Christine Daae was in a rather difficult -yet cliché- situation. The young and beautiful opera star was torn between two men, both of which she loved dearly; Raoul, her childhood sweetheart and current fiancé, and Erik, the mysterious "Opera Ghost" and a lonely "Angel of Music".
Raoul was a handsome, rich young suitor, who loved Christine with all his heart, while Erik was a poor, terrified man, his face distorted on one side so much that he was forced to hide beneath the Paris Opera house. He told her that he was madly in love with her, but she was beginning to suspect that his life of solitude had simply made him mad.
"Make your choice, Christine!" the Phantom cried angrily, tightening the noose around Raoul's neck, "Will you stay and let him live? Or leave and let him die?"
"Christine please!" Raoul choked, struggling against his captor, "Run! Leave me here! I could never live on the outside knowing you were trapped here! Go!" he begged.
She looked from one man to the other and back again…she couldn't decide! Either way, she could never be with Raoul, and Erik…well he was just a little too unpredictable for her to marry. Not to mention he had homicidal tendencies…
Tears began to well up in her eyes, "How? How do you expect me to choose one over the other? I love you both! Why not just kill me and save us all the trouble?" she wailed. Erik's expression softened as he attempted to approach her, but suddenly, an object dropped from above and he was forced to retreat.
The object, in reality, was not actually an object…it was a person. Meg Giry, Christine's best friend, as a matter of fact. She had mistakenly fallen through one of Erik's many trap doors and landed with a splash in the water where everyone else was standing. The petite blonde ballerina soon resurfaced, sputtering and wringing out her hair, "Christine! Are you alright?" she ran over and embraced her sobbing friend, "What's wrong? And why on Earth are you in a wedding dress?"
The Phantom cleared his throat, attracting her attention. At first, Meg was a little startled by his appearance (and Raoul's predicament) but her shock soon turned to something else, "You…"
He smirked, taking her wide-eyed stare as a look of awe and terror, "Yes. It is I, the Phantom of th-"
"YOU inconsiderate, thieving little scoundrel!" Meg shrieked, cutting him off mid-sentence, "I know EXACTLY what's going on here! You're trying to manipulate poor Christine into choosing you over Raoul!" she pointed an accusing finger at the unmasked Ghost.
He stammered, "Um…well…I wouldn't put it THAT way…"
"WELL NOTHING! This is the most immature, ridiculous, juvenile thing I've ever seen in my life! HONESTLY!"
"You hold your tongue!" she snapped, "And cut Raoul loose before he turns blue! Now!" Erik reluctantly released him, expecting Christine to run straight to her future husband. However, she remained beside Meg.
"As for YOU Raoul…" Meg suddenly aimed her rant in the Vicomte's direction, "You have sunk almost as low as him! How DARE you ask her to abandon you to die! You have got to be the most selfish person…I swear Raoul! I thought better of you." she hissed. Neither man spoke. They could only stare at the little spitfire they had once thought was a little mouse.
"Christine wouldn't be able to live with herself if something happened to you Raoul! And I'd wager she'd be saddened if you were hurt or killed too Erik!" Meg helped the bawling bride to her feet, "The both of you ought to be ashamed of yourselves! Fighting over her like two dogs!" she glowered down at them from the staircase. They exchanged quick, guilty glances before staring off in opposite directions awkwardly.
Christine sniffled, "You know something Meg…I've made my decision." she wiped the last of her tears away as the boys looked up at her hopefully. Both of them were expecting her to pick them, and were left speechless by her choice, "I've decided that I'm tired of fooling with you two! To be quite honest, I'd rather be with HER than have to deal with all this juvenile nonsense!" she nodded to Meg, who barely caught the wink that signaled her to play along.
"You can't be serious!"
"I second that motion!" Madame Giry called from the other side of the iron grate. She had thrown off the search party and had ventured down there alone, "It is obvious that neither of them would know how to behave with a wife if they can't handle all this jealousy between them."
"Quite right Mama! Come along Christine, let's leave these divas to their bickering!" Meg took her by the arm and marched right past the two slack-jawed guys. Together, the ladies pulled the lever that lifted the barrier and let themselves out. Then, without even a backwards glance, all three women departed, leaving Raoul and Erik gaping in astonishment.
"Let me know when one of you mans-up enough to handle a woman the right way!" Christine called over her shoulder. Madame Giry sniffed and warned her not to hold her breath, sending a wave of giggles over the two younger girls.
Raoul and Erik stood motionless, staring at each other in disbelief.
"Did you see-"
"What was THAT all about?"
"The nerve of some women!"
"This is absurd!"
Left flabbergasted, and without answers to any of their questions, the two enemies finally stood on common ground. Christine had left both of them…for Meg.
"Well, monsieur, feel free to show yourself the door. I've no further use for you as bait…" Erik sighed, shaking his head.
"Are you kidding me? My fiancée just left me for ANOTHER WOMAN! I can never show my face in public again!" Raoul shouted indignantly.
"Join the club…" the Phantom rolled his eyes.
"Why, I might as well stay down here!"
The Phantom scoffed, "Not likely sir. Go haunt your own opera house." taking advantage of Raoul standing where the women had previously been, he slammed the gate shut, stranding the Vicomte outside.
"B-but, don't you get lonely? Aren't you by yourself all the time?" he grasped the bars of the fence pleadingly.
"I'm lonely, yes. Desperate, no. Goodnight, Mr. de Chagny." the Opera Ghost grabbed a golden chalice from a nearby table as he bid his former rival adieu, then proceeded to smash every mirror he could reach. He finally found his secret escape tunnel and soon disappeared from view forever.
Now doubly rejected, Raoul skulked back through the many passages until he came back into the main auditorium. He melded into the crowd, trying to escape his embarrassment and the burning building.
Meanwhile, Christine, Meg and Madame Giry were all having a good laugh, amused that the boys had fallen for the whole act…hook, line and chandelier!