AN: Here it is! I won't keep you, just enjoy! (Longer author's note to follow)
I DO NOT OWN CHARMED!
Wyatt clutched Chris to him tightly. He could feel Leo and Piper stepping up on either side of him and while it crossed his mind that he should let go and let them see there (until recently dead) son; he had no intention of doing so.
Chris' arms tightened subconsciously around Wyatt who had yet to release his hold on the younger man. He understood his brother's fear, felt it really, and he knew Wyatt needed the reassurance that he wasn't going to disappear.
"Its okay, Wy. I'm here."
Chris felt Wyatt nod against his head and he grinned silently into his brother's neck before slowly loosening his hold around him. Wyatt appeared to be reassured enough for now, because he too slowly let his arms fall from around his brother; although a hand on Chris' arm kept some physical contact between them.
Wyatt breathed out and stepped slightly to the side of his brother, his hand never leaving his arm. He could feel Chris' presence in his mind stronger than it had been in years, and it reassured him. He didn't know how, he didn't care how, but his brother was here.
Piper stood silently next to Wyatt, her eyes wide and shining with unshed tears. Chris was here. Her baby was still alive. She watched as Wyatt and Chris slowly released one another and she stepped closer toward Chris.
Piper placed a hand on either side of Chris' face and stared up at him; searching his face for some explanation, some assurance that this wasn't a dream. Chris grinned happily down at her and the tears Piper had been holding at bay fell from her eyes. With a sob she lurched forward and pulled Chris into her arms.
"Thank God you're alive," she murmured into his neck. "I was-, you were-, I couldn't-"
"It's okay, mom. I'm alive. It's okay." Chris soothed, cutting off her choked words.
Piper nodded and held him tighter.
Leo didn't try to hold back the tears brought on by his youngest son's presence. Chris was here, Chris was alive. The part of him that had shattered at the loss of his son was put back together and he felt happier than he thought he'd ever feel again.
Leo watched first Wyatt and then Piper step up and embrace Chris, a smile on his face and tears in his eyes the entire time. Leo watched as Piper reluctantly stepped away from Chris and without hesitation he moved in to hug his youngest.
Chris grinned and wrapped his arms around his dad. His own eyes were now shining from the emotions in the room and he found it hard to hold back his own tears in the presence of his family.
Either the father or the elder in Leo must have sensed this because he gave one last tight squeeze before taking a step back from Chris, but keeping an arm on his shoulder.
"How is this possible?" Leo asked, awe in his voice and eyes.
Chris' answer was stopped by the sound of feet running into the room. Chris turned to see his aunts stop abruptly at the entrance to the room and his face lit up in a grin at their surprised expressions.
"Hey Aunt Phoebe, Aunt Paige." He greeted them, smiling.
They both stood frozen, their eyes filling with tears and smiles spreading across their faces. Chris made a move away from Leo, Piper, and Wyatt, who all reluctantly released him. The movement pulled the sisters out of their state of shock and they both moved to pull Chris into their arms, ending up in a three way bear hug.
Piper laughed at the sight and Leo smiled brightly between her and the three still locked in a hug. Wyatt chuckled, a happy smirk on his face.
Several minutes later, after everyone had the opportunity to hug Chris, they were all sitting together in the living room. Chris sat on the couch, squeezed between his mom and brother, while Leo, Phoebe, and Paige sat across from them. The younger Wyatt and baby Chris slept peacefully in the play pen.
Wyatt found himself unable to sit completely still. The sight of his brother who he'd believed to be dead left him feeling rattled and surprisingly anxious. What if it wasn't real? What if it didn't last? What if Chris was a full white-lighter now and would have to leave them, leave him.
Chris was tuned into Wyatt's mind and he caught his brother's worries as they ran through his mind. He shifted so his leg was pressed against Wyatt's, offering what physical proof he could.
"I'm not going to disappear on you, Wy."
"How do I know that? I don't even know how you're here."
Chris sighed inwardly and outwardly. He wasn't even sure how to explain it. He didn't even understand; he was only going on what he thought may have happened.
"I know you're all wondering what happened," He said out loud, for the benefit of everybody. "I'm not a full white-lighter though, so let's just get that one out of the way."
A collective sigh of relief moved throughout the room and Chris couldn't stop the grin from spreading across his face.
"You're sure?" Leo asked carefully.
Chris shrugged. "My powers are still there. And you don't keep those if you become a white-lighter right?" Leo nodded.
"You're not a white-lighter," Wyatt felt the uncertainty in Chris and needed to assuage his little brother's doubts. Chris turned to him.
"How do you know?"
"I'm pretty sure I'd feel it. You're mind would feel different, but I can still feel your magic. You're still a witch-lighter."
Chris smiled. "Thanks, that's comforting."
"So, what did happen?" Paige asked. "Leo and Wyatt, well they said you died."
"You died in my arms."
Chris was trying to follow both the conversation in his head with Wyatt and the one that was taking place between the family. Out loud was probably easiest, so everyone could hear.
"I thought I was dying. My body was fading and I could feel myself getting weaker." Chris spoke just to Wyatt now. "You were talking to me, you tried to heal me."
Wyatt nodded. "It didn't work," he said sadly.
Piper watched her sons and had to blink back her tears at the broken expression on her eldest face. Not for the first time, she turned to glance at the younger versions and was both amazed and excited to see them grow into what she saw in front of her. She smiled pass her tears and focused back on her older sons.
"But it did work, Wy." Chris said firmly.
Leo looked up; intrigued and confused. Wyatt just stared at Chris with a confused expression.
"No it didn't," he said slowly. "I watched you fade away."
Chris shook his head, smiling. "I know, but I didn't die. I woke up in mom and dad's room at the manor. I was home."
"Home as in, your own time, home?" Phoebe asked. Chris nodded.
"I don't know why that's what happened. But you tried to heal me and I remember feeling myself solidify before I faded out completely. I didn't understand it, don't understand it."
Wyatt's eyes were wide and he turned his head away from Chris to stare at the wall. He'd felt it too. He thought it'd been wishful thinking, his mind fooling himself into believing he'd saved Chris... it had worked?
"Leo? Do you understand it?" Wyatt heard his mom ask. He turned his head to stare at Leo.
Leo nodded to himself, thinking it over. "The only thing I can figure is Chris was already so far faded, between this time and his that when Wyatt healed him, it was in his own time. It was really just timing. He faded out as Wyatt healed him so he was just brought back to his own time."
Everyone nodded. "I guess it makes sense," Paige said slowly. "Or as much sense as time traveling nephews can make anyway."
Everyone either laughed or nodded, but it was clear that the room agreed with Paige's statement. How else did you explain it?
Piper smiled and turned to tug Chris, who went willingly, into her arms. She buried her face in his neck. "I don't care how it happened, I'm just so happy you're okay." Piper pulled one arm back and reach around Chris to squeeze Wyatt's knee. "Both of you," she said firmly.
"Yeah, but now we have to go back. We've been out of our time for so long. Who knows how we've affected the future." Chris worried.
Leo shook his head. "I think the future's going to be okay."
Piper sighed sadly. Part of her didn't want to part with them but she knew she had to. Her future self was probably worried sick about them and besides she thought, looking over to the play pen, she wasn't really letting them go.
"Let's get you guys home," Leo continued.
Wyatt and Chris stood off to the side as the Charmed ones set about preparing the attic and the spell that would take them back. Leo hung back and watched over the younger Chris and Wyatt. Baby Chris was in the play pen while Wyatt sat at Leo's feet.
The older Wyatt had his arms crossed over his chest and was silent, as he had been since finding out he'd healed Chris.
"You did it," Wyatt said mentally, startling Chris.
"Saved the future, saved me."
"I thought you didn't need to be saved," Chris teased. Wyatt chuckled mentally.
"Yeah well, I guess I was wrong."
"What brought you to this pleasantly surprising change of opinion?"
"After you... died, or faded, I felt different. And then Dad killed Gideon and I was certain that something had changed, now I'm even more certain." Wyatt paused to get a grip on his emotions. "I healed you, Chris. I haven't been able to heal in years. You told me yourself when I first came here that it was a power I'd given up a long time ago."
"I didn't mean you'd lost it, just that you couldn't access it. You didn't know how anymore, you needed to remember. To really feel it again."
Wyatt nodded and Chris squeezed his arm gently but reassuringly. "You weren't going to be able to use it until you really let yourself fell again, something you've been trying not to do for a long time."
"You saved me, little brother."
Chris shook his head. "We saved each other, Wy."
Wyatt turned and grinned at Chris. He shook his head and threw an arm over Chris shoulder. Chris wrapped his around Wyatt's waist and the two brother's gave each other a side hug, holding on tight.
"You guys ready?" Phoebe called.
Chris and Wyatt glanced at each other and nodded. They let their arms drop from around each other and moved forward to stand in front of the Triquetra on the attic wall. Piper, Phoebe, Paige, and Leo smiled at them with tears shining in their eyes. Paige and Phoebe gave a half wave, while Piper blew them both a kiss. Leo just smiled and winked at each of them, whispering good luck.
"I love you both, so much." Piper mouthed.
Wyatt and Chris were both choked up but they returned the silent sentiment. Wyatt, who spent even less time with Piper than Chris, was particularly upset. Remembering a future where his mom wasn't there.
"She'll be there, Wy. They'll all be there."
The Charmed ones began to chant and the wall lit up in front of them. As the spell drew to a close, the Triquetra opened into a familiar portal that would bring them both home. They spared their family one last glance before looking at each other.
Wyatt smirked. "You ready, little brother?"
Chris nodded. "Let's do this."
Without another word, they stepped forward together and into the portal. The portal sealed behind them and the Triquetra glowed blue. They were gone.
The Charmed Ones and Leo stood back as the blue glow slowly faded from around the triquetra on the wall before disappearing completely; the symbol remaining fixed on the wall. For a minute, nobody said anything. They stood together silently, as though they were waiting for something to happen. Some sign that something monumental had occurred. Something to ensure that Chris and Wyatt were alright.
The childlike squeal broke the silence in the attic and the four adults turned to the toddler version of their son and nephew. Wyatt sat on the attic floor, a toothy grin on his face, and his blonde hair falling into his eyes.
Wyatt put his hands together and motioned toward the playpen where baby Chris laid on his back, his head turned to his older brother and family.
"I think he wants to see Chris." Phoebe said, smiling.
Piper moved to grab Wyatt and put him in the playpen with his brother but her assistance was unnecessary.
"Kwis!" Wyatt cried again, his eyes squinting.
Piper's eyes widened as she watched baby Chris vanish in a swirl of familiar blue and white orbs. She looked frantically to a confused Leo and back to the playpen. A happy laugh drew her attention temporarily away from the playpen and back to Wyatt who now held his baby brother close to his chest.
Chris reached his hand toward Wyatt who grinned and slowly stroked the baby's cheek. Piper felt Leo move to stand beside her but she didn't take her eyes off of her two sons.
"He orbed Chris," Paige murmured behind her.
Piper felt herself nodding along with her sister's surprised statement. To her right Leo stood, a soft smile on his face. Piper took her eyes off of Wyatt and Chris to turn to him instead.
Leo smiled wider and placed an arm around Piper, drawing her into his side. Piper went willingly and leaned into his warm embrace.
"I think they're okay." Leo said quietly, referring to the older Chris and Wyatt.
Piper turned back to Chris and Wyatt who hadn't moved or taken notice of the adults in the room watching them intently. Wyatt held Chris closely to him; protecting him it seemed. Piper smiled wide; thinking of the two men who had left only moments before but who she could already see in their smaller counterparts.
"Yeah," she agreed softly, "I think they are too."
Wyatt appeared to take notice of the attention and he turned his head to stare up at the adults. He grinned innocently and held his little brother closer to his body. Piper felt her heart fill with love as she stared at her two sons. She turned from them to the Triquetra on the wall.
She sighed happily. "They're okay."
So, there it is! Not sure what you guys were expecting but if it wasn't this; I hope it was still good, lol. I'm sorry for the LONG wait in getting this out but it's hard wrapping up a story you've put so much time and effort into; I wanted it to be juut right. And I must say, that I'm pleased with the final product (I just hope you guys are too).
I tried to explain Chris' being alive the best I could and I hope everyone understood and for those of you who thought he was a full white-lighter, it was a great idea but not what I wanted to do with this story, although I seriously considered it (another reason this took so long, lol).
Thank you SO much for everyone who has been reading, reviewing, favouriting, and alerting this story. It means so much to me to see all the people who have followed and loved this story as much as I have. A thank you to those of you who threatened bodily harm if I didn't get this done :P and those of you who promised cookies if I did, lol! And to those who took the time to PM me, it meant a lot. You all made me smile. A special thank you to my friends who have been putting up with this story and me for over a year. I know you've been wating for this so I hope it met expectations :) You all kept this story going and made it what it is! We've been through one hell of a ride together! :D
I'm sad and relieved to see this go. I'll miss this world and these characters as I've written them but it feels so good to finish it at the same time; I feel accomplished. A year and a half, I've been writing this story and now I have to let it go :( But for those of you who loved it, and the way I wrote Chris and Wyatt, I'm sure I'll be back with something else from them at some point. So keep me on your alerts because you never know what I'll do ;) In the meantime, feel free to check out some of my other stories for this and other fandoms - I would love to hear from you :D
THANK YOU! 3
Review (one last time) and let me know what you thought please! : )