[Based loosely on CLAMP's Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle. The names have not been changed in order to not protect the guilty. -HJC]

Syaoran compared the glyphs in his notebook to the writing on the walls of the chamber of the Well of Darkness. He almost had it, just a few strange words whose context wasn't clear.

"Is this one small room the only place you've cleaned out in the last month?"

Syaoran dropped his notebook and leaned down to pick it up as he turned to the speaker, "Pr - Princess Sakura!" He quickly averted his gaze from the princess. Partially because it was the law of the land that it was death to look at her, partially because she had a habit of chopping off heads that looked at her too directly, but mostly it was because in typical strange desert kingdom princess fashion she was a beautiful young woman who wore little save her elaborate jewelry, "Is the King with you today?"

"No, my brother isn't here and nobody will tell him about this, will they?" The princess looked back at her half score guards, who all shook bowed heads, "But you!" The princess spun around and took Syaoran down with a stiletto heel kick to the gut, "I told you to call me Your Royal Imperial Majesty Princess Sakura, when I allow you to talk at all. I should have you killed for your insolence, but there's nothing to do in the palace, so I'm bored," The princess placed the heel of her sandal on the side of Syaoran's head, pinning the young archaeologist to the floor.

"Thank you for sparing this worthless life, Your Royal Imperial Majesty Princess Sakura."

"That's better," The princess stepped off of Syaoran, looked around the chamber and stopped in front of the main mosaic, "Did you do this?"

"No, Your Royal Imperial Majesty Princess Sakura, it's many centuries old."

The princess thought she heard a trace of mockery in Syaoran's voice, but she decided to let it slide for the moment. She could always have him dragged to the palace later where she had spent many a pleasant evening whipping him until his cries for mercy had seemed sincere enough, or until she had grown bored, "But it looks just like me. Even the jewelry is the same."

"Your jewelry is as ancient as this temple and the inscriptions say that is a depiction of the goddess or priestess Ashura."

"That sounds interesting. I'll have my brother add Goddess Priestess to my titles. What is this other writing?"

"It describes a ritual to be performed in this room by the priestess that will either cause or avert a great evil or somehow do both at once."

"But this part I can read. Ia! Ia! Cthulhu Fthagn! Ph'nglui mglw'nfah Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!"

"No princess, don't!"

The jewels worn by the princess began to glow as dark clouds billowed out from the knee-high well, casting darkness as the jewels cast light. Long green tentacles emerged from the well and lifted the princess into the air.

"Unhand, or whatever, Princess Sakura, you monster!" Syaoran grabbed one of the tentacles, but it threw him against the wall, where he collapsed stunned.

The princess's guards drew back gibbering in fear as the tentacles gently removed each ornament from her royal highness, despite her struggles. Finally when she was clad only in her ivory slippers, silk bra and panties, the tentacles tossed her away and she landed on Syaoran.

The tentacles withdrew into the black clouds that then dispersed, leaving no trace behind of their existence.

The princess sat on Syaoran and blinked. Then after ten seconds of uncharacteristic silence, she glanced down and noticed that all of her jewelry was gone. She stood and lifted Syaoran to his feet by one arm, "Get in there and get back my Bling!"

She tossed him into the well. Off balance he thrashed about and hooked the fingers of his left hand into the hem of her panties. She grabbed his hand with both of her own to protect her garment and was pulled down into the well after him.

The guards looked towards the well and waited for one minute in silence then rushed up to look down into it, but the well was blocked by rubble only one meter deep into it, with no sign of Sakura or Syaoran.

The guards looked at each other, then drew straws to determine which of their number would report the incident to the King.

Somewhere very far away, the young couple tumbled down a column of light towards an unknown destination. In spite of the lack of leverage in free fall, the princess managed to unhook Syaoran's hand from her panties and twist his arm behind his back as she held him in a scissors lock with her legs, "You are so dead when we get back!" Then she looked up at the lights around them, "How deep is this well anyway?"

"Only a meter. I haven't had time to clear the rubble any deeper than that."

"Well this is a lot deeper that that."

"Perhaps we've fallen unconscious and are simply dreaming this?"

"Does this hurt?" The princess twisted Syaoran's arm a little further.

"Ow, yes!"

"Then this isn't a dream. Now look around for my bling."

At that moment the couple fell through a dimensional gateway and they landed in a well maintained yard, with the princess on top as usual.

A tall woman awaited their arrival there and her eyes narrowed as she saw the princess, "Ashura!"

Sakura stepped off of Syaoran to face the woman, "Who are you, where is this, and where is my bling?"

"I am the Dimensional Witch, Yuko, and this is my home. What is this bling that you speak of?"

"The princess lost her jewelry down a well," Syaoran got to his feet and rested his abused left arm on his right arm, "Have you seen it around here?"

"If these items were lost to the Well of Darkness, they will have been scattered over many dimensions. I can grant you the means to travel to these worlds, for a price."

"Whatever the cost, he'll pay it," Sakura nodded towards Syaoran as she allowed the witch's young bespectacled assistant to cover her own near-nudity with a robe.

"Very well young man, the great price you will carry is the following. Though you may recover the princess's bling, she will never think more of you than she does now."

"I figured it would be something like that."

"What was that?" Sakura looked up from admiring her new garment.

"Nothing, Your Royal Imperial Majesty Princess Sakura."

And so the young couple set off on a great journey, shattering the sudden outbreaks of peace, prosperity and happiness that had befallen each world where the princess's bling had appeared and messing up a few other worlds out of Sakura's spite and general bad temper.

-HJC