Paige pushed a red strand of hair out of her eyes and glanced over at her dark-haired half-sisters. The girls were sitting on a loveseat in the middle of the Halliwell Manor. Paige bit on her lower lip, wrung her hands together and tapped her foot on the hardwood floor. Her eyes were wide open and she was close to tears.
The Angel of Destiny stood to the side, looking up. He swayed his body as if listening to music nobody else could hear. He glanced over at them as they talked about the offer he brought. He sighed, returning to his act of pretending to mind his business.
"Sweetie, please think about it!" Phoebe said, trying to reason with Paige. She winced as she could feel both her sisters swirling emotions overwhelm her. The new empath put her hands over her temples and tried to massage the pounding away. "We can be normal for once." Her brown shoulder-length hair was coming undone around her face. She looked far younger than her twenty-seven years.
"Do you understand the chance he is giving us?" Phoebe believed the youngest sister still thought all the magic stuff was fun and games. Paige had not seen as much as her sisters had in her short year as a witch. She did not have to go through the pain of seeing their oldest sister murdered by a demon. Phoebe knew Paige would give anything to have known Prue, but she still did not get the full picture. Missing someone you never met is one thing, but losing someone you grew up with is entirely different.
"No, you can't be serious? I do understand! Piper, Phoebe . . . hear me out, please." Paige looked between them, the tears she had been holding started to trickle down her cheeks.
"Of course, I know you've been through a lot, but what will happen to all the innocents if we give up? With or without our powers, there will be demons and evil." She tried to calm down when she saw how much pain Phoebe was in. They were still getting used to Phoebe's new power. It was as if the middle sister could almost read their minds now. Paige wiped her eyes and puffed out a breath of air.
"I see your point, we both do, Paige." Phoebe reached out and grasped Paige's hands. "I can't go through another Cole. Piper gets what I'm going through. Remember Jeremy?" She glanced over at the usually calm and collected of the three who up until this point had not said much. Piper did not meet her gaze. Phoebe sighed and looked back at Paige.
"You do not know how horrible it is to realize the person you thought you loved is the source of evil."
"Why did you have to bring him up?" Piper winced at the memory of Jeremy. He was her first serious relationship. Her first taste of evil. He was the last person she wanted to think about. She had Leo now. There was no need to dwell on the past.
"I'm trying to get her to understand. She has not had a lover turn into an evil creep. She has not seen as many innocents die as we have, and she did not have to go through-"
"Don't bring Prue into this." Piper narrowed her eyes at Phoebe. "Don't."
Phoebe closed her eyes, breathing in deep. "Can't you see, I don't want Evil to use me again. I'm the weakest link and Evil has always known that. My unborn child, Cole. I can't do it again." She opened her eyes but avoided looking at them. She was thankful she was the empath and not one of them. If they could feel her emotions, they would know she also questioned if they should give up their powers. She could not help but wonder if she was being selfish. There were a lot of innocents who would suffer if they took a mortal life. Could Paige be right?
"We have done so much. We killed the Source of Evil! Nobody could do that for ages and we did it. We can rest now. I want a normal life." Piper placed a hand on her stomach. "I can't get pregnant doing what we do." While Phoebe questioned if she was being selfish, Piper knew that she, in fact, was being selfish. She wanted a family more than anything. The pain radiating from her almost killed Phoebe. Though Paige was not an empath, she could see how much Piper was going through as well.
Paige knew they all had pain and they had all made sacrifices and would continue to make them. She was at a loss for words. She did not know how to convince them to keep their powers for the greater good. Didn't they realize how much the world needed them? What would happen when the Underworld appointed a new Source of Evil?
"I know it has been bad, but the good we've done far outnumbers the bad. The world needs us." Paige looked at the Angel, who was now looking at them, a thoughtful, understanding look on his aging face.
"Ladies, I do not have forever and your Destiny ties into others. I need you to decide." He glanced at Piper's stomach, but none of the girls noticed. He walked toward the sisters and then paused before he reached them. The Angel glanced over at the fireplace. On the wall above it hung a photograph of Phoebe, Piper and their late sister, Prue.
"Hmm?" He seemed to be muttering to himself. "Very well, how about this, is there another gift you desire? It would have to be something quite grand. You did, after all, fulfill your shared Destiny." His light blue robes billowed around him as if an invisible gust of wind had come from nowhere.
Piper pulled herself out of the loveseat and moved away from her sisters. She paced back and forth in front of the fireplace. At first, Paige and Phoebe did not understand her behavior. It dawned on both of them at the same time that the oldest was thinking about Prue.
"Are you suggesting we can make another deal?" Piper did want a normal life, but the possibility of being able to ask for something else was too tempting. Her heart pounded in her chest at an abnormal rate. "Can you give us whatever we want?"
"The three of you defeated the greatest source of evil. You have earned the right to a gift equal your accomplishment. If your wish is within our powers, it will be yours."
It did not take them a moment to think of the exact same thing. The sister's linked eyes and nodded. Piper gave them a hesitant smile. Her hands started to sweat, and nervous butterflies flew around in the pit of her stomach. She braced herself. What they asked for would mean she would have to sacrifice her dreams of ever having a family with Leo. It hurt so much to think about, but this wish was something she wanted more than a normal life. She knew Phoebe felt the same.
Paige looked at them. She felt the sting of tears in her eyes as she watched Phoebe touch her flat stomach. Piper was doing the same, though neither noticed the other. It made her realize they were all about to give up the chance of having a family. The doctors did not understand when they saw how much internal scarring Piper had. They said it would be hard for her to conceive. If the sisters continued to fight, it would be almost impossible to become pregnant.
Finally, when they had been silent for what felt like hours, Phoebe voiced what they had all been thinking. Her voice trembled and she could only get it above a whisper. "Can you bring someone back from the dead?"
"Two people." Piper was shaking as much as the others, their fear overwhelming. He might tell them their wish was impossible.
The Angel did not seem surprised by their request. He smiled at them in a way a grandfather would. He radiated comfort and the girls were soon soothed. "It is possible if they are worthy enough." He looked up at the ceiling and shut his eyes, deep concentration written all over his features.
"It is difficult bringing the dead back from beyond the grave and rarely ever done. We have to alter timelines a great deal, same with memories. We also have to change mortal and magical records." He opened his eyes and looked back at them. "The adjusting period for the previous dead can be quite the hardship, but some do take to it rather well."
"Can you do it?" Paige twirled a strand of hair between her fingers.
"Yes. There are instances where we can not do it. For example, if the dead are in Heaven, we're forbidden to interfere normally." He clapped his hands together. "Who are you willing to give up your normal life for?"
"Without a doubt, one hundred percent, I know we're in agreement. We'd give up anything to have our sister Prudence Halliwell back. The same goes for Andy Trudeau. He died protecting us and is like our brother." Piper glanced at her sisters. They both nodded their approval of her words. Paige did not know Andy, but she had heard all the stories and knew he was as important to her sisters as Prue was.
Everyone could not help but wonder what would happen if it turned out they were both in Heaven. They were good people and died fighting evil, killed by magical means. An energy ball killed Andy. Prue died from blood loss after she got hit by Shax's power. The idea that they could be in some sort of Hell scared the sisters.
From the look on the Angel's face, it was clear he had already known the answer. He crossed his arms and looked up. For a moment all was silent and then he glanced back at them. "I must speak with the others. You will get your answer soon." With that, he vanished out of sight.
Phoebe fell back against the wall and slid down until she was in a heap on the floor. "Oh, God, is it possible?" Her sisters joined her, pulling her into their arms. They laughed, tears falling down their cheeks, talking about how it would be if Prue and Andy joined them. Paige had always wondered what Prue was like and now she might get to find out. The idea terrified and excited her at the same time. What if Prue hated her for taking her place?
What would happen to the Power of Three ? Would things change to the Power of Four ? Could that even be possible? Then there was the chance Prue and Andy would not be able to adjust. They could go crazy.
Pulling away from her sisters, Piper started to chew on her lower lip. "Do you think we should do this?" She looked at Paige and then at Phoebe. "What if they are happy where they are?"
"If they are happy or in Heaven, I do not think the Angel would let them come home anyway." Paige's words were reasonable and seemed to give Piper comfort. Paige brushed her shoulder length hair out of her eyes and sighed. "But, won't it be wonderful for them to come back? I never imagined I'd get to meet them."
Phoebe smiled. "Prue is the strongest person and she'd sacrifice herself again in a heartbeat to save someone. As for Andy, he is so brave and faithful. We love him like a brother."
"Except for Prue. They had something together." Piper frowned, remembering Prue and Andy never got to figure their relationship out.
It made the sisters happy that they might get the chance soon.