Disclaimer: I never have, nor ever will, own Charmed.
Summary: 'In all my life, I have never seen you take the bait the way that witch took it from you.' Chris' viewpoint on Season 6 episodes.
Chapter 6 – Witchstock part 2
Grams stood in the doorway wearing tie-dyed sixties clothes.
'Oh no. No. no, no. This isn't good at all.' Chris thought as Penny started speaking.
"I think love conquers all. I think that we should take the demon into our arms and make it feel safe." Chris looked towards his father, catching his eye just as Leo looked back.
"Leo, could I talk to you for a second, please?" Chris asked, eyeing his great-grandmother carefully. He racked his brains, examining his own memories to confirm what he already knew.
'They've changed the past.' Dimly, he heard Leo protesting that his brother's name was Wyatt while he thought about the situation.
'Ok, so what happened?' he wondered. Leo made his way over and the two moved out of Penny's earshot, conversing in low voices.
"One of the sisters must have changed the past because Penny clearly never made the change from flower child to demon hunter." He informed his father quietly. They glanced over to where Penny was dancing with Wyatt, half-humming a rendition of "We Shall Not Be Moved" to the blonde toddler. He fought off the memory of his mother singing the same song to the two brothers when they were really young, rationalising that it had never happened. He tried to hold on to his sense of self, realising that if he believed his own memories he could end up just as much of a pacifist as his great-grams clearly was.
"Clearly." Leo commented to Chris' earlier deduction. "Think the girls can fix the timeline and get back here?" Chris noted the slime oozing its way up the back door, obviously attempting to trap them. He stifled the urge to bang his head off the kitchen counter.
'One problem at a time, please! There's a limit to how much multitasking I can do in a day!'
"I don't know. But this thing is trying to back us into a corner." Chris told Leo, re-alerting the blonde man to the fact that the past wasn't their only problem. He quickly came up with a solution, praying that it would work. "Take Wyatt and Joan Baez here into the conservatory. I'll get what we need to fight it off." Leo nodded, ushering his grandmother-in-law and baby son out of the kitchen. Chris grabbed a blender and went to follow them, trying to avoid the goo coating the door between the two rooms. He headed back and forth with different appliances, stacking them onto the table as Leo plugged them in and Grams kept Wyatt busy. Several times he heard her talking to the baby, telling him that maybe the slime wasn't so bad and should they go to try and comfort it?
"Don't you dare." Leo warned the hippy, plugging an extension cord into the wall. "That's my son you're trying to befriend a demon with." Chris hesitated, the beginnings of a theory stirring in his mind.
'What if this was what happened to my Wyatt? Grams' teaching my mom to love and respect all demons started him in thinking they weren't so bad?' He tried to shake off the thought, reminding himself that this had never really happened in his life. He needed to get back to the job at hand. He headed into the kitchen to retrieve the kettle. Coming back in, he was struck by a sudden irrational thought. Unable to suppress it, he asked Leo curiously
"What do you think about the name Bob?"
"What?" The Elder looked confused.
"For the slime." Chris clarified. "Penny thought it needed a name, and I just thought, what about Bob? Though maybe we should ask it first?" Penny, overhearing, smiled at Chris.
"I think that's a brilliant idea! I'll ask him now!"
"What? Penny, no! Chris, what are you saying?" Leo cried. Chris blinked, shaking his head.
'Crap. This is not good. You've gotta snap yourself out of this, you idiot! Wyatt's in danger, and I'm naming a blob? This memory thing is really getting to me!' He shook his head again.
"Ok, they really need to get back here. Penny's memories aren't the only one changing, my life's gone different too. If they don't sort out the past soon, you're gonna have a pacifist me on your hands. Then we'll be screwed." He told Leo. The Elder looked confused, but nodded. Chris went back into the kitchen to get the coffee-maker.
"Why isn't it attacking?" Leo asked sometime later, as Chris surveyed the mass of kitchen appliances on the table, biting his thumb. "It's like it cornered us and now it's just waiting."
'I think we need the toaster oven.' Chris mused, voicing as much to Leo. The elder grabbed the oven and hauled it over to the table.
"You know, that's a disaster waiting to happen." Grams commented. Chris repressed the urge to agree with her, and another telling him to yell "No duh!"
"That's the idea." He informed Penny. "You saw how the slime reacted to electricity. Well, if we can get it to attack this pile, maybe we can get to zap it." He hypothesised. Leo looked for room on the power board where all the appliances were plugged in.
"If I can find a place to plug it in." he commented.
'Maybe we've got too much?' Chris wondered.
"No offence, you know, but my dear Allen would have taken the path of peaceful resistance. Have you tried talking to the slime?" Penny suggested, obviously still keen on the Bob idea.
"No, I haven't, and you shouldn't either." Leo warned. He turned to Chris.
'Why do I think I know what's coming?'
"But if you're up to some light conversation, maybe you wanna tell me what happens to Wyatt in the future." The Elder said lightly.
'Oh, that's why.'
"Uh, nice try." Chris smirked, refusing to open his mouth for anything other than that. Leo looked annoyed, but turned back to the extension and plugging the toaster oven in.
"Got it." He said triumphantly.
'Cool. That might be enou –' the power went out, leaving them standing in the dark with no protection. Chris could only think of two words for the situation.
"I told you, boys, violence is not the answer to anything." Grams tutted. Chris ignored her, knowing that if he didn't he would probably find himself agreeing with her.
"Where's the fuse box?" he asked his father.
'I wonder if he still remembers. It's not like he's been here a lot lately.' He knew where it was himself, of course. But appearances were everything.
"It's in the basement. Find a flashlight in the laundry room." Leo informed him, and Chris was only mildly disappointed that he hadn't forgotten.
'Maybe the air up there isn't lacking in too much oxygen after all.' He left the dining room to grab a flashlight from the laundry room.
'Right where it always is.' He opened the door to the basement slowly and cautiously stood at the top, pointing the flashlight downwards.
'Crap. Why can't life ever be easy?' he thought as he surveyed the sea of emerald sludge at the bottom of the stairs.
"Leo!" he shouted, dashing out of the basement and shutting the door, leaning against it. His father ran in quickly, obviously worried about leaving Wyatt alone with Penny.
"What? What is it?" he questioned.
"The slime, in the basement feeding on Nexus." He panted.
'Damn. He didn't catch me just saying Nexus, did he? They still don't refer to it as a person. They say 'the', don't they?' Obviously Leo missed the slip.
"How big was it?" he asked. Chris shot a glance at him and slapped the flashlight in his palm. He watched Leo's face as he opened the door and surveyed the mass below.
"Big." Leo commented.
'Well done Sherlock.'
"Yeah. Big." Chris agreed.
"If the demon comes at us, I'll try and hold it off with this." Chris explained to Leo, holding up two exposed electrical wires.
'It should work, I think there's enough power left in them for the moment.' He missed his great-grandmother heading towards the basement door until he heard her voice and Leo's yell.
"Don't be afraid of us. We won't hurt you."
"Penny, get back!" Chris turned too late, catching a glimpse of Penny being grabbed by the magical energy-feeder.
"What the hell! Dammit! Leo, go get Wyatt somewhere safe! Right now!" Chris barked, slamming the door closed. Leo nodded and ran to the dining room with his young son. Chris grabbed the wires and surveyed the door, hoping his plan would work. The Elder came back in a few minutes later. Chris was leaning against the door, trying to hold it closed as it bucked against his back.
'I am never going to ride a bucking bronco. Who needs thrills? Give me the quiet life!' Leo came over to help him, steadying the door as he spoke.
"Wyatt's secured in the living room. There's no sign of the demon in the rest of the house." Chris breathed a sigh of relief.
'Good. That's what I thought it would do.'
"I figured it was distracting us before so he could feed on Nexus." He told Leo, before biting his lip momentarily.
'Damn, slipped up again. Did he catch it?'
"What about Penny? Is she...?" Leo asked.
"I don't know." Chris replied.
'Thank God for the obliviousness of Elders.' He caught sight of the slime creeping under the door. Thinking quickly, he grabbed his two wires and zapped it. Another chunk of slime crept under the door and he zapped it again.
"I can't keep up with it, we've gotta get out." He told Leo. The Elder shook his head stubbornly.
"No, we have to keep fighting. It's what Penny would want us to do."
"What Penny would want us to do is try 'the path of peaceful resistance'. And need I remind you that I'm on the edge of heading that way myself, Leo? We have to get Wyatt out of here!"
"That wasn't the real Penny and you know it. And you can fight the slime and keep yourself as yourself at the same time, Chris. This is important!"
"Alright." Chris sighed, zapping the slime again almost absently as he considered his father. He stood up wordlessly and leaned his back against the door. Leo smiled at him gratefully. A few minutes later, he had seemingly changed his mind and was urging Chris to take Wyatt and leave.
"Get out of here, go!"
"Not without you." Chris told him.
'Wow. Role reversal. Guess I'm more like him than I thought.'
"This thing's gonna swallow you whole." Leo argued.
"Most likely." Chris admitted.
'Why does he care anyway? Just because I can't keep my memories together doesn't make me helpless!' As he thought this, his memories swirled into place again. The real ones took the place of what he had though to be true for the last while, as he glanced up in relief.
'They're back. They've fixed it.' He thought, just as Piper, Phoebe and Paige appeared in a swirl of lights.
"Stand back, fellas." Piper warned. He and Leo scrambled to obey, clearing the way as Paige recited a quick spell.
"Drawing on the power of three, destroy this evil entity." A light shone through the basement door and the slime disappeared.
'That…was almost anti-climatic.' Chris though wryly.
"Where's Wyatt?" Piper asked.
"He's in the living room." Chris answered, jerking his head out the door.
"What about Grams?" Phoebe enquired, not seeing her grandmother anywhere. Leo and Chris exchanged a sad glance.
"She didn't make it." Leo started. As he spoke, the basement door opened, smoke pouring out. Grams walked out, coughing.
"Nonsense." She exclaimed briskly. "You can't damage an old war horse like me. I'm already dead."
'Oh yeah. Whoops, forgot about that.'Chris thought, as Phoebe exclaimed and went forward to hug her grandmother. He leaned against the kitchen island counter as Wyatt cried, Piper leaving with a smile to comfort him.
"Hey there, sun god." Paige said mischievously to Leo, who laughed uncomfortably. Chris mouthed 'sun god?' under his breath, before shaking his head.
'I don't think I really want to know.' He realised, as Leo pleaded for Paige to keep the name to herself.
"Hey, I wanna thank you two for not giving up the fight." Grams commented, coming over to the two. "I'm really proud of you boys. You did good."
Despite himself, the comment warmed Chris up immensely. They were all alive, his memories were back in place, he wasn't a pacifist hippy, and Great-Grams approved of him.
'Life is good.'
AnimeAlexis: I am actually quite pleased with myself. All three of my stories updated on the same day? Brilliant. And this took far too long. Review please!Oh! And I redid the last chapter, cos I didn't proofread the last time.