Disclaimer: I do not own Toradora or Clannad, nor is this story earning me any profit.

Author's note: No, this has nothing to do with Clannad; I just borrowed the name because I thought it fit the themes of this fanfic well. Note that I removed all the honorifics, but I tried to keep most of the core values alive.

Warning: This fanfic draws upon mainly the anime (more specifically, episode 26) in the prologue and Chapter One.

"Since ancient times, the dragon has been the only beast to equal the tiger," Taiga stated. She glanced up. "That's why, even without a vow, we'll always be together, right?"

"Yeah," Ryuuji said, as if that one word declared the deep feelings he had for the petite girl standing in front of him. "Tai-"

"Your eyes are red. Your breathing is all weird."

"Shut up," said Ryuuji, embarrassed.

Taiga continued. "Your lips are cracked. It'll hurt if we kissed."

"It's not like…"

"If we kiss, it'll definitely hurt… a lot."

At that moment, Ryuuji sensed a tinge of loneliness in her voice, a feeling that she was planning to leave far, far away. He hesitated for a second. After removing his hand from his mouth, he swiftly crossed the gap between them, laid a hand on Taiga's left shoulder and gave her a quick kiss. Even more embarrassed than before, he asked, "How was it?"

"Just as I expected…" Taiga reprimanded. "It was like a rough, dry wilderness. Also…" her voice softened immediately as if her bodily feelings caught up with her thoughts. "It was really, really warm…"


"Hey, it's cold, so let's do it one more-"

Ryuuji did not hesitate this time. The kiss was longer. Half-way through, she closed her eyes and kissed him back.

"One more…"

He leaned in again; the kiss was longer yet, more passionate, more loving. He placed his hand on her cheek, supporting her head in this affectionate endeavour.

"One… more…"

The stars twinkled outside up upon the dark sky, as if they were looking at this fated couple. A cool wind blew through the trees, making a soft rattling noise.

This heavenly feeling, thought Ryuuji. It was almost as if it was…

~To be continued in Chapter One~