A Little Fall of Rain

(second in the "A Little Fall" series)

by Ekai Ungson

this one is for enerirenie. who proves that one really good turn deserves another XD. i love you sweetie!

this is the second in two oneshot fics, and i hate myself because i haven't quite finished the other. gah. the first is "A Little Fall of Snow", which was posted on my LJ a few months back. (I can't seem to find the notebook I wrote it on, you see)

funnily, i wrote this on a dry, hot afternoon in school. the professor was making me sleepy. then, that night, it rained! very hard. i was soaked and laughing all the way home. i guess that's irony, isn't it?

The raindrops were pitter-pattering on the windowpane that afternoon, the repetitive sound of it was cool, comforting. Up front, Terada-sensei was reading a story about a rose-tree and a nightingale. Beside her, Sakura-chan was trying very hard not to fall asleep, Li-kun watching over her. But behind her, Eriol-kun had succumbed to his slumber, his head buried in his arms, his breath coming in, slow and steady, lulled to sleep by the rain. She angled her body in such a way that he would not be seen. She felt the cool air on her neck and smiled as Sakura-chan lost her battle with the Sandman: she fell asleep as the rain fell steadily on, with Li-kun keeping loving eyes on her.

The four of them found themselves later beside the shoe lockers near the school entrance, looking out at the unrelenting rain. Li-kun looked out at the weather, frowning as he rummaged in his bag for an umbrella. Sakura-chan pursed her lips, worried, "Tomoyo-chan, I forgot my umbrella-- what will we do?"

Before she could reply, Li-kun offered her his umbrella. "Here, Daidouji. You can use this so you and Sakura can walk home."

"But Syaoran-kun! You can't walk in the rain!" Sakura-chan protested.

She smiled, nodding. "Sakura-chan is right. Why don't you take her home instead, Li-kun? I'll stay here and help Hiiragizawa-kun do his detention."

Li-kun's frown deepened. "Are you sure?" he asked.

"You don't have to do that, Daidouji-san," Hiiragizawa-kun said. He had, somehow, been caught sleeping by Terada-sensei and was assigned to do cleaning. "You should go home with them."

"That's okay, I'd rather wait out the rain," she replied.

She and Hiiragizawa-kun waved as Li-kun and Sakura-chan walked out under the umbrella. They continued waving until the pair rounded a corner and was out of sight. At which they dropped their hands and looked at each other. The rain was still falling all about them.

They worked in comfortable silence, she erasing the chalkboard, he sweeping the floors. But by the time they were done, the rain still hadn't stopped. She looked out at the window thoughtfully. He came up beside her, watching the water fall down in waves.

"Why don't you call, ask someone to fetch you?" he asked her.

She didn't hear what he said. "I've never walked in the rain before."

And so they went out into the raindrops. She felt the water, cool on her face, and had to smile. The rain had slowed to a slow drizzle and was not as merciless as before.

The water was blurring up his glasses. She turned to him as he blinked repeatedly, trying to remedy the condition.

"How well can you see," she asked, "without your glasses?"

"Not very well, I'm afraid," he told her. "I can only see clearly until where you're standing right now."

Where she was standing was very close: only a few centimeters away, as they were walking side by side. "Can you remove them?" she asked, though, curiously.

He removed his spectacles obediently and placed them in his pocket. Behind them his eyes were as blue as the night sky. He looked younger. She knew that Hiiragizawa-kun was her age, but he always acted in such a refined manner that thinking he was young simply did not compute.

Struck by that idea, she paused. He paused as well, looking at her questioningly. Suddenly, she grabbed his arm and began to run, deviating from the usual path home. She ignored his startled, and then surprised expression as she made her way to the only place that made sense at the moment: Penguin Park.

The place was deserted, the children had all been ordered home. She made him sit on the swings. She moved to stand behind him and murmured in his ear, "Won't you play, Hiiragizawa-kun?"

He turned his head to face her. Their faces were so close-- she could feel his breath on her cheek. She looked into his eyes and placed her hands on the chains.

His eyes never left hers, but his hands moved up to cover hers on the chains. With that, she pushed with all her might.

Only, not succeeding. Hiiragizawa-kun was awfully heavy for her. She laughed at that, at the playfulness of it all, as she only managed to sway him a few inches. Her hair clung to her face, she stopped laughing when he brushed them away with his hand. Then he pulled her away from the swings, because the rain was picking up again, and they needed to find shelter.

The only shelter in the park was underneath King Penguin slide: they reached it, very wet, breathless and panting for air. She turned to look at him as he was looking at her, then, without a word he removed his jacket and placed it on her shoulders. They remained that way for a long time.

"You have diamonds in your eyelashes, Daidouji-san," he whispered. "And on your hair, too."

"Those are just raindrops," she replied just as quietly.

Then he bent down and touched his lips to her eyes, and then he trailed kisses down her hair, where the gems were supposedly. After that, it seemed only logical that he kiss her lips, sweet and light and long.

In her ears the rain was singing. One thousand voices all on one note and one song. She heard each drop fall to the ground and shatter, felt his hands on her face as he kissed her. Her hand dropped the bag she'd been clutching, then drew up and rested on his waist-- his shirt was not as wet as the rest of him, and his warmth seeped into her fingers and into her soul. He kissed her forever. She never wanted it to end.

When they broke apart the sun was setting. The rain had given way but not entirely-- there was still some mist falling from the sky. She looked up at him and smiled.

Beyond them it was still pouring rain. Some people thought it was a curse and a nuisance, and some people called it a blessing. For her, it was something else entirely. She looked up at his eyes and knew that she would remember him forever, just as the rain would fall each time it did. The rain would remind her of him and of this day, only a quiet afternoon, that with a little fall of rain, she fell in love and was happy.

o wa ri