So, I can't help it. I'm deeply, deeply in love with the idea of these two as a couple in CCS. And when I saw them in Tsubasa, there's even more new and angsty ways to be cruel to them. This was written as a dribble but could be a lot more, if I'm motivated. Chocolate works well.

mourns so many of my old stories, gone gone gone… all because I was nice for the kiddies and rated them high to be safe… sobs

I don't own anything of Clamp's, aside from an impressive collection of their manga. Definitely not the copyrights on anything they've written.

"Your Highness?"

Touya's head snapped up. The young king, in typical fashion, had lanky limbs sprawled messily over the over-large throne that dominated the throne room. His flowing robes accentuated his tall, powerful frame. Dark eyes, filled with unhappy thought, shaded slowly into a warm fondness when he recognised his visitor. "I told you not to call me that."

"Sorry." The dance of bright eyes indicated that Yukito was anything but. He stepped further into the room, pausing to straighten the hanging sleeve on his own robes- white compared to black, marked with blocky inlays and embroidery that complement the lovely softness of his own features. His hair, somewhere between silver and brown and grey, looked like feathers in the bright sunlight filling the chamber.

"How many times must I ask you?" teased Touya gently, leaning back a little further. "Just Touya. Right… Yuki?"

Touya's voice, and the warmth of his gaze, felt like a hand brushed over his cheek. He felt the hint of a blush follow it, and ducked his head quickly to dismiss the pinkness. "Yeah… Toya."

Smiling at his high priest, Touya unhooked his knee from over the intricately carved arm of the throne. The move was not quite as graceful as it should have been- after Yukito's continued ministrations, the poisoned wound he had taken months ago no longer pained him, but he was still recovering from the effects of the toxin. "Come sit with me."

It would have been reflex to accept- to perch on the vacated arm, to sit almost in Touya's lap, their legs entangled and their heads close, to talk in soft confidence. Reflex, but not appropriate. "Your- Toya. This is an important matter."

Touya's calm playfulness turned to a serious manner. Slowly, he gathered himself into a more controlled sitting posture. "What is it, Yuki?"

He approached the throne. "Toya…" His feet shifted, and he bit his lip before continuing. "You know I am as hopeful of Sakura's return as you are."

A muscle jumped in Touya's jaw.

Hastily, Yuki forged on. "As are all in the kingdom. You know Sakura-chan is adored. But the fact is that she's been gone for many months now."

With that brat, no less. Oh, Sakura! Get well, my little monster of a sister- be healthy and return to us!

Yuki watched the play of emotions across his king's face with a twist in his own chest, and continued mercilessly. "Toya- my king- you need an heir. One the people can see."

"I have one!" gritted Touya. Then bowed his head in apology. "She will come back. You know it."

"I know. Toya…" He sighed. "I know it's not pleasant to speak of. But our people need it. You know that the stability of this kingdom is founded on its ruling line. And with Sakura gone, you are the only one who bears the royal blood. It is your duty to provide the kingdom of Clow with blood heirs to carry on your line."

"Sakura is my blood heir," the king grumbled. "I don't wish to speak of this."

Yuki was far from enjoying it, himself. But he was the king's closest advisor, dearest friend, and most certainly the only one who could push Touya into solving this increasingly dire problem. He lifted pale eyes to dark, holding Touya's gaze.

He knew he was wrong. Touya looked away.

"I have- I have prepared a list of ladies you could consider paying court to."

A short, abrupt breath escaped him.

"Highborn ladies from our own kingdom, and princesses from others- to strengthen alliances and trade advantages, as well as securing your line."

"I suppose we should have a ball," snapped the young king, "and wed me off to whichever girl seems most fertile."

Yuki flinched.

"Or should I be put to stud? Bedded to as many willing girls as can be found till some dozen catch with my seed? That should ensure the succession." He stood angrily, and strode up to the smaller man. "I don't want to wed, Yuki. Or to court. Or to have some girl I don't love, don't even know, bear my children."

"Toya." He looked up into his friend's scowling face. "I say this not to my king, but to my friend. You are being a child."

Touya recoiled as if slapped. "You are right," he sighed. "You are always right. Forgive me, Yuki. I am confused, and tired from worrying."

"I know." Fondly, Yuki reached up to straighten Touya's collar. "And I'm sorry. I hate to push this on you, but the people are growing restless. The problem needs to be resolved. As soon as we may."

"I have no interest in courting, Yuki. You know that."

Indeed. The only one Touya had ever courted had been a tutor he'd had when younger- and Mizuki-sensei had left him with scars that were only now healing. Nevertheless, Yuki kept trying. "Toya, I know she broke your heart. But you must begin looking again."

"I promised Sakura… neither of us would wed for convenience. That she would marry as her heart led her, and so would I. And my heart will not lead me to marry some girl I don't know or love, just to have babies," he repeated stubbornly.

"How can you say that, Toya? You haven't even met them yet! It may be that you'll find one you can love. You can't know that without looking."

Touya looked down, face full of pain. "Yuki…" he whispered hoarsely.

No… no, Toya, don't make me deal with this now. Not now. Yuki drew a thin breath into a suddenly constricting chest. Maybe it was time to confront this. He really didn't want to, but he didn't think it could be avoided. Not when Touya's breathing was so raw, his stance and his face begging for Yuki to ask the question. "Toya…" Nervous, his tongue ran over his bottom lip. "Some… some say… there is another reason you don't court. That you…" He couldn't meet his friend's eyes. "That you have no interest in… girls."

The silence after those words was electric.

He stumbled forward. "That you would prefer to bed a man. And those who say that, say also that… that you will not court a bride because you have already chosen a groom." Yuki swallowed, dryly. "That you are in love with- with me."

Touya gasped, and staggered. He would have fallen if Yukito hadn't reached out to steady his arm.

Yukito's heart was in his throat. What would Touya say? Acknowledge this, or deny it? He remembered so clearly that night a week before: ducking down the kitchens for a snack- only three bowls of rice, and half a chicken- and overhearing two guards speaking of the matter-

"About time the king wed, isn't it? I mean, we can only wait for little Princess Sakura to wander back for so long. It makes me nervous not having any royal kiddies around."

"I know, but let's face it- how likely is he to marry? When he's got his snowbunny right there? Man, I tell you, if I had a beauty like that to come home to, I wouldn't be looking too hard for anything else."

Snowbunny? Yukito frowned, suspicion waking.

A laugh. "So you prefer guys now? Wait till I tell that girl at the tavern. She'll be surprised."

"Ah, shut up. I can say the priest is good looking- doesn't mean I want to sleep with him, just that the king does!"

Yukito breathed out. Was it true? Could it be true?

"Yeah, I guess. God, the way the two of them look at eachother- sometimes I'm surprised they don't throw eachother down in front of the whole court, the way they act."

"Wonder if they're actually doing it, or just… y'know. It might be that the High Priest doesn't know the King wants him that way. Damn shrewd statesman, but I get the impression he's a little dense when it comes to, well, anything else."

"Could be. But how could you not tell? The king's always touching him, or standing way too close, or looking at him the way you're looking at that cask of ale in the corner. Come to think of it, he always has, hasn't he? Funny. It never bothered me before."

"I guess Princess Sakura was always here before. Now there's no more royals after King Touya. And he sure as hell won't be making any babies with Tsukishiro-sama."

It had to be true. He was sure. Once his attention had been brought to it, he couldn't help but notice- Touya did want him.

"Yuki…" Touya breathed, voice raw. He wouldn't look up, but steadied himself, eyes hidden by black bangs. "What if… what if that was true?"

Oh, no.

With a ragged breath, Touya met his eyes. Touched his face timidly, and leaned in to place a single chaste kiss on Yukito's mouth.

The slighter man was too stunned to react. Eyes wide and shocked, he felt the brief press of warm, dry lips on his own, and watched Touya lean back afterwards, face drawn with misery.

"You were never supposed to know." Touya's voice sounded broken.