A/N: This is my first Charmed story, but not my first fanfic. I love Chris, and had this idea rolling around in my head for a while, I've just finally found the time to write it out. Please enjoy, and review!
This story is displacing time just a bit, to make it so Piper has at least two months before the baby's due, but continuity wise is a change in the episode "It's a Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World." However, I'm getting rid of all this 'parallel universe' world of evil whatever stuff, so there's only one Gideon, not two, no mirror, etc, you get my point.
Flashbacks appear in italics. Premonitions appear in bold.
Disclaimer: I do not in any way claim to own Charmed, just the creative material of this story.
Bound by Blood
By: Ada C. Eliana
Chapter One: Memories of the Past
Falling and crawling
A fight to stand up
Memory still haunts me
In the dead of night
Over and over
I felt so small
But one day I'll be stronger
And you better watch out
"Overcome" Within Temptation
Casseroles spilled over every counter, food that would have been delicious, but tasted rotten and vile in their mouths. A never-eaten, impeccable birthday cake, only a few days old, sat abandoned and covered in foil. The Halliwell Manor bulged and thrummed with the movements of too many people, people who came to gawk and stare and gossip about what would become of the two boys left alone now that she was gone.
"Oh please, how good of a mother could she have been, she's a club owner!"
"There were always so many 'family emergencies' for them."
"Not to mention all of the screaming I've heard from this house over the years."
"That explains a lot."
"I remember when her sister was murdered in this house, what exactly goes on here?"
"Is this really a safe environment for the boys?"
"There's the father, acting like he's going to stick around this time, I highly doubt it."
"The blonde is looking over here, let's move along."
Wyatt and Chris sat side-by-side on the couch in the living room, Wyatt trying not to listen to the people around them, trying not to think about why everyone was here; trying and failing. Leo stepped in behind them, and they heard the mutters, mutters about the dead-beat dad pretending he was going to be there for the boys now, everyone knowing that was a lie.
The throngs stared at Leo, young as he was the first time they saw him. They all wondered what type of job he had, why he was never home. Those who knew Piper remembered the problems she had; the disappointments and empty promises. Who would take care of the boys?
Phoebe, her brown hair tied back in a conservative bun, pushed her way through the crowd, her dark and handsome husband one step behind, their daughter following along. She reached Piper's boys, wrapping her arms around the younger one, pulling him into an unreciprocated hug. The boy seemed in shock, not really focusing, not really there, his mind far-off.
"Thank heaven they have her," one woman sighed to her friends. "I couldn't imagine what might become of those kids without Phoebe."
"I heard she's moving her family into this house as well."
"God bless her, sacrificing that much for their sakes."
"Well after what happened to the other sister and her children…"
"Did they ever find the bodies?"
"Not that I heard of."
The crowd of people pressed in to gape at the two teenagers, surrounded safely by family. Eyes filled with pity, and relief. Relief that this was not their funeral, that they were not their children, that they would have dinner tonight with their family, and talk about those poor Halliwells, while moving along with their life, eventually forgetting. Something those boys, their father, grandfather, aunt, uncle, and cousin could never do. They would not think about them again until the next year, when they returned for another funeral, another loss in that shrinking family.
The respectable amount of time spent at the reception passed, and so the friends, co-workers and neighbors began to filter out. Stopping by the seven mourning relatives of the deceased to say their goodbyes, and speak empty words of consolation. As they trickled out, Phoebe's girl, Philena, wrapped her arms around Chris and whispered soothing things into his ear, as if afraid that without her stable touch he would disappear.
At sixteen Wyatt had grown into quite a capable witch. His powers, present since he was in utero had multiplied in strength and potency. He could now wield the combined skills of his mother and aunts, but had spent little time refining certain ones. His true interest lay in another power, one he had been able to sense since he was a child, but had never been able to wield; a power he knew belonged to him, but was kept from him by his mother and aunt.
It had been a week since the funeral, and Aunt Phoebe and Uncle Alec had already moved their things from the gabled mansion they lived in to the old Manor. The place felt crowded, and Wyatt just needed to get some space.
He stared into the sun room. Phoebe, Alec, and Lena were fussing over Chris again; Chris, who had gone into some deep state of depression since Piper died in front of him. He had simply gone through the everyday motions without saying so much as a word; his eyes hollow and lost.
Wyatt knew what would do everyone in that room a world of good: revenge for his mother.
And he would dole it out.
He just needed to know who did it. And the only witness was his little brother; the brother who had not even spoken for over a week. He had a way, but no one would allow it.
He walked quietly into the room, garnering the attention of all of its occupants, save Chris. Alec cast a suspicious glance in his direction – that guy had acted strangely towards him for years. "Aunt Phoebe," he said, making his voice falter in just the right places. She snapped her attention to him instantly.
"Yeah, Wyatt?" she asked tenderly.
"Could I… just be with Chris for a while… you know… in private?" he questioned delicately.
Phoebe stared at him for a moment, as if trying to sense his true intention – she would never be able to. Then she smiled at him gently. "Of course. Come on, you two, let's leave them alone. We have to go do some grocery shopping anyway. Call us if you need us, Wyatt." She started for the door, Lena and Alec behind her. As she disappeared into the hallway, Wyatt caught Alec staring at him intently.
"Something wrong?" Wyatt asked. Alec only shook his head and left him.
Chris did not so much as look in his direction when Wyatt approached him. "Chris? Hey, Chris!" Wyatt called, kneeling in front of him. "This is for both of us…" Wyatt muttered, raising his hands and placing them on the sides of his brother's face. He concentrated, and Chris' eyes snapped from their dull state to attention as magic channeled from Wyatt into him.
He tried to pry Wyatt's hands from him, but it was no good.
It was too late.
As Wyatt projected himself into Chris' mind, using a strain of telepathy he shared with Phoebe, he could see the shield and protection Chris had created for himself; a kind of shelter to protect him from the memories he wanted to escape. Wyatt easily pushed through the fog and cocoon of silence Chris had made, forcing Chris' mind to show him what he wanted to see.
Surrounded by bowls with the last remnants of cake batter and frosting, Chris and Piper sat at the kitchen table. The latter was carefully frosting a cake, turning the knife upwards on each go-around to create a pattern. Chris carelessly held one of the frosting-covered spoons up to his mouth, licking the chocolate off of it.
"Your Aunt Phoebe, Uncle Alec, and Lena will be here soon for your birthday, peanut," Piper said, smiling at him. He grimaced at the use of his baby-nickname. "And your dad will be bringing Wyatt back from his lesson."
"Is dad going to stay?" Chris asked, his green eyes filled with hope; but his tone betraying none of it.
"No sweetie, he has to go back 'up there'," she sighed apologetically, as if it were her fault.
"No big deal," Chris shrugged. "I'm used to it. As long as Aunt Phoebe shows up, I'm cool."
"You and Phoebe have always been close… I'm grateful for that, given everything that's been going on…" By that Piper had been referring to the numerous problems and challenges Wyatt had caused, and the times Chris had fled the Manor for the sanctity of Phoebe's mansion.
"Yeah," Chris said, his eyes darting around as if this was really not the conversation he wanted to be having on his birthday. With a mischievous smirk, he turned to his mother again, "So… what'd you get me for my birthday?"
"Nuh-uh Mister, you aren't getting anything out of me. You'll just have to wait and see."
"But I hate waiting! I already know what Aunt Phoebe got me!"
"That's just because she can't keep secrets! Now come on birthday-boy, go in the other room while I clean this place up." He laughed, and then did as she said.
He never anticipated what was waiting for him in there.
A gang of darklighters and one demon poised to attack; athame in hand stood in the sun room, smiling maniacally at him. He barely had time to react as arrows sliced through the air, all aimed at him. He pushed some away telekinetically, knocking the poisoned weapons into the walls, shattering the windows. Those he missed, he dodged to the best of his ability.
Upon hearing the commotion, Piper raced into the room. She pushed her youngest out of the way as the next barrage of arrows raced towards them. The darklighters grinned as she blew up several of their fellows, completely unperturbed by the event.
"Mom! You have to get out of here!" Chris called while deflecting arrows from hitting him.
"Do I need to remind you who the whitelighter is in this equation?" she asked. "I would tell you to orb out but…" He could easily finish her statement, she was afraid that if he stopped deflecting to orb he would be hit.
The demon, a small, wiry looking man, finally decided he had enough of standing around and threw himself into action. Pocketing his athame, he aimed his hands at Chris. The room suddenly felt as if all the air had been sucked out of it, and an instant later, the demon sent a red telekinetic wave at Chris. The power slammed him into the wall, and cut a deep slice in his abdomen. He crashed to the ground haphazardly, his hands clutching the wound as his mother hysterically shouted to him, asking if he was all right. He pushed himself to his feet, watching the demon warily. This time when the demon attacked, Chris was ready.
Striking with his own telekinesis, Chris held his attacker's powers at bay. The red and invisible energies met in the air between their two creators, neither willing to budge. It hovered unmoving for another moment, and then the red began to gain. Chris screwed up his face in concentration and effort, releasing his power in a torrent, and praying it would be enough.
It was not.
The blast of energy sent him reeling. His nerve endings screamed, and his vision burned. His ears rang painfully and only magnified his mother's fearful screams. He was dimly aware of his back smashing into the wall. However, the attack did not end there. The pressure forced the air from his lungs and he could barely breathe. His body pressed against the plaster behind him. It buckled and broke, scattering dust into the air around him, making him choke.
All the while, Piper watched in horror, kept at bay by the increasing number of darklighters present. "LEO!" she screamed for what felt like the 100th time. "Wyatt! WYATT!" She blew up arrow after arrow, darklighter after darklighter, and still could not reach her youngest. "Chris! Chris!" she cried, tears of frustration and terror pouring from her eyes.
The pain seemed never-ending, and Chris could barely keep his eyes open against the constant pressure any longer. The demon had pulled out his athame, preparing to make the kill. With one final burst of adrenaline (his fight-or-flight mechanism had always been set quite high on 'fight') he was able to pull his hands forward, harnessing an ability that had remained dormant before now. Flicking his wrists at his attacker, he felt a burst of power leave him. An instant later, the demon screamed and was blown into pieces, along with several darklighters, as if Piper herself had done it.
Chris dropped to the floor, unable to stop what happened next. His combustion of the demon backfired, causing a reverse explosion, one that rocked the manor and sent him into the wall again. It also knocked Piper off of her feet, pushing her backwards. At the same moment, the athame the demon had intended to use to kill Chris sailed through the air and stabbed into her chest. The explosion of darklighter arrows sent poison spraying throughout the room, coating Chris, and seeping into his injuries.
"MOM! NO!" Chris screamed, staggering to his feet. A darklighter arrow, shot by the only one who had not fled, firmly entrenched itself into Chris' side. He collapsed to his knees as the attacker dark orbed out. Ripping the arrow from his abdomen, Chris all but crawled to his mother's side.
"Mom, hey, come on," he whispered as he reached her. Sprawled across the floor, the athame's handle protruding from her heart; she tried to tilt her head as he approached. Chris reached for the athame, forcing his rapidly weakening body to obey his commands. He pulled it out and threw it to the floor. Hands hovering over the wound, he waited for latent whitelighter powers to take effect, thinking that if he wished strongly enough for his healing power to develop that it would suddenly work. "WYATT! DAD!" he screamed at the same time, knowing deep down that he would not be able to save his mother.
"Chri…s…" Piper whispered, grasping at him with her right hand. "Baby…" she added, getting him to turn his saline filled eyes to her face.
"I'm so sorry!" he said, tears falling freely now. "I'm so sorry! I don't know what happened! I don't—"
Blood had pooled around her, a crimson stain that spread as her life leeched away. It covered Chris and he could feel it seeping into his clothes, into his skin.
"Shhh… It's not… your… fault. Chris… I love… you…"
"I love you too, Mom, but you can't, you can't die!" he protested, clutching her hand tightly in his own. "WYATT! WYATT, PLEASE! DAD!" He turned his attention back to his mom. "I'll… I'll orb you to Magic School. They'll be able to… somebody there can help." He clutched her tightly and concentrated on orbing away. His body began to disintegrate into the tiny blue and white lights, but immediately reformed. "What's wrong?"
"You… can't… poison…" Piper whispered, her voice faltering and fading. "It's… not your… fault. Don't blame… yourself… I… love… youuu…" the word elongated as she took her last breath and went limp in his arms.
MOM! NO! NO!" Chris screamed, an animalistic howl. "Don't leave me, please! Please! MOM!" A moment later, her spirit appeared above her body, hovering in the air.
"Chris… tell everyone that I'm sorry, and that I love them," she called softly as her spirit was drawn onto another plane, as she began to move on.
"MOM!" he shouted. Knowing she was dead, and there was nothing he could do about it, he released a scream of primal agony. He collapsed beside his mother, unable to move his body any longer as the poison set in.
He did not know how long he lay there, feeling his own body dying and realizing that he did not care anymore. He stared up above him, and saw the ghostly figure of his Aunt Paige, forever-young, looking down on him, surrounded by light.
"Aunt Paige…" he whispered, relieved that she was there to take him, that she would take him to be with his mom.
"Shhh, Chris, it's not your time, it's not. You have to hang on, okay? Please, for me, for your mom, please hang on, sweetie," she said, tears forming in her transparent eyes.
"I…" he whispered, but the sound of twinkling orbs and the front door opening sidetracked him.
"Hey Chris! Guess what!" Wyatt's voice happily called, returning from the magically guarded place where he practiced his magic; a place where he could not sense Chris' calls for help. Chris could hear his footsteps descending the attic stairs. He was unable to move, and even speak at this point. He just watched Paige as she smiled encouragingly and sadly at him.
"Piper! Chris!" Phoebe called hysterically from the entryway.
He heard Wyatt, and Phoebe drawing closer, knowing they were only moments away from reaching him.
"Chris!" Wyatt shouted, his voice laced with panic as he realized something was very wrong. He stopped abruptly as he reached the doorway to the solarium. "Oh my God!" he raced to his brother's side, as Phoebe let out an agonizing cry. "Dad!" Wyatt called. Immediately orbs filled the air and Leo appeared, taking in the scene around him with mounting panic.
Phoebe fell to her knees beside Chris as Wyatt put his hands over Chris' wounds, healing them nearly effortlessly. Her premonition had come a moment too late. Leo tried to save Piper, but already knew in his heart that it was too late.
As soon as Phoebe saw Chris would live, she turned to Leo, the question in her eyes clear.
He shook his head.
And Phoebe screamed again.
Chris' body shook as Wyatt removed his hands and severed the psychic link. "Chris…" Wyatt began, his expression somewhere between anger and despair.
"What the HELL did you do that for!" Chris demanded furiously; the first words he had spoken since Piper died. He pushed Wyatt away from him, leaping to his feet and taking staggering steps backward. "Why would you do that!"
"To find out what happened, since you weren't talking!" Wyatt shouted back.
"You had no right! NO RIGHT!" he bellowed, his powers acting on his emotions without his permission and throwing Wyatt against the wall.
"Chris!" Wyatt admonished, tossing Chris like a rag doll with one flick of his hand and a shower of orbs.
The crash of Chris' body colliding with the bookshelf greeted Phoebe, Alec, and Lena as they returned arms full of grocery bags. The bags dropped to the floor as the three raced in. Chris used bloody hands to shove his body up, glaring at Wyatt with a hardness he did not know existed within him, the shelves broken and disarrayed behind him. He sent another blast of telekinetic energy at Wyatt, but Wyatt merely gestured and it froze in the still air between them.
"You couldn't control it," Wyatt stammered through gritted teeth. "You screwed it up! You ruined everything!"
"It wasn't my fault!" Chris shouted back, though he appeared to not even believe himself. "She… she said it wasn't my fault!" he screamed with more fervor this time, the various glass candleholders and vases in the room shattering with his words.
"Chris! Wyatt! What are you two doing!" Phoebe cried. But it was too late, Chris' anger and self-hate had reached a maximum, and all objects in the room began to float and sail around him like a tornado.
"I didn't! I didn't kill her! I didn't! I didn't kill mom! It wasn't my fault!" he screamed, tears gushing from his eyes. Phoebe tried to reach him, but his out-of-control powers prevented her from getting through.
"Chris!" she cried. "Chris, please, stop this!"
Wyatt watched in disbelief as his brother completely lost it; unsure of his part in this and what he could do to stop it.
"Chris!" Lena, the eleven-year-old daughter of Phoebe and Alec shouted in distress. She looked like a miniature version of Phoebe, though her paternity became apparent in her black hair and teal eyes. Reaching out with as much power as she could muster, she sent an empathic hit to her cousin, freezing his emotions. The items spinning around him abruptly hit the floor, and Chris collapsed in the center of them.
Chris shot up in bed. Covered in sweat, and tears in his eyes, he fought off the lingering effects of the nightmare/memory of his mother's death he had re-experienced. "I'm in 2004," he reminded himself. "None of that has happened yet." Forcing away the old ghosts, he mentally chided himself for even thinking about it. He had changed the future, saved Wyatt, and (he hoped) his mother as well. He no longer needed to think about those things. There was just no time or reason to.
He was going home today.
A/N: How was that for a first chapter? Want more? Let me know with a review!
Have a nice day,
Ada. C. Eliana