This is a one-shot btought on by a different site, asking for one-shot stories involving a given situation. The category for this one was 'Erik is at his organ, three months after Christine, desperately attempting to fight off depression.'

As always, I own none of these characters, but am pleased to give my best at answering 'what if's'. Hope you enjoy.


At the lair...

Three long months...filled with agony for the infamous Opera Ghost.

Endless nights, pain-filled days. Not even sure why he should keep going. Knowing Christine is cared for, knowing Raoul will care for her until death, he sees no more purpose, no more resolve. His life's labour is gone, ruined, and soul-less.

Erik sits up from his bed, and wearily makes a path to his organ, laying forgotten, and bereft of use. A layer of dust coating it's polished wood. Sighing, and sitting down, the Phantom's fingers gently caress the keys. Behind him, a figure stands, watching him curiously.

"What are you doing?" Erik whispers hoarsely, sensing her presence.

She doesn't answer, but walks in silently, her feet making no sound on the stone floor.

"I am sure you are wondering what I'm doing out of bed. I am going to tell you now, I need to walk around, to use my feet once more. Lying in that bed all day is doing nothing to earn my strength back, and you should know it. You seem to know these things." He turns, and faces her.

Again, she doesn't speak, but comes to stand next to his organ. Watching him with glowing eyes, her spine tingling, she locks eyes with le fantome. In silent question, she comes close to him, sitting next to him on the bench. He caresses her as she stretches her long legs, in silent bliss.

"Why is it you are the only one who stays? After all this time, you are never afeared of my presence. Never speaking, you still tell me al the time of how much you care. I love you." This seems to be expected from her, and she merely continues to watch him.

Erik reaches down, and lifts her chin to meet his eyes. "Tell me your secret."

Her eyes shine with happiness, and she jumps down from the bench. He follows her to the lake, it's shimmering surface like untouched glass. He watches her as she runs to the bank, and reaches into the dark water. She watches the black liquid for a time, then turns to him. Slowly, he stumbles over, and kneels beside her. Looking in, he sees nothing but his reflection. The sight of his death head causes him to sneer, and turn away. With a quiet, almost undetectable sound from her, he looks back.

She reaches into the water again, making the water ripple. His face is now distorted from it's original malformity, revealing nothing but what seems a patch of yellow where his head should be. When the water clears, he meets her eyes wet with tears. Her meaning is clear. It all depends on how you look at it. When looked at by the cold light of morning, Erik is a deformed monster. But when the water is disrupted by troubles, by afflictions, he is just like any other; a human. Capable of love, hate, sadness, and pain.

"Thank you, Ayesha." He chokes out, pulling the kitten closer to him.

She only replies by rubbing her whiskers against his worn, beautifully calloused hands.