Pieces of a puzzle
Disclaimer: I don't own charmed, any of the characters, or this episode so don't sue me.
Summary: Rewrite of the episode witch stock, focused on Leo and Chris. When Paige stops Allen from dying its not just Grams who changes, it's Chris too. Will Leo be able to make the connections before the sisters get back?
Christopher Perry and his soon- to- be mother, Piper Halliwell were stood pacing in an empty warehouse waiting for the youngest charmed one to yet again appear. This was the fifth time in the last week she had failed to turn up after promising she would. Ever since she moved in with her boyfriend Richard she had been slacking in her charmed duties a little more each day. Personally Chris couldn't see why Piper had allowed her to move out in the first place, it wasn't like they had a future together. In fact, if history repeated itself, Richard was set to dump his Aunt in the very near future.
"She's supposed to be here by now." Chris complained as he gave up pacing up and down the concrete room and turned to face the eldest sister and the women who would eventually give birth to him, not that she knew that last little fact.
"So, she's a little late." Piper responded with a sigh, she too was getting fed up of just standing around doing nothing as angry factory workers stood outside trying to do their jobs. She still couldn't understand why Chris just didn't let them go and vanquish the demon after everybody went home; it wasn't like Leo had anything better to do than watch Wyatt. Darryl on the other hand did and she could almost here his angry voice in her head, standing outside a vanquishing scene was not his job. He didn't sign up for that when he agreed to keep their magical secret to him self.
"No, she's a lot late. Paige used to be the first one to a vanquish. What's wrong with her?" Chris snapped back, getting rather irritated by the lack of anger his mother had towards her sister, surely she should be the least bit annoyed that Paige was leaving her to do all the work.
"She's in love, that's hardly wrong." Piper shot back at him, annoyance evident in her voice. Ever since he came back from the future Chris had been on a demon vanquishing high, something which was quickly becoming nothing more than an inconvenience in her life. Sure she felt sorry for him, he had lost the love of his life after all, but he's extreme obsession with saving Wyatt was getting out of control. Don't get her wrong, she loved Wyatt more than anyone he was her son after all but she needed a break from demons every once in a while or she was going to go insane. Unfortunately though the neurotic whitelighter hybrid didn't see it that way, meaning there was a new threat to take care of every single day.
"It is when it interferes with her responsibilities as a Charmed One." He replied, by now completely sick to death of waiting for Paige to appear, that and if he heard the world love once more he wasn't so sure that he would be able to control his emotions as well as he had been over the last few weeks. His mother, no matter how much he loved her, was not the best at taking a hint and apart for telling her to shut up Chris could no longer think of anything to say to avoid that topic.
"Why don't you just let me handle this one alone?"
"Because you've handled the last four vanquishes alone. I swear you should've never let them move out."
"Hey, you don't see me complaining, I'm happy for them. And you should be too." Piper continued, before sighing at the expression on Chris face, he really did look like a lost little boy trying to find his way home.
The witch lighter instantly stopped pacing for a moment and looked at the thirty one year old, he could have started laughing if he wasn't so frustrated, Piper put on a great act but he could tell better than anyone else that she missed having her sisters around. Why else would she constantly try to start up a conversation with him which lasted more than a few minutes and didn't involve the word magic? She had even asked him what his grades were like in school a couple of days ago, that was how desperate for company she was. Not that he was complaining, it was nice to talk to his mother again, even if technically she wasn't at that given time, plus anything was better than her yelling at him for that brought back memories of his mother he would rather forget.
"So where is this demon and what's its name?" Piper asked, holding back the impulse to roll her eyes at the look Chris gave her, it almost seemed like he didn't know the answer.
"No one knows its name and it's too strong for one witch to handle alone."
As he said those words, the door to the warehouse started creaking open causing them both to turn their attention to the entrance, where an exhausted looking Darryl now stood and Chris was pretty sure if looks could kill he would be dead.
"How much longer is this going to take?" He asked as the loud voices of the workers shouted out behind him. Piper looked away from Darryl and turned back to Chris, completely fed up of the current situation.
"Go see what Phoebe's doing."
Without waiting even a second longer Chris orbed off, determined to get at least one of the sisters to fulfil their Wiccan duties. As he left Piper turned back to look at Darryl as the blue lights fizzled away, a sympathetic look on her face.
Unfortunately she was so preoccupied that didn't see Chris zap a bit of green slim off his foot as he dematerialized using a power he never told her about when she had bugged him for days until he had finally told her what wiccan powers he had inherited.
"Where'd he go?" Darryl asked confused, he may have known about magic but that didn't mean he liked seeing it.
"Hong Kong." Piper replied with a smile like it was the simplest answer in the world.
"Hong Kong? This is the last time I work ground control for you guys."
Piper just waved her arm as the inspector closed the door; it wasn't like she hadn't heard him say that a million times before, yet for some reason he always came back to help them. Then again he wasn't usually asked to keep workers away from their jobs for random vanquishes.
Looking up she saw Chris orb back in with a hyperactive Phoebe who was wearing a purple Japanese kimono. She could have sworn she saw green on Chris' orbs and though the cracks on the floor but they quickly vanished as the lights disappeared.
"Hi! Wow." Was all Piper could say as she hugged her little sister, completely thrown by the outfit.
"Oh, how's Wyatt? I miss him so much." Phoebe cried after they broke apart, forgetting about the reason she had been interrupted during her spar day completely.
"He misses you too. Is this a bad time?"
"No, this is a great time. Jason's away at a conference, I was just practising my origami. This is a tiger, you can have that." Phoebe handed the paper tiger over to Piper who looked at it funnily. "I'm sorry I didn't visit."
"No, no, don't be silly. You've obviously been really busy folding. I'm sorry I have to ask for your help, but..." her voice trailed off as Phoebe quickly reassured her it was ok, after all with Jason's money she could have a spar day anytime she wanted.
"No, it's okay. I mean, if you don't enter the tiger's cave, you may never get the cub, right?"
"Come again?" Piper asked confused as Chris, who was standing behind the two, rolled his eyes. He had heard that stupid saying a million times growing up. His not so favourite Aunt had decided to move to Japan for good after Jason broke up with her and moved away to Romania, meaning the Chinese proverbs were very common. The Whitelighter blocked out phoebes explanation and decided to cut in, after all they were there for a reason.
"Can we get the show on the road here?" He asked, causing the two women to turn and look at him funny for a few moments, a look which clearly said 'you dare interrupt us'.
"Okay," Phoebe replied after a moment or two with a sigh "what do you want me to do?"
"You're the bait. All you've gotta do is levitate into the air and when this demon senses your magic, its gunna come fast and hard."
'Like it almost did when I orbed to get you' He thought silently, but thought it was best not to add that last part, after all why would a creature that feeds on powerful magic want anything to do with him!
Shaking her head, Phoebe indicated to Piper to put her Tiger down before she levitated into the air. Almost as soon as she was of the ground she practically fell right back down again as something that was causing quite a bit of dust came charging towards her from the underground. A large, green blob flew out from the bricks and with a cat pouncing motion it tried to swallow Phoebe whole. Piper screamed as her sister's face turned to fear and without looking threw her arms out and blew the creature up as Phoebe crashed to the ground.
Chris smiled at that before leaning over and helping his charge up. He was so glad he drank that potion before he orbed piper to the warehouse, even though it only lasted an hour, it blocked the demon from sensing his magic. If he hadn't of made the liquid up, he would have been the one nearly eaten alive not Phoebe.
When piper came back into the ware house Chris grabbed the two witches' hands and orbed them back to the manor. As soon as Chris let go of them they walked off into the kitchen to change their goo covered clothes, chatting away like they hadn't seen each other in years, when in reality it had only been a few weeks.
After brushing off most of the dirt that had some how made its way on to him, the twenty one year old went upstairs to tell Leo they were back. Ever since he found out Chris was half witch he seemed to trust him a lot more and Chris was determined not to screw that up. Although for the life of him he couldn't work out why, finding out he had lied to everyone about his magical status would change Leo's opinion of him for the better. Surely it made more sense to trust a full whitelighter who had earned their position, than from someone who was born into it.
"How'd it go?" Leo asked when he saw the young Whitelighter standing in Wyatt's bedroom doorway, just leaning against the wall as he watched the father and son play together. Chris just smiled at him before he walked over to the sofa which had been placed opposite the baby's cot and sat down in the room he had spent most of his childhood in.
"Phoebe levitated, Piper blew it up." He replied, saying as little as possible, he still felt uncomfortable around Leo for some reason.
Leo nodded and continued to play with the ten month old blonde baby, he knew by now it was pointless trying to get Chris to say anything else, he had been a lot quieter since returning from the future and the elder decided not to push it. Chris might have only said his fiancé wouldn't be a threat to anyone anymore, but they all knew what that meant; she was dead, killed trying to protect the whitelighter she evidently loved, so out of respect they had decided to be a little bit nicer to him under the circumstances and give him a break, a second chance if you will.
Wyatt giggled in amusement as his father jiggled a toy green block above his head and Chris couldn't help but smile when he saw how happy his little big brother was; it remanded him of why he was doing this, that once upon a time the twice blessed child was good and not the core of all evil. That backed up his theory that something major had happened which turned the child even more, although others thought he was crazy, that he was just unwilling to accept his brother was born the source.
"Oh, hi, baby." Chris heard Phoebe call out and he turned his head just in time to see her rush over to Wyatt, shortly followed by Paige who entered the room only moments later.
'Well look who finally turned up' he thought and had to look away to stop himself saying something he'd most likely regret. He only just had their trust back; making sarcastic comments like that really wouldn't help his cause.
"This one too?" The younger witch asked as she walked around and studied her old room, shock evident on her face.
"Yeah, you move, you lose it in this family."
"You could lose a lot more than a bedroom when this is over." Chris stated, still annoyed that Paige hadn't shown up before when they needed her. After all for all she knew they could have been ambushed and lay dying in a cave somewhere as she had 'relations' with her boyfriend. He was very tempted to add 'like your life' but swallowed his tongue, knowing it would bring more questions that he didn't want to answer.
"Hi, Chris, I'm fine thank you, and you?" Phoebe said in response, which was kind of stupid considering she had only seen him around ten minutes ago.
"It's his job to offer his opinion." Leo quickly defended Chris, causing everyone in the room to turn and look at the elder. The future witch lighter raised his eyebrows along with Phoebe and Paige as they studied the man in front of them all choosing to keep quiet. Leo NEVER defended Chris no matter what time period they were in and to hear him actually doing it, was something Chris never expected to experience.
"You know the only reason why she's even here is Paige missed another vanquish." Chris said swiftly, trying to forget about what had just happened, after all he was just Leo here; he wasn't the man he grew up with, he wasn't his father.
"Another one?" Leo responded, rising his eyebrows, looking to Phoebe scarily like the young man, not that she would actually verbally admit that to anyone as she looked between father and son, confusion evident on her face.
"Yeah, that makes what? Five in a row now?" Chris continued, turning to face his Aunt who just yawed as she bent down to make a fuss of Wyatt.
"You guys are such nags." Paige complained as she got to her feet and went to sit down at the other end of the sofa. That little comment caused Chris to roll his eyes in pure annoyance, for nowadays it seemed all Paige did was complain about every little thing and walk around like she didn't have a care in the world. He had personally not had the pleasure to see what she was like in the future, considering she had died before he was even conceived and at that moment in time he was extremely grateful for that. To him she seemed completely selfish, choosing to stay at home with her darling Richard rather than help her sister fight the evil which could 'harm' her nephew. She said family was the most important thing to her, but how could that be true when she would willingly leave her sister to fight a demon on her own after promising to show up.
"When did you two become so chummy?" Phoebe asked after a moment of silence, causing Chris to abandon his thoughts and turn to face her. No one noticed the small piece of green goo crawling out of one the vents in the floor and onto Chris's shoe.
"We're not chummy, it's just he's gone through a lot protecting Wyatt and I figured instead of doubting him I should help him a little." Leo answered, his voice getting quieter as he spoke until it was barley hearable. Chris genuinely smiled at that but it was hardly noticeable and to anybody else, it was like it never happened as it disappeared with a click of a figure.
"So what do you guys think? Do you like Wyatt's new room?" Piper asked as she walked into the bedroom with clean clothes on. Chris faintly heard them say yes but he wasn't really paying much attention as his mind wondered back his conversation with Leo the night after he returned from the future and the reason the elder had suddenly decided to help him.
Chris was sitting on top of the golden gate bridge staring at the cars zooming by below. It was pitch black outside and the flashing lights of the cars made the bridge seem like a Christmas tree. Not that he was paying much attention to anything going on around him, a dinosaur could be about to eat him and Chris wouldn't even move a muscle. That was because in his left hand he had the blue and silver engagement ring he had given Bianca almost a year ago, two moths before he left to go the past.
He was just staring at it thinking about the things he and the phoenix went though just to be together, it was like Leo and piper all over again apart from she was no angel and neither was he for that matter. When they first met she was a cold hearted killer, hell bent on seeking revenge for her mother's death, which surprisingly wasn't Wyatt's fault. As for him, he was actually apart of his brother's army helping him when necessary with anything over than killing innocent people, something which he was always dead set against. In his defence, he was barely a teenager when his mother had died and had followed Wyatt blindly in his mission for he was the only family Chris has left, it was years later when he realised what his brother had become and helped form the resistance. Bianca soon joined forces with the only people willing to take on the source and the rest as they say was history.
Thinking about the everything that had happened in the past finally caused the witch to start crying for the love he had lost as small tears dripped down his face, it just wasn't fair! Everybody he loved ended up dead, his mother, aunts, uncles and cousins, even his father and now there was Bianca.
As the feeling of grief began to consume him, he let the tears roll down his checks as memories of the days he had spent with Bianca flashed though his mind. He was so out of it he never even noticed an elder orb next to him.
Leo was obviously just as surprised to see Chris there and was about to ask what he was doing on top of the golden gate bridge at two in the morning when he noticed the sparkling ring clasped in his hand and the wet stain marks on his face, he simply looked devastated.
"Chris, are you okay?" He asked. It was a stupid question really considering the state he was in but Leo honestly couldn't think of anything else to say, really in a situation like this one, what can you say?
The unborn Whitelighter jumped a foot as he heard his father's voice, not realising anyone was there apart from him.
"Sorry I didn't mean to scare you." Leo added quickly, noticing the fact Chris nearly fell over the edge of the bridge and only just managed to regain his balance in time.
"You didn't!" Chris replied defensively with a hint of sadness in his voice, making Leo wonder why the boy insisted on seeming completely emotionless and in control all the time.
"What are you doing up here?" Leo asked, deciding to change the topic away from if he startled him or not.
"Thinking" He replied simply as he looked away, causing Leo to frown.
"NO about how I end up getting everybody I love killed." Chris replied and Leo found that he just couldn't say a word, as for once Chris' voice wasn't dripping in sarcasm and that unnerved him! The whitelighter sitting on the railings was completely the opposite on what he was used to seeing, making Leo wonder if anyone really knew the real him or did he put on this fake mask to simply stop himself being hurt.
"I'm sure that's not true!" he eventually replied realising Chris really didn't need someone to just stand there with their mouth catching flies.
"Really? So she didn't get herself killed trying to save me from HIM." Chris replied as he blinked back the tears, actually speaking with venom in his voice and the elder couldn't help but wonder who 'Him' was, but he didn't dare ask, who ever it was clearly wanted the boy dead if the events he was being told and the trouble he went to return Chris to the future was anything to go by.
"Well I can't really answer that but I'm sure she wouldn't want you to blame yourself, not if she really loved you." Chris didn't reply, he just continued staring at the sea not even acknowledging that he had heard the man.
"Is your arm itchy?" Leo asked after a few minutes of silence had passed. Chris looked up at him strangely for a moment or two before realising he had been rubbing his left arm subconsciously throughout their entire 'discussion'.
"No" he replied and moved his hand away from his shoulder and let it drop by his side, Leo shrugged, guessing it was some sort of grief thing. After a while Chris put the ring back into his pocket and sort of winced as he moved his arm backwards. He continued to gaze at nothing in particular below ignoring the look Leo was giving him.
"What's wrong with your arm?" He asked, realising the half breed was yet again not going to say anything.
"Nothing" Chris replied stubbornly, but it was to late to deny it, Leo had clearly since him wince and they both knew it.
As if to prove he wasn't imagining it and that it wasn't 'nothing', Leo grabbed Chris' left arm and gently moved it backwards and up towards the sky. Studying his face carefully the elder wasn't surprised to see his eye lids squeeze shut in obvious pain.
Chris just shrugged his uninjured shoulder but kept quiet, he wanted it to hurt on some level as it made him feel slightly less guilty about what happened to the love of his life. If he was suffering to then it somehow made it easier for him to accept. Shaking his head Leo pulled Chris's t-shirt sleeve up to see what was wrong and he couldn't help the surprise which was cast over his face when he saw it was all bruised- The top part of his arm was purple, blue with even bits of black, you could't even see his normal skin colour.
"Never start a fight with the source of all evil with out any powers... or with them for that matter." Chris said absentmindedly knowing what Leo was about to ask and answering the earlier one that the man was just dying to say.
Sighing Leo held his hands over Chris' arm, knowing he wouldn't ask for help and waited until the warm healing glow came forward. After he finished Chris muffled a thanks and Leo sat down next to him, suddenly very concerned that he would actually jump off the bridge.
End of very long flash back
"WE LOST PAIGE!" Chris heard Phoebe scream as she ran back into the room, funny thing is he didn't even realise she had left. Leo who had just put Wyatt down for a nap looked at the middle sister in confusion as Chris stood up, being snapped straight out of his day dream.
"You did what?"