Kiss of an Animal Princess
Disclaimer: I don't own Princess Tutu!
Author's Note: Kero is the only one who shall seem like he's Japanese-speaking. This is because his character is based off of the standard shouta lolicon a little. Think of Honey-kun from Ouran Host Club.
Sorry for the long delay. Wow, I must say, I've waited a long time to write this chapter since I first developed the plot.
CHAPTER 9: Hearts and Parts
Drosselmeyer's stories never wandered far from the truth. Whenever a prince or noble went missing, a story about one of many possibilities was written by him and his ethereal quill. The stories became so uncanny and ridiculously consecutive that people began to report him for doing suspicious activity. However, there was poor evidence provided by the locals of Swan Kingdom's capital, a town simply named Lake. Even so, they prosecuted him on those charges and even killed him against the accordance of law.
The buildings were constructed out of glass stronger than diamonds from a lake in the middle of the royal courtyard. This lake was garnished by foliage and ravishing blue roses. A hedge maze formed guardian walls about it.
Currently a woman with nothing but platinum white hair and a crown of feathers tucked under that large body of hair was tripping over herself. Prodigious yellow wings adhered to her spinal cord below the waist from the position that the wings on Princess "Tutu" had herself. It was an everlasting source of yellow brightness.
"Keep your composure, your highness." said an aide of the Queen.
"How ever can I keep my composure! My daughter! She's here, somewhere, in this land! For years, I have lost my husband. I have lost my daughter. I lost a piece of my own heart trying to rule Azure and keep the Swan Kingdom secure from the threat of the Mermaids all by myself. So much as happened… I can't let that Mermaid princess lay a finger on her, now that she's finally returned! I won't have it!" Yelled the Queen like never before.
Her crystal blue eyes verged on tears but now was not the time to mope.
"We shall work to retrieve your daughter safely, Queen Odette!"
Now was the time to search.
Kero looked like a prince in his robes and Fakir looked like a peasant in his rags. Gloria still remained a human and Ahiru still remained a duck.
Ahiru's eyes blurred for but a minute as they fluttered open. It appeared as if Gloria and the Frog prince were engaged in conversation long before she had came to consciousness. Their heads both snapped in Ahiru's direction at the tiny disruption of silence and presence that indicated her consciousness.
"She's awake." Kero informed Gloria.
Ahiru and Gloria shared a glance of encounter. What was this Gloria girl doing here? Better yet, what was Ahiru doing here? The last that she remembered was a book and a light show of some sort. She did not even know if any of it was her own choice.
Ahiru embarked on a spinning walk in wonder at her surroundings, a vast dead plateau of greens, browns and dismal grays, and soon bumped into Fakir's slumbering body.
Fakir was here.
For some reason, anxiety had been lifted from her soul. Leaving Fakir alone, miserably, would've been the worst feeling. But he would have had Gloria, if she was still there.
Ahiru queerly managed to place her bill on Fakir's hair. What was their connection?
Kero kneeled down before Ahiru and Fakir. His green hair was a mess no neater than Mytho's hair as usual. His eyes were as bright as she remembered them.
"Are you alright, Ahiru-chan?" asked the prince out of care.
Pathetic. Men were more focused on a duck, rather than a true girl right before their eyes. That feeling of inadequacy left Gloria feeling a Katamari of very old feelings she was tired of having again.
"What's the point of talking to a duck?" She irritably complained, against her normal kind nature.
Ahiru was not flabbergasted. Was this the perfect-mannered lady that gave her competition?
"She's not just a duck." A glare began to tear apart Kero's bipolar face.
"What makes her so important?" A rotting jealousy began to climax in her voice and personality.
"She's right there, she can hear you!"
Ahiru felt agreement course through her veins like adrenaline. Ahiru raised her head with determination.
"What makes you so sure that she is human enough to understand any of us?"
Veins throbbed in her head with undisputed anger as she flew to Gloria's ankle and clamped on it as painfully as she could.
"Ah! Stop it, you monstrosity!" The word "monstrosity" was a harsh and far too severe a term for what Ahiru truly was at the moment. She wagged her leg, thanking Drosselmeyer for giving her a conservative dress that showed nothing of the knickers hiding between her legs. Ahiru wanted legs like these so much! Such beautiful legs.
"Ugh… what's going on…" Fakir rose from his spot like a surviving warrior awakened from unconsciousness on the battlefield.
His hands searched for the pendant that had found a path below his collar bone. It was gone.
Then he geared his attention towards the awesome sight of Ahiru biting Gloria's ankle, Gloria attempting to kick her off and Kero struggling to break up the meaningless fight. Ahiru, Kero, fine, sure. But Gloria?
"Gloria!" Fakir cried. He was indeed surprised.
All three of the fairytale characters froze in their place and gawked. Fakir planted his feet firmly on the ground, clenching his forehead.
"Why are you here? Why… am I here? Where are we!" Fakir asked questions incessantly.
"All of us are now located on the land of Azure. I'm sorry I could not tell you Fakir." Gloria ridiculously tried to explain.
"What are you doing here?!" Fakir snapped.
"I was originally a mermaid and a princess, heir to King Neptune's throne. My title is Gloria Neptune. But I wanted nothing more than to be a land dweller and find love. Drosselmeyer gave me that wish."
"Quack!" Ahiru's eyes bulged.
"A… mermaid?" Fakir was shocked, to say the least. "A princess?! Drosselmeyer?!"
He was disappointed in Gloria. How could she not tell him of such important details?
"I'm sorry." Gloria whispered below her breath as she stared with ignominy at her feet, ashamed of her deceit.
Kero cleared his throat.
"Now… Lady, duck and gentleman, the answer to our problems is right here! You could fight but there more important issues happening! This is the temple The Temples Kokoro. Step inside and ... well... what exactly does happen... Something spiritual I suppose..." He mumbled.
Fakir had revolved and determined the size of the temple immediately.
"But… it's so small." He calculated.
Gloria and Kero shared an exchange of conclusive understanding by looking in depth into each other's eyes. They nodded and only Ahiru noticed it.
"Let's head inside, ne?" Kero smiled falsely.
"There is something you people are not answering. If I had no reason to be here, than why am I? Is there some connection between me and this world?" Fakir was mildly upset but it began consume his behavior as of now.
"You must find out about it yourself." Kero began.
"In there." Kero drew his attention with his index finger to the darkness crawling in the temple.
The entrance to the temple was stone and chiseled to perfection with features that seemed so fine and real that it seemed the place had been petrified by a beast's doing. A network of stone flowers, vines, leaves and butterflies crowned the top of the doorway. There were no windows and no other exits. The roof of The Temples Kokoro was a stout spiral. An elixir of magic swept past it all and a pillar of magic the colors of the rainbow forever extended itself to the sky. It was not blinding, just fascinating. Nothing was revealed in the ajar entrance but pitch black.
They were steering him in a oblivious, vicious cycle.
"I guess there is no other way for either of you to answer my questions? I… still don't know how to feel about any of you. About you, Kero, and you, Gloria… But there is no doubt in mind what I feel for Ahiru. This is progress." Fakir's face was a taciturn one.
"It is agreed that we enter Kokoro then, ne?" smiled the Frog prince.
"I'm entering, regardless of what either of you do." grunted the former knight.
"Aren't you afraid, Fakir-kun? You have no sword to duel with!" Kero asked.
"I do not care. I should not need one." Fakir concluded.
Worry crossed Kero's face but Fakir was right. This was The Temples. Kokoro was a mind over matter area. There was no need for a physical weapon. It would do him no good.
After such a long moment, Fakir proceeded. He only stopped until he felt a tug on his tethered pants by the ankle. Ahiru clamped her bill to his fabric.
"What is it, Ahiru? We have to go inside." He was being foolhardy and reckless.
Ahiru thrashed her wings and lopped onto his stomach, hugging him with her wings. She was slipping due to the lack of fingers but Fakir's arms broke any chance of her falling.
She found a comfortable spot within Fakir's arms. A blush crept between her eyes.
Without another word, they stepped inside. It would seem a jealous Gloria was to follow them but Kero stole her wrist.
"Gloria." Was all Kero could manage.
Guards adorning wolf fur, swords and spears, encircled the remaining duo and the Temples. A barrier had formed in the entrance, a blockade of magic that resembled the elixir of magic and colors that ran out of Kokoro.
"Our arrangement is off, Gloria. Fakir is here. You are here. We did not plan for it to be this way." Kero frowned lightly. His sadness was sincere but there was no reasonable explanation why it would be.
"What?!" Gloria gasped.
Two of the guards seized both of her arms.
Kero could not bring himself to look any of these dishonest people in the eye. He was no better than them.
"Nice work, son."
The royal leader himself appeared. He looked no different from Gloria's memories; haughty, conceited and wrong. She could notice some features more vividly this time. His hair was long and hazel, of course, and his face had not aged since the last time she met him as well. Some facial hair survived the years but it was never longer than a shave.
"King Sebastian, we have obtained the mermaid princess!"
"I see that. Good work." The vicious man walked towards the vulnerable lass and tilted her chin upwards with a gentle thrust of his hand. He forced her to look him in the eye.
"My, is she pretty. You are that mermaid for years ago that spared Mytho. I never forget a single detail. I see that you have legs now. I might make good use of them."
Gloria's eyes widened. His own eyes were furiously amber and sharp slits divided them.
"Confine her in the carriage. Bond her legs and hands together. But for now, we must wait."
Gloria was stolen away to a different location.
"Curse you, Kero!" Gloria yelled at the top of her lungs.
As soon as she was dismissed, king pulled his attention to Kero.
"Good job, my boy. Good job." King Sebastian murmured.
He pet Kero numerous times on the head as if he were the dog instead of himself. The urge to break down was unbearable but Kero could not wane from his determination.
Ahiru and Fakir were isolated from the outside realm as soon as they set foot inside. The room was but a giant box. Mirrors engulfed all 4 walls. Pillars made of any ornate platinum with a hue of purple tinting the scene stood in the corners.
"This place is small." Fakir could not help but stare.
Ahiru faced the west mirror and Fakir faced the east.
A girl resembling Princess Tutu stood before Ahiru. No, that was Princess Tutu! Her smile was so serene that Ahiru could remember how it felt when she smiled in such a way.
The girl was naked on every inch of her body. Her divine feathers were there, yes, yellow wings of a fairy perhaps below her waist on the back and she did not have much of a chest but there was nothing to censor her graceful body in the most intimate parts and Ahiru flushed out of embarrassment.
"Quack, quack, quack!" Ahiru threw her head back and forth gazing to Fakir to the girl on the mirror.
There was no reaction from Fakir. He was still in a stupor, staring at the grandeur of the puzzling place.
The girl on the mirror giggled, politely, and brisk fully "ran" away by pointe. Would it be impossible to follow herself? Ahiru could only find out.
She fluttered from Fakir's arms to the floor. He still was not disrupted.
"I'm sorry. I have to go see this for myself." were the words in Ahiru's heart at that moment.
She soared away, chasing her identity.
"Ahiru?" Fakir had not noticed her departure until now, "Ahiru!"
He tore his face to every angle but still found no trace of the duck. But he did see something new.
A haunted landscape appeared before himself and a vibrant full moon caught his eye within it.
"No matter how many brothers and sisters I have or where we are, we will always watch you, Fakir. You belong to us."
Finally tearing his vision away from the mirror, he discovered his entire world was this melancholy landscape. Every leaf was as scarlet as Rue's eyes and the collection of them forced him to recall the look that ravens give people like him. After his parents died, after he almost died several times… the feeling that it restored in him was never old.
It was a bank of darkness with blue overtones. Ahiru was tired from flying so she rest on the earth beneath her webbed feet. She lay down and shut her eyes for her host's display.
Ahiru's eyes opened in a heartbeat.
"This is Kokoro. A place where destined people come to resolve the questions in their hearts."
"Who am I? I am not only your humanity but an important entity of your soul."
"Do not get me wrong. I am not completely you. Do you think if you were to become human, you would be exactly like me?"
Ahiru had no idea what would happen if she became human, she never thought of what would happen to her mind and spirit.
"That is a misconception. Drosselmeyer did not curse you to be a duck. He cursed you to lose the part of your soul that has the grace and heart of your dance. The curse was broken only when you agreed to fulfill the role he wanted you to in his story and came forth to save Mytho's heart. By doing this, he separated your heart as well. Not into shards but into different entities. To be whole or at least Princess "Tutu" you needed a piece of someone else's heart."
"I am not completely you. The duck you are now is also a part of your soul. When you were still a little Princess, everyone was so enraptured by your perfect dancing that they could not see your mistakes and flaws. They overlooked them. The duck you are now holds an important part of your soul. Without you, we can't be Princess Ahiru."
The information overwhelmed Ahiru.
"Do you think I am perfect because you are? No. I am the grace and the great things you are. But I am nothing more. I am not you completely. We need to be together in order for you to become whole."
She kneeled down to the duck and hugged her dearly in an instant. Ahiru liked the feeling of this endearment. It was herself after all.
When she opened her eyes, the clone was gone. However, Fakir was there behind her.
She was no longer a duck. Ahiru was standing as Princess Tutu. She wore her signature white Tutu of course and pink slippers. She was no different than she used to be, however, she could feel her personality sharing a place with "Princess Tutu's" for the first time. Fakir was fastening the pendant of a crescent moon around her elaborate neck. The one that once appeared to him before their arrival to this land.
"Fakir?" Ahiru beckoned, pivoting her head slightly so she could see him.
A smile on his face warmed the atmosphere. It was warmer and lovelier than any smile he had worn before.
Sharing his feelings of love was a waste of time and energy.
"Ahiru. Have a good life."
He caressed her cheek with his lips briefly, tasting her heavenly skin for the first and last time.
He locked the pendant together. A dreadful sound of pain shook the foundation beneath their feet.
"Fakir!" Ahiru turned around at once. Something was transforming Fakir!
Fakir withdrew from Ahiru, his rags ripping due to the sudden growth and stunt growth of his anatomy.
"Fakir!" Ahiru screamed at the grotesque scene before her.
He whirled around and ran on all fours as he became a large raven-black wolf to wherever he could. Where was the haunted landscape with the moon? Where he could he hide his feelings of pain forever?
Unfortunately for him, he ran outside of Kokoro where his fate was planned. Guards captured him with a nuzzle and shackles. It was not long until he gave in but he had no rest as Ahiru followed him and was snatched by King Sebastian.
"Patience is a virtue."
Fakir barked relentlessly and resisted with all his might. But some magic easily put that anger to submission. He fell unconscious.
"Fakir!" Ahiru's new lungs nearly shattered at the cry.
"Look upon the face that has done all this for you and wishes to marry you." Sebastian clenched Ahiru's torso and prodded a finger under her chin to guide her to a scandalous Kero.
"I don't want it this way, otou-sama…" Kero murmured, crestfallen. He could not face Ahiru in the eye. He could not even face Fakir, even though he lay dormant. What was even worse was that he wanted things to happen this way. It was so much easier when he did not consider the feelings of Ahiru and had not known who Fakir was.
"Where has all your gusto gone, my boy?"
"Men, put Fakir with the Mermaid. What fools, bargaining everything that made them powerful for what? Love? Freedom? Rejection and containment are quite the contrary. What fools."
Ahiru did not acknowledge Kero with scorn or contempt but pity.
"Put Ahiru away in a sealed compartment with her new beloved. We have plans to finish." He smiled maniacally.
Giant sea horses with the wings of angels pulled floating carriages and whips cracked at them as they came to a halt.
She had finally just regained her humanity. However, this worse than any experience she had as a duck. She could almost hear the laughter of Drosselmeyer, laughing at her irony.
El gaspo. D: R&R