Description: Mai and Makoto have a chance meeting to talk about the KoF.
Mai has her work cut out for her. It's almost time for the King of Fighters - the most important tournament - but she isn't sure who all to invite for her team. She already approached her friend King and got a strong Maybe.... so that's one.
But what next? There were so many beautiful, strong, talented women out there. And some of them have already sent Mai some glossies. She had to figure out the way to balance the team and not hurt anyone's feelings too.
This was a job that called for cakes, so she sat down at the Pao Pao cafe and ordered just dessert, her favorite sweet rice cakes. She likes cake way more than she likes looking at paperwork though, so she's already distracted looking out the window and digging in. There's a folder of important work in front of her open on the table with lots of girl pictures... it's like she's trying to audition models.
Makoto Nanaya, ex-NOL member, street fighter and occasional connoisseur of fine or at least delicious food, does not yet have any cakes.
She may be intending to fix that.
Whether that's her ultimate plan or not, Makoto enters the Pao Pao Cafe. She's wearing what may be a casual outfit for her; an orange and black shirt or jacket that is zipped up to her chin but falls open over her stomach, along with her favourite orange skirt, high socks, and boots. It has a half-circle cutout for her tail's base, so she didn't just grab it at random.
Makoto gets halfway to an unoccupied table before something - someone! - catches her eye, and just like that she's over at Mai's. Someone she was hoping to see, too. "Oh, hey! I never did get you that drink... oh, what are you doing?" She's eyeballing some of the photographs, upside down or sideways from her angle, standing next to the table instead of sitting at it.
"Hello! I'm having red bean cake!" Mai says. The most important part. She recognizes Makoto of course - it's hard to miss that tail.
She picks her tea up, sips from it, and THEN mentions the other, perhaps more important thing. "And trying to put together a team for the King of Fighters! It's hard, so many options! But I always want Women's Team to represent the best! So I'm looking at talented women..."
Makoto stops, resting her hands on the table and leaning forward slightly so she can look down at Mai and her photos.
And then - without asking! - Makoto slides into a seat across from Mai. It takes her a couple tries and she ends up with her tail bundled next to her. Booths are not great for her.
"Oh really," Makoto says, brightly. "I was kind of hoping to see you again, so I hope you don't mind me sitting here! Women's team, huh? That's great!" Makoto means it. She squints at a couple photographs, still upside down. "Some of those women look really, uh, talented."
Makoto is trying to tell if this will make her job easier or harder. She can't decide.
"Yup!" It's not that Mai is screening for bust size exactly. But it does seem to be a factor in her descion-making for some reason. This pun will continue, until it's been run further ito the ground, because the anime gods demand it.
She pulls a few pictures out of her folder and looks at them, flipping through. Then she looks up again. She is not making eye contact. "You're a pretty talented fighter yourself!" Pause. "I enjoyed our matchup, anyway. Are you thinking about joining the tournament too?"
Makoto takes advantage of not having her eyes met to steal one of the bean cakes, because she is hungry and she hasn't had a chance to order yet. Plus, she should probably not look at the photos too long.
It's all right, she figures. She'll buy Mai another one afterwards.
There have been occasional joking suggestions that Makoto is actually part chipmunk and not part squirrel, because when she shoves basically the entire bean cake in her mouth and chews on it for several moments it makes her cheeks totally round until she swallows it. "Those are pretty good," she says, with a grin.
"Actually, yeah! I was going to join if I could. Buuut..." Makoto considers how much she can get away with telling Mai. She settles for a highly abridged version of the truth: "I kind of don't have a job right now and a few of my friends are still, uh, employed, and will probably do a company team. Which I can't join. So I don't have a team."
"Why, you interested?" Makoto arches her eyebrows. "Because I would be!"
Mai laughs. "Hey!" But she's not really mad, or she's look more angry about it. "No, that's fine, help yourself. I should be watching my figure anyway. But they're really good, right?"
Makoto asks about teaming, and Mai sits up a bit straighter. Ah, official business! "You seem to meet the initial qualifications."
She leans forward, putting her hand under her chin, and elaborates. "I mean you're a good fighter and you have a cute look! I think the crowd would like you. Do you have a glossy or a resumee?"
Makoto is personally glad that Mai didn't ask more about the whole employment thing. She does *not* want to go into details. Fortunately, she had lies prepared, but that's always a second choice anyway.
But a resume? "Uh, not really," Makoto says. "I mean..." Makoto doesn't have many glossies of herself anywhere, but - "Actually, hold on, how about I show you on my phone?"
Makoto digs out, from one expansive pocket, a slightly battered phone, which she proceeds to quickly thumb through. "Here!" And, indeed, Mai can see that Makoto...
...placed highly in a competition at a water park a while ago. There are some photos. Admittedly, she looks kind of bedraggled in at least one of them, because that tail doesn't handle being drenched very gracefully. But hey, score otherwise. There's a photo set of her fighting with Sakura in the gift shop, which is the set she's elected to pull up.
Mai was gracious enough not to ask because she... thinks she understands, at least. There's been a few times when she was short on sponsorships at any rate. But even with her current work the KoF purse is awfully tempting!
Her eyes light up when she has some more photos to look at. "...Oo, swimsuit competition..."
She pulls up the combat with Sakura photo, too. "Was that girl good too? I like this action shot."
"Thanks!" There's a few of those. Admittedly one is of Makoto being thrown into a display and having it fall on her, but this is just a thing that happens when you're fighting in close quarters. "And of course it was swimsuits, they wanted to demo that kind of thing."
Makoto considers. "Sakura? She's pretty good," she decides. "It was a while ago... she's got, ah, some of the Ryu style? With the uppercuts and the energy balls." She mimes a hadouken, not very well. "I mean, he's better, of course - I don't think I'm *that* good, and I beat Sakura! But she's not bad at all."
"Oh, great! Maybe I'll watch the replay and see your performance. Then I can make a decision. I don't think she quite has the attributes I'm looking for-" Mai says, nodding at the phone, "But you'd be a shoo-in, you bring something new!"
"Yeah, I'm not sure she'd be quite so qualified..." Makoto debates stealing another bean cake, decides Mai basically gave her permission, and does so, though she doesn't jam the entire thing in her face this time, so that's a plus.
Instead, she gestures with it. "I think you should. It was a pretty good fight! I did pretty well in general in that, so it should be okay. I've got some SNF replays too... Check the one of me against Rainbow Mika." That was a good one, Makoto thinks.
"Man, I'm glad you're interested. I wasn't sure I'd have a team chance at all!" NOW Makoto takes a bite out of the bean cake.
"Hm. I do have a lot of applications to consider..." Mai says. But she does know Makoto and fought her recently, and it looks like she's beaten some tough contenders too. "But it sounds good to me... so I'll just check with a few other people and give you a call! Do you know my old friend King? You'd like her I think. I was going to ask her to step in and help out too."
"I've never met her," Makoto admits, before looking at the pictures again. "Is she in here, or do I have to wait? But that would be fine, I'm sure any friend of yours would get along."
Unless she's biased against non-humans, Makoto mentally adds, but she figures Mai would veto it if she was and she knew.
"Oh," she adds. "Do you want another cake? I mean, I could buy you one. Or a drink! Coffee?"
Mai does have a picture of King in her folder. King and Mai have very different styles, with the other woman wearing a bow tie, but she looks extremely classy and pretty tough too. "How about another tea? If you're buying, then we'll be even!"
Makoto Nanaya spends a moment considering the image of King, once she finds it (she gets distracted by a different one partway through).
"Oh! Fancy. I never had the patience to dress up like that, but I think I could pull off a suit if I wanted to, don't you? Though maybe not quite the same way." She sets the photo down after that. "All right, I'll buy! I could use something to drink myself."
Mai raises her tea cup, and says, "Cheers to a good tournament then!" and she finishes it with a drain.
"Ready for another."
Log created on 19:49:18 05/13/2019 by Mai, and last modified on 22:28:09 05/13/2019.