Here we go with "kiss" on day six!
Ren took the bouquet gratefully from the security guard. He really couldn't walk into a flower shop as himself - but he also couldn't miss a chance to give Kyoko flowers. She seemed to have some sort of aversion to him spending money on her. The things in the bathroom were apparently exempt, as her best friend also benefited from them. But flowers - flowers were okay. Flowers were relatively cheap and attracted fairies. Plus, when they got too old, she would dry them and make things from them. As he got in the elevator, he made a mental note to ask her where she learned to make jewelry. She had shocked more than one interviewer with the news that her gorgeous jewelry was handmade.
He opened the door and opened his mouth to call out his usual greeting, but the words never made it out. Kyoko had heard his key in the door and hurried over to it, making it there just as it opened. The way his eyes lit up when he saw her bolstered her confidence. She grabbed him by the lapels of his shirt and tugged him down for a kiss.
Kuon had no idea what was going on, but Kyoko was kissing him, so he wasn't going to question it. The hand holding the bouquet found its place on her back, pressing her to him, as the other fumbled to close and lock the door. It was only when he stumbled trying to take off his shoes that she released him. He stared down at her, dazed. "Hi."
"Welcome home," she replied, her face a vivid pink. She glanced down at her hands, then back up at him. "Moko's got her other job tonight, so she won't be back until ten. She's got a safe way home, so… it's just us for date night." She fidgeted, but forced herself to say, "I've - I've missed being able to be close to you this week. It was weird being here but not being able to cuddle, or kiss, or anything because we had company. Which isn't to say I'm not grateful that you took both of us in! I am! I just… missed you."
"I missed you, too, princess," he said hoarsely. So it wasn't just me. And it looks like she stores up her affection and enthusiasm for everyone, not just her best friend. "A lot."
"I - I should let you get your shoes off." She slipped out of his one-armed embrace and finally noticed the flowers he held. "Oh!"
"They're cornflowers." He handed them to her, relieved that they weren't smushed, as he swapped his shoes for house slippers. "I thought you'd appreciate the name. I didn't know that they came in colors other than blue."
"They're beautiful," she gushed, her mind already swirling with ideas for how to use them. The blue ones were almost the same color as her Corn stone. Maybe she could use the petals to make some sort of enamel fairy? Or maybe she could cast a whole flower in resin for a charm. "Thank you so much, Kuon."
The smile on her face was all the reward he needed. "Of course, princess. Now, what do you want to do tonight?"
She shyly offered him her hand, which he took, and she led him to the couch. "I know that we were talking about going out in disguise this week, but…"
"But…?" he asked, a smile on his face. He sat down, and his grin grew wider when she placed the bouquet on the table and tucked herself into his side.
"But I want you all to myself for a bit." He could feel the heat of her cheeks through his shirt.
If that hasn't been my thought process all damn week…. "I am so good with that." He looped his arms around her, pulling her properly onto his lap, and buried his face in her hair. He alternated between blowing raspberries and peppering her with kisses, sending her into a fit of giggles.
"Kuon!" She twisted around to face him, bringing her hands up to stop him. He pressed a kiss to her palm - and then licked it. "Eww," she laughed, wiping it on his shirt. "What's gotten into you?"
"Maybe that my adorable girlfriend is showing her possessive side a bit? And is letting me hold her the way I've been craving?" His arms tightened around her.
She pouted at him. "Well, it's not like I haven't been wanting to cuddle, too! But it's not proper with Moko here."
"So now we have until ten." He leaned forward and kissed her, letting all of the pent-up longing and jealousy from the week flow into it. She responded in kind, scraping her teeth across his bottom lip in a way that made his fingers dig into her back.
She pulled back with a gasp. "The flowers!"
"Wha...?" he mumbled, eyes half-open. I swear I could get drunk on her kisses.
"The cornflowers! I need to put them in water." She trailed her fingers, which as always had been twined in his hair, down the side of his face. "I don't want them to wilt. And then how about we do dinner?"
A soft smile graced his lips. "True, we don't want the tummy monster to interrupt us later."
She puffed out her cheeks in mock-irritation and hopped off of his lap to go find a vase. A few moments of rustling later, she reappeared in the doorway. "Kuon, I have some questions."
"Yeah?" He stood, his head clear once more. "What's up?"
"One: Where did you put the vases?"
"Second cupboard, I think." He followed her into the kitchen and fetched one the right size. "You had other questions?"
She took it and filled it with enough water for the flowers. "Why are there six potato peelers sitting out on the counter?"
"Because I forgot to put them away." Wait, did I ever decide where they go?
"Why do you have six potato peelers?" She set the vase on the counter and carefully arranged the flowers.
"I genuinely have no idea." He opened a drawer and tucked them in alongside some vaguely similar tools.
"Last question: What sounds good for dinner?" She grinned up at him. Why do those go in with the egg beater?
Don't say her. "How about something simple, like miso and tamagoyaki?"
"Sounds perfect! Will you get out the tools and pans, please?" She gestured to the cupboards. "I don't know where they are."
Crap. I didn't think about that when I was trying to reorganize. "Right, sorry." He dropped a kiss on her hair and started rummaging around for the required items.
She waved her hand, indicating that there was no need to apologize. "Are you okay with sweet, or do you want me to make some salty tamagoyaki?"
"I think I'd prefer salty. The only sweet thing I ever really want is you." The line rolled off of his tongue before he could think.
Kyoko's ears went pink. "That was corny."
He shrugged as best he could while setting the tools they'd need on the kitchen island. "What did you expect from me? I'm Corn."
She took advantage of the moment he bent over to grab a spatula, dropping a kiss in his hair in the way he so loved to do to her. She managed to not get a mouthful of hair. "And I'm never going to stop being thankful for that."
He almost dropped the spatula. It still threw him when she showed affection - even after all the kisses they had shared, even after the ones from earlier this same evening, something as simple as her kissing his head… it was overwhelming. All of her was overwhelming, and he loved it.
Cooking with Kuon had quickly become one of Kyoko's favorite ways to make food (right up there with cooking with taisho or Moko). Not because he was particularly skilled - gods, no - but because they worked so well together. They danced around each other, and Kuon seemed to have made it his personal goal to kiss her as many times as he could when they cooked. Her hair, her cheeks, her neck, her lips - all were fair game. Her hands were usually off-limits, as they too often held knives. Yet despite this distracting game, he was helpful. Once he had gotten the hang of basic skills, cooking with him was faster than cooking alone. Not to mention, more musical.
"Sha-la-la-la, my oh my, looks like the boy's too shy," he sang, stirring the miso.
"He's gonna miss the girl," Kyoko sang along.
"Nope!" He swooped in and stole a kiss, leaving Kyoko giggling.
A few Disney songs later, dinner was done, and the two sat down at the floor table to eat. Kuon had brought out the flowers to decorate the table, and Kyoko gazed at them dreamily. "They're so pretty."
"Perfectly suiting my princess." He set down their bowls of miso. She's too cute, he thought, watching her cheeks turn pink. And, because he didn't have to hide his feelings, he leaned over and kissed her cheek.
"You're extra affectionate tonight, Kuon," she teased. "Something you're not telling me?"
He chuckled and clapped his hands together; they gave their thanks for the food before he answered. "Maybe I'm just enjoying having all of your attention for the evening, since my competition is at work."
Kyoko's mouth dropped open. "You mean that you and Moko are rivals over me?"
He nodded, pleasantly surprised that she hadn't denied it. "Have been since the first Happy Grateful party, actually."
We told you so! screamed her grudges and angels.
"But there's - there no reason for that," she said blankly. "You two are really important to me, just in different ways. I need you both."
"I know." He gave her a wry smile. "And this whole rivalry is absolutely just Kotonami-san and me being petty, jealous children who are coming around to the idea of sharing you."
"We're all celebrities. We should be used to sharing.." She took a bite of her tamagoyaki. "Ooh, these came out well!"
"The key word here being should." He caught her free hand and pressed a kiss to her knuckles. "I'm working on my jealousy, and I think she is too. You're more important than any petty competition she and I might have."
"I never noticed until now," she murmured. "Have I… have I made things worse between you? Did I keep you from being friends?"
"Of course not, princess." His lips brushed against her knuckles as he spoke, as he was still holding her hand to them. "Honestly, I don't think she and I would know each other if not for you. You bring people together, Kyoko, and you bring out the best in us. Like you've done with me, with Kotonami-san, with Maria-chan - and, if what I've heard is accurate, with Amamiya-san as well. And probably countless others." He reached out and stroked her cheek with his free hand; she leaned into it.
"Corn…" she whispered, her hand coming up to hold his to her face. She didn't know what else to say, how to respond to any of this. How could she form words when faced with the pure emotion in his eyes? But there was still that concern in his eyes, hiding - or at least trying to hide. "About - living together."
"Yeah?" Have I been pushing that too much?
"I think, maybe… Well, Moko and I have another six months on our lease, but then…." She released his hand, but he did not move it, instead leaving it where it was. Her face burned under her hand. "Maybe? I don't know - because this is like, the only time I get to live with my best friend, but when we get married, I'll get to live with you forever, but I -" Her eyes went wide and she clapped a hand over her mouth. I said when, not if. Oh gods, what is he thinking?
When. She said when we get married. She said forever. And she was saying maybe, when her lease is up, maybe she'll move in. But she said forever, she wants forever. Those thoughts running through his mind, he surged forward and kissed her with all the joy he felt. Their tamagoyaki and miso both grew cold before they remembered they had been eating dinner.
What do you think?