Summary: A modern 2010 woman is sent to 1428 Paris, France to prevent the tragic ends of Esmeralda, Quasimodo, and Claude Frollo (as well as the others). Is there a way to turn the priest's head away from his ill-fated love/hate of the gypsy girl? 1982 movie.
A/N: This is a time-travel story, so there's going to be a lot of anachronisms, implausible events, ect…if that turns you off, well, you've been warned. I don't own anything but the other characters.
Chapter 1….The Amulet
No one knows exactly when or how the amulet was created in the first place. It had been in the possession of the gypsies for a long time. The amulet was rumored to have special, sacred powers that only a select few people could unlock. Maybe the rumors were true, maybe not. The amulet's appearance was enough to spur the rumors: it was about the diameter of a quarter. The outside was glass heart-shaped bottle with a small cork in the top. Inside was a viscous, clear liquid that sometimes bubbled as though an invisible flame made it boil. Always suspended perfectly in the center was a gold and silver crucifix. The figure of Jesus had been crafted so lovingly that even the tiny crown of thorns was visible.
The night that Notre Dame came under attack, one of the gypsies was wearing it. When she was struck down, the clasp broke and the amulet clattered to a stop under the statue of Mary. Her heartbroken husband had placed the amulet in Mary's outstretched hands in hopes that God would have mercy on his brave wife's soul. He lived only long enough to see Esmeralda executed and Dom Claude Frollo's lifeless body being carried away. The poor man knew that the power of love could give life, but lust and hatred served as twin murderers.
The amulet was retrieved by a priest who had seen the curious object glinting. Thinking it was an object of witchcraft because of the exterior bottle, he tried to destroy it. Nothing happened, not even a crack. Eventually, he flung the object into the river and it floated away. Paris gradually returned to normal, though shaken by the events of Notre Dame's attack. No one but a select few even remembered the amulet.
It was washed out to sea. It was swallowed by a fish, then carried on a ship when the fish was gutted and eaten. The sailor who found it held onto it as a gift for his daughter once it was good and cleaned up. The daughter wore it for many years and it became a family heirloom for several generations. Ten or eleven generations later, the spoiled brat of a daughter said she "didn't want this old thing" and threw it away. Someone else found it and sold it at a pawn shop. The amulet disappeared mysteriously overnight. Nothing else went missing.
It was strange then…if anyone would have looked closely at the figure of Jesus, they would have seen his mouth turned upward slightly.
As if he smiled.
As if he knew something no one else did.
Many more years passed and the amulet had circled the globe three times before it finally came to rest at a church in America. At first, it was an object of fascination amongst the congregation, but it was put away in a drawer to keep it safe during renovations. Gradually it was forgotten again.
The preacher of the church came across it one day when they were doing the spring cleaning. Everything in the dusty storage room was emptied out and sorted through. He held the sparkling amulet up to the light.
Then, he remembered that it was someone's birthday…a young woman who had just graduated college. She was new to this town and did not know very many people yet. She held a special place in his heart because she had lovingly painted a mural of the trinity behind the baptismal tub. The amulet ended up in her possession as a gift of gratitude.
She was more than happy to keep it and promised to take good care of it. The clasp was easily mended and she fastened it around her neck.
It struck her as odd that she couldn't get it off after that, but she didn't mind. She also wondered why the liquid bubbled sometimes. At others, she could have sworn that the crucifix inside was glowing, but she chalked it up to her imagination.
Then, the dreams started…
A young woman dressed in clothes from the middle ages tapping a tambourine and dancing…a poor, misshapen young man with a good heart that people were afraid of…a priest, kneeling by the fire and begging God to help him…the same priest trying to touch the young woman and her disgust at his actions…everyone speaking a language foreign to her…
The girl never revealed the dreams to anyone because they already thought she was strange. She wrote stories, though none had been published yet. Her patience with the so-called "real world" was very limited and it was hard for her to hold down a job. The only being in the world who understood her (besides God) was a small, wheat-colored mutt that she'd adopted from a shelter as a puppy. She named the dog "Squishie" because the dog liked to be hugged and held.
After a week of increasingly bizarre dreams and nights punctuated with wondering what they meant, the inevitable finally happened.
She was working at the church late one night, humming along to the song "This too shall be made right" by Derek Webb. The English translation of "Notre Dame de Paris" was sitting in one of the pews, her electric guitar and amplifier resting beside it. After losing her waitress job to a now-closed restaurant, the church band and the janitorial position was her sole means of paying the rent. The amulet began to glow again and Dawn held up the small pendant and shook it. She thought it was just a trick of the light. Her dark eyes narrowed.
God…I must be pretty tired...I'm starting to see things, she thought irritably.
The door creaked open. Dawn looked up and immediately felt uneasy. A man in baggy, ripped jeans and a white (though dirty) sweatshirt walked towards her. His cap was pulled down where she couldn't see his eyes. The already dim lighting made it nearly impossible to see past the shadows that his hat cast on his face.
"Can I help you?" Dawn asked, straightening up. She'd been polishing the wood on the pews.
"Pastor Dan's already gone," she continued awkwardly, "but I can get you his number if it's important."
"I'm not looking for him," said the velvet smooth voice. Dawn wondered how that voice could come out of such a rough-looking human being. Dark stubble from an unshaven beard decorated his jaw-line. His skin looked leathery and sunburned.
"Who are you looking for?"
Squishie started to bark at the man, but Dawn's hand on her back silenced her.
"You, my lady."
He inclined his head in a bow. Now, she was really confused.
Dawn did not know what to think.
"You are Dawn Stevens, aren't you?"
She dearly wished she'd thought to lock the door. If something happened to her, no one would be the wiser until morning. Her cell phone was useless because the service had been cut off. She hadn't been able to pay the bill this month.
"I have a message for you."
Who is this nut job? Is he somebody I went to school with?
The man pulled a folded piece of paper out of his pocket and read it out loud.
"The power of love transcends all languages and time. Love God and Love Thy Neighbor, the rest comes from the divine."
She stared at him.
"That's what it says. If you don't believe me, look right here."
"So…what do you want with me?" she demanded again, hand slipping onto the broom handle. The flimsy plastic might not do much damage, but it might slow him down.
"Your amulet, girl! You didn't think that getting it was an accident, did you?"
"Of course it wasn't an accident," she snorted, "it was a gift."
The man grinned as if enjoying a joke she didn't understand.
"Of course it was a gift," he answered, "from above."
Dawn wanted to smack her forehead.
"Don't get them pretty gold curls twisted in a knot," he said, still smiling, "you'll figure it out soon enough."
"Stop talking in circles and just tell me," Dawn demanded.
"I'd rather show you."
Before she could object, he seized her arm. The amulet flashed so brightly that it looked as though there had been a lightning strike inside it. The world suddenly blurred around her and went black. The last thing she heard was Squishie barking noisily.