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Chapter 15

A New Dawn

Two days earlier:

Cole was standing in the silent Manner basement as he conjured a table to do some dark alchemy. With a wave of his hand the table vanished leaving only behind himself and the small concoction he made. His shadow began to separate from him and with a quick stern look it moved back into place behind him.

"This stays between us got it," Cole said and the dark head nodded in agreement. "It's time to test the theory of the stone tape. I need to see what the girls were talking about before they left." He finished and poured the lavender liquid onto the concrete floor in hopes to get it to talk. The stone tape theory, is that some stone like limestone or quartz can store energy and in some ways record the past like a videotape. It generates reoccurring phenomenon which appears in a transparent and ghostly form and devoid of intelligent interaction. The liquid seeped into the concrete like a sponge and then above him he could hear footsteps and muffled voices. He smiled a little at his plan may have worked as he carefully ascended the staircase that led into the kitchen. Cole open the door slowly and could see transparent figures moving about. At first the conversation seemed normal, sisterly talk but once their white-lighter orbed in, it all changed. The name Lady Laois came up and Cole smiled as he knew exactly who she was. Occasionally the figures would flash in and out like a bad recording as more information was conveyed and released by the nexus that help store the energy as well as the limestone floor in the basement. He got what he needed as the images disappeared along with the voices.

"New York, looks like were going on a little trip" he said to his shadow and shimmered away.

Present time:

Phoebe finished up a spell she has been working on for the last 10 minutes to keep the demon from shimmering in as Leo kept an eye out through a hole in the steel to make sure no one was coming.

"Why is it so dark?" Piper asks as she came out of the bedroom holding her side and leaning against the door frame.

"Piper," Leo said and smiled as he went over to her.

"Ok what happened?" she asks and then covered her mouth as she saw Paige.

"A lot," Phoebe replied while lighting the small piece of paper she was writing onto activate the spell.

"She will be ok," Leo said and helped Piper sit down. She cringed as a sharp pain went through her side.

"Awe, wait how did you guys get to me?" Piper asks.

"Paige orbed to you and then it went awry, she had trouble orbing back. Clift note version, we ended up surrounded by zombies and she got bitten and attacked," Phoebe replied as Piper looked into the bedroom.

"And Prue?" Piper asks.

"That would be a nervous breakdown, see Piper you missed all the fun," Phoebe replied as both Piper and Leo looked a little concerned at her answer. "Oh and Frank is a demon."

"is there anything else like the sky is falling, pigs can fly anything?" Piper asks as her mind was still trying to grasp all of it.

"Nope that's it," Phoebe said.

"Honey are you ok?" Leo asks.

"I think he broke a rib. I don't like this worlds Dan," Piper replied as she tried to take a deep breath in but could only go halfway before she had to stop.

"We did the power swap spell but the white-lighter part never came to me and with Paige being – well dead right now her power is in limbo and we can't do it anymore," Leo said.

"Yeah I tried to heal you but all I did was levitate, I think the witch has to be a alive in order for her power to truly swap again, Sorry," Phoebe said.

"Its ok, its mostly bruises. How long have they been like that?" Piper asks.

"Prue at least 24 hour's and Paige about half that," Phoebe replied as Piper looked at Leo's hands. She put one in her small hands and then looked up at him.

"Piper I kind of lost it. After I saw you and the state you were in, the moment he entered the room I just lost it," Leo said and lowered his head feeling ashamed. Piper put her other hand under his chin and gently forced him to look at her.

"Leo its ok, trust me I don't blame you," Piper said and then put her and on the side of his face. She could feel stumbles of hair from the lack of shaving and see dark circles under his eyes from the lack of sleep. "When was the last time you slept?"

"I honestly don't remember, it's weird when I had my powers I never really got tired," he replied as small moans could be heard coming from Paige. Phoebe stood up quickly as Leo stood and went to check on her.

"Leo be careful," Piper said as she was not sure if Paige would be affected or not. Paige opened her eyes and then sat up looking dazed as she examined where she was.

"Dam I'm back in the RV, I really hoped this was all a really bad dream," Paige said and pressed her lips together in disappointment of the realization it was not. Phoebe smiled cheerfully and hugged her. While both Piper and Leo let out a sigh of relief.

"Welcome back to the living," Piper said.

"Living nightmare," Paige said as she looked at her clothing," Ewe I smell."

"Yeah just a little," Phoebe said while finishing her hug.

"Okay so now all we have to do is fix Prue," Piper said and then she noticed someone was missing," Where is Andy?"

"Outside talking to Darrell, apparently he was going to leave that group because of their violent nature but he was protecting a girl and that kept him with them," Leo replied.

"I am going to take a shower," Paige said and headed off to the bathroom.

"Wait Paige can you try to heal Piper," Leo asks.

"Leo let her get her energy back I know personally just how hard that power is to tap into," Piper said as Paige continued to the bathroom.

Outside of the RV the group was discussing what to do with the sisters.

"Why don't we just have them go their way and we will go ours?" the Greek suggested.

"They won't go for that, you can't trust them they'll probably come back and kill you," Frank said.

"One of them saved my son which would have taken her life in the process if it wasn't for their rear blood," Sheila chimed in.

"They kidnapped him," Frank said while pointing to Andy.

"Yeah that is something I'm still trying to figure out," Andy said.

"The oldest one took you because I guess in her world you don't exist any more, your dead," Darrell said as he had a conversation with Prue before she collapsed.

"Okay what does that have to do with me?" Andy asks.

"You guys used to be boyfriend and girlfriend or really close," Darrell replied.

"I don't even know her," Andy said.

"Could we get back to our earlier discussion about what to do with them," the Greek asks.

"They have a lot of powers from what I can tell so I don't know what we can do to stop them if they want to hurt us," Darrell replied.

Their conversation was interrupted when Phoebe, Piper and Leo emerged from the RV. The other group stood together except for Frank who kept his distance from both. Phoebe kept her eye on him as they came out.

"I know you don't believe her but Phoebe would not make that up and believe me when I say demons are always trying to kill us," Piper said.

"And why would that be, because don't you both travel in the same circles?" Frank asks.

"No we don't and don't play naive Frank or is it Balthazar?" Piper asks when they heard rustling coming from the tree line close to their camp. Everyone's attention was now focused on what could possibly be making ominous noise except for Phoebe who kept her eye on Frank, as he kept watching her. Andy and the others took out their guns ready to fire as someone stumbled out of the woods. He landed face first and then slowly rose as they tried to figure out if he was dead or alive. When he raised his head is glaze over white eyes were the first indicator and the pale chalk like skin was the second.

"Frank?" the Greek asks as they looked from the one to the other and Phoebe could not help but smile as Balthazar was now shown for what he really was. He exhaled deeply while closing his eyes for a moment realizing he made a crucial mistake of not finishing off Frank. He changed his appearance and was now the red demon that Phoebe already had an encounter with.

"Told you," Phoebe said while getting Piper's attention. "Freeze him."

Piper put up her hands but Balthazar would not stay frozen for long as he began to fight through it while the others were trying to understand what was happening. The dead Frank was getting closer and the Greek had no choice but to finish him off while Balthazar formed a fireball. Sheila grabbed her son and used her body as a shield as the demon was trying to make a choice of who to take down first.

"We could really use Prue right now," Piper said while continuing to try to freeze him but instead froze the group as the gun went off. For the most part the scene was frozen as the dead Frank had a bullet only inches away from his head and everyone else was still including Leo while she and Phoebe backed up a little.

"You're making my targets too easy," he said and tossed a fireball at Andy's back.

"No," Piper said and tried to freeze it but her weakened state along with her injured ribs caused her to cringe and go to her knees.

"Piper," Phoebe said as she held on to her. Just before the fireball was about to hit Andy it went right back to Balthazar, hitting him square in the chest and sending him back. When he got to his feet he could see the oldest standing beside her sisters as the youngest emerged from the RV.

"You don't touch him," Prue said as she got in front of Andy.

"Prue's back," Phoebe said while helping Piper stand. Balthazar looked from one to the others and knew he was outnumbered as Paige was now seeing a demon for the first time in her life. He shimmered away as the scene unfroze and the bullet finished its trajectory into Frank's head. They all jumped a little as the sound broke the silence.

"Where did the other one go?" Andy asks when he turned around.

"To live and fight another day," Prue replied as she looked into his eyes.

"When did you wake up?" Andy asks.

"Just-in-time," Prue replied as her other sisters came over to her.

"Hay look who is not sleeping beauty anymore," Piper said and Prue looked horrified when she saw Piper.

"What happened?" Prue asks.

"Oh Prue I don't have the energy, ask them," Piper replied and headed back to the RV.

"You ok?" Leo asks the once catatonic sister.

"It's hard to explain but I think I have our answer to the problem at hand, as for the other stuff, yeah that's going to take therapy," Prue replied and went back to the RV.

"Um guys we are still a little confused here," Darrell said as the sisters went back to their makeshift home.

"Well that makes two of us," Paige replied and shut the door.

"So Frank was a demon?" Sheila ask.

"No the demon took on Frank's appearance," Andy replied.

"Like sleep was easy to come by before now it's going to be impossible," Sheila said.

Back in the RV Paige finished up drying her hair and used a blanket to cover her self up as the water was ice cold. They explained what occurred while she was out and after a few moments of absorbing it all she just shook her head slightly.

"You said you have a answer?" Piper asks.

"An Army," Prue replied but only received confused looks." We can handle a few of these things but not when there's 50 or 60. It drains our powers completely," she continued but still again confused looks.

"Okay I think we were sent here to gather an army to fight the Queen of wands. She has powers yes they are much more than ours but that doesn't mean they can't be drained making her vulnerable.

"They could not just put that in a letter," Piper said through her teeth.

"Piper it's only a guess and we still have to find a way to get them back with us without infecting our world," Prue said.

"A portal," Phoebe said.

"But how do we keep them from infecting everyone?" Paige asks.

"We put them on a different plane, like the ghostly plane?" Phoebe replied.

"That could work," Piper said as a knock at the door made them stop the talking. Phoebe got up and answered it.

"Here this belonged to Frank, I know that Prue can use a gun so considering you may have saved us again I think it should be hers," the Greek said and handed it to Phoebe which immediately caused a premonition.

She could see Balthazar in the woods as Frank was finishing up going to the bathroom. The moment Frank turned around a knife was jabbed into his chest and then Balthazar took on his appearance. She came out of the premonition and just smiled awkwardly while the Greek was waiting for some kind of reply. She shut the door and he stood there for a moment a little confounded.

"Well I know what happened to Frank," Phoebe said as she put the gun on the table. She explained her premonition as they began to continue their earlier conversation.

"Maybe since they think we are one of them they will follow us?" Piper asks.

"Unfortunately I do think it's wearing off at least on us, but it just happened to Paige so it may be fresh," Phoebe replied.

"So I lead them into this portal?" Paige asks.

"According to my premonition we all do," Phoebe replied.

"And we also go jumping off cliffs," Piper reminded her.

"Maybe not I think there was water over the cliff. Water can store and create a lot of energy for the supernatural maybe that's what we will make the portal out of," Phoebe said.

"I don't know why would I be in a helicopter and not with you?" Leo asks.

"Because I think we used a helicopter to draw their attention. Okay I know it's confusing but maybe in the original time line we did not know what was going on. Now that we know because of my premonition it would change the outcome," Phoebe replied.

"The Greek he knows how to fly one," Leo said.

"So we have a plan?" Piper asks.

"Yeah but we're going to need to experiment with making portals we have only done maybe one or two in our lifetime," Prue replied.

"There are four of us now so in a way we just got an extra power boost," Phoebe said while looking at Paige.

Balthazar shimmered into an abandoned building and began to pace the room. He needed to calm himself down so he changed into his human form, Cole.

"Fuck!" he said as now his leverage was gone. "How could I be so stupid I should finished him off, " he said and looked into a old mirror that was mostly covered with a film of dust. "Its because you love her," the reflection said back and he backed away a little as he picked up a rock and tossed it into the mirror.

To be continued...