Disclaimer: Gakuen Alice is the work of Higuchi Tachibana. Not by me.
Summary: REVISED. Mikan Sakura is the new EVIL STEPMOTHER. Reason: She was deprived of a certain raven-haired lad to act as Cinderella.
When I Didn't Land the Job
Written by: TheVanishingSpectacles
Something happened a long, long time ago. It was a distant memory of someone calling out my name, a hoarse voice echoing through the back of my mind. The world was sprayed with the color red and creatures of sorts emerged from the piles of brown and green and white.
"He's lying. You know he's lying..." I cupped my ears when the hissing started around me.
He didn't notice. He was too busy looking at the girl in front of him, blonde curly tips framing a small, diamond-shaped face. Hand shoved in his pocket and the other gripping the side of the script he had made, he spoke. "You—you will be Cinderella, Koizumi."
"What are you gonna do little rabbit? She's going to steal him away from you. Koizumi will steal him away from you."
Luna Koizumi. That was her name. The girl who tossed pompoms in everyone's face, who thought any guy would fall for the beauty spot above the left corner of her pink lips. She took a step closer, raised her forefinger and placed it on his shoulder. "You know I'm the only one who can do that, Natsume-kun."
But Natsume loves me! He will never fall for her trap! I whispered back at the voice in my mind.
The voice chuckled at me.
"How sure are you?"
It took me only a blink and the world was like a painting, smudged in its own colors. I peeled my hands away from my ears, only to find them clenched and my knuckles drained of any color but white.
"Mikan," her cold fingers were wrapped around my arm. Surprised, I veered to her and stared back at her vacant amethyst pools.
Hotaru shook her head lightly as she lifted her hand clutching her spotless white handkerchief. She wiped my lips and I found blood on it after.
From my peripheral vision, I saw Natsume nod his head. He still didn't notice me.
"You're a coward, you know that?" The voice whispered. "You will lose him little rabbit. Unless..."
"You know what I'm talking about. Let me out."
"It's your loss."
Hotaru's grip on my arm tightened. She must have known. She always knew.
But it's too late. The voice had taken over me.
"Then I'll be the evil step mother."
Everyone's face was worth a photograph as they turned to me. Especially his.
"What? I refuse," Natsume glared at me through the black frame of his eyeglasses. I took a step back when he took one forward to me.
I crossed my arms before me, elbows hitting Luna's lackeys that moved beside me.
"You know I can do better, Hyuuga. If you don't, then you still don't know me well."
My friend Anna who was beside me, looked at my fists. She gasped when she found no shadow of my stressor ball.
"I left it in my locker Anna." I didn't look at Anna, but it was obvious it was directed to her.
Hyuuga. I know that he hated it. "Do you think this is a joke?"
I stopped him by placing my hand in front of his face. "I am serious. I want to be the evil stepmother whom everyone hates. I feel disgusted? No. You will be amazed how I can easily act the role. Trust me, honey."
He gulped. He knew that I only call him that when I've reached beyond my point.
"Let her be Hyuuga. Mikan knows what she does, just as how you know yours," Hotaru's voice was enough to frighten the shit out of everyone, even Natsume.
"Imai..." He growled at her. "Fine, if that's what both of you want. But don't ever try to mess up in this one."
We got him. Mess up? Only Luna could do that. I and my best friend, Hotaru Imai, both excel in our fields in school. We practically owned them.
I tiptoed to him and placed my lips an inch away from his ear. "That's better my dear. Excuse us."
He stood there frozen as we spun our heels towards the door to exit our classroom. I was the last one to exit but before I did, I turned my face to him and gave him a finishing smirk.
Natsume knew, too. She had told him about this and he was careful that I would never come out. I brought trouble, always.
As soon as we are out of the door, I heard Luna, "Please don't fight because of me."
I awoke at the beeping sound of my phone.
20 calls and 8 messages from Natsume Hyuuga.
What had happened while I was out? I couldn't remember. The last thing I knew, the voice was asking me to let her out. What trouble was it this time?
I stood up and walked to my window, propping my elbows on the frame. The fresh and cool wind of the evening softly caressed my troubled face, the moonless sky overwhelming everything. It was so peaceful. Until my brother, Youichi Sakura, a fourth year student at Tokyo University, kicked my door open and grabbed my hand to put something in it.
"Please Mikan, whatever issues you have with your boyfriend, don't bother me with it." He plopped down my bed and ran his fingers through his messy silver hair.
"I am not bothering you. And how the hell did you know?" I leaned my back on the window and let my waist length milk brown hair feel the wind.
He gave an annoyed look. "He rang me. You weren't answering his calls?"
"That bastard... let him be. It's his fucking fault." I dropped down on the floor and stared at the red phone of my brother in my hand.
I had fragments of what happened when she came out. I wasn't entirely sure, but my brother coming in here, meant she made another trouble again. I didn't mind.
It seemed to amuse my brother how I easily cursed Natsume. "You had an attack. I'm correct right?"
Pursing my lips, I nodded.
"What did he do this time?"
It's typical that my brother asked. He was one of the very few persons who opposed my relationship with Natsume at first, not until I persuaded him to give him a chance. I was very precious to my brother. Come to think of it, I still am. I had a brother-complex. When I was still young, I used to cling with my brother all the time. Like his tail, I followed him everywhere, even when he's with his friends. They had grown to like me, the same as me to them.
It all started when our father died in a car accident.
I can still remember that afternoon. The memory of 10 years ago was as fresh as sunrise in my mind that whenever I think of it, I can still smell the unpleasant odor of blood. The mixture of thick red liquids that flooded the car was still glued on my hands as I stared at it wide eyes.
Or so I would make myself believe.
Those memories were what the voice told me.
I would dream of them, shake uncontrollably, and my brother would come running to me and embrace me, hush me, and tell me that everything would be alright.
It was Friday. Us three, I, my brother and my father will be going to his Art Exhibit. Since my mother had a very important surgery at that same day, she couldn't come with us. Before we went to the place, we visited her in the hospital first to wish her good luck. Although we were sad that she couldn't come with us, we understood her. My father explained it to me that mama saved lives. She worked very hard for us and she brought me a gift every time she came home. That was enough for me. So we bade good bye to her. I kissed her cheek and gave her my good luck doll so her surgery would be successful.
"Be careful on driving." She reminded my father then they kissed. My brother told them that they were embarrassing us and pointed at me who was covering my eyes with my little hands. They only laughed at us.
"Bye bye." She waved her hand at us, while her other hand hugged my doll with orange hair. What I didn't know, it was us who needed that doll.
I was sitting on the back of the car while father and onii-san were in the front. I was singing happily with father, but my brother was annoyed with my loud voice. I knew he loved it. He's just jealous.
We were so happy. So happy, it was too unbelievable.
I would never believe the voice whenever she told me this.
A ten-wheeler truck mercilessly threw us on the side of the road. It had a malfunction on its brakes. We came down rolling, rolling, rolling, rolling, and rolling.
"Close your eyes Mikan. Everything will be alright," those were the last words father told me. Those were what I could remember exactly.
Mama and Papa always told me I was a good girl. I always obeyed them. So I did.
After five minutes or so, I couldn't take it anymore. The silence was eating me up and I hated that ugly smell.
"Papa, can I open my eyes now?"
No one answered me. So I peeked with my one eye and what came before me, I was sure I could never forget it.
There was blood all over me, in my face, in my arms, in my feet, in my cute pink dress, and they all came from the two persons in front of me.
I tried reaching out to them but my seatbelt prevented me. It was too difficult for me to unlock it because it was my brother who put it.
He was enveloped inside the arms of our father. Both of them were unconscious. But the one who took all the hit was our father, who protected my brother from the tree before us.
For a six year old, it was too much of a sight. It was too much to bear. I didn't scream, neither cried. Instead, I remembered smiling before I fainted.
I woke up in a bed, in a room of white. I wasn't dumb. I was in a hospital. Besides that, I was alone.
My mother then emerged from the door, crying as she hugged me. She cupped my cheeks, but what she saw frightened her. A smile was on my face. There was no sign of hurt or pain and though my eyes were hollow, there was something in there she understood. And that day, I changed. Or rather, a part of me.
A psychiatrist told my mom, one day when we went to her as I sat across my mother, that I was some of the rare cases. I reacted differently when my father died. I never cried. I only smiled and laughed even at his funeral, and people thought I was happy for his death. I mourned differently. Apart from that, the accident had awoken something inside me.
My split personality.
That was her.
It took them three years of curing me. The shrink visited me daily to check up on me. Also because of my other personality, I was home schooled. There was this one incident that labelled me 'dangerous'.
I was walking to my table when I accidentally spilled my drink on the rubber shoes of the bully of our school. He was slightly bigger than me, considering he's a guy and he's one level higher. I told him I was sorry, but he didn't listen. He mocked me about my father's death and said that I was crazy. And then, she, who was the mean one, took me. No one could have thought that I could beat up the bully of our school. In fact, some rejoiced at this but his parents, my mother, and the teachers weren't. His parents, who could barely recognize him, suggested sending me to either the juvie or to a mental. But my mom told them that their son was partly at fault, too, and I was still in the process of recovery from my father's death. She told them she would give him a free surgery and promised that I will be home schooled. I cared the less. It was his entire fault.
It was thanks to my brother who didn't lose hope that I would be healthy again. He stayed with me, while my mother focused on her work more since she was a single-parent now. I know she was disappointed at me. I didn't care. But she was sorry after, too.
My split personality came less frequent by the time. That was also because of Youichi-nii. He never made me angry and instead, gave me what I needed. He brought me along wherever we go. He spoiled me too much.
So when it was decided that I was finally cured, mother suggested that I should already socialize with people other than her and my brother, and stop being homeschooled. Youichi gave me a stressor ball so that whenever I suffer from emotions that will tire me; I could use it to avoid her from waking. It was a very precious ball for me. It was the replacement of Youichi-nii when he wasn't with me.
Both of us knew one thing, though. She never left. She was always there, ready to attack. I just learned to control her over time.
"You left it, didn't you?" Youichi was now staring at me. He must have seen the hollow look in my eyes again as I travelled back upon my past. I only looked at him.
"Come here." He patted the bed, ushering me to sit beside him. I followed and sat.
"Natsume chose Luna over me," I started. He didn't answer but I heard him grunt. "A month from now, we will have a play. It will be Cinderella."
I laid my head on his shoulder. "Yeah. He told me I couldn't act. He's the one who wrote the script that's why he was the one who chose the characters. I was just so mad at him that 'she' came out and volunteered to be the evil stepmother. Hotaru stood up for me, too, when he refused. Then I and my friends left them alone. I didn't care you know, that he didn't chose me to be Cinderella. It was just, he said I couldn't fucking act!"
Youichi squeezed my hand like Anna did. "Let me guess, he's the prince right?"
"Screw him for doing that to my little sis. You should get back at them at the play. Show 'em what Mikan Sakura can do." It was then I realized how much I missed my brother. He's been very busy these days. He's preparing for med school.
Suddenly, the phone in my hands rang and Natsume's name registered on the screen.
"Answer it." He told me.
I flipped the phone open. Youichi mouthed 'speaker' and I pressed the button.
"Youichi, is Mikan there?" I can hear the hopeful and tired voice of Natsume.
I waited for seven seconds before I answered. "How have you been Hyuuga?"
"Mikan, is that you?"
"Nope, it's the ghost under your bed."
I could already see the smirk on his face. "Why didn't you answer my calls? I was worried."
"I didn't see that coming."
"In case you forgot, I'm your boyfriend."
I want to gag him already. Bastard. "And I'm your girlfriend. Not Luna."
"H-hey, that's only a role. It isn't a big deal. Don't tell me..."
"Are you jealous?"
"Am I? I am, Hyuuga. But last time I checked, I don't need to. We're done. And Hyuuga, it's a big deal for me."
"W-what?" I heard some rustling from him. He must have stood up or moved. "Are you serious? Mikan, you know why it should be Luna."
I glared at the phone on the bed. Youichi was doing the same thing. "Oh really now?"
"Yes." The jerk he was. "She's popular. People will come. And Cinderella is blonde and pretty."
"So I'm ugly? Is that what you're saying?"
"I know why. You just want to taste her saliva because you're the prince. You want to kiss her, do you? You're just like the other guys who fell for her antics!" I can't help it. I was really really really furious right now.
"What? I never said that. I just don't want you to wear a wig Mikan. I love your hair and you. I don't want other guys to be attracted to you."
Natsume, you're a big liar. "Oh trust me, you will. And wig? You don't want me to wear one? Goddamn you Hyuuga!"
My brother snatched the phone. He had cut Natsume even before he could retort. "Look Hyuuga, it's clear that my sister doesn't want to talk to you. She wants some space. If you ever want to see her again, listen to me." Youichi smirked at me. Oh, how I wanted Natsume to feel that I was not nothing. "You better give her the role of the evil step mother or else, I swear that you will never see the daylight again." He shut off the phone, removed the battery and hid it in the same box where I placed my phone.
"You want to play some video games?" He asked me.
I arched a brow at him. "Thought your busy?"
He stood up and messed the top of my hair. "Not for my little sis."
We both laughed and went outside of my room. Mom was still in the hospital, performing another surgery.
Thank God my brother was here.
A month had passed so quickly. We were now in the backstage, preparing for our play. Not only the month, but also the news that I and Natsume called our relationship off had spread like wildfire in our school. People came to me, asking me why I broke up with him when we were such a good couple. But I knew, they only asked to confirm if it's true so that they could take him away. I told them it really was true. But Natsume still followed me like a puppy. He showered me with gifts, flowers, and chocolates every single day as if he was still courting me. He tried really hard to win me back, but I won't give in that easily. If he thought I was that easy, he's wrong. I didn't spend my dreadful past because I was joking. I was hurt. And what he did to me a month ago, he brought me pain again.
They said that I was cruel and a hypocrite. I didn't care. They could see his efforts but not mine. To be followed by the hottest guy in the campus was a dream of every girl, well not mine. I clearly explained it to him. He must show his worth to me. That was his way. Natsume, he must understood that I'm not like every other girl. I was different, and I'll always be. That was why until he proves it to me, that he was still the guy whom I fell in love with two years ago not only outside but inside, I won't be his again.
"Anna, what do you think?" I came out from the dressing room. I was wearing a blue long sleeve puff ball gown. The leaf shaped opening that showed a bit of my cleavage was made possible by the turqoiuse gem that buttoned my collar. My hair was tied in a neat bun and I sported an elegant looking gold-framed eyeglasses. Sumire said that she gave me a very minimal make up that made my face look very mature. I doubted that. My lips were coated in a very red lipstick. She brushed my cheeks withgold and my hazel brown eyes were complemented with the light bronze eye shadow and black mascara.
Anna's beady blue eyes sparkled as she hugged me. "You look so beautiful Mikan." Anna didn't ask for a role. She wanted to stay in the shadows and help with the props since she belonged to the very creative minority in the class.
Someone joined us. "Of course I helped her with that. And my mother cannot look ugly as Cinderella." Sumire would portray as Grizella, one of the evil step sisters. She was wearing a green sleeveless empire cut puffed dress that ended up before her knees. She matched it with a pair of gold stilettos and gold fascinators while her hair was curled down. She wore white hand gloves. "Anastasia, come over here." She called out.
Anna and I giggled as Hotaru emerged, wearing the same thing as Sumire. Only her dress was violet and her accents were in black. If Sumire's lips were shimmering pink, hers was pale. Her short jet black hair clearly completed the evilness of Hotaru, not to mention the elegance she emitted.
I admitted... these two could pass as sisters.
"I do not like one bit of what you are thinking Mikan." Hotaru's cold voice warned me.
I took the white fan with silver designs from my pouch and fanned myself. "Daughter, words please."
All four of us giggled at our silliness. I'm sure that we would be the star of this show. Just you wait Luna.
And speaking of the devil, she passed by us, wearing the ugly rag clothes of Cinderella for the first scene. She halted upon seeing us. A smirk made way into her lips. "I can't wait to kiss Natsume-kun later." She told her lackeys as they continued walking.
"Who does she think she is?" Sumire fumed.
"Leave her be Permy. That's all she can do." I told her.
"Mikan, today is the last day right?"
I turned to Hotaru. "Yes. If he still can't show his worth, so be him."
And speaking of another devil, my phone buzzed. I fished it out from my pouch and his name registered.
"Today is the last Natsume." Yep, I've called him Natsume again. I know how much he hated being called Hyuuga.
I heard him sigh. "Mikan, I am really sorry."
"Don't blow this up."Of course, I wanted him to win this challenge, too. I still have feelings for him after all. He just had to learn his mistakes.
I felt the smile he's giving from the other line. "Watch me."
After that, he hung up. My friends smiled at me. They are one of the few genuine persons who hoped for the two of us to get back together.
The place for the audience was full that the number of chairs prepared was not enough to suffice. The people were silently watching. Well, not really. I could hear them gasp, laugh, complain and exert some other emotions as our play went on. Their expressions when they saw me were really priceless. I was perfect for the role, as well as Sumire and Hotaru. I even heard some guys whistled and I smiled inwardly. This was one reason, according to Natsume, why he didn't want me to act as Cinderella. Too bad, I was even hotter when I portrayed as the evil step mother. My brother and mother were sitting about three rows away from the stage so I saw it when my brother clapped for me.
We were cruel, Sumire, Hotaru and me. We thought Luna was really crying because we did it for real, every slap, every kick and every shout. I grabbed her blonde hair, the crowd went crazy. Gosh, I loved those.
The crowd went ballistic when Natsume, the prince came out. One word – hot. He's even better than the princes who used to portray for that specific role.
And so, the next scene was the prince fitting the glass slipper on the foot of Cinderella.
We, the evil step family were there on the stage, too, as Natsume knelt down to fit the glass slipper on Luna's foot.
This is it, I thought as I gave the signal to Hotaru and Sumire.
Luna was thrown on the floor when Sumire kicked her. My, Sumire was a very good actress.
"How dare you, you filthy thing steal our prince?" She spat at Luna.
The audience gasped at the scene. That was definitely new to them.
"What are you saying?" Luna faked a cry.
Hotaru joined in. "Don't act so innocent now Cindy. We knew that you slept with Prince's adviser so you could bribe him."
"I didn't." She hollered.
I was at my highest point now but something sure was crazy here. Why aren't the crew fussing about this? Oh anyway, this would make us a hit.
"Don't lie now child..." I rubbed the side of my temple and sat on the couch beside Luna. "Everyone in the village knows. I wonder why the prince doesn't."
"Why are you lying? Prince, don't believe them." Luna crawled to Natsume's feet. He, too, was frozen on the spot.
I butted in. "Prince, it is my daughters whom you should marry. Cinderella had always been an ill child. She came out of the house without my permission and came back before midnight. There is the undeniable fact that she left the house alone with someone just to destroy your party."
Natsume coughed for a bit and smirked. He took her hand and helped her up. "Still, I am blessed to know this lady."
The three of us looked at him. Luna's face was like she won the Ms. Universe title. "See, step mother, it is I whom the Prince loves."
The next words that came out from Natsume shocked us and the audience even more. "I never said such words. I deny such confession."
"Wh-what are you saying Prince?" Luna's voice squeaked. Tears sprung from her eyes.
Oh, she wants to be the star huh? I closed my eyes and rested for a bit.
Suddenly, I felt arms scooped me from my chair. I opened my eyes and saw Natsume's face an inch away from mine.
"Cinderella, I am blessed to have met you for if not, I wouldn't know this woman in my arms." He smiled at me.
That was the one question that came from me, Sumire, Luna and the audience, all directed to Natsume. Hotaru was... I guessed her eyes widened for a second and I was too busy thinking to notice it.
"Wait wait. This is wrong. Put me down now Prince!" I ordered him but he did not follow.
"I love you." He said.
I felt that this was already beyond our play. Was he saying that for real?
"This is uncalled for!" I flailed my arms all over me. The next thing I knew, Natsume's lips were pressed on mine and his hand was on the back of my head to keep me from moving.
"Say you love me, and I'll put you down."
Again, he kissed me. "Say it. If you won't, I'll kiss you again and again until you admit you love me, too."
Luna tried to grab me away from Natsume but she was held by Sumire and Hotaru. Soon, she was tied in the chair by a rope from Hotaru's pouch. "I am Cinderella. Prince, you love me and not her! What are you doing? Stop kissing her!"
Sadly for her, a duct tape was placed on her lips and a brown paper bag was placed on her head with big holes for eyes and nose. She struggled on her seat but to no avail, she was tied firmly and professionally.
The audience laughed at Luna.
"You planned this, didn't you? Didn't you?" I hissed at him.
"I did. Now, do you love me?"
"I refuse." And for the third time, he kissed me.
Natsume faced the audience. "She says she doesn't love me. What should I do?"
The audience answered back, "KISS HER! KISS HER!"
God, I am blushing really red now. I was so embarrassed. So this was what he meant when he told me to watch him.
"KYAAAA! NATSUME-KUN, YOU CAN KISS ME!" His fans screamed in delight as he smiled on them.
"You're cruel." I couldn't help it when I smiled at him. I missed his kisses.
"MIKAAAAAN-SAMAAAAAA, DON'T FALL FOR HIIIIIIIIIIIM!" I heard the guys scream.
I turned to them. "What should I do? He wants me to say I love him."
A giggle escaped from my lips as I faced Natsume who was smiling at me. His crimson orbs were hopeful, just like the voice he had when he called me from a month ago.
"So, what's your answer?"
I stared at him. This was it again. Once I say those three words, I could never back out. I was scared. But what could I do? He's the only guy who made me feel this way. "I love you."
Our fourth kiss on the stage was even better than the first three. It was a good thing that Natsume was holding me—he's strong and quite persistent—or else, I'd fall on the stage.
As if he knew what was on my mind, he spoke, "I'll let you fall, but I'll catch you."
"I thought you won't kiss me if I tell you I love you?"
He smirked at me naughtily. "I deny such statement."
The audience cheered for us. We laughed along with them.
Natsume finally let me down but he made sure I won't escape him, which I was not planning actually. He encircled his arm around my waist. "I'm sorry girls. The prince is on for evil stepmothers."
The audience clapped at us before the curtain fell. I laughed when I heard the whimpers of the girls outside.
"You sure made a lot of girls cry." I poked Natsume's chest as he hugged me. He only chuckled in response. So I continued, "I told you, I'm better as the evil stepmother. Anyway, where is Cinderella?" I whipped my head to look for Luna but I didn't see her. Plus, Natsume pushed my head so I could face him.
"Don't worry about her now. She's at her most rightful place." He kissed the top of my head and I smiled.
Little Mikan didn't know, her two evil step daughters dragged Luna to the dressing room along with Anna and tortured her there. That was all in Natsume's knowledge.
I furrowed my brows as I looked up at him. "Where to?"
Natsume scooped me once again in his arms. "You need some punishment for attracting those guys in the stage."
"And they lived happily ever after." Hotaru smiled at the little kids in front of her as she finished her story.
Who knew that the once Hotaru Imai who did nothing but torture everyone before could be a kindergarten teacher?
The girls sighed lovingly and promised to find their prince. The boys, however, said that girls were so demanding.
One girl with raven hair and hazel brown eyes raised her hand. "Teacher, is that their ending?"
"They need no ending. Life goes on for them."
A/n: The Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) or formerly known as Split Personality Disorder of Mikan in this story was taken very lightly. This is a fluff story and I don't mean to go on deeper about the said disorder, which details, I am not entirely informed. I showed very few of the symptoms, those I have seen in the internet. Her other personality was commonly referred to with the bold I, she, her, and voice. I didn't mean to cause you any confusion. If you have also noticed the change of tone in the story, praise you. I revised the story, mainly the first scenes where Mikan's symptoms were shown. The previous writings told me nothing about the approved symptoms of DID. :3
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