New Fic of the Week: 5/9 - 5/15

May 11, 2011

Music of the Night by theladyingrey42
Review by Dragonfly336

Rating: M
Genre: Drama/Romance
Characters: Edward/Bella

Summary: He seeks atonement through music. She seeks solace in an unseen world behind the curtains of a stage. What they end up finding is each other. Written for JAustenLover and Durameter for FGB:Eclipse. AU / BxE.

Music of the Night is the new story by theladyingrey42. It is loosely based on The Phantom of the Opera, with each chapter title being one of the songs from the musical. The story starts off with a canon Edward, awakening in 1918 to his vampire life.

In 1918, Edward Masen wakes from a sleep of fire and ash, his eyes opening to stare up into a cold, golden gaze. For a moment, there is disorientation. Silence.

 And then the world is a cacophony of sound. Voices. Darkness. With his hands over his ears, Edward finds himself in a crouch in a corner of a room he doesn't know, the floor tiles cracking beneath his feet as he shifts. The golden eyes are in front of him again, one voice ringing out just slightly louder than the others. After a few moments that feel like hours, Edward realizes that this voice, alone amongst the hundreds waging war inside his skull, matches the motion of the lips before him.

The person behind the lips before him is Carlisle, taking on his role of Edward’s creator. Among all the wisdom that he bestows upon Edward about his new “unlife”, Carlisle also tells him that he should keep his human memories close in his first year so that he won’t forget his humanity. Carlisle brings a piano home and leaves it for an unsuspecting Edward, which sparks very vivid memories from his childhood and playing side by side with his mother.

The first note fills the room and his empty chest, but it is accompanied by a crack and the smell of fresh ivory as it is exposed to the air. The second is equally satisfying but more sour, the end distorted by a piece of wire stretching and then snapping. The third hears the breaking of a hammer and the obliteration of a key, and Edward is already relearning all over again that vampires cannot cry by the time his hands move automatically for a chord that he remembers his mother teaching him.

As the three keys depress at once, the entire front of the piano collapses, a host of wires surrendering en masse to the call of non-being, steel and wood all giving. With a dry sob, Edward looks at the destruction his monstrous hands have wrought through the blur of dry, unsatisfying sobs, his fist coming down on the top of the piano as he abruptly stands.

He flees back into the woods, leaving behind him the shattered ruins of the piano, and with it, the broken shards of his lost memory.

Of his love.

And of his humanity.

I love that theladyingrey shows him not being in control of his vampiric strength and lets us feel his frustration.

Some things are very true to canon in this story, such as Carlisle changing Esme and bringing her into their home while Edward feels abandoned by his companion. She does veer away, when Edward decides to break away from Carlisle and Esme, before Rosalie comes along, to succumb to his true vampiric nature.

Over the course of many years, Edward revels in killing humans to becoming loathsome of his true nature. Although, instead of returning to Carlisle and Esme, he finds his salvation in a small theater.

The steps that take him to the bench are silent and swift, and his unsteady breathing is calmed slightly when he manages to sit without incident, the wood failing to creak or to crack under his weight. Edward does not even dare to blink as he lifts a cold white hand to off-white keys, pressing down so subtly. So gently.

The warmth that moves through him at the resulting note is almost as powerful as that of the sun, and Edward exhales raggedly, unnecessarily, with the lifting of a weight that has hindered him for so long. A second soft, musical tone rings out, and then a third and a fourth. Stinging with venom, his eyes cloud and close as finally he dares to make a chord. And then another.

And before he knows it, lost in memories of his mother and of love and of home, Edward is playing. There are old songs and silly songs. Songs that haven't even been written, but which flow from his hands like water. 

Like blood.

And like blood, the music sustains him. Beneath the slowly rising notes, there is a silence he has never known, the thoughts and voices outside of the theatre slowly fading until it is just him and his memory.

Soon we meet Bella, an eleven year old girl who desperately wants to be part of the choir, but is rejected. Through a series of letdowns in her life, she becomes a shy, withdrawn girl who eventually moves to Forks for her senior year of high school. It is there that she decides to take another shot at her dream of being onstage, only to get laughed at by her peers.

 After leaving in tears, Angela Weber introduces Bella to the world of working behind the scenes. Eventually going to college to study theatre production and stage craft, she ends up with a job building sets and working backstage. It is there that she hears a beautiful voice belonging to a beautiful man with golden eyes.

Music of the Night is only three chapters in and theladyingrey does not disappoint. I have always admired her writing style and she goes above and beyond with this story. Please go read it and become swept away with Phantomward.

Banner by JaimeArkin


  1. IGiveUp said...:

    Everything theladyingrey42 writes is amazing. This story is no exception. Two people who have gone through so much separate and alone. Go read Music of the Night now! You will think you are reading poetry.

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