How to Have Fun

Author: natia_99
Rated: PG
Genre: Romance/alt.reality
Disclaimer: standard

Darien Shields seated himself uncomfortably across from his cousin Rei and her bestfriend

It was not Rei that was making him uncomfortable. Good, serious, no-nonsense Rei who
never suggested wild unthinkable things with enough enthusiasm to send any man screaming
in the opposite direction. It was her bubbly friend Mina.

And Mina had that gleam in her eye today. That gleam had been the beginning of many a
disastrous blind date for Darien. He shuddered to remember.

Mina chatted innocently enough until the inevitable came.

"I want you to meet someone." She said, fixing Darien with her wide blue eyes.

Darien immediately stiffened, "Mina, no. I don't want to meet anybody."

Mina simply laughed, "You say that everytime...and I must admit, you've side stepped my
last few attempts very neatly....but this time you can't."

"What are you getting at?" He asked suspiciously.

"My best friend from grade school is coming up here to finish the last year of her
degree. She's taking dance. She's delightful. You two will both love her! And," She said
turning to Darien with dancing eyes, "She's *just* what you need!"

And once again Darien's eyes took on that look akin to a panicked animal,
"Mina, I don't want to date! What part of that don't you understand! You know it never
works! I can't juggle a girlfriend and med school and Rini!"

By which everyone knew he meant that Rini sabotaged any attempt at romance he was ever
unfortunate enough to bring to her attention.

"Oh rubbish!" Was Mina's dazzling reply, "You just haven't met the right girl. And I think
this one is. And you'll never guess what her name is!"

Rei and Darien exchanged looks.

"I'm sure we won't." Rei replied dryly.

Mina just rolled her eyes, "Serena. Serena Tsukino."

"Serena..." Darien muttered with surprise. For Rini's full name was Serena. What were
the chances?

"I think it's a sign." Said Mina with satisfaction.

"Hardly." Darien muttered darkly.

"Just wait till you meet her Darien. She's the most energetic person I've ever known.
She never stops! Why, she even puts *me* to shame!"

To which Darien nearly laughed, for imagining anyone more energetic than Mina was impossible.
The tall, beautiful blond was a non-stop chatterbox, and with eyes like hers, a lot of people

She was studying theatre while Rei, his sensible cousin, was studying religion and hoped
to be a Professor, or even an Ambassador.

Darien himself was still bent on being a Doctor. Though, since the death of his parents
he'd set his sights a little lower. Now he aimed to be a simple GP with a small practice
near a good school--rather than a Surgeon.

He had his priorties all worked out. He was a serious, responsible man trying to study
and raise a little girl. He had no time for Mina's ridiculous attempts at matchmaking.

"I don't plan to meet her." He said quietly.

"Well, too bad cause here she comes! Serena! SERENA OVER HERE!" She waved her friend over.

Darien looked wildly for an escape and found there to be none. Mina had chosen her
location carefully.

A slender girl ran over and threw her arms about Mina's neck, "Mina! You look beautiful!"

"Not half so beautiful as you Sere, all that dancing keeps you in such good shape!"

"Oh go on!"

Mina dragged her over to the table and Darien got a look at her. Slender, long blond hair
and big blue eyes. She was pretty but that's not what struck a person when they first
saw her, it was her though life itself were bursting through her veins and
lighting her up from the inside.

"Serena, this is Rei Hino and his cousin, Darien Shields. Rei, Darien, this is my bestfriend

Serena offered her hand cheerfully, "Hello, good to meet you both. I'm glad I'll know at least
a couple of people on campus! Hopefully our schedules will allow me at least a few lunches
with companionship!"

She shook Rei's hand and then Darien's, meeting his eyes for the first time and he noticed
how she started a bit and then regained herself.

"Mina's told me all about you two." She said, quickly looking away, "You're studying
religion and you're studying medicine right?" She asked pointing to each in turn.

They both nodded.

"Mina's told us you're a dancer." Rei said politely.

"Hopefully after this year I'll be able to call it a career." She cheered, grinning

"What ever got you into it?" Darien asked curiously.

She turned eyes with that same gleam as Mina's in them on his, "Oh, I was born dancing."

Mina laughed, "She's right, it comes from her soul."

Serena laughed too and the two of them launched into chatter about anything and everything.
Mina's various boyfriends and acting gigs, her delightful professor with a spanish accent
'to die for' and her new apartment by the water.

Then Serena turned her attention to Rei and grilled her about her studies, impressing her with
her own knowledge on the subject--but Rei found her light hearted attitude towards such
serious matters a bit baffling.

Finally Rei and Mina went to order them some ice cream and bring it back, leaving Darien
and the boistrous girl alone. Rei shot him a helpless look but left all the same.

Serena turned a smiling face on him as he stared helplessly after them.

"Mina's trying to match-make us." She observed with amusement.

Darien sighed--a far too serious sigh she noted, "She never stops."

Serena laughed and pulled her chair over close to him, "What's meant to be will be, don't
you agree?"

He smiled back gratefully, "I do."

But then that gleam returned to her eyes and he paled a bit.
"So you're studying to be a Doctor."


"Pretty serious stuff. You must be very dedicated."

He nodded, "I've always wanted to be a Doctor."

"Med School's supposed to be the toughest."

"It is." He replied, wondering where she was going with this until she dropped the bomb.

"So what do you do for fun?" She grinned.

His eyes widened and he made the horrible mistake of blurting out his downfall before
he thought about it, "Fun?"

She laughed, "Oh no, you've forgotten!"

"Forgotten what?"

"Forgotten how to have fun! That's what Mina told me. She asked me to look after you."

Now his face grew serious, "That's not true....."

Serena arched an eyebrow, "I don't think you mean that. I happen to be quite the expert
on fun--as Mina will atest to, and I volunteer to share my secrets with you--what do you say?"

He looked at her bewildered, was she asking him out?

"Friends?" She offered a hand and her face was so open and honest he found himself
simulataneously at ease and on edge.

"How much did Mina tell you about me?" He asked.

"That you were in Med School and that you'd forgotten how to have fun." She said
with laughing eyes and saluted him, "Anything else?"

"Why did you jump when we first met?" He said it and then couldn't believe he had.
Though he was glad at his own honesty, it frightened him to death.

She laughed, "She didn't tell me you were so handsome." She confessed, "But it's okay, I've

Now even he had to break down and laugh, "Thanks, I think."

"Success!" She cheered, "A smile AND a laugh! But I think you need more sessions, how about,
Friday night?"

And he surprised himself completely when he heard his voice reply, "It's a date."