Never There

By: Sokai

Disclaimer: I, Sokai, do not claim ownership to the American television series, Charmed -- I leave that honor up to original creator, Constance M. Burge, and Aaron Spelling in terms of production, etc. Nor do I own the song, "Never There," by Hoobastank. However, I can and DO claim to own this story, as well as inspired ideas FROM said series.

Note: I absolutely love the series, Charmed, and especially season 6 (which, in MY opinion, at least, was THE best overall, especially in terms of fluency, consistency, each episode actually having SOME sort of point and not just a filler like how most if not all of season 7 had been, more emotional depth and insight to the future, etc). And besides Paige and Leo, Chris is an all time favorite character. So, because of this and because I'd absolutely loved his character and the confrontation between he and Leo (which always makes me cry to watch LoL) at the end of the "Spin City" episode, I thought I'd write something about it.

This story was created/written in October 2007.

Alone did Christopher Perry Halliwell (or, simply Chris Perry, as he had been known by his family up until recently and at his own calculated discretion) sit, perched high atop one of the many suspensions of the glorious, uncompromising, and persimmon colored Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco, California that evening.

If any of the thousands of commuters within the vast distance down below could have been able to clearly gaze upon the solitary being as he continued to sit, it would have appeared as though he had ventured there with the sole purpose to do away with his life.

And if Chris had been a normal individual, severing his mortal coil would have been the only thing to have transpired at such a tremendous height. However, despite the high altitude and blatant dangers that surrounded him at all points of view, the twenty-two-year-old nonetheless sat, legs folded beneath his person with confident leisure.

This was because he was not just some regular, normal individual. He wasn't even a mortal -- Not within the traditional sense, at least. He was a male witch -- No, more than that: A direct, honored descendant of one of the prestigious Charmed Ones.

As a being blessed with a plethora of magical abilities, the half witch-half Whitelighter had utilized one of said abilities to have even reached the famous bridge in the first place.

Orbing. Courtesy of his father, a full fledged Whitelighter.

How utterly ironic it was to the brunet, that one of his most favorite of magical powers that he'd currently possessed had been completely bestowed upon him by the very same man who had also given him virtually nothing else throughout the younger man's entire life (with the exception of the partial assistance of bringing him into existence).

It was true.

All that Chris had encompassed within himself over the years (and perhaps had yet to embody, even, once he'd grown older) was because of his two aunts, Phoebe and Paige. . . and most especially as well as importantly, his beloved mother.


Once timid and reserved, she had swiftly become the strongest and most courageous of the remaining Charmed Ones after the tragic befalling of her eldest sister, Prue (and the aunt Chris had never gotten to know as a result). And right up until her own demise when Chris was a mere fourteen-years-old, this was how his mother had always exuded and conveyed whenever he had been within her presence.

He'd looked up to her.

Cherished her.

Honored her.

And in turn, Piper had always been at his side, showing him nothing but support at the same time that she would also shower love and care onto him without having ever played favorites between his older (and tragically diabolical) brother, Wyatt.

Piper was a beautiful woman, with an equally beautiful soul and generous heart to all who had had the grand distinction to have known her. . . A mother to the world.

That's about the one thing that Leo and I will most likely ever agree upon. Having chosen Mom to become the Goddess of Earth, instead of Aunt Phoebe or Aunt Paige during the Titans' assault several months ago, thought Chris with a heavy, embittered exhale and deep, hurtful scowl upon his beige colored visage. And at least Mom's still alive within this time, and I can see and be with her while I still can. . . no matter how much of a double-edged sword that may be, since she won't be there once I return to the future I've hopefully repaired after saving Wyatt from whatever Evil had managed to corrupt him in the first place.

And as for his so called father, there was little to no love loss where he was concerned, in Chris's opinion.

If Leo couldn't have seen fit to not only acknowledge, but also give to him the same kind of love and attention that he'd given to the rest of their family, then Chris did not see why he should not return the same dismissive courtesy.

Especially now that Leo had returned earlier on that particular day from Up There from his newfound duties as Elder (after six solid months of absence) to assist Aunts Phoebe and Paige to save both Piper and Chris from the clutches of the depraved Spider Demoness.

But what's six months to virtually twenty-freaking-years of neglect? reflected Chris in silence, cursing himself as he felt his traditionally well guarded heart begin to unexpectedly throb with regrettable anguish at the thought.

It had never been the young Whitelighter hybrid's intention to have ever revealed his true identity to the Halliwell family of the past once he'd arrived to alert and then have them assist him with successfully protecting Baby Wyatt from all sources of evil. And as a bit bothersome as it had been at times to receive nothing but hostility and a callous nature from his mother (that he would only ever really witness her direct mostly towards demons and other vile creatures), Chris had otherwise managed just fine to keep his true emotions at bay while remaining aloof.

That is, until he had mistakenly underestimated his aunt's astounding capabilities as both a psychic and, most recently, an Empath, inadvertently discovering his true identity during her vision quest to reaffirm her abilities as both a witch and overall individual.

After which, Chris was no fool. He knew that it was only a matter of time before the rest of the Halliwell family he'd worked so hard to distance himself from had gained knowledge of who he really was.

Regardless, it had all been tolerable to endure, for the most part, and admittedly a bit more liberating to be able to talk freely around his mother and aunts, and even be able to bond with them in a way that he could not before (mainly due to not having yet been born during this present time).

However, the one and only thing that Chris had not anticipated upon (nor had even for one moment desired) was for Leo to return (at least not until after he had returned to the future). To have been viewed as a potential threat to the Charmed Ones and even a bit piqued as a result was something he could and had been able to cope with. But now, to be viewed as a direct member of the blessed Halliwell family -- Moreover, as the older man's second, previously unknown son, was something that Chris was simply ill-prepared for.

What did it matter? Why was Leo even bothering to pretend as though he honestly cared that Chris quite visibly despised the very ground the Whitelighter Elder walked upon?

The nerve of that man, to have tried to make Chris open up and talk about the specific, cited reasons for his contemptuousness towards him while the two had been sealed together within the now vanquished Spider Deaconess's cavernous lair.

Hadn't the physical abuse that the brunet had doled out (with admittedly justified relish) to his deadbeat father (before his fetus counterpart within Piper's stomach had been inoculated by the antidote potion she'd smartly ingested to release the older Chris from the demon's thrall) been enough cause for the older gentleman to get the message loud and clear that there wasn't any chance in Hell (or any other part of the Underworld, for that matter) that he would ever let down his emotional barriers and get close to him.

As if there would have been much point, he thought as he continued to sit within the cool night air and clasp both of his hands tightly together. But whatever. That's why I've Orbed here. To unwind, clear my mind of this horrible day, and try to forget all about --

Before he could have completed his train of thought, the very person he did not wish to see within the slightest had suddenly and unexpectedly (despite the Golden Gate Bridge being a frequent gathering place for various fellow Whitelighters and Elders while visiting Earth) orbed in within a brilliance of hundreds of familiar, shimmering and breathtaking whitish-blue lights.

Great. Just what I needed, thought Chris within instant, growing perturbation, his heart beginning to beat fast in intermingled nerves and apprehension as he swiftly looked away from the dark golden haired man as the minuscule yet stunning orbs had dissipated away to reform his stalwart body and before their eyes could uncomfortably meet.

Nonetheless, Chris could still deplorably feel the soft, ironically kind and caring eyes of his father-in-name-only gaze upon his stoic, seated body as Leo stood at his side to his right. And it was at that moment did the brunet feel that it was increasingly hard to breathe nor feel reposeful any longer, wondering to himself if he should not merely depart from the area before Leo could say or do whatever it was he so obviously intended to right then.

And yet, for whatever reason, something deep inside of him had resoundingly prevented him from doing anything save sit still and remain to be privy to the unfolding events. . .

"Can we talk?" Chris could hear Leo softly ask with distinct awkwardness, stuffing both of his hands into the pockets of his casual dark blue jeans (which were a far cry from the respectable, regal, golden and universal attire that every Elder, regardless of gender and age would all wear).

Chris, inhaling sharply at this, looked up towards the darkened Heavens and slowly lowered his tightly clasped hands away from his face before responding.

"There is nothing to talk about," he replied hollowly, his normally reinforced voice suddenly now so shaky and filled with the anguished emotion (in regard to his louse of a begetter) that he'd tried his very best to keep buried but was now beginning to swiftly rush back to surface without his consent nor much resistance.

I'm filling up inside
Like I need to open wide
And pour my heart out to you
But I'll just get denied
And all I wanted was someone to hear what I'm going through

Leo continued to peer up at his second child -- His son, that he had only truthfully "met" that very same day, despite the many months that he had been within their revealed mutual family's company. Such a mind blower it had been to him, to have left his family behind for their own sake (with such a heavy heart), only to learn that he had also unknowingly left behind yet another.

What should have been quite the joyous occasion to have gained knowledge of his beloved Piper's second pregnancy with their next child, was now only shaping out to be a crestfallen one at that. And all because the male offspring that had yet to be born and yet had been all at once could not even stand the sight of him, let alone the fact that Leo was his father.

Whatever the reason was, no matter how small or perhaps even how greatly impacting it turned out to be, Leo had resigned himself into finding out whatever the cost as he'd journeyed forth to the Golden Gate Bridge to seek out the distressed young man.

Turning his head away from his son for just a moment as though to jostle his dispiriting thoughts away in order to focus upon the situation at hand, Leo inhaled deeply before countering with gentle meticulousness, "I think there is. Quite a bit, actually."

Despite this statement being nothing but the truth as both men were keenly aware, no doubt, Leo was also simultaneously cognizant, with profound lament, that it was still a drastic understatement. Especially after the way Chris had carried on (even after having been freed from the Spider Demoness's unwanted serfdom), what with repeatedly pummeling him with the sole intent to dispose of him once and for all.

Never in all of Leo's life (as well as afterlife) had he ever witnessed such rage, heartache, vulnerability and resentment all at once from a sole individual as he had within Chris's livid blue eyes. And worse yet, all of that negativity was harbored by his own flesh and blood. . . his baby boy.

Chris continued to stare straight ahead, out into the relatively calm night and faint, twinkling variously colored lights of the city he had always known and loved over the years, even after Evil-Wyatt had destroyed and then reconstructed it into his own nefarious design with the help of his vast villainous following.

It was then that he'd decided to use his older, decadent brother as his current focus -- His meditation, as a way to help him (ironically, given that Future Wyatt, at least, was just as much of a sore topic for him as their shared father was) keep his cool and composure while remaining within the prying older man's company.

Doing so seemed to have helped a bit, as Chris slowly began to feel himself regaining control over his normally placid emotions as he uttered to his father with an even, nonchalant tone and brief shaking of his dark colored head, "It doesn't matter."

Finding this verbal deliverance to be far less than satisfactory, Leo, within faint annoyance and tremendous frustration of his own, swiftly remarked, "It does to me, Chris. You're my son. I think I deserve to know what I did that's so bad."

There. He'd said it. Now Chris knew precisely what Leo wished to discuss with him -- Although not as though he hadn't already, naturally, as Leo had already suspected earlier. However, now that it had been expressed vocally and with such determination, Leo had then begun to dare to hold within himself a small fraction of hope that perhaps his youngest son would bother to let him in and, moreover, allow the two of them to rebuild their arrantly broken relationship.

Chris, meanwhile, at that moment felt as though a thousand, jagged knives had penetrated his body and run him clean through the instant that his ears had listened to the present Elder refer to him as his "son."


What a crock. How dare this man even think of said word, let alone direct it towards him as though its meaning had honestly registered where Chris was concerned?

By the same token, however, Chris had also drawn a minute, fleeting notion of security as he'd heard his father say so, and with such. . . concern and love, even. Two things the young half witch and Whitelighter could not, for the life of him, recall the last time when the older individual had ever seemed to harbor for him.

And it was because of this unexpected Achilles Heel that the Halliwell Second Son from the future had surprisingly felt every wall and inhibition effortlessly tumble and fall away as his mouth opened to express nearly two decade's worth of pain and inattention to his perpetrator before he could stop himself.

Every time that I need you around
You're never there (never there)
You're never there (never there)

Fighting with all of his might to hold back the tears that were facilely swelling and yearning to be set free within the eyes he'd regrettably earned from his father, Chris furrowed his dark brows as he looked down at his hands (that were now nearly chalk white due to all of the squeezing he'd done while attempting to maintain his composure) a moment before daring to look at Leo dead within his own blue tinted gems.

"You were never there for me. You were there for everybody else. For Mom. . . Wyatt -- half the world. . . But you were never there for me. . . You didn't have the time. . ." Chris heard himself reveal to Leo, the object of his utmost disdain as well as despair, at long last. And as he continued to bravely stare the now visibly rattled and increasingly uncomfortable Elder before him, the brunet had felt strangely. . . relieved, almost, that he could have finally done so.

As nerve-wracking and emotionally exposing as it had been to have done, Chris nonetheless also felt a tad satisfied (and not to mention profusely vindicated) to have gone through with his admission. Because now, now was when, without any further doubt or mistake, would the Elder be astutely aware of such the bang-up job he had done as father to the extended product of his being.

Because in my life is where I need you now
But you're never there (never there)
You're never there (never there)

But will it even make a difference? Will he even care? He never has before in all of my life, after all of the idiotic attempts I'd made when I was younger to get him to notice me and realize his neglectful duties as an upstanding father figure to me. . . So what would make this time, right now any different? thought Chris as an aftereffect, his insides executing consistent back flips as a result.

You were supposed to see
All the signs I left to read in front of your face
You were supposed to be
The closest thing to being me
But you're the furthest away
That's because...

Leo, in contrast, found himself barely able to stand, let alone breathe effectively any longer. He knew that his confrontation with his distant son would not at all be a pleasant one; however, he had also managed to prepare himself as well as he could have to handle whatever might have come his way once Chris had at last confessed to him his cause for loathing him so.

His preparations had not been nearly enough to suffice, apparently, as every word uttered by the younger man and dealt onto Leo had just about eradicated his usually sound being.

This could not be.

It was far too inconceivable to effectively ascertain for the otherwise knowledgeable Elder.

With all of the various flaws and faults Leo tended to possess, being a careless, ho hum patriarch was not at all one of them. If anything, caring for, loving and being a bit too overly protective of everyone within his family (immediate or extended) could very well be categorized as one of his faults in opposition.

Making sure that they were all very safe, happy, and loved at all times was Leo's sole mission within his renewed life. If he had possessed a dime for every time he had gone many a night without so much as a wink of sleep because he had been so worried or bothered about if the next day would bring yet another demon, wizard, or warlock barreling into the front doors of the Halliwell Manor to attack either one or all of the Charmed Ones or Wyatt, Leo would be astoundingly wealthy, hands down.

I mean, after all, look at how stressed and worried I am over Chris's news from the future about how an evil being had actually been successful in turning his older brother evil and away from his enlightened path as a future being for Good! If that doesn't demonstrate how loving and caring I truly am as a dedicated and diligent father, I don't know what else will! he thought with slight vindication of his own, before it immediately dissolved into a grand, depressing realization.. . .Which is also probably why Chris hates me so much in the first place. . . Because I had most likely been so focused upon helping Piper and her sisters protect Wyatt at all costs and around the clock within the future, that I honestly hadn't much time to think of or do much else, sadly. . . which includes never having taken a moment to stop and give thanks for what was right in front of me. . .

Every time that I need you around
You're never there (never there)
You're never there (never there)
Because in my life is where I need you now
But you're never there (never there)
You're never there (never there)

Now armored with this hardened, heavy realization, Leo, momentarily looking down at the fast moving lights that hailed from many a car far down below upon the bridge, opened his mouth as he took his time to choose his words carefully. Finally, and with yet another heavy, broken and honestly ashamed inhale, the dishwater blond weakly expressed, "So. . . maybe you came back from the future not just to save Wyatt. . . Maybe you came back to save us, too."

Chris had maintained his even, unaffected expression upon his face while boldly peering down at his father expectantly (who had at that moment begun to silently pray with all of his might that the next thing to come out of his son's mouth would be something far more positive than what had been said throughout the entire duration of their depressing conversation).

That is, he had up until that very moment.

Did Leo honestly expect to make some sort of impacting headway between the two of them by tacking on that last line?

"Maybe you came back to save us, too."

Not possible. Even if I wanted to make some sort of peace with him, it's far too little, too late for the two of us, he thought, his insides and emotions now critically reaching their breaking point. You hadn't given me a chance, so why should I do the same for you

You're never there

And so, with the tears that he'd managed to bar from escaping from his virulent, cerulean blue orbs beginning to gently break free as just a few at a time softly trickled down and stained his creamy hued cheeks, the supremely, emotionally wounded Whitelighter hybrid bestowed the hopeful man before him one last hardened look for that evening.

". . .I doubt it," he voiced with tremendously heartbroken abandon, no longer caring if his tattered, tender heart became further and figuratively exposed upon his sleeve and in front of the last person he'd ever wish for it to be.

None of that mattered, because before Leo could have even said a word nor made any sort of gesture, Chris's body, after having concentrated for a few passing moments, had suddenly erupted into the same plethora of illuminations (in the same manner that the Elder's had) as he swiftly Orbed away. . . Away from the bridge, away from his so called father, and away from every last one of his hindering emotions.

It was now time to leave all of those crippling notions and sentiments behind him if the young man could not either cope with or seal them back away deep within himself. Because it was only serving to slow him down, as well as distract him from his important mission that'd taken all precedence. His all too essential objective to locate and destroy the looming threat to his older brother's life as it was currently known within this time.

It was Chris alone who could truly achieve this, as he was also the only one armed with the pockets of knowledge of various events yet to be. This was how it had always been, and, despite the added assistance of his aunts and mother, how it always would be.

And I doubt
That I will ever find out
If there's a way to get out
Of feeling all alone

Not much of a change, anyway, because "alone" is what I've always more or less been throughout my life, whether with someone or not -- Well, after Mom had died, at least, his mind idly reflected upon as the rest of his luminously fractured being continued on within its journey throughout the darkened night sky of San Francisco. And it doesn't appear as though that will ever change, especially after I've returned to my depressing future, even after I've managed to alter it once I've saved Wyatt. . .

Cause lately
I've been thinking
That no one's going to save me
I'll do it on my own...

On my own

A dejected Leo, meanwhile, remained at his place upon the bridge, having let out another sigh for the umpteenth time as he helplessly watched his estranged son magically flutter away from sight. He hadn't the slightest notion what to do next. In his attempts to bring the two of them closer together, in one fell swoop had Leo managed to broaden the already tremendous chasm that was between them even further.

It wasn't as though he had never screwed up before within his life, either within the general or magical sense, or even within the personal where his family was concerned. But he had always been able to, somehow, some way remedy every situation.

". . .But what am I going to do, now?" the magical entity asked himself with a heavy heart and tears within his eyes, looking about his surroundings to realize that he'd never thought it possible to feel so utterly enclosed and alone within such an ironically vast exposure.

For the very first time, the Elder that was Leo Wyatt was not at all sure that he would ever be able to rectify all of the wrongs that he had inadvertently done to his doleful and painfully troubled son of the near future . . .

Every time that I need you around
You're never there (never there)
You're never there (never there)
Because in my life is where I need you now
But you're never there (never there)
You're never there (never there)

-- The End

(A.N. Huh. That had been fairly easy to concoct. I love it when stories just come to me and pour out just as easily. It's been a while. LoL Anyway, there you have it. I'm honestly pretty pleased with its overall result. Didn't think that I would be. But now I am, yep. LoL Don't bother tearing it or me apart, though, please, because this is only my second Charmed story I've ever bothered to write despite my being an avid fan since the very beginning. So, yeah. Not a seasoned "vet" or whatever within this category. But I still know them all pretty much inside out at least, thankfully. Hope you liked it, though. I'm tired. 4 am right now. LoL)