Okay, so I apologize for this not being an update of my other Falling Kingdoms story, but I wanted to write a one-shot. And then this turned out to be a bit long and cheesy. So long- freaking 5,000 words just now, there is a part two. And it kind of had to be to combination of the whole Romeo & Juliet, star-crossed lovers, love at first sight thing so yeah, it's cheesy. I'm sure there are some errors, pay them no mind, and don't forget to review because I love those. Also, I will accept writing prompts for the whole book series so I can write more one-shots so there is also that. I think that is all and enjoy the story.
Romeo and Juliet AU
- Magnus POV-
Magnus Damora sighed as he started up at the Mytica sky. It was beautiful- it almost always was- but this particular shade of blue brought forth images of shining blue eyes. Kind blue eyes that belonged to the woman he had fallen in love with.
He groaned. Of course, the particular girl he had fallen for happened to be his own sister. His father would be so angry if he knew, in fact most people would. Lucia would probably be appalled. And Magnus would hate for her to be appalled by him so he kept it to himself, spending his days outside and away from the Damora household.
"Oi, Magnus!" His sister called cheerfully, leaping over the stone wall to sit next to him.
"Hey, Lucia," Magnus greeted as he plastered his face with a easy smile.
"I have just heard news of a ball being held at the Bellos household," Lucia mentioned mischievously. "What do you think of the idea of going?"
"You know of the feud between our families," Magnus scoffed. "We wouldn't be let through the gates, much less the ball."
But still Lucia's eyes glimmered as she leaned in as if to tell him a secret. "It's a masquerade. No one will know it is us," She said excitedly.
Magnus knew there would be no fighting his sister on this, especially when she was as excited about the idea as she was.
"Fine," He agreed and Lucia let out a small squeal of delight, taking his hand- he ignored the tingles going through it- and dragging him back to the house.
"This is going to be so exciting and daring. Who knows? Maybe you'll even find love."
Magnus doubted it.
- Cleiona POV-
"Aron is going to be there," Cleo's sister Emilia mentioned casually. "You know, father has said you two would be fit to marry in just two years from now."
The girl poked her head up from her covers to glare at her sister. "Tempting, but I still don't want to go."
Emilia sighed exasperatingly and held up a necklace in front of her own form as she studied it. "It's technically your ball. Father set it up so you can spend some time with him. You're lucky he isn't just forcing you to marry him."
There was no response from the younger Bellos.
"Besides," Emilia went on. "The brother of that guard of yours will be there as well… Simon. And I would love it if you introduced me."
Cleo rolled her eyes but glancing at her sister, she realized she was being completely serious.
"Oh my Goddess, you fancy him!" She exclaimed.
Emilia blushed. "So what if I do?" She cast Cleo a sly look. "But I will be needing introduction and who better to do that than the friend of his brother?"
It took a second, but soon Cleo dragged herself off the bed. "You're lucky I love you, you know that?"
Emilia smiled. "Thank you."
Cleo couldn't help but smile back. "You're welcome. Now, I hope you got me a mask because I seriously was not planning on going."
Emilia pulled one off the table and held it out to her. Cleo raised an eyebrow.
"Prepared as always, I see."
"I knew you would come," Emilia shrugged. "It just came down to pressing the right buttons."
"Jerk," Cleo joked.
Emilia laughed, tossing her a ball gown. "Get dressed. You've only got a couple minutes."
A couple minutes, the two were headed down the stairs into the main ballroom of the Bellos household, studying the multicolored masks of the mascarade through their own.
"I should probably go find Arom," Cleo said, glancing around for the familiar head of brown hair.
Emilia nodded. "Alright." She shoved her younger sister lightly into the crowd. "Go."
Cleo stuck her tongue out at Emilia before weaving her way around the ballroom to find Aron.
- Magnus POV-
Magnus had to admit, for their families worst enemy, the Bellos' had great balls. Much of the room's occupants were dressed in fine brightly colored dresses and matching masks but never being one for color, Magnus had opted on the darkest blue he could find in his closet- it was more close to black then blue but that was beside the point.
He wound his way to the back of the room as Lucia was automatically spotted by a man who then proceeded to ask her for a dance. It was probably best for Magnus to stay out of her way and not ruin her night with foolish jealousy.
For a minute he just observed the scene- flowing gowns floating about the room in the waltz, soft music played by a merry band nearby, even the food looked delicious. It was much more elegant than any ball the Damora's had ever held.
"Excuse me," Piped up a small voice behind him. "You wouldn't happen to know where an Aron could be found?"
The first word that came to mind when Magnus turned to see his visitor was 'stunning'. The girl- probably just a little younger than him- had princess curled blonde hair and playful blue eyes shone out from under her mask. He found himself wondering what she looked like without her dark red mask. In that instant, Lucia and her dance partner were forgotten.
"Umm... No," Magnus replied, searching his memory for the name. It took a second but then hit its mark. Aron, a nobleman rumored to be a close friend of the Bellos family.
"No," Magnus replied more confidently, sure he was thinking of the right person now.
"Oh," The girl said, sounding a little relieved. "Good. He doesn't seem to be anywhere."
"Have you tried the gentleman's drinking table? He might be found there," He suggested, trying to be helpful, although why was a little unknown even to himself.
The red masked girl shook her head, "Can we pretend you didn't suggest that? Because honestly he's bound to be there and I would prefer to avoid him."
Magnus snorted. "Don't ask for his location then."
The girl looked indignant at his response. "I wanted to know if he was nearby. I thought it was a little odd you were the only one in this corner of the room but now I see why. You are a rude young man, you know."
"Well, what does it say about you that you're in the rude corner as well?" Magnus couldn't help but retort.
The girls mouth fell open. "In the name of the Goddess, seriously, what does it take to just find a nice friendly person to chat with!?"
"Oh so you want to chat now, huh?" Magnus asked amused.
"But you did?"
"To ask about the location of Aron, yes."
"You realize we already are chatting about other topics, correct?"
"You realize we are now shortly chatting about chatting, correct? If I wanted to chat, this would definitely not be the subject."
Magnus studied the huffy girl in front of him for a second. In his silence, the girl apparently deemed this as a change to take her leave, spinning around on her heal.
"Wait," Magnus couldn't help himself. He closed his eyes cursing himself as he wondered why he was doing this. But she was something new and mysterious and most of all not Lucia. He got the feeling he could get used to the quick-witted girl- at least if she didn't kill him first. "Let's say you did want to talk to me. What would we chat about?"
The girl narrowed her eyes. "Nothing I wouldn't dare divulge to a stranger."
"Let us make it so we are not strangers than," Magnus said simply.
The girl studied him for a second. "I'd rather not. You might have some horrible disfigurement underneath your mask."
He got the feeling she wasn't just talking about his physical appearance.
"Fair enough," He replied. "For all I know, you might have one as well."
Magnus swore he saw a twitch of a smile from underneath the girls mask.
"So," She said after a moment of appraising him. Magnus watched as she took a seat near the wall, looking at him expectingly. "If we were to chat, what would you care to divulge to a beautiful stranger."
"Well, if the lady were as beautiful as she seemed to claim, anything," Magnus replied. "But as for you, that depends on what you yourself are willing to divulge."
- Cleiona's POV-
She didn't know why she stayed to talk to him. Cleo could have easily walked away and brought up a conversation with her sister but for some reason she found herself interested in staying to chat with the rude man.
Despite their little bickers as they talked, Cleo found herself growing alarmingly fond of him.
They talked about all sorts of things from the weather- she argued it was a great day but he seemed insistent on the idea the sky was too blue- to politics- he thought the recent ban on street fighting was not going to help anything whereas she disagreed.
But they did agree on plenty of things. The Bellos-Damora rivalry was deservedly there, the food was delicious- they both snuck a bite, and both seemed to care quite fondly for their respected sister.
Cleo was halfway through telling an animated story about sneaking out of her house to swim in the lake in the middle of the winter- no, she did not have a death wish, she had informed the man after he quite politely asked- when a clearly drunk Aron came stumbling over.
"I found you, m' lady!" He exclaimed, looping his arm over her shoulders, placing a slobbery kiss on her cheek.
Cleo's stomach churned in disgust and she could have sworn the man opposite of her moved slightly as if to stop Aron.
She plastered on a polite smile. "Found yourself the Mytican wine, have you?"
Aron grinned down at her. "First thing I saw when I walked in."
The man Cleo had been talking to cleared his throat for a second. "And you are Aron, I presume?"
"That would be me," Aron agreed, his sloppy smile dropping as he caught sight of Cleo's new companion for the first time. He glanced him up and down. "And you are?"
Cleo opened her mouth to defend him but realized, she didn't know the man's name either.
The man didn't answer for a second and Aron rambled on.
"Oh wait, I can guess. I recognize you from somewhere... Don't you think he looks familiar, darling? If only you didn't have the mask on but no! I think I know this without a hint at your face."
Cleo raised her eyebrow, taking the chance to slid out from under Aron's arm right in time.
"Oh!" He cried out drunkenly loud, swinging his arms around wildly to call everyone's attention. "I don't know how I didn't see it before! You're Magnus Damora! You fool, how dare you crash our party on our night of celebration!? How dare you spend your night consorting with your enemy, Cleiona Bellos!? What lies have you been feeding her!?"
Cleo stared at the man in front of her in shock as the crowds around her turned against him. Magnus Damora? She had spent the whole ball bickering and having an actual interesting conversation with her sworn enemy?
He seemed equally in shock and Cleo was almost begging him in her mind to deny it. But he didn't.
Instead, Cleo watched as he mouthed in confusion, "Cleiona?"
Magnus' eyes widened but he was distracted from the thought because Aron had drawn his sword and was now brandishing it in front of him.
"Fight me, you Damoran swine!" He cried, lunging drunkenly with his sword.
Magnus stepsided but soon the whole ball had been drawn to his presence.
"Fight!" Someone called from the crowd.
A few voices joined into the chant as Cleo was unable to prevent anything. Her eyes met with Magnus' and only then did she remember her mouth was still hanging open. It was quickly closed and she looked swiftly away. She did not want to watch the impending fight.
Luckily, Cleo did not have to.
"Enough!" Her father shouted, making his way to the middle of the room. "There will be no fighting in my household. This is a ball and I will not have it ruined." He turned to Magnus whose hand was fingering the hilt of his blade. "I will ask you politely to leave as well as any of your acquaintances. If I see you in my household again, do not expect any mercy."
Cleo watched as Magnus nodded and signaled to someone nearby. A beautiful woman, she couldn't help but notice.
"Let's go Lucia," He said. "There is no need to cause trouble at this time."
The two exited the house, and Magnus cast a final glance at Cleo. She suddenly felt the need to stand a little taller as if he were judging her identity. Neither smiled at each other for there was no reason to smile.
"If you'll excuse me, I'm going to be going to my chamber," She muttered to her father, turning from the Damoran heirs retreating form.
He studied her. "Are you sure you don't want to stay and get to know Aron some more?"
"I think I am quite exhausted for the day," Cleo said honestly.
Her father studied her a minute more before nodding, giving her a kind smile. "Sleep well."
Cleo smiled and nodded, before retreating up the stairs and fleeing to her room. She made her way carefully to the balcony and groaned as she looked over the gardens, placing her head in her hands.
"Why'd he have to be a Damora!?" She sighed. "And better yet, why can't I shake the feeling that I still wish to spend more time with him? I should have known he was a Damora, he was the rudest person I've ever met. Not to mention a vain fellow. But still... A Damora!? To imagine, I found him intelligent, witty, and altogether desirable person to be around. I-"
Cleo hesitated as if unwilling to say what she was about to out loud.
"I wish there were not the feud between our family's so that anyone may court who they pleased."
"Court?" Called a familiar voice below. "Who said anything about courting?"
Cleo was lucky it was dark because her whole face turned red.
"Magnus Damora, my father will kill you if you are caught here!"
Magnus waved the comment off casually. "Many have tried. Now you were saying you wish to court me?"
Cleo huffed, pulling some loose hair out of her face. "Empty words into the empty night," She said simply.
"It turns out the night isn't empty as much as you thought," Magnus replied smugly. "So does that make your words unempty as well?"
"You are intolerable," Cleo responded frustratedly.
Below, she could see Magnus start to climb the low ivy branches leading the her balcony. He paused as he looked up at her. "Actually I believe, and this is in your own words, I am intelligent, witty, and altogether desirable."
Cleo didn't know why she didn't stop him from climbing up. Or maybe she did, she was just too stubborn to admit it. "I also said rude and vain."
Magnus hopped onto the edge of her balcony, sitting unproperly close. "And yet, you wish our families did not feud so we could court," He whispered in her ear.
Cleo was a red as a tomato. "Insufferable as well. Did I mention that?"
"You haven't," Magnus informed her amused.
"Yes, well now I have," Cleo said briskly. "Now if you'd excuse me, I have better things to do than to indulge the likes of you. I'm going to go call the guards."
Magnus scoffed. "No you won't. You wouldn't dare miss another chance to have another chat."
"Vain," Cleo repeated. "I have added 'vain' to the list haven't I? Even so, I shall add it again because it's twice as bad as I previously believed."
"I'm only stating the truth, my lady," Magnus replied smugly.
Cleo narrowed her eyes. "And should I dare ask why you were found underneath my balcony, risking your life to see me? If I were to guess, someone has similar thoughts as myself."
"Yes, well, I suppose I am similar in thinking you yourself are vain, intolerable, and insufferable."
"You would not be here if that were entirely true, Sir."
"I truly think it," Magnus told her. "But I also share your last thought as well."
"Which one?" Cleo taunted.
Magnus glared. "I... can't help but find you desirable as well and wish to court you."
There was silence for a moment. So long, it got to the point where Magnus swung down over the side as if to climb down.
"This was a stupid idea, I'm sorry to have bothered you," He muttered.
"No!" Cleo quickly exclaimed, grabbing his hand. "It's just- we can't. Our fathers..."
"-Will kill us." Magnus finished, raising his eyebrows as he glanced at their hands. "Worth it or no?"
Cleo frowned, removing her hand. "I don't know."
"Neither do I," Magnus smirked. "Want to find out?"
Cleo studied him once more. "I don't see why not."
Magnus smiled- a real smile not a smirk or taunting grin, Cleo noted- and leapt to the ground. "Am I correct in assuming I will see you tomorrow?"
"But where could we meet?" Cleo asked curiously.
"The orchards just past the village," Magnus suggested. "Friar Nicolo will keep our secret."
"Cleo!" Emilia was heard calling from inside the house.
Cleo glanced desperately inside to see if her sister was close before turning to Magnus, shooing him away.
"I will be there. Now go! Before someone sees you!"
Cleo caught sight of his gleaming dark eyes from the top of the balcony and for second she couldn't help but think it'd be worth it, no matter what happened. It wasn't love yet, she was almost positive, but with a little spark it could burst into flame.
"Cleiona!" Emilia called again and Cleo watched as Magnus swiftly ran off into the bushes.
Her sister came up behind her and leaned up against the balcony.
"Guess what you forgot to do? I believe it's time for you to introduce me to Sir Simon."
For the first time in a while, Magnus dreamt of not his sister, but another beautiful maiden. He didn't know what it was about Cleiona Bellos but for some reason she was a fire he was inexplicably drawn to. She made him want to go against his cruel father in order to see her. Surely, courting a charming young girl should not be against the rules. It was frankly a bit ridiculous- their family feud- now that he thought about it. It had seemed perfectly reasonable just yesterday but now... Now he realized the Bellos' were people who had done wrong in the past, just as the Damora's had.
Now, he realized there was really no specific time the two had arranged to meet. It all had been a bit rushed the other day.
Sluggishly, he pulled himself out of bed and pulled on a fine tunic. He pulled his way through the kitchen, grabbing a loaf of bread, thanking the kitchen staff, and ended up outside just as the sun finished rising.
It did not take very long to reach the orchard he had suggested to Cleo, each step became more confident the farther he went.
He arrived to see a pretty blonde picking an apple off a tree and rubbing it off before taking a bite. She would not have been recognizable without the mask if not for the fact no one but the youngest Bellos daughter could be just as stunning.
"You're early," He couldn't help but comment.
"As are you," She replied without looking over. "Then again, we never said a time so why don't we both say we made it right on the dot."
Magnus chuckled. "Alright then." He held up the loaf of bread. "I was saving this for lunch but I suppose it will do for breakfast."
Cleo plucked another apple off the tree. "Better than my breakfast. Here, we can share."
She turned towards him and tossed him the extra apple. "Where shall we eat?"
If she had any reaction to seeing his face without the mask, she didn't show it. Magnus made sure to do the same- it was hard not to stare a little.
"Why, right here!" He said, sitting down on the grass under her apple tree. "You have no problem getting your skirts dirty, do you?"
"Absolutely not," Cleo responded simply, sitting across from him.
Magnus smirked, handing her a broken off piece of bread. Cleo took it but was silent for a minute.
"So, do you see a horrible disfigurement, now that you see my face without a mask?" Magnus asked, taking a large bite out of his half of the loaf.
Cleo managed to look him right in the eyes. "I fear to tell you, but I must admit, it looks like a gargoyle."
Magnus raised his eyebrows. "My gargoyle face compares none to the wicked hag I am looking upon."
Cleo's eyes widened and Magnus feared he had taken her joke to far as she began to fan her face.
"I am insulted, good sir. How do you expect to land a lady if you call them hags?"
"The same way I land my fortune," Magnus said haughtily. "I expect it to be simply brought to me."
"Am I special then?" Cleo asked, taking a bite out of her apple, her eyes gleaming. "For I was not brought to you as you expect."
Magnus thought that she truly was something special- she had already rid his mind of thoughts of Lucia and no girl he'd ever met had humor like his- but he'd never admit it. But any other answer, he was afraid she wasn't quite as joking as she appeared with this question.
"Yes," Magnus admitted. "You surpassed all expectations of a Bellos." He paused. "-and a hag."
Cleo laughed and Magnus wondered what he would have to do to hear the sound again.
The two ate in comfortable silence as they finished up their bread and apples.
"Do you stay here often?" Cleo asked curiously as she brushed the extra crumbs off her hands.
"Often enough," Magnus replied. He surveyed the surrounding area. "It's quiet. Outside of the bustling market."
Magnus could tell from her facial expression she had not been expecting that answer.
The expression of surprise was quickly gone and she held out her hand. "Help a lady out, would you?"
This time it was Magnus' turn to be surprised but he stood up and took her hand, pulling her up alongside him.
"Thank you," Cleo said, and he could tell it was more out of habit than anything. Magnus found he was okay with it. Because she also sounded like she meant it.
"Anything for a lady," Magnus mocked.
"Have I been traded from a hag to a lady now?" Cleo asked brightly.
"Depends. Have I been traded from a gargoyle to a prince?"
Cleo looked him up and down, her eyebrows pinching together as she thought. "Small steps. I am a lady and therefore you will be a lord."
"I'm already a lord," Magnus countered.
"Son of a lord," Cleo corrected. "Besides, you were just previously a gargoyle. I would take the upgrade in title."
"You never changed titles."
"I went from lady to hag to lady once more, whereas you went from a sir to gargoyle to lord. I am willing to bet you got the best end of the stick."
"Is not a lady below a lord?" Magnus asked.
Cleo held her chin higher, a smile resting in between her lips. "A lady is never below anyone she does not wish to be."
"What of the King?" Magnus countered.
"Even the king!" Cleo proclaimed. "Now I bet you were wishing you had the title of the lady, do you not?"
Magnus couldn't help but snort. "I wouldn't trade it for all my manhood."
"You have a small manhood then," Cleo replied.
Magnus just stared at her, continuing to be more surprised the more she spoke. He opened his mouth to say a comeback but found there was none.
Cleo burst out laughing. "I take witty off the list. All you've got is your intelligence and desirability now and the latter is still in question."
"You seemed pretty certain of it last night," Magnus replied, attempting to gain back his feet.
"Empty words," Cleo said confidently.
Slowly, Magnus drew himself closer to her, finding he was unable to pull away. "How confident are you of that, my lady?" He whispered.
He could feel the girl shiver slightly. "They were empty words," She repeated.
Magnus brought his lips to her forehead. "You don't sound so confident now."
"This is inappropriate behavior, Magnus," Cleo interrupted.
Magnus sighed and drew back. She had a strange expression of both victory and disappointment.
"It's inappropriate just to be together." He mentioned.
Cleo's eyes met his for a second and he thought they were so much prettier than the blue of his sister's eyes.
"I'm about to say something probably very inappropriate for the situation then," She replied.
Magnus' mind automatically searched for anything she might possibly say but she spoke before he could decide on anything even remotely possible.
"I think I am in love with you."
Everything froze. Magnus thought of Cleo in her ball gown last night, her cheery laugh, her joking attitude. He knew it hadn't been long but he could positively reply back, "I think I am in love with you as well."
He didn't know why but Cleo laughed. And he couldn't help but chuckle as well.
A minute later, his lips met hers.
"This is inappropriate," Cleo muttered again.
"You know, we can fix that," Magnus replied.
"We can get married."
Cleo stared up at him and even he was surprised at the words that passed through his lips. But he never felt more positive about anything.
"Okay," She replied simply.
There was no point in waiting after they had decided it. There was no ring but that didn't seem to matter. There would be no dowry for Magnus. There would be no one who would know.
But there was a certain freedom to it. A lovers secret. Something that would be just theirs.
Magnus lead her to the Friars house where a friendly looking red head answered the door.
"Magnus!" Friar Nic exclaimed, opening the door wider to let them in. "Nice to see you again. And you, Lady Cleiona. An odd sight seeing the kin of rivaling houses together but I suppose odder has happened."
"Friar," Magnus interrupted. "We wish for you to marry us."
"Call me Nic, how many times do I have to say that?" The friar rambled on for a second before pausing as if just hearing Magnus' request. "Did I just hear you correctly?"
Cleo squeezed his hand in assurance to both him and herself.
"We wish to be married," She repeated for him.
Nic laughed, flinging himself onto a chair as he studied them. "A Damora and a Bellos being united in marriage. Never thought I'd see the day. Last time I saw you-" He gave a pointed look at Cleo "- you were insistent on the hatred of his family. What did I tell you? They weren't so bad after all, huh?"
Cleo tried not to blush at the embarrassment of her previous beliefs.
"Hatred?" Magnus chuckled.
"Hush," Cleo responded. "You were the same."
"Love changes a man apparently," Magnus mused.
"Or simply day with a pretty lady."
"Maybe it was both," He winked.
"Flirt," Cleo said, making a disgusted face.
Friar Nic coughed into his fist. "If I tell you I can marry you two, will you take your flirting elsewhere?"
Cleo pouted at Friar Nic. "Ah, you're just a grumpy friar. Not to worry, you'll find someone to love as well someday."
"I already did. Alas, they died by their family's hand," Friar Nic replied curtly before smiling kindly at her. "But not to worry. I will not stop anyone else's love for the sake of my loss."
"You'll marry us then," Magnus interrupted again.
"Of course!" Friar Nic grinned. "Gather in the fields and I will bring the holy book."
Magnus nodded curtly and left outside leaving Cleo with the friar.
"It's not too late to change your mind, you know," He joked. "You could always give the old friar a chance."
Cleo laughed. "You're here to marry us, not joke around."
Friar Nic bustled around the room as he tried to find a copy of the bible. "Acting the jester comes with whatever I do... Ah ha!" He exclaimed as he found it, holding it up for her to see. "Ready to become a wife?"
Cleo felt her heart beating in her chest and butterflies in her stomach. She nodded. "Yes."
They met in the middle of the wheat field. There were no flowers for Cleo to hold or rings to exchange. There was no fancy clothes or guests, just what they had brought with them. Friar Nic stood between the two with his bible and nothing else.
Cleo didn't pay much attention to what Frair Nic was saying. She was too busy watching the man in front of her. Her enemy, her lover, the man she had met just yesterday. He seemed very confident in what they were doing, the corner of his lip twitched upward as he met her eyes. She took a deep breath.
This was against everything she believed in her whole life. It was against any logic in her body. The idea of love strong enough to drive her to agree to this seemed fictional.
But meeting Magnus' eyes, she decided there was nothing else to do but marry him. Because she was certain she was in love, no matter how quickly it had formed.
"You are now husband and wife," Friar Nic announced.
Without prompting, their lips met for the second time.