Standard disclaimers apply.

LONG HAUL

By Cassandra's Destiny

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"It amuses me how you always manage to make her hate you."

Touya snorted; good to know there was one person who found this amusing, at the very least.

"She doesn't hate me." At least he hoped she doesn't.

"Uh-huh," Yukito chuckled before swallowing another mouthful of meat.

"Even if she didn't hate you," he started. "She's still not talking to you after what happened."

"It wasn't my fault." Touya was quick to reply.

Her fault, never his.

"Now you're blaming her?"

"All I'm saying is…" he paused mid-thought, not bothering to complete the statement.

That's exactly the problem; he was out of words to say.

Yukito grunted sympathetically, as if reading his mind.

"Fix this. Don't play the blame game, Touya. No one's blaming you, so don't go blaming her."

"What did I do?" Sakura descended from the stairs with Tomoyo, a mixture of worry and annoyance evident in her voice. "If it's about the last slice of cake in the fridge, I swear I didn't eat it!"

Tomoyo giggled. Of course she didn't eat it; Kero did.

"Don't worry, Sakura. It's not about that."

"Eh?" So it wasn't the last slice of cake. "What's it about?"

Sakura had a few guesses. Her older brother has been acting more irritable than usual since five days ago. The day before Nakuru accompanied Eriol to England, she remembers. Maybe he misses her?

"He's shutting himself from the world," Tomoyo's words rang in her ear. "Really, Yukito, what's it about?"

Touya rolled his eyes. "None of your business, kaiju." With that, he got his plate and walked to the kitchen.

Sakura fought the urge to stick out her tongue, for fear of earning his brother's spite. "I'll find out eventually, onii-san!" Alas, the battle against her urge proved to be a futile attempt. She stuck her tongue out and made a face.

Sighing to herself, she sat down opposite Yukito, who continued munching on the pork barbecue sticks. Tomoyo, at that time, occupied herself by making them some tea.

"Come closer and I'll tell you." Yukito leaned forward to whisper as if in secrecy. This, of course, has not gone unnoticed by Touya. "I need a new best friend, one who'd actually keep the confidential matters to himself," he thought.

"Nakuru's not back yet." Sakura sweatdropped. That was the big secret?

"And Touya hates her."

"No, I don't!" A glare was cast in Yukito's direction, but he paid it no heed.

"Nakuru hates him too."

"Oh," her mouth formed a small 'o', catching on to Yukito's game.

"If you ask me, they're better off apart. She should probably stay in England, get engaged to a rich English man there for all Touya cares. He, on the other hand, should stay here, finish his studies, forget her and find a super model turned actress who'd happily go out with an idiot like him."

She sweatdropped again. Sakura never knew Yukito was this tactless.

He let out a small laugh. "Come her wedding day, we'd all fly to England to see her walk down the aisle in a lovely white bridal gown, adorned with lilacs or whatever flower she chooses. Tomoyo is a bridesmaid, obviously, so is Meiling. You, too, a bridesmaid, escorted by no other than Li Syaoran himself."

Now he was really pushing it, dragging Syaoran to the issue like that. Yet Yukito chose to continue. "I will be seated in front, next to your dad. Now, as for Touya, he'd be in the row after ours, sulking, while seated next to his girlfriend. He won't be able to give his full attention to the ceremony though, because his girlfriend turned out to be a complete nightmare – an obsessive possessive, mega diva character who finds utmost entertainment in fawning at his feet, feeding off the attention other people give her while sporting her long blonde hair and well-endowed body."

"She sounds like a ditz," Sakura exclaimed, frowning at the thought of her brother ending up with a woman like that.

"No doubt about it. Thing is, Touya won't be able to get away from her unless she says so, because she'll keep giving him this tall tale about how her family thinks of her as a woman who can't settle down, how the media will react if she got dumped, how being seen with her will bring wonders to his social life…" He trailed off, feeling the intense look Touya was giving him.

"Loads of bull." Touya rejoins them at the table, Tomoyo with the tea set in tow.

Sakura's brows furrowed, her lips in a straight line. It was unlikely her older brother would end up with a woman like that. Unlikely, but not impossible. She feared the consequences of one bad decision on Touya's part.

"So what do you intend to do?" Tomoyo poured them a cup of tea, her question blatant and without ill intent.

He exhaled slowly as realization hit him. It didn't matter what happened, how it happened or whose fault it was. Yukito was right. He had to fix this.

"When does she arrive back?" Yukito asked in his behalf.

Sakura pursed her lips, rummaging in the many thoughts inside her head for the exact date of Eriol's return. "Well…" It was a fact she couldn't remember, and she knew her brother wanted an answer.

Tomoyo sensed the worry in Sakura's face, and so she decided to supply the answer. "This Tuesday," three pairs of eyes settled on her. "Their flight lands the day after tomorrow.


In the next chapter: "What do you mean she wanted to stay behind in England?"