In the Rose Garden Orphanage, many young boys and girls were fast asleep in their bunks. The sun rose, and the cool air coming through the open bedroom windows awoke a few children.
There was a small ringing noise as the annoucements came on from Mr. Hoffman's office.
"Boys...and girls, it is time to wake up. Bed time is now over and cleaning time will soon begin. Please rise from your bunks and begin folding in the order in which I call your names. Diana, Eleanor, Xavier, Meg, Susan, Nicholas, Thomas, Clara, Olivia. Once again, please rise from your beds and have a good morning." said Mr. Hoffman. He didn't seem to notice that he had, as usual, skipped both Wendy and Amanda, conisdering they were both in seperate parts of the orphanage at that time.
"Oh, and as a reminder, you must all prepare the room so that it should seem even brighter and cleaner than usual for our new arrival this morning. Thank you." added Mr. Hoffman.
Diana groaned and slowly lifted her head up before sitting up and stretching. She shut her eyes tightly before opening them up again and blinking a few times. Oh, how she hated this place. Oh, how she hated these children.
She began to climb down from her top bunk and grab her sheets, blankets, and pillow and fold them atop each other on the floor so that she'd have more room to do her folding perfectly.
Eleanor rose quickly and quietly from her bunk below Diana and glanced at her Duchess before folding her own sheets and blankets. Everyone knew that being mysterious and quiet and, well, rude was in fact perfectly normal for Countess Eleanor.
The Gluttonous Prince, known as Xavier, tried to rise from his top bunk, but his weight caused him to fall back onto the bed. He tried again, and made it up. He grabbed onto his pillow and blankets and sheets and dropped down from his bunk, and began to fold.
"Of course, he forgot to mention breakfast..." the Prince said sadly.
The Wise-Looking Princess, known as Meg, quickly and obediently rose from her bunk above Susan and began to fold her blankets and sheets.
The Impetuous Princess, known as Susan, jumped to the floor from her bottom bunk and folded her own sheets and blankets.
Nicholas, known as the Sloppy Prince, climbed out from his bunk from below Xavier's and folded his blankets and sheets into a pitiful little mess.
Thomas, The Mischevious Prince, and Clara, The Frightened Princess, came out from their bunks and silently folded their sheets and blankets.
Now, the Tearful Princess, Olivia, was the only one without a "bed-buddy" or "bunk-buddy", so to speak, and she began to cry as she rose from her bed, not only because she was alone, but because she missed her father so dearly. Though, of course, no one paid attention t her sobs except for her close friend Susan, who glanced at her in pity before setting her folded sheets and blankets on her bed.
Being a toddler in a place like this was hard for Olivia, especially since she could hardly reach anything, or do anything that involved hard work.
Once all the sheets and blankets were folded, The Strong-Willed Princess Diana began to speak.
"Now, we need to make this place all nice, and shiny, and LOVELY for the newcomer, right?" she asked. Everyone nodded.
"Well then, we best not dissapoint them, then, yes? Margaret!" Diana called. Meg blushed in pleasure from hearing her real name being called so suddenly from her gorgeous Duchess' lips.
"Y-Yes?" she replied shyly.
"Please help Countess Eleanor collect the lose garments from the floor and toss them into the Filth Room."
"Yes, my Duchess." once again replied Meg.
"Eleanor?" Diana asked the Cold Princess, who seemed to be doing her signature pose with her head turned away from everyone and her hands at her sides. She seemed to be paying no attention to the Duchess whatsoever.
"Yes, my Duchess?" Eleanor replied.
"The laundry? The Filth Room? Help Margaret? Now?" Diana said, getting rather annoyed.
"You need not waste your breath, Princess. I heard you the first time." Eleanor replied carelessly.
Diana's annoyance showed even more on her features now, as she clenched her fists and teeth.
"Well, get to it, then." she said coldly. Eleanor just turned her head again and did her signature curtsy as well, along with Meg, before they prepared the laundry basket. Eleanor went to get the basket from the closet while Meg began to pick up the loose garments from the floor.
But then, they heard a loud creaking noise as the entrance to the room slowly opened. There was a boy, no, a girl, in a bright blue and white dress, with a very boyish hair cut, even shorter than Eleanor's hair, light brown hair, and fair white skin.
The girl stood there for a moment, not saying a word, just looking at the faces of all the other children. Then, she curtsied and spoke.
"Hello. My name is Jennifer. When I first walked in, I came to the Sick Bay, but the girl in there, erm, Wendy, told me to go upstairs. So, I did. And now I'm here. So, um, hello again, I suppose." she said, and curtsied again.
All the other children were silent as they glanced at each other with the same look. Then they all stared back at Jennifer. Jennifer was surprised at this rude behavior.
"What? Do I not get a 'hello'? Is there something wrong with me?" she asked the children. They looked to Diana, and she smirked.
"What a poor, useless, stupid little beggar we have in our presence this morning." she spat at Jennifer.
Thomas pretended to cough and muttered loudly enough for all the children to hear, "Unlucky girl! Beggar Jennifer!", and cough once more. All the children laughed, and Jennifer felt very hurt.
"You come in here, acting so happy and feeling all welcome here, while we work and clean and fight every single day, morning until evening. Children who don't behave will be punished. We might as well just send you to the Filth Room to be beaten by the imps, you poor, unlucky, horrid girl!" Diana once again yelled at the Unlucky Princess.
"Your a disgrace! Nothing, worse than nothing! You are worth nothing!" Meg joined in on the taunting.
"Duchess, should we explain more clearly to Beggar Jennifer what we go through every day of our parentless lives?" Eleanor asked.
"What do you all think?" Diana asked the children. Everyone except for Clara and Olivia nodded and reached under their beds and grabbed either brooms, washcloths, or buckets. They all looked menacingly at Jennifer. Clara and Olivia pulled out some objects that resembled instruments and began to play a catchy tune.
"It's a hard knock life for us!" sang Susan, Clara and Olivia, who then began washing the floors with the washcloths.
"It's a hard knock life for us!" sang Xavier, Nicholas, and Thomas, who were sweeping the floors with the brooms.
"Instead of treated..." sang Diana.
"We get tricked!" sang Susan, Clara, and Olivia, who were slapping the washcloths against the floor so hard that water splashed all the way to Jennifer, getting her a bit wet.
"Instead of kisses..." sang Diana.
"We get kicked!" sang Xavier, Nicholas, and Thomas, who were now swordfighting with the brooms.
"It's a hard knock life!" everyone sang all together.
Then everyone began to clean to the rythym of the music. They all began to stomp their feet and jump around. They flipped and twirled, and Susan and Meg began to dance together. Diana grabbed the laundry-basket-on-wheels and began to zoom around while riding on it, collecting all the lose garments one by one.
"Got no folks to speak of, so..." sang Meg, who hung her head as she walked to her Duchess.
"It's a hard knock row we hoe!" Eleanor sang as she walked to the two of them, as Nicholas and Xavier began to do big sweeps with the brooms according to rythym.
"Cotten blankets..." sang Diana, as she grabbed one of the blankets from the top bunks and threw it in the basket.
"Instead of wool!" sang the others.
"Empty bellies..." sang Xavier, holding onto his stomache. Diana rolled her eyes at the Gluttonous Prince.
"Instead of full!" sang the others.
"It's a hard knock life!" they all sang.
The girls that were washing the floors set up their full buckets of water in a line in between Diana and Jennifer.
Then everyone began stomping and twirling again. Then, worried that Diana might do something to her, Jennifer moved to one of the windows.
"Don't it feel like the wind is always howling?" sang Susan as she stood in front of the cool window.
"Don't it seem like there's never any light?" sang Clara as she pulled down the shades on every window except for the one Jennifer was at, making the sun dissapear.
"Once a day, don't you want to throw the towel in?" sang Nicholas as he flopped down onto his bed.
"It's easier than putting up a fight." sang Xavier and Thomas as they dragged Nicholas along with them.
"No one's there when your dreams at night get creepy..." sang The Frightened Princess Clara, who shuddered.
"No one cares if you grow or if you shrink." sang Eleanor, who grabbed a bucket full of water, along with Susan and Meg and Diana. They tip toed over to Jennifer, who was listening to the children, but not really paying attention as she gazed out of the window.
"No one dries when your eyes get wet and weepy." sobbed Olivia.
"From all the crying you would think this place would sink!" they all sang loudly as Jennifer turned around, only to be splashed with a huge amount of water from all four buckets. She opened her mouth in surprise as she looked down at herself.
"Ohhhhh!" she groaned in irritation. The other girls ran away from her, but she couldn't find the strength in herself to chase after them and become just like them. She needed to be the bigger person here.
Diana jumped back onto the laundry basket, making it zoom super fast all around the whole room again.
"Oh~" she sang as she felt as if she were soaring above everyone there.
"OH~" sang all the girls.
"OH~" sang all the boys.
Then everyone except for Meg and Diana and Eleanor began to dance and clean at the same time.
"Empty belly life!"
"Rotten smelly life!"
"Full of sorrow life!"
"No tomorrow life!"
"Santa Claus we never see..." cried Olivia. Susan sat next to her and held her to comfort her.
"Santa Claus, what's that? Who's he?" Susan asked her.
"No one cares for you a smidge, when you're in an orphanage!" Diana sang very loudly as she aproached Jennifer, her anger showing on her facial features. She was pointing at Jennifer, as if on cue.
"It's a hard knock life!" sang the others.
Then Thomas climbed to one of the top bunks and played with his hair a bit until it resembled Mr. Hoffman's hair. Then he removed the broom from the stick and used the stick as a cane.
"You're all going to clean this up, until it shines like the Princess Of The Red Rose!" he yelled, imitating Mr. Hoffman's voice.
Then everyone laughed for a moment before running over to the bunk and trying to get Thomas. Thomas jumped off the bunk and then the chase began.
"Yank the whiskers from his chin!" yelled Xavier.
"Jab him with a safety pin!" yelled Nicholas.
"Make him drink a Mickey Finn!" yelled Susan, holding a bucket near Thomas' mouth.
Then Thomas went over to Clara and winked at her, causing her to blush and look away.
"I-I love you, Mr. Hoffman..." she said.
Everyone cheered and laughed as Diana continued to zoom around the room.
"Get to work! Now!" yelled Thomas.
"Get those blankets! I said, GET TO WORK!" Thomas yelled again.
Everyone began flinging their blankets into the laundry bin as it rolled past all the beds.
"It's a hard knock life for us! It's a hard knock life for us! No one cares for you a smidge, when you're in an orphanage!" Everyone said, pointing at Jennifer.
"It's a hard knock liiiiiife~"
"It's a hard knock LIIIIIIFFFFEEEEE~"
The Diana began to roll over to the door. Everyone else chased after Jennifer until they caught her. They picked her up and carried her to the laundry bin as it moved. They threw her in as Diana passed by.
"To the Filth Room!" Diana called.
A few girls ran out of the room to open the door to the Filth Room. Meg and Eleanor held the room door open for Diana, as the Filth Room was right across the hall from their room.
Just as Diana was about to exit the room, she jumped off of the cart and watched as Jennifer soared into the Filth Room as Susan and Olivia shut the door. Everyone high-fived and ran back into their room. Meg locked the door so that Jennifer couldn't get in.
"Ladies and gentlemen, are we going to let that filthy wretch back in here?" Diana asked her peers.
"No!" they all yelled in unison.
"Right you are! Now, let's go and make sure that the dog is ready. Wendy told us about this girl's little "friend", yeah? Well, it wouldn't be fair to harm him, right?" she asked the children.
"Yeah..." everyone agreed.
"The only problem is that nothing is ever fair here, isn't that right?"
"Yeah!" everyone agreed.
"Well, let's get on with it, then!" Diana yelled, and all the orphans ran down stairs to get Jennifer's "friend" ready for the Funeral.
This is my first RoR fanfiction ever. I hope you all enjoyed it. This was inspired by a RoR clip on YT called "Rule Of Rose - It's A Hard Knock Life".
Take care, and please review! :)