Hello everyone, and welcome, to the fourth installment of my "Give the Nobodies Another Life" series! Yeah, I know. Four! Wow, who would have though I'd make it this far? This story is HETEROSEXUAL, holy crap. So if that offends everybody please just hit the back button now. (Lawl, just kidding. Cause, you know, usually people make a big deal out of homosexual material so I thought I'd turn it around and make a funny. I fail.)
If you're new to my fiction, know that I am prone to go on rants and tangents at any given moment, deal.
Also, DISCLAIMER TIME!
I don't own KH or the characters. Duh.
Now listen, and listen well. This story takes place in a time where racism was common. I am NOT, I repeat, NOT a fucking racist. There will be characters that use words like "nigger" and "caffer" and other derogatory language. But bear in mind that this is a fiction story and for the life of me, if I hear somebody say they are offended by the use of the words I'll brand you the biggest moron ever! Words are nothing more than words, and a person who is not able to rise above them and keep their head held high without lashing out immaturely is just lowering themselves to the very definition of the word "nigger" itself, which means IGNORANT. That being said, these aren't words that are going to get slung around and used every chance I get. Not all the characters are racist and not all of them treat blacks badly. You'll see what I mean. So just relax.
Now, all that aside let me explain the writing style. Most chapters will start with Larxene writing in her diary, and then jump to a flash back, then back to her diary and then to another flashback. If this starts to get too confusing, let me know and I'll change the style. Hopefully though, it'll be simple enough to read.
Other than that, enjoy!
March 03, 1922
This is my second attempt at keeping what my mother refers to as "a well documented account of the life of a young lady," but I hear most normal people call it a diary. And I can tell you, diary, my mother is anything but normal. She has the most ludicrous ideas stuck in her head, and one of those ideas is that I marry some man I've never met. I suppose that is why I turn my pen to your pages today. If I had friends I would be asking their advice and not wasting my last few moments of sanity pouring out my frustrations on you, but I digress.
Diary, this whole mess started ten years ago. I was nine, and just as happy as could be for any regular little girl. I'd just arrived back from boarding school when my father decided he wanted to lay upon me the biggest brick he could find…
"Daddy! I've been waiting for you for nearly an hour now." Larxene tapped her foot impatiently and stared up at her father with crossed arms. "Why weren't you here when I got back!? You were supposed to pick me up from the train station!"
"Now, now darling…" Vexen cooed to the irritated little blonde before him. "Daddy was just returning from a trip himself." He pulled out a large package from behind his back and handed it to his daughter. "I brought this to you from abroad, from London."
Larxene squealed and snatched the package out of her father's hands. "Oh, what is it Daddy!? Is it a doll!?"
Vexen chuckled and patted Larxene's head. "Well, open it and see."
"Oh! I bet it is a doll! You always bring me dolls back from business trips!" Larxene tore at the silk ribbon binding the lid to the top of the package and cast it aside. She thrust way the stuffing in the box and reached inside but she found nothing. "I-its empty."
Vexen shook his head and took the box from his daughter's hands. He peered inside and then turned the opening to face her. "What do you see at the bottom?"
Larxene squinted into the dark hole and reached in to pull out the thin piece of paper that she hadn't noticed at the bottom. "A photograph." She examined the picture closely and furrowed her brow. A boy, no older than fourteen, was staring at her with a very cocky smirk on his face and some form of prestigious looking uniform covering the rest of his body. She stared hard at the photo before turning her gaze up to her father. "You brought me back a photo?"
"He is the son of a British business associate of mine. Isn't he quite handsome Larxene?" Vexen placed a hand on his daughter's shoulder and smiled. "Your mother has been bothering me for a while to find you a suitor, and I think he's just perfect. She'll be quite pleased, I think."
Larxene curled her nose in disgust and threw the picture to the ground. "No! I wanted a doll! Why didn't you bring me back a doll!?"
"Larxene, you are nine years old now. You are far past the age of playing with dolls. It is high time you become a young lady, don't you think?" Vexen picked up the picture from the floor and handed it to his daughter who quickly forced it away again. "Now, Larxene, don't make me be stern with you."
Larxene grabbed up her dress at the sides and glared at her father as she turned to run away. "I hate you daddy! I hate you forever and ever!"
After that day, my father and I never had a decent relationship and I blamed my mother for this because, after all, it was her idea to find me a suitor in the first place. And now today, on the eve of my nineteenth birthday, I was to meet this suitor whom I have loathed since I learned of his existence. And although I could refuse him, regretfully there is a new factor in this situation. My parents are becoming progressively bankrupt. Unless I marry this man, we could lose our mansion, our fortune, and everything good we've ever known; and though I am loathe to help my parents, this also effects me. It looks as though I have no other choice.
But this evening was a disaster...
Larxene sighed and pulled the last hot roller out of her hair. She fluffed the curl with her hand and gave it a spritz of holding spray before turning her eyes back to her makeup. Her young servant, Naminé, was busy behind her trying to tie her bustier as tightly as possible. "Don't try too hard. The last thing I want is to appear too sexual. Remember, I'm really not trying to impress this man."
Naminé nodded quickly. "Yes, I know. But Miss Larxene, he did seem awfully handsome when I caught a glimpse of him arriving. Perhaps this arrangement won't be so bad."
Larxene let out a low snort and rolled her eyes. "I'm only doing this so that my family won't go bankrupt. If my mother wasn't such a racist, we'd be able to have black servants instead of white ones, and you know full well that black servants make a lot less money that white servants. That's half our family's money problems right there! And then my mother pouring all our money into prohibition groups a couple years ago wasn't the smartest idea since a good portion of our livelihood was alcohol exports. All of it just to spite my father, and now she wonders why we're broke."
Naminé shrugged and tied Larxene's bustier tight. She then pulled the woman's white gown off of the mannequin in the corner and helped her get dressed. Once Larxene was completely dressed, Naminé stood back and looked at her with a smile. "Well, you may not want to impress your suitor, but I don't think it can be helped. You look absolutely beautiful, Miss Larxene."
Larxene sighed and looked at herself in the mirror. "I do. Though, I suppose it can't be helped." She sighed and clamped her earrings on her ears. "Well wish me luck. I'll need it to survive this encounter."
Naminé giggled and ushered Larxene out the door. "Go save my job!"
Larxene rolled her eyes and started down the hall. This stupid débutante ball was her father's idea. A chance for her to get to know her suitor in the guise of a harmless social gathering that put her on display. But this was anything but harmless. It was humiliating. She spotted her father waiting for her at the top of the stairs and stormed over. "Well, I'm ready for you to parade me around like a piece of meat."
"Don't be so volatile." Vexen held out his arm for his daughter. "I'd think you'd be happy that I rolled out such an extravagant event for you. Most young women your age would die to have a private cotillion."
"The point of a cotillion is to show that a woman is available for marriage to suitors. Not just one suitor. Many. Ones she can choose from." Larxene took Vexen's arm and scowled. "This is hardly a choice of mine. You're merely holding this ball in an effort to save face. You're afraid everyone will think you're old fashioned by choosing a suitor for me and now I have to play the part of the complacent little daughter who swoons over the handsome British man." She glared at her father out of the corner of her eye as they began their descent down the stairs. "And just so you know, I despise you for it."
"Just be congenial." Vexen hissed between clenched teeth. "I expect this to go flawlessly." Once they reached the bottom of the stairs, he signaled the trumpet player to announce their arrival as they entered the ball room. After the man had blown his horn, Vexen cleared his throat and looked out at the crowd which had hushed to a mere whisper. He smiled and motioned to his daughter proudly. "May I present to you all my lovely daughter, Miss Larxene Even."
Larxene curtsied to the crowd before her and smiled graciously as she received a round of applause. The music then picked up and her father lead her across the ballroom where a slew of men stood on the other side. Some of the faces she recognized, others she did not. But there, smack in the middle of them all, was the face she feared to see the most. She curtsied as she was lead down the line of supposed suitors, each one returning her curtsey with a bow. As she reached the end she felt her father spin her around to face the men and then suddenly she was alone. She felt eyes on her from all over the room, but none of the stares burned as badly as the stare she received from the blond man smirking cockily at her. He approached then, and her heart stopped. This was all too soon. She didn't want to meet him yet. Not here in front of all these people. No, she wanted it to be in private so that she could tell him just exactly what she thought of him. She cast a gaze over her shoulder to see her father watching with a firm scowl. And then she felt a hand scooping up her own and lips being pressed against her glove. She whipped her head around, eyes intent on the man kneeling before her, but it was not who she expected. "D-demyx!"
Demyx smiled brightly up at the beautiful blonde woman before him. "May I have this dance, Miss Larxene?"
Larxene let out a heavy sigh of relief and nodded curtly. "Yes you may, Mister Demyx."
Demyx stood swiftly and clasped Larxene's right hand in his left and placed his free hand about her waist. He waited for her to place her left hand on his shoulder before he lead her in a waltz around the room. "You look lovely this evening Miss Larxene. I barely recognized you, for all that lip and cheek rouge."
"Well, it was not my choice to say the least. But you know my father. If I didn't just doll myself right up he'd take it as a personal attack on his hard efforts." Larxene cringed inwardly as she caught a glare from her father but shrugged it away. She was sure to get a good reaming from him for not declining Demyx's invite to dance in favor of her betrothed, but she would worry about that later. Instead she turned her gaze back to Demyx and forced a smile. "I should say, you look rather dashing yourself."
Demyx chuckled. "When did you learn to speak so eloquently? The last time we spoke, you sounded much more…" He cocked his head to the side in thought. "Oh, what's the word? Crude? Yes, crude."
Larxene shrugged as well as she could while they danced. "Well, I've matured a lot since then."
Demyx snickered and shook his head. "It was only last week that we spoke. Don't you remember? You haven't matured much in that time."
"You'd be surprised how swiftly a young woman can mature." Larxene cast Demyx a wink before pulling herself closer to him in their dance, pressing her breasts against his chest as she did so. "Tell me, would it be too terribly rude of me to request you neglect the rest of these lovely young women in favor of being my escort this evening?"
Demyx blushed lightly and managed a small laugh. "Why, Miss Larxene, if I didn't know any better I'd say you're trying to use your sexuality and my none too secret affections for you to goad me into letting you use me for whatever purpose you believe I could serve you."
Larxene growled low in her throat and leaned closer to Demyx so that she could speak quietly. "Is it working?"
Demyx smiled. "What's the problem, darling?"
Larxene scoffed as Demyx spun her around. "You see that man over there talking with my father?"
Demyx let his gaze fall upon Vexen and the blond man at his side. He furrowed his brow in curiosity before turning his attention back to Larxene. "I already don't like him. What about him?"
"My father expects me to let him escort me tonight. He wants us to marry." Larxene tried her hardest to keep from making a face. Many eyes were on her, after all. "I'll assume your sentiments about that are the same as mine. And if that's the case then I need you to keep me dancing all night."
Demyx smiled down at Larxene. "My love, I thought you'd never ask."
"Don't abuse this Demyx." Larxene looked up at him firmly. "You're doing me a favor, and I won't forget it. But if you take it too far I'll be certain you live to regret it."
Demyx sighed and shrugged with a bright smile. "Larxene, when are you going to just drop your walls and admit that you have feelings for me?"
"When you stop acting like such a pompous ass." Larxene looked away from Demyx and grumbled. "Just keep me close without making a big deal out of it."
"As you wish, darling. Just don't be surprised if I happen to forget this is only an act and end up kissing you." Demyx said with a wink.
"You try it and you die. Do you understand?" Larxene huffed and let Demyx lead her around the ball room. Truth be told, she was actually very fond of Demyx. They'd been playmates in their younger years although he was two years her senior. Still, they'd formed a bond that stayed with them even when they were shipped off to entirely different states for boarding school. As they grew, Demyx had become more and more interested in his wealth however, and that was a trait Larxene found deplorable though she herself was guilty of it. He began to view himself as an elite member of society and the only woman he deemed worthy of him was Larxene herself. But in their teens when they would occasionally see each other again, Larxene did all in her power to push him away in his attempts to woo her. She knew they couldn't marry, not with her parent's blessing at least. So she kept him at arms length with rude remarks and acts of disinterest. Even now she found it hard to break these habits despite how dear he truly was to her. She wished inwardly that he was her betrothed rather than that British stranger. If it had been Demyx, well, she could live with that much.
"Your man is watching us like a hawk…" Demyx said with a grin as he whirled Larxene around the dance floor. "He seems very displeased."
"Then let him be displeased." Larxene replied. She pulled herself closer against Demyx and then threw her head back in a delicate mock of laughter. "Oh my, you're really too much!"
Demyx looked down at Larxene curiously. "Too much?"
"I'm pretending you're charming and witty." Larxene repeated the laugh and leaned even closer to Demyx. "Just go with it."
"Pretending?" Demyx cocked an eyebrow at Larxene. "You know, you're awfully ungrateful for someone who needs my help. I've got half a mind to just walk away from you right now, but the gentleman in me won't allow it."
"The jealous monster in you won't allow it either." Larxene smirked. "As soon as you walk away, my suitor will be at my side and you'll lose this golden opportunity to woo me."
"Don't toy with me Larxene, you and I both know you'll never surrender your heart to me." Demyx shrugged as the music came to end and they bowed to one another. "I've come to terms with that much. Come…" He held out his arm to her and smiled. "Shall we get some refreshments?"
"I suppose." Larxene took Demyx's arm and started off with him but stopped abruptly when she saw that horrible blond British man standing in their way. She began to turn away but he was approaching too rapidly to make an escape. She cringed and closed her eyes, trying hard to will him away, but then he spoke.
"Bonjour, mademoiselle." Luxord said with a wide grin. He bowed to Larxene before casting the man beside her a dangerous glare. He then turned his eyes back to Larxene and smiled. "Might I have this dance?"
Larxene looked from Luxord to Demyx and back again, forcing a smile. "I already have an escort, thank you. Please excuse us."
"Don't tell me you don't recognize me, dear. I'm your betrothed!" Luxord straightened from the bow and rooted himself in between Demyx and Larxene, leading the young woman away. Once they were out of ear shot of anyone he spoke quietly through a clenched smile. "Your father is furious with you. I suggest you don't try to pull away from me or make a scene. Also, your father told me you knew full well that I would be your escort this evening so why is it I had to fetch you away from that riff raff?"
"Who the hell do you think you're talking to?" Larxene glared at Luxord as he forced her into closed position and began waltzing her around the room. "Do you need to be reminded you're in my home? I will not have you speak to me like that!"
"Funny." Luxord looked down at the blonde woman and smirked. "Here I thought this was your father's house and you were his daughter. And as his daughter, I believed that you did what you were told to do. Forgive me, apparently I was mistaken."
Larxene gasped and pulled away from Luxord but he quickly pulled her back against him. "Unhand me, you filthy Brit."
"Such course words." Luxord clicked his tongue and kept his gaze on the woman he was forcing to dance. Their voices were low, but body language enough had many eyes watching them intently. "Is that any way to speak to your future husband? Don't be unpleasant, dear. We're starting to garner an audience."
"Good." Larxene stared furiously at him, ready to tear him limb from limb. "All the more eyes to watch when I slap you, you arrogant son of a bitch."
Luxord growled and shifted his hand to grasp tightly onto Larxene's wrist but he quickly remembered where they were and released his grip. He pulled her close and pressed his mouth against her ear. "You would do well to mind your tongue, especially in matters where my mother is concerned. Were we not in this place, and were you already my wife, I would not have hesitated to teach you a bitter lesson. Do not make that mistake again. Now, join me on the piazza. Your father is waiting for us there."
Larxene scowled and let the man lead her to the large veranda through two tall double doors. Her father was waiting against the railing and she felt all her courage flood her. Under normal circumstances she never feared to defy her father or even stand up to him verbally, but for some reason all her venom had fleeted. The sound of the ball became muffled as Luxord closed the doors behind them. She felt like a trapped animal. "You wanted to see me?"
Vexen turned his gaze to his daughter and pulled out a flask, taking a quick swig before tucking it back into his jacket pocket. "What the hell was that all about Larxene?"
Larxene sighed. She knew arguing and fighting with her father would get her nowhere at this point so she decided to play another role that she only ever had to use when her father was completely fed up with her. She put her hands behind her back and batted her eyelashes at Vexen. "What was what about daddy?"
"Don't daddy me. You know damn well what I mean Larxene and I am appalled at your actions." Vexen crossed his arms and stared his daughter down. "I did not have to throw this ball for you, yet I did. And how do you repay me? By waltzing away with Demyx when you knew damn well that…"
"But daddy!" Larxene pouted and rocked her upper torso back and forth to entice sympathy. She had this role down pat. "I wanted this to at least seem like it was a real débutante ball! Ideally, I should be waltzing with all the suitors. Not just the one you chose for me. I was just trying to help you save face."
"Drop the act Larxene." Vexen stepped closer to his daughter and sighed. "You are humiliating me and you are disgracing your betrothed. I suggest you adjust your attitude swiftly."
Larxene growled and crossed her arms. "You can't control me! I'm a grown woman now and even though I was thinking I could just go along with this whole arrangement, I'm starting to realize I was out of my mind! I won't agree to this!"
Vexen grit his teeth and turned his attention to Luxord. "Would you please excuse us? I need to have a word with my daughter, privately." He waited calmly as the blond man bowed and excused himself before turning a wild gaze on Larxene. "Are you out of your mind!? This is our one chance at retaining the wealth that we are swiftly losing!"
"I don't see why it has to be him! He's deplorable, father! And he isn't the only wealthy suitor, you know! There are at least ten in there right now expecting to dance with me!" Larxene crossed her arms and huffed loudly. "I could just as easily marry Demyx. His family is wealthier than ours, and at least I know a bit about him!"
"You can't marry anyone within our social circle." Vexen sighed heavily and rubbed his temples. "Your mother would all but die if anyone found out about our current financial problems."
Larxene scoffed. "Serves her right! She's the one that got us into this mess in the first place, throwing all our money away into those damned prohibition groups! And now we've got no livelihood since you can't export alcohol. So who's fault is that!? Honestly I think if all of New Orleans found out about our little situation it would be just what she deserves for being such a spiteful bitch!"
Vexen mulled the thought over quietly before nodding. "Hmm… I have to agree. But there is still my reputation to think of. I know you don't care about that either. But think of your own. What will people say? They'll accuse you of all sorts of horrid things. You don't want your own image soiled, do you?" He reached into his jacket and pulled out his flask once more, taking a swig before handing it to his daughter. "Our only option is for you to marry outside of the country. Luxord's family will happily provide us with money, should we ask, and nobody else has to know."
Larxene put the flask to her lips and sucked down a good mouthful of moonshine before handing the flask back to her father. "I still despise the idea, but I suppose we have little other choice at the moment." She sighed and rolled her eyes, crossing her arms once again. "Alright, I'll comply. For now. But I still hate you for putting me through this."