Gustave awoke with the sun shining through unfamiliar curtains. Stiffly, he got up. It had been three weeks—construction on the theater to keep it safe was done, and now they were cleaning out the dust that had plagued him on the first visit. Sometimes, Eveline accompanied him on visits, and sometimes he was alone. She was a nice presence to have around—a friend, something Gustave had not had since he was a schoolboy. Even then, some children had stayed away, for his . . . strangeness. He didn't mind being alone. However, he was definitely not a recluse, something that made him have more energy to go on when the Prima Donna's daughter was working with him.

After having coffee, he was going to work on the set design as well as practicing for the "mirror" scene, starting with Raoul coming in to meet Christine and ending with her taking Erik's hand to go to his home under the opera house. Eveline had volunteered to help him. Her clothes were much less formal when she walked into the theater—still filled with dust, though perhaps the stage was a bit more bearable.

"Gustave, what do you have so far music-wise for this scene?" she asked. He half-smiled.

"It's all written. Would you like to see it? I may have to edit out a bar or two, but I think it's good." She snatched the pages from his hands, her eyes quickly scanning them. A giddy smile spread across her face.

"This is amazing! Could I hear it?" He nodded, walking over to the orchestra organ and playing some chords before his voice boomed throughout the empty theater, echoing strangely against the far-off walls. Eveline carefully read the words over his shoulder, Christine's part, and sung softly. Her voice surprised him—she had not done so before. It was clear she was no professional, but she had a natural, light voice that sent chills up Gustave's spine.

Just outside the theater area, one of the construction workers heard the echoing voices. 'Construction worker' was a light term, as they were all young women that were paid by the city to get things clean. One of the women was doing this not for pay, but to see the opera house that she had performed at so long ago. She had fled from it on orders from her mother, hiding in her locked home, when men in police uniforms that smelled like burnt things and lake water (a strange combination, she had thought) came in her living room and questioned about the murderer. Paris had no longer been safe. Now in the foyer, hearing these voices, she moved her cleaning supplies right outside the doors so she could see.

The reason she was back, and her mother was not with her, is because she was once again running from the law. She would never dare follow her mother again, or anyone, so Paris seemed like the best option-no one would expect her to return. She had a new face, haggard from all the menial work she had done, and no longer did she resemble the "oo-la-la" girl.

Wiping the floor, she heard the voices mingling with the organ-in reality, this was not true. She did not hear the organ. She did not hear the girl. She did not even truly hear the man-if she had, she would have noticed that his voice was a tad higher and younger than the one she thought it was. No. She did not really hear him.

All Meg Giry heard was the voice of the Phantom that had ruined her life. Yes, he must be back.

But not for long.

Finishing with the first bar of loud organ music, Gustave turned.

"That was amazing," grinned Eveline, "You have an amazing voice. My father met the true Phantom, they say. The Phantom's voice was... mysterious, he said. Dark like the night, like an angel of music..." Gustave froze at the term Erik, his own father, had used to say Christine Daae once called him in the old days at the Paris Opera.

"What's your father's name?" he asked calmly.

"Raoul. He's the Vicomte de Chagny."



"That was my mother's husband. I thought he was my father for the first ten years of my life... coming to Paris was pointless!" he growled, and stormed out of the building.

Eveline chased after him. It was probably not the best moment for Meg to do so, but she followed the woman that seemed not to care that she was barefoot on the streets of Paris.

Gustave slammed the door behind him and started throwing things in his suitcase.

"Stop, please," Eveline said in a small voice, suddenly behind him.

"Why should I? Coming here was a mistake," he muttered.

"No, it wasn't. The music you're writing is beautiful. It ought to be shared," she told him. He smiled slightly. Perhaps, after all, he'd found a Christine actress...

Tadaa! See you guys later!