Ami was freezing her butt off.
She mentally consigned whoever designed the Sailor Senshi uniform to an eternity in hell. Then she pondered the idea that her past self might have done the foul deed. Followed by a short mental trip over the paradoxes involved in wishing yourself to eternal damnation and a short reverie on the merits of being in the flames of Hades and how it would have at least defrosted her goggles. Then she sighed.
She literally couldnâ€™t feel her butt cheeks. Her fingers were stiff even with the constant tap tapping on her mini-computer. Her gloves currently refused to bend, which made using the electronic marvel almost impossible. Her nose felt like sheâ€™d been drinking vodka for the past hour. Or at least what it might have felt like after drinking, sheâ€™d never actually indulged like her friends. Now she was wondering if sheâ€™d die without ever even being drunk. The tiny skirt and short-sleeved leotard offered little protection from the snow and ice around her. Even the long gloves and boots did little to keep out the cold seeping into her veins. She mentally cataloged the symptoms of freezing to death and smiled slightly when her brain returned visions of falling asleep and no pain. At least freezing was a nice, quiet way to die.
The wind whipped pieces of ice into the air and made the frozen landscape shudder under its frozen breath. D-point, the artic circle, where no living person really wanted to live. Which of course made it spectacular for a hiding spot. Sheâ€™d tracked the Dark Kingdom here, and followed them unerringly with the girls at her side. But the currently blustering wind, snow, and ice made visibility next to impossible. That combined with Sailor Moon missing and youma popping up out of the snow at odd intervals had quickly separated the Senshi. Ami had no idea where the others were at now; even her computer couldnâ€™t seem to track their signatures in the steadily increasing storm. She stomped her feet, wincing when the motion didnâ€™t even make them tingle. This was supposed to be her element. Ice, snow, water, whatever, and sheâ€™d never quite figured out exactly what element was at her command. But it definitely wasnâ€™t fire. Her brain felt like it was freezing along with the rest of her body.
She gave up, snapping the minicomputer shut and shoving it in the waistband of her fuku. Her goggles retracted and the landscape looked even bleaker without the gentle blue tint. She focused on putting one foot in front of the other. And hope the others would find her soon. A laugh stopped her in her tracks.
â€œA little cold for you, buttercup?â€ The words were strong and forceful, audible even over the storm. Ami spun around so quickly she slipped on the snow and fell on her already frozen butt. And swore. Loudly.
â€œSuch language from a pretty little flower.â€ Her eyes traveled up black boots, a gray uniform, and met laughing pea green eyes. Zoisite stood just a few feet away, arms crossed, smirking at her. Ami sat for a moment, completely dumbfounded. The wind seemed to swirl around him, never touching him even though he didnâ€™t have a coat or cape to protect himself from the storm. His eyes dipped lower, to where her legs had fallen open gracelessly in the snow. â€œNice view. Where are your little friends, buttercup?â€ The last words were spoken with a great deal of heat in the tone and in his eyes.
Ami was angry now. The idiot was trying to make her uneasy with his hot gaze and sexy â€œI want youâ€ voice. Granted, no male had ever used it before on her but every female recognized it. She furrowed her eyebrows and struggled to her feet. Her legs wobbled but she managed to pull herself upright. Then she smiled.
â€œWhereâ€™s your dress, pretty boy? I donâ€™t even recognize you without it. Did your Kunzite turn you away last night so now youâ€™re looking for easier pickings? Or are you just so desperate for a screw youâ€™ll actually put on pants.â€ There was moment of stunned silence. Ami felt a streak of pride, and knew sheâ€™d treasure the astonished look on Zoisiteâ€™s face for the remainder of her life. But the surprise morphed quickly to rage and Ami did what any self-respecting Senshi would do, she turned and ran.
Her brain continued to mull over the consequences of her actions despite the frantic beating of her heart, the swift motion of her legs, and the sure knowledge that Mr. Gorgeous Eyes was on her tail and royally pissed off. Although why she even noticed his eyes was quite beyond her understanding. She would have loved to throw a couple attacks at him, but her energy reserves had long since been depleted trying to keep warm and fighting off youma. Now she had nothing left. She glanced over her shoulder, and tripped over a snow hill. She tumbled head over heels, smashing several body parts that would undoubtedly have bruises in the morning. She lay still for a moment, every inch of her body throbbing.
â€œWell, that was really stupid.â€ She muttered the words under her breath. Her fuku skirt had somehow worked its way over her face, sheâ€™d lost her tiara somewhere in the snow, and there was a rip halfway up her right sleeve.
â€œI think Iâ€™d have to agree, that was stupid.â€ Ami moaned at the words. She slowly pulled the ragged material out of her way and met those smug eyes again. â€œBut since you seem to be offering to fix the problem, I accept.â€ He leaned over and grabbed one slim, boot wrapped ankle and started pulling. Ami froze for a moment. Then she started kicking.
â€œWhat the hell do you think youâ€™re doing?â€ The hands were strong, the arms strong, and neither showed any signs of letting her go or stopping.
â€œI think, little Mercury, that I just found myself a new playmate. Now quit squirming or Iâ€™ll drag you the entire way.â€