Summary: Kaoru considers a 'friends with benefits' relationship. Kenshin has something else in mind.

Disclaimer: All standard disclaimers apply: I do not own Rurouni Kenshin, I make no money off this work, etc. Characters of Rurouni Kenshin are the property of Nobuhiro Watsuk.

Warning: This work contains adult material, specifically sex. Some chapters will likely be censored to meet guide lines; in that case the uncensored version will be posted on mediaminer under the same pen name.

Author's Note: This story is completely written; it's about 40 pages in Word. I'll be posting the chapters as I edit them. If you notice any frequent errors, please let me know so that I can correct such things in future chapters. As always, reviews are appreciated.




Kaoru eyed the club warily as they waited in line and sighed, tugging at the short top that Misao had forced on her. At least she had managed to keep her jeans instead of that atrociously bright mini skirt Misao had picked out.

"Come on Kaoru. You look great – the skirt would have shown off your legs more, but the jeans do nice things for your ass. You'll have no problems picking up a guy tonight," Misao commented.

Kaoru glared. Hard. "That's precisely why I didn't want to come. I'm not looking for a guy and I don't want to spend the even fending off the bumbling advances of half drunken males who can't seem to understand that 'fuck off' does not mean 'I'd love a drink."

Misao compressed her lips, then drew a deep breath. " It's been over three months since you and Enishi broke up. That's more than enough time. You need to get back in the saddle again."

"Look, Misao. I know you mean well. And I'm not heartbroken over the break up – lord knows it was far beyond time for that miserable excuse of a relationship to end. But I'm happy being single right now. I like having my own space, my own time, not having to deal with crap. I'm just not interested in entering a relationship. More than that, I'm not willing to put in the sort of effort it takes to establish a real connection with someone."

Misao turned toward her. "Who said anything about a relationship? I was talking about sex. Getting laid will do you a world of good. I'm sure you can find someone to meet your needs -- hell most guys will view the 'no relationship' bit as a bonus."

Kaoru choked, but long experience with Misao kept her from turning bright red. "First off, I really don't feel comfortable with casual sex, as you know. Second, I can meet my own 'needs' quite well myself, thank you for asking," Kaoru replied, trying to keep the edge out of her voice.

Misao stared at her wide eyed. "Was Enishi that bad in bed that you really don't remember what you're missing? Because there are few thing better in life than a nice hard fuck from a hot guy."

This time Kaoru felt her face burn. Then she straighten her shoulders, held her head high and entered the club. Just as she passed the bouncer she called to Misao, "I've always thought that if you need a man to do it for you, you must be doing something wrong."

Misao's screech, silence, then a rambling, incoherent attempt at a comeback followed her in. Thankfully, Misao had dropped the topic by the time they reached a table containing a few of their friends.

The evening went well. Kaoru successfully fended of a few drunken pickup attempts, no doubt aided by the strong glares of mutual friends. She got to dance a bunch, both with friends and friends of friends who could be trusted to understand that dancing was not an invitation to grope her in the hallway.

Sano's dancing skills had still not improved, so Kaoru was happy to release him to go back to his drinking. Cho was much better, but quickly left to pursue someone who caught his eye. Her favorite partner was Katamari, who could definitely put on the moves, even if he enjoyed watching the guys watching her dance a bit more than he enjoyed dancing with her.

She danced with a few others, not quite remembering them all. There was a Ken-something who was noted mainly for his red hair and ability to keep other guys away, unlike Anji. Anji's peaceful demeanor seemed to encourage other guys to cut in, and his spiritual leanings meant his dancing was so chaste it seemed uptight. But overall it had been a good night and she'd probably go dancing again with this group.


They had indeed gone dancing again. In fact the somewhat random assortment of friends-of-friends seemed to coalesce into a somewhat regular crowd. They added Tae, a friend of Anji's, and her friend Megumi who Sano was trying to court. But they lost Cho who got a job in a different city.

Today most of the group was assembled for a barbeque farewell for Misao, who was leaving in two weeks. She had always wanted to travel through Europe and sample its delights – both culturally and physically. She had found a magazine, that while not covering her expenses, would at least buy any stories she wrote about her experiences. Seeing that as a way to live her dream and make use of her degree in journalism, Misao was ecstatic. She planned to spend the next year or so traveling through Europe.

As they sat around the table munching chips and waiting for Kenshin to finish grilling the burgers, the topic turned towards sex. Actually it started out about Misao's trip, which brought up her sexual expectations for her endeavor. But over time the conversation seemed to keep returning to some aspect of sex. The current debate was that of 'friends with benefits'.

Sano, of course, was all for anything that would get him laid more often. Misao's approach was the opposite.

"While I don't see anything wrong with sleeping with friends, it just seems like a waste. There are so many options out there you could be sampling, why take the edge off your game?" Misao commented.

Megumi sniffed. "Friends with benefits is just a way for a guy to get into your pants without fully committing. I don't put out and I certainly don't give it away for free. I'm not easy."

Katamari laughed. "I doubt anything with you is cheap or easy. I, on the other hand, am very easy. And I've slept with friends before. A friends with benefits opportunity is a nice way to keep the libido satisfied without the emotional drama of a relationship."

"I don't know," Kaoru replied, biting her lip. "It seems like sex could mess up the friendship and make things awkward."

Kenshin looked up, removing the burgers from the grill. "It doesn't have to be that way, with good communication and honesty…," he said, placing the burgers at the table. The remaining conversation was lost amidst the scramble for food.