Chapter 1- Overheard

It's everybody's favorite time...that's right! Disclaimer time!

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Skip Beat, as much as I would like to be.

It was a normal day for LME's number one actor, Tsuruga Ren, as he walked through the halls of his company. After an ng-less take of his current crime-drama,and an RMandy photo shoot, Ren had a couple of hours before his next job. And he decided, after some determined prodding from his overbearing manager Yashiro, to spend some those hours with a certain love-me member.

Looking around casually for the adorable actress, Ren and Yashiro couldn't help but notice all the bright Christmas decorations hanging all around the company. Leafy green wreathes tied with bright red ribbons adorned the doorways, and blinking lights of every color were strung from the ceiling.

"The president really is going all out this year." muttered Yashiro, who had been rearranging Ren's schedule to create more 'Kyoko-Ren alone time'.

"I just wonder what he's up to.." replied the raven haired actor. The president had been relatively quiet recently, and Ren couldn't help but worry about what his eccentric boss would pull out. After all, just a mere two days a way was Christmas, a holiday that emitted love, and the presidents favorite day of the year (besides Valentine's day, of course). Ren's thoughts came to a halt when his manager yelled out across the lobby.

"Kyoko-chan!" he nearly screamed to his charge's kohai, and dozens of pairs of eyes turned to see the pink-clad newbee actress. Turning his head, Ren felt a smile flash across his face upon sight of the girl. Even in the gaudy love-me uniform, he thought she looked ravishing. Her short hair stuck up, but framed her face nicely, and a rosy blush painted her cheeks.

"Good should I say afternoon, Tsuruga-san, Yashiro-san." Kyoko greeted softly, still unused to having all this attention on herself. Now, when her name was called out in public, people recognized it. They would turn their heads to locate her, unlike when she first joined the company, when the only looks she got were ones of annoyance or disbelief.

"Sorry for causing a spectacle, Kyoko-chan," Yashiro apologized, noticing the girl's discomfort with her rising fame. In the past few months, after Box R had finished its first season and had been recalled for another based on popular demand, Kyoko had become increasingly popular with young people. Although most of her roles were still antagonists, she had branched out a lot In one of her current roles, she played a devious girl who pretended to be nice to manipulate people. Thus, in some scenes, she got to act more like a princess of her dreams than an evil witch.

"Good morning, Mogami-san" Ren spoke up, keeping his tone neutral. Suddenly, Kyoko started fidgeting, swiveling back and forth while twiddling her thumbs.

"Um...Tsuruga-san.." she started nervously.."I was wondering, and I know it's inappropriate and last second, and don't at all feel obligated to say yes, me being a lowly kohai-" Kyoko's froze in place when her demons appeared.
OOh..I sense some delicious anger coming from that man..a demon cooed in Kyoko's ear, and she looked up to see her sempai flashing his notorious 'gentlemanly smile'.
"Wha-what did I do to upset him this time? Was it too presumptuous of me to even ask him for a personal favor?" she thought nervously. Not wanting to cause her beloved senior anymore trouble, she flew down into a dogeza."I'm sorry for troubling you Tsuruga-san!" she cried, before a pair of large hands peeled her from the ground and helped her up.

"It's alright, Mogami-san," reassured Ren, allowing his anger to pass. When Kyouko approached him, and started to ask him for a favor, he had felt so needed. But, his fantasies of love had been crushed the second she muttered the word kohai, further cementing their relationship-or lack of one. "Please continue with your request."

"O-ok. Well, Maria and I wanted to throw a grateful part again, like the one last year. But I have been so busy lately, and I haven't been able to contact her to plan it. So, I just assumed we weren't going to have one. But today, when I finally ran into her, she started talking about how this year's party would top last years! I didn't want to let her down, so I need to invite people ASAP!" yelled the teen, waving her arms maniacally, and speaking faster as she continued her rant, "So, could you and Yashiro-san please attend, as guests of mine?" Kyoko looked up into her sempai's eyes and was surprised by the soft look on his face. She missed, however, the fangirlish look on his manager's.

"Of course, Mogami-san. I would be honored to attend your party. What time shall we arrive?"

"Oh! Um..Eight O'clock tomorrow night. Thank you very much, Tsuruga-sempai! And you too, Yashiro-san." Kyoko exclaimed, before realizing the time.
"Sorry, but I have a few other people to invite. I'll see you both later, hopefully."

"Of course. Have a nice afternoon, Mogami-san," Ren replied.

"Bye Kyoko-chan!" Smiling, Kyoko ran off to go find the two other love-me members, who still needed to be invited.

"Oh, Yashiro-san!" she yelled before skidding around the corner, "make sure Tsuruga-san eats a healthy lunch, ok?". The bespectacled manager chuckled while nodding his head. Feeling satisfied, Kyoko continued on her search for her friends connected by the same hideous curse, missing Yashiro's smug visage. Ren sighed with contentment, as well as dismay. He had a feeling that his manager's teasing would be relentless this afternoon.

"I would love to come to your party, Kyoko-sempai!" stated Chiori Ayamiya, honored to be invited to a Christmas bash by her role model. A few months since she joined the section, the third love-me member had become close friends with the two other pink clad girls. Although it was hard at first to penetrate their 'best friends' barrier, Kyoko and Kanae had been accepting, and the three were currently on excellent terms.

"Mo- I'll come, just stop groveling." Kanae Kotonami, the second love-me member, demanded. Secretly, she was happy to have an excuse to spend Christmas Eve and morning with her best friend (since she was too prideful/embarrassed to ask directly), but for obvious reasons, would not let it show.
"I'll have to move around a few things, but I should be able to come. You're lucky that my drama gave me the weekend off, or I would be booked solid." she added. Chiori rolled her eyes at the cold actress' antics, but tears built up in Kyoko's eyes.

"THANK YOU, MOKO-SAN! Thank you, Thank you, both of you! I'm so happy you two can come. Tomorrow is gonna be great!" Sparkles and flowers seemed to surround her, and her two friends couldn't help but smile.

"I have some time before my next job," stated Chiori, looking at her love-me watch (which the president provided for all three, but only she wore it), "would you two care to join me for coffee or something. I know a really nice place down the street."

"I suppose I have time," Kanae responded.

"SURE!" exclaimed Kyoko, who almost never turned down an opportunity to spend time with her two closest friends, "Let me just grab my purse...". Looking into her locker, Kyoko took out her worn out, overused bag. Chiori smirked proudly, knowing that her sempai would have a beautiful new purse in a matter of hours. Checking quickly that all her things were there, Kyoko scanned her bag, but was horrified when she realized a very important something was missing.

"CORNNNN!" she screamed, making her friends jump back in shock, "HOW COULD I HAVE LOST YOU?" and without a seconds notice, she sprinted off out of the locker room.
"What was that about?" asked Ayamiya.
"Who knows. Let's just head out. We can text her with directions if she wants to show for coffee." offered Kotonami. Knowing Kyoko, she would understand.

Meanwhile, Kyoko was running rampant through the halls of LME in search of the small coin purse that holds her precious stone.

Please don't be gone, please don't be gone, please don't be gone! she chanted as a mantra as she tore the building apart. She didn't know how she would survive without the magic corn stone to absorb her sadness. All of a sudden, she noticed a faint blue shimmer out of the corner of her eye. Turning in the direction, she saw the indigo rock protruding the small purse, lying on the beige tile floor.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!" she whispered out loud, curling Corn in her hands and pressing it to her cheek. Her joy and gratitude was interrupted when she heard a pair of familiar voices from around the corner.

"So, Ren, what are you going to get Kyoko-chan for her birthday?"

"I believe that's between Mogami-san and I." Kyoko knew she shouldn't be eavesdropping, but was curious about the route this conversation was taking.

"She turns eighteen soon. You know what that means?"

"That she'll be nineteen next year?" retorted Ren, putting no emotion into his voice.

"No, you cold hearted robot. You know, eighteen is the year teens are considered adults in America.

"I'm aware."

"So, Kyoko-chan will be an adult, or at least by American standards. She's older now, and what's a better way to celebrate than telling her you love her?" Kyoko felt her head nearly blow off. Tsurga-san? Loving her? That was the most ridiculous thing she had ever heard! And, with that mindset, she was not at all prepared for his response.

"Because I love Mogami-san, wouldn't it be selfish of me to force my feelings on her, and make her upset?" Freezing in place, Kyoko couldn't believe what she heard! Had Tsuruga Ren just confessed that he loved her?


Author's Note: Thanks for reading, those who took time out of their precious lives to read the fruit of my mind. I hope my mind fruit was very delicious (sorry for the lame metaphor). This is actually my first ever fanfiction, and I'm uber excited! So, any comments/criticism would be appreciated. I don't know if it was like this for all of you on your first fanfic, but I am really eager to write! But, as I know from experience, my love of writing will really be tested once I hit the first road bump of my story. Hopefully, I'll be able to cruise over it with a bit of perseverance and creativity. Wish me luck, and please keep reading!