaten, is fit to drive a girl mad." She leans across the counter for a Naru-smooch, then turns and heads for the balcony. "I'll be back up in a little bit." And then she's exiting out through the doors.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 18:25:50 82181
Naru leans over to capture the tea cup from Kyouko, and the smooch. "Fresh bread will be worth it." She notes, immaterial of the muffins not needing all THAT much more time. But they aren't ready yet.

"Egg bread, perhaps. Something that will stand up to a cream stew." Naru muses on bread options as Kyouko takes her leave, letting the kitchen return to just Naru and Kunzite and cooking duties.

"Good to hear that she's alright." Naru comments as she gathers up flour, lots and lots of flour, while the yeast proofs and gets all frothy and bubbly. There's a comfortable silence, of familiar spots in the kitchen as work gets going.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 18:33:29 82182
A comfortable silence that is mildly interrupted a little later, after Kazuo has duly washed hands and bound back hair and dealt with the slicing of vegetables, by the chiming of his phone. While, inevitably, he is cutting up the aforementioned chicken and his hands are biohazard zones. His attempt to glare at his own pocket is perhaps less than successful; but he puts down the knife and washes hands again and then pulls out the anonymous backup phone to scan it. "Lacrima's up," he remarks. And, after a moment, "Jiaying's back."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 18:37:37 82183
Water, oil, egg, yeast and a bit of salt. It's a rich bread dough, and Naru has had enough practice to not need to find a recipe, relying instead on 'looks about right' and 'feels about right'. "Up in what sense? Awake?" Naru asks as she spreads flour over a chunk of counter that isn't near the raw chicken, and scoops dough out to land in it. "I wasn't sure if Jiaying hadn't been around, or if school and vacation meant I just hadn't seen her."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 18:47:35 82184
"And interacting," Kazuo confirms to 'awake.' "Generally I consider that good news where she's concerned." He thumbs out an extended reply, pausing at one point to reach for a towel and dry off a bit of the screen before he can continue. "Often it's something of both, I think. She travels a fair amount. I don't think either she or Ayana are terribly happy confining themselves to a single place for too long."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 18:57:20 82185
"I appreciate travelling." Naru considers that for a while, as she kneads. The easy bit of kneading, before the gluten has gotten invested and cranky about being stretched. "It's enlightening, and fascinating. I like coming home again too, though. It's easier to process and appreciate everything you saw while you were away, at home. How's Ayana doing? Not still here, is she?"
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 19:01:54 82186
Kazuo finishes the text and puts the phone down, but doesn't pick up his knife again. "If you saw Mamoru's amendment to the house rules," he says, "you'll note that the 'maximum length of stay' rule specifies that it applies to genetically bipedal guests. I suspect she's coming and going. But her den isn't in either of the more commonly-used apartments, which helps considerably."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 19:07:54 82189
"I hadn't looked." Naru admits, and pauses in her manhandling of the dough to take the few steps to peer out at the apartment rules. She reads all of them again, reacquainting with most, and reading the newest addition. "It does help considerably." Naru agrees as she moves back in and gets back to kneading. "It must feel quiet around here, with no current extra guests."

It's a rhythmic experience, and one that's improved over the last year or so with the addition of gym time, and magic. A gentle thump and drawing out of the dough, before folding it back and turning it again.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 19:14:51 82190
"In practice," Kazuo says, dry again, "all that it means is that there are fewer magical-girl cartoons on the television, and more of whatever Neil's yelling at."

(So he's back to Neil again, now.)

"Unmei's primarily in her own apartment now. Which was promptly attacked. I need to look in on her again; she's having some trouble adjusting. Not much more than most people do, except for the manticore and the wrathfire and the lunatic jewelry." There's the chime he's been waiting for; he picks up the phone.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 19:21:29 82192
"That sounds like my life for much of a year." Naru points out as she works the dough, watching the strands form under her hands, rather than watching Kazuo as he focuses on his phone. She opens her mouth to say something and then gives a little shake of her head as she decides against it. "I hope it settles down and she settles in soon enough."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 19:26:34 82193
"I'm reasonably certain that your mother makes certain that lunatic jewelry is your life for much of every year. Fortunately, most of hers doesn't talk." Another exchange, and Kazuo sets the phone back down, reaching for faucet and soap yet again. Apparently one does not touch food after touching phones.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 19:29:26 82194
Phones are fairly filthy, it's true. Naru's phone isn't even in the kitchen, out sitting on the table, just above where her bag is slumped on the floor. Oddly and almost suspiciously silent, truthfully. Her reputation for text messages isn't currently warrented.

"As much as I probably shouldn't tempt the universe, but I'm vaguely surprised at the lack of lunatic jewelry in my life, all things considered." Naru points out. "It's one of the very few places that I'm around so much, and it's been largely mundane. No whispers in the night, no screams in the day."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 19:41:10 82195
Kazuo considers the chicken very carefully for a moment before returning to cutting the meat into chunks. "I was under the impression that there had been some screaming involved. Broken cases. The like. Only once or twice, granted. Maybe three times."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 19:43:59 82197
"One psycho plant dude, one psycho card, and one that I don't really remember." Naru points out. "No psycho, sentient, or lunatic jewelry." She considers the dough smoothing out in her hands. "I can't really call my necklace sentient or lunatic. Just mine."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 19:47:10 82198
"Having had to deal with Pin," Kazuo says, "i'd call that a point in your necklace's favor." Hands get washed yet again. Butter and bacon go into a pot and onto a burner. "Possibly several dozen."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 19:52:23 82199
"A year of magical stalking aside." Naru comments thoughtfully as she leaves the ball of dough for a moment, to retrieve a clean bowl with plenty of space and give it a quick oiling. "There's no Pin. There was some worried moments before you found my necklace for me, but its hard to really complain much." She frowns a little, shaking her head and then plunking the dough into the bowl. Now it's her turn to get her hands washed up well.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 19:56:45 82200
One of the places where Kazuo's height helps in the kitchen: being able to saute, without burning, foods at the bottom of a stewpot. Without wrenching any joints. And with the ability to spare glances elsewhere. "If you can't complain," he notes aloud, "then why the frown?"
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 19:59:22 82202
To saute in a stewpot, Naru would need a ladder.

"Big thinky thoughts." Naru replies thoughtfully, a tea towel getting spread over the bowl and it getting pushed to the back of the counter to stay out of the way while its rising. "Not with enough form for words, exactly, but uncomfortable with no solid sense on the why."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 20:04:59 82203
Chicken is added. By which, given the appetites around the household and the number of people, we really mean 'chicken is dumped in.' This is likely to take rather longer than the bacon. Kazuo still does not need a ladder. A stepstool would be plenty to put his head through most ceilings.

"Generally awkward," he agrees on the topic of formless worries. And does not press her further. Related topics will surface, or they won't.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 20:10:38 82205
Naru is, however, tiny enough to be able to slip in and check on muffins in the oven without being unduly in Kazuo's way while he's cooking chicken. She reaches in to give one a stab with a skewer, and then closes the oven door again. Not quite yet.

The lull in her tasks lets Naru retrieve her coffee and settle to leaning against the counter, watching Kunzite cook and letting those thoughts roll about without distraction a moment. "It's odd, not to be on top of what's going on in the city, still."
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 20:21:17 82207
"You've had other priorities lately," Kazuo replies, staying close by the burners to give Naru plenty of room to move. "Being in Europe, say. A laudable thing to have your attention on while you're doing it, but with the notable quality of not being Tokyo."
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 20:24:27 82208
"True." Naru sips from her coffee and then adds. "It's been easier not to when I've gotten back, though." She acknowledges, thoughtfully. A gesture pushes her off from the counter, moving over to top off her coffee cup.

The cup didn't really need much warming, but focusing upon pouring the hot liquid and re-fixing it to just so is an excellent distraction.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 20:30:58 82210
"Other priorities in addition to Europe, then." Kazuo makes the amendment without apparent disturbance; somehow the word 'placidly' still does not apply. His phone remains quiescent. And there's a space left there, maybe open to thinkings, maybe usable to define a border around a topic. For all that it's definite, it's not a pointed silence. Just one left there to do with what Naru will. Presumabily he has something to form the other side of it eventually.
Naru Osaka 2017-09-01 21:06:24 82213
And silence there is for a time.

Not truly. The coffee maker drips and blurbles now and then. The chicken sizzles in the pan. The general noises of the apartment and life and the fact that this is not a sensory dep chamber. Even the quiet sounds of Naru sipping from her freshly warmed coffee as she resettles back watching him cook and leaning against the counter.

Thoughts. Examinations. Questions more than answers. Uncertainties. Few of these are found upon her expression, but there is a weight to the silence. A gravitas, that lends itself to holding onto it.
Kazuo Takeba 2017-09-01 22:23:54 82214
Meat comes out of the pot. Onions and carrots and stock go in. Liquid boils, then simmers. Somewhere the ventilation comes on; somewhere there's the distance-muted hint of a piano.

And maybe one of those silent questions is whether there are things worth preserving in this reality as it is.