A/N:Well, time to update this fanfic! Anyone else hate stereotypes about girls? I effing hate people who say we all have to be beautiful, kind, gentle, sweet little princesses, so to someone who ticked me off royally, I shall present the following chapter to you all!
Chapter 19 Miss Pretty Princess
This was the worst day ever, Kallen Kouzuki thought, as she glared at the hideous fabric that was attached to her, as if wishing it would disappear. Why did she have to go through this bull again? Oh, yes, it was the day of another Royal Ball, and her stepmother couldn't get enough of sucking up to rich, royal people who didn't give a damn about them at all.
"Why the hell do I have to wear this trash? I'm a girl, not a doll," She said scathingly, ripping at the dress with her fingers. It was an ugly pink dress. Right now, her hair was being blow-dried instead of letting her hair spike up the natural way; her stepmother wanted it to look more Britannian. Like hell she would ever be one of those suck-ups.
"Consider yourself lucky you're even going to the ball, Eleven. Normally, I'd leave you behind, but when I heard that his Highnesses Lelouch, Clovis, and Schneizel himself will be there, I had no choice but to bring an ungrateful brat like you. You should really be thankful for the kindness I've bestowed upon you. You'd better hide that arrogant attitude of yours and smile naturally."
"I'd rather not be a plastic doll for men to admire, thank you very much," Kallen snapped, desperately fingering her hair and trying to prevent it from being mauled by the annoying blow-dryer. Her stepmother glowered at her and slapped her hands away from it.
"Know your place, brat! This is for your own good. If you turned up in your regular outfit, you'd just be a fly for them to swat. This way, you look like a real human." She snapped as she turned off the dryer and started brushing through it furiously, as though she couldn't stand the thought of being around her any longer. Good, because Kallen couldn't stand her, either.
"I'm not just an object for people to look at, you know! I don't-" Kallen protested, but then suddenly her mother walked in, carrying a hideous set of earrings, along with a set of ugly slippers. Her mother tripped and fell, breaking the glass slippers and scattering the earrings on the floor.
The stepmother instantly turned her hatred from Kallen and onto her mother, who was staring up at her with wide eyes. "How dare you break my beautiful shoes! Have you no tact or dignity, you piece of Eleven trash?" She screeched like the ugly old hag she was, raising her arms threateningly at her mother as though she was a falcon waving its talons at unsuspecting prey.
"I-I'm sorry...I'll clean it up."
Her stepmother stepped on her mother's hand with her high heels, leaving a mark. "Sorry doesn't cut it, vermin. Consider this mercy from me."
Her mother nodded her head and slipped out of the room, leaving an angered Kallen behind. Embittered, she turned around and glared at her reflection in the mirror, who looked like a total stranger to her. She looked like someone fake, like a pretty little mannequin someone dressed up. Well, she wasn't a goddamned mannequin, and she was not going to play as a puppet in her stepmother's evil games.
She smudged the lipstick by wiping some of it off her, and scowled as she put on the soft silken gloves. Instantly, her hands went to her cell phone and she found herself dialing a familiar number. 'I hope he answers,' She thought.
"Hello?" Said a familiar silky voice, not even showing any signs that she had bothered him at all. "Q1, what's wrong?"
"...RR, I'm glad I could get ahold of you. I wish I could get out of this vile house. I'm stuck recruiting as some stupid princess!"
Rolo chuckled on the other end. "It sounds to me like you've had a tough time. Fortunately, I don't have to deal with those stupid things. Q1, I used to be a prince, too, but I fled that accursed family."
Kallen nearly dropped the phone in shock. "Why didn't you tell me?"
"Kallen, I feel no loyalty to that loathsome family. As far as I'm concerned, they can all die." He said, before chuckling darkly. "Though that is one of my objectives."
Kallen felt awed by him, yet at the same time, afraid, afraid of his madness. "Are you insane?"
Rolo laughed. It was a cold, dark laugh that chilled her to the bone. "As a matter of fact, I think I'm rather sane compared to most of the Britannian sheep who don't resist at all. Wouldn't you agree?"
"I suppose. So what does that make me?" She whispered.
"You're sane, Kallen. A refreshingly sane girl, unlike most of the girls who blindly worship me because of my looks. It's always nice to find a girl who's not obsessed with petty things like fashion and clothes. So when are you going?" He said, smirking on the other end. "Want me to make things interesting?"
Kallen felt herself smile. "I'm guessing you can't go as yourself."
"Unfortunately, no. It's also because Lelouch will be there and I don't want him to see me at all. I have something big planned for tonight, so keep your eyes peeled, Q1. The pawns are about to be lined up exactly where I want them to be, and then things will get truly interesting." He said coldly, but Kallen could feel herself becoming greatly excited the more he spoke.
"Who are you talking to, wench?" Her stepmother demanded.
"Look, R.R, I've gotta go now, so talk to you later!" Kallen said, hurriedly hanging up just before her stepmother snatched the phone out of her hands and stared at it.
"Your boyfriend? Is he an Eleven? You think you can honestly go around fooling around with Elevens?" She snarled.
"At least I'm not an old hag who likes to impress pompous idiots!" Kallen cried, but was struck by her stepmother.
"No more backtalk. Now remember, act positive for the rest of the night. I'm warning you, girl, if I find you've told anyone of your Eleven heritage, you'll be deeply sorry."
Kallen stuck her hands in her ears and ran out, utterly sick of being around someone like her.
She fussed with her nails on the ride to the ball, wondering desperately when Rolo was going to enact his plan. She was getting tired of waiting for something exciting to happen.
"Now, girl, you know the rules, don't you?" Her stepmother warned.
Kallen nodded her head, and got out, quickening her pace and moving forward when she collided with someone. "S-Sorry,"
"Watch your step," A familiar aristocratic voice said, and she found herself staring into a pair of purple eyes. It was Prince Lelouch, staring at her with visible concern in his eyes. It was eerie how identical he and Rolo were. Of course they were twins, but she had at least expected them to be different in some aspects.
"I'm sorry, Your Highness, she didn't know what she was doing, she's just a useless burden. She's worthless! Let me discipline her!" Her stepmother snarled, beckoning her finger at Kallen.
Lelouch frowned. "...Is she your daughter?"
"Y-Yes, er, my stepdaughter," The woman said, instantly detecting the suspicion in the Prince's voice.
"...So you treat your own stepdaughter like this because she made a little mistake? I see what sort of person you are. I'm afraid I can't go along with your order. Shall we dance, Miss Kallen Stadtfeld?"
"U-Um, I suppose," Kallen said, smiling gleefully at the shocked look on her stepmother's face. She was obviously not used to being shot down like that.
"Your Highness, you're mistaken," She said, "You should understand why she's so defective!"
She paused. The crowd was staring at her. Everyone, even the snootiest nobles had turned to look at her, all looking at her with everything from curiosity, disdain, sympathy, or even disgust.
A figure came close to them, eying the Prince. "So, she's your daughter? Why are you mistreating her? That's disgusting that you treat your own daughter like that!" She cried, her lavender eyes flashing with rage. Her eyes softened as she came to rest her eyes on Kallen and Lelouch.
"Euphie, this isn't the time for you to be drawing attention to yourself," Lelouch whispered, shooting a glare at his half-sister.
His half-sister withered under his baleful stare. "Lelouch, she was being mistreated. I had to do something. Defective...I'm assuming you're Japanese?" She whispered the last part, shocking Kallen.
There was no condescension in her tone, no mocking look. Instead, she was looking at her with friendly eyes, genuine kindness.
"Thank you for helping me," She said gently as she went over to dance with Lelouch.
"I was right, after all," He whispered into her ear.
"Right about what?" Kallen said sweetly.
"You're a terrorist, aren't you? I could easily hand you over to my brothers," He said in a deadly voice.
"So what if I am?" She hissed, her hand reaching into her bag where a knife was hidden.
"Don't bother with the knife, I already knew it was there," Lelouch said darkly. "So, who are you affiliated with?"
Kallen noticed Schneizel and Clovis in the crowd, flirting with women and talking to Euphie. She deduced that Euphemia must be a princess, judging from how familiar she was with them. 'Isn't there anyone who can save me?' She thought, shutting her eyes tight. She wished Rolo would help-no, he wouldn't be here, this wasn't his type of event.
Little did she realize that there was a new man watching, dressed in all black. A wry smirk crawled up his face under the mask. "I see...it's time to roll the dice and let one of the pawns fall."
Kallen continued her dance with Lelouch, until she noticed the princes straighten in their seats. It looked like they were ready to announce something. Lelouch let go of her then, and headed back over to where his brothers were.
Suddenly, the room was plunged into darkness. Many screamed, trying to figure out what was going on in the ensuing panic. Kallen's heart thudded in her chest, wondering what exactly was happening.
A new voice came out of the darkness, startling all who heard it. "...Hello there, citizens of Britannia. I welcome you all to this event. I am about to change this boring, tedious ball into something rather...new."
It sounded like a robot, monotone, but she felt relief circle her being. She knew who that was. 'Rolo!'
The lights flickered on, and when they came back on completely, the guests present gasped. Prince Clovis was unconscious on the floor, Prince Schneizel was holding a gun and Prince Lelouch was being held tightly by a man dressed in all black, who also had a gun pointed at his head.
"Greetings, Prince Lelouch. I've wanted to meet you for a long time. My name is Zero."
"Put down my brother, you terrorist!" Schneizel said calmly.
"Ah, Prince Schneizel, the scariest man in Britannia. You look every bit as swinish as the rest of your kind. I have a message to deliver to all of Japan. If you would kindly switch the camera on and let it run, I have something to say."
The guests screamed as the cameras started to run, terrified of this terrorist and what he wanted to do to their prince.
"You...who are you?" Lelouch said, glaring at the masked man, who just chuckled darkly.
"...Me? I'm afraid that I am Britannia's downfall. Allow me to show you what my intentions ultimately are! The Japanese will no longer have to live in fear! I will destroy the vile pest known as Britannia and obliterate it from existence! Britannia is the enemy of the world! Let this be known to the Royal Family!"
Rolo, no, Zero, pointed the gun closer to Lelouch's head.
"Go ahead...shoot me," Lelouch said.
The masked man chuckled. "Every bit as stubborn and prideful as I remember, Prince Lelouch. Unfortunately, you shall serve as an example of what I shall do to Britannia herself."
Elsewhere, a girl with long black hair watched the newsfeed in excitement. Her green eyes glittered in surprise. "How interesting. Zero, huh? I want to marry him and make him my husband!"
"Lady Kaguya..." A new voice said from behind her.
"I don't care what you say, this Zero man is perfect!" She chirped.
A small, white-haired girl with orange eyes watched the masked man in curiosity. "Xingke, who is that man?"
The Chinese man beside her stiffened. "I don't know. He sounds insane to take on Britannia, Tianzi."
Charles zi Britannia chuckled deeply. "So you intend to rebel against me, Rolo? Go on, give me your best shot. Prove to me that you're willing to kill your own brother, then you will be worthy of being my child!" He boomed.
Rolo smirked under the mask. Yes, this was only the beginning of his conquest. Now the foolish world would be forced to bow down to his vision of a new world and a new destiny that awaited them.
'Nunnally, this is one step closer to the world you dream of. Lelouch, this is also one step closer to freeing you from the shackles of your princely heritage.' He thought darkly.
Yes, today was becoming a nice day, indeed. He stared at Kallen. Now Miss Pretty Princess was going to sweep the nobles off their feet. She knew what to do. She was going to show them all how wrong they were about her! The Black Knights were going to change the world.
"He loves to grandstand, doesn't he?" C.C. whispered to herself, her long green hair blowing behind her as she watched both of her contractors. "Will you really kill your own brother, Rolo?"