Blood is black at night. Warm. Living. It makes her hands look so fragile as it coats her skin. It's a wonder anyone should think she killed with these pale hands.

She sinks to her knees by a body and wonders how it all came to this. She wonders if fate has a sick sense of humor, giving her everything, then taking it away with so much violence. But isn't destruction the story of her life? And if it was not by bullet, had she not destroyed many before with her weaknesses?

There is no hope for her, the police will not be kind. She might as well be dead too.

Hope… Such an odd word. She wonders when was the last time it warmed her.

Then she wonders no more, because Christine Daaé remembers.

Her wedding day. She heard the whispers that it was the most beautiful wedding of the season and others that it was the most beautiful they had ever seen. She remembers that young girl. The young singer with the voice of an angel, clad in a beautiful dress of silk and lace, floating down the aisle to join her friend, her lover, and soon her new husband Raoul, the new Comte de Chagny.

There were other whispers too, of another man, another scandal that had threatened the happiness of the young lovers, but no one cared to remember as Raoul slipped the ring onto her finger and named her as his own. Their future was light with possibilities of love and happiness. They could move on, they could finally forget. They could live. They could love.

But fate was never kind. And now she knelt in a pool of blood, trying to remember what hope felt like. Because she knows there would be none left for her when they come to kill her too.

A/N The title for this story comes from the book by Isabel Fonseca on modern gypsy life. The respective characters, Christine, Raoul, the Phantom, as well as certain aspects of the story were inspired from the original novel by Gaston Leroux, the musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber, and the novel by Susan Kay. I also claim some inspiration from Diana Gabaldon's fabulous "Outlander" series and strongly urge anyone with free time on their hands to pick up a copy.

While heavily researched, this is by no means completely historically accurate. I can't get everything correct but I promise I have not rewritten French history… I just messed with it a bit. ;)

Due to mature situations, including violence, language, and adult situations, I'm going to rate this M.

Huge thanks goes out to my beta for humoring me when I told her, "So I've got this idea." Poor dear didn't realize what she was getting into.

Reviews, criticism, or simple hello's keep me on track, so please leave them.