Hey there!

I can't believe this is happening: my first fanfic Love and Music re-posted! The original one was so filled with grammatical mistakes, as I'm fin so English is not my native language, that only few people could read it.

Note: Big applauds and most of the honour belongs to Anges Radieux, who was most kind to work with my terrible grammar.

Summary: A modern-day version of Charles Dance, Yeston/Kopit Phantom.

Disclaimer: Nothing is mine and no profit is made.

You would have to be blind or a complete idiot not to notice the opera house when you came up to it. Unlike other buildings surrounding it that were modern, the opera house was very old fashioned. It had been built in the late 19'Th century, but it had almost been destroyed during World War II. Opera house had been abandoned for decades until a little over 20 years ago it started to be reconstructed. It had been build exactly as it was with some modern technology. Opera house was currently been managed by Jeremy Carriere.

All this information went trough Christine Daniel's mind when she finally found her way to opera house. It had been so long since she had last been there. She had been probably six or seven then and had come with her father. It had been her father's dream that she would one day sing there. Christine's whole life seemed to vanish into thin air when her father died. Unfortunate car accident, when Christine had only been twelve years old. For last four and a half years she had lived with her Aunt Valerious without any hope to get here. But here she was now and all thanks to Phil.

She had been in a talent search competition and Phil Chagny had been there. She had been friends with him when her father was still alive. He didn't remember her and she had not reminded him. But he had been kind to give a letter to Mr. Carriere to her where he explained how talented she is and what waste it would be not to let her join the circus, or something like that. It appeared that trough his father Chagny had very good connection's to the opera house. And just a day later Christine jumped to a train and made her way to here.

"Well, Dad" she muttered to herself "I'm finally here". Now she only had to see this Jeremy Carriere.

When she came to door she found herself looking at a white haired man in his 50's. She came closer to the man.

"Excuse me, do you work here?" she asked politely.

"Yes, miss. I'm the caretaker of this theatre. How may I help you?" he said very friendly.

"Well, I'm supposed to see Mr. Jeremy Carriere, the manager of the opera house. Phil Chagny told me that I could join the chorus" she said. Man's polite smile disappeared and he looked stressed.

"Oh, my…" he muttered.

"What?"

"Well, my dear. I hate to be the one to tell this, but Mr. Carriere has been dismissed this morning".

Jeremy Carriere had a terrible morning. Almost the instant he walked into his office he was greeted by a little bald man with waxed moustache. With him there was a tall woman with white skin, red hair and the face of a dictator.

"Ah, Mr. Carriere" the man had said immediately. "I am Alan Cholet and this is my wife, Carla". Jeremy was somewhat slow to understand what was going on. Had he forget some important appointment?

"Well, nice to meet you. Why exactly are you here?" Carriere asked politely.

"What!" the woman shrieked. "How dare you…" she was interrupted by her husband.

"Don't get upset, my darling. Mr. Carriere is obviously just joking" Cholet said still smiling.

"Uh, no I'm not. Did we have a meeting?" Jeremy asked. At the age of almost 60 he was not in a mood to joke with unknown people.

Now Cholet's smile disappeared. "If this is a joke it isn't funny".

"I assure, I'm not joking. Who are you and what do you want?"

"Your job, old man" Carla said. "My husband is now the manager of this opera house".

About four minutes later Carriere made a few angry phone calls to different important people to simply ask what the hell was going on. Apparently they had come to conclusion that Jeremy should retire from his duties and Cholet had immediately bought the place for himself. After a few minutes of listening Jeremy understood that there was nothing he could do about it. He didn't even have a word in who would continue his work.

So there was nothing else to do but inform everyone in opera house about it. They were not pleased. Jeremy Carriere had been manager for years and everyone loved him. Especially box keeper Mrs. Giry was upset about this news. This new manager was obviously only thinking money and how his wife would become a leading singer. Secretly Mrs. Giry smiled. It would be fun to watch how this Cholet is going to deal with him.

And without her knowing it Jeremy Carriere was thinking the same thing. Unlike Mrs. Giry he was worried of all the possible things, which could happen now to his beloved opera house. And what might happen to him. Did he even now about this yet, he wondered. His question was soon to be answered as his phone rang.

"What is this talk about you retiring?" asked a voice, which Cerriere knew very well.

"We need to talk, immediately".

"The alley, in ten minutes".

"Yes, Erik".

Carriere was not an easily frightened man but even he got the shivers just thinking what all could happen. He knew that he couldn't even possibly guess what Erik could do. He was afraid for his opera and for Erik. At the same time he was afraid what Erik would do to this Cholet and his wife. He had just got to alley that was behind opera house and could only suspect when Erik would appeared. He knew Erik wouldn't make a sound, so for all he knew he could already be there.

Very soon a tall man dressed all in black appeared from the shadows. Tough the white porcelain mask he wore covered his entire face, with exception of mouth and jaw, Jeremy could read from his eyes that Erik was on a foul mood.

"Hardly had I put my mask on this morning when I already heard about your dismissal" masked man said coldly.

"How on Earth did you find about it?" Jeremy asked, because he didn't now what else to say.

"I know everything that happens in my opera house" he said darkly. "Is it true that some man with much money has bought you out?"

"Yes, it is. I heard about it today. Some man named Cholet and his wife, tough I suspect her sex" Carriere added, desperate to light the mood.

"Can't you do anything about this? Isn't it illegal to fire you without telling about it first?"

"What can I do? I made a few phone calls, this Cholet is well connected. And beside I would have retired soon. You must know that".

Erik nodded. "I was hoping you could choose next manager" he said much more softly.

"Perhaps someone who would follow your orders without asking questions?" elder man suggested.

"My orders have done nothing but good to this opera house. Was it not my idea to build this exactly as it was? Was it not I who chose what we play, how it is produced and who would sing? Was it not…"

He was suddenly interrupted by a sound coming from an open window of the opera house. It sounded like a dying cat trying to sing Figaro's marriage. Erik's mouth almost dropped open.

"What is that?" Erik finally managed to ask, after recovering from the shock.

"Without much guessing I would say it's Carla" Jeremy said, quite dryly.

"Who?"

"Our leading soprano" Carriere explained.

"You must be joking. She can't even sing. How on Earth did she get that position?" Erik roared.

"I suspect trough her husband. She is Cholet's wife" Jeremy said, not wanting to watch Erik who would snap.

"This is too much! I suspect that she is also brains behind this farce".

"It wouldn't surprise me".

"Doesn't your connection to the Chagny family help at all?"

"I'm afraid not".

Erik sighed. His opera house had been handed to fool's who obviously don't care anything about art. Opera had been Erik's whole world through his entire life. He felt anger growing inside of him.

"Erik, what are you going to do" Jeremy asked carefully.

"How about kill them?" Erik said sarcastically. Jeremy just looked at him.

"You go enjoy your retirement. Have a rest for few days and visit me sometimes" Erik said softly.

"Of course I will Erik. But what are you going to do?"

"I'm not sure. But I'll think of something. It's better to check what else had been happening in opera house. Maybe something good has come also" he said and disappeared in the shadows, like he had been a part of it.