A/N: This is a short look into Mai's mornings at SPR. There is no definite time period this was set in, but assume that she's been working there for a while.

Also, this little story was written and forgotten. Later, I changed the ending after some inspiration from a famous quote. You will see which quote at the end. Enjoy. :)

It Starts With Tea

Mai quietly walked into the entrance room of Shibuya Psychic Research at seven thirty in the morning. She was not required to be there until eight, but had found that the day started so much better if she was early. Glancing towards the adjoining offices, it was apparent that the full timers of the SPR team were present. One door closed coldly towards intruders, a faint sound of papers rustling occasionally, and one open to the sound of keyboard typing. It was like this everyday. In fact, Mai wondered if Naru and Lin might just keep working in their sleep.

She hung her jacket near the door and made her way to the back. Lin paused in his typing for a moment; it was his way of acknowledging her arrival. She nodded at his back and smiled.

Once in the small kitchen Mai relaxed, here she was unlikely to disturb Naru if he was in a touchy mood. Quickly, she pulled out everything she would need and began preparing tea. This was one of her many morning rituals and always put her at ease. While the water boiled, she pulled out a stack of newspapers and began to peruse one. Occasionally she would highlight a section, but more often than not, she would just flip on through. Just as the kettle was about to whistle, she pulled it off and set to finishing the tea.

Soon the young assistant was making her way into Lin's office, balancing a tray. Softly, she placed his tea on the corner of the desk and cleared her throat. His hands paused and he turned towards her.

"Have you eaten breakfast Lin-san? I picked up some pastries on the way to work today." The tall man shook his head and turned back to the computer screen. Grinning slightly, she placed the small plate next to his tea. "Enjoy."

Next, she swung back to the kitchen and picked up Naru's tea. It made her giggle a bit to know that her tough boss did not like his tea very hot. When she reached the door of his office, she knocked firmly and then let herself in.

He glanced up from some papers, said, "Sort the Takahashi research today." and then went back to reading.

Rolling her eyes, she deposited his tea and pastry (because if Lin hadn't eaten, then Naru was due some breakfast) and made her way out. The door closed and she plopped down at her desk. The Naru-monster now had his morning tea and she was not on the clock for another 15 minutes.

A little bit later she made her way into Lin's office and removed the plate of crumbs from his desk. He gave her a slight nod and she beamed at him. She repeated her knock on Naru's door, walked in, gave him a new tea, swapped out his dirty dishes and grabbed a stack of files from his desk. He never looked up. She knew by now she shouldn't expect a thank you, but it still riled.

It was 8:13 when Naru finally left his office for the bathroom. Mai had just finished sorting out some paperwork. She took a moment to watch him as he went by. Despite his terrible attitude, he really did have a nice backside.

"Am I paying you to do nothing, Mai? If you plan on sitting around all day, feel free to go home and do it at your own convenience." The door clicked behind him.

"I'm doing nothing? Really!" Angrily, she grabbed the most recent file, flipped it open, glanced at it and then slammed it down into its proper stack. She repeated this until Naru returned, in which case she smiled sweetly at him. "Would you like some more tea, Naru?"

"Not if you plan on poisoning me."

Mai gaped at his closing door in astonishment, before glaring down at her desk. "'If you were my husband, I'd poison your tea.'"

"Did you say something?"

Startled, she looked up into Naru's piercing gaze. "Umm... hah, I was just reading out loud." To prove her point she waved the file in front of her vigorously. A couple pieces of paper slipped out and Mai nervously tried to gather them up. He continued his stare for a moment more and then turned towards his office.

"Oh, and Mai?" Her eyes shot up to his again.

"If I were your husband..." He smirked.

She gulped and felt her cheeks flush hotly.

"I'd drink it."

The slamming of the door felt a little like a slap to the face.

The clocked ticked loudly in the silence that followed. It was 8:17 and Mai was already exhausted.

A/N: The original quote was made by Lady Nancy Astor and Winston Churchill.

"Winston, if you were my husband, I'd poison your tea."

"Nancy, if I were your husband, I'd drink it."

Once I stumbled across this quote I just loved the idea of Naru finishing it. I can see him delivering this in his sharp insulting fashion to Mai, just for fun. Or in the lovey dovey part of my brain, I like to think that Naru would drink Mai's tea no mater what. Hehe.