The sisters confront Chris about the little girl.
The sisters and Leo were surprise when they appeared in Chris' office. It was bigger than they expected. Large enough to hold themselves Cole and Miguel with plenty of room to spare. Apparently it was a corner office since two walls were completely made of glass giving a spectacular view of New Avalon. The remaining two walls were lined with full bookcases and filing cabinets. His desk, a well-worn wooden antique, was situated a few feet from one of the clear walls was, a comfy and expensive looking leather chair behind it. Two more were placed in front.
Phoebe couldn't take her eyes off the desk as they heard the familiar jingle and saw the blue and white orbs appear between the two guest chairs.
The moment Chris was fully formed he raised his hand to cut off whatever Piper was already about to say. He decided the best way to avoid Hurricane Piper, followed shortly by Volcanic Paige and Tornado Phoebe, was to stop it before it has a chance to start.
"Look," He told them. "I'm sorry about what I said about Wyatt."
He paused. "Well, more about how I actually said it to be truthful. It still needed to be said. You have to understand that we've been fighting a war against him for eight /years/. Virtually everyone in the Resistance has lost someone because of Wyatt. He's every bit as bad as I said and more. I just... could have broken it to you more... gently I suppose."
Chris leaned back onto his desk and crossed his arms over his chest meeting Pipers gaze with his own. "We have other things to go over we really don't need to waste time with an argument over that."
"I wasn't actually going to say anything about that."
Chris stared at Piper with open confusion.
"I'm repressing it actually. Trying to anyway."
"Oh." Was the most intelligible thing to come out of his mouth.
"What I was going to ask," Piper told him as her neutral expression changed to one of steel. "Is why you never told us we have family here?"
"They met Little Piper in the park last night." Miguel filled in as a look of worry imperceptible to all but those who know him well crossed his features.
He nodded in realization "Ahhhh."
"Ah!" Piper fumed. "Ah! That's all you have to say? I want an answer."
The others just looked on as Chris gazed off to the side seemingly considering his answer. Cole and Miguel said nothing, knowing Chris would handle this as he saw fit and curious about how that would be given the new circumstances. Leo and the girls made no interruptions because they wanted to know as badly as Piper did.
After a long moment of contemplation Chris turned back and opened his mouth to speak.
"--And don't dare say future consequences!" Piper interrupted.
He said nothing.
"Well you said don't say it."
Miguel and Cole did there best to cover their chuckles.
"Look, it was never anything personal." Chris told them as a sigh escaped his lips. "I didn't say future consequences just to be an ass. The simple act of knowing the future changes the future."
Phoebe interrupted him with a question. "Isn't that what you wanted?"
The look he gave her caused her to take a step back. It was a look full of fierce conviction and devotion. "Not if it causes someone I care about to cease to exist. Knowing you're suppose to have a child and a good idea when, that's a lot of pressure to be sure. Just armed with the knowledge of what's going to happen you're going to do things at least a little differently without even realizing it. Or do I have to remind you of Melinda?"
Piper and Leo both winced at the mention of their daughter the sisters had seen the first time they went to a future. The one they never had.
"There were good times before the war started. There have even been some after. I don't want to risk those for the sake of your... curiosity and what you think you deserve to know."
The sisters and Leo avoided Chris' searching gaze. They had never considered he would have such a good reason behind avoiding future talk. The emotion in his voice, however, left little doubt as to his motives.
Leo was the first to look at him. "Fair enough." The girls nodded their agreement.
"Do you think we could see her again though?" Piper added. "Just the little girl I mean. We've already met her so if it was just with Piper how much worse could it get?"
Chris shook his head. "I don't think that's a good idea."
"Besides," Cole said jumping in quickly. "Hopefully you won't be here very long anyways."
"Right. We really should be getting back to the reason we're all here." Chris told them trying not to make it seem like he was changing the subject. "Like finding a way to get you back to your time."
"Why don't we just use the same spell you did?" Paige asked.
"Well I have it memorized so I wouldn't have to steal the Book of Shadows from Wyatt again, which is a big plus." He told them and their faces began to get a little hopeful. "Unfortunately it needs to be said over a powerful convergence of mystical energies. In other words the Nexus under the manor. We'll never get back in to do it there. Wyatt will make sure of that."
As their looks deflated Chris decided to add the rest quickly. "So we'll be having one of our research teams meet you in the library to find an alternative method. Cole will be going with you since he has had some experience with time travel."
"You're not coming with us?" Asked Phoebe.
"No. I have a full day of meetings and then I'm going to go home and visit my family. I'll stop by tomorrow and help when I can, but I have a lot to catch up on and a lot to do."
"Oh my god!" Phoebe exclaimed as she walked beside her sisters and Leo in the park to unwind after a long day of researching. "If I never see a book on magic theory again it will be too soon."
Paige just laughed at her sister. "It wasn't that bad!"
"Says the girl who's gone super witch." Piper chimed in.
"I hate to admit it but I wish Chris had been there. He did seem to have a nack for that sort of thing." Admitted Leo.
At the mention of Chris the group stopped walking and conversation came to a halt. To be truthful they didn't really know what to think of him anymore.
It was Phoebe who broke the silence as she spoke in a quiet voice.
"Hey Piper?" She asked. "Did you notice the desk in Chris' office?"
"What about it."
"Doesn't it look a lot like Dad's to you?"
"I really wasn't paying too much attention." She replied honestly. "But now that you mention it I think it did. But there has to be a lot that do, I mean, a desk is a desk right?"
"Yeah, you're probably right."
"I don't know anything about your dad's stuff but that not the part that bothers me. It's something he said." Paige told them drawing their gazes.
"Chris said he was going to visit his family. I never considered..." She trailed off.
Piper finished for her. "Ya, I know, me too. It just didn't occur to me that he might have had to leave somebody behind for his mission."
"He seemed to take the not existing thing really personally. Said 'someone he cares about'. Do you think that someone might be the daughter of one of us?" Nobody answered Phoebe immediately. An uncomfortable silence again reigned at the implications that question arose.
"It would make an eerie kind of sense." Paige spoke up, breaking the silence finally. "He knew the manor, the book... us. It would explain a lot actually."
"I'd rather not think about it." Piper told them. "It's not like he'd tell us anyway."
Before they could get any further into the conversation their attention was drawn to the same fountain they stopped at last night. There was an orb-shimmer that soon disappeared to reveal Little Piper going to work with a piece of paper and a pack of crayons.
"Where are you going?" Leo asked as Piper started walking again.
"To say hello."
"I don't think that's a good idea. Remember what Chris said?"
"It's not like we went looking for her Leo."
"Ya." Phoebe said as she matched stride. "It's just a coincidence."
"What's the worst that could happen, really? Chris tends to be a little paranoid." Paige added.
Leo stood there alone for a minute before sighing and moving to catch up. "Why do I even bother arguing? I never win."
"Hello again." Piper said as she approached the little girl. "What are you drawing?"
Little Piper smiled as she looked up and saw the nice ladies who made her boo-boo go away came over. She proudly held up her paper for them to see. "A cat!"
Piper looked at the purple vaguely cat-like blob on the page. She smiled warmly. "Well it's a great cat."
The little girl's smile brightened at the praise before she spoke something completely out of the blue. "You're pretty."
"Awww! She's so cute!" Phoebe gushed drawing the little girl's attention to her.
"Your hair looks funny."
"Maybe she's not that cute." Phoebe grumbled light heartedly as her sisters and Leo didn't even try to stifle their laughs.
By the time they stopped laughing at Phoebe's expense Little Piper wasn't paying them any attention anymore. Instead she was looking past them with a look that could only be described as pure happiness and excitement.
"/Daddy!/" She exclaimed before rushing past them. As one they turned only to see her rush into Chris' open arms.