"We're living in repetition...going over and over and over..."

– Green Day

Sometime in the future...

"Wy! Wy! Where are you?" Chris called, as the twelve year old scratched his head. "Come on, Wy...I give up...please?"

Wyatt orbed in beside his brother. "Chris, the whole point of orb and seek is for you to orb to me."

Pretending to pout, Chris whined, "Why can't we just do something normal – like play a game of hoops?"

"Because –," Wyatt sighed, "YOU need to improve your control over your powers, and this is one way of doing it. You're the one who refuses to go to Magic School."

"I just want to be normal," Chris sulked.

"Like you could EVER be normal," Wyatt laughed, reaching over and ruffling his little brother's hair. "I respect you wanting a normal life, but I don't understand it. Seriously, Chris – living in this house, with all the demons that keep showing up, I really think you should start coming to Magic School with me. There's only so much that I can teach you...you'd get a lot more from Aunt Paige."

Ducking away from his older brother's hand, Chris shrugged. "You're the twice blessed. If you can't teach me, who can?"

Rolling his eyes at Chris' stubbornness, Wyatt retorted, "Just because I'm twice blessed doesn't mean I know what I'm doing. There's a lot to be said for knowledge and experience, you know."

Wincing at his brother's tone, Chris apologized, "Don't be mad, Wy. It's just...sometimes I hate magic. It takes so much away from us. Dad never has any time for us – he's always doing 'his job.' And mom, aunt Paige and aunt Phoebe are always in danger."

"I bet if you asked them, they'd tell you that making some sacrifices is worth it in the end if they can save innocents." Wyatt nodded, wisely.

Chris sighed – his brother really soaked up all that propaganda. Struggling to express himself, Chris tried again, "Yeah, but look at everything they've given up. They can never live away from each other. What if one day aunt Phoebe wanted to move to Hong Kong? Or Chicago, for that matter?"

Wyatt frowned. "Aunt Phoebe did move to Hong Kong for a bit, remember? Mom told us. She didn't like it."

Chris rolled his eyes. "But what if she wanted to?"

"Why would she want to?"

Exasperated, Chris threw his hands up in the air, "I don't know, Wy! It's just an example!"

"If you don't know, why are you asking?" Wyatt wondered, staring at his brother as if he had suddenly grown a second head.

"What if I want to move away?" Chris shouted.

"You're twelve, Chris. Mom and dad aren't going to let you move out on your own!" Wyatt replied, still puzzled at Chris' questions.

"Oh God – give me strength," Chris muttered, under his breath. He looked up to his older brother, really he did. But Wy just didn't understand him sometimes. "I'm just saying – what if when I grow up I decide I want to go see the world? You know, wander around, explore, discover stuff."

"You could orb to wherever you wanted, and then orb back at night? Sure, why not?" Wyatt raised his eyebrow, "I'm sure Mom and Dad wouldn't mind."

"Forget it," Chris rolled his eyes again. Sometimes his brother was so thick, it was unbelievable. "Let's just continue the game."

Tactfully ignoring Chris' fit of pique, Wyatt lectured his little brother, "This time, really try to sense me...and then you should be able to find and orb to me, okay?"

Raising his eyes heavenward, Chris prayed for patience. "I know what I'm suppose to do, Wy. Just go, would you?"

Shrugging his shoulders, Wyatt dematerialized.

Chris closed his eyes. And concentrated – there...

And he materialized back into the attic of the Manor.

Chris cursed, as he materialized on top of a shelf, crashing to the ground, landing on top of a bunch of boxes with a thud. "Ouch! God damn piece of–"

"Better not let Mom hear you say that word," Wyatt shot a glance at his brother from beneath his lashes. "At least you found me. Now we just need to work on controlling your orbing in."

Sticking his tongue out at his brother childishly, Chris tried to roll gingerly to his feet, dislodging boxes left and right as he flailed about.

Rolling his eyes at his younger brother's antics, Wyatt reached down and grabbed his brother's arm to help him up, automatically pushing the boxes back with his telekinesis.

"What the – ?!?"

Hidden behind the boxes was a giant boulder, with what appeared to be a sword stuck in it.

"Is that what I think it is?" Chris asked, whispering, as he and his brother tiptoed closer to get a better look at it.

"It's the sword in the stone!" Wyatt exclaimed, excitedly. "We're studying it at Magic School, right now!" Cautiously, Wyatt reached his hand out to touch it.

"I don't know, Wy," Chris said, doubtfully. "I don't think we should touch it."

For a moment, both boys stood staring, in silence, at the sword in the stone. Shivering, Chris turned away, nervous and just a little afraid. He couldn't explain it, but the magical artifact gave him bad vibes.

Looking back at his brother, Wyatt let his hand drop back to his side. "What do you think it's doing here? How come Mom hasn't said anything about it?"

Chris shrugged. "I don't know. And I don't care. Let's just leave it. I'm sure Mom will tell us about it when she wants us to know about it." He trotted over to the door, yanking it open, getting ready to head back downstairs. Looking back over his shoulder at his brother, he saw that Wyatt's gaze was still transfixed by the sword, "Coming, Wy?"

"What?" Wyatt said, absently. He felt like he was waking from a dream. Sunlight streaming through the attic windows seemed to make the steel of the sword almost glow. It was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. "Yeah, sure."

Reluctantly, he turned away, following his younger brother out of the attic. Pausing at the door of the attic, Wyatt glanced over his shoulder one last time at the sword.

So beautiful.

Maybe he would come back later to study it.

And then he followed his brother down the stairs.

The End.

Author's musings

Just in case anyone's interested...this is how I came up with the idea for the plotline.

Ever since I saw Sword and the City, (as a repeat...I didn't start watching the season until after Chris-crossed – I had lost interest back in season 3, and then only caught it once and awhile when flipping. Then, suddenly, I saw some of the episodes with the Chris character and I was hooked again.) I always wondered, where was Chris in this episode? Was it just coincidence – the sword can 'turn' someone evil (e.g. Piper was able to pull the sword out and use it, even though it wasn't meant for her to wield), Wyatt using it the first time before Chris was born (e.g. adult Chris' allusion to the deadline of Wyatt's turning), adult Chris not in the episode? My guess was it was unintentional on the part of the writers – but it bothered me so much I had to write this story.

Will I write another story?

When I first envisioned this story, I had jotted some notes down, which soon progressed to a one-page summary. I never thought it would end up being so many chapters, let alone so many words. For those of you who may wonder whether I will write another story – that will depend on whether I get hit by a creative spurt again. I think I'd like to eventually write a sequel (any suggestions?) to this story that would be more character driven than plot driven, but who knows? I promise only to write a story if I think I can do it justice, and if I think people will read it.

For now, I'd like to catch up on all the other great fan fics that I haven't had a chance to read, let alone review, while I was working on this story.

Here's hoping episode 7.07 lives up to everyone's (and my) expectations.