Title: "Cold"

Author: Shaitanah

Rating: G

Timeline: Season 6, obviously. Before "Chris-crossed".

Summary: Chris hears voices and catches cold.

Disclaimer: I don't own Charmed. Though I suppose I own Chris's paranoia. I don't think he was that crazy in the show. 'In Your World' belongs to Muse.

A/N: Companion piece to 'Believe The Lie' though you don't necessarily need to read it. I'd appreciate reviews on both, though. Thanks and enjoy!


COLD

I'm hurting you again

Too lonely to pretend

Like everything is new

I promise you to

Blow it all away


Let's just say it all comes down to the main Question: good or evil? I'm looking at you and, oh my God! I'm so bored! You with your pathetic struggle to defend the Greater Good. How come we're so different? I know right from wrong, I can tell black from white & I know life is never black-and-white, but it's both. It's grey. It's striped, spotted, blurry – whatever! It's just not what you want it to be!

Chris woke up in sunset, his brother's voice still ringing in his ears. Wyatt honestly loved to get people brainwashed with his philosophy. The youngster sighed and dropped his head back on the pillow. 'One more month, please!' He needed those few priceless moments of sleep. Moments when he managed to cross his worries out of his mind, forget what he was here for.

No-no-no, my dear brother! Do you seriously believe I'll let you go? You escaped to that bloody past to alter my destiny. Did you ask me whether I wanted it or not? You're having fun there with our family; for Christ's sake, I gotta make you pay.

Wyatt's laughter rocked through the darkened room. No, he just couldn't leave him alone, could he? Even if it was a mere memory of Wyatt as he knew him. Chris's actions in the past must have already changed the future.

With a sharp sting of concern and astonishment Chris realized he would probably miss his tyrant brother. After all, Wyatt only had his personal vision of future… for good.

Stop! Chris shook his head fiercely. He came here to change it, not be at peace with it.

He barely made it out of the bed, washed his face with cold water and sneezed loudly to his surprise. Great! The Charmed Ones had a collision with an Ice Demon yesterday, so the whole mansion felt like a freezer soon afterwards. Chris helped cleaning up so he might have caught cold as a result of it. Just what he always wanted.

Compromise, dear brother! Looks like you're stuck in the middle. There's no other way but to summon…

"Leo!" Chris shouted at the top of his lungs. "LEO!"


In your world

No one is crying alone

In your world

No one is dying alone


"I can hear you, Chris. No need to scream". The Elder appeared before him, making Chris instantly regret his decision. Leo's face was serious and alert. He examined Chris briskly and asked what was wrong in a voice that suggested actively: 'You SHOULD NOT have bothered me!'

"I… er… I need your help", Chris stuttered. "Can you heal me?"

Leo cocked his head slightly. "I can't see any serious traumas. What's wrong then?"

He won't do it. All for nothing.

"Shut up!" Chris muttered through clenched teeth. Leo regarded him with obvious curiousity. Whitelighters couldn't heal mental damage. Chris made a tired face and sneezed again.

"Oh no, that's simple cold!" Leo protested.

"So what? You healed Wyatt when I… when a demon locked the sisters up in dreamworlds!"

Leo shook his head, suggesting Chris to deal with it himself, and orbed out in a pencil of blinding blue light. Ignoring a bonecrushing noise in his head, Chris grabbed a chair and hurled it at the spot where Leo had just been standing.

Ooh, that was harsh! I swear I saw a smirk on his lips. He enjoys this. He always did.


Too broken to be loved

too weak to sing along


Scarcely breathing, Chris dragged his feet towards the counter. A kettle was whistling in the nearby. Okay, hot tea with lemon, some aspirin, then back to bed.

Riiiiight! And who's gonna save the world in the meantime. Let's go confide our big secret in the Charmed Ones. Mommy, I'm your junior son Chrissy, the one who always fails!

Chris gritted his teeth tight, doing his best to ignore the taunts. His paranoia progressed, for sure. He had never heard Wyatt so vividly while awake before. The witch tended to invade his dreams, sometimes he whispered quietly in his thoughts but he had never screamed so loudly, so oppressingly before.

Tea was ready. Young whitelighter gulped forcefully, allowing the hot liquid to fill his throat, then his stomach. He relaxed and tried to persuade himself he really needed to use that opportunity to have rest. Reality was bleared, pale like a thin layer of paint smeared over a dull sheet. Chris lost the sense of time. He crept back into bed. People dashed about the club, preparing the stage for another band announced to perform in the evening. They didn't notice him. He closed the door and his entire world became a universe of sore throat, hoarse cough, running noses and micro-stars exploding somewhere at the back of his heavy eye-lids.

Poor Chris! To catch cold, it must be so unpleasant. Especially when your own Daddy refuses to help you. So much for a doc, huh, Leo?

The door shot open, sending shiver through Chris's weak body.

"Hey, what's up with you?" someone asked in Piper's voice.

"Mom…" Chris whispered, sinking into hot stillness that enveloped him and cut off every other sensation.


I'll comfort you my friend

Helping you to

Blow it all away


Something cool touched his parched lips. Chris woke up to a welcoming sensation of a spirit-sprayed towel on his forehead, indistinct hissing of dissoluble aspirin on the nighttable, warm hands tucking up his blanket.

"Hush, dear. It's okay. You've been unconscious for a while".

Did she call him 'dear'? Was he back in his time where she was his mother, where they had no secrets from each other? Chris wrapped his burning fingers around her wrist.

Careful, Chrissy! You'll break Mommy's hand.

Oh for heaven's sake! 'Shut up! SHUT UP!' Chris would roar if he could strain his vocal chords. He focused his hazy eye-sight on Piper. She helped him to raise his head and swallow the medicine. The taste was sour and chemical. Chris grimaced wryly.

"You don't have to–", he started saying, but Piper shook her head kindly. It was such a relief to see her smile. Chris could barely hear Wyatt now. Amazing! She managed to shut him off. "You guys should probably be head over heels with joy. No more demons at least for a day".

"A day?" Piper chuckled. "Oh no, you should rest for a week, no less! Besides I think you'd better sleep in the mansion for a while. This night's gonna be real noisy".

Chris smiled. Wow, that chance was to die for – and he totally blew it by having fallen ill. If another demon attacked he would be useless.

Oh no, just imagine Leo's face! That alone is worth it!

'Gee, thanks, brother! A single sober thought throughout my entire journey!' Chris smirked mentally.

"Thanks, Piper. I guess I'll take my stuff and orb, then. No, don't even think about talking me into driving. I won't survive it".

When she left, Chris began to pack some of his things. Like a toothbrush. Who would think timetravel was such a common thing that you actually had to bother about how to brush your teeth… Chris recalled his awkward position after his affairs here were settled and he was assigned to the Charmed Ones. No place to live, no private possessions, only uncertainty and Wyatt's intrusive voice in his head. So he went to the pharmacy and bought a toothbrush. He still had no idea why it was the very first possession he acquired in this timeline.


In your world

No one is crying alone

In your world

No one is dying alone


He still felt like hell. But he forced himself to focus, then took his bagpack and was off. After all, a few nights in the mansion would not only piss Leo off but would also help him out in his mission.

Chris smiled. Mission. What a cool definition.

Somewhere deep in his mind Wyatt murmured sardonically: Yeah… another Chosen One.

June 14 - 15. 2006