I've been planning this crossover for a good while and an RP partner did help me jumpstart the writing. Unfortunately, the pressure seemed to be too much for him so I let him retire after the completion of the first chapter. I might as well find another RP partner to help me continue writing out the story.

If you want to volunteer to be my beta reader/RP partner, be sure to drop by my DeviantArt, Fanfiction, or my Tumblr.

I must admit though, I'm not that experienced in social skills, especially in real life…

Final Fantasy 9 belongs to Square Enix.

Mass Effect belongs to Bioware.

I'm just a creator of this fun crossover.

The monorail sped across the field as the Kingdom of Alexandria came into view. Princess Garnet kept her hands perched on her lap as she anticipated her mother welcoming her back home with open arms. Steiner and Beatrix sat across from her, with the general holding a teacup in her hand. Why would the queen send them to Lindblum for a week anyway? Still, it served as a good excuse to attend the Festival of the Hunt for this year.

The monorail had been fairly silent as it traveled at high speed. With the famous and skilled General and her own skilled personal guard with her, Garnet had nothing to fear, but silence lingered in the air. The Queen insisted on her leaving for Lindblum. Despite her practically pushing her onto the monorail, the Queen made sure she didn't know anything, even telling her two escorts not to say anything until it was the right moment. The general and her guard, despite not saying it, clearly didn't like each other for whatever reason. And since the only question she had couldn't be answered, there wasn't much to say.

"I promise you, Princess," Beatrix told her, her eye still focused on her cup for the moment as she gently stirred it, "once we arrive, everything will make sense."

Garnet gave Beatrix a soft smile.

"Thank you, Beatrix," she replied.

Soon, the monorail sped closer to the station leading into the city. In a few seconds, Garnet, Steiner and Beatrix heard a ping in the intercom.

{Attention Passengers. We'll be arriving in Alexandria within the next five minutes. Again, we'll be arriving in about five minutes,} the conductor announced which ended with a final ping from the intercom before everything went silent.

"It seems it will be sooner than I thought," Beatrix mused.

Despite the monorail's slight shakes, she sipped the tea like a noblewoman would, showing that despite her being one if not the strongest warrior in the army, she was still a dignified woman. From outside the city, Alexandria appeared peaceful with the lake nearby and the massive castle built in for all to see and admire. The princess, captain of the knights, and the general, despite being residence of this amazing capital, felt a hint of nostalgia. As the monorail pulled into the station it slowed down gently. Once it came to a complete stop, both Beatrix and Steiner prepared to escort Princess Garnet off the train. Once they disembarked and left the station, they started their stroll down the street and made their way to the castle.

During their trek, however, they noticed strange figures with pointy hats patrolling the streets. This was unusual as those beings weren't there when the Princess left. Both Beatrix and Steiner eyed the small figures as they moved about the town. The dark eyes glancing past their obscured faces as they ignored everyone, slowly marching along at their own pace to some unknown destination.

"Black mages," Steiner muttered, his eyes lingering on a few of them, "why are there so many of them? There weren't this many before we left."

"I have no clue," Beatrix admitted.

They still reminded themselves that they shouldn't waste any time, so Steiner, Beatrix and Garnet continued meandering through the streets. As the group walked further into the city there noticed more black mages. Several of the citizens seem intrigued and slightly off put. But with the general, knight captain, and the princess their attention turned to them…eyes widening in shock and awe as they drew closer to the castle.

"Such a surprise, Princess," a calm voice greeted.

A silver haired man approached without warning, a large feather in his hair and eyes light blue.

"Princess, it's so good to see you've safely returned," he said, giving a slow a grand bow.

For some reason, Garnet couldn't help but shudder. Where did this guy come from?

"W-What happened?" she asked, "who are you?"

"Me? Oh, no one special," he answered with a soft chuckle, though his elaborate and elegant clothes spoke otherwise, "I am merely a humble man, going about for a stroll. I simply wished to meet Princess Garnet and behold her with my own eyes…truly, a canary, but one with a spark in your eyes."

He turned to the General and captain of the knights.

"I mean no harm to the princess," he continued, "and I won't waste any more of her time…"

He walked past them as his blue eyes locked onto the princess.

"After all, this will be a night not soon forgotten," he concluded.

Steiner, Garnet and Beatrix gave Kuja a confused stare as he wandered off.

"And he didn't give us a chance to answer questions I had for him," Beatrix muttered in disappointment.

Garnet tilted her head towards the castle.

"Maybe my mother might know something about him," she replied.

The three climbed aboard a boat, made their way across the moat and arrived at the castle, making their way through the front door. As the princess glanced around, she noticed how everything was more quiet than normal, though everything before her appeared like the castle was cleaned from top to bottom along with beautiful and rich colors filling the halls.

"This way, Princess," Beatrix called over, not giving the girl long to examine every detail, "you must be exhausted from the travel here, so you should rest up. We'll have someone come by later."

Garnet nodded at Beatrix before she stepped across the foyer and ascended the staircase. She meandered along the balcony and turned to a corridor leading to another set of stairs. The princess made her way into the north side of the hall and turned to her right. She pushed the door open and stepped into her chamber. When she took a moment to scan her surroundings, she found nothing of suspicion. Sighing, she approached the wardrobe and opened it, only to notice a full duffel bag sitting underneath the dresses.

"That wasn't there before," she whispered to herself.

Garnet knelt down and zipped it open. She soon noticed a small box placed on top of folded clothes with a boarding pass lying next to it. The princess picked up the boarding pass and found a message attached on the back.

{You must evacuate to the Citadel, dear child. Alexandria is no longer safe. ~Queen Brahne.}

"She should be all right," Garnet whispered to herself.

Garnet wanted to believe that message was a prank, but it seemed odd to her that she didn't find Queen Brahne in the foyer. Was something delaying her? The princess looked over the note again and again, trying to make sure it was false, yet with every reexamination it became more clear that this letter wasn't a fake…and in fact from her mother.

Inside the box were four stones, each radiating power within her palm. One a yellowish green, one a fiery red and yellow, one a light purple and one an aquamarine color. They lightly shined in her hand in a long moment of silence before she placed the stones back into the box. Garnet closed the box and zipped up the duffel bag before she stood to her full height.

A few hours later, Garnet woke back up from her nap. She set off to change into a white long-sleeved blouse, her orange jumpsuit and a pair of red boots. She took a moment to slip on her red gloves as she soon heard a light knock on the door.

"Princess? It's Steiner, is everything alright?" a voice called from outside, having yet to enter the room.

Placing the royal pendant around her neck, she sprinted over to the door and opened it, the Captain of the Knights of Pluto standing outside.

"I am all right, Steiner," Garnet reassured.

The knight stared at her for a second before nodding his head.

"Very well. Please follow me, Princess," he gestured with a smile, "there's something you should see. I think you'll love it."

Garnet smiled before she followed Steiner down one of the halls. The princess noticed the lack of people in the castle, everything was quiet as Steiner led her through several different passages until they reached the balconies while a theater airship flew in the castle's direction.

"Princess Garnet," Steiner smiled, "your mother has arranged front row tickets to the see the play I want to be Your Canary…for your birthday."

He made a grand sweeping gesture. The knight held out a ticket, allowing Garnet to pluck it out of his hand.

"Thank you, Steiner," Garnet replied.

The older knight smiled as he led the princess towards the airship. The path she's taken down appeared to be specifically for a grand display for the princess. Beatrix is waiting at the base of the airship as she offers her a friendly smile.

"The queen will be joining us," Beatrix informed, "for now, the play will be starting soon. Let's have the show's honor guest get to her seat."

Beatrix extended a hand out to Garnet. The princess eagerly took the general's hand. She took a seat in the front row with the general sitting to her left. They waited while plenty of guests arrived to search for their seats. Several minutes later, Garnet glanced over her shoulder as she saw Queen Brahne emerge from around a corner. Both mother and daughter exchanged glances as the queen sat down to her daughter's right. Amidst the orchestra on the ship in the middle of tuning their instruments, Steiner simply stood near the front row seats and gazed onward as the queen kept her fan open. Half an hour later, the knight nodded to himself and raised his sword in a ceremonious manner.

The music began to play a split second later and a geyser of fireworks popped to life, an applause erupting from the audience. Soon, the orchestra's podium lifted and revealed the stage. Garnet might as well relax for now, and the questions can come later. A large man came onto the stage, a thick beard on his face as he glanced around his surroundings.

"Ladies and Gentleman! I am Baku, and I am happy to present our performers for tonight; The Tantalus Theater Troupe!" he declared loudly, several figures briefly coming onto the stage and performing sweeping gestures as the audience cheers, "tonight is a truly special night, we have been requested to preform as the main show for Princess Garnet's 16th birthday!"

He pointed up towards the princess as he and the other actors gave a bow in respect to her.

"Tonight's performance shall be of the play I Want to Be Your Canary," he added, the actors disappearing and leaving him alone on the stage, "it is an old and loved tale, one of the forbidden love between a Noble…and a Peasant! Now, allow us to entertain you all, and begin the show!"

He gave a bow to the audience as the lights dim and he exited off the stage. A minute later, a few actors made their way to the stage in costume as the applause faded.

"Bereft of father! Bereft of mother!" one of the actors exclaimed in theatrical sadness, "Marcus, thou has lost even thy love!"

"Fortune hath escaped thee," another actor added, "but for what end shalt thou live?"

The three actors approached another one playing the role of Marcus as he held a flower in his hand while kneeling to the ground.

Meanwhile, Steiner stiffened as he saw shadowy figures with pointy hats climbing onto the rooftops. It didn't help that the audience were too focused on the play.

"This has to be some conspiracy," he muttered to himself.

An hour later, the sunset gave way to evening and a few acts of the play have passed, making way for the finale. An actress emerged from the stage panel, allowing Marcus to break free.

"Cornelia!" he cried.

"Oh, Marcus," the actress playing Cornelia embraced herself to Marcus, "I missed you so. I wish to never leave thy side."

"See, King Leo?" another actor gestured, "thou should give them thy blessing!"

Leo watched his daughter's smile across her face and just as his expression almost softened, he returned to his stern expression and turned away.

"Never!" he proclaimed, "never leave his side, thou sayest? Foolish banter! I'll not allow it!"

King Leo relaxed his left palm right-side up.

"Cornelia shall marry none other than this man…Prince Schneider!"

Without warning, Garnet spotted a shadowy figure jump from cover and land gracefully onto the stage, revealing himself as the strange man she saw before this afternoon. The audience gasped in shock and even the actors gave him bewildered stares.

"Good evening, your highness," he greeted with a bow, "your majesty."

Garnet stiffened and resisted the urge to clench her fists. What excuse did he have to justify crashing the party?

"Oh, Kuja," Brahne snarked, "of all the times to show your girly face, you choose now?"

"You thought you could be sneaky with me, your majesty?" Kuja reminded, "I gave you until tonight, didn't I?"

Garnet gave Kuja a blank stare while Brahne let out a harrumph and murmurs swept across the audience. One of the actors with a tail tapped his foot in irritation.

"Hey, you!" he pointed at Kuja, "get off the stage!"

Kuja shook his head and shrugged.

"Not until her majesty hands over the princess," he insisted.

"Like I told you," Brahne declined, "Garnet is not up for your bargain."

Kuja sighed in disappointment and pinched his forehead.

"Very well," he said, "I will have to do this…the hard way."

Kuja made a beckoning gesture and without warning, the black mages scattered all over the castle began casting their spells. A split second later, the black mages launched fireballs at the audience, eliciting screams of panic from the audience. Beatrix thought fast and yanked Garnet out of harm's way. When the princess recuperated from the shock seconds later, she watched out of the corner of her eye as Queen Brahne pulled the duffel bag out from under her seat.

"Your majesty," Beatrix muttered, "you can't be serious!"

"General Beatrix," Brahne ordered, "make sure Garnet leaves the kingdom safely."

"But," Garnet protested softly, "you'll die."

"Better that man take my life than your own, Garnet," Brahne insisted, "your life matters more."

Garnet couldn't help but shudder. Still, she knew she was running out of time, so she lifted the duffel bag off the ground, placing its strap over her shoulder. Beatrix sighed before placing her hand on her chest.

"Take care, your majesty," Beatrix said.

Beatrix and Garnet began scurrying away while Steiner gave the queen a blank stare.

"Your majesty!" Steiner exclaimed.

"Captain Steiner," Brahne instructed, "take care of these pointy hats!"

Steiner stiffened seconds before he gave the queen a salute.

"Yes, your majesty."

Steiner turned on his omni-tool for a brief moment and sent a quick message to his knights. Once he shut off his omni-tool, he drew his sword and aimed it at the black mages closing in on the queen. This would at least be the finest hour for the Knights of Pluto.

We'll be getting into Mass Effect territory soon enough, so stay tuned!