Disclaimer: CLAMP owns all the characters and stuff.
Notes: Okay, now I'm just being silly :P
It was all the fault of a spinning wheel, a feather and a stupid prince.
They'd landed softly and easily and it had almost, almost given Kurogane hope that this world would be over with quickly and then they could move on. Mokona had picked up on the feather almost immediately.
It was inside a castle high up on a hill. All the locals said the place was cursed and told them to stay away from it, and then some stupid prince (who used more 'thees' and 'thous' and 'forsooths' in his speech than anyone had any right to use) had appeared and begged gallantly for their help, because whatever the stupid curse was it had trapped his princess in the castle and he was unable to pass through the gates.
And of course it made sense, then, that the curse was probably either caused or strengthened by Sakura's feather so naturally she felt bad and insisted that they save the poor trapped girl.
Kurogane didn't really care either way, as long as it meant he got to fight something.
It turned out that the something in question was plants. Lots of plants. Big stupid thorny vines and giant man-eating flytrap things (which had apparently been planted to deal with the giant man-eating flies, naturally) and what appeared to be very large, pretty tulips with impressive sets of teeth.
Kurogane and Syaoran had dealt with them the best they could (the prince had helped by waving his sword a bit and making more long speeches with lots of 'forsooths.' The man really seemed to like the word 'forsooth' and Kurogane was beginning to suspect that the idiot hadn't any idea what the word actually meant). Fai and Sakura had stood back and watched the show. Fai had even applauded helpfully when they finished.
Once the man-eating foliage was dealt with they finally entered the castle. The door they had fought so hard to reach turned out to be locked tight (of course) so the prince led them in through a storm drain. By the time they found themselves inside the castle they were all covered in dank, clingy mud (and, in Kurogane and Syaoran's cases, man-eating rat guts).
Well, almost all. Somehow Fai managed to swan through the sewer without a hair out of place. His only response to Kurogane's irritated glare was a bright smile and a comment on how man-eating rat guts brought out the red in Kurogane's eyes.
The inside of the castle turned out to be positively boring. Everyone inside was fast asleep and no amount of shouting or shaking could wake them (smells apparently had no effect either, as Kurogane was certain the stench from the muck that coated their clothes was enough to wake the dead).
The prince had run off to rescue his princess, and, finally free of one nuisance, they'd gone searching for the feather. With Mokona as guide they'd eventually made their way to a small dusty room beneath a staircase. The inside of the room was completely empty, save for a spinning wheel.
Caught in the wheel was Sakura's feather.
Fai had reached to take it. Kurogane still wasn't sure why it had been Fai. Syaoran would have made more sense, or Sakura herself. But Fai stepped forward to take it. And as he deftly took the feather in his hands, he somehow managed to prick his finger on the spinning wheel.
The feather had slipped from Fai's fingers, and Kurogane had only just managed to catch him when he fell.
That had been several hours ago, and Fai was asleep.
The stupid prince had apparently managed to do whatever it was one did to break a spell and the rest of occupants of the castle had woken up. Their princess (who also used too many 'thees' and 'thous') had been "sorely and surely sorrowed" to see that Fai was still under whatever curse had befallen everyone else in the castle and had promised to help them in any way she could. So far this appeared to consist of placing Fai in a ridiculously opulent and impractical bed and arranging flowers and candles around his unconscious form in order to create the proper ambiance.
Truth be told, the magician looked far too close to dead for Kurogane's liking. Not that he cared if Fai died, mind, it was just that this wasn't the way it was supposed to go. Fai was supposed to die with Kurogane's sword in his ribs, and no spinning wheel curse was going to rob Kurogane of that sweet, sweet satisfaction.
"There must be something we can do," Sakura murmured. She only just woken up herself after having retrieved her feather, and had been very upset to find Fai still asleep.
"Punch him and see if he wakes up," Kurogane suggested darkly.
"Um, Kurogane-san, I don't think that will work," Syaoran said hastily. "If it's a curse, there must be some special way to break it."
"Mokona knows!" the white creature suddenly spoke up.
"Then why didn't you say so earlier?" Kurogane muttered.
"Mokona wasn't sure," the white thing replied. "Because Mokona thought that when the prince broke everyone's spell it would break Fai's spell, too. But it didn't work."
"So how do we save Fai-san?" Sakura asked.
"Fairytale Rules," Mokona said sagely. "Fai can only be awakened by true love's kiss!"
There was a very long pause and Mokona smiled and then Sakura said "Eh?" and Syaoran said "Um," and then all three of them looked at Kurogane.
Kurogane glared back.
"Why the hell is everyone looking at me?"
The children suddenly seemed very interested in the candles. Kurogane thought he heard what might have been a snicker from the bed and glanced over sharply at it, but Fai hadn't moved and his eyes were still closed.
"Someone must kiss Fai and then his life will be saved!" Mokona declared. Syaoran and Sakura looked at each other and then at Fai. Kurogane looked pointedly away from all of them.
"Um…should I…?" Sakura volunteered meekly.
"P-Princess Sakura, you don't have to--" Syaoran started.
"I don't want Fai-san to sleep forever," Sakura said. Mokona looked at Kurogane in a way that the ninja suspected had been calculated to make him feel guilty.
Sakura took a deep breath and gathered herself, then strode forward and gave Fai a nervous kiss on the forehead.
"It didn't work," Sakura said, turning to Mokona. "He isn't waking up!"
Mokona glanced over at Kurogane again and until that moment Kurogane had doubted that it was possible for a small white meat bun to look scheming.
"In Fairytale Rules," the white thing said slowly, "to break the spell the kiss has to be on the lips."
"Oh." Sakura's eyes were wide, and the only face redder than hers was Syaoran's.
There was another long pause while Sakura played with the hem of her skirt. Out of the corner of his eye Kurogane thought he saw movement by the bed again, but when he turned his head Fai was lying as still as ever.
Or not. Kurogane narrowed his eyes. Had the sleeping bastard been smiling when they first laid him on the bed?
"I—I guess I sh-should, um…" Sakura took another nervous step towards Fai. Kurogane looked at her wide eyes and Syaoran's increasingly scandalized face and sighed.
"Step back," Kurogane told Sakura as he moved forward and knelt by the bed.
"Kurogane-san?" Sakura glanced at him.
"Are you sure this will work, white thing?" Kurogane ignored her and turned to Mokona. The white creature nodded sagely.
"True love's kiss will wake Fai from his sleep," Mokona stated.
Kurogane leaned closer to Fai. You'd better appreciate this, you idiot.
Kurogane had intended it to be a quick kiss. Lips on lips for just a moment and it would be done. Quick, efficient, break the spell and be done with it. He was only doing this because the kids and the white thing had forced him into it anyway.
Kurogane closed his eyes and his lips met Fai's and suddenly there were strong arms pulling him closer and Fai's mouth was warm and inviting and Kurogane couldn't quite pull himself away, not even when he heard Sakura make a small squeaking noise from behind him.
Then there was a tongue in his mouth that wasn't his and his eyes flashed open.
"You bastard!" Kurogane pulled away and stumbled to his feet, reaching for his sword. Fai looked up sleepily at him from the bed.
"My hero!" Fai beamed up sweetly at him.
"What the hell were you doing?" Kurogane demanded.
"Hmm?" Fai was all innocence and sunshine. "But Kuro-pii kissed me. I was just returning the favor."
"Fairytale Rules!" Mokona said sagely, nodding. "True love's kiss works every time."
"I-I'm glad you're all right, Fai-san," Sakura managed. Her face was still bright red and she was glancing at Kurogane out of the corner of her eye.
"It was just a small spell, Sakura-chan, nothing to worry about," Fai said airily. "Luckily princely Kuro-rin was here to save me!"
"Can we leave now?" Kurogane demanded. "We're finished here, right?"
"We should let the prince and princess know Fai-san's all right before we go," Syaoran said, heading towards the door. Sakura nodded and followed him.
"Right, right!" Mokona jumped after them. It paused a moment as it hopped past Kurogane and the ninja could swear that the damn white thing smirked as it went past.
Fai laughed and stood up, seeming only a little unsteady on his legs. As he walked past Kurogane the ninja grabbed his arm.
"How'd you know you were under a spell?" Kurogane demanded.
"You told the princess it was just a small spell," Kurogane said. "But we never told you that you were under a spell. You just fell asleep and woke up with me…" Dammit, he was not going to say it. He was not going to give Fai that satisfaction. "…breaking the spell and you immediately knew what had happened before we told you. How'd you know?"
"Lucky guess." Fai shrugged. He was smiling again. Kurogane's hand tightened around the hilt of his sword.
"You bastard…that spell on you broke when the one on the rest of the castle broke, didn't it?"
"Who knows?" Fai somehow managed to get free even though Kurogane was sure he'd been holding the mage in an iron-tight grip. "Don't worry about it, Kuro-tan. And besides, you really weren't a bad kisser after all. You just need the right motivation."
Fai laughed and disappeared out the door. Kurogane pulled out his sword.
Fairytale rules be damned, next time he was waking Fai up with a punch to the head.