The Only Gift

Rated: PG-13

Written by: FuuMegami

Fuu sat in her room brushing her hair while humming softly. She loved this time of year, the time of year just before Christmas. It was cold and the air smelled of the promise of snow.

She pulled a dark green sweater over her white tank top. She then opened her wallet that lay on the vanity where she sat. She counted her dollar bills to make sure she had enough for the shopping trip she was about to take. Once she knew she had enough money she put the wallet in her messenger bag and slug that over her shoulder.

As she swung her bag she knocked over a framed photo of her boyfriend Sam. The glass had cracked but hadn't shattered, so she set the photo back on the vanity. She'd have to add a new frame to her list of things to buy.

Just then the door bell rang, Fuu then hurried down the hall and down the stairs. Her sister had beat her to the door and had already let Umi and Hikaru into the house by the time Fuu reached the bottom of the stair case.
"Hikaru-san, Umi-san," Fuu said with a smile.

"I still can't believe that after knowing us for FOUR years you still always use such a formal greeting." Umi said as she laughed.

"Do you also call Sam, Sam-san?" Hikaru asked with a playful grin.

"Only when they're role playing," Umi said before Fuu could answer herself.

"No, and a very big no. I do not call Sam, Sam-san, just plain Sam. Not that it's really your business." Fuu replied as she poked Hikaru in the ribs.

"Well we should get to the mall before it closes," Umi said as she tapped her watch.

Fuu rolled her eyes, "you always get down to the point don't you?"

Umi grinned and opened the door, "to the mall!"

Hikaru happily bounded a head and snatched Umi's keys from her hands as she went.

"Hey!" Umi shouted.

Fuu rolled her eyes as Umi chased Hikaru down the drive way and to the gate. She fallowed the two without running since she knew an argument was ahead.

"YOU are NOT driving MY new Jag, I'm telling you that right now straight and up." Umi said as she pointed a finger at Hikaru.

Hikaru pouted and handed Umi back the keys to her dark blue Jaguar. "You drive then missy," Hikaru replied.

Umi gladly took the keys back and then said, "you can ride shot gun."
Hikaru's face lit up, "yay!"

Umi got in and unlocked the doors. Hikaru climbed in and was beaming, "This car is sooooo cool!"

Fuu climbed in back didn't say a word. She was still busy thinking about what she wanted to buy everyone for Christmas, so many choices, but she had to pick the one that was just right.

Umi turned on the radio and searched for a good station that was playing Christmas music. Once she found one she pulled out of the drive way and headed for the mall.

Fuu watched as everything outside the car appeared blurred, melted together. Bare trees melded with street lamps while people appeared to be a part of the buildings. As the scenery blurred she began to think as she usually did when she wasn't the driver.

Her mind drifted to Cephiro, a land without snow. And she wondered what the people of Cephiro would think of snow, she could see Mokona making Mokona angels in the fresh snow. She wondered what Caldina would do if she had to wear something more then what looked to be her underwear.

And then she thought of Ferio. "Ferio..." She whispered involuntarily.

Hikaru turned around and looked at Fuu, she seemed startled. "You haven't mentioned Ferio since we left Cephiro four years ago."

Umi stopped at a red light and turned to look at Fuu. "Yeah, I thought you said that you had put it all behind you, since you know, we can't really go back and they can't come here."

Fuu nodded. "I know... I was just thinking about snow in Cephiro and..."

"Ferio came to mind huh?" Umi said.

Fuu nodded and blushed. "I really haven't thought about him in at least three years."

Umi was about to comment when someone behind her honked their horn. She decided to turn her attention to the road once more.

Fuu dropped the thought and turned back to the shopping matters. And due to her silence, Umi and Hikaru decided not the dwell on it all.

Once at the mall Hikaru was reverted to her childish self, ooing and ahhing at the well decorated mall.

"I love the Christmas tree, every year they have all those neat decorations, I wish I had a tree like that!" She said as she hugged herself.

"Uh huh..." Umi trailed off as she looked around for the first store to hit.

Umi had this almost army mission type shopping plan. First she scopes out the stores and visually maps the places, and then she hits them one by one getting in and out quickly. Fuu preferred to browse and look a bit before buying what she came for. Hikaru liked to pretty much touch everything in the store and then maybe buy something.

"Remember, after the fist hour we split up to buy gifts for each other," Umi reminded both girls.

Hikaru nodded. "And if we run out of money we need to head straight for the ATM no questions asked."

Fuu grinned and said, "and if one of us dies, the others will carry on the mission."

Umi stuck out her tongue and headed for the nearest Bath & Body store. "Need some violet scented body lotion and soaps kit for my mother, and a really big bottle of peppermint body lotion for my grandma."

Hikaru nodded, "your grandma showed me her dry spots."

Umi made a face, "when grandma offers to show you anything besides her tea pot collection, tell her you have to go. I'm telling you this for your own good."

Hikaru blinked, "alright fine. After this store we need to go to a hat shop, my grandma shaved her head."

Umi stopped dead in her tracks, "what?"

"She shaved her head." Fuu repeated.

Umi sighed, "well let's hope it all grows back, unlike her eye brows."

"She draws them on now," Hikaru replied.

Umi didn't say a word and returned to looking for the things she had on her list.

Fuu walked through the scented candles hoping to find something for her mother. She found a peach scented candle that was in a frosted glass jar. Next to it was an ever green scented candle, a scent that reminded her of Ferio. He had always smelled like a forest or rustic scent. She found herself reaching for the candle, but she stopped herself. She didn't need anything that reminded herself of Ferio.

Hikaru bounded over carrying six bottles of anti-bacterial soap, all different colors. "Look at these pretty colors!"

Fuu nodded, "yes, but Hikaru-san, they're kitchen soap, don't you think it would be nicer to buy them something... More thoughtful?" Fuu said as nicely as she could.

Hikaru looked down at the soaps in her hands and sighed.

"Well, you could also buy them some hand lotion. They have little bottles over there." Fuu said as she pointed.

Hikaru grinned and hurried off.

The next store they hit was a hat store where Hikaru found the perfect baseball cap for her grandmother. Neither Umi nor Fuu felt like arguing with her over it, and figured that her grandma would prefer the base ball cap anyway.

After that they went to the book store. Fuu loved the book store. Umi headed straight for the romance novels while Hikaru looked through the comic books. Fuu found herself looking through a computer book section. Next to a book on dBASE was a miss placed book, one that belonged in the fantasy section. She pulled the book off the shelf, it had a beautiful castle in the picture.

She returned the book to the fantasy section, though she couldn't find which shelf it went on. She had a hard time finding anything in the store that she thought anyone but herself would enjoy.

After the book store the girls headed upstairs where they knew the music store was. On the way to the music store Umi grabbed Fuu sleeve.
"Fuu, is that Sam?" She squealed.

Fuu looked up to see Sam, his blonde hair gelled back, he was in a jewelry store, looking at a diamond ring. "Yes... That is Sam."

Umi poked Fuu, "you think that's going to be your Christmas present? An engagement ring?"

"I hope not." Fuu replied. "I mean... I don't know."

Umi's eyes grew even wider, "you hope not?"

"Well... You know Umi-san... We're still young..." Fuu said as she looked down.

"But he's perfect." Hikaru pointed out.

And she was right, he was on the foot ball team, a star player, his hair was always gelled back and he wore nice clothes. His family had money, and he was polite. He enjoyed social parties a lot more than high school parties. Her parents loved him, he always came over for dinner on Saturdays. Bottom line... He was safe.

"If he asks, will you say yes?" Umi asked.

"Of course." Fuu replied.

"I hope he does! It would be so cool!" Hikaru said loudly.

Umi shushed Hikaru and the three of them hurried to the music store. Fuu quickly wondered off and browsed the CD's. She noticed a Christmas CD that caught her eye, tracks done by Dido, Brittany Spears, *NSYNC, Steps, and other artists. She put on a pair of head phones and searched the track listing. Then she selected a song by Dido, a sweet and slightly sad song about a man promising to return for a girl on Christmas day. She closed her eyes and listened sucked in by the sad sound to the song.

As she listened she felt someone's hand touch hers, both of her hands covered by someone else's hands. Someone kissed her cheek softly. She thought it was Sam and so she opened her eyes, but instead of seeing Sam, she saw no one.

"Fuu!" Hikaru called in an alarmed voice. "Fuu!!"

Fuu tore the head phones from her head and set them down, an almost chilling feeling crept over her.

Hikaru ran over to Fuu her eyes wide and her mouth open. "I think I just saw Ferio!"

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