AU – Sakura and Syaoran met as small kids, lost touch, and grew up. Years later, he is a notorious playboy who specializes in dating bridesmaids while she is a charming pediatric dentist with a very handsome boyfriend. What will happen when they finally bump into each other again?
Disclaimer: CCS and TRC belong to CLAMP.
Chapter 1. Let's Get Married!
Prologue 1: S&S
Yelan and Nadeshiko were friends from their modeling days. The Kinimotos were in town visiting Yelan's family who live in Beiba. They went out with their husbands for an afternoon of sightseeing and eating out downtown to catch up on each other's lives. They left their children in the playroom of the Li mansion under the care of the Li family's nanny--Nanny Lei, who was about 60 and a "little hard at hearing".
Inside the playroom, the four Li daughters 11 years old (twins) and 9 years old (twins) respectively, were playing with their gold-colored (plastic) princess beauty sets. They all had tiaras and plastic jewelry on and very red lipstick that they stole from their mother's make-up case. 6 year-old Syaoran and 4 year-old Sakura were still taking an afternoon nap in a corner of the playroom under the watchful gaze of Nana Lei.
In comes a slightly disoriented 12-year old Touya, who almost lost his way around the maze-like halls after going to the "little boy's room". He looked at the cackling little witches in the corner and knew that it did not bode well for him. He picked up a book and tried to ignore their whispering.
Fuutie, the eldest daughter, led the girls as they approached him. "Touya, you know we've read a book about a pasha in Arabia." She stood in his left side.
"Uhum…" Touya said, tightening his hold on the book.
"He lived in a large palace like our house…" Xuehua said, going to Touya's right side.
"Uhum…" Touya said, still pretending to read the book.
"He was tall, dark and handsome and rich, just like you." Feimei said, joining Fuutie.
"We're not rich…and I'm not handsome either." Touya blushed, he was starting to feel nervous.
"And so we thought," Huanglian, the youngest, said, "that if you become a pasha…"
Xuehua: "You can..."
Feimei: "Marry four wives..."
Huanglian: "At the same time…"
Fuutie: "We can all marry you!"
Touya stumbled and fell out of his chair. His whole life (so far) flashed before his eyes.
The girls chorused: "Marry us, Touya!" And they all glomped him at the same time.
Nanny Lei looked nonplussed at the youngsters and just smiled. "Innocent little things." She said. (She's a bit hard at hearing.)
Touya stood up, his shirt hanging at an odd angle from his shoulder and ran out of the room. The girls immediately ran after him. "Touya, come back here! We know how to perform the ceremony!"
Nanny Lei had to leave her comfortable chair to look after the bigger kids, who were rampaging noisily around the halls outside of the Li Nursery. The old woman thought that they were just playing tag.
Syaoran and Sakura woke up because of the racket. Sakura started to sob she hated it when she woke up alone. "Uhuhu…"
Syaoran frowned, he jumped from his bed and reached her side in no time. "You're such a cry baby, here, eat this." He gave her a big bar of his precious milk chocolate from his secret stash (under his daybed). He was feeling very generous today—a month ago with Meiling he only gave her a very small pinch and that was after she had cried her lungs out.
Sakura pouted cutely but accepted the chocolate just the same. "Uhmmmm. It's jelishoos Shooran!" She liked saying his name—it sounded so cute, just like him.
"You're such a baby." He said promptly ignoring that he is also just a child, he liked the way she said his name, even if it sounded like "shoe" in stead of "syao".
"Where are they?" She asked, her lips were brown with chocolate. He liked it when she smiled, but of course he wouldn't tell her that.
They could hear loud noises from upstairs—of doors opening and closing, of loud, running feet, a panicking boy's shout and predatory feminine screams. Syaoran pointed his finger up. "Up there, can't you hear?" He tried to be grouchy in front of her so she won't notice that he likes her.
Sakura chose to ignore his grouchiness. "Let's play Shooran!"
"I don't want to play with you."
"Because….because…you're a girl."
"I know—why don't we play house?" She said brightly.
"Um…play house?" He frowned. His sisters would usually force him to play house with them and he is usually cast as the "baby" since he was the youngest. Then they would take turns pinching his cheeks and calling him "kawaii" in high-pitched voices. The upside is that they'd give him chocolate milk for all the humiliation.
"Play house--you know where there's a daddy and a mommy and kids?"
"I know what 'play house' is." There was a hint of arrogance in his voice.
"You could be the daddy and I'll be the mommy and the plushies can be our kids, OK?" Sakura skipped with glee. She couldn't "play house" back home because she there were few people to play house with. Touya would usually pretend to be a big bad wolf that would pretend to "eat" her dolls, so she would always exclude him. There is no "daddy" so the family is still incomplete.
"We can't be daddy or mommy because we're not married." Syaoran said dryly.
"Then why don't you marry me?" She asked without batting an eyelash.
"Ermmm…OK." When he played with his sisters, it was usually Fuutie who played "daddy" because she was the eldest and tallest while Xuehua would play "mommy" because she was second oldest. At least now he had been promoted from baby to daddy. "Here," he gave her a plastic ring from his sister's princess beauty sets and took a bigger one for himself. She slid the ring on his ring finger and he did the same to her.
Syaoran took charge, being the "bigger" kid: "OK, so now we hold hands and pray together." They held hands and bowed their heads to pray together.
Syaoran waited for her to finish praying. "Now we kiss."
"OK". Sakura said, puckering her lips.
Syaoran blushed and scratched his head he suddenly felt shy. He didn't expect her to just say yes. He cleared his throat. "We have to do a long kiss, I've seen my Father and Mother do it."
Sakura nodded. She saw her parents do it too. "Hurry up then and kiss me, Shooran."
So they pressed their chocolate-smeared lips together. After about a minute, Syaoran pulled away, blushing. His lips felt all nice and tickly, it felt good to do it and he could smell her cherry shampoo.
Sakura frowned. "That's not long enough. I've seen it on TV, you should count to 10." She closed her eyes again, puckering her lips.
"Ummm…OK." Syaoran counted in his head in Japanese and Chinese (he is very good in math). He licked the chocolate from her lips and she did the same to his.
Meanwhile, the four girls have cornered Touya in the garden. He clambered up a tall tree and the girls were looking up at him, coaxing him to marry them. Nana Lei was trying to calm down the 5 bigger kids.
"Now what do we do?" Sakura asked. "I know—I can cook for the kids." She motioned to the army of plushies stacked in a neat row in the toy shelves.
"I can help you." He said. She nodded. "You could read the newspaper while we're eating later. My dad does it all the time."
"OK." He had also seen his dad do that.
She got into 'character' immediately. She took the chibi-sized plastic cooking set in the corner and the basket full of plastic vegetables, fruit and meat and pretended to prepare a meal for her 'family'. He set the table.
"We should also have a honeymoon, too you know." Syaoran said.
"What do we do in a homee-moon?" She asked, pouring imaginary soup into the bowls for their 'kids'.
"Stuff…I guess…it took my aunt and uncle a month to finish theirs." He said.
"But we're leaving tomorrow." She pointed out, alarmed. "We should do it really fast."
"I don't know. You're supposed to give something precious to each other." He was also puzzled and for some reason he suddenly felt sad to know that his new "wife" is leaving tomorrow, he really likes her. He suppressed the urge to cry because his Dad said boys should never cry and he is a big boy now and he didn't want Sakura to think that he's a cry baby.
Sakura was close to tears. She suddenly went back to the mini-bed and took her brand new pink teddy bear. She broke her "tooth fairy" piggy bank so she could buy the bear. Her mother would "pay" Sakura whenever she lost a milk tooth. The 4-year old girl kissed and hugged the bear. "Here, Shooran. This is very precious to me. You can have it." Her eyes were shining with tears, she really loved her pink teddy bear and she hasn't even named it yet.
Syaoran was touched. "Wait here." He ran to his bedroom and was back in a minute, panting. He was holding a bigger brown teddy bear with a green polka-dot tie around its neck. "Here, this is precious to me too." He said as he held it out to her.
Sakura took and hugged it close. It smelled like him—chocolate. She then started to cry loudly. "I'm so sad, Shooran! I'll miss you! And who will take care of our kids when I go away?"
Syaoran patted her shoulder. "I'll miss you too. I will take care of them, don't cry. Maybe we should sleep again?" He suggested desperately, that was the only way he could think of for her to stop crying.
"But I'm not sleepy, I'm sad!" Her face was wet with tears now. He wiped it off with his hanky.
"I'll give you ALL of my milk chocolate bars if you sleep again." He said soothingly. That meant he would have to do without chocolate for weeks—it was his secret store.
"All of it?" Sakura said, her sobs subsiding.
"Yes, all of it." Syaoran said. He emptied the contents of his green backpack and gave it to her. She placed it all inside her pink pouch.
"But what about you? Won't you get hungry?" She asked, suddenly feeling concerned.
"I have had enough chocolate. " He replied nonchalantly.
"OK." Sakura said and hugged him tight. "I love you, Shooran! Will you marry someone else when I'm in Tomoeda?"
"Of course not!" He replied a bit louder than he intended. He stuttered when he continued: "But we should sleep together now because we're married." She nodded. She knows that her parents sleep together too. He joined her on the daybed that she was sleeping on earlier and put his arm around her as they lay down. In a few minutes they were both sleeping again. Sakura sucked her thumb and Syaoran's face was almost buried in her hair.
Around this time, the bigger kids sauntered to the room with both sets of parents, the Li's and the Kinimotos. "Oh look they're so cute!" Yelan said indicating the sleeping Syaoran and Sakura. The other parents agreed. Nadeshiko smiled and asked, "So they both slept all afternoon?" Nana Lei nodded. "They're such innocent angels!" The four Li daughters were whispering among themselves: "Little brother's got himself a kawaii girlfriend!"
Touya frowned. He was the only person in the room who was not happy with what he is seeing. He wanted to punch the sleeping gaki and remove his filthy, stinking hand from his sister. He never felt the urge to hurt younger kids before except right now—and only for the gaki. He remembered that the two had slept on separate beds earlier and was wondering how the stupid, annoying gaki transferred to his sister's bed. He was glad they were leaving this place first thing tomorrow or the gaki might get ideas with his sister. Little did he know that he was well, a bit too late?
As scheduled, the Kinimotos drove back to Tomoeda after brunch the following morning. Syaoran held Sakura's hands as he walked her to their van, which the adults thought was sweet. Touya could not do anything but glare at the gaki because he had the four girls hanging on to him. The adults were of course oblivious to everything. Sakura cried inconsolably all the way back to Tomoeda, hugging the brown bear tight. Touya was busy trying to catch his breath, he was almost strangled to death by those girls and his parents did not notice a thing. They even took pictures!
The two families lost touch of each other because the Li family had to move overseas temporarily for additional treatment of Mr. Li's illness. Nadeshiko died a few years later. The "newlyweds" did not see each other again until many years later, when they were all grown-up.
Prologue 2: E&T
6-year old Eriol was very pissed for this past week. Very, very pissed. His dad, Clow Reed had grounded him indefinitely. And what was more annoying was that his mom Yuko had agreed with his dad this time. (She would usually intercede on his behalf.)
All he did was "destroy" the super weird stained glass cathedral-size windows in the mansion of the old neighborhood weirdo Fei Wong. He and his siblings believed that the over-sized bats on the windows were scary and that the old, batty man worshipped them and smelled like the winged creatures too! It's either that or he has a fixation for Batman, which could be possible, since the old man is a bit retarded in their opinion. It also broke Eriol's heart whenever he saw how scared his secret crush and neighbour 6-year old Tomoyo Daidouji is whenever their school bus passed by that spooky old mansion. So he only did what a typical Prince Charming would do--protect his princess.
It was exciting pitching baseballs to break the glass windows. He had practiced well on their own house's windows many times before, often when playing baseball with his dad. The aftermath of his glass breaking spree was that his dad had to write a check to pay the weird old man when he arrived with a basket of blue baseballs marked with "Eriol Reed wuz hea" and the jagged remnants of his precious stained glass windows. (Eriol had to make sure that the other boy who was trying to catch Tomoyo's attention—Kurogane or something—does not get the chance to claim the credit for this so he wrote his name on all the baseballs. Ah young love! Or should we say, foolish love?)
Earlier that week, he found out that Tomoyo was moving away because her parents have divorced but he couldn't even say goodbye to her since he is grounded indefinitely. He felt so forlorn. What if she forgets all about him and marries another boy? What if they don't see each other again?
Now his older siblings, 10-year old Nakuru and 8-year old Kimihiro felt very sorry for their little brother. So they thought of something to distract their parents so Eriol can say goodbye to his dear Tomoyo. In exchange, Eriol was to do both of their household chores for as long as he was grounded. It was a very solemn act. They did a three-way sibling spit shake and a complicated butt dance on it.
It was a Saturday morning, around 10-ish, so both of their parents were sleeping in. This is when his lovely Tomoyo is going to leave, so they put their plan to action. Eriol was waiting in the living room, his trusty bike was hidden and ready in the bushes, and his farewell gift for Tomoyo is in his backpack.
Kimihiro entered their parents' room and shook their mother awake. Yuuko was a light sleeper so she opened her eyes immediately. "Mom, mom, I forgot my book at school yesterday. I need it for my homework." (He's attending genius school.)
Yuuko sat up, still groggy. "What's that sweetheart?" She turned and leaned her head on a pile of blankets in the depths of which lay her husband.
Kimihiro repeated what he said, ending with: "Can you help me get it pleeeeezzzz, Mom?" He tried to look as helpless as possible (which made him want to throw up). Luckily he dabbed on some fake tears using the "tear bottle" of Nakuru to fake his "watery eyes". Eriol sure owed him a LOT!
Yuuko immediately got up and dressed. She was very supportive of the children's studies. "Clow!!!" she bellowed as she violently shook her husband's sleeping form. Kimihiro yawned while his mother's back was turned. He was not bothered at all with what he was seeing. Everyone in the family knew that Clow slept like a log—literally. He could sleep through a tornado if you'd let him.
"Uhmmm.." Came a drowsy grunt from the mass of blankets that is her husband.
Yuuko sighed. "Good, still alive. I have to drive Hiro to school to get his book. It's your turn to make brunch today, OK?"
Two more distinct grunts came from the blanket pile, but his wife was apparently satisfied. Hiro smiled silently to himself because he got the easier task. He had left the "missing" book in school on purpose yesterday in his "secret" location so he could tell his mom that he had to look for it. Nakuru's job was to distract their Dad, which would need all his sister's so-called "acting" skills and hyperactive energy to pull off. Hiro gave a small thumbs-up sign to Eriol (who was hiding behind a sofa in the living room) when he and his mom passed by. They drove off in a few minutes. Eriol climbed upstairs and did their "secret" sibling knock on his older sister's bedroom door. Phase 2 of the plan was about to start.
All of Clow's and Yuuko's children were geniuses in their own way: Kimihiro with numbers, Eriol with music and Nakuru, well, in her "acting" skills. Inside her well-lit ruby-red boudoir (as she calls it, but most of us would just call it bedroom), Nakuru had on a thick, white, plush robe—the kind that actresses wear in-between takes. She applied some lip stain to her cheeks to redden them and make them look like she had been crying for a looong time. She put some dark powder under her eyes to make her look "less attractive". Ewwww! How she hated looking bad, but great actresses often "uglied" down for their craft. She was only doing this for Eriol, who had agreed to do her chores for as long as he was grounded—that was her "motivation".
Her room was fit for an actress. She wanted to be one someday so she counted about a dozen long feather boa and exotic looking masks as part of her 10-year old wardrobe. (She is the apple of her dad's eyes). She stole her mom's expensive lip plumper to make her lips look swollen. It looked like she was stung by the occupants of an entire beehive. She dabbed fake tears into her eyes and kept a bottle in her pocket when the "pivotal" scene came. She "emoted" in front of her three-way, full-length mirror to see which facial expression would be most convincing.
Waking up her dad is a big, difficult job, but like we said, she's a genius. She took off her plush terry robe and went to her parents's bedroom. She kicked off her white espadrilles off haphazardly, getting "into character". Her inspiration for this "scene" was the latest dramatic episode in a TV soap wherein the bastard daughter of the Count of Vertram returns to remind him of how he deserted her. It's good that Clow never watched soap operas or else her plan might not work.
Step 1: "Daaaaaaaaaaaaaddyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!" (Even Eriol had to cover his ears downstairs).
No response from the "pile of blankets" on the bed.
'Typical Dad', shrugged Ruby. She rolled up a piece of newspaper into a tube and walked towards her father. She pointed the improvised megaphone to where his ear should be and repeated 'Step 1'.
Rewind Step 1: "Daaaaaaaaaaaaaddyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!" Eriol had earphones now.
Clow's heart rate shot up and he abruptly got up from the bed. He thought there was an army of stampeding elephants in his room. "WHATTT?!?!?!?" He shouted, extremely startled. What a great way to wake up!
He clumsily groped for his glasses on his bed's side table and when he finally able to put them on, he saw his precious daughter, sitting on the floor near the bed, sobbing like there was no tomorrow. "You, you, shouted at me daddy….you shouted at me!!!!!! You don't love me anymore!!!! (Take note: She is shouting too.)
Clow's face softened. It was his precious "hime" after all who had him wrapped around her little finger since the day he saw her in the ultrasound screen. He couldn't bring himself to be strict with any of his kids, but most especially with Ruby, leaving his wife the job of 'family disciplinarian'.
He got up and approached his daughter. "Hime, hime…" He cooed soothingly. "Daddy is sorry—he was just startled…don't cry now Hime."
Ruby sobbed even harder. She looked up at her dad with her big brown eyes brimming with tears and said in between sobs and while wiping away her tears: "I…just…wanted to accompany you to McDee's to buy our brunch with you….but but…I guess you don't want me to go because you shouted at meeee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" And she hid her face on the bed sheets again. Clow felt very bad and very guilty now. His daughter looked so forlorn.
An idea popped in his head. "Dry your tears now Hime, we'll go out to buy brunch if you want, OK?"
Ruby sniffed, her fingers had been crossed all this time. "Really, daddy?"
"Really. And we can even buy that dress you asked your mother to buy you at the mall, remember?" Clow said tenderly.
Ruby could almost jump for joy but she restrained herself. Her mother thought that the dress was too expensive for a 10 year old and said no to her, but her dad was another matter. "But, but…mom said…I can't. And she said we can only buy it when it's on sale! I feel so poor!!!!" She pretended to sob again and blew her nose loudly on her parent's bed sheets.
"I will buy it for my hime, just don't tell Queen Mommy, OK?" Clow said in a conspiratory tone. He knew he would get an earful from his wife who thought that he spoiled their daughter too much.
She nodded, slowly going back to her usual perky, hyper self. "But you're still tired, Daddy—can we really go to the mall?"
"I'm not tired anymore hime. But first, I have to check on Eriol first.." Her father replied.
"I'll check up on him, I'm his older sister after all." Ruby said.
"How responsible of you hime. That's why I'm so proud of you." Clow beamed at her. "I'll just get dressed so we can go right away, all right?"
"OK!" Ruby smiled sweetly at him, all her sorrows apparently forgotten. She rushed downstairs to where her younger brother was hiding and waiting—she gave him a triumphant victory wave worthy of a diva. Clow hurried downstairs fully dressed. It would not do to keep his hime waiting.
"Eriol is still asleep Daddy, but I prepared his favorite cereal and strawberry milk for him on the table, in case he gets hungry before we arrive." Ruby informed her father.
Clow nodded and smiled like the proud father that he is. "Let's go then, hime." Ruby skipped as she followed him to his sleek, expensive car.
Phase 3 of the plan is now in effect. Eriol waited for the sound of his Dad's car to fade before he jumped on his bike and pedaled fast towards the Daidouji's mansion two blocks away.
Tomoyo was waiting for him at their back door. "Eriol! You're here!" She hugged him in welcome, making him blush.
"Uh-ah-uh-of course. I wish I could have arrived earlier." He said, very flustered and cleared his throat. "Is the Fluorite kid here?"
"Yes, he's in the solarium." Her cheeks were red when she replied. She looked at the on the ground and smoothed imaginary lints in her white skirt. She was wearing an all-white dress with a thin veil on her long, dark hair. Eriol had asked her to marry him and she said yes. The Fluorite kid agreed to "marry" them since his dad Ashura was a pastor.
"Would you like to ride on my bike with me?" Eriol asked shyly.
She nodded and sat on the wicker seat in front of his bike where she leaned her head on his chest. He blushed again and his glasses got fogged over. They rode towards the solarium which was on the other side of the property. He climbed out of the bike first and assisted her when she stood up from her seat.
"Eriol, before we do this…I just want to say…" Tomoyo said, holding his hands. "I know what you did for me—when you destroyed those windows of Fei Wong. I… thank you, I know you've been grounded because of me..." She started to cry. Eriol tried to soothe her by hugging her, putting aside his shyness. He was starting to think that it was all worth it after all. "And I don't like Kurogane, I like you—even if I think you also like Kaho-sensei because you pinched her butt." Tomoyo was sobbing now.
Eriol was very relieved that she did not like Kurogane but he felt a bit guilty too about the other thing that she said. "Tomoyo, I don't like Kaho-sensei—she's ancient! She's 27!"
"But you said her butt is cute!" she accused.
"Er…well…only her butt is cute—but you—everything about you is cute!" Eriol said with much conviction.
This seemed to console her very much. Fay emerged from the solarium munching loudly on an apple. "Can we start now? I'm going to miss my favorite anime." He was holding a children's prayer book that his dad gave him in his other hand.
"Tomoyo? Shall we?" Eriol nervously.
"Of course." She replied, holding his hand.
"Good. Now place both of your hands on my prayer book." The couple complied. "We stand here in the presence of heaven to join this…ummm…little boy and this little girl in holy matrimony."
"Hey I'm not a little boy!" Eriol protested.
"For me, you're a cute and brave little boy." Tomoyo interrupted, trying to prevent an argument from happening.
Eriol blushed at this, now both of his hands were holding hers.
Fay cleared his throat, a bit annoyed at the interruption. "We stand here in the presence of heaven to join this cute and brave little boy and this cute and pretty little girl in holy matrimony. Do you Eriol Reed, take Tomoyo Daidouji as your lawfully wedded wife, in sickness and in health…and all that jazz…for as long as you both shall live?"
"I do." Eriol replied.
"And do you Tomoyo Daidouji…"
"I do." Tomoyo replied and then she did something totally spontaneous, she stood on tiptoes and kissed her startled new "husband" on his lips. They both blushed and continued to look at each other, ignoring Fay.
"But I haven't finished with my question yet." Fay complained. "Ah do whatever you like, I'm leaving. By the power and all that jazz, I now pronounce you husband and wife. Bye." He left fuming on his racing bike.
Tomoyo's cellphone rang and she answered it. It was her mom, Sonomi. "Where are you dear? We're ready to leave."
"I'm on my way there mom, in a minute." Tomoyo's voice threatened to break when she ended the call. "Eriol, promise me you won't forget me."
"I promise. I'll call and write to you every day. We're married, we won't be apart for long."
"So will I, promise. Here, keep this." She handed him an embroidered hanky which he took. He gave her his favorite blue scarf, which she hugged close to her.
Eriol drove his new "wife" to the waiting car of Sonomi.
"Oh hi Eriol, didn't know you were here. Hurry up dear." Sonomi motioned to her daughter.
Tomoyo meekly entered the car with a sad backward look at her miserable-looking new "husband." Sonomi, as usual, was oblivious to all of this and promptly closed the car's door. They then sped off for the airport. Tomoyo hoisted herself at the back window of the car and waved to him.
Eriol could feel his chest constricting. He mounted his bike and followed the car that contained his beloved. He pedaled after the car until they got near the express way. The last time he saw her, Tomoyo was openly crying and waving to him and then they were gone. Eriol finally gave in to his urge to cry.
For the next few days, his parents noticed how miserable their youngest son was and could only think that the reason was because they grounded him. So one night, Clow and Yuuko made a family announcement—they are lifting Eriol's punishment---which astonished all three of their children. Its benefits to Eriol were immense--this meant that his siblings will have to do their own chores now instead of him.
"But Daddy, I'm sure that Eriol hasn't learned his lesson yet." Ruby protested—not relishing the fact that she would have to take out the garbage now.
"Mom—I thought it was indefinite? Indefinite does not amount to less than two weeks!" Kimihiro frowned.
The stern look on both their parents' faces quelled the protests of Ruby and Kimihiro. They cannot tell them about the bet of course—or else, they would be grounded too. Eriol was silent through all this. He was still sad because he had not heard from Tomoyo since she left. He never heard from her for many, years afterwards, until they were both grown-up and what a reunion it was!
Hiya! I'm not sure if this is OK enough to continue, so please drop a review if you have time. Thanks!