Hey anyone who reads this.

I apologise for my Punctuation. It's really not my strong point. But I really do hope you like this Fanfiction.

To: Mena In The Garden you were my first reviewer. Thankyou.

Iheartjacknkim Thankyou for that. I wasn't sure.

felicityphoenix Your review will never cease to make me smile

Here's hoping that you read this. Even if you don't I just wanted to say thankyou. :D

She heard a small growl and turned her attention to the boarded up door next to her, which her new friend Pooka had just disappeared through. Bending down slightly so that she could see through the gap, Anya called out to him. "Pooka." If she had not been so determined to find the elusive Dimitri, she probably would be doing the same thing. "Pooka where are you?" She certainly would not just leave him to wander around, especially in a place as grand as this. Taking a firm hold of the boarding, she pulled. "AAH! OH!" She fell onto the cold ground, her hat falling off. It turned out she hadn't needed to use so much of her strength. She couldn't help but wonder how Pooka, her sign, had managed to find her.

She entered the vestibule of the Palace, slowly taking her scarf off as she looked around. "Hello. Anybody home?" She shouted. She had expected no reply. If someone was living in this place it surely would not be here. It would be in one of the bedrooms where it was cosy and at least a little warmer. She continued upward and Pooka followed.

The first room she found appeared to be a dining room. Or at least it had been once. The table, covered with Candelabras that still contained candles burnt to halfway, Glasses, Cutlery and Plates, was also covered with thick dust and cobwebs. Anya wondered to herself why no one lived here. It looked beautiful on the outside, surely once, not very long ago, everything on the inside had been cared for and sparkled.

As Pooka darted under the tablecloth, she stepped closer, carefully, not wanting to disturb anything. But she could not help herself. She blew away the dust of a plate to look at her reflection. It felt heavy and somehow she knew that it was made of Silver. Real Silver. Picking it up, she took in everything about it, the heaviness, the shape and the pretty pattern around the edge. As she once again looked at her pale face, an image of a young girl being lifted and spun around in the air by a handsome man, flitted through her mind. Slightly startled as to why she had seen this she replaced the plate to its resting spot. Wondering how long it would be before it was held or cleaned again.

Her scarf trailing across the floor, leaving a slight trail through the dust, she continued on her slow walk. She could hear Pooka's paws padding behind her toward the doorway just to her right. But something else had caught her attention. A Grey vase sat on top of a side table. The bottom half of the Vase was painted with elegant Swans, the top with dancing Bears. "This place it's... it's like a memory from a dream." She told herself in the cracked mirror.

Then she heard it. At first it was faint, but as she began to walk towards the doorway, it seemed to get louder. She was not sure if the tune was playing in her mind, of if some ghostly band were playing it for her in the next room. The melody haunted her. She felt that she had heard it before and should know the words that you were supposed to sing along with it. But she could not for the life of her remember them.

Without realising what she had done, Anya had moved into the Grand Hall. She stopped herself and found that she was on a balcony that overlooked the dance floor. A few years ago when she was in the Kitchen of the Orphanage helping Comrade Phlegmenkof to make the meals that had to pass as food in that place, she would not stop complaining. And after a while Phlegmenkof could take it no longer. "When you are older and married, if any man is stupid enough to marry you, you will find that the Kitchen is the heart of the home." A 14 year old Anya had kept quite afterwards, but had tried to imagine that dark and dingy Kitchen as the heart of that "home." But after being in that Hall for not even a minute, she knew that this was the real heart of this home. And that Comrade Phlegmenkof had never even dreamt of anything like this.

She imagined what the parties had been like. The ladies in their beautiful dresses as they danced with their angelic partners, Mothers and Daughters gossiping in the corners. The portraits on the wall hearing every word that was spoken, forever keeping everyone's secrets to themselves. The chandeliers that hung from the ceiling glistening with light as they watched the people below chatter and laugh the night away. Anya moved towards the top of the staircase, and to her left noticed the biggest portrait in the room. On a plaque at the bottom of which read: 'The Romanov Family.' Five radiant children and two refined parents. The light from the windows made it look ghostly, almost like they were watching her back. The image of the man had to be the one she had seen while she had held the plate. All the while the melody played on in her head.

She let the music take over, not caring if anyone was in fact watching, and began to make up her own words. "Dancing bears, painted wings, things I almost remember." Still keeping her eyes on the portrait she looked at each face in turn, apart from the youngest girl she could truly imagine what they looked like in real life, to dance with them and to be held by them. A warm feeling was taking over her, like she belonged. And if she was honest with herself she had felt this way since she had first set foot in the boarded up doorway.

"And a song, someone sings

Once upon a December.

Someone holds me safe and warm

Horses prance through a silver storm

Figures dancing gracefully across my memory"

She spun to the last line and paused, holding her arms out wide now facing the dance floor. Closing her eyes for a second to the darkness of the room. When she next opened them it looked exactly as she had imagined it would as if a party was about to take place. As if the people in the Portraits had been waiting for her permission, they stepped out into the air and glided gracefully to the ground, continuing their dance as if they had never ceased. Again she had done something she was not conscious of doing. Her coat had landed in a heap behind her and her gloves were to her right where she had thrown them unceremoniously. She began to descend the stairs and stopped in-between the two couples that had landed there. She bowed to each of them in turn before she ran the rest of the way to the floor. She spun again and again; truly feeling like this was her song.

"Someone holds me safe and warm

Horses prance through a silver storm

Figures dancing gracefully across my memory."

The family too had left their frame and headed towards her. The elder sisters, the quickest, began to greet her warmly, almost like they were welcoming her home. Anya noticed that the youngest sister was nowhere to be found. But before she could really think about it, one of the girls placed a necklace over her head. And the absence of the other girl was quickly forgotten.

"Far away, Long ago

Glowing dim as an ember"

This time as she spun, she took hold of her shirt, which in her mind became a dazzling yellow dress, a blue ribbon tied around her waist. And on her head a shiny tiara. The girls had been waltzed away by dancing men and before she knew it one of those dancing men was holding her, spinning her, and then effortlessly passing her to the next partner. As they let her go they blew her kisses. Almost like they were telling her that they would miss her.

"Things it yearns to remember"

The third young man to dance with her let her go after their last spin and bowed her out as the Father from the portrait held his hand out to her inviting her to the last dance of the night. She took his hand as he placed his other on her waist. They waltzed slower than the other men had danced with her, and he looked at her face seeming to drink her in. She too did the same but she felt a little confused. Why would this man want to dance with her?

"And a song someone sings."

She curtsied, hoping she was doing it right. Sitting on the floor she looked up at the man, wishing he could stay forever. Her dress pooled around her as she bowed her head, only now did she take her eyes from him. 'Was that real?' She asked herself.


She gasped as her head snapped up. Her dress vanished as did the figures surrounding her, the room dimmed and she was back in reality. She turned to find two real men on the other balcony. She wondered how long they had been watching her. "What are you doing in here?" She got up quickly and began to run back towards a yapping Pooka and the stairs, slipping slightly on the dusty floor. She could hear the footsteps of the man who had shouted running after her.

In that moment she forgot the lines to her song and the melody she had sung them to. Her party was truly over.