B is for Backstage

Click, clock. Click, clock. Click, clock.

The sound of high heels clicking against the tiled floor echoed shamelessly in the silent and empty hallway. The owner of the high heels walked steadily down the narrow hallway with purpose, looking for a certain room. Her knee-length black spaghetti strap dress swayed around her legs, gracefully dancing in time to the faint music.

Following this same music to locate its source, the young girl glanced down the red velvet colored hallway, eyeing each door. The soft chime of a piano lured her towards a dark mahogany door with a brass knob. The piano could be heard playing from the inside, flowing soothingly when out of nowhere the tune faltered and a harsh curse was shouted.

Stiffling a laugh and turning the knob, the girl stepped into the dimly lit room. A grand, glossy black piano was in the middle of the room, taking up a lot of space. A young white-haired man in a dark pin striped suit sat on the piano bench, his fingers drumming rapidly across the white and black keys. His head was bent down, concentrating intensely on his work. A tall, lean floor lamp stood off to the side, providing a low and warm light.

The snow-haired boy faltered again and muttered another curse. The young girl standing in the doorway giggled which caught the pianist's attention. He lifted his head to look at the petite girl. A violet ribbon was wrapped around her waist, seeming to cut her black dress in half. Her light hair cascaded down to her shoulders. Two thin strands of hair framing her face were curled into loose corkscrews at the ends. On top of her head were two tufts of short strands of hair pulled into small pigtails. She smiled at him while her bright green eyes reflected it.

"Maka," he whispered astounded. "What are you doing here?"

Maka walked into the room and the large heavy door swung shut behind her by itself, snuffing out the light from the hallway.

"I could ask you the same thing," she replied. She walked over to the piano, her heels clicking against the floor. "The show's over, Soul. It's time to go home."

Soul turned back to the piano, lowering his head. "Go ahead. I'll be home soon." Without another glance at her, he began to play the piano again.

A fast paced melody rung out from the piano, keeping up with Soul's fluid fingers. Maka listened silently and linked her hands behind her back. She watched as his hands glided swiftly across the keys, fingers moving inhumanely fast.

Maka closed her eyes, calmly but intently listening to the individual notes weave themselves into a song. They filled the room completely, hardly leaving any room for air. It sounded full and meaningful; it was layered with emotion.

Abruptly it stopped, plunging the room into immediate silence. The room felt suddenly empty. It became emotionless once more, just a room again.

Maka peeled open her eyes and met two red hot ones staring back at her. Her heart skipped a beat - in surprise, she assured herself - at the intense gaze he gave her.

"I thought you were going home," said Soul.

Maka shrugged. "I'm waiting for you." She sat down next to him on the piano bench. She looked down at the color contrasting piano keys as if they were completely foreign.

Soul looked down at the keys, too. "I might be awhile. You could be here for hours," he told her.

He looked up to see her staring back at him. Her forest green eyes were so deep and dark and the dim light gave them a strange Victorian era feel. He quickly looked back down at the piano, uneasy about seeing those eyes watching him. If he had known better, he would've noticed that his face was beginning to grow warm.

"That's okay. I can wait that long," said Maka. She looked down at the piano keys and clasped her hands together. She rested her adjoined hands on her lap. "Besides, I want to hear you play," she added quietly.

Soul let out a short laugh and looked at his fighting partner. "You didn't get enough after a full hour?" he asked.

Maka lifted her head up and stared straight forward, not looking at anything in particular. She bit the corner of her lip for a few seconds before answering, still not looking at him. "Think of it as a backstage special. Behind the scenes, if you will." She turned her head to face him and smiled. "So, Mr. Evans, what's your backstage special?"

Soul looked down at the piano keys then back at Maka and smiled. He stood up from the bench, taking pleasure from Maka's confused face. Walking around the back, he stopped behind Maka, grinning almost evilly now. Without any sort of warning, he scooped her off of the seat into arms bridal style.

"Soul!" cried out Maka as she was lifted into the air. Her cheeks darkened to a light pink as her weapon laughed at her. He sat back down at the piano and lowered her onto his lap.

"There," he said.

Maka frowned and crossed her arms. "Was that absolutely necessary?" she asked a bit breathlessly.

Ignoring her question, Soul took Maka's hands in his own and placed them over the piano keys. "I'm going to teach you how to play," he announced.

The young meister stiffened at their touch and her breathing became slightly labored. Her heart thudded against her chest and she fought to calm down. Only then did she realize what he had said.

She pulled her hands away from his and tucked them into her lap. "No, no! The piano isn't really my thing," she protested.

"Ah, ah, ah, Miss Albarn. You asked me for my backstage special and here it is. Now, come on." Soul reached around to her front and plucked both of Maka's hands off of her lap. Her cheeks heated up, but she ignored it. She was more concerned about not looking like an idiot.

Soul held her hands over the keys again, each of his fingers resting on her corresponding ones. He pressed lightly down on one of her fingers which in turn pressed one of the keys. A low note cut the silence and he pressed another one of her fingers on another key, playing a different note. He did the same thing with a few other notes until they started to form a low stream of music.. Soon enough, she was playing a steady beat on the piano by herself while Soul removed himself to sit next to her.

His heart began to flutter as he gazed at her excited smile and the ways her eyes twinkled with happiness. Not wanting to give himself away, he began playing some higher and more intricate notes to add to Maka's low, repetitive tune.

Maka paused for a moment, a little caught off guard from the addition of notes but recovered quickly. She found the correct keys again and started playing, both of their tunes mingling with each other to create one melody.

They played for no more than five minutes, but to each it could've been a lifetime. Once they had both stopped, Soul turned to his light-haired meister and smiled.

"Not bad for a beginner," he complimented.

Maka shrugged. "Eh. The piano's still not my thing." She turned to face him and smiled warmly. "But thanks." She got up and walked to the other side of the piano. "So are we done here? Can we go home now?"

An idea popped into the soul eating weapon's head at just that moment and he smiled. It was perfect, not to mention a cool way to go about something he'd been dying to do all evening.

"I believe you're forgetting something, Miss Albarn," he said as he walked over to her.

Confusion obvious on her face, Maka questioned him. "Oh?"

Soul nodded. "Yeah. You see, your V.I.P. Backstage Pass included four special features." He took one of her hands in his and gave it a squeeze. "You only completed three."

Maka's eyes widened and she smiled playfully. "I did? What was the fourth feature that I had forgotten?" she asked, playing along. Of course, she was still unsuspecting of his true intentions.

Soul pretended to think about it. "Well, let's see. You got to hear me play a song and I taught you how to play the piano." He reached out his arm and hooked it around Maka's thin waist and pulled her closer, much to her surprise. "Then you got to play a duet with me." He looked at her and smiled a sharp-toothed grin. "I believe you were forgetting the kiss."

Before Maka could utter a single word of shock, Soul leaned down and brushed his lips against hers and pulled her even closer to him. He felt Maka's frail arms slowly wrap around his neck and he deepened the kiss.

Needless to say, they both were really enjoying the fourth feature.

Once their lips had parted, he saw Maka smiling like crazy. She looked up at him and giggled. "That's quite a feature there," she joked.

Soul smiled and leaned down to whisper in her ear. "And you just earned yourself another V.I.P. Backstage Pass."

Maka smiled and pushed him away so she could face him. "Oh really now?" She rose up on her tip toes and kissed his cheek before pulling away completely and walking towards the door. Right as she reached it, she looked over her shoulder. "I guess I'll be seeing you then, won't I?" With that, she turned and walked out of the door with Soul following close behind.


Author's Comments:

Before I say anything else, I know that they were OOC for a couple of parts. Maybe not for the last chapter, but for this one I'm sure of it. But in order to get that special mood for the story, I had to you know?

Anyways, I really hope you like this chapter. I'm not sure when 'C' is coming out, but hopefully that's soon.

Lastly, the song they were both playing to was Dearly Beloved by Hikaru Utada. If you've played Kingdom Hearts II, it's the menu theme. For those of you who haven't, here it is:

I chose this because it could very well be a duet. If you listen close enough, there is a low keyed rhythm in the background. That was Maka. And the more apparent high keyed was Soul.

Until next time~!