A/N: Wow, it's been a while since I last updated this. I'll admit, I got lazy with the upkeep since I had to find my other binder folder with the next line of chapters in it. That's why this update took so long. Anyway I can't go on neglecting it now can I? So, without further adieu, here's the next chapter.
I do not own Sailor Moon.
Arc 2: Chapter 21:Wedding day.
The sun was just about to rise as the gray of the sky took on a new meaning. Although outside it was calm, inside two different houses a ruckus was being started. It wasn't bad, but it was clear that the madness was overwhelming. The home Haruka and Michiru shared was among the largest, and thus Usagi, and the brides maids were clustered inside scrambling to get ready. There were three bathrooms, but sadly only two of them contained a shower, so modesty was left forgotten as the mirrors were clogged both with steam, and the reflections of faces trying to do makeup.
"Stupid thing!" Rei all but yelled as she slammed down her eyeliner. "Minako, wheres you bag, my pencil needs sharpening."
"I'll tell you that as soon as you tell me where the hell the cover-up is!" The blond screeched as Setsuna passed them with two more dresses in hand, almost tripping in the process.
"Who's ever blush this is, I'm going to bum some!" Shouted Makoto from the other bathroom down the hall.
"That's fine." Came the chorus of Rei and Minako. Setsuna's voice was also there some place, but much quieter.
"Rei, your dress is in the green bag, Minako, yours is in the blue." Setsuna explained passing two dresses covered with protective plastic into the bathroom before she undressed. "Move, I still need my shower."
"Oh, whoops." Minako laughed, getting out of the way before she finished her mascara.
"Do you really need to do that now of all times?" Rei wondered aloud, although, she really hadn't wanted an answer. Thankfully, Setsuna didn't voice one, loss of her bathrobe and the sounds of the glass door being closed were enough of an answer. Even if the glass obscured Setsuna's frame, it was painfully obvious that she had a very nice body. She often didn't flaunt it, but Setsuna had also been a bombshell in her younger years. Even now, Rei was willing to bet that the older woman could still put many women to shame merely by standing in one place, that was, if that shower door wasn't lying.
Coughing, she recomposed herself, going back to her makeup. Her momentary blushing hadn't been lost on Minako, who by this point knew Rei's mind had hit the gutter. The blond took a rare sort of pity on her, forgoing the remark she could of said, and there were a great many she could have chosen from. Instead, she merely checked her bra one more time, and went about placing on her dress. Thankfully, it wasn't a pullover style. The sound of a baby screeching echoed through the hall before the child quieted down again.
The entire morning had been nothing but havoc and it didn't look like it was going to die down any time soon. Ami had taken Hotaru for the time being as she laughed at the gigantic knot that was currently Makoto's hair. The tall girl always ranted about it, but never did anything to change it. "This is so stupid. I keep saying I should just cut it all off. It would be so much easier. You know, Zoisite has such nice manageable hair, and I'm left with this rats nest!" She worked more leave in conditioner through the strand of naturally unruly hair. "I don't think any one really knows how much time I spend trying to get this...thing...to behave in the morning."
"Well, perhaps if you didn't roll around so much in your sleep you wouldn't have that issue." Ami replied softly with an amused smile.
"Yeah, because we know that the sex last night has nothing to do with it." She smirked at the red hue that comment produced upon porcelain cheeks and went back to her hair.
"Makoto, not in front of Hotaru." Thinking how that could sound she quickly amended the statement. "Or anyone else."
"Besides the fact she's a baby and wouldn't care anyway, neither would the others." Came the off handed reply as Makoto focused on her task at hand.
After almost ten minuets of just trying to gt the tangles out she sighed, none too gently slamming the brush on the counter top. After finding the pins she was looking for, she began the slow task of clipping her hair back and away from her face. It was then a trouble making, sandy blond, made herself known. She was sneaking around, hoping no one would notice her. So far, it seemed as everyone had given her the luxury to be left alone, but she didn't know how much longer her dignity would last. She wasn't about to find out either.
"Ah, there you are..." Haruka sighed as she came to claim her child. "Come on kiddo, let's escape before Setsuna catches us."
"Going to go help the men are you?" Ami saw right through Haruka's plan. "Or are you just running away?"
"Yeah, I can't let my little girl be brainwashed just yet, and you people will do just that." Makoto rolled her eyes as she put another pin in place she wasn't about retort though.
"Dare I ask what happened now?" The entire morning had been nothing short of a complete and total rush, even Ami could agree with that.
"This house is swimming with entirely too much estrogen. I need to get out, or next thing I know my daughter will be the next on the list of fru-fru loving girly girls..." That caused Ami to almost fall backwards as she sat on the side of the tub, Makoto wasn't any better as she pulled a few strands of hair harder than she intended causing her to curse while she doubled over laughing. " I don't see what's so funny, but enjoy yourselves. I refuse to stay here and allow my daughter to be corrupted this early in life." Haruka's departure from the bathroom only caused more laughter from the two girls.
As all of the upstairs ruckus continued, Usagi was being fussed over downstairs. "They sure are cackling like idiots up there. What happened now?" Setsuna spoke offhandedly as she adjusted the towel on her head, her long hair wasn't completely dry yet. It seemed on cue, Haruka didn't wait a moment sooner, taking the diaper bag, the cold pack filled for the very long day, and the car seat making her escape. All the wile grumbling about the fact babies didn't need to be shoved into such things when they were that little. "Ah, I see..." She trailed off, her question already answered.
"I told you she was going to go hide." Michiru rolled her eyes as she saw the tall blond walk out of the door with her daughter.
"That's why Saeko's going to ambush her when they hit the door." Setsuna had planned ahead for this.
"Yeah, where are the boys getting ready anyway?" Michiru asked as she continued to braid the long strands of Usagi's hair.
"My dad's house." Walking into the kitchen Ami couldn't help but giggle at the blond waterfall Michiru was trying to manage. "She left already didn't she?"
"Like a bat out of hell." Setsuna agreed. "Hmm, I just don't know what to say to do for the nail polish."
"How can you not know Sets, you have like fifty in front of you." The light jab from Michiru was pointedly ignored.
"I may not be the authority of beauty, fashion or anything...but, the saying goes that she'll need something blue." Ami tapped her chin in careful thought. Then she walked over to the table she took in the assortment of different colors. "You could go with a very light, almost pale blue if you wanted. Speaking of that, what was the rest of that rhyme...I wish I could remember. There was a something blue, but what was the rest of it?"
"What you can't remember?" Minako walked down into the kitchen half naked uncaring that her bra and scant panties were the only things covering her as she bummed some of the nail polish.
"The old wedding thing..." Ami answered offhandedly.
"Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue?" Minako filled in sitting at the table beginning to give herself a manicure.
"Yes, that would be the one." Ami nodded.
"Yeah, it's a pretty fun...as is having victims deal with the garter." After stealing a nail file and a few different colors, she nabbed a few for Rei too.
Ami turned blood red and squeaked "Do I even want to know?"
"No, no you don't." Minako affirmed, although the grin on her face spelled trouble as she skipped up back upstairs.
Everyone in the kitchen watched Minako take her leave before Setsuna sighed, shaking her head. "She seems entirely too pleased with herself." She was paying very little attention, instead toying with a few polish colors trying too see if she could come up with a decent blue. "Perhaps if I mix this blue?" She was talking to herself again, trying to figure out what to do. "No, not light enough..." Something Setsuna often did when she was working in her shop, or sewing. "Too dark." Idly she could hear the others talking around her, but it was mostly tuned out...that is, until Usagi brought up the bouquet. "This one."
"If I were you, I wouldn't catch the flower arrangement at the reception." Usagi warned Ami, although truth be told, she wasn't sure about that entire game.
"I don't think Ami's the one who needs to worry." Setsuna spoke dryly. "I fear it'll be me. Those Aino's are at it again I bet...stupid meddlers."
"Why are you throwing a flower arrangement in the first place?" The pure look of confusion that graced Ami's face was all too amusing, and thankfully Michiru came to the rescue.
"In some weddings the bride throws the flower arrangement behind her and one of the single women catch it. Who ever does is the next to be married."
"You're living with Makoto, so I'd hardly call you single." Usagi added, still confused. "I think you're safe."
"She may get off lucky, but I'm not." Setsuna grumbled. She did not want to catch that stupid arrangement. "I hardly call a few casual dates anything steady. Therefore, I have a very bad feeling that somebody is going to do something." She went to work finishing Usagi's nails now having found the perfect color. Michiru was still stuck with the never ending task of braids, and she grimaced slightly when she realized that she wasn't anywhere near done. Ami went back upstairs to get ready, the day had only just begun, but there was way to much needing to be completed.
While the girls gossiped, dressed, fussed, and everything else expected when preparing for a wedding, the men were better off. Well, for the most part. The wedding was going to big, not that it wasn't expected, but still, big normally meant hectic, and that meant disarray. Between the many ties that the men seemed to tangle, vests that were rumpled, and shirts that were crinkled there was still a mess of other things needing to be done. Spilled clone in the bathroom gave a pungent order for anyone who passed the door, let alone stepped into the room. Shoes needed polishing and on top of everything, some people were running late.
The women who were there helped in any way they could, namely, ironing shirts, ties, suits, and anything else they boys would end up wearing. "Honestly, this is crazy, who knew a bunch of grown men would fail to be ready...this is just nuts." Ikuko clicked her tongue as she tried to iron the suit her son would be wearing. "It's one thing when I find my son's suit in the closet, on the floor. It's another completely when I find my husband's in the exact same manner. Look at this! How am I going to get the lint off?"
"You know how bad they are about it. We leave them alone for five minuets and look what they do. Such a mess already." Mrs. Aino continued her current task of dealing with the jumble of ties that sat in the corner. "We should have seen this coming. Your husband is as bad as mine, and you can't expect Shingo to know these kinds of things." Yanking another from the messy ball of silk she gave up, leaving them alone on the counter top.
"Nor do I expect to find his suit in the corner of the closet collecting dust bunnies." Ikuko sighed out, finished with the top half, going to the pants. "It's called a hanger...they need to use it!"
"That's our sons for you." Saeko rolled her eyes "Jadeite! Where are you?" She shouted trying to locate her boy.
"What?" He snapped coming down the stairs. "I'm right here, what do you want?"
"Get dressed, and tell your father that his suit had better be pressed and if it's not he better haul his butt down here and get ready." Then she flattened his hair properly on his head giving him a reprimanding look. "Be good today. No pranks, tricks, and do not, under any circumstances terrorize your sister." The warning was only scoffed at as he ran back up stairs, the shower was currently invaded by Zoisite, and Mamoru had already left an hour before hand with his band of groomsmen. "And keep your hair down!" Spiky hair was one thing when it looked nice, but a bed head was simply not acceptable for a wedding.
"Really now, I don't see why they had to turn this into an entire rigmarole." Ikuko shook her head. Finally at least appeased with her son's garment, she called Shingo from the living room telling him to find a place to dress. Lacking any sort of modesty, he chose the kitchen. "I didn't mean here..." Her annoyed look was enough of a warning. "I raised you better than that. At least I thought I did."
"Here's a good a place as any, besides it's just my boxers, not like you should care." He shrugged. "You guys are going to be late if you don't haul butt though, least you forget about the fact I'm one of the ones standing in the wedding. Zoisite too." He looked around noticing the tall man was no place to be found. His mother placed his tie around his neck, being sure to fix it for him. "He sure is taking forever."
"Speak for yourself." The man butted in, coming down the stairs dressed to the nines. "I have already dressed, and we aren't going to be late, we will have a car once Haruka gets here." Then he looked at his watch and fished out a tie from the mess that matched his look completely, making sure to tuck it in properly. "Knowing Mamoru, even if he looks ready, he's all over the place. You and I are going to have to put his head back on."
"He's kinda dumb." Shingo agreed earning a look from his mother.
"Come now, he isn't that bad, is he?" Saeko didn't know him well enough to be a good judge of character. "At least I hope he isn't."
"Yeah he is..." Shingo laughed. "Usagi isn't any better though."
"Now you be nice." His mother scolded. "Remember to mind your manners today of all days."
"Usagi isn't nearly as bad." Zoisite added. "However, Mamoru tends to lack the common logic of preparing everything until the last minuet. He could have planned for fifty years and he still wouldn't be ready, that's just how he is." They all heard a car drive up and Zoisite nodded. "That's our ride, come on, let's go meet up with everyone else." He looked at Saeko, Michiru had warned her to be ready. "I hope you can deal with getting those two ready."
"I'm already prepared for Haruka." Saeko nodded pointing too the blazer Haruka was going to wear, and then held up the frilly dress Setsuna had made for the baby. "And I've got Hotaru's dress too."
"Poor Haruka." Zoisite shook his head... "Poor, poor Haruka."
"Poor Haruka? Poor me!" Mrs. Aino laughed. "It's going to take the lot of us just to get Haruka ready fast enough, never mind the baby."
The day was a total blur after that. It had been driving to the wedding, getting everyone ready, seating the guests, and everything in between. Those standing for the wedding had been crammed into Rei's room waiting to be told what to do. The service was going to be outdoor, and thus every folding chair on the face of the planet had been shoved outside. The weather was cool, but very beautiful. The brides maids and groomsmen were the comical part of everything seeing as it was very...unconventional.
Usagi was stunning. Her white wedding dress was simple and easy to walk in. Her hair not only braided, but done up into a weave made her veil perch atop her head beautifully. Mamoru was just as spiffy in his tux. For being a street punk in his younger years he had toned down and cleaned up rather well. His hair was slicked back, just as he liked it, white gloves on his hands only adding to his appearance. If that hadn't been enough, their wedding party was a small army in and of itself, all dressed to impress. The golden lining theme went for everyone in the wedding party, but other than that, the dresses differed greatly.
Zoisite was the best man, as expected giving his history with Mamoru, and Usagi's choice for maid of honor happened to be Makoto. It was something no one would have thought about as a logical idea, however it was fitting, even if it was a bit questionable at first. Makoto had been very good to Usagi in high school, and had it not been for her, and her brother Zoisite, she never would have met Mamoru in the first place...the good word the siblings had put in for him had been the only reason she had been allowed to date Mamoru in the first place, so with that being said, it felt only right. Most people had expected that it would have been a toss up between Rei and Minako, but either way, everyone was happy with the arrangement.
The service went by without issue, bar Hotaru deciding to squeal randomly causing some people to laugh. She ended up being passed around like a hot potato during most of the service. After the wedding vows went on longer than it seemingly needed too, "I do." was spoken, and a kiss given. Some people questioning if tongue was involved or not, much too the dismay of Ikuko who's overheard Mrs. Aino's bantering. From there is was the average exit, followed by the reception that the crown was going to be holding. The history the place held made it the ideal spot, and as soon as Makoto got there she shoved herself in the kitchen, making sure the staff knew what was going on. Dinner was three courses and she had to be sure they knew the order. She also told them to put the cart the cake sat on in front of the elevated table Usagi would sit at.
The cake...it was a masterpiece in fine artwork, and had taken several days of hard work to plan and complete. The cake stood tall amidst a floral pattern of white, pink, and red roses made from fondant and air brushed with food coloring. The lake made of crystallized sugar had a few fondant lilies placed on it as well, the entire thing topped off in the end with an edible photo paper on each level of the cake, filled with the faces of family and friends, the top a place for only one singular photo of Usagi and Mamoru, the first one they had ever taken together in a photo booth. The tables were round, and covered with white cloth, they forwent a seating chart since most of the guests would end up wandering around anyway. That's normally how it went. The seating started and the toasts arrived, some people wondered if some of the wedding party would stagger home drunk. There were so many speeches. Dinner arrived plated elegantly in three separate courses, and soon after that the different dances commenced.
All in all it was a beautiful reception, just like the wedding itself had been. The final song was one of beauty, one of romance, that sent Usagi and Mamoru across the dance floor elegantly, beautifully. After that, they were off to enjoy a honeymoon alone while a few others cleaned up the mess. Setsuna had stayed behind to clean, and she was one of the few who had fallen victim to Minako's harassment. "I'm going to kill her...slowly." The annoyed growl didn't go unnoticed by Ami who was still embarrassed by the earlier situation.
"Really? I thought it was highly comical. You should have seen the look on your face!" Rei cackled. Minako had really livened things up.
"That was lewd, crude and everything in between!" Ami snapped back. "There are just some things I'd rather not witness! EVER!"
"Agreed!" Setsuna tipped back the last bottle of sparkling cider. "I just can't believe your mother of all people went that far up."
"She was drunk, what do you expect!" The blush of humiliation covered Ami's face and the two of them nodded, fully agreeing on the next thought.
"Minako's a dead woman..."
In the hotel room that night Mamoru smiled softly at the woman in his arms. Usagi was so beautiful, had always been so. His hands trailed up her arms, silky smooth, soft, and warm. Even if her eyes were closed, he knew she was awake, enjoying the quiet time between the two of them. "Mamoru?" Her soft voice wafted into his ears like that of a soft melody. She sounded sleepy, but also content. "What are you thinking about?"
"Lots of things." It wasn't a lie. He had been reflecting about the day. It had been wonderful, but he had to be honest, he didn't feel any different. More complete perhaps, but they had already been living together long enough.
"Just random stuff really. Guy stuff." He shrugged, flashing a grin when her blue eyes opened gazing into his. "Like how sexy I think you are, how good you feel when you're in my arms like this, and that for the first time in my life, I can say I'm not worried about tomorrow or the day after."
Usagi was a gentle woman by nature. A little clumsy, almost always late for anything and everything. You'd never guess how perceptive she could be just by looking at her. Even those who were close could hardly guess the depth this woman had. "You'll always worry." She laughed quietly. "You always have and you always will." She snuggled in closer, his warm embrace something she sought after each and every night. "That's alright, I like it when you worry." She mocked what her father constantly preached. "Someone's got to after all."
With one arm still around his wife, Mamoru let his other hand fall below the sheets, caressing her body slowly, sensually. "I may worry constantly, but it'll be a different kind of worry. You can't teach a guy like me too many new tricks." He may not have been the best catch in the world, but right about now he thanked every deity known to man that she chose him. Usagi seemed amused but didn't say anything else, enjoying the quiet time. Looking up again she noticed his eyes flutter closed, drifting off into glorious slumber, dreaming in blissful memories and hopeful futures.
She shook her head lightly, a small smile on her face as she too did the same. "Love you Mamoru." She whispered.
Well, at least I got another chapter up. It's been a long time since I've sat and leafed through the papers for this fiction, so that's why it took so long. I really need to get back into the swing of things. Anyway, please leave a review. I know it's been a long wait, but now that I've taken a break, I feel ready to dive back into the near swimming pool of loose leaf paper that this fiction is written on, along with all of the binders and notepads to go with it...