Chapter 4

The cards fluttered around her, falling like snowflakes from the clear night sky. She held out her hand and caught one, then gasped. The Star card's usual colour was gone, replaced by black. Beside her were Keroberos and Yue, silent and unmoving, staring up at the tower, which now appeared to be made of black shiny stone.

On a building nearby stood Tomoyo, Syaoran and Eriol with Ruby Moon and Spinel Sun at his side, staring at the same point. Something moved in Sakura's senses, drawing her attention away from her friends and fiancé. Five shadowy figures on the roof of a tower block. She could almost make them out, but it was like they were shrouded in mist. All she could see were flashes of images. Blood red feathers, an ice white eye, fur the colour of peacock feathers and pale lilac hair. But even these were blurry. The final image was of a pair of blue grey eyes, full of amusement and power.......and they were watching her!

*******

Sakura. Time to get up kaijuu. Her brother shook her gently and she opened her eyes reluctantly. Go away Touya, she said in a sleep muffled voice and rolled over, only to be shaken again. Otosan is downstairs, he wants you to come down for breakfast. And Syaoran-san is here. After much persuasion, Touya had reluctantly accepted Sakura's feelings for Syaoran and that the Chinese boy returned her feelings, although he had not been entirely happy when Sakura had announce that she was going to China for a year.

Syaoran is here? I'll be down! Her face lit up and she practically jumped out of bed, grabbing some clothes as her brother left the room. She dressed quickly and rushed downstairs to meet her fiancé, leaving Kero snoring in his drawer.

Syaoran stood as she walked into the room and she threw herself into his arms. I didn't think you'd be coming over today!

Wild horses couldn't stop me. I was wondering if you wanted to come to the house today, practice some magic.

Sakura looked over at her father who was making breakfast at the work top. Is that alright otosan? I feel bad for asking since I haven't seen you very much.

Kinomoto Fujitaka smiled at his daughter. Hai, of course you can. I have to work today anyway. We'll spend some time together at the weekend.

Arigato otosan. Sakura smiled dazzlingly at Syaoran, making his heart flutter. Sakura finished breakfast in record time and then went to wake Kero.

Finally ready and with a grumbling Kero in her backpack, she and Syaoran left after Touya telling her that he and Yukito would pick her up that night. Along the way, Sakura decided to tell Syaoran about the two strange dreams that she'd had.

He frowned slightly and stayed silent for a moment after hearing his fiancé's description. Strange. That girl sounds like she was another cardcaptor although there are no records with our clan of anyone before you mastering and transforming the cards. Have you talked to Yue and Keroberos?

Kero stuck his head out of the bag after listening to their conversation and hearing his name. Maybe Sakura's dreaming of something in the future. He shrugged. There's no-one else's power in the Star cards, and there was none in the Clow cards excepts Clow's power. It's not really a lie, he thought. She took her power out of the cards.

Oh well, Sakura said, relaxing in the sunlight and companionship of Syaoran. I'm sure the dream's meaning will reveal itself sooner or later. They usually do. Now let's go practice some more magic!

*******

The boy's human shaped guardian caught him as he stumbled, supporting him gently and with delicate butterfly wings fluttering nervously. What is wrong Master?

The boy pushed her gently away, preferring to stand on his own. The card mistress is in danger. Her enemy is approaching. It's so close already!

The catlike guardian looked at his master in worry. Should we assist her Master?

The boy thought for a moment then shook his head. If we intervene now, Sakura may lose a valuable ally. We shall contact her tomorrow, if she survives the night.


*******

The day had gone well and Sakura leaned into Syaoran's embrace as they walked back to her house. Kero was asleep in her backpack and Yukito and Touya were a little ahead of them, deep in conversation. Around them, the darkness filled with poisonous magic that watched them intently without them noticing.

Sakura giggled at something Syaoran had said then yelped. she walked into the back of her brother who had stopped suddenly, he and Yukito staring at something in front of them. Sakura and Syaoran pushed past them to see what the problem was and Kero woke, crawling from the bag to perch on Sakura's shoulder.

In front of them was a lone figure, blocking the path and facing them. Sakura gasped, recognising the figure in front as the girl from the park, with a few changes. Her hair was curled into an elegant knot at the back of her head and she had an amused smile curving her lips. She was wearing an outfit that reminded Sakura of Meiling's battle costume but in red and purple with a pheonix symbol. The thing that startled Sakura the most though, was that in her hands, she was twirling a staff topped with a pheonix emblem, just like the one in her dream.

Greetings Card Mistress, she said, bowing slightly, although her eyes never left Sakura's. I'm honoured to meet you. And these, she gestured to a four dark figures nearly hidden in the shadows around her, are my Guardians. Sakura gulped as she surveyed the girl's guardians, all four of them.
Four guardians? she whispered to Syaoran, who took a few steps forward, bringing out his sword.

What do you want? he asked, his voice harsh.

The girl laughed and whispered something to one of her guardians who smiled slightly. I merely wished to speak with the Card Mistress and her guardians, Keroberos and Yue, Syaoran of the Li clan.

Sakura pulled the Star key from under her top and glanced at Yukito and Kero. If you want to speak to myself and my guardians, here we are. Would the two of you please transform? A peculiar expression passed across Yukito and Kero's faces as their wings surrounded them, leaving them as Yue and Keroberos.

A strange half smile appeared on the girl's face as she regarded the two guardians, but it was quickly replaced by an angry expression, her eyes blazing. She looked at one of her guardians who stepped forwards, arms outspread. He seemed to be a complete opposite of Yue. His wings were many shades of red and his long hair was black as it floated unbound around him. Something appeared in his hands which glowed with a fierce light............a large ball of fire. He drew back his arms and then hurled it towards them.

Sakura froze in panic, the fireball was headed straight at her!