This is set in the first season when Raye gets her date with Darien.
Oh, sure, Darien was the typical tall, dark, and handsome figure that every girl would fall in love with. That was why it was so easy for Raye to get away with this.
She knew all along that Serena liked Darien. There was just no way around it. All the "fights" between Serena and Darien were flirt fests, and Raye was determined to make them both see the light.
That, and it didn't hurt that Darien was attractive. She would definitely be envied today, for today was her big date with the black-haired stud. She secretly hoped, though, that perhaps…well, time would tell.
As she brushed her raven black hair and looked in the mirror, she decided that her outfit would do. She wore her black miniskirt with a cute, ruffled red top and red flats. She had the foresight to see that if she was going to walk everywhere with Darien, the last thing she wanted was for her feet to hurt. She applied light makeup and heavy red lipstick, and then snuck out the back door of the temple. If her grandfather saw her, well, it was going to definitely be a lecture.
As she waltzed down the sidewalk, she noticed what a bright pretty day it was. It was perfect, everything was perfect—her hair, her date, the weather…it was almost too good to be true.
Suddenly Raye stopped and turned around. She wasn't sure, but she just had this feeling that she was being watched. She shook her head. Perhaps she was just being paranoid. Or…turning around again…perhaps meatball head had decided to stalk her. Raye shrugged and continued on her way. It didn't matter, really. Serena couldn't stalk anybody if her life depended on it. Surely by now she would have had a klutz attack and run into a wall—or Darien. That girl always seemed to bump into Darien. And Serena said she didn't like him—yeah right.
Raye arrived at her destination—the new café that was built in the center of town. She saw her handsome date waiting for her at window booth. She waved and dashed inside.
Sitting down across from Darien, Raye exclaimed, "Hi!" He definitely looked good today. He wasn't wearing that old green jacket for a change, just a nice black shirt that was a little tight on him, and a pair of blue jeans.
Darien smiled. "Hey there, I hope you don't mind, but I already ordered us some milkshakes. Is that okay?"
"Perfect." This day was just getting better and better.
Glancing over the menu, the couple made their selections and told the waitress who came with their drinks. Raye gave the girl the evil eye, noticing the waitress's fondness of Darien. Darien, oblivious to all of this, folded up his menu and handed it to the waitress.
Focusing her attention on Darien again, Raye remarked, "Oh, did you get a haircut?"
"Yep. You noticed?"
"Of course I noticed. It looks good on you."
"Gee thanks. Serena noticed it earlier, but since I pick on her hair all the time, she just said that I looked like a homeless guy."
Ah. He mentioned Serena. Trying to contain her inward jealously, Raye tried to brush it off. "Well, meatball head has never had good taste in hair anyways."
"I dunno. The meatballs look kind of cool to me, but don't tell her I said that."
I won't, Raye thought resentfully. Trying to change the subject, Raye said, "So, how are your classes going?"
"Oh, I keep busy. Next week will be a school holiday for us."
Yay. More free time for us, perhaps? Raye wondered. The conversation continued on without incident (incident being, no more Serena being mentioned). Their food arrived and they continued to chat while they ate. Raye couldn't help but notice, though, that Darien ordered spaghetti and meatballs. Surely it was just a coincidence.
When the check came, Darien was the gentleman and insisted on paying the bill. They walked out together and headed to the park.
The birds were chirping, flowers were blooming, and the sky was still a light blue. Raye was happy, but a little nervous. She wanted to reach out and grab his hand, but didn't know how he would feel about that. Don't be silly, she told herself. You are the bravest senshi there is—the fire senshi. And you're worried about touching a guy? Puh-leeze. Just as she began to muster up the courage to touch his hand, he pointed at concert stage. "Look, I think they're going to play come music in the park." Sighing, Raye followed Darien to the stage. A little orchestra (about a dozen people or so) had set up and was playing classical music. Turning around to Raye, Darien asked, "Would you like to dance with me?"
Too nervous to say anything, Raye just nodded. Together they twirled around. Darien certainly knew how to dance. Raye was secretly thanking herself for having taken dancing lessons when she was younger. As the music slowed, their pace slowed…and they came together…
Am I supposed to kiss him now? Is this all too soon? Raye wondered. More people had gathered in the park, so there were a number of people who were dancing together. It would be awkward to kiss in public like this.
Just at that moment, Lita and Serena came up. "Hey Raye!" Lita exclaimed. "Didn't know you were out here. Hey there Darien." He nodded politely at her, but his gaze became fixed upon Serena.
Raye felt the familiar jealousy rise up within her. She tried to calm herself down. Why did they have to show up now of all times?
Serena remarked, "I didn't know you could dance, Darien."
"Of course I can," he replied. "Here, let me show you. Raye, do you mind?"
His date shook her head and let him go. Sighing, she watched as Darien tried to lead Serena into a dance. She tripped one or two times, but overall, she was doing pretty well. Trying not to let her emotions show, Raye plastered a fake smile on her face.
"Isn't it cute?" Lita asked.
"Sure," the raven-haired beauty answered.
"So you're dating Darien, huh?"
"How is it going so far?"
"Um, pretty well."
"That's cool. I hope I can find someone as handsome as Darien one day. He looks like my old boyfriend…"
Raye rolled her eyes and watched Serena and Darien dance. Something about it seemed so familiar. She was sure she had seen them dance somewhere before, but she had not been so jealous that time. What a silly idea, she scoffed. Honestly, Serena dancing? Raye was surprised Serena could hold up this long without tripping. Didn't matter if Serena was a sailor scout, she still couldn't chew bubble gum and walk at the same time.
The sonata finished, and although Darien let go of Serena, but he had a certain longing in his eyes that Raye couldn't help but notice. Serena seemed a little unaware of his gaze, and ran over to Lita. "I hardly tripped at all!"
"Yeah, I noticed. Wanna dance with me next, Serena?"
The blonde girl laughed. "Really? I thought you would never ask…" And so the two friends went off to dance together.
Darien came back over to Raye. "Hi again." Looking concerned, he asked, "Is something wrong?"
Is it that obvious? Raye thought. Instead, she said, "No, everything's fine."
"Wanna go someplace else?"
And together they walked away from the park.
As they were walking, Raye wondered where they were headed. "Darien, where are we going?"
"You'll see," he said with a smirk.
They arrived at the local lake. No one else was around and the water was serene. Raye didn't like water much; she preferred fire, but she had to admit it was a peaceful scene. They made their way down the hill that led to the lake and sat on the side of it together, just watching the water.
"Do you like it?" Darien asked.
"I love it," Raye admitted.
"I used to come down here when I was a boy," Darien explained. "It always helped calm me whenever I felt stressed out or alone."
Raye repeated, "Alone?"
"Yeah, my parents died when I was little, so I grew up in an orphanage."
"Oh wow, I didn't know that."
"Of course you wouldn't know. Not many people do."
"It must have been really hard, being so alone. Do you have any brothers or sisters?" Darien shook his head. "Wow, so no family at all?"
"No, just friends." Darien reached over and touched Raye's hand. She almost pulled it back in shock, but then realized what he was doing, and intertwined their fingers together. He smiled. "You know, I like you, Raye. You seem to have a nice spirit."
Interesting compliment, Raye thought. "How so?"
"You seem to be full of life, like a raging fire, but yet you can be so calm and intuitive. It's a good mix," Darien said. "I have only seen a few spirited people like you."
"Oh, Serena for example. She is a klutz, to be sure, but she is so full of life and hope—she is sincere and caring. She seems to be a very loyal person."
Serena again? Raye questioned. That was it. He liked her. As much as Raye had tried to ignore, tried to distract Darien, it all came back to her. Maybe if I was a little klutzy and dumb I could win him over too, she thought. Darien appeared to be a sensitive person though—talking about spirits and such? That was not typical of most guys. She almost wondered if he was gay.
"Raye, what's the matter?" Apparently her silence caused Darien to worry.
She looked him straight in the eye. "You like her, don't you?"
"Oh, her? I…uh…"
"Darien, you can't lie to me. Everyone knows it; you just keep denying it. You can't stop thinking about her, talking about her, much less stop running into her."
"Well, you see…"
"Darien, it's okay. Really. I knew it all along."
He cleared his throat. "You did?"
"Yes. I'm here…to tell you…just go out and ask her on a date already!"
Darien was speechless. "You…what?"
Was he that thick-headed? Raye marveled. He was such a smart guy…surely he could see… "I am her friend. And I know she has to feel the same as you to some extent."
"Yes. This day has been really nice—and I'm sure she would enjoy it just the same, especially the milkshake part."
Darien laughed. "All right then, you have me convinced. Just one thing though…"
He leaned forward and kissed her. Raye's mind froze in shock. Half of her wanted to take back what she had just told him, and the other half knew that Serena and Darien would be a good match. They broke apart (Raye remembered to start breathing again). "Thank you," he said. "Today was a nice day, and I enjoyed spending it with you. I won't forget this."
"Neither will I," she said.
"Can I walk you home?"
"Certainly." And together they journeyed back to the temple, with the twilight settling upon the edges of the day.