AN: Woo!!! Christmas fic!!! My very first Christmas fic. A little late, but hey, who's counting? I'm going to make a valiant attempt to be original, but if there's a cliché or two in there (and there will be, most likely, as this is a lovely piece of romantic fluff stuff), please don't hold it against me. I'm trying here!!!
Also, this fic has a dedication!! I was chatting with KyteAura, and long story short, I told her I'd try to write a humorous ExT fic for her. This is the result. There's a lot of SxS in here too, but that's forgivable (I hope!). The ExT is closer to the end, but it's there! Kind of, sort of, maybe!!!! So I hearby dedicate this fanfic to KyteAura!!!! Read her fics, too. She's soooooo talented!!
On we go! I don't own CCS!!! It belongs solely to the geniuses at CLAMP. Poop on a stick.
Brightly colored lights twinkled merrily from where they were strung along the perimeter of the roof. A lush, forest-green wreath was hanging on the front door, topped with a large crimson bow. All in all, the outside of the house was plenty decorated for the holiday season.
And the inside didn't look too shabby either. In fact, more decorations were being hung, set up, and otherwise put out around the home as we speak…
"Kero-chan, get out of the tinsel!"
Okay, maybe not.
"You know better!" Kinomoto Sakura plucked the small plush toy-like creature from the box of tinsel and held him up to eye level, glaring angrily, despite how comical he looked. With a pitiful expression on the small round face, and several long, silvery strands of tinsel hanging from his ears and wings, it would have been hilarious if Sakura hadn't been so irritated.
"But I wanted to help…" Kerberos, the Guardian Beast of the Seal sniffled, with just the right amount of gusto. When he really tried, he was probably fully capable of charming the paint off a building at three hundred yards.
And Sakura wasn't quite immune. Yet, anyway. She sighed. "All right, but if you do it again, you're going back upstairs and staying there. Understood?"
"Yeah yeah yeah!" Kero squealed, doing a little cartwheel in the air.
Sakura sighed. Tinsel was messy stuff, though. Eriol had tried to help put the stuff on the tree, but judging from his attempt, he had never even touched tinsel before. He had ended up with the long strips of foil sticking to his clothes, hair, glasses, the works. He looked like Tina Turner, with all that fringe! Needless to say, Eriol-kun hadn't made a reappearance at the tinsel box.
"Get off me!"
Sakura turned and burst into laughter at the sight of Akizuki Nakuru, happily trying to stuff Spinel Sun—in his small form, of course—into what looked like a doll's outfit. An angel outfit, no less. She kept saying that he needed to wear his Christmas costume, but the unfortunate Sun Guardian seemed less than thrilled by the prospect of being dressed up in a white dress with gold wings and a halo attached. But try as he might, he couldn't get away; Nakuru was winning.
Still giggling, Sakura turned to appraise the rest of the situation.
Kero-chan was talking to Yukito-san—translation, he was trying to pester Yue-san, but Yukito-san was being pretty good natured about the whole thing. Otou-san was digging through a box in search of further decorations. Tomoyo-chan was videotaping the whole scene, though her camera tended to stay focused on Sakura more often than not. Every few minutes, she would sigh happily, or breathe the word 'kawaii…' But that was typical Tomoyo. Eriol, who still refused to touch the tinsel, was busying himself with some garlands and wreaths.
And, of course, what get-together would be complete without onii-chan and Syaoran-kun playing their favorite game, 'Let's See If Looks Can Kill.' If one looked closely, it was possible to see the lightning and firebolts coming from their eyes. Honestly, if looks were arrows, those two would have turned each other into pincushions eons ago.
"Okay!" Sakura clapped her hands. "The tree's done! What next?"
Fujitaka gave the decorated tree an appraising look and smiled. "It's perfect. Now let's see—"
"Sakura-san! Li-kun!" a slightly panicked voice interrupted their conversation. "Could you please give me a hand over here? I need a little help."
Syaoran rolled his eyes and followed Sakura towards the place from where the voice had originated—namely, Eriol. "Did you get into the tinsel again?"
The reincarnation of Clow Reed managed to keep from punching his decidedly uncute descendant in the face, and instead pointed to a box nearby. "Could you get me the stuff in that box?"
"Sure!" Sakura bubbled, skipping over to oblige. Syaoran followed, though he was displaying a little less enthusiasm about giving any sort of help to The Evil One.
But when they got to the appointed cardboard carton, both received a slight surprise. It was empty. Sakura even picked it up, flipped it over, and shook it to make sure that there wasn't anything in it that they were missing. Sure enough, the box was void of anything.
"Hiiragiziwa, there's nothing here," Syaoran said in exapseration. But when he turned to look at his evil ancestor, he noticed something immediately: the trademark Smirk of Evil (patent pending) had made its way onto Eriol's face, and it was directed at the two idiots standing there, looking blankly into an empty cardboard box. This did not bode well…
"Uh-oh!" Tomoyo giggled suddenly, putting one hand over her mouth in a vain attempt to hold back, or at least muffle, her laughter. "Sakura-chan, I think you're in trouble!"
"Hoe?" Sakura looked around, the famous Look of Confusion™ taking its place on her face.
Behind Tomoyo, Eriol was smirking. "And my darling descendant as well? Oh my…"
"Nani?" Syaoran looked just as bewildered as Sakura did.
But they just laughed and laughed. Sakura and Syaoran exchanged a look before Sakura decided to risk another try. "Ano…what's so funny?"
Tomoyo finally took pity on her clueless friend, and pointed up, to the ceiling over Sakura's head.
Sakura immediately followed the direction her friend had indicated, but Syaoran didn't. He suddenly knew exactly what was so damn funny.
It was just as Syaoran had thought. There was a nice sprig of mistletoe, hanging from the ceiling. It was a nice little plant, just hanging there as nice as could be. There was just one problem. It was dangling right over their heads.
The empty box fell forgotten from his hands as Syaoran suddenly realized exactly why they had been ordered over there to retrieve that box. This was a set-up. But it was too late now—the mob had descended, and there was no escape.
"Come on, Li-kun!" Eriol cajoled. "Just a little kiss, that's all it takes!"
"One tiny little smooch," Tomoyo teased, clutching her video camera carefully in both hands. She had it cued, poised, and ready to record if/when the monumentus occasion finally occurred. Which it hopefully would, considering that Eriol wasn't going to let them move unless they did.
Sakura was still blushing furious, and Syaoran wasn't doing much better. Much more of this, and he was likely to spontaneously combust. Which would have made Touya indescribably happy, he was sure. So dying on the spot was out of the question, because it would have made Sakura's brother waaaaaaaaaaay too happy. The same went for a black hole miraculously opening under him and swallowing him up into another dimension where there were no Eriols and no Touyas.
And no Sakura, either, but one couldn't always have everything one wanted, right?
"T-Tomoyo-chan…" Sakura stuttered. She looked mortified beyond belief.
In an attempt to stave off further embarassment for both of them, Syaoran made an escape attempt, but he was blocked by a couch that conveniently moved into his way. He whirled around and bestowed one of his trademark glares on his aggravating ancestory (alliteration!!!).
"You're not escaping until you plant one on her," Eriol said casually.
Syaoran muttered something decidedly ungentlemanly about Eriol's parentage, but managed to restrain from flipping Eriol the finger. After all, there were ladies present, and that would just give the stupid big brother another reason to kill him.
Sakura hadn't really said anything. She was still managing to look halfway between miserable and mortified, and her face was doing the best impression of a ripe apple that Syaoran had ever seen.
He turned to her. "Well?"
"They're not letting us go," she half wailed.
He put his hands on her shoulders. "I'll kill him later. I promise." If I kill him for the insult, then I won't have to thank him for the opportunity. Too bad she'll never know…
Sakura giggled, then tilted her chin upward. "Let's just get it over with. Then maybe they'll leave us alone." I'm really in no hurry, but you're probably embarassed enough as it is…
Syaoran took a deep breath and dipped his head.
The kiss wasn't really a kiss. It was more of a peck, as their lips barely brushed. But just by the way they were both blushing furiously from head to toe, one would have thought that they had been caught in some far more forbidden, embarassing activity than sharing a tiny kiss under the mistletoe.
The second the brush was over, both jumped back, ending up several feet apart. Both were practically glowing crimson as everyone around them cackled with hysterical laughter or, in Touya's case, began muttering something about 'torture,' 'Chinese brat,' and possibly something concerning a red hot poker or fire ants or something involving flames—it was kind of hard to hear exactly what he was saying.
"There," Syaoran snapped. "Happy now?"
Eriol reached a finger under his glasses to brush away tears of laughter. "Oh, I am a very happy person right now. And Daidouji, I'd like a copy of that video, if you don't mind."
Syaoran stormed by the two evil, manipulative plotters and ended up back over by the tree. He was so furious and so embarassed that he failed to notice that Eriol was moving his fingers in a very specific pattern…and then the mistletoe disappeared from where it had been.
To compound Syaoran's misfortune, everyone followed him over to the tree. Eriol was smirking and making comments about whether or not they should start planning the wedding. Touya was still muttering, and his eyebrow was twitching like crazy. Sakura was red as a cranberry, and not really looking at anyone; she seemed to be conducting a very in-depth study of her hands, which she had conveniently folded in her lap when she sat.
Tomoyo wasn't really participating in the conversation at all. For that matter, she wasn't really paying much attention to anyone else, as she was too busy murmuring in baby-talk to her beloved camera. After all, inside that camera was a tape on which was recorded Sakura-chan's very first kiss ever. Okay, so said kiss had been slightly coerced under the mistletoe by basic force, but hey! A kiss was a kiss!
Syaoran glowered up at Eriol, not really paying attention to anything Eriol was saying. All he could really think about was that kiss. It had been under extreme coercion, and protested by both parties, but it was a moment he would cherish forever. Okay, so it wasn't quite as romantic as he might have liked his first kiss to be, but it was a kiss with the girl of his dreams, so he wasn't going to complain. Much.
Hey, if he didn't complain at all, that would be saying something that he didn't want to be said right at this moment in time. Trying to push thoughts of THE KISS out of his head, he attempted to refocus on whatever it was that Satan—aka Eriol—was saying. And he caught the tail end of it.
"Oh my," Eriol was saying with another upward glance. "This just isn't your day, is it?"
Syaoran blinked, then joined Sakura in looking up at exactly the same moment. Sure enough, there was another sprig of mistletoe dangling over their heads. It was silently mocking them, taunting them.
Several colorful Mandarin curses escaped Syaoran. Never before had he had such a strong urge to whip out one of his trusty fire charms and fry something. That stupid, stupid plant…one little tiny ofuda was all it would take…but if he set the house on fire, he had the feeling that some people might be a little bit peeved with him. Damn.
Sakura's brow knitted in thought. Strange…I didn't think we had this much mistletoe up around the house…maybe Otou-san and onii-chan got some more. I wonder why…oh well.
"Well, well, well, this is someone's lucky day," Nakuru trilled from over beside the Christmas tree. She was cheerfully tying Spinel—who had finally been stuffed into the angel outfit—to one of the tree's branches. Spinel, however, did not seem very happy with this arrangement.
The two trapped beneath the demonic plant both looked like they were going to bolt, but were blocked by their two manipulative little friends. For the first time ever, Sakura felt the urge to just shove her best friend out of the way and run for her life.
"We're stuck again," Syaoran said. A slight lift in his voice indicated that it was, in fact, a question, but judging from his posture and tone of voice, it really was more of a statement.
"Just do it," Eriol ordered with a smile.
This was a little closer to an actual kiss than the first time around—the contact actually lasted longer than a nanosecond, but the aftermath was exactly the same. The moment they pulled apart and seemed to realize exactly what they were doing, turned bright red, and leapt apart—only this time, they each ran into a wall in their frantic attempt to put distance between them.
"Kawaii…" Tomoyo breathed, as Syaoran stormed past, in an attempt to get away. She followed him religiously, camera poised and recording. She jumped a mile, though, when he suddenly whirled and glared right into the Eye of Satan—otherwise known as the camera lens.
"Daidouji," Syaoran said through clenched teeth. He was doing a marvelous job of keeping his temper. "Get that camera out of my face before I pull a fire charm and show you how we handle annoying things in Hong Kong."
She leapt back with a gasp of horror, and clutched the treasured piece of equipment in both hands, as though by simply hugging it to her chest, she could protect it from whatever magic Li Syaoran might decide to throw her way.
He smirked at her, and folded his arms across his chest in a slightly menacing pose.
Tomoyo sighed in exasperation and disappointment, and rolled her eyes towards the heavens, as if she thought perhaps the answer to whatever question she was asking was written on the ceiling over her head. Her eyes stopped, widened, and she burst into hysterical laughter.
Everyone already knew exactly what she was laughing about, but for the sake of tradition—and possibly humor—all eyes shot upwards to the ceiling above Sakura and Syaoran's heads.
"This is getting suspicious," Sakura murmured, staring at the small sprig of green leaves with bright red berries and a crimson bow attached to it.
"Once is chance, twice is coincidence, but thrice is conspiracy," Yukito quoted with a laugh. "I'd say we've reached the conspiracy level by now, wouldn't you? So who are the conspirators?"
Every eye in the room simultaneously moved to glare at Eriol.
By some miracle, he actually managed to look innocent. "Nani?"
"This really does have your evil little fingerprints all over it, Hiiragiziwa," Syaoran growled, trying to hide the fact that he almost felt like thanking the guy for giving him the chance to actually kiss Sakura, even if it was simply a little kiss under the mistletoe, in front of everyone. Still, a kiss was a kiss, and he almost felt like thanking Eriol.
Key word: ALMOST.
"Oh, come on," Eriol threw his hands up in the air in a gesture of exasperation. "It's not like you two are complaining! You both want it, so just use it as a really good excuse, take the opportunity, and get on with it already!"
"Nani?!?" Sakura and Syaoran managed to screech in perfect unison—they were even in the same key and everything. It was as impressive as it was hilarious.
"What do you mean, 'we both want it?'" Sakura yelped. Her face was happily doing its best impression of a ripe tomato. At the same time she said that, an equally redfaced Syaoran yelled, "What the hell is that supposed to mean?"
"It means exactly what I said," Eriol said matter of factly. "Quit kidding yourselves, admit you like each other, and let the rest of us live in peace!"
"You're so full of it!" Syaoran hollered. "I want to, but she doesn't! So just shut up!"
At the exact same time, Sakura finally lost her temper as well. "Eriol-kun, you're wrong this time! He doesn't love me back, okay?"
The room went dead silent as everyone realized exactly what the two had just said. And Sakura and Syaoran looked around—at the tree, the lights, the ceiling, practically everywhere except at the others in the room with them or each other.
But after getting over his momentary shock that his plan had really worked and that they had actually had admitted what they had, Eriol fell over onto the floor and started to laugh uproariously, rolling around on the carpet.
Touya was cursing rather fluently, using several very colorful phrases, and describing several extremely interesting acts that made Sakura stop and wonder if such things were anatomically possible.
For the most part, the other reactions were somewhere in the middle, dangling between laughter and amusement, and shock and amazement. The only real exception was Tomoyo, who was squealing as softly as one can squeal, and had her trademark camera poised and ready. She had already captured the moment of confession, and was now waiting somewhat impatiently for what was to come next.
"You…like…me?" Syaoran stammered.
Sakura was blushing so hard, it looked like she was going to spontaneously combust. But she managed a very slight nod as her only response.
The room lapsed into silence again, as the two simply stared at each other. Well, Syaoran stared at Sakura, anyway. Sakura seemed more determined to stare at her shoes as though they held the very meaning of life. Everyone else just looked back and forth between the two. It was like watching a tennis match, with everyone's heads swiveling from left to right in perfect sync, waiting for something to happen.
Finally, something did happen. Syaoran stopped looking at Sakura—and shifted his gaze to the floor as well. The atmosphere in the room shifted momentarily from anticipation to disappointment.
Suddenly, something else happened. Sakura looked back up at the ceiling, at the mistletoe. (*readers flame the author and leave*)
Then, so suddenly that everyone jumped, Sakura yelled, "Oh, to hell with it!"
In two strides, she closed the gap between her and Syaoran, threw her arms around his neck, and laid it on him. Passionate. Right on the lips. After getting over his initial shock, Syaoran apparently decided she had the right idea.
Naturally, the room broke out into reactions that suited the personality of each individual person.
Fujitaka was stunned.
Touya was twitching.
Yukito was smiling.
Tomoyo was sighing.
Kero was yelling.
Nakuru was squealing.
Spinel was screaming (for help).
Touya was still twitching—and had started muttering.
Tomoyo was mentally beginning to make funeral plans for Syaoran.
Yue, deep inside Yukito's subconscious, was busily trying to figure out what the best intercept course would be when Touya lunged forward to grab Syaoran by the throat. Not that he personally cared a great deal, but if his Mistress—his TEENAGE Mistress—got angry, it probably wouldn't be very pretty.
Kero had stopped yelling and started crying—full fledged waterworks—because his little Card Mistress was all grown up—or so he said.
Eriol was cracking up. "My goodness, it finally worked." He snapped his fingers, and the mistletoe dropped to the floor at Sakura and Syaoran's feet.
Sakura picked it up and looked at it, as realization dawned on Syaoran's face. "You were moving that thing, weren't you? It really was you the whole time!"
"Guilty," Eriol cackled. "You can thank me later."
"After I permanently pound your glasses into your face," Syaoran growled. The only response he got was more laughter. Syaoran made a silent vow to thank Eriol later—and immediately after voicing his gratitude, drop the reincarnation off a roof somewhere. Maybe Tokyo Tower or some such thing.
Clow Reed or not, Hiiragiziwa Eriol was going down.
"I'd say that mission was a success," Eriol laughed as he stepped over to stand next to his partner in crime. Daidouji Tomoyo was sighing happily, stroking her camera as though it were a cherished pet. But she was in a fantastic mood. After all, in her opinion, she had just gotten the shot of a lifetime.
Suddenly, Yukito started to laugh. Hard and loud.
Everyone looked at the gray-haired young man in confusion. Even Touya stopped plotting Li Syaoran's long, messy, excruciatingly painful death to stare at his best friend and love. "Yuki?"
"Look," he gasped, pointing towards the ceiling over Eriol and Tomoyo's head. His hand was shaking because he was laughing so uproariously.
All eyes moved upwards, following Yukito's gesture.
And all followed his example by busting out into hysterical laughter.
All except Eriol and Tomoyo. They hadn't even looked up. They were both staring straight ahead, backs ramrod straight and eyes wide as saucers.
"I don't want to know what's so funny…" Tomoyo muttered, even though she was pretty sure she already knew what the big deal was.
"Oh yes you do!" Sakura giggled. "Go on, take a look. You know you want to!"
Two pairs of eyes, one sapphire blue and one amethyst purple, slowly drifted towards the ceiling. And the sight they beheld was a confirmation of what they had already known.
A sprig of mistletoe, dangling from the ceiling. Right above them…
"Ummm…" Eriol said, his trademark large vocabulary momentarily escaping him.
"Well, this is awkward, isn't it," Tomoyo said. It was a statement rather than a question.
The sound of someone clearing his throat made them both look downwards again. It was Syaoran, holding Tomoyo's video camera, and watching them with a look of utmost victory on his face.
"I don't think Sakura and I were the only ones who want to have an excuse, if you catch my meaning," Syaoran teased. He was bordering on downright giddiness! "And the sad part is, that's the actual spot where the mistletoe is supposed to be hanging!"
"Li Syaoran!" Eriol admonished, earning laughter from his decidedly uncute descendant.
He would have gone further, explaining logically—and probably mathmatically—why this was a bad idea. But apparently, Tomoyo had just had enough. And that meant she took action.
She grabbed the sides of Eriol's face, and forced him to turn his head and look at her. His eyes widened. "Okay, Hiiragiziwa. This is an example of 'turnabout is fair play.' And if I know Sakura-chan and Li-kun, they're not letting us out of here until we oblige. So shut up and take it like a man!"
Without further ado, she leaned a little closer, and laid it on him. Planted one right on the lips.
It wasn't terribly long, and she pulled back, let go of his face, and sat back, arms folded over her chest, giving him a Look. She was also flashing him a surprisingly Eriol-like smirk.
Eriol reacted in a manner completely befitting the reincarnation of one of the greatest sorcerors ever to have lived. He went cross-eyed, stammered for a few seconds, and then his eyes rolled back into his head, and he fell backwards in a dead faint.
The room was dead silent for a moment, then burst into applause.
"All right, Tomoyo-chan!" Yukito laughed.
Syaoran grinned from behind the eyepiece of Tomoyo's trademark video camera. "Daidouji, this should make a very interesting movie."
Nakuru was squealing with sheer, unadulterated joy; she was also cheerfully stuffing sugar cookie after sugar cookie down poor Spinel's throat. And Spinel was still in the tiny angel costume. Poor Spinel.
"Well, now that that's taken care of," Tomoyo proclaimed cheerfully, "let's finish these decorations, shall we?" As per her suggestion, the decorating resumed, save for Eriol: he was still on his back on the couch, staring up at the ceiling through wide eyes.
And Nakuru continued to gorge Spinel on sugar, except now she was singing Christmas carols at the same time. The resulting commotion probably could have shattered glass.
"Tomoyo-chan," Sakura nudged her best friend as they were untangling a long garland; when Tomoyo leaned over, Sakura whispered, "do you remember what onii-chan was saying earlier, when Syaoran-kun and I were…um, kissing? Do you think that was possible?"
Creases crossed Tomoyo's forehead as she frowned in thought. "Well…I think it could be done…but only if they were really, really flexible…or something like that…"
"Hoeeee…" Sakura breathed.
AN: Wow, that ended up really weird. I hope this worked. I made Tomoyo kinda weird at the end there…oh well. I'm the author, I can do what I want!
And did you like the big kiss between Sakura and Syaoran? I decided to be a little different. It seems like all the fics out there have them staring passionately into each other's eyes, blah blah blah…believe me, I've done it too. So I thought, "To hell with it," and lo and behold, this is what happens! A little OOC for Sakura, but I figure Syaoran would be more likely to just stand there and stutter. Girl power…or something. *grins*
*Easily entertained readers applaud* *All other readers roll their eyes, flame the author and leave*
I'm primarily a drama/angst writer, simply because my sense of humor is pretty warped, and a lot of people probably wouldn't get some of my gags. Plus, I'm a musician, an artistic person—I'm dramatic by nature! And extremely unorganized! Heeheehee…
Anyway, KyteAura, I hope this was okay. I know it was more SxS than ExT, but really, it seemed like more of an Eriol prank than something Syaoran or Sakura would be able to think up. Thanks for reading, and double thanks to anyone who decides to drop me a review…and please, don't actually flame me!!