Ok so this is my first Tsubasa fic, but ive done about a million of other fics in Kingdom Hearts if you want to check them out. Anyway, this fic was inspired by the song "Tunnel of Love" by Dire Straits. It's a fucking awesome song, if your into classic rock and kick ass guitar. Which i am. I dont know. I highly suggest you download this song and play it as you're reading. Or just download it for fun. Because it's good. Anyway ive been working on this fic for a year, i shit you not. i keep picking it back up i guess, until i finally finished it today. so. enjoy. and please review.
-Tunnel Of Love-
-. . . . .-
The night swirled with childish splendor.
Ribbons, lights, and cries of joy filled the air around him, swaying him to the spot. All the overly bejeweled and blinking carnival rides towered above him, suffocating him, and only rising higher in his mind. Every candy-stripped booth along the pier was filled with underpaid clowns and overpaid parents, wasting their life earning's on their children's 'needs' of the fluffy bunny that they just have to have. The smell of cotton candy and salty-sweet air that surrounded him seemed to collide, meshing together to make one hell of a euphoria of a night.
And frankly, Syaoran was a little overwhelmed.
Sure, he liked the Semi-Annual Pier Carnival as much as the next guy, but he couldn't help but think that they might have overdone it this year. He could barely see with all neon lights of the Ferris wheel shining like the sun in the middle of the night, outshining all the stars and galaxies that defined life itself. Also, he couldn't stand the smell of cotton candy and caramel apples. The carnival treats were a sugar-shock, diabetes on a stick in his opinion. And frankly, he just wouldn't accept that fact that he was even there right now. Maybe he was just bitter; over reacting on the festival that he had once loved.
Syaoran puffed out a breath, crossed his arms, and leaned against a creaky old, wooden shack that stuck out like a soar thumb in the festival glamour. Just like him.
Well, he thought distastefully, if Eriol hadn't just dragged him to come along because, as he said, come one, Syaoran, for old time's sake! Sure, that had made him angry. It had made him annoyed. But perhaps he was right. He's been so caught up in graduating and training to be the head of Li Corporations, that he hadn't reminisced like he should be doing, considering it was their first summer out of school, college, hell, etc.
But whatever glimmer of hope Syaoran had to relive his childhood carnival days were completely demolished the second Eriol ran off with some girl named Tomoyo. Like, c'mon. It was their first Guy's Night Out, however pathetic and childish it was, of legitimate adulthood. This really was no way to celebrate two nights after college graduation.
Syaoran shuffled his feet awkwardly, wondering why exactly he didn't just go to his car and drive home, leaving his old childhood behind. But maybe Takashi-san is here tonight? He was the always one to bring that girlfriend of his to any public event. Syaoran crossed his arms again in annoyance, noting the fact that his old high school/college friend wouldn't be here considering there was no one over the age of twelve. If he was here, Syaoran would be able to plainly see him because everyone was half his size.
Nonetheless, Syaoran looked around the overly crowded pier for his closed-eyed friend. But while scanning the crowd, Syaoran saw something else. Or someone else for that matter.
It wasn't that he was shell-shocked when he saw her. Love struck, Google Eyed, or whatever you want to call it. Just simply surprised to see her. I mean, he hadn't seen her since four years ago, high school graduation where she said goodbye with a quick hug and a large smile. And she wasn't exactly his friend back in high school, either. More like a mutual acquaintance. The kind where as you passed in the hallway, you'd catch each other's eyes almost every day, but never really talked. It was kind of a mutual understanding that they were friendly, maybe with a touch of attraction. There was nothing negative about her anyway. I mean…she was always nice to him.
Either way, Sakura Kinomoto was nice to everyone. She had some kind of magnetic attraction to people, where no one could resist but return the favor after she smiled. In high school, she was Homecoming queen, runner up of Prom Queen ( the title which Syaoran's girlfriend had taken at the time along side him), Personality Award almost every year, and co-captain of the Cheerleading-squad. Basically: very popular. But barely in the obnoxious, haughty way that Syaoran admits he was at the time, being a teenager and all, but the kind that was simply friends with everyone.
Syaoran blinked at his high school memories, realizing he had not thought about her in a couple of years. She had the same short, playful haircut she had years ago. Same large, glittering smile that matched her emerald eyes. In a cute sunflower sundress, Sakura Kinomoto looked as Sakura-ish as ever.
She hadn't noticed him yet either. As smart, athletic, and determined as the girl was, she was still a space-case, or at least from what he could remember.
Realizing that the chances of her looking this way and detaching herself to whatever she was looking at was about one in a thousand, Syaoran made his way over to her, a small smile tugging on his countenance.
The closer he got to her, the more changes he began to see. She had lost whatever baby fat she had once had, leaving high cheekbones and a definitive jaw. Her hair also seemed lighter than it was before, more of a dark honey than a mahogany brown. As he was walking, he thought how odd it was to see her so randomly after all this time. Like a ghost from your past you never though you'd see again. But here she was, standing right in front him.
"Kinomoto-chan, I had no idea you had a taste for carnivals." Syaoran said over the carnival music and cries of joy. Miraculously, however, she had heard him, and jumped two feet in the air before turning around in surprise, face flushed and eyes wide. However once she recognized who it was, all those features disappeared to replace a broad smile and a quick back-breaking hug. She has groan up, Syaoran thought, she always blushed at the sight of any acknowledgment of a human being.
She quickly released him and looked up at him in happiness. "Li-kun!" Sakura said, flustering Syaoran at the childish formalities. Then again, Sakura always called any male other than her father and elders with that suffix.
"Still as jumpy as ever, I see." he replied, smiling down at her. Syaoran took what he said back, Sakura hadn't grown up all that much; she was blushing bright red just like anytime she used to came in contact with him or any other male.
"Well, you surprised me! I didn't expect to see you anywhere near a place like this." Sakura smiled up at him, taking a step back from their current closeness. Syaoran laughed. "What are you doing here anyway, Li-kun?" she asked, sitting down on a near by green bench, signaling for him to join her.
"Well," he said, sitting himself down and turning to her, his arms along the side of the bench toward her, "Eriol-san dragged me here, then ditched me for a girl. So now I'm stuck here."
Sakura smiled, "Really? Same for me, I was taken here by my friend Tomoyo-chan, and she left me too." she smiled sadly. Sakura always had the ability to change emotions quickly.
"Oh, well…I guess we're both victims of the night, then." he said, trying to make her smile again. It worked. Another positive of Sakura; she smiled very easily. "Actually, I think both our friends ran off with each other. Eriol-san mentioned a girl named Tomoyo." a smile slowly starting to creep up at her lips as he said this.
"Party poopers!" Sakura cried, throwing a fist in the air. Syaoran couldn't help but laugh.
"You really haven't changed much, Kinomoto-chan." he teased, smiling as the girl turned bright red.
"Um-um, lets go on a ride!" Sakura decided, standing up, and grabbing his hand as he stumbled before running alongside the girl, lights and sounds blurring around them.
"C'mon! For old-time's sake!" Syaoran couldn't help but smile in spite of the fact that Eriol had said the exact words to him about an hour ago. Maybe it was because of this he allowed her to pull him into the crowd, noisy and large as ever. Or maybe it was something else, he thought, laughing all the way over. Either way, he hoped she wouldn't leave her side like Eriol did.
"So…er, you think this is safe?" Syaoran asked as the maintenance man rather roughly slammed the securing rebar in between his legs. Not a good first sign, he thought, as he double checked if the roller-coaster strap was actually secure.
"Oh, stop being such a baby, Li! Have fun! How many times a year do u get to go on a roller coaster?" Sakura responded laughing giddily as she dangled her legs off the seat. They were currently in one of those coasters where it was basically a few rows of seat attached to a wheel at the top, so that you have a large, nasty, metal securing thing that keeps you in place. They made them look like yellow robots, in his opinion.
"Yeah, well, I'd like to see their permits."
"Business, business, business. Is that all you ever think about? Relax! You're on a really cool roller coaster with an old high school friend." Sakura cried, trying her very best to look at him even when the robot suit was in the way.
"Fun roller coaster? This one is called Lightning Death. Does that sound fun to you?"
"Well, it sounds interesting."
"No, what's interesting, and questionable, is not its name, but what inspired it."
"To make you feel better, I highly doubt there is neither lightning or death included in this ride. So relax!"
"Really." Syaoran responded with sarcastic doubt.
"Oh yeah, Tomoyo-chan said it was quite fun, actually!"
"Well if I remember correctly," Syaoran started, stiffening noticeably as the ride jerked into motion, climbing at almost a 90 degree angle, "Daijoubi-chan's taste in 'fun' was never exactly normal." Sakura laughed, whether it was at Syaoran's subtle joke, or at the fact that they were almost at the top of the top of the starting point. Either way, Syaoran may never know, because when he opened his mouth to continue, it ended up becoming a scream as they surely plunged to their death.
Sakura, of course, was squealing with delight, something Syaoran would never understand. The ride continued in various, flips, turns, and twirls, making the two never sure in which direction they were going to be jerked toward next.
"Oh, that was rather fun! What do you think Li-kun?" Sakura laughed, swinging her legs back and forth. She waited, but she didn't receive an answer. She furrowed her eyebrows. "Li-kun?"
The yellow robot straps all began to raise in unition, finally allowing her to see Syaoran's face.
"Oh!" Sakura cried, her lips forming into a perfect 'O' and covered it with her delicate finger. "Li-kun, are you okay?" However Syaoran was unable to answer, he was currently sitting rigidly in his seat, hand unconsciously gripping the sides in agony. His hair was wind-blown and pushed to one side, and it seemed like his face had lost most of its color under the neon lights. His eyes were large as well, wide, horror-struck, and wild.
"Umm?" Sakura mumbled, wondering what she was going to do about her unresponsive partner. So she did the only thing that she could think of, she slapped his across the face. That woke him up, his eyes growing larger than before, and a small groan emitting from his mouth. Sakura immediately regretted it, her hands flying to her face all over again.
"Li-kun! I'm so sorry! I shouldn't have done that, I should have--" However she was interrupted with a hand over her mouth, her eyes large and green in confusion. Syaoran looked at her, sense finally returning in his eyes (although they were still stunned and large) and a small, skittish smile graced his lips.
He was about to say something when someone to their right cried in aggravation. "Hey, are ya' gonna' get out or what?" Both Sakura and Syaoran snapped their heads to the left simultaneously and saw a dark haired young-adult with his arms around a skimpy looking girl, who, with as much class as a popcorn cornel, winked flirtatiously at Syaoran.
Syaoran and Sakura flushed in embarrassment, realizing they were still seated in the roller coaster seats as new passengers going onboard. They were all waiting for them. Of course.
So Syaoran stood up with a glare, took Sakura's wrist, and pulled her away and into the crown. Still grumbling, Syaoran heard Sakura giggle. Confused, he stopped in his tracks, in the middle of the walking path, people pooling around them, and stared at what she thought was so funny. He was about to say something, but then became conscious of the fact that his hand had slipped down from her wrist and was now laced with her fingers. His face flushed with embarrassment and quickly let go, crossed his arms, and looking in another direction.
Sakura giggled again, "I like your hair like that, Li-kun." Syaoran grimaced and quickly ran his hand through his hand roughly, trying to undo whatever was wrong with it. Oh, and then he blushed again. Fuck. What the hell was wrong with him? It was like he in first grade again.
Not being able to control her giggling, Sakura spoke up again, "No…you're doing it all wrong. Here…" she said, her voice velvety-clear. He watched her reach up to his hair, taking a step even closer to him in proximity, and smoothed it out with her finger tips. He shouldn't be thinking this, but her fingers felt absolutely amazing across his scalp; they sent tiny shivers down his spine. Their eyes met, and both of them froze.
What an odd scene. In the middle of a carnival, lights flashing off both of their red-hot faces, and standing in the middle of the carnival street.
They both took a quick step away from each other, and then both spoke at the same.
"Where to next?" Syaoran said at the same moment that Sakura said, "Lets go to the Ferris Wheel?" They both froze once more, staring at each other.
"Uhhh…yeah lets go." Syaoran mumbled, ducking his head and started to turn toward the large wheel turning, its neon burning up above.
"Ok…" Sakura squeaked, following close behind.
"So if your wondering Li-kun--" Sakura started as they both stepped into the Ferris Wheel's metal booth when Syaoran interrupted her.
"Syaoran. Call me Syaoran." he said quickly as they sat down, his eyes blazing, reflecting the glittering lights around them. Sakura swallowed, a small smile plastered on her lips as she fumbled for an answer.
"Umm, yeah, same." she said. He smirked. Her eyes grew large, "Oh! Um, well, I mean, don't call me Syaoran, call me Sakura. You know…'cause…ummm…" she cried, her voice growing fainter as each word passed her lips. Syaoran laughed hard, sitting back against the constricted metal bench he was on, letting his arms stretch our around them.
"Ok…Sakura. What were you saying before." he said, trying out her first name, and stared at the girl sitting across from him.
She played with her hands on her lap, her legs stiff. "Oh, well I was saying that if you were wondering if this ride was safe, Syaoran, then I can guarantee you that it is."
"Can you really?"
He chucked, the cool nights breeze playing with his hair as they rose higher above the ground. "Okay. I believe you."
A tentative silence followed this, both of them looking at each other, smiles playing at their lips. The neon lights couldn't touch them this far up, and soon all that illuminated them was the bright white, blinking lights of the Ferris Wheel that adorned it. Syaoran chuckled softly, unable to break eye contact with the glowing girl before him. He shifted his weight slyly, making his knees graze hers. She broke the stare first, heart pumping loud, glad that the carnival music could still be heard from down below, and looked down at her fidgeting hands. It stayed like that for a few moments, a silence that seemed to be pulsing with electricity as their knees rest together. Sakura found herself needing to breath deeply, silently thankful for the cool night air that passed easily through her lungs.
"So, ummm…" Sakura started, looking up from her hands to see that he was still looking at her. She couldn't understand the heat in his amber eyes, but she smiled timidly anyway. He looked away, down to the glittering carnival below them and the ocean stretching far a wide, are large midnight blue mass that twinkled under the moonlight.
"It's beautiful, isn't it?" he said softly, warmth oozing from his lips. So softly, that, Sakura wasn't even sure if he said it at all. She only smiled and nodded, joined his gaze into the night. Her blood boiled and her stomach made a quizzical explosion of butterflies as she felt his foot graze hers, timidly, softly.
He turned his blazing gaze away from the scene just as the Ferris Wheel slowed to a stop, leaving them somewhere near the top. "So Sakura, tell me what you have been doing since high school."
"Oh nothing much. Just, you know, school, life, joint internships with Tomoyo. You know, that kind of stuff." she shrugged, looking down and playing with the silver locket around her neck.
Syaoran chuckled, making her look up at him, and said, "Hmm, any boys involved?" Sakura's heart skipped a beat, "I think I would have to intercede if any of those weirdo stalker from high school were still infatuated with you." he said, amusement coloring his soft words. Sakura giggled nervously, never letting got of her necklace.
"Well…they were really annoying, weren't they?" Sakura smiled up at him, her foot grazing against his in response, sending an odd pulse up Syaoran's spine.
"You didn't answer my question." he stated simply.
"Oh. Well, no, not really."
"Ah." was all he said, nodded silently. A long silence passed.
"And how about you, Syaoran?" He liked the sound of his name coming off her tongue.
He chuckled. "For which question?" His eyes were burning with amusement.
He laughed again, relaxing his arms, and then letting his elbow prop up again against the side of the cart, holding his head up. "Well, for the first question, school I suppose. Getting ready to take over the family business. You know, that kind of stuff." he said, mimicking her previous answer, "And as for the second question, nothing too serious."
"Ah." she said playfully, also mimicking his response. He smiled. "Well, we wouldn't want any of your old high school fan girls following you around, now would we. I suppose I would have to intercede." Sakura said, smiling. She was pleasantly surprised she was able to keep her words relatively smooth, and wasn't gasping and stuttering as much as she normally did. His confidence was intoxicating. Maybe that was it. However she'd never seen him act like he did before when they were on the street…
His eyebrows raised, "Would you really?"
"Well--" she started, but was interrupted by the sudden jolt of the Ferris Wheel, landing them back on the earth's surface. They both blinked in surprise. They had been so into their own little bubble they didn't even notice it was almost over.
Syaoran hopped up and opened the gate for Sakura. Muttering a "thank you", Sakura climbed down the stairs with Syaoran right behind her.
"So, where to next?" Sakura asked excitedly, rolling back and forth on her heels. Syaoran chuckled. His countenance held an emotion she vaguely remembered. It was powerful, sure. One that radiated confidence. Sakura remembered with a click. This was what he used to look like before a big soccer game. Focused. A challenge ahead.
And Syaoran was feeling dangerous tonight. He felt high on the world, the burning neon not so bothersome as before, the children running, not as annoying. A smile graced his lips as he took her hand in his, taking a step closer.
"How about taking a low ride with me?" he said, staring down at her. Her stomach was on fire, and suddenly, her throat felt very dry. She had a hard time responding.
"A low ride. The tunnel of love. With me." he said, smiling largely down at her. The words sunk in slowly, a smile playing at her own lips.
"Lead the way."
"I always do."
They both laughed in the night, fingers laced, running toward the depths of the future.
They both knew what was to come.
They felt weightless, floating instead of walking, and flying instead of running. Their minds were clouded, taking in the neon splendor in much magnitude. Their body parts were just tools tonight, their hearts dominating the body, and using these tools to its own will. There was no thinking. There was no hesitating. They were just swept up by the tide, floating easily in wherever it took them. And they would do just about anything tonight. The decision wasn't up to them, however, and in reality, it didn't make much of a difference.
Neither of them had felt this way before. However this thought didn't hold them back.
Syaoran and Sakura finally arrived at the Tunnel of Love, fingers laced and cheeks flushed, and laughed when they came to a stop. Sakura bent over in laughter, her unoccupied hand grazing her lips to cover for facial expression. Syaoran laughed with her, unable to stay completely erect as well. Finally Sakura stood up straight and looked at Syaoran, her stomach so full of butterflies, she felt as if her feet were no even touching the ground, and smiled up at him.
"You know I still don't understand why we're laughing so hard." she said, winding their other free fingers together, and then stepping closer to him so that his body warmth radiated onto her.
Still holding hands, Syaoran wound his arms around the small of her back, making it so that their chests were touching, their faces inches apart. "Hmm, it might have to do with your facial expression."
Sakura smiled, "Mmm…" she said, taking the liberty to step onto both of his feet so that her face was almost level with his. His scent was intoxicating, she thought. His face seemed even more perfect this close, and his amber eyes absolutely smothering. She tilted her head, "And you think yours is much better?"
He smiled crookedly and put his forehead to hers, "Oh I don't know. Yours is pretty funny."
His breath was hot and sweet on her face, and she had a hard time focusing. The words that have been coming out her mouth she was barely aware of, which was odd considering she was always one to choose her words wisely. It seemed that all her rules were being broken tonight.
It took one of the carnival employees to snap them out of their daze, a disinterested facial expression that seemed popular amongst the staff. Syaoran and Sakura both cleared their throats, lightly stepping away from each other. Sakura took the chance to look around her, only to notice numerous people looking their way with unreadable expressions. She swallowed, suddenly feeling awkward and way too much like her normal self. Noticing where she was looking, Syaoran took in the expression of all the people and rolled his eyes. He then looked at Sakura, who seemed like she didn't really know where to go; torn between running and staying. She opened her mouth to speak, perhaps trying to get out of the situation, but Syaoran stopped her, scooping her up like a newborn child and carried her into the dim lit cave. Sakura let out a noise, somewhere between a squeel and a yell. Whichever it was, Syaoran laughed at her.
"Oh, calm down. And forget them, they're just stupid." he told her, still carrying her in his arms. She giggled in response, taking advantage of the fact that she was against his surprisingly large chest. He came to a stop and let her down in a daze. It took her a few seconds to notice that Syaoran had opened the small door to the much too cliché swan boat, and was waiting for her to get in. He laughed, looking at the expression on her face as she climbed in.
He followed her lead and sat down, taking the opportunity to put his arm around her. In response, she scooched closer, enjoying the warmth. The boat suddenly lurched into motion and moved them forward, as if an invisible force was pulling them forward into the unknown.
They were soon immersed in darkness, a darkness that before would have gone unnoticed and misunderstood. But now it was comfortable, not tenuous or scary as it may have been in the past. The only things heard was the twinkle of the water, the boat swiftly, quietly passing through the darkness, and the sound of their hot breath. The ceiling above was now studded with dazzling diamonds that replicated the stars not too far away. A soft light now cast in the Tunnel of Love, illuminated by the skylight, allowing them to see each other in the warmest darkness.
"Don't you think its weird," Syaoran said, almost a whisper as he looked off into the darkness, "how in high school we weren't really friends? I mean, we were sort of in the same social group, but I never really took the time to get to know you." A silence followed this in which Sakura could feel something rising in her gut. It was a sort of heat. It left her breathless and dizzy, her mind on only one thing.
"It's weird because I never really realized what was…there all along." he finally glanced down at the tiny girl next to him, a feeling of ecstasy at the tip of his tongue, his current position teetering on the edge of precipice, about to take a plunge in which he had no idea the depth of. But when he turned to her, she was already there to receive his burning stare. Her eyes were set and locked on what was to come; the glitter in them reflecting the rebel diamonds above.
They stayed like that for a while. There was something in a stare that was much than any physical contact imaginable. It was the stare that was no often endured, and this was the first test. And it was passing with flying colors. Because there have been a thousand sets of eyes that both of them have gazed into, and have been unable to hold for longer than a beat. Because that was what was expected. That was what was polite. But here, now, there were no lines or limits, walls or barriers. Because once you can look into someone's eyes with no expectations or rules, its something totally abstract. It was a trust. And both sets of eyes would never look into another's again.
"Kiss me." Sakura whispered with an intensity that revealed that she was not going to take no for an answer. He didn't say anything for a few moments, he only continued to stare. Slowly his lips parted, his eyes steady.
And so he leaned in and suddenly years of bottled passion was uncapped. There was heat, burning heat that was in the air, their lungs, and pulsing through their blood. He held her face in his hands fiercely, digging his lips, nose, everything into hers; a crescendo of passion and heat. Her hands were already under his shirt, clutching onto the skin of his back, and then up to the nape of his neck, tugging at the skin of his hair. He then lifted her onto his lap in which she happily ablodged so that she was straddling him, her whole body pulsing along with his. His hands were now all over her, the skin of her body covered with goosebumps of pleasure. He broke away from her swollen lips and attacked her neck, making her close her eyes and catch her breath.
Slowly, he stopped. What went from biting and scratching went of softness. He kissed the wounds he inflicted on the tenderness of her neck, soft and moist. He trailed it along her collarbone, back up her neck, until he met her slightly parted lips, panting softly into his. His large hands were now at the bare skin of her hips, hers on the back of his head.
Syaoran kissed her lips, barely touching them once, twice, three times until he slowly looked at her. Her eyes were closed, lips still parted. He watched as she put her forehead at the base of his neck, enveloping him in an embrace. He breathed into her hair and ear, just holding her, knowing that he wanted to do this everyday for as long as he can squint into the future. Just her. And just him. Because there really was nothing else as important.
Sakura pulled away from him, still straddling his lap, and looked into his face. She put his face between her two hands and couldn't help but stroke the softness of his cheek, his hair, his lips.
"I don't ever want to forget this." She whispered, her green eyes blazing softly.
"You wont ever have to."
She smiled softly, and began to take something from around her neck. "I want to give you something." She placed the object into his hand.. She smiled playfully, and then began to blink as suddenly a neon glow began to sneak its way through the cave. They were almost at the end of the tunnel. She slowly untangled herself from him, smoothing her dress and hair as well as she could. Syaoran, however, did not move. He only clutched the small object in his hand and never let his gaze break from Sakura's face.
And just like that they were outside the tunnel. She took his hand in a blur and led him under a tree. They stared at each other for another long moment, silent.
"Go on. Look inside." she said, opening his hand to reveal her locket. He gingerly took the small silver object and opened it. Inside was a picture of her as a child, and a small piece of paper. He slowly unfolded the paper from its creases and read it.
It was a phone number and apartment address. Under it, it read Tonight.
A small smile played at his lips. But as he looked up, she was gone, just the remaining scent of her body lingering in the air. He smiled wider, a crooked smirk. It looked like he had something more to occupy himself with this fine evening. And so he walked forward, the night enveloping him as the neon lights faded, marking the end of the carnival, and the start of a whole new nightly adventure.
Above were the stars, shining like rebel diamonds cut out from the sun. And there was no other source of light he ever needed again.
"Tunnel of Love" - Dire Straits