Written for the Sailor Moon Monthly Fanfiction Challenge
December Challenge - Day Four: Flirting
by Kihin Ranno
Jadeite enjoyed his sleep. He never overslept of course, but his position made it necessary for him to stay up late most nights. He was a busy man, and he took comfort in the few hours where he could sleep uninterrupted, dreaming of the various courtesans who giggled when he passed. It was hardly his favorite part of the day, but it was certainly enjoyable.
"Jadeite!" someone whispered, threatening to rouse him from his sleep. "Jadeite, wake up!"
Recognizing the voice as Endymion's, Jadeite had no choice but to obey. He didn't open his eyes, unwilling to see how dark it was outside. The less he knew about that, the less he'd want to throw something very heavy at his prince's head. He grumbled into his pillow and muttered, "Are you dying?"
Jadeite clenched his jaw. "I said, 'Are you dying.'"
Endymion hesitated. "Well, no."
"Are you in mortal danger of any kind?" Jadeite continued, quickly growing more impatient for this to end.
Endymion sighed, apparently figuring out where this was going. "No, but that's not--"
"Is Zoisite wearing a dress?" Jadeite surmised, desperately hoping for Endymion's sake that this was the case.
"Not to my knowledge," Endymion deadpanned.
Jadeite nodded. "All right then. You have woken me up for no reason. You will now leave my room, let me get some sleep, and prepare yourself for your beating in the morning." Jadeite yawned subtly and turned over. "Goodnight, Endymion."
His hope that their conversation was over was dashed when Endymion actually grabbed him by the shoulder and started shaking him. "Jadeite, this is important."
Jadeite opened his eyes into tiny slits, willing himself not to look at the window. He craned his neck to glare at Endymion over his shoulder. "Endymion, I have run through the list of important things. Nothing important is happening. Except of course for the fact that I was sleeping."
"I need your help," Endymion explained.
"I'll help you in the morning," Jadeite insisted.
Endymion frowned. "You know I'll just keep bothering you until you wake up."
"So, what you're saying is that you want me to kill you sooner rather than later?" Jadeite asked. "I'm willing to comply, but I warn, you it won't be as quick."
Endymion's features softened into a plaintive, almost begging expression. "Jadeite, please?"
Jadeite looked at him for a moment. He did not want to do whatever it was Endymion supposedly needed, but it seemed that he had no choice in the matter. Either he stay up for an hour, or Endymion keep him up the rest of the night.
"Fine," Jadeite growled, sitting up in bed. "But this had better be good."
Endymion's face broke out into a smile that Jadeite might have returned on any other occasion. He merely glowered and waited for Endymion to explain his motives for pulling Jadeite out of a dream that featured a particularly busty redhead.
Endymion took a deep breath, preparing himself. "I have a problem," he confided, taking a seat on the edge of the bed.
"Really?" Jadeite drawled.
"Well, you see…" Endymion began, having some trouble articulating the words. "It turns out that I'm rather hopeless at…" he trailed off, looking embarrassed.
"Articulation?" Jadeite supplied.
Endymion pondered the suggestion and then nodded. "Something like that."
Jadeite raised an eyebrow. "Care to elaborate?"
It was fairly evident that he would have rather not, but if there was any hope in finding a solution to his problem, he was going to have to. Endymion gestured weakly and said, "The fact is I'm hopeless at talking to… a certain kind of person."
Jadeite understood almost instantly. He raised both of his eyebrows, his lips twisting into a smirk. "You can't talk to women?"
Endymion's shoulders sagged. "I knew you were going to tease me about it."
Jadeite shrugged. "You're the one who decided to wake me up. You have three other guardians you know."
Endymion rolled his eyes. "Who exactly would you have me ask? Zoisite's interests rarely go beyond his music, and of course Kunzite is completely useless."
Jadeite was unable to stop himself from grinning at hearing Kunzite called useless. It improved his mood significantly. "What about Nephrite?"
Endymion's silence was all the answer Jadeite needed.
"Couldn't wake him up?"
"I don't think he could hear me over the snores," Endymion muttered, defeated.
Jadeite tipped his head back, considering the situation. "So let me get this straight. I am supposed to help you even though you have woken me up and tried another person before me – all of this in spite of the fact that I am the clear expert?"
"I only tried Nephrite first because – I don't know if anyone's told you this or not - but you're kind of a bastard," Endymion assured him.
Jadeite glared and poked him in the chest. "I will have you know that I am all bastard."
Endymion chuckled, shaking his head. "Say what you like, Jadeite. I know you have a soul in there somewhere."
"Lies. All lies," Jadeite insisted, running a hand through his hair. "But enough of this. What exactly is your problem? Because if you just sit there and stammer, then you are hopeless and destined to be a virgin."
Jadeite was joking, but Endymion seemed genuinely panicked at the prospect. "No, it isn't like that… I just don't seem to say the right thing."
Jadeite nodded sagely. "A common problem for one as inexperienced as yourself."
Endymion glared. "Jadeite."
"Honestly," Jadeite insisted, though he knew Endymion did not doubt the truth of the statement, just how sharply it was delivered. "Anyway, let me guess. You start by complimenting their looks."
Endymion blinked. "Aren't I supposed to?"
Jadeite tutted, shaking his head in what was obviously an excellent impression of Endymion's mother. "Silly boy. That is the last thing you should do. They pay people to compliment their beauty when they wake up every morning. They don't need suitors to do that. You're just telling them what they've been told all their lives. They're aware."
Endymion furrowed his brow. "I never thought of it like that."
"Of course not. That's why you woke me up in the middle of the night," Jadeite grumbled.
"So what should I say instead?" Endymion asked.
Jadeite shrugged. "It depends on who you're talking to. For example, I wouldn't compliment Lady Rezi on her lovely singing voice. Everyone knows she can't talk for shit, much less carry tune. So you say something about her riding ability. Preferably in front of Nephrite, as I happen to know he still hasn't gotten over when she beat him in a race last fall."
Endymion nodded. "I suppose that makes sense."
"And when all else fails, say something about her sense of humor or how well-read she is. All ladies think they ought to be valued for their intelligence even if they're as dull as a pile of rocks," Jadeite explained. "But that's just starting the conversation."
Endymion's face fell. "Right. I haven't really gotten beyond that."
Jadeite scoffed. "Nonsense. You're the heir to Elysian. I happen to know you have women hanging on you everywhere. Hell, you'd have that problem even if you resembled a mangled toad."
"Not the right sort… hang on me though," Endymion sighed. "They always just sort of stand there staring at me and giggling every time I cough. I spend most of my time glancing around hoping one of you will save me."
"Well don't because none of us will," Jadeite said definitively. "You'll just have to learn how to have conversations on your own."
Endymion nodded. "I think I could do that now that I might actually have a topic other than beauty to work with. But if I want to do more than… converse?"
Jadeite leaned over and looked at Endymion's ears. He smirked when he saw they were bright red. "Is the little prince embarrassed about his urges?" Jadeite asked. He reached forward and tussled Endymion's hair. "How sweet."
Endymion pushed Jadeite's arm away. "I will break that if you try it again."
Jadeite scoffed, but didn't return the threat. "You do realize that Kunzite would have my hide if he heard I told you how to talk women into bed with you."
Endymion's entire face flushed. "I'm not saying that! I just meant… develop an interest. Possibly – I don't know, kiss or something, but I didn't mean… that."
"Of course you didn't," Jadeite said, not entirely believing him. "Well, keep in mind that you have a reputation to uphold. You don't want the kingdom to think you're a cad as they say."
Endymion ran a hand down his face. "Yes, this is why I am talking to you about this."
"I'm just pointing out that it would be much better to discuss this bit with Nephrite," Jadeite said truthfully. "He's much more chivalrous than I am. Remember, I am a bastard."
"Kind of a bastard," Endymion corrected.
Jadeite rolled his eyes. "No matter. My point is… Well, you've heard me with women, right?"
"Never say anything like what I say, and I'm sure you'll be just fine."
Endymion thought about this and then nodded. "Fair enough I suppose."
"And if all else fails, make a pilgrimage to Venus." Jadeite paused. "And take me with you."
Endymion raised an eyebrow and grinned. "For my protection?"
"Why else would I go?" Jadeite asked, feigning innocence. "After all, what could I do on a planet full of unbelievably attractive sex maniacs?"
Endymion sighed. "I don't know, Jadeite. I think you'd be terribly bored. At least if I took Zoisite, he'd have something to occupy his time."
Jadeite reached forward to tussle Endymion's hair again, but the prince was quicker than him this time. He grabbed Jadeite's arm and twisted it behind his back, prompting Jadeite to reach back with his other hand and attempt to flip Endymion over his shoulder. He would never succeed of course, but Jadeite knew the position was quite painful. Then Endymion released Jadeite, broke away, and tackled him, resulting in about ten minutes of rolling around on the bed and then the floor swearing and punching liberally.
"I'd better let you get some rest," Endymion panted as he got to his feet.
Jadeite glared, taking the hand Endymion offered with some reluctance. "Yes, because I'm always able to fall right to sleep after impromptu wrestling matches."
Endymion shrugged and walked to the door. "I did warn you."
Jadeite waved him off. "It's not broken. It's sort of bent oddly, but I'm sure that will straighten out by morning."
"Most likely," Endymion paused. "Jadeite?"
"You're welcome," Jadeite yawned as he crawled into bed.
Endymion smiled at him and then turned to leave. He opened the door and jumped back, utterly shocked to find another one of his guards leering at him in the doorway.
"Nephrite!" Endymion shouted, sounding guilty for absolutely no reason.
Jadeite groaned, shoving off the covers and starting to pull on the shirt he had discarded several hours before. "Oh, hell."
"And what is this?" Nephrite asked, his voice deeper than usual, a sure sign that he had only woken up recently. "Jadeite in a state of undress, Endymion with his clothes in disarray, and all alone in a bedroom? Whatever could this mean?"
Jadeite glanced up in time to see Endymion's ears turn red. "It's not what it looks--"
"You know, Jadeite, I never thought you'd be interested in men," Nephrite observed.
"Why? Because I never seemed interested in you?" Jadeite drawled as he began to search for his boots.
Nephrite considered that and then nodded. "Mostly that. But I always sort of assumed Zoisite would be… that way. I mean, what with the dresses and everything."
"It would seem that way," Jadeite said through clenched teeth as he struggled to get his second boot on.
"So, when is the wedding?" Nephrite asked over Endymion continued stuttering.
The boot finally slid on. Jadeite looked up and smiled wickedly. "Right after your funeral."
Nephrite didn't need to be told twice. He took off running immediately, quickly followed by Jadeite, who pulled Endymion along with him. They ran alongside each other in pursuit of Nephrite, and all three of them knew that Jadeite was not going to be getting back to sleep that night.
And Jadeite knew exactly who was going to pay for it.