broadsword_babe: (Miranda (sepia smile))
Opening Night, Paris, 1881
Alias: Jacqueline Valmont

{Continued from here}

I took my seat in one of the boxes at the Opera Populaire just as the orchestra was beginning to tune their instruments for the evening's performance. I could not help but notice the rather strong presence of gendarmes stationed around the theater. I had continued my friendship with Meg during rehearsals, and she had told me that although Signore Piangi was cast as lead, everyone suspected that the Phantom would somehow replace him.

"Everyone is on edge, Madame," Meg confided in me one day as we sat in a small café. "His music is so strange, nothing like I've ever heard before."

Her eyes took on a far-away cast. I could tell that the young ballerina was just as smitten with the composer as he was with Mademoiselle Daae. I could only hope that things would turn out well for them.

The tapping of Monsieur Reyer's baton on the conductor's podium brought me back to the present. The opening strains were in a discordant minor key, and several members of the audience cringed. I chuckled softly. If there was one thing I enjoyed to distraction, it was thumbing my nose as the status quo.

I watched as Meg made her entrance and then danced off stage left. Piangi's atrocious Italian accent made his words difficult to understand. I had to agree with the Phantom that he made a rather lacking Don Juan. Soon after Piangi left the stage, Christine entered, and I understood why the composer was so intrigued by her.

Mademoiselle Daae's voice was unparalleled. It held a superb clarity that I had never heard before. It was difficult to believe that she was the same timid, shy, lack-witted child whom I had met at the Masquerade. I could also understand Meg's jealousy as ballerinas were rarely given the same accolades as sopranos.
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broadsword_babe: (Miranda (sepia smile))
New Year's Eve, Paris, 1880-1881
Alias: Jacqueline Valmont

I had been in Paris for some years after my time as an outlaw. I was tired of the unnecessary violence and rugged living. As always, whenever I felt a keen need for pampering and polite society, I returned to Paris. The investments I had maintained over the years had paid handsomely, and allowed me to live in rather quiet luxury. It was a far cry from the dusty dryness of the American Southwest.

During my stay in Paris, I had become quite an aficionado of the arts. I attended symphonies, ballets, operas, soirees and galas. It was during one of those galas, a Masquerade held on New Year's Eve, that I befriended a young ballerina, Mademoiselle Marguerite Giry, and her mother, Madame Antoinette Giry. Meg had been dancing in the Opera Populaire's Corps de Ballet for many years and had done very well for herself. Madame Giry was the opera's ballet mistress. We had been in the middle of discussing the finer points of dance when Meg's jaw dropped open. I followed her dumbstruck gaze to the top of the grand staircase.

Standing at the very top was a finely cut figure of a man dressed in a splendid red uniform. A masque, vaguely resembling a skull, covered the top portion of his face. I turned to Meg to ask who the man was, but her eyes remained fixed on him. Unless my wits were on holiday, I had to say that Meg was very much taken with this stranger, not that I blamed her. His very presence commanded the attention of everyone in the grand foyer.

"Marguerite,"I whispered. "Who is he?"
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{As a headmate, Meg was more than willing to participate. Erik's quotes were borrowed from the movie (although I'm sure his mun wouldn't mind). Christine is shamelessly borrowed from her mun.}


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