Disclaimer: All of the characters belong to Disney. The plot is based loosely on a few chapters of Anne of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery.
A/N: This story takes place about a year after Aladdin and Jasmine's wedding. Sorry if it seems too spaced out, but I think it makes the story easier to read.
A/N: You know, it's funny, it seemed a lot longer when I was writing it. Anyway, enjoy! (Hopefully)
Princess Jasmine awoke to the sounds of birds chirping. Sunlight streamed through her window. And she did not even have to open her eyes to know that her husband would not be beside her.
Her husband. Her Aladdin.
She sighed and rolled over. She had the small satisfaction of being right; she was completely alone.
She had hardly seen Aladdin at all over the past two weeks. He disappeared for hours at a time. He came to bed after her and woke up before her. He showed up for meals of course, but always excused himself quickly and disappeared for another few hours.
When Jasmine was with him, she had the feeling he was somewhere else. He would nod and pretend to listen to what she was saying, but Jasmine could see that his mind was not on her. He still kissed her, but usually only on the forehead and then very absently.
Jasmine considered the question that had been bothering her all night: Could Aladdin be tired of her?
Her stomach began to churn as she considered the possibility. They hadn't been married that long, but Aladdin had always been the adventurous type... Perhaps he found palace life, her life, boring! Maybe he regretted ever marrying her!
A salty tear rolled down her cheek at the very idea of Aladdin wishing he hadn't married her.
"Be rational, Jasmine!" she told herself aloud. "You're letting your imagination run away with you! Of course Aladdin doesn't feel like that!"
But as she got up and dressed, she couldn't help thinking that if Aladdin didn't love her anymore, it wasn't even worth the trouble of getting out of bed in the morning.
"Aladdin!" Jasmine called as he brushed by her in the hall without noticing her. It hurt that she had to call his name to get him to pay attention to her.
"Good morning, Jasmine," he said tiredly, kissing her on the forehead. She wrinkled her nose at the forehead-kiss. Noticing her reaction, he asked, "Is something wrong?"
I never see you anymore, she wanted to scream. Where do you go all day? And why won't you kiss me on the lips? But instead she just murmured, "No, I'm fine."
"Good." Aladdin said. Jasmine thought she saw a glimmer of relief in his eye, but she could have been mistaken. "Hey, I gotta go." Aladdin continued. "I'll see you later." With a squeeze of her hand he was gone.
See me later? I doubt it. Jasmine thought sullenly.
Jasmine knocked softly on the door to her father's chambers.
"Come in, come in!" She heard her father's voice, still jovial, but much weaker.
Her father had been ill for quite some time now, and as of late he had been getting steadily worse.
"How are you feeling, Father?" Jasmine asked as she gazed at the bedridden, feeble, old man who was not only her father, but also the Sultan of Agrabah. It pained her to see her kind, loving (if somewhat childish) father as weak and pale as he was now.
"I'm fine, precious." he answered with a smile, and Jasmine thought he did look a bit better than he had yesterday. She and her father talked for a while before the sultan said he was tired and wanted to sleep.
Jasmine left him and continued down to the menagerie, where she found Rajah. It seemed her pet tiger was the only one she spent time with anymore.
Aladdin sat in the palace library, surrounded by mountains of books. Law books, history books, even etiquette books. He wasn't ready to rule a city! What did a street-rat know about laws and manners and the economy?
Ever since the sultan had quietly pointed out that he was sick and that he "might not make it," to Aladdin, Aladdin had been frantically trying to figure out exactly what would be required of him if Sultan were to, well, die. He glanced out the window at the sundial on the lawn. Twenty minutes till dinner.
He picked up another book and started reading.
Up in her room, Jasmine raided her closet for something to wear. She thought, perhaps, if she looked different Aladdin might take notice. Different, of course, meaning "nicer."
She changed into a rose colored off-the-shoulder top and long skirt. As she brushed out her long dark hair, her mind wandered. Was Aladdin with Genie, exploring the desert? Or maybe digging up buried treasure with Abu?
Or maybe he was taking some other girl for a ride on carpet.
That thought, no matter how absurd, made Jasmine brush a little harder. Finally, she tucked an orchid behind her ear and admired herself in the mirror.
She would knock his socks off, she decided approvingly. Figuratively, of course. Aladdin usually went barefoot.
Jasmine walked into the dining room in time to see Genie, wearing his "Kiss the Cook" apron and carrying their dinner. He then poofed himself into a gong and smacked himself with the provided blue mallet.
Jasmine covered her ears and rolled her eyes, though she did notice that the gong had brought Abu rushing in.
"Sorry." Genie apologized. "I didn't see you there." Then he noticed her dress. Poofing into a teenage girl, he exclaimed, "Cute outfit, girlfriend!"
Jasmine had to smile. "Thanks." Her smile faded. "Where's Aladdin?"
Genie replied. "He said he wouldn't be in for dinner tonight." Seeing Jasmine's crestfallen expression, he poofed into a light bulb and turned himself on. "On the bright side, the sultan's feeling well enough to come down. The Rugman is getting him now."
Sure enough, Carpet entered the dining room with Sultan on his back. Jasmine was happy to see that her father looked much better.
Genie poofed into a nurse and stuck an oversized thermometer in Sultan's mouth. When he took it back out, he announced, "No fever!"
"That's great!" Jasmine said, hugging her father.
The sultan nodded. "My energy is back. And so is my appetite! Let's eat!"
Aladdin sighed as he pored through another thick, dusty book. He wasn't cut out for this job. His behavior as sultan would not only reflect on him and on Agrabah, but also on Jasmine.
He skimmed through another book. He wouldn't let Jasmine be embarrassed by him; he loved her!
He thought sadly that none of Jasmine's other suitors had been as naive and inexperienced as he was. Sometimes he wondered what he had done to deserve her.
"Abu!" Jasmine called as she followed the monkey out of the dining room. Abu turned around and looked up at her expectantly. "Do you know where Aladdin is?" She had hit rock bottom. She had finally reached the point where she had to ask his monkey for advice.
Abu let forth a long stream of chitter which Jasmine took to mean "No."
"Ok. Thanks anyway." Jasmine said sadly.
Abu scrambled up onto her shoulder and patted her head while chittering in a reassuring tone. Jasmine didn't understand a word of it.
When he was finished, Abu jumped to the ground and scampered in the other direction.
Jasmine looked after him, then shook her head and headed up to her balcony to sulk.
Abu peered through a doorway. Nope. He tried the next door: No Aladdin. Next door. Not there.
Jasmine sat on the railing, staring at the stars. Sitting out here always reminded her of "Prince Ali" and her first ride on Carpet. She bit her lip. She was sure he had loved her then. What had happened?
She almost fell off the balcony when she heard someone call her name. Someone who was standing right behind her. Aladdin.
He was here! He had come to her! Elated, Jasmine was unable to stop herself from whirling around and throwing her arms around his neck. Aladdin looked down at her, his big brown eyes sparkling. "Hey," he said tenderly. "Abu said you were looking for me."
Jasmine loosened her grip on his neck. He came because the monkey told him to!?
Jasmine must have looked as stricken as she felt, because Aladdin said, "Jasmine? What's wrong?"
Jasmine let go of him and turned away, crossing her arms. "Where have you been?" she asked, wondering if she really wanted to know.
Aladdin tensed. He was ashamed to tell her that he had spent all that time studying things that came perfectly naturally to people like her. So she wouldn't be disappointed in her street rat husband. "I heard your father is getting better." he finally said.
"I suppose Abu told you that, too!" Jasmine snapped. She couldn't believe he was avoiding the question!
Aladdin sensed it wasn't the time to tell her that he had, in fact, heard it from Abu, so he stayed silent.
Jasmine turned to him, hurt shining in her eyes. "Where have you been?" she whispered.
Aladdin stared at the ground as he answered. "I was in the palace library." Once he had gotten that out, he took Jasmine's hands. "Jasmine, I was so afraid that your father was going to die! I don't know how to be sultan! I don't know what to do, what to say, how to act..." he trailed off when Jasmine squeezed his hands. He looked up at her pleadingly, but saw her smiling at him.
"That's all?" she said in surprise. "That's what you've been doing all week? The library?"
Aladdin wasn't sure she was taking him seriously. "I've been reading all sorts of books, and I'm still not even sure what I'm supposed to do! There are so many rules, so many duties, I can barely remember them all! I guess that's why the princess was supposed to marry a prince and not a pauper." he said dejectedly. His next words almost broke her heart. "I don't want you to be ashamed of me."
"Oh, Aladdin." Jasmine said softly. "I could never be ashamed of you. I think you are perfect the way you are. You don't need books to tell you who to be. You're loyal, and caring, and brave, and you've never disappointed me." She put her arms around him and leaned into him.
Jasmine was so relieved. She laughed into his chest, and he pulled away. "What?" he asked.
Jasmine looked up at him. "I thought you were tired of me!"
Aladdin's eyes widened, and he scooped her up into his arms. "No way! I love you!" He spun her around and she laughed again. Then he drew her close and kissed her. A real kiss, Jasmine thought. Her first non-forehead kiss in weeks.
"Wow," Aladdin said. "I may have been preoccupied, but I definitely missed that!" He set her down on the ground, but kept his arms around her waist.
"I missed it too." Jasmine told him. "I'm so proud of you." she said earnestly. "You'll make a fine sultan. And I'll always be here for you. You were silly to worry."
Aladdin grinned. "Maybe. But you were even sillier!" He kissed her again. "Tired of you!" he scoffed. Then he looked at her as best he could without letting go of her. "Is that a new dress?" he asked.
Jasmine smiled and nodded. "I wore it to impress you." she confided.
Aladdin smiled too. "I'm impressed." he murmured.
"I love you."
"I love you, too."
"Say it again." Jasmine requested.
"I love you."
As Jasmine stood on her toes to press her lips against his, she didn't think she had ever been happier.
A/N: So ends my first Aladdin fanfic. And my first one-shot. Kinda short, kinda fluffy. You know how it goes. Oh, and here's the part where I beg for reviews. My favorite part of writing is getting feedback. Just to let me know how I'm doing. Please, please, please make my day and review?