Disclaimer – I don't own the songs used in this story or Rent. They belong to their respected owners. I do own my original characters and the plot. 'Nuff said.
Italics are song lyrics and thoughts.
A/N: This idea has been brewing in my head a long time and my muse prompted me to write this story, so I am.
A/N 2: The song choices
April – On My Own from "Les Miserables"
Angel – When Will My Life Begin from "Tangled"
Maureen – Maybe from "Annie"
Benny – Forget You by Cee Lo Green
Roger – Bad Romance by Lady Gaga
Mark – Sarabeth by Rascal Flatts
Joanne – Maybe This Time from "Cabaret"
Mimi – Castle on a Cloud from "Les Miserables"
Collins – I Won't Say (I'm In Love) from "Hercules"
Summary: AU: Follow all of our beloved Bohemians, including April, through their childhoods, starting with the very young and working up to teenager. Rated T because I'm paranoid and for character death. Nine-chapter story.
(chapter title – Mimi – Castle on a Cloud)
Seven-year-old Mimi Marquez cried as she swept the floor. She wanted to still be in her warm bed, sleeping, but that wasn't going to happen as long as Linda lived with them. Linda was the woman who married Mimi's father after Mimi's mother had passed away. Linda had two daughters from her previous marriage and didn't make them do any chores. They got to play tea party and all their other fun games while Mimi did the chores. Their names were Esmeralda and Mary.
That morning, Mimi had been peacefully sleeping when Laura barged into Mimi's room and had her start in on the chores. When Laura woke Mimi up, it was 4:30 AM.
"Get going and no breaks today!" Linda had told Mimi.
"But what if I have to go potty?" Mimi questioned.
"Fine – one bathroom break." Linda said. Mimi shuffled out of bed and went to get started on chores.
Mimi's father, George, often objected to Mimi doing chores and didn't find it fair that Esmeralda and Mary didn't have to do chores.
Mimi had done everything that Linda had asked her to do and was now sweeping the floor. She wiped her dirty hand across her forehead and rested her cheek on her broom handle.
"There is a castle on a cloud
I like to go there in my sleep
Aren't any floors for me to sweep
Not in my castle on a cloud
There is a room that's full of toys
There are a hundred boys and girls
Nobody shouts or talks too loud
Not in my castle on a cloud
There is a lady all in white
Holds me and sings a lullaby
She's nice to see and she's soft to touch
She says 'Mimi, I love you very much'
I know a place where no one's lost
I know a place where no one cries
Crying at all is not allowed
Not in my castle on a cloud." Mimi sang, but quickly got back to work when she heard the door open and saw Linda enter, a stern look on her face.
"Now look who's here, the little madam herself. Pretending once again she's been 'so awfully good'. Better not let me catch you slacking. Better not catch my eye. Your mother passes away and I'm stuck with you!" Linda told Mimi and handed the young girl a pail. "Now take that pail, my little 'mademoiselle' and go and draw some water from the well!"
Just then, Esmeralda came running into the room wearing Mimi's favorite blue hat. Mimi didn't say anything, she just stood there, head down and chewed on her bottom lip.
"Esmeralda, come here my dear, Esmeralda let me see you. You look very well in that little blue hat. There's some little girls who know how to behave and they know what to wear. I'm saying thank heavens for that." Linda praised her daughter. She noticed that Mimi hadn't moved. "Still there, Mimi? Your tears will do you no good. I told you fetch some water from the well in the woods."
"Please do not send me out alone
Not in the darkness on my own!" Mimi sobbed. The sun hadn't come up yet and Mimi was afraid of going out alone and in the dark. Linda laughed and shoved Mimi out the door.
"Enough of that, or I'll forget to be nice! You heard me ask for something and I never ask twice!" Linda told Mimi, slamming the door behind her. Mimi sobbed and walked deep into the woods behind the family's house until she found the well.
Mimi sobbed as she filled the bucket and carried it back inside. She wished that her mother was still alive so that she wouldn't have to go through this constant torture.
Linda promised at noon if Mimi got everything done, she could go back to bed. Linda wasn't one to keep her promises, so Mimi was wary of her words.
Noon came and Mimi was scrubbing the toilet when Linda came in the room, followed by Mary. Esmeralda was with a friend of hers.
"Mimi, as soon as you're done scrubbing the toilet, you may go back to bed." Linda told Mimi. Mimi nodded sleepily and finished up.
She then went back to bed, satisfied with all the hard work that she had done.