Disclaimer: I tried kidnapping Willy Wonka, but Tim Burton's goons got to me before I could get to him…

AN: Yes, I am trying to write my own Wonka fic, diverting from the co-written story I've been working on called "Frozen Chocolate Can Still Melt" and going with my own idea. If my partner's doing her own fic, why can't I? I promise "Frozen Chocolate" will still be worked on, so don't worry! Anyway, please review and let me know how this chapter is. It's sort of an AU (alternate universe), but with the movie still interwoven into it, towards the end. Please let me know how this is!

Chapter 1: After the Factory:

It was two weeks after an extremely shocked Willy Wonka had left a gaping hole in the Bucket's roof, and things were just starting to look both normal and up for the family. Mr. Bucket had gotten a better job, the roof was repaired, and there was now more (and better!) food on the table at dinner. Everything was going quite perfectly, until…

KNOCK! KNOCK!

The entire family stopped everything they were doing and looked at one another. Who could it be at their door? It was Saturday, and everyone would be in town shopping or out at the theater except for the Buckets, who always stayed home and basked in the presence of their loving family. Mr. Bucket shrugged at his wife and stood up to answer the door. Mrs. Bucket merely went back to preparing dinner while Charlie got help with his homework from his three sane grandparents, Grandma Georgina imputing any silly little ideas that suddenly popped into her head. Mr. Bucket smiled at the homey sight and opened the door.

Standing on the outside of the rather slanted doorway was a young woman, wavy brown hair whipping into her eyes from the winter wind. Deep brown eyes stared at him, but it was a shy stare, one that made the person receiving it smile kindly at the owner of said brown eyes. She was well-dressed in a black trench coat, black leather boots with a modest heel, and what appeared to be an ankle-length red dress.

"I'm sorry to be bothering you today, but is this the Bucket residence?" she asked, her voice soft and polite.

"Yes, it is," Mr. Bucket replied. "How can we help you?"

"Well, you see, sir, I'm trying to find a Charlie Bucket," the young woman said, looking around his shoulder. "I have something I need to give him."

Eyebrows quirked all around the family, the adults suddenly very suspicious of the person at the door. Ever since the whole Golden Ticket incident, there had been people pouring out of the woodwork, all trying to find out about the mysterious Wonka factory. The other four children had already signed book, television, radio, and movie deals to talk about their tour, but the one that people wanted the most was Charlie's voice, since he had been the one in Mr. Wonka's presence the longest. He had, of course, refused any and all offers, but that really didn't keep the persistent ones away.

Mr. Bucket imposed himself between the woman and her view of his son. "What, exactly, do you have for my son?" he asked, eyes lightly narrowed.

"My name is Astra, and I mean you and your family no harm," she said. "I'm not here to exploit him or get any sort of information from him. I simply want to apologize to him."

"Apologize for what?" Charlie quipped up, now standing beside his father to try and get a look at the stranger at the front door.

Astra smiled at the small boy. "Well, technically I'm apologizing for another person. My husband, to be exact. I know that it's wrong to try and patch things up for other people, but I feel that you deserve it either way."

Charlie blinked at her, something slowly nagging him in the back of his mind. "Who's your husband?" he asked, tilting his head to the side.

"Can we continue this inside?" interrupted Grandpa Joe, quickly shuffling to the door. "It's rude to keep the poor lady in the cold, and it is the middle of winter."

Astra was quickly hurried inside, put into a comfortable chair and handed a cup of hot tea. After being introduced to everyone (even Grandma Georgina, who stated that she liked blue starfish), she managed to get a few sips of tea in before being questioned again.

"So, why are you apologizing for your husband?" asked Mrs. Bucket.

"Is he one of those reporters or something that's been bothering our Charlie?" pressed Grandpa George. "Because if he is, then you can tell him to-"

"Dad!" interrupted Mr. Bucket. He turned towards Astra. "Now, why exactly can't your husband apologize himself? Why send you to do it for him?"

"I understand you being a bit suspicious of me, sirs and madams, but I assure you that I'm only here to explain my husband's behaviors and actions to your son and your family," Astra replied, brown eyes turning sad. "I particularly feel that your Charlie is a very special boy, being the only boy my Willy found worthy out of the entire world's population of children."

The room went quiet. All of the Buckets stared at the young woman, realization dawning on them.

"So your husband is…" Grandpa Joe trailed off.

"Yes," Astra replied, giving them all a small smile. "My husband is Willy Wonka."


AN: Please review and let me know if I should keep going or not!