Persona 5 - Toast to the Queen

Akira/Makoto

Day 7- Cosplaying

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A/N: Jeez, I forgot how esoteric some of these can be xD Another quick reminder that these scenes are in no chronological order! I hope this works out though! I decided to lean into the anxiety shit that I kind of set up in earlier chapters for this one. Idk, I feel like Makoto is the kind of person that suffers with it, despite her commanding tone and whatnot. Again, I know this one is less fluff and kissy and stuff, but I feel like there's room in this fic for more than just that (And we're gonna get straight back on that next time, most likely). This is just a very good way to get the rest of the cast in here. Just one more quick one to say thank you for all the glowing reviews so far. They all mean the world to me 3 Regardless, Enjoy :)

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Makoto looked over her work in the mirror of the hotel room. The suit that Ann had chosen fit her well, and she'd styled her hair perfectly. The prop gun thing that Yuuske had whipped up for her looked great too. What did Futaba call it? A Dominator? Surely she was making that up…

She'd never been to a convention before. She never had the time between all the studying and the student council work and whatnot. Besides, conventions were expensive, and her budget was tight. But now she was earning part-time, money was less of an object.

And given that they'd successfully stolen another corrupt heart, It was decided by their glorious leader that by way of celebration, The Phantom Thieves would take Tokyo Anime Expo by storm. He also made the decision that they'd all do so in costume.

Makoto was up for it, but it made her a little bit nervous. She'd never really done costumed… anything before. As such she decided to go with something she could reasonably achieve, something she could replicate accurately and something she loved. As such, her costume was inspired by her favourite show, and the main character therein. A police officer that chased after justice while trying to reform the corrupt judicial system. Sounded perfect for her.

"You sure you don't need anymore makeup, Makoto?" asked Ann, who was stood next to her, applying the finishing touches to her rather military costume, an image of a unicorn on a field of green emblazoned on her shoulder. She failed to see the point of putting a blonde wig over her already blonde hair, but cutting hair like Ann's would be a crime in itself to Makoto so she let it slide.

"If I say no promise you won't eat me?" Makoto teased, fiddling with her collar. She just couldn't get it to stay quite right…

"No promises" Ann winked.

"I swear you just chose that character so you could just respond to your own name all day" Makoto laughed.

"I won't lie, that was part of it" Ann smiled. "Gotta commend you though, Makoto, you look great! It's like you *are* the character"

Makoto looked herself over in the mirror one more time and had to conclude the same. She had to grow her hair out a little bit, but otherwise it was more or less a one to one.

"Thanks" Makoto said, taking a weird kind of pride in this. "So who's everyone else dressing up as?" she asked.

"The word is Cosplay!" she heard a shrill voice yell from the bedroom. A voice that could only belong to Futaba.

"How did you even hear us through that mask?" Ann asked, rolling her eyes slightly. "Anyway… Ryuji is from some Shonen thing i've never heard of" Ann chuckled. "Yuuske said he's doing something 'Avant-Garde'. I have no idea what that means, but it'll be interesting at least. Haru said she's torn between a few different ideas, but I think she settled on that magical girl from that one show. And of course, Futaba's doing something from Featherman."

It was at that point that the small hacker burst into the already cramped ensuite, in full Featherman garb, deep blue in colour.

"It's not just 'Something from Featherman', i'm Feather Swan! The deeply analytical and intelligent backbone of the team!" Futaba enthused. Though Makoto nor Ann could see Futaba's face thanks to her helmet, they knew that it was screwed up in a mix of frustration and excitement. "And I still think we missed a trick by not all going as Featherrangers. Akira could have been Hawk, obviously, and Ryuji would make a great Falcon… But Asas would be a problem."

Makoto knew she was gonna regret asking this but even so… "Why would Asas be a problem?"

"Cause Asas is Hawk's girlfriend, duh." said Futaba, like she had just told them that water is wet.

Ann and Makoto avoided each other's gaze for a moment. They knew what she meant…

"Ann is a more obvious choice for the part but you have first hand experience, huh, Makoto?" Futaba smirked under her helmet.

"Ok that's enough out of you, short round" Ann said, as she ushered the younger girl out of the bathroom.

"It's Feather Swan!" Futaba yelped as she struggled against the elder girl's shoves. To no avail though as Ann eventually got her out of the ensuite and locked the door.

Makoto wasn't really sure how to feel about that.

"Hey… You ok?" Ann asked her, placing a hand on her shoulder.

"Yeah" Makoto forced a smile.

It was no secret to either of them that Ann used to hold some feelings for Akira before Makoto came along. While Akira swore he never reciprocated those feelings, and Ann swore that she was over him, Makoto still felt kind of anxious whenever the subject was brought up. Ann was everything Makoto wasn't. She was gorgeous, exotic, upbeat, cutesy, all traits she thought guys liked. She just couldn't get past the idea that if things had been just a little bit different…

She knew she was being silly. Regardless of what had happened in the past, everything was going great between her and Akira right now, he'd said so many times how crazy he was about her, and there's no way that Ann would ever try and sabotage that relationship. It just wouldn't happen. Ever. The logical part of her knew that.

So then why couldn't Makoto get the image of the two of them together out of her head?

"Hey, why are you sad, i'm the one that just got humiliated by a spaceman" Ann laughed in an attempt to cheer her up.

This seemed to work somewhat as Makoto forced a laugh and then did what she always did when she felt this pit in her stomach. She breathed in and counted to five before releasing. She did this five times and the feeling went away. A little trick that her sister had taught her to at the very least put these thoughts to the back of her mind. It seemed to help ease the knot she was feeling.

"Better?" Ann asked with a genuine smile.

"Better" Makoto said, returning Ann's expression in kind.

This is why Makoto was proud to call Ann her best friend, she understood her better than she understood herself, especially in situations like this.

It was at that point the two of them heard a knock on the door to the bathroom.

"Futaba, we're busy in here, just hold on, OK?"

"MWPSB, Open up, ladies" said a voice from behind the door that most definitely wasn't Futaba's.

Ann moved to unlock the door and standing there, resplendent in his costume, was Akira. His costume was very similar to Makoto's, with a fitted suit and the same weird gun thing. However, his hair was styled very differently to how it normally was, with an upwards coif. He'd also replaced his trademark spectacles with a fake cigarette.

"Inspector" he nodded towards Makoto with a knowing smirk. He was portraying her subordinate from the show perfectly. "And who are you?" He asked Ann.

"Military Police" Ann winked. "I'll leave the two of you alone" she said. Before she left however, she leaned in to Makoto to whisper in her ear. "If he starts to get rough, remember you're the one holding a dominator, don't be afraid to shock him if you need to" she teased before she skipped out of the small bathroom to slam the door behind her.

"Nothing like that's gonna happen, Ann! Jeez!" she shouted through the door, her face a deep crimson.

"Hey" Akira chuckled, dropping his act, and pulling Makoto into a tight hug that she warmly accepted and returned. "What do you think, pretty good huh?" he said doing a little spin.

"It's good… Not as good as mine but…" Makoto said, laughing. She'd already forgotten about earlier. He had that effect on her…

"It was this or be Ren Amamiya from that show God Eater" he laughed "Can you imagine me with a name like that?"

"I dunno, I kind of like it…" Makoto ruminated. It was a surprisingly good fit for him…

"Anyway, Inspector, shall we get underway?" Akira said, spinning his model gun around his finger.

"Hold on… just one more finishing touch…" said Makoto, playfully.

Without warning, she grabbed Akira by the scruff of the neck and pulled him in for a long, deep, kiss. For a moment, he was shocked, before leaning into it, running his hands through her hair. She needed that, somewhat. More for herself than anything. Everything was OK.

"Where did that come from?" Akira asked, surprised but smiling.

"Ok then, Enforcer" Makoto said, in character once again and knowingly ignoring his question. "You're to do as I say today, got that? Any insubordination and i'll zap you" she said in a mock stern voice, pointing her gun at him

Akira halfheartedly saluted and chuckled "Yes ma'am, message recieved"

"Sounds Kinky…" said someone from behind the door, obviously listening in.

"Futaba!"