Decipher

A/N: Ok, I seriously need to do something about this writer's block of mine, so I'm forcing myself to write something now so I finally do something useful again, I've just been hanging around the last few days… So I decided to do a one-shot which is something I rarely do. But I hope you enjoy it.

Time: Set in the unchanged future (about 2 years before Chris goes to the past)

Disclaimer: I can barely believe that this is my 9th Charmed Fanfiction, but what's even harder to believe, is that this still doesn't make me own it. Sorry to disappoint anyone who believed otherwise.

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Chris didn't like the Underworld. It was plain creepy and even though everyone used to believe hell was hot, he always had the impression, that it was always a little bit colder down here than in the mortal realm.

He barely was to the underworld, but it still he knew quite a lot about it, especially about the part where he was now. It was a giant part of the demonic plane. To be more specific he was currently a visitor to his brother's lair.

He had once heard that it made up more than half of the entire Underworld. He wasn't entirely certain whether that figure was accurate or not, but he could definitely not deny that the complex was huge.

His older brother had a way to show his own greatness with this. None of the structures that he now called his own had existed before he had taken over control. All of them were built exactly to his orders, and nothing was used which had previously existed.

There were huge halls and long winded corridors. There was a torch every 5.34 meters in a standard corridor, which Wyatt had calculated to be the distance were the ideal amount of lighting could be achieved using a specific kind of torch. And it was indeed very well planned. The torches that were used weren't burning very bright and the shadows that figures passing by caused had a threatening and intimidating look to them.

Still the most amazing part of all this were the walls. They were full of inscriptions in ancient runes of a long lost language. The signs were thoroughly beautiful, but no one knew what they meant. Except for Wyatt. He had discovered them years ago and had spent a great deal of time in deciphering them. He was the only one that had ever managed to do so. After he had succeeded in this he had written a very long text in that language and ordered his demons to write it on all the walls of the lair when he had built it. The signs were another subtle way of his to show how much better he was in every aspect of his life than everyone else.

But Chris wasn't here to admire the interior, no matter how impressing it was. No, he was here to do the most stupid thing imaginable.

He was here to attempt to kill Wyatt. And he didn't stand any bit of a chance. He knew that exactly but still he was going anyway. He did it because he had no other options.

The members of the Resistance were very persistent. They had the opinion that if Chris didn't go out now, he would never again get the chance to stop Wyatt. The young whitelighter had absolutely no idea how he was supposed to make it now, or even why he of all people should be the one to try something like that. But lately the pressure the others had put him under had become too much, so he had reluctantly agreed to try it. Even though he was very well aware of the fact, that he could just as well jump off a cliff and get the exact same result as he was going to receive now.

Chris was realistic. That was all there was to explain it. He clutched the athame he held in his hand and had to stop himself from laughing. He was going up against the Lord of Darkness and everything he had was an athame. He saw no way this situation could get any more ridiculous.

He took a deep breath and tried to steady himself. It wasn't really as funny as it sounded. Truth to be told, he was desperate. And he had no options were to turn whatsoever. He felt like a hamster in a wheel, running and running to no avail. He had once said so to someone whose name he had forgotten and that person had told him, that a hamster in a wheel could create a lot of electricity. As if that was making a difference.

He fiddled in his pocket and retrieved a piece of paper he had been carrying. It was a plan of Wyatt's lair. The complex really deserved that designation. It was made up of thousands of tunnels that looked exactly the same, apart from the fact that the writing on the walls was a different one. And this didn't really help either, since to someone who did not understand these signs i.e. everyone except for Wyatt, all the symbols looked exactly the same.

Chris checked whether he was on the right route and then put the plan back to where he had gotten it from. Maybe it was better to concentrate on what he was doing instead of why he was doing it. It was all pointless anyway.

He arrived at a crossroad and checked whether there was anyone around, and then went on. Some meters after this he arrived at a door, which led to a room that, according to his plan he had to cross. He pushed the heavy door open and was startled when he was greeted by a lot of cold air hitting him in the face.

He entered the room and was just about to cross it without any second thought when he realized that this was not just any room.

It was the "showroom".

That didn't sound very bad, but its name could be misleading.

This place showed in all its horrible detail how truly sick and twisted his older brother really was. It full of boxes which were made of glass and illuminated an unearthly light from the inside. They looked somehow creepy and unsettling, but they were comforting and nice compared to their contents. In them were bodies of all kinds in all positions.

All of them dead.

Some looked like they were asleep and peaceful, others were standing and seemed to be struggling against some invisible force, but it didn't change the fact that there was no life in here. The ruler of evil had put all of these poor souls under a spell, which conserved their bodies in the state that they were in at that particular moment. Whoever was hit with it was immediately dead, but their bodies would never decompose. "Like Egyptian mummies, only better looking and longer holding", were the words Wyatt had used to describe when he had shown this room to Chris for the first time.

That time Chris had run out almost immediately and thrown up. Facing the contents of his stomach had been far easier than facing all these haunting eyes staring back at him.

Only this time he had no choice but to cross this room. Wyatt's lair was heavily shielded, but on some places the shield was lower and could be crossed. It was no coincidence that the surroundings of this room belonged to these areas. Wyatt knew how horrible this was to most people and with this he gave them a clear message of who they were facing when they came here. And that he was not afraid of getting rid of intruders with whatever means necessary.

Chris absolutely didn't want to be here, but still he began to make his way through the large hall. He tried to focus on the floor and to not look at the corpses standing and lying everywhere around him, but it was hard not to notice all these bodies.

He couldn't keep himself from noticing a woman standing in the middle of the room, who had apparently been stabbed right before being put here. She was holding a hand to her stomach which was covered in blood and some drops of blood were floating in the air, frozen as if it were some obscene photograph. The blood would never dry, but never flow again either. The thought made Chris shudder.

He fastened his steps and hurried to the opposite door, but while he was going there he struggled to push an image out of his mind that had just shown up there. Himself in one of the boxes.

He couldn't find any words strong enough to describe the relief he was feeling when he could finally grab the doorknob and push it open. He hurried through it and pushed it shut immediately after he was through. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath while he tried to steady himself again.

"I've been expecting you", he heard a cold voice say from the other side of the room he had just entered.

Startled he opened his eyes and looked at his brother who was sitting next to a coffee table which had never been in this room before. Chris didn't know what to do or say now, because he had expected Wyatt to be in an entirely different room.

Yet he tried not to make known how confused her was and asked something else, "Have you?"

Both of them knew that this question was completely unnecessary, since Wyatt was a telepath and could also look into the future in a lot more sophisticated way than their aunt used to be able to. He could actively control when he wanted to see something and concerning what matter he saw something. Surprising the twice blessed witch anyhow was close to impossible.

"Yes. And I have to say, I'm not so fond of that plan of yours", Wyatt replied calmly.

"Neither am I, but it's the best I've got", Chris said without displaying any emotions. What was there to say, anyway? Both of them knew that what he was doing was entirely pointless, but it didn't matter much.

"Well, if that's the best you've got that does not make the Rebellion appear pretty incompetent", his brother stated.

"We prefer to call ourselves 'Resistance'", Chris corrected, well aware of the fact that it made no difference whether they called themselves "Resistance" or "Flying green Easter bunnies".

Wyatt just shrugged it off. "Want some tea?", he asked, pointing to a can that was standing on the table.

"No, I don't like tea", Chris answered while he was beginning to feel a little weird. Why the hell was he talking about tea to the person he had come to assassinate?

"Coffee instead?", Wyatt offered and orbed a new pot next to the already existent one.

Chris was just about to decline that as well when he realized that this was not really something of importance. "Why are we talking about tea?", he asked instead, since that seemed very odd.

"Well we aren't, we're talking about coffee now", Wyatt answered with something on his face that could be interpreted as an attempt to smile.

Chris just rolled his eyes at this. Why did his older brother have that talent to always get around answering questions?

Wyatt saw his brother's reaction and decided to stop fooling around. Or at least fool a little less. "I was just thinking, since you're not going to do what you came here for anyway we could just as well spend our time doing something useful", he explained.

"What makes you think I won't?", Chris asked provocatively. He knew his behavior was stupid, but on some weird level he was enjoying his conversation with Wyatt.

"I know you too well, and besides this poor little athame is not going to be a real threat, you know?", Wyatt told his younger sibling.

"True", Chris said and looked at the athame he was still holding with a frown. "But since you've already won this fight before it started, why don't you just get it over with?", he asked and couldn't help but seeing the image of himself in one of those glass walled coffins again, that were just meters away.

"Ew, what are you thinking?", Wyatt asked in a disgusted tone, having clearly read his younger brother's mind.

"That's what's going to happen after all, isn't it?", Chris said in an icy voice that amazed himself. Since when was he so cool when facing the source of all evil? Well, today he wasn't really up to everything anyway.

"I wouldn't put you in one of these things, I know how you feel about them", Wyatt defended himself. He tried not to show how shocked he was that Chris thought this bad about him. He wasn't so much of a monster now, was he?

"If you care so much about other person's feelings, what do you think these people feel about their current situation?", Chris asked with a wave towards the wall that was shielding the poor people out there from view.

Wyatt just rolled his eyes. He was not going to have a discussion about what he could have as a hobby and what not. It was his life, not Chris' to meddle with.

Both of them stayed quiet for a while until the older man broke the silence. "My offer still stands you know?", he stated cryptically.

Chris knew exactly what Wyatt was talking about. The offer to join him and be one of Wyatt's highest ranking followers. That was an option Chris would not take no matter what the circumstances were. He still had that much integrity left and he knew that everyone that mattered to him would hate him for that. "We've had this discussion", he simply said.

"Quite lively discussion", Wyatt agreed. Both of them were remembering the time when Wyatt had offered this to Chris very well. It had resulted in both of them flying across the room for a pretty long time and the two of them had never had a fight as severe before.

"So, do you kill me now?", Chris asked with a unconcerned voice as if he was talking about a leave falling off a tree in autumn. What was wrong with him today? He couldn't answer that question, but his own behavior was somehow scaring him.

"No", Wyatt said without looking up. He had to admit that he had no idea what to do now, actually. Chris had put him in a rather uncomfortable position and he didn't yet know how to get out of it. One thing was out of the question, he couldn't kill him. He doubted he would ever be able to look at himself in the mirror again if he hurt his baby brother. That was just a thing he could not, and would never do, no matter what the younger man thought about it.

Chris on the other was pretty confused. He had actually not really believed he would even meet Wyatt, but rather be killed by some of his followers on the way. And this entire conversation they were having seemed to be leading in a situation that neither of them knew a way out of.

So Chris decided to do something else now. Smalltalk. He pointed to the wall which was covered in the weird script that was present everywhere in the complex. "How did you decipher all this jibberish anyway?"

Wyatt smiled, grateful for the change of topic and explained, "It's magical. It chooses those who can read and write it on its own. It depends on power but also on the personality of the reader. And even on their heritage. Demons can never read it. That's why I can write everything in this and they'll never know what it means. Not that it matters anyway, I didn't write any big secrets on these walls."

"You know, this stuff makes all the caves look as if they were Egyptian or something", Chris remarked and kept on looking at the symbols. Together with the color of the walls and the flicker of the torches it looked exactly like the inside of a pyramid.

"That's the idea. I admire the ancient Pharaos. Not because their people were so smart and their culture was so advanced very early on, but because they made something that lasted. And I'm going to make something lasting, too. That's my goal", Wyatt explained. Chris could practically see the glimmer of pride in his brother's eyes. This seemed to mean a lot to Wyatt. Not only that he wanted to do something lasting, but also that he was a chosen one to read and write this language.

He sighed and changed the topic. "There's something I'd like to know. If you really did have the power to kill me, would you do it?"

Chris was startled by this question. He had never really thought about what he would do if he had the power, since that was not the case. Yet, he didn't hesitate to answer at once. "Of course, that's what I'm here for." But both brothers knew exactly that this was a lie.

"What do we do now?", Wyatt asked, not interrogating further on the previous topic.

"I don't know", Chris said honestly.

"I could hurt you a little, and you orb back to your friends, pretending we had a big battle and you barely escaped with your life. How does that sound?", Wyatt offered.

Chris knew this was stupid, but it sounded pretty good, better than anything he would've thought off, so he reluctantly agreed. "Ok"

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In the evening Chris was wondering about Wyatt's definition of "hurting you a little". He could barely sit and felt really like hell, but still he had to be grateful. He hadn't killed him, and the others at the Resistance had believed the story Wyatt had made up. They were a little disappointed, but Chris didn't care. It was their own fault if they set up impossible tasks for him to do.

Now he was alone in his room and sitting on the bed. He knew that he was lucky, and it was good, that this had ended well, still his entire conversation with Wyatt felt surreal. How could the two of them just have a talk like this as if everything was ok? And why had he enjoyed talking to his brother again?

He looked out of the window and sighed sadly. How he missed the times when they had been real brothers, standing on the same side. Their previous interaction only brought back to his mind how well it had been between the two of them and this was making him sad. Couldn't Wyatt be saved from evil somehow?

His thoughts were interrupted, when he saw a piece of paper being orbed in. He looked at it confusedly and then read the text. "Sweet dreams little brother. Wyatt." This was weird enough but after a second he realized that this was even weirder than he thought. It was written in the same language that was written all over the walls of Wyatt's lair.

Then why the hell could he read it? He remembered what Wyatt had said back in his lair. "It chooses who can read it on its own"

So he was one of these people after all. But then he thought about the content of the message. Maybe there was still hope for Wyatt…

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A/N: So please tell me what you think!