Tread Softly.
I have spread my dreams beneath your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
* William Butler Yeats in "He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven"

It's one of his dreams this time. Yuuko stands up and she's in his garden and it's spring this time, so that his cherry tree is blossoming. As she walks towards the tree she wonders, what age will Clow look this time? Their last dream he looked twenty and he was about to get married. The time before that he was five, all wide eyes and sad wisdom far too large for him.

It is hard like this, because it makes her feel as if Clow has always been a part of her life and Yuuko isn't sure she enjoys that. Then again, there's nothing she can do to fix that -- Because there's time and there's time and there's them, who can move through time as if it was a suggestion, and it's too much bother to try and think which was first, which came second.

She finds him looking more or less her age: fourteen, perhaps fifteen years old, all gangly limbs and eyes already behind glasses, his hair now brushing his shoulders. He's reading a book, engrossed in it, but the moment she sits down besides him he puts it aside, smiling at her.

"Hello, Yuuko-chan."

"Reed," she says, ignoring the way he huffs, shaking his head.

"How long do we have to know each other for you to say my name?"

She huffs and doesn't answer further. In his dream there are no clouds, just vast blue skies and the flowers falling around them. One day, soon, they will meet. It doesn't matter if she's unsure of when.

"Am I here for any reason at all?" She finally asks, half glaring at him. There's something in the way he smiles that annoys her, as if he knew everything that would happen. She realizes that it might be true and it bothers her that it makes a difference. But their destinies are intertwined, strand upon strand and it's not only her destiny – or his – that who'd suffer if the strands were broken. Despite how selfish she can be, it's not enough for her to disrupt the whole balance of the universe.

"Other than the pleasure of your company, you mean?" Clow asks with a charming smile.

Yuuko huffs and starts to stand up.

"If that's all, I have more important things to dream about, Reed."

She can feel that he has a wish there, a wish that she won't ask her, and she sometimes wonder if sometime in the future he will. But for now Clow's hand closes around her hand and he smiles, apologetic.

"I have something for you."

"... do you have a wish?"

"No, I brought a present for a friend," Clow tells her with a little amused quirk to the mouth that makes her frown. But before she can snap again, he produces a hairpin from within the air and flowers that rest in this dream of his, lacquered and bright. "I would like very much if you wore this when we finally meet."

Clow puts the butterfly in her hair, let's go of his hand so that he can take strands of her hair and twist in a chignon for the butterfly to rest. Yuuko keeps her hands on her thighs, not quite glaring, not quite smiling, in a sort of breathless wonder. She knows the butterfly will be there when she wakes up from this, something tangible beyond their dreams, as if she needed any more proof that he really exists.

"... you're still a creep," she tells him, and then, softly. "Clow."

"Ah, I guess I am, dearest," he says softly. "I hope you can forgive that, Yuuko"

She doesn't look at his face, so she most definitely can't be sure if he smiled or not and it's not as if it was important anyway, because he's always smiling, even if his voice sounded soft, even if he dropped the honorific. And so when she leans her head against his shoulder, it's just to enjoy the way the cherry blossoms fall within his dream, and not because for a moment she can wait, there, even though he refuses to ask for his wish.