First a thank you to my reviewers:

vrb18 - Wow! You got an account. Congrats! I'm glad you like the way Prue interacted with her nephews.

Chris's Adorer - Hey, Jana! Welcome to this site. I hope my email was helpful. I was going to post this on TCS, but my internet died and I'm not ready to leave, so I'll post it there when I get back.

Queen Of Gabb 488 - You made my day with that review. Definitely made me smile. Thanks so much. Sorry, that I couldn't post it at once, but I'm afraid I had to write it first. Hope you enjoy it.

La . Manzhanitah . Prue . Hermione - I'm glad to hear you liked it enough to go back and read the prequel. Of course there are some things that make more sense if you do, such as Prue and Cole, seeing as Charmed left them dead and both are alive in this story.


Chapter Two - Alarm Clocks, Boyfriends, and Other Alarming Things

At the moment the sound of the loudest bell in America could not have competed with the tiny buzzing sound of one small alarm clock. Phoebe Halliwell flipped over and covered her ears with her pillow.

It didn't work.

With a sigh., Phoebe climbed out of her bet and walked over to the night stand her dad has strategically placed on the opposite side of the room. Ever since she and her sisters had returned from the "dead", Phoebe had just been so tired. And it just kept getting worse. No matter how early she got to bed, she still woke up tired.

Today of all days she need to be alert, but it didn't seem to matter what she needed. She had finally managed to get a message through to her former boss, Elise Rothman, when Elise had returned to the country a few days before. While Phoebe had been trapped in a communal dream with Piper, Paige, and a witch named Christy, Elise had moved up in the world, doing a lot of traveling for the paper. She'd only just gotten back to receive Phoebe's calls. Elise had asked her to come in and talk. Unfortunately because Phoebe had managed to ignore her alarm for so long, she only had forty-five minutes to get to the Bay Mirror and most of that was driving time.

A search through her closet revealed that she had neglected to do the laundry, but wasn't a total loss she faced a flattering blouse and shirt. The skirt was a bit longer than she wanted, but it went well with the blouse and didn't hinder her movement, so she put it on. She suspected that her dad had something to do with it. Since she couldn't imagine him shopping for women's clothing she wasn't sure what he had to do with it, but she was sure he did.

As soon as she was dressed she grabbed her cell and headed into the kitchen and grabbed an energy bar out of the fridge. There were definite advantages to living with her dad and a well stocked fridge was one of them. Today, though, she didn't have time to take advantage of it. The energy bar would have to do for now.

She was almost out the door when her cell phone rang. She kept walking as she pulled it out of her pocket. "Phoebe."

"Did you make your alarm?" her former ex-husband and current boyfriend, Cole Turner asked.

"On my way out right now," she announced. "I told you I'd make it okay."

"If you're just leaving right now, you're behind schedule," Cole teased.

"I'll make it in time," Phoebe assured him as she began the decent down the apartment stairs.

"Dinner tonight to celebrate?" he asked.

"Celebrate what?" she asked absently. "My replacement's pretty popular, Cole. This may just be a courtesy, telling me in person, rather than over the phone, that there is no opening at the Bay Mirror. "

"Maybe," he conceded, "but that doesn't sound like Elise's style."

"What would you know of Elise's style?" Phoebe asked, amused. "When we were married, you barely took notice of her and certainly not after the divorce."

"I've learned enough," Cole dismissed.

She shook her head with a smile as she fumbled in her pocket for her keys. She groaned.

"Something wrong?"

She sighed. "I forgot my keys."

The sound of poorly suppressed laughter could be heard from Cole's side of the phone.

"It's not funny, Cole," she protested as she headed back up the stairs.

"Yes, it is," he countered.

Phoebe scowled as she reached the top of the stairs. As she walked down the hallway toward Victor's apartment, she was too preoccupied to notice a door open into the hall.

A young woman peeked out from behind the door and watched Phoebe. She dug her hand into her pocket and pulled out a cell phone. She put it to her ear and in a musical voice that belied the evil look growing on her face, she said, "I almost missed her leaving. Do I follow?"


At the end of The Halliwell Death Trap I left Phoebe and Cole's relationship in question, but I decided for this story to make a decision there. Other things I left open will be decided in this story.