The lights dimly lit and accentuated the tones and textures of a beautifully crafted scene of a garden. Christine was in her dressing room, sitting on a chair in front of her vanity table. The gas lamp made a muted whistling sound as it provided the small room with just about enough light. She added a few final changes to her made-up face and waited for her cue. Soon enough, a stagehand rapped at her door, and hurried her out. She puckered her lips and carried her skirts as she proceeded to the left wing.

Two tenors neared the end of their piece, and once the song hit the crescendo of the piece, Christine made her entrance rather abruptly, since that's what her character called for. The two men exchanged bits of conversation and exited, signaling the conductor to begin Christine's aria.

The violins made a disheartening entrance, preparing the audience for a sad ballad. Applause greeted her as she stepped into the limelight. Christine looked absolutely stunning that night, her costume more regal than that of Her Majesty's. She took great care with her movements so she could discreetly take a quick look at Box Five, nearest the grand tier. As the audience clapped her praises as she began her aria, her eyes would see nothing in Box Five.

She focused all her concentration back to her song, moving gracefully and delicately, following the choreography taught to her. The fluidity of her voice against the backdrop of the stringed instruments moved the house to tears and sighs. A low and deep organ entered and added dark undertones to her song of love and loss. Coincidentally, her eyes glided up to Box Five.

The song approached its peak and the audience was on the edge of their seats. Christine would be too, if she were seated. Instead, she firmed herself and san. The notes were hit perfectly and everyone was too engrossed in her to move. She stood in the center of the stage and the music came to a halt. She looked into the audience. She could make out the whites in the eyes of each person in that large auditorium.

Her character was then to look up longingly into the sky. She did so, with her hands in prayer and sang in a quiet voice. Then, woodwinds were heard, adding tension to both her and the audience. The song reached its climax; the highest, most heartfelt note sung so beautifully that squeals and sighs were heard from even those seated at the farthest nook. The song ended and the lights flickered off. Act II of III was over. The lights went back on once more, focused on Christine and the little beads of sweat shining on her forehead.

The whole house then went wild. Lights around the theatre walls were dimly lit, and Christine could see all grinning madly at her, clapping their hands in pleasure and glee. She could see the people up in the boxes throwing flowers at her feet. One of her co-actors handed her a bouquet of roses and left the stage. Clearly it was her night. She smiled at everyone, wording 'Thank you' and 'Merci', nodding happily at the cheering crowd. Never had she seen so full a house, so many people in manic applause. She smiled and waved to the people at the boxes on the right of the stage, but kept her eyes on Box Five, which showed nothing still.

Then, Christine felt blissfully faint as two gloved hands emerged from the shadows of the box, pressing each other in firm and satisfied applause. Christine was laughing, her gaiety could not stay suppressed. She watched the white hands as they moved back and forth, then rise up, as if a man drew himself up to his full height. What an honor! she thought. A standing ovation; he had given her a standing ovation.

Then, an explosion, then one and two, then two more. The people in the boxes gasped and the rest of the audience either scurried out to the large exits or remained in their seats, holding on to each other. Some of the men ripped of their coats to reveal dark blue uniforms, with pistols in hand.

Christine looked up and the white-gloved hands were gone. She felt stagehands pushing her, leading her offstage. Her eyes were still on Box Five. She heard shouts around her, all yelling different things, but she was only able to isolate a few phrases.

"We got him, men! We got him! We got him!"

"Inform the Vicomte! Hurry! Inform the Vicomte!"

"Vivent longtemps le fantôme de l'opéra! Hahahaha!"

A/N: Reposted at the encouragement for Daniel Radcliffe's dance partner, Crescent Fresh