My Dearest Meg,

     Sweetness, I have missed you so. America is so vary different from France or Sweden. Every thing is so loud here, in Paris the vendors are polite and the shopkeepers so discreet. In New York, it is a different matter, the fruit seller’s yell, and the shop owners send children out in the streets to tell passer-bys about their wares. Men have jobs walking through the town with signs on, giant advertisements!
     Now, as different as Paris is from New York as a town, I have found that, the world over, singers are the same. I have started with the Metropolitan Opera Company and once again, I am the new girl. Thankfully, the diva here is no match for Charlotte!
     I must make this letter short, for I am needed in practice, I will be singing in The Bohemian Girls.
Before I end, I must tell you, I have found a friend in one of the musicians. She is willing to receive letters for me. Oh Meg, send me some word of Erik. I heard that a mob went into the cellars that night, but they could not find him. Please, if you know anything more tell me, some times I think of it and make myself almost sick with worry.
                                         Your faithful friend,
                                                          Christen

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     I walked in to my apartment just as the phone started ringing. I decided to ignore it and I made my way to the CD player as the answering machine clicked on, “Kristina? It’s Mother, are you home yet? Well, I was wondering about your audition. Oh, and call your sister. The two of you really should be able to talk this whole diary thing out. Your sisters for God’s sa…” the timer ended, cutting my Mother off in mid thought. Something no person could do and live to tell.
     I put in the CD that was the cause for the argument between Sara and myself. Not that we are fighting over a CD, but the music that’s on it. My family has a story; it started before the move to America, depending on the person telling it, it’s the reason for the move. It all started more then one hundred years ago with a lonely young girl and ended with a performance of an opera written by the gost of the Paris Opera, who was obsessed with her. Sara wants to turn this into a musical and she probably could, if not for me. You see there was no ‘gost’, there was a man. A real, flesh and blood person, who was a genus. Architecture, science, music, languages, the man had mastered all these fields. I know this because I have sole ownership of his personal journals, work notes, and music. The best of the music I had a friend put into a portable format, the CD that was now playing in my living room.
“If Sara knew I had the full opera she would die, just have a heart attack on the spot.”

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     Meg looked over Christine’s letter again, “I heard that a mob went into the cellars that night, but they could not find him.”
“No, they could not. Nor could I.” Removing some paper from her desk, Meg began to write her friend, telling her of the many trips across the lake, the early mornings spent down there before she was needed for ballet class, but no trace of the man who had touched there lives. 
     “The mob took almost every thing that could be carried, things that were to large they tried to brake.”
Meg had searched for any sign of Erik, but of the man there was nothing. Still, her time was not all wasted. Now, resting in her trunk next to his mask was the papers he had left.
     “I found some writing. Christian, he felt for you so. I dare not send them to you, but I will leave you with some of his thoughts.
     “What is the physical? Is it something that can inspire? No. What Christen give me will go far beyond that. It will carry with me to the grave.”
     I hope this comforts you, your always, faithful friend,
                                     Meg

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     After dinner and a shower I was ready, somewhat, to face whatever my mother had to say about me, my audition, Sara, and my ever-present lack of a love life. She picked up before the second ring.

     “Hello, mother.” “Kristina, darling, why didn’t you call sooner? You know it’s rude not to answer as soon as you can.” “I did mother.” “Oh, pish. Now the audition. Did you get a role? I mean a good role, not some chorus part.”

    
A good role, how do I say this. “I didn’t get called.” “Well that doesn’t matter. Who’s the director, your sister might know him.”

    
Good ‘ol Mom. If you can’t do it your sister can. “Sara’s not going to pull strings for me.” “Well, if the two of you would sit down and talk like reasonable human beings, she might.”

    Here we go again. “Mother! I don’t want her to. I want to do this on my own merit.” “Merit, ha! If you don’t have people helping you merit means sex. Now, are you trying to say something, Kristina?”

    
Less then five minutes and she brings up sex. “No, mother. I want to be more then just another Chagny. I want to.” “Be myself. I know, you’ve been saying that from the time you were 10 and Aunt Marie moved in.”

    
God, Aunt Marie, she was my salvation growing up. “Aunt Marie started a lot of things when she moved in. Not all of them bad.” I reminded her. “I suppose.” She conceded. “After all, she is the one who started coaching Sara’s voice. And we can see where that took her.”

    
And Aunt Marie loved the fact that I danced. She thought it a noble art. Just as good as singing, playing, or composing. “Yes, mother.”

    
God, anything to end this. A power-out, a runaway cab hitting the building, anything. Please! “Oh, now here’s a question I’ve never had to ask before. Why did a policeman call looking for you?”

    
There is no god. “A police man?” I asked. “Said something about you wanting information about the accident you were involved in? You don’t have a car, how could you be in an accident?”

“I was a witness. A guy got hit crossing the street. What did they say?”
And why did they call there?
Chapter Two
On to chapter three
coming soon

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