Disclaimer: See first chapter.
Thank you to everyone who reviewed the first chapter.
This is the final part. Sorry I kept you all waiting; let me know what you think.
The rain pattered down with no release. Piper's long hair was drenched, dripping onto her already soaked brown top; she shivered without any other layers, while the rain drops on her face were mixed in with the salty tears still pouring as the weather worsened around them. Looming dark clouds seemed only to get bigger as her emotions took control. More and more rain, harder than ever before beat down on her as she knelt over his body, unaware of anything anymore.
His lasts words uttered, had been begging for forgiveness. A revelation as he revealed who he was finally. 'Mom' the words he had mumbled that she had shooed away as nothing more than confusion induced by pain, but they had been so much more.
She had coaxed him, almost patronisingly, as she tried to calm him down, keep him warm as he already wore his own jacket, and his mothers long black coat was drenched atop of him. She had been about to whisper soothing words to him, when he caught her wrist, staring her right in the face, putting as much emphasis on the word as he could, looking her in the eyes, willing her to understand, to realize and to know once and for all.
A hand had gone to her stomach as she felt something more suddenly, a bond re-opened that had been closed and shut away for so long. His breathing had hitched and a small trickle of blood had escaped his pale pink lips, seeming almost purple as the cold continued to beat them down, as his breathing became shallower and the world became nothing more than a dreary mist around him, the only thing he could make out was his wet mother, crying, weeping from the words he had uttered, and his now, fatal condition.
How he wished he could take them back. For her to only watch a stranger die and not her own son. How he longed to only comfort her as the burden of his own existence pressed down upon her shoulders.
He had lifted himself up as much as he could, to lean in so close that they're noses almost touched. He looked her straight in the eyes, with his father's eyes, glowing jade green with acceptance. He smiled at her, in the way that only a child could do, a smile that makes all others around you smile, just because that one innocent boy smiled. A smile being the last thing he ever thought of doing. His mind raced with last minute concerns.
Who would save Wyatt?
Who would save the world?
And he looked forward and found his answer.
Mom would, mom will make it better. Mom always does. When I'm sad she makes me happy, and when I'm ill she takes care of me. Mom will make it better. And he felt the release as a soft kiss was planted on his forehead. Closing his eyes. He slept, untroubled, and without pain. The ghost of a smile, still present on his pale lips. Echoing inside of Piper's mind.
Piper swallowed the lump in her throat and banished the sob trying to escape her. Only silent tears continued to fall down her face, more and more as she continued to stare at him.
"Chris." She whispered his name her words too soft for any one to hear, and they were carried away with the leaves of October as the breeze became a sharp wind, howling around her amongst the rain. She felt more tears as the thoughts raced around her head, as she could see his body in the corner of her eyes, but instead, her hand rested on her stomach. On her son, that was barely a speck of anything, but she had seen him. She had felt him and she had held him as he died.
She carefully pulled him as gently as she could into the parlour, her small frame not allowing her to do any more. She ignored his blue-tinged lips, choosing instead to grab a pillow and lift his head up slowly for him to lie on it, as though she were in denial, as though she thought it might make him more comfortable. Though it were much too late to be doing so. Tossing a blanket over his frame, on top of the black coat she had already put on top of him, as though she were tucking in a small child. In a way she was, minus the small part.
She took one last look, before running up the attic as fast as possible. Thoughts of Leo promptly forgotten.
"Piper?" Grams' voice came to her from inside of the circle of candles. She was more than concerned to see her grand-daughter drenched with her hair dripping, her face red, and the agony of loss shining through her eyes.
"No, no, you will not stop me from seeing him!"
Penny Halliwell stepped forward suddenly, making way for another spirit to follow after her. "Piper?" She heard her mother call, and as glad as she was to be surrounded by those who might understand, she didn't want them. She stepped backwards. Screaming. "No! I don't care if I'm not ready! You will let me see him NOW!"
"See who, Piper? What's wrong? What's happened?" Both were more than confused. Piper had said about not being ready, something that they had told her regarding Prue's death, but she had quite clearly said him. And the only him's around her were alive, or at least, on earth.
Wyatt's own screams out-did his mothers but Piper ignored him, unable to handle another child, when she had found another only to have lost him so suddenly. Grams looked between her daughter and grand-daughter and quickly exited the attic, heading for the nursery all the while calling out for her youngest grandchild. "Paige!"
"Honey? Please, tell me what's wrong."
Piper looked up at her. "I just want to see him, please, let me see my baby."
"He's in the nursery Piper, come on." Patty spoke softly, with a gentle tone.
"No, not-not Wyatt." She was sobbing, and the words were barely heard, but the non-living mother, heard them clearly. She didn't say anything, simply looked at her daughter, waiting.
"I didn't know. I have to see him, please."
"See who, Piper?" Her voice was firmer; she needed an answer if she was ever to help her child's pain.
"Chris." She cried, and more tears following, a choked sound let out, as she buried herself in the comfort of Patricia Halliwell's shoulder.
"Grams?" Paige asked confused as she finally gave in and orbed to the nursery, and saw her grandmother consoling a very red-in-the-face Wyatt. Penny took in her daughter's appearance and quickly discerned that the girl had been out. "What are you doing here?" She asked, her lips curving into a smile all the same. But Grams did not return the grin. "Can you get Phoebe for me? Piper's very upset."
"Uh sure, I'll go get her." Paige said orbing out once more in search of her older sister.
Grams turned back to her great-grandchild. "What's up with your mom, huh, kiddo?" She said, bouncing the child, calming him down until he giggled slightly.
"Piper, you're not making any sense, isn't Chris your Whitelighter?"
"An inexperienced one, at that." Grams said, as she too joined the company in the attic, her words stopping Piper's cries suddenly. "Take that back!" She screamed, never one to raise her voice at her grandmother. "God damn it take it back!" She was being restrained by her mother now, though Patty had winced at her mother's lack of tact. Grams was clearly taken aback, but raised the hand that wasn't holding Wyatt in defeat almost like a peace offering.
"So, what's going on?" Paige asked quietly as she orbed herself and her sister into the attic.
"Beats me." Grams muttered, annoyed with her grand-daughter's abrupt outburst directed towards her.
"Oh my god, Piper!" Phoebe rushed forward, no potion strong enough to block the amount of pain raging inside of Piper Halliwell. She embraced her sister, Paige quickly doing the same, while Patty stood back, observing the scene. Piper only cried harder, the thought of explaining seeming so daunting. Patty caught her mother watching her. "She said it had something to do with Chris, she seemed to upset."
Phoebe looked up, still half cradling both sisters.
"Chris?" She echoed, worried. Then louder, calling for him, "Chris!" Nothing, only silence. "CHRIS!"
"He-he can't, he's d-downstairs." Phoebe looked at Piper, and knowing her sister was safe, ran downstairs immediately. Maybe a part of her had expected something to have been wrong, maybe he was injured, or sleeping, but she had never expected this. The crimson stains on the floor of the parlour glared at her, as she knelt down. Her mouth with a silent gasp as it opened in the shape of an 'O' her hand paused halfway between stroking his hair. Tears falling down her face, increasing fast as she dared touch the frozen skin. Her heart skipped a beat.
As did Piper's when she heard her sister calling desperately for Leo from downstairs. The wailing that followed, so akin to Piper's made them shiver. Paige felt the dread, and couldn't help but tense. Piper looked at her for a moment, staring into her eyes, before whispering "You know." And now there was no doubt in Paige's mind that Chris was downstairs, and things were bad. She left her sister in a hurry, concern for her nephew taking the front seat as she raced down.
The images engraved themselves into her mind, as the situation, the scene, and her sisters own sobs brought tears to her eyes as she ran over to them, and crouched down besides Phoebe.
"He's dead." Phoebe said, sounding so lost, and Paige embraced her, both of them crying into each others shoulders.
"He must have told her, before-before." The words died on her lips, but the meaning was caught, and Phoebe nodded in agreement, the two of them having calmed down slightly as they turned away from the body.
"We, we need to be there for Piper, Paige." Phoebe said, looking at her sister. "She-she needs us." And she knew Paige had been thinking the same thing. She didn't orb them, preferring instead to walk sombrely up the stairs. Up the many flights of stairs to the attic.
"Why didn't Leo come?" Was all Piper could ask, as her sisters returned with heavy steps and tear-stained cheeks.
"You called him?" Phoebe had assumed it had already been too late, and that was why he had not arrived when she herself had called him having found Chris. Piper nodded. "He didn't come. He knew it was important, he must have and he just didn't."
"Leo!" Paige cried, looking up.
"Leo!" Phoebe did the same, though Piper it seemed no longer had the energy. She sat herself down on the floor in front of the podium that held the famed Book of Shadows instead. While her sisters, mother and grandmother desperately called for the now full time Elder, though the latter two were not completely informed.
They were all screaming in unison, and Piper sighed, before joining in, and hoisting herself back into a standing position, adding her own words that broke her heart in two.
"LEO!" She cried. "Your son is dead!"
And the orbs rained down as fast as anything, moving forward before fully materializing. Hands appeared on her shoulders as she was pulled at arms length. "What?" The choked voice asked. She ignored him, staring in disbelief.
Leo looked around him, at seeing the other sisters who had clearly been crying, his heart dropped but then he saw Wyatt, his golden child, in his great-grandmother's arms absently playing with the necklace around her neck, something she was clearly unfazed by.
"Piper? What's going on?"
"You bastard!" She cried. "You good for nothing asshole! I hate you! I hate you!" She was beating on his chest, ignoring his surprised cries as he tried to pry her hands, curled into fists, away from his body. The spirits in the room did nothing, knowing better than to interfere.
"Piper! Wyatt's fine!" He cried, confused as ever.
"I know he is! I know Wyatt's fine." She continued to rain blows down on him. Venting her pain.
"Then why, why did you say he was dead?"
"I didn't!" She cried, her hands almost numb. "Go downstairs Leo, go see for yourself!"
Leo was more than taken aback, and grabbed Piper's hand too as he orbed down there. In the living room nothing was out of the ordinary and the same could be said for the hall, but Piper had let go of his hand as though it burned her, as though touching it disgusted her. She walked slowly into the parlour, crumbling half way, and crawling to reach her destination.
Grams turned to her grand-daughters, and though she knew, she knew more than anything that they were hurting, she needed to understand.
"What's going on?" She asked simply and Phoebe sighed, sitting herself down on the worn out sofa in the attic.
"Chris is Piper and Leo's son." She said, not caring for any use of past tense, indeed she knew it would take time for her to do so when it came to talking about him. Grams' stone face didn't change, but inwardly she gasped, while her own daughter brought a hand to her mouth to hide her own exclamation of surprise.
"I found out on a Vision Quest, and we-." She pointed to herself and Paige, "Agreed to help him...exist."
"Piper and Leo needed to, well, you know, so that he could be conceived. And he disappeared for a while, but then he was back." Paige sighed, trying to keep her emotions at bay.
"He knew so much about us, you know? It was so obvious, and when I saw the vision of some kind of beautiful future, and Wyatt had a little brother..." She paused. "When I woke up he was standing over me, with the same eyes, almost the same hair, just asking for help." Her voice had grown quiet, and Paige took her turn to continue.
"We were trying to get him conceived, but when Piper and Leo got sent to the ghostly plane...I guess it was meant to be." She said with a smile. "Piper has to be pregnant, because Chris came back."
"Only to leave again."
"Thanks for saving my life," He had said from his position on the ground. "Hope it wasn't for nothing."
Leo, unbeknownst that his son was the man on the floor, felt as though it were slightly anti-climatic, especially since he had said that he would become a full-time elder. It was obvious that he wouldn't be able to heal everyone anymore, and that was something they would just have to face.
But at the same time, if Leo had come down the first time, then maybe this young man would be alive. He looked at Piper at a loss of what to do. He stayed back, and kept the distance, not wanting to upset her further, he merely watched as she cried harder, tears falling like rivulets down her face as she stroked Chris' cheek. As she gently ran her fingers through his mussed hair.
She kept staring at him intently, searching for something, and by in the increase of her tears she found it, found the familiarity she had wondered about since the first time she had met him but had quickly forgotten it, choosing instead to hate him to follow her husband's suspicions.
How wrong she had been. How wrong Leo had been. But he didn't know, still, he had no idea. Indeed she herself had not known long, but had been plagued by losing him just as suddenly. She knew from Chris' eyes as he told her that he regretted it but if anything Piper was glad. She wasn't a stranger to him, she was his mother, and it consoled her to know that he wasn't alone as he died. That was something a mother cherished.
Leo still hadn't moved. And she could hear footsteps on the stairs. She turned to face him, and he gasped at her eyes. Her glaring eyes filled with fury. "Why didn't you come?"
"Piper, we talked about this, I can't just leave all of the time-."
"You let him die, you just, ignored me!"
She was clutching Chris' lifeless hand that seemed so light, so limp. He looked away, unable to hold her gaze as she spat obscenities in his direction. Insults he knew he deserved.
"What happened?" He asked quietly, but she only shook her head. Chris hadn't had the chance to tell her that much. He tried to bridge the gap between them, but a look from Piper stopped him in his tracks. He couldn't understand why she was so upset. Why she was taking it so personally.
"The last thing he said to me, w-was Mom."
Her words were quiet, but Leo heard them.
"Leo! Your son is dead!"
The denial was swift, but he dare not voice his doubts that slowly turned into assurance. That was what Piper had meant.
Chris, he's, no, he was, my son?
And just like that he was on his knees. Piper didn't need to tell him who the father was. The both knew. They both understood. And they both grieved, while guilt clawed at Leo's heart, as he desperately tried to breathe, the simple motion proving so difficult as the lump of emotion in his throat choked him. He sobbed, and sobbed, and sobbed. And Piper made no move to comfort him. He didn't deserve it, and they both knew. They both understood. And they both grieved, while guilt clawed at Leo's heart.
The rest of the Halliwell women stayed in the doorway, the youngest son having been put to bed, and they were left watching as the parents grieved over Christopher's body.
But it was far from closure when Piper felt the light hand go lighter. She span around in time to see the air change, the doors of the parlour were swept open by the increasing winds outside and fallen leaves fell into the room, some spiralling with the wind at their heels before falling around them, falling to the ground. Rotten, crinkled, and at the end of their life. She stared at her son, ignoring the weather's outburst, and she watched, dismayed as he began to fade away. She tried to claw at his figure, but met only mist. And then the ground, the floor he had lain on. He was gone, and all that remained was the blanket, and her coat, and the pillow his head had rested on. Not even the bloodstains were there, nothing was left.
"No!" She couldn't help cry, and she didn't even try to fight off her husband as he took her in his arms and cradled her. Not searching for forgiveness, simply looking to help her injured soul, though no matter of healing would repair the break of her heart.
I know, he didn't fade straight away, but I didn't want him to...so there...
That's where this is ending I'm afraid.