whiterabbit1613: self portrait (Default)

Title: Once Upon a Time
Author: whiterabbit1613
Rating: PG-13 ish.
Disclaimer: These boys and girls don't belong to me. I know that this isn't real, and no libel or whatever the written one is is intended.
Summary: In which Anderson is a magical fairy princess, and Keith just wants to go home and watch baseball.

Notes: This is CRACK, and it is also a) not finished and b) completely unbeta'ed. I'm serious about the crack, here. It's... very cracky. It also reads like some kind of horrible teen romance in parts.

And a link to the drawing that semi-inspired this: whiterabbit1613.deviantart.com/art/Princess-Andy-93437847

     Once upon a time, Queen Gloria, the beautiful and benevolent leader of Vanderbiltia, married and had two handsome sons. The two boys, Carter and Anderson, were the best of friends, and spent many hours playing together and exploring in the castle gardens. They lived a pretty normal childhood -- or at least, as normal a childhood as two princes could live.

     But a terrible day arrived, when the Queen's consort, the love of her life, was taken ill and died in his sleep. Shortly thereafter, a war broke out all across the land, and Carter, the elder of the two princes, fell victim to the violence, slain by a stray arrow that broke through the window of his bedroom. The war ended within a few days of this tragedy, but the damage had been done. The Queen, mad with her grief, believed that all the men of her family had been cursed, and to prevent this curse from killing her only remaining son, she began calling her twelve-year-old son "Princess Andy" instead of "Prince Anderson", took away his tunics and replaced them with dresses. In public, she referred to Anderson as her daughter, and any courtier who suggested otherwise was immediately removed from her presence and often sent to jail. Anderson resented being forced to grow out his hair, most of all, but he hadn't the heart to rebel against his grieving mother, and so he spent the rest of his youth trying not to prick his fingers as he embroidered tablecloths and bed linens for his dowry.


     "But Daaaan," Prince Keith of Olberville whined, "I just don't understand why I have to meet this princess right now! She'll still be here after the baseball season!"

     Dan Abrams, the top adviser to the King of Olberville, rolled his eyes with a sigh. "Look, Your Highness, if it was up to me, I would have let you wait to meet her, just to make you stop whining. But your father was most insistent, and I understand that the Queen of Vanderbiltia is a bit of an oddball."

     Keith slouched in his seat. "I'm too young to get married," he muttered. "I'm not ready to be tied down for the rest of my life. Besides, I think I'm finally getting somewhere with Rachel. And now this!"

     "Trust me," Dan said, "Even you aren't going to get anywhere with Rachel, and if she's led you to believe otherwise, she's a crueler woman than I previously thought."

     When their carriage pulled up in front of the Vanderbiltia castle, Keith and Dan were greeted by a contingent of royal staff, led by Wolf Blitzer, the head butler, and Erica Hill, Princess Andy's lady-in-waiting. They were ushered inside to a large, ornately decorated parlor.
     "I will go tell Her Highness that you have arrived," Mr. Blitzer said, bowing as he left the room. Erica offered the travelers some tea and biscuits, which Keith accepted out of politeness more than an actual desire to eat. Before entering the castle, he had mostly been annoyed by the concept of having to meet this princess, but now that the event was close at hand, he felt the stirrings of butterflies in the pit of his stomach.
     "What's she like?" Keith finally blurted out, no longer able to restrain himself. Dan gave him a sharp look, which he of course ignored.
     Erica smiled. "Who, the princess?" Keith nodded, and an odd look crossed Erica's face. "Princess Andy is absolutely wonderful, so don't be alarmed, but I feel I should tell you that you might be in for a bit of a surprise."
     Keith, who did feel slightly alarmed at this news, was about to probe for more information, but at that moment, Erica and the other attendants in the room stood, as Mr. Blitzer announced "Her Highness Queen Gloria, and her daughter, Princess Andy." Keith got to his feet, straightening his waistcoat and sparing a moment to hope his hair was behaving.
     Queen Gloria swept into the room ahead of her daughter, resplendent in a purple gown. Keith bowed deeply before her, and she returned the gesture with her own curtsey. "It's a pleasure to meet you, Prince Keith. My kingdom has long been a friend to Olberville, but never have the two been joined by such strong diplomatic bonds." She seemed ready to launch into a full-on speech, but in that moment realized that her daughter had not followed her into the room. She turned to face the door. "Andy? Oh, Andy, this is not the time to be shy! Come in and meet your suitor!"
     At first, nothing happened, and Keith started to believe that the princess had simply taken off to avoid meeting him. But after a moment, a slippered foot could be seen, then the hem of an emerald green dress, a small hand, and then, hesitantly, a shy face and a curtain of silvery hair. Keith's eyes widened at the sight as the princess finally stepped out from behind the door frame and into the room. She was slender and tall -- not as tall as Keith, certainly, but of above average height for a girl. As Keith took her hand to kiss it, he noticed that he didn't have to look down very far to meet her eyes, something he found strangely appealing.
     "It's a pleasure to meet you," the princess said, and while her voice sounded genuine, something in her face made Keith think that she was just saying it to be polite, so maybe she was just as shocked by this sudden arranged marriage as he was.
     Keith tried smiling at her anyway. "Likewise."
     "Well," Queen Gloria said with a bright smile, "We older folks will leave the two of you alone now to get to know one another. Not...alone alone, of course. Erica will sit with you." Erica and Andy shared a glance so brief that Keith thought he might have imagined it, but Andy seemed to relax momentarily after the eye contact. The queen then swept out of the room, Mr. Blitzer escorting Dan out right behind her, followed by everyone else. Soon, the room was empty, save for Keith, Andy and Erica. Andy seated herself daintily on a couch, Erica sitting next to her with a piece of embroidery in her lap.
     "Please," Andy said, indicating a chair with her small hand, "Have a seat."
     Keith did, and then the two stared at each other in mute silence for about ten minutes, until Erica got fed up and put her embroidery down. "Andy," she said, turning to her friend, "If you don't want to marry him, then I will, because he is clearly handsome, healthy and probably rich. Am I right?" she added, addressing Keith directly. He gaped at her before regaining his composure and grinning.
     "Yes, you're right. On all three counts."
     Andy turned sharply towards Erica and started shooting daggers with her eyes. "That's not the problem, Erica, and you know it!"
     "What is the problem, then?" Keith asked, feeling left in the dark. "Maybe I can fix it."
     "I don't think you could. The best you could do is choose to ignore it," Andy said despairingly, tugging at his hair in frustration. "I mean -- how old are you, anyway?"
     Keith didn't think he was that old. "Twenty-seven. Why, how old are you?"
     "I'm not even twenty. Mom, what are you thinking?!"
     "Okay, that does make me feel like I'm robbing the cradle a little. But seriously, I'm not exactly some old geezer. You're the one who's gone gray already."
     Erica was clearly either a very bad lady-in-waiting, or Andy's very good friend, because she barely concealed her laughter behind her needlework in time. Andy's look turned frosty, and she seemed to be choking down a retort. Keith found himself hoping the retort would win out, because Andy's cheeks were turning a very fetching red as she fought down her unrefined, un-ladylike anger. There could be hope for this yet, Keith thought, if I could only get her to be real with me.
     But the princess, instead of bursting out, suddenly deflated. "You don't want to marry me," she said in a tiny voice, staring at her hands. "Trust me."
     Keith didn't know why, but he was starting to feel stubbornly attached to this very odd princess. "See, the more you tell me I don't want to marry you, the more I actually want to. You haven't given me a good reason not to, yet."
     He was increasingly starting to suspect that the meek and quiet side of Andy was just an act, because her eyes flashed angrily. "Fine, then! The reason you shouldn't marry me is because I'm a b--"
     The doors to the room burst open, to admit Her Highness the queen and Mr. Blitzer, who announced that dinner was about to be served in the dining room. Queen Gloria beamed at her daughter and Keith as they moved to sit at the table. Andy sat to the queen's left, and Keith, as the guest of honor, to her right. Though they kept up a stream of dull chatter, and though Keith kept trying, Andy refused to make eye contact all night, and so by the time the meal was over, Keith went to his room disappointed, and starting to believe that things might not work out after all.

     As he got ready for bed, Keith thought back to the conversation he'd had earlier, just before the queen cut off whatever Andy had been about to say. Keith took a bath to wash off the dirt he'd accumulated traveling and to reflect on what little he had gleaned.
     Andy apparently believed there was a reason Keith shouldn't marry her, and it was either embarrassing to the monarchy or embarrassing to the princess herself. Judging by what little he had seen, Keith believed that Andy was not routinely embarrassed by herself. She seemed pretty comfortable in her beliefs, and the couple had even had a reasonably good debate about the importance of educating the kingdom's subjects, despite the fact that Andy wouldn't make eye contact. So Keith decided it was embarrassing to the monarchy -- something about Andy that wasn't supposed to get out.
     The reason you shouldn't marry me is because I'm a b--
A bitch? Unlikely. Maybe snarky, but that was hardly a deal breaker. A bowler? A bolshevik? A bad snorer?
     A bisexual?
     Keith contemplated that as he rinsed out his hair. Well, that could certainly be scandalous, if it was true. Most people, in Vanderbiltia and in Olberville alike, were pretty enlightened, and did not generally disapprove of anyone, regardless of their sexuality. But it could be somewhat problematic, he supposed, if the last heir to the kingdom's throne decided to marry another woman, thus ending the bloodline and possibly leading to civil war. And it would explain why Andy and Erica seemed so close. Perhaps they had been carrying on a secret love affair and were planning to elope one day.
     He got out of the tub, pulled the plug on the drain, and started vigorously toweling himself off. He went to his suitcase to pull out a fresh set of clothes, which he put on. He combed his hair with his fingers, hoping that it would be presentable while damp, picked up his glasses, and set off to find a way to sneak into Andy's room.

     Andy, who the gentle reader surely remembers is actually our hero Anderson, had in the meantime gone through much the same process in his own room, and was now doing the crossword puzzle in the Vanderbiltia Times as Erica combed and braided his long silver tresses.
     "You have to admit," Erica said, "This guy is much better than the last suitor your mother approved of. He's handsome, smart, and, you know --"
     "Not a sexual pervert?" Anderson laughed and filled in 23-across. "Yeah, so he didn't try to grope me five minutes after meeting me. That's a huge plus."
     Erica rolled her eyes, though the effect was lost on the object of her scorn. "Oh, spare me the sarcasm, please."
     This time of the day was Anderson's favorite, because for the few minutes before he went to bed, he could just be a normal guy hanging out with his best friend. Maybe it was weird that his best friend was a girl, but hey, a guy has to make do with what he has, and Erica really was wonderful to talk to.
     "I don't want to get married," he said quietly. "To anyone. And I don't want to wear dresses or makeup or sit in the parlor all day doing counted cross-stitch. I want to do something useful. I want to travel and write stories for the Vanderbiltia Times and I really, really don't want to be Queen. Or King, for that matter, but even that would be infinitely better."
     Erica tied off the braid and Anderson turned to face her. "You should tell your mother."
     Anderson opened his mouth to reply, but was cut off by a sharp rap at his window. "What was that?"
     "I don't know." Erica went to look outside, and was surprised to see Keith standing in the garden below, waving his arms frantically. "Hey, it's Keith." Anderson scrambled to her side, pulling on a nightgown over his sleep clothes. Erica opened the window and stuck her head out. "What are you doing down there? You're supposed to be asleep!"
     "Just wanted to talk," was the response, sounding soft across the distance. "Can I come inside?"
     Anderson edged Erica out of the way. "I don't know," he said with a smirk, "Can you?"
     Two minutes later, a very surprised and impressed Anderson was helping his erstwhile courtier into the room, and Keith's grinning face was red from the exertion and the cool night air. "I've been sneaking out my whole life, princess. Sneaking in isn't much harder."
     "Why are you here?"
     Keith shrugged. "I just wanted to talk. About what you almost said today before your mother came in." The look on Andy's face was hard to read -- somewhere between nervous, resigned and defiant. It only confirmed Keith's suspicions. "I suspect that your mother doesn't want this information to get out, right?" Anderson nodded unenthusiastically. "Princess, it's nothing to be ashamed of. I know that not everyone is as understanding about these sorts of things, but I -- I wanted to tell you that I'm just like you. I have the same secret."
     Andy gave him an odd look. "It's not much of a secret, Prince."
     This threw Keith for a loop. While he hadn't gone to any great pains to be discreet about his orientation, he hadn't really bedded that many guys, and overall thought he'd hid it pretty well. Certainly, his reputation as a ladies' man had always helped to dispel any rumors that surfaced. "Really? H-how did you find out?"
     Now Andy was openly staring at him like he was crazy. "It's kind of obvious, isn't it? I mean, look at you!"
     Keith had, and Keith did so now, glancing down at his shirt like maybe he had some sign tacked to it reading "Equal Opportunity Lover" or similar. "I'm sorry, princess, but what about my appearance told you that I am a bisexual?"
     Erica was the first one to start laughing, while Andy just stared at Keith for a minute with shock featuring prominently on his face. "Bisexual?" he finally squeaked, which just set Erica off worse than before.
     Keith let the merriment go on until he couldn't stand being the unknowing butt of the joke any longer. Red in the face, he said, "What's so funny?"
     Anderson sighed. Erica fell on the floor. "I'm not bi, Keith. Earlier on, I was trying to tell you that... well. I'm a boy." Keith kind of grayed out, though in the background he could hear Anderson continue. "Or a man now, I suppose. I never exactly got the talk from anyone, so I don't know the precise definition, but being over the age of majority, I figure..."
     "There is no way you're a boy," Keith blurted out.
     Anderson's eyes narrowed in annoyance. "Well, I am one, so clearly there is a way."
     "But you're entirely too pretty!" Keith proceeded to ramble on for some time about Andy's many feminine characteristics, until Anderson stood up, took Keith's giant hand in his, and placed it firmly on his crotch.
     "See?" He squeezed a little, and, yeah, that was definitely a dick-shaped bump under the layers of silk and lace.
     "Okay," Keith said. "Um. Wow."
     Erica got Keith a cup of tea, and then she and Anderson waited until Keith had drunk the whole thing before trying to advance the conversation.

     “I know it’s weird,” Anderson began, “and now that you know I certainly don’t expect you to want to marry me.”

     Erica shoved him to the side. “Stop whining, Andy! What he’s trying to say is that he wishes you would marry him. Anderson’s been waiting his whole life to get out of the palace and see the world, and the only way he’s likely to be able to do that is if he marries.”


     Anderson reddened and looked down. “Yeah. My mom… is a little weird. She’d be crushed if I just ran away. I’m all she has left.”

 ... and then there are many magical adventures and a wedding and happily ever after YAY!

From: [identity profile] peapods42.livejournal.com

Hahahaha, awesome awesome crack.


From: [identity profile] writer-atdusk.livejournal.com

YAY INDEED! wonderful crack, I even imagined Keith outside the window, Erica giggling... =)

From: [identity profile] culf.livejournal.com

This was actually kind of sweet, and I'd love to read about their wedding and married life together.


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