“What if I’m not smart enough?” Chris mocked his sister after her first day of school. “You are the only ten-year old I know enter straight to sixth grade.” He said. Andrianne threw a pillow and hit his back. “Andy.” He warned.
“Sorry.” Andrianne said quietly as she approaches her big brother who was busying with demonology and other books. “I’m sorry about my moods and tantrums. this morning.” Andrianne hugged Chris from behind as she spoke.
“Andy, I want to ask you something. I want an answer. No more going around the question okay?” Chris said as he led Andrianne back to her bed and sat opposite her. “Princess, I may not be the best brother you could ever ask for.” He started.
“Chris, what are you talking about?” Andrianne cut him mid-sentence. “You raised me up. What more can I ask from you?” She questioned him.
“That’s not what I mean.” Chris replied. “Hear me out first, okay?” Andrianne just nodded a response. “When I told you I’m coming here, you asked to come with me.” Chris said. Andrianne looked up to him. She was a little surprised that he brought that up again and a little scared of the question he might ask her. “And you said at least you have some time with me even if it’s not long. What do you mean by that?” Chris asked.
“I was blabbering… I was desperate.” She answered; her eyes could not even look at Chris. “I just don’t want to lose you.” She continued.
“No, that’s not it. Andy, I may not know what you feel or read your mind, but I know something is going on and you’re not telling me. I’m your brother, I know you better than you know yourself.” Chris said trying to get her to talk.
“Chris.” Andrianne whined. “I don’t want to talk about this with you. Not right now. Not here.” Andrianne said and shaking her head as she walked out of the room.
“Andrianne Hope Halliwell… you don’t walk away while I’m talking to you.” Chris raised his voice without knowing Phoebe was there as well.
“I’m not. I’m just doing what you do best.” Andrianne shot back.
“Andy, what is wrong with you?” Chris asked obviously upset by Andrianne’s outburst. “You’re the one without temper. What happened?” Chris said still trailing his sister.
“Nothing. Stop following me.” Andrianne said walking faster.
“Andy stop!” Chris shouted practically screamed. Andrianne stop in her step, shocked. “What is wrong with you? Why won’t you talk to me and avoiding my questions for days, this is not you Andrianne.” Chris said touching Andrianne’s shoulder.
“No. it’s not time for you to know.” Andrianne said as a tear rolled down her cheek.
“Tell me what?” Chris demanded. “What are you hiding from me, Andy?” Chris asked his voice was soft. Andrianne was partly shocked to be shouted at by Chris, but mostly she was scared to face what will happen if she tells Chris the truth of why she came.
“I’ll talk to her. Maybe, she’ll open up to me.” Phoebe said tapping Chris lightly on his back. Piper and Paige just froze in their places. Never had she seen Chris raised his voice or being so frustrated at anyone ever before.
“She’ll never open up to anyone. She tells me everything. Everything. I know every single thing in her life. Andy please, tell me what is going on.” Chris pleaded. “Princess.”
“No. I’ll tell when the time is right.” Andrianne said.
“Give her time.” Phoebe said. Chris raised his hand up like surrendering, and he backed away. “Let’s talk together, peacefully. No tantrums, no temper.” Phoebe said looking at Andrianne and then Chris. Chris just nodded. Andrianne just stood there frozen.
“I can’t tell you now. I will when I’m ready.” Andrianne said softly. “Thanks, Aunt Phoebe, but I can’t. I’ll tell Chris once I’m ready. I’m sorry but I just can’t.” Andrianne said as she walks to the room that she shares with Chris.
“Be patient. She’ll open up. You just need to cool down a little.” Phoebe said to Chris as they watch Andrianne go to the room.
“I can’t. I’ve been having these flashes about my past. Like it’s telling something. Something only she can tell. And I can tell she’s in some sort of trouble. She never gets into trouble… I just need to know.” Chris proclaimed.
“Look, she loves you. She loves you more than herself. There must be an explanation to all this. There is a reason to which she won’t want to tell you. The reason is that she don’t want to hurt you.” Phoebe said. Chris just nodded and heads outside.
“How’d you know?” Chris asked naïvely.
“I’m an empath, she’s an empath and she does let her feelings show. Unlike some.” Phoebe teased.
“Very funny.” Chris shot back. “I’ll be in P3.” Chris said to Phoebe. She just nodded.
“I hurt him didn’t I?” Andrianne asked as Phoebe sat down on the couch and Andrianne walked from her room to the living room.
“Yes.” Phoebe answered; her voice was a mix of curiosity and feel of empathy for both the siblings.
“We never fight. Ever. He never shouted at me like that before. I never walked away from him or his question before. I know it made him mad. But I just can’t bear to see him more hurt than he already is.” Andrianne said as she sat on the single couch near Phoebe.
“You two are very close aren’t you?” Phoebe started. Andrianne just nodded. “You want to tell me whatever the fight was about?” Phoebe asked trying her luck.
“It’s about me. When he was coming here I almost made him not to.” Andrianne said. Phoebe looked at her questioningly. “I have a secret that I kept from everyone. From Chris, from you, in the future, that is and from grandpa.” She continued.
“Elaborate. I’m bad at these hazy things” Phoebe said.
“I’d rather if I tell Chris first.” Andrianne said. “I’m sorry. Phoebe, Chris is more than a brother. He’s my best friend, he’s my only friend, and he is my father… figure. I never met Leo, before I came to this time.” Andrianne said. “I’d better look for him and say sorry before he gets really mad at me.” She continued.
“He was not angry at you.” Phoebe said. “He’s just frustrated, he’s in P3 now. I’ll send you there if you want to go.”
“It’s okay. I can orb.” Andrianne replied. “But thank you.” She smiled.
“Andrianne, are you sure everything is okay? You look scared to tell Chris whatever you are going to tell him and you don’t look so good today. Is there something wrong? Are you feeling well?” Phoebe asked. Andrianne just answered her with a nod. “Andrianne it’s late. Let me send you there.” Phoebe said. Andrianne just shook her head and orbed away.
Chris sat on the bed pondering in the backroom of P3 when Andrianne orbed in. “I’m sorry.” Andrianne said, walking up to her brother. “I’m sorry.” She said again.
“What for?” Chris asked. “You didn’t do anything.”
“I made you angry at me.” She said as she sat beside Chris.
“I wasn’t angry. I was for you walking out on me, but I know you wouldn’t do that for no reason. I’m sorry for pushing you too hard on everything.” Chris said wrapping his arm around her shoulder.
“I told you, I was going to tell you when I’m ready right. Well, I’ll never be ready. And I can’t wait any longer.” Andrianne said looking up at Chris. Her eyes welled up a little.
“Don’t cry, princess. You don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to.” Chris said soothingly.
“I don’t but I have too.” She said leaning on Chris’s shoulder.
“What is it?” Chris asked.
“Before you came, a few months before you came, I was sick, I still am.” Andrianne started. “I’m afraid if I told you then, you wouldn’t come here. But I’m afraid I wouldn’t get the chance to see you again. That’s the reason I came.” Andrianne said. “I just want you to myself but at the same time I know what you were going to do is for the greater good.”
“Sick?” Chris asked ignoring Andrianne’s last sentence entirely. “How serious is this?”
“I was given a year to live. And the year ends in 2 months.” Andrianne said quietly.
“Do not joke about this, Andy.” Chris said.
“Am not, Chris.” She answered. Chris pulled her into a hug as tears rolled down his cheek. He did not want Andrianne to see him cry. He never cried in front of anyone. Especially in front of Andrianne. “I’m sorry.” She said.
“Not your fault. This is why you’ve been acting all weird. I should have asked earlier and I should have known.” Chris rambled.
“This is the reason I don’t want to tell you.” Andrianne pulled away and wiped Chris’s tears with her thumbs.
“Very funny.” Chris smiled. “Are you still getting treatment?” Chris asked. Andrianne looked down towards her hands. “Good god, Andy...” Chris said.
“It’s not getting anywhere. And it hurts too much to be at the hospital alone. I forged your signature, saying I’m not going to continue with treatment.” Andrianne said.
“But with proper treatment, you can get better. You will. Maybe I can ask Leo to heal you or something.” Chris said. Andrianne shook her head. “Andy, why?”
“Because there is a way. But I don’t like it. It involves you. I’m never going to do it. I’d rather die than see you in pain.” Andrianne said.
“Andy listen to me.” Chris said cupping her face up, forcing her to look at him. “Give it a shot. Try, for me. Let Leo give it a shot.” Chris said softly.
“Leo cannot do anything. An elder tried before.” Andrianne said. “This is a mortal sickness, Chris. We both know that he can’t do anything.”
“Tell me, what can I do. There must be a way.” Chris said.
“There is.” Andrianne said. “Smile. Be happy with the time we still have together.” She smiles.
“Very funny.” Chris smiled.
“Want to know something.” Andrianne said as Chris nod. “You look cute when you’re worried.” Andrianne teased. Chris just rolled his eyes then kissed her forehead. “Maybe, we should talk to Aunt Phoebe. She’s worried.” Andrianne said.
“Since when do you call her Aunt Phoebe?” Andrianne asked.
“Since I was one,” Chris said. “Now she’s what, five, six years tops older than I am. I can’t call her Aunt Phoebe.” Chris said.
They orbed home and had a long talk with Phoebe, but none about what happened or about her health. Andrianne sat beside Chris, like the fight never happened. Deep inside Phoebe knows Chris was too worried about Andrianne to think about what happened earlier.
That night, Chris watched Andrianne sleep; he felt that could be the last time he was going to see her sleep like that. Even though he could not feel what she was feeling but it hurts him just as bad. He knows what Andrianne was talking about earlier. Giving a part of him to her. Her pain must be unbearable, but she never complains. Just like her never to worry anyone else.
He moved her from the couch where she loves to read then sleep on to the bed. Softly he strokes her hair. “Why you? Why not me.” Chris said quietly. His eyes welled up. He should have seen the signs that she was sick. She was throwing up some mornings but she said it was food bug or something. She eats less, almost always tired and she was quieter.