Standard disclaimers apply.


By: Ryuuen

Chapter Two


          A whispered word, barely audible, broke the stillness of the night. Cold, emotionless and yet…

          Moonlight filtered through the limbs of the cherry tree, and Sakura stood languidly, looking up into calm silver orbs looking at her in quiet inspection. She tried for a smile and, finding that it fit, nodded in acknowledgement. "Yue-san… I haven't seen you in quite a while."

          Her Moon Guardian nodded in return and lowered his gaze. "I am sorry, Mistress."

          Sakura sighed. It was true. Yue had not appeared for a while, choosing to remain in his false form as Yukito. And, at the times when she did manage to summon him, his stays were brief and, the moment he felt that his task was finished, he would just revert back. After some time, she finally gave up on summoning him and simply waited for him to appear when he wished to, which wasn't that often. Yes, she did miss him but she knew that forcing him to spend time with her would be taking a step backward. She had to respect what Yue-san wanted, for, even if she had gained his loyalty, she knew she was yet to win his friendship. How terribly wrong she was!

          For five long years, Yue had watched behind Yukito's eyes, the blossoming flower that was his Mistress. His being seemed to exult at the mere manifestation of her presence. It was strange, that feeling of peace and contentment every time she would smile at his false form though he often wondered whom she was really smiling for. He wondered what it would take for her to smile. He wondered how Clow's descendant felt to be the reason behind that smile. But now, he was gone, and the bubbly, loving, energetic young woman who was his mistress was reduced to…


          "You still mourn for him?"

          She looked up, taken aback by the question. Tears began to fall again in spite of herself and she averted her gaze, surreptitiously wiping them away. She tried to plaster a smile that did not come out as sincerely as she wanted it to and mustered a cheerful tone. "What do you mean, Yue-san? Of course not! It's been a year and…"

          She was surprised when she felt cold fingers tilt her chin up and brush away the salty liquid flowing down her cheeks.


          "You cry, Mistress. Why?"

          It was an innocent question, as though he did not truly understand how it was to cry. And maybe, she thought, he didn't.

          "It's nothing, Yue-san. I just… tripped and scraped my knee against the tree root… Really…" She tried, and yet there was something in Yue's stare that told her she was not convincing enough.

          "You were never a good liar, Mistress."

          She blinked, as the hands caressing her cheek withdrew, and blushed. "You know me too well, Yue-san."

          Her Moon Guardian looked away in return and whispered. "I don't." If I did, I would know what troubles you so and stop your tears…


          "Nothing, Mistress…"

          Silence. And then…

          "Would you please stop calling me that?"

          He looked at her questioningly.

          "I've been telling you to stop calling me Mistress for over six years now, y'know." She laughed mirthlessly, in an attempt to change the topic and the uncomfortable mood that was settling over them.

          "It is your rightful title, Mistress and…"

          "I'm your friend, am I not, Yue-san."

          He pondered his answer and nodded.

          "I wish you'd never leave me…"

          Just then, a gust of wind blew, chilling her and sending silver and auburn tresses into fine disarray, sparkling under the silver of moonlight. And it was then that his hands found the contour of her cheeks once again and she leaned into the contact.

          "Yue-san, please don't leave me. Like everybody would."

          And then she found herself flinging her arms around him and sobbing uncontrollably upon his chest. Yue just stood there helplessly and let his mistress weep. It had been a long time since he allowed such an intimate contact and yet…

          Hands covered shoulders and squeezed them and Sakura smiled and pulled back. "Thank you, Yue-san."

          Her Moon Guardian looked above and beyond her as rain clouds began to fill the sky. "It is going to rain, Mistress. It would be best if I escort you home."

Sakura looked up and confirmed it. "I guess so." She was startled when he offered his hand to her.


"It would be quicker if I carried you. We'd reach your house faster before it rains too hard."

As if on cue, a big fat raindrop fell against her cheek and she nodded and he picked her up and unfurled his wings, ethereal in the darkness of night. It was getting cold but the warmth of the chest she was currently pressed against seemed to enough to lull her into a sense of security she hadn't felt since he had left.

And as the raindrops faltered not and the night wind blew stronger, a weary Card Mistress sighed herself to dreamless slumber in the comforting arms of her Moon Guardian.