I only saw Nightmare Before Christmas for the first time just two years ago (I know, I know. Shock, horror, pity, I got it from everyone else I know. Anyone, I think I might be the first to come up like this. Or not. Don't quote me on that in case I'm wrong.

I'm going to do the "one chapter a day" shtick, but be comforted with the fact that I've already finished the story itself and I have all the documents loaded and ready to post. Yes, it's a cheap ploy to get more hits (and hopefully reviews)...but in fifteen or sixteen days time, this sucker should be posted in its entirety.

Still, consider this yet more evidence of my weird, weird mind. And enjoy.\

I own none of this.

There is a world, far, far away from our own dull world. All this world is…is a forest. Nothing lives here. It is only a stop for dimension travelers. And the destination of these travelers lies in the very center of the forest, in a ring of seven trees. Each one of these trees has a door on them. One is shaped like an egg, another like a turkey. One of them is shaped like a pumpkin, with a wide, laughing mouth and a knob in the center of its orange face. Anyone opening this door would find only blackness beyond…but, if they kept the door open too long, the blackness would begin to tug at them, until the pull was too much to resist.

Each of these doors lead to a world. An unchanging world, where one holiday never ends. The pumpkin door leads to Halloween Town…

The full moon shone down over a graveyard. Tombstones of all sizes littered it, with no real order except for the trodden dirt path leading away to the north. Dead silence reigned, except for the howling of the wind and the occasional moan from nowhere…

…and the crash.

The crash had been immediately preceded by a strange noise, like the very air being twisted around. Then, a hole had opened up in the air, a deeper blackness against the night, and four people and a thing had hit the ground, one on top of the other.

The…thing that had landed on the very top of the pile was about the size of pork bun, and was actually shaped like a white pork bun. It was covered in white fur, with long rabbit ears, rabbit feet, stubby arms, narrow eyes, and a large red gem set in the middle of its forehead.

The pork-bun-rabbit was currently doing a happy dance on top of a man. He was very tall, and wiry, with wavy blond hair and deep blue eyes. He was wearing a high-collared, long sleeved white shirt buckled together at the left side, with black pants and black boots. Black gloves went all the way up to his elbows. His entire outfit was covered by a long white hooded coat, decorated with teal-colored symbols and lined with fur.

The blond man was on top of a couple of children, one boy and one girl. The boy was tall for fifteen, tall and lean, with a mop of brown hair and intense amber eyes. He wore a sleeveless black shirt, baggy white pants, and thick hiking boots. Goggles hung around his neck, and he wore a long, tattered cloak tied around him with string.

The girl was as tall as the boy, but much thinner, with short, wavy pink hair and green eyes. She wore a white overshirt, white pants, green shoes, little more than pointy-toed slippers, and an overskirt, belted with a sash. All of her clothes were lined with red, and the shirt had a black cross set in the middle with a red gem.

The final man, crushed under the weight of his four comrades, lookedlivid. He was tall and more heavily built than his other companions, with spiky black hair and narrow red eyes. He wore a large, high-collared, black cloak, over an old, beaten breastplate, with black pants ending in large, thick boots. His hair was kept out of his face by a black hairpiece, set in the center with a silver crescent moon. Stuck into his belt was a sword, with a blue hilt decorated on the edges with gold.

"Would you all get off of me?!" he finally managed to yell.

The other man finally oriented himself, realized the order they'd fallen in, and hurriedly got off. "My apologies, Sakura and Syaoran," he said with a bow. "Oh, and you too, Kuro-mi."

Syaoran offered a hand to the man in black, who ignored it and struggled to his feet. "Are you all right, Mr. Kurogane?" asked Sakura nervously.

"Fine," muttered Kurogane bitterly. "At least I will be as soon as I can get my hands on that stupid white pork bun…"

The "pork bun", who had vacated to a tombstone, let out a shriek, although its huge grin remained fixed in place. "Eeeeek! Fai must defend Mokona!" it cried, leaping onto the blond man's shoulder.

Kurogane made a lunge for the two, but suddenly stopped dead. "Kid…" he growled, drawing out the word. "Where…the hell…is Hien?"

Syaoran blinked, and then both hands suddenly patted his sides. He went pale. "Oh, no…" he said. "It must have come loose during our fall…Master Kurogane, help me find it!"

Distracted from his revenge against Mokona, Kurogane broke off and joined Syaoran in his search.

Fai let out his breath in relief, and took advantage of the break from his favorite pastime of teasing Kurogane to observe their new surroundings…

"Wheet-whoo…" he said softly. Fai couldn't whistle. "Take a look at this…"

Sakura heard him, and she too gazed around…and gulped. "T—T—Tombstones…" she whispered. "So many tombstones…"

"Yep," said Fai, who appeared completely unperturbed. "I wonder if the old rule of walking over someone's grave being bad luck applies in the world?"

Sakura gulped and tried to step away from the tombstone that towered over her, but soon realized that, with the graves scattered as they were, her group might soon have a lot more bad luck than they already did…

She whirled around suddenly, at the sudden barking of a dog behind her! "Hm…" said Fai, cocking his head. "Now what would a dog be doing out here…?"

"I…don't know…" Sakura whispered, creeping forward. She heard Fai start moving behind her, and felt a little braver. Fai, though he was more than a little strange, was a comforting presence to have at your back.

She heard the bark again, around the tombstone right in front of her. Edging around the tombstone as quietly as she could manage, Sakura looked around…

There was no dog. The patch behind the gravestone was empty, except for…

"Mr. Fai! Moko! Come look at this!"

When Fai and Mokona rounded the headstone, he saw Sakura kneeling down, her back to them. "What's wrong, Sakura?" asked Mokona.

Sakura glanced back at them, her face white. "There's…" she whispered. "There's no dog…"

"I guess it ran off," said Fai, shrugging.

Sakura shook her head. "There's no dog…" she said, moving aside to let Fai see. "But there is…"

Fai knelt down where Sakura had been sitting, and let out another low "Wheet-whoo".

There was no dog.

But there was another small tombstone…

…shaped like a dog house.

"That's strange," said Fai, standing up.

"Yes…" said Sakura with a gulp. Then, she looked down at sword, sheathed in red and gold, that she'd found leaning against the grave. "At least he found Hien…"