|Which Way Is Up?
Author: Mel88 PM
Christine first encounters mysterious Erik at age 16 while on a school field trip. After 10 years and an engagement to Raoul, she returns to the site of her awakening to seek out the man who had occupied her thoughts for so many years. But how much and whRated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Christine & Erik - Chapters: 26 - Words: 33,207 - Reviews: 105 - Favs: 34 - Follows: 23 - Updated: 10-11-06 - Published: 07-09-06 - Status: Complete - id: 3036322
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: I feel silly having to mention this, but the only parts of The Phantom of the Opera that I own are the DVD, the soundtrack, and the book. Also, this is the first story I've posted. Any feedback, be it praise or criticism, is greatly appreciated. Hope you enjoy it!
It was the summer of Christine's 16th year, and she was finally living out one of her many seemingly impossible dreams: going to France. She stood at the terminal, watching her friends get waved off by their parents, and more strikingly, their boyfriends. Her best friend, Meg Giry, was currently involved in an obscene PDA.
Meg and the boy she was currently latched on to were a very unlikely couple. Meg looked in every way like an angel. She had light blonde hair that fell straight, thick, and long down to her mid-back. She had clear blue eyes and just radiated peace and goodness where ever she went. She was the last person ever expected to hook up with Tom, her intensely gothic boyfriend. Christine was shocked when she first met him. She saw them walking towards her, hand in hand, Meg dressed in jeans and a collared shirt and Tom dressed in all black with multiple piercings. Christine got used to it after a day, and now, the two were inseparable.
'Quite literally,' she thought with a chuckle and a rueful smile. 'What I wouldn't give for that.'
For all of her life, Christine had been alone. Her father died before she was born, her mother during labor. No siblings came before her, and obviously, none came after. She had no contact with aunts, uncles, or even grandparents. She had been born without a family. Thus, she was immediately sucked into the "the system", which undeniably had its flaws.
She bounced around from home to home, from city to city, from state to state for the first 14 years of her life. Christine had no occasion to make many close friends, and didn't even fathom the idea of a boyfriend. Fortunately, Christine was one of the few lucky ones. She eventually settled with one foster family for four years, allowing her to maintain a steady GPA and a core group of friends through high school. Still, something was missing. Sure, the family was nice enough, but with seven other children to look after, Christine was sometimes nothing but an afterthought.
To burn off the frustration she often felt because of her life, Christine ran. This not only kept her sane, but also toned her already lean body. Muscles lay below her fragile-looking exterior, oftentimes causing people to misjudge her. She was tough. For the ripe age of 16, Christine had the air of a girl who had to grow up much too fast. Her wide amber eyes held significant knowledge of the world and its cruelties, and betrayed her naïve looking face. Her dark chocolate curls, which framed her face, added to her look of innocence. She sometimes thought she looked like a life-sized doll: small features, porcelain skin, except for her rosy cheeks, perfectly shaped pink lips. It was hard to look so innocent. Teachers, friends, and sometimes even family underestimated her and were unintentionally condescending.
'But I must be grateful,' she scolded herself. 'My family and my friends have given me more than I ever thought I could have. And now, I'm 16 and I'm going to Europe!'
"This is the final boarding call for Air France Flight 210. Please have your ticket ready as…" droned the sickly sweet voice of the gate attendant. Christine's friends gave one last wave to their loved ones, and made their way towards the gate.
"Did you have a pleasant send-off, Meg?" Christine said to Meg with a smile.
Meg looked at Christine and laughed. "Yes I did, thank you very much!"
As Christine gave her ticket to the attendant, she steeled herself for the long flight ahead. She clutched her Passport and her I-Pod and stepped onto the plane, ready to visit the country that had enchanted her for so long.
The flight landed many hours later in the Charles de Gaulle International Airport. The trip had left her somewhat frazzled. It had not been her first time on a plane, but it was certainly the longest she had ever been on one. And it had not gone smoothly. Luckily, Meg was prepared for this and brought along the sleep-aid of the gods: Dramamine. Christine groggily grabbed her luggage and was soon bustled off onto the bus that was to take them to the hotel.
Once finished unpacking and eating, the girls settled into their beds, preparing for sleep, but knowing their objective was futile. With four girls to a room, sleep was not an option. Instead…
"Who's ready for girl talk?" shrieked one of their roommates, Carmen.
All four girls gathered pillows and blankets and migrated to the floor. Spontaneous giggles erupted when Ashley, Meg and Christine's other roommate, pulled a gigantic bag of Twizzlers from her bag. Each grabbed a couple of the red vines, and settled down for what looked to be a long conversation.
After the usual gossip about who was going out with whom, who was a bitch, and who was a slut, the topic turned a bit more personal.
"Guys," whined Carmen. "I want a boyfriend!"
Christine lowered her eyes.
"Don't worry, you'll get one eventually," said Ashley.
"Oh, you always are the optimistic one. It's been ages since I had any action. I can't stand it!"
"It's really not that big of a deal," countered Meg. "I mean, it's like having a big puppy. Hey! Don't give me that weird look. It is! It's cute a first, but then it starts to want food and attention and…"
"Does is start peeing on the carpet, too?"
The four girls burst into peals of laughter at Carmen's quip.
Catching her breath, Meg said, "Well, that too. But after a while, really, it's no big deal any more."
"You only say that because you have one," said Carmen.
'Well, some people haven't even had their first kiss yet, Carmen!" said Ashley.
"Oh yeah? Like who?"
At this, Christine reddened and slowly raised her hand. "I haven't," she said in a small voice. Almost immediately, reassurances spewed from the mouths of Meg, Carmen, and Ashley. "It will happen eventually." "You just haven't found the right one yet." "Don't worry, your first kiss probably won't be any good anyways."
Taking it all with a doubtful smile, Christine leaned back against the bed.
"I just hope it happens soon. I'm sick of being alone."
She snuck a glance at the clock.
"Guys! It's 2 a.m. We have to sleep."
At the mention of the time, yawns suddenly started to escape from the girl's mouths. Each crawled into bed, and by 2:15, soft breathing, and Carmen's snoring, was all that could be heard.