Wish-chan’s Reflections at the Completion of the Third Arc of New Trials about CCS and Characters…
October/November 2007… My Reflections on Card Captor Sakura after eight years (going on ninth I think)… I can’t do math anymore, and I used to be a Straight-A math student ^^;…
My first introduction to CLAMP’s Card
Captor Sakura might have been around when I was Sakura’s age—11ish. My
Japanese/Korean friend showed me a Sakura sticker and I thought, ah, she’s
cute. She also gave me Sakura stationary—you know the pictures with Sakura and
Touya with sunflowers? And one with Tomoyo and Sakura in kimonos, facing each
other. Back then, I did not know what CCS was, what CLAMP was, just that the
art was pretty. CLAMP began Card Captor Sakura in 1996, I believe. My first
introduction to CLAMP works was Magic Knight Rayearth, which I adored, my
favorite character being Umi—and the music was GORGEOUS. This was before the
advent of internet in my life. Then, Card Captor Sakura began airing in
So, I began writing New Trials around this time eight-ish years ago, so I did a little commemoration. I finally updated the New Trials layout, which is probably as ugly as before but a bit more organized. Hopefully the links work now—I don’t know how they got so mess up. @.@ Funny thing is, I was once able to do html and java and c++ and all this computer programming stuff back in high school. Lol… Look what’s happened since. I don’t even know how I made my main page—I don’t think I’ll be able to reconstruct it if someone told me to, hence it is going to remain that way. Either way, I wrote New Trials throughout high school, through college, and now I entered the working force, probably going back to school in a year or two. So, I’ve hung on through all these years and am grateful to all those who have stuck by this epic of a fanfiction, and welcome those who have discovered New Trials more recently. It’s exciting where this little idea in a 13 year old’s head has lead to. So, I know there are many aspiring writers out there—I am one too. Read, write, be happy—for me, I think writing is one of the best meditations out there. Writing makes me feel truly human, meaning, when I write, I try to put myself in each character’s shoes, feel everything that character is going through… Hence, it is sometimes very draining writing New Trials too, going through all the roller coaster. ^_^ That is part of the reason why chapters take a long time to come out—I need to get into the right mood to write it. But sometimes characters do their own thing, and events are not always under my control. What was important to me when I began New Trials is to make a believable continuation of CCS, of course with my own flairs and original characters and author’s digression. But, when I read fanfics, I like reading stories that I believe actually are the characters that the original mangakas/authors created. That’s why when I started writing, I wanted to be as faithful to the original characters and premise of CCS as I could, also keeping in mind that the characters also are aging and going through puberty @.@. So it makes me happy when I get reviews like, “Oh, it seems like a natural continuation to CCS,” or “They should make an anime of NT!”
There are some
things that I need to go back and edit, such as typos, grammar mistakes—that
happens when you’re pressed for time; everything’s a tradeoff. I can get out
chapters faster or I can spend another week editing—I hope people can overlook
the occasional typo since I’m not a professional writer with editors and such.
^^ Also, after hundreds of pages, you start seeing things that don’t exist.
Secondly, I began writing this before CCS ended; however, I don’t think it is
that inconsistent since I did guess correctly that Syaoran returns to
My Reflections on Various Characters…
Unofficial List of Characters in New Trials
Kaitou Magician/ Mizuki Kai—I don’t even know how I came up with him; it’s not like I began New Trials intending to introduce him. He just appeared one day, as a guest character, and has stuck by since. In each character, I put a little something of me into them. In Kaitou-kun, this is escapism. Out of any of my characters, I think Kai-kun is the most multi-faceted, sort of an antithesis to Syaoran, who I think despite his inability to express his feelings honestly in words, is still a very straightforward character. So is Sakura. lol… He’s a character I want to strangle, hug and cheer up. About Kaitou and Meilin-chan… Don’t laugh if I state, it’s not like I created a love interest for Meilin because I felt bad for her—in fact, they never were really meant to become an item. Chemistry just happened when these two characters started interacting with each other, so it just happened. ^o^
Li Meilin—I think I mentioned before that I hated Meilin when she first appeared in CCS, because I was jealous, I guess. I was afraid S+S wasn’t going to happen. But that last episode when she leaves Japan is heartbreaking, like the flashback to when they were children. With her, I can utterly sympathize with the hardships of one-sided love, because I know what it feels like… Meilin’s, like Syaoran is a very straightforward, direct person; she likes what she likes, doesn’t like what she doesn’t. That’s why I think Kai baffles her, because he’s the meandering sort. We’ll see what happens with them because in essence, they do have some irreconcilable differences.
Daidouji Tomoyo—is probably the character that I am most like, actually. I’m sort of the listener/encourager/wacky ideas person in real life. Because of that, I know what it is like to be in that position where you’re always expected to be calm and supportive. Hence, I wanted to portray a darker side of her in the Phantom arc. She’s the character I’ve been keeping abay to develop further in the future.
Akagi Aki—he began as “the other boy in the class” simply because I needed some male students. And then, he became Akagi Aki, who has quite an interesting backstory that will be revealed eventually. He’s sort of the normal guy, the average guy in comparison to all the other wacky male characters in CCS and NT. I like him because he’s the typical, uncomplicated egotistical guy in contrast to all the other angsty NT males. ^^
Hiiragizawa Eriol – The character that sort of grew on me while writing NT. What can I say. His intentions are good, usually, and I know what it feels like to be a 100 year old soul trapped in a kid’s body. I’m not sure is he can be 100% trusted though.
Mihara Chiharu and Yamazaki Takashi – Chiharu’s always been my favorite among Sakura’s girl friends because she’s just, how should I put it, solid, dependable, practical and supportive. Rika’s rather secretive, as we all know, and Naoko’s rather wacky. Chiharu is that friend who watches all the drama going around her and is supportive, no matter what. I also like to think of Yamazaki-kun and Chiharu being the resident long-term couple. The normal couple, the one that squabbles, makes up, supports each others as friends through ups and downs. There’s always that couple that remains constant and unchanging, and that’s Chiharu and Yamazaki-kun.
Sasaki Rika – Back in CCS, there were whispers that Terada-sensei and her relationship is rather tabooed in the pedophilic sort of way. But now that she’s older, it’s a little less irksome, I think. My theory is that the older you get, the less age difference matters. Hey, and CLAMP likes teacher-student relationships (3 just in CCS, along w/ Suki Dakara Suki right after). And big age differences ie. Clamp Campus Detectives. The girls were in kindergarten for heaven’s sake.
Yanagisawa Naoko – Ah, the least developed of the girls IMO. But I don’t think she’s the hiding, brooding type. I like having someone like her around. If you haven’t noticed, she’s the news-conveyer most of the times. I like to think of her as being the nosy, inquisitive type. Also, the only completely single, untaken, undated, without a crush CCS girl left. Well, Miho doesn’t count because she’s brother-obsessed, Eriol-protected. Lol…
Chang Eron & Erika—the villains who are not so villainous? I actually pity the two too much. I mean, I began not liking Erika, though she was my character, but I think over the course of two years, maybe these two have grown the most. Their theme song would be “Winter Light” by Linda Ronstadt (and there’s also a Sarah Brightman version) from the movie Secret Garden OST.
Kinomoto Sakura—it’s interesting rewatching CCS episodes and thinking, OMG, Sakura-chan was sooo cute. I just want to hug her—it’s strange going from being around her age, to being around Nadeshiko’s age when she had Sakura. lol… I have done my best to be as faithful as possible to CLAMP’s characters while still attempting to develop them and let them mature with age and experience. Well, poor Sakura-chan’s going through quite a crisis in recent chapters! But Sakura-chan is always Sakura-chan. CLAMP has created one of the classical, unforgettable shoujo icons and female heroines.
Li Syaoran—my darling Syaoran takes himself too seriously, which is probably his downfall. For a moment, I’d like to diverge and talk about Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles, which as you know takes our favorite couple and puts them in an alternate universe. TRC SPOILERS… and a moment of digression… You’ve been warned.
Wish-chan’s Reflections on Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles
I tried not to read the TRC manga in the beginning because I didn’t want to get influenced when writing NT, but recently, I’ve given up and caught up to the recent chapters. It was sort of an enlightening process in a way, because it was good to see that I got some things right about CLAMP, ie. obsession w/ twins… In one way, it overjoyed me to see the BEAUTIFUL new artwork of S+S older, but in another sense, I felt sort of robbed of the happy ending that Sakura and Syaoran got in the manga in CCS. But I’ve sort of learned to separate CCS Syaoran and Sakura from Tsubasa Syaoran and Sakura. But I LOVED the music in the Tsubasa anime and the seiyuus did a magnificent job as well, so they’re voices are what I imagine them to sound like in New Trials. And I LOVE Maaya Sakamoto as Tomoyo-chan… it’s like my dream come true, my favorite seiyuu doing older Tomoyo’s voice. One qualm is I loved Tomokazu Seki as Touya—He IS Touya… But other than that, I tried to differentiate CCS characters from TRC characters… until Real!Syaoran showed up. And he’s just so reminiscent of CCS!Syaoran, that it makes me really sad. In a good way. I mean, he uses the same spells, the sword, has that same attitude CCS Syaoran had in the beginning. It’s getting confusing with too many Syaorans… Sigh… But it’s not a bad thing. Either way, my point is, the original Syaoran (the Clone) didn’t FEEL like Syaoran initially when I started TRC, so I could think of them as separate characters who just look alike. But then, when Real Syaoran appeared, it almost felt like he was CCS!Syaoran in an older form. I tend to think of Syaoran clone, who is always so hardworking, earnest and smiling as to be a testimant of what Syaoran would be like after growing up with Sakura as a childhood friend, since he becomes friends with Sakura since age 8, if I’m correct. And Real Syaoran is a testiment of what Syaoran would be like without having known Sakura—unsmiling, serious all the time, bearing all the burdens of the world on himself. And Clonie without a heart, after eating Fai’s eye, is hot.— I always imagined what Syaoran would look like w/ blue eyes in order to envision Li Ryuuren. I don’t know how CLAMP does it, but they fulfill all our fantasies. I meant to say, Syaoran without a heart is like this crazy beast. and shame on him. Anyway, I was really distraught over the more recent events in TRC, which is the reason I had to catch up with it because there were now two handsome Syaoran’s running about. I think three Syaorans are more than I can handle. Four, including New Trials version. lol... Also, did I mention how much I love Yui Makino and Irino Miyu’s voices as Syaoran and Sakura? (I know, I know)… They sound so cute when they sing together in “Yume no Tsubasa,” I can’t help thinking of Star-Crossed. sniffles… but anyhow, I need to think of TRC S+S as separate from CCS, otherwise it’ll be too depressing, because there’s something very disturbing about all the events that have been happening in that universe lately. Then again, New Trials has not been the cheeriest either lately, but at least it’s not been a blood-bath.
Dec 2007 note… So how is it that Clone!Syaoran is sooooooo hot without his shirt on? I think CLAMP mocks us. I really really thought I was over this silly fangirl stage, but when we’re thrown images like this, what can I say? It is sad, it is disturbing, but older Syaoran half-naked (whether he is the killing machine clone or not, is undeniably sexy.) Sigh… I am in a constant dilemma whether to feel seriously worried for where TRC is heading or squealing with the gorgeous new art. It would be quite interesting to write a Card Captor Sakura and Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles Crossover one-shot where the S+S+S+S+S all gather. Can you imagine?
Flash of light and from the air drops down Kinomoto Sakura from CCS!
CCS!Sakura: Hoe-e… Where am I?
TRC!Syaoran: In the
TRC!Syaoran: That is right. We must collect the feathers to restore your memories to you.
CCS!Sakura: Syaoran-kun, why do you look so sad?
TRC!Syaoran: … Turns around and sees half-naked, blood-soaked Syaoran wielding a long katana running forth.
CCS!Sakura: Hoe… There are two Syaorans! Which one is which?
Clone!Syaoran: Stares at Sakura with one blue eye and one brown eye. Must… collect feathers.
CCS!Sakura: Syaoran, what happened to you?
CCS!Syaoran: Leaping down from the air. SAKURA! Stay away from him! He’s nothing but a heartless, killing-machine clone!
CCS! Sakura: HOEEEEE!!! Three Syaoran’s!
CCS!Syaoran: Hurry, we must find a way to return home!
CCS!Syaoran: We must call upon Yuuko-san.
TRC!Sakura: Drops down from sky into CCS!Syaoran’s arms. Opens eyes. Syaoran?
CCS!Syaoran: Ah! Another Sakura!
^.^; sorry for my wacky digression. Confusing, eh? My brain got a little addled ever since I completed Chapter 53. I need to write some slapstick fluff or something to recover. Then again, I like TRC because it’s like CLAMP decided to write a fanfiction of their own works, (convinced after the perfectly wonderful teddy-bear sakura petals fluff ending in CCS manga that they need to make Syaoran suffer and torture him as much as they can.) Not only that, but TRC’s plot is getting more and more like a crazy fangirl’s fanfiction on crack. Lol… But it’s gorgeous, exciting and entertaining at a point in life for me when very little entertains me anymore. Only, I’ll get depressed if I try to think of CCS!Syaoran somehow being related to TRC!Syaoran, especially the Clone. Poor Clone—I don’t see any redemption for him now. Sigh…
Continuation of Reflections of CCS and NT Characters…
Tsukishiro Yukito – our Snow Bunny’s probably the one I have the most difficulty getting inside of. Then again, he is an androgynous non-human that is sort of schizophrenic… lol… to put things bluntly. Then again, Yue is the bishounen of CCS and is uber cool.
Kinomoto Touya – character that’s least developed over the years? lol… I love Touya—he’s everything I ask for if I had a brother, and it’s always been my dream to have an older brother. If Syaoran didn’t come along, Touya might have been my favorite male CCS character. But NT is slightly skewered towards Syaoran’s POV, hence Touya may come across as slightly intolerant. Still, it is all out of love for Sakura, and remember, Touya also has second sight, so he has a better idea of what’s going on than people assume he does. It didn’t take me long to figure out what career path Touya would follow—I thought the medical field was logical because his mother dying from a disease, his good grades, etc. And he would look hot in a lab coat. #.#
Li Ryuuren—I imagine Syaoran’s father to be the handsomest and manliest out of all the male characters in New Trials. He’s very confident and poised… unlike his son, who I think is so awkward and all over himself and very uncouth in social situation. I blame that to Syaoran growing up in an all female household. I wouldn’t call anyone in New Trials mean, but Ryuuren, I’d say, was a mean person initially.
Amamiya Nadeshiko – in CCS, she was so sugary, so idealized, so angelic. I guess you can’t speak illy of a dead person, but she was just this beautiful face in photos. I liked most Sonomi’s flashbacks the most of Nadeshiko being clumsy, falling, tripping and calling out “Sonomi!” showing flashbacks of her to when she’s a little girl to when she announces she’s going to marry Kinomoto-sensei, which sort brought Nadeshiko down to earth and I began imagining what she was like as a girl. Sakura’s sort of tomboy, so I imagine Nadeshiko to be really feminine but she’s also a klutz—a beautiful, graceful looking girl who’s a walking disaster. She grew up quite lonely so she’s the type of girl who would attach herself to a person, ie. Ryuuren, Sonomi, Fujitaka…
Mizuki Miara – Ryuuren may have a mean streak, but Miara has a sarcastic, blunt tongue which misconstrues her message sometimes, which made Nadeshiko intimidated in the beginning. Ultimately, she has a good heart and became good friends with Nadeshiko—Sonomi never really learned to like Miara. Well, Sonomi never really liked anyone who Nadeshiko liked. I didn’t know quite what to make of her, but I’ve grown to like her now that she’s out of her coma state, because she’s not a typical housewife-like mother.
Mizuki Kaho – I was initially resentful of her for ditching young Touya in CCS. And I shared Syaoran’s suspiciousness of her. I never really got why Syaoran was so repelled by her though, when he was attracted to Yukito’s power of the moon. I liked little details about her from her characters stats, like getting lost all the time.
Ruby Moon – I’m kind of disappointed that Nakuru never got more developed beyond being Eriol’s sidekick. Nakuru’s character design is quite pretty, actually. He/she amused and annoyed me whenever she tried to interrupt Touya and Yukito. I would have liked to see more of her interactions w/ Yue though—they are such extreme opposites.
Kero-chan – Did you ever wonder if Cerberus the guardian ever felt resentful that he’s a beast while Yue’s in human form? Lol…
Suppi-chan – I might like Suppi better than Kero (if I had to live with one of them)—Kero-chan is such a noisy, energy-consuming, high-maintenance pig. (j/k, j/k Kero-chan—we all love you best!) Then again, I’m more of an Eriol than a Sakura. Sigh… I’m even AB bloodtype like Eriol. You notice in anime/manga, all the villains or the psycho sadistic freaks are bloodtype AB. Great.
The Great Five—I had a blast creating the Fabulous Five—it’s a pity I don’t have a chance to write more about them at this point. I think I have enough ideas about them to give the Great Five their own epic drama. But most likely I’ll share little snippets of their story relevant enough to NT.
of Edo—an interesting
character that I could develop more w/out giving out plot secrets. >.<
He’s from an austere samurai family so I guess had a strictly traditional
upbringing. He’s the smiling, “nice” sort of person, so I think he’s probably
the scariest out of the Great Five. He might also be one of my favorite
original characters albeit I don’t get a chance to write about him. Best
Lord Landon Reed of England—hot-tempered and arrogant. I think the love triangle back in the days would have been quite interesting. I sort of imagine him to be the bishounen type with his long blond hair. The kind of person that looks like some Michelangelian angel until he opens his mouth. Think of it this way—he has Eriol/Clow’s sadistic streak, along with a temper to match it. At least Eriol/Clow hides it well. lol.. He left England, heartbroken because his childhood love, Katherine, chose his older brother Lawrence over him. Has a strained relationship with his father, Lord Clarence Reed but a tight bond with his mother Lady Eleanor Cleau, a Frenchwoman. Either way, he and Shulin are similar types of people. Father of Clow Reed.
Li Shulin of Shanghai—I chose the characters for Shulin and the kanji for Hayashi to both mean “woods.” What was the truth of her heart? I wonder. She is the Chosen One of her time and her closest friend is her cousin Li Clan Protector Li Shenji. Supposedly grew to be the most beautiful woman of the East. Mother of Clow Reed.
Mizuki Mayura of Kyoto—as they (who is ‘they’ ^^;) say, her story is probably the most tragic out of the Great Five. She is the calm, level-headed one of the group, miko-sama of the Tsukimine shrine. Talented in archery and has a younger brother named Keigo. Childhood friends with Hayashi, so knows some things about him that no one else does…
Chang Ruichi and Risa… ^-^ The twins who started it all.
Shirose Subaru … His last name isn’t revealed until Chapter 52. >.< Another guest character that stuck by. The funny thing about the children is that when you’re nice to them, they get even brattier, but when you’re mean and scary, they become more obedient. Got his last name from “Seishirou,” inverting Shirou and Sei… Shirose… for those of you who are X fans. (Sugoi Kirei-chan noticed @.@) I’m not really into X because it’s too much destruction going on in there, but the artwork is undeniably CLAMP at their all-out magnificientist. NT Subaru’s got too much life and energy to be in the hospital, but his disease wasn’t really just out of the blue actually. The first guy I liked in junior high had brain tumor… he eventually got treated and better, luckily, but his older brother died of cancer. For me CCS is about fantasy and fluff and magic and extravagance, but at the same time, what makes a piece important is the humanness, sincerity of emotions, uncertainty, all those things which makes CCS not just another cute shoujo animanga but this long-lasting anime classic. I guess that’s why I liked how CCS included all these flashbacks of Sakura’s great-grandfather, young Nadeshiko, Fujitaka and Nadeshiko’s grandfather’s conversation… Issues about family and relationship, daily matters in contrast with the splendid battles and struggle to prevent destruction.
Nina-chan… Poor thing… She’s a spoilt brat, but I think I was like that too when I was her age. And she already lost her first love… sigh… She and Su-chan would have made a cute couple. I can imagine them going to school together and always bickering.
Tamemura Asuma and Akagi Arima… The resident long-term couple. Kind of like Chiharu and Takashi’s relationship, but they might possibly be even more immature. I like to think they deserve some happiness. But long distance relationships are difficult, and it’s hard when you’re in complete different career paths. More on them coming up in the Fourth Arc.
The Kinomotos: Fujishinta, Fujishika and Fujiko. And Fujitaka. I get confused myself, and there’s a chapter where I think I messed up the names. I called Fujishinta, Fujitaka’s father, Fujishinto by mistake. Anyway, it’s a pity about Fujiko. She would have made a good aunt to Sakura. As for our favorite father, Fujitaka, I feel guilty for introducing Ryuuren into the storyline and making people route for Nade+Ryuu. See, we all like the bad boys, but when it comes time to marrying, pick the good ones! Ahem… Advise to Meilin-chan. ^^;
Then, there are the three new characters…
Li Leiyun, Li Jinyu, and Kara… I’ve been dying to introduce them to an already large-enough cast. But more of them in the Fourth Arc!