“Chris… I’m so sorry I hit you. Talk to me please?”
The boy in question continued to quietly weep, crouched in one corner of the bed while Wyatt sat beside him, now actually afraid to touch him.
“What happened to you? Chris talk to me…”
Chris was in no mood to respond. The death of his father was too much to deal with right now. Through painful tears, he looked around the place… his mom’s bedroom but none of her stuff was here. Her scent was long gone.
Nothing had changed, if at all – his going back to the past seemed to have made things worse because not even an aloof Elder *excuse* for a father was alive anymore.
He only assumed Wyatt was playing another of his evil games with him. In his deep anguish, he surrendered all defiance… and did not even realize when Wyatt inched in closer, and gradually proceeded to hold him again. He did not protest. Maybe the boy needed to be held, even if it was by the evil all-powerful Wyatt. He had almost retreated into himself, once again hearing his heart beating atrociously loudly. Like he did while on his death-bed… back in the past.
Beat Beat Beat…
“Chris you… you wanted to talk to dad?”
Chris stuttered on his next sob. Dazedly he raised his head from Wyatt’s chest to look at him. The latter looked genuinely concerned about him. How could that be? And what the hell was he saying about dad?
“You mean, like a séance?”
Wyatt squinted at him in confusion.
“Why would you need a… shit! Chris no!”
And then it was the older brother’s turn to look disgusted and angry.
“Didn’t I tell you what the Elders did *seven* years ago? They thought Dad was spending way too much time here with us so they blocked us out of his range!”
Wyatt had still been supporting the back of Chris’ neck with his left hand. Now he tugged at his longish hair insistently.
//And it didn’t hurt at all.//
“Yeah! Only, we found a way to *unblock* us without them idiots tracing our calls. Dad wont hear you if you call him by name. He can only hear you when you call him ‘Dad’! Don’t you remember?”
“So… he’s alive?”
“Still slow on the uptake I see. Good to know some things haven’t changed.”
The look of relief flooding Chris’ eyes was too intense to be missed. Wyatt smiled, with a big question mark on his face. He swiped at a stray tear from Chris’ cheek just as he felt Chris finally relaxing and leaning back against Wyatt’s broader frame. He experimentally rubbed the still tensed up spine, expecting Chris to sucker punch him any minute now.
The blow never came.
“Yes he’s alive kiddo. You really don’t remember, do you?”
“Who’s slow on the uptake now?”
Wyatt blinked. It was a happy blink.
Chris would have smirked were he not still in stunned-mode. Was all that horseshit he just said really true? Or was the *source of all evil* mind-fucking him again?
Wyatt shook his head and sighed. Then without looking away from Chris, he spoke out.
Shimmering white pearls glowed in a distance, growing brighter and brighter until the brothers had to momentarily look away. When the shimmering stopped, there stood Leo – the Elder, smiling one instant… concerned the next.
“Chris you look awful.”
Chris just stammered something totally unintelligible and Leo was at a loss.
The next thing he knew, Leo was holding up a frail but definitely buoyed up Chris in his arms.
“Hey… someone’s happy to see me.”
Leo joked and clapped his younger son loudly on the back. That was usually a logical point to end hugs and the Chris he knew was always eager to get out of one of those. But today… the boy was clinging to Leo like anything.
Unfazed parent that he was, Leo just shook his head and indulged him for awhile. Then lost patience.
“Okay that’s enough… come here, lets take a look at you.”
And he gently pried Chris away from himself to hold him at arms distance. That was when he looked at his boy’s teared up face carefully for the first time.
Something… clicked, then fell into place.
Chris caught a fleeting moment of realization come over Leo’s face but didn’t pay much heed to it. He just continued to… be shocked and happy and relieved and speechless. Wyatt got up from where he’d sat on the bed and came to stand behind the duo.
“It was just as you said dad. The spell alarms went off and he appeared out of nowhere on this bed… dead.”
Chris was also hearing the account for the first time but considering he was *there*, he shouldn’t have been as shocked as he was. He looked at Wyatt to determine if he was telling the truth. There was nothing but open honesty on his face.
Then he gaped at his father – his father was frowning but he sure didn’t seem particularly surprised. Wyatt continued.
“So then I revived him.”
It was said extremely casually. Chris wondered if there was any limit to his sibling’s powers at all, if reviving the dead came this naturally to him. Actually, now that he thought about it, the Charmed ones used to do it almost on a weekly basis as well.
“And then instead of thanking me for saving his sorry ass, *again* – he attacked me! Like I was demon spawn or somethin!”
So vaguely amusing to hear that tone from the mighty Wyatt Haliwell, almost like... whining.
Leo sighed, then smiled and put an arm around Chris’ shoulder and led him back to the bed. Wyatt looked on with his arms folded.
“How are you feeling Chris?”
Dad was still here, and Wyatt had saved his life… apparently. Was he dreaming? Was he stuck in some comatose state, hanging between life and death? Past and future?
Was he *totally* screwed?
“I don’t know dad, you tell me.”
This was it, Leo thought, the moment he’d waited for, for over twenty years. Leo sat down next to his son, sighed heavily and began his story.