Title: Taking a chance
Author: Ree
Theme: Minor Characters (Fairytale)
Genre: General/Romance
Version: Anime or Manga - before the official story line
Rating: G

All characters from Sailor Moon belong to Takeuchi Naoko , I'm just borrowing them for awhile.

Kenji Tsukino watched her walk across the stage. He felt very lucky that Tomo-chan had convinced him to be part of the Drama club play because he could see Ikuko Matasori at every practice. She was in class 2-B, and he was in class 3-D. Their paths wouldn't normally cross. As he watched her speak her lines, he couldn't help but notice the other boys staring at her, too.

He had spotted her when she was a first year in the cafeteria. She had been surrounded by a large group of friends. It was her laugh that had caught his attention. It was soft and tinkly, and didn't sound forced at all. Ever since that day he had been quietly watching her, trying to figure out how to approach her. 'Every time I thought I would have a chance, there was another boy hanging on her sleeve. I never seem to get to her early enough. Well, that is going to change. This time I'm going to succeed!'

After practice, Kenji approached Ikuko. In what he hoped was a confident voice he asked, "So do you think we could practice our lines together a little more? I don't feel like I have them yet."

Ikuko gazed up at him and smiled. "Sure. Do you want to go to the park?"

Kenji just nodded yes.

They had become the talk of the Drama club by time the play was ready to be performed. Kenji had succeed in going out with Ikuko almost three times a week, if not more. His only problem was that they were never actual dates, they were just working on the play.

It was finally opening night. Standing in the wings, Kenji took a deep breath. He knew his part as well as he could, that was not what made him nervous. It was the fact that he was to spend all his time on stage with Ikuko. He was nervous of making a mistake in front of her.

The theater lights went down, and the play was announced. "The Drama Club presents "The Bamboo Princess"." The first set of actors and actresses went out onto the stage.

Ikuko looked over at Kenji and gave her happy smile. "Are you ready? We're up next."

Kenji couldn't help but smile back. "As ready as I'll ever be."

They both turned their attention back onto the stage so they wouldn't miss their cue. When it came Kenji walked out onto the stage.He walked around the stage harvesting bamboo. Finally he came to one that seemed special, he cut the bamboo shoot open, and found the baby girl inside. He showed the baby to his wife, who was being played by Ikuko. They agreed to raise the child as if it was their own. The story continued, and both Ikuko and Kenji played they parts perfectly. Finally the end came, and they found out that their little girl really was the Moon Princess. They both wept realistically as she left the Earth and went back to the Moon. Kenji loved the way that she was pulled up into the sky on wires. Tomo-chan was the only one he knew that was brave enough to do that.

Finally the last encore was completed, and they were left to change back into their regular clothes. Kenji finished before Ikuko, so he waited on her. 'I'm asking her tonight, while I still have the courage.' While he waited he twirled a rose between his fingers. He had brought it tonight to give her for luck before the play, but had been so nervous that he had forgotten to give it to her.

When Ikuko finally came out of the dressing room, she was once again surrounded. Kenji looked at the crowd around her, and started feeling like he couldn't do it. He turned to leave, but after looking down at the rose in his hand he knew he had to turn back. He just couldn't give up. He followed the crowd until he spotted her.
"Ikuko-chan! Ikuko-chan!" He called out to her, and expected her not to hear him.

Ikuko turned her head looking for him. Spotting him, she called back. "Kenji-sempai!" She pushed through the group to get to him. "You did great tonight!"

Kenji looked at the crowd that was listening to every word that they said, and scooping his hand under her elbow he steered her of to a quiet area. Surprisingly, the crowd didn't follow. Taking a steading breath he looked at her, and then spoke. "You did really well tonight, too." 'Moron! Get to the point before they all get here!' Ikuko smiled up into his eyes, and had a waiting look on her face. Swallowing hard, he tried again, this time holding out the rose. "Ikuko, would you go out with me? Not just to practice the play, but for real?" 'There! I said it. Now, what is her answer?'

It seemed like an eternity before she answered him. She reached out and took the rose he was holding. Raising it up to her nose, she smelled it. As the rich fragrance wafted up, she looked up at Kenji. "How did you know I like my flowers to have a rich fragrance? Looks are nice, but the fragrance is more important."

Kenji looked startled. "I didn't. I just like my flowers to have a good scent." He was starting to wilt due to the wait. If she didn't answer yes or no soon, he felt like he was going to run.

Finally Ikuko answered his question. "Yes, Kenji-sempai. I would like to be truely dating you." She twirled the flower between her fingers as she smelled it again.

Relief washed over him. She said yes! Calming himself down, he smiled at her. "Please, drop the sempai. And what is the first thing you would like to do, now that we are officially dating?"

A mischievous smile crossed Ikuko's face. Reaching out she took hold of his hand, and the standing on tiptoe she said, "I've been waiting for you to ask me Kenji-kun, and what do I want to do? This." and she kissed him on the check.