Disclaimer: I do not own Mai HiME in any way, shape, or form.

Sorry for disppearing on you guys for so long! RL has taken over and I just haven't had the time/motivation to write as of late. Until further notice, updates will be sporadic and random.

I have recently found myself as a shipper of MaiNao, so when I was prompted to write something, this pairing came to mind. ^-^;

Try to keep in mind that Mai and Nao are college-aged in this story, and they no longer possess their HiME powers.

I caught whispers from a group of immature-looking boys as they passed our table. Only a few lines were exchanged in the 3 seconds it took for them to disappear from my sight, but I can still hear them perfectly fine because the bastards chose to sit in the booth right behind us.

"You're glaring at your food, Nao. Does it taste that bad?" Mai asked, fork pointing at me.

"It's fine. It taste like food," I replied curtly. I couldn't force myself to stop listening in on their conversation, even though it pissed me off by the minute.

"Now you're stabbing at it," she informed.

Realizing that Mai was right, I relinquished the fork I was using and tossed it onto the table. "Are you seriously deaf? Do you not hear the conversation behind me?"

Mai blinked at me, looking clueless. I was about to tell her what they were saying, but she cut me off before I could start. "Is that what you're pissed about? Really? That's it?"

"That's it?!" I practically yelled with disbelief. "They were objectifying you!"

She gave a small shrug and popped some rice into her mouth, chewing it slowly before swallowing. "I know. I'm not stupid, Nao. But it's not like I can do anything to stop it."

"You're seriously okay with it?" I asked, anger subsiding only to make room for the intense amount of incredulity that I was feeling.

"I never said I was okay with it, but it also hasn't reached a point where I feel the need to do anything about it," she replied blankly as she continued to eat.

I picked up my fork and began working through my meal, eating slightly faster than I normally do. Just because Mai didn't want to make an issue out of this doesn't mean I won't. And if I had to listen to one more comment about how they want to get a taste of that bodacious rack, I'm going to murder somebody with the fork I'm holding.

"Careful," Mai warned, seeing the speed I was eating in. "The food's not going to go anywhere."

"Yeah," I replied, taking another bite of the chicken I ordered. "But I want to... ASAP. Maybe you can stay calm about this, but I can't."

She replied to my comment with a calm smile before finishing the last of her vegetables. As soon as I saw her empty plate, I waved my hand for the check, not caring that I only ate half of my dinner. When the waitress came, I threw a few bills her way, told her to keep the change, and rushed out of the restaurant with Mai.

"You know, I do think it's kind of cute that you're so protective of me," Mai started, "but let's not bolt out of a restaurant again."

"I let you finish your food," I replied defensively.

"But I wanted dessert," she sighed.

"We'll go somewhere else. I saw a froyo place nearby. We can go there."

Before Mai could answer me, we were rudely interrupted by a few familiar voices. "Oi oi, you girls alone tonight? Wanna hang out with us?"

I clenched my fists and was only 0.23 seconds away from lunging at them when Mai grabbed my hand and placed her lips next to the shell of my ear. "Easy there, tiger," she whispered.

I instantly froze on the spot, but did not bother taking my eyes off of the prey. Instead of talking, I chose to ascertain the situation, forming a rough plan in my head on how I would beat the crap of them. She moved slightly away from me so that she could address them, but kept her hand on mine as she spoke.

"Thanks for asking, but we'll decline the invitation," she replied with an empty smile.

How she could still smile at them, I will never know, even if it was empty. It took all of my self-control, plus her, to not jump in their faces the second they decided to approach us.

"Aw, come on. We're really nice guys and we're told that we're fun to be around," another one tried.

"Ah, as you can tell, my friend is not in a very good mood right now, so I'm afraid we really will have to decline," she replied.

It might've sounded nice to their ears, but I could tell that even Mai was getting impatient with them. The very polite way she worded her sentence told me so.

"Then all the more reason to hang out with us, right? We can all do something fun together and help make her feel better," he pestered.

"What kind of fun thing, I'm-gonna-fuck-her-so-hard-her-jugs-are-gonna-pop- san?" Mai questioned, her face showing no embarrassment at the words she uttered, as if she was just asking about the weather.

I, on the other hand, felt my jaw drop. Literally, my jaw dropped to the ground and I was only able to recover from that when she lightly squeezed my hand. Realizing that I let my guard down, I replaced my shocked expression with the glare I had on earlier and continued to watch them intently.

The boys stood there in shock. They must've thought we were deaf; that we couldn't hear a word of their disgusting discussion. I couldn't help but do a small victory dance in my head when I saw the looks on their faces... which were still on their face.

"What kind of fun thing?" Mai pressed, her voice slowly getting colder.

"Look," someone finally said. "We're really sorry we said that stuff about you. We were just... talking, that's all. Didn't mean any harm. But we really are nice guys if you give us a chance."

"Perhaps I'm not making myself clear," Mai said as she loosened her grip on me.

Then she did something that I completely did not expect. She grabbed me by the back of my head and pulled my face close to hers. In the very brief second that she stopped to look me in the eyes, I saw a glint of mischief; then, not a second later, I was given a very, very hungry kiss. One that was usually reserved for the bedroom... for obvious reasons.

When we parted, I turned my vision to her eyes, and noticed that they were actually on the boys to see their reaction. A small smirk formed into my lips as it was my turn to take the stage now.

"The only reason you three are still standing around with all your limbs attached," I started as my eyes were still on Mai, "is because my girlfriend stopped me." I slowly turned my vision to them, noticing that they were still dumbfounded. I took a step forward and rolled my shoulders to loosen any muscles in that area. "But she just gave me the go ahead, so I'll be enjoying my new toys for the night," I finished as I put on my brass knuckles.

When they didn't look scared, I thought it was because they were confident in their fighting skills, but it turns out, they just didn't think a girl could win. It seemed like they were relying on the power of numbers and the fact that they were stronger than me as a basis for concluding the victor of this match.

But they were proven wrong. So very wrong.

Because by the end of the night, they were all on the ground, groaning in pain as they clutched onto their balls.

"I think you overdid it," Mai noted as she watched them grovel.

"If I had a knuckle blade, I would have castrated them," I replied. "I consider this light."

"I think you broke someone's ribs... not sure which though."

"Should I even it out then? They could all have broken ribs together."

"No, it's okay. I still want dessert and I'm pretty sure the place is going to close if we don't hurry."

"Are you sure? It'll only take a minute."

"Nao," she said in that voice of hers that meant 'playtime is over'.

"Tch. Fine," I replied, pocketing the brass knuckles as I walked towards her. I grabbed her hand and laced my fingers between hers, then whispered into her ear, "But that kiss you gave me earlier... I'm not going to forget about that tonight. Just a forewarning, tiger."

A/N: Rather than claws, I think Nao will enjoy having knuckle blades, but those things are lethal... especially with her using them. Therefore, I decided to just give her brass knuckles. I very much see her as someone who got into a lot of street fights given the way she spent her HiME years. A good number of people fell victim to her shenanigans and given how pissed those people were, I imagine they attempted to get their revenge, which is where she gained her street fighting creds.

Anyway, read & review please. Questions? Comments? Concerns? Thoughts? Leave me a note. Thanks!