Fandom: Moulin Rouge (AU)
Archive: Red Windmill, Britslash, others with permission
Summary: Christian's new lover admires him after the show
Thanks to: Tomy for beta reading after my usual notice!
Disclaimer: characters are beloved creations of and copyright Baz
Luhrmann & Craig Pearce. Story copyright MJHughes 2001
When I step out of the warmth of the Moulin
Rouge, I see him standing
there, some way from me, on the path between the club and the windmill
that attracts and welcomes men from all over Paris.
I stand on the top step and watch him for a time.
It is snowing. It must have started sometime in the night for although
the weather had turned cold some days ago, this was the first time I
have seen the white flakes falling since last Christmas.
He is standing with his long, thick winter coat pulled around him, his
hands thrust deep into his pockets. His scarf – that terrible, faded
blue woollen rag he loves so dearly - is wrapped around his neck. His
head is tipped back, his face to the night sky as he watches the snow
fall towards him.
This is a part of what I love about him. The awe with which he sees the
bleak world around him. Through his eyes I have learned that beauty
isn’t on the surface, but buried deep – in this village, in its people
and places. To him, everything has hidden depths. Those that are the
hardest to see are usually the ones with most to give.
That’s how he found me.
My beloved Christian.
He’s amazing, there is no other word that describes him so perfectly.
The difference he has made to my life, my future, my very soul, is
beyond reason. And yet I fought him every step of the way until finally
I had no choice but to give in.
Now, as I watch, Toulouse comes up the path from the windmill, and
bounces up to my Diamond in the Rough. I can’t hear what the two
friends are saying, but I catch Christian’s laugh and I revel in the
I know now how different things might have been, how hellish I could
have made his life, had he not seen something within me that I had not
even been aware existed. And I can not bear to think of him hurting.
Just one smile is enough to make me think my life has been worth
something. To see tears in his eyes, even a frown upon his face, would
break my heart.
To think I could have been the source of his pain.... I would rather
die now than be the cause of any suffering for him.
I consider myself to be lucky. And I know others do too.
Toulouse loves him, that is obvious to me and I think always has been.
Yet, as much reason as Toulouse, and Christian’s other friends, have to
hate me, they accept me. For his sake, I suspect, more than any real
like of me. I am learning, as quickly as I can, their beliefs and their
ways. I am slowly beginning to understand the ideals by which they
live, the four cornerstones that uphold their lives – Beauty, Truth,
Freedom, and Love.
They made Christian believe in them when he first arrived in Montmatre.
Now he is turning me to their particular religion.
I love to watch him like this. I love to sit in the back of the
auditorium and admire him as he works. Sometimes he sits hunched over a
piano, other times he is dancing over the stage, showing the players how
to move, how to express the words he is putting into their mouths.
The players – they worship him. Just as I do.
He is the most talented person I have ever met. Not that the path of my
life has been littered with playwrights and poets. And the only
so-called artists I’ve ever known are men whose position and wealth have
opened doors for them. They haven’t had to kick those doors down.
Christian never stops. After the success of ‘Spectacular, Spectacular’,
he has created more shows, visually stunning entertainments that draw
clients in from far away cities. Word of mouth has spread the news
about our little theatre and the lavish shows put on by beautiful women
and talented actors.
Christian hates the limelight. Though he loves to sing, he prefers to
do so only when teaching his songs to others. He stands on stage and
his beautiful voice reaches out over the auditorium, hypnotising us all,
drawing us all into the magic he weaves.
Like I am drawn now.
I can imagine his face, flushed red from the cold and the excitement of
opening night. Later, I will warm him, kiss his cold lips and touch his
chilled skin. I aim to grab a few brief minutes alone with him, if I
can, before the party ensues in Toulouse’s attic.
There are so many better, bigger places in which we throw parties now.
The gothic tower being one. But some tradition dictates that on the
opening night of a new show, the party must be held in Toulouse’s attic
above Christian’s rooms.
They say it would be bad luck for anyone to break that tradition.
I am too deliriously happy to question them. As long as I am with him,
as long as I have him in my arms, I don’t care where we are.
Sometimes, the changes he has wrought in me seem like fantasies, and I
fear I shall wake one day in a dark, cold room and find myself alone
with the fading images of a long and wonderful dream.
He turns, and smiles at me.
It is the most incredible smile. And I still recall the day I realised
that he had one of those smiles for me. Not the first time we met,
certainly. I wasn’t aware of my own feelings then, and that – I believe
– masked my ability to know his.
Always so open with his emotions and affections, he seemed to love and
be loved by everyone. It took time for me to realise that I was special
in his eyes.
In the past, I’d only been special to me. Everyone else looked at me
and saw Francs. He looked at me, and saw the human being I’d thought
lost in the underworld.
Not that he wasn’t the most beautiful thing I’d ever laid eyes upon.
His blue eyes were like diamonds, sparkling in the lights of the club.
His raven hair shone, and I imagined how soft it would feel through my
fingers. And he could dance. I’d never appreciated that before, but
once over his initial nervousness, he blossomed like a flower on the
Now, the snowflakes are settling in his hair, and Toulouse is trying to
hurry him inside. So many of us concerned for the welfare of this one,
sensitive writer. It makes me smile when I think about it. Very little
in my life has made me smile a smile that truly touches my eyes and my
He turns to look at me again, and I nod. I am waiting also, and he does
not want to go ahead without me.
A moment later, the door opens behind me and two others step out, coming
to stand either side of me.
To my left, Zidler breathes in the cold night air and grins widely. “A
splendid night for a party, don’t you think?” he asks me, not giving me
time to reply before jogging down the stone steps and on to the path,
heading for the old hotel across the road.
To my right, Satine slides her arm through mine.
“He is a rare jewel,” she says to me softly, her eyes seeking out the
man I’d been watching for the last few minutes.
“He is indeed,” I agree.
“Promise me that you will look after him.” I nod. Of course I will. I
will look after them all – my new-found family. Smiling at me, brushing
her long red mane behind her shoulder, she leads me down the steps in
Zidler’s wake, and I hear her add, “You’re a good and lucky man, Duke.”
I know I am.
[BritSlash Contents Page]
[BritSlash Fiction Archive]