AUTHOR'S NOTE: AUTHOR'S NOTE: There are a lot of stories where a character's life (like Aladdin himself) is horrendous simply because they're an orphan and they're alone in the world. Literally the entire plot of Aladdin 2019 wouldn't have happened if his parents were alive. That being said, movies almost never have said now-adult orphan character adopt a child themselves even though the main character knows what it's like to be alone.
Here's the thing. There are literally established orphan kid characters in the plot for Aladdin and Jasmine to adopt. In the 1992 film, the starving kids eating trash are clearly without parents, and in the 2019 version they still have their mother but are obviously homeless. But I wouldn't even call this fic simply a post-canon imagination I just decided to write. It's honestly a missing scene in my opinion. Disney could've added the two orphan kids in the 2019 epilogue and showed they had been adopted by Aladdin and Jasmine without a single line of dialogue. It would've been so easy, but Disney missed a golden opportunity.
I'm adopted myself, so this means a lot to me. And it's interesting that the last fic I wrote (for the Instant Family movie) almost a year ago, was also about adoption.
"I want my charitable cause to be helping disadvantaged children," Aladdin says without hesitation.
As the princess' consort and a recently minted prince himself, he knows he must choose some cause to champion after the wedding. It's common for royalty – particularly those not destined for the throne themselves and thus lacking a purpose – to pick a goal to spend their time and resources on. Helping children is a common one, but most royals simply open a new orphanage in front of an adoring crowd, pose for paintings with starving urchins, and never do anything else.
But Aladdin knows what it's like to be a child alone in the world.
Nothing that's happened to him would've occurred if he was not an orphan himself. Had his parents still been alive, he would've never had to become a thief, never would've been needed by Jafar to enter the Cave of Wonders, never would've met the Genie and then have been able to free the djinn, and likely never would've met Jasmine, let alone married her. Aladdin would have been just another merchant's son selling dates in the bazaar, taking for granted that he knew where his next meal was coming from.
"A worthy cause," the sultan Hamed says across the low table.
Said table is laden with more food in one meal than Aladdin would've ever seen in his entire life before. This is the one aspect of royal life the former thief still isn't used to, having unlimited access to food. When Jasmine had first given him an official tour of the palace, he had legitimately almost cried seeing the huge kitchens and massive storerooms. He had been used to wanting and never having. Used to being able to see every single one of his ribs. Used to his stomach hurting so often he didn't notice it anymore. But now as a royal himself, he can make sure other people don't have to do the same.
Seated beside him on the silk floor cushions, Jasmine sees the pain in Aladdin's eyes. "I quite agree with Baba," she says softly. "A worthy cause indeed."
A lump rises in Aladdin's throat, and he reaches for her hand.
The next week, Aladdin and Jasmine go to Agrabah's only orphanage.
There are no crowds to welcome them, no people gathered to see the royals only and uncaring about the purpose of their visit. The princess and prince consort are firm about having no court painter to record their visit for propaganda's sake. Most of the city has no idea the heir to the throne and her husband are even among them. Jasmine and Aladdin have guards, but no other entourage. This is a private visit – well, as much as can be managed for a princess and a prince consort.
The orphanage itself is clearly old, rundown, and far too small. A long line of children are lined up outside to meet the royal pair, and it's obvious the building isn't large enough to comfortably hold them all. Even before he goes inside, Aladdin sees the mothball-eaten excuse for curtains, the cracks in the walls, the holes in the roof.
But equally important is how thin the orphans are. As Aladdin and Jasmine meet every bowing or curtsying child in the line, the royals can tell the kids aren't getting quite enough food. The orphanage caretakers appear to be kind, but it's expensive to feed this many mouths.
But then at the end of the line, Aladdin sees them.
He remembers the two children he had given the dates to, the day he met Jasmine. The boy and the girl had been with their mother then, huddled together on the street with no shelter or food. But it's no surprise that the children had ended up in the orphanage. There's ten different reasons why their mother is almost certainly dead. The children obviously recognize Aladdin as well, but don't know how to broach the subject now he's married to a royal. The boy bows and the girl curtsies, staring up at him and desperately wanting him to remember them, wanting someone to care about their miserable lives, someone to notice they are here.
"I remember you two," Aladdin says, seeing tears well in the children's eyes because he cares that they exist. "I gave you a bag of dates in the bazaar."
"Yes, you did," the boy says. His sister elbows him, so he adds, "Yes, Your Highness."
"Thank you so much for your gift, Your Highness," the girl adds. "It was most appreciated."
Aladdin bends down to their level. "I will let you in on a secret," he says in a staged whisper. "I know what it is like to be hungry. After all, I have not always been royalty."
"Oh, these are for you, Your Highness," the girl says quickly with another curtsey, holding out a cheap bouquet of wilting lilies to Jasmine.
"Thank you so much," the heir to the throne says as if she has been given an entire hanging garden. "They are beautiful."
"This way, Your Highnesses," the orphanage matron says.
"One moment, madame," Aladdin interjects, still bending down before the two children. "I do not believe we have been formally introduced," he adds to the girl and the boy.
"I am Noora," the girl offers, "and this is my brother Fahid."
"It is an honor to make your acquaintance. I am-"
"Aladdin, husband of Jasmine the princess royal," Fahid blurts out. "We know." Noora elbows him again. "Sorry."
"It is quite alright," Aladdin says with a smile. "Would it be alright if the princess and I saw your home?"
"Of course," Noora says brightly. "This way, Your Highness."
As Aladdin stands to follow Noora, Fahid, and the orphanage matron inside, he glances back at Jasmine. His wife has an odd look on her face.
"Yes, of course," she says. "We should not keep Fahid and Noora waiting."
The children give the tour instead of the matron, who only offers occasional facts like how many orphans she looks after. Fahid and Noora do most of the talking, showing Jasmine and Aladdin every inch of the orphanage. The royals are told information they probably didn't need to know, but eagerly listen to anyway. Noora shows them her ragged cloth doll that can barely be called a toy, and Fahid displays the six tin soldiers that the entire orphanage has to share.
Jasmine tries to hide it, but it's obvious her heart is breaking at the poverty before them. There aren't enough beds or blankets, and multiple buckets are scattered throughout the rooms to catch rain when storms leak through the roof.
"I know it is not a palace as Your Highnesses are used to," the matron says quietly, "but we do the best we can. The children are given the best care we can provide."
"No one doubted it," Jasmine says sincerely as tears well in her eyes.
"I only wish they had enough toys," Aladdin adds. He had had some while his parents were alive, but had to sell the toys to buy food. After that, he had played with Abu, as no other entertainment could be afforded.
"We will have a toymaker sent here, so the children can make selections from his wares," Jasmine announces. "It will cost the orphanage nothing."
Aladdin and the matron stare at the princess, and it takes her husband a second to remember that they actually have the money for it. He's not used to the feeling.
Now it is the matron's turn to tear up. "Thank you, Your Highness!" the woman gasps.
"And we will ensure your kitchens are well stocked," Aladdin says. He knows what it's like to go bed hungry, and he finds he can't bear the thought of Noora, Fahid, or any of the others enduring that.
"You are too kind, Your Highnesses!"
"No, not at all," Jasmine says.
"We are more than happy to help," Aladdin says honestly.
At this point, Fahid, Noora, and the other children have lost interest in the adults' grown up conversation. Over the chatter, Aladdin catches Noora's eye. "Would you like new toys?" he asks.
Noora gapes at him. "Truly?"
He smiles. "Truly. A toymaker will come by in a few days."
She drops her doll made of rags and throws her arms around Aladdin. "Thank you, thank you!" she cries.
"You each can choose whatever you like," Jasmine adds.
Fahid tackles the princess. "Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
The other children rush forward to offer their own gratitude. Over the sea of grateful faces, Aladdin and Jasmine exchange grins.
The pair stay the rest of the day at the orphanage. Other royals might have only observed the orphans from a careful distance, but Jasmine and Aladdin get down on the creaking floor to play hands on with the children. Aladdin, Fahid, and some of the other children - boys and a few girls - kick a leather ball on the dusty street outside the orphanage. Jasmine stays inside with Noora and the rest. They teach the princess rhymes and games she had never heard of, herself growing up as an only child. The midday meal comes straight from the palace, brought over by royal servants.
Only when the sun goes down do Aladdin and Jasmine leave. The children wave as the princess and prince consort finally depart, and Noora and Fahid are the most enthusiastic.
Back in their palace chambers, the royals change out of their dusty attire.
"May I ask you something?" Aladdin says to his wife once they have changed into night tunics. Jasmine's new handmaiden and Aladdin's valet take away their employers' day clothes, closing the door behind them and leaving the husband and wife alone.
"Of course," Jasmine says as she and Aladdin get into bed.
"When we first arrived at the orphanage," he begins, "and I met Fahid and Noora again, you had an odd look on your face. What was going through your mind then?"
She doesn't answer for a moment. "I realized I wanted that with you," she says quietly. "Children of our own, I mean. I stood there thinking how right it looked, you with children. They adored you today. And I mean this honestly when I say you would be an excellent father."
"I could say the same as you as a future mother," he replies. "They were awed by you when we first showed up, but they loved you by the end of the day."
She flushes. "It was humiliating that I did not know most of their games and riddles."
"That did not matter to them. What did matter is that a princess, a future sultan, got down on the floor and played with them. Not many princesses would do that. Almost none. But you showed that you cared, and that meant the world to them." He looks into her dark gaze. "I have never once regretted marrying you, but today I was particularly proud to call such a caring woman my wife." He kisses her on the forehead.
"And I am proud to call such a kind man my husband," she replies when he leans back.
"I want to go to the orphanage again. If we only show up once and never see them again, it will look like we do not care."
"And they need more than one fine meal from the palace kitchens," she agrees. "Did you see how thin their faces were?"
"I remember being that hungry," he says without thinking, and silence falls.
He shrugs, pretending like this did not open up painful memories. "Being hungry is nothing new for me."
Her eyes glitter with unshed tears. "I am so sorry."
"It was not your fault."
"All the same, I am sorry you have experience with starving," she says sincerely.
He tries to keep his tone light. "Well, that and dehydration, and cold, and fear, and a hundred other things that goes along with being a homeless orphan. It is just… I saw myself in those children today. I was never in an orphanage, but otherwise, I was looking at my younger self in a way. I was Fahid. I did not have any siblings, but when I looked at him, I saw me."
His voice betrays him by tightening, and he clears his throat roughly, fighting back the tears building behind his eyes.
"You do not have to hide anything from me," his wife says gently. "I know my childhood was very different from yours. But no matter how difficult something in your past was, you can tell me."
"Thanks." He can't continue for a moment. "At least Noora and Fahid are in an orphanage. I should have been there too as a child, but I never went. I am glad they have at least some regular source of food, because I did not. I had to steal to eat. And I had to become skilled at theft out of necessity, because otherwise I would get caught, and that meant getting beaten by a merchant. Which happened more often than I like to admit."
"It should never have happened even once," his wife says passionately. "Children should never be beaten, no matter the crime." She takes his face gently in her hands. "I am so sorry, my love. I wish I could fix this for you."
"No one has ever said that to me before." His voice becomes thick with emotion again, and this time he can't stop it. "No one has ever cared before," he rasps.
"Well, I care."
His smile doesn't quite reach his eyes. "I want to believe you, I really do. But at the same time, a lifetime of misery makes that hard to believe."
"Then let me prove it to you," she says, and kisses him.
The next day, they meet the toymaker at the orphanage. "Do not worry about the price," Jasmine says. "The palace will pay the bill."
Aladdin has never seen any child more ecstatic than the orphans as they select toys. The prince consort remembers what it was like to not have any toys at all in his own youth. After the merchant leaves, the children gather before Jasmine and Aladdin. The matron guides Fahid, the clear spokesman for the orphans, forward.
"On behalf of the orphanage," the boy says, "I want to say thank you to Your Highnesses."
"What for?" the matron prompts.
"For your generosity," Fahid finishes.
"You are most welcome," the princess says.
But when Aladdin and Jasmine return to the palace, he can't stop thinking about how different his new home is to the nearly decrepit one the children have. Over dinner, he looks at his wife and father-in-law. "Could we get them a new building? The orphanage they have now is about to cave in."
"I think we can find something," the sultan Hamed says with a smile.
The royal family ends up building a new orphanage entirely.
Hamed joins his daughter and son-in-law for the official opening, and Jasmine insists Aladdin be the one to cut the ribbon in front of the door. Ignoring protocol, the children rush inside before the royals to look at their spacious, sturdy home. Outside, the matron cries and kisses Aladdin's hand when he tells her the orphanage would receive a monthly allowance to purchase food, clothes, and anything else they might need.
But as just as the royal trio is about to leave, Fahid and Noora run out the door to Aladdin, Jasmine, and the sultan Hamed. "Thank you a hundred times over!" the girl says as she and her brother hug Aladdin's legs.
"Thank you a thousand times over!" Fahid says.
Not to be outdone, his sister declares, "Thank you a million times over!"
The adults laugh as the bemused matron steps forward. "Release His Highness," she says with a smile. "The sultanate family has to leave now."
Neither child releases their grip on Aladdin's legs. "No, stay, Your Highness!" Fahid says.
"Please stay!" Noora echoes.
"Let go of the prince consort," the matron says, and the children reluctantly obey.
But Aladdin bends down to Noora and Fahid's level. "We will be back."
"When?" Fahid asks bluntly.
"How soon is soon?" Noora inquires matter-of-factly.
"Tomorrow," Aladdin promises. "We shall come back tomorrow."
Leaving is now even more heartbreaking, because he has a connection with these children now. They are not just two random peasants in a crowd. He knows their names, knows Noora's favorite color is purple, knows Fahid wants to be a soldier. Jasmine must be thinking the same thing, because she reaches for his hand, and the sultan gives his son-in-law and daughter a knowing smile.
"I think you two are ready to have children," Hamed says over supper that evening.
Aladdin nearly chokes on his wine as Jasmine's eyes go wide. "Baba!"
"We only just got married," Aladdin wheezes.
"And I saw your faces around those orphans." His father-in-law smirks. "It is obvious you want children of your own."
"As he said, the wedding was only a few months ago," Jasmine counters. "There is plenty of time for such things later."
"I am not ordering you to get pregnant tomorrow, dear. But the truth is, I am not getting any younger. You will have the throne sooner rather than later, and the fact of the matter is, you need heirs. And," the sultan adds with a twinkle in his eye, "even if we did not have to worry about dynasties and royal bloodlines and the future of Agrabah, I would very much like grandchildren. Just a thought."
After sharing a meal with the children at the orphanage, Noora looks up at Aladdin at her place beside him at the table. "Would you read us a story?"
The rest of the children clamor in agreement as Aladdin's stomach twists into a knot. "I, uh, I am sorry, but…"
"You are a prince, are you not?" Fahid boldly interjects. "Princes can read."
"I can read to you," Jasmine announces. "Show me what books you have."
The orphans rush to show her the books that the matron had newly purchased. As a cacophony of suggestions are called out, Jasmine glances back over the sea of children at her husband. Thank you, he mouths. She smiles gently.
Jasmine reads from A Thousand And One Nights. The children are enthralled by tales of Scheherazade, Ali Baba and the forty thieves, and the seven voyages of Sinbad the sailor. Aladdin has to admit his wife is a wonderful storyteller; she is animated and almost musical in her delivery, and the children can't look away. They beg her for more stories, but Jasmine gently insists that it is high time they go to sleep.
But back at the palace, silence stretches on between Aladdin and Jasmine. She seems to be waiting for him to broach the subject in his own time, and he finally does when they are finally alone in their chambers.
"I am sure you have figured out that I cannot read."
She pauses in brushing her hair, and sets down her ivory comb. "I gathered that was the case."
He avoids her gaze, not knowing what else to say.
"We could hire a tutor."
"And alert the entire country to the fact that I am illiterate?" he counters. "No thanks."
"It is nothing to be ashamed of-"
"As a peasant, it is the norm," he interrupts. "But a prince who cannot read is another matter entirely."
After a moment, Jasmine says, "I could teach you."
He finally meets her gaze.
"Then no one else would have to know. Not even my father. It would be between you and me alone."
"Perhaps," he finally says, continuing quickly as not to dwell on his own shortcomings. "And maybe we should hire one for the orphanage. A tutor, I mean. Or multiple tutors, and maybe even a free school for all the children in the city. Some other countries have public learning institutions. Why not in Agrabah?"
"An excellent notion," his wife says. Aladdin knows she's not going to forget this conversation, but she's not going to force the issue of his own lack of literacy.
Going to the orphanage becomes a routine.
It takes time and quite a bit of money to set up the free school, but eventually most of the children in the capital – orphans or not – flock to learn at the school named after the prince and princess.
Aladdin and Jasmine still visit the orphanage itself. Fahid and Noora take to calling the royals by their first names, and the formality of royal protocol has almost completely disappeared. Jasmine even comments once that the orphanage is the one place she feels almost normal.
With the heir to the throne and her husband so often in the city, the royal duo attract a following. The common people turn out in droves to see their future leader (who they hardly know) and the prince consort (who they already do). Aladdin himself finds he enjoys being among the people on the streets he grew up on, rather than being stuck in a stuffy palace all day. He had worried he would be stifled by his lofty role, but it is helping him do more good than he ever could have as a peasant.
But the hardest thing of all is the end of each day, when he and Jasmine leave Fahid and Noora. One evening as a glorious sunset paints the sky, Noora looks up at Jasmine and asks, "Can Fahid and I come with you to the palace?"
Jasmine and Aladdin exchange a glance. They both would have expected the bolder Fahid to make such a request, not Noora.
But Fahid does chime in. "Please say we can, Jasmine. Please, Aladdin?"
"The palace is the home of Their Highnesses," the matron says. "You cannot-"
"Of course they can," Aladdin says. He glances at Jasmine, who gives him a nod of approval. "How about tomorrow after school?"
The next afternoon, Fahid and Noora chatter away as Jasmine, Aladdin, and the sultan welcome the children and the matron into the palace. But once they go inside, Noora and Fahid's mouths fall open.
"You live here?" Noora gasps as she and her brother stare at the great hall.
"This is the great hall, where we meet dignitaries and statesmen and…" Hamed begins. "But uh, yes, we do."
"Think about how much food one of those gold doorknobs would buy," Fahid says innocently, and the adults' smiles fall. Aladdin and Jasmine look at each other over the children's heads.
"Yes, well, let us show you the next room," Aladdin says.
Fahid and Noora are most impressed by the fact that the sultanate family has a monkey and a tiger. After the tour, the children are given permission to play in the garden. As Noora and Fahid run through the greenery with Rajah and Abu, Aladdin and Jasmine are content to watch them. Aladdin tries to imagine his own children playing there, and when he glances at Jasmine's contemplative expression, it's clear she's thinking of the same thing.
"Fahid, Noora," the matron says, "it is time to leave."
"Could we stay?" Fahid asks.
The question hits Aladdin in the gut as if he has been struck by lightning.
"Oh, well…" Jasmine says.
"The other children will want to hear all about the palace," the matron smoothly intervenes. "We should be off."
That evening in bed, Aladdin turns to look at his wife. "I know this will sound odd, as royals rarely adopt, but-"
"But you want to adopt Noora and Fahid," Jasmine finishes as if it's the most natural thing in the world.
"Yes," he says honestly. "Do you?"
"With all my heart."
"True, they are sweet," Hamed says kindly as Jasmine and Aladdin stand before the sultan with Fahid and Noora. "But it is illegal for them to be in line for the throne."
Aladdin feels Fahid's small hand tremble in his own.
"You took no issue in my taking a commoner as my husband," Jasmine says, lifting her chin. "Why is this any different, Baba?"
"Your biological children with him would have blue blood because of you," her father counters. Again, Noora and Fahid are sweet, but it is illegal for anyone without royal blood to ascend the throne. They cannot be your heirs."
The street urchins look up at Jasmine and Aladdin with wide, scared brown eyes.
"But they can be our wards," the princess says.
"And we shall love them as much as any blood kin," Aladdin adds. "They will still belong to this family."
At this, Fahid and Noora throw their arms around their new parents, and soon everyone's eyes are wet.
When Jasmine sends a letter, Dalia and Genie come straight back from their travels in China. But their friends have news of their own. When the newly-made family of four first greets the globe-trotting pair, there is a small but unmistakable swell beneath Dalia's dress.
Jasmine kisses Dalia on both cheeks. "Congratulations, my dear."
"We each got hitched around the same time," Genie says, "and it seems we each will have children at the same time. What are the chances?"
"Speaking of which, may we be introduced to our new niece and nephew?" Dalia says. "I am your Aunt Dalia, and this is Uncle Genie. We are not technically related to your parents, but we are such close friends we might as well be."
"This is Noora and Fahid," Aladdin says.
"Are you truly a genie?" Fahid asks.
"I used to be, but I am human now. Your father freed me from my lamp."
"I thought Mother was cool as the future sultan," Noora says, eyes shining, "but Father freed a genie!"
Dalia and Genie laugh, but Jasmine and Aladdin stare at each other.
"Did you…" Jasmine says a bit shakily. "Did you just call us Mother and Father? You have never done that before."
"So your stories were true," Fahid says as Noora nods shyly to Aladdin and Jasmine. "About the djinn and the lamp and everything else."
Aladdin smiles. "They were, yes."
Noora turns back to Genie. "Can you still do magic?"
"No, thankfully not. I am glad to be done with it."
"But magic is… Well, magic!" Fahid protests.
"I think we are all far better off without it," Dalia says.
"I quite agree," Aladdin says.
Dalia and Genie decide to move into a townhouse in the capital until their son or daughter is born. Travel can wait until their child is older. Noora and Fahid settle in surprisingly well to palace life, and everyone is content.
And then Jasmine starts throwing up.
"We have news," Jasmine begins when the five royals are at breakfast.
"What is it?" Noora asks.
Hamed, who has already been informed, smiles into his goblet.
"Your father and I," Jasmine continues, reaching for Aladdin's hand, "are going to have a baby. Just like Aunt Dalia and Uncle Genie are having one of their own."
Noora bursts into tears, and Fahid runs out of the room.
"I will go after him," Aladdin says.
As he follows Fahid, Aladdin hears Noora say, "Are you going to send us back to the orphanage?"
"Of course not, dear!" Jasmine exclaims. "How could you think such a thing?"
Aladdin finds his adopted son crying in the gardens. "Are you going to send Noora and I back to the orphanage?"
"Your sister said the same thing." Aladdin sits down beside Fahid. "The answer is no. Your mother and I are not getting rid of either of you."
"But we are just your fake, pretend children," Fahid sniffs. "Now you are going to have a real one, there is no use for us."
"You will always be part of our family. Honestly, I see this baby as my third child. In my eyes, Noora and you are my first and second. And there is nothing pretend about this. You are my son, and Noora is my daughter. Simple as that."
"But it is not that simple," Fahid says flatly. "You will have an heir to the throne now."
"Yes, but being sultan or sultana is not all it is made out to be." Aladdin looks down at Fahid beside him. "Do you want to know a secret?"
Fahid scrubs at his wet cheeks. "What is it?"
"I do not want to be sultan myself."
The boy blinks. "Really?"
"I have no interest in politics. The first time I tried, I was really, really bad at it. I started talking about jam for some unfathomable reason."
"Jam, yes. No idea why. Your mother is fantastic at politics, but I am terrible at it. I would never want to inherit a throne myself. I would have gladly married her even if she was a peasant fishmonger. I wanted to be with her because I love her, not her power. So if there is a place for even someone like me here, there is a place for you and Noora in this family, I promise."
"Thank you, Father," Fahid says, throwing his arms around Aladdin and burying his face in his adoptive parent's shoulder.
Out of the corner of his eye, Aladdin sees Jasmine and Noora. Their adopted daughter's eyes are red, but her cheeks are drying.
"You are just as much part of our family as your brother, Noora," Aladdin says. Tears well in Noora's eyes, but this time she runs to Aladdin and hugs him.
Jasmine follows at a more measured pace, sitting down carefully beside her husband and first two children. Fahid climbs into Jasmine's lap and throws his arms around her neck.
"Careful, Fahid," Aladdin says.
"It is quite alright," Jasmine says to both Aladdin and Fahid.
The cobbled-together family remains there for a long time in the courtyard, content to simply be in each other's presence. But Aladdin knows he would hold his children, adopted and by blood, for as long as they needed.
That evening after putting their eldest two children to bed with the Desert Moon lullaby, Aladdin and Jasmine retire themselves.
She sighs as they stand in the middle of the room. "Well, that did not go how I expected it would."
"Such is family life."
"We went from having no children to three in a year," she muses.
"It was fast, I will admit," he confesses. "But I would not have it any other way."
He steps forward and kisses her. His hands fall to her hips, and then to her stomach. He imagines her body bursting with life and full with his child - not Anders' child, not Jafar's, but his and his alone. Aladdin loves his adopted children, but having a child created of himself and Jasmine is something he wanted ever since he met her. It was not the only reason he fell in love with her, of course. He wanted to raise children with this brilliant, brave woman who let him into her world that he still doesn't always feel he belongs in. But he also wanted to have children to give them the life he himself hadn't had – a safe, happy childhood with living parents present for all his days. And Aladdin wanted, and still wants, to create that with Jasmine.
So he kisses his wife on her forehead, and then he kneels down and kisses her still-flat stomach. "I love you," he breathes, resting his forehead against her hip. "You both, and Noora and Fahid… I love you all so much words cannot begin to describe it."
Jasmine's hands go to her husband's hair. "And we all love you too."
Still on his knees, he looks up his wife. "I am trying to believe it." He realizes this inadequacy is what Noora and Zahira feel. How did he not see the similarities before?
"Then let me prove it to you again," Jasmine says, raising him to standing. She kisses Aladdin for what must be the millionth time, but he will never tire of it.
But their happiness is shattered when Jasmine's father dies.
It had been a long time coming, Hamed tells them on his deathbed. He had not wanted to worry them when they were creating their own family with his adopted grandchildren. And so, secure in the knowledge that Agrabah is in his daughter's safe and capable hands, the sultan dies.
At Jasmine's coronation, Aladdin kneels before his wife, pledging allegiance to defend his sultana with life and limb. Fahid, Noora, Dalia and the Genie watch with the rest of the audience. And so Jasmine, the future heir growing within her, is crowned the first woman sultan in Agrabahian history.
Jasmine goes to be with Dalia and Genie when her friend's time comes, while Aladdin stays at the palace with Fahid and Noora, waiting for news. Then after Dalia gives birth, Aladdin takes the children go to see the former djinn and the former handmaiden at their townhouse.
"We are calling the boy Omar," Genie says as Dalia holds their newborn twins, "and the girl Lian."
"They look the same," Fahid says of his almost cousins.
"Well, they are fraternal twins, not identical," Dalia explains. "Even identical twins are actually different. In small ways, but all twins are different people."
"Did you know you were having twins?" Jasmine says, shifting again in her chair. She's eight months along herself, and the desert's summer heat is intense already. Aladdin now wordlessly starts to rub circles into her back with his thumb.
"No, we did not," Dalia admits. "That explains why I felt like a whale the entire pregnancy."
"Two children must have been quite the surprise," Aladdin muses.
"Oh, it was," Genie says. "I love both Lian and Omar and would not trade either of them for the world. But yes, it was a bit of shock."
"Prince Anders and his wife had twins," Dalia says. "They all looked happy."
"You saw them in person?" Aladdin asks.
"Yes, when we went to Skånland," Genie answers. "At a parade."
"Anders married a peasant girl, who apparently had been locked away in a tower most of her life," Dalia adds.
"Oh, that poor girl," Jasmine gasps.
"I even heard Anders went blind for a while, but he recovered," Aladdin says.
Jasmine shifts again in her chair, a hand going to the curve of her stomach. "Well, I am glad he is happy now. Skånland needs it, after the attack by the giant who killed Cinderella, the crown prince's wife."
She winces, but smiles at Aladdin to reassure him. It doesn't completely ease his worry; he may be illiterate, but he knows when something is wrong with his wife.
"How do you tell Omar and Lian apart?" Noora asks.
But Aladdin is less focused on Genie's answer and more on Jasmine suddenly grabbing his hand with a vicelike grip. "Jasmine?"
"I think… I think we need to return to the palace," she says in as even a tone as she manage, but it is clearly an act for Fahid and Noora.
"Carpet?" Aladdin says, but the flying carpet is already hovering by the sultana. The Persian rug has taken to following Jasmine almost everywhere, and it turned out to be for good reason. "Fahid, Noora–"
"They can stay with us," Dalia says as Aladdin helps his wife stand. "Jasmine, if I can survive giving birth to twins, you can survive one. I would come with you, but…"
"But you are in no state to move. I understa-" Jasmine reaches for the chair, holding onto it so hard her arm trembles. "I understand," she finishes in a faint voice.
"Your carpet express is ready, Your Majesty," Genie says. "All aboard."
Jasmine manages a smile as Genie and Aladdin help her onto the carpet. Aladdin turns to his closest friend. "Any advice?"
"If she holds your hand so hard you think she's going to break a bone, let her," Genie says. "A fractured finger or two has nothing on the pain she is about to endure."
"I would never have said otherwise." Aladdin gets on the carpet and puts a protective arm around his wife. "Keep it a smooth ride, carpet."
Aladdin has only been this scared two other times in his entire life. Dealing with Jafar, being trapped in the Cave of Wonders, or thinking he was going to die in the frozen wasteland was nothing compared to this. Watching his father die and then his mother die trumped everything else.
But watching Jasmine suffer might beat all others.
She refuses to have Aladdin sent from the room, and as she is now sultan, no one questions her like they might have before. Though she wants him there, Aladdin can't fathom why. He feels so incredibly useless, having to just sit there and watch. He lets her grip his hand, of course, and he'd let her break every bone in his body if it would only ease her pain. But rubbing her back and encouraging words seem to do nothing.
But finally, after an entire day of agony and just over two days after Genie and Dalia had their own children, Jasmine and Aladdin's daughter is born.
And oh, she is perfect.
Genie brings Fahid and Noora to the palace, briefly marvels over the third royal child, and goes back home to be with his own wife and newborns. Aladdin and Jasmine's adopted children seem a bit nervous, and Jasmine herself is so exhausted she can barely move, so the prince consort takes on parenting duties. "Remember, nothing has changed for the two of you. Your sister is an addition to our family, not replacing either of you."
"What is her name?" Noora says.
"Baldoura Zahira," Jasmine rasps. Screaming for twenty three hours can have that effect. "Baldoura for my mother, and Zahira for Aladdin's mother."
"Your own mother is very tired," Aladdin says. "We should let her rest."
"Goodnight, Mother," Noora says. "Goodnight, sister."
"Goodnight, Mother," Fahid says, and Aladdin sees tears well in Jasmine's eyes. Noora has taken to calling Jasmine mother and Aladdin father with ease. But their adopted son had yet to call Jasmine anything other than her first name before today.
"I will return right after I put them to bed," Aladdin says as he and the older children go into the hall.
When Aladdin does come back, Jasmine appears to be asleep. Baldoura starts to fuss in her dosing mother's protective arms, and Aladdin takes their daughter. But then Jasmine's eyes crack open.
"I have Baldoura," he whispers. "Go back to sleep."
"Aladdin," Jasmine says in a pale voice, "tell the new vizier to write up a law abolishing absolute primogeniture. I do not want any future brothers to displace her in the line of succession."
"I agree, but must this happen now? You have every right to rest."
She smiles. "I appreciate your concern, but the vizier shall write the law. All I will do is sign my name."
So only an hour later, Aladdin holds their newborn as his wife signs the law into order with an albeit shaky hand. "And now I will rest," Jasmine sighs as she puts down the feather quill.
"Do I have your leave to present this law to parliament?" the new vizier asks somewhat nervously. He's a far better man than Jafar, but has been anxious about entering his sultan's birthing room.
"You have my leave," Jasmine says.
The vizier bows and goes to the door, but pauses. "Congratulations on the arrival of the princess, Your Majesty, Your Highness," the vizier says, and goes into the hall.
"Now I want to sleep for a thousand years," Jasmine murmurs, her eyes fluttering closed.
"By all means. You have more than earned it." Still holding their daughter, Aladdin sits on the bed beside Jasmine, careful not to jostle either of them. "Baldoura and I are not going anywhere. Rest, my love."
He looks down at his two girls, his heart about to burst with love for them and the two other children elsewhere in the palace. Can a person die of happiness?
The crown princess Baldoura is presented to the people of Agrabah a few days later.
Aladdin again holds their second daughter. It is an ordeal for Jasmine to even make it to the chair on the balcony, but once she is seated, she waves and beams to the crowd. But then Aladdin looks over his shoulder to see Fahid and Noora hanging back.
"Noora, Fahid, come forward," Aladdin calls. "You are both as much a part of this family as Baldoura." Fahid and Noora shyly join Aladdin and their adoptive sister, and begin waving to the crowd alongside Jasmine.
The sultanate family is certainly odd – the wife as the monarch, her husband only a consort, two of their children merely wards, and a girl in line for the throne. But none of them have had conventional lives, so why should their family be conventional? Of course Aladdin loves Baldoura and Jasmine, but their family wouldn't be complete without Noora and Fahid.
They all might have been sewn together like different colored threads in a tapestry to make an unusual weave, but Aladdin wouldn't have it any other way.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: The name Baldoura is based on Badroulbadour, Jasmine's original name in the fairytale Aladdin And The Magic Lamp.
I know it's canon that Jasmine becomes sultan (shouldn't it be sultana?) at the end of the movie. But her father is still alive, so in any other normal monarchy Jasmine would technically remain a princess until her father died. Sorry, Disney, but it's true. I would have LOVED to see her coronation, though.
Also, Prince Anders and Rapunzel's Prince are totally the same person, Into The Woods is set in Skånland, and Rapunzel's Prince Anders was only acting weird so Jasmine wouldn't marry him and he could go back to Rapunzel. Just saying.
Which I wrote a fic about, of emerald and gold, that will be uploaded soon.