Pit Stop 1: Cosplay Cafe!
Temari's heart was beating so fast that she could hardly breathe.
A single drop of sweat ran down Shikamaru's face.
No, it wasn't particularly hot, nor was Temari suffering from a heart attack.
No, it was because they were simply holding hands.
'Calm down Temari! You're only holding hands! It's not like you're walking down the aisle about to be married off!' thought Temari trying to keep her thought together; but it was hard since they were about to walk through a white arch with roses and love hearts on it holding hands. Very wedding like.
She didn't realise that Shikamaru was having a hard time calming down as well.
"Ok you two! You're first point is at the Cosplay Café right here" the girl explained pointing to a star on the map, "I'll explain it once more. You have 10 minutes to get to the check point. When you arrive, you have to successfully complete a task. If you succeed, you get a stamp on your stamp card and will get told where to go to next in another 10 minutes. If you fail, you lose and have to return the necklaces and other belongings given to you. It's pretty straight forward. Oh, and don't forget that you have to hold hands the WHOLE time unless told that you can let go. If you let go at any point that you're not allowed, you will be disqualified! Any questions?"
"Yeah, like how do you know if we make it to the next check point on time and whether we hold hands for that entire time as well?" Shikamaru asked
"Easy. We have contact with every check point through mobiles and walky-talkies. We tell the next check point that you have left and they'll record the time it took for you to get there. If you look at the back of your card, there's a code number. I just tell them that code and the time you left and everything's easy from there. As for holding hands, we have people out there in and out of uniform working for us, keeping a look out for cheaters. If they spot you, they'll tell you that you're disqualified and tell us as well. Any other questions?"
'Wow they're thorough!' Temari thought
"Alright! On your marks, get set, GO!" A bunch of party poppers popped and streamers flew everywhere. So they walked off to the next pit stop.
"They're quite flashy aren't they?" Shikamaru said to Temari
Temari nodded in agreement.
They arrived at the Cosplay Café with the sign 'Love Game Pit Stop' in front of it in five minutes. They walked in to be greeted by a boy dressed up as a samurai.
"Welcome to class 2-D's Cosplay Café! I see you're taking part in the Love Game! May I have your card?"
Shikamaru handed him the card and they could see him fumble with a piece of paper and pen writing down their code and what time they arrived.
"Thank you! You'll be assisted immediately!" the boy told them; and sure enough, a girl dressed as a female priest walked up to them.
"Please, follow me"
They did and they walked through a door at the back into a room.
"Ok. The challenge is that you will be wearing a costume, serve customers and take care of their order. You have 15 minutes to serve 10 orders successfully. Presentation and quality is the key. If you fail to do this and it's unworthy for the customer, it will be rejected. You only have 3 chances. Is everything clear?" the priestess explained carefully
"Uh. I have a question…" Temari started, "How do we get dressed holding hands?" She blushed a bit.
So did Shikamaru.
"Oh don't worry. You are allowed to let go of your hands when you get dressed. You have three minutes to change into your costume. When we say times up, if you don't come out fully dressed, you lose. You will get changed behind those two curtains. Any other questions?"
"Are we meant to take orders holding hands as well?" Shikamaru asked
"Yes, that is part of the challenge. Anything else?"
They both shook their heads.
"Ok, when I say start, you can let go of your hands and go into the changing room. The costume you have to wear is already hanged up in their. I'll tell you when time is up and you have to step out in the costume. Ready?"
They both let go quickly. My hand feels kind of empty now Temari thought; but quickly ran into the changing room, not wanting to lose so quickly full of un-mentionable excitement. She turned and looked at the costume hanged up nicely on the hanger. "Oh no! You've got to be KIDDING me!" she exclaimed in horror. "Can I get another costume?"
"No, you must wear the one provided."
"Come on, there's no time to complain Temari. It can't be that bad. Swallow your pride and get dressed, clocks ticking." Shikamaru spoke next door
"Easy for you to say!" hissed Temari; but she did swallow her pride and quickly slip it on.
Exactly 3 minutes later, the girl called them out.
Shikamaru stepped out fully dressed, his tie a bit crooked, and the girl blushed because he looked GOOD! No, scratch that SEXY! He was wearing a French suit with a pocket watch chain hanging form the pocket and he had his hair down so he could wear the top hat. The shirt had frills at the front and the suit was pin-striped. Who could've thought it would suit him so well?
Temari walked out a couple of seconds after him in a….
She was blushing like mad; VERY embarrassed in what she was wearing.
Shikamaru turned to look at her and his face turned into a deep shade of red. 'Wow that amazingly suits her. Kinda…cute' He tried to keep calm…but it failed.
"What you looking at?" Temari hissed trying to sound normal.
"Uh…" Shikamaru stuttered, "Obviously you. Just curious in your costume wondering what will match mine…"
There was an awkward silence.
"Oh, your tie's crooked. I'll fix it." Temari gently grabbed his tie and fixed it up.
"Will you two hold hands again and look this way" the girl ordered
Shikamaru held out his hand looking away. Temari was about to take it, hesitated, then shook her head and placed her hand in his.
He closed his hand and they both looked at each other and she smiled a cheesy smile that forced Shikamaru to grin back against his will.
Then a light flashed on the corner of their eye. They flicked their face towards the light to see the girl holding a camera.
"Aaw that's a nice photo! I forgot to mention that a photo will be taken at every checkpoint; which is why I asked you to look this way, but this is much better!" the girl explained admiring the photo she just took on her digital camera.
"What? Give that camera to me!" Temari panicked looking like she was about to pounce with her face flushed.
"Nuh uh! If you get rid of this photo you will be disqualified because this is proof that you've been here." She wagged her finger
Temari bit her lip, 'Oh when this ends, you're so DEAD!'
"Come on, let's get on with this" Shikamaru complained wanting to get out of the stuffy, tight suit.
"Ok, follow me"
They walked out of the room and many heads turned their way and looking at them.
Embarrassment was pasted all over Temari and Shikamaru's faces and they were lead to the kitchen area.
"Alright. Here is a notepad and pen to take orders. You take an order and then complete the order in this kitchen then serve it out to them. It's pretty simple. The customer is allowed to reject your order remember. They can also reject your order if you take too long. Oh and you also lose a chance if you drop something. Now, ready to start?"
Shikamaru sighed "Troublesome…"
They ran out to where the customers are and looked out for someone to serve.
"We should take five orders first, complete them and then take another five while bringing them out." Shikamaru suggested
"Why only five?"
"Think about it. If we take one at a time it'll take too much time, but if we take all ten, we'll take too long to complete the order. If we take five, when we bring out the orders we can take them at the same time. It makes the most sense."
"I see…I guess they don't call you a genius for nothing. Too bad you're too damn lazy."
"Tch, shut up. I just like relaxing; unlike you girls and your excitement bubbles on shopping sprees"
"Stop being so stereotypical! I'm definitely not one of those ordinary, annoying girls like Ino! I'm different! They annoy me as much as they do to you."
"I know that. You are different…which is good" Shikamaru mumbled down the last bit
Temari's eyes widened, "What did you just-"
"Oh someone over their wants their order taken" Shikamaru cut her off and dragged her towards the table.
There were three girls, "Hey. We would like to order now" one of them said a little bit flirtatious towards Shikamaru battering her eyelashes. She had a cute face. One that a lot of guys would jump for.
'How disgusting' Temari thought, 'She's flirting with Shikamaru, even though we're acting as a couple in this stupid game. What if he really was my boyfriend like he's meant to be…not that I care or anything…'
"Yes we would like to take your order" Temari empathised the word 'we' trying to make a point. 'Why am I acting like I care?' Temari started to mentally slap herself.
The girl glared at her.
Temari flashed a fake smile.
Shikamaru didn't notice.
"I would like an ice tea and a strawberry and cream cup cake please" she spoke looking away from Temari and straight towards Shikamaru.
Shikamaru placed the notepad down on the table and wrote down the order.
The girl stared at him, swooning.
"Uh-umm…" stuttered one of her friends, "Can I have a soda and a brownie?"
"And I would like an ice-chocolate"
"Ok, is that all?"
They all nodded their heads.
"We will bring your order out later. Thank you" Temari and Shikamaru bowed and left.
They got the rest of the 5 orders in 3 minutes and took it back to the kitchen. They quickly fulfilled the orders and tried to dress it up a bit putting the drinks in fancy tall glasses and placing cakes on cute, decorated plates. On the ice chocolate, they towered the cream on top nicely and sprinkled shaved chocolate on top and on ice coffee, they sprinkled coffee beans on top. It was difficult with just one hand.
Temari was a bit annoyed because she had to admit that Shikamaru was better at this than her even with his left hand.
They brought the orders out and were accepted every time. The three girls from before adored the little plates and tall glasses and accepted the order as well.
The girl eyeing Shikamaru spoke, "Hey thanks! My name's Yumi. It's nice to meet you! What's your name?"
Shikamaru looked at her weirdly, "It's Shikamaru" he mumbled
"Shika-kun ne~? Well, I'm really happy that you served us and you did a really good job! I love the decoration next to my cupcake. Can I thank you with a coffee or tea sometime?" she battered her eyelashes again smiling sweetly and used a cute squeaky voice to match her face.
'What does this little hussy think she is? Hello! I'm the partner here holding hands and all! Oh my god what am I saying? Shut up Temari! Shut up!' Temari turned to look at Shikamaru.
Shikamaru had a bored look on his face, "Shikamaru's just fine and sorry, I have to decline. I'm not interested in girls who go after other girl's boyfriend's and expose it to their faces. Oh and by the way, my partner here did that decoration next to your cake" Shikamaru held up their linked hands
Yumi's jaw dropped.
Temari tried her hardest to stifle her laugh but it still came out muffled. 'She's probably not use to rejection, let alone one like this' She stuck her tongue out at her. There was nothing she could do now; she's already accepted the order.
"Other girl's guys huh?" Temari smirked at Shikamaru as they went to serve another table.
He blushed a little not realising what he said, "Well our hands are linked and she's probably aware of the love game. No matter how you look at us, we look like a c-couple." Shikamaru stuttered, "I hate girls like that"
Temari giggled, "We do agree on something"
They approached a couple of guys.
"Hey there girly. Like the outfit, very flattering!" one of them spoke
'Ugh, what a perv' Temari thought, turning her nose slightly up in disgust.
"Sir, can we please just take your order now. Other people are waiting." Shikamaru said a little annoyed.
The said their orders and when Shikamaru and Temari left, they winked towards Temari.
She felt like she was going to throw up.
They came back and gave the couple of guys' orders last. Shikamaru insisted on giving theirs last for some unknown reason.
When they did, they seemed to be alright. No more weird comments or anything sickening.
Temari and Shikamaru turned around to tell someone that they've finished the task before time was up, but as soon they did, one of the guys went to make a grab at Temari.
Temari noticed, not letting her guard down, and was about to let reflexes take over, but Shikamaru already beat her to it grabbing the guy's am that was making the move.
Shikamaru's eyes turned sharp and scary, "What do you think you're doing?"
"Hey calm down. If she's dressed like that, naturally-OW OW THAT HURTS! OW LET GO LET GO!"
"Give me a good reason why?"
A shiver went down Temari's spine. His voice was so raspy and threatening, so different to how it normally is.
"Well it's not my fault she's dressed up like a hook-ARGH! STOP TIGHTENING YOUR GRIP!"
"Oh, you asked for it!" Shikamaru said letting go of his arm and tightening into a fist.
"No! Stop it Shikamaru!" Temari yelled out.
"Why should I? Don't you hear what he's saying?"
Temari got out her hand and punched the guy in the face really hard that he toppled to the floor and laid there un-conscious. "Because I want the first shot"
Shikamaru stared at her a tad scared and laughed really hard. 'Just like mum'
"What's going on here?" questioned an upper classmate
"This guy tried to grab Temari so we stopped him and punched him out because he started talking dirty. Anyway we pass since it's only been 13 minutes and 28 seconds and we've finished 10 orders with no rejections, unless you include this guy, but it's too late for him anyway, so we're going to get changed and stamp our card. Thanks" Shikamaru bursted out in a rush and dragged Temari back to the other room to get changed leaving a whole lot of people staring at them.
"Whoa! Well that was more exciting then I thought it would be; but no more thanks!" Temari sighed in exhaustion from punching so hard.
Shikamaru laughed, "Well nice punch."
"Thanks. What you did back there was sweet"
Shikamaru blushed a little, "Yeah…let's just get changed. I hate suits."
"But you look good" Temari whined
"You too…" Shikamaru mumbled under his breath
So they got changed, stamped their card and headed of to their next challenge.