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

Thanks to everyone who took the time to review the first chapter. The second installment for this two-shot is here, which concludes this piece. Don't worry, guys. I plan to have more oneshots/shorts about this couple in this universe. A part of me wants to do for MaiNao in this fandom as RadiantBeam did Vivio/Lutecia in MGLN. So let's hope the interest stays.

I'm also currently working on another oneshot... which is sort of like an epilogue (but not really) for ChiexAoi in IBYR-verse. Watch out, fanfiction world, ookamidesu is back!

Oh - and in case anyone is wondering, Knight Natsuki is currently put on hiatus, as I am not so interested in writing for ShizNat at the moment. I feel other pairings are in dire need of more attention. xD

"You enjoy it, don't you?" I asked, reflexively wrapping my arm tighter around her when she snuggled into me.

"Yeah, you're really warm. I'm not very good at retaining heat, so I get cold easily when I'm naked," Mai replied, drawing random patterns onto my bare chest with her finger.

"Not that," I deadpanned.

"No?" Mai asked in faux cluelessness. "Well, if you're talking about the sex, of course I enjoy that. You really know how-"

"Not that either," I replied indignantly. "Of course I know you enjoy sex with me. That's not what I'm talking about."

"Oh? Then what is it?" Mai asked as she propped up slightly to look me in the eyes.

I shifted slowly to make myself comfortable as we turned face to face on the bed. "At the restaurant today, when the guys approached us and I was about to jump them, you stopped me. You like showing that you have control over me, don't you?"

"Of course. I'm very proud of the fact that I was able to tame you."

"I'm not an animal, you know," I said, slightly offended at her choice of words.

"You're not... but you know what I mean," Mai replied apologetically. "You didn't like me at all during the HiME carnival. And even after the Obsidian Lord was defeated, you still had reservations about trusting people, despite how much they tried to help you."

"Tch, they were all pretentious assholes. They didn't actually care, they just wanted to look like they did," I murmured.

Mai chuckled at the memory. "Yeah, you drove them away pretty easily. But my point still stands. Earning your trust was difficult, especially since you thought of me as some goody two-shoes who worked way too hard for the sake of my brother."

"You were damn persistent though, woman. I hated you before, and then I hated you with a passion after. You just wouldn't leave me alone. I still don't know how you wormed your way into my life like this," I said, turning to face the ceiling.

"It was Natsuki that helped me figure it out, you know? She pointed out that you needed proof that someone will stay with you through thick and thin; that you didn't need someone who would just leave you after a few bumps in the road. And that was when it clicked. You drove people away because you knew that they wouldn't stick around when things got difficult. There was no point opening up to someone who wasn't going to stay in your life very long."

I inched closer to Mai and gathered her into my arms. When she held me back, I buried my face into the crook of her neck and inhaled deeply, taking in her scent. "People always come and go, Mai. If you really mean that little to them, then they should mean equally little to you. And people who don't mean much to me don't deserve to know who I am."

"I understand," she replied, petting me affectionately. "I understand it so well. After I figured it out, I just couldn't leave you alone. I wanted to prove to you that I'm not one of those people. I'll stay with you, through the good and the bad. When you need to be held or when you need someone to hold, I'll be right here, at arms-length for you."

"I know," I replied, my voice muffled. "You've already proven yourself to me. You've given me everything you are, and so I will reciprocate and give you everything that I am." I moved my head out of it's comfortable spot to look into Mai's eyes. "I give you control over me because I know you won't abuse that power, but make no mistake. I'm not whipped. I won't do everything you tell me to do unquestioningly."

"Well," Mai sighed in faux disappointment, "That's a shame. But I guess I'll take what I can get."

"I'm surprised that mutt helped you help me," I said, changing the subject.

"Natsuki isn't as bad as you're making her out to be. She has a warm heart too, you know, but she's just a little more tsundere than you."

"I'm not a tsundere," I deadpanned.

"No," Mai replied, a smirk forming on her lips. "Of course not. You're a mischievous troublemaker."

"Hey now," I retorted. "My troublemaking days are over."

"Are they really? I seem to recall someone getting into a fight with a few boys earlier tonight," Mai returned, placing a contemplative finger on her chin.

"That can barely be considered a fight. All they did was flail around in panic. Besides, I couldn't let them get away with all that crap they were saying. Nobody, and I mean nobody, besides me is allowed to touch you that way."

"Getting possessive there, aren't you?" Mai teased, giving me a chaste kiss.

"So what if I am? You're mine," I replied seriously.

I could tell she was about to tease me until she saw the seriousness in my eyes. "I'm yours," she confirmed with a smile. "And I will always be yours." She placed her head onto my chest and allowed me to wrap my arms around her.

I'm happy, I thought to myself. I'm lucky to have someone like Mai in my life. Before she stepped in, everything was a mess. Everything that happened with mama, with the carnival, and even post-carnival was a wreck. But Mai walked into my life and she helped fix it up. She helped me deal with my demons and helped me straighten my life out. Now, I have a direction. I'm in college. I live in an apartment with her. And I'm going to make her happy.

"Ne, Nao?" she said sleepily.


"Tomorrow, we need to go grocery shopping."

"What? We just went two days ago!" I complained.

"Mikoto visited yesterday, remember?"

I let out a low growl without even realizing it. "That thing eats way too much. You need to cut her diet down before her metabolism stops working from all the overeating she does."

"Be nice," Mai giggled. "She's a growing girl."

"In case you missed it, Mikoto and I are the same age," I emphasized the last part of my sentence.

"That doesn't change the fact that we need to get more food," she stated with finality.

"Fine," I said as I sighed loudly. "But we still have food, right? We can wait til the weekend to food shop."

"Mm, did you forget? Tomorrow is karaoke night at our place. I invited the whole gang over."

"The...whole...gang?" I gulped. "Does that include mutt and her crazy girlfriend?"

"Nao," Mai reprimanded. "Shizuru isn't crazy. She was just heavily affected by the HiME star. Are you still holding that grudge?"

"She killed mama when she killed Julia. I will never forgive her," I replied, contempt clearly in my voice.

"Please play nice tomorrow. I know you don't like either of them, but please at least be civil."

"Can't I just... disappear for the night and come back when it's done?" I asked hopefully.

"Nao," she said in her warning voice. "You're my girlfriend. You're very important to me. So, it's equally important to me that you and my friends get along."

I grumbled, not liking the idea of karaoke night. But in the end, I nodded slightly to tell her that I will be in attendance, like she wanted. Content with having persuaded me, Mai snuggled closer and slowly drifted off to sleep. I sighed to myself. Yeah, totally not whipped.

Regardless, I vowed to make Mai happy. And I'm going to do just that. Even if it means doing something with her that I absolutely hate. Like playing nice with that stupid mutt and her murderer of a girlfriend.

And there you have it, MaiNao fluff. xDD

I wonder how many of you thought, "I wonder how Mai tamed Nao..." as you read this. Raise your hand. :3

Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Concerns? Leave me a note. Please & thank you. :)