Categories > Anime/Manga > Princess Tutu > Princess Tutu and the Secret Six


by paladin313 0 reviews


Category: Princess Tutu - Rating: PG - Genres: Crossover - Published: 2009-05-29 - Updated: 2009-05-30 - 6577 words - Complete



It was now a week from Thanksgiving and the boys were actually becoming quite good in the toe shoes: so much so, that they made it look easier than it was, much to the jealousy and chagrin of the girls. They even joked about continuing to dance like this, but the girls, who had been so eager to help them into the shoes to start with, (thinking to tease the two, and exact a touch of revenge,)were now wishing they never had received them! However, they boys had a more practical reason: it actually made them lighter of foot, as they had found out with Van Hellmann. In addition, the six had also decided to add a dance sequence to Enya's Gaelic rendition of "Silent Night." They were really getting the two sequences down well, and felt that it had to be the Christmas Spirit that was pushing them along. Mr. Katt now knew more than ever that these kids were destined for fame together, and he was going to do all that he could to insure that this happened without the interference of greedy leeches that would not have their best interest at heart. In addition, because of their work together, the ones he knew were at the intermediate level were going to gain so much hands-on experience that they would more than likely be in the advanced class by the next semester. If that happened, then there was the special class that they could advance to if they had learned all that they needed to at that level. In that class, to which Rue and five other girls belonged, they would gain college level experience that would cause the act to soar to unknown heights. It would be an interesting year that next year. Of course, they had to get past the team becoming a tight group first, so it would have to be one step at a time. However, before they could enjoy holiday cheer, they would have a couple of obstacles to clear first.

Edel was gaining a few human helps, however, because of the scar; it was hard to be attractive to seduce enough to be the generals she needed once her army had been formed. She also had not fully tested or researched the strength of the Marvels yet, so this was next on the agenda. She managed to research some library archives in Fawcett Cityto find out whom the toughest villain Captain Marvel had faced. Since Black Adam had made his turn, she had to seek elsewhere. If only he had not, she could have seduced him, and offered him great things the kingdom that the Raven would have established once he got the heart he desired. She would have been unstoppable. However, she now could only test the Marvels'mettle, and once she had seen them at their best, she could then formulate aplan to stop them, and get her revenge. One thing she knew, Captain Marvel would do all he could to protect Princess Tutu, and would be her biggest obstacle. In addition, she hoped that she could get what she sought soon before Tutu and Claire fully realized just how powerful they were. Soon, she came across apicture of what appeared to be an oversized three-inch long silkworm in ajar. He had on glasses, and had around aneck what looked like a small speaker. She saw the headline, "Big Red Wrangles Wiry Worm to Justice."

She read in the article about how this little worm was named Mr. Mind, and could control the minds of anything that got in his vicinity. The article went on to tell how it was almost impossible to stop him, because he could use anyone or anything to execute his deeds against his victim's will, causing no end of difficulty. Captain Marvel could not lash out against the actor, because that person was not acting in his right mind. Because of his size, this added to the difficulty. Edel was amazed that something so small could cause Marvel so much difficulty. She found another article that showed the results of his trial, considering that he was sentient enough to stand for it, and said he was to be held for life in a special facility in the prison, specially designed so that he could not control anyone, and exact his escape. Before he was put away, he swore revenge on Marvel for this, and for what he had done to his race. "Perfect!" she exclaimed, "He'll be a great test. If Marvel can stop him, I will know just how tough he is, and what I need to do; and if not, so much the better!"

Mr. Mind's cell-if you could call it that-was proportional for his size. It was no different in its interior, except it had a separate recreational area, considering that it was too dangerous to allow him out. The cell was made of a special glass designed to block his psionic ability, and his food was distributed through a pneumatic system that would allow in this nourishment, but not allow him out. If he even got within five feet of any creature, he could take that mind over, and do whatever it took to get out: essentially, a solitary confinement that was necessary to prevent his escape and contact with anyone or anything could affect an escape for him. Getting him out was also going to be a challenge for Edel, and she figured that the only way out would be through the pneumatic system. The container normally came up, opened for him to retrieve whatever he needed, then immediately closed as soon as he had retrieved it. It then was quickly retracted, and the hole closed up faster than he could react to it. What needed to happen was that the door had to remain open long enough for him to get in. The first thing she had to do was get in, and she was fortunate to find a guard that looked a lot like her. She subdued her, took her uniform, and slipped in. She then made her way to the kitchen, and found the pneumatic tube system that led to Mr. Mind. She wrote a short note, and quickly reprogrammed the system to allow the door to be open long enough for him to read the note, get in, and come down the tube. She slipped the note underneath his meal, and sent it along. When it emerged, Mr. Mind then wrangled it out, and saw the note flip out. He quickly opened it, and it read, "If you want to get out of here, get in the shuttle now: a friend."

He did not understand, and was not sure if it was wise to trust something as mysterious as this. However, he saw that the shuttle door was still open, and realized that this could be a chance. If it were a trap, whoever was on the other side was going to be in for a big surprise. He jumped in moments before the door closed, and it took him down. When it arrived, Edel scooped it up, and put it away before he could open the door, or anyone would be the wiser. She then started to attempt to exit the building, but the actual guard arrived at the front gate, after regaining consciousness, and reported what had happened. At about the same time, the cameras showed his cell empty, and the alarms immediately sounded. Edel had to act fast, because the prison would go on an immediate lockdown before she could get out. She headed for a service exit in the kitchen that led to the outside where supplies would come in. She slipped out just before the door closed, but that only got her outside. Now she would have to get off the grounds. She saw the big service doors for the supply trucks closing fast, so she threw ahandful of seeds near the door on some grass. Since it was morning, the grass was still moist, and the seeds were designed for quick growth by her own hand. They immediately grew, and entangled the door before it could shut. She quickly exited, but not before a few shots hit the ground, on which she had stood. However, a police car came up, responding to the emergency and stopped right in front of her. The two officers quickly jumped out in an effort to subdue her, but she reached into her sack, pulled out a handful of powder, and blew it onto the men. They passed out on the spot. She grabbed one of their hats before leaping into the car, and sped away before the prison guards got there. It was then she saw the jacket, and managed to slip it on as she drove. She had the sirens blaring, swiftly making her way out of Fawcett City. She had to be fast, because there was only so much time before those cops came to, and told what number squad car had been stolen. If she could get out of town, it would keep from alerting Black Adam, and that would put a fast end to her trip if he showed up, no question. She took aside road, and accelerated her speed out of town. By the time they had set up the roadblocks, and Black Adam was beginning to scour the city for the missing squad car, she was already three miles down the road. She then took some of the back roads that she knew the state troopers did not patrol very often, and were well veiled by trees, which would make it difficult for aircraft to track the car. Once she considered it safe, she pulled out the shuttle, and opened the lid. Mr. Mind took a big gasp of air, as it was fast running out on him. As he was regaining his senses, Edel immediately said, "Do not worry, Mr. Mind, you will not be hurt, but I wanted to set you free: you and I have a mutual foe."

Mr. Mind was just about to take control of her mind when she said this. The minute speaker on his neck fired up, and spoke for him, saying, "Okay, you have my attention: go on."

"I have a bit of a Marvel problem, and Ithought you could help," she said.

"Oh really," he said, beginning to smile an evil grin, "I would do it even if you were not involved. However, since you went through the effort to spring me, what's in it for me?"

"Once you rid the world of Marvel, I can then do what I need to do," she said.

"And what is that," he then asked.

"I need to sacrifice a human heart to the Raven to release him," she then said.

"Like I said," he said, a bit frustrated,"What's in it for me?"

"The Raven shall plunge this world into darkness, rule it, and you could have a part in it," she said, happily.

"Hmm," he pondered, "Having a part in global conquest: it sounds like fun. Where do Ifit in?"

"By the time you take out Marvel, I will have subdued any of his allies, the heart gets taken, job done," she said.

Mr. Mind knew that whoever this Raven was, he was not going to take over the world,-that was his job! However, he saw this woman as a means to an end, and he knew that she had no clue as to just how powerful he was. Thus, he figured that he would take care of Marvel, then take over this girl's mind, get her out of the way, and do what he set out to do long ago. He figured he would play along with it as long as it benefited him, and then dispose of the dead weight later. He then said, "You have a deal. However, where are we going: Fawcett is back that way?"

"Marvel has been seen around Kinkantown,(so renamed from its original name in honor of Mr. Matzuzama,) so that is agood place to start," she answered, "Besides, Black Adam is probably scouring the city right now looking for us."

"Right!" he said, "Let us not go back right now."

They got within a mile of Kinkantown, and exited the car. She then reached into her sack, opened the gas cap, poured some kind of substance in the tank, grabbed her normal clothes, and Mr. Mind, and ran into the woods as fast as she could. About one minute later, there was a loud explosion as the police car exploded. Mr. Mind began to rethink things, seeing just how resourceful she was, and figured she might come in handy after all. Maybe later on, she would make a good slave. She changed clothes, stuffed the other clothes in some rocks, set them on fire, and headed in the direction of the school. While all this was going on, some of the girls were in the dayroom, looking at some television. Ahiru, Rue, and Mary were passing by just at the moment a news bulletin came in, "We interrupt this program to bring you an emergency news bulletin: the notorious Mr. Mind was broken out of prison approximately 45 minutes ago by the aid of a mysterious blonde woman. She overpowered a guard, disguised herself, and using some unexpected tricks, managed to escape Fawcett City with the wicked worm."

The news went on, stating the appearance of Mr. Mind, and the mysterious lady that aided him, giving warnings about both fugitives, and that which they were capable. They then had a short interview with the warden of the prison, asking about how dangerous this creature was, and he said, "Do not let his size fool you: he has the ability to take over the minds of anyone within five feet of you, turning anyone or anything into an unwilling accomplice for his will. If you try to capture him, he may just take over your mind, and cause you to do harm to yourself. If you see him, do not approach-I repeat-do not approach him, but call the local police immediately. There are special means to capturing him, and even then, it won't be easy!"

It was at this point, the girls looked outside, and it seemed that there was a large influx of students making their way back on campus in a hurry, and the gates were being shut. When they stepped outside, one of the campus security said that it was best for them to stay where they were, and that they could not leave the campus until the crisis was resolved. It was at that moment that a black clad individual, dressed similarly to Captain Marvel, sans cloak, hovered before atop floor window in the boy's dorm. The three of them knew well that this was Billy's window; it seemed that this stranger was engaged in a conversation with Billy. Suddenly, the stranger pulled Billy out and flew away. This was followed by a loud thunderclap, and then this stranger returned with Captain Marvel at his side. They seemed to be discussing something, and then the stranger left. At this, he went to the girl's dorm and saw his three comrades standing in the foyer. "Ladies," he said, "you two find a place to change: I am going to need all the help that I can get. Mary, come with me."

With that, he picked her up, and they took off over the campus wall. One thunderclap later, and they returned as both Marvels. The girls then met up with the Marvels, and Captain Marvel explained. He said,"Listen, Black Adam just informed me that Mr. Mind, and the woman who sprang him are in this area. The wreck of the squad car, and the burned guard clothes that they found would lend credence to the fact that they are near, and that they won't be going far, unless they commandeer another vehicle. However, Idon't think escaping is what he has in mind."

"What do you mean?" asked Tutu.

"Well, remember the story about that alien race I told you about, that bad mistake I made?" he asked.

They remembered. Then he said, "Well, he is the last of that race, and he has been itching for payback ever since."

"What do we do?" asked Claire.

"You stick close to Mary," he answered,"And Tutu, stay with me. In our current forms, our minds cannot be overtaken. However, you two are vulnerable, but you two have some needed powers. So stick close to us. If it even seems like your minds are about to be overtaken, we will get you to a safe distance. I told the guys to stay put, because there would not be much that they could do."

It was at that moment that the campus security showed up, and said, "Some of the Secret Six: thank God you are here! How can we help?"

"I'm afraid that there isn't much you can do," Captain Marvel responded, "just keep yourselves in a small area that you have the ability to watch the approach of anyone from any angle. We cannot risk any of you being taken over. He is small, so keep your eyes sharp!"

At this, they split up, and began to scour the campus.

At this time, Edel and Mr. Mind approached the school, and saw that it was locked down tight. "Why are you bringing me here?" asked Mr. Mind.

"Some of his allies reside here," she said, "Therefore, if you can endanger some lives here, you may be able to flush out Captain Marvel, and you can do as you please at that point."

Mr. Mind liked how this woman thought: cause some chaos, flush out Marvel, and then put him into a position where he had to comply, and then destroy him at that point. Although the campus was locked down, it would be no problem for someone of Mind's size to enter in unnoticed. He slipped under the gate, but then was disappointed to see the campus quite empty. They must have alerted the students by this point. However, if this were some kind of a boarding school, if he could find the dorms, he could start there. He slithered his way along until he reached the stone fenced dorms, each facing the other with a straight sidewalk from one to the other. He entered the arched gate of the girl's dorm, knowing that they would be the quickest to panic in asituation like what he was about to cause. He slid through a crack in the door, found that there was an adult in the mix, and figured that would be a good person to use. He came close, took her mind, and had her pick up the phone. She said, "Oh, really? I'll make it happen right now."

Then he had her turn to the girls, and say, "Ladies! There is an emergency: you need to evacuate now!"

It did not take long for panic to spread, and they all went out. Campus security then approached, wondering what was going on. They began to try to get the girls back into the dorm, and in doing so, did not see the girl that was making her way to the boy's dorm, where the pattern was repeated. The boys were amazed at what they were seeing, but Mytho suspected all of this. The two of them knew that they could have apotential riot on their hands, so they changed and exited the building. Mr. Johansen came out with a bullhorn, trying to get the children back inside, but confusion was beginning to take over the campus. Suddenly, Mr. Johansen locked up, and said, "Captain Marvel: can you hear me? That's right, it's Mr. Mind! Surrender now, or face total chaos!"

He zipped up to Mr. Johansen quickly, but Mr. Mind was nowhere around. At that moment, someone screamed as three girls were climbing a rickety vine ladder. Mary Marvel moved quickly as she caught the three girls when the ladder gave way to the weight. When they got to the ground, Mr. Mind moved again. This time, he gained control of two large boys, and caused them to start to fight one another. This caused some of the people around them to start to move out of the way, starting a groundswell of panic. Captain Marvel was on this one as he broke the boys apart. Mr. Mind moved elsewhere, as the two boys came to, not knowing how they had been hurt. It was an ironic situation, considering that the two were the best of friends. Suddenly, a boy in the voice school, one with a strong voice, thundered,"Observe the power of Mr. Mind, and despair! You are all doomed!"

That did it! The boys were trying to run, but bumped into one another, not knowing which way to flee. The girls screamed, and started to take off like a bunch of spooked cattle. If the six could not act fast, someone was going to be trampled to death. Quickly, Captain Marvel grabbed Mary and said, "Get to New York, and go to the Hall of Justice. I'll try to call ahead to let them know you are coming."

"Why am I going there?" she asked.

"Tell them to give you the Mr. Mind jar: they'll know what you mean. Go now: there's no time to explain!" he said.

With that, Mary took off like a shot to New York. All this time, Edel was sitting in the bough of a tree that sat above the wall, watching the chaos ensue. "Let's see you handle this, Red Cheese!" she chuckled.

Mary was in New Yorkso fast that it seemed like no time had passed. However, because she was still trying to get the hang of her powers, she actually overshot New York by forty miles, and stopped, hovering over the Atlantic Ocean. She regained her bearings, and headed back, more controlled. She wondered at that point just how long it took Billy to get the hang of his powers. He had already taught her a lot, but she still had to learn some control. She finally reached Manhattan, and reached the international district. This was a no-fly zone, but no fighters were scrambled, considering that, this was asuperhero, and they had some authority to be there due to the close proximity of the New York unit of the JLA. She passed the United Nations building, and came to the hall a few blocks later. Immediately, subduing weaponry lifted up from all areas, and an electronic voice announced, "Halt: you are now on restricted ground! Identify yourself, please!"

"Mary Marvel," she said, "Captain Marvel said he would call ahead."

A few minutes passed, and then another voice came in, "Yep just got the call. Come on in!"

She landed, and Plastic Man met her. "Hey, Cap didn't tell me he had a sister! What are you doin' this Saturday?"

"You're Plastic Man, right?" she asked.

"Sure am," he said.

"Look, rubber brain," she snapped, "This is no time for schmoozing: there are lives at stake here!"

This was happening just as Martian Manhunter approached. "All right, Plaz, dump some hormones and let the girl in, would you?"

She stepped by, but behind her back, she shaped himself so his top half was as a cat, and he swiped a couple of times as he hissed. However, Mary said, without even turning around, "Knock it off before I find out just how far your arm can stretch as I stuff it down your throat!"

He reverted to normal, and skulked off, muttering, "That time of the month?"

J'onn apologized for Plastic Man's behavior, and then asked what the problem was. She explained, and then asked for what Billy had asked for. Once he understood the danger, he handed over the jar. He then said, "Look, right now, the rest of the heroes are in the main headquarters on the moon, but I think Ican help. Can I get involved?"

"Any port in the storm," she said, "I just hope that the other five can get control of things."

Meanwhile, the kids were just beginning to start a deadly panic. However, the Swan Sisters thought fast. They began to jette lightly off the shoulders of the running students, going from one end to the other. As they did, green and black vines sprang up and began to stop and restrain the students. They were not constricting, but it held them fast enough as such that they could not hurt themselves while in the panicked state. They were also lifted off the ground about 20 feet, and the sisters then said, "Calm down! You shall be safe right where you are right now. Just relax, and it will all be okay."

The campus now looked a bit like a jungle, but the students were at least safe. Now only the five were there. This made things a bit harder for Mr. Mind to cause problems. However, there were at least four other targets, and quite powerful ones with whom he could have fun. He then went over to the Chess Knights, and took control of them. They suddenly took out their swords and started dueling. "NO!" screamed Claire, as she rushed over to try to restrain the boys. Black Knight uttered, "Surrender, Captain Marvel, or else the girls are next. If they are as powerful as I think them to be, they will be lots of fun!"

However, Tutu had other ideas. She crept up behind Black Knight, upon whose shoulder Mr. Mind now sat. She concentrated, making sure that he could not detect her approaching psychically. Before he knew it, she had snatched him up, and established a mental link with Mr. Mind. In her mind, she saw Mr. Mind standing there, except that he was now her size. He smiled, and spoke with his own mouth, considering that they were speaking internally. "Impressive, young lady!" he said, smiling, "You are the first person that has ever snuck up on me like that. It was even more impressive that Ididn't even detect your approach."

"You shall learn many things about me today," she said, "but things you do not want to know!"

"Nonsense," he laughed, "You also are the first person outside of Captain Marvel who ever dared touch me, much less try to establish a mental link with me. You are either quite powerful, or quite stupid: I cannot yet tell which. Yet, I shall soon know."

Inside this world, a green hand reached out for her, symbolizing his attempt to take control of her mind, but a human female hand reached out and slapped it away. Then two hands came out, and then two hands slapped in response. Before long, there were a plethora of hands reaching, and then being slapped. They both relented, knowing that this was getting nowhere. "Ah, so you're a mind controller as well, yes?" he said, "You're quite impressive. Only Captain Marvel has been able to withstand me thus far. This is going to be a fun challenge."

She then began the gesture, but because of the already established link, he said, "Don't bother: I know what that means, and what you want. I shall never open up like that, much less to someone like you!"

"What do you fear," she asked, "I only want to help you. Open your mind to me!"

"NEVER!" he thundered, and suddenly, it seemed like 100-foot tall walls rose up to either side of her. She went to the turn, took it, came to a T, chose to go right, reached a dead end, went back the other way, and she came to three straight turns. It was then she realized that she was in a maze. "That's right, little girl," she heard voice say, "Welcome to the labyrinth that is my mind!" which was followed by an evil laugh. She was not going to be outdone by him, though this was one of the toughest minds she had yet to encounter. She pirouetted twice, and what looked like a beanstalk grow from the bricks. She got to the top, and then was stunned by the sight. In every direction, as far as the eyes could see, was nothing but a maze. There was no knowing where she was on the maze, or how even to start to look for the center of the maze, where she felt he must be hiding. "My, you are resourceful," he said, as the sky filled with the crest of a green head and two antennae, and bespectacled eyes. "I know what you want, little girl," he said, "You think you want to help me? HA! You have no idea what you deal with here! Why don't you open your mind more fully to me?"

At this, another green hand extended to try to contact her, but she evaded this, and another followed. She slapped that one away, but now more was coming than she could deal with at one time. He was trying to get deeper in her mind, as to be able to control her, not the other way around. At this, she created, in her mind, her astral barque, and ducked below the deck. One of the hands started to pass, stopped as if it noticed her, and came back to grab her. Instead, she shoved off, and plowed into the mental hands like a ship on the waves. This had to stop, for there was only so long she would have the mental endurance to evade the attacks. It was then that it dawned on her that all the hands were coming from the same direction. "Got you!" she said, and plowed forward. "Do you really..." he started to say, but finished with a timid, "...think so?" as her barque speedily arrived at the center, where he was hiding.

At about this time, the other four were approaching Tutu. She was standing like a statue, as was Mr. Mind, they being locked in severe mental combat. It was then that, not only did Mary return, but also she had a guest. "Manhunter!"said Captain Marvel. "In person," he said, and then asked, "It seems quiet. Is it under control?"

"Not quite," Marvel responded, pointing to the new foliage that the Swan Sisters provided, complete with students as flowers. He then pointed to Tutu and Mr. Mind. "I don't know what's going on,"stated Marvel, "but it must be some severe mental combat. That is something that is out of my realm."

They all tried to approach, but Mr. Mind had enough contact with the outside world to say, "Back off, or she dies!"

They did not know if that was an honest threat, or if he was bluffing. However, this was something that they did not want to risk. Then Captain Marvel had an idea.

Internally, Tutu had set the barque down, stepped out, and smiled her gentle smile. "You poor tormented soul," she said, "I dance to guide your heart. I only want to bring you peace. Let me help you."

Mr. Mind, who trusted no one, was not so sure he wanted some inferior creature rooting around in his head any greater than she already had. He thought for amoment, and then said, "Are you certain you really want this? There is so much more here than you realize."

At this, he suddenly seemed to take the form of a python, maintaining his own head, and wrapped her up tight before she could react. "You have no idea what runs around in my head, do you!" he thundered, "Apparently the Big Red Cheese didn't fill you in on how I got this way, what he did to my people, and what happened to my mind as a result."

Externally, her breath was now coming in short bursts, there was a look of shock on her face, and the others knew they had to act fast. Internally, Mr. Mind continued his rant, saying, "Are you really sure you want to hear the screams of the millions of my people that gave their power to me when he killed them?"

"ack He did not gasp mean it!" she said, "Uhh he is no murderer!"

"Ha! Even your kind has penalties for accidental death!" he snapped, "He must pay!"

"Carrying this anger around won't help you! Gasp you have to find uhh closure!" she gasped out.

"Then, maybe I should just open it all to you," he said, "AND FRY YOUR BRAIN!"

At this, he opened his mouth as if to swallow her, symbolizing his brain consuming hers. Once he had this control, he then may be able to stop Marvel. However, before that could happen, he detected another approach. He once again contacted the outside enough to see who it was that approached. It was Captain Marvel, and Mr. Mind said, "I have her in a position of compromise! Surrender or I kill her now."

Captain Marvel stopped, looked for amoment, and then had a look on his face that seemed to say that there was no other way. "All right," he said, "no more games."

He took two steps closer, and then, all of a sudden, it was not Captain Marvel, but Martian Manhunter. "What!" exclaimed Mr. Mind, and Manhunter said, sarcastically, "Boo!"

Internally, he set his antennae on her head to indeed attempt to fry her brain. However, just as he made the full link, it was broken completely, as the jar slammed shut around him. "Gotcha!"shouted Captain Marvel, and he quickly got him away from the princess. However, in that brief moment of deep contact, the sound of the clinking shut of the jar sounded like a million guns going off all at once inside the mind of Tutu. It manifested itself as blood coming out of her ears and nose, as if she had actually heard the horrible sound. "Ah," was all she could utter at that second, because it hurt too much even to scream. She dropped to her knees in shock, sputtering out, "It...hurt! Can't...hear..."

Edel saw this, and was ecstatic. Her eardrums were shattered, and she would be deaf for the rest of her life, and become ineffective, as far as she was concerned. She got what she came for, and then some. She knew better what she was facing, and took her leave. Mr. Mind was livid. He had the chance to stop Marvel, and now things would be worse for him in that accursed prison. Now this Edel was on his hit list. They would both pay dearly.

No one knew what to do, except for Mytho. He walked up and put his hands on her ears. Within about a minute's time, the bleeding had stopped, and her hearing was back to normal. However, her head still hurt very badly, and she needed to get some rest. Marvel said, "I am so sorry. I didn't know how strong the link was."

"It's okay," she said through the tears,"If you had not, I do not know what he would have done with me. Please, take him back, so he can think hard about the chance he had to be at peace that he passed up."

Despite it all, she still only had his good on her heart, even after what had happened. Marvel leaned over and whispered, "I love you."

"And I you," she responded, and gave him aquick peck before he took off. He thanked Manhunter for his help, and he was on his way. She waived her hand, and all the plants slowly receded into the ground. Claire took the cue, and did the same. Claire then knelt by her, and said, "You have to get rest, but you must stay Tutu, because, if you show the same pain as Ahiru, things could get worse."

Tutu nodded, and then realized that now; two other people would have to know her secret. She told Claire and Mary to get the other two of the terrible trio, and have them help bring her to their room. This was done swiftly, and Mai and Yumawere trying to figure out how to break it to Ahiru that she would have to give up her bed for the night. However, they were in for the surprise, when, as they entered the room, Ahiru was nowhere to be found. She was not in the bathroom, because the door was open. Claire then went to get one of her nightgowns for Tutu as they sat her down. "I am about to risk much by what you are about to see, for I can see no other way for you to understand your missing roommate than this," she uttered weakly. With that, she began to remove the mask, feather ring, and loose the bun. She began to remove the ballet outfit, and Mary began to draw a bath. Claire came back as Rue, because she did not need to reveal who she was in this. The girls guided her to the bath, filled with the leftover salts from the dance time, hoping the scent would be pleasing and good for her. They did not have to worry, for, in the light, they began to recognize her for who she really was. "Ahiru?" they said, and she answered, "Yes, it's me...sort of."

"Why did you reveal this to us?" Yumaasked, as they eased her into the bath.

"Could not leave," she answered, "Too...many people...see me leave...come back as Ahiru...same ask questions...everyone would ask...fewest questions this way."

Now they understood why she often got secretive on them from time to time. They also understood the odd behavior now, considering that she must have been trying to make a disconnect between herself and her alter ego. They now looked on her with a sense of awe, knowing their friend was a superhero, and had the weight of the world on her shoulders. Tutu was beginning to feel better, but needed rest. She explained that she would have to stay Tutu for the night as she got into the sleeping gown, and then leave the next day as Tutu, and come right back in as Ahiru, to make sure that no one would suspect anything. After they laid her down, they asked Rue, "Did you know about this?"

"She told me," she said, "because she knew that if anything had ever happened to her, someone would have to explain things, and she felt she could trust me."

"Why not us?" asked Yuma.

"Yeah, why not us, blabbermouth!" Mai said to Yuma, sarcastically, "You could not keep a secret to save your life!"

"Well, now you must," Said Rue, "because now the life of your best friend may lie in the balance."

They looked over at the bed, seeing that Tutu was beginning to slip out of consciousness. They waked over; both kissed her cheek, caressed her hair, said that they loved her, and hoped that she would sleep well. On that note, Rue and Mary took their leave. It seemed that the only thing wrong with Tutu was a mild concussion, and she just needed rest. Yes, it had been an interesting day.

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