Disclaimer: I don't own Power Rangers. That honor belongs to Disney.
Spoilers: Very minor for Sigh of the Tiger.
Summary: It was like she was there one moment, gone the next.
Notes: Established Relationship! It kind of jumps but I really wanted to bring in the rangers.
Clare always showed up. His girlfriend may have not been the most prompt of a person, but she always showed up. So when she didn't show up at the pizza parlor or a week, he was a little worried. But it turned into full blown panic when she missed their date.
Fran barely managed to keep him from going to the police station. After all, it wasn't as if he could give them some important information. Like her last name. So he threw himself into his work. For the first time he was glad he ran JKP by himself.
All he could do was wait.
"So, for not helping Fran the two of you get clean this place up while the three of us go get ice cream."
"Oh my, what happened to this place?"
The voice came from the door and everyone looked to see a woman in a light purple tank top and long flowy dark purple skirt. She was carefully making her way across the floor, trying desperately to avoid the major messes.
"Clare!" Fran launched herself across the room at her missing friend.
Toppings and sauce covered Clare's outfit, but she didn't particularly care, happy just to see her friend. "Fran!" The two girls separated to look at each other only to start giggling and hugging each other again.
"Where have you been?! I haven't seen you for over a month! I was worried. I kept hoping that you'd come by but you never did and then when--." Fran's rant was cut off.
"Fran, remember to breath." Clare grinned, some things never changed. "I had a lot family stuff going on." She ran a hand through her hair, a silver ring with purple stone glinted in the light and one could have sworn that it glowed. "I'm so sorry, but it was just one thing after another."
"I'm just so happy to see you again!" Fran took in Clare's somewhat more normal look. "You look good."
Clare looked at her friend's outfit and reached out to pull a piece of noodle from her friend's hair. "You look very… employed."
"I know. Isn't it neat?!" Fran's giddiness was contagious and Clare could barely stop giggling.
RJ. She felt herself flush as she turned to look at the man who was staring at her intensely. "RJ." She was embarrassed to notice that her voice had gotten breathy. "Hi."
There was a pregnant pause; one where the two did nothing but stare at each other. This was interrupted by Fran who had been shift from foot to foot uncomfortably. She introduced Clare to Casey, Theo and Lily.
Clare smiled, "It's nice to meet you." She became aware that there was movement from beside her and looked up to see RJ standing beside her, grinning madly. "Hi." She repeated.
"Hi." He reached down and gripped her hand. "Welcome back." RJ said, lifting up her hand to place a kiss on the back of her knuckles. There was a quiet 'aw' from somewhere inside the room.
A heated wave of electricity danced up Clare's spine. His eyes darkened as he reached up with his spare hand and brushed his knuckles against her cheek.
She blushed and looked away. "Look I'm so sorry for missing our date. I--." She was cut off as he placed a finger over her lips.
"Tell me later." Every ounce of self-control RJ had ever possessed deserted him in that moment as he drew her close and lowered his mouth to hers.
He took it slow and easy at first, his lips brushing her gently, but when she slid her arms around his neck and stood on her toes for a better reach, he was lost in a sense of heat and desire.
A sense of urgency swept over him, and he drew her up against him. He felt a growing compulsion to run his fingers through her long, silk hair, something he had wanted to do for a while.
Still, the kiss continued.
Right there, in the middle of the parlor with everyone watching RJ found himself making out with Clare like a love-struck, hormone-driven teenager.
And he'd be damned if he even cared.
The moment was broken by the clearing of a throat. Clare turned a deep shade of red and stepped back while RJ gave the four a look of annoyance. Fran was grinning manically, fanning herself. Casey was beet red and wouldn't meet RJ's eyes. Theo's jaw was unhinged, looking a little faint. And Lily… She was just watching them with raised eye brows. "Maybe we should leave you two alone."
RJ shook his head. "Actually, I think we were going to get some ice cream, if I remember correctly." He slid his arm around Clare's shoulder and pulled her close, placing a kiss to the top of her head. "And you should come with us, Clare."
Clare just nodded and leaned into the embrace. She was still a little red in the face and she didn't think she would have been able to say anything if she tried.
"Then it's settled. As soon as Fran cleans herself up, we'll head out." Fran gained a bashful look and headed off. "I do have one question for you Clare."
She glanced up at him. "And what is that?"
"What's your last name?"