"Darling! It has been too long!" Madame Celine Grey greeted one of her greatest friends with as much flamboyance as usual. She had once been a succesful reascher and designer for Silph Co., but now she lived in the countryside of Kanto writing raunchy romance novels and trying to pair off her son and daughter with various different socialites. Her massive career alteration had been the result of two things: her own wish for the life of the landed gentry and a high-profile, but utterly fictional, affair with a fifteen year old boy. Four years on nearly all of Kanto high society had forgotten the sordid affair and she had been invited back to freelance work at Silph Co., which she gratefully took after finding out how hard it was to create the erotic literature one dreams about. The young man she had invited to stay at her stately home was none other than the boy with whom she had supposedly had 'relations'. In reality it had been little more than an extravagant business venture and a wobbly pretext on which to base a divorce and new life. She embraced her guest, pulling his face down into her not inconsiderable bosom, helped by the fact that she was a good nine inches taller than he. "The life you have helped me create has been blessed, my little darling! Come, my son is here to-day and no longer holds venom for you." Madame Grey might be in her fifties but she still glowed with such youth and radience that Kari could not help but feel a strange sort of love for her. It was almost unfortunate that the life he had helped her achieve had involved her running off with her true lover; her personal fitness trainer and gardner, Michelle. Together they walked toward her home, a mansion nestled between great oak and redwood trees, the lawn rolling away on either side of the flower-lined path. The mansion was of the old style known (for somewhat arbitrary reasons) as 'Victorian'. This really just meant it was a construction of red brick with almost lace-like banisters surrounding the veranda and balconies. Madame Grey had always been an eccentric, so it was natural for her to live in such a large house, even if it was just her and Michelle most of the time. "Oh Kari, Makszi has been just dying," Here Madame Grey exaggerated as she always did, Szi (as he preferred to be called, it was never Mak, Maks or any variation thereof) was never 'dying' to do anything. "...to meet you again. He feel just awful about the things he said to you all those years ago. Now my darling son realises that you were only helping me, not destroying us." It was true, Makszi had never liked Kari, for at the time of the affair the two boys were the same age - in fact Kari had been posed as one of Makszi's school mates, in act which furtther heighted the scandal, but also angered Makszi to no end. It was surprsing then that he wanted to make amends, but perhaps that was just one of Madame Grey's embellishments again. Though the walk to the mansion was a long one, they moved swiftly and were soon upon the oak-wood veranda. Here one of the servants opened the white double-doors, curtseying before her employer and guest. The entrance to the mansion was not as one would usually expect; here a small part of the Madame's greater book collection spilled across the walls, held in maple cabinets and shelving. Her collection was as eclectic as its owner, having mixes of poetry and philosophy, romance and history and anything inbetween. The books themselves dated from the modern day to scrolls nearly hundreds of years old; should the collection ever be publically announced, it might be the most extensive of it's kind in the world. "Makszi! Michelle! Dearies, we have a guest!" Her mezzo-soprano voice rang throughout the hall, but it needn't have, as the two she was calling were in the adjacent sitting room. Michelle poked her head out of the room, purple eyes sparkling beneath her pixie-style blonde hair. She was tall, averaging out at six foot in the morning and had the build of an athlete; she looked just as beautiful in androgynous clothes as her love did in the most feminine haute-couture. Kari had a strange sort of love for her as well; an admiration of character and physique, but nothing romantic. 'An old love, a lost style' as he had once been told. Madame Grey swept across the hall, her delicate silk scarf flowing out behind her. She always wore such scarves, almost as wide as they were long, draped across her back kept in the crook of her arms. She embraced the other woman and planted a series of passionate kisses on her pale lips. Madame Grey was not one for doing things in half-measures. Silently, the servant who had held the door appeared beside Kari and offered to take his jacket. Though it was summer and quite hot outside, Kari had kept a light jacket with him ever since his ill-prepared desertion of Saffron City. He had been away for only two weeks, but already missed the comforts of his well furnished flat. It was only by chance that he had been able to receive Madame Grey's call while he had been in Cerulean. The event almost made him believe in fate, as the house that Madame Grey kept had soft beds and far better food than that he had been eating. Turning back to the sitting room door, Kari found that his hostess and her partner had retreated within, assuming he would follow. Such a welcoming abode seemed hardly the place for any animosity and yet it was that Madame Grey's sayings about her son had been slightly exaggerated. The young man was sitting on one of the embroided couches, his dark grey eyes fixed firmly on his mother's acquaintance. Like Michelle, Makszi was six foot tall and, from years of rigorous sports, had a well muscled and imposing build. Kari swallowed and held his breath. The menace eminating from the college student was almost tangible, yet everyone else in the room (the servants included, hiding, as they were, behind various bits of furniture) seemed blissfully unaware. Kari was frozen, standing just inside the sitting room, the door to entrance hall ajar behind him. Madame Grey noticed and assumed that her dearest kitty was having trouble finding a place to sit; she and Michelle had taken up a single four-seater couch, while Makszi's college books and papers were strewn across his. Well, she knew exactly how to deal with that. "Makszi, be a dear and let Kari sit with you," Though her voice was gentle and warm, the fact that she had used her son's full first-name meant there was no room for argument. With only a small grunt of disapproval, Makszi did as he had been asked, pulling his books and papers into a haphazard pile and sliding them beneath a nearby coffee table. In moments, a maid appeared from the aether and spirited away the unsightly pile, along with herself. Awrkwardly, and with no small embarrassment, Kari set himself down on the couch, as far away from Makszi as he could without looking rude. Madame Grey beamed another one of her great smiles at them; no doubt this was one of her plans to keep her children in money and social standing. Of course it was a foolish endeavour as Kari's money came at random and his social standing was equal to that of the fruit fly*. "Now that we are here, let us get down to business." Madame Grey folded her hands in her lap as she always did when there was serious work to be done. This only served to make Kari more on edge; there were only two reasons for him to be present if there was 'business' to be discussed: Madame Grey wanted to marry him off to someone or, and more likely given the current company, she wanted to talk about the affair. Michelle, obviously knowing what was to come next, rested her arm over her love's shoulders. The Madame took a deep breath and smiled once more. "This work is to be published posthumously of Monseigneur Jean Grey; despite us being no longer married I do not wish to destroy his reputation with the information held within. Now, Kari, I called you here so that we could discuss some fo the finer details as well as your... involvement." Kari doubled over from embarrassment, burying his face in his knees and grabbing the toes of his shoes. He greatly hated having to talk about those times, though it had been his greatest triumph as a private escort. Makszi chuckled lightly. Another maid servant materialised and placed a small booklet on the coffee table before the embroided couch. Kari could not see it, given where his head was, but he heard Madame Grey tell him of it. Apparently it was the first draft of her memoir's introduction and he was invited to read it and, if necessary, make adjustments and notes. The meeting continued for some time, with everyone ignoring Kari's head remaining in his lap. After about half an hour, tea and scones were brought in and Kari could momentarily forget the shame of his profession. He did not often meet again with old clients, unless it was for business purposes; the exception, of course, would always be Madame Grey. "Now my dear Kari," She softened the 'r' in his name, making it lean more toward sounding like an 'l'; a trick she used when being formal yet inviting to her guests and friends. "Makszi I know wishes to speak with you, so Michelle and I shall take our leave soon." She sipped on her tea as Michelle told the two young men about the arrangements that needed to made to the mansion's swimming pool. Being not of aristocratic breeding, unlike Madame Grey, she spoke with a more colloquial tone and vocabulary. "...it really just needs a re-tiling, but the blue ones are a bit expensive for what we need," Madame Grey guffawed at this, but did not interject; Michelle playfully prodded her love's thigh with a giggle. "So I think we may just stick with the marble instead." Just then the clock struck three o'clock, and with barely a 'good-bye', Madame Celine Grey and Missus Michelle Smith briskly exited the room, discussing, in hushed tones, what tiles they would use for the master bathroom in their Saffron City apartment. Kari was flabbergasted and rather confused; no enamel tile he could think of was more expensive than it's marble counterpart and he had just been left all alone (with the possible exception of the invisible servants) with someone who looked just about ready to kill him. Distracted as he was by the empty doorway he did not have enough sense to react when Makszi slid up behind him on the couch and grabbed in a rough hug, pinning his arms by his sides. "So," The much taller man breathed in Kari's ear, "Let's have that talk shall we?" All Kari could do was let out a tiny squeak as the strong arms tighented around him. *Fruit flies are very important to certain areas of scientific research, but for the most part people don't like them and don't want them around - naturally, due to self-esteem issues arising from his job and private life, Kari often compares himself to such things as fruit flies. Here we preserve such a tradition fot the sake of exactness. Author's Note: This was entirely written in WordPad, so there may be a few spelling or grammatical mistakes. If you point them out I can fix them!