A/N: As unfortunate as it may be, I do not own the characters of Chrono Crusade. Daisuke Moriyama does. *sobs*
Anyway... For all of you who haven't figured it out yet, it's a Cinderella-type version of Chrono Crusade! But there's a little twist... *snickers evilly* By the time you finish the part in Rosette's POV, you should figure it out.
Good day to you all and enjoy the story!
It all started on a warm autumn day.
School hadn't started yet, and the leaves hadn't begun to fall yet, but it was cool enough that autumn had definitely begun. I was at home with my brother, Aion, and his creepy group of friends. There was Shader, a genius girl who was obsessed with cats; Fiore, a runaway maid that Aion took in; Rizelle, who adored spiders and worshipped my brother; Viede, who seemed invisible most of the time, despite his massive size; and Genai, the crazy, blood-thirsty teen who seemed rather fond of Rizelle. All in all, they were a band of freaks.
Not that I'd ever say that to their faces, of course.
On this particular day, they were lazing around in the kitchen, eating and drinking God knows what, when the doorbell rang.
"Chrono," Aion called lazily. "Get that, would you?"
I rolled my eyes and got up to open the door. A royal messenger was standing on the porch.
"Good day, sir!" the man shouted, completely interrupting me. "It is my duty to announce that the Crown Prince has chosen to throw a ball in honor of his older sister's sixteenth birthday!" He all but thrust a piece of paper into my hands. "There will be three balls, in succession: One on Friday night, one on Saturday and a final one on Sunday. Each one will last from sundown to sunup. All teenage males are requested to attend; females are welcome."
"Good day, sir, and I hope to see you at the ball!"
Then he was gone.
I stood there for a few minutes, staring at the place where he'd been standing, trying to make heads or tails of what he'd said.
"Hey... Chro-no! What's that?"
I was jolted back to reality when Aion tugged at the paper in my hands. "Oh, this? Not too sure." I passed him the page, which he began to read.
"Who was that person at the door, little brother?"
"Just some palace messenger or the other. Something about three balls for the princess." I walked back into the house and called over my shoulder, "If you need me for anything, I'll be up in my room!"
I didn't really believe that they were throwing a ball for a girl, and even if I did, so what? Not like I'd ever attend, anyway. Even if I wanted to, Aion and his gang would never let me. They'd go off themselves and leave me stuck at home, if only to laugh at me when they came back.
"No!" I yelled. I was acting like a baby, but to be quite frank, I didn't really care. I was too horrified by something else.
"I am not going to that stupid ball of yours, brother!" I shouted. My brother was standing in my bedroom doorway, trying to appease me. It wasn't working.
A ball? As in, a ball with dancing, food, gowns, and tuxedoes? No thank you. Now, if it was a dueling tournament or something, I'd understand. Maybe even a week-long hunt. But...
"Sister dear," my brother said with that overly patient voice that I oh-so-hated, "it's not one ball. It's three. For your birthday. And you are going, whether you like it or not."
I poked my head up from under the covers and glared at him. "Oh, yeah? What'll you do, hypnotize me? Knock me out, force me into a gown and then bring me to the stupid dance before I regain consciousness?"
He shut his eyes and put his hands together in prayer. "God, please help me convince my sister to do this one little thing for me." He opened his eyes. "Just attend one of them, at least. Okay? You can even dress up as a country girl! As long as you attend, I'm happy."
I rolled my eyes and pulled the covers over my head again. "And when I do decide to attend, you're going to say, 'But please, sister dear, go as yourself! It's not polite to make those boys all come here, only for them to discover the princess isn't even here to dance with!' No thank you. I am not going, and that. Is. Final!"
"Joshua, is something the matter?"
Azmaria - my brother's girlfriend - swept into the room. Even now, after just having had gotten up, she looked beautiful. Her silver hair was just messy enough to look stylish, her red eyes were blinking tiredly, making her long eyelashes bat, and she wore a silk nightgown. I felt a slight pang of envy while staring at her.
God, why couldn't you make me that beautiful? And she's my age, too! And a commoner! Oh, the injustice...
"Oh, nothing, Azmaria," Joshua muttered. "Just Rosette being mule-headed as usual."
"Hey!" I bolted upright and full-out glared at my brother. "I am not mule-headed! I'm just stubborn, that's all!"
"Oh." Azmaria smiled with understanding. "Rosette, you don't want to attend the balls?"
"Of course not!" I yelled. I crossed my arms over my chest, uncaring of how childish it seemed. "All those dresses, and the dances..." I shuddered. "And those high-heeled shoes that I'll have to wear. They're so painful! And then there will be all those boys fawning over me, trying to win my affections so that they can marry me or date me or whatever to become famous and rich... No, thank you. I'd rather not."
Azmaria smiled gently at me. "Rosette, it's perfectly fine to dislike all those things. Still, you must get used to them. When your brother inherits the crown, as his sister, you will have to attend many social events such as this one." Suddenly, she clapped her hands gleefully. "I know! I've come up with a wonderful idea!"
"What is it?" Joshua and I demanded simultaneously.
She pointed at me excitedly. "Rosette! You don't want to wear high heels or gowns, or have boys fawn over you, right?" I barely had enough time to nod before she moved on to Joshua. "And you want your sister to attend no matter what. So, why don't you compromise?"
I stared at her. I'm pretty sure Joshua was staring at her, too. There was a long pause.
"Compromise? I think that's kind of impossible," Joshua added. "How exactly do you expect us to compromise on this?"
She grinned. "Well... Rosette, you're going to love this. This is what'll happen: You two switch places for the first half of the ball, up until midnight. Rosette goes as Joshua and Joshua goes as Rosette."
When we both opened our mouths to say something, she held up a hand. "Just listen. After midnight, you guys excuse yourselves, go to your rooms, dress up as yourselves, and stay like that until the end of each ball." She beamed at us. "Rosette gets to go to the ball and meet boys, and she also gets to do whatever she wants! Good idea, huh?"
The only response they gave was stares. It was a while before Joshua said, "Okay. Doesn't sound like a bad idea. Just one question, though: Why do I have to dress up as a girl?"
"Obviously, since Rosette's being you, somebody has to be Rosette!" Azmaria said innocently. "Even if I'm her, you've got to attend the ball, too, and then somebody has to be me anyways. So, either way, you're attending as a girl."
"Oh yeah!" I yelled. "I'm dressing as a boy and I get to see Joshua in a dress! Great job, Azmaria! I will worship you forever!"
"Oh, just a ball gown will be quite enough thanks," Azmaria replied as she walked to the door. "Now. Joshua, I've still got to discuss something with you. The flower arranger came and..."
The two of them walked out, still talking about plans for the ball.
I flopped back in bed and stared up at the ceiling.
"Cross-dress as my brother, huh?" I murmured. "Wonder how that'll go?"
I turned around and smiled when I saw who it was: My cousin, Mary Magdalene. "Hey, Mary," I called. "Come in."
She stepped through the doorway with her usual happy expression on her face. "Chrono! You heard about the balls, right?"
I snorted and leaned back in my chair. "Of course I have," I retorted. "Aion made me answer the door when the messenger came, just like always. Why do you mention them anyways?"
She beamed at me. "I'm going!" Her eyes stared off into the distance as she dreamily said, "I'm going to wear my new gown. It's sky-blue, with white lace on the sleeves and neck, and the embroidery on it is so nice..."
I rolled my eyes. "Is that all you came here to say?" I wanted to know. "Because if it is, I''m sorry, but I've got work to do."
She pouted. "Chrono, what're you wearing?" she demanded. "I'll coordinate my outfit with yours, and we'll go together! Okay?"
I stared at her. "Are you kidding me? No way I'm going to a ball! Forget it!"
"Don't forget, cousin dear," she told me, "it's three balls."
I rolled my eyes. "Three balls. Stand me corrected." I sighed. This wasn't really going anywhere. "Bottom line is, I'm not going. First of all, Aion and his buddies won't let me-"
"Oh, I can handle them, they're not a problem," she said instantly.
"-and second of all, I have nothing to wear-"
"I could fix that for you!" she said brightly. "I have a ton of clothes at home!"
"-and third and last of all, I do not want to go!" I snapped. "Okay?"
She jerked back as though I'd slapped her. Without warning, tears welled up in her eyes and her bottom lip began to tremble. "You..." She sniffed and continued in a trembling voice, "You really don't want to go?"
I hesitated. "Uh...no?"
She began to sob. "You're so mean, Chrono!" she wailed, tears running down her face. "Why won't you go to the balls? They're going to be so much fun! Chrono, you meeeaaanniiiiee!"
Uh-oh. She was crying really hard now. In a desperate attempt to cheer her up, I told her, "It's not that I don't want to go! Really, it isn't, Mary! I just don't have anything to wear, or any way to get there! Plus, Aion and his friends won't let me go. If I had clothes and transportation, and if Aion allowed it, I swear I'd go!"
Suddenly she was staring at me intently. "No joke?" she asked warningly. "If you had clothes, transportation, and permission, you'd really go?"
I held my hands up in surrender. "Yes, really!" I smiled at her warmly. "Promise."
"Okay then!" she said gleefully. "I'll come over on Friday with clothes and a carriage for you."
I stared at her, gaping in horror. What? She was seriously planning on taking me? "But... Aion won't..."
"Oh, leave Aion to me!" she replied cheerfully. "I'll bring him to his senses. I'll be here at seven thirty on Friday. Seven thirty sharp."
Oh no. What had I gotten myself into? "I seriously doubt that Aion will-"
"Are you doubting me, Chrono?" she asked with a hard look on her face. Instinctively, I gulped.
"N-No, Mary!" I rushed to say. "Not at all! Never!"
"Then be ready for me on Friday," she chirped, happy as ever. "And, Chrono, really - if you didn't want to go, you should've just said so! Even so, I'm glad - you went just to make me happy!"
She walked out with a grin on her face. I sighed in defeat and flopped onto my bed. How could I have forgotten her mischievousness and persuasive powers?
"I am never going to let her manipulate me ever again," I mumbled into my pillow. "Never."
Of course, that was what I said every time, wasn't it?
A/N: Figured it out now, have you? Yep - Rosette is going to cross-dress! And if this is a RosettexChrono story, then, my friends, that means Chrono...?
I'm just going to let that sentence trail off for now.
Anyways - review, review, review! Go ahead and tell me my story sucks if you want. I'll just be plunged into eternal depression. Nothing too bad. I'll go through hell if that means getting reviews.
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