Okay, before you freak out and yell, "Is this a joke? I thought you said it was the END?" Yeah, I thought it was the end too. Heehee. But the truth is, I found this half-finished chapter in one of my old folders and I was really surprised and annoyed that I didn't put it in the original story. It IS an important chapter after all (which concentrates on Syaoran's past), but I guess I forgot all about it when I was finishing the story. Nevertheless, I edited it a lot, including my poor grammar and spelling, and of course, finished it. This is actually going to be the true epilogue of the story. As a note, about three fourths of the chapter is on a third person point of view, but on Syaoran's perspective. The remaining bits of the chapter are only on Syaoran's POV, which you will see below in a bit. Hope you guys enjoy; it's one of my longest chapters, since it's really the end!
Chapter 22: Special Story II
A Final Memory
It felt like a long day.
On the contrary, I hadn't realized until now that time has passed by so quickly. But maybe because I wanted to return home so bad that I didn't notice. Only today it felt like every second was an hour.
I was impatient to come back, and return to where I once called my personal hell.
Twelve years ago
A young Li Syaoran stared at the enormous house that stood in front of him.
"Isn't it beautiful, Syaoran?" asked his mother, Yelan, as she put down a box that contained a set of fragile porcelain.
"I guess…" answered Syaoran. He continued to stare at the new house that he was going to live in from now on, with a feeling of both anger and melancholy inside him.
"Thank you, Fujitaka-san," said Yelan as she unloaded the last cardboard box filled with possessions into the front step of the house.
"Your welcome," said the man she addressed, who closed the van. He was at his mid thirties, with light brown hair and wore glasses.
Fujitaka faced Syaoran, who stepped back a little with caution.
"You'll like it here," said Fujitaka warmly.
He smiled at Syaoran, who didn't smile back. Yelan gave him a disapproving look.
"Forgive me, Fujitaka-san," she said as she placed her hand on Syaoran's shoulder. "He's… really shy."
"I understand." He was still smiling.
Syaoran couldn't help but feel safe from his friendly tone. But he still didn't feel like smiling.
"I think that is all." Yelan looked at the car. "I can't thank you enough for helping us."
"Anytime," said Fujitaka.
"Uncle!" said a voice, high and excited. Syaoran quickly looked around to find the location of the voice.
A little girl, about his age, with short bronze hair and chocolate brown eyes ran to them. She held Fujitaka's hand.
"Oh, Kaou," said Fujitaka. Yelan smiled at Kaou, who smiled right back.
"Hello, little one." Yelan was easily charmed by her.
"Hello!" chirped Kaou.
"This is my niece, Kaou." Fujitaka placed both of his hands on Kaou's shoulders.
"Oh, Syaoran, look," said Yelan. "You made a new friend!"
Syaoran didn't reply, but simply stared when Kaou came to him and offered her hand.
"Hello, there!" she said. "My name is Amamiya Kaou! What's yours?"
Syaoran looked at her hand until she awkwardly pulled it away. He didn't get why she asked him his name; his mother just said it out loud. It annoyed him.
And her being a little too hyper didn't help either.
"May I know your name please?" she tried again brightly. He felt his mother's glare on his back and gave off a brief sigh.
"Li Syaoran." He said it slowly and reluctantly.
"Yay, I made a new friend!" said Kaou happily as she grabbed his hands. Syaoran froze, stunned by her sudden action. Fujitaka and Yelan stepped back to give them the encouragement to talk.
"So she will be staying here for a while?" asked Yelan quietly as both she and Fujitaka watched a bubbly Kaou talk her head off about herself to an uninterested Syaoran.
"Yes and from now on." He sighed sadly. "Her mother and father both passed away when she was three."
"Oh dear, I'm sorry," said Yelan sympathetically. "It must be hard for her."
"It's alright," he said. "She doesn't remember them much, so it's good she doesn't have to live with remembering that tragedy."
"True," she agreed.
"But I am sorry about your husband," he said. "Forgive me, but Nadeshiko told me what had happened."
Yelan smiled at him sadly. "No, it's alright if you knew," she said. "As you can see why Syaoran is not his usual self today… or will be, for some time. Unfortunately for him, he will have to live with experiencing this pain…"
They continued to watch the Kaou talking to Syaoran.
Syaoran didn't like her at all. She was getting on his nerves, and telling her to shut up sounded appealing to him.
But he couldn't blame her for what was happening to his father. He was dying, and Syaoran could do nothing to stop it. Even though Kaou was only trying to make him feel better, he still didn't want much company at the moment.
Fujitaka sensed his discomfort.
"Kaou," he said. "Why don't you go inside and see what your aunt and cousin are up to?"
"Okay," said Kaou as she smiled at Syaoran (who still didn't smile back) one last time and skipped inside the house.
"Well, we'll talk again I presume," said Yelan as she took a box. Syaoran automatically picked up the second one in his arms.
"Yes, please do visit us," said Fujitaka. "Nadeshiko has been eager in seeing you again."
Yelan smiled. "Yes, I am as well. Tell her and Sakura I said hello."
"Will do." Fujitaka went into his own house after he waved.
Both Yelan and Syaoran then walked into the house and saw that almost everything was organized already by the movers. As Syaoran looked around, Yelan placed the boxes in the living room.
Then she walked back to him and knelt in front of him. She placed her hands in his shoulders and said, "Syaoran, I know this is a drastic change for you. But don't worry; everything will be all right."
Syaoran simply stared into her eyes, believing nothing that she had just said.
It was not all right, at all.
"Sir, would you like anything?" asked the flight attendant. I looked up at her and gave her a polite smile.
"No, thank you," I said. "I'm fine." She smiled back and walked to the other passengers to talk to them.
I placed my book on my lap so I could stretch. I kind of regretted not taking my private plane, but I guess this was nice too. It wasn't too quiet or loud.
I looked back at my book and smiled again. I wondered how many times I have read it up until now; I lost track after the tenth time.
Syaoran would never cry in public, even in front of his father's grave, who died a week after they moved.
His mother naturally cried; she loved him deeply. Syaoran loved him too, but he didn't want to show his weakness. He was strong; no one was going to see him fall.
It was his only way to keep himself from dying.
The sky was cold and dark, gloomy as if it mourned for his father's death as well.
Syaoran stared at the ground that covered his father's coffin, with flowers everywhere near the tombstone. As everyone, including his relatives and his father's close friends, started to depart, Yelan came to him to take his hand and lead him to the car.
But he moved away. He was filled with anger and remorse, and going home didn't make him feel any better. He had a strange hope that his father would suddenly appear and apologize in coming late; and that the grave belonged to someone else.
"Syaoran, let's return home," she whispered as she tried to grab his hand again, but he wretched his hand away.
"Syaoran!" she snapped impatiently. "Do not give me an attitude!"
Her words pierced him like a spear. What was wrong with this woman? Did she understand nothing?
"It's going to get dark soon!" she continued. "Give me—!"
"Why did we have to move when he was going to die anyway?" he shouted suddenly. Yelan stared at her son, stunned by his words. Some people turned to stare at the sudden shout, but he didn't care.
"We could've taken better care of him if we didn't have to waste our time, moving our stupid stuff!" he cried and he ran off to the opposite direction of the car.
"Syaoran! Come back!"
Syaoran ignored his mother's yells and continued to run until he ran out of breath. He looked back and saw nothing; he probably went as far as a mile.
Of course his mother wasn't going to chase him; he was going to come back eventually.
He finally sank to his knees, and the tears poured out of his face. It was okay now; no one would be there to see him. He slowly placed his hands on the ground as he cried, grabbing at the soil.
His father was dead, and he moved to a place that knew nothing of him. Now, he just felt like dying.
"Hey… why are you crying?"
His head shot up with surprise. He didn't sense anyone coming, but suddenly, a girl was there, watching him with a curious, but caring expression on her face. He stumbled as he tried to stand up; she didn't laugh when he almost tripped.
Instead, she slowly walked to him until they were a foot apart. "What's wrong?" she asked in a soft voice. She had long, brown hair that went down to her waist, and brilliant emerald eyes.
Syaoran stared at her. Who was this girl? He hesitated before he answered.
"My father… he…" His voice broke as he fought to push his tears back. The girl understood at whatever expression his face was giving.
"Was this your father's funeral?"
"Here…" She had stepped closer to him to give him a handkerchief. Syaoran gave her a bewildered look.
"Wipe your tears with this… it will help."
To his surprise, he obeyed automatically. He wished that it would cure his pain. It didn't, but he did feel a bit better.
"Feel better?" she asked.
"A little," he answered truthfully.
"You can keep it for as long as you want."
She beamed at him. "Tee hee…"
He felt himself smiling. This girl… he never met anyone quite like her.
"My name is Kinomoto Sakura," she introduced herself. She didn't offer her hand or anything. She merely just smiled at him.
"Li Syaoran," he blurted. It felt so easy talking to her than anyone he has ever talked to; easier than that Kaou girl.
"Sorry you had to see that," he continued. "I probably looked like an idiot right now."
"No." She shook her head. "It's okay to cry once in a while."
Then he saw Fujitaka walking toward them. Weirdly enough, he didn't feel like running away.
"Syaoran… I think it's about time you should head back now," he said as he reached them. His voice sounded clearly somber. "Your mother was worried about you."
Syaoran nodded once, swallowing.
Fujitaka gave him another sad smile. "I'm sorry about your father," he said quietly.
Syaoran didn't reply, but looked down at the ground. Fujitaka then looked at Sakura and frowned a little.
"Sakura, you weren't supposed to wander this far," he said; the tone of his voice didn't change. "I was worried about you."
"Sorry Daddy," she said as she hugged him. "I won't do it again."
Syaoran was a little surprised by this revelation. She didn't really look like her father.
Fujitaka chuckled and patted her head. "Alright now, let's all head back."
Syaoran followed behind as they walked back to the parking lot, saying nothing. He only looked up to see Sakura looking at him sympathetically.
She gave him a look, which he didn't need words for to understand: You'll be all right.
And for once, he believed.
How are you so far? I'm missing you already. I bet this sounds so cheesy right now, but still, I can't help feeling this way, even if you are coming tomorrow.
Hope you're doing well. You'd better be eating right and staying healthy up until now! I don't want to see a zombie at the airport!
I chuckled after I read the latest e-mail I received just yesterday. Somehow reading it just made me feel better, even though it sounded a little annoying… and yeah, somewhat cheesy.
But it won't really matter much longer.
I took the pillow that the attendant that I finally accepted so that she would leave me alone. The plane wasn't going to land for the next six hours… might as well use the time to get some good sleep.
I closed my eyes and sighed.
Syaoran watched a bed of peonies move along the quiet wind at the backyard of his house.
It was almost three months after his father's death and, his life was slowly turning to be normal. His mother didn't scold him for running away; rather, she actually apologized to him, for not understanding what he felt. He forgave her, of course, because he knew she was only human.
He turned to see Kaou practically running to him, carrying a bag, with Sakura walking calmly behind, smiling, though somehow it had a sad tone to it.
"Yes?" he said warily. He watched Kaou catch her breath for a few seconds until her regular hyper self kicked in again.
"Syaoran! We found something incredible! Come with us!" she said as she grabbed his hand. Syaoran looked at Sakura for a reason, but she shook her head.
He couldn't believe that he actually made some friends since he moved to Tokyo. Sakura was more patient in making friends with him; it was as if she knew his discomfort. Kaou, on the other hand, was eager to be his best friend. They were pretty close themselves, Kaou and Sakura; Sakura seemed a little more mature though.
Then there was Tomoyo, whose mother was also close friends with Nadeshiko. He didn't really know her much; she only visited once in a while, but Sakura told him that she was a wonderful person.
They walked for nearly ten minutes, until Syaoran noticed that they were near some sort of high school. What was this…? Seijyu?
But Kaou's voice slightly sidetracked him. "Look, look!" she said as she pointed.
Syaoran looked at where she was pointing to, and stared in awe. It was enormous cherry blossom tree, bigger than any tree he has ever seen, and the most beautiful. He couldn't speak for a few seconds.
"It's beautiful." Sakura spoke as though she had read his mind.
She walked around the field to look at the flowers as Syaoran and Kaou sat at base of the tree trunk.
"It's really pretty, isn't it?" she asked.
Syaoran nodded. "Yeah…"
He looked at her and she blushed a little in response. "Well… er…" she started.
"What is it?" he said, bemused. He saw her grip on the bag that she had carried around with her before.
"Um… Syaoran… do you know when a teddy bear's birthday is?" she asked. Syaoran shook his head.
"No… when is it?"
Kaou smiled. "When you put a ribbon to it and give it a name… it becomes his birthday."
"Ah…" he said. He didn't know where she was getting at.
"And… when you give it to someone you love…" she continued. "And they name the bear after you… eh never mind." She started blushing again.
"Huh?" He was still confused.
She turned to face him, her face still flushed. "Syaoran… can I give you a teddy bear?"
"Wh-what…?" He stared at her.
Then she smiled hugely. "A teddy bear!" she said as she gave him the bag. "Here's a ribbon too!"
"Er… thanks," he said as he opened the bag to see a brown teddy bear with a green ribbon.
"Give it a name!" she suddenly urged.
"Uh…" He didn't know what to say.
"You want to name it…?" She sounded a little pushy and he didn't understand why she was doing that.
"Er… I don't want to give it a name…" he said slowly.
She frowned. "Why not?" she said sadly.
"Uhm… maybe later," he said. Then she sighed.
"Won't you name it after me?" she asked, her voice barely audible.
"Why would I—?" he started. Then he looked at her face and froze. She took a deep breath.
"Because… I love you," she said slowly. His mouth fell open slightly.
At that moment, Sakura came to them and gave them each a crown of flowers that she had been working on. Kaou mumbled that she wanted to look for flowers too and ran off to the field where the flowers were. Syaoran sat where he was, immobilized with shock.
Did he just get confessed? He couldn't believe it.
Sakura sat next to him this time, fixing her crown. "Nice weather today, isn't it?" she asked cheerfully. It took him a while to process what she said.
"Yeah…" he said finally as he kept staring after Kaou. When Sakura looked at the bear, she stared for a brief moment, as though she was surprised to see it. Then she quickly composed her face and touched the bear's ear.
"Ooh, what a cute bear," she said. "What's his name?"
"I haven't really thought of a name for her yet," he said without thinking.
"He's a girl? Oh, I'm sorry." She smiled, and he felt something hot grow on his cheeks. He quickly stared at the ground, so that she wouldn't see his face. Was he blushing?
He looked up again when he heard her call him. She started to flush.
"I… I think I…" she started. She hesitated.
Syaoran was completely distracted by her now. Was it a personal thing? But she just sighed and placed the finished crown of flowers on his head.
"This looks good on you," she complimented. "Don't you think?"
He stared at her. What was she really going to say? Unless it was like Kaou's…
He blushed again, and shook his head.
"Is there something wrong?" he forced himself to say. He couldn't help but feel like there was something that was bothering her; her smiles weren't as bright as before.
"Oh… my mother is getting sick," she confessed. "It's getting me a little worried."
Syaoran couldn't help but feel sorry for her. He wondered if her concern was the same with his when his father was dying.
"Like you told me before," he said quietly. "You'll be all right."
Sakura nodded and smiled grimly. "Yeah… I hope you're right," she whispered.
"Hey guys! Let's take a picture!" said Nadeshiko, Sakura's mother and Kaou's aunt, as she walked to them. Syaoran was surprised to see her here. Didn't Sakura say she was sick?
He noticed a young man, around seventeen, carrying a basket that Syaoran presumed to be containing lunch. Another young girl about their age followed him; she had long wavy black hair and dark eyes, the color that Syaoran couldn't name. They both followed behind Nadeshiko.
"Hey Toya! Hey Tomoyo-chan!" said Kaou. Toya glared at Syaoran as they approached closer; Syaoran glared straight back at him. Tomoyo and Kaou giggled. Sakura, on the other hand, didn't notice.
"Mother… you shouldn't be out like this," she said worriedly.
"It's all right Sakura," said her mother as she stroked her cheek. "I feel fine."
Sakura could only give her a half smile.
"Isn't that the really old camera, Auntie?" said Kaou skeptically as she eyed the camera.
Nadeshiko grinned. "Yup," she said. "Your father thought I might break the new one, so I'm going to have to stick with this." She sighed. "Good thing too, I almost dropped this when I tripped walking on the rocks over there."
"There are no rocks," said Kaou and Toya flatly in unison. Nadeshiko ignored them.
"Come on guys," she called as she positioned the camera. "Get together."
So Syaoran, Sakura, and Kaou huddled together for the picture. It was a little awkward for Syaoran to be next to Kaou, so Sakura stood between them instead. The picture was going to be black and white, but they didn't mind.
"Okay, why don't we have a picnic here?" suggested Nadeshiko when they finished taking pictures. "Tomoyo came over and brought chicken sandwiches that her mother made." Sakura seemed to smile more after hearing that.
"Ooh, and let's all say scary stories!" said Kaou as they prepared lunch.
"Uh… let's not," said Sakura nervously. Syaoran raised an eyebrow as Tomoyo giggled again.
"Passengers, we will be arriving to our destination in ten minutes."
I slowly opened my eyes and looked around groggily. Then I looked at my watch to see what time it was.
It was nearly two in the afternoon. Wow, I really passed out.
As I stretched, I felt the plane suddenly shift and rumble; we were almost there. My suit was already crumpled from the way I slept. Meh.
"Please remain seated," reminded some attendant who placed her hand on a little boy's eager shoulder.
I put my letter and book away in a bag and closed my eyes again.
I felt really tired for some strange reason…probably because I didn't sleep at all the night before.
Syaoran never thought he would get his first crush when he was only ten years old. Nor did he think anyone would have him as a crush.
Maybe that was why he didn't really respond to his feelings every time Sakura was with him. When she was near him, he would feel his heart beat faster than normal, his palms turn sweaty, and the temperature of his cheeks rise. The symptoms grew worse every time he met her.
He never knew what this feeling was. Until… it was too late.
"What?" he said, shocked. He was suddenly standing upright from the couch when he was folding laundry with his mother.
"Yes, Syaoran," said Yelan as she calmly folded a towel. "The Kinomoto family will be moving to Osaka. Nadeshiko caught pneumonia and moving there will make her feel better."
"When…?" Syaoran could only whisper.
Yelan hesitated. "Tomorrow," she finally said.
Then he understood why Sakura and Kaou were avoiding him for the past week, why he was told by Fujitaka or Nadeshiko that they were busy, and why there were so many trucks in front of their house. Sakura and Kaou would have told him everything the moment they saw him.
Syaoran ran out of the house before Yelan had said a word. He bolted across the street and saw, to his surprise, Sakura sitting on the steps of her house, reading a book.
"Kinomoto!" he called as he reached her. She looked up with a mixture of delight and sadness on her face.
"Sakura," she reminded him. He tried to ignore her.
"My mother said you were moving," he said, as he caught his breath. "Is that true?"
Sakura looked at him sadly. "Yes," she answered slowly.
"Why didn't you tell me?" he demanded. She sighed as she stood up.
"Because, I didn't want to see your face like that," she murmured.
"But, Kinomoto—I mean… Sakura," he said slowly. "I—"
"I'm going to miss you, Syaoran," she said suddenly. And then she smiled. "Why don't you read this book? I thought it was good, and you won't have to be so bored after we leave."
She handed him a green covered book, and its title read, Cardcaptors. But he pushed the book in her hands.
"You don't have to go," he said. He sounded almost pleading, and Sakura's eyes tightened, as if she was about to cry. But they relaxed as she tightened his fingers on the book with her own hands, giving him a sympathetic smile.
"Goodbye, Syaoran," she whispered. And then she turned around and went back into her house.
Syaoran stood there, motionless with pain and sadness within him.
The girl that he fell in love with was going away forever.
But he wasn't going to let it happen. He had to tell her… his feelings.
To make things worse, Yelan forbid him to go out the next morning. Blind by his frustration, he didn't get why she would suddenly do that, given a stupid excuse that he ran outside without permission the previous day.
When he tried to run out anyway, she ordered her maids to lock him in his room. The maids only obeyed her reluctantly; they didn't understand why she was acting this way either.
He was lying on his bed for what seemed like hours until a maid knocked at his door and told him that his friend came to visit. He sat up almost abruptly, holding a tiny hope that it could have been Sakura, or Kaou at least.
Thinking about Kaou made him nervous; he felt guilty that he didn't get to give her his answer yet.
His hope was vain though, for Tomoyo came at the door.
"Daidouji?" he said, feeling surprised and disappointed at the same time.
"Li, what are you doing here?" She frowned, sounding disappointed as well. "Did you get into trouble?"
He looked down. "I don't know," he muttered.
She sighed. "Sakura-chan and Kaou-chan can't wait for you."
He looked at her carefully, trying not to glare at her. Tomoyo saw the teddy bear.
"Did you name it?" she asked, her voice solemn as she examined it.
"No… I don't think I can," he whispered.
She shook her head. "You can name it any name you want," she said slowly. "You should name it after the person you love the most. It would be more fitting, don't you think? Even if that person didn't give it to you."
He stared at her, but she only nodded, smiling. He wondered if she had ever had this situation before, or if she was just very observant.
He looked out at the window to see the Kinomoto family go inside the car, with both Kaou and Sakura hesitating. Kaou was a little teary, but Sakura had an unreadable expression on her face. And Syaoran realized at once what name he should give the bear.
If only he could meet her one last time. Just like Tomoyo said… she couldn't wait for him. So he would have to make sure she didn't have to.
He suddenly got on his feet and almost ran to the door.
"I'm not going to make her wait for me," he muttered, and then he bolted out of his room.
"Syaoran! Why are you—?" started Yelan as he reached her downstairs.
"Mother… where is she? Where did you take her?" he demanded. He thought for a second that maybe she wouldn't understand him.
But she did. "She's gone," she said. "She had to, it's for the best."
"Why are you doing this?" he nearly yelled at her. "What's wrong with you?! You didn't even let me see her off…!"
"I know it's hard but—"she started sadly.
"You don't know anything," he spat as he glared at the door. He never thought that he would be angry at his mother this much.
"I'm so sorry, Syaoran." She looked almost guilty, but he couldn't take it anymore.
"I hate you mother!" he shouted as he ran through the door, out of the house. He heard her call out, "Syaoran!" but he ignored her, just like he did at the funeral.
The car had already taken off, but he still ran for it. He didn't like his bad habit of having too much hope in things, but it was the only way that would make him feel better.
The car came at the intersection and the light came to his favor. He was only half a mile away, and if the car was going to turn, they would see him and stop. He felt almost triumphant… he was going to tell the girl he loved his feelings.
But for some reason, he also felt something strange. As if… something bad was going to happen. He tried to shake it off as he ran towards them, until he found out in horror that it was too late.
The car turned right, heading towards him, when a truck suddenly appeared out of nowhere and slammed right at the middle. The windows from both cars exploded and shattered everywhere, pieces of metal flew across the street, and the tires screeched and wailed futilely on the pavement. The car rolled twice, and stayed on its side.
Everything happened in about a few seconds, yet Syaoran saw and absorbed everything in his eyes.
He stood in shock as he heard screams from the locals.
"Somebody, call the ambulance!" someone shouted.
Everything was wrong… it wasn't supposed to happen this way. He felt as if he was living in a total nightmare.
And then… his legs moved on their own accord and he sprinted towards the crash site, ignoring everyone else, trying not to look at the blood that covered the front window of the car.
He ran until he saw a familiar body, crawling towards him. His heart sputtered as he ran faster and realized that it was Kaou, bloody and almost mangled. He slowly picked her up and saw blood pumping out of her forehead. "This isn't happening," he thought.
But despite all the blood and grotesque wounds on her face and body, the expression on her face looked elated.
"Syaoran… I had to see you again," she rasped. "And you're here…"
"Stop talking," he said, his voice breaking as he watched her shirt slowly staining. "There's so much blood…"
"I'm so sorry… you're probably mad at me…" she whispered, her voice getting slurred. "I didn't tell you anything…"
"What…?" said Syaoran. He couldn't understand why she was saying this.
"I just wanted you to know… that I know that love won't change," she said. "And even though mine will be unrequited…"
"I'm sorry," she apologized. "Don't be mad…"
"I'm not mad," he said hurriedly. "Just please, don't die!"
"I'm… going to be okay!" she insisted, her voice turning soft. "Don't worry… about me! Just please… be happy…"
But her eyes unexpectedly rolled back to her head and her body limped in his arms.
"Amamiya… Amamiya!" Syaoran shouted as he looked for a pulse. "Open your eyes…!"
He shook her, but she didn't respond.
He couldn't listen to the people yelling over him, and the sirens from the ambulance cars. He didn't see the blood that was all over his clothes and hands. Because by then he had closed his eyes and screamed.
He couldn't save her… or Sakura. It was his entire fault. Why was this happening to him?
When he opened his eyes, he was surprised to see that he had been lying down on a bed. He quickly tried to sit up, but strong hands were on his shoulders and he fell back down.
He looked at the hands' owners to see his mother looking stricken, with tear stained marks on her cheeks.
"Mother… where am I?" he mumbled as he looked around. His clothes have been changed, and the blood was gone. He was in his room.
"You… fainted when they took Kaou away," she whispered. "I thought—because of the blood all over you—that you…" She couldn't finish as she wiped her eyes with a handkerchief.
"Where's Amamiya? Sakura?" he said with a vain hope that everything was just a dream.
She didn't respond, and instead, touched his face with her trembling hand.
"I'm sorry, Syaoran," she whispered. Her words made his stomach feel empty.
"I… see," he said finally as he looked at her. He tried to sound calm. "Can I… sleep for a bit? I'm… actually really tired…"
"Sure, sweetie," she said. "I'll leave you alone for a while." When she left the room, closing the door, he placed his arm over his eyes and let the tears stream down his cheeks.
Everyone was dead, and he couldn't do anything about it.
If only he had listened to his mother, who, even though she wouldn't have known, could have saved him from that tortured memory he would have to live through everyday.
Eight years later
An older Syaoran took a fresh cigarette and put it in his mouth. He needed another stress reducer; a wannabe punk had just tried to act like a bully on him in front of the cafeteria and he simply responded by breaking his arm.
He couldn't believe why idiots like him were so obsessed with control. Was he trying to score with a girl or something? Maybe he wanted that new student he heard who just transferred, to like him.
Perhaps, but he messed with the wrong guy.
He sat by a café and continued to smoke, looking around now and then to see if Meiling was going to pounce on him. If he saw her, he would immediately go to his car and drive home. He had enough of her annoying voice.
And then he saw someone he didn't recognize. A young woman with short brown hair in his school's uniform was crossing the street on skates. He was a bit annoyed; she looked like a nerd.
Only at first, until he saw her brilliant emerald eyes. And suddenly, he felt himself standing up from his chair, dropping his cigarette. He heard a voice in the back of his head say "Is it possible?"
While she was crossing, he spotted a car going straight at her, with no intention to stop. And he found himself running at her.
It was that girl. Something about that girl was making him wanting to save her. Who was she?
But he knew for sure that she was stupid; she was rooted to the spot as the car was coming towards her.
And without thinking, he had his arms around her waist and was pushing her across the sidewalk as the car shot past them. The girl looked up at him and he saw her eyes, those beautiful green eyes that made him short of a breath.
She was surprised to see him as much as he was, but it was a different kind of surprise; she didn't think a person like him would save her.
And he made himself realize that she couldn't be the girl that he knew. "She's dead," he reminded himself quietly so that she wouldn't hear him.
He fixed his face before she did. "You okay?" he said gruffly as they both stood up.
"Y-yes," she stammered. He quickly took out another cigarette. Her voice sounded like hers too.
"You freaking idiot," he snapped. He tried to sound harsh, to cover his remorse. "Why did you just stand there?"
He walked towards his car until he heard her say, "Wait!"
Just hearing her voice made him want to scream again. "What?" he snarled unpredictably. She cringed away from him, and he regretted saying that to her.
"Thank you…" she whispered. His free hand clenched into a fist in his pocket as he heard her speak.
"Next time do yourself a favor and move those damn legs… it could really help the people around here," he muttered, hating himself. The girl said nothing and he turned away again.
"People these days can't drive," he murmured angrily as he walked to his car, forcing himself not to turn back to her.
When he got into the driver's seat, he threw his unused cigarette out of the window, and placed his hands on his hair as he rested his head on the wheel. He slowly turned his head to see if she was still there; she was slowly walking away, her back to him. Then he turned back and pressed his face on the steering wheel.
Sakura was gone, he knew that. There was no possible way that she would have ever come back.
He clenched his teeth to prevent himself from crying and turned on the engine as he straightened up. He wasn't going to fall just yet.
"Sir?" a person poked my arm and I opened my eyes to see a woman, looking concerned. "We've landed quite some time ago."
"Oh, shit," I murmured as I stood up. Everyone in the plane was gone.
I overslept… great.
"Thanks," I said hurriedly as I ran out of the steps and into the entrance of the building. I managed to find my entire luggage and dragged everything downstairs to the waiting area. Arms full of bags and suitcases, I avoided the slow escalators and ran right at the stairs. I knew a lot of people staring at me, but I didn't really mind.
As I reached the waiting area, I managed to see my party, waiting for me.
I first saw an older, yet still enthusiastic Yamazaki, who first spotted me and yelled out loud, startling nearly everyone, including myself.
I reminded myself to punch him when we got home.
Daidouji was there, with her pleasant smile, and my other friend, Hiiragizawa who grinned at me and winked. They were holding hands and they didn't look like they changed much.
The girls, Yanagisawa (with longer hair and now wearing contacts), Mihara (now wearing a ponytail instead of braided pigtails for once), and Sasaki (with shorter and curlier hair) all clapped their hands with joy. Everyone looked older, but it felt like time has never passed since I left.
I didn't really pay attention to any of them, however, as I looked straight for the person who I craved to see for the past four years.
She was beautiful, as always, with her (still short, but slightly longer) brown hair turning ochre from the sun rays, and stunning emerald eyes as they flashed to me. She wore a light green summer dress (which I think was from Daidouji). She smiled, though there was a trace of annoyance on her face.
Everyone kept distance around me, because she was right before me, and we both breathed in relief.
"You're late, Syaoran," she said as she wrapped her arms around my neck when I reached her.
"Sorry, Sakura," I said as I lowered my head. "Overslept." We both chuckled as our lips met, making everyone sigh.
"Okay, party in my house!" roared Yamazaki, startling everyone again. I grimaced at him. He still hasn't changed.
Both he and Hiiragizawa helped me with my luggage and we all walked to Tomoyo's limousine. Hiiragizawa and Yamazaki put away my stuff for me in the trunk. I looked at the limo skeptically as Sakura shrugged.
"More room," she explained as we all got in the car. I held Sakura's hand as we both sat next to each other.
"Actually, I was thinking," I murmured as I moved some of her bangs away with my free hand so that I could see her eyes. "…if we can go to a restaurant."
"You're hungry?" Sakura frowned at the thought of poor service at the plane.
Daidouji looked at me for a brief minute. Comprehension flickered on her face and she told her driver to take us to a restaurant that I didn't recognize (I suspected that it was a fancy one, which was even better).
"Well, not really," I said. I put my free hand in my pocket and my fingers closed around a small box that contained the promise of keeping Sakura in being mine forever. She looked baffled when I gave her a reassured smile. I kissed her hand that I entwined with mine.
"I just want to try something."
O…kay, seriously that's the end. Seriously! Ahaha. Hoped you enjoyed, and I look forward in seeing your reviews! I'll update my The Last Nagori soon so keep an eye on that one too!