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Saving the Day

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“This looks horrible.” 

“Haruka.” Michiru said in a low tone, voice full of warning. 

Looking into the mirror, Haruka could just feel herself dying inside. They were in a bathroom at some ratty convention center in bastardized versions of their Sailor Guardian uniforms. Their skirts were made with cheap fabric that wasn’t cut right, so the ends were uneven and rough against Haruka’s leg. The unitard she was wearing was a size too small and it pinched in all the wrong places. The yellow bow on her chest was gaudy and cartoonishly large; and it was only able to keep its position with the help of cardboard, so, whenever Haruka moved her head too much she’d bump into the bow and bend it. So far there were three bumps. On her head, the tiara was itchy and scratchy - Haruka was pretty sure she’d have a rash tomorrow. Finally, the boots on her feet and the gloves on her hands were cheap and prickly, not to mention tight. The whole outfit made Haruka want to take a shower and never wear clothes again.

Haruka turned to Michiru - a bit too quickly, getting another chinfull of cardboard bow - with a stern look and her hands on her lips. “Look me dead-in-the-eye and tell me I look good.” 

Refusing to meet her gaze, Michiru kept looking in the mirror, patting down the costume. “You always look good, Haruka.” Michiru kept a neutral expression but after knowing her for years, Haruka could find the barely-there mischievous twinkle in her eyes. 

“You’re not looking at me.” Haruka replied in a deadpan. With a soft sigh, Michiru turned to face Haruka, tucking her arms behind her back as her eyes appraised Haruka and her costume. This also gave Haruka a chance to look at Michiru’s outfit, which was pretty much of the same quality as hers but in Sailor Neptune colors - meaning it looked as bad as Haruka’s. The outfits were truly horrible if not even Michiru could make it look good. 

Haruka’s eyes trailed up to meet Michiru’s. The two stared at each other, neither daring to be the first one to comment on the other’s appearance. Michiru stood with her arms dainty held behind her back, in her usual elegant style, but with the costume it just made her look awkward. It was rare not to see the ever-so-perfect Michiru look so normal . Maybe, Haruka thought, she should take a picture. Just in case.

“Well, you don’t look bad .” Michiru concluded after a considerable amount of silence. Haruka let out a dry laugh at the obvious lie, deciding to just let it be. Taking a few steps forward, Michiru was near chest-to-chest with Haruka. She reached out and adjusted a few things - her bow, her gloves, her tiara - as if that would make Haruka look better in the shoddy recreation of her Sailor uniform. “You know, for Usagi’s first try at making outfits, this is very good. We should encourage her-” Michiru tugged on Haruka’s chin, making the taller blonde look her dead in the eye as Michiru gave her a very innocent yet very sinister smile “-and not demoralize her by telling her we don’t like the outfits.” Haruka felt the hairs on the back of her neck raise.

“Yeah, got it.” 

Michiru dropped the more sinister part of her smile and patted Haruka’s chest. “Thank you.” With a quick - and chaste - peck on the cheek, Michiru pulled away and wandered towards the door of the bathroom. “Well, we shouldn’t keep the others waiting. Let’s go.” Annoyed by Michiru intentionally - it was definitely intentional, everything Michiru did was intentional - teasing her, Haruka just grumbled a reply and followed Michiru out into the main convention center. 

The white floor and walls of the convention center were covered with anything and everything anime, but it was mostly Sailor Moon or Sailor V related. Today was the day of the very first Sailor Moon TV episode, and tons of people had come out to celebrate. Usagi, the endearing little narcissist, was no exception. 

Standing away from the bathroom doors but in clear view was the gang, Sailor Moon and the Inner Guardians, all in the same crappy versions of their usual outfits. The little one and Mamoru were there as well, dressed up in their outfits as well - which, of course, were bad. It seemed no one was safe from Usagi’s bad costumes. Michiru guided Haruka over to the group, they had to dodge people who were dressing up as them - who were also doing it better - which felt weird to Haruka. How did the anime producers even know about her and Michiru? They worked in the shadows and barely made public appearances. 

“Michiru! Haruka!” Usagi ran to them, giving them a hug. Which was actually painful due to all the cardboard bows digging into uncomfortable places. “You guys don’t think my costumes are lame, do you? Everyone else thinks they are!” Usagi looked up at them with her puppy-dog eyes, tears clearly forming. Haruka could tell Michiru was glaring at her to make the right answer, but honestly, Michiru didn’t need to remind her. Seeing her little bunhead so upset made Haruka want to cheer her up. 

“Yeah, they’re good, bunhead.” She put on her usual charismatic smile and patted Usagi’s head as the Inner Guardians all gave her a disbelieving look. “You did a really good job.”

“I agree.” Michiru nodded next to her. “You really captured the feel of being a Sailor Guardian.” Usagi looked like she might cry from happiness now instead of sadness. Quickly, she spun on her heels to face her Guardians. 

“See! I told you they were good!” Usagi was grinning ear to ear. “Michiru and Haruka always look pretty and stylish, so if they say it’s good, then it's good!” The Inner Guardians, and the little one, all shared a collective eye roll. 

“They’re just being nice, Usagi.” Rei sighed. “There’s no way they actually like these silly costumes.” In Rei’s defense for being mean to Usagi, her outfit looked extremely bad, as if Usagi had purposely spent less time on creating her - and Haruka was using this term lightly - “fremeny’s” costume. 

“Shut up Rei!” Usagi quickly snapped back before the two bumped heads, doing their usual stare-into-eachother's-eyes-and-stick-my-tongue-out battle. Metaphorical sparks flew between them.

“Usako, there’s no need to argue with Rei.” Mamoru awkwardly adjusted his cheap white mask, which was probably from some cheap costume store, while trying to calm his girlfriend down. “You worked very hard on these outfits, and I think they turned out nice.” Usagi was quick to pull away from Rei and that and hug her boyfriend, rambling on and on about how much that meant to her.

“Look, I’m not trying to diss Usagi’s efforts or anything.” Makoto spoke up from where she was standing besides Ami. The green in her outfit wasn’t the rich emerald it was supposed to be. It looked more lime. Which was pretty unfortunate. “But why couldn’t we have just transformed?” Makoto gestured around the convention hall, pointing out all the nice - and scarily realistic - cosplay. “We wouldn’t have really stood out. No one could’ve guessed our secret identities.”

“Well, Usagi had started making our costumes a month ago.” Ami shifted nervously besides Mako, her eyes barely visible behind the cheap blue plastic that served as her makeshift Mercury Goggles. “It would’ve been a shame to put all of her hard work to waste.” In her hands, a pamphlet, describing the Sailor Moon anime, was being horribly creased up by Ami’s strong - or maybe nervous? - grip.

“Yeah!” Usagi was back in the conversation, puffing out her chest and nodded. “I put in a lot of hard work for these outfits, so you all better appreciate it!” Rei looked like she was going to speak up again, but a quick nudge and shake of the head from Minako stopped her from commenting. Which was probably good. 

“Well anyways,” Chibiusa pipped up from Mamoru’s side. She was clinging onto his pant leg in a verison of her uniform that had way too much glitter. “We should get going, the viewing is about to start soon! And we need good seats! I don’t wanna look over peoples’ heads!” 

“Chibiusa is right, we should go get good seats before they’re all taken.” Mamoru picked up Chibiusa and set her on his shoulders, ready to carry her to the theater. 

“Wait!” Ami said, making the whole group turn to her. “I actually have a concern.” She held up the info sheet about the Sailor Moon anime. “They have a lot of information in here about the Moon Kingdom. I’m a bit worried about how they know so much. If they know that much, then surely they can find out our secret identities too…” Haruka and Michiru shared a look because, damn, that was concerning news. How the hell had they learned about the Moon Kingdom? 

Noticed by all of the group was the nervous laughter and shared nervous glance of Usagi and Minako - and suddenly, it all made sense. Rei, always quick to chastise, had her hands on her hips, giving the two a glare that made even Haruka a bit uneasy. 

“What did you two do?” Every word that came out of Rei’s mouth was filled with venom. Usagi and Minako both scratched behind their heads, their nervous laughter filled the tense silence as literally everyone else gave them disappointed looks. Look, Haruka knew bunhead could be dumb, like very dumb, but this? 

“Well, um, you see-.” Usagi started, rambling over her words, voice high in nerves.

“We may have-'' Minako cut in, pressing her fingers together “-gone to the producers in our Sailor uniforms in order to, uh, give them some insight into why Sailor Moon - and Sailor Venus! - are super duper important.” She laughed nervously, rubbing the back of her head. “But that's aaalllllll we did! We didn’t even mention our civilian selfs. Like, at all! So, when you think about it, it’s not that bad?” Minako peaked around the group, gauging for their reactions. 

The group was silent. Mako and Ami were exchanging glances and Mamoru looked tired beyond his years. Rei was just pinching the bridge of her nose in frustration, too annoyed to get any words out. And when Haruka looked at Michiru to see her reaction to all of this, Haruka was surprised to see even Michiru was rattled by Usagi’s and Minako’s actions.

“You two are so stupid.” Chibiusa finally said, breaking the silence. Nobody could disagree.

“We can talk about this after the viewing.” Mamoru said with a heavy sigh. “Let’s just go...enjoy ourselves.” The rest of the Guardians agreed, mumbling their responses and beginning the walk over to the theater. 

“We’ll catch up with you.” Michiru said, grabbing Haruka’s arm. “We’re going to grab some drinks.” Haruka was pretty sure she heard Mamoru mumble something about needing a beer but didn’t press as he and the rest of the girls waved and walked off towards the theater. Once they were all gone, Michiru turned to Haruka. “You know, sometimes that girl really worries me.”

Haruka rubbed her forehead, accidentally moving her tiara - causing it to tear off some skin. “Yeah, I get what you mean.” She watched their retreating forms. “It’s like she turns into a whole different person whenever the world’s in danger. The girl that tells anime producers confidential info is definitely not the Sailor Moon who saved Earth.”

Michiru nodded with a hum. “Well, I actually did need some water so-” Michiru held out a hand to Haruka. “Will you come find a vending machine with me?” It was sweet, so stupidly sweet. And normal too. Holding hands with your girlfriend as you nonchalantly go find a vending machine without worrying if the world is going to end in two minutes feels like a dream to Haruka. She never thought she’d get that kind of normalcy back, but -well- here she is, taking Michiru’s hand. 

“Of course.” Haruka replies with a smile, sliding her hand into Michiru’s and walking back towards the entrance where she swore she saw a vending machine earlier. The two walked uninterrupted through the convention hall, their costumes weren’t good enough that people stopped to ask for photos or to shake your hand. They were only good enough that people would recognize that you were cosplaying as x character and think internally to themselves ‘Oh yeah, x! From that one show! Those girls are really pretty but their costumes look like shit!’ As they walked, Haruka noticed some guys openly staring, and probably drooling, over some girls dressed as the Inner Guardians - and even a few cosplayed as Michiru. Haruka swore to herself then that if any guy tried to lay a hand on any of her girls, they’d be knocked out before they could even cop a feel.

The hall was desolate by the entrance, with most people having already migrated to the viewing hall or to any of the other attractions. Only a few workers were there, either posted at the counters or cleaning the floor, and none of them were focusing on the two girls. A vending machine stood by the wall and the pair approached it. Michiru slid her hand out of Haruka’s, much to the latter’s disappointment, before pulling her wallet out of the unitard. Near the breast section. Haruka’s cheeks quickly dusted at that, but she tried to calm herself down while Michiru slipped in a few coins to buy herself a water. 

“Do you want anything?” Michiru asked as her water came tumbling down. 

Haruka hummed, feeling a special kind of thirst after watching Michiru pull her wallet out from her bra. “You.” Michiru let out a short giggle and rolled her eyes, but turned around to face Haruka anyways. She rested a hand on Haruka’s chest, right above her heart - and out of the horrid cardboard bow’s reach - as she stared into Haruka’s eyes.

“You’re so predictable, you know that?” Michiru had a smile on her face as her finger started to trace around the bare skin on Haruka’s chest. Haruka’s hands were automatically wrapping around Michiru’s waist, pulling her closer until their cardboard bows knocked into each other. 

“Are you complaining?” Haruka asked, letting her voice drop into a tone she knew (from experience) got all the girls’ attention. Trying to be as smooth as she could, Haruka craned her head over the bows and into an awkward position that allowed her forehead to bump against Michiru’s. Their lips were only centimeters apart, which would change in a few moments.

“No.” Michiru’s smile grew wider as she closed her eyes and leaned in more for the kiss. Haruka did the same, tightening her grip on Michiru’s hips, ready to lose herself in Michiru’s tender body.

“Hey! Are you two Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune?”

Haruka had never been so ready to murder a child before this very moment.

Both women turned their heads, looking down at a little girl who was standing uncomfortably close to them - especially considering they were making out not five seconds ago. The little girl was probably no older than Chibiusa’s age, and was in an oversized Sailor Moon t-shirt. Her eyes and cheeks were also red in a way that indicated she’d been crying recently. Haruka wasn’t too sure on how to respond, but, like always, Michiru was quick on her feet. She had pulled away from Haruka to give her full attention to the little girl. 

“No, we’re just dressing up as them.” Michiru responded, giving the child a smile as she bent over at the hips, resting her hands on her knees. “Is everything ok-?”

The little girl just frowned, shaking her head and interrupting Michiru. “It’s okay! You don’t need to lie Sailor Neptune!  I know it’s really you!” The little girl reached out and grabbed Michiru’s wrist. “But I really need your help! So please, listen!”

“Help with what?” Haruka felt her body rigid and tighten, going on high alert. Was there already a new enemy to be fought? Their transformation pens were back in her car. Could they even get to them in time?

“Some mean boys from my school stole my kitty! And they said they’re gonna hurt her real badly!” The girl’s eyes got all puffy and teary. “You gotta rescue Princess KittyKat Fuzzball The Third! Please!” Haruka was in physical pain trying to process that ridiculous name for a cat. She tried to share a glance at Michiru, but the prodigy was too busy wiping tears off the crying girl’s face. 

“We’ll help you.”

“Huh?” Haruka leaned in closer, as if she heard her girlfriend wrong. 

Michiru turned her head to Haruka, her usual outwardly kind but inwardly sinister smile on her face. “We’re going to help this little girl get her kitty back. That’s what Sailor Guardians do, right?” Haruka was pretty sure no Sailor Guardian had ever played cat rescuer, but there was no way in hell she was going to argue with Michiru on that point. Not when Michiru threatened so much violence behind that smile of hers. And especially not with the way the crying little girl was looking at her. 

“I guess you’re right...Sailor Neptune.” Haruka decided to go full-on Sailor Uranus mode. Squatting down to the kid’s level, Haruka patted her head. “Don’t worry, we’ll get your cat back, kid.” 

“Thank you so much!!” The little girl leaped up, managing to wrap her arms around both of their necks and yank them down to her level. “I’ll make sure to name my next two kitties after you two!”

“Ah, thanks, kid.” Haruka was able to unlatch the little girl’s arms from around her and Michiru, allowing them both to stand upright. “Why don’t you show us the way?” The little girl nodded, turning around and scampering forward while Haruka and Michiru followed behind her at a normal walking pace. Leaning in, Haruka whispered to Michiru. “What made you agree?”

Michiru hummed, keeping her eyes on the little girl. “I just wanted to do a good deed.” Haruka could see some sadness in Michiru’s eyes. “Play the hero, for once.” It was obvious Michiru was thinking about the whole talisman and ‘we need to kill Hotaru for the greater good’ situation. Neither of them did their dirty jobs with a smile. They didn’t get to be like the Sailor Moon and her Inner Guardians, they didn’t get to play paragon hero. They had to play the role of morally-grey antagonist. 

With a small frown on her face, Haruka reached out and took Michiru’s hand, caressing the back of it with her thumb. She couldn’t come up with anything to say though. Haruka wasn’t Michiru, who always had good advice or soothing words to offer, but gods did she wish she was right now. All she had to offer was the shoulder to shoulder contact and gentle strokes of her thumb. 

The little girl had led them to the plaza area outside the convention center. Brick pathways were lined with pretty flowers and hedges that went all the way to the road and main sidewalk. Iron fencing lined the perimeter, making sure that no convention go-ers accidently walked into the street. The little girl had stopped and turned around, facing them. 

“This is where they took her.” Was all she said, hands on her hips. 

“So….” Haruka looked around - no sign of any kids - before looking back at the little girl. “You don’t know where the boys are?”

“Nope.”

Michiru squeezed Haruka’s hand. “Did you happen to see which direction they went after stealing KittyKat?” Of course Michiru would remember the name. 

The little girl frowned, looking annoyed. “Princess KittyKat Fuzzball The Third.” She corrected before shaking her head. “And no. I didn’t see where they went.”

“Do you know where any of them live?” Another shake of the head. “Or like to hang out?” Yet another ‘no’ response. Haruka could feel her blood pressure rising. “So, no leads at all?” 

“No.” The little girl said with a shake of her head. “But you’re Sailor Guardians! You can track down monsters and fight them! Little boys shouldn’t be too hard.” Well, usually, the monsters were always convenentially around when they decided to cause havoc, there wasn’t any need to track them at all. Trying to find non-descript elementary school boys with a cat in all of the Juban district was going to be hard. 

Haruka exchanged a look with Michiru, who was thoughtfully looking around and tapping her chin. Haruka had to hold in a sigh. Of course, leave it to the perfectly-composed prodigy to take all of this in stride.

“If I were a mean little boy who wanted to hurt a cute little kitty, I would go someplace where adults wouldn’t be looking.” Michiru spoke her thought process aloud, her eyes darting around the surroundings. “But, the place I am can’t be too scary, since I am an elementary school boy.” She turned to the little girl, bending down to her level. “When and where did they steal…” Michiru faltered, thinking hard on the name of the cat. “...Princess KittyKat The Third?”

“Princess KittyKat Fuzzball The Third.” The little girl corrected before tapping her chin in thought, imitating the motion Michiru had been doing a few moments ago. “As I said, they took her right here, about ten minutes ago.” 

“I see.” Michiru stood back up to full height and turned to Haruka. “I think they’re either at the park around here or that abandoned building a few blocks away.” Two places that made perfect sense for nefarious little boys to do their evil deeds. Gods, Michiru was so smart. Haruka wished they could just ditch this little girl and these itchy costumes and disappear in the bathroom for ten to twenty minutes. 

For reasons Haruka cannot elaborate on right now, unless she wants to get all horny in front of an eight year old. 

“The park seems like it’s too out in the open.” Haruka replied, crossing her arms. “Families might be there. I’d say they went to the abandoned house.” 

Michiru gave her a smile. “That’s what I was thinking as well.” She turned to the little girl. “Alright, why don’t you follow us so you can help us identify ... Princess KittyKat Furball The Third.” Haruka’s brows rose in surprise: Michiru finally got that godforsaken cat’s name right.

The little girl was ecstatic. “Of course! Lead the way!”

The two Sailor Soldiers did lead the way, walking from the center of the plaza and out onto the street. Haruka had completely forgotten about her uncomfortable costume for a moment until they stepped onto the street where normal people were walking or driving to work or other normal places. While she and Michiru were in the most cringe-worthy and ratty costumes imaginable. She really hoped they didn’t bump into anyone she knew.

Keeping her head held high, trying to maintain what little dignity she had left in this costume, Haruka walked by Michiru’s side down the streets. The big cardboard bow was thumping against her chest and neck with every step. Haruka was half tempted to rip the thing off at this point. The little girl stayed close on their heels, watching the Sailor Guardians blaze a path down the sidewalk and through groups of normal people. 

“So, little one,” Michiru hummed as they turned a corner, the abandoned building coming into view. “What does Princess KittyKat Fuzzball The Third look like?” Michiru was probably the only person on this planet who could say that ridiculous name and make it sound like it wasn’t a monstrosity. 

“She’s really fluffy!” The girl said quickly, moving forward so she was right in between Haruka and Michiru. “She’s got white fur! It’s all puffed out, so she looks like a big fuzz ball!” 

“Oh.” Haruka nodded along. “Is that why you named her…” Gods, she felt so ridiculous saying this “...Princess KittyKat Fuzzball The Third?” 

The girl looked up at her, frowning deeply. “That’s a very rude thing to say, Sailor Uranus.” Instead of arguing, Haruka just threw a confused glance to Michiru who gave her a small shrug. 

“I, uh, sorry.” Haruka - lamely - apologized, rubbing the back of her head. “I won’t do it again.” The girl just made a huffing noise and turned away, leaving Haruka to wonder why what she said was rude. And honestly, she couldn’t figure it out. 

Luckily, she was pulled from her mental contemplation when they arrived in front of the abandoned house. It was an older style western home which was abandoned by the family living there after discovering all the internal infrastructure was rotting on the inside due to very poor installation decades ago, and it was cheaper just to leave it than to fix it all. At least, that’s what Haruka remembers hearing on the radio. 

The bricks of the house and walls were covered in vines, and the garden in front of the house was overgrown and full of ivy. Swinging back and forth in the wind was the iron gate connected to the brick walls surrounding the house. The three slipped past the rusted thing and onto an uneven stone pathway. Haruka felt super unsteady. She was already wearing cheap heels, the uneven walkway was not helping with keeping her balance. Off to the side in the garden was a man made path, but it hadn’t been made with stone. Plants had been bent upwards and downwards while grass had been padded down with lots of steps. The grassy path curved around to the back of the house. 

Haruka nodded to the path, pulling Michiru’s attention to it. “I think that’s it, Neptune.” 

“I think so as well.” Michiru nodded in confirmation. “You lead the way, I’ll follow behind.” Haruka nodded and walked towards the opening. Ducking her head and pushing plants out of the way, Haruka was able to walk through to the end of the makeshift tunnel. 

Bingo. 

Four little snot-nosed brats stood around a drenched cat. The poor cat was being pressed into the ground by one of the little boys, who was clearly applying too much pressure. Their white fur was soaked and the cat was visibly shaking. 

“Hey! That’s no way to treat a cat, kids.” Haruka felt safe to call them out because they were trapped in this corner. High brick walls prevented their escape in all other directions, and if they wanted to leave, they’d have to get past Haruka. Which wouldn’t happen. She stepped out of the grass, feeling much better when her heels were on solid ground. 

Michiru came up besides her, her brows furrowing. “Let the poor thing go. That cat has done nothing wrong.” Subconsciously, Haruka and Michiru fell into their usual Sailor stance: back to back, arms crossed, and glaring at the bad guys. Or, in this case, bad kids. 

On Michiru’s other said came out the girl, who let out an open wail at the sight of her cat. “Let go of Princess KittyKat Fuzzball The Third! Please!” Jeez, even in a dire situation she pronounced the full name. That’s dedication.

The boys looked at Haruka. Then at Michiru. Then at Haruka again. Finally, they all glanced at each other before breaking out into a wild laughter. They held their stomachs, physically bent over as they roared their amusement out. Some were laughing so hard they cried. 

The girl sniffled. “What’s so funny?”

“You got some dumb cosplayers to help you get your stupid cat back?” 

“T-They’re not cosplayers! They’re the real deal!” The girl retorted, clenching her fists by her side. Haruka had to hold in a snort because, really, the girl technically wasn’t wrong: Michiru and her were the real Sailor Neptune and Uranus.

“Suuuure!” The boys all broke into laughter again and Haruka was starting to get fed up. While she really didn’t care about watching the anime premiere, she did want to get in someplace that was air conditioned. The shitty costume only got more and more uncomfortable the more sweaty she became.

“Look, whether we’re real or not doesn’t matter.” Haruka stepped forward, giving the boys an icy glare. “Let the cat go now, or-” Could she threaten kids? What could she threaten them with? She couldn’t hit them. Gods no. So, what could she do? “-or I’ll have to force you to let her go.” 

One boy snorted. “Oh yeah? What are you gonna do? Hit me with Earth Vibrating?” The boy inflicted his voice on ‘Earth Vibrating’, making him and his friends burst out laughing. 

“Maybe I-.” Haruka was about to snap back when she actually processed what he said. “Earth Vibrating…?” 

Another boy shot her a lot. “Come on, you’re cosplaying as Sailor Uranus and you don’t even know his moves?” 

“That’s not…” Haruka started before her eyes widened. “And wait, did you say he?”

“Um, yeah. Sailor Uranus is a guy. According to the trailers, he’s gonna get in a super ‘steamy’ love triangle with Sailor Moon and Sailor Venus.” Haruka could feel her face getting redder and redder. 

Usagi and Minako were going to get a very stern talking to later.

“But, what about her - I mean him - and Sailor Neptune?” 

All of the children stared at her after that. “What do you mean?” The little girl said. “Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune are cousins.” 

Haruka looked over her shoulder to see Michiru’s reaction to this, and was glad the unshakable Neptune was even a little off-kilter with all this new and strange information. So many thoughts were running through Haruka’s mind but one in particular stood out: why were they cousins of all things? Why cousins? 

“Everyone, let’s remember why we’re here.” Michiru said, bring everyone back to focus on the poor cat beneath the one boy’s foot. “Why did you all steal her cat, anyways?”

“That idiot reminded the teacher that she didn’t collect homework yesterday!” One boy yelled, pointing a finger at the girl. “That’s such a mean move!”

“It’s not my fault you didn’t do your homework!’ The girl shot back. “I wanted the credit for my hard work!” The arguing between the two devolved into a screaming match between the boys and the girl. Honestly, Haruka just felt so tired at this point. Using their fight as a distraction, she sauntered over to the boy stepping on the cat and lifted him by his shirt. 

“Hey! What’s the big idea?” The boy yelled, squirming. The cat took off like a bullet, leaping over the brick wall and sprinting out of there. Haruka didn’t blame the cat - she wanted to do the same thing right now. The little girl who had recruited them - Haruka is just now realizing that they never got her name - quickly took off, yelling for the cat to come back. 

A loud twack in the nose broke Haruka’s attention. She dropped the boy and held a hand up to her face, blood dripping on her cheap white glove. Looking down, she saw the cardboard bow had broken off, and that one of the pointy ends was also covered in her blood. It seems the dastardly thing was used against her. Who would’ve guessed that something so big and uncomfortable could’ve been dangerous? Definitely not Haruka, Haruka thought to herself sarcastically. 

“Dumb girls!” Was one of many childish insults thrown her and Michiru’s way as the boys jumped into the garden and dashed off. Haruka was too annoyed to give chase. 

“That was certainly...not what I was expecting.” Michiru chose her words carefully as she walked over and examined Haruka’s bloody nose. “Oh my.” 

“It’s nothing.” Haruka grunted, wiping the nose with the back of her palm. “Let’s just go back to the convention center and get out of these things.” 

Michiru gave her a small smile. “I guess we’ve done enough today as Sailor Uranus and Neptune.” 

“Yeah.” Haruka gruffly responded. The two carefully started to walk out and back to the main street, being careful not to topple over anything in their loose and wobbly high heels. 

It was a long and awkward walk back to the convention center, filled with lots of stares. Haruka felt her face growing red, not used to such negative attention. Once they were back inside the convention center, which was still mostly empty while the screening was going on, they rushed to the bathrooms where they changed out of those horrid outfits. Haruka felt physical pleasure as she ripped the thing off her body. It felt better than sex, not that she’d ever say that with Michiru around. 

As Haruka put back on her jeans and button up, she suddenly felt self conscious. “Hey, Michi…” She glanced up at Michiru, who was changing into a beautiful blouse and skirt combo. “Am I not beautiful or something? Is that why they all see me as a man?” 

Michiru gave her a pair of empathic and loving eyes. “Haruka, you’re so beautiful.” Michiru approached her, sliding a hand on her cheek and wrapping the other around one of Haruka’s hands. “You’re the most beautiful girl I know.” Perching herself on her tippy toes, Michiru leaned in, gently pressing her lips against Haruka’s. 

Haruka sighed into the kiss, wrapping her arms around Michiru’s waist and pulling her as close as possible. Her eyes fluttered closed as Michiru lovingly caressed her cheek and sucked on her lower lip. These had to be Haruka’s favorite kisses. So soft and loving. Filled with an indescribable warmth that made Haruka want to cry and thank Michiru for being in her life. 

When Michiru pulled away, Haruka let out an annoyed huff. “More.” She leaned back in for another kiss but was stopped by Michiru’s index finger. With a grumble Haruka opened her eyes, met with a close up of her partner’s lovely face. 

“Later, when we’re alone.” 

With one final caress on Michiru’s backside, Haruka reluctantly pulled away. “Fine.” She shoved her hands in her pockets, not bothering to hide the pout on her lips. Michiru giggled at the bratty display before sliding her shoes on and turning back to Haruka. 

“Let’s go find the others, yeah?” Michiru held out a hand, flashing Haruka one of her award-winning smiles. 

With a smile on her own face, Haruka pulled out a hand from her pocket. “Yeah.” Taking Michiru’s hand in her own, Haruka could face anything - even the troublemaking Usgai and Minako, who were definitely not off the hook for any of the struggles Haruka had to go through today. Haruka scoffed just thinking about it. Who needed a love triangle with Usagi and Minako when she had Michiru?

Haruka squeezed Michiru’s hand tighter. “I love you.” 

Michiru turned to face her, looking amazingly angelic, even in some cruddy bathroom. “I love you, too, Haruka.” The speedy little racer was able to sneak in one more little peck before the pair left the bathroom, which had Michiru giggling as they entered back into the main hall.