Casablanca

Chapter One

Note: This is set after the Casablanca oneshot in the manga as well as that one oneshot where Minako tries to inflitrate Rei's school, but you don't need to read those in order to (hopefully) enjoy this. More ANs at the end of this depressingly short chapter.


"What?!"

A loud noise blasted through the shrine, disturbing the peace and quite possibly shaking a few of the trees nearby. Phobos and Deimos took flight, cawing nervously as they flew in tight circles over their master's room.

"Agh, Minako, don't be so loud!" Rei scolded her blonde friend, putting a hand over her mouth to shush her. Minako stuck her tongue out, wriggling it, and with a noise of surprise the miko quickly withdrew her hand, the palm moist and tingly. She stared at it for a few seconds, face inscrutable, and finally decided to wipe the offending thing onto Minako's new totally cute polka-dotted henley.

"Reiii! That's gross!"

"You're one to talk - you're the one who l-licked my hand anyways!"

"You should be grateful that the Goddess of Love deemed your peasant hand worthy enough to lick!"

"... What?!"

"... Rei, is everything alright in there?" an old, faint voice sounded through the thin shrine walls.

Rei sighed resignedly and stood up from the low table in the middle of the study room to go to the doorway. She slid it open and replied, "Yeah, Grandfather, everything's fine!" She came back to her original seat, glaring at the innocent-looking blonde on the other side of the furniture. "You've woken him up from his nap - and just as I finally got him to relax from all his chores." Was that actually a halo around the blonde's head, or had Rei been staring at the sacred fire a bit too long?

Minako opened her mouth to reply that Rei had also started shouting too, and was thus being hypocritcal and totally not cool, but decided that perhaps now was not the time to push Rei's buttons on that. Instead, she jumped subjects. "Uh, I'm sorry - I'll apologize to him later then. But," she leaned in accusingly, elbows on the wooden table, hands flat on the surface. "You've gone and eaten at Casablanca. Casablanca! Without me?! With Makoto?! Why?!" She pouted heavily, her full pink lips moistened by her gloss she had applied earlier while Rei was busy finishing leftover homework. The stoic miko was seemingly unmoved.

"Minako, that's not going to work. Minako... Minako, stop!" she finally snapped under the blonde's pressure. "I don't even know what you want from me."

"Isn't it obvious? I have a proposition for you," Minako impossibly leaned in closer, practically lounging, her flat stomach on the table. Rei refused to back away, her back rimrod straight. The miko tilted her head up, staring at Minako's shining lips down the tip of her nose.

"It's pretty simple, actually, so even you'd be able to understand it," Minako continued, grinning in that way of hers. She called it adorable and totally irrisistable. Totally irrisistable alright, Rei had mumbled under her breath to Ami. The urge to punch that infuriating, grinning face was definitely hard to fight. The blue-haired genius had giggled despite herself.

And Rei had started to sweat just a bit. Dammit. Minako went on. "So. You treat me at Casablanca. I eat that delicious fabled food of theirs. And then I won't tell the rest of the Senshi about your lunch date with Makoto. At Casablanca." She made a face at that, but was clearly proud of herself for thinking this up.

"Are you blackmailing me?" Rei asked incredulously. After receiving another grin, the miko shook her head. "You'll need to try harder than that. None of them would care and you know it."

"Hah!" Minako chirped. This was were she would win. "You sure Usagi wouldn't care?"

Rei flinched almost imperceptibly but recovered gallantly. "You know just as well as I that Mamoru would just take her there after just a few minutes of complaint." She folded her arms, feeling oddly triumphant. "I've called your bluff, Minako. You can get to Casablanca on your own. Or with your latest boy toy, either is fine. As long as I'm not involved."

"Reiiiii," Minako whined, dragging out the miko's name. "You're so mean; you, like, already know that I don't have a boyfriend right now. And besides," her blue eyes gleamed menacingly, "I'm not quite done with you yet!" Now was the time to reveal her trump card!

Now Rei, being born as Sailor Mars incarnate and into a family of renown Shinto priests, had special powers of predilection. This was, not surprisingly, also available to her in her civilian form (civilian form - pah, what was she, one of those super heroes in skin-tight jumpsuits and odd masks?!). Many times had these powers alerted Rei to any startling developments fast approaching in the future, and never one to fail, these powers made themselves useful once again by alerting Rei to an alarming omen.

A fast approaching omen.

An unavoidable omen.

Rei was appropriately scared.

"I'll tell all those underclassmen at your school that you took someone out to Casablanca," Minako sang joyfully. One small part of Rei's mind noted that the blonde was getting better at tunes; those idol lessons must've helped at least some. The rest of Rei's mind quickly killed it with fire and stomped the ashes into the imaginary ground. Rei had no words.

"Oh, and maybe those younger nuns that I saw staring at you when I came undercover to your school," Minako added after some thought. "Gosh, Rei, people love you almost as much as they love me." She had the nerve to preen.

"You... you wouldn't," Rei growled. She was well aware of just how... popular she was at her private Catholic school - among not only the students, but the staff as well.

"Silly Rei," Minako said, flipping her long, blonde hair over her shoulder. She tapped Rei on the nose. "You know just as well as I that I would." And Rei did know.

The black-haired girl closed her eyes. With her arms still crossed, she tapped her fingers. She opened her eyes and stared at Minako for a long time: first at the blonde's upturned lips, and then at her startlingly blue eyes.

After a long moment, she sighed despairingly and slumped for the first time that day. "Fine. You win... this time." Once again Venus incarnate had stronghandled her into submitting. The miko glared imposingly at the cheering blonde, trying to recover even an ounce of her dignity. "And just why are you doing this?"

"'Cuz, Rei," the blonde smiled winningly, "I just wanna get to know you better! After my little dabbling at your private school, this is merely the next step!"

"Little?! You're still dabbling in my private school, you blackmailer!"

"Your face is a blackmailer."

"What does that- I don't even-"

Minako laughed brightly. She sounded much like the bells that Rei's school still used. "Oh, relax, Rei, this'll be totally fun! The beautiful and lovely Aino Minako will show you how to have a great time. Like, you know, normal people, Miss I'm-So-Prim-And-Proper-I-Don't-Even-Fart!"

"Yes, and after Casablanca the beautiful and lovely Aino Minako will probably show me how to diet, too," Rei deadpanned.

Minako screeched and hit Rei on the arm, claiming loudly that in no way that this future idol was fat, and you freakin' had it coming to you if you, like, dared to insult the Goddess of Love. The miko winced and rubbed her arm, but she was already smiling anyways, settling back into the routine of firing retorts semi-calmly and quietly scoffing all the while.

Well, Rei thought as she watched Minako pout with those pink lips yet again.

Maybe this little outing wouldn't be too bad after all.


AN: yeah idk what i'm doing. i've always wanted to try rei/minako, but in a more manga-oriented way because the manga needs more love. however, i don't think i have a good enough grasp on their personalities (rei here actually seems more like her anime persona, which i absolutely loathe compared to the manga ugh), so you'll just get banal trivialties like this in the rest of the story. constructive critisisms would be immensely helpful - thanks for reading.

maybe i should spell check this.