Disclaimer: I do not own Phantom of the Opera or Erik (Although I wish I owned Erik. LOL)

This story takes place 2 years after the fire.

The new manager had bought it cheap... too cheap. The opera house had been restored as good as new, and rehearsals for the grand reopening was well underway.

Home Is Where the Hurt Is

Chapter 1 Beginnings

"Papa, is this our new home?" 19 year old Corrine asked excitedly.

"For the time being princess. We will live here until we find a proper home nearby that's available to buy," her father replied.

"It's almost like a castle isn't it mother?"Corrine said as she turned toward her mother.

"Corrine, dear please take 'it' out of the carriage. You know I can't stand the sight of it," her mother said disgustedly.

"Mother, his name is Alec, NOT it," Corrine said as she helped her 5 year old brother out of the carriage and placed him on her hip.

"Don't listen to mother, Alec. You're not an it," Corrine whispered into the boy's ear.

Her thoughts went back to the day her brother was born.

5 years earlier

"What's taking so long? Mama's been in there an awful long time. I hope everything's okay," Corrine thought to herself as she nervously paced the floor.

"Corrine, you've been pacing the floor for the past 2 hours, please sit down. You're making me nervous," Her father stated as he shifted in his chair.

She stopped her pacing and sat down by her father. Just as she sat, that's when she heard it... A baby cry.

"It's here. I'm finally a big sister," Corrine said as she jumped out of the chair.

The door opened and the doctor walked out. He smiled warmly.

"It's a boy. Baby and mother are doing fine."

Her father jumped out of his chair and ran into the room.

"Excited fathers, I see them everyday," the doctor said chuckling.

Then he noticed the girl trying to look past the doctor, and into the room.

"Well, now, you must be the big sister. You must be excited."

"Yes, I was hoping for a brother. I didn't want a sister."

"Oh? And why's that?" the doctor asked

"If I had a sister, then she'd want my dolls and things, and we'd have to share a room. With a brother, I don't have to share my things."

The doctor chuckled at the girl.

"I must go. Tell your mother that I will come back tomorrow to check up on them," he said as he patted the girl's head and walked out of the house.

After he was gone, Corrine stood up and walked to the bedroom. She stopped short when she heard her mother's voice.

"Richard, we can't keep this baby. Look at him. He'll frighten everyone that sees him. He's a freak and I can't stand the sight of him."

Corrine felt her blood run cold. She went into the room, and saw her brother laying in the cradle crying.

"Mama, the baby's crying," Corrine said as she tried to calm down.

"I'm not going to take care of him. He's a hideous monster. No, I think it would be best to let him die, or put him in an institution."

Corrine was shocked to hear her mother talking like that. She ran over and quickly picked her brother up.

"I won't let you. If you put my brother in an institution or let him die, I'll hate you forever. He's MY brother and I will take care of him,"

"Corrie, dear, please understand. What kind of life could he possibly have?" Her father said quietly as he placed his hand on the girl's shoulder.

"I won't let you put him away like a criminal. He's only an innocent baby, what is his crime?"Corrine said with tears flowing down her face.

"Fine then, if that's the way you see it. It's all yours. Don't expect me to do anything to help you out," her mother said angrily.

Corrine walked over and picked up her brother. As if he could sense what had just happened, he automatically stopped crying. Corrine carried her brother into her room, and sat down on the bed. That was when she finally got a really good look at him.

"Your top lip isn't right, but that's not your fault. It's not like you got to choose that. It's not fair that mother and papa treat you like you're not even human. Just because ou have a cleft lip doesn't mean they can pretend that you don't exist," Corrine quietly whispered to her brother.

The baby kept his eyes on Corrine the whole time she was talking.

"Don't worry, I'll always be here to take care of you. However, you do need a name don't you? I know mama and papa won't give you one, so I guess I get to name you. Let's see, how about Louis?"

The baby screwed up his face to cry.

"Okay, okay. You're right, I don't like it either," Corrine said as she rocked her brother.

"How about Alec?"

Corrine and her brother locked eyes.

"Was that a smile?" Corrine asked her brother.

"Okay, then. Alec it is."