Forte could hear out of Cherry's screaming, Belle was on her way to the music as the Beast's dog kept barking all around the halls.
"Yes, my dear...." Forte smirked in a low, hypnotic voice. "Come to me..." Forte kept playing as Cherry panicked. He stopped once the doors opened and Sultan charged in chasing after Cherry like she was a piece of meat.
"Nice doggy! Good doggy!" Cherry cried as she was chased and she crawled up into the chair.
"Sultan?" Belle's voice was heard. She entered the room with Chip in her hand as she looked around and called for the footstool dog. "Hello? Hello!"
"M-Maybe there's nobody here," Chip stammered in fear. "Maybe we should g-g-go...."
"Yes, please, let's go and please, let's never come back!" Cherry squealed, shaking with all her might like she was scared witless.
"What's the matter, Sultan?" Belle noticed the dog was whimpering up at the giant pipe organ she was oblivious to.
"Oh hello." Belle noticed Cherry. "So, this is where you spend your time away from me or the Beast, huh?"
"I'm filling in for Maestro's apprentice, Fife." Cherry explained.
"Anyway, Chip and I heard the most beautiful music," Belle smiled at her young friend. "Was it you?"
"Me? Oh Belle, I could never do that, I can't even play this thing right." Cherry showed her school recorder and put it in the Forte's music chest.
"Mademoiselle, please..." Forte's voice boomed in Cherry's ear and Belle turned to see the 20 foot tall organ. "I am Maestro Forte, court composer and your most humble servant."
"Pleased to meet you, Monseir Forte." Belle greeted. "I'm Belle."
"Yes." Forte observed her as Chip hopped out of her hand. "Cerise and the entire castle has talked about you, child. They say you're planning a Christmas gala. Marvelous idea. The very thing to shatter the Master's dark and gloomy past. But you must make this the grandest celebration ever. Have you gifts?"
"Yep!" Chip answered.
"Garlands, ribbons, wreaths?"
"Spangles and fandangles? The trinkets, the trimmings, the trappings?"
"Yep, we've got 'em all!"
Forte smirked sinisterly and looked down at the young teacup with the creepiest face Cherry had ever seen. "The tree....?"
Chip frowned and showed he wasn't afraid of the maestro. "See Belle? I told ya!"
"Well, we found one." Belle shrugged.
"But it was the piddling side of puny." Chip sighed.
"But... Did you look in the Black Forest?" Forte showed the windows showing a dark, spooky forest. "There you will find a tree, better than any you can dream of."
"Better?" Chip had a bright smile on his face. "We gotta go, Belle!"
Cherry shuddered with fright as she looked at the dangers of the Black Forest. Not to mention Belle was nearly attacked by wolves in that very forest a while ago.
"We gotta!" Chip turned to Belle with delight.
"Chip, we can't." Belle frowned. "Cerise and I promised your Master we wouldn't leave the castle grounds. We gave our word."
"Chin up, son." Forte said as he found a way to get Belle to disobey the Beast. "There's a profound lesson here. Keeping your word is much more important than bringing joy to another."
"You're twisting what Belle says!" Cherry protested.
"Not at all," Forte messed with the 10-year-old's head. "I agree with you both. Look after yourselves, let the Master do the same. Never mind that the tree was his favorite part of Christmas."
"I think you just made that up." Cherry said under her breath.
"Please Belle?" Chip's eyes got big and puppy-like. "PLEEEEEASE!?"
Belle looked down at him and back out the window to see the forest again. "It looks dangerous."
"Mademoiselle," Forte chuckled. "You and Cerise are in more danger in this very room, I assure you."
"Alright." Belle sighed in defeat. "We'll take Philippe. If we hurry we can be back by nightfall. You coming, Cerise?"
"Thanks, but no thanks." Cherry shrugged. "It looks too cold even for me out there."
"Very well. Au revoir, Monsieur Forte. You'll keep my secret, won't you?" Belle asked as she and Chip were on their way out.
"Of course, mademoiselle. The Master will remain completely in the dark." Forte nodded.
"Au revoir, Cerise." Belle left with that.
"Au revoir..." Cherry waved trying to pronounce.
"CERISE!" Forte barked, making Cherry snap to his attention. "I want you to follow her. Make sure they don't...come... BACK!"
"Yeah, but... Maestro, she's one of my new best friends, maybe we should just let the spell have a chance to be broken." Cherry smiled.
"When you're finished living in Lala Land, Cerise, maybe you'd like to get crushed by the power of my organ playing?" Forte taunted. "I have to give the Master a song for Belle for Christmas..."
"Can I at least hear what you have so far? Your music frightens me, but I actually enjoy classical music."
Forte felt touched. "You like my depressing melodies?" he smiled at her, and for the first time, non threateningly.
"Yeah, they might be dreary and depressing, but I like them." Cherry smiled.
Forte smiled back. He then decided he could play his song for her and played a tune like Deck the Halls.
"I feel it'll catch one someday." Cherry smiled at him.
"Thank you, Cerise... I feel like it needs words to it though."
"Before I go, how about I help you come up with words?"
"Hmm.... Okay, I doubt the Master will ask me to sing this happy, morning, sunshine song." Forte chuckled as he enjoyed the remaining time he had with Cherry.