Once upon a time in a kingdom far, far away there was a widower who had an only daughter, Rogue. The widower, not wanting his little girl to grow up without a mother, married again to a woman named Mystique who had two daughters of her own, Jean and Kitty. As it happened, Rogue's father also passed away and it was then that Rogue's step family's true colours were revealed. She was teased, tormented and eventually forced to be a servant in her own home.


"Hold it, hold it," Kitty said. "Like, I'm one of the ugly stepsisters? Excuse me? Offended much!"

"Yeah, that's what I was thinking," Jean nodded.

This is gonna be just like The Twelve Dancing Princesses where I keep getting interrupted, isn't it?

Sigh.

Number 1, I never actually said you were ugly, so don't jump to conclusions. Number 2, I had to pick someone - two someones - to be stepsisters and you were the logical choice. After Wanda and Tabitha, that is, but I need Wanda for another role.

"Yes!" Tabitha cheered. "I'm not an ugly stepsister, nanny nanny nah nah."

"What do you mean, the next logical choice after us?" Wanda demanded, her eyes narrowed.

Mystique is the logical choice for the stepmother because she actually is Rogue's adopted mother. And you were are the only girls in the Brotherhood, of which Mystique is associated.

"I wasn't always in the Brotherhood," Tabitha pointed out.

Minor detail. But since I need Wanda elsewhere, the parts fell to Jean and Kitty purely because Jean annoyed me last story -

"Wasn't pairing me up with Jamie instead of Scott enough?"

- and Kitty because she's Rogue roommate. Plus you guys get more air time on the TV show. Mind if I continue now?

"Actually I have another question," Kitty said. "Why does Rogue get to be the heroine again? She got the future King last time."

Because Remy is the logical choice for the prince on account of actually being a Prince of Thieves, and he loves Rogue.

Gambit laughed mischievously while Rogue rolled her eyes.

"Oh I see it's logic," Jean said. "This has nothing to do with you being a Rogue and Remy shipper at all."

... Not one bit.

Really.

Okay it does.

Hey I'm the one writing the story here, so if you don't like it, write your own story!


On this particular day it happened that King Jean-Luc -


"Whoa, whoa, whoa..." Professor Xavier cut in. "I miss out on being the King again?"

Jean-Luc LeBeau is the King of Thieves, after all, and he's Remy's father. I can't believe you're getting so upset about not being cast the King again, Professor. I didn't think you were into that kind of thing.


On this particular day it happened that King Jean-Luc was looking out on the palace grounds as the coach bearing his son, the Prince Remy, home from his journey to Assassinasia.


"Assassinasia?" Gambit snickered.

Yeah, and this is the Kingdom of Thievenhiem. Got a problem with that?

"No, no, although technically the Assassins Guild was called the Rippers in X-men Evolution."

I couldn't come up with a good name using Rippers. Maybe Ripperslaven? I don't know. Assassinasia sounded better. Not that it really matters as this is the only mention it's going to get.


King Jean-Luc had been hoping that Prince Remy would concede to marrying the Princess Bella Donna - or any other princess for that matter. Unfortunately, for King Jean-Luc's aspirations, his son was yet to show any interest in settling down.

"This can't go on," he complained to his chief adviser. "It's about time the boy got married. He has a responsibility to the crown! He need to provide grandchil- I mean an heir."

"Of course," agreed the chief advisor, Storm.


"Storm's the chief adviser?" Scott inquired.

Sure. Storm's kind of Professor Xavier's second in command and she used to be a pickpocket. It works. Are you people going to comment on all my casting decisions?

"Well, since we're on the subject," Rogue spoke up. "Why is it that once again I'm stuck being the swamp rat's bride? Just because he's been stalking me -"

"Looking out for you. I've been looking out for you. There's a difference," Gambit interjected.

"Ahem. Just because he's been stalking me is no reason to cater to his... obsession."

"But what a belle femme to be obsessed with, no?"

"Oh please Rogue," Jean dismissed. "You can drop the charade. If you really didn't like him you would have kicked his butt already."

"What makes you think I haven't thought about it and come to the conclusion that he might like it?" Rogue challenged.

"Well, either that or let Logan slice him up."

"... Shut up."


"Perhaps," Storm went on, "you should start looking closer to home."

"Storm! You're a genius!" exclaimed King Jean-Luc. "We'll have a ball and invite all the eligible maidens in the kingdom. One of them is bound to attract his attention. Well, for longer than it takes for him to -"


Hey Jean-Luc, stop with the ad-libbing!

"Well, you do have to admit cherie, Remy doesn't call himself a 'ladies man' for nothing," Jean-Luc pointed out.

Gambit smirked.

"And ya'll wonder why I want nothing to do with him," Rogue muttered.


And so it was that Rogue was busy cleaning the main hall when there was a knock on the door. With a sigh, Rogue put down her broom and opened up the heavy door. Much to her surprise there was a well-dressed, white-haired guy all nicely dressed in royal garments. He thrust an engraved envelope at her.

"The-King-Jean-Luc-is-having-a-royal-ball-in-three-days-and-all-the-eligible-maidens-are-to-attend," rattled off Pietro. "Have-a-good-day."

And in a flash the royal courier had zipped off to the next house, leaving Rogue to stare at the envelope in her hand and the trail of dust Pietro had left in his wake.


"Whoohoo! I-got-an-appearance-this-time!" cheered Pietro.


Rogue headed to the parlour where Mystique, Jean and Kitty were busy entertaining themselves. She knocked on the door frame before stepping inside.

"This just came from the palace."

Mystique took the envelope regally and with a fingernail broke over the seal.

"Hmm, it seems there is to be a Royal Ball in three days," Mystique said as she read the formal invitation inside. "Every eligible maiden is to attend... and to be presented to the Prince!"

"Eee! The Prince!" Jean and Kitty squealed in delight.


"Squealed?" Jean said disgustedly. "I don't squeal."

Kitty giggled.

"Sure you do. I've heard you!"

"I do not."

"Like, you soooo do."

Ahem, do you two mind? Trying to tell a story here.


"That means I can go too," Rogue said.

All three looked at her.

"It does say every eligible maiden is to attend."

"You? Dancing at a ball?" Kitty snickered.

Kitty and Jean looked at each other and cracked up laughing.

"This is true," said Mystique slowly. "Well, I don't see why you can't go. If you get all your work done and find something suitable to wear."

"Thank you stepmother," Rogue replied.

As Rogue departed, trying not to look too happy, Jean and Kitty looked at Mystique in horror.

"Mother! You can't be serious?" Jean questioned.

"I'm very serious, dear," Mystique replied. "I said 'if'."


"Please, like I would ever beg someone to let me go to a ball where there's gonna be a bunch of girls drooling over some guy," Rogue said rolling her eyes, then put on a voice and continued mockingly: "Oh isn't he sooooo dreamy? I love his eyes. I wanna dance with the prince."

"See? I knew you would succumb to my charms eventually," Gambit grinned at her. "Now here's what I'm thinking, cherie. For our honeymoon we can -"

"Get you arm off me, swamp rat," Rogue paused. "And if you don't stop kissing my neck I'll absorb you."

"Now there's a brilliant idea," Gambit exclaimed as he continued to kiss her neck. "Then you can see all my erotic fantasies for yourself and when I come to you can tell me which one you like best."

"... Dammit."

"Does that mean you won't be absorbing me, chere?"

"You suck Remy."

"What was that? You want a hickey?"

"Don't you dare!"


Over the course of the next three days, Rogue was worked harder than she had to in years. All of a sudden everything seemed to get dirty or broken. She had precious little time at night to work on her dress.

On the night of the ball, although Rogue had completed all her chores, her dress was still not done. Mystique, Jean and Kitty left the house with smug little expressions on their faces as Rogue watched them depart.

With a sigh, Rogue headed out to the garden for some fresh air and to clear her head. All she wanted was just one night out away from the house, was that so much to ask?

"Apparently."

Rogue frowned and looked around.

"Who's there?"

"Behind you."

Rogue turned to see a girl about her age, dressed in scarlet.

"Who are you?"

"I'm Wanda, your fairy godsister."


"Fairy godsister?" Wanda repeated.

Well, you're far too young to pull off 'godmother' very well.

"I never said I was complaining."


"I'm here to get you to the ball."

"But the carriage has already left."

"Minor detail. Now, let's see... we need a few things," Wanda considered. "First... a pumpkin."

"A pumpkin?" Rogue repeated.

"And then we're going to need some small creatures."

"Ooookay..."

"And then I suppose I should do something about those rags you're wearing. Well? What are you just standing there for? Pumpkin, girl. Need the pumpkin."

Feeling very much like she was having a strange dream and wondering if she'd inhaled a bit too much of the cleaning fluids the last few days, Rogue headed out into the field to collect a pumpkin.


"Rogue's been sniffing!" giggled Kitty.

Well, wouldn't you wonder about your state of mind if some random stranger started rambling about pumpkins and small creatures?

"I might start wondering about the random stranger's mind."

Point taken, but my version is funnier.


"Okay then," Wanda said gleefully after Rogue collected the pumpkin. "Let us begin shall we?"

Wanda then proceeded to work her magic. The pumpkin turned into a coach. Four mice turned into horses, a rat into a driver and two lizards into footmen. Rogue's rags transformed into a beautiful ball gown and a pair of glass slippers adorned her feet.

"Okay, I've either breathed in more chemicals than I thought, I'm dreaming or this is really happening," Rogue said.

"Oh it's really happening all right," Wanda told her. "Now, off you go. You're already late and you have to get back before midnight."

"I do?"

"Yeah, that's when the spell runs out. Now go. Go!"

Rogue stepped into the coach and they were off on their way.

Meanwhile at the palace, Prince Remy was standing on the dais, looking rather bored as maiden after maiden was introduced to him.


"I dispute that. There's no way Remy would ever be bored being introduced to belle filles," Jean-Luc spoke up.

I never said anything about them all being beautiful. The invite said 'eligible' not 'eligible and beautiful'. And he's not actually getting to say 'hi' to them either. It's just name exchanging right now, no chance for him to use his legendary charm.

"That's okay, Remy would just be giving them all a mental rating out of ten."

"Oui, I'm inclined to agree with mon pere," Gambit nodded.

You've just been doing this for the last hour.

"Okay I'm probably starting to get a little bit bored."

Haha.


Finally, the last of the maidens was introduced and Prince Remy began to take to the floor to mingle and find the higher rating girls.


"That's definitely me," Gambit chuckled.

"That's not something to brag about," Rogue replied.


Before he'd stepped off the dais, however, Prince Remy's eyes fell on the late arrival who had just slipped in through the over sized doorway of the ballroom. As if in a daze, the prince made a beeline towards her, the crowd ceasing to exist.


"Because on a scale of one to ten, Roguey's a sixteen," Gambit told everyone.

"Right, because I love the idea of being numbered," Rogue said cynically.

"Really?" Gambit asked brightly. "Because I'll be more than happy to give every part of you a ranking out of ten. Your eyes, for example, they're an eighteen -"

"I'm beginning to think you can't count."

"The extra is bonus points. Now where was I?"

Being quiet so I can tell the rest of the story?

"Oh. Right."


Rogue didn't notice Prince Remy at first.


"Sucked in," Rogue smirked.


He tapped her on the shoulder to get her attention and as she turned, he took her hand and kissed it gently.

"Care to dance?" he asked softly.

"Ohhh... sure," Rogue replied.

As the couple took to the floor, it was like there was no one else in the room. They melted into each others arms and all sense of time was gone.


"I wish you would melt into my arms more often, cherie," Gambit said as he played with Rogue's hair.

"You would have to write that, wouldn't you?" Rogue complained with a sigh.

Yep.


It was much to Rogue's shock when she realised that it was only a couple of minutes to midnight.

"I have to go," she said abruptly.

She pulled herself from his arms.

"Wait!" Prince Remy called after her. "Don't go!"

"Good bye!" Rogue called back as she ran for the exit.

"What's your name? Where will I find you again?"


"Note it never occurred to him to ask me my name before midnight," Rogue said smugly.

"I was too busy being enraptured by your beauty," Gambit replied defensively.


But Prince Remy got no answer. Instead he got mobbed by all the other eligible maidens who were much put out by his monopolising the one other woman all night. Although he tried to chase after her, all he found was a single glass slipper on the stairs.

Meanwhile, Rogue barely made the coach in time. At that the spell broke when they were still on the road and she had to walk the rest of the way home. All that was left of her evening was the one glass slipper that remained on her foot.

When Rogue awoke in the morning, Pietro the Royal Courier had already been and gone, announcing the news that the Prince Remy would marry the one who's foot fit in the glass slipper the Prince had. Mystique immediately put Rogue to work cleaning up -


"Haven't I done enough cleaning already? Seriously. Vindictive much?" Rogue grumbled.

"When we get married you can always hire your step family as your maids and give them a taste of their own medicine," Gambit suggested.

"When we get married?"

"In the story I mean. Obviously Jean and Kitty aren't your real stepsisters."

"And even if we were, we like wouldn't do that to you," Kitty nodded.


Mystique immediately put Rogue to work cleaning up, making everyone breakfast and generally ensuring the household was prepared for a Royal visit. Jean and Kitty got dressed in their nicest things and everyone eagerly anticipated the impending arrival of the prince.

At last the Royal entourage arrived. Along with the Prince Remy, there was also his best friend and head of his personal guard, Piotr, and his manservant, Scott.


"I'm the head of the prince's personal guard? Me?" Piotr asked in surprise.

"Why do I need a personal guard when I can blow stuff up?" Remy inquired curiously.

It's all about keeping up appearances.

"... Right."

"Better question," Scott asked darkly. "Why am I a servant? Sorry a manservant."

Well for one thing, you don't really think Prince Remy is going to go around touching the feet of every eligible maiden in the kingdom do you? C'mon, gross, some of them might have athletes foot or something.

Gambit laughed at Scott.

Clearly it's beneath a Prince to do such things.

"Clearly," Gambit agreed heartily. "Although I have a question myself: If I'm going around to all these houses anyway, why don't I just recognise Rogue? I mean, she's a seventeen for goodness sake."

"Wait, not that long ago I was a sixteen," Rogue smirked at him.

"You generate bonus points like I generate bio-kinetic energy. The point is, rags aren't going to disguise you. What do I need a shoe for?"

Because that's how the story goes.

"Like, Remy does raise a good point," Kitty nodded. "I always like, wondered why the glass slipper only fit Cinderella. Shoes come in only so many sizes."

Because they're magic shoes. They will only ever fit Rogue's feet no matter what size her feet are.

"Oooh I like that explanation."

"Heh," Rogue smirked. "I know why Remy needs the shoe to find out who he was dancing with the night before. Because it wasn't my face he was looking at."

"I'm such a bad dancer I spent most of the evening looking at your feet so I wouldn't tread on them," Gambit put in quickly. "So I'm quite well acquainted with how your feet look."

"... Must you have an answer for everything?"

"Oui."


With disguised eagerness, Mystique welcomed the royal entourage into the house. The first to try on the glass slipper was Jean. Unfortunately for Jean, the shoe was much too small for her foot.


"Are you saying I have big feet?" Jean demanded.

What was that I was saying about them being magic shoes that would only ever fit Rogue?


Kitty was next, but like Jean before her, the glass slipper was too small for her foot.

"Are there any other maidens here?" Piotr inquired.

"No -" Mystique began when Rogue entered the room.

"Please," she said. "May I try it on?"

Prince Remy looked up at the new arrival and his eyes locked with hers.

"Of course," he said. "Scott, I'll do this one myself."


"Like I'd let you get anywhere near Roguey's feet," Gambit said.

Scott rolled his eyes.


Rogue sat down and Prince Remy knelt at the floor by her feet. Having taken the glass slipper from Scott, the prince took Rogue's foot and gracefully slipped the see-through shoe on. It fit perfectly.

"Here," Rogue said, pulling the other shoe out of her pocket. "I do believe I have its mate."

The Prince smiled as he took the second glass slipper and placed it on her foot.

Thus it was that Rogue and Prince Remy were married and they lived happily ever after.


"Yay!" Kitty cheered.

"That is a happy ending," Gambit said, grinning at Rogue.

"Chellerbelle? Can you do me a favour and not hook us up next time?" Rogue asked. "All this marrying business is getting to his head."

"Which one?"

"I cannot believe you just... oh wait, I can."

Gambit chuckled.

"Now if ya'll don't mind, I need a shower so I can wash off all the Remy-saliva on my neck - why is everyone staring at me like that?"

"Umm, Rogue? Remy gave you a hickey," Jean told her, trying to hide a smile.

"I'm guessing from the look on your face, cherie, that I need to start running right about now?" Gambit inquired, grinning away.

"You are so dead," Rogue glared at him

"I'll take that as a yes. 'Scuse me, coming through."