And then I hear it...the sound of her wings...

Which came first, the phoenix or the flame?

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Strange Trees of East and West
Title: Strange Trees of East and West
Fandom: X/Disneys' Pocahontas
Rating: K
Characters: Grandmother Willow, the nonexistant cherry tree of X, Seishirou
Warnings: Crack.
Summary: Sentient cherry trees and sentient willow trees should not necessarily be in the same space.
Author Notes: This is an old crack fic I wrote back in 2011. It made me laugh then and it makes me laugh now, so I'm posting it.

Grandmother Willow'd had some unusual visitors in her time, but this one probably took the cake.

It had been sometime in the late 1990s, not yet the last year, but close. Possibly '97. Whatever the date, it had been the end of summer, and she had been in her pond, that she had been in for the last five hundred years, when a young woman that looked very much like a tree in her soul, had climbed onto her stump.

"Hello madam tree." the maiden greeted, her words heavily accented. "I see you are perhaps like me?" She shook impossibly long hair down, and looked up with impossibly pink eyes. "Yes, I believe you are."

"Hello my child," she said back, no need to be impolite when they were polite first. "If you mean a sentient tree, then you are quite right."

The girl smiled up at her, pink eyes really quite unnerving for some reason, like they weren't supposed to be so lovely a shade. "You're the first I've ever met. But then, maybe America has more than Nihon?"

She pronounced America like the Japanese did, and Nihon came off as unaccented to her old ears, maybe because it was a word of her language.

"I'm not sure how many of us there are." Grandmother Willow answered the girl's question, "But there were more when I was younger. Many humans have not been able to listen and have cut down many of us in the hearts of the woods."

Her eyes could have been sad, if they were not so hateful. "Why do you still live madam tree, if they have cut down so many?"

She frowned and was about to answer less politely when a white hand flew to her mouth. "Oh I'm so sorry, I didn't mean it so callously!" she apologized with a lot of sincerity coloring her tone. "I did not mean to offend you madam willow."

That impossibly long hair sunk down her trunk as she bowed, touching her head to the old wood like one would bow to a god, and she decided to relent. Often, young trees did not realize how their young words could cut until they said them. "You didn't offend me, I still live where I am because this is considered a sacred place among the people who used to live here. They own the land, and refuse to let anyone cut me down. And so I still am here, to talk to young saplings like you."

The girl raised her head, pink eyes glinting impishly. "I'm not entirely young. As in, when I gain a new feeder, I am sort of reborn in the image of what they think I should look like. But not entirely. I still remember who I used to be, but I am different." her smile softened. "My current feeder thinks I should look like his mother, who used to care for me as well."

That would explain some of the hatred in her eyes, she had been old enough to watch many trees die then. "You're not from here little one."

She tossed that long black hair out of her face. "Correct." the word gained an extra syllable with her accent. "I am from Ueno park, in Tokyo, in Nihon." the girl frowned slightly in thought. "Although I believe your country calls it Japan." The adopted word had a tree's disdain for much placed behind it.

Grandmother Willow did not know where exactly it was she spoke of, having long since had any people who were willing to sit still long enough to tell her all of the changing world. Not since Pocahontas really, had anyone spent long hours in her shade, telling her everything they knew.

She still missed that child.

"My feeder approaches." the girl purred, standing up. Her hair fell below her feet, almost into the water. She smirked, an edge of cruelty to it. "He does not approve of when I walk around like this."

Indeed, she could feel someone gently pushing aside her long branches, enough to pass through without stepping on the ends.

But something else about that statement piqued her interest. "When you say 'feeder', what do you mean by that?"

The pink in the maiden's eyes flashed blood red. "Why, my Sakurazukamori kill those who would threaten Nihon, and give me the corpses for nourishment. I do like the taste of fresh death."

"Sakuraki-san," a man's low voice echoed in the sudden silence. "What have I said about using that form?"

The tree-girl pouted at him as he walked into their view. "I found another tree like me. And I thought that it might be considered strange for a giant cherry tree to be walking through this reserve to meet her." She walked down from the stump, to stand next to the man, who was quite tall compared to her.

Grandmother Willow felt thoroughly disturbed by the duo, she could sense, now that she was looking for it, the waves of death and pain that resonated from the both of them.

But the man turned, and bowed to her. "Greetings, madam tree. I apologize for Sakuraki-san bothering you." His eyes were concealed, but his stare burned anyway. "Sakuraki-san, please return to your actual shape."

The girl scowled again, but acquiesced. She raised her hands out to her side, the fingers growing to sticks, the arms to sturdy boughs, as her long hair floated up, to curl and weave into a tangle of well-grown branches. The unnatural white of her skin bleached to the gray-brown of wood, and then to the roughness of bark.

The unsettling pink of her eyes became the flowers that adorned her every branch in a mad riot, an overabundance of blossoms that did not seem to weigh her down at all.

"Happy now?" she muttered, seemingly not hampered from talking at all from the change in shape.

"Very much so." the man murmured, and bowed to her again, never letting the shades slip from his face. "Again, I apologize to you, madam willow, for her disturbing you. My work is finished, we return to Japan as soon as we can."

Grandmother Willow recognized that this man must have been the Sakurazukamori that the younger tree had spoken of, and really didn't want to know the details of his work. "She did not disturb me, but if you must leave, then have a safe trip."

The man smiled, a knife in the darkness, and turned away.

The tree floated behind him, muttering to herself, ghosting away without touching any of her tendrils hanging into the water.

The last thing she heard from the strange duo was the tree gleefully chiming "You're just happy that when we get back to Japan that you can see Subaru-kun again." coming off completely as a little sister teasing her brother.

The man did not deign to reply to her comment, vanishing just as easily as he had arrived.

Grandmother Willow shuddered slightly and vowed to be very careful about what she said to any young trees in the future.


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