A/N and disclaimer: This is just a quick songfic set about a year (book time) after the second OVA. Yeah, I'm pretending that the third one doesn't happen. Also, I don't own the song Desert Rose, Sting does and I unfortunately don't own Tasuki, Miaka, Taka or anything else about Fushigi Yuugi. I just like to play with them. :)


Tasuki stood at the window of his bedchamber watching the stars fade as the clouds moved in. It had been almost a year since Miaka and Taka had returned to her world. In that time he had gone back to Mt. Reikaku and become an advisor to Koji. Chichiri would occasionally stop in when he was passing by. With his help he had convinced the bandits that perhaps they could become honest men. Well, as honest as these guys can get, he thought with a wry grin. Empress Houki had offered to employ them as impromptu soldiers, protecting the region they dwelled in. And for the most part it was working.

Life was moving on.

The rain started softly at first. Tasuki closed his amber eyes and thought back on the one who had haunted his mind for so long.

I dream of rain
I dream of gardens in the desert sand
I wake in pain
I dream of love as time runs through my hand

Miaka woke suddenly to the crash of thunder outside. For a moment she was confused as her dream lingered for a moment and then faded. She was in Tokyo, in her apartment. And yet, for an instant she could have sworn she was back in the Universe of the Four Gods, watching Tasuki stand near a window. She shook her head and rubbed her eyes. How strange, she mused as she stood up and pulled on a robe. She often had dreams of her time in the book but this seemed different. She couldn't remember a single time that she had seem Tasuki like that.

Quietly she moved through the small apartment that she called home. After their return Taka had grown distant and often looked as though he was angry with her for something. Unable to deal with his moodiness she had moved into a place of her own. They still saw each other but it was as though the feelings between them had cooled. Perhaps that was for the best as she found that she dwelled more often on a certain firey haired bandit.

I dream of fire
Those dreams are tied to a horse that will never tire
And in the flames
Her shadows play in the shape of a man's desire

When Mt. Taikyoku had started crumbling around them he hadn't even thought twice. The moment he heard Miaka cry out in fear he had run to protect her. Sure, he thought, any seishi would have done the same. And somehow he had ended up in the lake with her. And she hadn't been breathing. The thought of her silenced forever spurred him on and he gave her his own breath. Amazingly she came back. It was then he realized that that was the most intimate contact that they had shared up to that moment.

The memory of her lips still burned, even now. As the rain beat down harder he opened his eyes again and ran a hand through his rumpled hair. It seemed as though every memory of her was forever seared into his mind. It was sweet torture, but one he would never regret. Does she think of me?

This desert rose
Each of her veils, a secret promise
This desert flower
No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this

Miaka stopped her pacing in front of a picture she had placed on her bookshelf. Seven smiling faces and her younger one beamed at her. She ran her gaze over each of her friends in turn then paused as she reached Tasuki's face. She felt that familiar tug on her heart. The only hint of his feelings toward her had been that one night at the inn. The night that he never mentioned again. She had fought because of the shock and sudden fear. It wasn't until she realized that he planned to kill himself to save them that she knew she loved him.

But he never mentioned that night and put a distance between them. She drew back to the refuge of Taka's arms in fear of being rejected.

A tear dripped onto the glass of the picture. Was I wrong?

And as she turns
This way she moves in the logic of all my dreams
This fire burns
I realize that nothing's as it seems

I miss her! His thoughts turned to her green eyes, her auburn hair, the way she laughed and smiled. And with every thought he felt his heart ache. Of all things he remembered the moment when she summoned Suzaku. How she burned with red fire. And when she turned, ready to fight for what she held dear, she had never been more beautiful to him. He had told her once, "For fire, I'm your man." Now he found that it wasn't quite true. For she was the fire consuming him.

I dream of rain
I dream of gardens in the desert sand
I wake in pain
I dream of love as time runs through my hand

I miss him! She thought suddenly as a pain went through her. True, maybe she had been wrong to pull away. But in the time since she had grown a bit. She knew where her heart belonged now. Miaka set the picture down and made her way to the door. She stepped outside into the rain and let it wash over her face.

It was the warm rain of a summer night. She closed her eyes as the lighting flashed above. I can almost hear him...

I dream of rain
I lift my gaze to empty skies above
I close my eyes
This rare perfume is the sweet intoxication of her love

He stepped onto the windowsill and jumped down onto the ground. Within moments he was soaked from head to toe. Still the rain did not dampen the fire inside him. He walked through the garden that he had managed to cultivate since coming back. After reaching a small clearing Tasuki reached into his pocket and pulled out one of his old jade earrings. Holding it tightly he lifted his face to the night sky and smiled. Miaka-chan, I never had the words to tell ya while you were here. Maybe I still don't. But wherever you are I hope you'll hear me.

I dream of rain
I dream of gardens in the desert sand
I wake in pain
I dream of love as time runs through my hand

In her pocket was a beautiful jade earring that had once belonged to him. When she and Taka had come back she had found it that first night as she changed for bed. Tasuki must have placed it there without her knowing after that night. Miaka had never mentioned it to Taka knowing instinctively how he would react. Now she held it in her hand and ran her fingers over the smooth stone. She wondered if Tauski knew what he was doing when he placed this in her pocket. Did he realize that it was a possible connection?

...I hope you'll hear me...

Tasuki! Miaka's eyes widened in shock. With a convulsive movement she wrapped her fingers around the earring. Please, she thought, say the words and I'll go back where I belong.

Sweet desert rose
Each of her veils, a secret promise
This desert flower
No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this

"I love ya."

Sweet desert rose
This memory of Eden haunts us all
This desert flower
This rare perfume, is the sweet intoxication of the fall

Miaka's tears were lost in the rain. "Suzaku," she whispered, "please take me home."

A warmth began to fill her and she felt the gentle wings of the beast god lifting her up. She closed her eyes and smiled. Within moments she felt herself set down again in a garden. The scent of roses in rain drifted gently to her. As the red light faded she saw him standing with his back to her, his face to the sky. For a moment she just took in the sight of him. Then she could bear it no longer. She spoke quietly.

"I love you too."

Tasuki spun to face her, his mouth open in shock. "Mi--Miaka?" he asked, stunned.

Smiling still, Miaka nodded. "It's me."

He was frozen to the spot. Fear that she would disappear if he moved even an inch filled him. "How did you get here? How long are you here for?"

"I asked Suzaku to bring me home. He brought me to you." She held out a hand and opened it revealing what was resting on her palm. His other earring shone up at him.

That broke the spell that bound him. He took a few quick steps futher and gathered her in his arms. For a long moment he lost himself in her scent. She clung to him as well, neither of them noticing that the rain had stopped falling. She tilted her head up to where he could hear her whisper.

"And I'll stay with you forever if you'll let me."

He pulled back and gave her a full-fanged grin of delight. "How can a guy resist that?" She gazed up at him with a smile before claiming his lips with her own.