This story is all (or mostly) about Sakura and Syaoran. I suppose you
already know what _that_ implies. Warm fuzziness. Cute warm fuzzy feelings
galore. *hearts!* I advanced their age in order not to shock any people
this...there, ya happy now?
I only own 3 volumes of the manga and have seen none of the anime, so any if you spot any loopholes/glaring errors, please tell me. This is a sort-of continuation when all the Clow Cards are already captured, and the Sakura Cards...well, you won't find them here. In a nutshell, Sakura-chan's done all she ought to save the world from Disaster. Ok? ^_^
C&C _extremely_ welcome! Send anything you have to say to firstname.lastname@example.org
--Syaoran no Miko
A man's voice. His back was to her, and she was unable to make out who he was.
"Who are you?"
"Come to me."
The man-a boy, really-turned. Eyes of a peculiar shade somewhere in-between amber and dark brown shone in the darkness.
Wide-eyed, she shot up in bed, panting. Sweat trickled down her body, but she was shivering. It was not from cold, however.
"Hoeeee...what the heck was _that_ all about?" she moaned.
She briefly considered trying to get to sleep again, but dismissed that possibility. Sakura knew from experience that she would *never* be able to return to slumberland after a dream of that kind. She frowned, but decided to make the best of it.
/Since I'm up, I might as well start getting ready for school./
Then something struck her.
/Matte.../ She turned to check the clock face. It was three whole hours before her alarm clock would ring.
Kinomoto Sakura put a slender hand to her forehead. /Stupid dreams like that will be the death of me.../
But all of a sudden, she laughed.
It didn't really matter if she had weird dreams. It didn't really matter if she lost sleep. At the very least, she had not lost it over capturing Clow Cards. 7 whole years had passed since she had first met Kero-chan-everything needing to be done had been done. Finally, finally she was living life as a *normal* person, doing the same things any other schoolgirl did.
At the foot of her bed, the said Kero-chan stirred, yawned, and rolled over. She glanced fondly at him, and gently stroked one of his big ears.
Sakura stretched and yawned, not too loudly. There was no need to wake Kero-chan up, after all. In doing so, she happened to catch sight of her reflection in the long mirror on the opposite wall.
She paused, and looked at herself.
A petite girl of about 5"4 stared back, a girl with long auburn hair caught back in a ponytail, two slender bangs falling to just below her shoulders. Large dark-green eyes in a delicate face shone softly in the dim room.
/I look so different now...I wonder if Okaa-chan knows me?/ She nodded her head emphatically. Of course Okaa-chan did! She knew her mother was always watching over all of them. She didn't need to be seen. Sakura _felt_ her, and that presence said more than any words could have.
She headed into the bathroom and turned on the hot and cold taps full blast, wanting to have a good shower. She had more than enough time for it, at any rate.
/My looks have changed, but have *I* changed?/ she wondered, enjoying the feel of the water jets striking her skin. She didn't think she had, but then one could never really tell with oneself, could they?
Why was she even thinking that? It was far too early in the morning to be bothering about such a silly question. Sakura gave a shrug, turned her attention to showering, and thought no more about it.
Her father raised an eyebrow as she came down the stairs already dressed in her school fuku. "Ohayou. You're an early bird, Sakura-chan," he commented.
"The kaijuu actually woke up by herself? Repent," Touya intoned, "the end is nigh!"
She stepped firmly on her brother's foot, and he yelped loudly.
"'Nii-chan wa baka!"
"Are you really 17 already? Sometimes it's awfully hard to believe you are," he mumbled, rubbing his sore foot.
Sakura's only response was to step on his other foot. Ignoring his annoyed howl, she turned to her father and smiled brightly. "That really smells good! Can weeat already?"
He smiled back. "Hai. Fix yourself a drink, ne?"
"SHUT UP!" she shrieked, but her breath was wasted, as always. A cloud of dust trailing behind him, Touya shot down the road on his motorcycle and soon disappeared into the distance.
She scowled after him. /I should have stepped on his feet harder just now./
Touya was presently working as a doctor at the local hospital, and she hardly ever saw Yukito-san, who was working as a kindergarten schoolteacher. The school was near enough from his house that he had no need of a lift from her brother.
She minded, of course, but not so badly as she thought she would have. It amazed her to know this. She wasn't sure she liked the fact that her infatuation with Yukito-san was seemingly cooling off, but that was just the way things...were. Truth be told, she was even a tiny bit relieved. In some way she oddly felt as though she had been set *free*.
/I suppose Li-kun will be happy,/ she wryly thought.
Pulling the straps of her skates tight, she promptly stood up and grabbed her school bag.
"'Tou-chan, I'm leaving."
"Ittekimasu!" The door closed behind her, and she set off.
On the way, her thoughts involuntarily turned to the strange dream. She bit her lip-it had been what she called a 'seeing' dream, or one that gave her visions that were true. But what had it meant? Sakura could make no head or tail out of it.
The dream by itself had been unnerving, but even more unnerving was the fact that she *knew* the eyes of the boy. They bore a resemblance-no, not just a resemblance-they were exactly the same as Li Syaoran's eyes.
She blinked. Li-kun?
There was no more time to be puzzled then, for she heard a chorus of familiar voices calling her name. Spinning around, she saw Tomoyo, Rika, Naoko and Chiharu running towards her.
"Ohayou, Sakura-chan! You're early today-what could be the reason for this miracle?"
"Sou desu ne. Sakura-chan going to school one hour early is as close to a miracle as you can get."
"Not you too, Chiharu-chan!"
"Maa, maa! No matter what, this *is* an occasion," smiled Tomoyo. "We should be praising Sakura-chan for having accomplished so much. Oh, I wish I had remembered to bring my camera today! I could have got this all on tape!"
All her friends face-faulted.
"Ne, why don't we race? Last one to class is a turtle!" And before they knew what was happening, Sakura had shot off at break-neck speed.
They chased after her, panting as they tried to catch up.
"Unfair, Sakura-chan! You've got SKATES!"
Sakura skated on.
/That dream...why? Why about Li-kun of all people?/
It *was* strange. She had half-expected him to return to Hong Kong after the business with the Clow Cards had been finished, but he hadn't. He had graduated from Tomoeda Elementary School, and was now studying in Seijou High with herself and her other friends.
He kept his distance well. Suddenly turning cool and detached right after they had entered Seijou, he hardly ever spoke to her, and almost never returned her greetings, not seeming to notice her existence.
It hurt. She liked Li-kun, but he didn't even treat her as a friend. He might have forgotten everything they had gone through together for all she knew.
/Why should I care, anyway? I don't need him...I have Tomoyo and all my other friends!/
But she did care. A lot. The infuriating part was that she had no idea *why*.
/Sakura, you are an idiot./
She swung into the school, blowing out a breath that ruffled her bangs. /I'm not going to think about him anymore. He's ruined my mood./
However, Sakura did not notice a figure step out from the shadows of some trees just outside the school gates, or she would have been _very_ surprised.
Li Syaoran shouldered his bag, and walked in, ignoring the admiring stares girls were casting his way.
Syaoran watched Sakura skate inside, her figure growing smaller as she entered the building and finally disappearing.
He sighed. /Just what was I doing?/
On his way to school, he had passed by Sakura's house. He had absolutely no idea as to how that had happened, as his normal route came nowhere _near_ there.
Or _something_ else...but he refused to consider that possibility.
Seeing her set off, he had suddenly been taken with the decision to follow her, to make sure she got to school safely. Sakura had been on roller skates, true, but he hadn't spent a good deal of the time being chased around Tokyo by Touya for nothing. It had not been too hard a job to keep sight of her and yet not be seen. While *knowing* it was an outright crazy thing to do, common sense had been over-ruled by his heart. He hadn't cared.
Slapping his forehead, he grimaced horribly. /Listen to me...Kami-sama, I must be mad./
He should have returned to Hong Kong a long time ago, but he had been unable to bring himself to do so. There was something, more accurately, some_one_ keeping him here. And surprisingly, it wasn't Yukito-san.
No, it was someone else. And Syaoran knew exactly who she was.
He knew exactly how important she was to him, and did not trouble to try and think otherwise. However, he had been, and still was completely unable to tell her anything of his true feelings, had no idea how to express what he had been feeling for so long now. In fact, he was often anything *but* friendly to Sakura in school. They were in the same class, but they might as well have been in different countries for all the attention he paid her sometimes.
/Why?/ he tiredly wondered. He hated himself-he knew he hurt her by being so cool and aloof, but somehow he just could not bring himself to a public display of affection, even friendly affection, for her.
/I...don't know how she might react if I told her everything. What if she ended up laughing, or hating me?/
He pictured Sakura's beautiful eyes looking at him mockingly, angrily, and shuddered. No, he didn't think he could stand _that_.
/Doesn't she like Yukito-san, anyway? Well, *he* sure deserves her far more than I do./
With a groan, he headed for class. There was still time-he could get some work done. _Anything_ to take his mind off a girl with long auburn hair and eyes greener than emeralds.
/Clow Cards above, I'm an idiot./
That day, a curious thing happened. It was like this:
<After history period>
"Where IS it?" wailed Sakura, throwing books and papers out of her bag left and right.
"Douka shita no, Sakura-chan?" asked Tomoyo in concern.
"Hoe...my FLUTE! I can't find it-I must have forgotten to bring it! Sensei will kill me!"
Sakura had a right to be nervous. Aida-sensei was a woman who believed in strict packing of one's bag according to the day's timetable. That being so, any student who failed to bring his flute for music class could count himself as being in trouble. Deep, deep trouble.
"Last time she made Keisuke-kun stand on one leg in the corridor and
shout 'I forgot to bring my flute!' one hundred times! What am I going
to DO?" Sakura was growing more desperate by the minute. Her classmates
gazed at her in sympathy,
but all agreed that they could do nothing to help.
"Take mine, Sakura-chan. Aida-sensei's punishments are always after school, and you have cheerleading today. You can't miss that." Tomoyo smiled as she held her flute out, but there was a barely perceptible glimmer of fear in her eyes. Sakura saw this, and refused point-blank.
"Dame, Tomoyo-chan! I won't take it-it wouldn't be fair to you!"
"But what will you do then?" her friend demanded.
"She can take this one," a quiet voice announced. All eyes turned to look at its source, and sundry jaws dropped open, Sakura's amongst them.
"This is an extra flute. I left it under my desk in case I ever forgot to bring my own. Here, catch." He tossed it to Sakura, who caught it with an expression of disbelief.
"Take it. I don't want you to get into trouble." Amber-brown eyes held her gaze for the briefest of moments.
Standing up, he calmly walked out. With a few stares, the other students followed suit, except for Sakura and Tomoyo.
"That is a very strange boy," remarked the purple-eyed girl, open amazement on her pretty face.
Sakura stared at the flute in her hands.
I don't want you to get into trouble...
Her cheeks turned pink.
"_Strange_ is the right word," she murmured.
"Ja ne, Sakura-chan!"
She slung one strap of her bag over her left shoulder, and left the locker room, walking slowly. Cheerleading had been so strenuous that even the athletic girl was tired out.
/I've got so much Maths homework to do tonight, too...yuck./ Making a face, she shifted her bag to her other arm.
She had forgotten to do something. The thought nagged at her as she made her way home. She couldn't think what it was, however.
She rounded a corner...
...and collided full-tilt with someone going in the same direction. They crashed to the ground, Sakura on top of the person. Her right elbow connected with something hard, and a sharp, piercing pain shot through it. She gasped.
"Would you get *off* of me?" an extremely put out voice that was somewhat muffled asked from below her. It was a boy's voice, and was quite a feat, considering that his face was pressed into the ground.
It sounded familiar. Looking down, Sakura got a shock.
"Whoever you are, just GET OFF me! If that's you, Takashi, you're gonna be sorry..."
Sakura hurriedly got up, wincing as she did so. /Hoe...I must have banged my elbow against that lamp-post when I fell just now./ She bit her lower lip-the knock was a bad one, and it hurt dreadfully.
Getting to his feet, Syaoran growled in annoyance. "What did you think you were *doing*, anta baka?" He was rubbing his head with his eyes shut.
"Sumimasen," she said apologetically, trying to block out the pain. A bead of sweat trickled down the side of her face. "I should have looked where I was going."
Eyes flying open, he gaped open-mouthed at her.
"S-Sakura! Um, um, um, I..." Stammering and stuttering, he was at a complete loss for words. Finally, he gave it up as a bad job and said nothing.
Silence for a while, except for the roar of vehicles on the road. Both of their faces were a dark crimson.
Sakura was the first to break the silence, having remembered what she had neglected to do. Gingerly opening her bag, she extracted his flute and held it out.
"Here...I forgot to return it to you just now. Arigatou gozaimasu-I'd have been dead if you hadn't helped me."
Awkwardly, he reached out a hand, his fingers accidentally brushing hers as he took it.
Their eyes met, and they reddened simultaneously. Quickly, Sakura pulled her hand away, flinching as she felt her elbow protest. She averted her gaze.
"What are you doing here? I thought you'd gone home a long time ago."
"I had football practice today."
"You...don't seem the type who would want to play football. I mean, that is..." She broke off. /Great thing to say there./
"I know what you mean, but I actually kick a ball properly, which is more than can be said for me if I joined any other club."
She decided to make a move. Her elbow was complaining loudly, and she wanted nothing more than for it to stop. If only her bag wasn't so _heavy_...
"Ja," she said softly, turning to go.
She turned back, surprise written over her delicate features.
"You're injured, aren't you?"
Dark-green orbs widened in amazement. "How did you know?"
"You winced when you took your hand away. I heard you gasp when we crashed to the ground. Besides, I can see for myself that your right elbow's swollen."
Without warning, he was suddenly by her side, lifting up her arm to examine her elbow more closely.
Sakura started, flushing. "Y-you don't have to!" He ignored her, touching and probing the hurt elbow ever so gently.
"It's nothing serious, but there'll definitely be bruising. You jarred it quite badly. Go rub some cold cream onto it-it'll lessen the pain."
In one swift movement, he had slipped behind and removed her bag from her arm.
"Hoe! What...what are you doing?"
"It's a little much to carry with your elbow like that. I'll walk you home, Sakura."
Her eyes widened until they could widen no more, and she could feel herself blushing furiously.
"I'm sorry if you wouldn't like me to," he quietly said. "Demo, it was my fault you're hurt, and I want to make amends."
"I-iie! You may. That is, if you're sure you want to..."
Amber eyes queerly tense suddenly relaxed, and the corners of his mouth curved up ever so slightly.
"Sou ka. You won't be hurt again if I can help it."
She ducked her head, her face on fire. /This can't be happening,/ she thought. /This has *got* to be a dream./ But she could see her bag over his shoulder, feel the smooth fabric of his uniform jacket brush against her arm as he walked close once or twice, and she knew it was not.
"For your elbow, and because I called you an idiot just now. I suppose you're angry?"
"Chigau," she said, shaking her head, "it was nothing. 'Nii-chan can say much worse than that. And it was all my own fault that I got hurt, really."
He abruptly halted, and she eyed him curiously. "Is something wrong?"
He stared at her so intently that a pink hue crept up into her cheeks of its own accord.
"It wasn't your fault...*I* got you hurt. I'm sorry." His eyes were strangely dark.
"Hoe? What are you talking about?" she asked in bewilderment. Glancing at her, he shook his head.
They walked on for some time, not saying anything. Then Sakura spoke again.
"You'll be happy to hear this, Li-kun."
"Oh?" He raised an eyebrow.
"From today onwards, Yukito-san is all yours. I've...stopped going after him."
There was no answer. She looked at him.
"Aren't you glad?"
"What made you think I would be?" There was an odd ring to his voice.
It was certainly not the answer she had expected.
"Well...I know you like Yukito-san a lot. Ne?"
He turned to face her. They were already in front of her house.
"Maybe that isn't true now."
Sakura stared, taken aback. "Are you serious?"
"As serious as I can be."
"Things like this shouldn't be taken for granted, Sakura."
"Oi, Sakura-kaijuu! Just finished cheer-" Touya's voice abruptly broke off as he stared at the two of them from a short distance away.
He continued staring. Syaoran was becoming increasingly nervous.
"Ne...I'll see you tomorrow. Ja!" Depositing her bag at her feet, he took off as if a pack of hounds were after him.
"Yamete, you little creep!" hollered Touya, running up to his sister.
"Sakura-chan, daijobu desu ka?"
She eyed her brother with an air of faint irritation. "Daijobu desu. He didn't do anything to me."
"Just what was he doing with you, anyway? I know he doesn't live near this neighbourhood."
She decided to be frank.
"Li-kun walked me home," she coolly announced.
"I let him do it," she added.
As Touya's jaw crashed to the pavement, she unlocked the door and stepped in, inwardly chuckling at the sight of his face.
/He was different today. So nice...but why? I don't understand./
She entered her room, setting her bag down on a chair.
/And if he isn't in love with Yukito-san anymore, why is he still here?/
She headed for the bathroom, lost in thought.
Tomorrow. She had a feeling that even more would happen tomorrow.
But Sakura had no idea how true that would be...
Index of Japanese words/translations:
Hoe--Sakura's signature word. Think of Himura Kenshin's 'Oro' to get
an idea of
what it means. <laugh>
Sou desu ne/Sou ka--that is so
Ja/Ja ne--see you later
Itterasshai--said to child when he/she leaves for school etc.
Ittekimasu--said in response to 'Itterasshai'
Maa, maa--now, now
Douka shita no--what's wrong?
Sumimasen--excuse me/I'm sorry
Anta--rude form of 'anata', which means 'you'.
Chigau--that is not so
Daijobu desu ka--are you all right?
Daijobu desu--response to above; 'I am all right'.
Oh my...am I weird or am I *not* weird? <sheepish grin>
The spelling of Li-kun's name is one of the vaguest things in CCS. Syaoran? Shaolan? Shaoran? Xiaoran? Xiaolan? Xiao Lang? Make up your minds, people. ^_^ But as Li-kun's own miko, I choose the spelling that appears in the manga and on cards-Syaoran, so don't you come telling me I've spelt his name wrongly.
I NEED feedback. Hint hint! ^_^ Hope you liked this!
Coming Soon: Chapter 2: Finding of Questions/Two Steps Forward, One Step Back
Domo arigatou gozaimashita for reading!
--Syaoran no Miko (Shi Lin)