Princess Tutu Fan Fiction ❯ The Madrigal: Princess Tutu and the Secret Six II ❯ Chapter 3
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When Billy saw Luthor, the only thing he knew is that there was going to be problems. Instinctively, he marched right up to the limo without even thinking about it. Ahiru and Mary quickly marched right up behind Billy, not sure what his intentions were. A man in a suit with sunglasses immediately saw Billy's rapid approach and tried to grab him, but the man was surprised when he fast found himself on the ground with barely any contact. Luthor saw this and was actually amused. When the man, obviously a secret service agent, (as he was the last ex-president afforded the luxury of one,) started to arise to engage the scrappy youth, Luthor just laughed and waved him off. “I would quit while you're behind, Charlie,” said Luthor, “If I recognize this fine lad, he probably knows more on how to fight than they taught you at the academy!”
Luthor then turned his attention to Billy, and said, “Billy Batson of WHIZ and the Pas De Six I assume?”
Mr. Johansson looked a bit annoyed, but Billy ignored it, and said, “You assume correctly, Mr. Luthor. Do I assume some kind of hostile takeover here at our school?”
“Mr. Batson!” spat Mr. Johansson, “You stand on the edge of insubordination and dangerously on the edge of expulsion—celebrity or no celebrity! This is no way to treat a guest! If I had my way…”
Luthor put a hand on the headmaster's shoulder, and said, “Its okay, Mr. Johansson—I can understand the young man's trepidation. Sometimes, when Lexcorp is involved with something, things change more than some people care. I can understand someone having pride in his school, and being wary of change. If that were the case here, I would say that he would come around in time. He has a good fighting spirit, which is just the kind of people that I look for when hiring for my company.”
He then changed his attention to Billy, and said, “However, Mr. Batson, you need not fear. In fact, I have asked for an escort around the campus, because it is your very act that got me interested. Oddly enough, I watch things like Strut Your Stuff from time to time, and when I saw your act, and how well this school trained you and your friends, it got me interested. I am a purveyor of the arts, as you know, and all I would like to do is give the school a grant—you know, add to the trust that helps fund the school. Whatever helps you fine students, I am all for that.”
He patted Billy on the head as if he was a five-year-old boy being praised by his father, tousling his hair. He then turned back to the headmaster and said, “Well, if you would lead the way, I would like to see more of the campus and meet some more of the students.”
As they left, Luthor left one glance back at Billy with a smile, and Billy returned it with an indifferent stare, as the secret service agent glared at him. It was not because he had gotten close to the former president like that, but that he had been shown up by a teenage boy. Ahiru was confused, and said, “Would you mind explaining what that was all about?”
“That, Baby Duck, was one Lex Luthor,” said Billy, “He runs a multi-faceted business conglomerate called Lexcorp. The Justice League has been tracking him for some time, hoping to catch him with his pants down. I trust him about as far as you could throw him! He has his fingers in organized crime, no question. Yet, he does so much above board, and above the law, it is hard to peg him with any real wrongdoing. Just know that, if he is here, and interested in this school, he has an ulterior motive, no doubt.”
“Come on, Duck, we have to get ready for tomorrow,” said Mary, taking in the information, but not sure what to think of how her brother reacted. She only wished Mytho had been there. He could have read the man, and then they would have known. With them split up like this, it would be hard to communicate. She could not wait for the Raven's Nest to be completed.
Out in the woods, Dr. Savannah was out there with one of his teams. They were walking through what the students of Kinkan called the Thinking Woods. He had some advanced instruments and probes, testing random points in the ground for traces of petroleum. The amount found would indicate a possible oil field, and if there was one, it's possible size. The trek started early that morning, starting from the largest reading, and went towards the school, where he suspected the field to extend. They had done about fifteen readings that morning, going for miles. Dr. Savannah was glad that, despite his age, he was able to keep up, patting himself on the back for taking good care of himself all those years. They stood now about 400 yards from the school wall, and everywhere they had made a reading, it read the same amount of petroleum as was at the original find. This meant that the oil field was huge, and much bigger than what was suspected. With that data, he then gave the command to wrap it up there, and then to go to the outskirts of Kinkantown and start the process again. He knew that Luthor would be smiling ear to ear with this news.
Billy, for the time being, now had the room to himself. This would make it easier to do more hero work discreetly, and without interruption. He could also spread out a bit, at least for that semester, and make it more of a home. He had never had this much space to himself before, and he wanted to enjoy it. Meanwhile, in the girls' dorm, there were some moves. Mary took in Nana, and Mai, and that left Ahiru with Yuma. However, there was a new girl that they had yet to meet. She had already moved in, but she stepped out before both girls had the chance to see her. One thing was certain; she was in the creative arts. She had an easel, with several colors of oil paint in the holder, along with a slew of brushes and knives, a smock and a platter for holding the paints while she worked. She also had things for water colors, pens and pencils for sketching, and it was clear that two dimensional arts was her thing. However, by some of the drawings and paintings on the walls, she was a huge fan of anime. Not only did she have her interpretations in anime style of Naturo, Sailor Moon, Card Captor Sakura, to name a few, she also had done in anime style Harry Potter, Kim Possible, Pirates of the Caribbean, and other stories she loved. One thing stood out amongst her gallery, however, was the drawings of dancers. They were very diverse in style, and style of dance, but seemed to lean more towards ballet than anything else. By the amount on her wall, it was certain she loved the Japanese styling, and she was quite prolific. They wondered if the whole room would be covered with pictures by the time the year was finished. On the desk, however, were a personal computer, and a printer/scanner. If she got internet access, Yuma and Ahiru agreed to help her pay for it, because it would be a helpful research tool. One new addition did please Ahiru and Mary, and that was Rachel. She was roomed right across the hall from Ahiru, and she came in as a junior in the voice school. She had said that she wanted to remain close to the team, and they were glad that she was able to come. As for the other, well, they knew they would eventually meet her, because she had to “come home” at some point. However, as time passed, she did not show. By the time it was close to curfew, she was still not there. Soon, Yuma and Ahiru drifted off to sleep before curfew, and never saw her return.
The next morning, the girls awoke for their orientation, expecting to meet their new roommate, but they saw no one. Yet, they could tell someone had been there. The bathroom had the last hints of steam evaporating, there was a canvas on the easel, and there was a painting starting, in anime form, of a familiar figure. When they got closer, they saw that there was a CD set there just aside the canvas. A background wash had already been done, and the first parts of a face were coming through. Upon closer examination, they realized that it was the Pas De Six debut album, and that it was Ahiru's face that she was painting, of which Ahiru was very flattered. What they also found odd was that she had been so quiet in returning, painting, and preparing, that she did not awake them. They did not even know her name yet, which added to the mystery. Yuma could take no more, and started to snoop around a bit. Ahiru scolded her, saying, “Hey, that's not right! How would you like someone to go through your things while you're away?”
“Darling Duckie,” said Yuma, “If she won't show herself, we might as well look around a bit. I mean, we can't go the whole semester like this.”
Ignoring Ahiru, she opened up her closet. She found about three school uniforms, but not much else, save for various colored hoodies and jackets, along with a few pairs of wedge heel boots. She did not have anything as far as formal wear at all. By the looks of the clothes, she was not a petit thing. “Well, I'm not going through her draws, because that would be too much,” sighed Yuma, “I guess we shall just have to wait.”
With that, the girls got ready.
The orientation went as it had last year with some new and improved good idea/bad idea sketches, while the voice department and music department took turns, but worked with each other when the vocals came in. The orchestra did Mozart's the Musical Joke, and the voice department came in singing, of all things, in the madrigal form for some of their numbers, possibly inspired by the Pas De Six. The only difference in the dance department was the absence of Mr. Katt, who had retired and handed things over to Tanya St. John. Nevertheless, the seniors in each sub-department put on a great show. The only thing was that the creative art students had their own separate orientation, and so Yuma and Ahiru would not meet her there. They only hoped that they would meet her soon, and not have a phantom roommate. However, when it came time for the placement tests, they were in for a surprise.
The dancers prepared while those who wished to watch and provide moral support took their seats. This consisted of friends, any family that happened to live nearby, and another presence which drew attention to her by not sitting with the others, but putting a chair with the back to the large picture windows that lined one side of the studio. Upon it sat a brown haired, brown eyed girl of about 17 years, five foot seven, and about 255 pounds, give or take. She had shoulder length hair in a pony tail, and a warm, friendly face that did not betray her weight within it. In fact, she was what one would call thick—a big girl, but properly proportioned for her size, in such a fashion that betrayed some past athleticism. Thus, she held her weight well, and as a result, was attractive in her own way. One thing to note was that she had an IPod attached to her ears, and occasionally went to it to repeat a song that seemed to stand out to her, and to which she wanted to pay more attention. Beside her was a messenger bag, and once things seemed ready to commence, she went to it, pulled out a sketch pad, various types of art pencils, and a digital camera. Apparently, she chose this position to aid her in having the right light without having to use a flash, and thus avoiding distracting the dancers as they worked. As each dancer did their routine, she would put down a rough sketch of each one, and also photographing the ones she apparently found more interesting than the others. However, when it was Ahiru's turn, she set down her sketch book, and began to take several photographs of her in several different poses. If one of the students was already a celebrity, things would not have been allowed. Yet, since she first made use of the sketch book and limited use of the camera, they paid it no mind as they figured that she was a creative art student, and was already preparing for her first assignments. Because she had done that first, her taking several photographs was not questioned at this point, because it would have been written off as her wanting later images of what she thought was the best subject for her project. However, Ahiru took notice of this, and it distracted her at first. Tonya said from behind the table, “Miss Arima, please stop and start again. You cannot let yourself be distracted. I KNOW you dance better than that!”
She recomposed herself, and tried not to let the “art girl” take her attention away. She was able to put in enough to allow her back into the AP class again, and thus, have more time to hone her skills, and work on the act later when that was done. Yuma, on the other hand, looked right at the girl as the dance progressed, and figured that she was looking at their mystery roommate, considering her size, aptitude for art, and an obsession for her roommate and friend. Once Ahiru was done, Yuma brought this to Ahiru's attention, but when she looked to see her, the girl was already gone. “One thing is for sure, Duckie,” said Yuma, “for a big girl, she is fast!”
Indeed, Mary, Billy, and Ahiru made the AP class again, but now Ahiru was a bit bugged by the mysterious girl, and her possible roommate and she wanted to take a chance at finding her. She returned to her room to put on her civilian clothes, and noted when she had returned that more of the painting had been finished, and that the painter had not been away too long by the wetness of the paint. She then remembered some of the detective skills she had learned that spring, and tried to take note of anything different. Her messenger bag was not there, but the camera was, and it was attached to the computer. In the printer was some photo quality sheets, and thus, she must have printed out the pictures that she had taken. Leaving the camera out showed that she already had a trust for her roommates and that was comforting. Trying to think the way she would, she had to guess that she had printed the photos, and then went somewhere to do her work where it was the quietest, and the best place for that was the Thinking Woods. After she had changed, she went out to find her new roommate and see if she could get to know her. However, if there was a problem, (and she suspected this by her reluctance to be around people at that point,) this girl could meet someone else of whom she could sketch or paint.
Sitting on a lawn chair with a portable lap table in the Thinking Woods not too far from the school was the new girl. She indeed was doing some work, and she was drawing the different subjects that she had seen that day. She had the photos, and she was doing different ones in different styles, including the manga/anime style. Of course, the ones she had more of were the Ahiru photos, and she was being extra careful with those. Ahiru saw her in the distance, and she thought of approaching her. However, she wondered if she was a big fan, and if she might be asking for something bigger than she wanted to deal with. Since she so dearly wanted to get into her head, she figured that it may be better to let her meet someone else instead. With that, she reached up and grabbed the now ever present pendant and began to glow a golden glow. She lifted off the ground and balled up as the egg chrysalis formed, cleared, popped, and Princess Tutu emerged, straightening herself out and landing in the fifth position, hands above her head, in all her splendor, with her normal radiant and determined look on her face. Dancing to a symphony heard only by her, she danced her way up to the girl, and noticed the IPod stuck in her ears. If she came out here to work, it certainly was not to get in a silent place. Therefore, she took a chance and danced before her. She did not notice at first, being so engrossed in her work, but she did glance up for a brief moment, and then did a double take as she looked up, and was now affixed on the image of beauty before her. Once Tutu saw that she had the girl's attention, she popped up on her right toe, faced toward her, left leg 90 degrees apart from the other and to the side, toe pointed, right hand in the air, left set in the same way as her leg. Her smile was warm enough to melt ice, and that was the intent per se. The girl could not believe what she was seeing, and now suddenly wished that she had not left her camera back in the dorm. Tutu brought both her feet and hands down to the first position crisply as she grinned, and said, “Such pretty artwork—you have such a keen eye for detail and beauty.”
Despite the shock of what stood before her, she could not help but crack a smile, genuinely embarrassed at the compliment. “Uh…thank you…uh…who are you?” the girl finally stammered out.
The ballerina curtsied deeply and gracefully, and said, “I am Princess Tutu, the White Swan, and I dance to guide your heart!”
She returned back to standing, only now her feet were in the fifth position. The girl was not certain what to say, considering the surprise with which she appeared, and how warm she was being to a perfect stranger. “You dance to guide my heart?” she asked, not knowing what else to say, and Tutu nodded with a slight cock to her head. “Gee, I don't know what to say,” the girl said with all sincerity, “I guess you think my heart needs guiding.”
Without any malice, but with her smile and gentleness, Tutu responded, “We all need guidance from time to time. I have been watching you since I first laid eyes on you, and I notice that you don't seem to want to be around people much.”
The girl hung her head a touch, and said, “I have to admit, I am a bit shy, but there are reasons.”
“Would you care to talk about them?” Tutu asked, and she did her gesture: twirling hands over her head, and then her right hand extended towards her subject, as she demanded gently, “Dance with me!”
A look of confusion came over the artist's face as she cocked her head to the request, and she said, “Um…I'm not sure I'm ready for that, I mean, I don't know.”
The girl was now worried that she may have offended the pretty ballerina that took time to meet her, but it certainly did not show on Tutu's face. Tutu returned her hand to the first position, and smiled as she said, “That's okay. Yet, if you ever need someone to talk to about your problems, more often than not, you can find me here.”
She then gestured with her arm towards the forest as if she was a prize lady on a game show, and she then asked, “I didn't catch your name.”
“Well, I should have dropped it,” said the girl, “My name is Elly.”
“That is a pretty name,” said Tutu with all the sincerity in the world, “I am glad to have met you. Considering that many artists come out here, I will have a chance to see you often. Take care, dearest Elly.”
With that, she took the fourth position, reached out, gently caressed her face, returned to the first position, curtsied, and did a quick cabriolet as she danced away. Indeed, there were some things bothering Elly, and her shyness did not help. She did come out to do work, but at the same time, came out to sort out her thoughts. Her illness from the previous two years kept her from keeping up with the outside world, and now it was hard to adjust to being in it, much less being around your peers almost 24/7 in a private school far from home. It was a hard adjustment, and she felt a bit saddened that she had refused such a kind gesture. Yet, even though she had done so, even without trying, she had began to help her. She realized that she would have to meet her roommates at some point, and so she would make the effort that day. “You can't live in a shell forever, Elly,” she said to herself, “You have to meet the outside world at some point.”
With that, she gathered her things, stuffed the ear buds back into her ears, and rebooted the latest Pas De Six album for the umpteenth time, greatly admiring Ahiru's voice, and her harmonies with the other five. What made it hard was the fact that you were going to room with the girl you so greatly admired from a distance, and you were not sure how it would go, afraid to make some bad faux pas. However, she had to get this over with, and somehow, in that brief moment, because of the willingness to be so kind and open, and to put Elly's needs before her own, she found the courage to meet her at last. Now, with some steel in her resolve, she would meet her, and learn to love her as a friend, and not as an idol.