A/N: This is going to be my first chapter fic EVER. OO It is roughly based on a list called "What a Kiss Means." I don't know where the list came from, so I don't know who to credit that with, but it isn't mine. This story will detail the changes in Clarisse and Joseph's relationship. This first chapter may seem to start off a bit slow, but I thought that was necessary, as that's how their relationship is, after all. This story's chapters will not be directly related, so you can read them separately and not feel left out, but I do hope you read and review them all! ;

FanFic 100 Challenge #: 045- Moon


"The Queen looks stunning tonight, doesn't she?" Joseph overheard a tall, slender blonde with a friendly face say to her shorter brunette friend.

"Yes, she does," replied the brunette.

Joseph smiled to himself. Indeed, the Queen did look stunning, but to him, that was an understatement. He stood captivated at the way the light sparkled on the fragile designs on Clarisse's floor length light blue gown. It wasn't a color that she wore often, but she chose to wear it that night simply and secretly because she knew that a certain someone liked when she wore that color. Joseph continued to keep his eyes glued on Clarisse as she chatted with an ambassador's wife, and he reveled in the fact that he could gaze at his Queen for as long as he wanted. As her Head of Security, it was his job to watch her closely, after all.

The ambassador's wife continued to talk animatedly to Clarisse, and though Clarisse was doing a decent job at appearing to be interested in the conversation, Joseph could not help but notice the weary look on her face. Joseph glanced at his watch. It was already late enough in the evening that he could take Clarisse back home without anyone ever thinking twice about them leaving early.

"Pardon me, Your Majesty," Joseph said. "But it's getting late, and I think it would be best if we depart soon."

"Oh yes, I think you're right," Clarisse replied with a small smile. "Goodnight, Alexandria," she said to the ambassador's wife. "It has been a pleasure talking to you."

"Goodbye, Clarisse. Likewise."

Joseph took Clarisse's arm within his own and led her outside. It was a clear, bright night, and the stars were twinkling against the dark, velvety sky as beautifully as freshly cut diamonds. The only sounds penetrating the night air were the muffled click of Clarisse and Joseph's heels against the concrete sidewalk and the wind rustling through tree leaves.

"I'm glad you offered to leave when you did," Clarisse said, breaking the comfortable silence between the two of them. "I'm quite fond of Alexandria, really, but I don't know how long I could have gone on humoring her by listening to her endless stories."

Joseph laughed softly.

"I could tell."

"Was I that obvious?" Clarisse asked, her eyes opening wide as she glanced sideways at Joseph.

"No, not really," he replied. "You just had that expression on your face that said you wanted to go home."

"You know me all too well, Joseph," Clarisse said with a grin.

Without thinking, Clarisse took his hand in hers and squeezed it lightly. He smiled back at her, admiring the way the moonlight gave a pure, pale glow to her silky alabaster skin. He kissed the back of the hand that she had placed into his, briefly closing his eyes as her sweet scent intoxicated him.

"Thank you, Joseph," Clarisse said after another moment or two of pleasant silence had passed.

"For what?" he asked, slightly confused.

Clarisse's bright eyes met his as she squeezed his hand again, this time a little more tightly.

"For being my best friend."


A/N: This is from the part of the list that says "A kiss on the hand means friendship."