Author's Note: I don't know where these ideas come from but ignoring them has the most unpleasant side effects…

Disclaimer: I own none of the Phantom characters and am making no profit from this story.

It was perfect; flawless in its precision and brilliant in its effectiveness. The fool had marched straight into my trap and with a quick yank on the cord, had fallen in a disgusting lump onto the bed. So easy, a broken neck, such a clean and effortless death. No need to coat my hands in the red stain of spilt life. No need to exert myself or deal with unpleasant bulky weaponry or suspicious and expensive poisons.

A near silent gasp alerted me to another's presence behind me. Turning slowly I delighted in the look of shock and horror I saw. He knew what I had done; he knew why I had done it. My only witness and he would never be able to tell. I would make sure of that. We stared at one another, an uncertain and deadly game playing between us in the shadows.

It was the pure voice of Christine, floating through the listening silence of the opera house that broke the spell over us. His eyes burned, a white-hot fire of golden fury. He had planned this too long, fought for it too hard to give in now. He stepped forth at his cue, stepped into the brilliant lights of the stage, for the first time. The last time.

Glancing one last time at the stiffing corpse of Piangi, I could not help but smile. The Phantom, who even now poured out his love in song onstage to an unknowing audience, would be blamed for his spectacular death, while his innocent creation, Christine, would be ruined in the scandal of her involvement with the fiend. Soon, after all the fuss had died down, things would return once more to the normal buzzing hum of life in the opera house. Patrons would return, money would flow and the good times would run wild again, all from the death of one fat tenor.

It was the least I could do for my art. After all, I am the Diva.