True Prince

One day, one day I will complete all my projects. If I could stop the constant flow of ideas…that would help too…oh well. basic synopsis? Ren is coming to confess that he's Kuon and Corn to Kyoko, when he learns that Corn has returned to "bring her back with him"! Wait what? Chaos and laughs are sure to follow

By the way…I don't own Skip Beat (thank the Good Lord, I'm busy enough!)

Enjoy!

-Kate

Chapter 1- Too Late

Ren took a deep breath as he surveyed the towering building in front of him,

"she's in there."

He couldn't help but think. A small smile graced his face as he thought of her bright orange hair and even brighter golden eyes that seemed to stare through anyone. Suddenly picture after picture flashed in his mind, her small face that had the cutest smile on her small lips. The way her brows would furrow in determination when she wanted something, and the way she would regard everything as a fairy tale.

He stood before the building, determination rising in him as he approached the magnificent doors.

"she deserves to know, if I don't tell her, how can I expect to have a real relationship with her? No. I have to tell her. "

As he stepped closer, he began to have second thoughts, as all sorts of scenarios played out in his head. He imagined scaring her off, her hating him and never wanting to see him again. He imagined her not believing him (oh what would he do if she didn't believe him?) and even worse… her completely disregarding it and causing the pain and hole in his heart to grow, which let out the darker side of Kuon.

"maybe I shouldn't tell her."

This was ridiculous! He turned around and he could never remember a time when he was too frightened of what lay in this building to even go inside!

"I cant keep being a coward. If I don't tell her…I'll never have her. Even if we did…go out…she'd find out eventually, and then it'd be worse…she'd be heartbroken."

No. He couldn't…wouldn't break her heart.

That was his final push of thought to steel his resolve. He swung open the doors and walked through, unable to see the person who watched him with cunning trickery glistening in his eyes.

(page break)_

Kyoko was in a crisis. Kenae could tell the minute she opened the door of the LoveMe room and a frigid blast of cold air greeted her. Kyoko sat curled in a ball. Her hands clenching her knees like lifelines as the small grudges floated around her. Even her pink Love Me suit was cloudy and grey by her depressing aura. Kenae dismissed it with a shiver down her spine and gave a sigh,

"hey. What's up with you?"

Kyoko gave no response. Kenae looked at her friend closely to realize that her mind was somewhere else as her grey eyes met Kyoko's vacant amber ones.

"Kyoko?"

But Kyoko couldn't hear her. Her mind was somewhere else entirely. Back in a hotel room late at night leaning over Tsuruga…

"no! it wasn't Re-I mean Tsuruga-san! It was Onii-san! My big brother Cain! That's right! It wasn't Re-Tsuruga-san."

But she couldn't convince herself of that as she remembered the constant pounding in her heart as she pressed her lips to his hot chest, tracing small kisses down them until she "marked" him as her own;

She reached for his pants when Ren finally came to his senses. He knew what this girl was about to give up. And as much as he wanted her to, not like this. he wanted it to be with him, and only him; on the day that she would wear white. He grasped her hands and brought them up to his lips,

"Setsu..." he murmured gently, fighting against every fiber of his hormones,

"you don't need to give me that."

He was shocked as her eyes stared boldly into his. He was surprised not to see Setsu's cool glare turned to him, but Kyoko's wide innocent gaze, like that of a child, that bore into his heart.

"what do you need? What can I do, to show you how important you are to me? I don't like to see you hurt like you are. Tell me what I need to do to help you feel better. please."

She begged softly.

Ren's eyes widened as tears sparked in her own. He could tell that she was in a lot of pain over this. he could tell that his inner struggle with Kuon had taken its toll on her as well as him. To hurt the one he loved…was too much. He grasped her small chin softly, but firmly, as if to keep her gaze on him. He wanted to show her how much love he held for her in his gaze. He knew she could read him like a book…most of the time. He wanted to let her read him fully this time. No tricks, no interupptions, no subtlety. She wouldn't understand that.

"I want you to be with me. If only for tonight. I need you with me tonight, to keep me strong. Not like that, just stay with me."

He expected her to run away. To make excuses or disregard him, or act stiffly; so he was surprised (a little pleasantly) when she nodded, a blush creeping up on her cheeks.

"alright."

She stood up and turned to him, trying to suppress the blush that refused to leave her face. he thought that she was going to run when she gave him a small smile,

"you should probably change into your nightclothes then. I'll be out soon in my own. But I don't think the bed will feel very comfortable in what you're wearing now."

He gave a small nervous laugh as she went into the bathroom. He fell on the bed in amazement,

"did that just happen? Did the girl of my dreams just say that tonight…she'll be mine? I wont go all the way. I'm saving that. But she's trusting me. me! the one she considers a playboy! I wont screw this up. Tonight…I'll show her how much I love her. Tonight…I'll show her how much she means to me. I can't beat myself up for Rick for the rest of my life. I chose her over him."

Kyoko in the meantime was panicking.

"it's Tsuruga-san! I cant! I cant! I cant! He said he doesn't want me to have…that…with him, but he wants me to be with him? like I'm a…lo-"

She couldn't say it. She could feel the pressure coming back to her chest,

"this one's worse than before. With him it wasn't this bad. If I let out these feelings, how much more of an idiot will I be?"

"Baka! He needs you! You already told him you'd be his for tonight! Let out the feelings you truly have!"

Her angels seemed to exclaim. The grudges that circled her heart like sharks began to panic,

"no! don't do it! love is nothing! You can't love! You'll get rejected! You'll get hurt again! Don't love!"

"it's for one night! Love!"

Her angels retorted.

Back and forth the fight went on as Kyoko slipped on her black short pajama shorts and lacy tank top (it was a compromise of Setsu and Kyoko's modesty) she opened her mouth and unclipped the false lip piercing that she wore. She continued with all her piercings, until she finally took out her contacts that shown her bright amber eyes,

"if I took off the wig…I'd be fully Kyoko."

She muttered to herself. She couldn't stop the brief feeling of euphoria she felt as she thought of the man outside. She brushed it off as excitement, but only halfheartedly.

She walked outside to see Ren laying beneath the blankets. He was trying hard not to intimidate her. He lay quietly, trying to cease the constant thumping of his heart as the bed creaked beneath him, notifying of another presence in the room. He felt her lithe body slide right next to his, though not in a very comfortable position. He turned to look at her, and stifled a chuckle as he caught the blush that had seemed to have taken permanent residence on her face. She lay stiffly beside him and he caught the feeling of confusion in her face. That gave him hope, at least it wasn't disgust right?

"relax. I don't want Setsu tonight. Relax."

Kyoko could hear his voice, which was both comforting to her, and straining to him,

'I can't let him worry about me.' she thought. She took a deep breath and let it out, her small chest rising up and down begin to synchronize with his. He took a hand and placed it by his lips kissing it softly,

"I wont hurt you. You matter too much to me to hurt you. Trust me."

She did. With all her life she did. She felt her feelings become unable to control as the last lock on her box that protected her from love, slipped away. She could feel her true self coming back….and the scariest thing? She actually wanted it to!

They lay together, their arms and legs entwined in one another. She lay her head softly on his chest and listened to his heartbeat, while he took in the warmth she brought to him that he hadn't felt in a long time. He lay a kiss softly on her hair, inhaling the sweet scent of lily and rose shampoo that she always used. She always smelled like the sweetest flower.

She peeked up at him, his eyes were shut, but she could sense he hadn't fallen completely asleep. She tried to push herself up on her arms when she felt him tighten his embrace on her. He lay his hand at the spot where her hair and nape met and she could hear him whisper,

"please, please don't leave me Kyoko."

To hear her name, on his lips, her heart began to pound faster. She could see from where she was, his eyes scrunched up, like he was in pain. Did she really do that to him? Did he really need her that much?

'no one's ever needed me before like that. I wasn't wanted by anyone. Could this man really lo-care about me that much?'

That thought, brought happiness to her chest like she never felt before. Before she knew what she was doing, she reached up and planted a soft peck on his lips,

"don't worry Ren." She whispered,

"I'm not going anywhere."

She hated herself for feeling this way. She couldn't stand it! She had tried so hard to keep these feelings bottled and encaged. She had worked so hard to harden her heart. She couldn't care for someone like this. she couldn't love. Her mother, her childhood, and more prominently Sho, taught her she was unlovable. That whoever thought they could love a plain, boring girl with no sex appeal would soon grow tired of her.

'I can't handle it again. If I'm rejected again…I don't think I'll be able to get up anymore.'

That was what scared her the most. But seeing the look written on this mans face, she knew that wasn't going to happen. But she couldn't convince herself of that.

The next morning, things returned to normal. They were closer, but still far apart. But Ren didn't dwell on the latter, all he could think about during the day was one word,

'progress…I've made progress…'

Kyoko's eyes swirled as she thought about it that night.

"does this mean I lo-love Tsuruga-san? I don't know what to do anymore!"

She felt like she was being tossed in a huge ocean, just floating on the surface, she didn't know what lay beneath her, but she wanted to dive down deep and try to find out. At the same time she was scared to dive deep,

"what if something eats me? what if I drown?"

All these contradictions clashed in her mind, making her feel like love was a washing machine on spin cycle, swirling her and her heart around and around with sorts of thoughts.

"someone help me!"

She cried inwardly to herself.

Kenae shook her best friend's shoulders. Kyoko had been too quiet today! She'd not even called her Moko-san! It was way to hard,

"Mo! What's wrong with you?!"

Kyoko came to her senses as she saw her best friend shaking her and looking at her with concern blazing in her grey eyes.

"Moko-san! I need your help!"

She cried as she latched onto Kenae. A small burst of relief rushed through Kenae in an instant,

'she's alright.'

Then she shoved Kyoko off in her usual brash manner and sat her down on a chair. She pulled one up for herself and sighed,

"okay, since this obviously is so important." She said feigning sarcasm, "whats up?"

Kyoko retold the story (leaving out the bit about Cain of course) and Kenae's eyes got wider and wider. She was both impressed and awed with Ren.

'the boy finally stepped up and showed her that he has feelings for her. Good. Now it's just about her getting used to the idea of romance and love again…Mo! What am I thinking? I'm not a matchmaker!'

But watching as her friends face lit up with an inner glow (that she doubted Kyoko could see herself) as she talked about "Tsuruga-san" Kenae inwardly chuckled,

'I guess I'll play matchmaker for her. I cant think of anyone better for her to be with. But he better not take her completely away form me! she's still my best friend!'

As Kyoko finished the story, Kenae prepared to explain that what she was saying was love when a knock sounded on the door. Aggravated about being interuppted, Kenae turned to Kyoko,

"mo! you answer that. I'll answer you when you get back."

She huffed. Kyoko gave a small chuckle as she walked up to the door and twisted the handle open. She was shocked when her eyes met his. Her heart stopped with fear in her chest; but he gave a calm smile and said,

"Kyoko-chan? I've been waiting for you."

Her hands went up to her mouth and she uttered quietly,

"Corn?"

He smiled in acknowledgement and gave her a kind smile,

"you figured it out. I've come to talk with you, can we speak alone?"

Kyoko gave a numb nod and walked hypnotically out the door.

Ren quickly but gracefully strolled through the LME building, Yashiro running to stay up. He had run into him when he came through the building (much to his annoyance) but couldn't stop the need to go see Kyoko. He knew Yashiro would tease him for it later, but honestly…right now he didn't care. He had a little ways to go before reaching the LoveMe room but that didn't matter as he crossed another hall that put him that much closer to his destination. His previous fear washed away and was replaced with excitement as his hand (for the hundredth time that day) brushed over his lips,

'she kissed me! while it wasn't a full kiss, she still kissed me! that's got to mean something right?'

But as he neared the door, all excitement drained away. From the hall, he could hear a soft crying. Both he and Yashiro stopped. Yashiro's face went pale and Ren's was completely devoid of all emotion. He couldn't decide how to feel. Hurt? Confused? angry? They were all jumbled up in him,

'wait Kuon, don't jump to conclusions. You don't know what happened yet. Easy now.'

He slowly opened up the LoveMe door to see Kenae softly crying on the ground. Relief and guilt both surged through him; relief because he was happy it wasn't Kyoko, guilt because he was happy it wasn't Kyoko and disregarded Kenae.

Yashiro watched the beautiful woman crying on her knees. He couldn't ever remember seeing a cry like this. It wasn't like when she used it for acting. This was real.

"Kotonami-san?"

He asked quietly. He approached her calmly, he didn't want to upset her, while Ren closed the door behind him, missing the small yellow note that was stuck to the door. He figured Kenae wouldn't want everybody in LME to see her cry.

Yashiro had reached the young woman and was on his knees as he stretched out a hand to her,

"Kotonami-san? Are you alright?"

Kenae said nothing, as she felt a warm hand grace her shoulder she turned and collapsed,

"he took her! He took her away! I didn't even think he was real! But he took her! Spirited her away like in the TV shows!"

She hated herself for being this vulnerable. In her mind, she wanted to curse Kyoko whose idea of friendship had put her in this position. But she knew she couldn't curse her. All she wanted was the young woman to stroll through the door and glomp on her as usual.

Yashiro felt a chill. He looked around for the other two members of LoveMe, specifically, one bright orange haired girl. When not seeing her, he asked slowly,

"who took who away?"

That's what Ren wanted to know. He stood, frozen at the door, unwilling to move forward. He was paralyzed by this woman's words.

'took her away? Please don't be who I think it is! Please!'

But no luck as Kenae sobbed,

"Kyoko. He took Kyoko away!"

She clung to Yashiro, her hands in fists of anger and sadness. She was there, she could've helped her! She could've gotten the door! But she didn't! Yashiro placed a hand at the small of her back, rubbing it up and down gently,

"shh…it's okay. We'll find her."

Normally, those words would anger Kenae. Those were words that were told with resignation and out of duty. But to hear them coming from the managers mouth, she could hear the confidence brimming from it. she looked up and saw that he stared down at her with kindness blazing in his brown eyes. He shifted his gaze over to Tsuruga and she followed, before feeling a huge wave of relief and happiness rush over her.

Ren stood there, his fists clenched. His eyes were narrowed and seemed to speak volumes,

'I'm going to find her. I couldn't be there for her once; I'll be damned before it happens again.'

He turned to the door and spotted the note. Shaking, he slowly picked it up, suppressing all urges to tear it up each passing second. As he read the words, the world went numb and cold. In a muffled voice from reality, he heard Yashiro gently ask Kenae,

"now…who took her away?"

Ren shook with fury as he re-read the note,

I'll take care of her now.

Don't bother, she's mine.

-Corn

"Corn."

Kenae responded. Yashiro remembered Kyoko talking about Corn. He was her friend who was there for her for a little while, but he never thought they'd actually meet again! Ren had by now already left and was on the way to see the President with one thought on his mind,

'who the hell is this "Corn"?'

Kyoko stirred from her slumber in the car. She didn't remember much, just Corn saying he wanted to speak to her alone. She had told him, she could but she had to leave a note on the door for her best friend. He told her he would write it, and they left, next thing she knew, she had smelled the familiar smell of chloroform and…after that everything got fuzzy.

"Corn?"

She asked. The driver in front smiled at her, his blue eyes shimmering with glee,

'finally I have her. Now I'll make her mine.'

"we're here Kyoko-chan."

He responded calmly. Kyoko's head was pounding as Corn gently lifted her from the seat of the car. Carrying her bridal style, he kicked open the door and walked inside.

"now I'm sorry Kyoko-chan, but you're going to need to sleep a bit more now okay?"

He said gently as he waved the chloroform rag in front of her face again. Kyoko felt the pounding grow larger as she passed out unconscious in his arms.

Corn shut the door and locked it tight. He took her to the bedroom and placed her in a crib- like bed with bars all around in case she decided to try and run.

"I'd place you in mine if I could Kyoko. But when you learn a little bit more and when I feel like you're ready, you will be."

He gently caressed her cheek before shutting the door tight. He placed his hands in his pockets and retrieved the contact case. Pulling out the contacts one by one he gave a smile to the door, where the still unconscious girl slept peacefully.

"I couldn't get you before because you had a guard dog and a lion. But now? you're all mine."

Dah Dah Duuuunn!

So who do you think this pseudo-Corn is? Curious on your thoughts just send me a review and I'll get a message back to you ;)

Thanks!

-Kate