Dear Professor Xavier:

An explanation is probably in order.

If Neil Gaiman can write the wonderful Marvel 1602, which sets the Marvel universe and the X- Men in the Elizabethan era, then this can be a POTO-X-Men/Marvel crossover. It's not a time-travel story; it's an alternative universe. It's not taking place before or after the events of the Gaston Leroux book or the ALW musical or movie, but instead of them.

Once that has been established, Erik is obviously a mutant, which handily explains why he can look like Gerard Butler's Phantom and still have such trouble with people—he has fearsome powers and abilities, which I will not explain right now.

The role of Miss Daaé in this fan fic will be played by Katherine (Kitty) Pryde, AKA Shadowcat, sometime of the X-Men. Why? I looked at the Elle magazine with Emmy Rossum, and thought "In these photos, she looks like I always imagined Kitty Pryde would look. . ."

The Marvel Universe online says of Kitty that she is 5"6" tall, weighs 110 lbs, has brown hair and hazel eyes. She is a genius with computers, has been studying ballet for many years, and was trained to fight by Logan, AKA Wolverine. She's Jewish.

Her mutant power is the ability to phase, or make herself, other people, and objects insubstantial. As a result, she can walk through walls, just like a…ghost.

She's usually written as having a lively sense of humor, a well developed sense of right and wrong, and she's certainly used to people who are a bit different. Since computers don't yet exist when this story takes place, in the later part of 1888 through the first six months of 1889, Kitty will have to have an aptitude for math instead.

Nothing has ever been said about her singing voice, but she does tend to like older men. In the Marvel Universe, she's about 18.

There is anti-Semitism in this story. This reflects reality The Holocaust is coming for the Jews of Europe, and it is less than fifty years away. If anything, my treatment of itis mild.

The obligatory disclaimer: I don't own any of these characters; I just like to play with them. The dialog is mostly mine, however.

Rating PG-13, because:

A: of some language, and

B: the heroine is Jewish and will encounter anti-Semitism,

One last detail—this fic will be taking place in the epistolary, or letter form. That's what the Voices in my head wanted. I just write it down...

Cast of Non-POTO Characters:

Katherine (Kitty) Pryde: A heroine. Usually kick-ass, currently heartbroken.

Peter Rasputin (Colossus): The heartbreaker. Never formally engaged to Kitty, they had an Understanding that they would be married once she turned 18. He ceased to Understand. She doesn't understand.

Professor Sir Charles Xavier: A teacher, a telepath, and a mentor. Owns a large estate in Yorkshire. Very rich, but would be much richer if he were not so good. Takes in and trains young Evolved (the 19th century term for mutants) at his own expense.

Sir Erich Magnus Lensherr (Magneto), Baron Ware. An extremely wealthy Jewish banker, ennobled for loaning very large sums of money to the Crown. No relation whatsoever to anybody named Erik; the name is a coincidence. Doesn't really approve of anybody who isn't Evolved, or Jewish, preferably both. Kitty is both; he is as fond of her as if she were his daughter. Has phenomenal magnetic powers and is slightly telepathic as well. Banker to Messrs. Andre and Firmin.

Auroré Munro (Storm): Renamed because the Black Pride movement is a century in the future. An older sister figure to Kitty. Lives on and teaches on the Xavier estate. Has weather powers.

Kurt Wagner (Nightcrawler): Looks like a very handsome, furry, blue demon, acts like a Pirate King. Can teleport from place to place, and is a superb acrobat. Used to make Kitty uneasy because of his appearance, but his irresistible good nature won her over, and he is now like an elder brother to her. German-born; former circus performer. Also lives on and teaches on the Xavier estate.

Illyana Rasputin: Best friend to Kitty, former roommate, younger sister to Peter Rasputin. Confidant to all the juicy bits Kitty wouldn't dare tell the Professor or even tell Auroré and Kurt. Lives in and is a student in the Xavier school.

Logan (Wolverine): Trained Kitty in the Martial Arts. Like an uncle to her. Currently residing in Japan because Jean Grey married Scott Summers, and broke his (Logan's) heart. All-around tough guy who looks more like Tommy Lee Jones than like Hugh Jackman. Known for the wretchedly bad quality of his singing voice.

Lord Warren W. Worthington III, Earl of Worthing. (Angel) Blond, blue eyed, and as beautiful a man as was ever born, Lord Worthing is the heir to a fortune and title as well. Under his clothes he has a secret: a pair of angelic, white-feathered wings. He can fly. Currently doing the Grand Tour of Europe because Jean Grey….see above. Most obviously Raoul-like character, but you never know.

Alice Blaire (Dazzler): Name changed from Alison to Alice to be in keeping with the period. Has red-gold hair, blue eyes, and a beautiful singing voice. Can convert sound waves into light. A talented singer, actress, and dancer, she is moderately famous as a star of operettas like those of Gilbert and Sullivan. Rather more experienced and worldly than Kitty, and able to offer very good and practical advice on matters Professor Xavier would not approve of.

Why Katherine Pryde Went to Audition for the Paris Opera Ballet

Excerpt of a letter:

From: Peter Rasputin, Iznik, Turkey.

To: Katherine Pryde, Xavier House, Yorkshire, England.

Dear Katya:

I cannot soften this news in any manner. I must tell you plainly. Please forgive me. I have married another. From the moment I saw her, I could not help but love her…..

Excerpt of a Letter:

From: Sir Erich Lensherr, Baron Ware, Warefield, Devonshire, England.

To: Peter Rasputin, Iznik, Turkey.

Charles Xavier is too soft hearted to say this, so I must. Your behavior toward Katherine Pryde was disgraceful and dishonorable. I am not so old that I cannot deal with you as you deserve….


From: Sir Charles Xavier, Xavier House, Yorkshire, England.

To: Peter Rasputin, Iznik, Turkey.

We cannot command our hearts, but we can rule our actions. If you found you could not love Kitty as you should love your wife, it would have been wrong to marry her. Yet to marry a stranger on three days acquaintance, one with whom you have no language in common?

I am hurt and disappointed, Peter.

I had thought better of you.


From Charles Xavier to Erich Lensherr:

Kitty puts on a brave front in company, but she wanders around the school like a forlorn ghost when she thinks no one is watching…


From Erich Lensherr to Charles Xavier:

I have an idea as regards our heartbroken Katherine. A change of scene will do her good. I have connections in Paris…

Letter from Katherine Pryde to Peter Rasputin:

Dear Peter:

I cannot forgive you, for there is nothing to forgive. I was only thirteen when we met, and you were so kind to me that I could not help but become attached to you. It was unrealistic for anyone to expect that bond to last five years, much less result in our marriage. I wish you happy with a whole heart.

Your letters will be here in Xavier House whenever you should return. I hope you will keep those I have sent you, as well as any presents I have ever given you. I think it would be better if you didn't write to me again, at least not for a while.

Anyway, I will not be here. I am going to Paris. I have a letter of introduction to the managers of the Opera Populaire. I will be auditioning for the Opera Ballet corps. I have been studying ballet since I was a child; now I'll have the chance to prove I truly am a dancer.

I won't say good-bye, because of course we are still friends. I hope you and your new bride will be very happy—as happy as you could ever hope to be.


Katherine Pryde

Excerpt from Erich Lensherr to Charles Xavier:

Kitty is a sensible girl, and between her common sense, her powers, and her fighting skills, I'm sure she'll be almost as safe in the Paris Opera as in your school. Her stay there is not likely to be of long duration in any event. A professional dancer's life is harder than she can guess, and she will be lonely and homesick as well. She has never had to budget her own living expenses, either. She will return when she runs out of money, if not before.

Excerpt from Charles Xavier to Erich Lensherr:

You are very likely right, but Kitty may surprise us all.