At What Cost Victory Chapter II: Good Girl Gone Gold
  When Kotomi tried to put her outfit together, she couldn't decide which shirt would go with her new pants. As each shirt lay on her bed, she noticed that she always looked better with just the pants and the blue bra she was wearing. She put her shirts away, and wondered how she could get away without a shirt at all. It is a concert, after all.
 She saw a blonde wig in the closet and put it on. She looked in the mirror. She gave herself a little shake to see how she looked, and was happy with the results. "Who IS that?" she said out loud, before giggling.
 Primero could hardly believe it when she walked out to the car. He had never seen her look like that. He thought she was cute before, but now? She looked very hot. He felt a little weird handing her the teddy bear he got her as a gift. She seemed to like it, though.
 The concert was better than Kotomi could ever imagine. Primero had purchased great seats, and the whole place seemed to come alive on every song. And when the You and Me Song came on, she felt a strong arm pull her close. She took a selfie of the two of them together; when Primero took out his camera to do the same, she impulsively kissed him as the flash went off.
It had not taken a long time to return to their car. But there seemed to be no end in sight to the wait to leave the lot. Primero suddenly glanced behind her seat.
"You know what? I still have my security jacket."
"We could wander backstage."
Kotomi always wanted to see the backstage of a concert.
"Let's go."
A long line of girls stood waiting to talk to the stars. As Kotomi passed by, she could hear one girl complain that the drummer was not there to take a picture with. Primero had taken her hand, weaving her around the grumbling men trying to break down the set.
"I bet the stage is this way."
The stage. Kotomi could only imagine herself there, illuminated by a hundred spotlights.
He gestured towards a curtained entrance. She followed eagerly.
They parted one heavy black curtain, then another. As Primero reached for the third, he felt like it was stuck. He pulled harder.
The overhead lights were still on, blazing their light through the drumkit. Two figures were cast in the shadows of the kit. A man was on all fours, nude, with his ass turned to the couple. On the platform above him was a naked woman. Her knees were bent; her chest was sweaty. Her hair was tangled. And her pussy was...amazing.
And her voice was loud.
They had laughed all the way to the car. After she got in and buckled, she kissed him again. He kissed back. As she turned to him, he reached to hold her. His hand brushed by her top, releasing her right boob from its hold. For a moment, she gasped. Should she do it, right here, right now?
She looked at him.
He looked at her.
"My place is closer."
"Let's go."
 Their drive home passed by the ice cream store Kotomi's team often went to after practice. But as they came closer, they saw ambulances and fire trucks. Standing in their midst was her coach.
 "Stop the car."
She got out, taking his security jacket with her. She darted toward her coach.
 "What happened?"
 "The team and I came over after practice. I went to get my camera out of the car when a driver crashed into the front of the store."
 "Oh no! Is everyone OK?"
 "No. They are very badly hurt." Her expression changed.
 Kotomi could feel her coach looking her up and down. Her outfit clearly gave away the fact that she was not home, nursing a fever. "You are the only one in our squad to be spared." She shook his head. "And it was because you were skipping practice."
"I'm sorry, Sensei." She crossed her arms over her blue bra, knowing it was not enough to cover her. "The first thing I must do is cancel our season."
 "No, please!" Kotomi's mind raced.
 "I have no choice."
 Kotomi felt cold. And sad. And worried about her teammates. On top of that, she suddenly felt like there was a huge void where her future had been. Without meets, the recruiters would not see her. There would be no scholarships, no college teams. All her hard work would be for naught.
 "You have me. I know all five events. Ribbon, Ball, Rope, Clubs, and Hoop. As team captain, I will do them all."
 "That's crazy. Even if the judges let you, you would be exhausted."
 "Let me try. And until my teammates return, I will get new team members to cover all five slots."
 "I cannot spare extra time to train them."
 "Then we will." Primero stepped forward. "I can coach them to lift weights and get stronger. Kotomi can show them technique."
 "Please, Sensei?"
 Her coach saw a determined look in her star athlete's eye. It wouldn't hurt to try, she told herself. "The meets will be hard on you if you try to do it alone. And the finals require a team of five. " She put his hand on her shoulder.
 "You have a lot of work to do, Takanashi. I'll see you tomorrow at practice."
 She looked at Primero. "Both of you."
 Kotomi got back in the car and put her head in her hands. "All my friends are hurt. And I could have been there!"
 Primero softly put his hand on her elbow. "But you're not. And you can still compete. What's more you can get more people to..."
 "You know how hard that will be? We have enough trouble keeping people. Everybody wants to be a cheerleader instead. Plus, there's a whole bunch of things to learn. Skills don't just show up overnight. Where do I start?"
 She was frantic, he thought. What could he say?
 "There's always Ami." Primero suggested. "And what about Tomoko Saeki?"
 "Tomoko's on the cheer squad. Plus, I barely know her. But she would be really, really good." She looked up. "Can you help me talk to her?"
 "I'll see what I can do." He put his seatbelt on. "Let's get you home. Sleep on it tonight, and we'll get started tomorrow."
 As they drove away, Kotomi thought about Mako.
There's got to be another way, she thought.
A moment later, she was texting Ami.
"Need huge favor. Bring workout clothes tomorrow."