InvincibleInuYasha: Okay, I was reading a MARS fic today, and I felt like writing one myself. I love that series so much, so yeah, gotta write a fic. As an added note, I am not a motocross expert. So, if I get something wrong and you know it's right, let me know and I'll fix it. Thanks! Hope you all like it! Read and review!
Disclaimer: No, MARS doesn't belong to me. Too bad.
Marriage, Millionaires, and Motorcycles
Chapter One: Ready, Set, Go!
The sun was peeking through the curtains, a stripe of light sitting over Rei's closed eyes. He grunted and scrunched his eyes tightly. After a moment of frustration, he tried to raise his arm to shield his face, but something was holding it down. He groaned sleepily and flickered his eyes open to see a head of reddish blonde hair on top of his arm. He smiled buried his face in the girl's hair, trying to go back to sleep.
But then a loud buzzing noise filled the small room, and the girl's head shot up, smacking Rei's nose. "Agh! Kira, ow! That hurt!" Kira slammed her hand on the small alarm clock that blinked 7:30 and then turned to face Rei, "I'm sorry! Oh, let me see." Rei kept his hand over his nose, "Bow." "What?" "Bow, by dose wis bweeden." Kira leapt out of bed and grabbed a tissue from the night table and shoved it in Rei's face, "Here, honey. Pinch the bridge of your nose and hold your head up." Rei did as he was told and said, "You dow how late I'm godda be? I godda be ada track in an hour. Da race is today." Kira said, "Okay, okay. I'll start breakfast then, and you just get ready. Hurry up."
Kira rushed out of the room as Rei got out of bed, his head facing the ceiling. This happened a bit too often, this morning routine. The sun in his face, Kira's hair, the alarm clock, and a nosebleed. But even through the pain and blood loss, it was kind of funny. He loved the way Kira would panic when she realized she had crushed his nose. Then he realized that blood was sliding down his arm, "Oops." He went into the bathroom to clean up and get ready and Kira smiled. He was often late for everything. So without him knowing, she had set his clock and watch ahead fifteen minutes. She was glad to see that he hadn't noticed yet. Though she new he would sooner or later.
Since Rei had a race today, she was preparing his favorite good luck breakfast. She took some red weenies and set them to boil. Then she had toasted some bread and made an omelette. She turned off the stove and began to cut the weenies into little octopuses and crabs. When she had finished, Rei was still not ready, so she cut an apple into four parts and peeled them into little rabbits. She was on the last one when Rei walked in, his hair still dripping from his shower, and his eyes glowing, "Oooh! Yes! My favorite!" He gave Kira a quick kiss before taking a seat and wolfing down the eggs, toast and weenies. Kira smiled and sat across from him eating her meal not quite as fast. Rei slowed down as well and said, "Mmm, delicious, babe. You're the greatest." Kira smiled, "Anything for you." They finished their meal and Rei grabbed the keys to the Ducati Monster, "Let's go."
They were at the track in fifteen minutes. The Suzuka Curcuit was huge. Thousands of motocross fans cheered from the stands, unable to contain themselves. There were already a few racers pacing near the stands, or watching as their bikes were checked one more time. Rei smiled, "I love this place." Kira grabbed his hand as they pushed through people to get inside. Rei tried to keep his head down and face hidden. He was already late as it was and he didn't want any delays. Despite his efforts, a small group of girls squealed with delight, "Kashino! It's Rei Kashino!" Heads turned all around them and suddenly Kira found herself ten feet away from Rei, a ring of people separating them. She could here people calling out, "Can I have your autograph?", "Can you take a picture with me?", "Can I take you home?" But Rei looked around the circle and smiled when he caught sight of Kira. He nudged his way through the people, but the circle followed until Kira was next to Rei, his hand grasping hers tightly, not wanting to lose her again, "Sorry, babe."
Flashes flew from the numerous cameras around them but Rei ignored them like it was just Tuesday to him. Kira still hadn't gotten used to it though. Rei marched through the crowd, stopping a few times to grin at a camera or two, and then continued until they reached the racers' pit. Rei showed his racer's ID and the security let his pass into the pit. A few more flashes went off behind them.
"Ever the superstar, aren't you Rei?" Akitaka smirked at Rei and gave him a pat on the back. And then he suddenly grabbed a fistful of his hair, "But you're late!" A woman ran up to them and grabbed Akitaka from behind, "Now, Akitaka, don't worry. He's still got twenty minutes before he has to be out there. Calm down." Akitaka let go of a teary Rei and said, "Go get your gear on. I trust Kira's already fed you well, so we don't need to worry about that." Rei muttered, "Asshole..." before stomping off to the changing rooms, much like an upset child.
Kira bit her lip nervously as she watched what happened, but she also knew how Akitaka grew anxious near the start of a race, so she let it go. The woman released Akitaka and wrapped her arms around his waist, "You always have to punish him, don't you?" Akitaka said, "Kyoko, he's late! You know how stressful it is at the start of a race! He must be tense! He should have been here earlier to get used to it but no! He just had to make us worry about whether he would show up." Kyoko smiled, "You know he always shows up and he's never nervous. I don't know why you still get so mad." Akitaka shook his head and said, "So, hey Kira. How's it going?" Kira shrugged, "Good, I guess." Kyoko asked, "How's art school? Are you having fun?" Kira smiled, "Yeah. They're giving me a lot of assignments, and I've been seeing an improvement in my art. The paintings I made two years ago, before I started, aren't as great as the ones I'm making now." Kyoko said, "That's great. Well, I've got to go change. I'm going to be racing again this year. I'm surprised Akitaka hasn't gotten angry with me for taking so long this time." Before Akitaka could open his mouth, Kyoko had disappeared.
Akitaka shook his head and smiled, "So, you watching from the pits? It's gonna be a long race." Kira said, "I don't know. Rumi and Tatsuya said they'd be here, so I might go up to the stands." Akitaka nodded, "Okay." Kira said, "Akitaka, do you think Rei and Kyoko will win this time?" Akitaka shrugged, "I'm not sure. I mean, they blew it the past two years. Last year Rei busted his arm and collarbone, and the year before Kyoko had only broken her finger. But even the littlest thing can pull them out. Rei's still as reckless as he ever was. Hopefully he won't make us worry like he did last time." Kira nodded. Rei was still too crrazy, and she worried about him during every race. Especially since the last 8-Endurance had him zooming to the hospital. Akitaka added, "Plus there's that other racer, Mitsuru Takuhai, number 13. He's made himself Rei's unofficial rival, I suppose. He's competed against Rei in a few lesser races, but he just couldn't keep up. He's finally qualified for the 8-hour, so he'll put up a good fight." Kira nodded, "Well, I just hope Rei wins this time. He's been telling me how much he wants to win this time."
"How do I look?" Rei winked at them through the helmet. He had his racing suit on, covered in numerous brand names. Kira loved him in his racing gear. He always looked so damn sexy! Rei came up to her and gave her a bear hug, "I'm gonna win this time, baby! I'm gonna bring home the grand prize!" Kira smiled and tried to breathe, but she was also excited. She couldn't come to the Suzuka race two years ago, and the one she went to last year had gotten her all revved up. At least, before Rei had veered off course with his uncontrollable speed. But this year Rei had promised to be a little more careful and tactful in his racing. He never wanted to see the horror in Kira's eyes ever again.
A man with a racing cap and sunglasses said, "You're up in fifteen minutes Kashino. Your bike's almost ready." Rei released Kira and said, "Thanks." He smiled at Kira, "I'm riding another worksmachine. It's supposed to be way faster and manageable than the last two bikes I've ridden. I'm bound to win this time, I can already taste that Grand Prize money! I'll get us out of that smelly flat we're in." Kira said, "I hope so. It's going to be demolished in six months." Rei said, "Oh yeah. Shit, I have to win now!" He jumped up and down, loosening his muscles, and grabbed his helmet from Akitaka. Then he pulled Kira in for a quick kiss, "Wish me luck!" And he ran off.
Kyoko came out from the dressing rooms and also ran as quickly as Rei, giving Kira a quick hug and kissing Akitaka before sprinting to the starting line. Akitaka shook his head, "It's the same every time..." Kira smiled and gave Akitaka a hug, " I hope they win this time. I'll be rooting for them in the stands with Rumi and Tatsuya." Akitaka said, "Okay. Have fun. And don't worry so much. No matter how tight a squeeze Rei is in, he always manages to wriggle out." Kira giggled and left, "Good luck, Team Katayama!"
She made her way out into the packed stands. People were so excited, and the racers hadn't even come out yet. Kira smiled as they hauled out the bike Rei would be using, an HRC worksmachine. It was a different model from the last two, and it would be the fastest bike Rei had ever ridden. He was really excited about it.
"Kira! Kira, over here!" Harumi was in shorts and a short T-shirt, standing on her chair, in the front row, with her arms waved up high above her head. Tatsuya was sitting beside her, looking up at her with a smirk. Harumi looked back down at Tatsuya and gave him a small slap, "You keep your eyes on the track!" Kira smiled and trudged through the crowds to take her seat.
Harumi had sat back down and handed Kira a box of popcorn, "Oh, Kira! I'm so excited! I'm so glad Rei's able to get us these great seats too. I mean, wow, we're only a few yards from the pavement!" Tatsuya grinned, "Yeah, and now Rei's gonna race with his best bike yet! This is goona be great!" Kira said, "We'll see. I mean, Rei's got some competition. All the racers here have trained for years to be a part of this. They're not about to give up. Especially Mitsuru Takuhai." Tatsuya asked, "Which one is he?" "Number 26. Anyway, all these racers have been winning minor competitions left and right to qualify for the Suzuka. We can only hope Rei will win."
Suddenly, a wave of screams swept through the stands. Kira, Harumi, and Tatsuya all turned their heads to the side of the racetrack. Fifty racers came out from the racers' entrance. And then from the speakers surrounding the audience boomed, "And now we will prepare for the start of the Suzuka 8-Hour Endurance! Today we have twenty-five competing teams! Boy, it will be some race! Now, let's get this started!" The announcer began shouting out names of the racers, their team, and their number. "And finally, Kyoko Katayama and Rei Kashino!" The crowd screamed, everyone shouting at the top of their lungs. "Members of Team Katayama, this pair of racers will be riding a Honda Worksmachine, numbered 96! It seems these are the crowd favorites today! But let's all give a big hand to the racers and wish them all luck!" The crowd screamed again, ready to watch the race. "Now, as far as prizes go, we have some grand ones this year! Third place will receive five hundred dollars, and a new Yamaha Midnight Warrior! Second place will win two thousand dollars, and a Honda Superhawk, and a trip to Daytona Raceway in Florida! And the Grand Prize is five thousand dollars, and a Ducati Superbike 749 Dark! My, what great prizes we have today on account of the many sponsors who have participated in this race. And now we'll get this race started!"
And then about half of the racers stood by their bikes at the starting line, their coaches and managers giving them last minute tips. One racer, a tall man in his mid-twenties, and short black hair, strayed from his own bike and went up to Rei, "Ah, Kashino." He narrowed his green eyes at him in malice, "I see your riding the HRC works this year. It's going to be quite a tough race." Rei stood his ground, "Hey, Takuhai. Yeah. I'll put up a good fight. I'm not going down so easily this time." Mitsuru smirked, "So you'll make it out alive again this time?" "Alive and kicking." Rei put his helmet on and buckled it under his chin. Mitsuru smirked and returned to his own bike. Rei didn't like Mitsuru. He always had this feeling in his gut that he was bad news. He had been rumoured to play rough, and ambush past rivals until there wasn't enough of them to race again. And to top off Rei's tension, Takuhai decided to make Rei his rival for the past few races. But the Suzuka was the biggest race they would compete in at their level. Only the winner would go on and win.
The racers clasped their helmets on and mounted their bikes, waiting for the announcer's call. The racer at bike 96 lifted his head. Kira smiled and cheered loudly, though Harumi and Tatsuya were clearly beating her. Rei lifted up the visor of his helmet and winked at them. Kira laughed. Even at the start of the race, the most stressful time for every racer, Rei was still able to glide along with a grin on his face. Rei lowered the visor again and waited. The announcer would tell them to start in a moment.
The two race queens went out to the middle of the track, followed by hoots and whistles from the men in the stands. They held flags in their hands and then they raised their hands. And then the speakers blared, "Racers! On your mark!" The riders lowered their bodies closer to their bikes, waiting for another five antagonizing seconds. "Get set!" The race queens lowered their arms straight out to their sides and the racers took their leg off the ground and the announcer shouted, "GOOOOOOO!" The race queens lowered their falgs swiftly and the racers were off. Tires screeched on the pavement as the racers tried to belt them out at their max speed.
Kira's heart began to pound heavily. Not only was it the excitement making her feel like this, but also worry. Last year, Rei had taken a bad fall from his bike. But even before that, Kira watched the racers fall, one by one, some getting up and going to the pit, not returning for the remainder of the race, and some not moving until paramedics pulled them back into the pit on a stretcher, blood pouring from their wounds. She didn't want anything like that to happen to Rei again. She always had that feeling tugging at her heart, letting her know that maybe this time he wouldn't make it. She shuddered at the thought of returning to the hospital, worrying and wondering whether her husband would survive the night.
Rei turned his eyes only to view his surroundings. Out of the twenty-four other competitors, he was about tenth right now. He smirked, 'I'm going to win this time. I have to. And none of these guys are gonna stop me.' He swerved around numbers 72, 84, and 57, passing them easily. But suddenly, there was a roar from the crowd. He glanced over his shoulder for a split second to see a crashing motorcycle flying at him. Rei jerked his bike to the inner rings of the track and watched as the bike bounced to the edge of the stands, 'A crash this early?' It was extremely rare for a crash to occur within the first lap of the race. Rei's swerve had slowed him down. A few racers had passed him, including number 11. Rei leaned into his bike and maxed out the bike's speed. The adrenaline was kicking in and he was ready to fight.
Akitaka watched the crash from the pits, "That was close. But he's speeding up to early in the race." Kyoko said, "Don't worry too much. You know how he is. And this year he's determined to win. He would have won last year if the accident didn't happen." Akitaka cursed under his breath, "It's that Takuhai. He ruined it last year for Rei and I have a feeling he's going to try it again this time. Lucky Rei doesn't remember that part. He'd have tried to kill Takuhai." Kyoko said, "Don't bring it up now. Let's just enjoy the race. Don't get all upset now." Akitaka shook his head, "You're right. I've got you to worry about when Rei comes into the pit." Kyoko smiled and hugged Akitaka close to her, "I love you."
Rei was reaching a fast speed. He was passing racers left an right. He'd been riding for an hour already. He wasn't too tired, but he knew Kyoko would be waiting. If he raced too long, then it also increases her time on the track. So Rei pulled into the pit, hearing groans from the audience behind him.
He stopped the bike and pulled his helmet off, "Okay, Kyoko, she's all yours." The pit crew was quickly working on the bike, refilling the gas tank, rotating the tires, and checking the oil levels. Kyoko said, "You did great Rei. Pulled us all the way up to fifth. I'll try to keep up." Rei winked, "You'll do fine. They're a bunch of sissys this year, and I know a woman like you can, at the least, keep up with them." Kyko smiled, "Thanks Rei." She pulled her own helmet on and mounted the bike, stretching a little too far for comfort and gripping the handlebars. She revved the engine and sped off into the circuit.
Akitaka said, "You did good, Rei. But you're still crazy as always." Rei smirked, "Am I? Well, I can't help it. I get too caught up in the action to notice." Akitaka said, "Rei, be careful. You remember what happened last year." Rei nodded, "Yeah, yeah, I remember. I won't let it happen again." Akitaka said, "Good. Now go get your IV." Rei groaned, "Oh man! I hate those."
Kira smiled. Kyoko was out now. She was the only female competitor this year, but she was one of the highest ranked. She sped up, though she couldn't keep up the same speed that Rei had. It was hard enough to control the bike as it was, so gutting it out wasn't so smart. She had been on the track for twenty minutes when the bike went out of control on a turn. She had gone too fast and couldn't curve well without endangering herself. She slid to the side, almost crashing into the wall at the edge of the track. But she swoooped up at the last second, earning herself a "Whoop!" from the audience. She smiled underneath her helmet, her heart pounding and breathing heavy. Akitaka watched from inside, relieved. She had fallen much worse before, and she was lucky this time.
But because of her swerve, three racers sped into the inner rings of the track, causing a collision of two of them. The third sped ahead of Kyoko, putting team Katayama in sixth. Kyoko was able to get a last glance over her shoulder to see the two racers getting up, seemingly fine, before she sped up, keeping her focus once again on the race. That fall was almost too close. If she was just a little bit faster, she was sure that she would have flipped the bike and do some damage to herself. She sped on for another twenty minutes, trying to keep up and even moving her and Rei one spot up into fifth again. She was feeling the wear of her muscles from staying in her stretched position for too long, so she returned to the pits.
Rei was waiting. He already had his helmet on and was ready to hop back on the bike. He lifted the visor, "Okay, Kyoko, great. I'll get us into second, maybe first for now!" He winked and lowered his visor, mounting the bike and speeding back into the track.
Kira, Rumi, and Tatsuya cheered as Rei came back out of the pit. Kyoko had done well, but the main focus was Rei and his risky riding. Everyone loved it. Even Kira, though when she watched one of his crazy stunts or close crashes, her heart always skipped a beat in worry. They all stood for a few minutes, trying to keep track of who was in what place. Then Harumi and Kira sat back down. Harumi asked, "Kira, what exactly happened last year? I mean, when Rei got in that accident. It was kept quiet from everybody, so I'm not really sure." Kira folded her hands in her lap and stared at them, "It was sort of an ambush. Someone wanted Rei to lose, so..." Harumi said, "No! An ambush? Was the other racer disqualified, at least?" Kira nodded, "Yeah. But everyone kept it quiet. Rei doesn't even know for sure what happened. Akitaka asked me to keep quiet because we all know Rei would go crazy about it, and since there was no solid proof, it's not like we could really bring the guy to court." Harumi said, "Who was it? What did he do?" Kira said, "He swerved in front of Rei and slowed down the bike. Rei's natural reaction was to jerk out of the way, but he ended up crashing headfirst into another racer. The other racer was hit from the side, so he only came out with a broken leg. But Rei broke his shoulder and an arm. He was really close to hitting his neck. It was terrible." Harumi asked, "So, who was it?" "Number Thirteen."
Harumi's eyes widened as she double-checked the race program, "But, he's racing now?" Kira nodded, "Yeah, they could only disqualify him for last year's race. But we couldn't do anything to keep him from competing this year." She said, "Please, don't tell Rei who it was. I just know he'll end up getting upset and he'll try to get at Takuhai." Harumi sighed, "Okay. But that's just messed up. I hope he doesn't try anything this year, or I'll be the one getting pissed off, since you obviously won't." Kira smiled.
The sun had set and the stadium light blared onto the track. The audience was now tense. Six teams had dropped from the ranking from various accidents. And now only a few racers even had a chance of winning. The top three were numbers 96, 13, and 11. Kyoko was almost done with her time, leaving Rei to complete the last half hour. She turned into the pit, completing her racing for the day, exhausted. Rei wasted no time in jumping on the bike quickly. Kyoko patted his back, "Good luck. It looks like we're finally going to win this time." Rei smiled. He knew Kyoko couldn't see it because he had his helmet on, but he was happy. This was his chance. He only had to pass the other two racers and stay ahead for the last few minutes. And he sped into the pit.
The crowd roared in excitement. This was the last switch of the race and they were sure to see some kind of spectacular feat from Rei. And Rei gave it to them. He sped to an incredible pace, just barely keeping control of the bike. He easily passed number 11. But now there was Mitsuru, number 13. He was almost a lap ahead. But there was still fifteen minutes left in the race. He could pass him in five. No problem. Rei smirked and revved up the engine, popped a wheelie. The crowd, once again, cheered with enthusiasm.
Kira could hardly watch. He was going dangerously fast. Much faster than he was at the practice rounds, and even faster than previous races. This bike really was much better than the last one he had used. The crowd was going wild and it was getting really loud. Rei could practically feel the adrenaline pumping through each and every blood vessel in his body. He was going faster than ever. This bike was amazing! Kira watched as Rei zoomed past, literally a blur.
Only a few minutes remained left in the race and Rei was nose to tail with 13. The announcer was shouting something into the microphone, but Rei didn't hear it. Right now, he could only hear the rumble of the engines of his and 13's bikes and his own heartbeat. This was insane. The speed was incredible and Rei was going to win, he knew it. He gave the bike another rev and he swerved past number 13. His heart beat even faster. He was currently in first. Whatever had deafened him before was gone and he could hear screams from the stands. This only fueled Rei's excitement as he kept the speed up to the max. He only had two more laps. Two more laps and he would be on his way to the winner's stand.
He went around one more lap, overlapping quite a few riders, 13 just a few yards behind him. It was growing a little quiet. This was the last lap. He had a few more minutes. He would make sure to keep 13 in his dust. But it wouldn't be easy. Now 13 had caught up, right on Rei's tail. And they were both striving to win the Grand Prize. And then it was just the long stretch of pavement. They could see the finish line. Rei smirked under his helmet and reved his engine again. 13 did the same. Rei thought, 'Yes! I'm going to do it this time! And I didn't get into an accident, this went by perfectly! Yes!' Rei could see one of the staff holding the checkered flag, and the photographer on the other end fumbling with his camera to get the perfect shot.
By now, the crowd was screaming. A small portion was cheering for Mitsuru. But the vast majority was crying out Rei's name, desperate to see the end of the race and watch the crowning of the champion. Mitsuru had sped up a little more. They were now neck and neck. There bikes were so close to each other. Rei Leaned into his bike, his body attatched to it as if he was naturally fused with it. His speed increased, and he revved the engine for the last time, giving him a final jolt of speed, bringing him into full throttle, the extreme. He passed Mitsuru cleanly, and he zoomed over the finish line.
A huge roar burst from the spectators. People were jumping up and down, even hugging toher excited fans who they didn't even know. Rei, their favorite, had finally won the Suzuka for the first time! Rei kept speeding on, his velocity a little slower as he punched the air victoriously. He screamed in glee and triumph into his helmet. He won! This was the best day ever! He finally slowed down on his bike when he heard the crowd's screams changed from merriment to panic. He stopped the bike and turned around, seeing only for a split second the number 13 as it continued speeding towards him. His vision left quickly, but he managed to hear a cry of agony from a familiar but distant voice before going completely unconscious, "REI!"
InvincibleInuYasha: Okay, I think I did okay. I'm not sure if I made the prize much bigger than it should be. Never been to a motocross race, let alone a big one like Suzuka, so I wouldn't know what kinds of prizes they have. And I don't know how to convert money so I don't know how much money 5,000 dollars is in Yen. I did a little research on some racing companies and their bikes. Those bikes are all real, you can find pictures of them. They're really cool. Makes me want to get one! lol. But I can't even drive a car yet. Well, at least not legally. And I looked up the Suzuka Racetrack. 3.6 miles long! holy moose! And 16 turns, wowie. But I'm not including any of that, i"ll bore u, only those of u who read this will know then ha. lol. Oh yea, and Mitsuru Takuhai's name might be weird. I dunno, I made it up. I took Mitsuru from Mitsurugi from Soul Calibur cuz my friend is nuts about that game, and Takuhai from the name of that magazine that they keep showing in ads in the back of my manga. Yes, pretty random. lol. Oh, and you see how his number is 13? The so aclled unlucky number, hehee. If any of you have a phobia of the number, sorry, but I have to say, it's just a DAMN NUMBER! lol., neway, yea, not really too symbolic. Just letting u know something bad might happen very soon! And now my cat is stepping on the keyboard. htrfjnm 902y5ol. Thank you, Oscar, my lovely assiatant, for contributing to the fic! lol. Read and Review! Sorry, I like the waves.