After a bit of convincing, I was able to get my parents to agree to move to San Francisco and let me keep the dog. That, unfortunately, involved taking from both my seventeenth birthday gifts and my Christmas gifts, but it was totally worth it. I named the dog Rocky. He became my closest companion… well, second closest. Prue and I had a deep connection that could never change. She helped me to get past the fact that I had killed Gideon. Because she was unable to return to the regular world, she took over Magic School in Gideon's place. I got switched over to Magic School, and I continued my magical education there.

But there was still that persistent emptiness that had been created in Prue's absence. It bothered me even when I was with Prue, which was the majority of the time. It seemed to diminish when I touched Prue, but it wasn't exactly like I could have my hands on her all time.

So I ignored it. I pushed it away and tried to distract myself. But it was always there, always bothering me. Finally, I decided to talk to Prue about it. While we were sitting in her room, carrying on with our usual talks, I told her all about how empty I felt. I then I proceeded cautiously into the subject of how it was easier when I touched her. Prue wasn't the touchy-feely type, so I wanted to be careful about it.

"It seems like it's easier… when we're touching," I told her, hoping that it sounded right.

Prue stared into my eyes. "The emptiness will go away eventually," she tried to assure me. "We just have to be patient."

"So you feel it too?"

"Yes," Prue said, almost hesitantly. "It's getting easier, though."

"No, it isn't," I said. "You and I both know that it isn't getting any easier."

Prue sighed. "But what could we possibly do about it?"

"Well… we could try a touch…"

"Christy, we don't know much about this," Prue protested.

"How could a touch hurt us?" I responded.

She was silent for a while. "Okay," she at last said. "We'll try it. Erm… how do you want to go about this?"

I hadn't thought of this. "Um, close your eyes."

Prue eyed me. "Just what do you plan on doing?"

"It's just kind of weird to do this while you're staring at me," I said. "So just close your eyes."

She closed her eyes.

I wasn't quite sure of how to begin. Shyly, I reached out and tucked a stray lock of hair behind her ear. The small contact fed the emptiness a little, but not enough. I extended my other hand and took her hand. My free hand brushed across her cheek. I let it trail down her arm slowly. My heart began to pump furiously as the emptiness started to fill.

Then, it happened. I couldn't stop it. I tried, I really did. But my efforts and my logic did not stop me from leaning in and pressing my lips against Prue's. The emptiness immediately disappeared, and a wonderful warmth spread through my body. This felt so good…

Prue gasped and pulled away. "Christy! What… What was that?"

"I - I'm sorry." I orbed out and to my house. What the hell is wrong with me? I kissed Prue. And I liked it! Confusion crashed over me. I couldn't stand to stay in the house; I needed to get out. I wanted to get out of my body, but since that wasn't possible…

"I'm taking Rocky for a walk!" I yelled to my parents and grabbed the leash. Rocky bounded over. I clipped the leash onto his collar, and then practically ran out the door.

It was later than I had originally thought. I wasn't really supposed to be out at this hour, but I didn't care. I was too caught up in my thoughts.

I couldn't believe it. I had kissed Prue. Why had I kissed her? She was significantly older than me, and she was a girl. How was I ever going to face her again? I groaned. How could I ever face her again? She hadn't been too crazy about the whole touching thing. Just how was she going to react to the kiss?

Rocky started to pull on the leash. I didn't notice. That was a mistake, for it allowed him to get away. And that he did. He broke away and bolted towards the woods.

I watched him run off, then realized that I had to get him back. I cursed under my breath and ran into the woods after him.

"Rocky!" I called. Pausing, I heard the excited whining of Rocky. "What is it?" I got out into the clearing and followed the sounds. I tripped over something that was definitely not Rocky. Fishing my wand out of my pocket, I willed it to light up. I was most grateful when it did. I then looked down to see find out what I had tripped over. I gasped and scampered off of the body of a teenage boy. He was so pale. His eyes were closed, and he didn't move when I touched him. Oh God, please, oh please don't let him be dead. Shaking slightly, I checked his pulse. He was alive. I breathed a sigh of relief. What was I going to do now?

Rocky's whines came again, and I looked up. The dog was sniffing and licking at something on the ground. I went over to him and was a little less shocked when I found another teenage boy lying on the ground. His hair was dark, and he had a peculiar scar on his forehead. I checked his pulse and discovered that he too was alive. I was about to call out to Leo when I noticed that Rocky had stopped moving. "Rocky?"

Suddenly, Rocky morphed into a human man. I let out a bloodcurdling scream, which was enough to wake the two boys.

I let out a string of colorful swears (including a nice bit about the Elders and how this was probably their fault). I was about to go on when I saw that the two boys now had their wands pointed at me. "Um… what are you doing?"

"Hand over your wand," the pale boy commanded.

"Here," I said and gave it to him. "I can't even work the stupid thing."

The dark-haired boy lowered his wand as he saw the man. "Sirius?"

The man looked slightly confused, but the confusion cleared as he stared at the dark-haired boy. "Harry."

I looked from them to the pale boy. I then looked up toward the sky. "I can hear you laughing up there!" Sighing, I looked back at the three guys and started to think about how I was going to talk my way out of this one.