hey, another little oneshot, set after chris disappears during 'the courtship of Wyatt's father.' explores his relationship with his mom. hope you like and please review.

disclaimer: I own nothing.


The Weight of Water

'Let these words answer
For what is done, not to be done again
May the judgement not be too heavy upon us'

ash-Wednesday, t.s eliot


He knows what it is immediately, who it was. He dose not know the place, their ethereal surroundings. Knows not why he is here, nor the purpose. But he knows her. Inextricably, infallibly, he knows her.

She is not solid. Not tangible or visually represented. She is…implied. A jumble of memories and dreamends- The smell of august, perfume and cookies not quite baked. The whisper of magic, spice. The late-night voice that chases the bad dreams away.

The bitter taste of blood, even here, which taints every memory now. The weight of water, a final breath mouthing his name.

Christopher. It licks through him like a sigh, catches itself in the hollow of his thoughts and he echoes outwards.

"Mom."

We don't have long. You'll go back soon.

He blinks. Teary. Defeated. A paper-shell cut-out of the child she raised. "No, I screwed it all up. I failed Mom. Now you never had me. I lost Wyatt and I'm not even yours."

You have always been mine.

The air curves, an outline forms. His eyes fill the gaps, the spaces where she has faded, no longer exists. The place of things he cannot remember anymore. He feels the brush of incorporeal fingers across his cheek.

I gave you the means to destroy yourself. I am sorry. I am so sorry Chris.

Chris does not understand, he thinks too differently from the way she does. Cannot see how she could have committed any wrong worthy of an apology. Not when she is the only reason he is here at all. Is still sane, still good.

"Mom, it doesn't matter what your past-self said . Really. It's okay. I know you loved me. I'll save Wy somehow. I will, I promise. Whatever it takes, okay?"

I know. That's what I'm afraid of.

"Mom? I don't.."

Oh Chris, are you so willing to die for it?

She is looking at him and she is not; her eyes move forward into some distant place that he cannot fathom. Chris realises that she can see how this journey will end for him. How it will end for them both, the future they have known. She can see his death coming and already morns.

"Will I?" he asks, has to know.

She doesn't say anything. He dose not need her to. He can see it all in the twist of her; see the fury dancing in the horror. The way the loss creeps up the defiance. All of it draped in grief- oh chris are you?

Chris offers her a sliced open smile. "he's my brother."

She clenches her fists. Shutters; open. closed. It is a look he remembers only most distantly from a day eighteen years ago. When Leo ceased to remain save in jingles and memory.

I never meant to do this to you.

"Mom you didn't…"

Everything you are, I made you. If you're willing to die for Wyatt, then I made you willing.

He wants to argue, but it's almost true. So much of Chris is dictated by his recollections of her, what she taught him.

What she told him, even in her blood and her terror and her tears. When he had screamed for his father, his brother and no one had come.

It has lead him here, to this place of his not-conception. To the knowledge of his own death somewhere he can't see and by means he knows not. He feels it as heavy on him as the remembrance of the other deaths, of other little last breaths littered across his brain like raindrops.

He knows why she is sorry and has no words to leave her with. Their time is too brief.

Because he can feel it now, the way the life slides back in. The way she becomes his mother again even as he slips back, slips back.

She dissipates even before he retracts completely. Wide irises of farewell. She is gone now. Irreversibly. Part of a world that dose not exist and, if he succeeds, never will.

He reappears in the attic, to the bright faces of his aunts. To his quest and little Wyatt unmolested by malevolence. To hope.

This time around he must do better. The ulturnative is unbareble. He does not think he will survive losing her twice.

He tries not to believe that he just has.


fin



so tell me what you think!