Disney owns Beauty and the Beast and its characters.
"Five Days in Paris" is a spinoff of the story "The New Order in the Castle." I have given some initial background so it can be understood without reading the longer story first.
Lumiere and Babette went off to elope in Paris, but only their departure and return was described in "New Order." Here is what they experienced on their trip.
Chapter 1- Journey
The immense castle with its spires and turrets slowly disappeared from view, as Babette gazed out of the window of the large, elegant stagecoach. She felt a rush of excitement and adventure; she still wanted to pinch herself to know that this was actually real. She and her beloved Francois Lumiere were actually heading off to Paris to elope! It had been over ten whole years since she and Francois had been outside the castle and its grounds.
She turned from the window and smiled at her fiancé, a tall, thin man of thirty six years old, about six years her senior. He grinned at her, squeezing her hand.
"It will only be a day and a half of travel, cherie. Don't worry, if you tire of the ride and need to take a break, I'll let the driver know."
"I'm fine for now, but thank you." She took off her bonnet. Although it was lightly raining outside, it was quite warm inside of the coach. They were now rolling slightly downhill through a valley, soon to enter a main carriage road that would take them westward.
Lumiere removed his hat and heavy coat as well. His hair had receded slightly from what she had remembered it looking like before he was transformed into a candelabrum, and his laughing blue-grey eyes had developed just a few little smile lines.
Babette herself had barely aged at all, and what aging she had gone through made her more attractive in Francois' eyes, as she had been only twenty when she'd been turned into a feather duster. Over the last years, while he had been trying to cheer the other objects up, she had made sure to stay industrious, cleaning and tidying and trying to steer clear of the irritable and brooding Master.
Before the crazy curse, she'd hardly thought of Francois as someone who would have paid attention to someone like her. He had been a fairly new addition to the staff, coming on board about a year after the epidemic of illness that had claimed the lives of Prince Adam's parents, Prince Alexandre and Princess Marie Eugenie, as well as a handful of servants, including the former butler and maitre d', the beloved Nicholas Potts, and Babette's own hardworking and kind mother, Josette.
After those tragic losses, the remaining castle residents had been in despair. Their only master remaining was an angry and spoiled little boy, Prince Adam. So when Lumiere took on the post with his resume of experience lacking in practical castle-servant duties, but more as that of a performer and aspiring singer from Paris, willing to take on any job as a starving artist will, he brought a liveliness and gaiety to the glum inhabitants like a ray of sunshine.
She admired him from afar when they had been human back then. She was more like a little sister to him, but she had always felt giddy when he would talk to her or compliment her on her diligent work. She gathered that he had been a playboy back in Paris, and had several past girlfriends and admirers that he had talked of; their names unfamiliar to any of them. Apparently none of them had been serious, because they never bothered to show up at the palace. She often wondered if he missed any of them, or was secretly lonely.
Lumiere was probably the most popular member of the entire staff for another reason besides his showmanship and habit of bursting into merry song- he would take young Adam away from the castle on trips to the cities to see art museums and orchestra concerts, and to spoil him with new toys. This, of course, would relieve the rest of the inhabitants from the constant tantrums and whining of the little boy. The only servants who had ever attempted to control the child had been Cogsworth and Mrs. Potts, but they had lost the battle, as the boy was already nearly nine and his temperament had been established.
About two years later, on Christmas Eve, the boy happened to answer the door, and after he behaved rudely to an old beggar woman, a decade-long nightmare began.
Since they were all objects then, confined to the walls of the castle, they had no one to associate with but each other. Babette, even though she was just a duster, still had the mind of a young woman growing in maturity. Her cute feathery form and sweet personality soon caught the eye of the charismatic candle-man, and as the ten years progressed, a flirtatious friendship evolved into a romance. Of course, there wasn't much of a physical component to this, although they certainly tried. Moreover, they could both sense a passionate bonding of their minds and souls.
Babette had indeed enchanted Lumiere with the way she had appeared after the transformation. He vaguely recalled her as a thin and mousy little mademoiselle before, with dark hair cut short and unadorned, wearing dowdy black maid's dresses. She came out as a woman- a tantalizing woman. She had grown up, a late-bloomer in feminine beauty. The physical manifestation of her more confident personality, like a flower blossoming from his attention, was a sight to behold. She passed by him that day, and even was brave enough to flirtatiously wink at him, making him playfully chase her around the castle. There was no way that the mousy young girl she'd been before could have managed that.
After a few weeks of secret rendezvous-ing around the spare upstairs rooms of the servants' wing, Babette realized that they had both made a mistake and had rushed into things. She started wondering if he wouldn't see her as possible wife material, and to her horror, she thought that she might end up being just like another of his old paramours.
Things came to a head the day after Adam and Belle's wedding, when she flat out told him that if he were not to be the marrying type, it was best that they end the relationship. For a very brief time, that was what happened.
Two weeks later, although it seemed much longer, Francois completely shocked her with a proposal. He had a change of heart. That proposal had happened only yesterday, and here they were, heading out on a romantic adventure.
"Dear, when we get there, the first stop will be my father's. I would like you to meet him. Then, we can go to the old church where my father's favorite priest friend will marry us. If we make good time, that may be as early as tomorrow morning," Lumiere said to her.
"That sounds lovely," she replied, smiling and snuggling into his shoulder. She looked up at him and her lips found his, and since they were alone, they kissed passionately for quite some time, until their lips finally were numb.
"Mind if I smoke now?" he asked, reaching for a pipe in his coat pocket.
"Yes, I do mind. I feel as Cogsworth does, I'd rather you not," she gently scolded.
"Very well, then."
The rest of the day and evening went on very dull and dreary, with nothing to look at but the inside of the carriage and the grey skies outside. They stopped in a town for dinner, and continued on. A new driver- a cross-looking man- came on duty, and two more passengers embarked, two finely-dressed men. At this point on their journey, they were halfway between the area of Prince Adam's castle, nestled in the scenic, hilly region of northeastern France, and their destination of Paris.
Babette had never been this far west before. She hailed from Nancy originally, although she hadn't even been there since she had been fifteen years old, when her father died and she and her mother took on the positions of cleaning maids for the noble family. It was one of the most coveted positions for a widow with a young daughter. Even though their days were filled with menial tasks, she and her mother were treated well, with fine food, clean uniforms, and comfortable bedrooms, surrounded by opulent furnishings. She couldn't imagine what it may have been like if they had not been adopted as servants by Prince Alexandre and his wife.
As the coach rolled through the French countryside, Francois and Babette made small talk with the two merchants sitting across from them, but didn't find much about them to relate to; they seemed haughty and way too serious. All four soon became tired, and they fell asleep on the seats as darkness fell upon the interior of the stagecoach. They woke up in the morning with aching necks and a need to get out of that now-uncomfortable coach as soon as possible, but there was still more travel ahead. The groggy couple was about to ask the driver politely to stop, but one of the travelers, a large middle aged man, quickly yelled out the window, demanding that they stop for breakfast and a chance to stretch their legs, and the other three passengers were grateful.
Four monotonous hours later, they arrived at the outskirts of what was definitely a great city. Huge spires of Gothic cathedrals and other majestic buildings appeared in the landscape.
"This is it, cherie! We are here!" Lumiere exclaimed to his sweetheart.
The carriage entered into a main street and became surrounded by buildings on every side, homes upon homes, and all kinds of shops, taverns, and markets. Babette looked out the window, mesmerized at the flurry of activity- dozens of carriages of every type, and people of all walks of life going out and about. A little further, and they approached the immense Cathedral of Notre Dame, as well as the other fine works of archetecture.
"Magnifique! Better than the drawings in the books!" Babette exclaimed.
"Beautiful, is it not?" her fiancé said, grinning. He was so eager to share his hometown with her, as he had not been here himself for more than ten years. Soon they were passing through the most glamorous and elegant section of the great city. Here were the glorious Gothic cathedrals, the political buildings, the banks and fine hotels. The coach stopped for a moment, and the two gentlemen who had not said much to the couple stepped off, looking irritable from the lengthy travel. The coach picked up speed again.
"This is where some of the most powerful people in the world today live and work, Babette," he told her. Indeed, the people going about the streets were indeed much more elegant looking than the people they had passed before. The cobblestone streets were much cleaner, the carriages and horses the finest. Babette looked admiringly at the buildings; some of the architecture reminded her of Prince Adam's castle, with their spires and carvings of cherubs, but here there were dozens to look at.
The carriage traveled still further, past several more large and impressive buildings, and finally into a plainer, quieter area lined with smaller churches, cafés, and more shops.
"Now we are nearing my father's home. It is on the Rue de Orme."
Babette spotted a group of three young children out on the sidewalk, and she smiled and waved at them. In an instant, the children, all of them dressed in dirty, ripped clothing, rushed toward the stagecoach and reached out their hands toward her window.
"Mademoiselle! Mademoiselle! Nourriture,* si vous plait?"
A gruff voice was heard at the front of the coach.
"Stay away, you filthy little dogs!"
It was the coachman, and they could feel the carriage picking up speed in order to keep the children from climbing up on the coach. One of them had tried to climb, and as the coach lurched faster, the small boy was thrown into the cobblestone street. Babette gasped. The poor little thing was not more than six, perhaps five.
"I might have to have a word with this driver, pardon me, cherie," said Lumiere, angrily. He stood and leaned his head out of the window. "I want you to stop this carriage instantly!"
"We have not reached the address I was given, monsieur," the driver replied curtly.
"It doesn't matter. We are very close, and will walk! Stop the carriage!"
They felt the coach slowing down and finally to a stop. Lumiere and Babette jumped out, and Lumiere, still fuming, approached the driver in the front.
"I will report your cruelty to those children."
"To whom?" The coachman stared down at Lumiere in a challenging manner.
"His Majesty Prince Adam."
"I don't believe I have ever been chastised for trying to prevent little street rats from swarming our stagecoaches. It is the protocol to never stop to aid beggars and tramps! I do as my employers have always asked."
"Well, we are done with you, and I am certain Prince Adam would beg to differ on the protocol, Monsieur. Good day!" Lumiere turned from him and stepped back in to grab his and Babette's traveling bags.
Meanwhile, Babette had run as fast as she could, about the length of a city-block away, to where the child had been knocked into the middle of the street. Lumiere, carrying three large bags, lumbered toward where she had gone.
He arrived at an area just in front of some row houses, and was touched to see his fiancee helping a dirty child to his feet. She walked him back to the other two, an even tinier boy and a girl, the oldest.
When he reached them, the girl ran to him and asked, as before, "Monsieur! Nourriture*, si vous plait?"
He was jolted into the reality that he was no longer protected by the castle walls anymore. The magical spell over the years had cut all of Prince Adam's servants from the outside world and all of its problems and tragedies. Looking at the three children with their ripped and dirty clothes; the sobbing boy with a bloodied, scraped knee, and all three with a hopeless and lost look on their faces, he realized just how much about Paris he'd forgotten.
A.N. Nourriture- food, nourishment.