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27 August 2012 @ 09:09 am
Literal Translation (1/1), [Tangled]  
Title: Literal Translation
Fandom: Tangled
Characters & Pairings: Maximus, Pascal, Rapunzel/Eugene
Rating & Warnings: T, takes place after "Tangled Ever After"
Word Count: 1,200
Genre: Humor, Romance
Summary: Maximus learns the ups and downs of idioms.
Author's Notes: This is a very belated attempt to fulfill grav_ity's holiday fic meme request which was "Maximus and Pascal and a frying pan (and possibly a set of paints)." Max, Pascal and the set of paints made it in the story, but the frying pan remains elusive. Somehow, idioms came in, pulled a few ninja moves and ended up the star of the fic.

Another side note, I didn't look through the historical background of each of the idioms.  (In fact, I know one didn't come into being until the late 1800s.)  Just suspend your belief and everything will be just fine.

Princess Rapunzel loved idioms.

Ever since the queen had found the book on the expressions, Rapunzel had taken it upon herself to bring to life as many of the phrases as possible.

Maximus had his favorite idiom: upsetting the apple cart, which, despite its dire implication, was actually a quite delightful experience. Especially since he got to eat all the apples that were spilled on the ground.

Over the past few weeks, the horse had come to learn how to discern when the princess had another expression in mind. So, when she had approached him and Pascal in the stables with a hopeful look in her eye, Maximus wondered what the princess had in mind.

He hoped it had to do with apples. Last night, he had purposefully left the page declaring that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” open.

She led them through the castle halls towards the direction of her art studio.

Maximus suppressed a sigh. No apples today.

When they stepped into the room, Maximus saw that Rapunzel had set up her paints, two brushes and, curiously, two blank porcelain plates. Pascal scurried down her arm and walked on top of the table, grabbing his miniature brush. Maximus looked at the princess questioningly.

“I need you to paint a design on each plate,” explained Rapunzel. She looked at Maximus. “You need to make one for Eugene.”

The horse chortled. He wasn’t sure what Rapunzel was doing, but he was going to make sure the prince consort got a plate he would never forget.

“And Pascal, could you make one for me?” The chameleon nodded.

Rapunzel smiled at them. “Great! I’ll be back with Eugene in a little bit!” Then, she turned around and walked out of the room.

Maximus turned to his green friend. The chameleon had already started painting. With a whinny, Maximus carefully picked up a paintbrush between his teeth and set to creating his masterpiece.

It took him almost a half hour, but when Maximus took a step back, he couldn’t help but to admire the realism of his work. As he carefully set down his brush, he glanced at Pascal who had finished his painting.

Pascal gestured at the plate proudly. Maximus glanced at; it looked like one of the princess’ famous cupcakes, sprinkled with something that looked suspiciously like flies.


Maximus nodded towards his own plate. Pascal climbed up Maximus’ mane to get a better perspective and let out a hearty laugh that shook the horse.


Soon, the princess and the prince consort entered into her studio. “I want to see how Pascal and Maximus did with the expression ‘you art what you eat’!”

Eugene seemed less than enthusiastic. “You do know the phrase is ‘you are what you eat’, right?”

Rapunzel’s nose scrunched up. “Of course I do, but who wants to be an overcooked piece of cabbage? I like the idea of decorating what you eat on! It makes for a much livelier dinner discussion.”

Eugene held his hands up. “All right, let’s see what your frog and Max has come up with.”

Pascal stuck his tongue out at Eugene (which, Maximus assumed, was why Eugene called him a frog in the first place) before scurrying down the horse’s back to stand in front of his plate with a pleased look on his face.

Maximus gave the princess credit; she didn’t blanch at the sight of fly-covered cupcakes. “Oh Pascal! Look at all the detail!” she gushed.

Pascal’s chest puffed up.

Eugene looked at it and frowned. “Sorry, Blondie, seeing a bunch of insects on my dinner plate doesn’t make me particularly hungry. In fact, it has quite the opposite effect.”

“Eugene!” Rapunzel admonished. “Don’t listen to him, Pascal. We know how sensitive he is since he accidently swallowed a fly when he was riding Maximus--”

“That horse took me through a dump!”

Maximus smothered a laugh. That had been a fun day.

“He was taking you through a shortcut,” Rapunzel defended. “He did get you to the dinner party on time, didn’t he?”

“Yes, he did.” The words passed through gritted teeth.

Maximus gave him an innocent smile. Eugene glowered.

“Anyway,” Rapunzel said, trying to bring peace between horse and man, “Maximus painted a plate for you, Eugene!”

Maximus nodded towards his creation. He had painted a large apple tree (with rather delicious apples, if Maximus said so himself) with him and Eugene standing under it.

“Did you see what he did to my nose?” Eugene said indignantly.

Maximus smirked. When the princess turned to the horse, his face was the picture of innocence. He gave her a helpless shrug.

Rapunzel smiled. “I’m sure Maximus did his best job, didn’t you, boy?”

He nodded solemnly. Eugene, however, seemed unconvinced.

“Besides, even the royal artists couldn’t capture your profile,” she continued, turning to the prince consort. She smiled sweetly at him. “Nothing can compare to the real thing.”

Then, she leaned forward and kissed him soundly. Maximus rolled his eyes, Pascal turned away from them, and Eugene returned the gesture eagerly. When they parted, Eugene no longer seemed bothered by Maximus’ creation.

“You know,” he said, eyes twinkling, “there’s another idiom we haven’t tested yet.”

Rapunzel pulled away, excited. “Really?”

Eugene nodded, swallowing thickly. Maximus frowned. He recognized that look. Based on the deep red color of his skin, Pascal did too.

“I was thinking we could go for a roll in the ha--”

“Excuse me, Princess.” A royal guard stood awkwardly in the doorframe. “You told me to tell you when the supplies were ready.”

“We were going to paint the town red,” she explained to a befuddled Eugene. Rapunzel bit her lip, as if trying to make a decision. She looked at Eugene, then at the guard, then back to Eugene.

“It’s fine, Blondie.” He didn’t sound fine at all. In fact, Eugene sounded downright uncomfortable. “I didn’t realize that you had made plans.”

Maximus let out a sigh of relief. If he wasn’t mistaken, Eugene was about to suggest something that would have made his stable preoccupied for quite a while.

The horse’s elation didn’t last long. Rapunzel flashed him a wide grin. “Did I read something about the best laid plans going astray last night?”

For some reason, Eugene’s lips pulled upward. “You sure did.”

The princess grabbed him by the wrist and tugged him out of the room. She flashed the guard an apologetic look. “You can put the paint away for now, Abelard. We’ll be back later.”

“Much later.” Eugene sounded rather smug.

The flummoxed guard slipped away, going the opposite direction of the excited couple.

What type of humans came up with these pointless expressions anyway?

Maximus looked at Pascal exasperatedly. The chameleon gave him a disinterested shrug. The lizard was probably used to the idea of the newly married couple running off at the strangest times.

Maximus was willing to wager that the princess and prince consort never accroached Pascal’s living space either!

Before he could work up a dose of healthy indignation, Eugene ducked his head back in. Then, he hurled a huge bag of apples at Maximus’ feet. He winked at the horse. “Wouldn’t you to have to visit the doctor anytime soon.”

Well, Maximus thought as he chomped down on a ripe apple, maybe idioms were that bad after all.
smb_books: Tangled Dancesmb_books on August 27th, 2012 10:18 pm (UTC)
Wonderful! A nice way to end the work day on a Monday. Light-hearted fun for the win! :-)
just_a_dram: Tangled Eugene11just_a_dram on September 24th, 2012 08:07 pm (UTC)
Awww...this is so, so cute. I love all the interaction between all of them. So many people don't write about Maximus and Pascal, and I love that you always do.

And Rapunzel would totally love idioms, wouldn't she? She confusingly awesome! :D I'm glad Max came around to thinking well of idioms too.