Yeah, I forgot how much college likes to ruin my life an plans….well, at least I'm in my two month deadline I gave myself! Yay! Lol
So, this was originally going to be a longer chapter….like, another ten pages longer. However, I thought that posting Minako's and Ami's situation could be done in two or three chapters instead of one big chapter, mostly so I could at least post something on this story.
Tell me how you feel about the story so far, guys! I love feedback, even if it's to simply say you like the story. (I'll take anything….)
Also, concept art for new sailor outfits! Every senshi will have a different style, different sleeve lengths, different accessories or cuts of their outfits. Like, Usagi for example. I imagine her with tights that end above the knee with a dress like outfit on top that reaches just below the butt (longer than the fuku skirts, that's for sure) and a jacket with knee high lace up boots…..yeah, the other concept art will come along as the story progresses. I'll add the link on my profile.
It's Minako, by the way, in her new Venus outfit. The magic came up with the design, I swear…
Umm, so, pairings. I have a few in mind. Usagi and Duo are set, but how far of a pairing it ends up becoming remains to be seen. And I just have to put this out there…I'm one of those crazy fan girls who think that Trowa and Quatre are canon pairings and shouldn't be messed with. That is actually going to be a part of a great monologue that Minako will go off on. As Aphrodite, she embraces all love, no matter if it's a strait couple or a gay couple. I can see her getting quite pervy around them, actually…
Oh, dear, where are my manners! People reviewed! Yay!
JPandS: Thank you so much for another great review! When it comes to Usagi, it's like she's a magnet for trouble, and her personality through struggles she counters is one that I try very hard to capture. At the moment, her strength and kindness aren't really prevalent because she's in shock, but all will be explained soon! I'm glad you like the pairing idea! I'm also very strongly thinking of putting Minako and Wufei together….can you imagine the storyline that will take? Lol
Hope's Last Stand: Wow, that's really encouraging! It's great that my story was the stepping stone back into a great fandom, and I feel privileged my dear, simply privileged. I'm blushing. Oh, and don't worry, even though Usagi won't be with Heero, she will still meet him and make an impact on his life. She wouldn't be Usagi if she didn't, to be honest.
Puffgirl1952: Not one to mince words, I see! I like your style, chick-a-dee! You know what you want, and you ask for it! Lol. I hope this meets your expectations!
The sound of the standard Preventer high-heels that all the females were required to wear sounded off through the hallway, their pace even and purposeful. Spun gold hair swung gently with her stride from the middle of a perfectly coiled bun, the tresses floating around her waist. Blue flecked gold eyes strayed distractedly to the thick pile of papers she was carting, a small pout covering her pink lips.
"Morning, Aino." Minako looked up, an easy smile coming over her face when she saw who it was. Gavin Steele worked with her in the IT Intelligence department in the main preventer building. Gavin's job in the department was software management, and Ami worked alongside him creating programs that were used to fortify the security for every computer in the building. Minako, however, was the department's head (or, rather, only) secretary.
"Good morning, Steele. How are you doing today?" Gavin smiled, green eyes lighting up behind thick black glasses. "Better now that my favorite blonde is here." Minako rolled her eyes, sending an exasperating look over to the cheeky brunette. Gavin let his eyes roam down the girl's body without shame, lingering on the swell of her bust that was still obvious even in the preventer's jacket over her white blouse.
Minako and Ami had been working at the Preventer's HQ headquarters in Brussels for 3 months, and hardly a day went by since then that Gavin hadn't tried to sweet talk her into a date…Or undress her with his eyes. He always accomplished each at least once a day without fail.
The blonde looked at her fellow agent walking beside her without turning her head, polychromatic eyes turning completely gold as she focused on his left hand. Her vision took on a soft golden haze as multiple threads of various colours materialized on his fingers. Each strand of thread led off to different directions, but one red string that was attached to his ring finger stood out boldly among the others. The thread led off to an unidentifiable direction, nowhere near her. She looked down at her own ring finger, a familiar sadness coming over her. Her own red string was simply wrapped around her finger and, just like every other time she had looked, led to no one.
Minako pushed back the power channeling through her eyes with an internal sigh, her eyes reverting back to their original state. His soul mate was somewhere out in the world, and the fact that the red string was actually leading somewhere meant that he had already met that person. Yet here he was, flirting up a storm with her. Men; they truly were the clueless sex of the species.
Minako cleared her throat, pushing away her thoughts resolutely. "Aren't you intellectual genius types supposed to be awkward when it comes to talking to someone you like?" She asked him while grabbing her I.D badge, moving her stack of papers to one arm with an irritated grunt. The two slowed down when they came to the only door halfway down the hallway. Unlike most of the doors in the HQ, which were frosted glass, this door was a mix of wood and steel and sealed tightly. "Eh, that's just a stereotype. For instance, not all blondes are dumb, or else I wouldn't be going after you." Minako simply sighed for what felt like the millionth time, swiping her badge in the scanner to the right of the door. The red light switched to green, the door buzzing to indicate she was cleared to enter. The blonde opened the door and went through, Gavin mimicking her motions.
The room they walked into was reminiscent of a hospital in regards to the colour scheme; all white floors, white walls and white ceilings. The room in itself wasn't very small, but almost every available space was taken up by equipment that blinked red and green lights or miscellaneous computer parts. The temperature in the computer room was significantly lower than the rest of the building, reminiscent of a cold day in winter.
The loud hum of computers, servers and stacks filled the room, and the clicking of keyboards almost overtook the constant sound. There was an open doorway that led to a smaller room located to the right of the main area where all the servers and stacks took residence, cold air blowing out constantly throughout the day.
The main room consisted of six desks. Minako's desk simply contained the same standard computer system that the other offices commanded and a few random objects neatly lining the edge of the black material's surface. Her desk was set up facing the door and only a few feet from the entrance. The other five desks were spread out in the available empty space behind Minako's desk, at least two to three monitors taking up each one of them. Running along the left side of the room were numerous bins and containers that ran from one side of the wall to the other. Ami had explained to Minako that the IT Intelligence department preferred to work with computers that they had built themselves, and every piece of hardware that would ever be needed to build one from scratch was located in those containers.
Minako quickly walked the few steps to her black non-descript desk, placing down the loose papers gratefully. She picked up the light fur-lined jacket that she kept on the back of her office chair and shrugged it on. The first few days she spent working in the computer room had quickly taught her the importance of keeping a jacket on.
Gavin stopped by her desk and leaned a hip against the edge, seemingly unaffected by the drop in temperature. "You know, I tried asking Mizuno out on a date a few weeks ago," He told Minako, a thoughtful look on his face.
Minako plopped down in her chair, leaning her chin against a fist with a smirk on her face. "And how did that turn out for you?"
"She broke out in hives."
Minako snorted at the dejected look that came over his face. "Yeah, that tends to happen."
The blonde reached under the desk and turned on her computer, the quiet hum of the fan barely registering over the loud air-conditioner and fans from the other computers. "You do know that there's a section in the HQ charter that clearly states that relationships between agents, both field agents and non-field agents, are not permitted." Minako leveled a stern gaze at the brunette, her statement seemingly not even fazing him. Damn it all, she was almost out of verbal ammunition she could throw at him!
"What if they were to allow fraternization? Would you say yes?" Gavin sent a charming smile her way, his teeth practically glinting. Minako simply smiled a sweet, mature smile. When she spoke, however, her tone was flat. "You don't want me to answer that, sweety."
The weary blonde flapped her hand at the man, her monitor lighting up with a blue haze as the computer finished turning on, the screen prompting her for her agent number and password. "Don't you have work to be doing, Gavin? It would be a shame if I had to tell Utley that you wasted valuable work time trying to chat me up."
Gavin blanched at her threat, and what a threat it was. Wes Utley was the unofficial head of their motley crew and one of the most intimidating men that you could ever meet. The mere mention of Utley's name could strike fear through the hearts of the IT departments; not even Lady Une could hold a candle to his presence. Utley was in his forties, was at least six feet tall and had a solid body that was all muscle. He had the tanned, rough skin of someone who spent a lot of time outdoors on Earth and a long faded scar that ran along the edge of his right eye across his lower face through the right side of his mouth. The scar pulled down his eye and mouth slightly, only adding to his presence. A commanding 'mess with me and you die' aura surrounding him constantly.
Minako had the opinion that Utley had once been Special Forces or possibly even a black-ops soldier that had an incredible skill for hacking. After the Eve war ended and the Preventers was formed, he was one of the first to be hired for the IT jobs in the HQ building where all the agents worked. There was no use for someone like him in the main Preventer Office that was located in the middle of Brussels. He moved like a trained soldier, and Minako knew that he was always armed. Ami and Minako were always careful of how they acted around him. If they were able to recognize his past status as a soldier without difficulty, who was to say that he wouldn't be able to see the same in them?
Gavin walked away from her desk muttering to himself, sending furtive looks around the room to see if Utley was actually even in the room. He shuffled to his desk located at the back of the room and sat down, starting up his computers sullenly with a pout that belonged on someone much younger than him.
Minako let out a relieved breathe, turning around in her chair to the desk situated slightly behind hers and a little to the right. The blunette's fingers were flying over the keys, their speed not even faltering as she lifted blue eyes the same colour as her hair to regard Minako.
"Did you really have to threaten him with Utley?" Ami questioned, a small smile gracing her lips. Minako let out a huff, crossing her long legs and leaning back in her chair with her arms crossed. She pouted her full lips, her entire posture radiating annoyance.
"He's one of the most persistent men I have ever encountered! Nobody has ever tried so hard to get me to go out with them before. It's like the word 'no' doesn't exist to him!"
Ami's blue eyes flicked over the disgruntled blonde and back to one of the three screens in front of her, her fingers slowing down over the keys as she saved her progress on her current project. She pushed the wire-framed glasses perched on her nose to rest on the top of her head, rubbing between her eyes absently.
"Minako, you do realize what you look like, right," The genius questioned with an amused smile on her face. Minako muffled a snort with her hand, shoulders shaking with repressed laughter. "Um yeah. I do. And so do you obviously." The sentence was broken up with soft laughter, a teasing look coming over her face. "Have you been looking, Ami? I always knew you weren't as innocent as you seemed."
Ami blushed furiously, the red spreading from her face down her neck and underneath her blouse. The small girl sputtered, waving her hands frantically. She couldn't seem to put forth any intelligent words, the mortifying blush still prevalent on her face.
Minako laughed delightedly, eyes closed in mirth. Nothing made Ami loose her composure faster and more successfully than a simple comment peppered with sexual undertones. Minako had toned down the teasing some after she had caused Ami to practically faint a couple of years back, but couldn't help herself at times.
Ami cleared her throat self-consciously, moving her attention determinedly back to her numerous monitors. The blush in her face lightened from a dark tomato to a faint dusting of pink across her face. Minako simply watched her with a soft smile after she reigned in her laughter, golden eyes glowing softly. The blue-haired genius really was quite stunning when she lost her composure and her face was highlighted with the soft pink color.
The golden-haired teen whirled her seat around with a push of her foot and finally entered her login information, pulling open one of her drawers to rummage in her purse. She paused slightly, a noise registering faintly under the loud sounds of the room. It was a faint, rhythmic beeping that wasn't stopping. Minako froze altogether, eyes growing wide when she finally registered what the noise was and why it was so important. She frantically went inside one of the pockets and unzipped a compartment, lifting an orange watch out with shaking hands. A red light was flashing in time with the beeps, stopping as Minako pressed a button underneath the screen.
A map grid showed up on the small screen, a flashing pink dot registering 245 miles NE from their location in Brussels, Belgium. Minako quickly thought of what town was that way, silently cursing the device for not including town names. She sucked in a breath as it hit her, where the dot was located.
She quickly turned around to Ami, switching from the Standard that everyone spoke in this time to Japanese, confident in her assessment that no one in the room understood the language.
"Ami, the locator…It's picking up on Usagi's magic signature. She made it through."
Ok, I know I ended it off on a cliffhanger. Kudos to those who know what town Usagi landed in. If you have any questions, fell free to ask! I'm using all the major Gundam Wing A.C. locations in this fic, and Brussels is very prominent in the series. A lot of people actually use this town as a preventer headquarters site.
How will they get to Usagi? Where are the other scouts? All will be revealed…eventually, at least. lol