Konnichiwa, Minna-chan! Yes...another new fic from yours truly...I haven't been able to figure out how to continue my other ones yet. Please bear with me! As for my fic "Lunar, Silver Star Story: CCS Style", I'm not continuing. Barely anyone even liked it, so I didn't think it was worth my time to write it. Sorry to you choice few who did like it. I hope this fic goes over better with everyone. I thought it was an interesting idea....I sincerely hope you like it. I'm losing my motivation for writing...I feel as though I'm losing my knack for it. Please Review if you can spare the time! Good or bad, I need to know! If this fic goes over well, then I will continue to write. But it's up to you!

About this fic: It's S+S. [You should expect that from me by now.] I will add E+T too, if your reviews request the pairing. Anyways, this AU story takes place in a place called Mahou Kingdom; a kingdom with no king or queen, but only bossy, snobby princess, by the name of Meiling. Syaoran is a Prince from the far away kingdom of Azkar, come to fulfill the unwanted engagement between him and the Princess Meiling of Mahou Kingdom. Tomoyo is employed in the Mahou castle, as a type of castle maid, and Eriol is one of its most valuable and trusted knights. And where is Sakura, you ask? In a secluded forest, on the outskirts of the castle, she is imprisoned. Guarded by an unknown creature, only choice few know she exists. Why is she imprisoned? Who imprisoned her? How will S+S meet? What is the mysterious secret of Mahou Kingdom? Read on, fellow CCS fans...I will tell you a tale not soon to be forgotten...

1 The Secret of Mahou Kingdom: Chapter 1: The Prince and The Mysterious Forest

"Lady Meiling! Lady Meiling!"

A young girl, around age 16-17 turned around; her ashen black hair flowing behind her and ruby eyes fixing the newcomer with a glare of disgust. "That's PRINCESS Meiling to you!" She spat, tossing her glossy black hair over her shoulder. She folded her arms crossly when the person did not reply. "Well maid, what is it?" She snapped.

The young woman hesitated, her dark gray hair, longer than the princess's, framing her pale face and her violet-colored eyes showing signs of fear. "I- I'm very sorry, Princess Meiling." She sputtered, bowing awkwardly, "But I have news that Prince Li Syaoran of Azkar kingdom will be arriving shortly."

Meiling frowned at the maid, her eyes darkening slightly. "Why was a maid sent to inform me of this? Where are my messengers? Who ordered you here?"

The young maid tried to stay calm as she muttered numerous apologies. "I'm so very sorry, Princess Meiling! I was sent by Hiiragizawa Eriol."

Meiling's frown deepened at the mention of the blue-haired knight. "Oh yes, him. Of course." The violet-eyed maid bowed again in apology. "I will forgive you this time." Meiling informed the handmaid, "However, I do not want to see you in my presence again unless strictly ordered by me or my advisor. Is that understood?"

"Yes of course, your highness. I assure you, it will not happen again." And with that, the maid was dismissed, heading to her quarters.

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

"Where is that baka?" Meiling muttered, searching for her highest knight. She spotted him near the stairwell, his gaze fixed on something outside a castle window. "HIIRAGIZAWA!" she shouted at the young knight, nearly knocking him off the window ledge in surprise.

He jumped down from his perch, approaching Meiling calmly, his armored boots creating clicking noises upon the floor beneath him. "Yes, Princess Meiling? What is it?"

She puffed her cheeks out, like she always did when she was annoyed or upset by something. 'Oh, what did I do now?' Eriol thought, rolling his eyes.

"What business do you have sending a MAID to deliver messages to me?!" She screeched, throwing her arms in the air.

Eriol held his hands up in mock defense to the raging princess. "Calm down, calm down. I sent Miss Tomoyo because your messengers are very busy outside the castle walls." He informed, keeping his voice as even as possible, "She was not busy at the moment, so I saw no harm in having her deliver the message to you."

Meiling blinked twice. "Oh, I see now. Well, don't let it happen again." She dismissed the matter with a wave of her hand.

The young dark-haired knight bowed deeply. "It shall not, my Lady." He assured.

"The Prince will be arriving soon." Meiling reminded nonchalantly, fixing her crimson eyes on his sapphire ones, "And I trust you know what to do."

Eriol frowned, still staring back at the Princess. "Yes." he assured with a curt nod, "I will follow orders." He stopped short, as if unsure of something. "However, if he should...."

Meiling held a hand up to stop him in mid-speech. "You do as I say." She said none too nicely, emphasizing each of her words clearly, "You know the consequences."

He didn't even give her the pleasure of a reply, opting instead to walk away and return to gazing thoughtfully out of the window, where he had been before being so rudely interrupted.

*click clack click clack*

Both heads turned toward the sound of fast approaching feet. Within moments, a young man appeared, dressed in the royal red and purple colors of the kingdom, and panting heavily. "THE PRINCE ARRIVES!" he declared with a low bow.

Meiling smiled despite her earlier mood, and smoothed out the wrinkles of her ruby red dress, following gracefully after the messenger. They came to the front doors of the castle, which opened almost immediately upon their arrival. Intense, bright light showered through the opening, revealing a shapeless shadow in its center. After their eyes had adjusted, they saw a brilliant white horse, upon which a young man sat, his head covered by a fancy looking helmet. A sword hung from his armor, clinking noisily against the metal of his splendid armor as the horse moved forward.

A squire stepped forward from the Prince's ensemble, decked out in deep forest green garments. "Presenting, PRINCE LI SYAORAN OF AZKAR!".

The figure jumped down from the horse, taking off his helmet in the process. He revealed a mass of messy, chestnut-colored hair, and an intense pair of amber eyes. "I bring greetings from Azkar." he stated, advancing into the castle.

Meiling approached him, a pink tinge present on her cheeks, and curtseyed before him. "Welcome, Prince Syaoran. I'm Princess Meiling." She spoke kindly, "Mahou Kingdom is delighted to have you with us."

Instead of replying to her, he narrowed his eyes, glancing around him. 'Why am I sensing something around here?' He sent a suspicious glare to the blue- haired knight. 'He possesses powerful magic.'

Meiling clasped her hands into fists, her shoulders hunching slightly in annoyance. 'He's ignoring me!''

Eriol turned from the window, as if aware that he was being watched. Seeing the young amber-eyed young man staring back at him, he smirked to himself. 'If it isn't my dear descendent.' he thought, with an inward chuckle, 'What a pleasant surprise.'

He hopped from the ledge, landing skillfully on the marble floor below. The knight made his way to the Prince, and with a respectful bow, extended his hand in greeting. "Welcome, Prince." he spoke, smiling in a mysterious way, "I'm the highest knight of Mahou Kingdom, Hiiragizawa Eriol."

The Prince reluctantly shook hands with the knight, still administering a glare. "Pleasure."

Feeling the tension between her knight and the Prince, Meiling decided to barge in. "I have a wonderful idea!" Meiling gushed, placing herself in between the two, "Let's go have tea in the garden!"

Eriol's smile only widened. "That sounds like a wonderful idea, Princess." He turned back to the Prince. "Will you join us, Prince Li-san?"

His expression never changing, Prince Syaoran nodded. "Of course."

Eriol quickly excused himself, chasing after a passing maid. "Miss Tomoyo!" he called. The young maid turned around, revealing the same person that had delivered the message to the Princess.

"Yes?" she asked sweetly, smiling softly at the knight.

Eriol couldn't help but smile back at the kind young woman. "Would you be so kind as to set a table for three in the garden?" he questioned.

"I would be more than happy to." She curtseyed and scurried off.

'What a nice and kind-hearted young maiden.' Eriol thought, the smile still present on his face as he watched the maid's retreating form.

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

Syaoran swished the liquid around in his cup, watching it swirl. "So, about this engagement..." he started.

Meiling smiled at the Prince, though he was staring off somewhere else. "Isn't it a wonderful idea?"

The stoic Prince suddenly fixed his amber eyes on the Princess, no smile, and no hint of any emotion except possibly annoyance. "I just want you to know, this is not MY wish." he voiced, "I'm only going through with this for my mother."

Meiling's expression saddened for a moment, but she quickly covered it with a small chuckle. "Yes, yes, dear Prince, I understand. I will be patient. You will come to love me in time."

Syaoran stood up, pushing his chair back forcefully. "Love is NOT a part of this." he declared, "I do not love you, nor will I ever come to love you. This is only for my country and for the good of this Kingdom!"

Meiling's deep ruby eyes reflected the hurt in her voice. "How can you say that? Why must you make this so difficult?"

"You are the one who is making this absurd engagement difficult!" The frustrated Prince nearly yelled.

Eriol sweat-dropped, sipping from his tea as he watched the two battle. "If I may say a few words, perhaps you two can come to some sort of agreement?" He left the question hang open.

Syaoran scowled at the nosy knight. "What business is this of yours? Have you no other obligations?"

"The well-being of this kingdom IS my business." The young knight dared to send a glare back at the Prince. "I'll see to it that this unwanted marriage does not bring Mahou Kingdom to its ruin."

The Prince's eyes lit up in flame, and he held a fist up in anger. "How DARE you speak to me in such a manner!"

"It is you who should not be speaking to me that way," Eriol spoke calmly, smirking slightly at the Prince's bewildered face before continuing, "My dear descendant."

Syaoran's eyes widened considerably. "N-Nani? What is this you call me? 'Descendant' ?"

Eriol stood up from his chair, throwing his long flowing purple cape behind him. "I am the reincarnation of the great sorcerer, Clow Reed." he explained, with deep pride.

For a moment, Syaoran sat with his mouth open, like a gaping fish. He quickly shut it, fixing the knight with another one of his trademark glares. " I knew I felt magic from you."

"Ah, right you are!" Eriol declared, then gave him a cryptic smile, "Is that all you sense?"

Syaoran blinked at the blue-haired boy, who in turn raised one eyebrow in urging. The Prince concentrated as best he could, reaching out for any other trace of magic he could find. Left, right, left, right....then it hit him like a pile of bricks.

Magic was everywhere! The entire kingdom radiated an aura of strong, yet gentle power. "Amazing..." he mumbled out loud.

His eyes looked about, trying to pinpoint any particular spot of strong magic. It wasn't until his perception caught a single area in the distance: A large, enticing forest. It surged with a blue aura, yet it seemed to be concealing something more within its dark and distant depths.

Syaoran furrowed his brows, staring off into the distance as if he were trying to see into the heart of the woods. 'Hmm...what's out there?' he wondered.

Meanwhile, Princess Meiling was desperately trying not to blurt out something that she'd regret. 'Damn you, Hiiragizawa!' she cursed mentally, glowering toward her highest knight, 'You're leading him! Straight to-' Her thoughts were suddenly cut short when she noticed that the Prince was staring intently in the direction of the forest. She clenched her hands tightly, hidden beneath the table and out of sight from her companions. 'You will regret this, Hiiragizawa.' she vowed.

"What's so interesting, Syaoran dear?" Meiling questioned, prying the Prince's attention from his inner contemplation. When she was sure she had his full attention, she scowled at the object of his thoughts. "Oh, that forest?" She spoke of it like a curse. "Hideous place, simply dreadful. Dark and damp, very unpleasant."

Syaoran raised an eyebrow, questioning her sudden hatred of the forest. "I see." he drawled, quite unconvinced by her scorn and discouragement of visiting the woods.

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

'There's obviously something in that grove of trees.' Syaoran deliberated inwardly, 'And that something has powerful magic.'

He stared out the window of the guest room, which gave him a perfect view of the woodland area. His suspicions of the strange forest only grew as he pondered what both the young dark-haired royal knight and the Princess had told him. 'I'll get to the bottom of this shortly.' he determined, watching the last glimpses of sunlight disappear over the horizon.

"Pretty forest, is it not?"

The Prince whirled around, meeting the smiling face of his ancestor. "You!" He pointed a finger at him, accusing him of some unknown crime and fixing him with his custom glower. 'I wasn't even conscience of his presence! How can that be?'

The knight's strange smile faded into a frown of warning. "Should you venture into a long forgotten secret, be cautious, my descendant. You may fall in deeper than you intended."

The stoic young Prince raised his eyebrows in question, lowering his hand. "What do you mean? Secret?"

Hiiragizawa Eriol pointed out the window, Syaoran's gaze following after the outstretched hand. "I don't get it..." he mumbled, gazing out at the now-darkened woods.

He turned back, to inquire further from the odd and outlandish knight, only to see that he had vanished. 'Secret?' Syaoran

wondered. He stroked the pendant hanging from his necklace. 'Now to sneak out of this castle, and find out about that forest.'

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

The cinnamon-haired Prince tiptoed through the torch-lit hallways, creeping slowly out the comatose castle. He breathed in the midnight air, suddenly feeling very awake. Taking one last look at the slumbering kingdom, as if for reassurance that he wasn't caught, he ventured into the woodlands.

As if there was some unseen barrier between the forest and the kingdom, Syaoran felt that he was passing through something, almost like walking through water. 'Is this what Hiiragizawa meant my 'secret'?' he pondered.

Indeed, the forest seemed very much alive. Not just in life, but in spirit. As he crept more toward the heart of the woods, a strange light awakened within. He soon found himself surrounded by what looked like glowing green fireflies. He caught one in his hand and held it. 'Gentle magic.' he comprehended, releasing the glowing orb 'But where is the source?'

Jaw set in determination, he walked deeper into the core. He abruptly felt his sensitive magic perception flare to life. He veered to the left and stopped dead in his tracks.

A shadowed figure sat a mere twenty or so feet away. It held a firefly in it's outstretched hand, the face of the creature still shrouded in the shadows of the trees above. Syaoran swallowed the lump in his throat. "Hello?" he called.

It didn't reply, but rather, stood up quickly. As if on instinct, all the glowing orbs of light flocked to the figure. Syaoran watched in awe as the green lights fused together, enlightening the whole figure. His eyes widened considerably as his amber eyes met a pair of shining emeralds. Syaoran gasped. 'A girl!'

Short cropped auburn hair and stunning green eyes. And she seemed to be nearly his age. 'And very pretty as well.' He noted with a slight blush..

A whole ton of questions flooded his mind at once. 'A girl with such powerful magic? How did she get out here? Is she human?' His deliberation was cut short as the light completely faded to darkness and the girl fled.

"Matte!" He yelled, dashing after her withdrawing form. "MATTE ONEG-"

*BAM*

Syaoran blinked repetitively from his current position on the ground, shaking his head. "What the hell?" He replayed the past few moments over in his mind, trying to figure out what just happened. 'I was running after the girl, then something hit me and I fell back.' He looked up, but saw nothing.

Getting back on his feet, he took a few cautious steps forward. He narrowed his amber eyes at the space in front of him, holding a hand out. He could feel the warmth of the magic on his hand. He felt something akin to an electric shock course through his hand as it met something solid. 'A magical barrier!' Syaoran realized.

He pushed harder against it, exerting all his force. But to no avail, the magic was too strong for him to be able to bust apart. He sighed and closed his eyes, leaning against the shield. 'Dead end.'

He suddenly heard a crunching sound from nearby and opened his eyes, wondering if the strange girl had returned. He instead found himself staring fearfully into two large, angry golden eyes.

~That's it for my first chapter! *whew* I hope minna-chan liked it. I want to continue it, because I actually have a pretty good plot idea for this story ^_^ If you did or didn't like it, Review please!!! I'm not continuing if minna-chan doesn't like this one. It's my LAST try. If this doesn't work, I guess I'm disappearing from the world of fanfiction for good. There's no use continuing my other stories either, if minna-chan has lost their interest. So, I beg of you, please review! I would like to continue writing if minna-chan would continue reading. Thank you for your time. And I hope to hear from you! If I see that minna-chan is interested, I'll start the next chapter and have it out in a few days or so. GIVE ME SOME MOTIVATION PLEASE! THANK YOU! JA! ^^ ~Manda-chan