Card Captor Sakura Fan Fiction ❯ Sakura's Christmas Surprise ❯ Sakura's Amusing Day ( Chapter 2 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Sakura's Christmas Surprise

Chapter 2: Sakura's Amusing Day

By Lord Archive

Characters are property of Clamp and are used without consent.


Sakura mentally thought of some unpleasant things about Kero-chan having the television on. She really could do without hearing girls chattering 'So cuuuuuute' first thing in the morning, especially with her pillow so lumpy and hard, yet delightfully warm. She blinked open her eyes and then shrieked at the sight of four faces that filled her field of view.

The Li sisters giggled insanely at the flushed look on Sakura's face as she quickly sat up on the couch, clutching a blanket to herself as if she had nothing on.

Realization began to dawn on Sakura as the previous day's events caught up to her. She was in Hong Kong, staying at Syaoran-kun's house. She must've fallen asleep while talking to him, but she didn't quite know how she ended up using his lap as a pillow. Meanwhile Syaoran sputtered incoherently in extreme embarrassment.

"You had better hurry up and get ready. We leave for the amusement park in an hour," Fuutie informed.

"Hoeh?" Sakura emitted.

"Didn't Syaoran tell you of our family's Christmas tradition?" Shiefa questioned.

"Oh, right," Sakura giggled sheepishly.

"Now, don't worry, lil' sis. We'll help you get ready!" Feimei announced cheerfully, excited that eventually she wouldn't be fully considered the youngest sister.

Fanren nodded. "Certainly! Let's go, lil' sis!"

"Wheeeeee!" Sakura cried out as she was dragged out of the room.

Syaoran was left alone in the room. He wasn't entirely sure he liked that Sakura had been so quickly approved to be his girlfriend. Not that he had really given them a choice in the matter.


Sakura pouted at her image in the mirror. Her frown wasn't because of what she was wearing, as the Chinese silk shirt and pants did look good on her. It was that everyone seemed to like to use her as some life-sized doll. Having four young women poke and prod her excitedly over her 'cuteness' wasn't improving the situation for the teen.

Feimei marveled at the ease they had gotten the girl to play dress-up for them. It was like she was used to having someone rip her clothes off, making Feimei wonder just how innocent the girl's relationship with Syaoran was.

Fanren hugged Sakura from behind. "Just looking at you will knock the breath out of Syaoran!"

Fuutie smirked. "You sure will. Better not try to steal away my fiance or Shiefa's boyfriend while we're at the park."

Sakura blinked. "You're getting married?!"

Fuutie nodded. "This April. Care to be one of my bridesmaids?"

"Me? But you hardly know me," Sakura questioned.

Fuutie smiled at the girl. "I know all I need too. You're going to marry Syaoran some day, which will make you my sister."

Sakura flushed. "But he hasn't... I mean, we're not... engaged or anything."

"Not yet, but mother believes you will be, and she's hardly ever wrong about the future," Fuutie assured.

Sakura gazed back toward the mirror, letting out a whisper of, "Li Sakura...."

Shiefa giggled. "Sends a shiver down your spine, doesn't it? Saying the name you'll have once you're married." She then made a face. "Now if only Wulong would get off his ass and propose."

"I don't think you have long to wait," Fuutie commented. "Mother isn't certain which of us will make her a grandmother first."

"Really? But she's usually so good at something that big. What could throw her sight off?" Shiefa wondered.

Fuutie frowned, not wanting to mention the possibility of Syaoran beating them.

"Love is harder to predict," Sakura replied. "Even Clow Reed had problems with that. He predicted I'd end up with someone else."

"Clow was wrong?!" Fanren chirped in surprise. "You sure it still can't happen?"

Sakura pouted. "Definitely. Yukito-san is WITH my brother."

The Li sisters looked at each other, remembered the two men from meeting them a couple years ago, and in unison cried out, "Such a waste!"

Sakura couldn't help but giggle.

"So, will you be one of my bridesmaids, Sakura?" Fuutie questioned again.

"I'd love too!" Sakura agreed, wanting to cheer on her 'new sister.'


Syaoran smiled at the present Sakura had given him last night. She had told him she had given similar presents to everyone, yet each one contained a unique picture. The picture was doctored a bit as he had never stood by Sakura while she wore clothes that looked to be a pink version of his ceremonial robes. Though he could not argue with what was written on the photo, 'Partners forever. Sakura and Syaoran in love.'

The boy then stiffened when his mother entered the room, but no words were said. She merely gazed at him. He could never figure out what he could talk to her about. He had certainly tried before, but most of the time she knew of his accomplishments at a task before he had even attempted it. What she didn't know ahead of time, she could look into his past and see it. The only problems she usually had were things like report cards that were written up by someone she didn't know.

An embarrassed blush crept over his face, suspecting that his mother already knew when his first kiss with Sakura would be, and may have even seen it.

Yelan let her eyes rest upon her son. She wondered what she could possibly say to him. How do you tell your kid, 'Don't have sex with your girlfriend, there's a good chance she'd get pregnant?' Even though telling him that would scare him, it'd also put the idea of making love into his head. It was something she always hated about precognition, trying to figure out what to say and what not to say about the future. And despite the warning coming from her, she feared giving it would more cause than prevent the situation.

Both of them were relieved when two young men entered the room.

"Hello, mother," greeted Fuutie's fiance, Henry. His blond hair, blue eyes and pale skin showed his heavily English descent.

"Good morning," added Wulong. His raven hair and dark complexion contrasted strongly with his friend, but complemented nicely with his girlfriend, Shiefa.

After a moment of awkward silence, Henry spoke up, "The girls taking their time to get ready?"

"I guess." Syaoran shrugged. He had gotten quite used to having to wait for Sakura while she played dress-up during their adventures.

"They shall be here momentarily," Yelan noted.

Wulong felt put on edge by the certainty the woman spoke. This wasn't the only time the Li matriarch had said something that she couldn't possibly been able to predict accurately. He certainly didn't believe Henry's joke that the Li family was filled with witches.

Henry and Syaoran moved their attention to the door at Yelan's pronouncement. Seconds later Feimei and Fanren entered the room, quickly followed by the elder Li sisters, and then Sakura.

The boys in the room were each taken by the beauty of their respective girlfriends, each wrapped in delicious silk that accentuated their figures in surprising and delightful ways. Distracted by the sight, it took a moment for the young men to realize the fifth girl wasn't Meiling.

"Who do we have here?" Henry questioned in Cantonese.

Fuutie placed her hand on Sakura's shoulder and answered in English, "This little cutie is Syaoran's girlfriend, Kinomoto Sakura." She then motioned with her other hand. "Sakura, that's Henry Drake, my fiance. And he's Jin Wulong, Shiefa's boyfriend."

Sakura blushed as she bowed, and then greeted in accented English, "Pleased to meet you."

"The pleasure is ours," Wulong returned, in English as well, guessing the girl was truly Japanese and didn't know Cantonese.

Shiefa smirked. "Don't forget she's spoken for, and so are you."

Wulong raised his hands in mock defense. "There is no one more beautiful to me than you."

Feimei and Fanren latched onto the man while pouting. "And we're not beautiful?"

Wulong shook his head. "I can't win here, can I?"

"Of course not," Henry replied, chuckling.


Sakura's eyes sparkled as she gazed out of the limousine's window. While the others were left wondering what she found so interesting, she didn't want to waste the chance to see Syaoran's neighborhood. "That is where Meiling lives, right?"

Syaoran nodded. "Yeah. We'll be passing my school on the way to the park."

"Really?!" Sakura chirped. "I want to see it!"

"Sakura, how did you meet Syaoran?" Henry questioned, but was surprised she didn't give a quick answer.

Sakura paused to think, uncertain of how much Henry and Wulong knew of magic, let alone her own abilities. "Syaoran-kun spent a couple years at my school in Tomoeda."

"Where's that?" Wulong asked.

"It is part of northern Tokyo," Sakura replied.

"Was it love at first sight?" Fanren questioned, delighted that the girl had been put on the hot seat.

Sakura shook her head. "I was in love with another then, and I think Syaoran-kun, um, hated me when we first met."

"Hated you?" Henry wondered. "Why would he hate you?"

"Well, I have item that was original made by founder of Li clan and he wanted it," Sakura replied slowly, more from uncertainty of what to say than her English skills. Though she was quickly growing more interested in trying to figure out how to make a card to deal with translating languages.

"So what happened?" Feimei pressed. This was really getting interesting.

Sakura pouted, not wanting to answer.

"I tried to take it from her," Syaoran replied, regret and guilt thick in his words. "Her brother stopped me before I might've hurt her or got what I had wanted."

Henry and Wulong stared in surprise, while the Li sisters merely shook their heads.

"If you met by him trying to mug you, how did you two end up together?" Wulong asked.

"It is really a long story," Sakura replied after a moment. "Syaoran-kun and I were rivals for some time, but over time he did more to help me than fight me. Even though we met poorly, we became friends, and then more."

Feimei reached over and poked Sakura. "You'll have to give me the whole story later."

Sakura blushed while the other Li sisters nodded.

"What happened to the Li clan heirloom you had?" Henry questioned.

"I kind of still have it. I am confirmed owner," Sakura answered.

Fuutie smirked. "It'll return to the Li clan soon enough. Isn't that right, lil' sis?"

Sakura could only blush in response.


The half-hour car ride had found Sakura on the receiving end of more than her fair share of questions. Though the girl was left wondering why Syaoran's mother never said anything. From her boyfriend's comments, she could guess that at least the young men with them knew nothing of her magic. That had made it even more difficult answering their questions in a language she couldn't be truly considered fluent in yet. Thankfully Kero-chan was a great tutor for English and had helped her immensely with her learning there, but she would never let him near her mathematics studies again.

"The park looks really busy," Sakura noted with slight dread that her wait and the questions would be longer.

"It's always busy for Christmas. Uncle likes to throw a big party," Syaoran replied.

Sakura and the young men looked confused as those statements would seem to be mutually exclusive. They quickly learned it wasn't as the limousine bypassed the line of cars going for the front gates and went down a service road. At the employee entrance several people awaited their arrival.

Yelan exited first and bowed respectfully to a somewhat plump and elderly man. "Greetings, Uncle Hou," she greeted in English, setting the language to be spoken.

"Now, now, Yelan, how many times have I told you to leave the formalities at home," admonished the elderly man. "This is a place for fun, not tradition."

"Saying that won't change me," Yelan retorted.

Uncle Hou smiled as his grandnieces and grandnephew filed out of the limousine. His attention then focused at those who were not Li, starting with the mostly English man. "Fuutie, you have a taste for British I see. Business mind on this one, and might actually contribute to the legacy of the clan." His gaze then focused on Wulong. "A little scrawny, but love doesn't mind such things. A devoted husband he might be, but don't expect much." He then settled his eyes on Sakura and his eyes widened. "Looks like Syaoran definitely will secure the Li legacy for generations to come for his descendants."

Wulong was rather put off by the old man's comments, while Henry had been mostly pleased with what he had been told and was interested in what the man had said about Sakura. The young teen could only blush.

"Uncle, it is not nice to pry like that," Yelan admonished.

"You lecturing me about that?" Uncle Hou laughed. "Now let's not waste time. If you wish to ride our new roller-coaster, now would be the time. I can let you all be the first to ride it today."

"Really?!" Sakura chirped.

"Of course, my dear," Uncle Hou replied. "Enjoy my park to your heart's content."

Sakura smiled in delight. "Thank you!"


"Everything in order?" Uncle Hou questioned the park attendants that ran the new looping metal roller-coaster.

"Just waiting for the 'live test run,'" replied the one in charge. "I trust you have the 'volunteers.'"

Uncle smirked. "But of course."

The park's customers who had been waiting in line for the past hour for the coaster to open did not buy their lines for a second and only served to irritate them more.

Sakura took it at face value and was ready to help. She dragged Syaoran to the very front of the cars, with his sisters filing in behind along with Henry and Wulong. Syaoran stared in shock as Uncle Hou literally shoved his mother into the back of the cars, while his sisters giggled at the scene.

"Everyone set?" an attendant cried out. Harnesses lowered to secure the passengers into their seats and were tested to make sure they had locked into place. With no problems detected, the ride began.

Sakura's excitement built as the cars slowly rode up the first hill. The moment grew with the tangible pause at the very top before they dropped, screaming all the way. The speed was incredible as they streaked down the tracks and up into the upside down loop.

The hair on Sakura's neck became like needles just before the cars reached the top of the loop, then with a slight 'pop,' her harness unlocked and she felt the all too familiar sensation of momentary weightlessness before free fall.

Dread gripped Syaoran's heart as Sakura began to slip from her seat and immediately reached out, grabbing onto her leg as if his own life depended on it. He barely registered how unyielding her flesh had become, as if her leg was made of iron. He gazed up and saw that his girlfriend had latched onto the harness and was literally bending the metal in her desperation to hold on.

The breaks began to squeal and the cars were forced into an emergency stop before reaching the next hill. Sakura slumped back into her seat, shivering from the adrenaline flooding her body. She looked at the damaged harness and then her hands. Somehow Power had activated and she hadn't even called upon the cards. She willed her magical strength back into a card and frowned at how dim it felt in her hand.

"Sakura, are you all right?!" Syaoran cried out.

"I'm fine, really," was the reply, along with a weak smile.

Park attendants swarmed the coaster, releasing the harness locks manually. More than a few stares were cast at the mangled harness that had been meant to protect the girl. The former passengers, minus Hou, were all led away from the ride and allowed to recoup in a secluded grove of trees.

Sakura found herself being assaulted by questions, and was quite thankful when her boyfriend's mother brought the attention to herself.

"Did anyone sense anything prior to Sakura's harness unlocking?" Yelan questioned.

Her children merely shook their heads while Wulong looked confused at the question. Henry made no reply.

"I'm not sure," Sakura answered. "I wasn't exactly paying attention."

Yelan's frown deepened as she nodded. "I see." She then turned her attention to her uncle as he arrived. "Anything to say?"

"I'll have to study the harness closely, but I'm not sure if I'll find anything," Uncle Hou replied morbidly. "Sakura damaged the harness and her magic is so strong it'll be hard to see past it."

Wulong frowned. "Magic?"

Yelan nodded. "Yes, magic."

Shiefa looked away. "And mother doesn't mean stage magic, but real spells."

Uncle Hou approached Sakura. "I'm afraid I have to ask you to show me some of your magic. You can make it something minor."

The girl nodded and pulled out a card and her key charm attached to her necklace. She chanted, "O Key which hides the power of the stars, reveal thy true form before me. I, Sakura, command thee under contract. RELEASE! Brighten up this grove, FLOWER!" The charm grew into a staff, and the card turned into a pretty lady in a pink dress who danced around groove.

What had been grass and trees, was now a wondrous collection of blooming flowers, many of which were out of season or were not native to Hong Kong-- particularly cherry blossoms and nadeshiko.

Uncle Hou was put on edge. "If you consider this minor, I'd hate to see when you do something major."

Sakura smiled weakly. "Sorry."

"Don't be. This will give me a reference point of what I need to ignore when I try to figure out what went wrong," Uncle Hou replied tenderly.

Wulong's body shook and his face was devoid of blood as he looked at Henry. "You really weren't joking."

"Of course not," Henry replied, awe dripping into his words. "Though what Fuutie has shown me was nothing compared to this."

Yelan gazed at each of those present. "It would be best if we enjoy the rest of the day separately. Though we'll meet up at noon for lunch."

Reluctantly the Li sisters nodded and departed along with Henry and Wulong.

"Sakura, are you really okay?" Syaoran pressed.

"I'm FINE!" Sakura returned a little heatedly. "I just need to repay Power for what she did."

"How did you activate Power?" Syaoran question.

"I didn't," was her reply. "Power activated on her own to save me. But she used up a lot of the magic she had stored up to do that."

Syaoran stared in surprise. Just how much magic was his girlfriend feeding the cards that they could act up on their own? Sure they were still sealed by her will and could not do anything she didn't want them to, but the level of power to allow self-activation was beyond what he had thought possible.

"Are you sure you're fine?" Syaoran asked yet again.

Sakura scowled. "Syaoran-kun, just how many times has the cards and then Eriol-kun put me through worse than this? I'm okay, REALLY!" She then smirked. "Now lets go on some other rides, though let's stick with the ones on ground level for now."

"If you're..." Syaoran backed off at the glare he received. "Okay, how about the merry-go-round?"

"That's for kids," Sakura returned. "Bumper cars. Maybe I can knock it into your head that I'm perfectly fine," she teased.

After they left, Yelan turned toward her uncle. "Was this an accident?"

Uncle Hou scowled. "Dear, this is the first 'accident' my park has EVER had since I took ownership. And even if her harness had malfunctioned, Syaoran's harness should've released as well. I just can't tell yet if it was physically or magically tampered with."

Yelan's continuous frown deepened. "So, we can't be sure if the target is your park or her."

"Not until I've studied it some more, but the girl did a number on it. I may never know," Uncle Hou replied.

"Not until the next attempt is made," Yelan returned morbidly.


Feimei waltzed through the amusement park as if she owned it. Considering Uncle Hou's only child died years ago, there was a chance she just might own it in the future. It didn't hurt that she was invisible to naked eye. She could go anywhere and do just about anything without getting into any trouble.

Being invisible to others certainly had its advantages. She could see and do things very few other people could hope to do. Years ago she had even gone into the boys bathroom, but that experience had been a bit disappointing. Truthfully, her ability of stealth wasn't all that great an ability. In most cases it was like finding out what you'd get for Christmas before the day arrived, so when it was time to unwrap presents there was little in the way of surprise or true joy. Still, her curiosity often got the best of her, and she'd try to find out anyway.

"I just wanted a closer look at that statue!" cried out a young man of obvious Chinese descent. 'Geek' would be the first word that came to Feimei's mind about his bespectacled and thin appearance.

The overweight guard's firm grip on him tightened. "That's not allowed."

"Fine, I won't go near it. Just let me go," the man protested.

"Of course you won't. Not after I throw you out of the park..." The guard's eyes narrowed. "...again."

Feimei thought to herself. She could think of only one statue at the park that patrons couldn't get near and would attract attention of park security: the golem in the Fantasy Fun House. The debate of who to side with ended quickly, as did how she would handle things.

The guard suddenly felt a breeze against bare skin as his pants suddenly dropped down to his knees, and he promptly fell to the ground.

"GAH! Wear underwear, you fat slob!" Feimei screeched, kicking him in the ass.

The young man stood staring in surprise at the guard before feeling a slender hand grip his upper arm, which then pulled him into a run. The hand didn't leave him until a fair distance away from the guard. The disembodied panting turned into laughter as a young beautiful woman slowly materialized before him.

"That was too much fun!" Feimei announced.

"Who are you?" the guy questioned.

"I'm Feimei, you?" the girl returned.

"Fu Kau," the man replied. "Are you a ghost or a magician?"

"The latter," Feimei answered simply. "What were you doing that attracted 'butt-ugly's' attention?"

Kau slumped against a wall. "I just wanted to get a closer look at some of the magic kept in this park. I must say, hiding things like a golem in plain sight as part of a tourist attraction is genius. But every time I go to look at something, guards show up and kick me out."

"Magic isn't something for the uninitiated," Feimei returned.

Kau huffed. "I know a little magic, but what little my great-grandfather left in his books isn't enough. I need to learn more."

Feimei smirked. "You just may get your chance."

Kau looked at her almost pleadingly. "Would you teach me magic?"

"I'm not a teacher," Feimei returned. "All I can say is that I keep finding out about my Christmas presents too soon."

Kau blinked in confusion. "I don't follow."

Feimei almost laughed. "You will. It's almost time for lunch. Care to join me and my family?"

Kau wasn't sure what to make of all of this, but agreed.

Feimei sighed quietly. Unless she missed her guess, this guy was the romantic prospect Fanren had divined from her horoscope. Being a mage was certainly a plus, but did the guy have to look like such a geek?


"Something on your mind?" Fuutie questioned her fiance.

Henry smiled sheepishly. "I really don't know how to say this without coming off wrong." He paused in thought. "Well, I expected that your brother would be the next head of clan being the only son, but your uncle mentioned him securing that status with Sakura."

"Ah, you want to know how we determine who's the head of clan?" Fuutie guessed.

"I guess." Henry nodded.

"Well, it's both simple and complex," Fuutie began. "At the dawning of the year of the dragon, or shortly after the death of the current clan head, a challenge is set up to see who will take the reign as head of clan. Anyone who is a descendant within two generations from the current or any former clan head may take part if they wish to."

"So if you don't become clan head and none of our children, our grandchildren can forget being clan head," Henry surmised.

Fuutie nodded. "Yes, considering Syaoran's strength and that he'll marry the heir of Clow, the only way one of our descendants will get to be clan head is if one of them marries one of Syaoran's."

"What kind of challenge is it?" Henry questioned.

"Don't know until it's time to compete. There's a book that has the challenges written in it, but don't bother trying to read ahead as it only reveals what you have to do when those who wish to compete sign their name to it. You'd have to see the future to know what it will be, and even that is not always successful." Fuutie looked up to the sky. "The kinds of challenges it's had are sometimes strange. Mother won her first competition over my Great Uncle Li with a foot race, but the book created an obstacle course with a path different than what she had foreseen. Yet the advantage was still hers, being younger and capable of seeing the near future. The last one was too easy for Mother. It was the 'Ball-Under-the-Cup' game."

"The book can give the advantage to someone of lesser magic?" Henry observed.

"Technically, but you'd still need magic to have a prayer of winning," Fuutie replied. "If mother had half the magic she did during that first challenge or hadn't recovered yet from giving birth to Syaoran, she could've been killed by the obstacles. And it's mother's precognition that let her keep her title."

"Ouch." Henry shuddered. "Glad I don't have to compete. I like my neck where it is."


"Why didn't you tell me?" Wulong questioned harsher than he had intended.

"How should I have told you?" Shiefa returned. "Tell you on our first date, 'Oh, by the way, I can cast spells and use magic.' It's not something I can just tell a person."

"But when were you going to tell me? After you married me?" Wulong pressed.

"No. Once you proposed I was going to tell you," Shiefa replied. "I had to be sure that you loved me enough to not betray me."

"Betray you?" Wulong questioned, looking a bit hurt at the accusation.

Shiefa sighed. "Do you have any idea how many of my family members were murdered because someone learned of their magic? And most of them were either killed by their lover's own hands or by a being lynched from a mob the lover gathered."

"You should know me better than that," Wulong retorted.

"Believe me, I wanted to trust you with this, but I didn't want to scare you away either. I love you too much to have you walk away from me just because of a little gift I inherited from my family," Shiefa explained, tears welling up into her eyes.

Wulong frowned. Having Shiefa killed was definitely something he'd never do, but even now there was some temptation to break everything off with her. She did have a right to be scared in that regard, but he still couldn't help but feel she should've told him long ago. He shook his head. "Just... how strong are you... magic wise?"

Shiefa gazed at her feet. "Not very strong at all. I know a few spells, but nothing on the order Fuutie and Feimei could do, nor is my foresight anywhere near as accurate as Fanren's. To put in perspective: I'm a small knife. Fanren is more of a sword, while Fuutie and Feimei are handguns. Syaoran is military soldier loaded for heavy combat. Mother is more of Special Forces Black-Ops. And unless I'm mistaken, Sakura is on the order of a nuclear weapon."

"What can you do with your magic?" Wulong pressed.

"A few illusions and some minor healing, but that's about it," Shiefa replied. "Chances are any kids we have won't have any magic."

Wulong blinked. "Are you all right with that?"

Shiefa nodded. "I've watched the hells my family put Fuutie and Syaoran through just because they were talented enough to claim head of clan. Syaoran especially. He's never had a chance to be a child. I don't want to put any of my children through that."

Wulong was half-tempted to hug her, but he still felt betrayed by her. "Are there any special duties to your family I should know about?"

"Doubt it. The only possibility would be to challenge Syaoran and Mother for clan leadership the next year of the dragon, but I have no interest in doing that. Even if lil' bro and his girlfriend somehow go evil on us, I'd sooner move away from them than try to fight them," Shiefa explained.

Wulong settled for putting his arm around her shoulders. "Well, let's try to forget about this right now and try to enjoy the rest of the day," he lied. He would be considering everything she had told him before he'd decide on whether or not to give her the small present in his pocket.


Fanren didn't pay attention to the time, but as the clock struck noon she arrived at one of the many restaurants at the park. She blinked at the fact that her mother and Uncle Hou were indeed there waiting for everyone despite that this restaurant served mostly greasy and relatively cheap foods like hamburgers and fries. Not that she minded American foods, but it wasn't what even she expected her insanely rich family would have for lunch. What didn't come as a surprise was that the meals were already ordered and waiting to be eaten.

Fanren sat at the seat with the burger marked for no tomatoes or mayonnaise and politely waited for her siblings and their respective love interests. She then gazed across from what was presumably Feimei's seat of a hamburger with hot sauce was an extra tray of food. She smirked, guessing her morning prediction for Feimei had come to pass already.

Shiefa arrived with her boyfriend, and the girl scowled at her mother. Not that Fanren could blame her elder sister. Wulong had definitely been put on edge by Sakura's magic, and rubbing his nose into more of it would not really be a good idea.

Fuutie and Henry made no comment as they arrived, quickly finding their own seats.

Syaoran and Sakura gave raise to some giggling as the pair arrived looking like drowned rats, obviously having gone to some of the water rides. His mother wordlessly handed them a bag that undoubtedly contained dry clothes. They were gone for only a minute before they returned in fresh clothes.

Syaoran directed Sakura to what seat she'd have, and to Fanren's surprise the girl looked around before getting up to grab some mustard packets, which she promptly poured onto her fries. It wasn't the topping, but that her mother didn't foresee the need for it. She could understand issues arising with Feimei's love as they had never met, but her mother should know Sakura better-- especially considering the prediction that the girl would marry Syaoran.

The youngest Li looked over at the vacant seats with a puzzled look. While Feimei being late was hardly new, the extra tray of food left him confused. He opened his mouth to speak, but his attention was quickly diverted to where everyone else was staring.

Feimei was dragging a thin, bespectacled young man towards them.

The Li matriarch advanced toward the couple, her piercing gaze focused on the newcomer. His eyes glazed over for a moment, before she nodded and he shook his head clear.

Feimei pouted. "Mother, did you have to do that?"

She ignored her daughter. "Greetings, Fu Kau. I trust you'll take good care of my daughter."

"HOEH?!" Sakura chirped.

Kau's response wasn't much different. "Huh?! What are you talking about?"

Feimei scowled. "It's more than enough I knew ahead of time. Do you really have to let him know too?"

"This will allow him to understand your uncertainty in the days to come for he will share it," Yelan returned.

"Just what are you saying here?" Kau demanded.

Fanren smirked. "I predicted that Feimei would be meeting her future husband today, and that would be you."

"HUSBAND?!" Feimei screeched. "You told me, 'love interest!'"

"Thought I'd soften the blow a little," Fanren returned.

Kau slowly absorbed what had just been announce, causing his head to spin. He started to lean backwards as he fainted, only to be caught by Wei, which was made a little difficult because the elderly servant was also recording everything on a video camera.

"I will definitely have to make a copy of this before sending it to Daidouji-sama," Wei commented with an amused smile.


"There you are!"

Kau groaned at the plump guard waddling fiercely toward them.

"Oh, great. It's 'butt-ugly' again," Feimei groused.

The guard scowled, hearing her words. He grabbed her arm and roughly pulled her out of her seat. "Well, if it isn't his accomplice? You're in big trouble."

"Don't like your job much, do you?" Feimei growled. "I'd like to introduce you to my Great Uncle Hou, the OWNER of the park."

The guard looked over and indeed saw the park owner seated at the table, but the icy glare from the woman across him froze terror in his heart. He made no move as the girl pulled free of his grasp.

"Now, now. No need to get upset here," Hou said calmly. "He was only doing his job." He then gazed at the guard. "Fu Kau is my grandniece's fiance, treat him as an important guest whenever he visits. He can look at the special exhibits if he wants to, but continue to make sure no one outside of my family does. And these fine boys and this little darling should be counted as part of my family as well."

The guard straightened up. "Ah, yes sir. I'll let the others in security know."

"Do that," Yelan hissed. "And start wearing underpants."

Feimei and Kau laughed at the Li matriarch's last comment, while it left the others confused, shocked, and/or disgusted. With the horrid image that had been aroused, lunch came to a sudden, stomach-turning end. The embarrassed guard waddled off as fast as his feet could take him.

Sakura shook her head clear, then whispered to her boyfriend, "Special exhibits?"

Syaoran whispered his reply to her in Japanese, "We've hid a few of Clow's and other family heirlooms here."

"Ah! I see!" Sakura nodded. "I knew I sensed a few odd things here."

Syaoran frowned. "Um, I'll be back in a while."

Sakura blinked. "Where are you going?"

Syaoran blushed and fidgeted. "Bathroom."

Sakura's face also became a deeper shade of red. "Ah. Hurry back."

"Might not be able too," Syaoran replied sheepishly.

Sakura pouted.

Fanren placed her hand on Sakura's shoulder. "Why don't we go to one of the 'special exhibits' while lil' bro is 'occupied?' There's quite a story to tell with it."

Uncle Hou sighed at the girl's pronouncement. "You like that story too much."

"You know why I like it," Fanren returned.

"All too well," Uncle Hou conceded.

"Let's all go!" Fanren cheered. "This deals with some family history, so don't go around repeating this."

Yelan and Hou remained behind as everyone else followed behind Fanren as she began her tale.

"This began many years ago, with two people whose lives were so intertwined that they were born on the very same day!" Fanren began with the same sort of tone and flare Naoko liked to use at the start of her ghost stories, causing Sakura's goose-bumps to raise. "Hou was the great-grandson of a previous Li clan leader. Minmei was the second of three children and only daughter born to my great-grandfather who was the clan head at that time. As such, both were cousins and were raised together. They were inseparable as they grew up. Where one of them went, you could be sure the other was also there as well. They were closer than a brother and sister could be!"

Sakura frowned as the entered the park's haunted house attraction. She never did well with these sort of things, especially when Syaoran wasn't around.

Fanren didn't seem to notice the young teen's discomfort as she continued, "On their twelfth birthday it was learned that they truly did EVERYthing together. Minmei was pregnant with Hou's child!"

"Hoeh?!" Sakura chirped in surprised. "A girl can have a baby THAT young?!"

"If a girl bleeds, she can breed," Fuutie intoned, hopefully in warning to the young girl.

"It was more of a shock that the two were lovers than Minmei being pregnant," Fanren corrected. "But the pure love of Hou and Minmei led to the creation of new life! While Minmei's father and Hou's parents tried to figure out what to do, the young couple had their own idea of what they should do."

"What could they do? They were only kids," Wulong commented.

Fanren waved her finger. "You have to realize this was 1952. The concept of teenagers was still fairly new. Besides, they may have been young, but they loved each other more than anything else. The pregnancy could've been ended; however, Minmei and Hou demanded not only to keep the baby but to get married as well!"

Sakura's mind quickly was whisked away by an image of herself being married to Syaoran and starting a family. The concept was both frightening and exciting at the same time. She then found herself back in reality as Fuutie placed her hand on the girl's shoulder.

"Minmei and Hou proved their devotion to each other by forsaking their childish ways and becoming man and wife. Hou worked on ways he could help provide for his family, while Minmei did all she could to make sure her baby would be healthy," Fanren continued. "They were as happy as any married couple could be, but their happiness was not to last."

"What happened?" Sakura fretted.

"Minmei was a skilled magic-user in her own right, even if she was overshadowed by the talent and training her brothers had. And her particular talents resided mostly in her dreams. As her due date drew closer, so did the frequency and severity of her nightmares. Those nightmares let her know that she would have to make a choice. A choice that no one should ever have to make."

Sakura was shivering with expectant dread, and could not voice her question.

It was Henry who ended up asking, "What was this choice?"

"That only one would survive the birth. It could either be the mother or the daughter, but not both," Fanren answered. "Minmei told her husband of what would happen, but only in terms that she would die giving birth. Hou knew his wife was lying to him, that their baby could die in place of the mother. As much as it pained him, knowing his beloved Minmei could live but choose not too, he acceded to her wish. For he truly knew his wife, and that had she lived at the expense of their child's life would leave Minmei broken, a shadow of the girl he loved. He promised he would love their daughter dearly, and would not blame either mother or child for what would happen."

Tears welled up in Sakura's eyes, while the others listened intently.

"Labor came upon Minmei quickly. There had hardly been anytime to call a doctor. With her young age, the delivery was extremely troublesome. She was bleeding badly as the baby pushed out of her body. The little infant wasn't breathing after birth, and the doctor could only see to one of them. With Minmei unconscious, Hou asserted that the doctor should care for the baby first.

"Minmei never woke to hear her baby cry. She bled to death while her daughter's life was saved. Hou continued to tell his wife how beautiful their child was, and how much he loved her until the hand he held went cold and her skin paled from lack of blood."

Henry smirked at Wulong's attempt to not cry, with a few tears in his own eyes, while Sakura was almost sobbing.

Fanren wiped away her own tears. "True to his words, Hou cared for his daughter, whom he named Meiling. The little girl became the whole world for her father, and knew of the love and sacrifice she had received from her mother. She quickly grew up into a beautiful young girl with an amazing magical talent. At the age of ten she was approaching the level of skill her uncles had. She stood a strong chance to even become the head of clan at the age of twelve!"

"Really?" Sakura asked, trying to reign in her emotions.

Fanren nodded sadly. "Unfortunately, Meiling never got to see her eleventh birthday. On a day that was supposed to be filled with fun and excitement as Hou's mother took her to a newly opened amusement park, an accident happened. They were inside a fun house as the wires in it overloaded and an electrical fire erupted all throughout the attraction. Thirty people died inside that fun house as it burnt to the ground, Meiling and her grandmother included."

Sakura pouted, on the verge of more tears. "Oh, poor Uncle Hou."

"Oh, you can be sure Uncle Hou was indeed upset at the death of his daughter and mother. He attacked the park until it became his. He vowed he would run this park with religious devotion to preventing accidents, which the roller-coaster incident this morning is the ONLY accident I know of since Uncle Hou took over the park. He wanted to make this park a place for children to enjoy and be young, for Minmei, Meiling, nor himself ever got to truly be children themselves," Fanren finished. She then turned and looked to the left side of where Sakura was standing, and asked, "Did I tell that right, Aunt Meiling?"

Sakura blinked and slowly turned her head and saw the transparent image of a girl who looked very similar to the girl she knew of with that same name.

"You did," the ghost replied. The apparition then turned to look upon the Japanese girl. "Beware, the fate that befell me may yet fall upon you."

All life drained from the emerald-eyed girl before she screamed at the top of her lungs and ran away faster than her legs should've been able to carry her.

"What's with her?" Feimei wondered. "And what do you mean by that, Aunt Meiling?"

The ghost made no reply.

Fuutie found Henry's hand gripping hers dangerously tight as he stared at what appeared to him to be a floating mist. Wulong looked around in confusion, guessing there was supposed to be some sort of ghost here, but he certainly couldn't see anything. Meanwhile, Kau had approached the ghostly girl and was trying to poke her, but only felt cold air. The dead girl scowled at him and disappeared from sight.

Shiefa sighed. "Well, Fanren has had her fun, let's go back."

The group exited the haunted house, and quickly found Sakura wrapped around Syaoran. The poor girl shivering in fright, repeating the Japanese word for ghost. The boy could only tried to soothe his girlfriend, claiming his dead aunt meant her no harm.


Despite the ghostly encounter and the incident in the morning, Sakura still regretted seeing the sun set. She then brightened knowing that with dusk falling over the park, it would soon be time for the fireworks show. Though the girl was wondering what Henry found to be funny as they approached the viewing platform reserved for the Li family and their guests.

"Well, look who stepped under the mistletoe!" Henry called out.

With the heavy British influence in Hong Kong, the meaning of the statement did not escape Syaoran as he slowly looked up and saw green leaves with tiny red balls over his head. He sighed with defeat in his posture as his sisters promptly swarmed around him. Fuutie's lips upon his forehead, Shiefa the tip of his nose, Fanren and Feimei took each of his cheeks, and the final one upon his lips. Syaoran blinked repeatedly and blushed cherry red, seeing the fifth person to have given him the quick peck was indeed Sakura.

Sakura's red face matched his as she fidgeted before him. "Um, Merry Christmas, Syaoran."

The boy smiled at her, his lips still tingling from the extremely brief contact. "Yeah... Happy Christmas, Sakura."

Then the sky exploded into color as the first fireworks were launched. Syaoran wrapped his arm around Sakura's back as they moved forward to watch the display.

Yelan watched as her other children followed suit, a rare smile appearing on her face as she did not miss the ring that now adorned Shiefa's hand. Soon Feimei would also have a ring for herself. She then frowned at Fanren standing alone, but knew that had been the girl's choice rather than design and could not begrudge her for the fate that had been handed her.


Author's Notes:

Coming Soon:
Chapter 3 - Sakura's Friends at Home
Meiling takes Tomoyo, Rika and Naoko to an amusement park, while Chiharu tries to figure out what to do with her engagement.

And the plot bunnies keep popping up. I hadn't planned on half the stuff involving Syaoran's sisters or the situation with Aunt Meiling when I started this. However, the additions have helped me immensely to flush out the background for Shadow of the Dragon.

And just to make it clear, Li Meiling was named after her Aunt Meiling.

Figuring out the date for a series that gives half-statement of when it occurs can be quite annoying. However, Touya's birthday being on Leap Day, February 29th, pretty strongly stamps a solid date reference. The only problem, though, is which leap year? 1976? 1980? 1984? Well, manga wise 1980 would be the favored year. With the anime, 1984 becomes possible. As I follow the anime more, I'll be taking the 1984 route. This puts Sakura's adventures as either being 2000 or 2001, depending on whether Touya was held back a year for whatever reason. As that seems unlikely, at start of series he would've been sixteen with age references of seventeen being a result that's the median age of eleventh graders.

What this means for Sakura's Christmas Surprise is that it occurs in December of 2003, with Christmas day being on a Thursday. By extension Shadow of the Dragon would begin in April of 2005.