Author's NOTES! MWAHAHA! *ahem*: Hi guys, you may not know this, but this is actually my first attempt at fanfiction of any kind. So, when you review (not IF you review, but WHEN) please be nice. I decided to write this after I saw that there weren't many Shamanic Princess fics out there, especially Tiara and Kagetsu fics. So here it is, 'Ace of Hearts' Ch.1! (Yes, there will be more!)

K, disclaimer (to the tune of the chorus of "Inori no Asa")

Shamanic Princess Does not

Belong to me or any other fan

although it should

all that is mine is this fan fic!

K, happy reading! Bai now!

-Hikaru 3



Delicately plump snowflakes swam lazily outside the bedroom window, and Tiara pressed her face up against the glass pane. She breathed, and fogged up the small diameter around her face.

"I love winter in the Guardian World," Sara's delicate voice made Tiara turn to face her. Sara gazed at the window wistfully. "What are you thinking about Tiara?" Tiara felt a fierce heat creeping across her cheeks. She turned back to the window. "N-nothing really!" The strange pitch of her voice betrayed her, and made Sara smile. "You know. .Kagetsu was due back half an hour ago. ." Sara's voice was coated with sweet malevolence. "Ooooo! Sara! How could you possibly I think I was thinking about Kagetsu-" She turned to Sara once more, even more flushed than before. "When I was!" She sighed with defeat as she threw herself despairingly on Sara's bed.

"Hi girls!"

Tiara rolled over to see Kagetsu leaning in the doorframe of Sara's room. Her eyes bugged. "K-Kagetsu! You're h-home!" She stammered.

"Hi onii-chaan!" Sara said happily as she gave her brother a hug. He smiled warmly and stroked Sara's hair.

"How are you feeling today, Sara?" He asked, putting his hands on her shoulders.

"Much better, onii-chan! In fact, I'll make us all some tea!" She chirped, making her way out the door.

"W-wait Sara!" Tiara tried to follow but stumbled right into Kagestu's arms.

"Is chamomile ok with everyone?" Sara called.

"Hai!" Kagetsu called back. He looked down at the very red and very nervous Tiara. "Are you ok?" He said, not moving.

"U-uh yea yea! I'm fine!" Tiara jumped a mile, and sat cautiously on the edge of Sara's bed. She anxiously played with her hands and stared down at them, not daring to look up. 'I touched him. .' she thought to herself. 'He's so warm. .' Kagetsu crossed his arms, leaned his head to one side, and watched her. In the soft light of a kerosene lamp and the winter moon, Tiara's strawberry hair turned to rich, glistening wine, and her eyes, or what he could see of them, were brilliant emeralds. It made Kagetsu breathe softly, and smile. Tiara could feel Kagetsu's eyes on her. It drove her insane with nervousness. She took a deep breath, then lifted her head with a snap. "What!? Do I have something in my hair!? On my FACE!? What!?!?!" She nearly screamed. Kagetsu was slightly startled, but he simply laughed. "What!? What is it!?" She began to panic. "It's just that. .well, it's nothing. ." He turned to the window and touched the place where Tiara's face had been. "I love winter. The white peaceful nothing. ." He said softly, looking much the way Tiara had earlier. For a moment Tiara just watched him and wondered, what was it like to really be in his arms, how did it feel to have his strong arms around her small body . . .? She shivered slightly, then shook her head. "How dare you change the subject!? Now tell me, what's the big deal!? Why were you staring at me!?" She jumped off of the bed and stood behind him. He turned to her, leaning against the window, with a look of genuine bewilderment on his face. "What?"

"You heard me Kagetsu! Why were you staring at me?"

He scratched his head and smiled mischeviously. "Isn't it obvious?"

"No!"

"Jeez Tiara. ." His features became serious as he slowly leaned forward. He gently ran his fingers down her cheek. Her eyes immediately registered surprise.

"Tea's ready!" Sara called from somewhere downstairs. Kagetsu slowly pulled his hand away from Tiara's face, then left the room.

"Coming Sara!" Tiara barely heard his voice as he called to his sister. Everything in the room began to spin.

"Kagetsu. ." She whispered, falling to her knees. "I love you. ."



Tiara's breaths came in heavy, quick puffs as she ran the snowy tree- lined path to Sara and Kagetsu's house. She hoped the events of three nights ago wouldn't create a strain between herself and Kagetsu.

"Tiara! Have you heard?" A familiar voice made Tiara come to a dead stop.

"What are you doing here?" Tiara said with forced politeness.

"I bring news. .for Kagetsu."

"Kagetsu?"

"Yes. It's extremely important. Were you going to see Kagetsu?"

"I was going to spend time with Sara."

"Oh? Well then, let's walk together and talk. We've haven't talked in ages."

"Well. .what is so important about this news you have for Kagetsu?"

"You'll find out soon enough Tiara."

"Just tell me!"

"Tiara please be patient!" Lena's smile was too sweet, it made Tiara angrier.

"Lena. . ."

"Hurry, let's run! It's cold out here!" Lena grabbed Tiara's surprised hand and made her sprint to their front door. Twice Tiara almost slipped on frozen snow, but somehow she and Lena managed to laugh their way to the door, and actually enjoy each others company. Before they could ring the doorbell, the door opened, and standing there was a laughing Sara.

"Tiara! Lena! Come in!"

The breathless girls stepped into the house, Tiara still plagued with the giggles. Suddenly, Kagetsu appeared out of nowhere. "Let me take your coats girls." He said, smiling. He took their snow dusted coats and hung them up on the ornate coat rack by the door. "Tiara, you're not fighting with Lena. I'm very proud of you!" He smiled a disarming smile, which made Tiara weak.

Lena stepped forward and handed Kagetsu a parchment. "It is from the Elders. They requested I deliver it to you." Lena beamed at him.

Kagetsu was puzzled. "What is this?" He said as he slowly peeled off the seal.

Lena almost glowed. "You'll see." His faced betrayed many emotions as his eyes scanned through the parchment. He slowly lowered the paper. His face was unreadable.

"What is it Kagetsu?" Sara asked worriedly.

"I. .I've been chosen. ."

"For what!? Sara was getting increasingly nervous. Tiara knew what was coming. Her hand flew up to her mouth.

"No. .not that. ." She whispered softly.

"A Neutralizer." He finished dramatically.

Everyone was silent, solemn, except for Lena. "I, personally, think this is something to be proud of. Not everyone is selected to be a neutralizer. . ."

Kagetsu looked at Lena long and hard, then at Sara, then finally at Tiara. He stalked away without a word.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

"Kagetsu. . ?" Tiara said quietly, as she knocked on his bedroom door.

". . . . . ." Silence came from the other side.

"Kagetsu. . .please let me in. ." Tiara murmured.

"It's open." He said in a serious tone. Tiara turned the knob and let herself in. She leaned her back against the door. Kagetsu sat on his bed, not facing Tiara. The room was dark and only a few slanted rays of winter sun peeked through the venetian blinds. "Kagetsu. . .why aren't you happy about this. .about being chosen. .I mean, it really is an honor."

"I would be happy. .Tiara, but there's one thing that worries me, something that will probably be taken from me. ."

"What?"

"I sense some. . .impending dread, and being torn from the things I love most . ."

"Don't say that Kagetsu I-" She neared the bed, then stopped herself.

"Something is coming with me being made a Neutralizer. ." Tiara thought she saw him shake a little . .with fear and dread, but she couldn't be sure. She slowly climbed on the bed, and knelt behind him.

"Kagetsu!" She threw her arms his neck and held tight.

He closed his eyes and pulled her closer. "Tiara. . ."