"Mamo-chan, are you coming?" Usagi said, as they walked towards the store. She was unable to keep an amused tone out of her voice. Next to her, Rei looked over at him, clearly just barely managing to hold back laughter.
"Why don't I wait out here while you go in?" He said a little nervously, as they arrived at the store. He had heard them giggling as they collected him for their shopping outing, and he wasnt sure he liked the sound of it.
"What do you mean? We really need your opinion. That's why we invited you." said Rei. They stood in front of the store, clearly waiting for him.
Realizing that there was no getting out of this, Mamoru walked into the store with them. His worst fears were confirmed, they had chosen a lingerie store to begin with. Sighing the sigh of the long-suffering, he entered the store, trying desperately not to blush too obviously.
Rei and Usagi had already started fingering items and grinning, holding them up to their bodies. Turning to him, as he tried to think chaste thoughts, Rei lifted a lace teddy to herself and asked sweetly what he thought of it. He nodded, since no response he could make would have been adequate at the moment. The thought of Rei in that teddy made his chest hurt. She waited, smirking, while he caught his breath.
"Its nice, Rei." Several other shoppers turned to see what had caused the two young women to collapse into peals of loud laughter. Mamoru resisted the urge to cover his face with his hands. He studiously observed the myriad patterns the store had available in mens boxers, when Usagis voice, angelic and innocent, broke his reverie.
"Mamo-chan? Would you like to see me in this?" He turned and immediately choked. She held a nearly transparent cat suit to her body. He nodded again, this time enthusiastically. The saleswomen in the store pretended not to notice Rei and Usagis antics, but smiled to each other and found important inventory tasks that needed to be taken care of.
Eventually, tired of torturing Mamoru, Rei and Usagi disappeared with several items into the dressing rooms, where the occasional laughter would trickle back to him. His face became red, imagining the two of them "assisting" each other with the various items they had chosen. He breathed deeply, trying to slow the blood filling his head, and other, more embarrassing parts of his body. This was only the first store - and there were over 80 clothing stores in this mall. Mamoru took another deep breath.
Usagi and Rei would not let him see their purchases at the lingerie store, but they compromised by showing off outfits for him at the next several places they stopped. In fact, they were in a clear contest for who could make him lose his cool first. Mamoru was equally determined not to lose it, if only to get them back for the first store. By late afternoon, they were all flushed, hungry and extremely preoccupied.
They finally decided it was time for a break. Usagi insisted on curry, and the other two agreed. Usagi and Rei took the opportunity to show him the clothes they had bought. Mamoru noted with some relief that they hadn't bought any of the really provocative outfits. Apparently they had been content simply to try them on. But both women held back one bag, the one from the lingerie store, that they would not show him.
"You can have your own private fashion show later..." Rei purred. Mamoru tried not to spit his soda over the table, while Usagi giggled at him.
"Hmmm," Usagi commented thoughtfully, one finger to her mouth, "Rei-chan, next time we come here, dont you think that Mamo-chan needs some new clothes?"
Rei overrode Mamorus denial loudly. "Absolutely! Im free next weekend." They agreed, while Usagi covered Mamorus mouth with one hand.
"So..." Usagi said, putting the last of the clothes she had bought back in her bag, "We never did really talk about that last memory we recovered."
Mamoru and Rei both looked at her. "That's right, we didn't." Mamoru said. "It certainly was... interesting." he continued, guarding his speech a bit as they were in public.
"Yes, you could call it that." Rei said, laughing softly.
Usagi looked thoughtful. "I wonder what Minako-chan thought of it? We didn't see her yesterday - we don't have our study group on Fridays."
"I don't know - I'm sure she was surprised." said Mamoru.
"Yes, but I wonder how she'd react to it..." Usagi paused, then looked, wide-eyed, at Mamoru. "I never notice befored, Mamo-chan, but you have the most amazing ability for understatement, dont you?"
She sipped her drink, then smiled wolfishly and looked over at Rei. "So, Rei-chan..." she said, "How good a kisser was Venus?"
Rei looked a bit startled at the question and her eyes unfocused as she stared off into the middle distance for a moment, trying to recall the kiss. A crooked smile broke out on her face, as her eyes remained lost in the distance.
Usagi turned to Mamoru, a similar smile on her own face. "Id guess that means pretty good, what do you think?"
Mamoru nodded, laughing. "Id say so."
Reis eyes came back to the present, but the grin didnt leave her face. "Oh yeah. Very good." she drawled.
Usagi pouted. "Better than me?"
Mamoru clapped a hand over Reis mouth and said "Dont answer that!"
They all laughed at that. Their food arrived, and the usual period of focused eating ensued.
When their meal had been cleared away, Usagi sat back with a satisfied sigh. "What we really need," she began, "is to meet tonight for a, um, whatdoyoucallit, a "strategy session" to get Minako to come over."
Mamoru could not help himself, "Usako!" he yelped.
She turned her clear blue gaze on him and he subsided. "Not if it would upset her, of course, Mamo-chan. But you cant tell me that you werent even a little interested after that memory."
Mamoru sputtered. "No, its not that, but..."
"But what?" A gleam was lit in Usagis eyes, one that Mamoru was quickly coming to recognize. And with that thought, a spark flew through him, followed by a soft wave of arousal.
Mamoru turned to Rei, who was watching Usagi openly, hunger all but written all over her face. She returned his gaze, her dark eyes deep and meaningful. "I agree with Usagi." Rei said, which deflated Mamorus protests completely.
"Im not advocating seducing her." Usagis voice drew his gaze back to her. "Im just saying that if she reacts the way we do..." her voice trailed off. She stretched her arms over her head and turned to Rei. "All this shopping has worn me out. Lets go home and we can meet over Mamo-chans tonight to plan our "strategy.""
Rei winked at Mamo-chan, pulled Usagi out of her seat and the two ran off, leaving him alone at their table with his thoughts, and the check.
Mamoru poured out three cups of coffee, then placed sugar and milk on the tray. He walked out into the living area of his apartment and placed the tray upon the table. Rei and Usagi looked up and smiled at him thankfully. They were huddled together under a duvet, trying to stay warm in his chilly apartment.
Mamoru debated asking them to join him in the bedroom, which was much warmer, but decided against it. Too early, for one thing. And secondly, while bed would be pleasurable, it would distract them from the conversation they were about to have. Or, as Usagi insisted upon referring to it, the "strategy session."
Mamoru wrapped his fingers around his own cup and sighed happily as the warm liquid flowed into his body. He leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes. Rei and Usagi were giggling over something and he let their laughter flow over him. There was an answering laugh, his own, and Mamorus eyes snapped open in surprise. He saw Usagi and Rei poised and still at the table, listening, then heard them laugh again, although neither of them had moved. Mamoru put his cup down and smiled towards Rei and Usagi. They answered his smile with their own and the three quickly sat together on the sofa, while Rei tucked them all beneath the duvet.
Usagi took one of Mamorus hands, beaming at him. "Who would have thought Id be so excited to have a memory?" Mamoru squeezed her hand, and reached his other for Rei, who clasped it, and laid her head on his shoulder, her eyes closed. Mamoru felt Usagi leaning on his other side and he closed his own eyes, while the laughter advanced towards him.
A dazzling earth shone sapphire in the great windows above him. Endymion sat in an enclosed garden, under a brilliant dome of glass. Looking out over the greenhouse, Mamoru realized with a sudden rush that he was sitting in Queen Selenitys private garden, on the roof of the Moon Palace. Endymion was looking over an enjoyable scene below him. Princess Selenity wore a soft summer dress, the layers of which flowed about her as she moved, giving Endymion the impression that she floated in the air, rather than walked upon the ground. Mars wore a sleeveless green dress, thin straps setting off her strong shoulders and long, pale neck. As usual, her hair hung loosely down her back.
A small pool, filled with carp, gleamed in the bright light of the Earth, while a larger pool, clear and blue, reflected the planets glow. Windows, several stories high and framed in impressive scrolled ironwork, gave the impression that the conservatory was locked in a gigantic birdcage. The light of the sun, reflected from the azure planet above them, gave everything a ghostly sheen. The garden behind Endymion was dark but not threatening, while scents of familiar flowers filled the air. In front of him, Mars and Selenitys faces were pale in the earthlight.
Hands reached out for Endymion, and pulled him from his resting place. Mars and Selenity, giggling madly, dragged him to the edge of the pool and watched him pointedly.
He shrugged and began to remove his sword belt and lay it cautiously away from the water. His cloak was next. He detached it carefully from his jacket and began to slowly, painstakingly, fold it into a neat square. Endymion did not look at the women on either side of him, but reached languidly for the hook at his collar. It was all he could do not to laugh as the sound of teeth grinding audibly came to him. He kept his eyes on the planet above him and unfastened the hook, followed by the top two buttons.
Selenitys voice, low and almost threatening, broke the silence. "Endymion, if you dont hurry up, I will forget your dignity and mine and throw you in as you are." Endymion couldnt restrain himself and he began to laugh. Until he felt his hands being caught up from behind and held in a vice-like grip.
"Endymion-sama, I think you should heed your lady..." the threat was implicit.
"You wouldnt." he challenged, attempting to free an arm from Mars hold.
"Boots and all." she remarked cheerfully.
Selenity was working swiftly at removing his jacket, but paused before pulling it down his arms. Could he be trusted? She glanced at Mars, whose answer was plainly reflected on her face. Selenity grinned and gave a tug at Endymions jacket. At the same moment, Mars gave a tremendous shove in the middle of his back. He fell forward, stumbling, holding for one brief moment at the edge of the pool, then with a final effort he grabbed at both Mars and Selenitys arms. In one flailing, shrieking mass, the three of them hit the water with a tremendous splash.
Chaos ensued, of course. Mamoru was glad to find that his past self could swim, and very competently, too. Mars had no trouble either, and while Selenity would be unlikely to win any awards for speed, she was as graceful in the water, as she was on land. In fact, Mamoru found himself, once or twice just watching as Selenity and Mars swam around each other and himself, enjoying their elegant motions.
After a few moments of play, their voices died down to a murmur. Mars had dived under water, surfacing at the other end of the pool, where she lifted herself onto the edge and sat, regarding her ruined gown with some complacence.
"I needed a new one anyway."
Selenity laughed and opened her mouth to speak, but a new voice broke in before she could get a word out.
"Green isnt your color anyway, Mars. You should get yourself something in violet to match your eyes." Endymion turned to see Venus approaching, gliding through the conservatory, looking every inch the Princess she was. Selenitys hands went, somewhat self-consciously, to her own clothes and face. Mamoru was sure she blushed, although there was no way to tell in the wan light.
Venus continued lightly. "Its a good thing Her Majesty and household are away, youre all making quite a racket." She beamed down upon the three figures in the pool.
"Venus." Endymion rose, somewhat less regally than he would have liked. He ignored his dripping clothes, but stepped out of the pool and reached a hand for the blonde. She held her own hand out an exaggerated distance from her body and laughed. He smiled benignly and kissed her hand, bowing deeply. "Im glad that you could make it."
"Well," Venus beamed at him, "its not often one has such a pleasantly worded invitation from the Princess."
"Please attend an intimate gathering with the Prince of Earth, Princess Mars and myself, this evening at Her Majestys Private Garden." Selenity spoke sweetly, then her voice lowered suggestively, causing a thrill to run up Endymions spine. "We are all very glad youve come, Venus."
There was a soft splash as Mars, now naked, dove into the pool, tracing a quicksilver path through the water. She surfaced next to the edge and lifted one hand to Venus. "Wont you join us?"
Venus took the hand offered and stepped forward. Endymion remained to pull away the wrap Venus had worn. The material flowed off her shoulders to reveal her ivory body gleaming against the darkened garden. She stepped into the pool, letting the water rise up her legs, slowly reaching the junction between them. Mars lowered her hand to water level, caressing the pale skin and slightly darker hair. Venus smiled and continued to step into the water. She noted that it came no higher than her chest and she turned to Selenity. She was amused to find her Princesss eyes large and full of desire. Out of the corner of her eye, Venus saw a flash of white and heard a splash as Endymion dove into the water.
"You shouldnt keep this wet dress on, Your Highness, youll catch a chill." Venus stepped close to Selenity and began to undo buttons and fasteners. Mars stepped to Selenitys other side and assisted. Endymion had surfaced right behind Selenity, drawing his body up her back, eliciting a soft purr. He stepped back slightly, now enthralled, watching the two women undress the third. Mamoru, having only recently learned of the pleasure of watching two women undress each other was, along with Endymion, mesmerized at this scene.
Mars brushed the hair from an exposed area of Selenitys neck, stepping in to kiss it, as she lowered a sleeve over one shoulder. Stepping back, she and Venus lifted one snowy arm each and carefully removed it from its encumbrance. Their hands slowly peeled Selenitys dress from her, taking each opportunity to caress what flesh they uncovered. Her breasts freed, they floated enticingly under Mars and Venus eyes, but the two women did not cease their actions until Selenity stood before them, as naked as they.
Selenity, whose eyes had closed during their ministrations, now opened them and turned to Venus. She leaned forward, and just brushed her lips against Venus. Venus responded with a kiss as feather light as her own. Mars released Selenitys arm, and taking up one of Venus graceful hands, kissed it, then placed it on Selenitys shoulder. Venus smiled at the dark-haired woman, then leaned forward and kissed her Princess. Selenity stood up on her toes and leaned into her, pressing her breasts against Venus chest. Water flowed between them, lapping a soft rhythmic sound against their bodies as they kissed. Mars sighed audibly as she watched them. Endymion, and Mamoru with him, simply held his breath, entranced.
When they separated, Selenity frowned slightly. "Ive been a poor hostess. Youre the guest here and weve already put you to work. Endymion...," she turned to him, and he moved forward and saluted, ignoring Mars and Venus laughter, "please come help us make our guest feel welcome."
"Whatever you request, my Princess, is my command." He gave a small half-bow to Mars and stepped forward to Venus. Mars joined him, placing one hand in the small of her back, as he did. Lifting slightly, they pressed Venus backwards, holding her hips up, until she lay back, her hair floating about her in a pale halo. She smiled at Mars, who kissed her lightly on the lips, then she turned to Endymion, whose kiss was more lingering. Venus lifted a hand to his cheek and closed her eyes.
Selenity stepped forward placing her hands on either leg before her. She leaned into Venus, placing small kisses on the edge of her groin, where legs separate from torso. The kisses became long, Selenity drawing her tongue across Venus flesh, until she found the heat at her center. Selenity put her hands to Venuss mound, but found Venus own hands there. Lifting her head, the blonde met Selenitys eyes evenly.
"Let me help." She parted her own folds and Selenity moaned with desire, lowering her head to the offering beneath her. Her tongue caressed the insides of Venuss lower lips.
Endymion tore his eyes away from the sight, ready to attend to his own duties. He locked eyes with Mars, then lowered his own head to the pale flesh below him. Venuss breast was sweet and soft, and smelled slightly of carnations. He could see Mars head lower and mirror his motion. Endymion drew his tongue across Venus nipple and was rewarded with a soft gasp, followed by a deep, prolonged moan.
Mamoru found himself panting, holding, no clutching, at Reis and Usagis hands. He observed them, as their eyes opened, noticing the rapidity of their breathing, the color in their faces. He was sure he looked as flushed as they did. Reis eyes focused and she smiled up at him, curling one arm around his neck, pulling him down for a kiss. Her tongue slipped between his lips, demanding entrance and he gave it to her freely. As they kissed he could feel Usagi shift and he broke off with a sigh.
Usagis eyes were still unfocused and her mouth slack. Rei and Mamoru watched her as she began to blink rapidly, coming, at last, out of the memory. She looked dazed for a moment, then shut her mouth with a snap and an embarrassed giggle.
Putting her hand to her mouth, she smiled, blushing. "I was drooling." Rei and Mamoru laughed at her expression. Then Mamoru leaned down to kiss her. She pressed into him, her body warm under the blanket. He needed no further encouragment, not after that memory...their kiss was deep and prolonged.
They parted at last and the three sat, comfortable and content in the glow of the memory, when the phone rang. They sat staring at it for a moment, no one moving.
"Its probably Minako." Usagi spoke in a stage whisper. "What do we say?"
"What if it isnt?" Rei countered, her eyes fixed on the object as it rang again.
Mamoru, still excited from the memory, wasnt sure he could rise and answer it. He cleared his throat to mention this, but Usagi forestalled him.
"Ill get it." She looked back at the other two on the sofa and grinned lopsidedly. "I was the one who wanted a "strategy session" anyway." The phone rang once again and she picked it up quickly, as if she might change her mind.
"U...Usagi-chan?" Minako did not sound upset, only dazed. Usagi felt very bad for her friend at this moment.
"Hello, Minako-chan." Usagi imbued her voice with all the cheerfulness her nature provided.
Silence. A very pregnant pause. Rei and Mamoru sat dead still, watching Usagis face.
"Youre...youre over Mamoru-sans, your Mother told me, so I called..." Minakos voice trailed off.
"Yes, Im here."
"Reis here too, Minako-chan."
More silence, then Minako cleared her throat. "I see. Well, that makes sense, doesnt it?"
Usagis voice became very gentle, but there was an undercurrent, something soothing, but also a little exciting. "Minako-chan. why dont you come over and we can talk about it." There was an ever-so-slight stress on the word "talk."
Another pause. "Okay. Ill be over in a little while. Usagi...?" she sounded dazed.
"Forget it. Ill...Ill be over shortly." Minako put the phone down without saying anything else.
Usagi turned to the others and smiled. "Poor Minako-chan. She probably hasnt blinked once in the last ten minutes. She sounds out of it."
Mamoru nodded. "Endorphin rush, most likely."
Rei laughed. "Im a bit out of it myself after that last one."
They all agreed on that.
When Minako arrived, about a quarter of an hour later, it was Usagi who answered the door. She told Rei and Mamoru that, as she was the Princess, after all, it was her duty. Rei had argued that as Venus and Mars had a separate relationship, it was her duty. They began to argue the point, but Mamoru sided with Usagi on this issue.
"Besides," he reasoned, "If she comes in to find the three of us sitting here, shell feel like shes being looked over and judged. Its my apartment, but I really think I should be in the kitchen making coffee or something when she comes in. This way the whole situation will be less awkward for her."
Rei conceded. So it was Usagi who led the still slightly stunned Minako into the room and offered her a seat. Usagi walked around the table and sat down next to Rei on the sofa.
Mamoru popped his head out of the kitchen and said hed be in a moment. Minako glanced towards the kitchen, blinked once, then blushed a furious red. When she turned back Rei leaned forward, and took one of Minakos hands into her own.
"Minako-chan," Usagi had never heard Rei speak so reassuringly, "That was some memory, wasnt it?" Rei squeezed her friends hand comfortingly. "It didnt make you feel ashamed or anything, did it?"
"Ashamed?" Minako looked astonished. She sat, watching the faces of her friends and seeing only concern in them, she nodded, then as quickly shook her head. "Im not ashamed. Only...only a little embarrassed."
Rei and Usagi nodded, encouraging her. Mamoru entered the room then, bringing fresh coffee and a cup for Minako. He sat on the floor across from her, smiled and began to pour. Minako looked at him, then at Usagi and Rei. Seeing neither confusion nor bewilderment on any of their faces, she glanced at her surroundings, noticed the crumpled duvet on the sofa and comprehension crossed her face.
"Oh!" she cried, covering her mouth. "You...I mean, you all...?" the red in Minakos face was reflected in Reis and Usagis, but they met her gaze levelly. Mamoru simply leaned forward to push a cup towards her. Automatically, she picked it up and sipped from it. "I just assumed that this was the first time you had had a memory like that..." Minako stared into the cups depths.
"This has to be said..." Usagi began, but Rei interrupted.
Usagi grinned at the dark-haired girl. "Yes, I do feel like we keep having this conversation, dont you?" She turned back to Minako. "In the past, our past lives, the three of us were lovers." She paused, trying to find the best way to say this.
"And now we are together, as well." Rei spoke decisively.
Minako nodded, then dropped her eyes back to her cup. "And you and I, I mean, Mars and Venus were...were together. And I, I mean Venus..." when she lifted her eyes to Reis they were shining with excitement, "joined the three of you. It was incredible! Ive had memories before, Ive seen some of my past life, but never, never something like that!" Her voice had become more animated as she spoke and Usagi heaved an audible sigh of relief.
"Minako-chan, Ill admit you had me frightened. I thought you might, well, we didnt know how you would react."
Minako turned her bright gaze on Usagi. "How should I react? You are our Princess." She turned to Rei, confusion on her face. "Mars, didnt you tell her that we all love her?"
Rei was startled at this form of address, but Minako had turned back to Usagi. "We, all your Senshi, I mean, love you. We will die for you, we will live for you and we will love for you. You and those you love, are those we love. If you choose to love Endymion, or Mars, who am I to say no?" Her voice was firm and resonant and Usagi felt herself a little unworthy to be the recipient of such intense emotion. Minako, or rather, Venus, continued, "And if you should look at me and ask if you can love me, well, how should I react other than to be flattered?"
Then Minakos voice changed, and it was neither Senshi, nor Princess from the past that addressed them. "Besides, I cant say that it didnt...intrigue me." Her face was red again, but for the first time she looked Mamoru in the eyes, her own twinkling. He smiled at her warmly.
Usagis eyes were filled with moisture, and Rei swallowed hard around the lump in her throat. There was no doubt in her mind as to why her past self had loved this woman. For the first time she really allowed herself to look at Minako and what she saw pleased her.
Usagi was still concerned that Minako was getting in over her head. She had to be sure that her friend wouldnt get hurt. Mamoru saw concern furrow Usagis brow and he reached up to squeeze her hand in support.
"Minako, I just want to be sure about this. We," she gestured to include Mamoru and Rei, "entered into this knowing that we are not the same as Mars, Selenity and Endymion. Its a different world and a different life. If you dont want to join us, no one here will think less of you for it."
Minako looked at Usagi for a long time. Then she smiled brilliantly and looked down at the hand that held hers. Holding Reis hand in both of hers, she stood, drawing Rei to her feet. She stepped closer towards the dark-haired girl and holding her gaze, kissed her. Rei kissed her back, softly, sweetly, then more deeply. Minakos hand slid slowly down Reis hair to her shoulder, and she pulled Rei into her. Mamoru could hear a soft rumble of pleasure from Rei, then they separated. Rei placed one finger on Minakos lips, then stepped back, pulling her hand away slowly. Minako stepped past Rei and confronted Usagi, looking down at her. Usagi rose to her feet and threw her arms about Minakos neck, hugging her tightly. Minako let her arms slide around Usagis waist and held on to her, returning the hug. When Usagi released her hold, Minako did not. Usagi looked into Minakos eyes, closed her own and leaned in to be kissed.
Mamoru had to smile at this. He had seen this expression on Usagis face so many times. And everytime he did, whether it was he kissing her or Rei, it made him love her even more. Watching her kiss Minako was just one more example of the great love she had to share. Slowly, reluctantly, they parted and Usagi stepped back, as well. Minako turned to Mamoru, who had risen slowly from the floor, still a little unsure of Minakos reaction to him.
Exactly as Venus had in the first memory, Minako leaned in to kiss his cheek. She pulled away then, smiling, and drew him into her for a long, deep kiss. She held his face with both hands, and her tongue played at the corners of his mouth, teasing at him. She caught his tongue and sucked on it hard, pulling it deep into her mouth, rolling it around her own tongue, then sucking once again on him. Then she released him, leaving him breathless and panting. When she stepped away he almost collapsed. There was no doubt at all in his mind now.
Mamoru had said nothing, fearing to break the spell Minako had cast, but now he spoke up. Clearing his throat he said, "Im afraid I dont have a pool to offer, but I do have a new bath." He didnt add that he had had it installed because he now had three adults to accommodate instead of just the one.
Wordlessly, but with a devilish smile, Minako turned and headed out of the living area, towards the bathroom. As if enslaved by her, Usagi and Rei both followed, without a sound. Mamoru, stood still a few moments, trying to catch his breath. When he was sure his legs would once again hold him up, he turned and followed them.