Dissonance- The sounding of two or more tones which produce an effect of harshness or instability, and demand "resolution."

Rating: K

Characters: Hime, Touka

Genre: Friendship, Comedy

Summary: When it came to procrastination, cooking, and Hime, what could go wrong?

Spoilers: None, really

Setting: the night before Valentine's Day, at no particular point in the manga

A/N: The funny thing is, the plot of this story is completely parallel with the way it was written, not to mention how the last part of the definition fits with the story. Oh, and this is a four-part series that will be broken up over the chapters in this story.

I'd usually say "enjoy" here, but… eh. I'll probably revise it at some point.

"Uh, Hime-chan? How this is a little… ambitious," Touka murmured, staring in hopeless awe at the recipe before her. It was the night before Valentine's Day, and they had thoroughly procrastinated on their customary holiday chocolate-making.

To the oni, making chocolate from scratch was a pretty tall order, to say the least. Not only did she have any experience in making that sort of dish, but she had Hime out of all people as her sous-chef. Contrary to the mayor's ability to eat ungodly amounts of food, she was far less than capable of producing it.

"Well, obviously, tomorrow's Valentine's Day. Unless, that is, you plan on buying…" the other girl taunted in the most business-like tone she could muster, smirking lightly, leaning her weight against the cool countertop. After all, she knew she had Touka cornered.

'Any moment now…'

The response was immediate. "N-no!" the first girl hastily shot back, putting her hands up in defense. "It's just, usually we cheat on this, so I was thinking…"

Hime started in cool expectance at her, waiting for her to finish the sentence, as Touka's mind assessed the situation. '…and I would have thought the argument would be going the other way…' the onigirl mentally grumbled, glaring at her friend. After some time, the crushing reality of the situation setting in, she spoke once more. "Fine, let's get started before Onii-chan gets back," she capitulated, posture slacking ever so slightly.

'Score, one to zero,' Hime's mind smugly announced, as she exclaimed, "now that's what I'm talking about!"

Touka was left to merely puzzle at her friend's behavior.

"So, we just heat the oven up to 160 degrees, and put them in there for five to thirty minutes, right?" Hime verified, holding the tray containing the carefully spread cocoa beans. The phrase 'this should be easy' was clearly inscribed upon her face.

"Uh, pretty much…" Touka responded, inconfidently re-reading the sheet of paper which now lay on the counter. Immediately, as if Touka's words were some sort of adreniline shot, Hime sprang into action, gracefully placing the tray on the oven rack, slamming the door shut (to Touka's chagrin), and setting to imputing the time.

"We have a lot of beans, so we should probably go with thirty minutes, right?" Hime asked, dependant on Touka for the answer.

"Sure," the oni absentmindedly replied, beginning to leave the room, against what would have been her normal better judgment. Hime, having carelessly set the time, followed in pursuit.

After all, when it came to procrastination, cooking, and Hime, what could go wrong?

Apperantly, everything could.

The burning smell reached their nostrils before they realized how much time had passed. It assaulted their senses, laughing in a tormenting way, jarringly heralding their blunder.

Running as quickly as they could to the source of the odor, Touka snapped, "how long did you set the timer for!"

"I totally set if for thirty minutes, like we said!" Hime responded, mind running through all of the possibilities as to what she could have done.

As they reached the kitchen itself, the scene that awaited them was far worse than either could have imagined. The haughtily roaring light threatened to escape its confines, smoke billowing out in arrogant frustration, as the fire alarm threatened to bugle its strident memorandum at any moment.

The girls, however, weren't ready to let some measly oven fire have its way with their plans. Hime, quickly grabbing the fire extinguisher, working in tandem with Touka, who threw open the cell of the arrogant flame and slayed its scorching radiance.

Despite their victory over the petty kitchen fire, the aftermath of the battle was something far less than to be desired: the cocoa beans were now nothing more than charred ashes. In the end, the fire had won; it had the final laugh. As Touka dejectedly stared at their failure, Hime posed the question:

"What was that about cheating, again?"