Disclaimer: I wish I owned Skip Beat!, however that does not make it true.
Authoress' Note: Merry Christmas to all Skip Beat! fans. This is my first time writing a fanfic for Skip Beat! and I hope that it will not be my last. Though it is only a one shot, I hope that you enjoy my little Christmas/New Year's present for all of you. Let me know what you think!
It all starts in 3...2...1...ACTION!
Kyoko looked around the Darumaya again and let out a breathy sigh.
The owners had gone to spend New Year's Eve with their family, and though they had invited Kyoko to come along, she had politely refused, explaining that she didn't want to intrude and that she had plenty to do that night: "Scripts to read, characters to develop, oh you know."
"You work too hard," Okami-san had told her while her and her husband had been getting ready to leave earlier that morning.
"I'll be fine. I'll make sure to relax a little bit too. Go enjoy yourselves. You're the ones who work too hard," Kyoko had answered, ushering them out.
Once they were out the door though, she felt lonely, but it was a necessary loneliness. She already imposed herself so much on the kind hearts of the Taisho and Okami-san of the Darumaya, she couldn't possibly impose herself on their family - and overnight too. The Taisho and Okami-san wouldn't be home until late tomorrow evening.
Kyoko, who really didn't have anything to do tonight, had decided that she would experiment with some new recipes and maybe watch the New Year's Eve special on television before going to sleep. While she lay on her bed, flipping through a cookbook, she heard a strange buzzing coming from her purse.
It didn't immediately click that it was her cell phone, but as soon as it did, she leapt from her bed and dug through her purse rapidly to answer it before the call went to voice mail. The number was unlisted so she couldn't be sure of who it was, but she had a guess.
"Hello?" she asked when she answered the buzzing phone.
Kyoko held the phone closer to her ear.
"Tsuruga-san! Happy New Year's Eve!" she exclaimed happily.
"And to you, Mogami-san," he replied evenly.
"So why are you calling? I thought you'd be at some big party tonight," she started after a second.
"I don't really enjoy large parties," he answered her. "I was actually calling to enquire after your own plans."
"My plans?" Kyoko asked surprised. A sudden blush came to her cheeks and she managed to stutter: "I have no plans actually. I'm by myself at the Darumaya tonight."
"By yourself?" Ren asked her.
"Yeah. The Taisho and Okami-san went to their relatives' place earlier. I was just going to relax a little."
"Well then. It seems my invitation won't be in vain. I was hoping that if you weren't otherwise occupied tonight, you would consent to join me at my place."
Kyoko was stunned into silence. She had finally accepted that her and Ren were more than just sempai and kohai. Friends maybe. Not like her and Moko-san of course. But to invite her over to his place? And not to help him out or anything, but just because.
"Please don't say no," Ren continued, "it would hurt my feelings."
Kyoko could imagine the brilliant smile he would flash her if they were face to face right now. She couldn't turn him down. She had already told him that she had no other plans and it would just be rude to reject an invitation he had personally extended to her.
"I'll come right on over," she answered after another second of delay, "it'll take me a while to get there of course. And what do you want to eat? If you're having me over, the least I can do is cook dinner for you. I'll have to stop at the grocery store then. Maybe I should take my bike. That means that I have to go find the basket–"
Ren interrupted Kyoko's rambling. "I'll come get you."
And then he hung up, making all of the arguments Kyoko immediately came up with utterly useless.
She sat there in stunned silence, the entire conversation too surreal for her to really understand what had just transpired. And then it came to her suddenly. "Tsuruga-san is coming to pick me up. I'm spending New Year's Eve with him. How did that happen?" she asked herself.
She immediately picked up her phone and dialed him back, at the very least to tell him that he didn't need to pick her up - because she definitely could not reject his invitation - but his phone was turned off. There was nothing else she could do then. He was on her way to pick her up, so at the very least she could be ready to go when he got there.
Kyoko sighed heavily before rapidly getting up and throwing on one of her nicer pairs of dark wash jeans and a red blouse. A simple pair of black running shoes was what she pulled on her feet, and as for her hair, she simple pulled a brush through it so that it looked presentable. Quickly, so that she would be sure to be the one waiting for Ren instead of the other way around, she found her purse and made sure there was cash in it so that she could pay for any ingredients that she would have to get when Ren told her what he wanted to eat. Then she went to the door of the Darumaya with her keys in hand to wait.
Ren pulled up two minutes later, and before she could inconvenience him anymore by making him have to get out of the car to come get her, she zipped out of the Darumaya, locking the door rapidly behind her, and flew to his car where she immediately opened the door and jumped in.
Ren stared at her in awe. "I never knew that you could move so fast," he told her, barely keeping in his laughter.
Kyoko blushed before replying, "I didn't want to inconvenience you anymore than I already have."
"It's not an inconvenience," he told her, starting the car, "I was the one who invited you. It's my responsibility to make sure you make it to my place safely."
"I could make it there on my own you know," she huffed.
"Of course you could," Ren answered her, "but you're a kind person and you let me do these things because you care about my feelings."
Kyoko didn't respond to this and Ren was afraid that he had maybe teased her a little too much, so he asked her about the one thing he knew would animate her instantly.
"So, you said you were going to cook me dinner?" he asked her trying to encourage her to speak again.
Kyoko was immediately reanimated and she began to babble again to Ren's delight. "Oh yeah! What do you want for dinner. Since you're hosting me the least I can do is cook for you!"
"Hmm. How are you with cooking American style foods?" he inquired.
"Well enough. Anything particular in mind?" she continued her own questioning.
"Hamburger and french fries. A milkshake maybe. You can't really get good hamburgers, fries, or milkshakes in Japan," Ren answered her oddly sheepishly.
"Well you're in luck then. My hamburgers and french fries are well loved by Moko-san and personally I think I make a mean milkshake," Kyoko said happily. "So do you have ground beef, potatoes, flour, salt, eggs, milk–"
"You know my eating habits. We need to get all of it," he interrupted her. "Don't worry. I'll pay for everything."
"Oh no!" Kyoko started to protest. "Tsuruga-san, let me. I'm the one who insisted on cooking you a meal to thank you for your invitation."
"But it's my fault that there's nothing in the house. Think of it as my grocery shopping," he explained to her with a bright smile.
Kyoko's heart stopped beating in her chest for a second and as soon as she had recovered, she turned away from Ren and busied herself staring out the window.
She couldn't understand why he had such an effect on her. He was her sempai. Her friend. What could it possibly be? She knew what it wasn't though. The one thing it couldn't be. Love. Because she wasn't capable of loving right now. She'd been hurt too bad.
Thankfully, they arrived at the grocery store and Kyoko rushed in before Ren had even put the car in park. By the time he had put on a hat and entered the store, Kyoko had already picked up everything she needed and all that was left for him to do was pay and carry the bags to the car.
"You are fast!" Ren couldn't help but laughing this time as he and Kyoko climbed back into the car.
"I just didn't want you to be noticed in the store," she answered with a shy smile.
"Well, thank-you, Mogami-san. You are very considerate," he told her as they drove back to his home.
A minute of silence passed after that which Kyoko finally had to break: "I am very grateful that you invited me to spend the evening with you, but I do have to ask why. I am sure that there are other people you'd much rather be with than me."
Ren groaned internally. Every time he tried to make progress with Kyoko, he never seemed to get anywhere. When he had called, he had hoped that maybe if he told Kyoko he was alone on New Year's Eve she would invite him to spend it with her and the owners of the Darumaya, but upon hearing that she was all alone, without thinking, he had invited her to his place instead. Not that he was regretting his invitation, but Kyoko seemed to think that it only originated out of pity or something to that effect.
"Kyoko. Who did I invite to my place? You. I want to spend the night with you," Ren told her in one of the most obvious displays of his affection to date.
Of course it didn't have the effect that he wanted. Kyoko blushed furiously at the use of her first name and didn't hear much of what he said after that. Ren groaned inwardly again, but let the subject drop as they were almost at his place anyway, and he knew that cooking would make Kyoko forget everything else.
Upon their arrival at his apartment, Ren carried the grocery bags upstairs while Kyoko, who walked alongside him, started muttering about what she needed to do. Entering his apartment, Kyoko told him to set the grocery bags on the kitchen table and to go watch television while she made dinner.
"I can help you," Ren offered.
Kyoko smiled brightly at him before turning away from him and ignoring his offer. "Go watch tv. I'll let you know when dinner's done."
And so Ren went and sat down by the television and turned on the New Year's Eve special that was already counting down the minutes until the new year began even though it wasn't even nine o'clock. While he stared at the tv, not seeing it, he listened to Kyoko's movement in the kitchen and smiled whenever he heard something clatter and her ensuing curse. He resolved then to ask her to spend the night in the guest bedroom, knowing that if he made it sound like a reasonable thing and the greatest convenience for both of them, she would agree.
Suddenly, the smell of hamburgers and french fries was overpowering. He turned to the kitchen door and saw Kyoko coming out, carrying a tray with two hamburgers, a bunch of condiments and a plate of french fries.
"I didn't know what you'd like to put on your hamburger so I just brought it all out," she said upon seeing where his gaze was fixed.
"It smells really good," Ren offered.
"Well I hope it meets your expectations."
"I'm sure it will exceed them," Ren praised Kyoko, causing her to blush violently again.
"I need to go get the milkshakes," Kyoko immediately stated, rushing back off to the kitchen.
Not even thirty seconds later, Ren heard a loud shriek as the blender started up. Unable to sit in curiosity, he stood up and entered the kitchen to see perhaps the funniest sight of the entire year.
Kyoko stood at one of his kitchen counters, his blender plugged into the wall with a white frothy mixture in it. That same white frothy mixture was also all over the counter, the cupboards nearby, and Kyoko - who stood as still as a statue. Ren could see the blender's lid on the floor at Kyoko's feet. He couldn't help himself. He burst out laughing while Kyoko was only able to stare at him, in shock at the pleasant sound.
When Ren had recovered from his surprising outburst, he noticed that Kyoko had yet to move.
"Mogami-san," he began as he slowly approached her. "You really should get yourself cleaned up. I can take care of things in here. I should have warned you that the lid needed to be really tightly secured. I'm sorry I didn't think of it sooner, I hardly ever use the blender anymore. You can wash your shirt in the sink and I'll get one of mine for you to throw on while it dries out. Your pants should be fine - they don't seem to have much milkshake on them."
Kyoko was still silent.
'Drastic times,' Ren thought before he did something that he knew would get Kyoko moving and out of her cold, wet shirt. He stuck out a finger and wiped a little bit of the milkshake from Kyoko's face. Then he popped the finger in his mouth. "Delicious," he murmured softly, "but it's cold. You really should change. You might get sick."
Kyoko nodded her head and booked it from the kitchen to the bathroom like a scared rabbit.
Ren sighed loudly and disappeared to grab one of his shirts to leave by the bathroom door. Kyoko meanwhile was standing in the bathroom with her back leaning up against the door. The sound of Ren's happy laughter had made her heart beat faster. And then when he had traced his finger through the milkshake on her face and popped it in his mouth, her heart had stopped entirely. What was she feeling?
Kyoko was so frustrated that she wanted to start beating her head against the bathroom wall, but knew that would only bring Ren running in concern for her. She settled with rapping her head with her fists until she had calmed down enough to realize that Ren was right and that she would be encouraging a cold if she didn't get out of her soaking shirt.
She stripped it off with all the elegance of a five year old and tossed it in the sink where she ran cold water over it until she was satisfied that the ice cream mixture had been rinsed out. Then she hung the shirt on the edge of the bathtub so that it could dry. She remembered Ren saying that he would leave a shirt for her by the bathroom door, so she walked back to the bathroom's entrance and placed her ear against the door. When she was sure that no one was in the hallway, she opened the door no more than was necessary for her to grab the shirt that was sitting there for her use. She slipped it on and strode out of the bathroom to be met with the sight of Ren sitting on the couch, two glasses of frothy white milkshake next to the burgers, fries, and condiments on the table in front of him.
"I poured what was left in the blender into two glasses. It seemed too good to waste," he told her.
"Thanks for the shirt," was her reply while she bowed to him.
The shirt was huge on her, but Ren thought the effect was charming. It looked almost like she was wearing a dress over her dark skinny jeans.
"Thanks for the meal," Ren responded, inviting her to sit down with him so they could start eating.
"This is just as delicious as the milkshake," he told her after he had put some of the condiments on his burger and taken a large bite. Then he sampled the fries and told her they were also good.
"I'm glad you like them," she said, turning her eyes downward while she ate her own hamburger.
The two of them watched some musicians perform on the New Year's special while they ate, as well as some interviews with celebrities. Eventually, they both finished their burgers and were eating from the plate of fries when their hands both closed over the last one.
"You can have it Tsuruga-san!" Kyoko immediately apologized pulling her hand away.
"No, no," Ren insisted, "you cooked. You can have it."
"I insist that you take it as my sempai," Kyoko continued.
"Well then, I instruct that you eat it as my kohai," Ren argued back.
The two were at a standstill over a single, little french fry. Finally, Ren suggested that they play rock-paper-scissors for it.
"Rock, paper, scissors," Kyoko muttered before her and Ren's hands took shape.
"You're supposed to pick something different from me," Ren teased Kyoko when the two of them both showed scissors.
Kyoko didn't let him get to her for once. "Again," she said before they both went through the motions of the game.
"I think it's your fault!" Kyoko exclaimed finally after they had played seven times, both of them picking the same thing each game. "You can read my mind or something, and you're trying to drive me crazy. You know what? Here!" she said as she took the last fry, broke it in half and shoved part of it into Ren's mouth, the other half in her own. "Problem solved."
Ren swallowed the fry and laughed. "So what do you want to do now that we've eaten dinner?"
"Actually," Kyoko began shyly, "there's still more."
"More?" Ren asked confused.
"Yes, more," Kyoko answered, "just sit tight."
Ren obeyed and waited until Kyoko walked back into the room with a steaming apple pie in her hands.
"How did you have time to make that?"
Kyoko shrugged. "Ever since I had to cook for Hizuri-san I've gotten better at cooking faster and making big portions."
Ren smiled. His father's black hole of a stomach was as legendary as his acting prowess. He ate the large slice of pie that Kyoko gave him dutifully and with a smile on his face - it was delicious even though it was far too much food.
After they finished their pie, Kyoko was insistent on washing the dishes, and Ren was insistent on helping her. While Kyoko scrubbed the plates and pans, Ren dried them and put them away. Finally he got up the courage to ask her what he had resolved to during his earlier meditation.
"Mogami-san. You really should spend the night. Once the new year starts it'll already be very late and I don't want you going home alone - it would be unsafe. I would drive you myself of course, but I already feel tired and it would be unsafe to get behind the wheel of a car. I might fall asleep on my way home," Ren said guiltily, because he was definitely very awake right now and more than capable of driving Kyoko home. But just having Kyoko in the room next to him for the night was too much for him to pass up.
Ren groaned inwardly for the umpteenth time that evening. He was pathetic. Pathetic enough to lie to the girl he loved just so that he could spend more time in the same apartment as her. Then he scolded himself some more because he needed to be paying attention to this conversation so as to keep Kyoko from convincing herself it was okay to leave.
"Really, I'll be fine walking home," Kyoko was insisting.
"Mogami-san. I would feel so much better if you would stay here since I am unable to bring you safely home," Ren said, knowing that her desire to make everyone happy would render her incapable of leaving his home.
"Oh...Putting it that way, I guess I'll stay then. I mean, I'd be going home to an empty place anyways. Though this is quite inappropriate since you are in a sense my teacher, but I guess it makes sense under the circumstances," Kyoko finally replied.
Ren let out the most minuscule sigh of relief that he hadn't had to argue with her anymore and he finished drying the dishes that Kyoko washed without speaking another word until they were all done. By this point in time it was almost eleven o'clock, and there was only an hour of the year left.
While Ren and Kyoko settled onto Ren's couch to watch what remained of the New Year's Eve special together, both reflected silently on what they had accomplished during the year.
Ren felt like a failure, for he had made hardly any progress with Kyoko since giving her the rose for her birthday last year. His acting career had continued to flourish, and he was still ranked as Japan's number one celebrity according to the New Year's special he had been watching all evening, though disturbingly enough, Sho had been ranked as number two - luckily Kyoko had been cooking during that particular segment.
Kyoko meanwhile was thinking about how rapidly her career had thrived in the last year, and how quickly she was gaining popularity as an actress. She hoped sincerely that in the new year she'd get more leading roles and that her name would be more well known. The thing though, was that she wanted this for herself and not for the sake of beating Shotaro. It made her very happy to realize this, so under this happy glow, she resolved to turn her attention to something that had been bothering her during the year...
How her heart sped up in the presence of Tsuruga Ren. It had even happened tonight. She couldn't figure out why. If this had been last year, she would have said that it was because she was scared of him, but that was no longer the case. She respected him, but that should not mean that her heart would speed up or altogether stop in his presence. And it was often more particularly his smile that did it than his mere presence.
She actually sighed aloud after all this musing, which brought Ren out of his own musing. The two started chatting amicably while they watched the countdown show continue. And finally there were only five minutes of the year left.
"Under the circumstances, I was wondering if you would like to toast the New Year with a small glass of champagne like they do in America?" Ren asked Kyoko standing up to get himself a glass.
"Umm," Kyoko began. "I guess just a little bit would be okay," she finished not wanting to reject his kind offer. It's not like he was trying to get her drunk after all. He was being polite.
"This is shaping up to be quite an American New Year's Eve," she commented while Ren busied himself pouring a full glass of champagne for himself and a third of a glass for Kyoko.
"And why would you say that?" Ren asked her coming back to sit with her and presenting her with the drink.
She placed it on the table in front of her while she replied, "The food, the lack of Japanese traditions, the champagne toast. I mean, I guess it's not really an American styled celebration, but it's definitely not the traditional Japanese one I'm used to."
"Hmm. Would you be opposed to performing another American tradition then?" he murmured.
Kyoko replied that that was fine with her, but Ren said nothing more on the subject, feeling a little nervous about what he was about to do and hoping that it would not utterly ruin his relationship with Kyoko. His time spent in thought on this last year's progress - or lack thereof - had made him realize that she would never know his feelings unless he acted more boldly.
Kyoko, a little confused by his lack of reply heard the thirty second countdown beginning on the television and called Ren's name. "Tsuruga-san! It's almost time!"
Ren snapped to attention and listened as the countdown got closer and closer to the magical number.
"Ten, nine, eight-" Kyoko counted along with the people on the television with a smile on her face. Ren joined in, "seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, Happy New Year!"
Kyoko turned to face Ren, a bright smile on her face and held her glass of champagne up to his. The glasses clinked and Kyoko took a sip from her's before placing it back down on the table. Ren followed suit, and then when his hands were free of the glass, he placed them on either side of Kyoko's face and brought his lips to her's in a quick, chaste kiss.
Kyoko's heart sped up.
"Another American tradition," Ren began explaining, "it's supposed to drive evil spirits away in the new year."
Kyoko could heartily agree. All of her little demons had been dazzled away and she wasn't sure if they would be coming back this time. The speed of her heart beat was increasing again and she knew that she had to figure out why.
"I hope you don't think it was too inappropriate of me," Ren continued explaining with a smile on his face. Inside, he was in turmoil. He hoped that he hadn't driven Kyoko away with his bold move. Sho had done the same thing on Valentine's day - stealing a kiss from Kyoko. It had upset her so much then, but he hoped that was only because it was Sho who had done the stealing. And yet he was so happy that he had been able to kiss the girl he loved in a tradition he had never participated in before. His smile was genuine, even if the unaffected tone of his voice was not.
Kyoko was in her own state of turmoil trying to figure out what her palpitating heart could possibly mean. Ren's smile wasn't helping her at all - it wasn't allowing her heart to slow down in the least. She realized suddenly that she loved his smile. As much as it put her off her guard, it was beautiful, and when he directed it at her, she felt safe, she felt happy, and she felt loved. Love. Love. Love.
It all came back to love. And as impossible as it was, she was realizing slowly that the very thing she had thought herself incapable of was what she was feeling. She loved Ren. She loved him. She was capable of loving someone, and who she loved was Ren. With her entire heart. And he had just kissed her. She was in his apartment, alone with him, and he had just kissed her.
She loved him.
Could she bear the heartbreak if he didn't feel the same way as her? Yes. Yes she could. Because he had brought back an emotion she thought would be gone forever, and he hadn't done anything to hurt her. He would never intentionally hurt her. He cared for her. Maybe not the same way she cared for him, but all this time that she had thought he was just her sempai - he really had showed her more care than any sempai would show their kohai. She could trust him with her feelings. She could trust him to be honest with her. She could trust him not to hurt her intentionally with his actions and his words.
And what did she have to lose? Nothing would come if she didn't let him know - she might only be more hurt if she didn't deal with her feelings. What if Ren started going out with someone else? Wouldn't it be better if she had already accepted that he didn't feel the same way for her?
Kyoko was brought out of her thinking by Ren's voice. He was right in front of her and there was real concern in his eyes.
She glanced at the clock and saw that it was already 12:10. She had been in her own world for more than five minutes. How long could Ren have been trying to get her attention for?
"Are you alright?" he asked her when she focused her eyes back on him.
Did he love her?
She didn't care.
She reached out and grabbed his face in her hands and brought her lips to his in a kiss very unlike the one he had given her. Her kiss was full of need, full of desire, full of her long bottled up emotion. It was in no way quick pr chaste.
Ren, who had long wanted to do this couldn't help but respond and threw caution to the wind. He wrapped his arms around Kyoko's waist and pulled her closer to him, deepening the kiss at the same time. Instead of pulling away from him like he had feared she would upon his enthusiastic response, Kyoko moved her hands from the side of Ren's face to his hair and pressed her body closer to his.
When they broke apart, both of them gasping for air, Kyoko was the first one to speak, and her words brought such happiness to Ren who, even in spite of Kyoko's sudden kiss and reaction to his impulse, had thought he had ruined everything.
"Ren, I think I love you."
Ren responded by lightly kissing her.
"Kyoko, I have loved you for so long now. Last year at this time, you were already the only person on my mind."
Kyoko stared at him in shock.
"It's true," Ren continued. "Every little thing I did to try and make you see, without scaring you away forever, you misconstrued as the actions of a sempai towards his kohai. I knew how wary you were of love and how you said you couldn't feel it anymore, but I cared for you and I wanted you to know without ruining our acquaintance. I didn't want to lose you."
Ren kissed her again.
"Do you really think you love me, Kyoko? That you could love me?" he asked her, pulling away from her for a moment.
"I do. I love you now, and I think that I've loved you for a while. I was just too scared of what I was feeling to acknowledge what it really was," she told him, knowing as soon as she said it, that it was the truth.
And it was her turn to kiss him again as she closed the distance between them.
Suddenly, Ren's phone began buzzing and he regrettably pulled away from Kyoko to answer it. She was not completely deterred by the interruption however and took the opportunity to cuddle against his chest with his free arm wrapped around her.
"Hello?" Ren said as he answered the phone.
"Ah, Ren! Happy New Year!" Kyoko heard Takarada Lory's voice boom from the other end.
Kyoko briefly wondered why Lory would take time away from whatever extravagant party he was currently throwing to call Ren.
"And to you, Takarada-san," Ren replied. "So why are you calling me when I'm sure you have plenty of guests to entertain?" Ren asked while he stroked Kyoko's hair with his free hand. He marveled at how well their two bodies fit together and how easy this all was for her to accept. For him, it had been his longstanding dream and he was just happily enjoying the feeling of her reciprocating his love.
"Well, I was wondering if you had heard from Kyoko-chan actually. Maria-chan had so very much wanted her to come to our place tonight for the party, but I didn't have time to start calling her until late this evening, and then I couldn't get in touch with anyone at the Darumaya, and she hasn't been answering her cell all evening. I hope she's alright," Lory explained.
Kyoko, who had heard every word Lory had said, extended her hand asking for the phone. Ren obviously complied to her wish and placed his cell in her hand. She immediately brought it to her ear and spoke into the speaker: "Why don't you ask me yourself, Takarada-san?"
"Kyoko-chan!" Lory exclaimed happily before he was immediately confused. "Why are you with Ren?" he asked suddenly and suspiciously.
"I can't welcome the new year with the man I love?" Kyoko asked him with all the naivete of an innocent child in her voice.
Lory was actually stunned into silence and Kyoko handed the phone back to Ren.
"Takarada-san? Are you alright?" Ren asked when he heard nothing on the other end of the line.
And then both him and Kyoko heard the sound of crying coming from the phone. "Why are you letting me interrupt you, you stupid, stupid boy," Lory exclaimed through his tears and then promptly hung up the phone.
Ren placed his phone back on the table and hugged Kyoko to him.
"Takarada-san knew how you felt?" Kyoko asked him.
"I'm pretty sure that everyone except you knew," Ren answered her, kissing her on the forehead.
Kyoko laughed. "Well, at least I know now," she told him, tilting her head up for another kiss.
And thus, Kyoko graduated from the Love Me section.