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 I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please

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haleybob
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PostSubject: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Fri Sep 12, 2008 9:05 pm

Um, Right. I've been working on a new phan phiction of mine alongside a sequel (still in progress) and I thought it might be good to start posting it here. The new one I was working on, anyways. Er, I hope that I don't put it in wrong, or get the forums wrong...that happens a lot. It has a very similiar plot to a lot of stories on FanFiction, but I do not go overboard or go crazy out of character. I keep it strictly canon and try to make it seem as realistic as possible. I've read the original novel to see how the characters act and also to fit my idea in. So...yes... it'll seem like every other soppy one you find for a dime a dozen, but I think (and have been told) that mine does not go on the same level as those. So yeah. Sorry, er...here it is.
-------------



Part One:



The crackly, static filled voice made itself known over the plane’s intercom.

“Ladies and gentleman, this is your Captain speaking.”

-kkkt-

“Just letting you know that we will be arriving at our destination in a few hours.”

-kkkt-

“Please fasten your seat belts as we go through some turbulence.”

-kkkt-

“your seat belt light will tell you when it is clear to remove them."

-kkkt-

"Have a great day and thank you for flying European Trip Airlines.”

-kkkt-

Groaning I leaned back in my seat, searching lazily for the recline button on the side panel.

“Oh man,” I sighed, “Just a few more hours and we’ll be in…in…”

My friend sitting next to me, Max, cut in.

“Hell.” She said darkly, not looking up from her book.

Phantom by Susan Kay, is our favorite besides the one by Gaston Leroux. You could never beat the original as we always said.

I looked at her, raising an eyebrow. Max never swears though hell technically isn’t a curse word….If you use it as a place anyways.

“Okay then,” I said, changing tactics, “we’ll arrive in Hell. I thought our teacher got the wrong tickets!”

I grinned impishly at her, expecting her to laugh. She didn’t and instead she rewarded me with a scowl before flipping the page in her book rather savagely. She had had to get up early this morning to get on the plane, and she wasn’t a morning person. Either way, I loved to push her over the edge. Call me suicidal. I leaned close to her, pursing out my pale lips in a fish-like fashion.

“Hey Ms. Grumpy Gills,” I cooed right in her ear, using Dory’s accent from Finding Nemo. Slowly Max looked at me and gave me a you’re-going-to-get-it-later look.

“Emma, I’m not in the mood.” She hissed. See? Not a morning person.

Respecting that, I leaned away, cowering for my life.

“You so mean!” I wailed, making my voice go high pitched like a small girl’s. “You so mean, Max-san!”

Smack. I never saw the book leave her hands as it came down mercilessly upon my already beaten head.

“I said never call me that!” she fumed as I rubbed my head. “We are not in Japan and I don’t like anime!”

I only whimpered in response, thinking how many times we’ve gone over it. And how many times I forgotten it as well. The thought still made me smile.

“It’s not just in anime, Max!” I cried, taking up the usual defense when this subject came up. “It’s a term of respect in Japan!”

She raised the book high and I pressed myself up against the wall in hope to avoid her wrath.

“Emma!” she said warningly, “I said no! Only call me Max while we are anywhere else. We’re not in Japan and you can’t call me that unless we are there!”

I wanted to use my usual annoying response on how we should go to Japan before the red, angry face of our Band instructor made itself known over our seat.

“Jammes! Sorelli!” Mr. Perini bellowed his eyes bloodshot and bugging. “Shut up!”

We both jumped and nodded meekly, muttering a quick, “Sorry, Mr. Perini….” before he got up out of his seat to yell at the other high school students in the back. A vein in his temple, I noted, was ticking in fierce rhythm to his high blood pressure. Of course, I couldn’t blame him. But yes, Max Jammes and Emma Sorelli –me– were on a plane to Paris for an once-in-a-lifetime competition with the rest of our school’s band, percussion and all. Our instruments were safely being held with the luggage under the plane but somehow our whole band was able to achieve to totally make Mr. Perini and the rest of the non-band passengers go mad with the noise made with no instrumentation whatsoever. Max and I were lucky enough to get seats closer to the exits, that way, if Mr. Perini did go mad, we’d be able to get out first. Clever, non?

Oh, don’t get me wrong, it’s not that our band is bad.

In playing.

When we want to.

This is never.

We just liked to torture the poor man out of his mind with our still lingering middle school maturity. Even the Seniors enjoyed being stupid now and then. Max sighed and shook her head, muttered under her breath, “Stupid people.” I could only full-heartedly agree with her.

“Why is our band the only stupid one?” I complained, glancing to the back of the airplane.

Mr. Perini was yelling up a storm, his face beat red and turning purple. Not the most flattering shade for a mid-forty-year-old man who’s balder than the nation’s national bird.

"We are one of the best bands in the country, yet we only play well when we’re in competitions!” I said sadly.

Max nodded agreeably.

“Yeah,” she said gravely, “and the rest of the time is spent making Mr. Perini wishing he was on his death bed.”

“That poor man,” I murmured. “Well, no time to spend wallowing in misery!” I dug underneath my seat for my blue-crochet knapsack to get my MP3. “Time for some music!” I crowed holding it close.

Max rolled her eyes.

“How are you going to listen to it over the plane’s jets?” she asked, “You’d have to turn it up to 29 and blow out your eardrums.”

I stared at her in horror and looked at my music player and rose up a fist in anguish.

“Curse you infernal transportation villain!”

My friend patted me on the shoulder in sympathy as I muttered under my breath. Now we were really going to Hell. I told that to Max and she smirked and glanced back at our laughing, jeering, idiotic classmates.

“We’ll be lucky if Mr. Perini’s heart doesn’t give out.” She noted. “The percussion girl’s giving him some lip again.”

I groaned and looked over my seat. Sure enough, there was the black-haired, rather emo looking girl mouthing off to the teacher.

“Good grief,” I sighed, “we’re never going to get to Paris alive are we, Max?”

She shook her head and went back to her book, reading a passage she let out an embarrassed laugh. I leaned over her shoulder and cackled as well. We loved this part in Phantom when the khanum was threatening to make Erik a eunuch and he asked if a small jar….well if you read it you’ll know what I’m talking about.

O-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o

Thankfully the plane ride went more smoothly once we saw Mr. Perini haul the girl off to the front where our principle, Mr. Beech, was sitting calm as you please. Well, I think he was awake but I heard that he can sleep with his eyes open. Personally I felt sorry for the girl. Our principle was known to burst into a speech about any old thing and think it’s encouraging. Meanwhile, Max had finished the book in record time and was currently dabbing at her eyes with her t-shirt as a few tears tried to make a run for it down her face. Yes, even the mighty Max could be swayed by it. You should see us after reading the original. I took up the book as it was my turn and curled up in the corner of my seat to read. Unfortunately, this is where the so-called turbulence started to hit, rocking the plane enough to where our precious book slipped from my grasp.

“No!” I cried despairingly, diving for it as it nestled itself underneath the seat in front of me.

Unfortunately for me, I grabbed a foot and had to make a hasty, mumbled an apology to our other director Mr. Party. Oh, don’t be fooled by his last name, he isn’t interested in parties; he is only vivacious and very into his other work. This is being the toughest clarinet/saxophone teacher I have ever met. I was amazed that our fingers didn’t bleed after each lesson! He was really the only teacher our Band remotely listened to. It was probably because of him that we got practicing in and got as good as we are.

“Be more careful with your…ah…possessions, Miss Sorelli.” Mr. Party frowned, his light brown hair brushing into his dark, dark blue eyes.

I swear, from far away his eyes looked all black. It was maddening. Like he’d suddenly grow fangs and bite you, maddening. He’s a bit old, but he doesn’t have any wrinkles yet. Had he grown out and dyed his hair and changed his wardrobe a bit, he could look like an older rock star. Scary, non?

“S-sorry,” I mumbled, trying in vain to sink into my chair.

I don’t deal with adults well, they make me nervous. Especially Mr. Party, he was awesome but I always felt silly when talking to him. Another scowl and my instructor turned to face the front again; I let out a sigh of relief. Max looked at me.

“You know, you get into a lot of trouble with your randomness. Be careful okay?”

I sighed and nodded. Must I always be told to be careful?

“Don’t worry,” I assured her. “It’s not like Erik is going to pop out and Punjab me.”

Finally, Max laughed.

“You’d like that, though!” she said teasingly.

I laughed too, pleased with my success. Max was a lot more cheery when I got her to laugh. And yes, weirdly enough, I wouldn’t mind getting Punjabbed. But only by Erik of course.

How wrong I would find myself to be in only a few short hours.

-------------





I'll stop there to make sure I'm posting things right...and yeah. Er, that's the beginning chapter. I try to base of events that will take place (in my life or others) and characters off of the real things so. Yeah, I hope I got this right and someone enjoys it. I like writing it because it's fun.
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sat Sep 13, 2008 9:54 am

haleybob so happy to see you here. This is a delightful story. You do a fine job with the first person POV. I have a clear vision of the what's happening and this will be interesting to see a Phantom tale with a modern twist.

Even if this is similiar to some fics, I am sure you will make this one your own.

I saw a few grammar errors, and hope you don't mind me poiting them out. The head of a school is spelled "principal", not "principle" Remember, your principal is your "pal". Laughing

"...to make a hasty, mumbled an apology to our other director..." Remove "an", to read: "...to make a hasty, mumbled apology to our other director..."

Otherwise, good job! Please continue and yes you are in the right place.

Brava, brava, bravissimi! Razz Razz Razz
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haleybob
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sat Sep 13, 2008 11:39 pm

Ack! That's right, thank you. ^^;;; I don't mind at all, it's what readers are for. Correcting errors. You should see (or technically hear) how bad my grammer is when I'm speaking! Er, I guess I'll keep going then.
------------


Part Two:



“Everyone grab their bags and meet at the bus!” Mr. Perini barked. “No waiting around! We will buy food later! Meet at the bus!”

With our instructor barking orders, all of the high school students, Max, and I yawned widely while being jostled down the small escalator from our flying prison hold. With much luck, we had all managed to catch some sleep during a silent movie (surprisingly) with only a few stragglers managing to keep their eyes open.

I had watched the movie with hazed eyes, Max sleeping rather slumped in her seat beside me. I was so tired I didn’t even remember what the movie was about! Tousle-haired and extremely exhausted I managed to send Max an excited stare.

“We’re in Paris!” I whispered.

She, too, managed a wide smile that took form of a yawn.

“Yeah…Paris!” she murmured, staring around blearily.

Everyone was soon on their way picking out their luggage from the huge pile in the middle of us and piling into the buses that arrived shortly as we got out of the airport.

Loaded up on the bus I could only stare with wide-eyed wonder at the lit streets before me. Even at this late hour people were walking about and I thought I heard someone yelling, in French of course, outside. Settled in some sort of seat, I pressed my forehead to the cool glass and gave a satisfied sigh. Our competition would be tomorrow night, and for another three days, we’d be spending all our time wandering the breath-taking streets of Paris itself.

Lights suddenly turned back on the bus and I quickly shielded my delicate eyes from the harsh glare. Max groaned and started to get up, gathering her bags sullenly into her arms. I was quick to copy her and wondered if it was my exhaustion that had prevented me from hearing Mr. Perini’s orders.

I barely remember the hotel, a teacher helper giving me, Max, and some other girl we were paired up with a room key, and even the fact I had walked up a few flights of stairs to reach our room! But I did remember that the girl took the longest shower and that Megan fell asleep instantly on one of the double beds.

Barely conscious, I dragged myself to the window and admired the view, pleased that we could actually see the Eiffel Tower from our large window. Or at least, the tip anyways. The tip that might be the Eiffel Tower

“You’re turn,” the other girl muttered as she walked out of the bathroom, a towel secured around her wet hair, pajamas already on.

I was able to recollect that she was one of the few girl trumpets. Quite good actually.

“Thanks,” I muttered, seizing my own sleepwear before entering the loveliest bathroom I’ve seen in a hotel for the longest time.

It had a shower/bathtub with hot running water and the counter seemed to be made of a light pink stone. The shampoo was a mixture of delicious scents…I would have to steal this later before we left France. Before I became intoxicated with the hot water and bubbles, I quickly rinsed and hopped out, glaring at my painfully pale complexion, almost translucent white hair, and my purplish pink eyes as I pulled on my nightgown.

Yep, hard for some people to conceive, but I am an albino. Now, don’t go weird on me, we don’t all look like I do. I have type OCA1a, which stands for Oculocutaneous albinism type 1 A. I can’t develop pigment at all which gives people the color of their skin and hair, etcetera so I’m chalk white and my hair would fit perfectly on a 90 year old woman instead of a fifteen year old girl. I guess my eyes bug people the most…normally albino humans have normal eyes and develop normal hair and all, but there are few of us, like me who aren’t as lucky.

I wish it weren’t so, or at least I wished I had a bit more pigment to make my eyes blue at least. I loved blue eyes and was often jealous of my older sister who luckily had no albinism whatsoever. I bet her children would, though. Stupid recessive gene.

Painfully I took out my contacts, the sleep with them on in both the plane and bus made them gum to my very eyeball. Ah, my eyes. How much trouble they caused for my poor parents. We albino people usually aren’t sickly or unhealthy when we’re born despite our genetic disease, but if anything is wrong with us physically, it was our eyes. My own eyes had undergone several surgeries with little to better success to improve my poor vision.

When I had been a tiny child, I was almost legally blind. My parents, not wishing for my sight to disappear, signed up for anything to get me my vision. To their delight and mine, it worked out in the end even though my eyes still were not perfect and I had a choice of glasses or contacts. Contacts are your best friends, mon ami.

Well enough of this description of me. Let’s move on to something more interesting, and a little bit more interesting than the next morning at breakfast when a trombone inhaled half a banana and almost had to go to a French hospital the lucky duck. Competition, again, would be that night at eight, leaving us high scholars free for awhile after our tour to explore the wonders. As always, Max would be with me the whole time along with our packs filled with things to do in case the French community somehow bored us. Or banned us from the wine shop, I couldn’t tell which.

“The Opera House is a must,” she muttered, circling our map with red pen, clucking her tongue. “I am not going to be in Paris without seeing that building.”

She and I rested near a perfume shop, catching our breath while trying to figure out what time the rest of the band would have to get together again. I could’ve sworn the time schedule was in my pocket, but alas and to our hideous despair, it certainly wasn’t. Only my sunglasses which I hated to wear.

“We can go there and if anything, ask for help,” she continued as I stared at all the people around us in fascination. “I can’t believe I didn’t grab the schedule myself…no matter. Emma? Stay away from the locals, they aren’t your friends.”

I froze in the act of sidling up to a group of distinguished old men who spoke rapidly to one another in French, oblivious of my existence, and sulked back to Max.

“I will talk French to you if you really need to hear it,” she said dryly, leading me away down the crowded streets once again. “But I can’t go losing you. You’re parents paid me too much.”

I scowled as she snickered, enjoying her joke but glanced skyward towards the dome-like structure of the Paris Opera. My jaw dropped in awe of the architecture of it all and had a feeling I would fall backwards to soak its detail in if Max didn’t have a death grip on my upper arm.

“Erik was in here,” I whispered to her as we walked in the main lobby.

She smiled but shushed me, paying for our tickets for the tours. My mind was elsewhere as she shoved my ticket into my hands as I turned my neck nearly 360 degrees around to view it all. It was better than any of the Wikipedia pictures online. High ceilings, painted with gold filigree statues. Tiled floors with chandeliers, great big candle holders that dominated the halls, rich carpentry and tapestries…

Beauty all around me all shoved and crammed into one, grand, large building. Several other tourists snapped photos and talked rapidly in whatever language they were known to, one of which looked amazingly like a peacock.

The neck long and proud with feathery hair, beaky but delicate nose, and cold blue eyes it was odd characteristics to find on the man I stared at. Max nudged me on as his eyes flicked to meet mine.

I flushed and then just realized that the man was actually our tour guide and had been speaking while I stared about me slack jawed. Apparently he had asked me a question I didn’t hear and I just stared at him like a mute.

“Eh?” I said intelligently, my mouth still hanging open.

“Your ‘air,” he said in a slightly annoyed, French accented voice. “Did you dye it?”

I must’ve taken too long to answer for he sighed impatiently and hurried our group along. Max helpfully put in her two cents.

“Nice going,” she grumbled, “made yourself look like an idiot you know. If you were listening, we’re going to see the stage!”

“What about the skeleton?” I asked, absentmindedly still trying to permanently absorb things into my mind’s eye.

Or something along those lines. As much as I loved the building itself and that excellent stage, what I wanted the most was to see if the skeleton was truly there. The skeleton Gaston claimed to be that of the Opera Ghost.

“Excuse me…” I attempted to talk to our bird-for-a-tour-guide. I glanced at his name tag for help. “Sean. Um, you know everything about this place right?”

He stared at me looking annoyed that I interrupted him, again but I could almost see his bird frame puff out. The other tourists looked at me quizzically, waiting for Sean to give them more information about the tapestry we stood in front of.

“I wouldn’t say I know everyzing,” he drawled finally, “but I am sure I could anzer your question.”

Max looked horrified, waved her arms frantically behind him, knowing what I would ask. Ah, poor Max. We all needed one stupid tourist to ask a dumb question, right? And I would be more than happy to fulfill that role. So I asked our good French buddy:

“Is it true this place has the skeleton of the Opera Ghost?”

---------------



There we go. =3
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 10:43 am

As I read, I find a nice flow of words and some very good storytelling. The way you described Emma as an albino. I'm interested in knowing more about the skeleton.

Good job! Please continue.

Brava, brava, bravissimi! Razz Razz Razz
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 10:55 am

Danke very much. ^^; I hoped it was fun to read, that's what I aim for. Even some educational stuff! Ooo.... XD;;
-------------



Part Three:



At first there was silence among us all as everyone stared between me and Sean like frightened birds. I stood there, grinning as casually as I could, hoping he wouldn’t think I was kidding. I knew I wasn’t, I really wanted to know. Finally a smirk started to smear itself across Sean’s peacock face and my own fell. This would not be a happy answer. For me, anyways.

“The ‘Opera Ghost’?” he repeated mockingly, looking about the other tourists with a slight grin. “Mademoiselle, this is a historical site. Not a story ground.”

Almost on cue the others started to laugh to themselves and behind their hands, a few of the more polite ones changing their chuckles into coughs. I flushed faintly and muttered a quick apology, sulking back to Max’s side. I had a hard time refusing the urge to challenge the historical evidence of Erik against this peacock man. He could be hiding something about it. I told myself this as we continued on, Max listening enraptured with the history of our favorite place. She would be remembering it for me to tell me later in simpler English.

“He has a thing against albinos,” I whispered to her sulkily. “That’s why he wouldn’t spill the beans.”

To my disappointment, Max shushed me gently again and pulled me along one of the more dark hallways. She and I are true phans, but at the moment Max was all but interested in the building at hand, not the things left unseen and told of. I stared around me in wonder. Perhaps, if they were truly hiding the skeleton, it would be in one of the rooms we didn’t enter. Suddenly, a thought occurred to me. And no one was in my brain to tell me the stupidity of that thought either, which is probably why I went through with it with little consideration of the consequences. Letting go of Max’s jacket, I slipped to the back of the tour group behind one of the larger ones with a runny nose and a bad case of dandruff. Slowly Sean led them on while I hide behind a larger statue, congratulating myself on the small success.

“What’re you doing?” Max’s voice hissed behind me.

I nearly squawked but her hand clapped over my mouth as she pulled me into a darker corner as another tour group came around the bend. Automatically I tried to explain myself through her hand with little success. She let me go and glared, looking nervously at the tour as it passed without a single glance our way.

“I want to find the skeleton!” I admitted. “It’s here, I know it is! They’re just hiding it…”

She sighed and tried to pull me back to the lit hallways but I wouldn’t give up. I must admit, you might be wondering why I was acting like such a little kid. I took a test once on Facebook that recorded your real age. I got seven years old. Not that I’m making excuses of course, I just don’t care how I act. Not a good thing when your best friend has taken it up on themselves to become the parent as soon as my biological ones were gone.

With cunning skill I slipped just out of Max’s reach and scuttled down the halls, trying all the doors with burning curiosity. Hey, if you got to go to Paris and got to go inside the best place in the world, wouldn’t you want to see every single room they have to offer?

“I’m going to kill you!” Max hissed through clenched teeth, nearly seizing my backpack strap.

I restrained a giggle and threw open another door, this time accidentally catching my leg on the pole lying in the doorway. Of course I fell heavily and was just thinking about how my stomach would hold in my lunch when a heavier weight plopped on top. I squawked with pain as Max gave me a well deserved noggin punch before standing up, making sure to step on me as she closed the door of the room quickly.

“Emma, you’re going to be the death of me,” she moaned as she listened intently to the door in case someone caught us.

She’s always been terrified at getting in trouble and avoided any situation that could get her in any type of trouble like the plague. But I wasn’t paying attention to what she spoke. I found myself too busy staring at something and it wasn’t my stupid sunglasses that fell out of my pocket again.

“Emma! Did you hear me?” she grumbled.

I just kept staring while raising a helpful finger, pointing to the thing I thought would be impossible to just run up on. A skeleton standing in a glass case with its characteristically eternal smile, looking ominously pleased we found it.

“Holy crap, we actually found it?” She muttered faintly, coming up to the case itself.

I mouthed like a fish out of water, not expecting to see a real skeleton. Sure, I’d love to find one, but this would’ve been like horror movie kind of matter. Still there we were, touching the glass and peering at the yellowed, decaying matter of bones that might have been the Opera Ghost’s himself. I grinned widely at Max who stared at the bones with wonder and curiosity.

“How could we find-…” she started but then fell silent, her face wrinkled in concentration. “Do you hear that?” she asked suddenly.

I shrugged and paused in my awe-inspired glee to listen about the room with all my might. At first, there was nothing and I thought Max must be going crazy again. Then I heard it. My eyes widened and I looked at her while she looked back at me. Somewhere from our side of the room, somewhere very faintly I almost didn’t catch it, came the sound of strange chanting. I couldn’t tell if it was a human voice or a radio or anything and we both leaned in close to the glass to hear it better. Of course, it gave me a lovely view of a spider web spun between the skeleton’s toes; something I didn’t need to see given the fact of who we wanted it to be.

“It’s like it’s coming from the wall,” Max muttered, pressing her ear to the wall behind the case.

I nodded and copied, screwing up my face. It sounded phony and not frightening at all if we knew where it came from. It almost sounded as if someone else seemed to be shouting, in French of course. Briefly my mind slipped to the thought that Max could understand a little bit of French…until we seemed to fall right through the wall. It seemed as if we came right through the wall to the outside of the building for wind struck up and blew in our faces angrily. I faintly smelled the crisp, fall air. Funny, it smelled so much cleaner than the last time we went out. A man with large eyes and a ridiculous costume came into my way or stranger, seemed to be from below me if that made any sense. Perhaps we had come out of a window?

I opened my mouth to warn him that we might fall on top of him but it came to be too late and Max and I fell heavily on him, strange candles and stands falling over along with us. Barely getting a look around us, I saw that we somehow found ourselves in an open tent with little light streaming in from the open flap. The man kicked and struggled, freeing himself of his teenager pin-down. As soon as he saw what fell on him, he shrieked loudly upsetting both me and Max. There’s something about screams that trigger a panic button in your brain. We shrieked as well and for a moment everyone stared at each other. Finally he seemed to get something and fear came back into his eyes as he seized a book on the floor and looked at it then at me then at Max. He screamed something in French and booked out of that tent like a bat out of Hell.

“Rude!” Max coughed, picking herself off the ground and looking after the man disdainfully.

“We don’t look that bad, do we?” I asked lightly, checking myself for dust.

Surprisingly, I couldn’t find any. Max just shook her head and looked behind us, a look of pure confusion on her usually serious face.

“This wasn’t here before…” she said slowly, touching the solid wall behind her.

I joined her, equally confused. How had we passed through? Immediately my movie-based mind switched to secret door and I began to push and prod at the wall, trying to find some sort of way it worked.

“There wasn’t a tent by the Opera,” Max mused to herself, looking about as I gave up. “Was there, Emma? No, of course not, that’d be impossible. Why was he there?”

I shrugged and carefully tiptoed about the mess, reaching for the tent flap. Again, I felt rather confused at the noise…or lack there of. It seemed less noisy and I didn’t hear that ridiculous truck horn that blared once every two minutes since that morning. All I heard seemed…old. If noises could be old, that is.

“I can’t understand any of this!” Max fumed, looking thoroughly exasperated. If she didn’t understand something, we would all be in trouble because I knew and she knew that I knew nothing of anything so wouldn’t be much help. If that makes sense, of course.

“Yeah,” I replied automatically, staring out at the familiar, but not familiar territory. “Um, Max?”

“What?”

“When did everyone start wearing 19th century clothing and riding in carriages?”

She turned to me and frowned.

“Back in the 19th century, obviously.”

“Well,” I looked out the tent flap again, a rock sinking in my stomach. “They’ve certainly brought it back now….and everyone seems to have gotten the memo about it besides you and me. To make a quote, ‘Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore.’ Except replace the Kansas part…with the 19th century. We’re so screwed.”
----------------



And there we go! A little outlandish in bits, I know, but how else do things like that happen? ^^;;
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 3:19 pm

You really write very well. Certainly other fics have brought present day characters to the past, but you did an excellent job of setup and introduction. This is one of the best I've read.

The whole finding the skeleton, hearing the chant behind the wall, and walking through a portal really had me on edge. Well done!

Please continue. I need more, more, more!

Brava, brava, bravissimi! Razz Razz Razz
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 4:19 pm

Haleybob, this is excellent! Very well written and riveting. I too loved the part where they pass through the portal. You are doing a great job with the first person viewpoint. I've read a lot of first person phanphics that are poorly written, and yours is fantabulous! Smile

This is the only thing I noticed...I think this was a typo: "Painfully I took out my contacts, the sleep with them on in both the plane and bus made them gum to my very eyeball." Did you mean to say 'to,' instead of 'the?'

Anyway, splendid job and I look forward to more! Smile

Laura
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 4:32 pm

Thank you both very much! o.o I'm glad it's a hit...I find this story is easier for me in 1st person, so there you go. I miss stories that don't have a good beginning that tells you about the people so...I made one. =3
Laura: Ah. Er, that would be my poor grammer. Whoops, thanks for pointing that out. ^^;;;
Uuum, watch this one a little carefully, I can't tell if it's easy to understand or not but...hey! That's what other readers are for! ^^
---------------------


Part Four:

Max stared at me and then finally came towards me, pushing me fully out of the way.
“Stop kidding around, Emma. This is bad enough as it is.” She said grumpily.
I shrugged and moved out of her way. This was bad, but that didn’t make me want to deny it. Yet. Watch, as soon as someone tried to talk to me, seeing my baggy jeans and normal t-shirt, I doubt I’d be able to keep my cool. Max looked around at first calm, cool, and collected. Then started noticing the strange garb, the strange sights, and the assortment of things that belonged in a museum, her jaw dropped and she withdrew her head back inside her eyes wide. I could only shrug.
“What did you do, Emma?” she moaned. “What in the world did you do?”
I was shocked. Well, not really. I’m quite used to being blamed and usually it is my fault.
“What did I do?” I echoed, “I found out they were hiding something! Wait until we get the government on them. ‘There’s no such thing as the Opera Ghost’ my butt!”
She didn’t listen to me and started to look around for her bag. Fetching it, she grabbed some tea that lay nestled between our copies of Phantom of the Opera and an ancient CD player that skipped if you tapped the top of the case.
“We need to get out of here.” She said slowly after taking a calming sip. “We have a band concert tonight! Tonight! How can we go if we’re in the 19th century?”
I shuddered to think of what would happen to us if Mr. Perini found that we weren’t there for the concert. Or Mr. Party for that matter. I and my clarinet’s hide would be his and my head and its mouthpiece mounted on his office walls on a shiny silver plaque. Gruesome, but once you threaten the sound he creates, he gets scarier than the casual vampire look. In pure effort, we spent ten minutes or so pushing that stupid wall, hoping it would let us back in wherever we once stood.
We had no luck, of course. I sighed and we slid down to the edge of the wall.
“I hope no one finds us,” Max muttered. “Not until we figure this out.”
Almost on a cue, we heard footsteps outside the tent and a few voices barking to each other importantly. We took one look at each other and then scrambled out of the other side of the tent as fast as our scrawny legs could take us just before some official looking people threw open the tent flap. Puffing and nearly crazy without enough oxygen we ran a little ways down and stopped to look around us.
“An alley!” I gasped, not used to running suddenly. “We’re not even next to the Opera House??”
Max suddenly grabbed my arm and hid us both behind a wall as she peered over to our tent. A familiarly annoying little man bobbed around, still gibbering in French. Out in the sunlight (that currently was burning my skin off) he looked even more ridiculous than he did when we saw him in his own territory. A tall, squared cap sat on his dark hair and his bright red-yellow-blue costume sparkled with glitter as he hopped about, probably explaining how two young girls in men’s clothing came and fell on him. An officer-appearing man seemed to be listening, half serious half amused though the latter emotion was prominent on his face by his slight grin. I liked him on the spot and hoped that the strange tale our magician-like friend spun was merely that. A strange tale. For the first time that day besides breakfast, I started to snigger, holding a pale hand to my mouth to muffle the noise.
“It seems our little man was trying to turn us in,” Max remarked dryly, pulling back her hair in a hair band. “Lucky for us he isn’t the type to be believed, is he?”
I shook my head, my shoulders still quaking with smothered laughter. Max grinned slightly then the seriousness of our position came back to her and her shoulders wilted. I patted her back sympathetically, worried slightly myself. I didn’t want to show that to her, though so instead I put my little albino head to work.
“Well, first of all, we should know the date.” I said, tapping my chin thoughtfully.
Max nodded agreeably. “We should get back to the Opera House, too. Maybe we can reverse the process.”
“Now we’re getting somewhere!” I congratulated, slapping her a noisy high five.
Being as ninja like as we could, we shouldered our bags which had thankfully traveled with us and snuck around the allies, avoiding any suspicion by coming into the sunlight and exposing ourselves as weirdoes. Not that I wanted any sunlight at all. With no pigment to protect me, we albinos had it rough when it came to long term exposure to sunlight. Now I wished fervently that I listened to Max this morning and put on the sloppy goop called suntan lotion.
Slowly, things started to look slightly familiar. The streets still winded this way and that, helping us along even if street signs and stoplights and people did not. Megan stated that she could still understand the French people, but it seemed to be a little more formal than what she was used to. We breathed a sigh of relief as we came up to the familiar Apollo-guarded dome of the Opera House. If it had been a person, I would’ve hugged that thing. Now our trouble was getting in without attracting attention. No one looked like us, and with our turn of the century styles (ha, like we had style) we would stick out like pumpkins in a string bean patch to get my country on.
But with Max’s genius and my mad skills, we snuck in and immediately headed for the shadowy part of that music-inspired palace. It seemed the same almost except a heck of a lot less dust around and there were no snooty, bird men who gave tours.
“We need to know the year,” I muttered, flipping open our Phantom book.
Hey, we were in Paris, France inside an Opera House stuck in the 19th century. A girl’s got to dream. Max stared at it, then snatching it out of my hands stuffed it into her bag.
“This isn’t the time, Emma.” She said, looking like a strained mother with a less than corporative child. “I’m a little bit more worried about getting back.”
I pouted but held the certain date in my mind. If it matched with whatever one we got, life would be so much more interesting here than in our missing future. Slowly and with great composure for one who isn’t in her time, Max hailed someone and spoke politely in French. It was a simple sentence. The simpler the better as she put it. ‘What is the year?’ For once, I was glad that Max decided to clothe herself more simply today in her modest, printed dress for the guy didn’t stare at her but responded quickly and left. She wouldn’t be in the style of the day, but I think it was better than a chick dressed as a dude and an odd one at that. As she came back I congratulated her on sounding like a believable French woman.
“I’m just glad I listened in class,” she said, sending a meaningful glare at me. I shrugged feeling that had I been a Wal-Mart smiley face, I would’ve had a sweat drop over my head. She sighed and picked up her bag again.
“It’s 1880, if that makes you happy.” She murmured, watching out for anyone who might notice us. “Only one hundred and twenty six years to go before we’re home.”
I must admit, I perked up quite a bit despite the fact that even if we tried to grow up and reach the future we would die, I rifled through my Phantom book once more. If I was correct, we were one year or so before the entrance of the story where Erik started to sing to Christine. Max, knowing what I searched for smiled slightly but then looked up as footsteps could be heard. I also did, snapping the book carefully shut in case anyone noticed. A small group of gentlemen passed, all of them talking quietly amongst themselves like they held a secret. We moved deeper into shadow before being noticed by one of the older ones. There conversation, however, was most informative according to Megan who was the only one out of the two of us who could understand and speak French. I cursed my laziness and listened as Megan translated for me.
“They’re talking about stage placing right now,” she murmured quietly. “And…ah, that one, the tall one with the long face, that’s… I don’t believe it, that’s Monsieur Debienne!”
I peered closely at the group in awe, trying to get Max to see if she could hear about anyone else.
“What about Polywobbles?” I hissed, meaning Poligny.
“He’s in his office, I think… I don’t remember what that word means.” She replied back, a look of concentration on her face.
After a few more moments, they moved on ahead and it was safe to steer ourselves deeper into the Opera House. I kept looking up and about, wondering if we would get to see a glimpse of the Opera Ghost. We were in the right time period, Gaston still had not written the book that lay inside our packs, and there seemed to be an aura of mystery all around us. A delighted shiver ran down our backs.
“Dancers!”
I pointed excitedly, the slender young ladies off more ahead, scampering in their flesh colored tights and gauzy tutus. I moved to follow them, trailing a nervous Max behind me. Before long, each dancer had disappeared into either of two rooms straight across from them. From the shrieks of laughter and chatter, I could only assume these were the dancers’ dormitories. Max grabbed my hand suddenly and pointed more towards the dark halls.
“There are more rooms down there,” she murmured. “Didn’t Christine have one farther away and off towards the back…?”
“That’s right!” I exclaimed as we moved slowly towards those darkened rooms. “What if she’s actually here…?”
Max shushed me as another group of dancers giggled about twenty paces away. We couldn’t be bothered by them and we tried different doors frantically before they could catch up to us. Finally a door opened to Max’s touch and she shoved me inside. We listened attentively to the door, rather annoyed at how gossiping girls’ barely changed in over a hundred years back.
“I’d hate to be one of them,” I muttered, turning around to view our surroundings. It was more of a broom closet than anything else and disappointed we headed back out.
“This one opens,” Max called, opening the one across the way. “It’s a dressing room, too!”
We scurried in quickly, broad grins finally across both our faces. It indeed was a dressing room and it seemed unoccupied for sheets covered up the little furniture that sat inside. I ran about excitedly, trying to drink in all the old fashioned looks as I could. Max looked about, pulling off sheets to admire the furniture. Finally we stumbled upon the greatest find we could have ever hoped to find. The large, full length mirror.
“No way,” I gushed, “we actually found the right room?”
“It could just be another room with a mirror, Emma,” my friend reminded me realistically. “We can’t just assume it was Christine’s.”
“Will be Christine’s,” I corrected, feeling around the edges in fascination. “Quick! Look up the part where Daroga goes through with Raoul, maybe we can actually open it!”
“Would we want to?” Max wondered darkly, but obeyed my wishes.
It was harder than we would’ve imagined seeing we spent almost half an hour pushing and pressing and tugging all around that mirror with no success. Max leaned on the glass with a heavy sigh while I paced in front of her.
“What in the world are we missing?” I complained loudly.
I tapped the mirror above her head and glared at my ghost-like reflection. I bared my teeth and made one last face at it while Max rolled her eyes at me. Leaning on the wall next to both I sighed impatiently.
“This is almost impossible. There has to be a-…”
I didn’t have time to finish my sentence when the wall moved slightly beneath the small of my back and the mirror swung open, Max falling through with a startled shriek.
“Oops…”

-------------------



Ja, there we go. ^^;
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 4:49 pm

Ooo, yay, I get another installment! That was quick. Razz I loved it! But it ended much too soon. *pout*

Hahaha, I LOVE this part: “What did I do?” I echoed, “I found out they were hiding something! Wait until we get the government on them. ‘There’s no such thing as the Opera Ghost’ my butt!” Laughing

Great installment!

Laura
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 5:28 pm

Glad you enjoyed! I like making people laugh... it's quick because I've been working on this for quite a while, so lucky! You get more updates faster. ^^;;
--------------

Part Five:

I hastened to the newly opened mirror with slight urgency, worried that Max might’ve disappeared. Certainly I would’ve never expected my laziness to be the key in opening anything. Pretty awesome, though. I would definitely have to tell this one to some of my teachers.
“Max?” I asked timidly, peering in. “Are you okay?”
Thankfully she did not fall far from the opening and was there lying there on the ground, waiting to greet me with a kick in the shin and a dust-covered, scowling face. As I hopped around in momentary pain and relief, she got up and shook the remains of the floor that covered her.
“Nice going,” she growled, both annoyed and pleased. “Wouldn’t have thought of that one, I suppose.”
“Thanks,” I whimpered as she looked around the chamber inside the wall. She looked at me with a fond, but tired expression and motioned for me to follow. We would need to be out of the way before anyone saw us walking into a room inside the Opera walls. I limped in after her and none too soon for the mirror closed behind me firmly with an ominous groan. We stared at it nervously but banished the thought that we might not be able to get back out. Still, I’d much rather go in this way than poor Joseph Buquet’s way. I think we all know where he ended up.
“Onward?” I asked, grinning.
Max smiled briefly then nodded and we started off. We were getting very impulsive these days. I guess time travel and being stuck in a time where you can’t even ask where the bathroom is starts to get to you. Anyways, it all felt like the dark tunnel explained in the book and I wished to take it out, but not even a glowing red light was to be found. Water could be heard from ahead and eagerly we ran forward.
The fountain gushed still. I shook my head. Of course it would, Erik hadn’t even been here for the purpose he would yet. I kneeled down in front of it in amazement, almost reenacting Erik’s soon to be action of placing water at the woman he loves’ temples. Max touched the water briefly in her own connection of joy, a look of awe on her face before pulling me to my feet.
“C’mon,” she murmured, “I can see the rest of the way.”
It felt like forever when we moved on, especially coming to the long, narrow gallery that would lead us down the cellars of the Opera House. The cellars were the worst and gave me chills like no other. I clung to Max’s arm as we counted how far we went down and passed the boilers that raged and spit. One, two, three….we came to the fourth cellar now. Without those flames from the boiler pits it became pitch black and we clung tight to one another to prevent being separated or tripping and somehow dying on something.
I shivered slightly then smelt the air. It was wet like air next to large bodies of water like a lake or ocean…or a school quad yard that got overflowed once by three toilets clogging at the same time near the end of school last year. I glanced at Max to tell her, but she had already felt the moisture in the air as well and looked forward, her hazel eyes wide. Peering ahead, we could see it. Blue light. Shimmery, hazy blue light.
“It’s actually here,” I murmured in a hushed voice as we walked slowly towards the light.
“Of course it’s still here,” she replied snappishly, probably to take away the unreality of all of this. “The Opera had to be built with it, Erik or no Erik.”
“Oh yeah.”
Max clung to my arm whether out of fear or excitement I couldn’t tell since I felt rather much the same. I was grateful for the less of light, though. We took our time approaching the lake and at one point jumped and almost screamed due to a rat running suddenly across our shoes. Luckily we both had the same idea and clapped a hand over each others’ mouth.
“Just a rat,” I half laughed half stammered. “I had a rat once…”
Max already had let go of me, though and was trudging towards the shore of the lake with me flailing behind. She stopped halfway and I trod on the back of her Converse’, literally running into her.
“What is it?” I hissed, my voice going soft in case it was something none to wonderful.
She pointed silently instead. I did a jaw drop. This was too perfect, too awesome, too story-book like! There, tied to a stake driven deep into the ground was a boat. The boat. The boat of wonders that would take us to the house of wonders which would hopefully take us to meet the man of wonders, literally. It didn’t come with a long pole to manage it as popular belief states, but regular oars. Just like the book. Chills came again as we rubbed our hands over it and gave each other gleeful looks. Tired of looking, I untied it and threw both the oars and my pack into the wooden bottom, clamoring in myself.
“All aboard!” I said cheerfully. “Quick, Max!”
Rather hesitant, Max barely made it into the boat as I picked up the oars. She kicked my pack aside to lay her own down, sending me a glare and wringing out the corner of her dress that had gotten wet when she had jumped after the boat. I stared at the wooden tools in my hands thoughtfully, trying to remember the time my mother taught me to row when she took me fishing. That had ended up with odd conversations and a whole bucket of scrawny, stinky, gasping-for-air-I’m-dying-in-your-hands fish. Moving on…
“I didn’t think we’d actually cross the lake,” Max said breathlessly as we skimmed unevenly over the glass like waters. “Sure, go to the bottom, but the lake…”
I nodded, too busy for a vocal response. She trailed off then and looked over the edge while I rowed along, trying to get rhythm into my slapdash labor. Strange how we hadn’t run into any traps. I thought there would have been some, especially if we were talking about a disfigured genius. I mentioned this lightly to Max but she was looking about her nervously as though listening to something. She shushed me by placing a finger to her lips and motioned for me to stop rowing. I obeyed and listened with her.
“I don’t hear anything,” I began, until it came.
That soft, sweet noise that seemed to come from all around the boat. If I could go any paler, I’m pretty sure I did.
“Siren,” I mouthed frantically.
She nodded, looking faint herself. It was so beautiful, though. Almost like Celtic music, but less annoying and more understandable. Against my better judgment and knowledge of what it exactly was, I strained to catch the words almost tilting to the side to hear it. Certainly there should be words to such a lovely melody. I glanced at Max dreamily. Surely there wasn’t anymore danger. Not from such an innocent tone. I wanted to know if my friend could share in my enjoyment. To my surprise she was neither lightheaded nor misty-eyed but alert and having her hands fully covering her ears against the noise. I frowned.
“You can’t hear it if you do that,” I reminded her, picking up the paddles cautiously again. Her alertness brought the danger of it all back to me, something I felt both thankful and annoyed at. She scowled at me but pointed to the shore we came from, silently telling me to take us back as quickly as possible.
“He won’t tip the boat,” I whispered, shaking so hard I could barely grasp the oars with my fear returning. “Would he…?”
Max shrugged, wide-eyed as the sound got louder and more earnest and if possible, more unbearably sweet. He was calling us. All the hairs on my nape stood straight up and I tried to paddle calmly, acting like I couldn’t hear it. The boat rocked slightly, bumped from underneath.
“The pipe!” Max whispered helplessly, “He uses the pipe to breathe, look for it!”
“I’m scared out of my pants as it is,” I whispered back, “you look and I row.”
Even though I said it and made it seem simple, like our fear of the sudden appearance of a rat I scanned my poor eyes across the dark waters. It felt cold now and I shivered, wishing I had my jacket that lay on my hotel bed in the 21st century. No luck getting that one. During my thinking Max leaned tentatively over the side to look around the sides of our little vessel.
Funny. Even in this situation where we could possibly be murdered, I found a link to the scene from Phantom. Before Christine, that Daroga guy had done this exact thing. He knew it was Erik and he knew he must look for how it worked. He leaned over the side, too. Silly man, he should’ve known Erik would be waiting for him under the water. Wait. Leaned over the side?
“Get away from the edge!” I half yelled half whispered and reached out to grab my friend’s shoulders.
The siren was quicker. Two, pale, bony arms made themselves known beside the boat and latched onto Max’s neck, pulling her overboard. She barely had time to scream before going under the dark green waters.


----------------


There we go. =3
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sun Sep 14, 2008 6:33 pm

ok now i`ve read everything but the last chapter,i\m coming back to it Wink
and i have to say it`s cool Very Happy really amusing

*reads last chapter*
Shocked ok.. yhat sat me on an edge, definetly.
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Mon Sep 15, 2008 6:22 pm

OH MY GOSH!!!! *screams frantically* That was SO incredibly freaky! Aiieeee!! You simply HAVE to continue this soon! *faints dead away*

Yeah, I liked it. Very Happy

I think this was a typo: "I was grateful for the less of light, though." Razz

I look forward to more!

Laura
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Mon Sep 15, 2008 9:03 pm

Whoa! The Siren has struck again? Not Max! This is edgy and scary now. I don't like things grabbing me and pulling me into the water.

Good job! I did see another typo, but now I can't find it.

Please continue.

Brava, brava, bravissimi! Razz Razz Razz
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:29 pm

Typos strike me once again! ^^;;; Ah, I'm so happy you all enjoyed it! I really liked the idea of the Siren...so it was added. I'm so glad it's what you all enjoy. Umm...I'll update now.
---------------


Part Six:

“MAX!” I screeched. I stood up in a panic and before trying to think out what could happen to me, I dove into the waters myself right where they disappeared. It was freezing. That much I figured out on demand but that wasn’t important right now. Frantically I looked around, wishing for goggles and wondering briefly if my contacts would fall out. Churning bubbles came to my left and I swam quickly over to see if it were them. If I knew Erik at all, Max would be dead in minutes. I could see Max, and then if I wasn’t under water and could gasp, I saw the strangler himself. Sort of. The green water made it hard to see them but luckily the siren’s luminous white skin helped me track them down.

In pure panic and strong wanting of the releasing of my friend, I seized the hands caught around her throat and bit down on them as hard as I could. A muffled, bubbly screech could be heard and the arm snapped back to try to do anything it could to harm me. Or at least to free itself of my teeth. Luckily the grasp of those bony, long fingered hands (That I swear are just perfect for strangulation) was weakened and I kicked hard to get Max above water, prying her out of the death grip. She wasn’t moving and it was only when we broke the surface of the lake did she gasp and choke out for life… and oxygen. I looked around for a moment and I couldn’t find the boat. We would have to rely on ourselves now.

“Swim!” I gasped at her. “Swim that way! Now!”

I pushed her hard in the direction I thought was the shore we came from and started to swim after her. She floundered only for a moment before swimming as hard as she could. This was a really stupid idea. I would be held guilty if we both died. How ironic would it be for us to die in the hands of the man we admired? Very ironic I tell you. I hate irony. I swam harder, cursing the times where I skipped out on getting into the swim team. I kept an eye on Max, silently urging her forward so I could reserve my strength for screaming later.

Something ice cold and hard wrapped around my ankle, though and I swallowed a mouthful of water as I got drug under. Erik was back and he was mad. Or maybe mad-er since I bit him. Blindly I twisted and wriggled as hard as I could, but the hand groped its way to my neck and another came to join it in its death hold. My eyes felt like they would bug out of their sockets as my lungs screamed for air. I could barely see the white figure in front of me. I was loosing feeling in my neck, if that’s possible, too.

A glint of gold caught my eye as I strained for consciousness. Time for Plan B, and Plan B wasn’t nice at all. In fact, I probably wouldn’t have done it if I thought more about it. But no, I gave one more violent struggle, bringing him closer towards me to make certain I would die. It was it. I gave him a strained grin and then kneed him as hard and as well as I could right ‘where the sun don’t shine’. A muffled cry of pure agony and lots of air bubbles came from him and I was able to fight back the death fingers, prying free. Without looking back and with an elephant load of guilt on my shoulders I swam as hard as I could to the surface. Luckily both Max and the shore came closer and with a last burst of speed, I felt the sandy, slimy bottom beneath my thoroughly soaked sneakers.

Max sloshed over and helped me as my knees weakened suddenly and I stumbled.

“Are you okay?” she asked frantically, grabbing my shoulders, “He didn’t get you?”

“No, I kind of got him first,” I coughed. “Where’s the opening? We got to get out before he...er…resurfaces.”

Max shrugged as she had only just got to the shore as well. We jogged around both looking nervously over our shoulders towards the water when we found out something we didn’t realize before. We were on the wrong side. And in front of us, now, in all its glory was Erik’s house. And it actually kind of looked like a house from the outside. My jaw dropped with a slight excitement back into my pounding heart besides panic.

“His house?” Max stared up at it, flabbergasted. “This isn’t the other shore, Emma!”

She turned to me with killing intent, water dripping down her arms that reached for me. I yelped and scurried out of her way.

“I’m sorry!” I yelped again, “I didn’t know, I swear! I-…whoa, help.”
I skidded to a halt and immediately walked backwards, Max running into me. The lake was moving again and a shape burst out, groaning in both pain and irritancy. We stared for only a moment before immediately backpedaling, looking for somewhere to hide or run. It was no use. With water streaming down that tall, skeletal figure he came at us. I couldn’t even focus on him well enough to see if there was a mask or anything; my mind was too much in panic mode.

Oh.

My.

Leroux.

The book never did give him justice on how terrifying Erik really was. And there he was. In the flesh. Or what little flesh he actually had. Like a god of Halloween, his sunken eyes burned with the flames of a hundred bonfires and the death’s head real and out of human comprehension. My knees instantly were struck with weakness and my eyes felt they could go no wider. Death was walking towards me. Not a man, but a living corpse of one and animated in such a way it was ominously awesome.

No one can really understand the fear of an object until they see that object for themselves. It seemed as if Fear had made itself a mannequin to haunt us. Luckily, despite our terror, there would be no screaming for my throat seemed to close up on me.

“Arm to your eyes!” Max said suddenly, forcing mine up, “He’s got something in his hands! Arm level to your eyes, you idiot!”

We were backed against a wall and we babbled like idiots, trying to get each others’ arms to stay up. It’s no use and he is upon us in little or no time. In desperation I call his name, hoping that it would confuse him.

“Erik! Erik, please don’t kill us!” I called to him, still scrabbling with Max.
Brilliant plan, Emma. Tell the man you just kneed in the groin not to kill you. He ignored me for the most part and would have gotten us in a deadly noose had he not paused slightly at the use of his name.

“Erik!” I didn’t mean to hurt you, honest!” I continued babbling, this time able to face him enough with Max at my back, her hand protecting both our necks. “We can leave, Erik! We won’t let anyone know!”

He cocked his head in such a manner I almost smiled. I have a bad habit of smiling when it is not the time to smile at anything. Still approaching us, though he glared directly at me with slight surprise. I flushed as much as my pale skin could let me and hoped he didn’t think of me older than I was. Maybe he wouldn’t kill kids, but no one said he wouldn’t kill an old person. In the start of that moment I didn’t really focus on his face but more on the hands that hid a dangerous weapon.

“I know you probably can’t understand me, but don’t kill us!” I stammered, but more softly.

That stopped him and he opened his mouth and said in perfect English, with a lovely, sinister accent.

“Erik understands all tongues but Erik does not understand who you are. Explain now.”

It wasn’t a request and though Max shook her head violently and squeezed my shoulder hard as I opened my large, betraying mouth.

“Sorrelli! I am- I am Emma Sorrelli.” I gave a crazed grin, hoping this would buy more time. “And…and this is Max Jammes! Well, her real name is Maxine, b-…”

Max’s hand clamped over my mouth and I speak no more. Erik’s terrifyingly awesome eyes smolder and I think he’s contemplating if it’d be okay to murder young ladies. Why not? He’d be kidnapping one soon enough. The cat eyes seem to be observing our attire, or at least my own since Max was passable as being normal.

“Where are you from?” He demands, taking a step closer to remind us we are not friends.

Max answers this time before I can launch into full explanation.

“We are from…we’re with Daroga,” she lies wildly though her face is admiringly calm.

Her nails bite into my shoulder to prevent my cry of alarm at our new identities.

“We are his…accomplices. He wanted us to view the Opera House since he was busy.”

I have to admit, it’s a pretty good lie to come up with right on the spot. Especially since Erik did not realize we knew his Persian friend, so far from just knowing his name. Not that I think he believed we were Daroga’s friends. Poor man. We would cause him much more trouble than now.

Erik’s eyes could seriously start a fire as he starts muttering under his breath in French turning away from us. Max later told me he was both wondering out loud and swearing, something she didn’t care to interpret for me. I started to inch away, pulling Max with me when suddenly a bell rang out over the lake and both Max and I startled violently. Erik swore a little more and seemed to come at us again when suddenly a wicked, wicked gleam came to those hidden eyes.

“You say you are friends of Daroga?” he says, seeming rather pleased, “Well, you should know he is here now. Erik shall find out if you are indeed his accomplices.”

I nod, wide-eyed. He, in what his face could manage to look like, smiled slightly and seized both of us in surprisingly powerful hands and dragged us towards the shore. I gasped slightly and felt like smacking my forehead. Somehow, that stupid boat was there whenever Erik needed it, not us. He shoved us towards it.

“Get in,” he said curtly. “And we shall see who was foolish enough to enter Erik’s domain.”

----------


There we go. Thanks for watching out for those typos, they pass me over completely! ^^;;;
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:57 pm

Now you are seriously scaring me. What a grand description of Erik: And there he was. In the flesh. Or what little flesh he actually had. Like a god of Halloween, his sunken eyes burned with the flames of a hundred bonfires and the death’s head real and out of human comprehension.I didn't notice typos, but you did switch verb tenses. You went from past tense to present. Slow down a bit. You've got a good story here.

Please continue. Good job!

Brava, brava, bravissimi!
Razz Razz Razz
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Tue Sep 16, 2008 5:40 pm

x_x;; Whoops...sorry about that. I guess that I flick back and forth without realizing it. Thank you for catching it! I really wanted to stay in character with Erik, so reading the original over and over again helped. Next part, I suppose. ^^;;
-----------

Part Seven:

We were not in the best situation at the moment and things were looking pretty grim. No offense to Erik, of course. He always looks grim. I glanced at Max who sat rigidly beside me and hoped at least she would get out of all this. Erik sat across from us and his cat eyes never left us, sending chills down my spine. I don’t think he would let us live once Daroga turned us down but I trusted perhaps Max could save us. After all, we weren’t dead yet and I wasn’t planning on dying at so young an age. Nor in the 19th century now that I thought about it…
The ride across the lake was smoother and quicker than I remembered what with our more than able rower companion. Soon the boat hit sand again and without taking his watchful gaze away, he hopped out of the boat backwards. A complaining voice started to come through to us as a tall figure made itself known. It was all garbled to me and I stared confused until Max whispered in my ear that Daroga, for that is who it was, was complaining to Erik in very fast French. It only sounded garbled because of his accent apparently.
Daroga wasn’t much shorter than Erik and he looked like a very normal, Persian man compared to the walking Halloween scarecrow. He even had that hat that was mentioned so many times in the book. I stared at him as he was quite unaware of our presence yet, Erik seemingly waiting patiently for him to finish his rant. Max translated some for me so I could understand. Basically it was all complaints about health, time, and normal behavior. Finally I think he actually noticed that he and Erik weren’t the only ones in that dark cavern for he started to stare behind Erik with wide eyes.
“He’s sputtering,” Max told me softly. “Ah, now he’s in another language. Or is it back to French, now?”
I shrugged, wishing I had paid more attention in class when I had the chance. How was I supposed to know I would be talking with Erik?
Erik didn’t reply to Daroga, but instead came towards us menacingly and though we clung to each other, grabbed my shoulder and tugged me ungracefully out of the boat, showing me off to his Persian friend. He now spoke English, whether for my benefit or to see if Daroga really was an associate or not.
“Will you explain who you are now?” Erik almost purred, making all the hairs on the back of my neck stand straight up. “Or does it seem that this man is one you don’t know and you have been lying to Erik?”
“N-no, it’s Daroga.” I sputtered, avoiding the olive-skinned man’s curious gaze. “I’d know him anywhere!”
I didn’t dare look at Max, but later she told me that she was mouthing to Daroga as best as she could to get him to say we were with him. She didn’t really feel like dying, either I suppose.
Erik turned to his companion and spoke swiftly in French which later I learned became to be him asking if he had ever seen our likes before. Poor Daroga…he looked really bemused and could only shake his head before catching my eye. I made myself look as pitiful as possible moving my eyes up and down instead of nodding as the bony claw Erik’s hand could be called was still placed on my shoulder possessively. I think I freaked him out more though, because Daroga stared more with shocked curiosity than understanding of our position here.
I scowled. Couldn’t anyone just look at me like a normal person? My thoughts were interrupted by Erik shaking me slightly.
“Well?” he asked either of us.
My heart sunk as Daroga shook his head again, still bemused. I doubt he even spoke English for my mouthing of names and curses seemed to be barely effective. Erik then rounded on Max, dragging her out of the boat as well with that superhuman strength. His anger renewed he looked to Max for answers, snapping in both English and French in his frustration in learning who we were.
“How do you know about Erik?” he hissed, “Erik’s secrets are supposed to be Erik’s alone! Speak or the siren shall have you!”
Max trembled under his burning gaze and I was a little more than a scorched out husk of myself. I swallowed hard.
“We’re not your enemies,” I said quickly, “We’re friends! How else would we know so much about you two and not turn you in already? Not that you guys need to be turned in of course.”
If anything, I think I only bothered Erik more by saying we knew more for he seized me by the head and whispered in the most terrifying way. I nearly jumped out of my skin when I felt how icy his hands were against my normal death-like pallor.
“What of Erik do you know?”
I started to grin, hysteria closing in on myself. It had been a long day and I’ve been sent back in time, chased by cops, went down a lot of freaky cellars, rowed across a lake, nearly got strangled, and now was being interrogated. Frankly, stress doesn’t work well with me. I started to laugh wildly, smiling so wide it hurt. Erik just stared mutely at me while Daroga took a step back from me.
“I know your name!” I said, with more hysteria than enthusiasm, “I know you helped build this place! You live across the lake, you’re the Opera Ghost, and you blackmail money off of the managers!”
Max, who long before had been dragged to my side chimed in, though her voice was calm and cool despite the fact she was almost as pale as a full moon.
“We got stuck here, monsieur,” she pleaded while I giggled in fear, “please, look at our attire, have you not seen such odd things?”
She gestured to my shirt and my pants and sneakers, all thoroughly soaked but nonetheless not from the 19th century.
Both men stared at us and then at me. I held out my arms, showing off my ‘attire’ as well as I could without collapsing from the impending stress that knocked on my forehead. Erik released me and I almost fell if Max had not caught me, supporting my weak knees.
“Please believe us,” Max said softly, “we have proof, you see! Look!”
She turned to the boat while hanging onto my arm and dragged out her own bag while Erik stood like a vulture over us, watching tensely. Max brought out her crappy CD player. In the eerie blue light and the fact that it was still beyond this time, it almost looked impressive in its shiny grey, bulky form. Daroga and Erik’s eyes never left her as she slowly pressed play and offered a earphone she still had hanging on it to either of them.
Daroga started to mutter to himself, probably in Persian since I didn’t understand a single word. He seemed rather bothered by the little machine.
Erik, however, took a step forward and accepted it, looking at it with a curiosity he could not suppress. My wild grin faded into a real one as I watched Max place the other in her ear and motioned for Erik to do the same. He copied her and the glint of his hidden eyes flashed suddenly as I knew music was spilling into his very head. He took it away quickly and stared. Max nodded, smiling weakly. He put it again to his ear and of course still heard whatever CD Max still had inside.
“Daroga,” he addressed the slowly retreating man, “Daroga, écouter!”
Daroga, listen.
But he would not and slowly shook his head, now staring at Max as if she were a demon or an apparition. Erik took the CD player from Max gingerly, inspecting it. He tapped it once and seemed surprised as the music, as I know it always did, changed rapidly into the next song.
“We have more stuff, if that’s not enough,” Max muttered.
Erik didn’t hand back the CD player but pressed buttons with the fascination of a small child. He looked up barely and took away the earphone, frowning as well as his death face allowed.
“Erik believes you are not from here, as he has never seen anything like this in all his travels.” Erik said slowly.
I smiled in relief. Perhaps I wouldn’t be feeling the rope of the Punjab yet!
“However,” he said, speaking to everyone now. “Erik does not keep guests. You will stay with Daroga. Erik wants to see more of this…”
Erik looked back down at the CD player in his hands before handing it back to Max who accepted it like a trophy. He turned to Daroga who looked suspiciously at his deformed friend and started speaking rapidly to him. Daroga blanched and argued back. Max came close to me while they argued briefly.
“I think this means they’re going to keep us for a while.” She whispered.
“Good,” I whispered back, half smiling at her. “I’ve always wanted to be a pet!”
----------------

There we go. Sorry for the typos if you find some...I wrote these quite the while ago. ^^;;;
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Tue Sep 16, 2008 5:42 pm

what a timing Shocked


oh my leroux Laughing i gonna bother my friends to death with that one,lol.

people never gonna say oh my god again Razz Laughing
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:53 pm

Wow! This is more than amazing! I LOVE your story cheers!
I can't wait to know what is going to happen next! Wow! Sorry, I apparently can't stop saying that word Score!!

I've never been a fan of going to the past kind of fic but I think your story is going to make me love them; I truly enjoyed reading it. God, there is nothing I don't like about your writing. It's a true marvel.

Please update soon. This is definitely one of the most wonderful fic I've ever read!

Sincerely, WG Hug .
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:41 pm

Part Six was PHANTABULOUS, nothing to critique there! I too loved the description of Erik. Oooo, you send my hyper-active imagination into overdrive just thinking what it would be like to actually MEET Erik! *swoons*

Part Seven was equally phantabulous, I love this sentence: “Good,” I whispered back, half smiling at her. “I’ve always wanted to be a pet!”---------------- Laughing

Please update soon! I am having withdrawals...

Laura
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:45 pm

Heh heh, up goes my ego. ^^;; Thank you both so much, I'm so glad you're enjoying it! I worked really hard to not make it seem like every other back in time story I've found so, yay! I must be doing a good job. ....And yes, I like saying "Oh my Leroux" much better. Very Happy I got the idea from another phan phriend of mine a long time ago...
No suggestions at all? o.O; I'm flattered. ^^;; I guess I better continue!
---------------

Part Eight:

I must state the truth, this day couldn’t get any stranger. Erik won the argument with Daroga apparently, and now we followed both up another passage way with Daroga in front, then Max, then I, and then good old Erik following up in the back. If we tried to run, he would simply kill us. And he told us this with a straight face. I had a good reason to have goose bumps all over my skin and fear in my heart. I think I would’ve felt better if I could actually hear him behind me, though. They didn’t call him O.G. for nothing I can assure you! Daroga must’ve come down this way more often than naught for he seemed very confident and we reached a door very soon.
A rattle from his olive-skinned hands told me he had brought out a key and didn’t let me look until it was fitted in the door and light streamed in, showing all the dust hanging in the air. Cryptic feeling, much? I turned around and tried to tell Erik that he could stop following us as awesome as he was when I found the dang guy wasn’t even there anymore! While I gabbled to myself in confusion, Max seized my shirt and pulled me along, following Daroga as closely as he would allow.
“So we’re staying with him, then?” I asked Max quietly, even though our Persian friend didn’t seem to be able to understand a word of English.
She nodded and we half ran to catch up with him. His strides were long and his dark face wore a scowl. Obviously not pleased in dealing with Erik’s new toys. Ha-ha. Toys. I imaged briefly Max and I dressed as large Jack-In-the-Box toys with Erik tinkering away on our wooden noses. I cackled which brought a small eye roll from Max and a glance over the shoulder from Daroga. He kept to the more deserted streets and soon we came up to old apartments that were obviously lower class. He turned and spoke with Max in that odd, Persian affected French. I waited like a small child and I added a pout as well. I only understood so much but I managed to realize we would be staying with Daroga for tonight so that he could keep an eye on us for Erik.
Sleepover with the Persian! We followed him to his own apartment and I stared with wonder as his servant opened the door. He had the same dark skin and dark eyes though looked a little older and sterner with a serious, alert face. Good and faithful Darius. I smiled timidly at him as we passed but his focus was on his master. He didn’t look very curious, though and he calmly brushed past me after Max and Daroga.
Daroga’s place wasn’t over-fancy nor overly decorated. It was comfortable and without a word to us, he turned to Darius and instructed him something. We all stood in his small parlor awkwardly. I wanted so badly to whistle, just to break the silence. Daroga viewed me curiously again and I flashed him a quick grin, wanting to let him know I was a friend. Max was looking about the room with her deep, thoughtful eyes. I sidled over to her.
“What will we show Erik if he comes?” I asked her. “He won’t be amused with the CD player forever.”
She didn’t answer for Darius had come back and had some clothes in his arms, one bundle for me and one for Megan. Oh fun, we’d be wearing Daroga’s clothes. Secretly I wished they were Erik’s. We took them and thanked him as well as we could but he only blinked once at retreated, waiting for his master to call on him again. Daroga looked to Max again and spoke to her, gesturing a door behind him.
“We can change in there,” Max translated for me as my face screwed up in concentration. “He doesn’t want us to be ill from the cold.”
“Well, if we die, he’ll know what killed us,” I said cheerfully and looked at Daroga with as much thanks that my purple-pink eyes would allow. I was saddened to see he turned his face away from mine as we entered the room.
“He’s so social,” I said, rolling my eyes and throwing off my cold, wet shirt after Max shut the door firmly.
She only smiled and shrugged briefly before changing as well. The clothes were too large of course, but with the help of my belt I managed to keep the pants from falling down. I was glad to get into something warm, too big or not. Max didn’t have as much luck with not having a belt so I poked my head out and looked towards Darius and beckoned him. He stared back at me but stood his ground. Freaking Persians… In effort, I stood out and pointed to my belt then pointed to Max inside.
Still he stared and I was about to give up until he left abruptly and came back with a black, leather belt. I grinned at him and took it from his hands. He left again. Daroga was no where in sight from the parlor.
“Try this one!” I tossed the belt to Max and finally we were clothed with dry, warm clothes.
I looked at the wet mass that was our personal clothing thoughtfully. I didn’t really want Darius to touch my clothes or Max’s, even though we had to stick with our cold, wet undergarments. It would feel too weird. So instead Max collected them in her arms and looked about for a bathroom of sorts.
“This place is so weird,” I commented lightly, playing with a button on the shirt I was wearing. “It’s like, all still dark-like inside. Do friends of Erik just like to have dark places?”
Max laughed and found the bathroom, a small little room with barely enough room for the bath and sink. There she carefully laid out our clothes and went out to find the others. I glared and made faces in the mirror, hating how sickly I looked. I leaned close to the mirror and inspected my contacts. Still there, amazingly. I was so absorbed, I didn’t see Daroga come up behind me and tap my shoulder.
“I’m not vain!” I screeched at him, wide-eyed.
He stared at me like I was an escapee of a nearby asylum. Frankly, I couldn’t blame him. I was more of a wreck than usual. I flushed as much as my skin would allow and I slipped out from the room muttering an apology he would never understand. Max was standing outside the door and gave me an exasperated look before she explained what was to happen to us. Daroga would let us stay here but if possible we would need to find another place and get out before Erik tired of us. I frowned.
“How can we leave if we don’t even know how we got here?” I argued, sending a glare at the less than compassionate man for two poor souls like us. “If he hasn’t noticed, Erik is a genius. He could help us!”
Max looked very tired.
“I know, but you know how paranoid Daroga was in the book.”
“True.”
I tapped my chin thoughtfully, wondering if Erik would fight with Daroga to keep us. That would be interesting to see seeing as Erik would never go out in daylight it seems. The Persian made his way over to us and talked to Max again which later turned out to be that he was sending us off to sleep in the parlor as Daroga’s small apartment only had one bedroom. Darius slept on the floor next to his master for protection and a serious devotional problem.
Later into the night when both of us were settled as well as we could on the armchair and divan we talked quietly to one another.
“I’m just worried about how we’re going to get home,” Max said, punching the flat pillow behind her head. “I mean, our families must be going crazy.”
“Yeah…” I thought of my own family. My parents had decided to travel in Europe while I was in France and wouldn’t be home to find I wasn’t there for at least three weeks. My sister was old enough to be in college and unaware of what I was up to.
“We could find that room again,” I offered lamely. “Maybe if we go back, we can push the wall and go home.”
Max shrugged.
“It’s worth a try.”
I flipped over on my armchair, trying to fit my legs in.
“Max?”
“Yeah?”
“Let’s stay a little to look around, okay?”
“We’ll see…”


----------

There we go. ^^;; Thanks for reading...!
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:13 pm

Another wonderful update! *lets out a sigh* Ah, at last the suspense eases a little! You were killing me back there... Razz Thanks for the update, I very much enjoyed it!

Laura
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:59 pm

I am definitely addicted to your story Very Happy! It was so beautifully well written; and your update definitely made my day!

I'm sure that you already know it, but I can't wait to read what is going to happen next! Please, update soon.

Sincerely, WG Hug.
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Wed Sep 17, 2008 8:01 pm

Thank you very much, all of you, I'm glad you enjoyed. ^^;; I've said it before, but I enjoy writing this, so perhaps that's why I am writing better? Maybe... Um, anyways, here's another update. Got plenty of them, since I was pretty far ahead before I decided to post it on here. ^^;
-----------------

Part Nine:

The morning was dim but even without the annoying hotel alarm we set for ourselves back in our own time, I woke up near six. Groggily I searched my pockets for my cell. Instead of finding that semi-reliant piece of machinery, I found a shirt and other clothing much too large on and nearly had a panic attack before popping up to look around, remembering where I was. When I was, too.
“Oh, my gosh, okay, I’m not in Vegas,” I panted. “Sheesh…”
I looked around at the couch Max had been sleeping at but it was empty with the sheets folded neatly on the corner. Neat-freak Max. I smiled fondly at the sheets and bounded up, now hearing the slightly muffled conversation coming from the hallway next to the parlor.
“Max?” I called, turning a corner. “Is that you…?”
No luck. What I found was Daroga’s kitchen along with Darius and him muttering to each other. They glanced my way as I stared rather stupidly at them. No Max was in sight but Daroga looked very grave. Darius never looked anything but blank so no change there. I stood awkwardly while they stared feeling rather stupid again.
“Where’s Max?” I asked, hoping I wouldn’t have to mime my way around these guys.
Thankfully Daroga picked up Max’s name and the confused look on my face and attempted to explain. Unfortunately he and I could only relate through speaking French but I caught words I understood. Max was not here. Yes, amazing at interpreting skills has I. Beside the point, I wasn’t going to be getting very far on learning where my friend was and that made me nervous. I couldn’t do much on my own and being without ones almost-substitute-mother didn’t help. With a withering look at the two men I asked in very broken French if she was with Erik.
“Just say yes or no,” I commented as Daroga opened his mouth again.
He glared briefly (what a friendship we had) then pointed behind me. I turned slowly to find my friend with her hands on her hips staring at me with an amused smirk.
“Right here, genius,” she said not unkindly. “Work on your French, we’re both going to see Erik again.”
She glanced at Daroga who looked very grim at the thought. Or, more grim than normal to be exact. Did anyone know how to smile more around here?
“He wants us to know he would not let us go if Erik would not stop hunting us down if we left,” Max said dryly. “So he does not approve right now.”
“’Right now’,” I echoed, “but he’s still leading us to him anyways. That’s cool.”
Max nodded and we followed Daroga after he was ready. Had to make himself grimmer I suppose. It felt like following a shadow. His skills at being unheard must’ve been acquired from watching over Erik. Although though this was all well and good, it didn’t help him from being noticed by others. He and I had a problem of attracting people’s stares I figured. That, and it didn’t look too well that a grown Persian man was walking about with two young girls, one wearing a rather crumpled dress (Max got her clothes dried and changed before me) and one wearing a suspiciously not-my-clothing outfit that was much too large for her (hey, I forgot).
I tried to ignore a few of the whispers, not that I would understand them anyways and stares the snooty people had and I stared around at the brightly lit streets, the sun making my eyes water. Daroga’s apartments were farther from the Opera House than I remembered and to not loose my way I clung to Max’s arm lightly. I think I could understand now why Erik preferred the dark, I nearly cried with relief as we came to the secret stairways that would lead us straight to the lake. It was a silent, almost monumental moment as we came up to the side of the lake.
I resisted the temptation to skip some rocks over the glowing, glassy surface. As if by automation, though, the water rippled and the three of us peered timidly into the dark to see a boat making its way towards the shore, a dark familiar figure atop it. Feeling like it was a dark, evil side to “It’s a Small World After All” ride at Disneyland, my face cracked into a grin.
With leopard-like skill Erik hopped off the boat gracefully and this time he had his full face mask on. It leered at us with zero level of emotion but the curiosity behind it shown through to us. Out of pure habit, I waved cheerfully to him, almost hearing Max’s hand smack her forehead. He gave me a look and turned to Daroga speaking to him briefly. Daroga scowled heavily at whatever Erik was saying and shook his head, crossing his arms. Max leaned in to help me out.
“Erik wants him to go away while he talks with us,” she explained, “but obviously Daroga doesn’t want to leave us with him.”
“They argue just like…‘in there’,” I said with a grin, miming a book.
Erik didn’t pay attention to our conversation thankfully but he turned to us and our mouths snapped shut. He observed my choice of clothing with unmoving eyes and I flushed slightly along with Max who usually would never ever wear things twice in a row.
“Odd choice of outfit for them, Daroga.” He said, eyes flashing cat-like.
“We’re the guinea pigs,” I replied, rolling my eyes. “And we got soaked, remember? Er…” I stopped talking as the gold behind the mask narrowed into slits. “Perhaps you shouldn’t remember. I’m sorry. I never mentioned it, ‘kay?”
I sealed my lips up to prove that the painful experience would not be mentioned. Max sighed. Erik ignored me and went to strolling around Max half a pace.
“It proves they are not from here, Erik thinks,” he said thoughtfully, viewing Max’s dress that was certainly NOT of the timeline we were currently trapped in. “Erik has seen the world, but not anything as these things you promised to show him, correct?”
He cocked his head in a way of a curious dog. Max nodded firmly and rattled the bag I never noticed before in her hand. Without comment she drew out her cell phone, useless here of course but that never stopped us from playing Tetris, and held it out temptingly and flicked it open so it beeped. Intrigued, Erik took it gingerly and I noticed right then and there how long his fingers really were.
While he pressed buttons and stared, bemused at the screen while Max attempted to explain I viewed my own white hand and then at his yellowish one. His fingers must have had at least four inches more compared to mine. I goggled and chocked silently.
“Magnifique,” Erik praised the little communicator, handing it back to Max, “I haven’t seen something so intricate as that in the entire world.”
“You shouldn’t,” she said, slightly embarrassed, “it won’t be made for a long, long time.”
“You’ll be dead before it’s here,” I put in cheerfully as Erik looked doubtfully at my friend. Both of them glared at me and I fell hushed again.
“What else do you ‘ave?” he asked, excitement making him stumble in his English. I could’ve swooned. Or record his voice, whichever came first.
I sat by the lake as Max pulled item after item out of the bag, from her cell phone to the little Ice Breakers dispenser. For once I was glad Erik didn’t really eat but he did ask to take one and studied it for a while before giving it back. Max couldn’t explain a lot of the really in-depth details and I could tell that Erik wasn’t so happy with that. He was a perfect gentle-skeleton despite our lack of explanation.
I don’t remember how long he looked at our stuff or how long it was before Daroga came back and started jabbering away to Erik again who looked thoroughly irritated by the interruption. Suddenly I had him come towards me, snapping those ultra long fingers at me. I stood hurriedly and scrambled to join Max who was trying not to look smug about something.
“What did they say?” I whispered.
“Erik thinks our appearance, although interesting, isn’t the best for us to be walking around in.” Max said, amused. “He’s making Daroga go buy us ‘normal’ clothing.” She put quotes over the ‘normal’ and I suppressed a grin. I would miss the pants and Daroga’s baggy shirt, but to get clothes from way back in the day? Heaven, I tell you, Heaven. The two men started jabbering again and I looked to Max, my faithful interpreter. She looked shocked at whatever the guys were arguing about.
“Erik wants to come with,” she said finally, smiling broadly.


----------

There we go. ^^;; Enjoy! And thanks for reading.
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Wed Sep 17, 2008 9:41 pm

Oh, oh, oh! I LOVE this!! Erik fiddling with modern gadgets, fascinated like a little boy...I adore that mental picture. And the last part, about him wanting to go with them was hilarious. I can't wait for more!!!

One trivial suggestion, should this sentence: "“Erik wants to come with,” she said finally, smiling broadly," have the word 'us,' at the end of: 'Erik wants to come with?' Just wondering...

Brava, brava, bravissima!

Laura
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Sat Sep 20, 2008 7:34 am

Wonderful, as usual Very Happy! Every chapter from your story made me smile; honestly, reading it makes me feel very happy.

I'm speechless. After all, what else can I say? It's simply perfect Wink. Update soon please!

Sincerely, WG cheers!
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PostSubject: Re: I Want a Refund on My Phantom, Please   Today at 5:22 pm

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