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Taken by Surprise

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Misaki could barely walk. Rehearsals with HaroHapi were always exhausting and she often wondered how she even managed to survive in Michelle's costume while Kokoro and Hagumi spent their time running after her and jumping on her. Today had been no exception and she felt like they had been even worse than usual.

She stopped in front of a vending machine and dug her hands in her pockets looking for some coins to use. She winced when she realised she didn't have a single one to buy a drink.

She heard footsteps behind her and wondered if Kokoro had followed her there to torture her until she'd probably die from exhaustion.

"Do you have any change?" she asked without turning around.

Two hands appeared on the machine, on either side of her head. Misaki froze, realising that it wasn't the hyperactive blonde behind her.

"For you, kitten, I'll get all the gold in the world."

Misaki froze. She didn't dare move, hoping deep down that Kaoru would think she was a statue and forget she was there. She knew Kaoru was stupid, after all (but maybe not that stupid, she thought).

She took a deep breath and hoped her voice wouldn't waver too much.

Please, please, just don't stutter.

"I just need 100 yen."

Kaoru didn't move for a few seconds. Then she withdrew her hands and Misaki heard her searching through her bag to see if she had any coins left.

Misaki, still facing the vending machine, could feel herself blushing and was afraid that Kaoru could hear her heart beating with how loud it was.

She'd thought she was immune to Kaoru's charm since she'd spent months with her on a regular basis, but she had to admit she could still surprise her even after all this time.