Komm Susser Tod 2 5

[07:37] <Minaplo> [END OF EVANGELION. 21st of May, 2018. Location: The Liberty Bell, Mars. "Komm Susser Tod" 2.5-
[07:40] <Minaplo> [How weddings should be conducted tends to vary from culture to culture. Nevermind that many of the cultures represented on what people sarcastically referred to as "New Paris"- their little slice of Mars- had changed somewhat over the last fifty years.-
[07:43] <Minaplo> [Yanmei, after all, was Chinese, but Chinese marriage customs had changed as well in the last half-century, nevermind that many of them were simply impossible due to the fact that they were on Mars and she was marrying an orphan, and her own family were hidden away in little safehouses back on Earth. No processions or photo albums here.-
[07:44] <Minaplo> [She was, in turn, marrying a man who had supposedly been raised in three different countries, but primarily the US and France, even though he'd actually spent most of that time floating in a vat buried in a lab somewhere under the Swiss Alps or the Himalayas or in the middle of the Sahara Desert.-
[07:44] <Minaplo> [Furthermore, the man conducting the marriage itself was the French President, whilst Yanmei's own bridal entourage contained the Austrian-born American President, both of whom had their own subtly different ideas on how things should go, nevermind the presence of people like Yanmei's own mother.-
[07:45] <Minaplo> [In the end, this is how it turned out:-
[07:46] <Minaplo> [The 'Wedding climate', as people began to call it, began a good day before the actual ceremony. Yanmei had finished up overseeing things on the Dory's bridge, and had headed to her dorm, only to be told that she could not see Isaiah (nor the reverse) until the ceremony itself.-
[07:46] <Minaplo> [How this decision was reached, or who decided it, seemed to be impossible to pinpoint, but Yanmei was told that this was how things were.-
[07:47] <Minaplo> [Meanwhile, Yanmei's roommates, Rei and Asuka, also had both of their partners removed as well, since they were both groomsmen. And so the night before Yanmei's wedding was spent mostly with the three of them gossipping away before they faded off to sleep…-
[07:48] <Minaplo> [But how had Yanmei slept that night?]
[07:51] <Yanmei> Restlessly, at best. She'd spent many hours tossing, turning, and staring up at the darkened ceiling wondering how she could feel nervous when this was her second time marrying Isaiah. Granted, the first time had taken place in an illusion world created by an Angel, but… -
[07:52] <Yanmei> Eventually, exhausted, she had finally nodded off.
[07:57] <Minaplo> […-
[07:57] <Minaplo> [It didn't feel as though much time has passed before she was being shaken awake.]
[08:00] <Yanmei> "Mrph." She tried to bat away the hand shaking her and crawled a little further under the warmth of her blanket. "G'way."
[08:02] <Minaplo> [There were giggles.-
[08:02] <Minaplo> [The hands shook her a little more vigourously this time. "Up you get, Yanmei~"]
[08:05] <Yanmei> "Unnngh." It was the laughter that did it. Were they laughing at -her-? She forced herself to open her eyes, peering out from her blanket bundle. "Whasso funny?"
[08:09] <Minaplo> [It was dark, and all she could make out were a few blurry shapes.-
[08:10] <Minaplo> ["Man, all these years and you still act like you did on our school camping trip to Guandu." Came one of the voices. She felt a hand grab her hair and ruffle it wildly. "Wakey, wakey, or we'll get Marianne to marry Isaiah instead!"]
[08:15] <Yanmei> "Uggh!" she began flailing about her hair, trying to smooth it down. "I-Isaiah? Oh shit-! What time is it?!"
[08:20] <Minaplo> ["Half past freezing is what it is." Said a voice- not next to her. Ju's voice. "This planet feels colder than a Mongolian's backside."-
[08:21] <Minaplo> [There was a distinctly Asuka-sounding snort from somewhere. "Man, I had no idea uncool Yanmei had such great friends."-
[08:21] <Minaplo> ["It's actually ten hours before the ceremony." Said the girl- Lanfen- shaking Yanmei awake. "I dunno how it works out here, but it's like 4 AM."]
[08:25] <Yanmei> "I am very cool," said Yanmei, glaring in the direction Asuka's voice came from. "And why are we getting up so early? Ju, Lanfen… you guys aren't due for another few hours, right?"
[08:26] <Minaplo> ["Executive Order from the President of America." Said Lanfen. "She wants you. Now."]
[08:29] <Yanmei> "She's even trying to boss me around on my wedding day," Yanmei grumbled. "What's this about? Something happen back on earth…?"
[08:30] <Minaplo> ["No, she has a surprise for you." Said Lanfen.]
[08:31] * Yanmei grumbled. Slooowly, she crawled out of bed and rummaged around for her clothes. The frigid air was… bracing, to say the least.
[08:36] <Minaplo> [Someone helped her towards them, helpfully putting a coat on. Someone turned on a light, revealing Yanmei's helper to be a sleepy-faced Rei. Her own garments were slightly misshapen in some places where she still sported bandages.]
[08:37] <Yanmei> "Oh. Thanks, Rei." And squinted in the light, trying to get used to it. "You doing okay today?"
[08:39] <Minaplo> ["Uh-huh. S'early though."]
[08:41] <Yanmei> "No kidding," Yanmei mumbled. It wasn't long before she was ready to go, putting the final comb strokes through her hair and parting it into twintails. "There. Let's go see what her Highness wants."
[08:44] <Minaplo> [And so a quick walk later, Yanmei would meet Ezekiel and jaunted over to the much warmer (although still objectively cold) Liberty Bell.-
[08:45] <Minaplo> [Rei and Lanfen went with her.-
[08:45] <Minaplo> ["Minerva Linden's quarters." Said Ezekiel, gesturing towards a very reinforced-looking door. "As to her instructions, you're to enter alone."]
[08:47] <Yanmei> "Huh. Thank you." She glanced to Rei and Lanfen. "You two okay hanging out here for a sec?"
[08:47] <Minaplo> ["We're fine." Said Rei.-
[08:48] <Minaplo> ["It will take longer than that." Said Ezekiel. "I will keep your companions entertained until then."-
[08:48] <Minaplo> [Lanfen shot Ezekiel a curious glance.]
[08:51] * Yanmei nodded, swinging her gaze back to Ezekiel. "All right? I'll leave it to you." She started for the door - although not without giving Lanfen a Look as she passed - and pressed the buzzer.
[08:54] <Minaplo> [The door opened, revealing Minerva's rather spartan quarters- it wasn't even close to the luxury she'd enjoyed on her quarters on the Dory. A bed, a desk, a side room that Yanmei couldn't see, a bookcase…-
[08:55] <Minaplo> [And of course a president. Minerva Linden was sitting behind her desk, wearing a bathrobe, her long hair down. She looked bright-eyed. Spread out before her were several bags and acrylic cases…-
[08:55] <Minaplo> ["Hello, Yanmei." She said with a bright smile.]
[08:59] * Yanmei smiled back, albeit uncertainly. "What's this 4 AM wakeup call about, Madame President?"
[08:59] <Minaplo> ["Wedding gift."]
[09:00] * Suzune (moc.rr.ser.yabapmat.551cfh1322356|enuzuS#moc.rr.ser.yabapmat.551cfh1322356|enuzuS) Quit (Quit: )
[09:02] <Yanmei> "Ah?" She eyed the bags and cases with mild surprise, and then glanced back at her. "You're going to do something."
[09:03] <Minaplo> ["When I was in the NeoAlexander Programme, I was taught about disguises. You know this, of course."-
[09:04] <Minaplo> ["But not everyone was given that training. I was special, because I had a specific interest in it- actually, it's a little curious. Care to hear the story?"]
[09:05] <Yanmei> "Certainly."
[09:07] <Minaplo> ["One of the few things I inherited from my father when he was presumed dead was his film collection. Oh, I wish I could show you. He loved some of the older classics, even ones from the silent era. He had hundreds, and I must've watched them all. European and American both."-
[09:10] <Minaplo> ["Now, you can imagine that the NeoAlexander Programme was pretty competitive?"]
[09:12] <Yanmei> "I'd be shocked if it wasn't. Did you have a rival movie costume buff there~?"
[09:22] <Minaplo> ["No, not quite." Chuckled Minerva. "But there was a rivalry. Not a specific one, just a general one. Growing up, I often felt short and skinny for my age, and that wasn't really helped by the fact that we had shared, unisex bathing rules."]
[09:28] <Yanmei> "Ugh. Unisex? Really? The people who ran that program were true monsters."
[09:31] <Minaplo> ["You don't know the half of it." Said Minerva. "The bathing rules were just one part of a larger initiative to quash our sexual urges permanently. Can you imagine that?"]
[09:33] <Yanmei> "That's so stupid?" Yanmei muttered. "There's no way it would work like that."
[09:34] <Minaplo> ["It didn't." Said Minerva. "It super didn't."-
[09:34] <Minaplo> ["Anyway, that's not what I wanted to talk to you about."-
[09:36] <Minaplo> ["See, I feared myself a plain, skinny little thing. But the movie stars in those movies, women like Lillian Gish or Clara Bow, always looked so glamourous and beautiful. I wondered if I could take it into my own hands. I asked the Programme to teach me specialised disguise training, taking into account things like fashions, costume design, makeup… Naturally, everything someone would need
[09:36] <Minaplo> to achieve that look. And I'm damn good at it too."]
[09:42] <Yanmei> "I see where this is going. You're going to make me pretty for the big day, aren't you? Well." She tossed her hair. "Prettier, anyway."
[09:43] <Minaplo> ["That's right. For the next four hours, you're my canvas."]
[09:45] <Yanmei> "F-four hours? It's going to take that long?"
[09:52] <Minaplo> ["Of course." Said Minerva. "By the end of it, you're going to be glowing. But this requires work- I'm pulling out all the stops for this."]
[09:53] * Yanmei nodded again, setting her face in a determined expression. Something about that sounded painful. But… "What do you need me to do?"
[09:55] <Minaplo> ["Now, don't tell anyone, because it's pretty scarce, you know…" Said Minerva. "But the first step will be to bathe you. I've prepared a hot bath for you with cosmetic milks and soaks."]
[09:56] <Yanmei> "Tsk. You raided the water supply big time."
[09:58] <Minaplo> ["I had it, er, imported."]
[10:00] <Yanmei> "Uh huh." Yanmei looked unconvinced. Nevertheless, she opened her coat. "Where to?"
[10:00] <Minaplo> ["Just through here."]
[10:04] <Yanmei> And so Yanmei followed. -
[10:11] <Yanmei> The next few hours were bizarre blend of relaxation and pain. Two regular baths, with her hair soaked, scrubbed and rinsed in a seperate basin after each time. An extra long moisturizing soak for her body, and then a seperate one with epsom salts for her hands and feet. Two facial steam treatments, a clay masque, and one exfoliation treatment each for her face and body. -
[10:20] <Yanmei> There was plucking and waxing. Two excruciating hours in a chair, trying desperately not to move as Minerva set her hair, worked on the makeup while it air-dried, and then styled an elegant half-up do with two coiled, braided buns decorated with pearls and a section in the back that spilled down her back in waves. -
[10:29] <Yanmei> She had struggled to stay awake during the first half of the chair treatment, leading to a scolding from Minerva. Since then, she had gotten into the groove of talking to pass the time - as long as it didn't interfere with the makeup process. When it was over, she kept on going. "And so he was like, 'You may be be a strange-haired Chinese girl with a poor attitude, but I know now that I can't best you.'" She was slipping on the bottom half of her uniform as she spoke. "And then I was like, 'You're absolutely right about that? But I have a meeting, so have fun freezing here.'"
[10:30] <Minaplo> [Minerva laughed.-
[10:30] <Minaplo> ["You got off easy. You should've seen what it was like the last time I shared a room with those sons of bitches."]
[10:31] <Yanmei> "Oh god. When was that, anyway?"
[10:32] <Minaplo> ["It was during the treaty discussions. The one where we agreed that I'd remain President of the US, but I'd defect to the UN." Said Minerva. "Do you know what Shardlake said to me?"]
[10:33] * ChanServ sets mode: +qo Minaplo Minaplo
[10:33] <Yanmei> "What?"
[10:38] <@Minaplo> ["He said I was perfect for President, because I represented everything the US was: a mongrel child, not one thing or not the other, wrapped in oversized trappings, seizing power without earning it. That I was nothing more than pretty artifice built up to hide shaky foundations."]
[10:43] <Yanmei> "Oh my god? He's such a complete asshole!" The top half went on next. A clean, pressed shirt and a dressier version of her blue and gold military jacket. Instead of the usual white trousers, she had opted for a short white pencil skirt with matching shoes. A locket hung around her neck, and a long white cape hung nearby, ready to be pulled on at the last second. For now, she busied herself with strapping a clean leather sidearm holster around her waist.
[10:45] <@Minaplo> ["No holsters."]
[10:45] * Yanmei looked up in confusion. "What do you mean?"
[10:46] <@Minaplo> ["No holsters. Gives the wrong impression. Take it off."]
[10:48] <Yanmei> "What? But… You can't expect me to go to my wedding defenseless, can you?"
[10:55] <@Minaplo> ["Do you really intend to use a gun? Why don't you take a decorate sword instead?"]
[10:56] <Yanmei> "Is that okay? I mean, Isaiah's going to be wearing one too…"
[11:00] <@Minaplo> ["It is."]
[11:10] <Yanmei> "Then… fine. I'll get someone to bring a sword from my room."
[11:11] <@Minaplo> [Minerva smiled.-
[11:11] <@Minaplo> ["Now, do you wanna see yourself in the mirror?"]
[11:11] <Yanmei> "Sure!"
[11:11] <@Minaplo> [Minerva walked over to her wardrobe and opened it. The door doubled as a full body mirror…]
[11:14] * Yanmei peered into it and someone only vaguely familiar peered back. She was a touch older now, with seductive eyes, and a warm, pink mouth. Her nails were manicured, and her hair silk. Her face was… smooth and milky. Way softer and cleaner than it had ever been even when she had regular access to a shower. She muttered a soft curse in Chinese. "…you're a miracle worker…"
[11:16] <@Minaplo> ["Are you kidding me?" Minerva walked up to her side, putting an arm around Yanmei's waist. "I'm good, but you're beautiful- I'd kill to look like you. I actually think I fell a little in love. Are you sure you want to marry this schmuck?" She asked, batting her eyelids up at Yanmei. "We could elope~"]
[11:19] <Yanmei> "Tempting. But should a President really be suggesting something like that?" Yanmei smirked. "Your cabinet would have a fit if it wasn't a bunch of computers."
[11:20] <@Minaplo> ["US Presidents and sex scandals go hand in hand." Purred Minerva seductively.]
[11:29] <Yanmei> "I won't deny that?" Yanmei was still smirking. "But you'll find that my heart belongs to another~"
[11:30] <@Minaplo> ["Shame." Said Minerva, grinning. But she took a step back.-
[11:32] <@Minaplo> [About ten minutes later, the door would buzz, and Minerva would open it.-
[11:47] <@Minaplo> [Standing in the doorway were two women- Yanmei would recognise Marianne and Asuka. The both of them had tried to step through at the same time, and were now fighting for the space.-
[11:47] <@Minaplo> ["Grrr!" Asuka tried to push through. "Outta the way-"-
[11:48] <@Minaplo> ["I'm Maid of Honour! Back off!" Marianne placed both of her hands on Asuka's head and shoved, sending her tumbling back towards the gathering of girls behind her.-
[11:52] <@Minaplo> ["Brat." Muttered Marianne, stepping through the door. Marianne was clad in her dress uniform, which looked surprisingly neat- like she'd managed to scrounge an iron up from somewhere. She'd even cleaned her hair and put it up in an attractive french roll. She was wearing a pair of black, slightly scuffed but otherwise clean high heels.-
[11:52] <@Minaplo> ["I'm he-" Said Marianne, turning to look at Yanmei.-
[11:52] <@Minaplo> ["Re. Holy shit…"-
[11:56] <@Minaplo> [Asuka was in next, wearing her own dress uniform with her flashy cape. She wasn't wearing high heels, but was wearing black boots instead. "Goddamned old maid, you-" Yanmei caught her eye, and Asuka turned, her jaw dropping.-
[11:57] <@Minaplo> [Following Marianne and Asuka were Rei and Chiisana.-
[11:58] <@Minaplo> [Rei was wearing a lovely pale link silk and chiffon dress, with long sleeves and a transparent shawl, a flared knee-length skirt and lace detailing on the hem, collar and cuffs. She was wearing a pair of pink high heels.-
[11:59] <@Minaplo> [Chiisana herself was wearing a larger, more elaborate dress- this one was floor-length, and completely sleeveless. It was a lovely sky-blue and was made entirely of lace. She wore a pair of long elbow-length white gloves on her arms, and around her waist she wore a silken white sash tied in an elaborate bow.-
[11:59] <@Minaplo> [As Rei and Chii caught sight of Yanmei, they both made an identical gesture, covering their mouths with a hand.-
[12:01] <@Minaplo> [The last three people were Ju, Lanfen- and Henriette. Ju and Lanfen looked rather odd since, lacking actual formal clothes, they'd each worn a greatcoat and buttoned it up over long-sleeved shirts and trousers to try to look a little presentable. They stepped around the Ayanami sisters to gawk at Yanmei.-
[12:02] <@Minaplo> ["No fuckin' way." Muttered Ju. Lanfen looked flabbergasted.-
[12:15] <@Minaplo> [Henriette did manage formal clothes however, wearing a dark purple floral dress with alternating petals of green and pink. It was long sleeved and knee-length, with a white cuff and white collar. Her legs were stocking-clad, tucked into a pair of mary-janes. She pushed her way through the crowd- then froze, staring up at Yanmei, down at Yanmei's feet, then slowly panning back up- before
[12:15] <@Minaplo> going a bright red.]
[12:22] * Yanmei stood with her hands on her hips, and let out her most sophisticated cackle. "Impressive, no~? I owe it all to President Linden's skill."
[12:22] <@Minaplo> ["Wow." Said Marianne, a little breathlessly.-
[12:23] <@Minaplo> [Asuka clamped her jaw shut, shaking her head. "Geez. Look at all the effort she went to! You almost look as good as I do."-
[12:23] <@Minaplo> [Chiisana snorted.-
[12:23] <@Minaplo> ["Talk about the lifestyles of the rich and famous." Murmured Lanfen. "Wow… Is that hair even real? It looks too good to be real."-
[12:25] <@Minaplo> [Rei clapped her hands and hopped away from the group. "Oh man, Meimei. You look like a goddess. Zaizai's going to be totally blown away when he looks at you…"-
[12:25] <@Minaplo> ["I don't suppose you have enough time to do me as well, Madame President?" Asked Marianne cautiously.-
[12:26] <@Minaplo> ["Hah, not a chance. I used up everything I had on this masterpiece here." Said Minerva, flourishing at Yanmei. "Trust me. She's going to break hearts today. Even the girls will want her."-
[12:26] <@Minaplo> [Minerva eyed Asuka and grinned. "Some of them already do. Isn't that right, Langley?"-
[12:26] <@Minaplo> [Asuka scowled, folding her arms, her cheeks going red. "Nope. No way, no how. I'm just mad that she's catching up…"]
[12:30] <Yanmei> "At least we can say I've surpassed you on fashion~" Yanmei jerked a thumb back at the long white cape. "I dare say that mine's a little flashier than yours," she added smugly.
[12:36] <@Minaplo> ["Pfft. Your little cape wouldn't do anything in a fight."]
[12:37] <Yanmei> "It so would."
[12:37] <@Minaplo> ["Get you killed, maybe…"-
[12:38] <@Minaplo> ["At least you guys have something fashionable." Said Ju. "All I got is this damned coat."-
[12:38] <@Minaplo> ["Yeah, I admit I'm worried I'll look a little inadequate next to you up there." Said Lanfen.]
[12:42] <Yanmei> "Trust me, not everyone there is going to be in dress uniforms or dresses. A -lot- of that stuff got trashed in the crash or left behind during evacuations." Yanmei checked the clock on Minerva's wall. "If you want, there might still time to grab a flashy cape for you guys. I have one back in my room, and Asuka, you have to have a spare too, right?"
[12:44] <@Minaplo> ["I think."]
[12:47] * Yanmei nodded firmly. "I have to get a sword from there anyway. Can I trust one of my wonderful bridesmades to run the errand for me~~?"
[12:47] <@Minaplo> ["I can do it." Said Chiisana. She turned-
[12:47] <@Minaplo> ["… Huh."-
[12:47] <@Minaplo> [She opened the door. Lying on the ground was… A package. A long, wide, white box.]
[12:48] <Yanmei> "…?" Yanmei edged closer, trying peek around her and the other maids. "What's that?"
[12:49] <@Minaplo> ["Some anonymous wedding gift? It looks like it's addressed to you." Chiisana lifted it, and placed it on the desk- it was nearly six feet long!-
[12:49] <@Minaplo> ["There you go."]
[12:50] <Yanmei> "…" Yanmei stared at it, puzzled, before slipping her fingers around the lid and slowly prying it off.
[12:58] <Yanmei> It… was a long, sleek dress, pure white, with a slit up the side. It was held up by broad straps, and the trim - also white - had tiny little rose patterns stitched into it. Yanmei gaped.
[13:04] <@Minaplo> ["A… A -dress-." Breathed Chiisana. "It looks beautiful."-
[13:04] <@Minaplo> ["You didn't tell us you had a dress!" Said Asuka in shock.]
[13:05] <Yanmei> "I… didn't," she said numbly. "-Who- sent this? There's no card anywhere?"
[13:09] <@Minaplo> [Marianne was already digging through the box. She took out a small square card.-
[13:09] <@Minaplo> ["No name. Just a riddle." She said. "'Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something…?'"]
[13:10] <Yanmei> "Oh my god." She literally sagged in defeat. "Now I actually -owe- him. Again."
[06:49] <Minaplo> ["Worth it." Said Minerva.-
[06:50] <Minaplo> ["Man, he made this for you? Why, though? Did Isaiah…?" Marianne eyed Rei. "Did you make him do this?"-
[06:54] <Minaplo> [But Rei looked as surprised as anyone else did. "No, this wasn't my idea…"-
[06:54] <Minaplo> ["Who're you all talking about?" Asked Ju, frowning.]
[06:57] <Yanmei> "This guy. Goes by the name 'Blue'? The Dorian's resident tailor, bartender, and general unsavory bastard. I bet he did it because he was bored. He doesn't have his bar now, right?"
[06:57] <Minaplo> ["No, he doesn't. Not yet at least." Said Marianne.-
[06:57] <Minaplo> [Ju was squinting at Yanmei suspiciously.
[06:58] <Minaplo> ]
[06:58] * Yanmei eyed her back. "What's with that look?"
[06:59] <Minaplo> ["Just seems weird."-
[06:59] <Minaplo> ["Oh, let's stop fussing." Said Chiisana patiently. "Put it on already!"]
[07:01] * Zack is now known as ZackSleep
[07:07] <Yanmei> "Right, right. You all wait here?" Lifting the dress high so that it wouldn't drag on the ground, she made for the President's adjoined bathroom. She emerged a few minutes later in the new body-skimming dress, her previous outfit now draped over one arm. "Huh. I guess he kept all my measurements? This fits perfectly!"
[07:13] <Minaplo> [There were squeals and whoops of delight from the entourage- Minerva was clasping her hands together, Ju was cheering, Chiisana was nodding approvingly…-
[07:13] <Minaplo> [Marianne, however, was holding something. "I found this, too, Yanmei." She said.-
[07:13] <Minaplo> [She held it out- it was a brooch, a shiny brooch shaped like a single blossom from a lilac bush.]
[07:18] <Yanmei> "Huh," said Yanmei again, reaching out for it and turning it over a few times in her hands. It was made of a pale purple crystal, with the back and pinning mechanism crafted out of a highly polished silvery metal. "There's no way he made this here." -
[07:19] <Yanmei> Before long it was pinned over her right breast, shining brightly and catching the light.
[07:20] <Minaplo> ["Have a look!" Said Minerva, gesturing to her mirror.]
[07:22] <Yanmei> So Yanmei did, turning this way and that. "I hate to admit it? But this suits me pretty well," she grumbled.
[07:25] <Minaplo> ["Are you kidding? You're going to kill it out there." Said Minerva with a huge grin. "That lucky schmuck won't be able to take his eyes off you all night."-
[07:25] <Minaplo> ["Can't say the same about the dress, though~" Said Asuka with a smirk. Next to her, Ju snorted.]
[07:32] <Yanmei> Yanmei coughed delicately, a slight blush creeping over her face. "You two be quiet! Hmph." She turned back toward her bridesmaids with her hands on her hips. "And speaking of quiet… hey Henriette. You're totally blown away by how awesome your favorite Yanmei looks, right~?"
[07:34] <Minaplo> [Henriette had definitely been quiet the entire time, but now that Yanmei was speaking to her… She went even redder, hid her face, mumbled incoherently and looked away shyly.]
[07:41] <Yanmei> Man. She actually -was- blown away. Yanmei resisted the urge to ruffle her hair. She did, however, pat her lightly on the head without fear of being kicked in the shins in retaliation. It would probably be the first and last time she could get away with it. "Now where were we? Capes, right?" she said distractedly.
[07:41] <Minaplo> ["That's right." Said Lanfen. "And the chance that we-"-
[07:41] <Minaplo> ["Wait." Said Asuka suddenly. "Hold it!"]
[07:42] <Yanmei> "What?"
[07:42] <Minaplo> [Asuka pointed at Yanmei. "You wearing a bra?"]
[07:46] <Yanmei> "Wh-?! What does that have to do with anything?!"
[07:46] <Minaplo> ["God, Langley, you can't just ask someone if they're wearing a bra." Said Minerva chidingly.-
[07:47] <Minaplo> [Asuka rolled her eye. "Oh come on. It's not like it's weird. We're all girls here. We've all worn them."-
[07:47] <Minaplo> ["What about Henriette?" Asked Rei.-
[07:47] <Minaplo> ["Shut up." Said Asuka.-
[07:47] <Minaplo> [Henriette let out a squeak of protest from behind her fortress wall of shyness.]
[07:52] <Yanmei> "Dammit Asuka," Yanmei sighed. "Yes, I'm wearing a strapless. Where are you even going with this?"
[07:54] <Minaplo> ["Oh, you are? Nevermind." Said Asuka innocently.]
[07:56] * Yanmei glared suspiciously.
[07:58] <Minaplo> [Marianne was doing quite the same, but shrugged and turned to Yanmei. "So how long until you're needed for the ceremony?"]
[08:05] <Yanmei> "We still have an hour and a half until we need to be there? And since we're already on the Bell…" A sly look crossed her face. "Let's take care of something first."
[08:06] <Minaplo> ["Oh?" Asked Asuka.]
[08:09] <Yanmei> "Let's swing by Remy's zoo for a minute. Then, let's head to medical."
[08:10] <Minaplo> [Asuka frowned- then suddenly went 'ohh' to herself.-
[08:10] <Minaplo> ["This is a pretty big group, Yanmei." Said Marianne. "If you want, some of us can go find you and the others something to eat whilst you do your thing."]
[08:12] <Yanmei> "Right. Rei, Asuka, Henriette, you're with me. You guys do your thing. We'll meet back here in forty minutes?"
[08:13] <Minaplo> ["Yessir." Said Lanfen, snapping off a mock salute and grinning. "Will a Mexican Slop MRE do?"-
[08:14] <Minaplo> ["You will not feed that to my masterpiece." Said Minerva warningly. "The chance of her getting it on her dress is maximum."]
[08:22] * Yanmei looked vaguely uncomfortable at that. "It wouldn't be -that- bad. Let's go!" -
[08:34] <Yanmei> The trip to the 'zoo' was a swift one, with only a little dialogue exchanged between Yanmei and its primary keeper. Whatever they were up to had apparently been planned well in advance. When they left it, they had an energetic new friend, who Yanmei tugged gently along on a leash. "Don't tell Minerva we're doing this?" Yanmei cautioned. "If she'd freak about mexican food, she'd freak about this too…"
[08:35] <Minaplo> [Rei was busy walking next to Yanmei, holding a hand on Yanmei's back. The air around Yanmei was shimmering…-
[08:36] <Minaplo> [Henriette was walking a little ahead of Yanmei, and was staring at the cub with a mix of curiosity and caution. "It's not gonna bite, is it?"]
[08:39] <Yanmei> "He's pretty well trained? But I wouldn't pet him all the same. You know he breathes fire, right?"
[08:39] <Minaplo> ["Yeah." Said Henriette dubiously. "That sounds really dangerous."]
[08:48] <Yanmei> "Maybe some day, when his handler is absolutely sure, you can pet and play with him."
[08:49] <Minaplo> ["So what if it breathes fire?" Said Asuka. "That just makes it more interesting, don't you think?"-
[08:50] <Minaplo> ["Danger outweighs interest!" Said Henriette with a frown.-
[08:50] <Minaplo> [And so they walked on, little Timur the cub padding after them quickly, being perfectly well-behaved.-
[08:51] <Minaplo> [Before long, they'd arrive at the medical wing of the Bell. There were people here and in the corridors who had not been able to help but stare at the divine Yanmei as she passed…]
[08:52] * Yanmei fluffed her hair primly as she walked them all to a certain little room and peeked inside the open doorway. "Hello Eevi. Are you awake?"
[09:07] <Minaplo> [Eevi was lying in bed. She had remained here ever since returning from Asgard. Even though her injuries had healed…-
[09:08] <Minaplo> [She looked over at the door, staring at Yanmei with an empty expression. "…"]
[09:11] <Yanmei> "Heh. I guess you are? Is it okay to come in?"
[09:11] <Minaplo> [She nodded.]
[09:12] <Yanmei> So Yanmei did, keeping a firm grip on the leesh. "I'm getting married today," she said conversationally. "So that's why I look a bit funny."
[09:12] <Minaplo> ["You look pretty." Said Eevi.-
[09:13] <Minaplo> [Rei, Asuka and Henriette followed Yanmei in. Rei instantly went to Eevi's bedside, sitting on the bed and putting an arm around Eevi's shoulders. The girl seemed to cheer up slightly at that, wrapping her arms tightly around Rei's waist and snugging her head against Rei's chest. Rei smiled softly down at her, bending down to kiss little Eevi on the forehead tenderly.-
[09:14] <Minaplo> [Henriette, looking slightly awkward, sat in one of the chairs, her hands folded on her lap daintily. "Hi, Eevi."-
[09:14] <Minaplo> ["Hi, Henriette."]
[09:27] <Yanmei> "It must be really slow around here," Yanmei said quietly, keeping an eye on little Timur. "But I guess that's the downside and benefit of having your own room, right?"
[09:28] <Minaplo> ["Mmm." Said Eevi.]
[09:29] <Yanmei> "Thank you, by the way, for calling me pretty earlier."
[09:35] <Minaplo> ["You are." Said Eevi. "I really like your dress."]
[09:37] <Yanmei> "Thank you~ It was an unexpected gift. Maybe we can get the guy who made it to come up with something for you too."
[09:39] <Minaplo> ["Right now?"]
[09:41] <Yanmei> "Well… I'm not completely sure we can find him right this minute? But I'll see him later today. I'll ask for you."
[09:42] <Minaplo> ["Okay." She snuggled her head a little more tightly into Rei's chest. Eevi's hair fell over one of her eyes, shielding much of her face from view.]
[09:44] * Yanmei paused before going on. "Have you met Staff Sergeant Awala's little friends before?"
[09:44] <Minaplo> ["… I don't know who that is."]
[09:47] <Yanmei> "Oh. Um. He's been staying close to the prisons, so it's no wonder you haven't run into each other? But he's been looking after this little guy and some of his siblings." She jerked her head at Timur.
[09:52] <Minaplo> [Eevi had to lean forward to see him. She peered down at little Timur- who was sitting by Yanmei's foot, scratching at its neck with its back paw.-
[09:52] <Minaplo> ["Oh." She let out a small, soft gasp. "What is it?"]
[09:52] <Yanmei> "An amored lion. Have you heard of them?"
[10:08] <Minaplo> [She shook her head.]
[10:18] <Yanmei> "They're from Africa? They've descended from normal lions who were mutated during second impact, so they have strange abilities? Like, they breathe fire, their fur can grow extra hard and armor-like, and they're much much bigger than normal lions as adults."
[10:18] <Minaplo> ["Oh."-
[10:20] <Minaplo> ["They're super cool?- Cool." Said Asuka, folding her arms.-
[10:20] <Minaplo> ["Is that one friendly?" Asked Eevi.]
[10:27] <Yanmei> "Yup! The friendliest one we have on board? Would you like to hold him?"
[10:29] <Minaplo> ["Okay."]
[10:30] * Yanmei stepped forward, pretending that she knew what she was doing as she guided him to the side of the bed. "Timur!" She patted the mattress. "Up up!"
[10:32] <Minaplo> [Timur padded forward, staring up at her, then over at the mattress. Then… Back to Yanmei.-
[10:33] <Minaplo> [Eventually, however, he crouched, his tail wagging wildly, before he sprang up onto the bed, peering around at the room from his new vantage.-
[10:33] <Minaplo> [Eevi reached out towards him, and Timur obediently padded over to her. He timidly licked at her fingers.-
[10:34] <Minaplo> ["His tongue's warm." Murmured Eevi. She patted at her lap- and Timur once again came closer, right up next to her. Eevi paused for a moment, eyeing his coat- before she began to pet him. Timur leaned into the petting, running the back of his head and neck against Eevi's hand enthusiastically.]
[10:39] * Yanmei beamed. "He likes you! A lot!"
[10:40] <Minaplo> ["He feels really warm." Said Eevi appreciatively, putting both hands around the little cub. "Is that because he has fire inside him?"]
[10:44] <Yanmei> "Heh. Having actual fire inside would hurt, so maybe not. Maybe he's just naturally warm to the touch, the way Isaiah is."
[10:45] <Minaplo> ["Well in that case, maybe you could show Eevi how to snuggle Timur properly~" Crowed Asuka.]
[10:47] * Yanmei glared at her. "We don't… I mean, we do, but… be quiet, Asuka!"
[10:48] <Minaplo> ["Ooh, you won't be able to deny that after today, will you~?" Said Asuka, glowing smugly. "'We had a totally professional honeymoon?'"-
[10:48] <Minaplo> [Rei coughed, a hand over her mouth trying to stifle her giggles.]
[10:53] <Yanmei> "I'll have you know that we won't have time for a honeymoon for some time?" Yanmei folded her arms, turning pink. "And when we do, it will be full of proper activities and romantic strolls. Not whatever sordid things you and Fontaine like to imagine."
[10:54] <Minaplo> ["Man, I hope not. For both of your sakes." Said Asuka. "That's not a honeymoon, that's a… A…"-
[10:55] <Minaplo> ["A breadmoon." Said Rei solemnly.-
[10:55] <Minaplo> ["Right. A breadmoon." Said Asuka, her tone decisive.]
[10:56] <Yanmei> "That doesn't even make sense!"
[10:58] <Minaplo> ["Sure it does." Said Asuka. "A honeymoon has honey in it, as in something sweet and luxurious." Said Asuka. "A breadmoon is just dumb and normal and stuff and not sweet at all."]
[11:04] <Yanmei> "What about banana bread?"
[11:05] <Minaplo> ["That would be a banana breadmoon?" Said Asuka, tossing her hair. "Which is just perverted."-
[11:06] <Minaplo> [Rei narrowed her eyes, suspecting that perhaps she'd lost the thread of this particular convo…-
[11:06] <Minaplo> [Henriette huffed. "I don't think that means anything perverted. You're just saying that because you don't have a good response."-
[11:06] <Minaplo> ["Oh, like you'd know?" Snapped Asuka. "Like you know anything about what's perverted or not."]
[11:18] <Yanmei> "She knows enough about what's sensible and what isn't. And you're totally not, Asuka."
[11:19] <Minaplo> ["Well if 'sensible' leads to breadmoons without lots of hot, sweet fun? Then I don't wanna be sensible." Said Asuka flippantly.-
[11:19] <Minaplo> [Eevi, meanwhile, was still stroking Timur, who had curled up in her lap.]
[11:21] * Yanmei scoffed. "Anyway, Eevi, would you mind doing us a favor?"
[11:22] <Minaplo> ["What is it?"]
[11:24] <Yanmei> "Would you mind looking after him for us during the ceremony? Since, you know. He looks so confortable?"
[11:24] <Minaplo> ["Looking after him…?"-
[11:24] <Minaplo> [Eevi eyed him. Her expression wavered.]
[11:27] <Yanmei> Did she push it too far? Yanmei watched carefully to see if she would come to a decision.
[11:27] <Minaplo> ["Just for the ceremony?" asked Eevi. "I think I can do that…"]
[11:30] <Yanmei> "Thank you so much!" Yanmei smiled at her. "We'll come fetch him as soon as we can."
[11:34] <Minaplo> ["Okay."]
[11:40] <Yanmei> "We should probably get going for now, right ladies?"
[11:40] <Minaplo> ["Sounds good to me." Said Asuka. "Keep truckin', Eevi."-
[11:40] <Minaplo> [Rei gave Eevi an extra-big squeeze and another kiss. "We'll see you later, okay, Eevi?"-
[11:41] <Minaplo> ["Alright." Said Eevi, turning enough to reach up and kiss Rei back on the cheek. "Have a good wedding, Yanmei."]
[11:42] <Yanmei> "I will~ Thank you again." She backed off toward the door.
[11:46] <Minaplo> ["Bye, Eevi." Said Henriette. "I'll bring you something to eat later, okay?"-
[11:47] <Minaplo> ["Okay." Eevi waved to Henriette before turning her attention back to the snuggly Timur.]
[11:50] <Yanmei> When they were way down the hall and out of earshot, Yanmei exhaled. "That went way better than I thought it would?"
[11:51] <Minaplo> ["Yeah." Said Rei. "Poor Eevi. She was really hesitant about taking him even for a few hours…"]
[11:53] <Yanmei> "It'll be ok. If she doesn't warm to him, we'll take him back to Remy and stop pushing it."
[11:54] <Minaplo> ["I'm pretty sure that's not even in question." Said Asuka. "She was super-snuggly. Who wouldn't be?"]
[12:01] <Yanmei> "And what if her guilt kicks in again?"
[12:01] <Minaplo> ["Well, we'll just have to hope that snuggly can beat sad." Said Rei.]
[12:09] <Yanmei> "Yeah…" Yanmei eyed Asuka with a slight frown now. "And as for people who are getting snuggly with armored lions…"
[12:10] <Minaplo> ["Hm?"]
[12:16] <Yanmei> "You're getting one for yourself, aren't you?!"
[12:16] <Minaplo> ["Damn right I am?"]
[12:21] <Yanmei> "I can trust Eevi to handle one. But what are you going to do if you lose control of it and it burns you? Or burns someone else?"
[12:22] <Minaplo> ["That's just part of the fun." Said Asuka.]
[12:26] * Yanmei gave her a long, stern look.
[12:28] <Minaplo> ["Whaaaaat?" Asuka huffed. "I'll get Remy to smack it out of 'em first or whatever, alright? Geez, like fire is such a big deal."]
[12:32] <Yanmei> "It's totally a big deal! And there another complication that makes it hard on me in particular."
[12:33] <Minaplo> ["What?"]
[12:36] <Yanmei> "Lizzie's going to look around at one point and see everyone getting cute little lion pets, and she's going to want one too! Never mind the perfectly fine lion we've -already- adopted. She wants the sort that'll breathe fire."
[12:38] <Minaplo> ["Good!"-
[12:39] <Minaplo> ["It's not good." Said Henriette. "Eevi is tough, and you can handle it, but Lizzie's only a little baby."]
[12:41] <Yanmei> "That's right! And the remaining cubs are both more aggressive than the one we left with Eevi. They'll definitely claw, bite and burn her."
[12:43] <Minaplo> ["Then just tell the brat to be happy with the cub she's got."]
[12:44] <Yanmei> "I plan to? But… dammit, it won't be easy."
[12:45] <Minaplo> ["Waaaaah."]
[12:45] <Yanmei> "Shut up." Yanmei pouted.
[12:46] <Minaplo> ["Nope." Said Asuka. "Anyway, now that that's done… Where should we go now?"]
[08:24] <Yanmei> "Food!" Yanmei declared firmly. "Let's hope the President has chosen well?"
[08:27] <Minaplo> ["Yeah, let's hope." Said Asuka dully.-
[08:29] <Minaplo> [Food was being served in the officer's mess, which didn't look anywhere near as cool as the Dorian's basic cafeteria, but it was functional and, more importantly, empty.-
[08:39] <Minaplo> [MREs had been prepared, the cleanest and most palatable chosen for Yanmei's big day. As she sat down, she'd notice her meal already heated and prepared: Asian beef strips in a non-messy marinade.-
[08:39] <Minaplo> [Marianne took the seat to Yanmei's right, Minerva to the left.]
[08:46] <Yanmei> Suddenly, the reason behind Asuka's lack of enthusiasm was clear to Yanmei… they were MREs and not the whale fare she had been spoiled on for the past few days. Still, she sat down with a grateful smile and took a bite of the beef strips.
[08:53] <Minaplo> [They were…-
[08:53] <Minaplo> […-
[08:53] <Minaplo> ["So, you feeling nervous yet?" Asked Asuka from across the table.]
[08:55] * Yanmei winced. Not from the question, but from the taste and also the texture. She swallowed as quickly as she could, with minimal chewing, and let out a loud laugh. "Me? Nervous? Never!"
[08:55] <Minaplo> ["So you were just tossing and turning last night for fun, huh~?"]
[08:56] <Yanmei> "Maybe? Don't tell me you were awake…"
[09:02] <Minaplo> ["I totally was." Said Asuka. "Someone had to keep guard, you know."]
[09:06] <Yanmei> "Keep guard for what? You didn't think I'd sneak out somewhere, did you?"
[09:14] <Minaplo> ["Of course I did." Said Asuka. "Isn't that basically how it goes? The young bride, tossing and turning, cold in her lonely, empty bed, sneaks out during the small hours to find her lover and commit a slew of indecent, immoral acts…"-
[09:15] <Minaplo> [Henriette reddened, whilst Rei glanced away sheepishly.]
[09:17] * Yanmei rolled her eyes. "Go's romance novel habits must be rubbing off on you? Right, Rei~?"
[09:22] <Minaplo> ["Huh?!" Rei's gaze snapped back towards Yanmei in an instant. "I don't know what you mean…"]
[09:29] * Yanmei tried very hard not to smirk or otherwise give herself away. "Go's stories. You've read some of them, right?"
[09:30] <Minaplo> ["Um, why would I- I mean…"]
[09:32] <Yanmei> "It's just that you're super romantic yourself sometimes? Exchanging lovey dovey looks with Alphonse all the time~"
[09:35] <Minaplo> ["Um…" Rei blushed, and occupied response time by popping a clump of MRE noodles and chicken into her mouth with sudden gusto.-
[09:35] <Minaplo> ["Oh, don't even get me started." Began Chiisana. "You should try living with Go the way she is now. Sleeping opposite that Ansgar fellow, who she's clearly taken with…"-
[09:36] <Minaplo> ["But enough about Lanfen." Interjected Ju.-
[09:36] <Minaplo> ["Ohh, you bitch." Snapped Lanfen.-
[09:36] <Minaplo> ["But you were nervous, right?" Asked Asuka seriously, focusing back on Yanmei.]
[09:38] <Yanmei> "Assassins or whatever aside, there's logically nothing to be nervous about? It's -Isaiah-."
[09:39] <Minaplo> ["Yeah, that's what I was thikning." Said Asuka. "Which is why it's so curious that you're nervous. Didn't you already marry weirdo-mind-trip Isaiah anyway?"]
[09:44] <Yanmei> "I never said I was nervous, and yes I did. There was champagne and a chocolate fountain and all the cake you could eat… and you, Asuka, threw a massive bachelorette party for me and got super drunk during it somehow."
[09:45] <Minaplo> ["Damn right I did." Said Asuka smugly. "That sounds like the sort of awesome thing I'd do."-
[09:46] <Minaplo> ["But still though, why're you nervous?"]
[09:48] <Yanmei> "I'm not! And even if I was, I don't know! It's normal, right? This is a big decision, even if I'm sure it'll turn out well?"
[09:48] <Minaplo> ["To me it seems like you have lots of reasons to be nervous." Said Minerva gently.]
[09:50] <Yanmei> "Is that so?"
[09:59] <Minaplo> ["Of course. First and foremost, this is an important day. You're getting married, and this is a once in a lifetime event, especially because this is the love of your life spiritually." Said Minerva. "So you want the day to be the absolute best. You want it to run smoothly, but you know that events like this can go wrong. What if the food is bad and someone falls sick? What if a couple
[09:59] <Minaplo> begin feuding openly during the ceremony? What if someone becomes drunk and begins spewing all sorts of embarrassing stories? What if your dress comes undone in front of everyone? What if the rings went missing?"-
[10:00] <Minaplo> ["Secondly, you're centre stage, so everyone is going to be watching you, so you're hyper-sensitive about everything. They'll be judging your outfit, your conduct, your vows, your food, the way you speak, the shoes you wear, the way you look, who you speak to…"-
[10:01] <Minaplo> ["And thirdly there's the fact that if you mess up it'll make you look like you've sucked up limited resources to fritter on your own desires in front of the entire population of New Paris, triggering a huge riot." Said Minerva.]
[10:05] <Yanmei> "It's not like everyone hasn't already been judging me for years?" Yanmei muttered. "That last one is the real worry, though? I mean, we're on our way out of Mars. I wouldn't be doing this if we weren't, just because of those types of reactions."
[10:06] <Minaplo> ["Right. Still, it's perfectly natural to be nervous, so don't sweat it." Said Minerva with a friendly smile.]
[10:08] * Yanmei started to toss her hair, but stopped because of not wanting to disturb her perfect hairstyle. "I know. It'll be fine."
[10:08] <Minaplo> ["Of course it will~"-
[10:08] <Minaplo> ["Still, though, getting married so soon." Murmured Lanfen. "I had no idea. It seems strange."-
[10:09] <Minaplo> [Marianne placed a hand supportively on Yanmei's shoulder. "How does it feel, sweetheart? The idea of being married so young?"]
[10:12] <Yanmei> "Heh. It's… actually been a while since I felt 'young', you know? I had to assure my mom and some other people, but I don't know if it's an issue outside of that."
[10:13] <Minaplo> ["Well, I guess, but from our perspective, you're the first person here to get married." Said Asuka.]
[10:18] <Yanmei> "True." Yanmei puffed up. "I'm a total trailblazer, then~ As usual. Think of me as someone to look up to and to get advice from."
[10:18] <Minaplo> ["Advice!" Asuka snorted.-
[10:18] <Minaplo> ["Alright, then, oh glorious leader. What advice do you have for the lovely women here regarding their own love lives? Should we all follow your example? Turn this into a group wedding?"-
[10:18] <Minaplo> [Rei choked on her noodles.]
[10:23] * Yanmei snorted with amausement. "Don't worry Rei. My advice it to wait until we're back on Earth first, so that you can have sweets at the reception? Also more planning time. Fontaine, Wellesley and Nine Lives probably aren't thinking about it just yet, right?"
[10:24] <Minaplo> [Lanfen slowly lifted her head to glare at Yanmei. Ju snorted.-
[10:24] <Minaplo> ["Aren't they?" Asked Minerva. "If your Isaiah is, then what's stopping the others? And if I know Wellesley, he likes to keep his ducks in a row early on."]
[10:33] <Yanmei> "I think things are relatively more stable for them now than they are for Isaiah?" she said slowly and delicately. "And this hasn't been something they've been pining for for a long time, right? This whole starting a family thing…"
[10:38] <Minaplo> [Marianne snorted.-
[10:39] <Minaplo> ["Putting it like that sounds like you're not entirely sold on the idea." Said Chiisana.]
[10:55] <Yanmei> "It's a non-issue? I've promised my mom to, ah… not do the whole baby thing for a few more years? But I think the point is that when people say the wedding's just a formality with Isaiah and me, they're probably right. We moved in together and raised a Lizzie. It already feels like we've been doing this partnership family thing as part of our daily lives, so why not make it official?"
[10:55] <Minaplo> ["That's true." Said Marianne.-
[10:56] <Minaplo> ["So you don't think the other romantically engaged ladies here are as ready?" Asked Chii.]
[10:57] <Yanmei> "Maybe not? I can't make an accurate call on it."
[10:58] <Minaplo> ["Interesting. What would you say to Rei, then?"-
[10:58] <Minaplo> [Rei glanced around nervously.]
[11:02] <Yanmei> "Hmmm." Yanmei pointed a fork at her. "It's a comfort thing. You can't rush it? Just take your time and keep on smooching and talk to him when you think you're ready for a biggest commitment. Same goes for you." she turned her fork in Asuka's direction. "It's not groundbreaking, I know, but it's truth."
[11:08] <Minaplo> [Rei nodded seriously, but Asuka snorted. "Man, that sounds familiar…"]
[11:12] <Yanmei> "What do you mean?"
[11:12] <Minaplo> ["That's the sort of crap Alex keeps saying? Usually in combo with 'We should think about the future'…"]
[11:15] <Yanmei> "Ohhh~~~~?"
[11:18] <Minaplo> ["W-what?"]
[11:19] <Yanmei> "You've been talking about the future after all~"
[11:19] <Minaplo> ["Of course we have. He insists on it."]
[11:23] <Yanmei> "He may be a Jerkface, but he's definitely level-headed."
[11:25] <Minaplo> ["You say that, but… I dunno." Asuka grumbled. "He wants kids."]
[11:34] * Yanmei started laughing quietly.
[11:36] <Minaplo> ["What?!"]
[11:41] <Yanmei> "N-nothing." She wiped away a tear. "Maybe he's more like Isaiah than I thought? But listen. You're going to be a great but terrifying mom, but absolutely don't do it until you're ready for it. Jerkface will have to wait and deal, and he probably realizes that."
[11:42] <Minaplo> ["Wait, why are you talking about it like it's an inevitability? I don't even want kids!"-
[11:42] <Minaplo> ["Uh oh." Said Minerva with a small grin.]
[11:43] <Yanmei> "But… what about Lizzie? She was totally going to marry one of yours."
[11:44] <Minaplo> ["What."]
[11:47] <Yanmei> "Yes. It'll start out super cute? As little kids they'll hate each other, but they'll drift apart after me and Isaiah take Lizzie world-hopping and then reunite after college and fall in love~"
[11:48] <Minaplo> ["Eeee! That's so cute!" Said Rei, her eyes shining.-
[11:49] <Minaplo> ["Oh my God. I am not going to breed just so you can live out your weird bizarro life fantasy." Said Asuka, sounding horrified. "Nevermind that Lizzie's like three years old already, so for that to work I'd need to have a baby in like two years, tops, and that's not going to happen. Get Rei to do it."-
[11:49] <Minaplo> ["But…" Rei frowned.]
[11:59] <Yanmei> "It's not -my- fantasy? It was the Angel Raphael's. And just don't sweat the baby thing if you feel that strongly about it. Just tell him you'd never do it, fight, and then work through it."
[12:00] <Minaplo> ["Work through it towards what…?"]
[12:00] <Yanmei> "A happy, childless existance with each other?"
[12:01] <Minaplo> ["Hm. Well, that works." Said Asuka, nodding slowly.-
[12:01] <Minaplo> ["But if Alex feels really strongly about it…" Murmured Rei.]
[12:08] <Yanmei> "Then they'll fight a lot before they reach an understanding. The important part is being honest during this."
[12:09] <Minaplo> ["That seems fair enough." Muttered Asuka.-
[12:09] <Minaplo> ["Wow, Ju. All this time and all you needed to do to sort out your love issues was speak to the guru herself." Said Lanfen.-
[12:09] <Minaplo> ["Oh, shut up."]
[12:14] <Yanmei> "Well," Yanmei leaned back in her chair smugly. "I wouldn't call myself a guru, but…~"
[12:19] <Minaplo> ["Well, since you're so good at it, tell you what." Said Asuka.]
[12:20] <Yanmei> "Hm?"
[12:20] <Minaplo> ["You can have my share of kids, and see how you go." Said Asuka with a smug grin.]
[12:27] * Yanmei glared and primly scarfed down another mouthful of terrible MRE. "One is plenty."
[12:34] <Minaplo> ["By that you mean one plus Lizzie, right?" Said Rei.]
[12:35] <Yanmei> "Probably. Ten years from now."
[12:37] <Minaplo> ["Let's hope for twins~" Said Rei gleefully then as she worked on finishing off her noodles.]
[12:41] * Yanmei sighed. How could she guess that Rei would be looking forward to it? In the meantime she took another look at the clock. It wouldn't be long now…
*
[07:59] <@Minaplo> [After their breakfast, the bridal party spent some time fussing about, making sure the maids' outfits were as good as possible, before finally being Jaunted over to the Dorian, about half an hour before the start of the ceremony. They were taken to a little room near the ceremony hall…-
[08:00] <@Minaplo> [… And instantly Yanmei would realise that as beautiful as the dress was, it was… Well, a wedding dress, a stylish one, but not a very warm or thick one. The instant she arrived she felt the wave of cold flowing through and around her…]
[08:29] <Yanmei> -Goddamnit-… She bundled her long white cape around herself as best as she could, at the same time trying hard to give off the air of a proud and dignified ruler. Was this part of Blue's plan…?
[08:31] <@Minaplo> [Asuka smirked smugly, wearing a much warmer outfit. "And that's why it's lucky you wore a bra." She crowed.-
[08:31] <@Minaplo> [Behind her, Ju snickered.-
[08:31] <@Minaplo> ["Not long now." Murmured Marianne, looking down at an electronic clock. "How do you feel?"]
[08:33] <Yanmei> "Like kicking certain people," Yanmei was glaring at Asuka. "Also freezing and there are stomach butterfies, but don't tell anyone, ok?"
[08:33] <@Minaplo> ["We won't." Said Marianne. "That's what we're here for- for you to let it all out."]
[08:37] * Yanmei nodded quickly and a little shakily. "I'm ok. I'm… I'm ok. Are there a lot of people out there already? Mazarin should be arriving any second if he hasn't already. Isaiah's group knows when they're supposed to be there, right?"
[08:47] <@Minaplo> ["Hall's packed, Mazarin's ready, and the men are all prepared." Said Minerva calmly. "They look good, too~"]
[08:47] <Yanmei> "Of course they would. The only one I was actually worried about in terms of looks was Fontaine, because he always looks like a dumbface."
[08:51] <@Minaplo> ["What?" Snorted Asuka derisively. "Alex always looks good. He didn't need an Angel to make him passable."]
[08:51] <Yanmei> "Hey! What are you implying?!"
[08:54] <@Minaplo> ["That Isaiah was so plain it took an Angel reshaping reality just to make him like, a six out of ten." Said Asuka smugly. "Although, y'know, maybe I'm being harsh? He looked pretty good on the entry plug feeds right after that…"-
[08:54] <@Minaplo> [Rei and Lanfen were peering over at Asuka and Yanmei curiously.]
[08:58] <Yanmei> "Well, considering that you think Fontaine always looks good, I'd say your rating scale is broken." Yanmei tossed her hair. "Also, what exactly were you looking at on that feed? You're such a perv."
[08:59] <@Minaplo> ["Like I had a choice! That window opened and all we saw was bare naked flesh everywhere!"-
[08:59] <@Minaplo> [Ju's eyebrows rose most curiously.-
[09:01] <@Minaplo> ["All the fun things happen when my unit's damaged." Said Chiisana, glowering, rubbing her chin.-
[09:02] <@Minaplo> ["You should try being in my unit sometime." Muttered Rei.-
[09:02] <@Minaplo> ["Don't worry, you didn't miss out on that much." Said Asuka with a grin.]
[09:08] <Yanmei> "Yes you did?" Yanmei's face was reddening with indignity. "But she is also -exaggerating-. Shut up, Asuka!"
[09:08] <Yanmei> ^indignation
[09:14] <@Minaplo> ["Yes, shut up, Asuka." Said Marianne primly.-
[09:14] <@Minaplo> ["Thbbbbbt." Asuka poked her tongue out at both of them.-
[09:14] <@Minaplo> ["So childish." Said Henriette huffily.-
[09:15] <@Minaplo> ["Shut it, kid. There's nothing more childish than a child pretending to not be a child!"-
[09:15] <@Minaplo> [Minerva returned from another scouting mission. "It really is packed out there, though. Like sardines!"]
[09:18] <Yanmei> "Maybe we should have picked a bigger place?" Yanmei folded her arms. "But then, I don't think there -is- anywhere bigger."
[09:21] <@Minaplo> ["Nowhere fitting that we can use." Said Marianne. "The Eva hangar, maybe, but who wants to get married in a hangar?"]
[09:30] <Yanmei> "I know, right? And suppose one of the units unexpectedly berserked or something while we were doing that? Like, just to screw with us?"
[09:43] <@Minaplo> ["It could still do that anyway." Said Asuka with a smirk.]
[09:44] <Yanmei> "That's true…" Her face darkened as she added this promptly to her growing list of worries.
[09:50] <@Minaplo> ["Tch. She has enough to worry about, Asuka-san." Said Rei, her tone hard. "Look, Meimei, it's okay to be nervous, and think of how the room is packed because these people want to see you at your best! And if you're cold, think about how nice it'll feel to be near Zaizai again."]
[09:54] <Yanmei> "I-I know that. Well, except the part about Isaiah, which is… But I'm not even nervous!"
[09:54] <@Minaplo> ["Which is what?" Pressed Asuka.-
[09:55] <@Minaplo> ["That's the attitude, Yanmei." Said Marianne, putting her hands on Yanmei's shoulders supportively. "Only twenty minutes now."]
[09:58] <Yanmei> "Right!" She gave Marianne a little pat on the hand and stood up, swishing her cape out dramatically. Not much time. "I'm already ready for battle, so let's hurry up and do this!"
[09:59] <@Minaplo> ["You wanna go now…?"]
[10:00] <Yanmei> "Well." A pause. "I'm just saying I'm ready? If we went right this minute, it would throw the entire schedule off? And that would make an imperfect wedding ceremony."
[10:02] <@Minaplo> ["Hurry up and wait." Said Asuka with a smirk.]
[10:03] * Yanmei glared at her. Asuka was clearly having entirely too much fun with all of this.
[10:08] <@Minaplo> ["Could be worse." Said Asuka.]
[10:08] * Suzune (moc.rr.ser.yabapmat.551cfh1322356|enuzuS#moc.rr.ser.yabapmat.551cfh1322356|enuzuS) Quit (Quit: )
[10:12] <Yanmei> "Well, of course it could! An enemy could be attacking or Isaiah could be in the midst of a heart attack, or the wedding officiant could have absconded with my mother… there are a million other ways that it could be worse."
[10:13] <@Minaplo> ["Wait, what?" Asked Henriette. "What do you mean-"-
[10:13] <@Minaplo> ["No, I've thought of something that's even worse." Said Asuka darkly.]
[10:15] <Yanmei> "How so?" asked Yanmei, ignoring Henriette's questions.
[10:16] <@Minaplo> ["You could be Isaiah, watching the minutes tick by as he waits to marry you." Whispered Asuka, with the air of a prophet soothsaying the apocalypse. "Realising he can't escape, the clock ticking closer to damnation… Tick tick tick…"]
[10:24] <Yanmei> "Grrr…!" Yanmei made a move as if to hit her, and then remembered that she was in a wedding dress and haughtily aborted it. "Hmph. Like marrying me isn't the best thing to happen to anyone ever? You're just jealous that it's Isaiah instead of you."
[10:33] <@Minaplo> ["Me, marry you? Please. Alex would look better in that dress than you do."]
[10:43] <Yanmei> "That Jerkface?! How dare you!"
[10:45] <@Minaplo> ["It's true?" Crowed Asuka. "In fact, are you sure that dress wasn't delivered to you by accident? Because I mean, there's some similarities. You're both sort of the same height, you both have somewhat similar builds, you both have the same cup size…"-
[10:45] <@Minaplo> [Behind her, Ju and Lanfen were bent over, laughing silently. Minerva was shaking her head, smiling only a little, whilst Chiisana was watching the entire thing in dignified silence.]
[10:56] * Yanmei glared sullenly at all of them! "Well, maybe you'd like to see dumb Jerkface get married instead today. Fine! Maybe I'll quit."
[10:59] <@Minaplo> ["Meimei, no!" Said Rei instantly. "Don't-"-
[10:59] <@Minaplo> ["… Wait." Asuka frowned. "Did you just suggest marrying Alex to Isaiah?"-
[10:59] <@Minaplo> [Asuka's eye widened. "Oh my god. You're one of those."]
[11:04] <Yanmei> "Those what?" Yanmei's eyes narrowed dangerously. "No, I'm not a voyeur? Who do you take me for? James?"
[11:05] <@Minaplo> ["Are you saying you're not a rotten girl who dreams of sexy boy pairings?"]
[11:06] <Yanmei> "You're weird for even thinking that?" Yanmei scoffed and flipped her hair. "Isn't it showtime yet?"
[11:08] <@Minaplo> [Marianne looked over at the clock. "Another fifteen minutes…"-
[11:09] <@Minaplo> [… Those fifteen minutes would either be the longest or shortest minutes of Yanmei's life. Maybe even both.-
[11:09] <@Minaplo> [But eventually Yanmei would ask again, and Minerva would nod.-
[11:09] <@Minaplo> ["It's time to go."]
[11:11] <Yanmei> "Right." Yanmei stood again, swishing her cape just as dramatically as she had before and took the first strides for the door.

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