1137/But I DID win!

From Radiant Heart MUSH

But I DID win!
Date of Scene: 19 February 2024
Location: Dorms #2
Synopsis: Hinoiri finally beat Haruka! It only cost her... almost everything. Fortunately, Mamoru is around to help take the edge off. And then it's off to the infirmary for... less owies.
Cast of Characters: Hinoiri Kirara, Haruka Tenoh, Mamoru Chiba

Hinoiri Kirara has posed:
Hinoiri Kirara had... no regrets. She had bruises. She had a limp. She had a... heavily damaged bike. She was covered in mud and had a twin in her hair. She had a competitive streak that was more of a scar. She had tried to walk back to school, only to barely make it a few steps and was now being supported by Haruka and was on her way to the nurse's office...

But you know what else she had? She had a VICTORY! Over HARUKA! Yes, she'd... gotten hurt in the process. And it'd take weeks to fix it. But Obsidian paid well. And victory? Victory tasted sweet.

... Actually, okay. She had many, many regrets. Maybe she'd wanted that win a little... too much.

NO! VICTORY AT ANY COST! She was disposable but this victory? It would last forever.

On the upside, while she was... limping... a lot... and every so often she hissed in pain... she uhhhh... she wasn't complaining. She knew full well WHO'S fault this was.

Hers. Entirely hers.


Haruka Tenoh has posed:
    If you ask Haruka, there's a limit. If you cross the finish line but destroy yourself and your vehicle, you might have won but that's not really something you can keep doing on the regular. Better to figure out how to win consistently and controlled than win once in a glorious detonation of pain and destruction.

    But that's if you ask Haruka, not if you ask Hinoiri. Clearly.

    She was able to kind of walk with Haruka giving her someone to lean on and support her. But the girl still looked like she'd lost a fight with a bunch of ninja armed with weed whackers. "Fine, you can hobble there, but I'm taking you to see a friend of mine." Well, friend of her friend. Well, friend of her Princess. Well, boyfriend of her prin- you know what, friend works, she thinks to herself.

    "... since you're aware of magic..." Haruka said, sighing "...I can at least see if we can get you fixed up faster than... it really should take. I don't know how you're still walking right now. Raw determination and adrenaline?"

Mamoru Chiba has posed:
Funnily enough, that friend is also on his way to the nurse's office-- he's carrying a thumb drive on a lanyard which he's swinging around, as cheerfully as a lifeguard with a whistle and keys.

Mamoru's wearing a pink long-sleeved graphic tee under his leather jacket, jeans, his dress shoes, his glasses... the t-shirt has a black-and-white drawing of a girl in a UNMASK aLIVE baseball cap on it.

He slows down when he sees Hinoiri and Haruka, then stops when he registers the fact that Hinoiri looks like an uprooted mangrove and is walking like she's listing to port with her sails in rags.

"Hey uhh--" he starts as he absolutely yes approaches because wow, "--would you object to feeling less like you look?"

That did not come out the right way.

Hinoiri Kirara has posed:
Hinoiri Kirara nodded. "Y-yeah. A lot of the first, quite a bit of the second. I'm admittedly a little scared of what's going to happen once the adrenaline dies down and I stop moving but hopefully by then I'll be with a medical professional. Either way, though! I won! Woo! Victory has never tasted so sweet!" Yes. Yes it had. Many times. But you see, the more hyper and energetic she behaved, hopefully the longer the adrenaline would stick inside her and she'd be spared the full effects of her poor decisions. "I did make it, though. And you have to admit I looked pretty awesome." Yes, but the difference was when a person in the movies did one of those kinds of stunts they were often on pulleys and landed on a padded bed, possibly with a stunt double. SHE was a teenage girl who weighed like a hundred pounds and didn't have magic. She had a lot of talent, but THAT WAS DUMB. And when Haruka Tenoh thinks something is reckless and/or too dangerous it wasn't SOMETHING ANYONE DID! Frankly she was lucky to be alive and that all of her bones and limbs were still pointing in the right direction.

However, the comment from Mamoru made her glance up. "Hm? Oh! Hey, Mamoru-san! Haven't seen you in a while. You're still Usagi-chan's beau, right?" That's right. She knew like. One french word. "... You mentioned being able to help with that, right? Cause uhhh... yeah. I... really hope nobody has to ever feel like I do right now." Pause. "I did win though. I had to race her for weeks, modifying my bike over and over, learning how to cut every possible corner, the most precise angles to turn, how to keep maximum speed with minimal drift and even then I had to improvise but I FINALLY managed to achieve that well earned victory over Haruka Tenoh!" ... Well... it was... earned... at least. And her eyes were *glimmering* when she said it.

"... There were some, ahem, consequences to my improvisational tactics, however. I technically should have hit the brakes before I crossed the finish line, but I couldn't risk her catching me and... that's why my bike is in the shop." Pause. "I looked a lot worse earlier, but well... a lot of the muck and stuff fell off as we were limping so please if you can help with some of this I think I can only keep the adrenaline high going for so long so go ahead please now thank you yes!"

Haruka Tenoh has posed:
    Haruka just... sighs. She sighs the biggest, most quasi aggrivated, somewhat put upon, exhausted sigh. Mamoru may recognize it from dealing with his own brothers (pick one). "And with that, she's ensured that she will have won the last race we ever do together, because you, Hinoiri Kirara, are too dangerous to race me, and that is pretty damn impressive but I do not want a peice of Tokyo to be known as 'dead girl's curve' so... yeah." she says.

    "Honestly I was tempted to hobble you around in a circle until the pain came back because pain is supposed to teach you not to do certain things but I'm just not that mean." she admits.

Mamoru Chiba has posed:
Mamoru definitely recognises that sigh, and can't decide whether he wants to commiserate or laugh. He settles on a look that's commiserating but in a bright-eyed and slightly sparkly way. He is amused. "I could come back later, sometimes I'm that mean," he suggests cheerily, but...

...he's probably lying, or at least just teasing, because he immediately reaches for Hinoiri's dirty, ripped-up hand. "You'll definitely still want to go to the nurse's office," he says, already distracted, and there's already a dim golden glow, hidden from the outside simply by virtue of the three of them blocking it from view.

There's also already no pain, but it's clearly an anaesthetic effect of some kind for while Mamoru's working. "You have sprains in places you shouldn't be able to sprain, for crying out loud. I can take care of them, but I'm not fixing all the abrasions..."

He's looking at her hand, but it's really obvious he's not actually seeing it. His eyes are unfocused. All the while, the whole time he's talking, there's this-- emotional load behind it--

The golden glow, the anaesthetic effect, it's warm. It's warm and calm and quiet, like a gold-and-green meadow in late summer near the end of the day, the sound of cicadas in the treeline and crickets in the field, the hum of small life above the thrum of the life of the planet. It's the glowing window in a snow-covered cabin in the woods in the dead of winter's night with the world all muffled, it's the song of electricity on the traintracks after the first snow. It's the living blood of cities and mountains, and it's home, it's home...

It's Mamoru's voice, calm and clear and just inoffensive background noise. "They need to get washed out first, and you definitely need to get tweezers taken to some of that road rash you're rocking under the mud. If I heal them over, you'll have lumpy skin with extra germs."

Hinoiri Kirara has posed:
Hinoiri Kirara perked up a little, though she managed to at least look a little embarrassed. "Yeah... but... I did win. I probably deserved that wipeout in the end, though." At least she admitted it. "I just... hate to lose, heh. Thanks for not doing that, though."

"Wait, no, don't leave healy healing man! Listen, if I was magic like you lot I'd just race while magic, but us mere mortals gotta do what we can."

However, then he had her hand. "Oh... that's nice..." she mumbled softly. No pain = very good right now.

And then the warmth. Then the glow. And... and just like that, she was a foal again. Running through the garden, circling the great, and highly amused, sovereign of them all. Giggling, playing, tripping, getting hurt. That warm, gentle glow. The warmth of a ruler who loved her. Who cared about her.

And when he did look up at her, the look she was returning likely wasn't likely what he expected. She'd come closer, pulling off Haruka. And she was looking up at him. But it wasn't... She wasn't exactly 'tall', but she wasn't 'short' either. She was just kind of... average. Maybe a bit taller than a lot of the girls her age. But that look? If he'd ever been to a petting zoo? Maybe had one of the goats, or a pony, or a rabbit, just... look up at him? With that 'pet me/pat me' look? Or, well, possibly a child looking up to their teacher to tell them they'd done a good job...

Home. It was home. It was warm, it was light. It was...

"What?" she asked, shaking her head, breaking the spell she was under. "Yes. Right. Shower. Get... shower. Dirt, off. Wow. That's, uhhhh. W-w-wow. There's a uhhhh... tartarus of a kick there, to that. Yes. There. Wow. Uhhhh... T-thanks. Err... should... should I pay you? My, uhhh... first heal, thing. Is... is it customary to tip?" She didn't realize it, but she was doing that thing with her hands again, up near her chest, all scrunched up like hooves and nervously poking together. She hadn't done it in months.

Haruka Tenoh has posed:
    "Well, thank you very much." she says, with a little bit of a bow forward that might look over dramatic, but is actually overdone because of what she knows about this particular dude. She sorts it out after a moment though, awkward as it is, and settles on a smile. "Seriously, this girl is so driven she's going to really get herself in trouble. Well, more trouble. Than this." she says, shaking her head.

    "There's more things in life worth striving for that winning a race, especially if you've got to nearly break your neck doing it. Hard to hang a medal around a brace you know." she adds.

    "You should invest in another hobby. Something... noncompetitive. Or some other way to spend your time... romance or somethin', I don't know." Then she pauses as Hinoiri seems to... react. She leans in a little closer and is curious about everything. "You alright there, Hinoiri-san?" she asks. Then after a moment, the girl is back to... well.. something like herself.

    "I think Mamoru-san would be offended if you tipped him." She says. "On the other hand maybe I should have been tipping him all this time. What do you say?" she asks, smirking and looking at him.

Mamoru Chiba has posed:
Oh right. Right. Amy had said something about the effect of it...

"Driven right into the dirt," Mamoru agrees with Haruka. "And she has a girlfriend... is Sayaka going to make sad faces at you?" he asks Hinoiri, smiling crookedly.

Then he takes a breath that's very deliberate, very even, and with effort, not very ragged at all. He pats Hinoiri's hand and lets go the rest of the way. "Probably take that shower before the effect wears off, you're going to notice the stinging a lot more now that the sprains are gone. In fact, probably take that shower in Meiou-sensei's infirmary, honestly, in case you end up needing help. And tell her it's fine to call me again after the gravel's dealt with, if she thinks it prudent."

She might think it more prudent to let Hinoiri deal with some teaching pain, too.

Then he huffs out a little laugh, offering Haruka the thumb drive he'd been swinging around. "This is for her, by the way, she probably already has it but just in case, it's Good Omens and Good Omens 2, original English audio. And no-- no tipping," he tells them both, finally. Then he adds gently, "Just... please take better care of yourself, Hinoiri-san. Winning is important, but you're important with or without it."

Hinoiri Kirara has posed:
Hinoiri Kirara just gave a small, nervous laugh. "I-I mean, yeah. I uhhhh... r-right. Maybe... but... I guess? But what'd be the point of doing something if I'm not the best I can be?" That was... almost correct. Almost. Except the swamp that nugget of good thought was in was a swamp of crocodiles and worse things. "And it's not so bad, it'll hardly be the first time I've gotten laid up when I pushed myself a bit too... uhhhh... right. I'll be more careful."

She reached up, dusting some of the muck off and-- letting out a hiss of pain. "O-ow. Right. Yes. Rocks. Removed. G-good idea. And uhhh, no. Sayaka-san and I kind of... yeah... we're... not really together... now. I think. It was a... thing. But uhhhh..." And there it was. Guilt. She was doing the hoof thing away, looking away. "... To be honest? I... really was not the right girl for her, you know? I tried to help keep her together while she was going through some things and... I failed. It kind of... came... to a head... on valentines day and... when she... fell apart? I couldn't... really... do anything but run and call other people to try and fix... what I couldn't." Her arms hugging herself a little when she said that.

"... We're still friends and... I do care about her... but yeah. She won't be making any eyes at me. I really hope she'll be making those eyes at someone else, soon. She's a special girl. Deserves... a lot more than I think even she realizes." There was... definitely care in there. Concern. It wasn't love. At least, not romantic. But Hinoiri did care about her.

"... I should... probably get to the infirmary now, though. Before this wears off. It's going to be embarrassing enough having the nurse look me over... again... without having to ask her to help me get out of my jacket."

She, at this point, started to hobble towards the nurse's office. Still a bit off balance but... better. Still making those hooves with her hands.

... Still thinking about that warmth. And trying to tell herself to NOT think about it.

Haruka Tenoh has posed:
    Haruka grows quiet. "If you just recently called things off with Miki-san, do you think maybe that's part of why you pushed yourself so hard?" She asks. "...I mean, if so, that means we could possibly race again, since hopefully you're not breaking up with girlfriends on the reg." she says. "But if this is just how you're gonna be, how you're gonna push yourself... I'm not gonna be responsible for another crash-landing injury buffet."

    "Thanks a lot, Mamoru-san. You're a life-saver. Maybe not literally in THIS case but I bet sometime soon." she says, nodding. "Hopefully not for crash n burn over here though." she says. And then turns. "I'll make sure you get there, Hinoiri-san." Haruka says, not taking no for an answer.