If Gwynplaine and Erik were to ever meet.

Scene: The Beyond.

It had finally happened. He was dead. How it had happened, he didn't care to dwell on it. Christine was happy, and music – sweet, beautiful music – had been playing. Now, he examined his surroundings. It was a vast abyss, filled with nothing, and yet everything all at once. Amid it all he noticed the form of another. It was a boy – no, a man. He was too far to tell clearly his age, and to Erik, everyone was essentially his younger. This person couldn't have been much older than the young Vicomte de Chagny.

With a thought, Erik was by the boy's side. Glancing at the boy's face, he realized the boy had a scarf around the lower half of his face, obscuring his visage. Unconsciously, Erik reached to ensure his own black mask was in place. It was.

The boy turned to look at him. "I have been waiting for you," he said calmly, staring right into Erik deep golden eyes.

Erik looked the boy up and down. "Are you cold?" he remarked somewhat sarcastically. The boy's eyes shifted to give a look of annoyance, before turning to mischievousness.

"You would know. I would suspect a man with a Death's Head to be more considerate of others. But," the boy tugged the scarf down, revealing his face, "I am like you."

Erik, though surprised, showed none of it when confronted with the ghastly visage. It was almost as terrible as his own. Instead of a mockery of life, the boy's was a mockery of happiness.

"I don't hate them for what they've done to me," the boy said plainly.

"'They'?"

"The men who changed my face. The Comprachicos. The King."

"How can you feel no anger toward them? I've raged against the heavens for being created this way. And you – you whom mortal men dared to play God with – find no fault in them?"

"I never said I was not angry. No. When they deigned to "give me what was mine," so to speak, I railed against them. But, I cannot be completely unhappy with them either. Had they not abducted me and mutilated me and left me for dead, I never would have met Dea."

"Dea?"

"You could say we were like brother and sister. I found her forever blinded by the snow – blinded from my face, but the only one who could ever truly see me. You thought you had that."

"Christine…"

A silent pause fell between the two of them. Erik was the first to break the silence.

"Even being cursed with such a face, you've managed to find love?"

"Yes."

"And yet, you're so young here…"

"Strong flames burn through wax the quickest."

Erik laughed at that. "And here I was, clinging to death, when all it took was a taste of life to end my pitiful existence."

"Pitiful? Perhaps only because you made it so. Have you not seen the wonders you created? The lives you've impacted?"

"All those people I sent to Death, you mean? My wonder Hall of Mirrors? Or perhaps the jolly little grasshopper and the lovely scorpion."

"Your Palais Garnier? The music you created that could be felt on the streets? The gratitude between the Vicomte and the singer for strengthening their love?"

"You must be madder than I!"

"You're too blinded by your hate. Have you thought about why you are here and not in the next?"

"What?"

"Here in Limbo."

"What?"

"Until you can come to terms, I have been assigned from the Beyond to be your Guide. Now, walk with me. Your adventure only now begins."