Not mine, not going to be mine, don't want them to be mine b/c then I wouldn't get to play with them, not making any money off this (don't I wish I could!), don't have any money, don't sue.

Rated for language.

Book of Shadows - a CCS/YYH xover by Jochan

Prologue

A hint of the sticky heat of summer lingered in the still evening air, though the forecast promised the coming morning would be crisp and chill. The leaves of most of the trees in Tokyo were edged with vibrant golds, but the tree outside the Minamino residence was green from crown to root.

In his room, 17-year-old Minamino Shuiichi -- also known as Kurama -- bent piously over his homework, his pen scribbling elegantly over the page as he wrote a report for his advanced literature class. A sudden breeze from his open window tugged at his long red hair, blowing it into his eyes. He brushed it back and pushed his glasses slightly higher on his nose, as if that would keep his hair out of his face.

"Hello, Hiei," he called absently, well aware of the source of the breeze.

A shadow in the tree outside moved, then resolved itself into a second youth, a dark-haired boy dressed in black, standing on the window ledge. He was shorter than Kurama, with a bleached white cloth covering his forehead, and a small, heart-shaped face. Garnet-red eyes took in the surroundings flatly, then locked on to Kurama himself.

"Since when do you need glasses?" Hiei asked.

"Since never," Kurama answered, used to Hiei's habit of ignoring pleasantries. He set his pen down and turned to face Hiei with a smile. "They're preventative... meant for reading small print without damaging your vision."

Hiei stepped down onto the rug, frowning. "You don't need that crap."

"Mother doesn't know that. Using them keeps her happy, though, so..." Kurama shrugged, then tapped the bridge piece. "Besides, I look good in them." Hiei snorted quietly, and Kurama continued more seriously, "But I doubt you came by to ask me about my eyewear. How's Makai?"

"Boring." Closing the window, Hiei sat down pensively on the bed. "I need information."

"There's a surprise," Kurama murmured.

Hiei scowled, but continued, "What do you know about Clow Cards?"

Kurama blinked. "Clow Cards?" he repeated incredulously. Hiei nodded. "Why on earth do you need to hear about that?"

"Humor me."

"All right... The Clow." Kurama settled back into his desk chair, steepling his hands before him. "Clow was a sorcerer, a master of occidental as well as oriental magics, who lived between two and four centuries ago. He was the most powerful human magician of his day, perhaps of this millennium, and his life's masterpiece was a single deck of cards, named The Clow, similar to the occidental Tarot. There are 52 Clow Cards in the deck, ranging from D-class to B-class in strength, and two A-class, sentient Guardians. The Guardians are contained on the front and back cover of a book that holds the Cards. And that book, with every Card in it, disappeared the instant that Clow himself died." Hiei stared at Kurama impassively, and the redhead added, "Don't you know all this already? It's been a legend since Clow's days. Hundreds of demons vanished trying to get their hands on them."

"Describe the Guardians."

Kurama rolled his eyes. "A white-haired angel, dressed in blue and white, and a winged lion without a mane, wearing an iron collar and headpiece. Now will you tell me why you asked?"

"I wanted to know how much you knew," Hiei answered simply, eyes glittering.

"And why...? Oh, no." Kurama suddenly recognized that glitter. "No, no, no... Hiei, you aren't seriously thinking of looking for the Clow, are you?" The faintest hint of a smirk answered him. "You are. And you're going to try to talk me into going along. Forget it! You may as well go looking for Atlantis, or the Tomb of Amenowakahiko. You're more likely to find them!"

"I'm not planning to look for the Clow," Hiei said dutifully.

"Good."

"I've found it."

Kurama gaped at him. Slowly, Hiei's mouth curved into a broad, wicked grin.

"You..." Kurama's voice broke. He swallowed and tried again. "You've found it?"

"I've found the angel," Hiei corrected. "It wouldn't be too far from the deck, so... interested in a little heist?"

"Hiei... if you're serious, hell yes."

TBC