Replies to some reviews that stood out to me
"Renzieyoung" yes! I'm so glad you noticed. I was actually inspired by the events in PREP, and I'm glad somebody caught on. Thank you for your support!
"Dandy Mandy" I truly enjoyed reading your review because it had criticism as well as compliments. And it was amusing how you described the many clichés that run about fanfiction. I'll try and oust those standards.
"SD" wow, what you said really got me because I absolutely had no idea how I was actually going to go about writing how private school work. No, sorry, I don't attend a private school myself but I do know how it feels to want to be alone. I hope more readers can relate to my story like yourself and you are the first out of plenty to tell me something like that, thank you!
"funkymoleperson" I know, and I'm so sorry for being like that. I will try harder now, I'm starting to actually keep notes and plan ahead so I don't run in to any more mile thick writer's block again. Thank you so much for your support!
And now, on with the show!
Girl with Green Eyes
Sakura Kinomoto had always been told how pretty her eyes were long before she could remember. She didn't think much of them but after that Sunday she found herself staring in to emerald pools every morning. Her eyes were a rather strange color. In the sunlight, people had said they turned an orange greenish gray. In the dark they were as dark as the deepest shadow in a forest. Her older brother had once said they reminded him of fungus on an ugly log. That was as close as her brother ever got to a compliment. But now as she stares ahead at her biology teacher, her eyes were simply green.
"Do I have everyone's tests? No? Ah, yes, sorry Takafumi…I'll be right there."
Sakura twirled her pencil between outstretched fingers. Syaoran. She started, oh no, she had been thinking about him again. It had been barely two weeks and she could not stop thinking about Sunday. Of course she kept the secret dearly to herself; no one would've believed her anyways. It wasn't at all a surprise when he completely ignored her last Monday. She had been expecting it, but it was still…almost heartbreaking.
"Oh!" Sakura watched her pencil clatter to the shiny marble floor. It rolled under her chair out of sight. She bent over to retrieve it but she suddenly found her pencil held in front of her face by a very pale slender hand.
"…thanks" She said quietly and took it by the tip.
"No problem," The girl replied cheerfully. Daidouji Tomoyo, the girl Hiirigizawa wanted to meet. She was the other class president, clearly that meant she was highly popular. Sakura had heard Meiling talk about her almost as much as she talked about Syaoran. Of course Meiling wasn't exactly telling Sakura how gorgeous Tomoyo looked in her uniform; it was a pretty well known fact on campus that Meiling hated Tomoyo. "She thinks she's all that because her mom owns that fashion line, it's not like my family doesn't own a company about twice that size!" Sakura found it hard to believe that such a sweet looking girl could possibly act like she's "all that".
Tomoyo rose up slightly off her seat, Sakura edged away from her, "Sakura…right?"
Sakura hesitated and did a quick mental run through before coming to the conclusion that she was the only 'Sakura' in the class, "…yes?"
"Do you want to be lab partners?"
Sakura was confused, "Huh?"
Tomoyo slipped out of her seat and sat sideways on her table, "Were you listening? We're choosing lab partners right now." She laughed a little, "But I don't exactly blame you, I hardly pay attention myself."
Sakura lifted the corners of her lips for about a second. Tomoyo didn't seem so bad. Sakura didn't understand how Meiling could hate someone like Tomoyo. But knowing Meiling…she could easily grow to hate an angel or a saint. Sakura wondered if there was anyone Meiling liked but that was a stupid question. Who else but Syaoran Li?
"I'm Daidouji Tomoyo, nice to meet you Kinomoto Sakura!"
Sakura took her hand. She was so pale it was as if her skin never even touched light. But that made her all the more beautiful which is probably what sent Meiling screeching and howling.
"Can I call you Sakura?" Tomoyo asked suddenly. Sakura's grip slackened, a burst of confidence had surged through her body when she heard Tomoyo's words. Suddenly Meiling seemed very small and insignificant.
"Yes, only if I can call you Tomoyo," Sakura was grinning.
"Deal!" They shook hands. Tomoyo laughed quietly, "You have a very pretty smile, I don't understand why you don't use it more often."
"Oh…" Sakura stopped smiling.
"See? There, I'm more used to seeing that face."
Sakura didn't understand, "This…face?"
Tomoyo pushed herself from the table and placed herself in the chair in front of Sakura, "You seem like the type of person who doesn't want much attention, but I don't think that's what you really want."
"I don't?" They stared at each other until Tomoyo broke the silence with a kind smile.
"You know what, you kind of remind me of myself a long time ago."
Sakura didn't know what to say, but she couldn't keep her eyes of this girl. This girl just defied everything she had tried to do for the last couple months. She wasn't one bit fooled by her act.
"Actually, I wasn't like this before." Sakura said suddenly. She wasn't even quite sure why she did.
Tomoyo was not one bit phased, "Did you go to a public school?"
"Yes…and I had a lot more friends…people…liked me.' Sakura said quietly, her eyes fixated on the smooth table countertop. She had told herself the same thing a million times at night. She missed her old friends but at the same time she didn't miss them. They were a part of history and now since she was going to Tomoeda she had to adjust to the new surroundings.
"You're lucky." Tomoyo said.
"This is actually my very first school. It's my first time learning with so many people."
Sakura looked at her with a puzzled expression.
"I was home schooled, my mother hired tutors." Tomoyo explained, "In my neighborhood everyone used to pick on me because I was so quiet. All I wanted was to be left alone, I thought I could live my whole life with my mom and that's it. Growing up proved me wrong so my mom decided I should meet new people, people my age."
Sakura couldn't believe something so personal was being shared between them. Daidouji had so many friends it seemed impossible she had come from such an isolated background, "You're doing a very good job then." Sakura commented, disbelief clearly evident in her voice.
Tomoyo laughed, her eyes shut and her cheeks stretched when she laughed. Sakura decided she liked Tomoyo, but it seemed ridiculous someone like Tomoyo would suddenly decide to be friends with someone like Sakura. Hardly anyone knew Sakura, hardly anyone noticed her. Usually people referred to her as –
"The girl with green eyes," Tomoyo said suddenly. Sakura almost jumped out of her seat in shock. Tomoyo was full of surprises.
"Mind reader!" Sakura accused, "I was just about to think that."
Tomoyo placed a hand over her heart and looked at the ceiling as if she was congratulating herself, "Just one of my many useful talents!"
They both laughed. A pair nearby turned to stare at them. For once Sakura didn't really care.
"Well, actually, I was just about to say how all my friends used to talk about this girl with green eyes, I became quite curious. So I decided one day I would meet this girl with green eyes and I must say I'm very glad I did."
Somewhere in Sakura's mind was still registering the idea that people had still been talking about here even though she had thought she did a perfect job of staying unnoticed. A voice startled them both.
"Well! I'm very sorry to break up this love fest but, I do think the rest of the class is already done with half the experiment, so Kinomoto and Daidouji, I wonder why your frog still appears to be in one piece hm? Are we confused, ladies? Were my directions unclear?"
"I'm very sorry Miss Itakira, we'll get started right away," Tomoyo said sounding convincingly guilty.
"I see...however Miss Daidouji, as freshmen class president I expected more from you." The professor peered at Tomoyo over her tiny glasses. Sakura simply watched how Tomoyo conversed flawlessly with the older woman. It wasn't a wonder how Tomoyo could easily become a teacher's favorite student. She was so talented in adapting to anyone as easily as water could adapt to bottles of all shapes and sizes.
"Yes Miss Itakira, I'll try my best."
"Very well, continue your work and I'll be back to check on your progress." Miss Itakira walked past Sakura's table and could be heard commenting on how someone had accidentally gone too far with dissecting their frog, "Idiots! A frog's heart is not some kind of joke!"
Tomoyo let out a quick sight of relief, "See what happens when people know you, sometimes I wish I was invisible."
"Well I can help you with that." Sakura whispered and they shared a small laugh.
After an interesting biology period Sakura welcomed the lunch break. Her head needed an outlet for all the things they learned about a frog's limbs. It was amazing how she still had an appetite while most of the class had already emptied their guts in garbage cans as soon as they left the room. Tomoyo had rushed off for a leadership meeting in the school's student body office. Sakura felt oddly misplaced once the girl had left. The cafeteria, as usual, was crowded and packed with hungry teenagers. Sakura slipped inside, being relatively small compared to some of the other junior and senior girls.
Sakura caught Meiling waving at her from a table not so far away. But that wasn't what had her attention. Her heart thumped twice against her chest. Syaoran was sitting there.
Her feet felt strangely like lead as she forced them to move. She walked closer and closer and her heart raced faster and faster. Syaoran wasn't even look at her yet. Sakura gulped and wondered if she looked too nervous. She forced herself to remain calm, leaving no hint on her face that could possibly show she had been anxious. Who was she kidding? She hadn't seen Syaoran up close for two weeks. Of course her palms would start clamming up.
"What's wrong with you, Kinomoto?" Meiling asked when she finally reached the table.
Sakura watched Syaoran glance her way but it passed as quickly as if a feather had brushed her face, "Hello Meiling…" Sakura greeted quietly.
"Sit down! You look like some homeless old man." Meiling scooted about two inches to her left, leaving a tiny space for Sakura to squeeze in.
Sakura sat and immediately felt uncomfortable crammed between Meiling and a girl she barely knew. Syaoran didn't look at her so she stared at her lap and played with her fingers.
"Syao…this is my roommate, Kinomoto Sakura! The one I've been telling you about, didn't you say you wanted to meet her?" Meiling crooned, her hands twirled in the air as she spoke. She didn't waste her breath introducing Sakura to Syaoran not that she knew they had already met not so long ago. Syaoran turned his amber eyes towards Sakura who looked away and blushed. Did she believe her ears? Syaoran had asked to meet her?
"Why did you call me here, Meiling?" Syaoran said, his eyes still hovering on Sakura's cast eyes, "You told me you wanted to ask me something."
"Oh of course! How could I forget about that?" Meiling exclaimed, she brushed her long black hair back with one hand, "I was just wondering when your birthday was, you know, so I can maybe get a heads up."
Sakura almost choked on the air she was breathing. Meiling was flat out lying. Sakura knew for a fact that Meiling had circled Syaoran's birthday on the huge calendar she hung over the bed with at least a gazillion markers and gel pens. She had even decorated the empty spaces with hearts and 'I love you's. Sakura gaped at her roommate who wasn't even sparing her a single glance. Her attention was occupied with Syaoran who was staring at her with a 'that's it?' sign labeled across his face.
"Wait," He said, "You don't know when my birthday is?"
"No, of course not, why else am I asking you for?" Meiling chuckled as if Syaoran had said something funny.
"But Meiling…" Sakura spoke with a tremble in her soft voice, her head was still spinning.
"Yes Sakura? How may I help you?" Meiling snapped.
"Aren't you Syaoran's cousin, so, I mean, shouldn't you know when his birthday is?"
Syaoran was staring straight at her. His face was unreadable but in his eyes, Sakura thought she saw a small glimmer of pride almost. Meiling, on the other hand, looked downright furious. Sakura knew she would have to face Meiling's wrath sooner or later. She wished it would be later.
After Meiling and her crew left the table in a storm cloud of bad luck, Sakura was alone with Syaoran who was already getting up from the table.
"That was very brave of you." Syaoran whispered in to her ear as he walked by. His warm breath tickled the side of her cheek and she felt a tremble run up her spine. She suddenly wondered if anyone else had seen it happen, had seen Syaoran Li bend over to whisper something in her ear. She wondered if it might have looked like…perhaps something else from far away. A peck on the cheek maybe. Before she could react he had already disappeared in to the crowd. Sakura looked around her and was disappointed to see that no one appeared to be looking in her direction.
Sakura's stomach growled seconds later. All that drama had made her forget about lunch.
The halls were nice and cool when Sakura reached her dorm. She let her head rest against the door and she slid a finger down until it lay on top of the handle. Did she really want to walk straight in to the dragon's lair? No. No, she really didn't want to. But unfortunately, her bed was in the dragon's lair and she didn't have a prince charming to rescue her from its wrath. Sakura convinced herself that this hadn't been the first night she hesitated in front of her door. Meiling was always cranky during the evenings, usually when a certain plan had failed to please Syaoran, but Sakura feared today was going to be slightly different from other days. Sakura had crossed a fine line today. Her head began to throb against the freezing flat slab of painted wood. She inhaled deep and pushed down hard against the handle. The door swung open and she saw Meiling's face. Her expression said it all. She was pissed.
"Good evening Mei – "
"SO! So, we're getting smarter are we?" Meiling cut in before even waiting for Sakura to shut the door behind her.
"I didn't mean to, I just thought."
"I don't know how you learned we were cousins but you just thought how great it'd be to make me look like an IDIOT in front of Syaoran didn't you?"
Sakura heard the satisfied click as the door slid in to place and exhaled. Meiling didn't look too good. Sakura wasn't going to sleep in peace tonight.
"Do you even know why I called you over in the first place?"
Sakura felt like a small fly caught in a deadly black widow's web. It seemed to fit well because Meiling was wearing her black hair with a long red bow, how ironic. "Because…because Syaoran asked you to?" She replied quietly.
Meiling laughed. Her laugh was a laugh Sakura hated to hear. It was hallowed and empty. There was no warmth behind her laughter; it was just a shell, an echo of laughter. Sakura remembered Syaoran's laugh. She desperately wanted to hear it again and be basked in its kindness once more.
"You actually thought – you actually thought that Syaoran asked you to come over! You're a joke!" Meiling had a wide smile on her face. Sakura was rigid, her shoulders pressed painfully against the door, "I asked you to come over because I was trying to be nice for a change! I thought, hey, there's Sakura being a loner, maybe she could eat with us. I was so kind to ask for you to join us at the table. Maybe you could've made friends! I even let you sit close to Syaoran Li, and I even introduced him to you. I do all this for you and you think Syaoran asked you over? You're crazy! Syaoran would never…NEVER ask someone like you to come over."
"He would never ask someone like you either."
There was a heavy suffocating silence that followed. It was so quiet, Sakura could hear Meiling's slow deadly breaths and the TV in the room next door, "Pardon me? Did I hear you say something?" Meiling hissed quietly and dangerously. Meiling was giving her a chance, a chance to answer "No, nothing at all." It was a rare chance to escape an inevitable hell.
But Sakura was staring at Meiling with matched confidence; she wasn't going to take this chance. Syaoran was far too good for Meiling. Meiling didn't deserve Syaoran. It was a sure thing she, herself would never get Syaoran to notice her but she refused to stand idly by and watch someone as pure as Syaoran be seduced in to Meiling's deceit and lies.
"Excuse me, Kinomoto. I'm asking you a question and you'd better answer it."
Sakura was pushing the handle down. Down. Down.
"Kinomoto, is there something you'd like to say to my face?" Meiling's face was contorted with anger.
Down. Down. Click. Sakura breathed, "Yes Meiling, I was saying how you'll never get Syaoran to like you. Never."
Sakura yanked the door open behind her and stepped calmly outside. Then she promptly shut the door on Meiling's furious face.
Sakura found herself in the hallway once more; the air was nice and cool, just like before. So why was she sweating? Sakura took two deep breaths and what she just did to Meiling finally sunk in. Oh god…oh god oh god oh god. She backed away from the door and ran in to the wall behind her. She pressed her body against it, feeling the roughness dig in to her back. Meiling was just beyond the door, probably contemplating whether or not she should burst outside and hunt her down. It could happen any moment. Any moment, Meiling could come out of that door; it was terrifying to think about it. What was I thinking? I have to go somewhere…I have to get away from here.
Sakura could not peel herself from the security of the wall behind her. Please…somewhere where she can't find me. Slowly she began to move down the hallway. She passed several open doors; nobody seemed to notice her distress nonetheless ask if she was alright. She had no idea where she was going. She had nowhere to go. Who could she go to? The teachers? No, that's just stupid. Syaoran. She could go see Syaoran. No. no, you absolutely can not. She passed the cafeteria, her biology class, and several more dorms until she realized she was just going around in one big circle. Where? Where can I go? Oh god.
"Hey, Kinomoto! Curfew is in five minutes, you better find your dorm, unless you're lost." Someone laughed.
Familiar voice. Someone I know. Sakura turned around and saw Eriol heading down the hallway towards her. Of course, class presidents were in charge of hallway patrol. They made sure students were in bed after curfew.
Eriol frowned when he got close to her, "Are you feeling alright? You're pale."
"I…" Sakura mouthed, what was she supposed to say? She couldn't stay in his dorm.
Eriol was still frowning, "You should go to the nurse if you're sick. It's really cold today and you should know we shut down the heater after nine. It's not healthy running around so late, do you want me to escort you to your dorm?"
Eriol almost took a step back; he had his hands up, "Okay! Okay! Geez, are you sure you're okay?"
Then it struck her as plain as day. It was so obvious, why hadn't she thought of it before? "Do you know where Tomoyo's dorm is?"
"Wait, Daidouji?" Eriol had suddenly changed the tone of his voice but Sakura was too disarrayed to notice. She just wanted to go somewhere where Meiling couldn't find her until she finished cooling off in the morning.
"Yes, Tomoyo! Please…I need…I need to tell her something!"
"Right now?" Eriol looked skeptical, "Can't it wait till morning? She just went to bed…"
Sakura didn't bother with asking how Eriol knew she had just gone to bed, she was desperate, "Please Eriol…just today…I won't do it again, I promise!"
"A rule's a rule, if I help you, I'll have to start helping everyone else who asks, or it's not fair."
"No, you don't understand. I need to talk to Tomoyo! Just this one time, please!" Sakura must've been making a lot of noise because a door nearby propped open and a boy in Sakura's biology class stuck his head out.
His hair was wet and it looked as if he was wearing nothing but a towel. If Sakura wasn't about to go hysterical she would've blushed ten different shades of red.
"Hey, Hirrigizawa, cut the poor girl some slack will you? In the mean while, some of us are trying to enjoy our time to sleep."
"It's a minute after curfew; you better disappear before I report this to the mistress in charge." Eriol replied smugly, one eye checking his watch while he spoke.
"Asshole," The boy laughed and shut the door. The echo seemed to run throughout the entire school. Sakura could hear the lights humming above and then Eriol cleared his throat.
"Second to the last one down this hallway on your right."
Sakura had to do a double take, "What?"
"Room three zero two, now get moving before I report you too!" Eriol sounded dead serious but his face was cracking in a wide grin.
Sakura barely had the energy to thank him properly so instead she gave a very small and messy bow then quickly hurried down the direction of Tomoyo's dorm. She could hardly believe her own luck. She would have to thank that boy with wet hair later too. Takafumi was his name, she noted.
Sakura stood in front of Tomoyo's door and her hand hovered in front of it. Should she knock or just open it? None of the dorms had locks in Tomoeda. The teacher's were enough security to prevent chaos. Sakura decided knocking was better. Tomoyo might be asleep as Eriol had said. She rapped her knuckles against the door and winced when the noise sounded piercingly louder than she had anticipated. She heard shuffling behind it and the sound of soft padded footsteps.
It swung slowly open and Sakura almost sank to the ground with relief at the sight of Tomoyo. She was already in her lavender nightgown but she didn't look as if she had gotten up from bed yet. Her expression was nothing but surprise.
"Can I come in?" Sakura asked. She knew she was being blunt, but she supposed this was a sort of emergency. However her adrenaline was dying out from all that walking. It seemed what had just happened was simply part of a bad dream.
Tomoyo opened the door wider and stepped off to one side, "Yes, of course! You look a mess."
Sakura entered the room gratefully and Tomoyo closed the door behind her, "Something happen between you and Meiling?"
"You are a mind reader," Sakura said and collapsed on to the floor. She had forgotten all about the possibility of Tomoyo having a roommate and was relieved when she found that Tomoyo had a single dorm.
"No, actually Chiharu told me she heard yelling from your dorm. She said she could even hear it over the TV."
"People heard us?"
Tomoyo walked over to one of the walls, she was barefoot. She knocked lightly against the wood and waited patiently. Someone knocked back the same number of times and Tomoyo smiled. "Rika is going to sleep too, you see, the walls here are really thin, thin enough for almost anything to seep through, that's why you can't keep secrets in Tomoeda. It truly gives meaning to the saying 'the walls have ears' Because in reality, they really do!"
Sakura felt a numbing sensation spread from her toes, "I think I'd rather die then face her tomorrow if the entire school knows about it. I never want to go back to that dorm."
Tomoyo spread herself out on the bed and sighed, "Was this about a boy, Sakura?"
"Don't tell me you know about that too…" The green-eyed girl groaned in to her hands. This was horrible. It couldn't be happening to her. Everything had been going great. She hadn't received any trouble since she had made herself so invisible. But why did something like this have to happen? Why did she have to go about and defend a boy she barely knew? Why was she so stupid?
"Nope, just my guess, Chiharu said she didn't know what you guys were arguing about anyways, but I guessed right didn't I?" Tomoyo said. She had a smile on her face.
"What are you thinking about?" Sakura asked, "Do you…know something?"
Maybe, maybe Tomoyo had seen her and Syaoran together that Sunday. Maybe she had seen him whisper in to her ear that noon. Maybe…maybe Tomoyo knew. She had to know, or else why would she look as if she was…expecting something.
"I…don't know!" Tomoyo laughed gleefully. Sakura noticed for the first time that her eyes looked much brighter in the dark, "But if you tell me…I might be able to help you."
"Then you have to tell me who you like! That's fair,"
Tomoyo blushed deeply and hid her face in her hands, "That's unfair, I didn't argue over him yet."
"But I didn't argue over him!" Sakura protested causing Tomoyo to fall back in a fit of giggles.
"Knowing Meiling, this must be about Li, isn't it?" Tomoyo chuckled as if she found it quite funny but then she stopped laughing when she saw Sakura's gaping face, "Wait…you can't be serious?"
"I can't believe this." Sakura exclaimed and threw her hands in the air, "The whole school probably knows about this!"
"No! That's not true! I just guessed! Wait, you're serious? Syaoran? You like Syaoran! Oh my goodness, you are serious!" Tomoyo had jumped off the bed in excitement, "Since when?"
"You didn't know? You just guessed the whole entire thing?" Sakura was in shock.
Tomoyo suddenly glanced at the clock and started, "Oh shoot, I have to get up early tomorrow for a meeting, I have to sleep early today," Then Tomoyo stuck an accusing finger in Sakura's face, "But don't think I've forgotten about this! You're going to tell me everything now since we're roomies."
"Wait, roomies? What?" Sakura could no longer keep up with the current events. Everything was moving too fast.
"I'm requesting a change first thing tomorrow morning!" Tomoyo said while pulling out a folded up mattress from the wall, "For today, you can sleep here, until I can find a proper bed for you."
Sakura was still in shock, "You…wouldn't mind?"
"Mind? I'd love if you room with me! Besides, this is just getting interesting! And you call yourself plain, for all I know, you have a far more exciting life than mine," Tomoyo was halfway under her covers now, "And now since we're going to be roommates, you'll get to share it with me, and I'll share mine with you!"
"But…it's so sudden…"
Tomoyo had a hand on the light switch, "I like surprises, do you?"
Yes, I love surprises. Sakura meant to say but Tomoyo had already called goodnight and her side of the room was immersed in darkness. As Sakura sat at the foot of the bed, surrounded by four unfamiliar walls, Sakura felt an odd feeling. It felt…good. It felt as if she belonged somewhere. She didn't have to go to bed after enduring Meiling's wrath anymore. She didn't have to stay up late waiting for Meiling to sneak inside anymore. No more Meiling. No more troubles. Sakura smiled. Her green eyes must've looked ten times brighter than normal. She had a friend, her name was Tomoyo, and she had met her that very morning. Yes, I do love surprises. Sakura thought to herself and let the dim lighted room engulf her in this new sensation of belonging.
Then she suddenly realized something.
Sakura got to her feet and faced Tomoyo's bed, "Hey, wait a minute, you didn't tell me who you liked!"