Rating: M (For drug use, again, not for the kiddies, but there's nothing I can do to stop you. Hell, I was reading and writing porn when I was seven… FEATURING: ERIK THE DRUGGIE!)

Summary: It's nice to be able to cut loose every once and a while. To break free of harsh Reality. Erik has found the key, the cure, but is using it too often. Now he must break free of the cure before it breaks him.

Disclaimer: POTO they tell me, belongs to Leroux, Susan Kay, ALW; but I think it belongs more to the Phans now. So in fact, Phantom belongs to everyone. (Wow, maybe I'm the one getting into the Hobbit Weed…) Or maybe it's this open bottle of nail polish I'm using to cover and art project… Anyhow, the lyrics belong to Robbie Robertson and Capital Records.

A/N: Alright, this might surprise you, but I have never used drugs in my life. So this is merely an… artistic view of what could happen. I mean, I've gotten knackered on the prescribed dose prescription pain meds, and believe me, that was interesting. But opium, not a clue what it's really like, nor do I care to try. Morphine, on the other hand, is good shtuff. I've been on that for back pain. ( : drools : Morphine makes you not care. It makes you love everyone!) Also, I've experienced first hand what an overdose can do to people and the ones around them. And that was an accidental overdose too. So ya.

Universe: Well, I've always had my own thoughts on what POTO would be like. I think the ideal POTO couple is Emmy Rossum and Michael Crawford, but the Great Cosmic Joke is that they are too far apart in age to sing together in anything. ( : sobs : ) I wub MC's voice and ER's as well and lets face, Emmy is just HOT! So, it's MC as Erik, Emmy as Christine, and everyone else is who you want them to be. God I love writing disclaimers…


With eyes of fire.
No one can see.

Erik lit the small amount of opium in the pipe. The sickly sweet odour filled the room and began to cloud his mind, blocking out all the pain and agony he had experienced as of late. All thoughts of Christine became nothing more than an abstract delusion of a woman in white, all luscious curves and inviting smiles.

The smoke from the sweet grass.
Covers me.

Slowly, slowly, the world drifted away and he was being carried away on a wave of drugs and music. It didn't matter that his heart was breaking in more than one sense. It didn't matter that Christine had become so afraid of him, he had to kidnap her to get her to come and see him. It didn't matter that that damn Persian kept nosing about and bothering Erik constantly. It didn't matter that half of his face was that on a daemons.

I am drawn.
I am drawn to her.
Like a moth to a flame.

The female shape his mind had decided was Christine was beckoning to him, leading him into the darkness. He went, willingly.

"Christine…" his voice was rough and harsh to his own impaired hearing. A guttural sound echoing the love and arousal inside him. "Christine…"

She leads me now.

The drugs that Nadir so unwillingly gave to him made him free for a while. Let him float away on his warm wave of music and opium, sometimes morphine for the pain.

He sighed, flopping back on the divan. Through his heavily drugged haze, he knew without Christine he was lost.

I am lost.

If she left…

I am lost.

If she left, he would die. It was as simple as that.

Has anybody seen me?
I am lost.

In the end, he knew she would leave with her Vicomte. There was nothing more he could do about it. The boy loved her. That much was obvious. He'd be forgotten… That's what he wanted… Wasn't it?

Oh nothing is forgotten.
Only left behind.

Forgotten, left behind. It was all the same. The short of it was he would be alone again. Alone… with only the rat's and Ayesha for company. As much as he loved his demonic Siamese cat, she was no substitute for a warm, willing human woman.

Where ever I am.
She leads me now.

Erik got up unsteadily, the drugs effects were wearing off. He had no way of knowing how long he had lay there, engrossed in his drug induced reverie. Stumbling a little, he went to the drawer in his room that held his syringe and morphine.

No borders.
No fences.
No one.

With a numb hand, he withdrew the apparatus and staggered back into the parlor. He sat back down on the couch and set about filling the syringe. Erik wrapped a cord around his upper arm and tapped the inside of his bony arm, trying to find a vein. Eventually, he succeeded and the soothing balm of morphine spread through his body, melding with the previously inhaled opium.

No borders.
No fences.

He was being shaken awake. His whole body felt leaden.

"Erik!" a voice hissed, concern lacing every letter.

Erik moaned, he was dizzy, unbearably so. Something was wrong. Wrong… wrong… wrong… Something' wrong…The words echoed eerily in his mind.

A small hand was on his arm, shaking him desperately.

"Erik! Please wake up!" the voice was frantic.

The Phantom cracked open bloodshot eyes, his mismatched orbs meeting the deep blue ones of a beautiful woman.

"Christine…" he murmured.

"Erik, what did you take? What have you taken in addition to your morphine?" she asked desperately.

He felt like he was falling. He reached out a hand to steady himself but found he was on the ground.

"Erik, answer me!" Christine' voice was shrill, her terror evident in every word she spoke. "Erik, please! You're not well!"

Oh listen for the night chant
Oh listen for the night chant.


Erik… Angel of Music… Phantom… Opera Ghost… Trapdoor Lover… Angel of Death… He had so many names…


Erik. Erik. Erik. Erik. The name echoed in his mind. He shook his head trying to clear the confusion. This proved to be a bad idea. The world spun, if possible, even more. His stomach heaved and there was nothing Erik could do to save his dignity. Nothing came up, of course. That's what happens when one doesn't eat on a regular basis. Blood speckled his shirtsleeve red as he wiped it across his mouth. The world tilted again and the only thing he could focus on was Christine pale, worry pinched face. He felt himself falling again and just before the blackness consumed him, he heard Christine's perfect soprano intone four words that should have sent him into a towering rage, had he the strength.

"Monsieur Nadir! Thank God!"

Like a moth to a flame.
She leads me now.

"Erik? Wake up, my old friend." a thickly accented but irritatingly familiar voice crooned. "Erik, you old fool. How many times have I told you, you must watch out for the drugs you mix."

Erik groaned. His head felt as if the Shah's personal elephant were sitting on it. His mouth was dry and throat sore.

"Why are you here?" Erik snapped.

"Because Mam'selle Daaé required some assistance in looking after you." Nadir said, as if he were speaking to a three year old and not the Phantom of the Opera.

"Christine… Where is she? Is she alright? Has she-"

"She had something to eat. She is taking a nap in her room. You gave her quite a scare."

"Don't speak to me like a child, Nadir. You know I detest it when you do that." Erik warned.

"Then you had better stop behaving like one." Nadir quipped.

Erik had just opened his mouth to retort when a soft voice spoke up from the doorway.

"Erik? Are you feeling better?" Christine perfect soprano asked.

The Phantom struggled to sit up, but Nadir placed a hand on his emaciated chest.

"Lie down, you're ill."

"I'm always ill…" Erik muttered.

Nadir stood and motioned for Christine to come replace him by Erik's bedside.

"How do you feel?" Christine asked when Nadir had left the room and shut the door behind him.

Erik stared at her for a moment, considering what to say. After a while, he replied.

"Terrible." he said. "I'm sorry I scared you."

"I was worried for you."

"I would have been alright."

"Monsieur Khan said you could have died this time."

Erik scowled.

"Had this happened before?" Christine asked bluntly.

"And what if it has?"

"Erik, you have a problem."

"My problem is Nadir."

"Your problem is the drugs."

Student and Maestro stared at one another for a long moment. Neither seemed willing to back down. Finally, Erik's shoulder slumped.

"Christine… You don't understand. The pain… Morphine is the only thing that helps dull it."

"But you didn't just take morphine. Monsieur Khan said-"

Erik sighed exasperatedly. Christine glared at him.

"You must take better care of yourself." She said plainly.

The Phantom struggled to sit up. A momentary flood of adrenaline was washing through him.

"Why? Why must I? You're going to leave me anyway!"

He was left panting with the effort his little outburst had taken. Christine smiled a sad little smile.

"Is that what you think, Erik? That I'll leave you?" she reached out to touch his cheek.

"Yes. You will. You have your Vicomte. Why would you stay with an old monster when you can have a young man, rich and full of life." Erik said bitterly.

No borders.
No fences.

"Erik. I'm not going to leave you." she promised.

Erik's heart swelled. He wished he could believe her. He just couldn't believe and young woman would want to stay with him, after everything he had put her through.

"I want to believe you." he murmured. "But you deserve someone better than me. I… love you. And I want you to be happy."

"What would make me happy, is for you to stop the drugs. They are doing nothing but harm. You need to quit." Christine replied.


"Quit? For me?"

No borders.
No fences.

"Alright. For you." He mumbled.

Christine smiled, then leaned forward and did the last thing he would have expected. She kissed him. Full on the lips. She caressed his cheek and gave him a long look.

"You can do this, Erik. You are strong."

With that she left. Erik was left staring after her in complete and total wonder. He reached up and touched his cheek, tracing the spot her fingers had been. It was then he realized something truly amazing. He had not been wearing his mask.


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