That Something About Mary
Summary: When Sakai Jefferson Koji falls in love, he only falls in love with the best. One-shot. Wanton parody.
Disclaimer: The title of this story is adapted from the hilarious Ben Stiller-starrer "There's Something About Mary."
Author's Note: This fic is also in tribute to all the missing HH humour fics, since all everyone writes nowadays is angst, and misses out on the funny side of the anime. (Blame to be shared by Crystal Haze for going on near-permanent hiatus with this fandom.) ::brings out kunai with friendly smile::
Sakai Koji was distinctly glad to be out of the building.
He'd spent at least an hour of padding around the boys' dormitory, looking for all the world to see, like some sort of primitive upper-garment-deprived caveman, frenzied that he'd be late. After all, the ladies didn't flock to Casanova because he couldn't eat with a fork and knife.
Kyosuke had expressed his eloquent opinion over the matter with a snort, and Rodrigo ... Rodrigo had ... Sakai shuddered. That fellow had to be positively ... He broke off, half in respect for his friend, and half in pity.
He'd finally managed to decide on a pair of black jeans, (Rodrigo had turned uncharacteristically firm at the last minute and refused to let him walk out in leather) and a shirt open at neck (in better taste than Murakami), and Sakai Koji stood waiting in the reception of the Chinese Chilli. Waiting that is, for his Saturday night date to turn up.
Truth to be told, he was early, and time had the dubious distinction of being able to make you re-evaluate the value of your wallet. Dining (or expectantly waiting to dine) at a five-star restaurant with a cheesy name, makes one realise the pricelessness of money.
All he could hope for now, was that the girl would end up being a feminist and insist that men had no right to strut around and wave credit cards, and deprive a woman of that civic right.
Her face flashed before his eyes, and a soft sigh left Sakai. He could still remember it: the cool, dusky evening, blocking goals at an impromptu soccer practice with Kyosuke and Rodrigo, then, out of nowhere a ball hurtling through the air, knocking him clean off his feet and sending him flying into the net with the force of impact.
(Never let it be said, except perhaps in the face of life-threatening peril, that he lost face.)
Although he'd been thoroughly disgruntled, and enough to blacken his gentlemanly reputation by emptying his vocabulary of every expletive known, English, Japanese, hell, even Swedish, at Kyosuke— until.
Until he realized Kyosuke hadn't fired that kick.
Oh, no. He was standing to the side of the pitch, increasingly red in the face beside Rodrigo whose eyes were bugging out in an unexpected deluge of brain-numbing shock— or horror?
It was a girl.
Who'd knocked him off his feet literally with a soccer ball.
Groggily sitting up, by the time Sakai's eyes taught themselves to focus, it was a girl, arms folded across her chest, who was staring down at him.
"I didn't hit you too badly, did I?"
Sakai shook his head to clear out that particularly abrasive memory. Despite the ignominy (no, he wasn't exaggerating), he'd asked her out. Here he was. Here she'd be ... all right, eventually. And that was that.
He was determined to make a fresh start. Somewhere, deep inside was stirring this unfamiliar hope of making a relationship, for once, get off its lazy butt and actually go somewhere.
Neatly, a Mustang pulled up by the curb.
Sakai blinked to clear out the reverie, and flecking his attention at the car, watched as a girl climbed out. Even now, even when she was out of the baggy jersey and shorts that failed to drown her attractiveness, Sakai was floored by her stunning looks.
No, that couldn't be it. She was beautiful.
Furiously unbidden, something flashed past his mind. Rodrigo, that poor, dateless fellow, had been right.
"Fh. She must be a real looker— usually your girls are gorgeous, drippingly gorgeous, or just plain pretty."
Now that he considered it, albeit grudgingly in the face of the memory of the Brazilian's uproarious laughter, Sakai's girls were never beautiful. Nobody was.
Struck silent, he watched her slide out of the car, lock the door, and make her way over to him. She was even dressed for the occasion with a cerulean blue dress that fell inches below her knees as it embraced her hips. The slit up the sides swished with the satiny fabric, and the pastel shading, the texture, were beautifully a foil for that dusky, tea-coloured complexion and the dazzling white choker at her throat.
He didn't even bother to wonder why he was chalking away his precious seconds with her by admiring her clothes, only dimly aware of her distant voice asking him something.
"You must be Sakai, right?"
He had loved his mother's giant harp when he was younger, the great, golden masterpiece of creation, the lilting magic it gave away as long, fine fingers ran over the strings. Sakai could only think of that harp as he looked at this girl, her voice so soft and beautiful that he...
"Yes, that would be right. Sakai J. Koji, your company tonight," He lifted her fingers to his lips in a gallant attempt to cover up that moment of spacing out. She did a quick curtsey for his honour, and said,
"Lovely to meet you. I'm Mary."
He was struck this time with how simple her name was. It should have been Dorothea, gift of God, or something exotic; but then again, the Holy Mother was called "Mary" and no one had seemed to mind.
"Mary," he repeated, with a smile, pleasant and charming on the outside, devilish and twisted on the inside (probably as ugly as what you get when you flip on the "Invert Colours" option in MS Paint) that shot an all-too-unforgettable warning to his brain about the consequences of slipping off on other completely unrelated tangents.
"Mary Susan Watkins. Shall we go in, Sakai?"
"Of course," He coughed fleetingly, and linking arms, they went in, skirting the spare, thin maître d' staring disapprovingly at them as if they were the faux pas. Mary turned around, smiling fleetingly at him.
Even a quarter of an hour later, the man simply stood there, very far away from the French hauteur he'd been displaying with such enthusiasm, and still— gaping.
The designers had contrived a beautiful atmosphere for the Saturday diner, the lights dim, soft and orange, a large paper lantern hanging over each table. Sakai sat across Mary in one of the padded mahogany chairs, the menu laid out in front of him.
His wallet was seriously going to be asphyxiated tonight.
"Don't you think this is all a tad too expensive?"
His head jerked up. Dark, toffee eyes met his calmly, and Mary politely repeated it. For a minute Sakai could barely breathe, his senses wildly occupied with kissing every goddess of monetary mercy there was, and seriously, he did a damn' good job of it.
"We can order something light, then?" He didn't miss a beat. Sakai Jefferson Koji rarely did.
The cuisine was continental. Literally. The menu was neatly transcribed with spiky letters, that detailed a winning varsity of dishes all over the world. Sakai blinked at the menu, trying to decipher a string of Thai words, trying to recall what they meant, because a description of the recipe had forgotten to follow its name.
On the other side of the table, Mary was beckoning a waiter to collect their word. Tall, immaculate and dignified, the fellow came sweeping and Mary said softly, "What would you like to have, Sakai?"
Inside, he jerked.
Outside, he lifted his head. He'd given up decrypting the Thai palette, and moved on to the easier Chinese, the restaurant's namesake. "Steak tartare," he said, in the smoothest possible voice under the scrutinising stare the waiter was casting.
Mary smiled. "Tenderloin meat? I hope you enjoy,"
(Suddenly, "uncooked" didn't sound so appetising.)
She turned back to the waiter, and neatly ordered a sizzler in the simplest possible terms. The waiter beamed politely, and moved away.
"Thanks for asking me out, Sakai," she said, turning her dark eyes towards him with honesty and allure that made his heart pound. "I've always wanted to know what kind of guy you were."
While I never knew you even existed. He twitched. The whispering demons in one's head seldom play the good sport.
"Not much to know about me," he said easily. "Nothing new, anyway."
She giggled softly. "Ooh," she teased, but there was a glint in her eyes. "Arrogant."
The word rolled off her tongue. Sakai blinked imperceptibly, and smiled wider. "Then, let's talk about you."
"Me?" Her eyes opened in wide surprise. "Who'd want to talk about me? All I've ever done is helped the women's soccer team win their first victory at the Regionals, and I'm coaching and co-captaining with Miki. Aside from that, I tutor in my spare time, on account of the fact I get the highest grades, but it's difficult to squeeze that into my time table, mostly because I sing at this local club for free, and they never want me to leave because I attract business for them."
"And dance, too. I've won so many trophies it gets so difficult to keep track. One boy who had a crush on me — I can't remember which one, there've been ever so many — offered most helpfully to keep track, but I turned him down.
"I act, too. I've done so many Juliets with a standing ovation each time, but soccer is my real passion. Even while I'm school, I've been approached by recruiters for the National Youth Team. I think they've seen me play Kokoryu High School by myself, but the whole things was supposed to be under wraps, especially since I've beaten them each time. I'm play a forward, but I'm actually very versatile—"
Like you use the Invert Colours option, Sakai was cringing so much internally, he would have resembled Quasimodo, the hunchback of Notre Dame.
He almost didn't notice, when Mary leaned forward further on the table, and said with a self-effacing smile, "But that's only about me. What do you do? Even if its old stuff."
"Well..." If he could have tugged a little at his collar or adjusted the knot of his tie in the most rich-man-about-to-be-modest manner, he would have, but if he tried doing it with the open-necked shirt he was wearing, he'd only have succeeded in ripping the buttons open.
(But it was best if didn't go about giving her the wrong idea.)
"Well ... I'd have thought my reputation as a small-town half-Japanese Romeo Montague would have preceded me, but ah, since it hasn't—"
Something hit the table. Hard.
Sakai's insides jerked, and he looked up immediately, terrified.
The chair shoved back, Mary was towering over him, her hands slammed down on the table. Her toffee-coloured eyes were glittering.
The suave, dashing Sakai Jefferson Koji had the nasty suspicion his jaw was unhinging itself like a very impressed dim-witted chimpanzee.
"You are so arrogant," she snarled. "I mean, Gawd, what an egoist." She was doing a remarkable fine impression of Aishwariya Rai. Sakai only improved his imitation of the chimpanzee being swept off its flat, hairy feet by fireworks.
"I mean, look at you. It's only me, me, me ... What do they even call you at school? No, lemme guess; how about— Marty Stu?"
His attempt at closing his jaw disturbingly resembled a goldfish, but she didn't even see it.
With a brilliantine flash of her gemstone-smooth eyes, and a curl of her full lips, Mary Sue Watkins had swept out the door.
Sakai remained in his seat for a long time, like a tiny cube of ice starting to melt on a floor of salt. He still didn't understand what the hell just happened.
—- End -—