December Baby: Yuui and the Boy
For: TrueDespair, since it's her birthday. I really hope this will make your sweet nineteen a little sweeter. ^_^
Summary: Before Yuui became a cooking teacher, he was just a cook. One who would never expect that visiting a café in a foreign country could have such an influence on his life. (slight SyaoYuui)
Beta: by Cookie from Animexx, also known as the little Martine, my dear name sister.
Warning: Language, same-sex-affection, Internet-abuse and mentionings of German Literature (urgh). Mild spoilers for Drama CD 3, in case you don't know it. As if. XD
With astonishment Aschenbach noticed that the boy was entirely beautiful. His countenance, pale and gracefully reserved, was surrounded by ringlets of honey-colored hair, and with its straight nose, its enchanting mouth, its expression of sweet and divine gravity, it recalled Greek sculpture of the noblest period.
Thomas Mann, "The Death in Venice" (Ch.3 as in translated by David Luke)
And I've always lived like this
Keeping a comfortable distance
And up until now
I'd sworn to myself that I'm content with loneliness
Because none of it was ever worth the risk, but...
Paramore, "The only exeption"
Yuui knew he was being pathetic. But at least he was able to admit that he had fallen.
He was a grown up man in a foreign town, who had a crush on an adolescent boy… and if Yuui had learned anything from The Death in Venice then it was that things like that always turn out bad. Well, he didn't expect to die from cholera the next days, but he was sure that the tragic death of Gustav von Aschenbach was a metaphor for being consumed by one's obsessions and although Yuui had promised to himself that he would never get to that point, he found himself at the same place every afternoon.
He sat in a cosy little internet café bar, owned by Mrs. Li, a beautiful woman in her forties. It was a family establishment, if Yuui had ever seen one. The waitresses of the café were the owner's four daughters. One could tell by the similar features and the wavy raven black hair.
Well, and then there was the boy, who looked nothing like his sisters and who had just his mother's amber-coloured eyes. Although Yuui's attraction to the kid was strictly emotional, he couldn't help but to think of those eyes. They spoke of maturity, intelligence, self-confidence and, for some odd reason, wiliness. He was like no other young man the blond had ever met.
The first time that Yuui entered the café (that would soon become The Boy's Café in his mind) was just after he had arrived in Shanghai. It had been a long and tiring flight from Italy to China and Yuui had looked for a place to rest before he would call a taxi to his hotel. He had chosen this café because it had a continental flair and it was nice to see something familiar in a new environment.
Without looking at the menu card he had ordered a coffee, just to get what Italians called un café americano, while all he wanted was un caffé – an espresso. (To order a coffee in Italy was a whole new battlefield, because in Italy, coffee was not just coffee and once you get used to it, it's hard to get rid of it). The caffeine concentration of a regular coffee had not been enough to keep the blond man awake; so, of course, he had fallen asleep.
Yuui didn't knew how long his little nap lasted, but it had been a decent voice that woke him up.
A groan escaped the blond man's lips as his consciousness returned. He felt even more tired than before he had fallen asleep. He tried to sit right up and rubbed his face.
"Sir, I'm sorry to wake you up, but we're closing in ten minutes."
He murmured something indefinable and tried to open his eyes. Tried to find out where he was and why he was here... slowly, his mind put the pieces back together. And embarrassment took over.
"Oh my god... I... I'm sorry."
"Don't worry. We don't have that many guests in December, so you can spend just as much time as you want here", the waiter said, chuckling. He had a soft, warm voice and as Yuui examined the guy thoroughly, he saw that the other one was still an adolescent. "To be more precisely, we hardly have any tourists in town at this time of the year."
The cook just noticed that the boy spoke almost accent-free English.
He mustered up a faint smile. "What gave me away?"
"Well, the blond hair and the blue eyes were a pretty good hint. Are you here on vacation, Sir?"
"Yeah, one could say that", Yuui replied vaguely. There was no need to tell a complete stranger that he was just here to escape the warm Christmas spirit. Talking about strangers and tourists... the boy didn't seem to be pure Asian. The frizzy brown hair indicated that one of his parents was European or American. Well, Yuui wouldn't ask. He thought this might be a bit rude. "But, please don't call me 'Sir', this makes me feel so..."
"Distinguished?", the brunet suggested.
"Alright, Mister, how should I address you then?"
He pondered. Actually, this was a good question, for he had no idea. His brother used to call him Yuui-chan, when he wanted to tease him... but Fai lived in Japan for a few years, so this was no surprise. "I'm Yuui de Flourite. But Yuui-san will do."
"You don't look Japanese", the boy stated.
"Because I'm not." The blond smiled and started to search for his wallet. As much as he enjoyed talking to this young man; it was time for him to go. He paid and promised to drop by at the next opportunity.
Later, Yuui should find out the boy's name was Xiao Long, but since the French man had serious trouble pronouncing it, they agreed on Syaoron – which was the Japanese pronounciation of the boy's name.
The laptop in front of him made a little "bing" as he received a new chat box message, ripping the man out of his thoughts. He took a quick look at the screen.
~Lil'Dragon: Hey, nice to see you again! Happy Bithday Italian!
Interesting. Now he even received birthday congratulations from people he never met before. At least not in person. But how did the other one know? Yuui glanced at the little birthday cake icon next to his screen name. So that was why.
He tried not to get down by the thought that this little picture might be the only birthday cake he would get today. When they were still teenagers, he and Fai used to bake their birthday cake together. Fai never got tired of explaining the chemistry behind the instructions.
Yuui rubbed his neck and composed a reply.
~Be_Italian: Thank you! It's been a while, huh? You'll never believe where I am right now.
But as he knew the little dragon (though it was odd to say that he knew this person, for he still didn't knew if Lil'Dragon was female or male, nor his or her age), his online-friend would guess. They were both members of a cooking forum site and so far, Lil'Dragon had proven as a reliable source for Chinese food. Real Chinese Food, not that stuff that one could buy in Chinese restaurants in Europe.
~Lil'Dragon: Don't tell me, you actually listened to my advice.
~Be_Italian: ^^ It's a nice city, even in winter. The weather's a bit moody, though.
~Lil'Dragon: Tried some desserts, yet?
~Be_Italian: A few. But didn't try to make some.
~Be_Italian: Too sweet for my taste.
Yuui waited a few minutes for a reply but got none. He looked out of the window and sighed. The weather expressed just how he felt. Raindrops were falling lazily on the ground and it was cold enough to make one shudder but not cold enough to get in a winter mood.
To him, it felt more like autumn.
"Do cooks usually get their recipes from the internet?", a familiar voice asked and a glass cup of latte macchiato was placed on Yuui's table. The man blinked, irritated. "I haven't ordered, yet."
The boy just grinned. "Yeah, but I just know what you want."
The blond blushed because of the (unintended) implication. "Thank you. And to answer your questions, no, cooks don't get their recipes from the internet but they share their knowledge."
The younger one clicked his tongue. "I see. I bet you would be a good teacher. By the way, have you made a decision, yet? About this school."
Yuui hesitated to answer.
"Xiao Long!", Mrs. Li yelled.
Her son just rolled with his eyes. "Coming!" He showed an apologetic smile before he left and Yuui had to tell himself, not to make too much out of that smile. The boy was a waiter; it was just natural that he was polite to the guests. Like it was natural for a teenager to use every opportunity for a little break. So the fact that they had a nice little talk every day meant nothing, really. This was not to say that it meant nothing to Yuui. His mood had lifted up a little bit and with the faintest of smiles on his lips, he chose to check out his e-mails. To see if Fai had written back.
Indeed, he had.
My dear sweet baby brother…
Now, that was just like Fai, constantly reminding him who was the older one (and even if it was just half an hour, older was older).
Happy Birthday to you, too! I really hope you can celebrate this day with your friends. You'll never know what happened today!
I'm in love!
Okay; that much you knew, but my crush gave me the best birthday present of all times: He told me, that he loves me, too! So, we're a couple now. I can't tell you how happy I'm right now, everything still feels so unreal. Kuro-tan is just sooo sweet to me.
Well, his kind of sweet. You'll know what I mean, when you meet him. By the way, when will you visit us? You promised me, brother.
Have the sweetest of days.
Sincerely, your beloved brother Fai
Yuui bit his lip. He felt a little bit guilty because he never admitted to Fai that he planned to spend the Christmas holidays alone. He never admitted to Fai that he had no friends in Naples, just colleagues and acquaintances. Because unlike his outgoing brother, Yuui found it hard to actually make friends. He was polite but cautious and people usually misinterpreted this as indifference.
The blond took a sip of his rather-milk-than-coffee.
If he was honest, he was just wasting time. Even the new environment couldn't distract from the fact that he felt lonely. Seeing the boy and talking to him made him feel a little bit better, but Yuui really wondered, what was wrong with him?
With him, not the boy.
It would have been easy to spend his two weeks of vacation in Japan with his brother but for some reason Yuui was uncomfortable with the idea. He and his brother had gone separate ways, built up their own lives. Of course this was painful, but this was what growing up was about, right?
The next bing made him flinch. Yuui internally cursed the freakin' internet and it's freakin' chatboxes.
~Lil'Dragon: Too sweet?
The blond needed a moment to remember what their chat had been about.
~Be_Italian: Fried sugar balls. Honestly, who would fry sugar?
~Be_Italian: When I'm home I definitely need an appointment at my dentist's
~Lil'Dragon: I heard Italian health care is quite crappy
~Be_Italian: Yeah. I'll probably die.
Lamest joke ever. Yuui knew he shouldn't try to be funny, especially if he was not in the mood for it.
~Lil'Dragon: So, when will you return home?
Home. His home was not in Naples. His home was somewhere in the past, back in the days when he and Fai were just kids and life was still simple. Good God, he really sounded like an old man! Was it possible to have a midlife crisis when he was only 22 years old? And if it was possible – did that mean his life would end when he was in his mid-forties?
Today was really not a good day for Yuui de Flourite. His brain was killing him with stupid questions.
~Be_Italian: Dec 22th
~Lil'Dragon: …really? Damn.
Yuui frowned. What was that supposed to mean?
"Sir?" Lian, Syaoron's oldest sister stepped to his table, with a plate in her hand. "Your cake, Sir."
"But I didn't order a cake."
"It's for free. Since it's your birthday." She smiled fondly and placed the piece of cake next to his coffee cup.
'What the… how do they know?' He never mentioned to anyone in this café that today was his birthday.
~Be_Italian: …do you know how it feels like when your life suddenly becomes an episode of the Twilight Zone?
~Lil'Dragon: Seriously, Yuui, stop complaining and blow out your candle.
~Lil'Dragon: And don't forget to make a wish!
There was no other explanation for something that could not be explained.
Xiaomeng Li cleared her throat and her son flinched immediately.
"Mom, don't be so sneaky!", the boy who was called "Syaoron" by a certain stranger complained. He was standing at the bar, mixing milkshakes and preparing coffee orders. And he had his little netbook placed next to the cash box.
"He's quite handsome, this foreigner, huh?" Mrs. Li said, tipping her finger on her chin in a pondering fashion.
"If you say so", Syaoron said, pretending he didn't care.
"And he's so polite. He'd make a fine son-in-law."
The brunet rolled his eyes. It was always the same. "Mother, you see a son-in-law in every customer. And he doesn't seem interested."
As a mother of four daughters in a nubile age, the biggest fear of this gentle woman was to find a husband for every girl, before their lightheaded nature caused serious incidents. The Li girls seemed to have more interest in fashion and parties than family values. But that was what happened if kids grew up without a father figure. It was just a matter of time until one of them would end up pregnant, not knowing who the baby's father was.
"I know. And unfortunately, your sisters hardly look at him", she sighed dramatically. "Unlike you."
"I have no idea, what you're talking about", Syaoron lied, trying not to blush.
"Young man, don't play dumb on me. You couldn't even hide your smutty little magazines from me, why do you think I don't notice how you stopped flirting with our female customers?"
For a moment, the brunet thought his mother would scold him. Not for the porn – his mother was quite open-minded when it came to this stuff, as long as it wasn't cheap or mysogynic. Flirting with the guests was a common strategy to get more tips and since this was a family establishment, the tips belonged to every family member; they went straight into the Li's holiday piggy bank.
But she just waved her hand dismissively and cut him off. "Don't get me wrong, I have no problem with that. Since I raised four girls that will never deserve the title 'ladies', I'd be dammed if I raise my son to be a lady killer. I have no idea why, but this man seems to have a positive effect on you. So if his acquaintance keeps you from toying with girl's hearts, you would do good to spend more time with him." Mrs. Li never said 'if it keeps you from becoming like your father', but the boy knew very well that this was what she meant. He seriously doubted that his father had a girl in every port, just like his mom had always accused him, but to Syaoron, that didn't matter. His father may not have affairs with women, but had an affair with his job, for sure. In fact, Hobarn Reed had always chosen his profession over his family; this was the crime that his oldest son would never forgive him.
Syaoron didn't hate his father, but he saw no need to like that man, either.
"Mom, can I call it a day?"
Xiaomeng smiled and ruffled her little boy's hair. "Of course, my dear. I'll make sure that Fang takes over the rest of your shift. If I can wake up Miss Sleeping Beauty, that is. And not just for today. As long as our blond guest is still here, I don't want to see you around in your working outfit, did I make myself clear?"
Syaoron chuckled. "Yes, Ma'am."
Yuui hadn't blown out the candle yet, he was too busy with examining his birthday cake with disbelief. All he could see was a mass of white icing, made of yoghurt or whipped cream, decorated with sugar-covered Schlumbergera blossoms.
This was absolutely impossible. This couldn't be… but it looked like a passion gateau.
This special cake, which was usually decorated with violets and primroses – spring blossoms, was so juicy and delicate, a high class dessert. Usually served in Easter time. Yuui could tell its recipe by heart. Among the ingredients of the dough were three eggs, grated carrots, a banana, minced walnuts... and cinnamon. As much as the blond liked this cake, he never added the cinnamon. Not just because he disliked the taste of this spice, it was also a question of attitude. Cinnamon was a winter spice. The passion gateau was a spring pastry.
But this did not explain his burning question: why was it here? In China? Just a handful of Chinese households – the privileged ones – owned an oven. And it was impossible to get one's hands on baking soda, for Chinese markets simply didn't sell it.
After ten minutes of indecisive staring, he risked to take a spoonful. The dough was soft, as expected, just a little bit flat (probably because of the missing soda). But the taste...
Yuui closed his eyes and his face lightened up. The fresh taste of the cream cheese-yoghurt-icing was the perfect contrast to the sweet, fruity dough. A spicy note tickled his tongue, but it was not the cinnamon he despised so much, it was...
"Ginger", the blond whispered, tipping the spoon against his lips. "Clever."
This was not the Twilight Zone; this was Heaven.
He made a wish. It was a little selfish one, but on his birthday he had the right to be selfish.
'Let it be him.'
At the same time, his laptop made another "bing".
~Lil'Dragon: Mind if I sit right next to you?
The man couldn't help smiling.
~Be_Italian: Some people might find your behaviour quite rude.
He saw the boy walking over, grinning. He took a seat at the opposite site of the table. "Rudeness is just a matter of interpretation, you know."
"Politeness is not. And it is really impolite to fool a man like that."
"I forgive you." The truth was, he couldn't be mad at the boy anyway. "One stupid question... what does your name mean?"
Syaoron's smile was an answer on its own. "Little dragon. Stupid question in return: why's your screen name 'Be Italian', when you're from France? I mean, you told me you're working in Italy, but that can't be it, right?"
"Actually, it's the name of a musical song." He took another spoonful of his cake. Enjoyed the taste. "Did you bake this?", he added, already knowing the answer. "You have talent, young man."
"No, I don't. This is the recipe you send me and the only reasons why I got this cake done is because of your clear instructions."
"You added ginger, right? So, this has to be at least your second try.", Yuui assumed. To refine a recipe, one had to try it out and taste the result. After that, ingredients could be added or omitted. And if a new one was added, it required a few more tries to find out the correct amount. Especially a spice like ginger needed careful handling; you add too much and the intended tickling note became an annoying aftertaste.
"Nah. I've been trying this one all week. My sisters already get tired of it."
"Nice job, anyway."
"Just because you're a good teacher, as I already said.", the boy replied modestly. "Speaking of which… will you take that job offer?"
Oh, oh. Now, they came to that topic, he had wanted to avoid so badly. One week before Yuui went to Shanghai, he had received a letter by a certain Yuuko Ichihara, who turned out to be the chairman of the Shiritsu Horitsuba Gakuen – or the Horitsuba Private Academy, as non-Japanese people liked to call it. Ichihara-san wrote that there would be an open position for a H.E. teacher, at the beginning of the new semester. It seemed that Fai had praised his little brother's cooking skills till no end. The letter also advised Yuui not to tell Fai about this job offer, for the sole reason of 'not ruining the surprise'. The cook had written an e-mail to this woman, asking for some more details and what he'd got was a copy of the employment contract.
The salary was good, the work schedule was a relief compared to his current job and he could be with Fai. So why was he hesitating?
"It's not that easy. I'd have to sell my restaurant, I would move to another country and, of course, I'd have to learn Japanese in less than nine months. And I need to find an apartment."
Syaoran looked at the blond like he didn't believe just any of those reasons. Like he knew that those were just excuses; not the real cause of his hesitation.
"This woman, she sent you that letter because your brother is working there, right?"
"So you could do some of the organizational stuff while you're visiting him in the Christmas holidays."
"Actually, I can't spend the holidays with him. I have to work on Christmas. Right now, my sous-chef is doing my job and she's quite reliable, but when it comes to the Christmas dinners, she gets nervous."
"I see." There was an accusation hidden in the two words. "So you're not afraid to change your life, you just avoid seeing your brother."
"Yes you are! There's always a possibility to be with your family, in case you really want to. If something terrible would happen to him, wouldn't you do everything in your power to see him?"
"Oh, so you care about him when he's hurt, but not when he's happy?"
"No, that's not-"
But the boy cut him off again: "Then there's only one explanation left: you care but you're afraid, that he doesn't care."
Yuui wanted to deny that. But despite this first impulse, he figured out that he couldn't. "We just always relied on each other. He had his way of causing trouble and I was the one to build him up when he was down. And if anyone teased us, he was the one to pick a fight with the guys. I just… what if I don't fit in his life anymore? What if I take this job just to find out that he doesn't need me at all?"
This time, there was no sharp-tongued reply. This time, Syaoron simply looked at him, with an uninterpretable expression on his face. Then the brunet stood up. "I'll be back in a minute."
He went to the bulletin board at the bar, picked a photo from it and then came back. Only this time, the boy took the seat next to Yuui. He handed the picture to the blond. "This one was made about four moths ago", he said.
Yuui wasn't surprised to find Syaoron's image, he was just amazed to recognize another person on that photo. "This is…"
"These are the classes B and C of the Horitsuba Private Academy and their form teachers."
"You're a student at this school?" If so – why was the boy here? As far as Yuui knew, the academy's holidays hadn't started yet.
"No. That's my little brother Syaoran. He sent me this photo. And in every single one of his letters he tells me how great this school is, how unique and funny. He's really happy. I can't speak for your brother, but my twin tells me every time that he wishes me to be there, to share his experiences with me. Did your brother ever invite you to stay at his place for a few days?"
Yuui stared at the little image of Fai, who grinned whole-heartedly into the camera while pinching the cheek of a dark-skinned, tall man next to him. "Every second e-mail, he asks me when I will visit him. But I… I don't know, I always thought that when we grew up, we would have to go separate ways. That this was something inevitable." He had always acted in a way that he thought was mature and now a teenage boy was about to prove him wrong.
"Well, I don't know much about inevitability. But you traveled into a city where you don't know a single soul, just to meet the only person whose twin brother is at the same place as yours. This has to be more than a coincidence."
"Yeah, you're probably right. By the way, who's that man?" With a curious smile, the blond pointed at the grumpy person whose cheeks were pinched – although if the pinching was the cause of the grumpiness or vice versa, Yuui couldn't tell.
"This? This is Kurogane-sensei, the school's gym teacher. He's also the one in charge for my brother's class."
The man was a typical case of TDH: tall, dark, handsome. Just as Yuui had expected from Fai's beloved one. His brother preferred partners that were taller than him. And he usually dated guys that would break his heart in the end. Yuui needed to get to know this man, to find out if he really was what his brother deserved.
The man ruffled Syaoron's hair fondly. "Thank you."
"For what?" The brunet chuckled.
"For your concern. I appreciate that, although in the end, I'll have to make my own decision. By the way, Syaoron-kun… why aren't you with your brother?" Yuui withdrew his hand and reached out for his coffee cup. But not to drink – he laid both his hands around the porcelain to soak up the remaining warmth of the drink.
"Syaoran lives with our Dad. He and mum split up two years ago, because Dad… let's just say he found it hard to stay in one place for too long. He's an archaeologist, so he has to travel a lot and when he left, he wanted one of his sons to come with him. And I've never been really interested in history and stuff like that."
"Then what are you interested in, young man?", the older one asked, searching for a more comfortable subject.
Syaoron shrugged. He liked pranks, although he'd never admit that to the blond man. "Sports. Rock music. Cooking. Puzzles. And you, of course."
He smirked as the cook started to stutter and blush fiercely. "I… You… Would you… go out with me?" Oh god, had he really just asked this question? With completely innocent intentions, but still…
Great. Now his secret crush wasn't so secret anymore.
"Sure. If you have the time. I don't have to work the next days, but you'll fly home in four days."
"That still makes three days for a culinary odyssey, don't you think so?"
When two people are aware that they had a crush on each other, although they knew that nothing would come out of it, they were very fragial. They didn't need to hold hands or even try to kiss the other one and none of them would mistake the shy affection with something as remarkable as love. But spending time together in a casual manner could become something special, almost magical.
With the boy by his side, Yuui even had so much courage as to try the taste of bee embryos in honey, fried snake on a stick and raw squid (so fresh, one had to bite it's head off to kill it, just before eating). Of course, dear Mr. Squid didn't stay very long in Yuuis stomach and Syaoron felt a little bit guilty for persuading the blond man into eating it, but they had a very good time, altogether.
So, saying good-bye was a bit painful, even with the promise that they would stay in contact via internet. But Yuui never expected to see the boy again unless he made another trip to Shanghai.
As it turned out, the man was wrong.
Seven months later, Yuui found himself in the office of Horitsuba's chairman.
Ichihara-san – or Yuuko-sensei as he had to call her as soon as he started teaching at the school – was just about to explain her marvellous plan of how to introduce him to the staff. "… and when your dear brother and Kurogane-sensei solve the riddle in the music-room, their treasure hunt will lead them straight to the gym hall, where the Syao-kuns will be waiting for them."
The Syao-kuns? Plural? Now, Yuuko-sensei had his full attention.
"Once they're in, Syaoron-kun will give Doumeki-kun a sign, Doumeki-kun turns off the light and we'll swap you and Fai-sensei. All you have to do is to lie on the floor and pretend to be half-conscious. Speak as few as possible. We don't want to give Kurogane-sensei any extra-hints, do we?"
Being involved in a prank was probably not the best way to meet his brother's boyfriend for the first time, but it made Yuui feel young again.
There was a soft knock on the door.
"Enter!", Yuuko-sensei demanded.
"Yuuko-sensei?", a boy's voice asked and both the chairman and the new teacher turned their heads. "I just wanted to ask you something about... oh, hey. Hello, Yuui-san."
The woman looked from one to the other. "You two already know each other?"
"One could say that, yes", Yuui admitted, his eyes resting on the boy who smirked in return.
"What brings you here, Syaoron-kun?"
"About the treasure hunt this evening, is it really necessary to tell my little brother about the change?"
"Shouldn't I?", the chairman asked with a polite smile, although Yuui couldn't get rid of the feeling that something was lurking behind this smile...
"Well, as much as I dislike fooling Nii-chan -", the brunet said, ignoring that this caused Yuui to raise his eyebrows. "- he's not really good at acting and pretending, so if we tell him the nature of the treasure, his reaction might give us away."
"Ah, I see your problem. Alright, then I'll leave it up to you to explain everything to Syaoran-kun later. That reminds me that we still need mustard for the treasure hunt." She clapped her hands. "I need to find Watanuki." And with that, she rushed out of the room.
The man stared at the boy. "Why are you here, Syaoron-kun?"
"Um, I needed to talk to Yuuko-sensei", he replied.
"I know. But I mean since when are you a student of this school?"
"Oh, I came here before summer break. Mother said, I should spend more time with my brother."
"But you never mentioned that in any of your e-mails."
"I didn't want to sway your decision... or ruin the surprise."
"Who says you're that much of an influence to me?", Yuui asked playfully.
The boy shrugged. "Hey, I'm just a boy, what do I know? Okay, I better get going – I need to change before my little performance in the gym. See you there, Yuui-san."
Syaoron stopped at the door, to take a quick look back. "I'm glad that you're here."
Yuui smiled. He felt his heart bit a little faster with affection and anticipation. "I'm glad, too."
This was the beginning of something new. Something special.
He could feel it.
About the Li-family: In Card Captor Sakura, Syaoran tells Sakura that he's living with his mother and his sisters, but I wasn't sure anymore if he had three or four sisters. I thought: the more, the better! XD From Horitsuba Drama CD 1 and 2 we know that Syaoran grew up with his Dad, so, of course, Syaoron had to live with his mom. That explains why they don't attend to the school at the same time. I wanted Mrs. Li to have a personality similar to Syaoron's, so she's a little bit manipulative and resolute. Oh yeah, and I did a little bit research on Chinese Names and I chose the ones that would fit very well to CLAMP.
Xiaomeng means "spring bud". I chose this one because it sounded a little bit like the twin's names and because spring reminds me of Yuui. (Thanks to TrueDespair, autumn reminds me of Syaoron, well… and I think you can imagine that KuroFai is totally Summer/Winter. XD)
Lian means "graceful willow", Fang is "well scenting" and although they never appear, the remaining sisters were supposed to be Hua ("flower" or "blossom") and Ju ("chrysanthemum").