Disclaimer: I do not own Fruits Basket, it's characters, or "A Cinderella Story". This fanfic was inspired by "A Cinderella Story"! Please read and review. New chapters soon to come!

A Mabudachi Story:

Chapter One

By Ayame Kazeai

Every family has it's secrets. Some have a felon for a cousin. Some a father that ran off with his girlfriend. Others may have it's young mother, it's alcoholic son, or it's baby with seven toes. This particular family, however, had a much deeper, darker secret- a certain thirteen members would transform suddenly into the thirteen animals of the Chinese zodiac if hugged by a non-related member of the opposite sex. As one could imagine, such a condition could be quite difficult. Accidents were sure to happen. A girl in love might fling herself into the arms of her boyfriend, or a man may find himself being tempted by the pleasures of the skin. And this situation was made all the more difficult by certain circumstances such as, say, puberty.

Hatori Sohma was, by far, no exclusion to the fact. At the ripe age of 16 years, he found himself watching the couples at his school longingly and wishing that he could have it too. Unlike his cousins and best friends Ayame and Shigure, who spent most of their time together, Hatori found it hard to satisfy himself in the ways he needed satisfied with the other members of the zodiac. This was due to the fact that he wasn't A) gay or B) desperate enough to mess with the girls of the zodiac, who were all well below the age of ten. It was quite the dilemma. But, even if he did have a way to get involved with a female, he probably wouldn't have the time to devote to her. Between studying, tending to his father, and learning the ways of the Sohma family, he hardly had the time to wave hello to a friend, better yet take a female out on a date. Which is quite possibly why he had Ayame and Shigure.

"Oh Haaaaa-chan!!!" a voice chirped from the hallway.

The raven haired boy quickly moved his gaze and concentration from the book on his desk and placed it on the doorway in front of him. "Yes?" he called out in return as he slowly rose to his feet. Moments later, in a flash of light, hair, and giddiness he found himself wrapped in the arms of a short boy with pale skin, dazzling golden eyes, and hair as pale as the moon in the night sky. A smile spread across the young snake's face as he nuzzled his nose into Hatori's cheek. Before Hatori had time to shove Ayame away, another boy strode into the room and stopped in a show of false surprise.

"Oh Ayame!! I leave you for five seconds to find you in the arms of another man?" the dog cried out melodramatically. A hand flew up to clasp his heart as his eyes turned to stare longingly out the window. "I thought we had a love that was strong!"

"Shigure!" the snake cooed out in return. "I would never leave you for another. It's just that Hatori was sitting here, looking so lonely and in need of love that I couldn't help myself!!" As he responded in his equally dramatic way, ivory arms abandoned their grip on Hatori and made their way to Shigure. Just a moment later, Shigure and Ayame were clasping one another and promising each other that they would never hurt each other again while Hatori looked off and shook his head. "Idiots."

Along with their zodiac based curse, the members of the Sohma family carried another flaw- each and every cursed member was hopelessly gorgeous. As you can imagine, this was just another bothersome condition. Hatori was your typical tall, dark, and handsome. His hair was of the finest ebony, eyes shone in the most startling shade of olive, and his body was that of perfection- strong, broad shoulders tapering down to a small waist. Shigure was much of the same, except that his features were more charming than handsome, and his eyes were a deep, puppy-dog brown color. However Ayame, on the other hand, had a much more effeminate appearance. He wore his silver hair much longer than one would think he could get away with, and had a beautiful face made all the more dramatic by his bright, sparkling copper eyes. While his two companions could be described as "drop dead handsome", Ayame reveled in the description of "the most beautiful boy that ever there was". The three had been best of friends since infancy, and even though they didn't have much in common, they enjoyed each other's company just the same.

Once the two finished their cuddling, attention was immediately returned to Hatori. "Tori-chan", Ayame started as he plopped down onto Hatori's desk, crossed his long, lithe legs, and casually flipped through the pages of a nearby book, "You've been different lately. I couldn't help but notice, considering my kind, careful, ever watchful nature." As he spoke, his eyes slowly made their way from the book beside him to Hatori, watching him with an air of mystery floating about him.

"I don't understand your question, Aya-chan." came his cool reply.

"Well, you use to be more care-free and fun. And by care-free and fun, I mean as care-free and fun as someone completely without the ability to be care-free and/or fun. And now you're just drab and moody." Ayame replied with a bit of disappointment on his face. Hatori had never quite been the lively one, but there was definitely something wrong with him.

"I have to agree." Shigure added. "You have been holed up in your room constantly lately. And when we see you at school, you float by as if we aren't there. It's as if you have too much on your mind to realize that we are there!"

"Maybe it's that I actually have things on my mind, and a mind to have things on. Which I know is hard for you to understand or comprehend." he shot back.

Both boys gasped and looked aback. Did he just…insult them? "Tori-chan!" Ayame cried, "That was unbelievably cruel and uncalled for!"

Hatori sighed and slumped down to sit on the chair at his desk. "I know, and I apologize. Things are just…stressing."

"What is stressing? Nothing is stressing for us!" the two boys replied simultaneously.

"I know, and that is half the battle…" he replied. Instead of being insulted, which would be the expected reaction, Shigure and Ayame beamed at each other happily, causing a great sigh to come from Hatori once again.

"Well, is there anything we can help you with?" Ayame cooed in return.

"Yes. Find a girlfriend for me who will not transform at my touch?"

"Mmm, that could be arranged."

"..without her being messed up and troublesome like Ritsu, dry and bitchy like Kagura, sickly, weak and horrid like Akito, or way too young to even look at like Rin and Kisa, please."

And for a moment, a look of devastation passed over the faces of both Ayame and Shigure.

"The fact that you would even think about that proves to me that you are both twisted and sick idiots." Hatori added coldly as he looked at them in disgust. Sometimes those two were just too much…

"Ah! I have a better idea!!" Ayame suddenly chimed in as a finger went up in the air. His face lit up like a firecracker on the forth of July. He quickly turned to point a lacquered fingertip at the monitor sitting on Hatori's desk and smiled as he added "You can find anything you need…"

"…via the internet" Shigure cut in.

end of chapter one