A/n: Cliffhanger extraordinaire! Sorry for the late update. Let the finale commence.
It didn't come. When Faerie dared to open her eyes it was to see a hazy purple bubble surrounding them. Fable behind her had his eyes closed and was babbling away in a whisper. The dragon dove and scratched at the bubble yet it did not pop. Faerie let out a high pitched scream, this was beyond terrifying. Her kendo stick still barred her little brother, in a pathetic attempt at protecting him, when it was him and his magic doing the protection. Then came a new sound, barely noticeable above the flapping wings and gnashing teeth, the young magician's spell and the screaming girl. Footsteps. First distant, but approaching fast.
Kurogane and Syaoran had their swords raised, and Fay had materialised his staff out of nowhere. A forty foot dragon was hardly miss able, and the echoing cries had been audible throughout the hamlet.
"Daddy!" Faerie wailed. He nodded at her, casting a very quick glance at them both to make sure neither was injured, then set to work. The protective mother dragon was no easy fete, blinded by rage and hormones she lashed out, clawing Sakura's stomach, Syaoran pushed Sakura over, to prevent the talons going any deeper. The dragon roared long and low, stomping her feet, squashing half of her eggs with one go.
"Sakura!" Syaoran groaned, as blood blossomed over her clothes, spilling onto the grass. Sakura seemed almost dazed and stared at the wound in confusion, she couldn't understand why there was so much blood, it didn't hurt that much. Syaoran dragged her sideways, near Faerie and Fable, he removed his shirt and tied it around her waist to stem the blood flow, despite there being a full scale war going on around them his main focus was and always had been Sakura. He kissed her cheek gently and she smiled.
"I'm okay… be careful." She squeezed his hand and reluctantly he returned to the battle, feeling guilty leaving her alone, but Fable's kekkai stretched to protect her as well.
"Kuro-tan!" Fay yelled, signalling his love, before distracting the dragon. A spectacular lightshow illuminated the sky, an aurora borealis of colours, rainbows of sparkles and flames leapt above the creature's head and it averted it's gaze. Had this not been a death defying situation, most would have said the display was beautiful. It roared and swiped at the pretty lights, as they were invading her space and endangering her family. Neck elongated high, throat exposed. Kurogane nodded and leapt up, sparing not a second in clambering the dragon, and plunging his sword hilt deep into the creature's neck. Scarlet blood droplets rained down, pelting the floor with crimson puddles and dribbling over the alabaster dragon scales. The dragon reared, and Syaoran from below thrust his sword up into her stomach as hard as he could.
With a final howl the dragon keeled over sideways, taking Kurogane with her, landing on top of her nest, destroying the remaining eggs.
"Daddy!" Faerie and Fable screeched, as the dust settled and Fable's shield faded. All the group stood (Sakura shakily), staring at the dragon's body, waiting, hoping, praying. Fay closed his eyes, his heart racing. He refused to believe a mere dragon could kill Kurogane… but the silence was deafening. Faerie whimpered and when Fable started to cry she wrapped one arm around him. What seemed like an eternity later a very shaken Kurogane stood up, looking worse for wear.
"Next time I want a lightshow mage I'll request fireworks." He said coolly, brushing blood, albumen and dust from his shirt. Fable collapsed against Faerie, exhausted, as everyone, including the injured Sakura, ran to them.
"What were you thinking?" Fay asked, and Faerie saw the worry and terror in his eyes.
"Shhh." Faerie whispered. "He's sleeping." She nodded toward her fainted little brother, before standing up, incredibly shakily, and allowing Kurogane to pick him up, cradling him against his chest. For a moment there was a different kind of silence, as Kurogane stroked Fable's hair and Fay rubbed Faerie's shoulders. Syaoran busied himself with paying attention to his princess, he'd always felt he was family, but this was a separate family moment.
"Look!" She said suddenly, pointing. Syaoran who had been tending to Sakura's wound, had not noticed the small blue dragon, the very same one that had hatched at Faerie and Fable's arrival, struggling out of the mass of broken eggshells. Kurogane raised his sword again, supporting Fable with one hand.
"Don't!" Faerie begged. "She's a baby!"
"Baby dragons grow into big dragons Faerie-chan." Syaoran warned. "Let's take you home okay?"
"No! Don't kill it dad!" She wailed, hurrying forward and scooping up the baby, even though it was nearly as big as herself. The dragons teeth and claws were no more dangerous than a cat's at this stage, but still caused Fay to clench his fist in worry.
"Please." Fable murmured into Kurogane's pecs as he came round.
"We don't have a choice." Kurogane growled. "If we let it go, it'll kill people."
"I want to keep her!" Faerie said determinedly, "Until we can find a place with no people!"
"Yuko-san." Fable said weakly.
"Fine." Kurogane growled "But you're not to carry it." He added to his daughter, who nodded, and handed the baby dragon to Syaoran.
"Can we please go home now?" Fable whispered. Faerie nodded, and reached up, she took Fay's hand, without a word and lead the way home.
"Poor thing's drained, that was a big spell." Fay said, stroking Fable's hair that evening.
"I cast it younger." Faerie countered, sticking her tongue out. He smiled at her, the two of them at Fable's bedside as he slept, which he had done almost constantly since he returned home. He had stayed awake long enough to give his account of the story, before zoning out again.
"So you did indeed." He approved. "He says you protected him."
"I tried… but my kendo stick's barely a toothpick to that thing." She said awkwardly, running one hand through the back of her hair, reminiscent of her father.
"He also told me… what you said to him… on the hill." Faerie blushed a fevered red.
"I'ma kill him." She grumbled.
"I love Sakura-chan, please don't misunderstand that, but what she saw, and what happened after you were born weren't always the same thing Faerie," He explained to her. "Before you were born it's true… your dad said he wanted nothing to do with you."
"Look." She cut him off. "I've heard all this before."
"Please… let me tell you. You've not heard my side." He told his daughter gently. She looked away and nodded. "For all he said he didn't want to be involved, he protected me, he looked after me, the entire time I was pregnant with you."
"He did that for you… not for me." Faerie scoffed. Fay shook his head softly.
"I wanted to believe that. I loved your dad so much, in a selfish way I wanted his attention to be mine… kind of like you and Fable right?" Faerie emitted a 'tcheh!' but allowed him to continue. "He didn't say it… but he cared for you. Did Sakura-chan tell you that for a while after you were born, you were really sick?" He stood up and crossed to her side of the bed, lifting her up onto his lap. She scowled at him but didn't wriggle away.
"No." She huffed.
"I'm not proud to say this but: I couldn't cope. I had a beautiful little girl who wouldn't eat. Sakura-chan, Syaoran-kun, and Moko-chan helped… but I was scared. I was scared your dad wouldn't accept you. Little and pretty and weak." He stroked her hair and ignored her eye roll. "But when he found out… do you know what he did?"
"He saved your life Faerie." Fay momentarily closed his eyes and let his hands brush Faerie's silky black hair. "Sakura-chan knew he fed you… but I don't think she knew about all the times he crept into our room… just to look at you. He doesn't know that I know this… I was exhausted. I never disturbed him. Thing is Faerie… you can't blame either of us. I didn't want to expose you to half hearted love… so I figured if he couldn't be open with it, it was safer to keep you out of the way and he figured I didn't want him involved. It was a misunderstanding. But he never ever didn't love you."
The door opened, and Kurogane came in. Seeing Faerie on Fay's lap he was slightly surprised but knew better than to say anything about it.
"How's Sakura?" Faerie asked.
"She's fine," Kurogane grunted "More fussed about that baby dragon than her own injury." He crossed to Fable's beside (where he lay pale and motionless), tugging something out of his pocket as he walked. Fay smiled softly and sadly, noting what it was, and Faerie lowered her gaze trying not to cry. A white scale, tied to a black string.
"Yeah well… I still got mine first." Faerie said waspishly, but she had a slight smirk as Kurogane attached it to his son's far too skinny wrist. "But I GUESS he deserves it."
"I'm still mad at you." Kurogane told her.
"Because I lead him out?" She asked shakily, knowing when her father was mad it couldn't be a good thing. Fay smiled and hugged her from behind.
"Kuro-chuu! When did you raise my daughter to be as selfless and as cute as you?" He asked, nuzzling into her neck. She laughed at the ticklish sensation then struggled out of the paternal hug.
"Gerroff!" She said, a bright shade of red scrabbling away.
"Faerie, we're not mad at you for taking Fable with you… that was his decision." Fay reassured her.
"I'm mad because you scared the HELL out of us by running off. Do you have any idea what we thought?" Kurogane growled and both Fay and Faerie fell silent. Fay felt this speech that was impending was aimed at him as much as Faerie. "Running is the coward's way out. If you have a problem, say it. Just wandering off is the worst thing you can do." His red eyes were alight with anger, and even though they knew he was relieved to have the children back home safely, he was truly angry. "You leave people alone with no clue what's happening to you. You can act as though nobody will care but believe it or not people do. And those people worry."
"I'm sorry." Faerie said, sapphire eyes brimming with tears.
"Me too." Fay nodded. Kurogane kneeled down to her level, then with two fingers he pushed her face up so their eyes met.
"That being said… welcome home." Faerie threw herself into Kurogane's arms and hid her face to hide her tears from Fay who smiled and politely looked away. "Oi." Kurogane added. "Same goes for you." But Fay still didn't look.
"Well I found her and I'm naming her." Faerie said stubbornly.
"How do you know it's a her?" Fable countered. Two weeks into their stay the most noticeable change in Fable was that he spoke more, he was still much quieter in comparison to his elder sister but his backbone was now a little more prominent. I could tell you Faerie had softened but I'd be lying, though she was a little more relaxed with Fay and Fable.
"She's a girl if I say she's a girl!" Faerie said, tugging Fable's ponytail before grabbing the little dragon and pulling her close. The tiny creature was growing at an alarming rate, now the size of a large dog, and would soon become a threat, but was currently sustained on snatching sausages from Kurogane's plate. Though she had been eyeing Mokona with a lustful hunger for nearly a week. ("Mokona is going to bed until that thing is in a cage!")
"You DO know she's not staying long. Only til Yuko-san can find a place for her." Syaoran reminded the siblings.
"Her name is Illumina." Faerie said, completely ignoring Syaoran. Fable shrugged, no sense in arguing when he liked the name.
"Not to interrupt but it IS bedtime." Fay spoke, having been content with watching them bickering. Faerie glanced at the clock then at her fathers.
"Five more minutes?" She begged cutely.
"Tcheh, you wish." Kurogane muttered. She sighed and dropped Illumina back onto the floor. The blue dragon's teeth gnashed in furore at being dropped with such little dignity.
"Fine But only if Sakura and Syaoran read our stories." She looked at Fable. "Race you?" And with that she ran off, Fable frowned and stood up. He bowed.
"Goodnight." He said, before walking off. Fay couldn't help but notice the smile on Kurogane's face, but pretended to be more interested in Syaoran helping Sakura up.
"Goodnight." Sakura said sweetly, and then blushed as Syaoran decided Sakura was 'too injured to walk' and swung her up into his arms bridal style. "Syaoran, it's barely a scratch." She mumbled, cuddling into his neck.
"Night." Syaoran called back to the adults, as he carried Sakura upstairs.
Fay yawned over extravagantly, then laid his head on Kurogane's shoulder. Kurogane sighed heavily, deciding it was easier not to fight it, and lay his arm lazily over Fay's shoulder.
"I'm glad they're getting along better." Fay said, making himself comfortable.
"Mm." Kurogane murmured in vague agreement before voicing what had been on his mind for a little while. "And just supposing that one day… we wanted to make them a little brother or sister… how would we go about that?" He hoped his voice sounded casual. Fay grinned wickedly and turned to face Kurogane with a mischievous glint in his cyan eyes.
"Nobody ever told Kuro-chan about the birds and the bees?" He teased. "Now that just won't do… I may have to teach you." And with that he leaned forward and initiated a long overdue kiss.
A/n: And would you believe that that my friends, is the end of the story. A combination of trouble with the boyfriend and fanfictiondotnet being a royal ….well meant this update didn't go up as soon as I'd have liked. Thanks to everyone who reviewed, go on just one more? Please.