EPILOGUE:

On the morning of May 12th, a death was reported. An impromptu hanging trial had been delayed due to elevated crisis circumstances- but as the guilty attempted to flee, he was shot to death by the sir Raoul de Chagny. They say it was an unknown man, who was being charged with kidnapping of a young girl. They say his warden went mad at his death and is currently in the care of a mental institution in Lyon.

Other stories circulated around the streets of Paris, as stories did. Some say that Raoul de Chagny had actually aided the criminal in his attempt to escape! These were flurried rumors that were not spoken very loud - to doubt the honor of one of the knighted would have been a grevious crime. Others whispered that the warden had actually escaped with her captor, others said she had killed herself shortly after the events had taken place. Some wondered if the guilty one had killed her himself. Some said they were both dead.

The stories took much more elaborate turns as they traveled through the ears of eager listeners. They said that the guilty man was none other than the infamous opera ghost, caught at last and brought to justice. Some say he had a new girl with him, another captive of his fancy, others say there was no girl at all, but simply the memory of a girl he had once taken, a girl named Christine Daae, who had taken her life a year previously, God rest her soul.

But the most chilling stories was that there was no hanging at all - that it had been a common man, and a common captive, nothing more than that. For those who truly knew the story of the opera ghost knew that a ghost could not be hanged. A ghost could not be caught. A ghost could not be anything more than a practical ghost, one who haunted the very depths of the Paris Opera House, who had a voice that could command all the beings of Hell, and all the scores of the angels. And when his young protegee took her life by her own hand, many say that she joined him in the down below, dancing through the vaults of a theatre, striking up a glorious duet that could only be heard when the stage was dark and the pit was silent.

Only one story claimed a path of complete lunacy, one in which there were absolutely no ghosts at all, but simply a man and a woman, who had come together by the most enticing of ways, and refused to be parted by any ways of this earth. He claimed, to dubious belief, that they had indeed lived beneath the theatre, but had escaped together to conquer the world. He did not know where they could have possibly gone, only that they were together and that they would remain so.

This story was from the mouth of Raoul de Chagny, and it was highly disregarded. A story with ghosts was much more interesting. A simple love story was common enough, but the tragedy of two ghosts in love was much more delightful to the senses. As a respected man, sir Raoul de Chagny was often reassured that his story was credible, and highly plausible... but they were simply words. Everyone knew there was no man under the opera. Everyone knew Christine Daae had been a sad, misguided little girl. Everyone knew the stories of the opera were just that - stories. To believe in one so heartily was only a lure for fools. Perhaps Raoul de Chagny had gone mad, they said. Perhaps he had truly lost his senses after the suicide of his dearly beloved. Perhaps his head had concocted the whole story for his peace of mind. Perhaps.

And yet, many years later, they say you can still hear a chilling duet that weaves it's way through the grand hall, heart-breakingly beautiful and almost tortuous to listen to.

It's only the ghosts of the opera. It's only a story told to children... There are no ghostly lovers beneath the great Paris Opera...

...are there?

A/N: Hope you enjoyed reading. I enjoyed writing.