With one hand on a smoothly naked thigh and another adeptly controlling the fast moving vehicle they were riding in, the emerald-eyed racer was positive she was being given a taste of heaven's rapture. It was her two favorite things in the entire world rolled into one: Usagi and speed. They meshed beautifully together into an experience more exhilarating than she could have ever imagined made doubly so as the wind kept them constant companion, raking invisibly playful fingers through their tousled hair.
Haruka's fingers rubbed gentle circles on her princess' creamy white skin, her hand partially hidden under the blue skirt of the younger girl's uniform which had ridden up even higher due to her efforts. She could feel the searing heat tickling the flesh of her hand just a few inches away. Taking a quick peak at her passenger to gauge her beloved's reaction, she could feel her heart constricting almost painfully in her chest. Normally wide innocent blue eyes were closed; head back thrown back against the leather seat as Haruka's hand did some not so innocent things to the younger girl's body.
"I've missed you so much," whispered her golden haired lover. "… so much." No sooner did the words leave those sweet lips then they were swiftly claimed by the wind.
Not wanting the exquisite moment to end in a crash, the wind senshi turned her eyes back to the road. Inexorably, her fingers probed higher as she moved that last little distance to the incredible heat emanating from the apex of silken thighs. A flash of familiar burning warmth washed through Haruka's own lanky form at the first intimate touch. The purr of the motor almost masked the surprised gasp that escaped from her companion's delicate coral colored lips but Haruka heard it all the same.
Grazing an eager finger lightly across the moist panty covered flesh, the wind senshi felt herself let out an equally breathy sigh. Her mouth watered slightly at the remembered sweetness flowing from that endless fount. She longed to bury her tongue deep inside her teenaged lover's body and feel those walls surrounding her like soft velvet. The more she indulged her fantasy, the bolder she became. Eventually maneuvering around the cloth barrier altogether, her fingers trembled as she touched wet heat.
Haruka longed to plunge her fingers inside her princess' warmth, to feel again that moment of completeness when lover shuddered around her. But doubts from yesterday intruded without warning, reminding the emerald-eyed senshi why she'd called this sudden meeting in the first place. With a keen reluctance, she withdrew although unable to leave the inviting spot without lingering for a few guilty moments.
Usagi's eyes instantly flew open at the biting absence. "Ruka-chan," she panted, squirming slightly in her seat. "Please … "
The shorthaired woman winced at the plea, wishing with all her heart that she could give in to her desires -- it would be so easy … but she would be damned if there was even the slimmest chance she was taking advantage of her princess and until she knew for certain, she would go no further. Returning her wayward hand back onto her own lap amidst continued protests from her passenger, she stepped on the gas, gunning the engine in sheer frustration.
Speaking through gritted teeth, Haruka brusquely stated, "We have to talk."
She didn't notice Usagi's expression of alarm, only that her princess was unusually silent on the remainder of the drive. Five minutes later, they arrived at the park and the hush became even more apparent in the absence of the wind's voice and the tick, tick, tick of the cooling engine.
"Did I … did I do something wrong?" The timidly asked question snapped the sandy haired senshi from her thoughts and she turned, a wrinkle of confusion marring her features normally smooth features.
"What?" She sputtered, completely taken aback. Watching horrified as tears began quickly collecting in cherished blue eyes, she reached out on pure instinct, her hands gathering the smaller fine boned pair in a gentle embrace.
"I don't want you to leave me," Usagi cried out as she all but leapt into startled arms, seemingly oblivious to the awkwardness of the new position.
After her initial astonishment, Haruka gently cradled her distressed lover, rubbing soothingly on a shuddering back.
"I'm not," the senshi stated firmly. "I'm not leaving you -- not until you tell me you're tired of me anyway."
Usagi vehemently shook her head as she burrowed her tearstained face deeper into the comforting hug. "Don't ever say that," she muttered. "How could I ever get tired of you when I love you so much? I'm just afraid you'll get tired of me and … "
Petering out in a helpless sob, the golden haired girl nearly climbed onto the senshi's lap, wrapping slender arms around Haruka's neck in a firm grasp. Feeling equally helpless as her princess' tears began soaking through her shirt, Haruka held onto the smaller girl while muttering a continual litany of what she hoped were calming words until the crying lessened to a few sniffles and hiccups. This was not how the wind senshi wanted this discussion to start.
"Do you want to go for a walk?" She asked instead, suddenly feeling suffocated by the car's cramped surroundings.
The golden head against her chest nodded ever so slightly and, Haruka was left with the conundrum of figuring out the technical dynamics of just how to separate them enough to step out of the car without taking a tumble to the ground. It took some maneuvering and every bit of limberness on the racer's behalf to get the both of them standing safely outside of the car, although Usagi continued to tightly cling to her arm as if the princess' very life depended on the contact.
Pointing down a random path, the leggy senshi suggested in a quiet voice, "How about we go that way?"
At her companion's nod of acquiescence, the two started walking slowly across the park: a handsome couple in the eyes of all those they passed. Eventually they approached a more isolated stretch of land that bordered a small pond. Haruka led them to a bench where they sat down in much the same silence that had stretched between them for a better part of the afternoon.
When the racer's question came, the words shattered the previous hush into so many splinters of instantly forgotten calm.
"If I asked you a question," Haruka began, enunciating each word carefully. "Would you answer me truthfully?"
She didn't dare turn to see her princess' face, afraid for reasons her mind couldn't even articulately voice. It was only the gentle pull of delicate hands on her chin that left her no choice in the matter.
"Yes," the answer came, washing across her cheeks on a tremulous breath that she could barely hear. "Ask me."
Haruka's heart beat an erratic tattoo in her chest as she looked into the guileless blue eyes of her beloved -- so close she could see the darker shade of the irises. She didn't want to upset her lover any more than she was already but the sandy haired senshi needed to know. Gently, she lowered her head, bringing their foreheads together in a tender gesture while breathing in the familiarly clean scent.
Deciding she could no longer put it off, the racer asked in a rush, "Last Saturday, did you feel forced in any way to sleep with me? Please koneko-chan, if I did anything that made you think you had to do something you didn't want, please tell me."
There was a moment of stunned silence before Usagi backed up just enough to pin agonized green eyes with a disbelieving look.
"No," Usagi fervently denied while simultaneously shaking her head. "What made you think that, Ruka-chan? I wanted you to … I wanted what happened as much as you did. I wanted you to be my first. How could you think I didn't?"
Haruka let out the breath she hadn't been aware she was holding as the relief washed over her like a priest's benediction but as much as she wanted to just accept this answer and let the whole thing go, a part of her mind continued to worry. Feelings of inadequacy long plaguing her psyche reared up as if just waiting for such an opportunity to cut her hopes off at the knees and as usual, her fears paved the way for her doubts. When it came right down to it, she still couldn't believe how someone as pure and good as Usagi could ever want to be with someone like her.
As if reading her mind, and Haruka would not have been surprised if it really were the case, the blue-eyed girl ran soothing fingers through her short thick hair in a manner reminiscent of petting an agitated puppy.
"You're my heart. No matter what happens, that will always be true." Usagi's voice was unexpectedly laced with steel. It sounded even more incongruous coming from the usually bubbly girl and yet Haruka had heard the tone many times before, only it usually came from her girlfriend's alter ego.
"What about Mamoru?" The question, when it came, surfaced from the darkest depths of the wind senshi's mind; a place not often visited, at least not while still awake.
The once open blue eyes became shuttered in an instant. They had never actually discussed him or the future, for that matter. Haruka was afraid, whether justified or not, that to do so would invite an inevitable ultimatum, and she doubted she would come out the winner in that. No matter how much she wanted to believe otherwise, fate was too heavy a boulder to push aside with a light swat.
Usagi's voice immediately snapped her attention back to her princess. "He's my prince. He's the man I'm supposed to marry. He's the one I'm destined to spend the rest of my life with. It's strange; most days, I can barely remember to brush my hair before going off to school and yet they all expect me to accept that the rest of my eternity has already been planned out by some higher force. I guess I should be happy because I do love him …"
The sandy haired racer winced as she tried bracing herself against the rejection she was sure was coming. Instead of jagged words that would rend her heart to shreds, her princess looked at her instead with absolute adoration.
"… but don't you see?" Usagi continued. "I can't be happy walking through eternity without you by my side. I'm only in love with you … not Mamoru."
Haruka pulled the girl into a crushing embrace, feeling a heady combination of elation and relief. It was finally out in the open -- her princess did love her, even more than the prince and that was saying something considering the many times she'd witnessed the smaller girl pining away for her 'Mamo-chan'. But that was all in the past now; she was positive of it. In the here and now, she knew with a conviction that was sorely lacking before now that her lover's heart was hers and hers alone.
"I love you too, koneko-chan," she said, nibbling softly on a tempting neck. "You're in my heart … woven into my soul."
Usagi emitted a sound halfway between a gasp and a whimper at the unexpectedly welcome touch, pressing closer to the lanky body engulfing her own like a living blanket. Almost a full minute passed as the two lovers continued to receive comfort and give comfort.
"Did I tell you the funny thing that happened to me today?" The muffled question made Haruka chuckle. It was just like the younger girl to bring up totally incongruous subject changes.
Humoring her golden haired angel, she said, "No, but I'd love to hear it."
The two of them stayed there for the remainder of the afternoon, completely wrapped up in each other's presence, frequently exchanging sweet words and sweeter caresses. It was only the purpling shades of sunset that finally urged them up to meander their way slowly back towards the car. Haruka wished again that the day didn't have to end so soon but she comforted herself with the fact that they'd made plans for the weekend. She also knew that this would make the next couple of days drag on interminably. It was always this way when there was some future event to look forward to.
The drive back was pleasant if still a tad bittersweet, the accompanying wind replaced by the continual low jabber of the radio. It seemed like no time at all before Haruka was pulling up in front of the Tsukino residence and it was time for them to part once again.
"Here we are," she said rather unnecessarily as she turned in her seat.
"I'll see you this Saturday," Usagi said, undoing her seatbelt. "Remember, you promised we'll spend the whole day together."
An indulgent smile lit up the senshi's face. "I know and I can't wait."
Looking around as if afraid someone would pop out at any moment, her blue-eyed lover returned the smile with a shy one of her own and then leaned forward to give Haruka a quick kiss on the lips.
"I love you Ruka-chan," she said with an adorable giggle. Quickly leaving the car, Usagi waved goodbye and disappeared inside her house.
The sandy haired racer stayed there as long as she could without the risk of arousing the neighbors' suspicions that she was some kind of stalker. The last thing she wanted were the cops involved -- she could just picture the tabloid headlines now and the image made her shudder. Giving the house one last forlorn look, she pulled out, wondering what she was going to do for the rest of the night. Unable to come up with anything off the top of her head, she decided to just drive around for a while. Michiru wasn't expecting her home for another few hours yet so she had time to kill without anywhere she really needed to be.
The afternoon with her princess played over in her mind and, unconsciously a warm smile appeared on her face. Not necessarily paying attention to where she was going, she soon found herself in a less than savory part of the city: little red riding hood wandering into the wolf's den, only this little girl could throw a mean left hook. Even when she noticed where she was, she wasn't particularly worried. She was, after all, Sailor Uranus. Not only did she possess super powers, she was also supremely confident that she could take care of herself in any situation -- so much so, that her attitude sometimes bordered on the arrogant. However, driving through street after street of boarded up buildings, empty warehouses, and broken streetlights left Haruka with a strong feeling of unease. This sense of disquiet was only exacerbated by the few people she saw along the way who seemed deliberately to avoid any eye contact with the driver in the flashy car.
Although by no means as perceptive as her partner, Sailor Neptune, Haruka could tell there was something unbelievably wrong with the entire situation. The nervous tension in her body manifested in the tightened grip on the steering wheel and the tautness of her jaw. Aside from these small allowances in body posture, if one were objectively observing the senshi, there was nothing else to indicate her increased state of agitation.
She was just debating the best way to get out of that neighborhood when, out of the corner of her eye, she caught a flash of showy color under the dim light of a nearby streetlight. Instinctively, she stepped on the brake, causing a screech of protest from her abused tires. The green-eyed senshi had seen that color before -- once might have been coincidence but twice in the same day smelled like the shore at low tide. Haruka's head swiveled around, managing to catch just the barest glimpse of a figure running around the corner half a block behind her car. For the briefest second, the thought of leaving it be and driving on crossed the handsome racer's mind, only to be shoved back in favor of direct confrontation.