Disclaimer: The following is a work of fan fiction. I do not own any of the characters contained herein.
Warning: This story is aimed for mature audiences and contains adult themes including torture, attempted rape, suicidal thoughts, and yaoi. I have not included any "lemon" in this, so if you're looking for gratuitous or explicit sex you have come to the wrong fic. The story is dark, and I'm not guaranteeing a happily ever after...you'll have to judge that for yourself when you get there.
Author's Note: Thank you for your interest in my story. It's finished now, but I am always looking for comments, so feel please leave a review. It means the world to me if someone lets me know I'm as evil as I think I am. Of course, if you think I need some serious lessons in evil and have a lot of room for improvement, let me know how! I'm always looking for reader torture techniques...as long as it keeps 'em coming for more.
On with the story....
More Questions Than Answers
He approached cloaked in silence. He glided on the gentle midnight breeze along the path of a glowing moonbeam. The barest whisper of sound was all that escaped as he withdrew his wings and allowed the magic to take them away again. His feet didn't even touch the ground as he floated up to the young woman standing under a huge cherry tree. Her eyes glinted in the light of the waning moon as she scanned the world around her for signs of the moon guardian that had just slipped behind her.
Sakura bit her lower lip and began to turn slowly. No sooner had she began to turn than she let out a yelp of surprise. "Yue, why do you always sneak up on me like that?"
His lips twisted to the side for a moment, revealing his frustration with the question. "I don't mean to sneak up on you, Mistress." Maybe if you'd pay more attention to the magical currents around you, we would stop this nonsense. He didn't say it out loud though. He wasn't her teacher, just her guardian. This time though, something within him couldn't be contained and he let some of the bitterness out. "Clow Reed was never surprised by my approach, so I suppose it became habit."
There was a flash of hurt in her eyes...she hated it when he compared her to Clow. He knew it made her squirm, but he was irritated at her thoughtlessness. She ducked her head and at least had the grace to apologize...and then he wondered if she even knew what she was apologizing for. It was an automatic response from her every time he showed a hint of irritation. She may be powerful, but she'll never measure up to Clow.
Sakura felt the sting of tears at the corners of her eyes as she bowed her head. After all these years she still felt like a child when she faced Yue. His eyes still reflected a judgment he had made the first time they met...she didn't measure up. She wondered if she ever would, or if she'd be in the shadow of greatness for eternity. It didn't matter how many times Kero-chan assured her that she was more powerful than Clow, or how many times Yukito-san told her not to worry about Yue. She couldn't stand that the one person who would never approve of her was almost forced into her service.
This was an old train of thoughts though, and she shook her head to clear her mind and get back on track. "We don't have time for this. I needed to let you know that you should be prepared. There is something coming up...a change in the wind that doesn't feel right. Something big is going to happen and I might need you."
Yue looked skeptical for a moment, then looked up at the waning moon and nodded. "I remember when I would have sensed it first, but you are right. Don't worry Sakura-sama, I know my job. I'll be ready."
She gave him a sunny smile, but it wasn't nearly as bright as the smiles she used to be able to muster for him. He was too perfect for her, and it was wearing on her to be reminded of it after so many years. "Please, Yue, please. Be my friend, not my servant. Call me Sakura-chan, Sakura-san, or just Sakura. Please." The words were just above a whisper, but it didn't matter if Yue heard her or not. She had said the words so many times that one more time wouldn't make a difference...it was almost a ritual by now. A ritual that left her feeling cold and empty.
"I'll see you later, Yue. I need to get to sleep." She nearly ran away, too tired of trying to do anything else.
Yue stared after Sakura's retreating form. Part of him wanted to go after her and comfort her and tell her things weren't so bad, but another part held back, eternally afraid of letting her too close. He felt whispers of his other self trying to intrude on his contemplation, but he wasn't in the mood to let the prattling of his innocent and optimistic other half sway his actions--or inactions. He shoved all thought aside and flew away, using his usual coping mechanism.
The smell of spring rushed past him...earthy and sweet with a moist heaviness that winter could never contain. Still, the air was bracing as he flew higher and higher, and the chill erased the promise of a new season. His thoughts had also been heavy, but soaring through the night skies cleared his mind and cooled his emotions. He found himself flying toward his home and felt a soothing warmth comfort him at the thought. Touya would be there, waiting for Yukito to return and wrap him in loving arms. That's when Yue realized why he was so irritable with Sakura. It wasn't that she was being inconsiderate, she had been worried about something more important. It was her brother's dismissal of him that had made Yue so frustrated.
With a sigh he withdrew his energy and let himself fade into the background. Yukito was there to take over, blinking a little to find himself outside, but used to it by now. Yukito sighed a little, then smiled and opened the door. "I'm home!" His voice sang out cheerily, ringing out through the house he used to think of as his grandparent's. Now he realized it was all his--his and Touya's.
"Welcome home Yuki." Touya smiled and Yukito felt warm, safe, and happier than ever. "So, what happened?"
Yukito laughed a little, smiling gently. "You know I don't have any idea. I never do."
"Aaah, one of those things. I'll ask Sakura later." Touya smiled back and wrapped Yukito up in a soothing hug. They smiled at each other and Yukito placed his head on the taller man's shoulder. They stood that way for a while, oblivious to the suffering of the third person there.
He doesn't even think about asking me, Yue thought with a pang. It's like I'm the one that's less than real. He loves his Yuki with all his heart, and I may as well not even exist. Gods above, I miss Clow so much!
Sakura felt tears slip down her face despite her best efforts to hold them it. She could feel Yue's pain as if it were her own, but she didn't know how to make it go away. She couldn't even figure out why he hurt so bad inside. He wouldn't talk to her about it, he was just there to do his duty, no matter how hard she pressed him to open up and be her friend. There had been a time she was sure he truly cared for her, but as time went on his eyes grew more sad and lonely.
She tried hard to figure out what she had done wrong, but the nagging feeling of foreboding wouldn't let her think. Or, maybe she hadn't done something wrong really. Maybe there was something else that weighed so heavily on Yue's mind that he snapped at everyone more and more as time went on.
She shook her head and chided herself aloud. "No, that couldn't be it. What did I do wrong?"
Of course there was no answer. Even if someone had heard her it was obvious that she was talking to herself. She sighed and her shoulders slumped. She slowly walked down the hall, and as she passed the phone it rang.
"Sakura? It's me, Eriol. I'll be there in two days."
"Really? I've missed you, but why? Why are you coming?"
There was a slight hesitation on the other end of the line before he answered her. "Haven't you noticed?"
"Something big is going to happen soon."
"Yes. I thought you could use all the help you can get."
"That's very kind of you Eriol, and I hope I won't need your help."
"Me too. Two days."
"I'll see you then."
The phone went dead. She replaced in on the cradle and almost turned away, but she waited a moment more. The phone rang again, and she knew who it would be.
She could almost hear him blushing over the long miles. "Sakura. Are you okay?"
"Nothing has happened yet. You felt it too?"
"Yes. Something bad is approaching. Who else has felt it?"
"Eriol called to say he'd be here in two days. Kero and Yue didn't feel anything on their own, but when I mentioned it to each of them they confirmed it. Dad is away on a dig, but he'll probably be the next to call. I'm sure he'll be home soon too. Will you be able to make it here?"
"I hope so Sakura. It might be two days before I can get there too. Be careful until then."
"Thank you. I will. I...I look forward to seeing you again."
"Me too. I'll see you as soon as I can."
They both hung up slowly, reluctantly, saying the words only once the line was disconnected.
"I love you, Sakura."
"I love you, Syaoran."
As the phone rang again Sakura picked it up and smiled. "Hello Dad!"
"How did you know it would be me?"
"Just a feeling--and the fact that Eriol and Syaoran called right before you did."
"I was afraid of that. So, something bad is going to happen then?"
"Nobody knows for sure, but we all have a feeling that it will."
"Have you told your brother yet? He'll want to keep a close eye on you."
"I'll call him as soon as I hang up with you. How is everything else going?"
"Everything is perfect. Aside from everybody suddenly thinking something bad will happen soon everything has been wonderful."
"I'll be home in two days."
"I know, that's when everybody will be here."
"I always am."
"I'm serious Sakura."
"I know. I'll be careful."
"Thank you. Good night."
"Good night Dad. Bye."
The phone went dead for the final time and Sakura ran upstairs to talk to Kero.
The phone rang several times at Touya and Yukito's house before Touya finally answered. Yukito laid back and listened to the deep tone of his lover's voice from the other room. He couldn't make out who it was, but from the tone it was someone close. Either his dad or his sister. Yuki hoped it was Sakura so that he would find out what had happened earlier that night. It drove him crazy that there were things he didn't know about that essentially happened to him. He always found out about things from Touya after a few hours, or sometimes days. That is, if he found out at all.
I just don't want to worry you, Yuki. You deserve to be happier than me.
It sounded like his own internal voice, but there was no question who it really was. Speaking to me again? How long has it been, Yue?
Don't you think I worry more not knowing than I would if I knew? Yukito smiled as he projected his thoughts a little, wondering what it must be like from the other's point of view.
I have a hard time talking to you. There are things I just find hard talking to you about. It's easier to let you hear about it somewhere else. If we survived, then there's nothing for you to worry about.
Good point.Yukito chuckled, letting his eyes slip closed. He could tell that Touya's conversation was coming to a close and that meant more silence from Yue. So what shouldn't I be worried about now this time?
I don't know.
So we'll be worrying together for a change? Good.
Yuki, we worry together a lot more than you realize.
"Yuki? That was Dad." Touya wandered in and when Yukito opened his eyes he noticed Touya getting dressed.
"I don't know." Touya's words echoed Yue's perfectly and a chill ran down Yuki's spine. "Dad wants me to keep a closer eye on Sakura over the next two days until he gets home. I guess Sakura's old friends will be here too then."
"I'll go with you," Yuki said, rising to grab his own clothes.
Touya was already dressed. "Wait." Yuki paused in confusion. "I'm sorry, I hate to do this to you Yuki, but I need--"
Yuki cut him off with an understanding nod. He placed a kiss on Touya's surprised lips and then stood. "I know." The magic then took ahold of him and he felt himself gently slip into oblivion.
Yue found himself revealed for the second time that night, this time summoned by Touya. He wanted to glare and demand an explanation for the rude interruption, but something about being in Touya's presence calmed Yue and kept the bitterness off his face. Instead a sad and lonely look touched his features with a hint of humanity that had been fading over the years. "There's not a lot I can tell you, Touya. I'm sorry."
Touya ran his hands through his hair. "All Dad would say is that everyone with magic still is suddenly worried, but it seems that from all points of the globe the soonest anyone can arrive is two days. I just thought you would know more. Yuki can't use your magic, and I--" He let the sentence hang; both of them were quite aware of what happened to Touya's magic.
"All I know is that there is a general sense of foreboding and danger. It seems to be soon, but I can't tell how soon. Everyone will either gather just in time, or just a touch too late, but with such a concerted effort by the strongest mages of this era I hope it will be just in time. I am staying closer to the surface than usual to be ready if Sakura needs me. Now you know as much as I do." Yue frowned, searching for some unknown expression on Touya's face. When he failed to notice it he nodded and prepared to transform back.
"What?" Yue sounded almost eager to hold off returning to his true form.
"You speak to Yukito sometimes. He told me that a long time ago."
Yue managed to bring the glare to touch upon his face this time. "It would have had to have been long ago. I don't do it often."
"You could have told Yuki what you told me. Had him relay the message. You would have used up less magic that way. So it seems a shame to have you transform back so suddenly."
Was Touya being nice? Genuinely friendly? Yue bit his bottom lip and stared at the floor for a while. "Thank you. I don't like to keep you away from Yuki unnecessarily, but if you don't mind--" Why am I being so meek, so shy? Why is it so hard for me to sit here with him? Before his mind could catch up though, his mouth formed the words that were at the root of his insecurity around Touya. "Do you ever regret it?"
Touya didn't play any games. He knew that there was only one it that the moon guardian would dwell on so much and put so much import in. And--he sounded exactly like Yukito had when he asked the same question so long ago. "Never. I miss it. I miss the extra energy I had back then, and I miss knowing immediately if something was wrong. I miss the awareness I had. I miss seeing my mother. But every day since then has been worth it. Without you, without Yuki, having magic would not have been worth it. I'd do it all over again in a heartbeat."
"I see." It was about Yukito. Of course it was. Why shouldn't it be? The two loved each other so much. Yue was merely the invisible observer that could be conveniently forgotten.
"What about you?"
"Yes. Do you regret it?"
"What about it could I regret? That's like asking if I regret existing."
"There's so much pain written on your face. It makes me wonder. Do you?"
Yue's voice was hushed, husky with overwhelming emotion when he answered. "I would regret more taking Yukito away from you, To-ya."
Touya clearly tried to say something, but Yue didn't let himself hear it. He gathered the energy to himself like a warm blanket and withdrew from the world before he could do more damage. It slipped over him, surrounded him, and brought Yukito back from--wherever he went at those times.
Yuki, where do you go when you aren't here?
He felt their body shudder in reaction before Yukito answered his inner voice. I go nowhere. I don't exist. Everything just stops, and then it starts again when you let me return.
I'm so sorry Yuki. If I had a choice I'd never do that to you again.
Sakura wasn't at all surprised when Touya and Yukito showed up. "Two days, right guys?"
Yukito smiled down at her, but she saw that his eyes were a little bloodshot and puffy. When he answered her, his voice was huskier than usual. "That's right. I understand that you'll have a house full of guests after that, so we'll go back home then."
"Yukito-san...have you been crying?"
Yukito and Touya exchanged looks before Yuki lowered his eyes and turned away. "Gomen nasai, Sakura-chan." He walked away, heading toward the kitchen while Touya grabbed Sakura's shoulder to restrain her from following.
"Onii-chan! What's wrong with Yukito-san? If you did this to him I--" The expression on her brother's face stopped her. "Onii-chan?"
"It was Yue."
"Yue was crying? I didn't even know he could--"
"No. Yue made Yuki cry, and he won't tell me why."