Chapter 14: Who Would've Thought...
"Are you sure we should be going out tonight"; I asked Chris as I grabbed a pair of jeans from the dresser. "I mean, finals start Monday."
"That's kind of the point"; he said as he buttoned his shirt while looking in the mirror. "It's kind of a "chill" moment before it all hits."
I sat on the bed while putting my pants on. "It's not that I don't love this element of spontaneity, but..."
"Calm down"; he said as he made his way to me with a smile. "I promise that we'll be back early to study. Besides, haven't we been cracking our skulls this entire week?"
"And isn't the weekend the time to let it all out?"
"So to speak"; I said with a grin.
"That will happen later"; he said. "But, what I was trying to say is... we've been taking practice tests in school, practice tests at home and even our parents have been helping us. We can take a short intermission and still ace the hell out of everything. We'll be fine."
I sighed and stood up. "I guess you're right."
"You know I'm right"; he commented, before kissing me on the cheek and going back to the closet. "Now, hurry up. Wyatt and Caleb are waiting for us at Caleb's place."
"How did he set this all up"; I asked him as I stood up to button my jeans. "Didn't he say his father was sort of..."
"His words, not mine."
Chris laughed. "Well, his father is working out of town for the weekend, so he decided to invite us all over there. Supposedly, Caleb's an amazing cook."
"Are you sure"; I asked as I tried to fasten my pants. "Didn't he almost burn down Mama's kitchen last time he tried to cook?"
"Well, maybe he's an excellent caller to a restaurant."
"Fuck"; I said after a minute.
"What's wrong"; Chris asked, walking back toward me, smelling of cologne.
"These jeans... they aren't fitting."
"We are still growing boys"; Chris commented.
"No... I mean, I just bought these 2 weeks ago and they fit perfectly."
"Well... why don't you just put something else on?"
"I guess I'm going to have to"; I realized as I pulled the jeans down. "Chris, do you think I'm getting fat?"
"Is this one of those loaded questions that I can't answer correctly no matter how hard I try?"
"No"; I said with a laugh. "But seriously."
He walked over to me and gave me a look over. "Well, you sort of..."
I gave him a face and walked to the dresser to get another pair of jeans.
"Baby"; he said as he put his arms around me. "You could be 300 pounds and I'd still love you. You're always perfect to me, you know that."
I realized how dumb I was being and placed my arms around him. "Sorry. I've been kind of moody lately."
"I've noticed. Is everything OK?"
"Sure"; I responded as I leaned my head on his. "I guess I'm just nervous about finals. You know how I get."
"Do I ever"; he replied. I turned myself around and slapped him on the arm.
"You weren't supposed to agree with that!"
He laughed and gave me a quick kiss. "Just kidding, babe." I playfully pushed him away and grabbed another pair of jeans that fit perfectly.
"You look great"; he said after I finished dressing.
"As do you"; I admitted.
"Then, we should go"; he said turning around. "Wyatt's already over there."
"Wait"; I said, stopping in my tracks. "Is this going to be kind of weird, considering what happened between..."
Chris turned back towards me and grabbed my hand. "Look, baby. We all agreed that it was a spur of the moment thing that was brought on by what almost happened to you. You said yourself that we've all been attracted to each other for a while, so... it happened. No worries, OK? We're still friends. We're still brothers and we're still cool."
"I was talking about Caleb"; I admitted. "I just don't know how to act around him."
"Just act normally. It isn't like you're going to shout it from the rooftops, right?
"Of course not, but still..."
"It happened and we're moving on, OK? Didn't you enjoy it?"
I just smiled and put my head down.
"It's OK"; he said, lifting my chin. "I enjoyed it, too. And so did Wyatt, I'm sure. So, let's just let it go and no feeling guilty, OK?"
I nodded and Chris gave me a quick kiss.
"Now, we have a dinner to attend"; he said as he opened the door.
"Are you sure this is the right place"; I asked as we walked to the pathway leading to Caleb's place.
"1731 Armand St. That's what Wyatt said."
"He lives here? Isn't this kind of the "rich" neighborhood?"
"I guess so"; Chris responded. "But, there's something oddly familiar about this place."
"Have you been here before or something?"
"I don't know"; Chris commented oddly. "Never mind. I'm probably just losing it."
We made our way to the door and just as I was about to ring the bell, it opened.
"Thank God you guys are here"; Wyatt whispered to us as he quickly ushered us into Caleb's house.
"Why are we whispering"; I asked as he shut the door behind us. I looked around the place... and to say it was nothing short of magnificent was an understatement. I mean, from where I stood, all I could see was the living room and the dining room... but damn!
"Wow"; Chris said as he made his way past us into the living room. The couches were black leather and there was an enormous sized television playing music videos. The speakers placed all around the room made it seem as if we were enveloped in music. Chris looked at the oriental rug on the floor and gasped.
"This is just... wow."
"Yeah, I know. It's a great place"; Wyatt said rushing into the living room, pulling me by my hand. "We need to talk. But first, you need to take your shoes off. He just had it cleaned."
Chris got off the rug as quickly as possible and took his shoes off.
"Oh, God"; I said, taking mine off as well. "He knows about what happened, doesn't he?"
"What? No"; Wyatt answered. "It has nothing to do with that. And besides, didn't we all talk this through?"
"We did"; Chris said, pulling me to the couch and sitting us both down. "He's just nervous. What's going on?"
Wyatt sighed and sat on the reclining seat in front of us. "This is... God, I don't even know how to start something like this."
"Just come out with it"; I said.
"OK. Let's start with the obvious. Does this place seem familiar to any of you?"
I stood up and looked around. "Not to me. But Chris said..."
"No way"; Chris out-bursted.
"What"; I said.
"Yes, it is"; Wyatt whispered through gritted teeth.
"This isn't what"; I asked, sitting back down. "And why are we still whispering?"
"Baby, think back a few years ago. Before we were together, even. Think junior high school."
I thought about it for a moment. "I still don't get it."
"This is Joshie's old place"; Wyatt whispered loudly.
"Joshie... as in your almost-boyfriend, Joshie?"
"Yes. How fucking eerie is this?"
"Did you tell Caleb"; Chris asked, leaning forward.
"No chance in hell. And I'm not going to. I don't want him to feel weird about it. But, that's not the big thing."
"There's something even bigger than your new boyfriend living in your pseudo ex-boyfriend's house?"; I commented. "This I've got to here."
"Hey. You guys made it."
I turned around to face Caleb standing in the doorway.
"Yeah"; I said with a smile bigger than intended. "We just got here a few minutes ago."
"Cool"; he said as he made his way to greet us. "So, how do you like the place?"
"It's pretty awesome"; I said, standing to hug him.
"I know"; he said as he let me go. "My dad is a little big on showing off." He gave Chris a kiss on the cheek.
"Well, I think it's pretty cool"; Chris replied. "What does your dad do?"
"You know... I'm actually not too sure. But, I guess a little of everything, which explains why he's not here this weekend." He made he way to where Wyatt was sitting and sat next to him.
We all sat in silence for a minute, glancing around and smiling.
Poker definitely wouldn't be our game... our faces would give it all away.
"You told them, didn't you"; Caleb said suddenly.
"Um... no"; Wyatt said, repeating my fake smile from earlier.
"Rule number one of lying, babe: Don't say "um"."
"What's going on"; I asked.
"Yeah. Chris started to tell us something when we got here"; Chris continued.
"So much for secrecy"; Wyatt grumbled.
"It's fine"; Caleb commented. "Of course, I want them to know."
"And we want to know"; I said. "So out with it already!"
"OK, OK"; Caleb said with a smile. "So... my dad has always moved around for business purposes. It's how we ended up here in San Francisco."
"Oh, no. Are you moving"; Chris asked.
"Well, yes and no. My dad got offered some huge promotion in New York and he accepted. Personally, I'm tired of moving around and considering that I've found you 3... it's be that much worse to get up and go again."
"That's so sweet"; I said; his comment actually brought tears to my eyes. Damn, why am I so moody?
"So... since I'm almost of age and I'm happy where I am... I've convinced my dad to let me stay here this time. So... this place is officially mine."
"No way"; Chris exclaimed. "You have your own place; this place? How are you gonna afford it?"
"My dad's paying for it"; Caleb said. "And yes, I guess this is my place."
"Well, that's great news"; I commented. "Congratulations. I think you're officially my first friend who has his own place."
"Well... hopefully, it won't be just my place."
"Huh"; Chris said.
"I've... asked Wyatt if he wants to move in with me."
Another silence filled the room...
"I'm not sure of what you want me to do"; said the demon Barbas, while standing in front of Pascal.
"I have tried many things to go against the Charmed ones"; Pascal answered. "I've sent countless demons after them to no use. I've battled them myself and still; nothing. My power is growing stronger by the moment... my time will come eventually. But if I can get rid of them before that..."
"So, you think that sending me after them will allow you to finally disable them once and for all? I have tried countless times to take the sisters out of existence... and I always fail."
"Well, this time, you aren't going after the sisters"; Pascal commented as he turned to face Barbas. "You'll be taking on their children."
"Children"; Barbas repeated. "This seems a little too easy."
"Believe me; this are not your average teens. Their powers are strong."
"But as teenagers, their fears are stronger"; Barbas sneered. His expression turned into one of inevitable triumph.
"What do I get if... I mean, when I succeed?"
"I have the power to free you... permanently."
Barbas pondered this for a moment.
"Well... it wasn't as if I was doing anything stuck down here anyway."
"Excellent"; Pascal said with a smile. "Oh, before I forget..."
"I knew there was a catch"; Barbas responded angrily.
"No, not a catch"; he said. "We're going to do things a little differently..."
"Dinner was great"; I said, lying back on Caleb's couch.
"Well, we can think the cooks at the Hong Kong Kitchen for that"; he responded as he sat on the floor next to Wyatt. We all giggled at that. I moved my feet on top of Chris' lap, who seemed content on his meal as well.
"So"; Caleb started...
"So what"; Chris, Wyatt and I all said. Sometimes, we were so weird.
"So... what do you think of my idea"; he continued, looking directly at Wyatt.
"I agree. I think that Pete is gaining a little weight."
"Fuck you"; I shot at him.
"Nah. I'd rather have Caleb"; he responded, pulling him close.
I almost countered that comment... just almost.
"Seriously"; Caleb went on. "What do you think about living with me?"
Wyatt said nothing and looked away.
"A simple "no" would suffice"; Caleb responded somewhat sadly, moving out of Wyatt's embrace.
"No, it's not that"; Wyatt answered. "I mean... we're only 17. Isn't this kind of a big thing for us?"
"Maybe we should leave the room"; Chris said; starting to move from his position.
"No"; Caleb commented, waving Chris to stay seated. "We're all friends here and I value your opinion on this, too." Chris sighed and relaxed once more.
"I mean"; Wyatt continued, "this is huge. We've only been together for a couple of months, not counting the two days we broke up."
"Is this punishment for that"; Caleb asked somewhat angrily.
"Not at all! I mean, we've worked all of our shit out. This has nothing to do with the other."
"Then, why can't you give me a straight answer? I know this isn't a normal kind of question, but if you say you love me, does it have to be so hard?"
"We really should get out of here"; Chris said telepathically to me.
"I'm quickly starting to get to that conclusion myself"; I responded.
I moved my feet off of Chris and stood up.
"We're gonna go"; I said.
"Yeah, it's kinda late"; Chris continued.
"No... look, it's fine"; Caleb said. "We're not arguing. You should stay."
"No, it's not that"; I said, coming up with a quick excuse and putting my sneakers back on. "I really want to get a move on studying for finals."
"And I definitely need the help"; Chris said as he did the same and made his way to the door. I started to follow him... when I had a weird feeling in my stomach.
"You OK"; Chris asked, noticing the look on my face.
"Um, yeah. I'm fine"; I responded... but not feeling any better. My stomach started to bubble up and I knew what was coming...
"Caleb, where's your bathroom"; I asked, my mouth completely dry.
He started to answer, but not fast enough. I took off running to the kitchen and it started to leave me just as I got there. I heaved and left a mess all over his sink.
"Hey"; Chris said, quickly following after me. Wyatt and Caleb stood in the doorway. "You OK, baby?"
"Yeah"; I responded. "I don't know what came over..."
I couldn't finish my sentence as another jolt went through me and I started vomiting again. Chris rubbed my back and the nausea soon subsided.
"Must've been something I ate"; I said, lifting my head up. "Caleb, I am so sorry."
"Don't worry about it"; he said sympathetically. "I'm more worried about you."
"Really, I'm fine. Um... where's your bathroom? I really should wash up or something."
"Come on. I'll show you where it is."
"After you come down"; Chris said as Caleb led me away, "we'll go straight home, OK?"
"OK"; I responded as we made our way upstairs. When we entered the bathroom, Caleb followed me in.
"Really, I'm OK"; I said as I turned on the water.
"I'm sure you are. But, I'm still staying here to make sure of that. Wait a second..."
He went across the hall and came back with mouthwash and a washrag. "Now, I'm staying here."
I smiled at him before grabbing the washrag and turning on the faucet.
"Why are we walking again"; Chris asked as we made our way back to the manor.
"You said something about the air doing me good"; I responded. "That was smart of you."
"I had no idea it was going to be chilly tonight"; he said with a smile. "Come here."
I moved closer and he pulled his arm around me.
"Better"; he asked.
"Lots"; I responded.
"How weird was that tonight"; I said after a while.
"I know. I mean, you were fine one minute and the next..."
"I'm not talking about that, dork"; I responded. "I meant with Caleb and Wyatt. The whole moving in thing."
"You know, I didn't even have a chance to think about that. I was kind of still stuck on the fact that Caleb was living in Joshie's house."
"Don't even get me started on that one. When I asked Caleb where the bathroom was, it was out of courtesy. I knew exactly where it was."
"I forgot you hung out there a couple of times with them."
"This has got to be so weird for Wyatt. I mean, you start a new relationship with someone and somehow, your ex's baggage keeps popping up."
"And invites you to live there"; Chris threw in.
I nodded and agreed with that.
"Did you really want to go home"; Chris asked after another short period.
"Not really. I just didn't want to be there anymore. That conversation was so none of my business."
"Well, the night is..."; he said, looking at his watch, "a bit mature. But, what do you say we stop at home, grab some sweaters and go somewhere?"
"Really? And where are we going without the car?"
"I'll borrow Mom's"; he said with a smile. "You up for it?"
I smiled and replied. "That would be nice."
We continued walking and suddenly, I felt another twinge in my stomach.
"Oh, no"; I said; trembling.
"What's wrong"; Chris asked. "Are you going to throw up again?"
I stood there, unable to speak. I felt something coming... and it throbbed in my head, too.
Wyatt was standing somewhere... in an empty street. All he was doing was standing in place; shivering in fear; his eyes nearly bulging from his head.
And then, he collapsed on the pavement... dead; blood pouring from him. His hair was white as snow.
"Pete... baby, what's wrong?!"
I came out whatever it was and couldn't breathe.
"What's going on"; Chris asked, leaning on the floor to look up at me.
"I don't know"; I said, trying to catch my breath. "I think... no, I couldn't have..."
"Couldn't have what"; Chris asked. "Talk to me."
"I think... I think I had a premonition."
"A premonition"; Chris repeated while standing up. He brought me over to a bus stop bench and sat me down, before sitting next to me. "That's not possible. Your powers have to do with time."
"I don't understand it, either"; I said. "But, don't premonitions have to do with time?"
"It's different. I mean, your powers stop time; not see into it."
"Well, our powers are growing."
"Growing, yes. But, not without a connection to a previous power. I remember reading it in the Book of Shadows when I was growing up."
I sat there for a second... before realizing what I saw in my vision.
"Wyatt"; I said, standing up and running back toward Caleb's place. Chris stood up quickly and followed.
"So, will you think about what I said"; Caleb asked as Wyatt put his jacket on.
"Of course, I'll think about it. But, you have to admit... this is a pretty big thing"; Wyatt responded.
"I know it's a big thing"; Caleb continued, "but... I know what I feel for you. And I know I mean what I say. I want to be able to... just be with you. To wake up with you and live with you. To make you coffee in the morning..."
"I don't drink coffee"; Wyatt said with a smile.
"You know what I mean"; Caleb smirked, while putting his arms around Wyatt. "I love you and I want to live with you... is that so much to ask?"
Wyatt smiled and gave Caleb a light kiss. "I better go... but I promise, I'll definitely keep my thoughts open to it."
"That's all I ask." Wyatt went to walk away, but Caleb grabbed his arm and pulled him into an even deeper kiss.
"Consider that a definite "pro" to this situation"; he said as they separated.
Wyatt smiled and walked out the door. He walked to the car and sat inside of it; alone with his thoughts of Caleb's proposition. Was he really ready for something this serious? Could he be happy living with Caleb? He sighed loudly and decided to push the thoughts away... for now.
He put the key in the ignition and twisted. The engine groaned and churned... but, the car wouldn't start.
"You've got to be kidding me"; he grumbled as he tried it once more. Still no luck and the car sputtered angrily at him for even trying. He leaned his head forward on the steering wheel and sighed once more. He gave up and exited the car.
He thought about going back to Caleb's house... but then figured that Caleb would continue asking him about cohabitation.
"No more of that tonight"; he thought out loud and decided to walk home.
As he walked, he noticed the quietness of the street. For a Friday night, everything seemed pretty abandoned. No cars were driving by, no people having parties.
He pushed the thought out and continued walking, placing his hands inside of his coat.
That's when he swore he heard footsteps behind him.
He walked a bit faster, not necessarily out of fear: he knew he could defend himself. Behind him, he could still hear the footsteps; even closer now.
He stopped in his tracks and said, "I don't know what's going on here, but I'm not falling for this shit. Stop following me or make yourself known."
He turned around... and found no one there.
"This is a little too "Friday the 13th" for me"; he said and turned back around and continued his walk.
"Halliwell"; came a voice from behind him. He turned around again and still found himself facing with nothing but air.
"Let me guess"; Wyatt said. "Demon?"
"You're a smart one"; the unseen man said.
"Obviously, you're not"; Wyatt responded. "Do you know who you're messing with?"
"Your powers won't work on me"; the man said responded. "And besides... you can't fight what you can't see."
"I doubt that"; Wyatt replied and tried to orb away... to no avail.
"You cannot leave until I want you to"; the voice said. Wyatt tried to turn around and walk away... and found that he could no longer move.
"What... what did you do to me"; Wyatt yelled as he struggled to move.
"I have done nothing"; the man answered. "It is your fear that makes you unable to do anything."
Wyatt continued to try to move.
"But, that's only part of your fear"; the man continued,. "being totally incapacitated..."
Wyatt felt something pass over his face, but still saw nothing.
"You also seem to fear... being unable to overpower an object."
Wyatt groaned as he continued to attempt to move without any luck.
"I can see you're getting impatient"; the voice said. "So, I'll help speed matters along a bit."
From down the road, Wyatt could see lights... belonging to a huge pick-up truck that was coming straight for him.
Wyatt screamed and continued to try to move... but his fear was overtaking him from even trying anymore.
The demon laughed and seemed to be speaking directly in Wyatt's ear. The truck continued to barrel down the street; horns blazing.
"Feed me your fear, young Charmed one"; the man said.
Wyatt tried to scream, but he couldn't even do that. The truck continued down the street, getting closer and closer... and there was no way out. Behind the roar of the wheels, Wyatt closed his eyes... and heard banging and his name being called somewhere in the distance.
"Wyatt... wake up. Wake up!"
When Wyatt opened his eyes... he found himself staring at Caleb, in his boxers and a t-shirt, standing outside the bed.
Beside him was Chris and Pete.
He fell out of the bed and leaned against a dresser, looking wildly all around the room.
"What happened"; Caleb asked, leaning on the floor to get closer to Wyatt. Wyatt looked around and realized... he was in Caleb's room.
He had never left Caleb's house.
"Are you OK, bro"; Chris asked.
Wyatt was silent for a moment... before getting to his feet. "Yeah... I'm fine. What are you guys doing here?"
"I'm not sure"; Chris answered. "We were going home and Pete had..."
"Had what"; Wyatt asked.
"I... had a premonition, I think"; Pete replied.
"A premonition"; Caleb asked. "Is there any power you guys don't have?"
"That the problem"; Chris said. "He's not supposed to have them."
"My powers are probably growing"; Pete said. "It's nothing. Besides... I mean, we saved Wyatt, didn't we?"
"Saved him from what exactly"; Caleb asked. "He's been here the whole time."
Pete realized that Caleb was right: Wyatt was safe and sound.
"I don't know"; Pete responded. "I'm... I'm sorry."
"Don't be sorry"; Wyatt said as he hugged Pete. "I mean, I am alright. Maybe you just had a weird moment or something."
"Speaking of weird moments"; Chris said, "what was that all about? You falling out of bed. Are you OK?"
"Yeah, I'm fine"; he said with a wave of his hand. "Obviously. I just had a bad dream is all. Scared me a little more than I expected."
"No explosions or anything like that, right"; Pete asked.
"No... nothing like that. It was just creepy. But, it was just that: a creepy dream."
"OK... well, since you're fine"; Chris continued, "we should probably go home. It's been a long night and besides, I want to check the Book of Shadows."
"What for"; Pete asked. "Are you trying to bring forth some trouble?"
"Ha, ha. Actually, I want to see what's going on with these premonitions of yours. This is the second time this has happened, including the explosion at school and I want to know why."class=Section2>
"My powers are growing"; Pete replied. "That's all. Why do we need to check the book for that?"
"Because although, yes, our powers do grow"; Wyatt said, "they don't come from nowhere. They usually tie into one of our previous powers."
"That's what I told him"; Chris said. "And that's exactly why I'm going to find out what's up."
"Can we not make a big deal about this"; Pete asked, a bit hastily. "It's a new power. I can deal with it."
Chris tried to say something else when Pete suddenly clutched his stomach.
"What's wrong"; Wyatt asked. "Are you OK?"
"I'm fine"; Pete replied with as much of a smile as he could muster. "It's just all of that food I ate. I'll be fine."
"Well, just in case"; Wyatt said, "I'm going to orb you guys home. Something tells me Pete isn't really up to it..."
"Just because I have an upset stomach doesn't mean I can't control my powers"; Pete yelled. "Just back off!"
"OK, calm down, Pete. It's going to be alright."
Pete glared a bit, but said nothing else. He walked to Chris and leaned his head on his shoulder.
"Caleb"; Wyatt said, "I'm going to drop them off. I hope you're not upset."
"Of course not"; Caleb responded. "Just as long as you come back."
He walked over to Caleb and gave him a quick kiss.
"I'll be back as soon as possible"; he said.
Caleb nodded and Wyatt walked back to Pete, grabbing his hand.
"Shut up. I'm being brotherly."
Pete sighed and took Chris' hand in his and Wyatt orbed them all back to the manor.
All three of us orbed back into Chris' room. For some reason, the traveling made my stomach turn once more, so I went to the bed immediately.
"What exactly did you eat"; Wyatt asked as I sat down.
"Exactly what you ate: that chicken-looking stuff."
"Rule number one of eating, bro: if you're not sure what it is, don't touch it."
"Yeah, yeah, yeah"; I responded. "Are you OK?"
"I'm OK. Just a little... never mind."
"Never mind what"; Chris asked. "Out with it."
"It was nothing. I just had a weird dream, like I said."
"Since when do dreams spook you"; I asked him.
"Since dreams apparently signify certain death for one of us"; Chris answered for him.
"It wasn't anything like that"; Wyatt continued. "Just a scary dream. You know how the brain works."
"Actually, I don't"; said Chris. "But, this is no time for a psychology lesson. Speaking of brains and thoughts however..."
"Here we go"; I thought out loud. "Look, it was just a premonition."
"You don't have premonitions"; Chris and Wyatt both answered.
"Well, apparently, now I do"; I nearly shouted.
"Calm down"; Chris said, walking over to me. "What's with you lately?"
I sighed and simply nodded my head. "I don't know... I guess I'm just a bit stressed with everything going on... and now this happens."
"Look, baby"; he started as he sat down next to me. "I agree with you; our powers are supposed to grow. And yes, they are growing at an accelerated rate according to what Layla said."
"Because of Pascal"; I said.
"Exactly. But, they grow from powers we already have. That explains how you're able to freeze things in place; rather than literally. But this isn't a power you're supposed to have."
"I guess you're right"; I responded after a second. "I'm just... sort of scared. I mean, this is all new to me. I'm still getting used to being a witch."
"Trust me bro"; Wyatt said, leaning on the floor to look me in the eye. "Even after almost 18 years, it doesn't get any easier."
That made me smile, but just a bit. "Alright. So, what do we do now?"
"First things first"; Chris said, "we get the Book of Shadows."
"Do we let Mama and Papa know about this"; I asked.
"Not right now. They're already freaked about everything going on with our powers growing so fast. Let's just keep this between the four of us right now."
"Four of us"; I asked. "Oh... you mean us three and Caleb. Speaking of him, Wyatt..."
"Already taken care of"; he said. I hadn't noticed that he had walked back to the dresser and was writing something down. After he finished, he waved his hand and the paper orbed away. "That should explain that I won't be coming back tonight."
He turned around to face us... and my mouth dropped.
"What's wrong"; he asked me. "Do I have something in my teeth?"
"Um... no. You have something in your hair."
"My hair"; he repeated as he turned around once more to face the mirror. Chris and I walked up behind him...
...and the three of us caught sight of a single lock of his hair... that was snow white.
"Pete... we need to get to the Book... now"; he said sharply.
"OK, so what are we looking for"; I asked as I thumbed through the pages of the Book of Shadows. We had snuck upstairs to the attic, hoping we would awaken no one.
"The hell if I know"; Chris said, standing next to me. "Demons who turn your hair white by dreams?"
Wyatt was standing in the mirror, not saying a word.
"Bro, you should come over here and help out"; I said. "Looking at it won't make it go away."
"I know"; he responded. "I just... I don't understand how this happened."
"That's what we're trying to figure out... but obviously, you're going to be to distracted by this to do anything."
Wyatt sighed and continued to run his hands through his hair.
I walked up behind him, facing the mirror and touched his shoulder.
"Are you OK"; I asked.
"Just a bit freaked out. I thought my hair would be the last thing to worry about with us being witches..."
"Let the object of objection become but a dream, as I cause the seen to be unseen..."
Wyatt's hair glowed with orbs... and the white lock of hair changed back into Wyatt's dark color.
Chris looked up from the book. "Doesn't that spell count as "personal gain"?"
"Nope"; I said. "I was helping out someone else's vanity, not my own."
"Ha, ha"; Wyatt dead-panned. "But thanks anyway."
"OK"; Chris commented as Wyatt and I walked back to the book. "I'm still not sure what we're looking for with this "dream" thing. All I can find is the Sandman... but he's not a demon. He preserves dreams..."
"What about the power-growth thing"; I asked.
"Nothing on that front, either. It's all the same things we already know and the same things that have nothing to do with what we're going through now... unless you cast a spell to increase your powers by three..."
"Of course I didn't. This is insane"; I said, walking away from the Book.
"Don't worry"; Chris said, following behind me to the sofa that stayed in the attic. "We'll figure this all out."
"I think I may have an idea"; Wyatt said, closing the book.
"Why are you doing that"; I asked, sitting on the sofa. "Don't we need that?"
"We do"; Wyatt answered. "But, if I remember correctly... I have no idea what I'm looking for."
We both looked at Wyatt, confused.
"Um, bro"; I said, "what are you doing?"
"Just wait and see."
We stood there in silence... and suddenly, the Book opened and started flipping through pages on it's own.
"What's going on"; I asked, walking back to the book. Chris followed behind me once again.
"You're a genius"; Chris said with a smile to Wyatt.
"I'm still confused."
Just as quickly as it had started, the book stopped on an open page.
"Thanks, Grams"; Wyatt said.
"Grams"; I asked. "Isn't that what Mama called her grandmother?"
"It's a long story"; Chris said. "Now, let's see what we have here."
"Barbas"; I read out loud, "the demon of fear."
"This can't be right"; Chris said.
"Why not?"; I asked. "It seems to fit his m.o. "He feeds on the fear of witches for survival... his victims are paralyzed and literally scared to death..." Only we happened to get there in time to get to Wyatt."
"But, it makes no sense. First off, it also says, "appears every 13 hundred years". I think he's off by some time."
"Well, demons aren't really what I would call punctual."
"OK, I got that. But also, Wyatt wasn't in any kind of danger when we found him."
"Not any real danger"; Wyatt said suddenly.
"What do you mean"; I asked him.
"Weren't you asleep when we got there"; Chris asked.
"Of course I was... I was... just having a really creepy dream. I couldn't move at all; couldn't use my powers... and this truck was coming right for me. It almost scared me...."
"To death"; I finished for him.
"But, still... I mean, I could hear a voice speaking to me."
"That was us screaming for you to wake up"; Chris responded.
"Not that... there was someone talking to me in the dream"; Wyatt said, "I mean, I couldn't see anyone. It was just a voice."
"Kind of a big job for a disembodied voice"; I said sarcastically. "This doesn't really match up with this demon. I think the Book may have this one wrong."
"Well... maybe Grams messed up on this one."
"Anyone going to explain that one to me, by the way? Hasn't she been dead for decades?"
"So, we're fighting something that we can't even see"; Chris asked, completely ignoring my comment.
"How do we even know it was demonic"; Wyatt threw in. "It just seemed like a normal bad dream... nothing too out of it. What if we're looking in the wrong place?"
"Do we need to remind you of the early white in your hair? That doesn't exemplify normal bad dream behavior"; I said, before grabbing my stomach in pain once more. I kneeled over and groaned.
"Oh, no"; Chris said, making his way to me once more. "Are you sure you're OK?"
"I'm fine"; I said, waving him away. "It's just..."
"Something you ate"; Wyatt said. "We got that."
I sighed and made my way back to a standing position, albeit shakily.
"See, all is well"; I said with a half-smile.
"Sure it is"; Chris said. "We're getting you to bed right now."
"I can't go to bed"; I responded. "We got some kind of demon on the loose after Wyatt. And that usually means we're next."
"Don't worry, Chris and I can handle it"; Wyatt commented, walking to me. "But, you can't do anything if you're not feeling well. On top of that, we have to figure out what's going on with your powers."
"There is nothing going on with my powers"; I said, a bit angrily. "They are just growing... a little weirdly, yes, it's true. But, I'm fine, OK?"
"Look, baby"; Chris said, "our powers are tied to our emotions. So, until you're feeling up to it, maybe you should just lie down."
"Would everyone stop treating me like I'm a fucking invalid?!"
"Hey, calm down"; Wyatt responded.
"I will when everyone stops treating me like a child. Now, Chris, can you get me some..."
I started to say "ginger ale" in hopes it would ease my stomach and was pointing to the attic door to express my point... in my hand orbed a can of ginger ale.
"Um... where did that come from"; Chris asked, keeping his eyes on it.
"I...." I couldn't say anything.
"Still think your powers are growing at a normal rate"; Wyatt asked.
"When you asked me to attack the Charmed boys"; Barbas said to Pascal, "I didn't think I would be this restricted."
"Of course you didn't"; Pascal responded with a smirk. "But, I couldn't have you going around attacking other witches, in an attempt to free yourself. That is not part of my plan..."
"It is none of your concern what else I do with my time"; Barbas yelled. "I have told you that I would help you in defeating the Halliwells. Now, set me free from here and allow me to do the job I was ordered to do."
"You will be released in due time, Barbas"; Pascal answered, while standing in front of a chained Barbas. "But while you're on my clock, you will play my way..."
"And if I refuse"; Barbas asked angrily.
"Well, the obvious: you don't play at all."
Barbas sneered at Pascal and tried to move forward to no avail. After several attempts in trying to free himself, he sighed and gave up.
"Now... were you successful in getting any one of them?"
After a moment, Barbas responded, "The eldest one, Wyatt. I had him, but... he was awoken by someone."
"Patience, patience"; Pascal whispered, walking away from Barbas. "But at least we're on a good track now. I got the idea from a human, coincidentally. His name was..."
"What makes you think I care"; Barbas asked.
"Of course you wouldn't"; Pascal responded, turning around to face his captive. "But, everything is still moving along perfectly. Now, you should get ready to try once more... this time, you will go after another brother. Are we clear?"
Barbas said nothing in response and looked away. Pascal laughed at this low act of defiance. Suddenly, Barbas felt as if he was choking... and caught sight of a black mist around his throat.
"I do not like being ignored"; Pascal said with his fist up in the air; pointing directly at Barbas. He was still standing several feet away and the mist seemed to be emanating where he stood.
"Especially by a so-called "fear" demon who couldn't scare away a bird if he tried."
Barbas' eyes bulged out of control as he gasped for air. Pascal then opened his hand and the mist disappeared. Barbas coughed loudly as air rushed into his lungs once more.
"Let's try this again: are we clear, Barbas?"
Barbas looked up and strained out, "Crystal clear... my lord."
"What is going on with me"; Pete asked Chris as they lay in bed that night.
"I don't know, baby... but you're going to be OK"; he replied as he held him close.
"How do you know that? My powers seem to be maturing faster than yours or Wyatt's. I start to get used to one and then out of nowhere another pops up."
"It's different with you, babe. Wyatt and I have always had full knowledge and use of our powers, you didn't. You can't blame it on that."
Chris couldn't say anything to calm Pete down.
"What are we going to do?"
"We'll figure it out"; Chris responded. "If the worse comes to pass, we can bind your powers. There's a spell in the Book..."
"We can't bind them"; Pete interrupted. "Then, what happens to the power of three? What happens when demons attack?"
"Then the power of two will have to do"; Chris said with a light smile.
"Look, angel. I know you're really freaked out right now..."
"Understatement of the millennium"; Pete wisecracked.
"... but I'm sure that it will all work out. Also, considering you're sick right now, your powers are already out of wack. The last time I tried to orb somewhere when I was sick... let's just say I was glad it was somewhere inside the house."
"Why is that"; Pete asked.
"Because I like to go to places with all of my clothes on."
"Oh, shit"; Pete said with laughter. "You orbed somewhere naked?"
"Not on purpose and not completely naked. I had my socks still on."
Pete laughed a bit and snuggled closer to Chris.
"You know how much I love you, right"; he said to him.
"Of course I do... and you know how much I love you too"; Chris said. "Now"; he said as he gave Pete a light kiss, "go to sleep. Tomorrow's another day."
"I don't think I can just yet. My stomach's still shaky... only I don't know if I'm hungry or what."
"How about I go downstairs and fix you something light and get you some more ginger ale?"
"That'll work"; Pete said with a light smile.
"Then, I'll be right back"; Chris replied as he climbed over Pete and off the bed. "Any specific requests?"
"Hmm... does Mama have any more of that garlic bread"; Pete asked with a smile.
"I'll find out"; Chris said.
"Cool. And some ice cream, please"; Pete continued.
"Garlic bread, ginger ale and ice cream"; Chris asked with a grin. "You are so brushing your teeth before kissing me again."
"Ah, shush and go get it"; Pete said and stuck out his tongue.
I laid back as Chris left the room. I was so lucky to have such a compassionate person in my life. For the first time in hours, my stomach didn't hurt so much and I felt... relaxed.
I thought about what Chris and I had talked about. Would my powers ever stop progressing? And what was up with all of these new powers coming back to back? Would I be able to control it... or would I eventually have to bind them?
What would happen to the Power of Three then? I had witnessed all of the demon craziness in the world. What would it be like being... normal? Could I sit back and do nothing?
It made my stomach hurt again just thinking about all of it. I sighed and closed my eyes for a second... pushing all of my thoughts away.
I opened them again and looked at the clock. 30 minutes had passed by so quickly. What was taking Chris so long?
I rolled out of the bed and walked to the kitchen. The house was entirely quiet and dark. Luckily, I basically lived here, so it was no problem to find my way to the kitchen shrouded in darkness.
I opened the swinging door to find it empty.
"Chris"; I called out as quietly as possible. "Are you in here?"
No response. Maybe he went back upstairs with my food. I turned around and made my way back to Chris' room. As I walked into the living room, I noticed the lights were turned on. I guess Chris wasn't so good with direction in the dark.
But if the lights were off when he came down, why turn them on going back upstairs?
Confused, I turned off the lights and walked back upstairs. On the way passed Wyatt's room, I saw the door open and the lights on in there, too. I poked my head in to bother him for a bit. I pushed the door open... and saw the room empty.
"Maybe he went back to Caleb's after all"; I said out loud. I closed his door and kept on back to Chris' room. I continued walking and saw that Mama and Papa's room door was open, also with the lights on. I knocked lightly.
"Mama, you awake?"
I pushed open the door and peered inside. The bed was made... but no one was there.
"Where is everyone"; I asked to the empty room. I closed the door.
I started to freak out a little bit... and walked faster through the empty house to Chris' room. I walked in and saw that Chris wasn't there.
"Chris"; I yelled out. "Wyatt? Mama Piper? Papa Leo?"
No one answered me. I made my way to my old room, now inhabited by Noah. I opened the door... and found the same thing.
Lights on; no one there.
I was officially scared.
I walked up to the attic and opened the door and found that room empty as well.
"What is going on"; I asked out loud.
"Are you afraid of being alone"; came a voice out of nowhere; one I definitely didn't recognize.
"Who was that"; I said, turning my head around. "Who are you?"
"Don't worry about that, Charmed one"; said the male voice.
"I never was a fan of "Hide and Seek" "; I responded shakily. "Show yourself."
"If I do, then it's no fun"; the man answered.
"Well, my way of fun is to cheat"; I said, closing my eyes and thinking of a spell.
"Hiding within this house lies an enemy concealed; allow this spell to lift the shroud. All things hidden, now revealed."
I opened my eyes and found myself still alone in the attic.
"Your magic won't work on me"; the man said. "Your fear overpowers it."
I walked to the Book of Shadows and opened it... and found every page completely blank.
"Peter. Your fear... is to be consumed by fire, with no one or nothing to save you. How simple and yet, how ironic. Aren't your powers to freeze?"
It was then that I looked up and saw smoke seeping through the now closed attic door. I started to cough; the smoke overtaking me.
I ran to the door and tried to open it. The doorknob was steaming hot and I pulled my hand away quickly, but I could see that it was already burned.
I turned around and ran to the attic window. I couldn't get it to open. I couldn't get away from the fire, no matter where I ran to. I turned around and the fire had made it's way through the door; overtaking the attic.
"I've got to get out of here"; I said to myself.
"You're not going anywhere. Your fear won't allow..."
"Oh, shut the fuck up"; I said to the voice. I looked around the room and tried to find something to break the window. With smoke covering everything, it was hard to see anything.
I started to kick at the window... and it wouldn't budge. The glass seemed to get stronger with every hit... and after a while, it hurt my leg. I turned around once more and saw the fire was even closer. Through the flames, I saw a man... white hair and black eyes, smiling wildly.
"I see you"; I told him.
The demon's smile slowly disappeared from his pale face...
"And something tells me... you're my way out of here."
The man laughed hysterically. "I'd like to see you try."
I looked around the room, almost completely engulfed in flames. I stood on top of the window ledge and jumped toward the man.
I landed right on top of him; the flames completely surrounding us.
"Get off of me"; he yelled. "This isn't supposed to happen!"
I grabbed him by his coat and smiled back.
"Unless you know how to get out of here... I guess we're both dead."
I moved my arm back and went to hit him. Before it made contact, I had a sudden feeling of being shaken. And hard.
"Pete? Pete? Wake up, baby."
I looked again and saw... Chris. I turned my head around and saw myself in Chris' room; lying in his bed.
"What happened"; I asked. "Where is he?"
"Where is who"; Chris asked. "Baby, it's just me. You fell asleep."
I took in what he said for a second... wasn't I just...
"No. I mean.. Wait. I was just in the attic... and there was this..."
"There wasn't anything"; Chris said sitting by me. "You must've been dreaming."
"No"; I yelled. "Trust me, baby. There was this fire and..."
"Another fire? Oh, no..."
"Not like that"; I exclaimed. "There was this fire in the house. And this damn demon was in the attic... and I saw him and... I had him."
Chris just sat there like I had went crazy.
"I know it seems weird, but..."
Suddenly, I winced in pain.
"Another stomach twinge"; Chris asked.
"No"; I said and remembered something. I looked at my hand... and it was scarred.
Like I had burned it.
I lifted it up and showed it to Chris.
"What is that"; Chris asked, grabbing my hand. "Are you OK?"
"In my dream... with the demon guy. I burned myself." Chris continued to look at my hand and slowly let it go.
"Do you believe me now"; I asked.
Chris stood up and walked to the dresser. "Something weird is going on."
"You're right"; I said. "And I think the Book was on the right track all along."
"What are you talking about"; Chris asked.
I climbed out of the bed... and looked at my hand once more.
"This... dream demon. Are you sure he wasn't Freddy Krueger or something?"
"What"; I asked him.
"Remember? In that movie... the girl would fall asleep and face Freddy and when she would wake up, she would have a part of him with her? Like his hat?"
I looked at my hand and a thought came to me.
"Baby, you're a genius"; I said. "Go and get Wyatt. He is here, right?"
"Yeah, in his room. Why wouldn't he be?"
"Long story. We got to get back to the attic."
"But what about your food"; he asked, pointing to the tray on the dresser.
"That is so not important right now"; I said pointing to the tray... and it flew across the room and out an open window.
"Uh..."; I said. "What was that?"
"I don't know. You did it."
"OK. Maybe something is up with my powers. First we get rid of the demon, then we figure this out."
"Really liking that plan"; Chris said, looking slightly freaked out. "Meet you upstairs"; he said, making his way ahead of me.
I grabbed him before he left the room. "You aren't... scared of me, are you?"
"To be honest... yeah, a little."
"My powers can't be used against you, remember?"
"Yeah, but I don't want you getting mad at me and... launching something at me."
"Shut up"; I said with a smile. "Go get Wyatt and tell him we got some demon ass to kick." I gave him a quick kiss.
"See. You're safe."
"Ha-ha"; he said and left to get his brother.
"How did this happen"; an angry Barbas asked Pascal. "You said they wouldn't be able to attack me in this state."
"A simple fluke... most likely on your part, Barbas. You were too sure of yourself."
"I wasn't too sure of anything"; Barbas yelled. "This was your doing! The Charmed one cast a spell that shouldn't have worked... and he saw me. Then, he caused this..."
Pascal took sight of Barbas' burned pant leg... or what was left of it.
"I am growing weary of your failures, Barbas. I thought you were the demon of fear..."
Barbas simply sneered in silence at Pascal.
"But yet, you can't seem to take out simple children, as you put it."
"I never put it in that context"; Barbas finally spoke. "I believe that was your comment. You have no one to be angry with but yourself."
"That may be true"; Pascal uttered and walked face to face with Barbas.
"But it's much more fun to take this anger out on you."
Barbas simply smiled in response. "You are nothing like the previous Source. You have to beat up a demon with no way of defending itself... although..."
He closed his eyes and smiled.
"I know your fear... and it's coming. Soon."
Without warning, Pascal backhanded Barbas as hard as possible.
"How dare you use your powers on me, you insolent fool!"
"I would be afraid as well"; Barbas responded, turning his face back to Pascal after the strike. "If mere teenagers were going to see to the end of me."
"I guess we'll see about that"; Pascal responded. "But as for now, you are going to try again... and this time if you don't succeed..."
"You cannot vanquish fear. I will always be here as long as fear rules this world."
"That may be true"; Pascal said, stepping away from Barbas. "But, I can make your time in this world most... unpleasant. You will know fear unlike any other being in existence."
Barbas was silent once more... the venom behind Pascal's comment caused him to be scared for his eternal life.
"Now, are you ready to go back to sleep?"
Pascal waved his hand over Barbas' face and the fear demon fell into a deep slumber.
"Are you sure you don't need anymore of my help, guys?"
"No, Noah"; I said as we all stood in the attic. "This is something the three of us have to take care of. But thanks for what you've helped us with already."
"Uh... sure"; Noah said with a smile.
"And remember... not a word of this to anyone"; Chris continued.
Noah ran two fingers over his lips; zipping them shut.
"Are you sure this is going to work"; Wyatt asked.
"It does seem a bit simple"; Chris admitted.
"I know it does"; I answered. "I can't believe how simple it was... until Chris pointed out something to me."
"What did I point out exactly"; Chris questioned. "That you can be hurt in your dreams?"
"No... well, yeah. Sort of."
"Huh"; Chris, Wyatt and Noah said.
"It was that Freddy Krueger reference; about how the girl brought out a part of him every time she faced him in her dreams."
"Didn't that girl die in a later movie"; Noah asked.
There was nothing I could say for that comment. He was right.
"Baby, you have to think this through"; Chris commented as he made his way to me. "If you can get hurt in your dreams... you can die in them."
I looked him in the eye and tried to quell his fears.
"I understand, baby. But the thing is if we can get hurt in our dreams, so can he. And against the power of three, he stands no chance."
"Our powers don't work against him"; Wyatt said.
"Our powers may not work... but spells do."
"What"; Wyatt asked. "How did you know that?"
"Let's just say that I was never a fair player at "hide and seek". "
"OK, now I'm really confused."
"It'll take too long to explain and we need to work fast. I need you guys to trust me on this one"; I responded.
"I guess we're going to have to"; Wyatt said. "But, I need to say one thing.."
"And that is?"
"If you get me killed, I'm going to haunt you."
I smiled at that and walked to him. "Thanks for the vote of confidence, asshole."
He hugged me quickly and smiled.
"OK"; Chris said, "what do we do?"
"Well... we get comfortable"; I said, pointing to the three pillows on the floor. I started to walk to my space when...
"Ow"; I groaned, clutching my stomach.
"What's wrong"; Noah asked.
"Bad Chinese food"; Chris responded.
"Oh"; Noah said with a smile.
"You're happy about that"; Wyatt commented.
"Oh... no. Never mind."
"You are so weird sometimes"; I said, sitting on the floor and then laying down on the pillow. Chris laid next to me and held my hand and Wyatt did the same next to him.
"I don't think I need the spell"; Wyatt said. "I'm already exhausted."
"Trust me, we need it"; I said. "Noah, you ready?"
"Hold on"; he said, eyeing the candles that surrounded the three of us on the floor. He snapped his fingers and they all lit.
"You're all set"; Noah responded.
"OK"; I answered. "See you guys in your dreams."
"Good night, John-Boy"; Chris said.
"Funny"; Wyatt threw in.
I sighed and read the spell I had written onto a paper...
"Life to life and mind to mind
Through slumber deep, our 3 spirits intertwine
We meld our souls as our bodies sleep
As I say these words, so mote it be..."
The last thing I saw before I fell asleep was Chris looking directly at me. Then, I felt myself falling into...
I found myself standing outside, during the daytime. There wasn't a cloud in sight; completely blissful. I was standing on a small hill; the sound of kids playing behind me happily.
"Whose fear is this"; came Wyatt's voice from behind me as he walked up. He was dressed pretty nicely: hair in a neat ponytail; a light blue sweater and slacks.
"Not mine"; I said. "Seeing you in the morning usually is more scarier."
"Very funny. You're dressed pretty nicely yourself, you know."
I looked down and saw that I was in a tux; completely white, except for a black dress shirt. I went to run my hands over the suit to take it all in and noticed a weird gold ring on my left hand that I never saw before.
"Are we supposed to be rich or something"; Wyatt asked, "because this is a fear I could get used to... easily."
"I don't know"; I said; taking notice of the ring. "Wait a minute. Where's Chris?"
Both of us looked around, realizing that he was missing.
"I don't know"; Wyatt asked. "Do you think the spell backfired or something?"
"No"; I said surely. "I know it's working. You're here with me, first of all and you're aware this is a dream."
"That's true"; Wyatt admitted.
"On top of that; all of our minds are intertwined. You should be able to sense Chris..."
Wyatt was silent for a moment as he closed his eyes.
"Yeah"; he said after a while. "I feel like he's close by... but muffled somehow. Why is that?"
"That's why I worded the spell that way... in case Barbas tries anything stupid; like separating us. We can know where each other is all the time."
"You're getting really good at spells"; Wyatt said with a smile as he got into step with me.
"If only I could control my powers..."
"What"; Wyatt asked.
"Never mind. We need to get to Chris... wherever he is."
Wyatt and I walked all around the unfamiliar place; which seemed like a park of some kind. We called Chris' name out over and over, unable to see where he was. On top of that; it seemed as if Chris' presence in my mind was getting fuzzier and fuzzier.
"Weird"; Wyatt said suddenly.
"What"; I asked.
"Look over there..."
I glanced in the direction he was referring to... a huge church.
"Oh no"; Wyatt said. "I think I just figured out Chris' worse fear."
I said nothing in response, because I thought the same thing.
"No.... that's impossible"; I realized. "I mean, he already faced that fear."
"It doesn't matter"; Wyatt said sadly. "It's not something you accept that easily. Plus, I guess with all of the nice clothes, it would make sense."
It slowly hit me that Wyatt may be right. Would I walk into that church and find my body in a coffin?
"We have to go in there"; I said. "No matter how freaked out I am."
"You mean, no matter how freaked out we are."
"Sure"; I responded. "What you said. Let's just go."
We walked closer to the church and as we did; Chris' presence got stronger.
"After you"; Wyatt said as we made our way to the stop of the stairs; leading to the entrance.
"Hey. I'm the dead guy. Shouldn't I get some respect? You open it."
Wyatt sighed, admittedly defeated and opened the door.
"Um... I don't know how you're going to feel about this"; Wyatt responded, his back to me.
"What is it"; I asked. "Am I charred beyond belief?"
"Uh, no. Let's just say I was off. Way off."
Wyatt stepped into the church and with a sigh of my own, I followed him inside.
First thing I noticed was that there was no coffin.
"Wow... Chris thinks I'm going to be obliterated?"
"Look around, bro"; Wyatt said, turning to me. "I don't think it's that kind of service."
I took in my surroundings and noticed that there were flowers everywhere. There were also some people there... and they were dressed in lively colors. There was a rainbow ribbon hanging over an altar and candles surrounded the front of the church..
"I don't think this is your funeral"; Wyatt commented. "I think it's..."
"My wedding"; I realized. "Oh, my God."
It was then that in the small crowd in attendance that I saw Noah; sitting in a chair.
"Hey"; I said, making my way to him. "What are you doing here? Aren't you supposed to be watching over us?"
He just stared straight ahead with a huge smile.
"Hello"; I said, waving my hand in front of him. "I know you..."
"He can't hear you"; came a sad voice from ahead of me. "He's part of my dream..."
I looked up and there stood Chris. He was dressed in an all black suit; except for a white dress shirt; he was dressed the complete opposite of me... and he looked absolutely beautiful.
"Wow"; I said, making my way to him. "Is this how you picture us..."
He sighed before responding, "Yeah. Someday."
"This is beautiful, bro"; Wyatt said, making his way to us. "I never would've thought you were capable of something this romantic."
It was obvious it was a joke, but Chris just stood there... with tears in his eyes.
"Hey"; I said, putting my arms around him, "I thought this was about fear. Does this mean... you're afraid to marry me someday?"
"No"; he said quickly, tears running down his cheek. "I want nothing more than to spend forever with you."
"Then what's this all about, baby? What does this have to do with your biggest fear?"
"Look in the front row"; he said sadly.
I turned around and noticed that there were three empty chairs.
"I don't understand"; I said.
"His greatest fear"; came a voice from behind the church, "is that his your parents will never accept his relationship with you."
I turned around and saw the man from my dreams walking down the aisle, his hands behind his back.
"That they will shun him and disown him... and you."
Barbas continued walking to us with a smile on his face.
"And of course they won't accept it, Christopher. Who would accept a homosexual relationship... with your brother no less?"
"I see we're no longer hiding"; I said, making my way to him.
"No, I'm not. Your previous spell saw to that."
"You're forgetting something else"; Wyatt said, standing face to face with him. "I'm no longer defenseless against you."
Wyatt then pushed Barbas away with a flash of power I had never seen him use before. He flew to the back of the church and slammed into a pew. The force of the fall caused it to break underneath his weight.
The demon laughed and stood up, brushing off wood shavings from his coat.
"That may be true. But, this isn't your fight. And since it isn't, your power can't hurt me."
Barbas then launched a fireball at Wyatt. Wyatt jumped out of the way and the flame sailed into the rainbow ribbon; causing it to burst into flames. The crowd stood up slowly, as if it was the end of the service and walked out of the church.
I turned around to look at Chris; shaking and crying. Slowly, his hair started to change color. The ends were turning gray.
"What does he mean, "this isn't my fight"; Wyatt yelled toward us.
If this wasn't something Wyatt could fight... then only Chris could. This was his mind, his fear...
"Baby"; I said, grabbing onto him. "You've got to fight this. You can't let this scare you."
"But it does scare me"; Chris exclaimed, his tears falling harder now. "We will never be accepted in their eyes! What if they never understand... never..."
"That's right, Christopher"; Barbas sneered. "Feed me your fear. Cry and understand that you'll never be good enough..."
"Who are you to tell him anything"; I said, shouting at Barbas. "You're just a demon! You'll never understand love! Why should anyone listen to you?!"
"Because he's right"; Chris said, looking downward; his hair getting whiter and whiter by the second. "Look around us, baby."
I looked and saw the fire growing in places it hadn't been before. The flowers that decorated the church were ablaze now and the pews were getting blackened.
"Our love only destroys everything else...."
"Listen to me, Chris"; I said, holding onto him once more. His hair was nearly completely white now. "Are you listening?"
He wouldn't look up at me. I took his head in my hands and forced him to face me.
"Do you remember what I said to you when we first decided to be together; even though I was so afraid of what everyone would say?"
He nodded sadly.
"I told you that it didn't matter what anyone else thinks; that this was about me and you and that's it. I know it's scary that no one else may ever accept us as a couple. But at the end of the day; it's not about them. This is our love and no one else's. We accept each other as a couple. And I know that I'm not going anywhere. Now, the question is... are you?"
I took his hand in mind and saw that he was wearing a matching ring; our wedding bands.
He looked up and glanced behind me: "Look over there."
I turned around, even with the fire nearly all around us and saw something truly magnificent.
Aunt Paige; dressed in a beautiful blue dress was sitting there with a smile on her face. She was the only one who never left, even with all of the ruckus surrounding us. For some reason, the fire wasn't anywhere near her.
"She didn't go"; Chris said.
"She's the one who knows about us... and she loves us."
"And I'm not going anywhere either"; said Wyatt... before something behind him fell from above. "Well... I will in a second, considering this place is about to burn to the ground."
"No, it's not"; I said. I closed my eyes and relaxed... and then, threw my hands toward the room, intending to freeze it. Instead, the flames died down and everything seemed to restore itself. The rainbow ribbon hung high above Chris and I and the pews seemed to build themselves from the ground up.
"What are you doing"; the demon yelled, walking quickly toward us.
"I don't think so"; I said, waving my hand toward him. It sent him flying down the aisle and directly out the front door of the church.
I turned around to face Chris... and his hair was back to normal.
"How did you do that"; he asked. "I thought you couldn't control..."
"Well, it's my dream, too"; I answered with a smile. "I can do whatever my heart desires."
"But I thought he said our powers couldn't do anything to him"; Wyatt asked as he made his way toward us.
"They may not hurt him"; I started as I faced him, "but they can affect him. Just like your power did when you attacked him."
"The fire... it didn't scare you"; Chris asked. I looked back toward him and smiled.
"As long as I have you, nothing scares me."
He smiled widely as tears continued to fall down his face... but I knew they came from a much different emotion.
"Um... there's a problem"; Wyatt said suddenly. "Shouldn't we be awake by now?"
"I don't think we're done here"; I realized, taking Chris in my sights once more.
"What haven't we done"; Wyatt asked. "Is it because the demon isn't dead yet?"
As if on cue, the door seemed to explode front it's hinges.
"You can't kill me"; said Barbas, making his way back into the church. "Fear never dies."
"He's right"; I said. "It just gets... overpowered."
I took his hand in mine and walked him back to the middle of the altar.
"Are you scared"; I asked Chris, taking his face in my hands.
"Does this answer your question?"
He moved forward and kissed me.
"No"; Barbas screamed. He tried to throw a fireball toward us, but it died out just before it reached us.
Chris held me tighter and returned the kiss with intensity and deep love... nothing would ever separate us from being together...
I continued kissing Chris. Everything else seemed to drown out including the demon screaming in pain... and then exploding.
When we knew he was gone, Chris and I finally separated lips.
"I thought he couldn't be defeated"; Wyatt said.
"He couldn't... but in our minds, he's as good as dead. Now, where were we"; I said, looking back at Chris.
"I think... we were right about here"; he responded.
He took my face and kissed me once more, more passionately than the first time. I could've swore I heard applause and whistles. I stopped kissing him once more... and turned around to see the people in attendance had returned to their seats... as if they had never left.
"Now, this is truly a dream come true"; Chris whispered in my ear.
I smiled widely and kissed him once more... from above us, I could feel glitter falling above us; draping the two of us... and then, everything turned white.
Barbas' eyes opened... to an impatient Pascal.
"Well"; Pascal asked. "Did you succeed?"
"What do you think"; he responded.
"Fuck"; Pascal screamed angrily , throwing a fireball at the cave wall.
"I told you from the start... you would not be able to defeat them so easily."
"Do not tell me what I can or cannot do! I am the Source of All-Evil! I can defeat three children!"
"Well, apparently not"; Barbas responded, "or else, I would be coming to you with much better news."
Pascal walked angrily to Barbas and stood directly in his face. "You will try again!"
He waved his hand in front of Barbas' face to place him to sleep... and came in contact with a lightning strike that sent him flying across the cave.
"What..."; Pascal said, as he shakily made his way up.
"I think I have... grown tired of you"; Barbas said. "There will be no more messing with my head."
"Well, if that's the case"; Pascal responded, "I guess your services are no longer needed. Therefore... how do you want to die?"
"I already told you"; Barbas commented, "you can't kill fear."
"Kill, no. Torture, maybe."
"Well, I pretty much doubt that will seem difficult to you as well."
"Why is that?"
"Because"; he said as he glanced at one of his shackles, "I won't be here."
With another crackle of lightning, the shackle fell off of his arm. He took the other in his now free hand... and crumbled it to pieces; as if it was dirt.
"You... could do that all along"; Pascal asked fearfully.
"I couldn't, actually"; he responded. "But... after facing your fear... anything is possible."
Pascal stood stone-faced in front of him.
"Do not summon me again... or I promise you... your greatest fear will be nothing compared with what I can do to you."
Barbas laughed loudly and then, left a scared Pascal alone as he shimmered away.
"I am so sorry, guys."
"Yeah, sure you are, Noah"; I said as we sat in the attic later that day.
"I didn't mean to fall asleep, you guys... I was just really tired."
"And we were just really close to dying. All you had to do was keep your eyes open if anything weird happened..."
"I didn't do it purposely! Look"; Noah said, leaning down to face the two of us, "I feel really bad."
Chris and I looked at each other... we already knew where this was going.
"I promise I'll make it up to you, guys"; Noah continued, not noticing our faces. "I'll... even go easier on you in class. Please don't be mad at me."
"So... you'll do anything"; Chris said.
"Anything at all"; I continued.
Noah nodded in response.
"OK"; I said. "We need you... to get Layla down here. We need to talk to her about some things."
"That's all"; Noah asked, standing back up. "No problem."
"And... we need you to not be here when we talk to her. Or tell anyone about us talking to her."
"And no questions asked"; Chris said, cutting Noah off from commenting.
"Fine"; Noah said with a sigh. "Can I just know a little on what's going on?"
"We could tell you"; Chris responded.
"But then, you'd have to kill me"; Noah continued. "Couldn't you come up with something a little more original?"
"Well, I was going to say "we could tell you, but it's much more fun watching you suffer"... but your's works, too."
"Consider it your punishment for sleeping on the job"; I said with a smile.
"Whatever"; Noah said. "I'll go and get Layla."
He orbed away, but not before adding, "And you're both getting extra homework!"
I laughed at his little comment, as did Chris.
"So, how are you feeling"; I asked him afterward.
"I just keep thinking"; his said as he took my hand in his, "how lucky I am to love someone like you."
I smiled at him and glanced down to see something hanging from a chain he was wearing.
"What is this"; I asked, picking it up.
"I couldn't help it"; he replied. "I kind of brought it out of my dream. I mean, it belongs to me... sort of."
I rolled the gold wedding band around in my hand and smiled. "You're so giving me another ring if you ask me to marry you."
"You mean when I ask you."
I smiled at him and gave him a light kiss... which got deeper as he placed his hand on the back of my head.
Someone in front of us cleared her throat lightly...
We stopped kissing and saw Layla in front os us.
"I'm told you wanted to see me"; she said with a smile.
"Yeah, we did"; I responded. "I'm guessing you know..."
"Yes, I know about you and Christopher"; she commented. "The White Lighters have no problem with your relationship. In fact, we stand by it 100 percent."
"Well, that's good to know"; Chris said.
"But... I can almost guess that this isn't the reason you summoned me... but before you ask me whatever you have on your mind, where is Wyatt?"
"He had...something to do"; Chris answered. "A friend needed to see him."
"That's fine"; Layla responded with another smile. I had the feeling she knew about Caleb, but I didn't want to say anything.
"Alright"; I started, "so... something's been happening with my powers lately."
"What do you mean, Peter?"
"They've kind of been... maturing"; Chris responded. "A lot."
"I'm still not sure I understand"; Layla said.
I pointed to an open dresser door in the corner of the attic. Layla turned around to face it. I moved my hand and closed it shut.
"Oh... now I understand"; Layla responded; turning back around.
"That's not all"; Chris started. "He's also been having... premonitions."
"Premonitions"; Layla said. "That's not one of his powers."
"We know that"; Chris said. "He's also been able to freeze things, but not like he normally does."
"You mean like your mother, Piper?"
We both nodded in response.
"Well, that is normal. It's a progression of his normal power. You can choose between both when necessary, Peter"; she answered, looking at me.
"Yes"; she said. "You don't lose a power when you gain another one. As time progresses, you will be able to use both."
"Fine, that's all great"; I said, "but what about all of these extra powers? And why are they coming so quick... ow!"
I grabbed my stomach in pain.
"I thought that would be over by now"; Chris said while putting an arm around me.
"So would I"; I admitted. "And I'm still feeling really nauseous."
"This really all began when Pete has that Chinese food"; Chris continued. "Could this have something to do with all of this?"
"You think that something I ate could have something to do with this power surge"; I asked him; half-laughing.
"You'd be surprised what would affect our powers. One day, ask Aunt Paige about cold medicine and orbing."
"Actually... it is not food that is causing his powers to grow... and his powers aren't growing."
"So... you know what's going on with me"; I asked. "And what do you mean my powers aren't growing?"
"I was hoping the two of you would find out on your own, considering how special this is"; Layla answered as she stepped toward us.
"How special what is"; Chris questioned. "His powers are going out of control and he's sick. What's so special about that?"
"The powers that Peter are exhibiting"; Layla said, "are not his own."
"What do you mean"; I asked her, standing up and still clutching my stomach. "They are coming from me, right? I mean... am I holding them for another witch or something?"
"Something like that"; Layla responded with a smile.
"No disrespect, but could you be a little less confusing"; Chris said.
"I am being"; Layla continued as she made her way toward me, "as simple as possible, Christopher."
"O.K. Now I'm confused"; I said.
Layla said nothing as she slowly placed her hand on my stomach.
"Are you healing me"; I asked her. "I didn't know you could cure illnesses."
"We can't cure them"; she said. "But then again, this is nothing to cure."
"I'm still not sure..."
It was then... that I got it.
"No"; I said.
"Yes, Peter"; Layla responded, smiling widely. "It's true."
"What's true"; Chris asked, standing next to me. "What's going on?"
"Am I really..."; I asked shakily. "I mean... it's impossible, right? There's no way..."
"In magic, all things are possible"; she responded. "Don't be afraid, Peter. This is a beautiful thing."
"What is a beautiful thing"; Chris asked. "What is going on?"
"Baby"; I said slowly. "I think... I'm pregnant."
"Hey"; Caleb said as he opened the door for Wyatt.
"Can I come in"; Wyatt asked him.
"Of course, baby"; he responded and pull the door open wider for Wyatt to walk in.
"Did I come at a bad time"; Wyatt asked as Caleb shut the door.
"Of course not. Why would you think that?"
Wyatt nodded toward Caleb's attire: a pair of pajama bottoms and not much else.
"Oh"; Caleb responded with laughter. "I was just working out. I can stop for a while"; he said, wiping some sweat from his forehead. "Have a seat."
Wyatt smiled lightly and walked to the living room couch and sat down. Caleb sat next to him.
"Can I get you anything"; Caleb asked while reaching for a towel. "Something to drink?"
"No, no, I'm fine"; Wyatt responded with a wave.
"So, what's up"; Caleb asked.
"I want to talk to you about last night... you did get my note, right?"
"Um, yeah. It's O.K. Did you get the demon?"
"Pretty much, yeah. It's kind of complicated."
"I see"; Caleb said slowly. "Trying to keep me out of the loop now?"
"No, nothing like that"; Wyatt responded quickly. "It's just... it would take too long to explain and if I start talking about that, then I'll totally leave out the reason why I came here in the first place."
Caleb sighed and looked down. "So, it's one of those conversations."
"Baby, just let me talk, OK? No more guessing."
Caleb looked up and tried to smile. "OK. I'm quiet."
"OK"; Wyatt said and stood up. He knew he would get nervous and start pacing, so he decided to sit back down again.
"Look... last night, you asked me something really big. And I know you wouldn't have asked me unless you didn't mean it... I'm already starting to get off point and I haven't even gotten to what I came over for."
"Calm down"; Caleb said, while taking Wyatt's hand. "Take your time."
Wyatt sighed and smiled, then grasped Caleb's hand tighter.
"OK... you mean... so much to me, Caleb. I have never been happier than when I'm with you. You make me laugh and smile and... just so happy. I want something like that for the rest of my life... to wake up with someone; knowing that just one look will change my day for the better... and I know that person is you."
After a pause, Caleb spoke. "But you don't think we should live together."
Wyatt sighed and continued. "Last night, I would've said, no, we shouldn't. But something happened between Chris and Pete..."
"Are they OK"; Caleb asked, full of worry.
"They're fine"; Wyatt continued, "and it's another long story... but it made me realize something. I think I've been... too scared to give my all to you. Maybe it's because of what happened with Joshie, maybe it's because of fighting these crazy demons; one after another. But the point is... I'm tired of being afraid. We never know what tomorrow holds for us... and I know that... I want something beautiful like Pete and Chris have. And I want to have it with you."
Wyatt looked up and Caleb's smiling face and gave him a smile of his own.
"So... if the offer still stands... I think I'd like to live here."
"Are you... sure about this"; Caleb asked. "Like you said, it's a pretty big thing."
"It is"; Wyatt responded. "But, what I feel is bigger... and I'm ready to face my fear... if you'll help me with it."
Caleb moved forward and kissed Wyatt deeply, his hands running to the back of his neck.
As they separated, they both had equal expressions of happiness on their face.
"So, how are you going to tell this to your family"; Caleb asked.
"Don't ruin the moment"; Wyatt said jokingly. "I'll figure it out."
"So... we're living together"; Caleb responded.
"I guess we are."
Caleb squealed and hugged Wyatt tightly. Wyatt laughed at Caleb's reaction and hugged Caleb back.
"We should celebrate"; Caleb said as they separated. "Let me take you to lunch."
"Damn. Living with the boyfriend has it's privileges."
Caleb smirked and hit Wyatt with his towel. "Let me take a quick shower and I'll be right down. Want to join me?"
"Um... I kind of already showered"; Wyatt responded.
"Who said anything about washing"; Caleb replied as he stood up and walked toward the stairs.
Wyatt winked and orbed upstairs to the bathroom.
"Cheater"; Caleb yelled jokingly as he raced upstairs to meet up with him.
Hey to everyone out there! First off, I'd like to give all of you who read this story a huge thank you! You have no idea how much your support means to me! It is so awesome of you guys to take a little time out to send your e-mails and thoughts (which I do respond to!)
Also, let me set the record straight: although it takes a while for me to post chapters... "FC" is not going anywhere anytime soon! I usually try to have two chapters completed ahead of the ones I post (and I'm currently writing Chapter 17), so that explains why there's sometimes a wait between postings here on Nifty. But, don't fret... there are more adventures on the way!
Once again, thanks so much to you all and a big thanks to Matt for his last e-mail! (Told you I'd send you a little shout out!)
Any comments can be sent to JonnyFantastico6@aol.com
Chapter 15: "Happily Never After"