Summary: Cinderella - Naruto style.
Warnings: Yaoi, swearing, lemon (eventual) - basically all the good stuff
Other: "Talking" 'Thinking'
Disclaimer: HA! I wish!
Once upon a time in a far away land there was a tiny kingdom, peaceful, prosperous and rich in romance and tradition. Here, in a stately chateau, there lived a widowed gentleman and his little son, Naruto.
Although he was a kind and devoted father, and gave his beloved child every luxury and comfort, still he felt he needed a second parent's care. And so, he married again, choosing for his second spouse a man of good family, with two daughters just Naruto's age: By name, Ino and Sakura.
It was upon the untimely death of this good man, however, that the stepfather's true nature was revealed. Cold, cruel and bitterly jealous of Naruto's charm and beauty, he was grimly determined to forward the interests of his own two awkward daughters.
Thus, as time went by, the chateau fell into disrepair. For the family fortunes were squandered upon the vain and selfish stepsisters, while Naruto was abused, humiliated and finally forced to become a servant in his own house.
And yet, through it all, Naruto remained ever gentle and kind… mostly… For with each dawn, he found new hope that someday his dreams of happiness would come true.
A pair of bright bluebirds twittered as they flew up towards the closed shutter of the window of the high tower. The sun had risen and so had they. But one more person needed waking.
Pushing the dull green shutters open the birds darted inside. Sunlight poured in to reveal a poorly furnished room, a rough single bed being the most notable feature.
Landing on the edge of the bed, Genma turned to Anko, who twittered at him. Genma nodded and they began their mission to try and wake the occupant of the bed up.
The person sprawled in the bed had their pillow held over their head tight. Their legs were thrown out and random angles, a slither of golden hair peeked out from under the pillow.
Anko landed on one side of the pillow, chirping at the gap she found. She darted in as Genma hopped closer to watch.
"Beat it…" a soft voice grumbled from under the pillow. Anko chattered angrily and the voice groaned. Genma twittered loudly at her to try again.
Suddenly, a pair of fingers crept up behind Genma, flicking his tail lightly. Genma shrieked, leaping away from them. Anko followed him, laughing. Genma glared at her, obviously not amused.
"Well, serves you right, spoiling people's best dreams," a musical voice scolded. The birds flew to the window to point out the rising sun, chirping. "Yes, I know it's a lovely morning, but it was a lovely dream too..."
The pillow slid down to reveal the occupant of the bed. Dishevelled blonde hair fell around his tan face in spikes; plump red lips were frowning due to the wake up call. His bright blue eyes took the birds in, amusement flashing amongst the disgruntlement in their depths.
The birds chattered at him and Naruto let out a long sigh.
"It was such a nice dream," he mumbled. "So very nice…"
Anko twittered out a question to the angelic blonde.
"What was it about?" Naruto clarified. Anko nodded. A beautiful smile curved onto Naruto's full lips as he shook his head. "Na-uh, can't tell."
Anko, obviously not pleased with the answer, chirped angrily. Naruto let out a sweet chuckle.
"Why? Because if you tell someone your wish, it won't come true!" he explained. "And after all, a dream is a wish your heart makes, while you are fast asleep."
Naruto ran a hand through his hair as other birds poured in the room to listen.
"In dreams you will lose your heartaches," he continued dreamily. "Whatever you wish for you keep. Have faith in your dreams and someday your rainbow will come smiling through."
Roused by Naruto's voice, the other occupants of his room woke. A tall mouse dressed in a red shirt stumbled out, rubbing sleep out of his eyes. Kankuro smiled as he looked up at Naruto.
Shikamaru, a small mouse, awoke in his bed, pushing his blanket off and rising from the feather. He straightened out his tail and was shocked to see a knot in it. With a sigh he set to work untangling it.
"No matter how your heart is grieving," Naruto murmured to the assembled creatures as Kankuro climbed up onto his bedpost. "If you keep on believing the dream that you wish will come true."
A loud clanging from the palace clock made them all jump.
"Oh that damn clock!" Naruto grumbled as he rose. "Old bastard! Even he tells me what to do!"
The mice frowned at that, shaking their heads. Naruto sighed heavily.
"Well, there's one thing," he said with a soft smile. "They can't order me to stop dreaming. And perhaps someday…"
Naruto trailed off, staring outside at the sprawled out kingdom.
"The dream that I wish," he murmured softly. "Will come true…"
Feeling better Naruto spun around in a circle, partially straightening his bed. As soon as he moved away from it a flock of birds swooped in, some fluffing the pillow before straightening it, others picking up the blanket and correcting it.
Unconcerned, Naruto crossed to his dressing screen. Ducking behind it he stripped his sleeping clothes off, hanging them over the top. Humming to himself he pushed his hair back out of his eyes.
A pair of birds darted towards a bowl of crystal clear water, carrying a large, dry yellow sponge. Swooping in, they dumped the sponge in the water and waited for it to absorb the water. When it was wet enough they took it up again. Or tried to. A handful of other birds dived down to help, carrying the large and now heavy sponge towards Naruto.
Naruto swore as the birds twisted the sponge in their claws, spilling the cold water over his head and body. He scrubbed hurriedly before drying off. He moved over to where his clothes were waiting for him, a threadbare white top and a pair of plain, worn brown pants. He tugged them on quickly before tying on a plain white apron.
Rushing over to the dresser Naruto scooped up a brush. He ran it through his hair half-heartedly while a trio of female mice shook their head at it. He poked his tongue out at them with a small smile. Naruto didn't care if his hair was a mess.
Commotion by the door drew Naruto's eye. Three mice scampered back in, shrieking at the top of their tiny lungs. Naruto knelt down quickly.
"What is it?" he asked Kankuro. Kankuro shrieked, pointing at the door.
"New mouse!" he cried. "New mouse!"
"A new mouse?" Naruto clarified, unconcerned as he rose and poked through a draw. He withdrew a pair of shoes and a dress. "Well, she'll need a dress, and some shoe-"
Kankuro chuckled, waving his arms.
"No, no, Naru!" he said. "Boy! Boy!"
Naruto let out a soft beautiful laugh.
"Well, that makes a difference!" he said. "So where is he?"
"In the trap!" Kankuro shrieked. "The trap!"
"The trap!?" Naruto replied, horrified, as his hand flew to his mouth. "Why didn't you say so!?"
Naruto dashed to his door, throwing it open and hurrying out. He flew down the rickety stairs, ignoring the creaks and groans. He hurried to the small cylinder shaped trap, opening the end quickly.
Peeking in Naruto's heart trembled at the sight of the chubby mouse backed up at the end, obviously terrified.
"Oh you poor thing!" Naruto cooed. "Kankuro, will you please explain?"
"Zuk, zuk, Naru!" Kankuro said as he nodded. He strode into the trap at an unconcerned pace. He approached the tubby mouse smiling. The plump rodent raised his fists in warning, preparing for a fight. Kankuro smiled at him unconcerned.
Naruto couldn't hear what the slender mouse was saying, but whatever it was seemed to placate the chunky mouse. Kankuro led him out to Naruto with a smile. Naruto grinned down at the newcomer.
"Ok, here are your shoes," he murmured, dropping them in front of the mouse. "And a hat…"
He let the small hat fall onto the mouse's brown head.
"And the top…" Naruto held it up before looking the podgy mouse. "Hmm… it will have to do for now."
Naruto slipped the top on to the fat mouse and watched as it slipped back up. The mouse didn't seemed disconcerted.
"And a name…" Naruto mused. "I know! Choji!"
Kankuro nudged his new friend with a grin.
"You like that?" Kankuro asked. "Choji, zuk, zuk?"
"Ahh… Zuk, zuk!" Choji repeated. "Yeah!"
Naruto smiled at the mouse before rising.
"Well, it's time to start the day,"
Alright... that's it for now. It's up to you whether this lives or dies.
Oh, and the start is pretty much exactly what is said at ths start.