Shiawase no Mahou (Magic of Happiness)

Disclaimer: All CCS characters are not mine, not even dear Eriol-kun. Do not sue me.

Inspired by: My all-time favorite romance author, the incomparable Ms. Rose Tan.

"Ohayou, Daidouji-san!" greeted Hiiragizawa Eriol cheerfully upon seeing sixteen-year-old Daidouji Tomoyo sitting by the lockers that afternoon all by herself. He was a little puzzled- ever since he came back to Tomoeda just recently for a week's visit, he knew that Tomoyo was never alone. A lot of people took Sakura's place when the cherry blossom left to visit Li Syaoran for some months.

The raven-headed Tomoyo looked up at the boy who greeted her. She smiled at him a little. Of all the people she had associated with these past few months, it was only to Eriol whom she could give a sincere smile. She knew he knew that.

He sat down beside her and looked at the school clock. "Are you waiting for someone in particular?"

"N-Not really. J-Just my bodyguards..."

"Would you mind if I intrude upon your privacy?" he asked in his ever-polite manner.

"No, of course, I won't." Tomoyo tucked her knees under her chin. "Dakara, I won't be much of someone to converse intelligently with."

"I am aware of that when I asked your permission to keep you company," he said. With a flick of his wrist, he managed to produce a long-stemmed red rose between his fingers. "One red rose for a blue lady."

She looked at the rose, fascinated. "H-How did you do that?" she asked as she gratefully took the flower.

He chuckled. "It's magic."

"A magic trick," she corrected. There must be a scientific explanation for roses popping out from nowhere!

"Magic. Simply magic," he insisted. "People who refer to magic as magic tricks are mistaken."

"Why?" she asked, forgetting about her initial pensive sadness. Her whole attention was on the Clow reincarnation.

"Will you tell me what is magic, Daidouji-san?" he asked.

"A supernatural art. Something that enchants and wonders," she replied.

"Correct," he agreed. "Magic does not want to trick people, it wants to amaze people. It puts them in dreamy states and under spells. It enchants and wonders, just like what you said." He moved his hand swiftly, this time producing a coin. "Magic is not mere sleight of the hand; it is done with a purpose. To astound people, making them forget about the magician who's doing the act. Reducing the simple but noble purpose of the magician's intention to make people happy by imitated supernatural art into just a magic 'trick' would be pitiful. "

"Trick...spell...they're just both manipulation," dismissed Tomoyo, shrugging.

"Something supernatural can never be manipulated because it's above us and our understanding," he explained. "Also, magic exists because it gives people hope too...that no matter how dreary one situation's is, the impossible could still happen. Magic is the representation of the impossible." He started to play with the coin.

Tomoyo tried to take her eyes off the silver penny. "Magic then is for fools. Those who cannot take the harshness of realities in life, because they would always look at the impossible."

"Who created the line between the possible and the impossible anyway?" he asked. "Wasn't it man himself too? So what does a random man know about what we can do and what we can't?"

She bit her lip.

He let his coin roll on his palm. "Magic is everywhere, Daidouji-san. Faith is magic. The power to believe unconditionally is a rare gift, don't you agree?"

She nodded.

"Love is magic. It can happen between people who have practically known each other forever, but would only feel how deep it is in a single moment. It can also happen between enemies, between random strangers, between people divided by religion or color or loyalties. Love also crosses impossibilities, with its pure steadfastness and willingness to sacrifice for another's sake. Don't you think that the willingness to be hurt for someone else is a wonder too?" he smiled at her, a you-should-know-that smile.

He then looked up at the ceiling. "Of course, the magic of happiness."

She blinked. Sakura always tells her about that.

"Don't you wonder about how no matter how much you give away happiness to others, it never runs out? Instead, it multiplies further. It goes into an even longer way." He tossed the coin up and down, then it disappeared.

"Where did it go?" she asked, mystified. She then noticed his clenched fist. "Hey, it's in there!"

"However, the magic of happiness can be sometimes annoying too. Just when you were so sure that you have found it there..." He unclenched his fist, revealing nothing. "...it isn't." He suddenly pointed to the bridge of her nose. "Then you realize that it's just been right under the tip of your nose all this time." He smilingly took the coin away. "But learning where your happiness lies, it's magic."

Little by little, Tomoyo was realizing how his strange logic was getting into her. "You're hypnotizing me to believe you," she kidded.

"Isn't that magic too?" he asked, smiling boyishly.

Tomoyo smiled to herself as she remembered the talk she and Eriol had five years ago. Since that day, Eriol had become her magician. One who brought her heart magically back to life. Until the last day of his visit, he made her happy. He astounded her, fascinated her, and made her wonder.

She looked at her reflection again and smiled to herself. She knew that her white and blue blouse and skirt ensemble would meet his approval. She took her handbag and left the house, leaving a note to her mother that she was out to visit her friend.

As she walked, she couldn't help but remember the most memorable conversation she had with him.

"Mou, Hiiragizawa-kun, I still can't catch the trick!" she complained. She tossed his silver coin for the nth time with her hand. On her next throw though, Eriol was able to intercept it.

"Too slow," he teased. "You need a motivation."

"Like…"

"If you don't succeed with the trick this time, I'll give you a punishment."

She sighed. "Hi-kun, that is the farthest thing you can call from a motivation. That's threatening."

"Euphemism."

"Amen," agreed Tomoyo. She tried to make the coin disappear from her hand into her pocket again, but Eriol was able to catch her hand again this time.

But this time, he didn't let go of her imprisoned hand. He brought her delicate white hand to his lips, and before she could protest, his lips were caressing her fingers already lovingly.

His cerulean eyes smiled at her affectionately. "Want me to make time stand perfectly still right now?"

"Y-You're going to use the Time Card?" she guessed.

"Iie."

And before she could ask how, he was kissing her already, a kiss brimming with sweet, tender love. One that really did make everything else but him dim into insignificance.

He did make time stand still! It seemed like sweet, sweet eternity when he held her like this, touched her like this.

It was magic.  

"Ohayou, Hiiragizawa-kun," greeted twenty-one year old Tomoyo as she sat down beside him. "Mind if I intrude upon your privacy? Don't worry, I am aware that you can't converse with me the way I want to, but I don't mind." She brought out a red rose from her fingers. "One red rose for a man who taught me that I do not have to be blue all my life. See that? I mastered your technique already! I've been studying it really well, and it was easy once you get the hang of it."

"Just like what you taught me about making others happy…you taught me well, because you made me experience the magic of happiness too…even in a short while." She smiled at the grave beside her, then looked up at the skies, teary-eyed. "Ne, you cheated me, Hi-kun. You must have one of the best rooms up there already, laughing at me while watching me master your magic skills clumsily. But I did well, didn't I?"

"Even when your magic spell lasted too soon, I didn't regret being under it. Because I would have rather lost you like this than having lived my monotonous life without you teaching me the magic of happiness." She blew him a kiss. "I love you, Eriol-kun. Life indeed is short, but you lived it to the fullest…and you gave life to me too. Thank you for that."

owaru