2014-05-27 - False Alarm! But You Should Try This!

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Title: False Alarm! But You Should Try This!

Takumi didn't turn out for morning classes, and Runealy alerted Mai. She'd already known, but it was an excuse to catch up over a quick lunch.


Runealy Waldia, Mai Tokiha


Ohtori Academy

OOC - IC Date:

20 January 2014 - 5/27/14

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

It wasn't immediate, but after the first class this morning Rune had recalled her promise to Mai; keep an eye on Takumi and call if something unusual happens to him. When Takumi Tokiha failed to appear for class and it was clear he wasn't just running late, she decided it was odd enough to notify his sister.

She already knew, apparently. Rune agreed to simply hear more at lunch, and didn't press it further at the time. Ohtori has some tables set up outside in open-air enclosures, railings giving them a low 'wall'. Just enough so people don't drift in unintentionally, but it's easy to see who's here in case people plan to meet. This even provides a nice view of the yard in general.

Sitting alone for the time being, Rune is going through a pastry from Midori-ya... the bakery's box rests on the table, and apparently the princess has made arrangements to get food from them even on school days from time to time. Money and a good attitude have its privileges in this sort of thing. Having been told that things are fine, Runealy is pretty relaxed.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

There's a rapid sound of shoes on flagstones - Mai has remembered her lunch date at the last second, and is walking quickly to reach the common lunch area. As usual, the overall area is elaborate - even the lunch trays possessing a touch more decor than what one would find elsewhere. Mai's haste, however, is aided by the fact that she doesn't have a tray from the cafeteria - only a pink bento box.

It takes her a minute to spot Runealy, but when she does she gives a smile and a wave on her approach. "Rune-chan!" She sets her bento box on the table before pulling out a chair, and catches her breath for a moment before sitting down. She's not outright grinning in good cheer, but she doesn't seem to be too worried.

Mai takes a moment to open her lunch before saying anything further - it's fairly basic, all things considered. A simple rolled omelette, rice, a handful of miniature sausages, and a cherry tomato. She doesn't quite dig in instantly, though she does take up her chopsticks - and uses them to gesture to Runealy's pastry. "Is that from Midori-ya? Don't pass this on, but I think those are the best in town - above Linden Baum, even."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"Huh?" Rune looks up from her meal when Mai speaks up, pleasantly surprised. "There you are! And... yeah, it is." Recognizing the box is actually pretty significant, prompting an explanation: "When I first got here and didn't really understand how Tokyo or Earth worked, Nanoha and the others at the Midori-ya were some of the first to just kind of look the other way and be nice to me anyway. So I want to be sure to give them business whenever I can. And... back then, before I got myself sorted out... sometimes the little something I bought from them was all I ate that day."

A tiny nod follows. "So they mean a lot to me. And don't worry, I won't tell anyone what you just said. Um." An empty hand slightly inches the box toward Mai, "If you want some, go ahead!" It's not just an offer for politeness' sake; Runealy looks pleased to try and spread the joy of Takamachi family fare to others.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mai blinks in surprise at Runealy's brief story - a thoughtful look flashing briefly on her face. "...in that case, tell anyone you like. I just have to voice loyalty to the place I'm working at, is all." She smiles, briefly. "Though I think for actual meals I'll still actually prefer the diner."

She looks at the pastry, then shakes her head. "You treated me to dessert there once before, remember? I think I'm good - I don't want to steal from your lunch. Though if you're interested in trying any of this, feel free." Chopsticks carve out a chunk of rice, and Mai takes the first bite of her lunch.

"In all honesty, though - it sounds like they really do matter to you. Are you still friends with them?" 'Loyalty over food' is probably the simplest way to describe Mikoto - and now that it's been voiced by Runealy, that would explain why she requests Mai's ramen so often...

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"I understand!" Rune isn't familiar with being on the 'careful end' of having to speak well of one's employer, but the notion of having to speak well of them lest they decide to 'wish you luck in your future endeavors' is pretty intuitive. "And yeah, I remember. Still friends... mm!" A sharp, deep nod follows; this is not a casual agreement. "Got to talk things out with Nanoha a few days ago, and it's okay. She's pretty incredible, you know. Kind of like you, just in ways that are a little hard for me to put in to words." A slight hand-raise tries to stall any protest or questions, "That's a good thing though, about both of you."

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mai smiles warmly. "Having friends you care about is a great thing, isn't it?" She cuts into her omelette, taking a quick bite - she's here to eat and talk both, it seems. "I'm glad you got caught up with her...and whatever similarity we might have, thank you for the compliment."

She does, finally, pause in her voracious activity. "Also, thank you for the tip on Takumi - if I hadn't known, I would have wanted to. He had an...incident over the weekend, and I didn't want him to strain himself. He's resting up for the morning, and I said I'd check in with him over the lunch break."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"Yeah. It makes being here a lot easier." Rune is in easy agreement on sentiments about friends. "I was kind of worried that nobody would even want to talk to me after what happened, just... 'make your amends and go'. It hasn't been like that at all, though. Some of you have even been showing me what you do for fun, and it's pretty mind-blowing!"

Then Takumi comes up, and Runealy raises an eye at Mai. "I'll keep watching for him, in that case. Though... checking in during lunch? That's niii--waaaait a minute," the princess' voice leaps with sudden realization. "Lunch is happening right now! Mai, do you need to go?"

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

"Well, I for one didn't run into anything you needed to make amends for." Mai smiles. "As for fun - has anyone ever taken you out for karaoke? It's great!" Her face dims, briefly. "Though it's a lot more fun if you know the songs being used..." Hrming indecisively, she pops one of the miniature sausages into her mouth.

Mai flushes brightly, then, and swallows before answering. "It's fine, it's fine. I'll just check in for a few minutes, and we have a full hour for lunch. I might not be able to stay for all that long, but I'm good for now."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"Karaoke?" Runealy's gaze narrows in thought. Despite sharing a language, 'karaoke' is somewhat new to her for cultural reasons. "No, but I think I saw what it is when I was first wandering Tokyo. Karaoke is where you have a giant cell phone show you the words to a song and you try to match that, right? We would sing songs we knew, back home, but not quite the way you do. It sounds kind of fun, and if I have to learn Earth songs to understand it then that's okay, maybe I'll try it anyway!" While not /as/ enthused about it as Mai seems to be, the HiME's mood is carrying over to Rune somewhat and it's enough to create some interest in 'this karaoke stuff.'

Yet Rune's mood deflates as Takumi's situation is touched upon. "So long as I'm not keeping you from him. You don't have to tell me, but... is it serious enough that I need to keep an eye on him in class still, just in case?" She barely knows Takumi, they haven't had much occasion to talk yet, but Rune appears worried anyway. Sitting right across from someone who Takumi does matter to puts some emotional weight to it; Rune can remember how Mai looked while they spoke at Mitakihara in idle time between one of his check-ups.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mai's face is as bright and vibrant as a bonfire. "It's great! It's where you get together with your friends, get a room together, pick out your favourite songs - or, you know, those that would be fun to try singing - and basically have a fun time!" She's beaming, and she gestures dramatically with her chopsticks. "Some parlors even go to the point of including costumes for people, so they can dress up like whatever singer or just something fun. It's the best!"

Finally, Mai settles down for a moment. "I just wish I had the time to do it more often. Any time I manage to have an afternoon without work, hospital appointments, homework, or something - someone else can't make it. I had to miss out on so many chances..."

And that brings the subject back to Takumi. Mai shakes her head. "It was just a brief scare, but there was a bit of a cold snap. We don't think there were any complications, I just wanted him to take the morning off to make sure. He might be back this afternoon - either way, after today things should be fine." Mai looks down, and takes a few more bites of her relatively small lunch.

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

Rune certainly does look interested with Mai's description of karaoke. "It sounds pretty good! How many people do you need for it though, if someone else not being there cancels the whole thing?" She's intrigued, but puzzled by just how troublesome karaoke can be if it's that hard to schedule.

This visible concern grows all the more as Takumi's situation is explained, and Runealy leans forward a little in her seat. "Wow... even some winter weather is enough to possibly hurt him?" Her gaze wanders down and aside, mild fright taking hold "I can only imagine that. Having a heart so weak that you need a second one, or even just being cold can be that big a problem. ...Okay." Rune's eyes snap back up to Mai with a sudden decision. "I'll keep an eye out for that, too. If he starts shivering or otherwise looking really cold, I can at least get him my coat. Thank you for trusting me with that, Mai! You're trying really hard to look out for him, but at least when he's in class I can do that part of it for you."

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mai shakes her head. "It's more fun with more friends - just, some people will only go if certain other people are going. So usually you have a group of people who are all going together, plus a few extras. I was just one of the extras more often than not - I didn't want to make people have to give up on a fun time just because I had work." She's pensive a moment. "I mean, there's nothing saying you can't go alone - but it's a lot more fun with people to hear you sing. I'd consider three the absolute minimum."

The comments about just how weak Takumi's heart leaves Mai quiet a moment, toying with the tomato in her lunch. "That's part of it - there was only so much he could take part in during the Hokkaido trip. It's more that he had a bad moment, and the cold weather made it worse. Just don't-" Mai's chopsticks click together as she clenches her hand. After a moment, she relaxes enough to cut another piece of the omelette. "...no, no, I should be thanking you, honestly. You didn't really have to go to this much trouble - the teachers know how to reach me, if it comes to it. But...thanks."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"Ohh..." Rune is now enlightened in the ways of karaoke socializing rules. "Yeah... singing alone would probably only make sense if there was something you just had to express somehow, and it was just for you. Well, if you end up with just two and need someone to fill a seat, I can go? I don't know the songs and I'm not much good at singing anyway, but if that's okay and you really just need a third..." Her voice trails off with a nod, enthused by having made the offer if nothing else.

Talk of how limited the winter trip was for Takumi dims the mood again, from excited to serious; a rollercoaster ride in this conversation. "That's awful. I missed out on some things too, but what I did get to do was amazing. If he got even less than that... that's not fair. And don't worry," A hand is held up in a physical 'defense' against Mai's concerns, "I'm being subtle. He doesn't know I'm watching him, he doesn't know that I know. Just like you asked. But Mai, 'if it comes to it', you say? If it comes to it, I bet you would rather get a half-dozen phone calls from as many people who went to the trouble, than to get no calls? For your sake, I'll annoy you a little. You seem like the sort of sister who would rather deal with a ringtone at a bad moment instead of risking hours of tears later."

Rune shows a patient smile. "That's the sort of shield anyone would want to have."

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

"It's something you can take as serious or as silly as you like - some people try to sing something that expresses their feelings, others just go with something that sounds fun. Or that has tongue-twisters for lyrics. Or that's been popular recently. But sure, you'd be welcome to come along - and not just if we need a third member! The more, the merrier - either just join in the fun of watching, or try your hand at singing anyway." Mai beams again, bright once more. "It's not about singing well, it's about singing badly and having fun anyway!"

The conversation's a bit of a roller-coaster, and Mai nods seriously, her enthusiasm extinguished again. "It's not fair to him, no, and I wish there was something I could do about it. You're sure you don't-" Rune's raised hand cuts Mai off. She hears Runealy out, and by the end of it there are ears in her eyes - but she's smiling all the same. "You're right about that. School, work, monster attack - Takumi's my priority, no matter what. Thanks."

Mai works at her lunch a bit more, but takes out one of the miniature sausages to set on the bento box's lid. "Have you tried these before? They're good - meat, a bit of spiciness. Best hot, sadly..."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

Rune is visibly surprised, to the point of her eyes shooting wide, when Mai explains karaoke is actually just fine if you do terribly at it. "...Really? Nobody minds if you mess up the song? They enjoy it anyway?" This revelation appears to have outright shocked the princess, to the point where she's coiling back in her seat. Not in distaste, but sheer surprise.

She briefly calms down, oddly enough, as something more important than karaoke comes up. "You're doing what you can for it, though. Everything you've said shows you have a plan for him to get his second heart, and you're already working on what to have ready for the time right after that. That's better than just doing your best. You're going to do it! With everything you're setting up, Takumi is going to get what he needs and then he'll be able to really go on these school trips or any other trip you two want!" Yet by the end of thate statement, Rune is fired up. She's speaking with intensity and strong approval. "Family and friends should be your top priority, and when this is all over... it's going to be worth it. You should take a picture of his face once that happens. So you can remember that perfect moment!"

She's actually so wrapped up in this that she outright forgets the matter of food, and it takes a little sausage-wriggling to remind Rune about it. "Huh? Oh... not that exact thing, no. I'll get one soon and give it a try if you're suggesting it, though!"

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mai's good mood is rekindled once more. "What, did you think we were all expert singers? Some of us try to work on getting better and matching the original singer as best we can, sure - but honestly, it's almost more fun to completely screw things up. We have a good laugh, and then someone else gets a turn. That's half the fun right there!"

For once, Mai's mood doesn't dim once more - she pumps her free hand, as fired up as Rune. "Definitely! I'm looking forward to that day - when we don't have to worry any more! Yeesh, picture of him, maybe one of me too - hopefully, this will be the year!"

The bento lid is slid towards Rune. "Go ahead and try one of mine, I've got plenty. And the rest of this lunch to get through, besides." She grins, and digs into the rice fully - her eating speed honed by months of life with Mikoto Minagi.

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

Rune blinks several times, astonished to learn this about karaoke. "I... well, yes! If singing is the idea, I figured people would only want good singers! That everyone just has fun not doing it right... wow. I think I do need to see this!"

Her mood finally stops bouncing, as it seems several things have been brought to a conclusion. "Two pictures, then! I'm going to want to see them, whether it's in a month or twelve months or more than a year! And... sure." Runealy has been here long enough that chopsticks are, while still a little odd to her, something she can use. The sausage is reached out for, and if all goes well... she gives it a try.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

"The idea is having fun with your friends." Mai holds up a single finger, and grins brightly. "You could make it a competition, only allow the best - but it's more fun to let everyone take a shot! I mean, if you wanted good music, you'd listen to the original album - this is what amateurs can do to it. And I wholeheartedly agree - you don't have to wait up on me, see if any of your other friends are up for giving it a try!" She's busy, after all.

Mai smiles at the idea that there's hope, that it's worth believing in miracles - and turns her attention to finishing her meal quickly, saving the tomato for last. The sausages, including Runealy's, are fairly basic - savoury, just a bit crisp on the outside, slightly juicy meat within. They're cool, but no less edible for it, and there's just the slightest hint of spice. Not enough to unleash the cat demon when Mikoto eats her lunch, just a touch to give it a bit of tang.

Mai's bento box is empty, now, and she snags one last stray grain of rice. The chopsticks go inside, the lid put back on - she can always clean it after work tonight. "Thanks again for letting me know about Takumi - I'd better get going so I can check on him before the afternoon starts. Who knows, maybe he'll be able to make it to the afternoon classes!"

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

'The idea is having fun.' This surprises Rune, but her disbelief finally fades as Mai finishes explaining things. "Now I get it! This doesn't have to be something I do one time, though. Maybe my first time for karaoke won't be with you, but maybe the second or third or whenever it work out for both of us!" The princess has been won over on this idea, now openly sharing Mai's enthusiasm.

And then... the food. The first bite is experimental, with several silent moments as Runealy's mind and tastebuds work out what they just got in to. It is not the last. A second one follows, with a much shorter 'evaluation period', then the third bite finishes it almost immediately after. "That /is/ pretty nice! Thanks! And yeah," Rune backs out of her seat as if to give Mai more room to work on cleaning and preparing to depart. "Go see him! I'll see you later!"