'Kaeptiv

Disclaimer from the Emerald-Velvet-Touch: I DO NOT own G-Gundam---though I wish I did. I give all credit to Hajime Yadate and Yoshiyuki Tomina it's esteemed creators and---of course---Bandai.

Preview: Marie-Louise is certain she is in love with our dear Rose Knight, and George will not act upon his feelings for the Princess. After the events of the Dark Gundam they rarely cross paths. What if a tragedy opened their eyes---and their hearts---to what's been there all along?

Chapter One---Apres pour La Princesse

Marie-Louise looked out the clear window of her room. She ruffled her pink dress between her fingers unconsciously, her eyes glued to what lay outside. Her favorite Rose Knight---George De'Sand was fencing with one of the hopeful men who would challenge him for the title of her country's Gundam fighter.

His movements had deadly accuracy accompanied by a graceful fluency that he had gained after many years of strict training. His eyes were a slightly darkened version of the bright violet shade she was used to---she had learned that to mean he was in deep concentration, but she also noticed they were laced with his deep passion for the joust. Those eyes—she always felt like she was sinking into those deep pools—being suffocated from the hold they had on her, and she never wanted them to let go.

With undetectable speed he parried his opponent's lunge and twisted his wrist into such a position that the clash of metal sent the shocked man's foil out of his hand and into the air. George smiled and caught it by the steel hand guard in his opposite hand.

He flipped it so as to give it back to his adversary and the man purposefully walked over. Once back in his possession the two knights took on step back, put their foils vertically at the chests, and bowed respectfully---as it was proper custom.

She watched as the defeated knight said something to George, his eyes clearly showing admiration. To which George ran a hand through his thick orange hair and studied the stone path briefly---Marie-Louise giggled---he looked so like the small boy he was years ago---completely bashful and modest. Even after he had helped save the world from the threat of the Dark Gundam he had denied the endless titles of heroism people wanted to crown him with---merely saying that he hadn't done it all himself and he still hadn't achieved the ultimate glory for Neo-France.

The knight laughed at George's modesty as unbelieving as the rest. Though he had to stop sooner than he would have liked at George's displeasure and the oxygen his body demanded. To the untrained eye he didn't look the least bit winded---but Marie-Louise knew better than to judge his appearance. From her experience with George, she could tell that he was probably masking it---though just how she didn't know.

The knight was rolling his neck a bit when his smirk disappeared. Marie-Louise felt her breath catch in her throat---he had spotted her spying from her own window. Her hand moved slowly to the velvet curtain---her hand felt heavy and the curtain even heavier. She didn't know how, but she was frozen in place---immovable and as cold as stone. She desperately prayed for him not to make George aware of her eyes upon them.

Much to her dismay, he pointed directly at her and looked questioningly at George----for any explanation he could give as to why their country's crowned princess was spying on them.

She saw him turn swiftly his hair twisting around him as he did so. He showed her a face marked with confusion, but then mild shock melted it away. Marie-Louise gasped and knew as she looked into his eyes she was becoming trapped again. Violet orbs had found their target and Marie-Louise could not escape.

Surprise was the message they conveyed to her and she soaked up his emotion—as if she had forever been parched. Marie-Louise's deep pink lips parted slightly in confusion---something else was there---it was faint---too faint---so much so she allowed herself to be pulled in deeper in desperate need and curiosity. Her own eyes glazed over and darkened to a stunning emerald---a little bit more and she could read him---her hope rose---she would know...

"Princess Marie-Louise!"

Marie-Louise's body jumped, knocking over the chair she was sitting on. She turned on a dime, her eyes wide. She let her body sag in relief as she saw who it was---Madame Bleu---her old and ageless handmaiden.

"Miss...I..." She started---apparently as surprised as her Princess. She made her way over slowly and bent down to pick up the chair first---setting it in it's rightful place—letting the usual routine calm her before walking over to her charge. Her slightly wrinkled hand was put on her shoulder and concern was written all over her gray-blue eyes.

"Miss Marie-Louise are you alright?"

"Yes..." Marie-Louise took a deep breath to steady her rapidly beating heart; "yes I'm alright. You just took me by surprise that's all, Madame Bleu."

Satisfied with her answer, Madame Bleu let her hand drop from the blonde's shoulder and walked over to the polished oak chiffonier. She carefully looked through various dresses and evening gowns before saying, "Your father sent word to tell you that Le Bal will start in one hour, do you remember Miss Marie-Louise?"

"Oh!" Memory struck her like lightning. "Yes I do. Thank you for reminding me Madame Bleu." She felt her heart drop in disappointment slightly--- slow suffocation by poilitics and suitors she had no interest in.

"Here we are Miss Marie-Louise," Madame Bleu held up a gown that had recently been fitted for her. With great care she laid it down on the down-filled bed a few feet away.

Marie-Louise walked over to Madame Bleu and turned with her back facing the kind-hearted woman. She pulled her hair up and felt the handmaiden slowly undo the pearl buttons in back. It was a memorized pattern they both learned to comfortably fall into with a few friendly exchanges in between.

Marie-Louise stared at the soft carpet beneath her feet and let her thoughts wander to the knight that stole her heart. She was so close to knowing---just one more endless moment and she would have known the truth---was there love beneath his polite and chivalrous facade? Love for her?

French Translation:

-'Kaeptiv: Captive

-Apres pour La Princesse: After for the Princess

-Le Bal: The Ball (or dance)

That about wraps it up. Let me know if it's any good, or if I misspelled anything (Must appease Bill Crosby with the whole grammar thing).

Stay tuned for the next chapter coming soon!

Chapter Two-Apres pour Le Chevalier

Emerald-Velvet-Touch