CorneliaxCaleb is one of the few pairing where I allow the characters to act mushy around each other. Curse you, romantic young self! :D

Every morning she carefully puts on the makeup she needs to go through the day.

First, she applies the foundation. She does this first step slowly: if the foundation isn't put right, her skin will look spotty, unhealthy and unattractive. The two fingers on her right hand, the forefinger and the middle finger always get smudged with the cosmetic and she doesn't like that but still, she continues on.

Then it's the lipstick's turn.

Her lips are naturally plump so she doesn't use any of those tricks to make them more inviting and beautiful. Instead she just adds some lip balm and keeps the focus on her eyes.

Her eyes really stand out against the dark eye shadow she puts on. The substance feels cool and soft on the tender skin of the eyelids and she doesn't as much as move her eyes. She is used to all this.

The last touch is the mascara that she puts with a gentle flick of her wrist. It is the last technical detail on her mask; all that's left is the smile which she'll welcome the day with.

The moment comes.

Her reflection moves its mouth upwards, curving into something like a smile.

She looks like a clown.

At school, girls will flock around her, all giggles and shining eyes. She will be disgusted but she'll never say that out loud. Instead, she'll smile along and laugh with them. And when she takes a second to look around, her eyes (makeup around them) will fall on the window. From there, she will see the outer world where he is waiting. Waiting for her.

But then, she'll snap out of it and return to the hushes and gushes and the gossip.

And, in the evening each one of her so called friends throws their litter to the ground, spoiling the earth, oh, spoiling it, spoiling it.

Every evening, just as carefully, he cleans her makeup off.

First off, he starts with her eyes. The mascara and eye shadow is gently wiped off with a wet tissue; she closes her eyes and lets him do his work. There's trust enough between them. She doesn't even move her eyes. She's used to that.

Then he moves on to the lipstick.

Her mouth trembles a bit during that minute and she can't make it stop. He notices, of course; and each session ends with him running his thumb across her lower lip, trying to relax her. He fails.

The only thing she feels is that they should have done something else, not clean her makeup.

He never truly manages to clean all of the foundation. His fingers, dexterous before (used to fighting), suddenly become clumsy and he can't do anything with them, so she pushes him off with a laugh and finishes off the work herself.

When they're ready, she mock-glares at him; he immediately adopts a puppy expression, making both of them explode in laughter. He opens his cloak and she snuggles there, safe and warm and happy.

She isn't wearing a mask anymore.

At school she might act like a tough girl, independent and self-sufficient, but she knows that by the end of the day, she will always come back to him.

Once they have finished, he takes her to the terrace and gently rocks her to sleep.