Yuki and Coral are in Coral's room, lying on her bed platonically. Coral is talking about her girlfriend, Callie.

"Well, you know..." Coral sighed. "I just feel like I can't match her! She's just too in love with me!"

"...I mean, her patron deity is the goddess of love." I rolled over a bit and looked at Coral. "I don't think you should blame yourself for not being able to keep up with that."

"No, you don't get it. It's pervasive. Every day I'm with her is a hurricane of feelings!" Coral waved her hands up in the air, trying to portray something with her gestures. I couldn't tell what. "...Like, we went to the movies on Tuesday. I told you about that, right?"


"I don't even remember what movie we saw! Because all I was looking at in that room was her. Her face. Her lips. Her... everything." Coral frowned, and lowered her hands. "And, really, we weren't watching. We spent basically that whole hour staring into each other's eyes and eating snacks."

"...honestly, that doesn't sound so bad." I chuckled. "Honestly I'd love if someone did that with me."

"Oh, don't get me wrong, it was amazing. Everything she does is. But..." Coral smirked. "Then she brought out the Pocky. You know what couples do with that, right?"

I felt my face heating up in a furious blush. "...Yeah. Yeah, I know." I looked away, nervously. "Um. You mean to say you actually..."

"Oh. Yes. We spent a good portion of that time kissing. Um... As embarassing as that is to say." Coral rolled over and looked at me, right in the eyes. "But that's the problem! She's a regular Cassanova! How can I ever hope to match her charm, her, her love..."

"...I really wish I had the answer to that." I looked up at the ceiling. "Actually... did I tell you what happened with me? Since the fusion incident?"

"No. Did something happen?"

I sighed. "Oh, lord yes. When we were falling off that balcony? Yume told me that she loves me. And then we turned into Stella Force? That was a really weird thing to go through, but we've already gone over that."

Coral sat up, and looked over at me, shocked. "...I'm sorry, she did what?"

"...yeah." I grabbed a pillow from beside me. "She said she's loved me ever since this all started happening. Since... I think that time with the demon door."

Coral stared at me, utterly dumbfounded ."...The one where you body slammed a demon and melted half your arm off?"

"...Well I'd really rather not remember it like that, but yeah." I looked at my arm, which even now were still scarred. "That one."

"That was maybe the single stupidest thing you've ever done, Yuki, and I will never let you live that one down, but she's into that idiotic bravery?" Coral said, horrified. "Does she want you dead?"

"Maybe! I don't know! I've body slammed so many demons at this point that I don't even know if that's when! Or why she likes me, for that matter!" I sighed, and hugged the pillow I'd grabbed. "It's just... silly, to me. Because I know she doesn't like me me."

"...What do you mean?"

"She doesn't like Stella Body romantically. But she likes 'Yuki' romantically. Not the Yuki I want to be..." I sighed. "Not the Yuki you treat me as."

"Yuki..." Coral sighed, but not dissapointedly. She patted the bed beside her. "Come on. Sit up."

"...Sure?" I sat up, and moved over next to her.

In a single movement, Coral swung her arms around me and tackled me to the bed. She grinned, and rubbed her face into me a bit.

"Yuki." She looked up at my face, and smiled. "Depression isn't allowed here."

"I know, I k-"

Coral rubbed her nose into my chest repeatedly. It tickled like hell, and I started laughing near-maniacally.

"C-Coral, stop! Stop that!" I managed to get out between laughs. "I'm dying!"

"All right, fine." Coral hugged me. "But... Yuki, just... I don't know how else to say this, but you need to believe in yourself!"

I rolled my eyes. "Yeah, as if-"

"Hey! Listen. It's cliche, I know, but it's important!" Coral pouted. "You're always going on about, nobody will this me, nobody will that me. Whatever it is. Love. Believe. Kiss. I don't know. But you need to have faith that people love you! Because Yume does, and I'm sure she's not the only one! It might not be perfect, Yuki, but you have to hope it will be! Because otherwise, there isn't a chance it'll turn out right!"

"...Ha." I looked to the side. "I know you're right. But that's easy to say. Harder to do."

"I know. But you have to try."

There was a small, uncomfortable silence.

"You know..." I looked down at Coral, still hugging me. "We probably shouldn't be doing this. Especially not in your bedroom."

"...yeah, I guess you're right." Coral, somewhat unwillingly, let go, and sat up properly across from me. "I think that might be the only issue I have with dating. No more hugs. Unless they're with Callie. But I'm kind of a physical person, you know? But she gets jealous."

I could imagine. Coral, since we'd met, had been prone to hug anyone she liked, myself frequently included. And Callie... well, she was fiercely monogamous. It was actually kind of a surprise to me Coral had managed to hold herself back so long. Of course, then she'd called me over for this whole 'cuddlefest' thing she'd come up with, so...

"...Yeah, that's kind of a pickle, huh."

Coral smirked. "Ha. You said pickle."

"Oh, hush." I flicked her in the forehead. She didn't resist, and giggled once I did.

"Well!" Coral smiled. "What other girly things should we do before the night's up? Watch rom-coms? Have a pillow fight?"

"Oh, fuck yes." I grinned. "We could eat chocolate. And talk about boys."

Coral laughed. God, she was pretty when she laughed.

"Well, I don't know about boys..." Coral grinned. "But I've a few stories about Callie."