2014-09-29 - If We'd Been Dating

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Title: If We'd Been Dating

There's tension. What sort of tension is up for debate, but there's tension between a couple of good friends. What-ifs and bigger problems and burying the hatchet in a few things.

Also, Mamoru warns Mai to watch out for True Feelings, arguably a little late.


Mamoru Chiba, Mai Tokiha


Ohtori Dormitory Rooftop

OOC - IC Date:

20 March 2014 - 09/29/2014

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

MAMORU to MAI: i'm on the roof but i can go away

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

MAI to MAMORU: ...no, tonight's as good as anything. I'll be up in a minute.

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

MAMORU to MAI: wtg me

When Mai comes up there, Mamoru's not actually henshined anymore. He's sitting on the edge of the roof, glasses reflecting the moonlight, reading a book by the light of his phone screen. He did not actually bring mochi, but given the fact that both phone and book are precariously situated in one hand, he is probably going through the big bag of Raisinets he brought with alarming speed.

Even though it's by moonlight, he's somehow managed to avoid looking dashing at all.

The grandpa-cardigan probably helps.

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

True to her word, it's not long before Mai emerges onto the roof. Longer than a single minute, perhaps - she had to turn off the stove, tell Mikoto where she was going, the usual routine. Still, she's here - still dressed in her school uniform, with the addition of an apron.

The sight of Mamoru Chiba, not Tuxedo Mask, is a disarming one - particularly with the cardigan and Raisinets. She starts to comment - hesitates - and takes a perch on a nearby air conditioning unit. It's a moment before she speaks - there's a bit of joviality, but not as much as there might have been a few weeks ago.

"So, Chiba-san. What brings you to the area - aside from your snacks?"

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Wordlessly, Mamoru looks up, takes his phone in his other hand, and closes the book. Phone's pocketed, book's set down on his jacket, laying on the ledge to his side. "And aside from going to school here too?" the eleventh-grader asks, eyebrows up. "Granted, it is the middle of the night."

He doesn't offer to share the Raisinets.

"I'm tired of this," he answers instead, looking down at the bag of candy. "If you feel too weird about what happened to keep being friends, then tell me." For a half second, he looks like he's going to add something else, then shuts his mouth. His phone audibly buzzes, but he doesn't take it out, he just looks up again, watching Mai's face.

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

"The middle of the night, on a girls' dorm roof at that." Mai smiles marginally. "It stands out." But hey, points for not reading his book while talking. She at least has his attention, if she wants it.

And even if she doesn't.

She glances down, guilty, as Mamoru brings up the suggestion of things being 'too weird'. The phone buzzes, and she tenses - but he doesn't make the usual excuse of having to run off. She definitely has his attention, and is beholden to answer. "I..."

And then the pot, too full, spills over. "I know you and Eri-chan and nearly everyone who knows about the monster says I shouldn't be blaming myself - but I can't help it. While everything was going on - that was practically me attacking you, Mamoru-kun, and that's not something you should be treating lightly! You deserve to get angry, you deserve apologies-"

And then all the tension leaves her, and she slowly brings her gaze around to meet his hesitantly. "...and you deserve to know why that happened at all."

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

'Mamoru-kun'. Mai knows how to disarm a lot of different kinds of bombs. Mamoru chuffs out a little bit of a laugh, but it's a step away from being uncomfortable despite the wry he's using to cover that up. He looks too unhappy. He's not even mindlessly eating Raisinets.

This time, he doesn't even try to argue with Mai -- she knows all his arguments, and he's finally figured out that trying to get her to forgive herself isn't going to help, it's just going to keep stopping her from talking. So he just sits there twisting and untwisting the top of the bag as she talks, looking away, examining her shoes, the HVAC unit, the bag of candy.

"I'm listening," is all he says, but there's none of the angry suspense of someone thinking 'this better be good'-- at least there're also no signs of him only pretending to listen while he puts together what he wants to say.

Mamoru looks at Mai's face again, and he's very still, and his attention is very focused. It's heavy. His focus is heavy.

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

It's a heavy gaze, and Mai accepts its weight. She takes a deep breath, and lets it out in something verging on a sigh. "...I couldn't help wondering. It was just an idea at the back of my head, but between the lunches and the poetry slam... I knew what we said. I was too busy to date, you weren't interested, and Ohtori's rumour mill could just do its own thing. I just-"

She closes her eyes. Torn between wanting to see his expression when this question is asked, and fear of what that expression will be, she chooses cowardice. She speaks carefully, formally, as plainly as possible. "Chiba-san. If we -had- been dating for the last month or two, what would you have done differently?"

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

That's not where Mamoru expected that to go, clearly. Not like he was in any way obviously expecting anything in particular, but by the startlement on his face, he's caught flatfooted and uncertain. "Uh--" he says intelligently, reaching up to rub at the back of his neck, face pinking slightly. "Is that a trick question? I would have kissed you back. I mean--"

He squints one eye, then takes his glasses off and hooks them in the collar of his shirt. "--what kind of-- what? If we'd been dating, we'd've been dating, and-- do you even mean right then, at Crown?"

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

The tension breaks, for a moment, as Mai snorts with laughter. Briefly, but enough to get her to open her eyes again, and see the confusion. "No, no. I mean - the last month, everything. Just...you're comfortable to be around. Handsome is one thing, but- "

She shakes her head. "Honestly, I expect there were rumours throughout our grades about our secret dating life, and it's hard to blame them. Between my bringing you lunch, you taking me out to formal events, and everything else... Kissing aside, how much more could there have been for it to count as 'dating'?"

Mai isn't stuck in despair, at least - it's exasperation in her voice, laughter at herself as much as anything. Her face, however, has a hot flush to it.

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mai blushing fiercely doesn't help Mamoru's pinkness, and suddenly he's looking anywhere but at her. "Oh," he says, voice low; he clears his throat. "Um. Probably have been doing things people who are dating do? I mean. In books they--"

His sentence stops right there, and it's for so very many reasons. Foremost among them is the fact that those three words, the beginning of a cut-off sentence, call ridiculous amounts of attention to what Mai already knew-- and put a very clear picture on it.

Abruptly, in reaction the heat of embarrassment and shame, he starts to call up his armor and his mask and very nearly uses them; they're what he knows, they're what have only failed him once so far.

He doesn't use them. Defiantly, he doesn't use them, and instead he sets his jaw and twists the bag of Raisinets shut so tight it might actually burst. "I'd've probably done a mix of what seemed right at the time and what I've read and what I've seen people I admire do."

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

It's horrible to realize that in the world of dating, Mamoru has even less personal experience than Mai does. The interrupted sentence shocks her out of embarrassment for a moment, right back into concern. It's swiftly tamped down, put aside to avoid embarrassing him further, and Mai settles on a nod. "That...works as well as anything. It's just - that's a lot like how you were treating Eri and me and who knows who else-"

This guilt is hers. "...so there was some buried part of me that wondered. How small was the difference? What if we were dating, and kissing, and everything involved with that - and that's what woke up when Nephrite's magic was influencing me. Why that - version of me - decided to just grab a taste."

She's blushing even more fiercely, now, and looking down at the roof. "...and that hurt you. Even with bartering for a good cause, that 'me' is probably the worst kiss you've had to go through. That's why I've been apologizing so much, why I've been so..." She trails off.

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

There are so many things he could say, because they're, in a way, back at the first horrible conversation they ever had-- and it is, once more, because of Mamoru's mixed signals. He listens, face turned toward the bag of Raisinets he's mauling, and he uncomfortably shrugs one shoulder as Mai explains. One corner of his mouth even turns up at her phrasing; 'a taste'.

There are so many things he wants to say, points he wants to correct -- what bothered him more than the kiss itself, say. Or how it's understandable. Or--

But it's the very last thing he latches on to, because it's the very last thing that needs correcting right out of the gate. "It's not," he says almost on the heels of her words, looking up sharply. "It wasn't. What you were feeling pretty much instantly told me something was very wrong. I think I even SAID so. I was furious, but I was more furious at Tsukino-san for jumping to conclusions when she already knew about the worst kiss."

Why should he even be so concerned, really? With what conclusions Usagi jumps to. Why would she even know about the worst kiss he's ever had to go through? There isn't much time to think about this at the moment, though: he's still talking, and his voice is insistent, heatedly so; his gaze is still sharp, back on Mai again. "I know you better than I know most people. That doesn't mean I know everything about you, but I know what's important to you and what your feelings are about that. Even when your care and your inhibitions and your resolve were taken away, even when the things you keep in control were out of it, the worst you did was only think of yourself. You might think that's bad, but you weren't-- you didn't feel worthless and afraid and hopeless, you didn't hate yourself, you weren't doing it to control me-- you weren't doing it because you thought it was what you SHOULD be doing. And I wasn't just-- convenient. It was at least... kind of personal..."

It's his turn to trail off, because wow, can he make that sound any worse.

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

Why is he concerned with what Tsukino-san thinks? It's hard for Mai to know - other than that, for whatever reason, he -is- concerned. That much is clear enough. But Mamoru is talking, and Mai is listening. Gradually, her face pales in horror at what kind of things he's already had to deal with. Okay, so maybe she wasn't the worst offender here, and that in itself is terrifying. She's about to ask who-

And then he drops that last bombshell. Mai's face blazes crimson. It's a moment before she can fill the awkward silence. Whether her answer will help things any...she's determined to be honest, at least about this. "...it was a personal thing. Sorry. I'll try to avoid letting that happen again."

She looks down, face burning, and grasps for something else. "Don't...don't be too hard on Tsukino-san for jumping to conclusions. Seriously, if she's got friends at Ohtori, the rumours about us should at least count as reasonable doubt. Though - I should probably try to find some way to explain. I ran into her the other day, but things got kind of busy..."

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"It's better," Mamoru says quickly-- maybe making it worse. "Better that it was personal. She just wanted to, to make me something she could understand, she didn't even-- she's a very confused and hurting person, and she didn't know me, she only knew that I went down taking the attack she threw at Sailor Vega. I don't even know her real name. She just-- no, don't. Don't-- personal is better because at least somewhere it means that-- that it's a reaction to actually knowing me, not just--"

The upperclassman lurches awkwardly to his feet and takes the steps necessary to put him within reach of Mai's hands, and he presses the bag of candy into them. Mostly because he doesn't want it anymore. "I don't think I can talk about this without making you feel worse and that's not what I want to do!" he finishes kind of desperately. "Jesus. It's like this. You weren't yourself but you looked at me. Not as 'awkward inconvenience to keep impersonal by putting in a box', but as 'I'm possed and hey, I have thought about this and damn the torpedoes, hello sailor, new in town'. Oh my god."

If Mai doesn't actually take the bag, it'll fall, because Mamoru lets go to reel away and drag his hands though his hair, which he's blushing to the roots of.

"God. I'm not mad at her anymore. Tsukino-san I mean. I'm still annoyed but I'm not angry. We haven't talked about it but I'm not going to push it, not when even trying to get her to wait to flip out until we weren't in public got her thinking I was both being cold AND trying to tell her what to do."

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

Startled, Mai takes the bag on instinct - left staring as Mamoru reels, and vents, and makes a statement so...so Ohtori that she's not sure she'll ever stop blushing. Partly because...frankly, that sounds about right. "That - is pretty much it. Hello, Chiba-san." Even the mock-sultry tone is hard to get out, and she buries her face in her hands. "Just - vent away, I've been dwelling on what you might be thinking for a week and I seriously doubt you can get worse than that."

She manages to lower her hands. Tsukino...seems to be a sore spot, and she's tempted to argue further, but...perhaps best to drop it. "I should still talk to her - clean up this mess a bit." She fidgets with the bag of candy that seems to be hers, now. Maybe soon to be Mikoto's.

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Reeling and venting -- yeah NOT generally things Mamoru does; him being this full of not knowing how to deal and not wishing to use his regular defenses against Mai means he is left tugging on his hair a little as he side-eyes Mai. "I'm not-- I'm not yelling at you. I'm not making fun of you. I'm not going to blame you no matter how much you think I should. I'm not judging you. I just don't even know if you think we SHOULD be friends, or if what I think of as friends is even safe if it keeps you guessing and guessing, and damn Nephrite!"

He turns away sharply; Nephrite's complicated too. Everything's complicated. Everyone's complicated. "I just don't understand any of this. It's fine if you talk to U-- Tsukino-san. I'm not the boss of anyone, and even if I were, I wouldn't be the boss of you or her. And I think Eri-chan is mad at me too. But I can't tell--"

Now it's a sharp gesture; his hand slices through the air, swift and aggravated. "And to top everything off, the *real* problems that are going on, Mako-chan is interested in Sanjouin-san and I think he's a pawn of the Dark Kingdom. Do you see why this is annoying to me? That's what I need to be focusing on, the why of it. And instead of being able to figure things out, to put things together, I'm fretting over my friends being mad at me. It feels like I'm spinning my wheels, wasting time. I can never be what anyone wants me to be. I can't even be what I think I should be. Damn it--"

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

Mamoru's curse is abruptly cut off by a finger jabbing him in the shoulder. At some point during his rant, Mai got off her perch and came in close. Having interrupted, she takes a step back, and looks at him with a stern expression on her face.

What is it that she wanted here? The situation was - if she's being perfectly honest - not so much caused by Nephrite as facilitated by him. But it's an awkward one all the same, and a conversation she'd been dreading all week. All those little hidden thoughts, brought to the harsh light of day. But at the same time...she's not the only one causing problems, clearly. And if she's perfectly honest...

"What I said all those months ago still holds - I'll make you another apology dinner if that's what we need to do. My fault, not yours. I like having a friend-" She emphasizes the word, drawing it out, starting him in the eyes. Nearly glaring, even. "-who I can actually talk about my worries with."

She glances down. "I couldn't help but wonder - largely because as far as random bystanders were concerned, we might as well have been dating. But it was a passing thought, and you deserve a friend you can count on, and I'm sorry for having damaged that." Her gaze comes back up to meet his. "...you have my word, I'm not going to hang onto any secret hopes there."

She lets out a sigh, and unclenches her hands. Her arms come up, folding themselves before her chest - and that stern, earnest look darkens for a moment. "...with that said, if you had any plans for trying to get to know Nephrite, I think you should know that I fully intend to set him on fire. I can't forgive-" She cuts herself off, this time. Because the list of his sins and hers are tangled up too much to hash out right now, but the Dark General makes an easy target to blame. The darkness is lifted by concern, though - Mai might not be smiling, right now, but she's earnest. "You think Kino-san's in danger?"

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mamoru lets out a tiny, tiny sigh, then presses his lips together in a thin white line and crosses his own arms. Whether it's a mirror or a defense is anyone's guess. "I just don't want things to be complicated. So, fine, I'll accept your apology even if I don't think you need to apologize. You're forgiven and let's get back to being cooler than everyone else, it's fun."

He almost -- /almost/ -- sounds more snippy than cranky, but only almost.

He starts scowling when Mai starts talking about him befriending Nephrite, and he shakes his head emphatically. "No, Zoisite kind of happened. Nephrite tortured one of the girls in front of me while I couldn't do a damned thing, while I could barely stand upright because of the driftwood incident. And then he did it again and I called Sailor Moon and he held me over the edge of the Rainbow Bridge. Him singing Les Mis and looking confused and conflicted isn't going to stop me from enabling your desire to set him on fire, possibly with a dragon. As for Kino-san-- yeah she's in danger. We're all in danger."

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

Mai snorts at the 'cooler' statement. "You say that to the girl who dragged her friends out to karaoke. Several times. But..." She relaxes, and unfolds her arms first. "All right. If you're sure you're fine with things, I'll avoid bringing it up."

There's a brief smirk, even in face of the snippiness - or maybe explicitly in response to it. "Though the rumour mill has probably been having a fun week. I don't suppose exams took precedence and everyone's forgotten by now?"

It's not entirely a joke.

Still...that's a definitive answer. The smirk fades, and Mai nods seriously - then looks over Mamoru in a new light. She doesn't exactly hide that she's checking for injuries, even this long after the fact. "I seem to have missed a lot. I..." She shakes her head. "I'll refrain from asking if everyone's all right. Turning friends and allies into obsessive lunatics aside - he and the one from the other day are both dangerous. If there's anything I can do to help..."

Mai turns her head to one side, looking away from Mamoru. Off into the hills, through the darkness. "...I'm going to have that conversation next. Just in case. So - if it's the kind of danger where subtlety isn't a concern..."

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"I'm sure!" comes Mamoru's exasperated reply, and he waves a hand dismissively through the air, impatient. "And the rumor mill can go to hell. I've never cared about it before, I'm not about to start now. Which, I don't think Usagi-chan actually gets how bad it is at Ohtori, so I suppose it's not a bad idea after all. Anyway--"

Seriously, seriously dropping that subject now. He jams his hands in his pockets, still not checking his phone. "Everything goes on, always. Zoisite pretty much confirmed there's something wrong with Sanjouin-san. I think Nephrite's using him. Who's the one from the other day? --what conversation."

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

Mai glances at Mamoru askance. Yes, there's more important things to worry about - but that doesn't mean the smaller problems aren't problems too. But...at this point she can't exactly put more effort into apologizing. So - the topic can be dropped.

Sanjouin-san - there's a thought crossing Mai's mind there, but it's abandoned in light of Mamoru's question. "Well, you might imagine that the last few weeks had me being either too irresponsible or too hospitalized to catch up on things I'd been putting off - which reminds me, I need to return your tablet. Sorry, I left it back in the room." She shakes her head. "Anyway. I wanted to clear the air between us first and foremost. After this...the next day I can manage it, I'm going to find some quiet place to talk with Kagutsuchi. Especially with Orphans showing up more, Nephrite being an active threat, and everything else..."

Another glance into the darkness. "I need to make sure I haven't ruined things with him, too. But...I have friends worth protecting."

There's a bit of pink on Mai's face - but she shakes it off, returning her gaze to Mamoru. "That reminds me. I ran into a new magical girl the other day - didn't catch her name, but she's got a vendetta against Zoisite. All things considered...it's not my place to intervene between them, but I figured you should know."

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"Ehh, he should have a lot of vendettas against him by now," Mamoru says with a little shrug; his shoulders are relaxed again after the tenseness of 'should have that conversation'. "He's a petty, vindictive, cruel and unpleasant and judgemental person with an awful lot of power, and he's done a lot of evil things, and he hasn't stopped, and he's going to have to deal with the consequences. He's responsible for his own actions. It's not my place to intervene, either. If he were to stop, if he were to ask for my help in getting away from what he's involved in, I'd say differently-- but he hasn't." He's not happy saying this; Mai knows his hopes on the subject. But hope is one thing, and well...

"Thanks for telling me, though," he finishes with a small, lopsided smile. His glasses, slung over the top button of his cardigan, glint as he turns to face the moon. It's not a full turn, and though Mai is closer than she was before, she's still not close-close, and she's looking in the other direction, so that damnable profile is the tree falling in the forest with no one around. "I'd ask you more about that, but... it's none of my business, it's hers. I hope she's careful, I hope she doesn't underestimate him."

Then the older boy glances back toward Mai, and his smile's even more crooked. "I don't think you could ruin things with Kagutsuchi. I think he'll understand. I think he thinks you're worth protecting even when you're an ass; I think that kind of sentiment is pretty common in our crowd. And take your time, all my schoolwork's in the cloud anyway, and I have another tablet, so I'm not in a rush to get it back."

He has another tablet. Ugh.

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

Well. If that's all Mamoru wants to say on ths issue, then Mai won't pursue it. "Stopping, asking for help, or even just giving indication that your opinion on matters made a difference...all right then. I've yet to run into anything of his, but..." She shakes her head. "I warned her about his reputation, she was determined all the same. It's out of my hands."

It really is. She has other responsibilities. She turns to face Mamoru - just in time to catch a glimpse of that moonlit profile. It is, as always, handsome in spite of his fashion sense...but this time, she just flat-out ignores it.

He deserves that much consideration.

"Well, I defer to your encyclopedic knowledge of dragon psychology, Chiba-san. And...of course you have two tablets. At least tell me you had them -before- Kyouko gave you a lesson in budgeting?" She's smiling again. It's a bit fiery, and paired with an unimpressed look in her eyes, but that's most definitely a smirk.

She makes her way around to sit on the wall nearer to him for a minute. "So that's a few enemies to watch out for. Nephrite, naturally - another general with the same kind of outfit, who attacked a shrine the other day - the Apothecary - and this girl who gave you a worse kiss than me. Anything I should be wary of with that last one?"

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

If he knew-- if he knew, he'd be grateful. Grandpa cardigan and all. Mamoru doesn't sit back down on the ledge, he moves his book and picks up his jacket, then sort of idly pulls it on as he addresses Mai's various questions. "Yes, I had it before Kyouko-san ate the entire rations of the Russian army," he says with a laugh, wrinkling his nose at Mai. "I upgraded and figured a spare would be useful, and lo and behold..."

Then he puts his book in his jacket pocket, and zips the jacket up, and finally, sits back down on the ledge more or less next to Mai. Not super close, just where he was sitting before. "Okay, that guy. That's Jadeite. I'm still having trouble believing he attacked that shrine in particular, it had to be some kind of suicide mission. The girl..."

He lets out a breath, shoulders pulling inward for a moment. "She's friends with Sailor Moon; she backed off trying to get me to come home with her when I said I wasn't available. What I felt from her was a lot of confusion and hurt and the fact that she hated herself, it was like knives everywhere. If you run into her, take care. She needs friends badly, but with all her confusion, she might lash out. She called herself True Feelings, which... is kind of terrifying, really. But like the other ones, what she did-- please, please, keep it to yourself, even if she didn't."

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

In her heart, Mai is still hesitant. Because rumours, and awkward admissions, and the guilt - but all Mamoru seems to want is a return to normalcy. So - she does her best to relax, as much as the conversation topic will allow. "The army, and the upper echelons of the Party. Well, spare or not, I'll get it back to you as soon as I can." Even if it was useful in studying for that history test. She did learn one or two things, at least - though Sugiura will still enact her price.

Mai intervenes briefly when the shrine comes up - "Attacked is a strong word. Someone else, calling herself 'President', showed up with some Orphans in tow. He just ambushed the fleeing civilians." Bitterness in her voice as she looks away - for all that she'd tried to help... But then she quiets, and lets Mamoru speak about his attacker.

Mai's face, mercifully turned away from Mamoru for the moment, pales in surprise. Surprise, shock, literally having her eyes opened by that statement. It's a moment before she finds the presence of mind to respond. Two more, before she can think of -how- to respond.

She'll try to be honest about herself, but where another's secrets are concerned... "I've - run into someone using that name. She helped me out of a pinch. I'll - try to avoid talking to anyone else about this." Vocally and in her seating, she's a bit off balance - one hand braces on the wall, and she turns to look properly at the hunched-over Mamoru.

After another hesitation, she reaches out, lays a hand on jacketed shoulder. "...I'll try to be careful, but...are you okay? Sorry for digging into things, but..."

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mai's shift in demeanor doesn't escape Mamoru's notice, not entirely-- he's hunched over and not particularly happy, but he sort of steamrolled through the explanation, and he's still paying attention... but he lets Mai leave it at 'ran into' and 'helped me out of a pinch', though her reaction indicates it's a little more involved than that. She doesn't ask him about other people's secrets; he won't ask her, either.

The hand on his shoulder does get surprise, but for once, he doesn't stiffen or flinch away. Instead, he offers Mai a wry little smile, some sort of attempt to reassure. "I don't think about it much. It was a while ago. In fact, it was the same night as the reason for the apology dinner-- months ago. It's fine. I'm okay. There's just a lot going on right now. Are you okay?"

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

"...honestly?" Mai's hand moves from his shoulder to her lap, and she fidgets for a moment. "...I'm a little furious at myself, but for the most part I'm just clearing up the aftermath of what I did while things were - weird. But generally...I'm on the upswing, and of a mind to return the favour to everyone who's been helping me out. So..."

She turns, and there's a flash of a smile there. "Show up for dinner any night you want. Mikoto knows who you are, so you should manage to avoid getting attacked again. And..." The brief smirk turns into a serious expression - she looks Mamoru in the eyes. "If you or Kino-san get attacked, call me in. Getting a chance to let Nephrite know what I think of his actions is the thing that'd help me most, right now."

With that mildly ominous proclamation, she hops down from the wall, walking back over to the air conditioning unit - at whose base the bag of candy wound up. She turns back to Mamoru, holding it up. "I've got to finish making lunches for tomorrow - I can add an extra one for you, if you don't have other plans - make sure Mikoto's settling in for the night, and maybe send a note to Shiori-chan. Did you want this back?"

<Pose Tracker> Mamoru Chiba [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"Good, taking that fury out on Nephrite is a good plan. Will do. And I am--" Another breath let out, and a remarkable release in tension; Mamoru rises fluidly to his feet, hands still in his pockets; the breath ends in a relieved laugh. "Very, very glad you're on the upswing. I'll definitely show up for dinner, but I think next time I'll call ahead anyway, even though she knows who I am."

The next time Mai blinks, she'll see Tuxedo Mask stepping up onto the ledge, grinning. "I think while I'm staying on Mako-chan's futon, I'd better leave the fussing over my lunch to her, or she'll likely have Words with me. And-- no, I ate so many I'm already starting to regret it, you go ahead."

Teasingly, the masked ally of justice sweeps off his top hat and flourishes a bow, then puts the hat jauntily back on his head. "Good night, Mai-chan. See you tomorrow."

Oh, right. School, yeah.

That said, there's a whoosh and a flutter of dark cape, and Tuxedo Kamen fades into the night.

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

Mai watches Tuxedo Kamen depart. Because for all that he's a friend she's not dating at all...that is a fine cut of suit. For a moment, she stays on the rooftop, thinking about a number of things. Whether this is the time to go out to sea. What kind of thing Chiba-san has going on with Kino-san, exactly - though frankly, it's safe to assume 'the same as with her'.

It's a nice night.

And Mai Tokiha has things she needs to do. Back inside, to continue housekeeping, and to bribe Mikoto with candy given by Mamoru.