Night of the Living Out of Character People

A New Erik

A.N.: This is in honor of the fact I accidentally bought the anti-Christ last night and can't return it. I might ceremonially burn it later. If you don't know what the anti-Christ is, you're about to find out. And I'm not even exaggerating any of this stuff.

The entire de Changy family had been outside in the front lawn, happily playing – well, Christine and Augustine were. Raoul was glaring balefully at the people in his back garden – when something utterly extraordinary happened.

At least, it would have been if it hadn't already happened once before.

It was that self same second sparkly fairy. "Hello!" she cried gaily, and all of the original, in character people glared absolute daggers at her. Unflinching, she went on happily. "I realized I made a terrible mistake yesterday!"

Raoul, Christine, and Erik scarcely dared to hope.

"I forgot one of the friends I was supposed to bring you!" The cry of anguish that followed has remained unparalleled in the whole of human history. With a tap of her wand, a third Erik appeared, bearing a strangely decorative mask, a book and a sword. "It's the Yeston Kopit Phantom!" (A.N.: And I paid money for it. I want to kill myself).

"Hello," he said shyly before becoming ecstatic at the sight of Smutstine waving at him.

"Who the duce are you?" demanded Raoul, flabbergasted. "Listen," he demanded of the fairy, "they're already ruining my garden. I can't have another one here!"

"Too bad!" she said, still smiling. "Because he's here to stay to love you forever and ever!"

"Oh no…" moaned Erik.

"My name's Erik," the third Phantom said. "I like poetry and picnics! And I have a sword."

Erik stared at him. "I hate swords, they're for pansies. I like my Punjab lasso."

"I like swords," Serik sniffed.

"Who asked you, you fruit cake?"

"Erik, mind you manners!" Christine declared. "He's a new guest."

Erik was very unrepentant, and a drunk and jealous Rodney was growling at the new arrival who was trying to flirt with Smutstine. "I don't care if he's the Queen of Sheba, he's not getting my name!"

The third addition seemed rather confused. "But it's my name."

"No, it's mine, and if the Leroux estate knew how ghastly you were you wouldn't even be here. No, no, you're getting re-named. Instantly."

"I want to name him!" declared little Augustine sweetly. "And I shall keep him as my pet."

Raoul put a hand on his boy's shoulder and shook his head. "I'm afraid not, son. If you're good, I'll get you a puppy for Christmas instead."

Augustine thought this over carefully. "Puppies are better," he agreed with a nod of his head.

"Well," the Yeston Kopit Phantom said, "that's hurtful." He didn't have much more time for anything else as Smutstine was trying desperately to get him flirting again.

"We shall call you…Well, Yeston Kopit, I suppose. It's the closest thing to a name you'll get."

"But my name's E-" he began to protest, but the real, unsullied, pure Erik was drawing out his Punjab lasso. It didn't seem worth the argument.

"All bets are off now, Christine," Raoul declared with yarn wrapped around his fist, sitting perfectly still as his wife knitted. "This new arrival completely changes everything. No, I'm absolutely getting my naval pistols, and I'm taking them all to the back of the house one by one, and that will be the end of it."

Christine pursed her lips and didn't give him a very hard look, but it was certainly enough to make him wither. "No you will not."

"…Whatever you say, dear."

"Good. Now-"

"Mommy," Augustine piped in, tugging with a precious manner on her sleeve.

"Yes, sugar lump?"

"My pony is lonely!"

"It is? Have daddy give it a kiss, that'll fix it up."

This clearly was not what the child was aiming for, but he dutifully had his father kiss the toy horse. "That didn't do it, he's still lonely!"

"Well," sighed Raoul. "I could always give you a kiss, would that help?"

Augustine put his forehead out and the father kissed it, but it still wasn't enough. "He wants to have a baby brother."

Raoul and Christine looked at each other. At least Augustine wasn't asking for one.

"Pray tell, my little Augustine," Christine asked, "where would we get your pony a brother?"

Augustine's blue eyes turned desirous, and Raoul sighed, giving in. "He just wants a trip to the toy shop. Alright, he's been good with all the confusion going on, I'll take him."

"That's an excellent idea, love!" praised Christine. "Maybe you can find some creative traps while you're out."

Raoul sighed and shook his head as he untangled himself from the yarn, picked up his son, and was on his way.

As providence would have it, Augustine's eyes also caught a model train set, but Raoul dismissed that as possibly a birthday present; they were here to keep his pony from getting lonely, after all.

"But trains are so much neater than ponies, daddy," the child protested. "Wouldn't it be fun to get on one and never stop, just to see where we'd end up?"

"Yes, Augustine, I think it-" Raoul stopped dead in his tracks, wheeling to face his boy. The wheels in his head were turning like mad, and in an instant he'd tossed his son into the air and caught him gleefully. "You beautiful, beautiful boy! You're an absolute genius! I don't know why I didn't think of it myself!"

Augustine wasn't sure what he'd done or what a genius was, but it seemed like a good opportunity anyway.

"Does this mean I can have the train set?"

Raoul did, indeed, buy him the train set. But what was he plotting? The reader will find out in the next chapter, The Phantom of the Opera Strikes Back!