Pictures of Sunset

By: Oracle Phoenix

Rated: T for teen (Some bad language)

Genre: Romance/Humor (Some Drama too. Not total fluff. LOL Though I do live for fluff… ;-) )

Pairing: Wonka/OC

Summary: When Nicolette DuClare's artistic passion finds her atop Willy Wonka's factory gates, she gets more than she bargained for from the reclusive chocolatier.

Disclaimer: All of this belongs to Roald Dahl and Tim Burton and Warner Bros. and so on and so forth. I am simply playing with their toys. Oh, and um…yeah. I borrowed the name Nicolette DuClare from the game Deus Ex, but not the actual character. …Does that even count?

A/N: Obviously this story involves an OC. If that's not your thing, then don't read it. For the record though, she isn't a Sue. I would never do half the stuff she does but she is fun to write for. This chapter is dedicated to my friend Kayla who, rather unwittingly, supplied part of her appearance and personal style. Beyond that though, Neiko isn't Kayla either. She's just...Neiko. :-D


Chapter One: Introductions and Addictions

A young woman drifted through the busy streets of a great town, beholden to no one. She had dark auburn hair that fell in ringlets at her shoulders. Few would have suspected that it had spent several months an intriguing shade of violet less than a year ago. She had a pale, heart-shaped face and vibrant, emerald eyes poured over the book in her hand from behind glasses with black-plastic frames. A bit 'emo' perhaps, but she'd had them for years, couldn't afford new ones, and, therefore, refused to be held accountable. Her name was Nicolette DuClare.

Her stride had a sharp, purposeful air about it and she barely glanced up from her novel as she moved along. High school had, long ago, taught her how best to maneuver through a heavy crowd. Finally, she paused in front of a street vendor and looked up. Her gaze was met with a large, colorful sign, proclaiming the release of Wonka's newest creation: the FudgeMallow Delight.

"Two please," she requested of the vendor.

"Yes. One for you and one for that friend I never meet," the man replied with a knowing smile.

Neiko was used to his teasing and merely rolled her eyes in response. Then, she paid for her chocolate and moved off again, stowing the novel away in her satchel as she walked. Regardless of what that man thought he knew, she had a candy bar to deliver. She could sample the latest sweet sensation on the way.

She pulled back the wrapping on one of the bars and bit into the chocolate. Wow… As she passed Willy Wonka's enormous factory, she raised her unfinished bar as if in a toast.

"Cheers Mr. Wonka," she said aloud with a silly grin. "Still doing God's good work I see."

She chuckled happily, shook her head, and strolled onward in the dying light. She had one more stop before she could head home.


Neiko (she refused to be called Nicolette, as it was much too stuffy) turned a darkened street corner and walked along a row of identical townhouses, looking for the familiar gold nameplate. About halfway down the line, she stopped in front of a fairly nondescript little place whose only defining feature was a shiny, professional plate by the door, proclaiming it home to Dr. Wilbur Wonka D.D.S. She climbed the steep steps and knocked twice.

A tall, rather imposing old man answered the door. His hair and beard were peppered with white and silver and his dark eyes glittered strangely in the light of a nearby streetlamp. Most people tended to shy away from this man but over the years Neiko had grown accustomed to his severe demeanor and remained unperturbed. When Dr. Wonka saw her, his face broke into a kind smile.

"Ah, Nicolette," he exclaimed softly. (For he was much older than her and a friend of the family and reserved the right to call her whatever the heck he wanted.) "To what do I owe the pleasure?"

"I am here to pay homage to the gods of your rather scandalous little addiction."

"You got it?"

"Of course I did. Never missed a release yet," Neiko grinned proudly.

"Wonderful! And you didn't…tell anyone did you?"

"'Course not. It'd ruin your reputation wouldn't it? We can't have that," she said slyly. "That's me. Always keeping up appearances. Like, for instance, the appearance that I'm a great, greedy hog who needs two of everything."

Her face turned momentarily stern and she raised a disapproving eyebrow before handing him the other Wonka bar.

"Thank you. And I do apologize for the inconvenience but I just can't miss one of Willy's wonderful candies. And I can't really be seen out buying sweets either…"

Neiko's face broke into a fresh grin.

"No worries," she said. "I can take the heat. Besides, it's good to see you taking an interest in your son's career. It's just too bad there's no one to tell him about it."

"Yes…" he agreed regretfully. "It is too bad. I bet he would just love to see what he has reduced me to!" He sighed. "Oh well."

"Tell you what. If I ever do see him, I'll let him know."

Neiko hated to see the old man look so sad. Her promise was genuine but she doubted she would ever meet his remarkably eccentric and reclusive son. She would have loved to though. Oh the stories she'd heard! She often dreamed of meeting the man behind those marvelous chocolates, knowing him and bringing him home to the father who missed him so. Some things, though, were just not meant to be.

Dr. Wonka smiled. "You do that. It would be nice to see him again…even just one more time." He paused. "Would you like something to eat? Dinner is nearly ready."

For this, Neiko fell back on her usual excuse of having 'some things to take care of.' She was quite fond of the old man but he just could not be trusted not to try and wheedle her in to an early dental checkup. She supposed he had gotten better about it since Willy had run off, at least those who had known him back then thought so, but he was and would always be, hopelessly married to his work. And, as a dentist, he still thoroughly spooked her.

Therefore, after a few more minutes and a warm goodbye, Neiko was back out in the chilly autumn night and on her way home.


Authors Notes:

-Neiko is roughly 10 years younger than Willy. They have never met.

-This story doesn't have an exact time but I figure it runs between the time the factory reopened, sans workers, and at least 5 years before the Golden Ticket fiasco.

-This story is AU. It will NOT lead up to the Golden Ticket incident because I enjoy writing romance and happy endings and the fact that he is still alone in the factory when the kids show up bodes well for neither. Charlie will just have to sit home and deal with it.

P.S. -Do you love my Dr. Wonka? I love my Dr. Wonka!


So there's chapter one. I hope you enjoyed it. I posted it to see if it was worth continuing so please review and tell me what you thought. Constructive criticism is welcome but flamers will be sent to eat green caterpillars in Loompaland. :-p