"This is so juvenile…" Lana said sternly, crossing her arms in consternation. She began getting up from the circle of girls seated on the floor. "I'm not playing."
"Everyone in this room has to participate," Carmella challenged, looking around at all the other women around her. "If you don't then you have to leave the room." She then got a wicked glint in her eye. "And you have to wear your underwear outside of your pants for the entire day tomorrow and ask everyone you pass, 'What's new?' That also goes for anyone who refused a dare or to answer a question. So how about it, who's out?"
No else moved from the circle.
Lana huffed and fixed the other blonde with an indignant glare, but plopped herself down on the floor.
"Alright, since I suggested this little game, I'll start," Carmella once again swept her gaze over everyone. "Peyton, truth or dare?"
Though she was competitive and wasn't about to quit this game, Asuka gave a little sigh of relief that she wasn't picked first.
As much as Asuka had been thoroughly enjoying her time with Shinsuke ever since they had gotten together a week and a half ago, she hadn't gotten much girl time. This lack of girl time extended back to when Shinsuke first started sharing rooms with her. Back when they were still friends. She craved some female only company.
"I want to have some girl time," she told Shinsuke earlier that evening in a secluded hall during SmackDown Live.
Shinsuke merely shrugged. "Don't let me stop you. Just make sure you have fun," he encouraged.
And so Asuka decided to gather as many of her friends from the SmackDown roster as she could fit in one hotel room, and proposed a girls night. There was Naomi, Charlotte, Becky, Peyton, Billie, Lana, and Carmella. They all had to travel in two separate rentals, but they were able to procure a room for all of them.
Since arriving at the hotel the group had made use of the outdoor swimming pool and jacuzzi, watched some cartoons and the movie Talladega Nights, and most recently, partook in the room's mini bar.
They were all still in their swimsuits and a little more than tipsy when Carmella suggest they all play a game of Truth or Dare. Asuka had been unsure how the game was supposed to be played, but Naomi was quick to describe the rules to her. She decided immediately that she would give this game a try.
Peyton's brows pinched as she thought over her options. "Dare."
"Take off Billie's socks and wear them on your hands for the entirety of the game," Carmella requested.
"What?! That's so gross!" Peyton shrieked.
"Hey, my feet are clean!" Billie piped up, offended.
"No one's feet are that clean!" Peyton argued.
"Are you gonna do it, or will you accept the penalty tomorrow?" Carmella asked.
"Ohhhh!" Peyton growled. "Gimme your feet." Billie extended her legs towards her best friend and Peyton removed both socks and slipped them onto her hands. She didn't look happy about it though.
"See, that wasn't so hard," Carmella said gleefully. She looked to her right then. "Your turn Becky."
"Truth or Dare Carmella?" Becky prompted with a quirk of her shapely brow.
Carmella looked mildly taken aback, but answered, "Dare."
"Everyone in the room gets to take turns putting makeup on you. Then you gotta let me take a picture of it."
"You'll post it to your social media!" Carmella accused.
"I won't, scout's honor." Becky held up two fingers. "I'll just keep it for myself, for shits and grins."
"Ugh..fine! But if I catch this on Twitter, you're dead meat!"
"Everyone bust out your make up kits!" Becky shouted.
Asuka never carried much as far as makeup, but she was allowed to this and that from all the other girls' kits.
Everyone else used heavy colors and shading, but Asuka decided she was going to use Carmella's face more as that of a canvas. Beside one garishly yellow and blue eye, she used a thin eyeliner pencil to draw some a star and some swirly lines. At least that part of Carmella's "makeover" looked halfway decent.
Maybe then Carmella would take it easy on her if she chose to pick her.
"Oh my god!" Carmella exclaimed at her reflection. "I look like an undead Mimi!"
"Time for your close up, Mella." Becky stifled a chuckle as she held up her phone.
Carmella made a sound in her throat like that of a mouse, but looked over and struck her best pose. Becky snapped the picture then Carmella dashed into the bathroom to wash away the hideous makeup job.
It was then Charlotte's turn. She dared Billie to take a shot of alcohol every time a person picked dare. As that seemed to be most of the women were picking dare, poor Billie had to down a shot at every turn.
Peyton dared Naomi to share her most juicy texts with Jimmy with the circle. By the time her phone had returned to her, Naomi's face was bright red. Asuka's face turned red out of empathy. She was glad that she and Shin rarely texted and when they did, they wrote in Japanese.
"Least her sex life seems interesting," Charlotte commented.
Naomi dared a drunken Billie to give everyone in the circle a lap dance. Once she was done, Billie proceeded to pass out the moment she sat back down.
"Looks like she's out," Becky remarked with a bit of a smirk.
"My turn then!" Lana exclaimed. She then turned her gaze onto Asuka. "Go three doors down to the right. Knock on the door, and ask for a glass of water. You can't come back until you have that water."
"Ohh that's easy," Asuka said, immediately getting up and marching out of their hotel room, her friends clamoring after her to watch her from the door. She reached room 308 and gave three hard knocks. It took a few moments for the door to open, revealing a half-naked Randy Orton.
"What'ya want?" he asked, sounding half annoyed and half intrigued. His eyes might have been raking over her, but Asuka felt too tipsy for that to be a sure conclusion.
"I need a glass of water," she responded.
Randy leaned against the doorframe. "Get your own."
Think fast, Asuka.
"Water is not working," she fibbed.
"Then get some from the vending machine."
Randy lifted a brow, his lip quirking marginally into an expression she could hardly call a smile. "Wait here," he said and disappeared back into his room.
Asuka focused on standing upright without leaning on anything for the few moments it took for Randy to return. "Here," his voice sounded distracted as he handed her a glass of water. Their fingers accidentally brushed, but she thought nothing of it, her attention concentrated on the sloshing water in her uncoordinated grasp. It wouldn't do to drop the glass in her inebriated state and irritate Randy further.
"Thank you!" she smiled and waved before leaving.
A cacophony of laughter greeted her when she returned to her room. "What's funny?" she asked.
"Was that Randy Orton?" Carmella asked with a squeal.
"Yes," Asuka replied, not understanding what the fuss was about.
Lana said, "Did he enjoy the show?"
"What show-?" Asuka then looked down at herself and realized for the first time in a while that she was still in her bikini. Maybe she would have had it in mind to cover up had she not imbibed. In her embarrassment, Asuka dropped the glass of water on the carpet and jumped into one of the beds. She pulled the covers up over her head.
"Your turn, Asuka!" Charlotte called.
Asuka didn't want to crawl out of her cave, but she preferred to keep playing than to take the punishment for quitting (even if she did wear underwear on the outside of her ring gear).
She threw back the covers and returned to the circle. She was ready to go for the jugular. "Lana…go to Randy's room and ask for sugar."
Lana looked aghast. "A-At least let me change."
Asuka grinned like a shark smelling blood. She shook her head no.
"I can't go over there like this!" Lana whined.
"I did," Asuka disputed.
"But I'm married."
Asuka pressed, "Do you quit?"
Lana stared at her long and hard. "Yes. I forfeit."
Asuka grinned victoriously and snapped the waistband of Lana's bikini bottoms. "Don't forget tomorrow."
Lana crossed her arms again. "Whatever, I'll do it."
"Back to me!" Carmella announced. "Asuka, truth or dare?"
Again, so soon? Asuka mused. She also thought over why everyone had picked nothing but dares thus far. What could it hurt to pick truth? And after her embarrassing first dare, she wasn't eager for another repeat.
"Truth," she said.
While everyone around the circle eyed her warily, Carmella's eyes lit up wickedly.
"So Asuka, would you have preferred Shinsuke Nakamura to have answered the door instead of Randy?" she asked.
Lana then leveled her with a triumphant smile.
I should have picked dare!
Asuka felt body immediately begin to heat, but she slipped on her Noh mask before the warmth could reach her face. While she managed to keep her face impassive, a bead of sweat trickled between her breasts.
How could she answer truthfully without giving her and Shinsuke away? She could lie, but then she would feel bad for cheating in a game. If she forfeited, then the others would believe she had something to hide. She also couldn't afford to leave the question unanswered much longer.
"Actually yes," All the women gave a collective gasp. When Carmella's eyes brightened almost feverishly, her countenance bordering on avaricious. Asuka added, "He's already seen like this." She gestured to her swimsuit.
"You like him don't you?" Carmella leaned in eagerly.
"That's two questions, Carmella," said Naomi.
"I do," Asuka answered anyway. "He's my friend."
Everyone looked from Carmella back to Asuka.
Now Asuka had free reign to lie with little fear of it sounding like a contradiction. She made a face as though the thought of Shin being her boyfriend was loathsome. "More like older brother."
Though a mild flicker of disappointment flashed over Carmella, she didn't look wholly convinced either. But it was of no consequence, as the younger woman didn't have any evidence to prove otherwise. She wouldn't either, not until Asuka and Shinsuke chose so.
"I see," Carmella said, examining her nails. "Well, I guess that means he's still on the market. I wonder who will pick him up?"
Asuka bit her tongue to keep from responding to that statement but inwardly she wanted to low key rip Carmella's head off. As well as the heads of anyone who thought to make moves on Shinsuke for that matter.
"Naomi, truth or dare?" Becky picked up after a tense pause amongst the ladies.
The game went on for a little bit longer; everyone choosing dares from then on. This time the dares became less malicious and more fun rather than cutthroat, which Asuka preferred.
Carmella was dared to draw on Billie's face. Naomi was dared to sing for one minute out on the balcony. Becky was dared to do an Irish jig all the way down the hallway. Asuka was dared to try doing a handstand for a whole minute. Peyton was dared to prank call Bayley from the hotel telephone. Charlotte was dared to kiss Becky on the cheek and to post the video on Instagram, but Becky turned at the last moment so that Charlotte planted one on her lips.
They all had a good laugh with the last one.
Meanwhile, in a room one floor down:
Shinsuke was in the middle of a game of Candy Crush when his nose suddenly felt the twitching signal of an oncoming sneeze. All he could do was aim it into the crook of his elbow.
Xavier and Big E both yelped at the relatively loud sound in the otherwise quiet and dark room.
"Man, you about gave me a heart attack," said E, gesturing to the scary video game he and Woods were playing. "Not cool."
Kofi chuckled from the bed behind his New Day buddies. "I wish I had my camera going."
Shinsuke barely had time to finish apologizing when he let out two more consecutive sneezes.
This time both Kofi and Xavier burst out in laughter at the glare E shot him. Even stoic Kenta joined them in their mirth. Hearing such boisterous sounds of glee from his usually stern friend made Shinsuke a touch nervous.
"Shin, you got allergies or something?" E asked, seemingly anxious about going on with the creepy game at the prospect of more abruptly loud noises.
"No," cackled Kenta. "More like someone loves him."
Heat immediately flooded Shinsuke's face, making him eternally grateful for the darkened room. He wanted to tell his fellow countryman to shut up, but then he would most certainly give himself away.
"Oh yeah," Xavier jumped in. "I remember seeing something about that in an anime. Alright, who loves you, Shin?"
Shinsuke returned to playing Candy Crush as casually as he could. "Your guess is as good as mine if you believe in that stuff." He decided to be cheeky. "Maybe the question is: Who doesn't love me?"
"Wow, now that's swagger." Kofi sounded impressed.
E started to say something when another ghoul jumped out at him. The big man cried out and nearly jumped out of his skin, causing the other four men in the room to commence laughing again.
A little while later when things had calmed down, Shinsuke received a message from Asuka. Discreetly he opened it to find a picture of Asuka and all her friends making silly poses for the camera. Below the picture was a text. It read: I had lots of fun!
Shinsuke couldn't help himself, briefly allowing a loving smile to carefully grace his lips.
The next day at the arena for SmackDown house show there was an uproar as Lana pranced around with the underwear all the girls had picked out the night before worn on the outside of her cut off jean shorts. She was also sure to give each person who looked her way her prescribed greeting. Instead of being embarrassed for his wife, Rusev mostly acted as if nothing were out of the ordinary.
Asuka was sure to wave at the blonde as she walked by where she and Shinsuke sat in catering. Lana glared only half-heartedly at her.
"What is that all about?" Shinsuke asked her with a raised brow.
"Truth or Dare," Asuka said. "Lana didn't complete the dare I gave her so she agreed to punishment instead."
"Hmmm…remind me not to play truth or dare with you."
"What's the matter, scared?" she taunted, taking a sip of her drink.
He moistened his lips and gave her a smoldering look. Before Shinsuke could answer verbally, Carmella sashayed up and took a seat next to him. "Hey~" she waved at the both of them. "Mind if I sit amongst two friends? Wait…that's not the right word is it?" She seemed to think long and hard. "What was it you called Shinsuke last night, Asuka?"
Shinsuke shot Asuka a perplexed and slightly wary look. Asuka blinked owlishly, trying to remember everything from last night. She remembered a lot, but there were some bits and pieces missing from her immediate recollection.
"Ohh that's right!" Carmella exclaimed. "You said he was like an older brother."
One of Shinsuke's dark brows raised in Asuka's direction as if saying, Is that right?
Asuka bit her lip, giving him her best apologetic look without making it completely obvious.
"So is that true, Shinsuke?" Carmella asked, resting her chin on her palm and giving him her undivided attention.
He didn't look at the blonde, keeping his gaze trained on Asuka. "I guess you could say that…"
"I see, that's nice…" Carmella went on, giving Asuka a sly glance. "Brother and sisterly love and all."
"What do you want?" Asuka addressed Carmella, trying to keep the venom from her voice. She didn't like how the SmackDown Women's Champion was eyeing Shinsuke like he was some sort of snack.
"To hang out with friends." Carmella shrugged, her hair bouncing with the movement. "We are friends, aren't we?" She looked between her and Shinsuke.
"I haven't decided yet…" Asuka muttered in Japanese.
"See she's got the right idea," Carmella said in assumption. "By the way Shin…can I call you Shin?" She didn't wait for him to respond and ran her hand flirtatiously along his arm, feeling his bicep. "Did you get stronger, Shin? You look really great."
Asuka gripped the edge of the table hard enough for the bones in her hands to protest. She would have lunged over the table at Carmella if not for Shinsuke's long legs wrapping around one of her own beneath the table, pinning her in place. His dark eyes flashed in warning at her before he turned to face Carmella for the first time since she arrived.
You better handle this or I will, Asuka thought and crossed her arms sternly over her chest, the defensive gesture the only way she could put a lid on her rage.
"Is that so?" he said to the woman beside him. "Can't say I feel different. What do you think Asuka?"
"Nope, same to me," Asuka grumbled.
"Your modesty is cute, Shin," Carmella leaned so her face was but a few inches from his, "An attractive man like you…surely you've got a girlfriend…somewhere. If not…well, I could find a way to change that."
A savage growl began working its way up Asuka's throat, but Shinsuke squeezed her leg just a little more. He was the only thing keeping her from going full shogun on Carmella's ass, but if this didn't end soon, not even he could stop her.
"Oh don't worry about me, Carmella," he affected a seductive tone of his own. His deliciously long fingers carefully pried her fingers off his arm. "I do have a girlfriend somewhere, and two mistresses. Between the three of them." he grinned roguishly and winked. "I'm a very satisfied man."
This time Carmella was the one to blink in bafflement. Speechlessly she got up from her seat and quickly removed herself from the scene.
"Bye Carmella!" Asuka called after her.
"Older brother…really?" Shinsuke asked focused on Asuka completely again.
"Carmella caught me in a corner with that truth or dare." she shrugged. "I don't know what her deal is with knowing about our relationship, but I had to say something…"
"And look where that got us," he chuckled, half in amusement and half in irritation.
"What about you?" she retorted. "Who is this girlfriend and two mistresses I don't know about?"
"You're obviously my girlfriend." He turned his wink and fox grin on her. "One mistress is wrestling and the other is the ocean. I thought it would be obvious to you."
Asuka couldn't help but laugh. "Such a romantic~ But what if Carmella starts spreading around that you have three women?"
"Honestly? I could care less. People talk, Asuka. Might as well give them something juicy to talk about."
She shook her head at him but smiled nonetheless.
That night during her match with Carmella, Asuka made sure her kicks packed just a little more sauce than usual. Judging by the redness blooming across the Champion's chest, she would think twice before inserting herself in business that wasn't her concern.