Giving You the Stars

They stayed in the garden. It was midsummer and the evening was warm. They didn't let any of the servants open the lights so they can savor the taste and feel of dusk. There was a crescent moon in the sky. Stars twinkled and smiled on the velvety darkness of the sky. The blooming flowers scented the air. It was romantic, beautiful and perfect for any love confessions. But it was so sad. No love confessions for tonight because they were friends.

"I think we're wasting Nature's handiwork," Hiiragizawa Eriol said calmly. He twirled a rosebud on his hand. "She laid out a pretty setting and we're not using it."

The young woman beside him scoffed. Daidouji Tomoyo's eyes burned with violet fires. "It's not our fault. We're not going to sing to that corny John Elton song."

"Can you feel the love tonight, it is where we are..." he sang gently."It's enough for this wide-eyed wanderer... That we got this far..."

"Watch it," she said with a smile.

"You don't have to believe me," he murmured as he slid closer to her. He could smell the delicate vanilla scent from her alabaster skin. His fingers itched to touch the silken waves of her hair. She was wearing a lovely dress made of soft white material that echoed her every move and settled when she stilled. On her hair was a little butterfly clip reminded him of a coronet worn by queens in the past.

The beautiful night must be appropriate for this elfin queen then. He had never found a more comforting situation. A mage from the ancient past sitting with a young woman who had a soul just as old as his. He understood her refusal from love because he can see himself reflected in her actions. They were too broken for a true and pure love.

Tomoyo was the perfect companion. She was beautiful, smart and wise beyond her years. Her wealthy life had molded her into a young woman of perfect manners and lovely spirit. She was just like him. They gravitated towards each other; they were true kindred souls. Tomoyo was the first woman to truly understand him in a way that was almost frightening. The beautiful amethyst eyes held truths that he wished to know. When they just glanced at each other, they knew what the other wanted to say. Nakuru had kidded him that they had an almost telepathic connection. It was.

"What's on your mind?" he asked gently when he noticed her silence.

"Is there a God?" she asked.

His eyes softened and he reached out to tuck her hair behind her ear. "Do you believe in Him?"

"Of course I do. But I want to know if there was really someone up there." Tomoyo pointed up towards the heavens. A sigh escaped her lips. "I want to ask him why the stars are too far away from earth."

"There's always a reason for everything. God knew what He was doing because he placed the apple up the tree instead of a pumpkin. Imagine if the trees bore fruit too heavy for their branches. It's a good thing because human skulls are already thick enough as it is. If it was too thick, learning might never really get through..." Eriol said in a teasing tone. She pinched his side and he howled in pain. "You can't take a joke, can you?"

"Don't joke with me right now, smartass."

"You're no fun," he pouted like a little boy.

Tomoyo laughed softly. Nobody can really resist Eriol. She let him hold her hand as they settled in the sweet silence. Eriol was a nice young man despite his "evil" tendencies. She leaned her head on his shoulder. "Eriol-kun, I want to have a star..." she murmured as she held his hand.

"What do you want a star for?" he asked gently as he leaned back for a more comfortable position. He could smell the sweetness of her hair.

"Ever since I was a girl, I've always wanted one. But when I found my star, it was snatched away from me." Tomoyo said as she held his hand tighter. "I guess that must be why stars must remain in the heavens. It must always be there to remind us that we can never have what we always want..."

He reached up and smoothed her dark curls. Because of the intimate closeness of their bodies, he can feel her trembling and her hurt. It wouldn't surprise him if she started to cry. Tomoyo was stronger than most girls. She did not spend herself easily and kept up a perfect facade until her bottled feelings finally reached the brim. That was when she needed him.

"I'll never have her, Eriol-kun. She will always be out of my reach..." She turned her face up to look at him. He saw the universe in her violet eyes. "I'm never going to be enough."

Eriol wrapped an arm around her. He wished that she would understand that he was there to be her rock and strength. He wanted to her to feel the warmth and solidity of his presence. She needed to remember that she was too beautiful, too wonderful and too lovable to be sad. Her value went beyond existing as the best friend, comforter and unrequited lover. She was born to be herself.

He leaned forward and kissed her forehead. "That divine little star is there because it is meant to be your inspiration. It's true that my former life hadn't anticipated your role but that didn't mean he wanted you to get hurt. My darling Tomoyo-san would like her Sakura-chan to be under her loving for a longer time but that is not possible anymore. Your star needs to shine."

"I cannot shine. I'm her best friend and shadow... She needs me in a way that Syaoran doesn't understand. We have an understanding," Tomoyo argued through angry tears. Stubbornness is indeed a family trait, he thought ruefully.

"Yes, you do. But for you to find out your purpose you have to step out of the shadows. You have to find your star and destiny. That chapter is done because Sakura-san has found hers. Yours is starting because you need to find yours. Tomorrow is the start of your life. And although you may not have her to cheer you on always and forever, you can make use of me." Eriol pointed to himself with a cheerful grin.

"You?" she giggled through fresh tears. "You make me cry. You make me think too much. How can you make me learn to smile?"

Eriol pulled out his handkerchief and wiped away the wet trails of her face. His expression was unbelievably tender. "I can give you all of the stars of the universe except that one. Can you accept that?"

She smiled despite her tears. "Arigato, Eriol-kun. Maybe I can take that one."

"It's hard to let go when you've learned to love long and hard. But you'll learn to smile again, Tomoyo-san. Remember that." Eriol tucked her hair behind her ears. She looked young and vulnerable. She was no longer the strong and almost invulnerable young woman before.

Tomoyo smiled shyly. Her eyes spoke volumes of how much she appreciated his advice.

"I'd give you all the stars in the sky if only to make you smile," he whispered as she kissed his cheek.

"I know," she agreed "so you owe me a galaxy or two."

They laughed together and held hands. Nature was right to give them this evening. Maybe they weren't too broken for love and companionship after all. In their beautiful and romantic garden they learned that although all the stars in the sky may fall, they'll still have each other.

oOoOoOo

A/N: Just in a very dreamy mood… I missed writing Eriol x Tomoyo…