I'm sorry it has been taking me a long time to up-date, but all I can do is apologize. I haven't gotten very many reviews for the last chapter so I thought that I would wait a while, and then I didn't want to write, but now I do because it seems that someone really does care. (Not that you guys don't. If you are reading this that is. So basically, the more reviews I get and the more e-mails (Thanks Justine!!! (Sookie) ^______^) you send me, the more I will want to write. AND, since it is summer, the more I will be willing to finish the story as fast as possible. Thanks for not giving up on me! You're the best!!!!!!
Chapter 29Melting a Stone Heart
~ * ~ What went on previously ~ * ~
'You like being alone.'
'You find it calming, and peaceful.'
'You know that no one will come for you.'
That is correct.
'You also know that no one will EVER, truly love you.'
There was silence, nothing moving, no other sound, nothing to be seen, nothing questioning in the back of the mind that had to do with random things, the future, or perhaps the past. There was only here, now. No future, the past lay forgotten. I stood, not able to form my own questions. Not able to think of what I truly wanted. The voice, the strangely comforting voice, had to be right. Didn't it?
Love. What of it? What was love? How does one define love? The grass beneath their feet? Maybe the stars overhead? A beautifully bloomed flower, wavering gently in the breeze? What was love anyway? Why was it needed? I didn't need to love. It only caused pain, and agony in the past. It only hurt, never soothed. Not now, Not anymore. Not after HE died.
Of course I don't NEED to love. I don't NEED to………
But, will someone ever love me? Can someone ever love someone such as I? Do I know that no one could ever love me?
And unbeknownst to me, a single tear trickled down my cheek.
"Syaoran!" My throat hurt, my eyes watered, whether from the fog or from actual tears I did not know, and my head was pounding. I was finding it harder and harder to breathe with every step I took. Maybe that meant I was getting closer to Syaoran.
I collapsed to my hands and knees, wand in a death grip and I coughed until my lungs ached.
"Syaoran," I rasped, wiping the saliva from the corner of my mouth. "I'm coming. Don't give up. Don't you DARE give up."
~ * ~ End of 28th chapter ~ * ~
I had to find him, I just had to! He could be suffering, or almost dead! I had to be the strong one this time, not the other way around. I had to be the one who would stand up and fight. I knew…I knew that Syaoran would do the same.
"Where are you?" I whispered hoarsely, voice sounding like a broken whistle from all the shouting I had done.
I painfully rose to my feet, feeling slow and clumsy. I will find him! I have to!!!
I moved one foot in front of the other, mechanically. My brain wasn't able to process too many things at once, and currently, it was only focused on finding the one I loved.
I blinked. Yes…I loved him. My heart skipped at beat, my face flushing with a light blush, but it quickly vanished. I didn't have time to think of that at the moment, I had to hurry up and find Syaoran! I had just admitted openly…oh, fine, to myself at least, how much
I loved him. If he died or got hurt because I was being a baka then it would be all my fault. I couldn't act like a lovesick girl, not now…not yet.
But there was still one thing nagging in the back of my mind as I went for an all out run in what I knew had to be Syaoran's direction because of the familiarity of his aura.
'Ha! So you finally admit it! You don't need it. No one will ever love you! You've known it all along now haven't you?'
Numbly, I nodded my head yes.
'I knew it! I knew it! Oh! This is too good to be true! Sakura will be mine! She will love me! She will love me because I deserve it, not some sniveling little stone Prince! I will have her in a way I was never able to have her mother! Her mother is too old for me now anyway. And…she's dead.'
My head snapped up. I tried to glare threateningly in the voice's direction, which didn't help since I had no idea where he was.
You killed her parents! I thought back angrilly. You don't deserve her any more than I do!
'Ah, but my sweet little lone cub, she will not know it was I who killed them.' I could feel the creepy smirk the guy was giving in the air around me. It sent a shiver down my spine. 'Do not worry, I will love her, and she will love me. She will be happy. I need love, unlike you. I prevented you from needing such a weak emotion. Really, you should be thanking me.'
Thank you? I think not!
'But you admitted you didn't deserve her,' the voice added smugly. 'Don't lie to me Syaoran.'
Of course I don't. She's too good for everybody. I gave a half smile when I heard him growl.
'She will be mine! I will have nothing stand in my way, do you hear me? If I can't have her… I will make it so that no one can!'
I paled at that. Don't you dare harm her! I know that she cannot love me, especially since I treated her like I did when we first met; but don't you dare hurt Sakura!
He snickered. The voice actually snickered. 'You will leave us be, won't you? You will give me space? I won't hurt our dear cherry blossom, but in return, you have to promise to never ever come between us. Do you promise?'
I… I didn't know what to say!
'It's not that tough of a question.' The voice seemed amused. 'You can't steal her from me! Got that?'
Suddenly the voice didn't sound quite as old as I had thought. If I was correct… he'd be right about my age…
'You already admitted that you can't have her, so let her see if she will have me. If you get in the way, I will have to do something about it.'
Don't hurt Sakura! I yelled, clenching my fists.
He snorted. 'I wouldn't. I'd settle for you instead. Once you were gone I know she will be mine!'
What did he mean by that? Once I was gone? Why did I have to be gone?
'So? Is it a deal? I could easily kill her if you would prefer…'
No!!! I…I'll do it. My shoulders slumped, defeated. I was defeated. And all because of this?!? I won't get in your way as long as you don't hurt her in any way!
I felt him smirk once again and I cringed. I really didn't like this guy…
'I shall not befall any harm upon her. Hmm… that was actually more easy than I thought. That spell I cast upon you must really do the trick. You really won't ever love, will you? Pity.' But he didn't sound too sympathetic.
I was almost there. I could feel it! But along with that feeling came a sense of impending doom. Something was wrong. It was as if the battle was already won.
And we had lost.
"No!" I shouted, running faster and harder than ever. "No, no, no, no, No!!!!!"
Was I too late?
"Syaoran-kun!" I hollered, gasping for breath. I saw a dark shadow ahead in the mist. Was it a figure? Was it… was it Syaoran?!? "Syaoran!!!" I yelled, giving an extra burst of speed, my body gaining energy at the sight of him. Hope was in the back of my mind. "Syaoran!" I ran up to him, tears streaming down my face as I stumbled, but caught myself in the nick of time. A smile spread across my face. He was here. He was safe. For now.
"Syaoran?" I asked, worried now that he hadn't called back to me. Something wasn't right. I could only see his back and partially the side of his face. I grabbed his hand as I trotted over to him, slowing down now because his hand was in mine…and because of the fear nagging in the back of my mind. I carefully moved around him to get a good look at his face, more accurately… his eyes.
"Syaoran?" I asked in horror.
He didn't answer, just continued to stare at me.
No, he wasn't staring at me, he was looking through me. His eyes were unfocused, he wasn't moving…he was hardly breathing! His beautiful amber brown eyes were dilated. They looked vacant and depressed. It looked as though he had lost a battle.
No. It couldn't be. I had to get him back!
"Syaoraaaaaaan!!!!!!" I screamed, squeezing his hand in an iron grip as if to wake him up. I threw my arms around his neck and sobbed into his shirt. I had no idea what was going on! All I knew was that I was extremely worried and Syaoran wasn't responding to anything I was saying to him. "Come back to me Syaoran… please come back…" I whispered, my hands fisting quite a large amount of his tunic. "I care about you. I don't want anyone to hurt you. Syaoran… I…I…I lo…" I couldn't bring myself to say it. I didn't know what his reaction would be. I didn't know what he thought. And… and… I didn't want to get hurt.
So… I was selfish.
'Now first I will get her flowers, and then I will get her—'Shhh!
I strained, listening for something that sounded vaguely familiar. Did you hear that?
'Hear what?' He asked, annoyed.
"Syaoran! Syaoran! …Syaoran?"
'No! I hear nothing!' The voice was a little quick to answer.But I think I…
'No! It's nothing!' He cleared his throat loudly. 'Now where was I?'
My head snapped up. There it is again!
'There's nothing there. You must be imagining things.'No, I…
"Come back to me Syaoran… please come back…"
It is her! It's Sakura! I know it!
'No! It's not!'
"I care about you. I don't want anyone to hurt you. Syaoran…"
I blinked stupidly for a couple of seconds. She…she really cares about me? She's…she's worried for my safety?!? Then that means…
Oh my gosh! Was she about to say what I think she was about to say? That she actually… she actually loves me?!? It was too much for my brain to try and comprehend. It wasn't possible. Was it…? How could anyone ever care about someone… let alone possibly love someone… if they were supposed to have a stone heart? No feelings what so ever? No one to care about in return? No one to… love?
This is all BS!
'Uh…yes! Yes, you…are right… eh heh. I mean, she doesn't care about you! Who could… an ugly pig like you—"
Not that. The part about you putting a damn spell on me! You just made that up!
'I did not!' Now he sounded like a little boy about ready to whine to his mother.
Feh. Yeah right. I care. I know I care! About Sakura.
'Don't you even think about it! Remember, I'm the one who gets her! You admitted to both of us that you didn't deserve her!'
Now it was my turn to smirk. That's where you are sorely mistaken. I said no one deserved her. She's too perfect… too pure. You killed her parents! For every tear she shed for them I will strike you with my magic. I will make sure you pay for ever putting her through that, and for killing innocent people. You will die soon if I have my way, and I'll make sure it's extremely slow and painful.
'Humph. For some reason… I do not believe you. Heed my words lone cub! I did place that spell on you, and you will see in due time that not only is it true, but it will harden every crack and crevice in your heart, leaving no room to love even your own mother!' He started laughing mirthlessly, not caring one way or the other. 'I will have my way… and when I do… she will be mine.'
I ground my teeth together, clenching my fists. What is that supposed to mean?!? I growled up at him, since his voice seemed to come from the sky.
'Simply that my spell hasn't even been put into place yet.' He cackled, which sounded painfully like hacking after a while, and then stopped, clearing his throat. 'When my plan goes into action little wolf, you will know. You will know.'
'Have patience, dear foe. Do not forget… you still have to get out of this place. Believe me… it will not be easy! Adieu!'Get back here you sonnuva—
"Syaoran, please! Wake up! You have to be okay! Wake up!"Sa-Sakura—
"Please…" she begged.
I felt the odd sensation of my hand being squeezed lifeless and looked down at it. Nothing was there.
"For me…" she whispered, her voice sounding close to my ear for some reason.
My shirt felt… hot? No… it was cold. It was… wet. Tears? Was Sakura crying?
Don't cry! I wanted to shout. I'm right here! She couldn't hear me! Why? Why couldn't she hear me?!? I'm all right! I tried to yell, but no words came out. Sakura… Sakura… I'm so sorry. Maybe I can't love. Maybe I can't really feel anything toward someone other than hatred and sadness. I can't even feel you!!! You're in my arms… aren't you? If only I could move. If only I could wrap my arms around you so you would know that everything would be alright. Don't give up on me Sakura. Please don't. What ever you do, whatever this stupid spell will do to me… just don't give up on me.
"Syaoran?" I could almost see her face. It was a bit blurry around the edges… but it was there right in front of me. "Syaoran… I won't give up on you," she commented quietly, as if she had sensed my earlier plea. "Syaoran… I promise. I'll never give up on you. Ever."
Tears. There were tears in those beautifully sparkling emerald eyes of hers. I wanted to brush them away; make them disappear. Why wouldn't they disappear? She was crying… for him… because she cared…
"You will always remain in my heart."
And then she kissed me. Her soft pink lips pressed lightly against mine in a tantalizingly wonderful kiss that spread warmness throughout my entire form. My eyes widened; my real eyes widened, as I stared gaping at her closed eyelids. Tentatively, I realized that I was back to normal, and could move again, so I encircled her waist with my arms and brought her nearer. She gasped, giving me access to her mouth, which I quickly invaded. It felt great to be warm again, to feel again; most importantly, to know that I was cared about.
When we pulled apart she stared at me with wide eyes, a crimson blush covering her cheeks as she gaped like a fish. "Syaoran…you…were—"
I placed a finger over her luscious lips and gave her a warm-hearted smile. That's right, I had a warm heart, no matter what Tokurashi said. I loved Sakura Kinomoto, and I wanted to proclaim it to the world!!!!! Well… maybe not her brother…
"Thank you Sakura."
She blinked a few times, her cheeks finally starting to fade from their fiery red. "Wha?"
"You will always remain in my heart as well."
For that statement her blush returned, going an even deeper shade than before. I chuckled, unaware of a light blush that had also covered my face from the moment her lips touched mine. I wanted to tell her that I lover her so bad, but I had a feeling that now wasn't the right time. Heck, we still had to get rid of this fog-type stuff…which was…slowly…swirling around us and…dispersing…into the tip of… Eriol's wand?!?
"So, it seems you aren't dead after all Syaoran. I was starting to worry that I would miss my main center of entertainment."
"WHAT?!?" I yelped, glaring menacingly…which he ignored, and turning an even brighter red. How much had he seen???
"What was goin on in there? You two sure were taking your time." He raised an eyebrow, looking from one red face to the next. When neither Sakura nor myself admitted to anything… or even muttered a word for that case, he shrugged and walked over to us. "Sakura, I think if you use the time card it will deactivate the original time warp, and everything should go back to normal."
"Should?" I asked in monotone, secretly glad he had dropped the subject about Sakura and I… for now.
"It's worth a shot," Sakura said exasperatedly. I sure hope this works! Time card! Restore time to its rightful hour! Time card!!!"
When birds started to flutter around and sing their songs, and the others started to move around and talk and asked what had happened, Sakura, Syaoran, and Eriol all looked greatly relieved. Tomoyo ran over to them, her long strands of wavy hair streaming out behind her.
"What happened? What's going on? Was it something to do with the Clow Cards?" She whispered hurriedly so the others wouldn't hear. "Was it Tokurashi?"
"Yes. He tried to attack us again, but he attacked only Syaoran this time," Sakura said, looking slightly confused. "I don't get it. Who's his real enemy?"
Tomoyo looked slightly troubled, but also relieved that Sakura hadn't been in any real danger. "So what happened?" She asked, keeping one eye on the others and one eye one on me. I guess she wanted me to answer that question.
"It was…odd," I stated, to say the least. "It was almost as if I was in another dimension, but I was kind of just… out of it. It was like I was talking to another voice in my head, except the owner of this voice was much more threatening."
"Tokurashi," she breathed, now both eyes riveted to my face.
She caught on pretty quick. "Yes."
"What did he say to you?" Sakura asked, eyes full of concern.
"Nothing you have to worry too much about. I didn't buy it. Well, that is… I don't any more." I blushed and hung my head, earning one confused look, one all-knowing smile, and one half-smirk. "But there was something odd he had said…"
"What?" Eriol and Sakura chorused.
"He said something about… someone's mother being too old, so I don't think he's as old as we think. He also doesn't sound very mature when you're arguing."
"What does that have to do with anything?"
"Well, he's here in the castle somewhere… right? What if he's one of the guests?"
"That could be…" Tomoyo trailed off.
"Or else he could be like me," Eriol suggested. "Old in spirit, young in body."
"I hope not!" Sakura said quickly, then cast an apologetic look his way. "No offense Eriol."
He smiled, giving off no true emotion while doing so. "None taken."
"Anything else?" Tomoyo pressed.
"Umm… he said something about not hurting Sakura… but if I get in the way he won't hesitate."
"In the way?" She asked.
"That doesn't sound good," Eriol said, sounding alarmed.
"What about you? Will he try to hurt you again?" Sakura questioned, her eyes boring into mine, pleading with me to promise her that I would be.
I could lie to her… "I'm not sure." It just…depended… on 'if' I got in the way again. And there was no way I was going to let her get hurt or believe some guy when he told her he loved her, because it could be Tokurashi. Nope, not a single guy would touch her if I had my way!
And I have my way…
"Is that all?" Tomoyo asked again, wanting to make sure.
"Anything that doesn't have to deal with Sakura?" Eriol added.
"Yeeeeeeees???" All three questioned at once.
What was I supposed to do; tell all of them I was cursed but it wasn't in affect yet so at any given time when Tokurashi feels like he wishes to squash my heart like a bug he can make it stone instead so I'll care about any of them any longer… not even my own mother?!?
"Nope. Nothing else."
Hey, what would you have done? Tell the truth!
"Sakura, Syaoran, Tomoyo, Eriol, are you coming or not?" Chiharu questioned from about six yards away.
"Yes!" We all said in unison, laughing uneasily.
"We'll be right there!" Sakura shouted, giving them a bright smile.
I grinned. She was beautiful, and kind, and loving.
And she cared.
Okay, all done! I decided not to leave it at a cliff hanger, so try not to be too mad at me, okay? Remember, it's summer, so I can actually type, but I only will if I'm in the mood. Now HOW do you get me in the mood? ^-^ You review!!! ^_______________^ Simple as that! Now please please review!!! It should have been a decent chapter. Correct me if I'm wrong. Well, talk to ya later! Bye!