The Thunder Of Teenage Feet! Tenoh-ites Attack
Michiru has always been very grown-up. As a baby she was fully-grown. Back in the Silver Millennium - or so I’m told – when Setsuna and I were playing with blocks and plastic keys, Michiru had an EZ Bake Oven and a little dinette set. When we got home from Kindergarten, we would run out to play, but Michiru would follow Queen Serenity around with a little feather duster, saying things like: ‘Oh, you silly goose!’ and ‘Do be a dear and stop trying to kiss me, Haruka!’ Who do you think made Setsuna all those care packages that made her so pudgy while she was at the Time Gates?
"SHUT IT, HARUKA!"
Geeze, sorry Sets!
Anyway, Michiru has always been infinitely sensible and mature. Perfect, says Setsuna, especially when she’s feeling not so perfect. I guess I would have to agree. Michiru was perfect in every way, and never inclined to do anything even remotely out of the ordinary.
I came bursting through the door, sweating despite the fact it was only mid spring, hair completely disheveled. My shirt had fingerprints all over it and several buttons were undone. I had lipstick marks all over my cheeks. I was a mess.
Michiru had been sitting on the living room floor, messing with Setsuna’s hair (which now brushed the nape of her neck in an even bob - yes, it had only been a couple of weeks since she cut it. It grew fast). They stopped what they were doing and looked at me curiously as I slammed the door and leaned against it. "They’re after me again!" I howled. "Nearly caught me this time!"
"Who, dear?" asked Michiru, eyeing the lipstick.
"The Tenoh-ites!" I sputtered. "This group of girls who are obsessed with me. Remember them from the Pervert Video?" Setsuna watched that movie enough so that no one could forget my recent adventure anytime soon. It was her favorite tape.
"That mad pack of girls?" Michiru was floored.
Setsuna lay on her stomach, fiddling with a loose thread in the carpet. "Why do they call themselves that? The Tenoh-ites."
I scratched my head. "Geeze, I don’t know. But they’re vicious, every one of them." "What exactly do they do besides chase you?" Michiru wanted to know. She had a very thoughtful look on her face.
I buttoned my shirt indignantly. "How would I know? I assume they must have some kind of lives."
Setsuna chewed on a stray piece of hair. "I don’t know why they’d want to chase you anyway. You’re far too ornery."
I rolled my eyes. "Thanks, kiddo."
"What they need is something useful to do with their time. Chasing you is fine for awhile, but energy needs to be spent on something beneficial." Michiru stood up and brushed off her hands, heading towards the kitchen.
I obediently stood still while Setsuna tried to wipe the lipstick off my face with her thumb. "I guess I don’t really understand why you care!"
Michiru’s head poked back out. "You’re cranky tonight. Go to your room until you can behave."
"But-!" I protested.
"Arg. I give up." I gave Setsuna an affectionate squeeze and headed off to the bedroom. As I lay there waiting until I was ready to ‘behave’, I wondered just what made Michiru so interested in the Tenoh-ites anyway. I figured Michiru was far too mature to worry about what a group of teenagers had in mind for me.
The next day, Michiru wasn’t there when I awoke. Since I didn’t have anything else to do, I decided to go the garage that always fixed my car and find out if they had any part-time work. I took Setsuna along with me and decided to make a day of it. The two of us hadn’t had lunch together in a long time and I figured it would be fun.
I drove along, breathing in the fresh spring air. "What do you say we order out and eat at the park?"
Setsuna eyed me. "Something bad always happens at the park. I still hate bees."
"I figure that was an isolated incident. I’m sure nothing will chase us this time."
I was almost right. It was still too early for bees, but the teenagers were out in full force. There seemed to be one lurking behind every tree. Setsuna was cheerful and ate well, but I was pretty paranoid. ‘Maybe the park was a bad idea. It’s downright evil, this park.’
Setsuna had just disposed of our trash when she stopped and looked around. "I hear something, Haruka. Something that sounds like shouting and thundering footsteps."
My eyes widened. "Oh, NO!"
Without hesitating for a moment, I grabbed Setsuna by the arm and started to drag her along. "Run!"
"Why?" Setsuna cried.
"They’re after me again!" Sure enough, the yells and cries belonged to about fifty girls, all of them wearing tight white t-shirts that read "Proud To Be A Tenoh-ite" on the front. Setsuna turned around, took one look, and started to really get the lead out.
We eventually passed the Inners, who were out having one of their spring picnics. They watched us run by and just shook their heads.
"There go the Outers," said Makoto.
"Humph. Must be spring," Rei observed irritably. *
"Come on, Setsuna,!" I howled. "Neptune always keeps up with me! She matches my pace exactly."
"No one cares!" Setsuna snorted.
The girls were closing in on us fast. In a last desperate effort, right before I was tackled, I grabbed Setsuna by the arm and slung her into a nearby bush to get her out of the line of fire. I went down hard under a delicate girl, who was remarkably heavy for her size. The other girls, who were a bit dumb, kept going as if I hadn’t already been captured. I figured they would realize I had fallen after awhile and come back for me, so I had to make tracks fast. But I had this girl on top of me to deal with first. But gosh, she smelled good! "Excuse me, Miss, but if you could just hop off…"
She rolled off and giggled. "I was hoping I would be the one to catch you," she panted, trying to catch her breath. "After all, I always match your pace perfectly."
"So we’ve heard," came a sarcastic reply from the bush.
I gawked at her. "But what you are doing? You’re a Tenoh-ite?"
"Absolutely. I just joined up today." She stood up and proudly showed off her white t-shirt. "I also have this way cute membership badge. See?" She held out a little plastic card with my smiling photo that read: I, Michiru Kaioh, promise my undying love and devotion to Haruka Tenoh. "If they only knew," she giggled.
"Did you say ‘way cute’?" Something was definitely wrong with this whole picture.
"The back of my T-shirt has my name on it too. See?" She turned around. It said ‘Kaioh’ in blue letters across the back. "I also purchased one of your official racing jackets."
I quirked an eyebrow. "You could just wear mine. Wouldn’t that be even more exciting to them if you showed up wearing the real Tenoh racing jacket?" I failed to see what was so cool about me, really, but I decided to go with it.
"I thought about that, but I don’t want them to get too jealous. They’re already going to be jealous enough at the great idea I’ve come up with to raise some money."
I struggled to rise. "And why are you doing this again?"
Michiru helped pull me up. "I decided to join them because A: I do promise my undying love and devotion to you, and B: They need some new ideas for things to do at their meetings. I’ve already been elected activity chairperson."
"That’s…good." I felt nervous.
Michiru looked around. "Where’s Setsuna?"
I pointed to the bush. "In there."
Michiru swatted me. "Get her out of there! I have membership stuff for her too! You get your name on a t-shirt, Suna!"
"Leave me out of this," muttered the bush.
Later that night, I sprawled on the couch to watch a movie. Michiru had headed to our room right after dinner, claiming to be quite busy. I had tried to find Setsuna to be my movie-watching buddy, but Michiru appeared to have kidnapped her for her own method of madness. That left me alone.
I really tried to focus on the movie, which was this odd Japanese thriller about evil spirals, but I was dying to know what Michiru and Setsuna were doing in the bedroom. ** This Tenoh-ite business was making me nervous. There were all sorts of bumps and thuds, like drawers being opened and shut, and I saw Michiru get out a duffle bag from the hall closet, which was just weird. I would have preferred it if they were having an affair in there. Then at least I could have demanded to be in on the action and I could have had some fun too. Ooops…did I just say that out loud?
Anyway, when I finally couldn’t stand it anymore and couldn’t concentrate on the movie for another second longer (despite how odd and rather grotesque it was), I decided to barge in and get in on the secret action.
I flung open the door and gawked at them. Michiru stopped digging through my drawers and froze, and Setsuna gave a little scream. Her lap was covered with my old boxer shorts. They both looked at me and I looked at them. "What the hell is going on in here?!" I howled.
Michiru laughed nervously while Setsuna tried to hide her head under a pair of my boxers.
I was busy watching Setsuna with the boxers and kind of wishing I had a camera when Michiru tried to explain. "It’s a fundraiser. For the Tenoh-ites."
"What do my boxers have to do with-?" I stopped. It was a dumb question. Tenoh Boxers and Tenoh-ites kind of went together like Mamoru and his green jacket.
"You never wear these ones anymore," explained Michiru. "I figured we could auction them off to the highest bidder. We’ll give the money to a charity."
"Heck no!" I argued.
She didn’t listen.
By the day of the auction, I was pretty much over the loss of my old boxers, but the embarrassment of it all still stung. Michiru had sweet talked me and we’d ended up in bed (Setsuna ran for the hills at this point), and I had promptly forgotten about the whole thing. But now that it was actually going to happen, I was really squeamish about the idea of some girl getting my old underwear. I wanted to at least be able to see who ended up with them.
"If you come along, they’ll mob you." She fluffed her hair out over the collar of her ‘Official Tenoh Racing Jacket’ that wasn’t quite as official as the one I had in my closet upstairs.
"I guess you’re right. What time is the auction?"
"It’s at three o’clock. I shouldn’t be much more than an hour or two. Then I’ll come home and make dinner."
"Okay." I suddenly got an idea. "Are you taking Setsuna with you?"
"No. She was sleeping the last I knew. I figured she wouldn’t care too much about it. She doesn’t seem to be that enthusiastic about being a Tenoh-ite. I wonder why?"
"Hmm…I wonder." I pushed Michiru towards the door. "Well, have fun! Earn some money with those things!"
Michiru left with the undies and I took off down the hall. I opened Setsuna’s door and entered the lair of perpetual darkness.
She was asleep on her bed. I sat down next to her and gently rubbed her shoulder. "Setsie. Wake up, sweetie." I was always really nice when I wanted something.
She didn’t budge.
I did the next thing that popped into my mind. I sat on her. She woke up. "What do you want?" she asked, rubbing her eyes.
"I’m sorry, but I really need your help! I need you to turn me into a Tenoh-ite."
I stood in front of Setsuna’s full length mirror, gazing at myself critically. "Not too bad." I had on a baby tee that said ‘Kitten’, a blue sailor skirt, white socks and loafers, plus about a pound of blush, mascara, and lipstick. "I look just like those girls. Except for the hair."
Setsuna had placed a long black wig on my head, figuring that my own hair was a dead giveaway. She looked me over as she pulled on her Tenoh-ite t-shirt and racing jacket. "What’s wrong with it?"
"It looks like a bad Sera Myu Mars wig."
"It is a bad Sera Myu Mars wig."
"Oh. Right." Setsuna liked to collect costumes.
Now that I didn’t look remotely like me, we set off to watch Michiru’s auction in progress.
"SOLD! To the pretty girl with the yellow bow!" Michiru pounded a gavel on the table in front of her.
I cringed. "Michiru is too nice to some of them."
Setsuna elbowed me. "Be good!" she admonished.
We were sitting in an old auditorium that had been rented for the day specifically for the auction. It was kind of interesting, but at the same time I wasn’t really that impressed with the girls who were buying my underwear.
"But I don’t want some of these girls to have my boxers! They all seem so ditsy and boy-crazy to me!"
Setsuna gave me a death glare that she probably picked up from Hotaru, before turning back to watch. "I wonder how long it will be before Michi lets them know that you’re actually a girl?"
I slumped down in my seat. "I figure she’ll never tell them. She’s having too much fun." My Mars wig was starting to itch. "Besides…it just proves these girls are stupid. If any of them could read, they would know already that I’m female. There have been a lot of articles about me."
Setsuna smiled. "I kind of think they would be after you even if they did know."
"Are you speaking from personal experience?" I asked suavely.
She thought for a moment before she said, "You bet!" She hugged onto my arm and I giggled. Setsuna could be fun.
Michiru suddenly pulled out a pair of white boxers with red hearts on them. I squinted. "Hey…those were thrown to me by a girl at my first race!"
Setsuna eyed me. "I guess that would explain why Michiru doesn’t mind getting them out of her closet…"
"Well, I’m not ready to get rid of those yet!"
Michiru held them up. "How much for this pair of boxers worn by Haruka Tenoh? Do I hear ten dollars?"
"Too much…" muttered Setsuna.
"Ten dollars!" called a girl in the front row.
"I don’t think so! Those are mine!" I raised a finger. "Twenty dollars!" "Haruk-!" Setsuna started to cry, but I clapped a hand over her mouth.
"Shh! If you call me by my name they’ll mob!"
Michiru smiled up at me. "Twenty dollars from the lovely lady with the long hair."
The girl in the front row glared up at me for a moment before turning back to Michiru. "Thirty dollars!"
Michiru was delighted. "I have thirty. Do I hear thirty-five?"
"Forty!" I yelled.
Setsuna gawked at me.
"They’re mine," I said between gritted teeth.
"Fifty!" countered the girl.
"Who is that?" I demanded of anyone sitting nearby.
The girl on my other side leaned towards me and whispered, "You don’t know? She’s famous here. Her name is Noriko Harada. She’s member number one!"
"The first member?" asked Setsuna. "Well, that is prestigious isn’t it?"
I snorted. "Oh, please! Sixty!"
The bidding went on like this until the total reached one hundred dollars. Michiru seemed thrilled, and a little bit floored, that a pair of her lover’s boxer shorts was worth that much money. The rest had only gone for about twenty or thirty dollars, so this was her big chance to make some bucks. "One hundred and ten?" She looked at me, who had bid the hundred, and then at the girl.
You could tell my rival was really thinking it over. The muscles in her face were working hard and you could tell her hand wanted to fly up to signify more money. Personally, I hoped she would stop now. I was spending my first paycheck before I earned it. Finally, fuming, the girl shook her head.
"One hundred going once? Twice? SOLD! To the young woman with the dark hair…sitting next to…Setsuna." Only then did her eyes narrow suspiciously.
I started to sweat as I went to collect the boxers from the assistant girl they had been handed off to.
Meanwhile, everyone stood up and started to head for the exit, some clutching boxer purchases. I was hugging mine happily when I felt a tug on my shirt from behind. I turned around to find myself face to face with Noriko Harada. She glared at me with her teeth clenched. "Those are supposed to be my boxers. Who do you think you are coming in here and taking merchandise away from the true fans of Haruka Tenoh? I’ve never seen you before and I know all the girls. Who are you?"
I smirked. "That’s for me to know and for you not to."
Noriko gave me a cold smile. "All right…fair enough. But if you were really a fan of Tenoh-san you would have joined this club a long time ago. You can’t really want those boxers that much. Why don’t you sell them to me?"
I pretended to think it over. "Nah…I think I’ll keep them."
Noriko’s smile tightened. "I’ll have you know that I always get what I want."
I grinned. "A ha. Well, not this time, honey."
That’s all it took. Noriko suddenly jumped at me, trying to tear the boxers out of my hands. "I will have them!" she shrieked.
"AHHH!" I had to use all my strength to fight the girl off. She was a tough cookie. We rolled over each other a few times, all legs and hair, both of us clutching a portion of the boxers.
Meanwhile, the rest of the girls had drifted over to watch, including several guys there to pick up their girlfriends. I started to hear cries of:
"Stop this minute!" Michiru.
"Don’t hurt her, Harada-san!" Setsuna.
"CATFIGHT!!" The boyfriends.
Noriko finally hit me where it hurt. She grabbed hold of the bad Mars wig and gave a mighty tug. The wig went flying and landed in front of a pair of aquamarine shoes, enclosing a set of very familiar feet. "I knew it," muttered Michiru.
Meanwhile Noriko gawked at me, her eyes large. "You’re…you’re…!"
"Haruka, run!" yelled Setsuna.
The girls immediately surged forward, screaming at the top of their lungs. I managed to squeeze through their legs in the general chaos and made tracks to the car, still clutching the boxers. I decided that lesbian or not, I really couldn’t stand girls and never wanted to look at one ever again!
That night I slept in Setsuna’s room and she stayed in with Michiru. Michi was not terribly pleased that I spent a hundred dollars on boxers that I already owned, and got in a catfight besides, so it was clear that she needed a night apart from me. But I figured she was more upset with the prospect of those boxers hanging around for the rest of our lives together. But I knew she’d get over it. After all, she was the sensible, mature one.
* The Outers seem to be chased through the park every spring…
** The movie Haruka is watching is called "Uzumaki", and it’s this really bizarre movie in Japanese about spirals (yeah, like the swirly thingies), uzumaki in Japanese, that take over this town and cause the deaths of all these people. It was pretty wild, with blood and eyeballs stuck in windshields, giant centipedes, and people twisting into spirals, so Haruka would have to be very distracted not to be glued to it. Good movie for a late sleepless night, but be ready to read subtitles.
************************************************************************ Next time: The girls attend a festival with a game competition, but an old "friend" shows up and causes Haruka grief. Already half done! Whoohoo! Hotaru and *Seiya* cameos!
NEW WEBSITE BASED ON THIS FANFICTION! So you like the Tenoh-ites? Want to be an online Tenoh-ite? I made four buttons featuring Haruka, Michiru, and Setsuna for those who want to display their loyalty to the Tenoh-ites on their webpage. Please see the new page for more details!
(Copy, paste, and take out the spaces)
www.angelfire.com / mi3 / ladygrizdrawings / tenohites.html
An accompanying illustration: (Copy, paste, and take out the spaces – thanks to C-chan who suggested this. It’s annoying, but seems to work. Thanks! Thanks also to those who gave me suggestions. *grin*)
www.angelfire.com / anime4 / setsuna_meioh / images / setsuna_haruka_tenoh-ites.jpg
It’s Setsuna and Haruka in their disguises for the auction. Of course Setsuna’s hair is shorter and Haruka doesn’t look a thing like Haruka in her "bad Sera Myu Mars wig", but it definitely captures the oddball feel of this chapter. Besides, it’s Haruka in skimpy clothes. *grin* I’ve also done an illustration for the last chapter, so you might want to check that out too if you like art. I’m posting it at the end of last chapter like I usually do.
Thanks a lot for reading! And sorry for the delay. It was supposed to be up a few days ago, but I couldn’t find a computer that would actually let me post this once it was finished. Sheesh!
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