A Phantom of the Opera Comic Parody

Catherine van der Goes

The Phantom's Lair || The Carriage Ride || The Graveyard Scene || A Picnic || Prequel

The Graveyard Scene

Chapter 6

Just in time, Erik jumped out of the way, in open-mouthed astonishment, and rolled over several times in order to avoid the flashing steel hooves as they charged past him.

As the buckskin mare reached the door to the mausoleum entrance, she had no choice but to stop, and she did so with such suddenness that Raoul was unseated and went flying through the air and over the mare's head, to land squarely on his backside once more, for the second time that day.

"Whoa, Buttercup!" said Raoul to the badly frightened mare before she could take off again for the stable, and warmth.

Upon hearing Raoul's voice, the mare calmed down and stood still, heaving and trembling with exhaustion. Sweat was all over her body and she looked around wall—eyed in fright.

Madame Giry and Christine ran up to where Raoul was and helped him up.

"Are you alright, Raoul?" Christine asked in concern.

"Can you move alright, Vicompte?" asked Madame Giry in a worried voice.

Raoul got up with some difficulty, but finally he was standing.

"I was urging Buttercup to go faster and telling her to 'go, Buttercup, go', so I could reach you in time Christine, and when I started telling her to whoa, I guess she got confused and could not tell the word 'go' from the word 'whoa' and just kept on going!" Raoul was breathing hard and paused for a minute.

The only one who didn't ask after Raoul's condition was the Phantom, who was doubled over with laughter, tears streaming down his face he was laughing so hard.

"Whoa, Buttercup!" he mimicked Raoul. "Can't tell 'go' from 'whoa,' he gasped, laughing. "We will have to tell our children about this hilarious episode, Christine dear, in the years to come after we are married!" he concluded, nearly choking with laughter.

Christine turned to Erik in wonder. She had never seen him laugh and it was a wonderful sight! She wondered how long it had been since he had laughed at anything? But she still admonished him gently,

"Erik, it isn't kind to laugh at Raoul. He could have been seriously hurt or injured. He was only thinking of my well being." And she continued to help brush dust and dirt off of Raoul and to calm down the frightened mare. Erik just continued to smirk and looked snidely at Raoul.

Madame Giry was also looking at the Phantom and a gentle smile was on her face. It was so good to see Erik laughing and happy, even if it was at Raoul's expense.

She had known the Phantom for many years now and cared about him as if he were her son, ever since she had rescued him from that horrible side—show in the circus traveling around Paris many years ago. She had hidden him in the Opera Populaire, and over the years it had become his home.

But in all the years after she had rescued him, she had never seen him smile or laugh — he was always serious and there was a sadness in his eyes all the time.

Now he was smiling and laughing! Christine was good for him, reflected Madame Giry. He had someone to love in his life now, someone who loved him with equal fervor.

Raoul was looking quite alarmed, though. "Married; children?" he asked. "Christine, what is this man talking about and who is he? Why is he wearing that mask? Is this the Phantom? How did he get here? We are engaged — what is going on here??"

Christine looked at Raoul with sadness. She was going to have to tell him the truth about her real love for Erik, and not for him.

"Raoul, I would like you to meet Erik. Hmm.... I'm so sorry. I have been meaning to talk with you, about us. I was planning to tell you about some decisions I have made concerning my life."

The sudden sound of several other mounted horses and a horse drawn paddy wagon galloping into the graveyard interrupted her speech. Christine looked around in alarm as quite a few mounted gendarmes (French police) came into view and quickly surrounded the whole area, their guns drawn and ready to use.

"You see, Christine, the stable owner called for the gendarmes with his whistle as soon as we suspected you had been abducted by the Phantom! Now your boyfriend will be going to jail for a good long while for theft, murder and kidnapping! He can't escape this time!!" proclaimed Raoul with triumph.

It was true. They were all surrounded tightly, and even the Phantom had nowhere to run. A look of fear and alarm was on his face, as he looked frantically for a place to run to and hide.

"You are surrounded!" called out one of the policemen. "Put up your hands and surrender. You are all under arrest. Put down your weapons if you have them!"

Raoul and Erik put up their hands, as did Christine and Madame Giry. One of the policemen walked over to them and quickly took the swords away from Erik and Raoul and the purses away from Madame Giry and Christine. Then at gunpoint he silently and grimly marched all of them to the horse—drawn paddy wagon where they were made to get in by climbing a couple of wooden steps at the back of the wagon.

"This is so humiliating!" exclaimed Madame Giry. "I will never live this down! I will also now be late in getting the girls into bed on time at the dormitories!"

"I will get you for this!" hissed Erik to Raoul who was seated across from him inside the wagon. "I have a Punjab lasso with your name on it, Vicompte, just waiting for you!"

"And you will be spending many years in jail for your many crimes, Monsieur Ghost!" hissed back Raoul in delight. "And Christine will be my wife and the mother of my children, while you rot in jail!"

A look of pure fury crossed the Phantom's face. "We will see about that, ... we will see about that! The game is not over yet!" he said in a low voice to Raoul in anger.

"Please be quiet, both of you!" exclaimed Christine as they jounced roughly along in the paddy wagon, a guard with them, watching everything they did and listening to every word said.

"I just hope that the police will make sure to return Buttercup and the carriage back to the stable they came from!" said Raoul. "We left in such a hurry, that I forgot to inquire."

The guard overheard Raoul and spoke up. "We have already done that monsieur, do not worry." And the paddy wagon was silent once more, each person deep in their own thoughts.

Chapter 7

They finally reached the police station in Paris and alighted from the back of the paddy wagon, rumpled and out of sorts.

All of them were roughly herded into a building where there were several small rooms and offices. They were put into a small room that had a long wooden bench on one side, a few chairs and a desk where a tall policeman with grey hair and a frazzled look sat and wrote in a ledger in front of him.

Christine, Raoul, Madame Giry, and Erik, in that order, were all made to sit on the hard wooded bench so that they faced the policeman seated before them. He continued to write in his ledger, but finally he looked up at them.

"Well, well, what do we have here?" he asked. "I understand you were all arrested in the local cemetery. Is that correct?"

They all nodded in acknowledgement.

"You, sir — what is your name?" the policeman asked Raoul.

"I am Raoul the Vicompte de Chagny and I was in the process of rescuing my fiancée, Miss Christine Daae" indicating Christine by looking at her, "from the clutches of this fiend," and here he pointed to the Phantom, "who had kidnapped her and Madame Giry earlier this evening."

"And what do you do, monsieur?" he asked Raoul.

"Currently I am the Patron for the Opera Populaire and I am soon going to be in the French Navy. I am twenty—one years old."

"And you," the policeman addressed Christine, "who are you and what is your part in all of this?"

"I am Christine Daae, I am seventeen years old and I am a ballerina with the Opera Populaire and I also am an Opera singer there.

"I had simply hired a carriage earlier in the day to take me to my father's grave to visit it and put some roses there. I had invited Madame Giry", here she nodded toward the older woman, "to ride with me, as we had some matters to discuss privately. We did not know we would practically be kidnapped in the process!" and here she glared at Erik for a minute or so. The policeman did not miss the look she gave Erik and made a note of it in his ledger, along with all the other notes that he had been taking down while each one of them spoke.

"And you are engaged to this gentleman here." and he pointed to Raoul.

"Well...not really, sir." Christine replied, refusing to look at Raoul.

"Ah, ha!" crowed the Phantom at Christine's pronouncement.

Raoul looked shocked and puzzled. "Christine, what do you mean, 'not really'! We..." he started to protest.

"She is engaged to me!" spoke up Erik suddenly and fiercely. "She belongs to me!" he added with emphasis, pointing to himself.

The policeman, listening, stroked his face with his hand and said, "A ménage a trois, eh?"

"What??" shrieked Christine in horror.

"Never!" cried Raoul.

"Hmm..." snickered Erik.

"This is an outrage!" said Madame Giry standing up in anger.

"Everyone be quiet and sit down!" said the policeman sharply. "I will put you all in jail if you have any more outbursts like that one!"

The policeman next turned to Erik. "And you would be?" he asked.

"Erik." he replied.

"Hello, Erik. And what is your part in all of this? And may I ask, why are you wearing that mask? Were you on your way to a masquerade party or just coming from one?"

"My mask is of no concern to you, monsieur, if you value your life." He added softly. "What is important is that I was the driver of the carriage my fiancée and Madame Giry were riding in. I was simply taking them to the graveyard so that Christine, my fiancée, could put some roses on her father's grave."

"Had they hired you to drive the carriage, monsieur Erik?"

Erik had the grace to blush. "Well, err, not really." he admitted. "I, hmm, 'borrowed' the carriage. I wanted to get a chance to talk with my fiancée alone about some things."

Christine leaned over Raoul and hissed at Erik — "I am not your fiancée, Erik! You haven't even asked me to marry you!"

"I will correct that oversight as soon as we get this silly mess straightened up, my love." replied Erik, leaning across Madame Giry to get closer to Christine.

"Excuse me!" said Raoul, who was seated in between them, "What am I, chopped liver? What about our engagement, Christine? What happened to that? You can't be engaged to us both!"

Christine did not answer Raoul, but just sat still, looking ahead at the policeman.

Then Raoul stood up abruptly and pointed at the Phantom, directing his words at the policeman — "He is a liar, a thief, a kidnapper and a murderer! He should be put in jail for life!" he exclaimed heatedly.

"Sit down, Vicompte" the policeman bellowed. "I will make the judgments here!" He next looked at Madame Giry. "Now, you, Madame, who are you?"

"I am Madame Giry, I am the Ballet Mistress at the Opera Populaire and I raised Mademoiselle Daae when she became an orphan at age seven. She has lived in the Opera Populaire's ballet dancers dormitories for ten years now. I am like a mother to her, I hope." And she gave Christine a gentle look.

"I was invited to accompany Mademoiselle Daae on a carriage ride this evening as she had some serious concerns on her mind she wished to talk to me about, privately. Neither of us suspected that Erik was our driver, until he showed up at the cemetery at the same time we did. And since Erik did take us to the cemetery, as we asked the driver to, (and he was our driver), I don't think it can be considered actually 'kidnapping'. He did drive rather recklessly, but we were not injured."

The policeman looked at Madame Giry.

"Well, Madame Giry, it is certainly theft, to have absconded with the carriage and two horses and assault, as he hit the owner over the head to steal the carriage for his questionable purposes."

Raoul looked somewhat relieved to hear that the policeman was indeed going to press charges against Erik. Perhaps it would land him in jail for several years, at least. He cheered up considerably — his chances with Christine looked good again. Surely this now would break the spell the Phantom held over her!! To press his advantage, he spoke up once more.

"I would also like to state, for the record, sir, that this gentleman, Erik, was also responsible for the murder of one of the employees of the Opera Populaire, a Monsieur Buquet, a few months back. He used a Punjab noose to choke the man to death and then hung him! He is very deranged and dangerous and should be put in jail for life!"

"Did you actually witness this 'murder' you talk about, Vicompte" asked the policeman.

"Well, no sir, I didn't, but the man was murdered during the Opera, 'El Muto' and many people — cast, crew and audience alike were witnesses to his death!"

"Well, unless someone actually saw the murder committed and witnessed Monsieur Erik at the scene of the crime, we cannot press charges against him for that. Only the theft of the carriage and assault, Monsieur Vicompte." The policeman sternly stated.

Erik looked triumphant at this statement and he smiled at Christine in a sly way.

Christine would not return his look, but instead looked straight ahead at the policeman, a sad light in her eyes.

"Don't look so smug, Erik," said the policeman, "I can add years to your sentence as it is!

"Now," he continued, "as I see it, Mademoiselle Daae and Madame Giry are free to go. You were both victims of circumstances, but unharmed. Do either one of you wish to press charges against this gentleman, Erik?"

The two women looked at each other and then back at the policeman, then said together, "No, sir, we don't."

"Well, then, you may leave. You may pick up your purses on the way out.

"Vicompte, you are also free to go now. Thank you for helping us to arrest this man, Erik. You may pick up your sword on the say out; but — a word of warning to you. As you know, Vicompte, it is illegal to duel in France. Had you been caught dueling with your sword in that graveyard with Monsieur Erik, you would have been put in jail also. Do I make myself clear?"

"Yes, sir." replied Raoul. With that he stood up and held out his arm to Christine. "Come along, darling, I will take you and Madame Giry home." he said.

"I am not your 'darling', Raoul!" she hissed at him in anger. "We have a lot to discuss tomorrow after my ballet practice!" and she swept out of the building after retrieving her purse at the front desk. She refused his arm.

Madame Giry joined her, her back ramrod straight, a haughty look on her face. She also retrieved her purse from the front desk on her way out.

"What did I do now?" Raoul asked as he walked out behind them. He picked up his sword as he left.

"You and Erik are both insane!" said Christine, throwing up her hands in the air and shaking her head at the same time as she walked out of the police station.

After they were all gone, the policeman at his desk turned to Erik.

"You realize, sir, that you will be doing at least a year in jail for the theft of the carriage and the assault you committed on the stable owner, don't you?"

Erik sucked in a deep breath through his nose. "Yes, sir, I do." He said between clenched teeth. Somehow, though, he vowed, to himself, he would break out of this jail and be re—united with his lovely Christine. He was a magician, after all. He would think of something!!

Chapter 8

Once outside the police station, Raoul hailed a passing hansom cab, drawn by a beautiful dappled grey gelding. He helped the two women into the cab and then got in himself. At least, he thought, he wouldn't have to ride any more horses tonight!

When he was seated and the carriage had started, he turned to Christine.

"I would like to know what is going on Christine, and this can't wait until tomorrow! I deserve an answer to some questions!"

Madame Giry and Christine exchanged a look and Christine seemed to get courage from the older woman, who nodded encouragingly to her. Christine straightened her spine and addressed Raoul.

"I don't love you, Raoul. I don't think I ever have. I know we were childhood sweethearts, but that doesn't mean we will love each other for life later on."

"What?" cried Raoul in a shocked voice.

"Let me finish, please, Raoul, before you say anything.

"I believe in my heart that I have loved Erik ever since I met him in his lair several months ago."

Raoul could not help himself from interrupting at this point in Christine's speech. "His lair, Christine? Where is this place? Did he rape you? I want to know!" He was frantic by now. "I'll kill him, so help me I will, if he so much as touched you!!"

"No, Raoul, Erik did not rape me. He was a perfect gentleman, but I did fall in love with him while I was there.

"I became engaged to you hoping that it would cure me of my love for Erik; that I would grow to love you over time, but it has not happened. At the masquerade party several days ago, when Erik was dressed as the Red Death and said to me that I 'belonged to him', I knew in my heart that I did indeed belong to him, heart and soul, and that I always would. That is also why I didn't fuss much when he snatched away the engagement ring from around my neck. That is also why I wanted our 'engagement' to be secret, Raoul. I had to be certain whom I really loved, and it is Erik!

"I'm so sorry Raoul that I have treated you so cruelly in this way! I never meant to 'use' you, truly I didn't! And what is worse is, that even though I love Erik with all of my heart, I cannot marry his either — there would be too many complications involved in that relationship, also, sadly.

"So, ironically, I can't marry either one of you! Mainly, though, I am simply too young to marry anyone right now, Raoul. I want to continue my career as an Opera singer and experience life to its fullest for several more years before I settle down and have a family and be a wife and mother." Here she grasped Madame Giry's hand and clung to it.

Raoul looked at Christine sadly. His whole world had just crumbled in the last ten minutes of her speech to him. He looked to Madame Giry for guidance.

"Is there any way I might be able to change Christine's mind, Madame Giry?" he pleaded.

"I'm afraid not, Monsieur Vicompte. She has made her choice of whom she loves, and that is Erik, not you. Perhaps you will find someone else in the years to come. I wish you only the best, but you must accept Christine's love for Erik, even though it cannot be fulfilled, either."

Raoul turned back to Christine. "Erik will be in jail for quite a while Christine. I am willing to wait for you, if you ever change your mind."

"Thank you Raoul." whispered Christine brokenly. "I will always think of you as a good friend.

"I am very concerned about Erik, though. I am afraid that he will not react well to being in jail, that it may actually kill him to be cooped up like a wild animal and have people make fun of his mask and him — not understanding that he is a genius and has great musical talent."

Madame Giry looked sharply at Christine. She had never been told Erik's story of his early experiences in the traveling circus, but yet she seemed sensitive to his feelings and needs, as only someone in love would be. And she suddenly realized that Christine was right! How would this experience affect Erik? Would this destroy him completely?

"My poor Erik, my poor Erik. I hope and pray nothing horrible will happen to you while you are in jail!" murmured Christine brokenly, tears spilling down her lovely cheeks as the carriage clattered along toward the Opera Populaire.

Chapter 9

Christine was truly brokenhearted about the arrest of Erik and had a hard time in the days that followed, concentrating on her ballet lessons and singing lessons for the Opera leads she was now getting.

She had begged and pleaded, as had Madame Giry, with the owners of the Opera Populaire, Monsieurs Firmin and Andre, to still let the production of Erik's Opera, 'Don Juan, Triumphant' take place as scheduled in two weeks. Even though it was originally only going to be used to trap Erik (and since he was now in jail, there was need for that) the owners had given in to her pleas and said that they would do the Opera.

It would be something for her to remember Erik by after she left the Opera Populaire for good when this production of Erik's Opera was over.

Christine, unbeknownst to Madame Giry, had gotten herself a job in downtown Paris selling flowers on the sidewalk at one of the many gaily decorated stalls that were on the streets there. She would be starting her new job just as the Opera, 'Don Juan, Triumphant' was over.

The hours were long at this new job of hers, sunrise to sunset every day, and the pay was little more than she currently made, but at least it was a new beginning and would take her mind off her love for Erik and her relationship with Raoul.

Christine had not visited the jail again after leaving it that night two weeks ago — it would have broken her heart to see Erik bound by chains and locked into a small, smelly stone room with a solid wooden oak door to keep him in and with only one small window in the door to let air in and to look out of. French jails were not nice places to be in and the treatment of prisoners was quite harsh, according to what she had heard! Poor Erik!


(The night of the production of the Opera, "Don Juan, Triumphant!")

Christine nervously took her place on the stage behind the curtain for "Don Juan, Triumphant!", her bright red dress with its black trim a lovely foil for her rich, dark brown hair, which had a deep red rose in it.

She looked down at the straw basket that held several lovely red roses in it, and then at the stage where the beginning of "Don Juan, Triumphant!" was going on. How she wished Erik could see his Opera being played — he would be so proud! It was going very well.

She again looked at the roses inside her basket and it brought back a flood of memories about Erik; his love for her and his handsome face. She remembered all the red roses, with a black ribbon tied around them, that he had given her for each performance she did... Tears pricked her eyes and she brushed them away angrily. She would not fall apart during this opera!

She was about to go on and sing her part now opposite the fat Don Juan that had just left the stage, so she looked one final time at the roses in the basket to get courage, and suddenly something caught her eye. A black ribbon! One of the red roses in her basket had a black ribbon tied around it!

How had that gotten in there? Had she missed it earlier? Or was someone playing a cruel joke on her, or was.....

Just then Don Juan came out behind the curtain once more, singing the beginning lines of "Point of No Return" to her:

"You have come here in pursuit of your deepest urge,
in pursuit of that wish, which tell now has been silent, silent..." 2

And here his finger came up to his mouth in a 'shh' motion at her.

A buzzing was in Christine's ears and she suddenly felt faint. That wasn't the same man that had gone behind the curtain a few moments ago!

This man was much more slender, younger, taller, black hair, beautiful green eyes behind a black mask, gorgeous lips. As the man continued to sing, Christine nearly fainted. She recognized the singing voice also — it was Erik singing to her!

"Past the point of no return — no backward glances:
our games of make believe are at an end..." 3

Her wonderful, beautiful Erik! How had he gotten out of jail? Were the police close by to arrest him? She gave a quick glance around, but could see no sign of any policemen in the theater.

Then she knew. She loved Erik with all her heart and no matter what happened, the least she could do for him was to show him her love by singing her heart out during this song he had written for them both.

When her part came, she sang with her whole heart to let the Phantom know she loved him and that indeed this was the 'Point of No Return' for her also; that they belonged together, forever.

"Past all thought of right or wrong — one final question:
how long should we two wait, before we're one...?" 4

Up the stairs they climbed, singing to each other and then up on the platform, Erik whipping off his cloak, his handsome face covered by that sexy black mask, his taunt, muscular body hugged by his jet black pants and a short black coat over his hard, lean back and chest, his gorgeous green eyes glittering with suppressed passion and desire for her.

Christine was having a hard time concentrating on what she was singing, she felt so melting with desire for this man opposite her and coming closer with every step! Then they were together and Erik had her in his strong embrace, singing with her —

"Past the point of no return, the final threshold —
the bridge is crossed, so stand and watch it burn...
We've passed the point of no return....." 5

He sang into her ear, while also stroking her gently on her throat with one hand and stroking and holding her with the other hand tightly against him.

Christine closed her eyes and leaned against Erik and gave into the wonderful feelings that being this close to him evoked. Love flooded her soul for Erik and she longed to kiss him!

Just then she felt him take her hand, the left one, and gently put a ring on her ring finger. She looked down underneath her lashes and saw to her amazement the blue—white diamond engagement ring that Raoul had originally given to her, but which Erik had snatched from around her neck during the Masquerade Ball several weeks ago!

Erik began to sing to her again, but a different song —

"Say you'll share with me one love, one lifetime...
Lead me, save me from my solitude..." 6

Christine realized that Erik was asking her, in this way, to marry him and be his wife. She knew her answer to his question, and she gently lifted her left hand, with his covering it, to her lips and kissed it tenderly and lovingly.

"Say you want me with you, here beside you...." 7

He sang with his heart in his eyes, as he bent down his head closer to hers and he kissed her cheek and nuzzled her face.

"I love you Erik" she said to him gently.

Erik turned her around firmly so that now she faced him and he pulled her to him and put his mouth down on hers and kissed her with his whole being.

Christine nearly collapsed from the power of his kiss, but she clung to Erik and kissed him back just as passionately!

There was a stone cold silence from the audience as they watched these events unfolding up on stage. They knew the kiss was not in the story. Several people actually gasped when it happened. The conductor, Monsieur Reyer was at a loss as what to do with the music, as Erik and Christine had stopped singing and were now sharing a passionate kiss and embrace that went on for some time!

Finally Christine lifted her face from the kiss to breath and suddenly remembered that she and Erik were on a platform above the stage and in the middle of the Opera, "Don Juan, Triumphant!" and that the audience had become completely still. It was so still and quiet that a pin could be heard to drop.

Everyone was looking at them open—mouthed with astonishment and agog with wonder — Madame Giry, Meg Giry, the other actors and singers and especially Raoul, up in box five, tears streaming down his face, his shoulders shaking with his sobs. He had truly lost Christine to the Phantom, and "Don Juan" was triumphant!!

"Let's get out of here, my darling Christine" Erik whispered in her ear. "I think we have well and truly 'brought down the house', as the saying goes!"

Christine quickly looked around at the stunned audience and agreed. It would be best if they left quickly now. Heaven's only knew if the police were after Erik for breaking out of jail!

Together they faced the audience, bowed, and holding hands raced quickly off the upper platform and down the stairs, to a smattering of confused applause from the audience, and went to a trap door that Erik opened for them in the floor.

"One, two, three!" said Erik as they both jumped together down it and the trap door above them snapped shut silently and firmly, Erik making sure it was locked above before they ran down the dark stone alleyway underneath the Opera House.

As they ran down the stone steps leading to the dock where Erik's boat was, Christine asked him — "How did you get out of jail, Erik?"

Erik slowed down, turned to her, his eyes twinkling behind his mask.

"Didn't you know I am also a magician, Christine? We have our trade secrets, and we don't give those out."

"No, darling Erik, I didn't know. I am only happy that you are well and alive and that we are together, my husband-to-be!" said Christine passionately.

"My wife!" whispered Erik and tears of joy brimmed in his eyes.

Together they held hands and went to the boat waiting for them, to take them to Erik's lair, and home.


Footnotes in story —

2, 3, 4, 5 — Music from the movie version of "Phantom of the Opera" copyright 2004, Song — "Point of No Return". Return to 2, 3, 4, 5

6, 7 — Music from the movie version of "Phantom of the Opera". Copyright 2004, Song — "Say You'll Love Me." Return to 6, 7

|| Later: A Picnic ||
|| Return to the start of The Graveyard Scene ||
|| Return to the start of The Carriage Ride ||
|| Return to the beginning in The Phantom's Lair ||
|| Prequel: A Politically Correct Opera Populaire ||