FF.net has been killing me for almost a week, but I still decided to write anyway. I wonder when will this get uploaded? *grumble grumble* The E+T Anniversary date has been moved to Sept.9, and for more infos, check out the URLs in my profile. I have to make a mirror site just so I can solve my bandwidth problems.

When I Wished on a Falling Star

Daidouji-san has always loved the stars – the night jewels that give out their own special light untiringly, even when the queen moon would most of times, petulantly take the lion share of the velvety night skies.

I guess that has what started me in taking Astronomy more seriously. I often hear her say that she wanted to be an astronaut, just so she can live her whole life studying the precious night gems. I promised her that I would go there someday, and if ever I do see one, I'll carve her name on it.

"Always the poet, eh, Hi-kun?" she said at one instance, laughing.

That was why even if Nakuru and Spinel found it absurd that I would go and take up space science, I pursued. It was worth it. When Daidouji-san learned that I took up the course she was frustrating over – her mother forced her to take up Business Management because she would inherit her mother's company someday -, she was overjoyed.

"Hi-kun, would you take me along to NASA?" she would ask every now and then.

To which I would reply constantly, "Yes, I'll take you along with me wherever I will go."

"You won't leave me?" she would ask, her endlessly lilac eyes seeking confirmation from my own blue ones.

"That is the last thing I would do, Daidouji-san," I would reply, smiling. A smile I would only give to her, and her alone.

Her face would light up like a thousand candles, then she would look up at the sky eagerly. "Then I can catch all the falling stars, and make all of my dreams come true."

Once, I asked what were the things she wished to have, when it was apparent that she had everything a girl could ask for. To this, she would laugh sadly.

"Everyone thinks that I've got everything, when in reality, I've got nothing." She looked out at the window, eyes shaking. "My life is as empty as a wind, ever since I lost my best friend."

Her shaking eyes crushed my heart, and I could have reached out to her and touched her when she suddenly turned to me, smiling forcibly. "The breeze blew too hard. My cherryblossom was blown far, far away. To a place where I could not follow."

It had been barely six months when Kinomoto Sakura died from an unexplainable illness that took Kinomoto Nadeshiko's life away too some years ago. It took me quite awhile to cheer her up, to encourage her to go on with her life, but it was worth it.

Definitely.

Her smile of courage could make the sun rise in my life even at midnight.

"Hi-kun?"

"Hmm?" I looked up from the book I was reading. It was a Friday evening, and I was in her mansion yet again to keep her company.

"Do you know where the morning star is?" she asked curiously.

"It won't appear until dawn." I looked up at the night sky. "What's with the sudden interest on it?"

"I heard that when it shines brightly at night, it would mean an omen. Is that true?" she asked.

I laughed. "No. Star positions cannot determine the fate of the world. Only Clow Reed can do that," I kidded.

She smiled. "You're right." She then shivered slightly.

"It's getting chilly out here, Daidouji-san," I said, standing up from my seat in the balcony. I took her shawl and wrapped it around her shoulders.

"No, I'm fine," she said gently. "I can stay here and endure the cold. I'm waiting for falling stars."

I smiled. At her age of seventeen, she still believed in wishing on falling stars.

She sensed my amusement. She pouted. "I know you think it's dumb, but falling stars are true. You have to believe it – it does grant wishes." Her eyes crinkled into a lovely smile.

"I'll catch one for you tonight then. Go to sleep."

"Very well." She sighed. "Lately, the weather has been cruel. Now I can't stargaze anymore until midnight."

"Summer night skies are the best," I told her. "Winter will be over soon."

"I hope it ends sooner," she said. "It was winter when Sakura-chan was taken away from me." Her voice broke. "I still can't believe that she's gone, never to come back. She has always been so full of life and cheer. I foolishly thought that death couldn't touch her."

I looked down, feeling her sadness seep into my heart. I suddenly reached out and squeezed her hand.

She looked at me gratefully. "Hi-kun always makes me feel better. Arigatou." She brought my hand to her cheeks. "If you go too, I'll stop believing in life."

"I am going nowhere," I said, taking her into my arms as the snow started to fall on us softly. "I'll stay here with you, for always, Daidouji-san."

Daidouji-san, the girl who was reduced to helpless vulnerability ever since she witnessed the cruelty of death. Daidouji-san, the girl whom I vowed in Sakura's grave that I would protect and take care of, come what may. Daidouji-san, the girl I cherish within my heart and soul.

When I leaned down to kiss her, her lips met mine. No words were spoken, our passion spoke out for us. I felt all my emotions crash out into the open like a broken dam. With my kiss, I declared to her all my love, every single space of my heart owned by her. I know that somehow, she felt the same way for me too.

"My dream came true…" she whispered inaudibly before crying on my chest.

Winter passed, but not for Daidouji-san. Eventually, she started to show the same symptoms Sakura did…

…before she died.

With all the powers I possess, I tried to help her, but to no avail. Until at last, exhausted as I was, I turned to the falling stars for my last resort. I wished for her recovery, both physically and emotionally. I then prayed to God – whose hand was the one that really weaves the fate of the world- to help her.

Two days later, my beloved Daidouji-san died.

Now, it had been exactly a year since the incident. I would soon be graduating from the university, armed with a diploma that would serve as my gatepass to NASA. I looked up at the night sky and smiled. "I will reach the stars soon…I'm glad that you reached them first though…just like what you wished before."

I still couldn't believe that I managed to live on – now I understood why Daidouji-san was like that when she lost Sakura. It was like, when I lost the person I love, I lost half of me too. But I would continue to live, because I know that would what Daidouji-san want me to do. I felt sad, yes, but not bitter. I know that she is much happier wherever she is right now, frolicking with her favorite night jewels.

Besides, I must live to make true to my promise. I still have to carve her name on a star.

Dear God, take care of my Daidouji-san tomorrow. Give her all my love.

A star streaked down the night sky.

Suddenly, I remembered what Daidouji-san told me minutes before she died.

"Just believe. Falling stars can be real, if you believe in their magic. I do so, with all my heart. Because when I wished on a falling star, I found you."

------ end -------

Not another angst. Gosh! *rolls eyes* See what FF.net deprivation can do to Syao-chan? She becomes morbid! Depressed! Maudlin! This is Alien-chan's fault! Her gloom and doom thingie rubbed on me too!

BTW, forgive the writer if the plot is cliché. I was just inspired by the gorgeous stars outside my window, as I was bainstorming for a fic idea.