Riceball in Wonderland


Legends say that the King of Hearts shall meet his Queen

When a beautiful stranger falls on the green

And she shall bring him eternal glory.

To last forever.

Honda Tohru hugged the book that Yuki Sohma gave her for her seventeenth birthday. It was entitled "Rewritten Adventures of Alice in Wonderland", and although it was a fairy tale meant for children, she loved the book very much.

And today, she was seated under the plum blossom tree, reading the first chapter of the slightly modified story featuring the heroine Alice, who was absorbed into a bizarre world called Wonderland. This one had a love element thrown into the story, the teaser says, but she has yet to read it.

She stretched and yawned. She was a little tired because she played hide-and-seek awhile ago with Kisa, Haru, Hiro, and Momiji.

I think I better take my rest first. Then I'll continue reading.

The next thing she knew, she was fast asleep.

Only to be waken up a few hours later when she heard hurrying footsteps. She opened her eyes sleepily. "Hmm?"

"Oh Ja! I'm late, I'm late!" Sohma Momiji looked at his watch attached to his bright red jacket. "The King will have my head for lunch! Oh dear! Oh –Mein Gott!"

She blinked. "M-Momiji?"

The German-speaking rabbit didn't pay attention to her. "Gazoots! I'm late!"

"MOMIJI!!!" she stood in front of him, blocking his way.

"Hey, what are you doing?" he cried. "I'm late! Please get out of my way!"

She firmly shook her head. "No, I won't! I want to know why you are suddenly dressed in that weird costume and why are you so freaked out in being late. And late for what?"

Instead of answering, he bypassed her and went straight to a hole.

"Momiji, wait for me!" she cried before she followed him. She caught a glimpse of Momiji's trail of jacket disappearing in the mysterious dark hole.

"Momiji!" She looked at the hole nervously. It looked deep, even bottomless! Her first instinct was to jump and follow him, but she stopped herself.

"Find Yuki-kun. I must tell him-" She turned around and found only darkness. Her heart started to beat rapidly. "Oh dear-"

The next thing she knew, the hole on her feet widened, then swallowed her up.

The sound of the chirping birds woke her up. She blinked, then stood up and looked around. The place was unfamiliar…as if she was in the middle of a large forest! The vegetation was lush, and animals she could only see in zoos roamed around the place freely. On the grass grew all kinds and colors of wild flowers, adding beauty to the foliage.

She shook her head. No time to admire the place. She had to find Momiji!

"New here?" a voice drawled.

She jumped, then slowly turned around.


"Up here," said the same voice.

She looked up at the branches of the tree until she spotted a smiling kimono-clad man with cat ears and cat tail.

"Eh? Shigure-san!" she cried. "Y-You're a cat!"

"Yes, yes I am," agreed Shigure.

"B-But you're a dog!"

"That is an insult, young lady," he said, shaking his finger.

She sweatdropped. "Shigure-san?"

"Hmm? You must call me the Cheshire Cat, understand?"

"B-But you're a dog!"

"I will hear none of these below-the-belt cracks." His tail began to slowly disappear.

"W-Wait! D-Don't disappear yet! Momiji is missing!"

"Wrong. It is you who are missing," he pointed out.

"T-Then tell me how to make it back home!" she cried desperately.

"There is a legend in our world…about the stranger who will fall on the green and make herself His Majesty's queen." Shigure the Cheshire Cat's grin widened. "You must first discover who she is, find her, and present her to the King, then he shall grant you your wish."

"Shigure-san!" she cried but only the head of Shigure remained.

"However, beware of the black spades…shadows that lurk everywhere. Beware!" he warned gravely. He then smiled again. "Take care! Toodles!"

Then Tohru could see only air where the Cheshire cat sat.


"Great! First, Momiji's gone, now Shigure-san!" she sighed. She still couldn't believe that the Cheshire Cat vaporized right before her very eyes…literally!

She started to make her way out of the confusion of greens and wilderness, hoping that she would run into somebody who could help her.

However, to her dismay, she found herself getting more and more lost in every step she takes.

"Now I know what Haru-san feels," she sighed. She felt the surge of sympathy within her, but at the same time, longing for her family again.

"Yuki-kun and Kyo-kun must be looking for me now," she whispered.

She knelt down on the grassy field, looking out at the setting sun behind the mountains.


She didn't exactly knew why he was the first person she thought of, but upon remembering the gentle, reassuring smile of the nezumi, she felt much more at peace.

She nodded. "I must not lose hope. I will find my way home!"

She then heard sounds on the bushes. She turned around, alert. "Who's there?"

Suddenly, deck of spade cards appeared, and were heading for her!

"Seize her! She is the Queen!" the head of the cards yelled.

"Yes! The Stranger that Heaven sent down!" another yelled.

"W-What-" She didn't have the chance to ask anymore because she was seized roughly already. "H-Hey!"

Black spades? These are the ones Shigure-san warned me about!

"We shall bring her to the King of Spades to be examined…it is told that whoever should marry the Queen shall be glorified forever!"

"Let's go!" roared the army of cards.

"Let go!" she cried, tugging herself away from her captors, but to no avail. For a deck of cards, they sure were strong.

"Let her go," said a quiet male voice.

"W-Who's there?" asked a card soldier.

A figure appeared from behind the tree, arms crossed. He was looking at them testily. "I will remain nameless to creatures who I will later render lifeless."

"Why you-" The head of the army turned to his subordinates. "Get him!"

However, Tohru watched in fascination as the hooded stranger slashed the cards one by one with consummate ease. Until it was only him, her, and the freaking head guard.

"I want her," demanded the stranger calmly.

The soldier suddenly pushed her on the ground. "She's all yours then!" He ran away as fast as his little feet could.

Tohru stood up and bowed. "Thank you!"

Her hero drew his sword back. "Tell me one thing, and do it honestly: are you the Queen that the heaven sent to the King of Hearts?"

She blinked. His voice sounded familiar, but then, she didn't have time to ponder on that. She had to answer his question. "I have no idea! I was just following Momiji when I unexpectedly fell down here!"

"Fell down? You must be the one then." He took off his hood, and revealed the familiar unsmiling handsome face. "I am the Jack of Hearts, and I was sent here by the King of Hearts to fetch you."

Jack of Hearts?

King of Hearts?


"Yuki-kun?" she whispered.

The stranger before her didn't react.

Her heart fell.

Okaasan, help me! I'm hopelessly lost on this strange world!