A/N This one-shot song fic was inspired by the song Till I Hear You Sing, from the musical Love Never Dies. Love Never Dies, was the sequel to Phantom of the Opera. I highly suggest that you listen to Ramin Karimloo's singing it, he brings so much strength and sorrow to the song. A big thanks to my beta Bellarsam Chrisjulittle who helped me with this story.
Till I Hear You Sing
Georg sat in his study with a lone bottle of wine keeping him company. The day's events slowly washed over him as he sipped the dark Merlot. It was close to two in the morning, and the occupants and guests of the household were fast asleep.
What a day it had been.
After a four-hour drive from Vienna, he had arrived home with Elsa and Max. He had fired his children's governess and then hired her back. He had reconnected with his children and heard their sweet voices, full of song. He had even sung himself.
He should be exhausted, he should be sleeping, yet he couldn't as suppressed energy caroused through his veins. His children's song reopened the wound that he so desperately tried to cover and ignore. He missed his wife, he missed her music, he missed the life they had, and the life they had dreamed of.
He rose from his chair in frustration. The night was warm and his study felt stuffy. He rolled up his sleeves and undid a few more buttons of his shirt. His tie and jacket were long forgotten. With everyone else asleep, he could relax and lose his inhibitions. His clothing and appearance were his mask and armor, but with no one to see or hear his pain, he could let his guard down.
With another frustrated sigh, he grabbed the bottle of Merlot and left his study. In the darkness he paced the first floor of his home. His body was exhausted, his mind intoxicated, and his tired feet, acting on their own, carried him to the ballroom. To the room his insubordinate governess dared to enter the first few minutes she had been in his home.
He opened the door and stood still a few more minutes, considering whether or not to walk over the threshold. He drank his wine straight from the bottle, and entered the room closing the room behind him.
The ballroom was completely dark, save for the soft silver light of the moon that illuminated the grand piano situated near the French doors leading to the terrace. The piano had been Agathe's favorite instrument, and she loved hearing him play. He had loved it too; as a young boy, he thoroughly enjoyed the piano lessons he took. Although his naval training prevented him from really developing and honing his skills, he had still played at every opportunity he had, at every bar, and inn he and his fellow shipmates passed.
He had not touched the instrument since she had died.
It lay forlorn and forgotten in the empty ballroom, like many of his memories and tortured dreams. His hand passed over the vast instrument, his fingers not coming into contact with the sleek and smooth black-painted wood of the piano, but rather the white sheet that covered it. He moved the rough fabric, only exposing the black and white keys as he slowly sat down.
He drank once more, setting the bottle down next to him. He hesitated for a moment before his hands touched the keys. He played a few simple chords as his fingers became reacquainted with the feel of music. He didn't realize at first when he began to sing.
The day starts, the day ends,
Time crawls by.
Night steals in, pacing the floor.
The moments creep,
Yet I can't bear to sleep
Till I hear you sing…
Above the ballroom, a young governess was awake, standing at her window. She was unable to sleep, and unable to put the day to rest. Moonlight came into her room, and a soft breeze came in trying to quench the heat that she felt inside. Her ears caught a sad melody coming from a piano. She opened the window wider, and saw no one out on the moonlit terrace, but she could hear music, and then she heard a man's voice.
And weeks pass, and months pass,
Still you don't walk through the door.
And in a haze
I count the silent days
Till I hear you sing once more.
Maria felt drawn to the music, drawn to the voice as it stirred something deep inside her. Without thinking twice, she placed her hands tightly around the vines next to her window, and climbed down the side of the villa in the same manner the children did when they played tricks on their governesses. She landed softly on the terrace and searched for the source of the music.
And sometimes, at night time,
I dream that you are there,
But wake holding nothing but the empty air...
She covered her mouth to stop herself from gasping. Her employer sat at the piano, his back towards her, as he put every ounce of his grief into that instrument and into his song. Oblivious to her presence, he continued to play as she hid behind the open French doors. His white shirt shone in contrast to the darkness of the room. His whole body seemed to move with the music he created as he bared his soul. The night was warm but she felt chilled to the core as his sorrow surrounded her and haunted her mind.
And years come, and years go.
Time runs dry,
Still I ache down to the core.
He abruptly rose from the piano bench and turned to face the doors. Maria hid deeper in the shadows as she dared to look at him. His shirt was almost completely undone and his hands clutched his exposed heart as he sung. His dark hair was wild as strands fell over his closed eyes. His face was pained and full of agony as he tried to release the world, the past, the pain, and the regrets that burdened him.
My broken soul
Can't be alive and whole
Till I hear you sing once more.
He angrily half-turned from the doors. Maria could now only see half his face as the other was covered in darkness. His voice grew stronger as his soul raged on.
And music, your music,
It teases at my ear.
I turn and it fades away, and you're not here!
He fell to his knees, looking at his empty hands, breathing deeply as tears ran down his cheeks. Maria clutched her heart and found her own eyes filled with tears, as she saw him cry of a love that was lost. She cried for herself as well, for a kind of love that she would never know.
Let hopes pass, let dreams pass:
Let them die!
Without you, what are they for?
I'll always feel
No more than halfway real
Till I hear you sing once more!...
Still on his knees, he rested his head on the piano bench. Maria so wanted to comfort him in some way, but prudently stayed in the shadows. He breathed deeply, trying to gather himself as he struggled to his feet. His hands hovered over the keys once more, but he did not touch them again. He gently covered the piano and walked to the French doors. He was so close to her, but too intoxicated to notice her. Maria sank as deeply as she could into the shadows, and closed her eyes at the smell of him, of the fading cologne, wine, sweat, and tears. Completely unfamiliar as she was with men, the combination of them created a tantalizing perfume. Only the click of the doors closing bought her back to her senses.
Alone on the terrace, she stood lost in her thoughts, trying to digest what she had seen, what she had heard. Finally, she climbed up the side of the villa and crawled through her window. Exhausted, she fell into bed. She closed her eyes, thinking only of him as she fell asleep.