AN: Finally, after months of being muse-less, I'm back! Sorry I haven't uploaded anything for 'Alien,' for those of you who have read it, I will as soon as I figure out where that plot is actually going. In the meanwhile, please accept this and a couple of other oneshots. Thanks to Slothygirl for editing it and for suggesting the last line, making this fict just that much more awesome. Hope you all enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Tangled. Disney does.
As her mother, Amelia...couldn't say that she was fine with everything about her daughter, for what sane mother would be happy about about the fact that her child was friends with some of the most dangerous men in the kingdom, even if they were nice and reformed now. But she did accept Rapunzel, had accepted the fact that she had lost out on the chance to raise her little baby girl and so now had to make due to getting to know and educating the young woman before her.
As her mother, Amelia loved every little quirk and habit her daughter had come with, because they made Rapunzel the special young woman she was today.
But Amelia was not only a mother. She was also the Queen of an entire kingdom, and as the Queen looking at the next heir to the throne, she couldn't help but be appalled at the mess she saw before her. Loud, energetic, hyperactive, slightly obnoxious, and unable to hold her tongue when it was most important, Amelia had soon realized with resignation that, if Rapunzel was to become a proper princess, they would need a Sun sent miracle.
To her utmost disappointment, even the 'former-thief-turned-good' Eugene Fitzherbert that brought Rapunzel home, and who Amelia was sure was going to be her son-in-law, was making better progress with his many lessons then Rapunzel, quickly advancing through the courses almost faster then they could find a teacher. Not to say that he was a genius or that her daughter was stupid or anything, for Rapunzel had frequently astounded them with her vast wealth of knowledge, one that was admittedly much larger then any normal girls' her age. The girl was knowledgeable in the arts, the sciences, higher math, history, reading, writing, and just about every subject that was taught in the kingdom university and more.
But she was ignorant of the social norms that dictated their lives, rules that even poor Eugene, an orphan from the backwaters of their country where tax dollars were spread a bit too thin, had at least grown up having an inkling of. It also helped that his travels had taken him across many kingdoms during his short life as a thief, which had allowed him to come into contact with many different kinds of people, all of whom he had quickly figured out how to charm and make trust him. The boy also absorbed knowledge better than a sponge could soak up water, information he actually had the skills to use in real life. With these two qualities, it seemed almost as if Eugene could soon pass as a born noble with a year or two's time, becoming the perfect example of a Prince Consort.
Rapunzel on the other had, while she learned quickly, had no idea that her every action would have a consequence, one that would most likely be bad.
Not that it was her fault or anything, for Rapunzel had been raised in a situation where she had had no chance to learn these unspoken rules, for in her tower, it seemed like the only four rules the child had ever known were 'don't die,' 'sing for mother everyday,' 'don't cut your hair,' and 'don't go outside.' With such a lose disciplinary system, how could they ever teach the girl that, while it was okay for her to wear whatever she wanted when she was in her room, that did not mean she could could walk down to the lake in nothing but her under slip so she could go swimming to escape the summer's heat? Especially when said lake was on the other side of the capital and forced her to walk through the entire city to get there.
But while these things were a problem for Amelia when she was the Queen, they weren't the worse problems with her daughter that she had to deal with. At least in regards to her social education she was learning, helped along by Eugene and the many friends she had made amongst the palace servants. She was learning when she should speak and when it was the time for silence, when to ask questions and when to give answers, and when it was time to learn and when it was time to teach. With this better understanding, her other lessons were progressing much faster then when she had first started then, giving Amelia the hope her daughters' position on the throne might be salvageable.
But then there was the lizard.
Not that there was anything particularly wrong with Pascal, for, while he was an odd choice, she would admit, it was a good thing that Rapunzel had had a pet to help teach her responsibility over the years. Amelia had had a cat herself in her youth, a beautiful snow white creature that had had brilliant blue eyes. Her constant companion, Percival had been a good source of comfort during her childhood when the duties of becoming a queen had been too overwhelming to face on her own. Even today she still allowed his offspring to roam the castle halls, killing off mice and occasionally playing with whoever was available at the moment. Just seeing them, all five of the now grown cats looking almost exactly like their father, was a joy Amelia refused to deny herself, even if they did occasionally get into the milk stores. So no, she had nothing against Rapunzel having the lizard as her pet.
What made Amelia nervous was the way Rapunzel treated it almost like it was human.
When Percival had been alive and she had been much younger in years, Amelia had talked to her cat as if he could truly understand what she was saying, had used him to bounce ideas off of when she was desperately in need of advice and had no one to go to, but she had always known that the ideas she came up with in the end, while she had attributed them to her cat, had always come from her. They were her own ideas that she had talked herself through, answers to questions that she had come up with by herself. Other then sitting there and listening to her, Percival had done nothing to contribute to the conversation, and she had known that. It had even given her much comfort throughout the years she had had him.
But there was something about the way Rapunzel talked to Pascal that forced her to believe that her daughter didn't know that. It was as if Rapunzel actually expected the lizard to respond to her, to answer her questions and ask his own, to give his opinion of her latest drawings or the math questions she had been set to solve. Many of her teachers had pointed out that she often spent much of the class talking to the creature, allowing appropriate pauses as if he was really saying something.
Truthfully, it scared them. What if their daughter's isolation had caused her to go insane, had done irreparable damage to her mind over the course of the many years she had been separated from them? If that was the case, not only would she lose her throne, but the possibilities of losing her to her mind, a more permanent separation then any physical one could be, was terrifying.
Wandering through the garden's, Amelia paused as she watched Rapunzel carefully rearrange the pile of flowers she had before her, gently stacking them so they created a pyramid of blues and pinks and reds, the green of their stems lost amongst the rest of the color. Stepping out of the shadows, Amelia allowed herself to lose the Queen facade she often wore, instead becoming just a mother watching her daughter draw. For a long while they remained like that, Amelia drinking in the sight of her baby girl looking so grown up, calming the many thoughts that often crowded her mind. Before she knew it she was talking, her words rolling freely off her tongue as she tried to squash the last of her fears that she held for her daughter.
"Dear, your father and I were wondering if you would like another pet. Someone else to keep you and Pascal company."
Glancing up from the sketch she had been working on, Rapunzel's eyes flashed with excitement before fading into worry, her teeth biting at her lower lip as she thought about her mother's offer, her head tilting slightly in the way she always did when some new thing or idea crossed her mind. When she finally spoke, it was not words of gratitude and acceptance that she had been expecting, but instead words that brought their own fears to Amelia's mind.
"I've never had a pet before. Do you think I'm ready?"
Keeping her face blank of the confusion and panic that was starting to grow within her stomach, Amelia allowed her eyes to drift towards the ever present Pascal, his bright green hue swiftly changing into a dark blue as their eyes met.
"Never had a pet? What is Pascal then?"
For a moment, confusion replaced the worry that had sprung up in Rapunzel's eyes as she glanced back and forwards between Pascal and Amelia, her mind racing as she made the connection between the two. Then, to Amelia's surprise, Rapunzel began to laugh, her high pitched giggle bringing a smile to her own face, mirth bubbling from her eyes to spread across her entire face.
"Pascal isn't a pet, Mother. He's a friend."
Staring at her daughter, the smile replaced by a look of astonishment, Amelia couldn't help the feeling of defeat that rose within her, for it was clear from that single statement that Rapunzel truly believed it. Her child had lost her mind. Shaking her head, Amelia gently cupped Rapunzel's face before turning away, feeling the tears well up within her eyes as she walked away, her own mind churning as she stored this newest quirk of her daughter's away for later examination.
"Of course, Dear. Of course."
As her mother, Amelia had decided the moment she had Rapunzel in her arms that she would always accept her daughter for who she was, for the woman she was and would one day become. She might be insane and she might not be, but either way, she would love her. As the Queen, she did not have quite the same luxury, for she had to put the people that were beneath her care before anything else within her life. But that didn't mean she couldn't make things as easy for her child as possible.
Two weeks later, in a ceremony that had the entire kingdom laughing about the quirks and eccentricities of their beloved rulers, Penelope the cat was named the first ever Royal Animal Advisor, a title Pascal didn't doubt he'd live up to in time.
AN: I hope you all enjoyed the story! Thank you for reading. :D