Hi everybody! So to be honest, I intended to have this piece be only a one-shot, but after reading all your comments and reviews, I decided I'll give this a more "conclusive" ending. Hopefully you guys will enjoy it because it's a side of Ren I never truly got to express in writing. LOL! Please Read and Review!
Disclaimer: I do not own Skip Beat or any of its characters.
Kanae shook her head vigorously, trying her very best to clear the wild thoughts that were racing through her mind. It was all Kyoko's fault. Thanks to her, Kanae was now more than just distracted. She was one hundred percent unfocused.
Kanae scowled angrily. No matter what she did, she couldn't stop thinking about Kyoko's INCREDIBLY vivid dream. Even now, she herself was starting to wonder who the mystery man was. And as she was unwillingly going down her mental list of potential males, there was one particular name that kept jumping out at her.
Kanae snorted loudly. "Right, she would probably have a heart attack if turns out to be him…"
And just as she was about to open the door to Sawara's office, a male voice suddenly shouted from behind her,
She swiftly turned around and to her great surprise saw Yashiro striding towards her with Ren not too far behind. Furrowing her eyebrows in confusion, she took a few steps in their direction and gave a tiny bow of her head.
"Good afternoon," she greeted politely.
"Hi Kotonami-san," Yashiro answered in haste. "Have you by any chance seen Kyoko-chan lately?"
"Yes, just a few minutes ago actually. Why?"
Yashiro took a frantic step towards her and asked with worry-ridden eyes, "Did she seem a little odd to you today?"
Her eyes widen in alarm. "Oh my god, don't tell me he KNOWS?"
"Um, define…odd," Kanae said in a reluctance voice.
"Well apparently, she ran away screaming from Yashiro," Ren explained with a suppressed chuckle as he stood beside him. "So we're wondering if you know why."
Sighing in relief that they were in the clearing (Kanae had unconsciously lumped herself with Kyoko's problem) and happy that it had nothing to do with her insane dream, she said, "Oh, then I don't really know. Maybe she just—"
Her voice had completely escaped her. There was no way around it as her eyes fell upon the craziest…surreal…and the most UNBELIEVABLE image. It was like her brain had suddenly stopped working. All she could focus on was Ren's wrist.
"THAT'S THE LOOK!" Yashiro shouted loudly as he pointed a finger at her dumbstruck face. "That's the exact face Kyoko-chan had before she ran!"
Following Kanae's line of vision, Ren realized that she was staring at his silver Rolex watch. He intuitively extended his arm towards her and asked, "Is there something wrong with my watch, Kotonami-san?"
She slowly raised her frozen eyes to his. "It's yours?"
"Yes," Ren replied with alarm at her shocked expression. "Why does that matter?"
"Kyoko-chan reacted the same way," Yashiro pointed out, practically jumping on the balls of his feet. "What's so important about the watch?"
Quickly turning to Yashiro, Kanae asked, "Kyoko actually saw it?"
"Yes, I was holding onto it for Ren," he answered.
"Wait, wait, wait!" she exclaimed anxiously, waving her hands back and forth in the air. "YOU had the watch when she saw it?"
"Yes, but it's actually mine," Ren said, raising an eyebrow. "Kotonami-san, what's going on?"
Kanae bit on her lower lip. She had no idea how to respond. She obviously couldn't explain why Kyoko had acted so strange, but it wasn't like she could explain the significance behind his Rolex watch either! But Yashiro's and Ren's stern gaze was practically boring a hole into her skin. Kanae had no idea what to say!
"I can't…really…say," she answered slowly, careful to avert her hysterical gaze.
"But it does have something to do with the watch?" Yashiro pressed as he tried to get a better look at her face.
"Well—I mean, I can't—it's complicated! Don't ask me! It's not my place to—!"
Kanae's blood suddenly ran cold. She had never felt anything like it before. It was like someone had poured ice down her veins. His voice pulled her flustered attention right to his penetrating gaze practically effortlessly.
Ren's eyes were undeniably commanding. The swirling aura around him locked her in place as if she was held prisoner. Kanae had never been on the receiving end of his intense side before, but now she could fully understand what people meant when they said how he could make them act. It was impossible to shake him off. He completely took over control.
And in the softest voice, he murmured, "Since what you can say is limited, would you please tell us what you can say then?"
There was no way around it. She couldn't fight him. He won.
So with a defeated sigh, Kanae fully faced the two confused men with closed eyes and replied in a small voice, "Alright…"
Kyoko leaned against the wall as she tried to regain her breath. She had run up four flights of stairs and the stitch in her side was throbbing like crazy. It was so hard to breathe, but whenever her hectic thoughts caught up with her consciousness, the hysteria from earlier would erupt like a full-blown volcano.
"NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!"
Forcing her legs to move, Kyoko dashed down the hall with her head shaking like a bobble head. She just had to run to clear her mind. The cool air rushing through her ears made it nearly impossible for her to think. That way, she didn't have to remember what Yash—
Kyoko was losing her mind. People around her were practically running away in fear at her insane movements and terrified expression. They didn't know how to react to her at all. And the unlucky few who were standing in her dangerous path quickly pressed their bodies flat against the wall as she tore down the corridor like a hot-pink, LoveME bull. There was just no stopping her.
By the time her lungs were in dire need of air, Kyoko had reached the tenth floor. But she had no plans of resting. She didn't know what else to do. Whenever she paused, the cogs in her brain would move and Kyoko didn't dare to let them function. She didn't want to see those horrid images anymore!
"NO MORE! NO MORE! NO—!"
It happened before Kyoko could even blink. From out of a nowhere, a large hand suddenly reached out from behind a silver door and clamped itself over her open mouth, forcefully pulling her body inside the room. The door closed with an ominous thud and as soon as her back hit solid wall, Kyoko's eyes sprang open.
He smiled and gently removed his hand from her mouth. "Good morning, Mogami-san."
"H-h-hi Ts-s-s-surga-san," she stammered, her heart beating in over time. "What are you doing in here?"
They were standing barely a foot apart in what appeared to be an empty and unused dressing room. The lights were off, but the windows were left open, allowing a hazy glow to light the entire space.
"I was looking for you," he said matter-of-factly.
Kyoko's eyes widen. "M-m-me? Why?"
She was suddenly very hyper aware of how close he was. Kyoko could see just about every eyelash.
"Well, it seems you were behaving strangely this morning and I decided to check up on you."
And feeling as if someone had their hands firmly wrapped around her throat, Kyoko asked in a fear-filled voice, "Did Yashiro-san—?"
Ren nodded, replying, "You hurt his feelings, Mogami-san. It isn't very polite to run away from people, let alone your seniors, now is it?"
Ready to perform a full-on dogeza, Kyoko was just about to fervently fling herself upon the cold, hard floor when he suddenly added:
"But considering what you're going through, I think he will forgive you."
Her eyes were glued upon the dark carpet, but they saw absolutely nothing. Her vision blurred, the dark colors melting into each other. It felt as if her breath was knocked right out of her. She couldn't breathe at all.
She opened her mouth to speak, but nothing came out. Kyoko was paralyzed from head to toe.
She unwillingly raised her trembling gaze to his silky voice.
"Won't you tell me about this dream of yours?" Ren asked, his dark eyes glinting in the dark.
Her breath shuddered. Kyoko's heart practically jumped out of her chest. The look upon his face was burning like fire. She didn't understand, but all she knew was that she was horrified! Kyoko couldn't believe this was happening.
"Yes?" Ren replied as he causally placed a hand against the wall beside her face.
"T-s-s-suruga-san, h-h-how did you—?"
He chuckled amusedly. "We luckily ran into Kotonami-san on the way while we were looking for you."
Kyoko's eyes jumped out of their sockets. "She wouldn't—!"
"Although, you shouldn't blame her," Ren added with a smile at her obvious thought. "I never actually gave her the chance to refuse."
She couldn't speak. The air was quickly getting sucked out of the empty room. All Kyoko could focus on was Ren's face and the way his dark eyes stared at nothing but her. She could hear the playfulness in his voice, but the look upon his face was dead serious. He was like the Demon Lord and the Emperor of the Night all rolled into one.
"Still, I would rather hear about this dream coming from you, Mogami-san. It isn't wise to get it second-handedly. The details are never fully accurate."
Kyoko hastily moved her head from side to side, her eyes as large as baseballs. "Tsuruga-san, there's no way I can say it! It's bad enough I dreamt of it! But to actually repeat it would be—!"
"And what's so terrible about it?" Ren asked with an innocent tilt of his head that naturally brought his face closer to hers. "I don't fully understand the reason why."
"Why? WHY! WHAT DO YOU MEAN 'WHY?'" she shrieked. "I dreamt of—!"
She bit down on her tongue, her face getting redder by the second. There was no way she was going to say it. Kyoko would rather die a thousand deaths before she would say it. She won't say it.
But Ren was relentless. He only leaned in closer to her as his smile brightened ten fold.
Kyoko's eyes naturally began to tear up from the sheer intensity of it. She couldn't turn away!
"What was that, Mogami-san?"
She shook her head forcefully!
Ren's smile broadened. "You dreamt of…?"
She clenched her hands into a tight fist, her fingernails digging deep into her palms, but Ren wasn't letting her go. Every second that she remained silent, his power over her seemed to strengthen. Kyoko pressed firmly against the wall as a useless attempt to get away, but Ren was just everywhere. There was no escape.
"Mogami-san," he said in a smooth voice that sent shivers down her spine. "You dreamt of…?"
And like a bomb with a fully lit fuse, Kyoko's shoulders fell in complete surrender as she sobbed at the top of her lungs, "SEX! I DREAMT OF SEX!"
Kyoko dropped her head into her hands, wailing, "But I didn't mean to, Tsuruga-san! It was completely out of my control! I can't believe how impure I am! I'M SUCH A DISGUSTING PERSON!"
Then to her utmost surprise, Ren suddenly let out a laugh. He had a trembling hand over his mouth, but his eyes glistened with pure amusement. He was practically shaking with laughter. "I see," Ren said with a wide smile, "so that's why Kotonami-san wouldn't say anything."
Kyoko gasped! "Moko-san didn't—?"
Smiling devilishly at her silent, stunned expression, Ren replied, "I was confident I could get you to tell me on your own, Mogami-san."
"Tsuruga-san, you're too cruel!" Kyoko accused with offended eyes. "You lied to me!"
Ren shook his head. "I never lied. It's true that I asked Kotonami-san about the details, but you just assumed she told me everything. I didn't say anything of the sort."
Feeling immense guilt for distrusting her best friend, Kyoko warily slumped back against the wall and mumbled, "You're so mean."
Before Ren could shield himself, he realized he was already starting to buckle at her now down-trodden expression. He had planned to torture her for a little more, but seeing how truly hurt she was, Ren couldn't help showing his gentle smile as he placed a hand underneath her chin. When their eyes met, he replied in a kinder voice, "I apologize, Mogami-san. I truly didn't mean to offend you. But it wasn't like you were going to tell me without some prodding on my end."
Kyoko frowned in reply.
But refusing to let her avoid the subject so easily, Ren's gleaming smile returned as he murmured, "So…sex?"
Her eyes nearly popped out of her head. She had never been more humiliated!
"I take it this is your first time?" Ren asked, failing to keep the humor out of his question.
"This isn't funny, Tsuruga-san! I'm terrified to go to sleep because of this!"
Shaking his head, Ren assured (unsuccessfully), "These sorts of dreams are normal, Mogami-san."
"DREAMS? These aren't dreams!" Kyoko cried with frantic eyes. "They're nightmares! And the worst part of it all is that the man I'm thinking of is—!"
Kyoko wailed loudly and slapped her hands over her ears, as if it would make the memories go away.
"Are you sure it's Yashiro?" Ren asked mercilessly.
Feeling the terror roar within her at the sound of his name, Kyoko squeezed her eyes shut and replied in a raised voice, "Of course it is! HOW CAN IT NOT BE? He was holding the watch! He had the same silver Rolex watch as HIM!"
"You mean this one?"
Kyoko automatically opened her eyes and saw the shiny item wrapped around his wrist. "Yes! That wat—!"
Ren grinned widely as he watched the color completely disappear from her face. She looked about as pale as a sheet. Her mouth was still open, hopelessly stuck in a mid-sentence that seemed to have rendered her speechless. He couldn't have been more pleased with her response. Ren hated to admit it, but he was having WAY too much fun with this.
And wanting to push the boundaries even further, he asked naively again, "Is this the watch you saw, Mogami-san?"
She opened and closed her mouth a few times before she could finally muttered in a trembling voice, "W-w-w-why do you h-h-h-have it, Tsuruga-san?"
"Because it's mine."
"Y-y-yours?" she croaked.
He nodded. "Yashiro was just temporarily holding onto it for me. I'm sorry if that confused you."
Kyoko's hands shook like leaves. Suddenly, her surroundings faded to black except the man before her, his face a few inches away. His eyes were so intense she could feel her knees beginning to collapse on her. But Kyoko felt absolutely lifeless. She couldn't do anything.
"It is," he said with a smile. "And if we take into account what you said earlier, then I believe that the man you're dreaming of is not actually Yashiro, but rather…me."
Ren leaned in closer. "Right…Mogami-san?"
Kyoko didn't reply. Her voice was long gone. It flew out of the window along with all the feelings in her legs and hands. She didn't know what to do anymore. This was just too much!
"But I can see that you're right," he continued in a softer voice. "You really are terrified to go to sleep, aren't you?"
He suddenly lifted a steady hand and tenderly brushed his thumb across the dark circles under her eyes. "You seem awfully tired."
Odd noises came out of Kyoko's mouth, but none of them made any sense.
Ren chuckled, replying, "It's okay, Mogami-san. If you think you offended me in any way, you didn't. In fact, I'm actually quite flattered."
"You are?" she mouthed.
He nodded. "But as your co-star, I find it bothersome that this dream of yours is negatively affecting your work. We wouldn't want it to get in the way of your career, now do we?"
Kyoko unwillingly moved her head in agreement.
"So I think it's safe to assume that you want these nightmares to disappear as soon as possible?"
"But you see, these kinds of nightmares are a little tricky," Ren pointed out in a thoughtful voice. "They don't just go away on their own. In truth, it's up to the dreamer to make them vanish."
Kyoko gulped. "How do I do that?" she murmured under her breath.
Ren chuckled. "You have to finish it—right until the very end."
Then with a deep and soft exhale, Ren suddenly shook his head in wariness. "But considering how you are unable to go to sleep, finishing the dream in your slumber seems like an impossible feat to do."
"So how do I end them?" Kyoko asked, her voice cracking by the end from pure anxiety.
"Isn't it obvious, Mogami-san?"
She raised an eyebrow.
And right before her amber eyes she watched his smile transform into one that sent a string of ripples down her spine.
His eyes smoldered. "You're going to have to finish it…while awake."
Kyoko lost it.
There was no better way to explain the tumultuous hurricane that swept away every rational part of her mind. Ren was serious. The look upon his face was neither teasing nor playful and that was what scared Kyoko the most. But the voice to defy him wouldn't spill out of her mouth. She just stood in his overwhelming gaze like a deer caught in headlights.
"Mogami-san," Ren began again as he moved forward, "you want these dreams to go away, right?"
She didn't reply.
"They are, after all, interfering with your work, aren't they?"
Kyoko's knees shook.
"And I assume you want these bothersome nightmares to stop, don't you?"
Ren pressed his cool forehead against hers and smiled alluringly. "And considering these dreams involve me as well, I promise to take full responsibility for what I've done to you, Mogami-san."
Kyoko whimpered as both of his arms trapped her within his cage, clouding her already hazy mind with the heat of his skin and the cologne of his clothes.
"So…shall we begin?" he whispered softly.
And before she had time to prepare herself, Ren had already lowered his head to one side of her face. Kyoko felt his cool breath run down her slender neck. She naturally had both of her hands placed upon his broad chest, but not a single ounce of strength to do anything about it. Kyoko was completely at his mercy.
One of his hands had already laced its fingers through hers and brought them high above her head. Kyoko's heart was beating so fast in her chest she thought she was going to die. But she couldn't push him away. Even though her body trembled violently, Kyoko couldn't get herself to refuse him.
When she felt his lips upon her neck, a sound suddenly bubbled up from her throat that even surprised herself. Kyoko suddenly wrapped her fingers around his hand as if her life depended on it. She held onto it so tightly she was sure she was hurting him, but Ren didn't seem to care at all.
His other hand was still flat against the wall, like some sort of shield that kept out any unwanted intruders. Ren could feel the pure heat that emanated from her body. He couldn't believe it was actually happening. And with every brush of his lips against her smooth skin, he was losing another chink in his armor of carefully composed control.
Ren sensed his self-restraint failing—especially when he realized how she wasn't fighting back. Miraculously, it was almost as if she completely gave herself up to him.
And just as he was about to move in even closer…
Kyoko jumped, her misty eyes clearing up in an instant.
Ren's mood darkened significantly as he reached a hand inside his trouser pocket and retrieved his vibrating cell phone. Flipping the black device open, his eyes narrowed in irritation as read the familiar caller I.D.
"Tsuruga-san?" her small voice called.
He quickly met her timid expression and to his alarm, saw the sweet, red blush upon her cheeks. Ren was struggling so hard to keep still. It was as if the Gods were already taunting him for his inappropriate position by making it even harder for him to leave.
But with a quick and unaffected smile, Ren suddenly gave a small shake of his head and cupped her cheek with his free hand. "I guess that's all for now," he murmured quietly.
Then in a painfully slow movement, he released her warm hand and gently brought her arm back down to her side. Kyoko still hadn't moved on her own. It was almost like she had lost the will to.
"But it seems you might have to endure another sleepless night," Ren murmured, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear.
He then fluidly straightened up and took a step back. Kyoko was still pressed tightly against the wall, but her eyes never left his face.
Chuckling softly, Ren silently walked towards the closed door and grasped the thin handle. But just as he was about to step foot outside into the real world, he suddenly looked over his shoulder and saw her staring at him with an almost desperate expression.
Ren smiled gently.
"Good luck tonight, Mogami-san."
And without another word, he quietly closed the silver door behind him, giving her the time he knew she desperately needed to recollect herself after the torture she had endured. He could only imagine just what kind of fit she was going through now that she was alone. But as he smoothly made his way down the empty corridor, Ren couldn't deny the whirlpool of emotions that were raging inside of him. His hands shook from just the sheer thought of it.
"I think that should preoccupy her mind for a good while," Ren murmured under his breath, hoping that her erotic dreams would now finally give her some peace for the next few nights. With a real memory to hold onto instead of fruitless illusions, maybe the dreams will let up and allow her the proper sleep she deserves.
But even though Ren had no intention of "making her nightmares vanish" from the beginning, he knew that no matter how hard he'll try to fight his desires off, he was certainly going to milk this sexy opportunity for all it was worth.