Disclaimer: I do not own the to-be-mentioned beverage, and I repeat, neither do I own Shakugan no Shana. Also, I borrowed quite a lot of lines from the original version. I hope it's not NOT allowed.

**********************************************************************************

Come on and lift me up, it's a brand new day,

Open up a lil' happiness today,

So I can be someone new...

Yuji poured himself another glass of Coke as he and Shana continued to gaze at the television screen. He posed himself a question: What would opening my happiness be? Slowly, he closed his eyes, and called to mind the events of last Christmas...

---

It was snowing tonight; walking down the street were two winter-clothing-clad people; one in a brown leather jacket, another in a pink wool sweater and a bonnet hat. Contentedly basking in each other's warmth, arms intertwined, Yuji felt happier than he had felt in a very long time.

"Where to now?"

"You kept me waiting a long time; I'm hungry. Let's stop by the bakery for something to eat."

"Ahh. Hai, hai. Melon bread again. Don't you ever eat any other kind of snack, Shana?"

Pausing for a moment, Shana stopped to think before responding, "Not really, no. What's the point in eating another kind of snack, anyway, when there's the perfect one; melon bread! The--"

"I know, I know, the soft inner taste of sweetbread and the crispy outer layer of cookiedough. But, why don't we eat something else for a change this time?" asked Yuji, nearing the street corner.

"..."

"Come on! Just this once. Please?"

"...Fine. Just this once."

Finding a pretzel stand two blocks away, Yuji bought two pretzels and two hot chocolates. Yuji ate slowly, watching the amusing antics of Shana beginning the rituals of trying new food; stare, smell, taste.

After a few bites, she remarked, "Not bad. Not bad at all. Still. We're getting melon bread next time."

"Ah, so there IS gonna be a next time." Drawing closer to Shana, he says in a lower tone, "Are we gonna be eating together often in the future, Shana? Like, a date or something?"

"Urusai, urusai, urusai! Baka-Yuji..." Shana said, as she stalked off.

---

Your heart deserves your trust,

a choice made for all of us,
The sun will come back tomorrow,
There's a message in a bottle...

Munching on a loaf of melon bread, Shana stole a glance at Yuji. He had his eyes closed. What could he be doing? Turning back towards the television, Shana posed herself a question: What would opening my happiness be? She found herself closing her eyes and recalling a familliar memory...

---

Sitting back to back on a rooftop were two figures, one looking worn-out, another glowing bright-blue. They talked with hushed voices, as though a solemn event was taking place.

"You won."

"In the end, I was able to stand because I heard your voice."

"I'm glad I was able to be of assistance..."

"..."

"He sucked away a lot of my power of existence... I guess I'll be disappearing... Maybe I pushed myself too much, when I'm just a torch--"

"Don't say, 'just'... you're Sakai Yuji."

"But... Gomen. Yesterday, you lost because of me, right? That's why you tried to kill me."

"It's not like that."

Shana reached for Yuji's hand, and found it, though she could have sworn it felt more faint and intangible than a normal hand would. "It's not like that," she repeated.

"Really. Then, that's a relief. I guess there was some meaning for my being here... Sayonara, Shana."

Just as Yuji was fading away into nonexistence, the clock struck twelve, and rematerializing once more was Yuji. Shana couldn't help but breathe a great sigh of relief at the fact that Yuji was still there, and would still be there, now that the Reiji Maigo theory was proven to be fact rather than just theory.

---

Opening her eyes, she finds that she actually HAS reached out for his hand, and now finds her hand resting comfortably on top of Yuji's.

---

Opening his eyes, he finds that he actually HAS drawn nearer to Shana, and now they are but centimetres apart, with Shana's hand resting lightly on top of his. He sees Shana slowly opening her eyes.

"Did you open your happiness too?"

"..."

They resumed watching the commercial, side by side, hand in hand, evidently comfortable in their position, as a man dressed up as a reporter sang standing sideways on a building. Gradually, Shana's head came to rest on Yuji's shoulders, although neither seemed to mind.

Come on and lift me up to a better way,

Open up a smile on another face,

So I can feel something new...

Fin.