Disclaimer: I don't own Gauken Alice. If I did, well I'd be rich for one thing.
Author's Note: I must say this prompt came to me in the spur of the moment.
Dedication: It's been a while since I dedicated anyting but this one goes out to Silvermist76. She's awesome. Do I even need a reason?
Just a kiss
"Alright time to pay up missy!"
"Koko what are you talking about?" Mikan asked in confusion. He had sauntered over to her desk with his arm around Ruka, who looked embarrassed if his red face was anything to go by.
"My mate here tells me that you've racked up quite a tab. It's about damn time you started clearing it!" Koko proclaimed, pointing a finger at Mikan. Ruka refused to look at her, choosing to look at a corner of the room.
Didn't Koko know that it was rude to point fingers? Or yell in people's faces?
"What are you talking about?" Mikan echoed, still perplexed. She must have sounded so stupid, saying the same thing again.
"You owe Ruka twenty four kisses!"
For a second, Mikan's mind was blank. Recognition came soon afterwards.
"Oh that," She acknowledged. "I'd be more than happy to settle it Ruka! All you had to do was ask."
"Wait like all of them?" Koko spluttered, disbelief coloring his features. "All twenty four- today?"
At that even Ruka had to stop pretending that the scene wasn't playing out in front in him. She couldn't be serious could she? Mikan didn't even seem like the kind of girl that'd give one kiss away freely but so many at once! It was unthinkable for her character! Maybe he didn't know her as well as he thought he did.
"A promise is a promise Koko and I always keep mine," Mikan said, throwing in a playful wink. "But I can't give them to Ruka now obviously."
Mikan turned to the boy in question and chirped, "Meet me in the courtyard after school and you'll get what you've asked for."
With that Mikan left the room to get a book from her locker and Ruka was left in a daze for the rest of the day. He couldn't really concentrate in class.
He was standing in the courtyard, waiting for Mikan when he felt someone tap his shoulder from behind.
Speak of the devil. It was her and she had something behind her back and she was grinning.
"Okay now close your eyes."
He did as she asked. Was she going to lean in and do it? Here in front of all of these people?
"Now give me your hand."
Okay now he didn't know where this was going. He held out his hand.
A weight dropped into it. He opened his eyes and in his hand was a bag of…
He blinked. So when she said she'd give him kisses, she was talking about the branded chocolates. You see over the past few months, Mikan had asked Ruka for a few small favors and they had fallen into a system where one favor done meant one kiss earned, the tab increasing with time. They were pretty menial things and he wondered why she felt the need to pay him back so.
Now he got it.
"I know it was twenty four but I just got you the whole thing. Consider it interest." She said her voice lighthearted. Then she left him. Alone with the hershey's kisses.
Ruka should've seen this coming. His personal blackmailer was nowhere in sight. That should have made him realize- if Mikan was going to kiss him, you could bet your ass her best friend would be there with a camera.
His eyes darted the space around him. He silently sent signals to the nearby animals to help him find what he was looking for.
Perched in a nearby oak tree was Hotaru Imai and what do you know- her trusty camera. At least he could be satisfied knowing Hotaru had been tricked as well and there was barely anything the girl didn't see coming.
"Expecting a show Imai?" Man he was loving this.
"Shut it Nogi, unless you want me to start selling those pictures I got last wee-"
"Alright, alright," Ruka relented, his hands up in surrender. The girl had zero tolerance for mockery. "I guess we both underestimated Mikan's naivety."
Then a woodpecker chose to peck at Hotaru, causing her to slip from her position on the branch and fall towards the ground.
Guess what broke her fall. That's right- one pheromone-alice cushion pillow.
Oh well at least the chocolate's still there.
"Natsume!" Mikan called out. She couldn't find him at their usual meeting spot and now she was walking the boundary of the northern forest looking for him. "Where are you? Are you up in some tree? Don't make me come get you!"
"Tch. Like you could."
"There! I found you!" Mikan exclaimed as she walked up to him. He was indeed perched in a tree at least ten feet above ground.
He smirked at her. "I thought you were going to come get me."
Mikan scowled, looking down at her hands. "Last time I climbed a tree I got splinters under the skin of my palms."
"Well I don't feel like coming down. So you'll just have to come up."
"Natsume!" She whined, stomping her foot. Then she remembered something. She reached into her pocket and took out a piece of bubble gum. She smiled at him.
He raised an eyebrow at her.
She happily started chewing it and blew a big, pink bubble. It became a balloon that rose upwards carrying her with it. When she had reached the height of the branch she popped, landing next to him. He steadied her so she wouldn't fall off.
"Invention #729: Bubble balloon burst. One time use only." She told him, with a triumphant grin on her face.
"And why would Imai randomly give that to you?" Natsume asked, facing her and leaning his back against the main trunk.
"Well she's been giving me loads of free stuff lately and I'm the first one to get it! I'm her 'taste-tester'. Isn't that so cool Natsume?" Mikan asked, still smiling like an idiot.
"She's using you as a lab rat. I don't see anything great about that." Natsume dismissed, looking away from her.
Mikan mood lowered a little but she wasn't about to let Natsume get her down so she decided to tell him about her day, "I paid off my debt to Ruka today. I don't know why but Koko wanted me to."
"What debt?" He asked, glancing back at her.
She looked down at the ground below them. It seemed so far away. "I owed him twenty four kisses and I paid them all back with interest."
"You did what?" Natsume growled, his eyes darkening and hand forming a fist.
"It's not like it's a big de−"
He grabbed her by the arms and brought her close to him. "Then I guess you wouldn't mind giving me the same."
"But I don't owe you."
Natsume scoffed. "Of course you do, I've saved your ass more times than I can count. Where to start…hmm… how about with Reo or Z or−"
"Okay! Okay! Point made sheesh," Mikan admitted, hands up in a show of surrender. "I didn't know you'd want it so bad. After all with your salary I figured it wouldn't be hard to buy them from someone yourself."
Now he was confused, why would he buy a kiss from a random stranger?
"Figures that boys go crazy over chocolate."
Chocolate? Oh. Oh. This whole time she was talking about chocolate kisses?
Natsume dipped his head forward and shadows covered his face. Mikan leaned in close, to see his expression.
"Polka when you promise a guy a kiss, he expects one from your lips."
"You mean you want me to feed it to you with my mouth? That's so gross."
He sighed, and whispered into her ear.
"Oh!" She exclaimed when he leaned back, blushing. "Umm I didn't mean…"
"Too bad, a promise is a promise. I want my kisses Sakura."
"Natsume come on," Mikan implored, her hands using his chest as support. "You can't be serious. You know how much I don't like it."
"Didn't seem like that last time." He replied, a smug smile on his face.
Mikan huffed at the implication. "Well…"
"You know you want to," He coaxed, his tone smooth. Eh it couldn't really hurt could it?
She leaned forward and kissed him. Right on the lips.
"See," He said after they had both pulled away. "That wasn't so bad was it?"
Mikan fumbled with the hem of her skirt. What was she thinking coming up here in a skirt anyway?
"You're not going to tell anyone right?"
She looked into his eyes reluctantly, "It's just that your fan girls are really obsessive and down right dangerous sometimes. And I don't think Ruka would like it."
"Alright," Natsume said. "Doesn't matter much though. The whole world already knows that you're mine."
Mikan tried to stop blushing but it was hard.
"Don't go forget about the remaining twenty three." He reminded, as he turned so his legs were dangling off of the branch, about to leave.
Mikan's mouth formed an 'o'. "Natsume! That'll take a lifetime to pay off!"
"No it won't," He chuckled, adding a far-from-innocent wink. "In fact it won't even last a month."
Mikan looked horrified.
"Did you think about how you're getting down from here yet?" He asked interrupting her shock.
Mikan looked at the ground. Ten feet. Damn it would hurt.
"I was hoping you could help with that?" She tried, shutting her eyes in hope. She felt arms wrap around her and she did the same. The air swished around them and then her feet found solid ground. She made to let go of him but he didn't reciprocate.
"So how exactly did you end up owing Ruka all those chocolates anyway?"
She didn't want to talk about Ruka right then, it didn't feel right.
"Umm I'm a bad gambler?"
"Then we should make bets more often, you know to help you improve."
Surprisingly she didn't mind where this was going. "Oh yeah? I bet you can't carry me all the way from the cafeteria to the dorm tonight after dinner."
"Oh you're on," He grinned at her, untangling himself from her and walking away.
Before he left, he threw a comment over his shoulder. "Lesson number one: be specific. You knew never said whose dorm."
Damn. She was in for it.
So what'd you think? Review and I'll give you a kiss! ;)
~Alexxis T. Swan