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My story should not have been told. But it is done.
January 8, 1935
Straatsoper (State Opera House)
The eerie melody floated out of the opera house. The Phantom put its mask on and started to move. People were clearly surprised to see it coming out of the stage after the phenomenal ending. The audience turned and seated themselves again clearly thinking that it was just a part of the act.
The thing's long cloak makes it hard for the viewers to see whether the new performer is a male or a female. Its white mask and long auburn hair masked its face.
" My appearance is tonight is not an act, it is real. I will sing my song to you, and those who are guilty will be haunted by the phantom forever!" it said in a raspy voice.
A hair raising melody emanated from the background as smoke slowly filled the stage. Mist slowly creeps down from the stage and slowly fills the room.
I have prowled the streets at night
Lurking in the dark alley
I float and waited for the grail to come
I leaped and sprang clearly surprising my lady
Terror filled her eyes yes
Oh yes I have killed her or so I thought
My wilting flower...
The Phantom sang in a low tone. The audience looked puzzled as the words of the Phantom settled in. They clearly concluded that the Phantom was male. They applauded at the performance.
With a swish of its cloak, the Phantom slowly dissolved back into the darkness leaving a swirling haze in its wake and the audience glimpsed an icy blue eyes that vanished.
January 9, 1935
St. Mark's Chapel
"My dear brothers and sister, God has given us life. We must preserve it! Never take a life my brothers and sisters, for God is the only being that has the authority to do it. The mass has ended my brothers and sisters in God. Always remember that being holy is our salvation, and life that our dear Creator has given could not be taken by anyone but by the Creator Himself."The Pastor preached.
Rustling skirts and chairs indicated that the mass has ended. Everyone was trying to reach the pastor. All of them have many questions about their new religion. Others were trying to invite him to attend another opera, for he loved opera very much. At the gist of his conversation to one of the ladies, a murmur reached the pastor's ears.
"Are you really a holy man pastor? I know what you did with Amanda." the faceless voice told the pastor in a raspy voice.
"Who said that?" asked the pastor.
"No one was talking about anything pastor." inquired the old man standing before him.
The pastor smiled and said, "Maybe its just my stomach rumbling to get food that I've heard. I have to excuse myself for I have had to partake my breakfast."
After he muttered his excuse, he bustled out and slowly make his way towards the back of the altar where he reside. Looking troubled, he didn't notice the Phantom looking at him from the shadows. It chuckled disappeared into the shadows of the Chapel.
"Good day pastor, I'm here to discuss a very important matter." Lady Diane Vane approached the pastor with a distressed face.
"If I could help, I would gladly be of service Lady Vane." replied the Pastor.
"Oh, Pastor, Our organization, that is pertaining to women who have survived violence will held a presentation of the member's opera talents. As an opera enthusiast, we would like to invite you to our show. Most male will not attend because of their chauvinistic attitude, but I hope you could represent your specie pastor, to show that you have supported this event will be a great honor." the breathless Lady Vane replied.
"It is an honor dear to support your organization and its activity. A pleasure it is to see that those who are once oppressed have been taken care of. It is good that ladies here are aware of the goal of our Creator, preserving life. Surely I would be glad to attend such event Lady Vane." accounted the pastor.
"We will send the ticket to you pastor when the time is ripe." answered Lady Vane.
Then, with swishing of skirts, Lady Vane departed leaving the pastor musing over what Lady Vane have said.
January 29, 1935
Straatsoper (State Opera House)
The Alliance of Women of Vienna Against Violence's event was successful, as they have perceived it. But the final act was missing.
A happy and jovial opera that this women have presented was replaced with dread and excitement as the lights dimmed and the Phantom appears once again. It said, " It is good to see people help those who were harassed, but they haven't or rather can't help the one who is already dead. Be terrified of me you tormentor!"
A strange beat and drumroll filled the opera house. It was magnificent yet it was also a spine-chilling performance. The Phantom looked like a fury straight from Hades' realm ready to devour everyone in the vicinity. But the Phantom's icy blue eyes prevented those theories to arise.
Be still my fair lady
For you are the only love of my life,
Now feel the the cold metal against your skin
Feel it slide and draw blood
For it is your salvation
It is your destiny
With another chilling drum roll and smoke filling the extent, The Phantom fade away as the smoke starts to clear. Now the Phantom left a bloodied and torn scarf which remains a mystery to the crowd.
January 29, 1935
Sleeping Quarters, St. Mark's Chapel
"So, how's my sweet cat today?" a middle aged man asked a blue eyed little girl.
"I'm not your cat daddy." the girl replied.
"Really? Well if you're not going to be my cat, your not going to be anybody's cat baby." stated the man and producing a knife from inside his jacket.
"Daddy, what are you doing?" asked the frightened yet curious child.
"It's time for your sacrifice baby. Like mommy you have to sacrifice, and someday daddy will make a sacrifice too. This is your destiny Amanda. It is your calling, and it is also your death."
The man saw the terror that masked the girl's face, her icy blue eyes stared back at him and went blank.
The pastor jolted in his bed. "It was just a dream," the pastor assured his self.
"But it wasn't 10 years ago." his conscience seemed to tell him.
"They have to be dead for me to walk free and serve God. It is my philosophy in life and it is for the greater good." the pastor guaranteed himself.
He brushed aside his doubts of his living nightmare and returned back to sleep. Before he closed his eyes he caught the sight of those icy blue eyes watching him.
The Phantom was an instant celebrity. Many were intrigued with the identity of the Phantom. Some gentlemen in the community commanded their wife not to attend the finale of the play of the association were Lady Vane was a part of. Everyone could feel the tension especially the spearhead of the organization, Countess Vane. She sent her ward to the chapel to assure the presence of the pastor which would make the event a success. "With the pastor attending who wouldn't feel secured?" the Countess mused.
Whoever the Phantom was, it was certainly making a racket at the opera, though the talent was there, a talent without a face wouldn't be so phenomenal. This Phantom really tipped the scales to its favor whenever it appears and disappears mysteriously.
The news about a Phantom prowling in the opera intrigued the gentlemen of Vienna. Each of them was hoping to catch the sight of the Phantom and put an end to its lamentation in public during Operas.
On its second recital, the news of the Phantom did not frighten the ladies of London to continue the part two of their musical. So the gentlemen decided to accompany the ladies and hoping to lure the Phantom out, they brought with them their guns and hid them inside their vests.
The gala started and nothing was amiss. Everyone was observing everybody trying to catch or observe details that might reveal who the Phantom is. The atmosphere among gentlemen was strained, while the ladies enjoyed the night without any disruption. As the play was near its end, the lights dimmed and this time, no smoke came from the stage.
Everyone knew it was the Phantom. The lights trained on the cloaked person in front of them. Then the Phantom decided to expose itself.
February 24, 1935
Straatsoper (State Opera House)
The Phantom took the back door, and entered the opera house. It settled itself on the back stage. Tonight, her plan would be perfect. It would reveal itself and who it hunts.
As the lights dimmed, a hush settled on the audience. They were clearly anticipating a male Phantom. It chuckled and gradually brought itself to the center stage.
" My story is the one you might read in novels, though it is of a sensitive issue. I don't stand here to convince you to believe me, I am standing here tonight to brought justice to my death, and to my mother's death.
My tale started when my mother disappeared. I asked my father about her and told me that my mama or rather mama cat has made her sacrifice to the world and someday I too would make that sacrifice. He always calls me his cat. But when I teased him and told him that I am not his cat, he told me that I would be nobody's cat, if not his. Then, he produced a dagger from inside his vest and slit my throat, he told me that it is my destiny. My calling, and he told me that it is for the world. After that, he left me in our house to rot with the corpse of my mother, but luckily my ward passed and helped me.
I heard a clutter of hooves on the pavement approaching our house. With the strength left in me I crawled my way out and ask for help. In her my wards arm I lay and fainted.
This is my story, but I have a song for my father. It is a short verse papa cat, but I hope you will remember it, like you will remember how you used this dagger to kill me and my mother.
I wandered in the darkness
Doubting if I could see the light again,
Hot blood trickled
Draining me with my life
You ran away
Took a flight
Leaving me your cat
Your little cat
Dying a young death
So, how do you like my verse daddy, your a respected man now."
The phantom took off its cloak and mask revealing Lady Diana Vane in plain sight with tears streaming down her icy blue eyes.
Everyone in the audience gasped except the pastor. He stood up and shouted,
"You should have been dead! I've killed you! Do not haunt me anymore Amanda! You're not real! It's just my imagination playing havoc with my senses." shouted the pastor.
"I am very real father. I always wore a clasp around my neck as a necklace to hide what you have done. I will avenge my mother's death! And Amanda's death father!" with that, Phantom, or rather Lady Vane lunged forward and jumped of the stage.
"NO!" crying a protest, the pastor ran and started towards the door.
"Don't you know the saying daddy that cat has nine lives? Here's your little cat only on her second life daddy!" replied Lady Vane.
Pandemonium broke as gentlemen scrambled trying to get to the pastor. The pastor himself sensing trouble scrambled and pushed his way. He spotted a carriage just outside the opera house. He jumped inside and drove the city's gentlemen in a wild chase.
While he was navigating a dark alley, a voice sounded inside the carriage, " Hello Daddy, why, you're taking me into an adventure, just like old times." said Lady Vane.
"What are you doing in here?" shouted the terrified pastor.
Feeling a slight change on the pressure of the reins controlling them, the horses decided to take control sending the carriage turning and tumbling on the banks of Danube River. The pastor was bruised, his shoulder bone was fractured, the carriage leaned on his feet keeping them sandwiched with the soft mud. He saw Lady Vane, no, Amanda make her way toward him bruised but not badly hurt.
"Why, to kill my papa cat of course and see if he has nine lives. It is time for your sacrifice pastor. It is your destiny, your calling, and it is also your death." stated Lady Vane as she raised the dagger to the man before her.
"No, Amanda, please don't do this! For the past ten years, I never really forgotten you and your mother. My conscience never failed to remind me of how your eyes looked when I slashed your throat. I'm sorry Amanda. I will face the authority but please don't kill me!" pleaded the pastor.
"Have you ever thought daddy that for the past ten years, the night of my supposed death kept re-occuring! I can't help it daddy, your gaunt and hollow expression always plague my consciousness." with voice full of spite, Lady Vane replied.
" Your conscience will be the one who won't stop bothering you Amanda." said the bloodied pastor. He was really weak now, pale from the loss of blood brought about by his injuries.
"I don't care daddy. I don't want another cat to be your pawn and fool him or her with your sacrifice blabber. I have lived with, and befriended anxiety father, it never bothers me anymore." though her words brought a strange chill in her being, Lady Vane decided to put menace in her voice.
"What have I made you into Amanda? What is the result of my past actions?" asked the ailing pastor.
"I became a tigress because of you daddy. I am the hunter now, and you're the prey. How does it feel being so helpless daddy? Prepare to meet you're Creator daddy, and get ready to answer His inquiries." Lady Vane jested.
She slit his throat just like he slit hers and her mother's throat. Blood spluttered at Lady Vane's dress. She heard the hooves of the horses coming near them. The dark alleyway was filled with light. Lady Vane slumped to the ground and wept.
February 24, 1935
"It is time for your sacrifice pastor. It is your destiny, and it is also your death." the pastor knows he will not survive this blow. He was old, and weak, his daughter have grown strong. But before he let death snatch his breath away from his body, he looked at his daughter's icy blue eyes for the last time.
He felt no pain, just numb. He heard the flow of the Danube River and imagined the haunting song his daughter had sung. The pastor was lulled to death by his little cat's song.
Vienna's gentleman found the dead body of the pastor and the weeping Lady Vane on the banks of Danube River, where the passageway comes to a halt.
" I thought I would be free from the nightmares that haunts me if I could kill him. But it looks like I just brought myself another nightmare." Lady Vane told the gentlemen.
"Peace never comes to those who have murdered. Conscience, but not the souls of the dead is the Phantom that haunts the killer for the rest of his or her life."
Lady Diana Amanda Vane Habsburg
February 24, 2013
Habsburg Manor, Eastern Bank of the Danube River
I was pardoned. The court considered that I am emotionally distressed, so I have done the unthinkable, that and with the influence of my ward I walked free.. I think I haven't realized that I have loved my father. On his death, I have set him free from the lament of his conscience.
Seventy-eight years have passed and my story was masked from history. I am the Phantom that haunted the Straatsoper or the State Opera House.
Now I am awaiting my death, my freedom from the constant banging of my morality, bruised and battered by time and by my actions.
I am a frail old cat
Huddled in a corner
Curled like a ball
Awaiting to meet his old friend,
His nemesis, and his deliverer of freedom
Death for kitty.