Cherry stepped forward, the light from the daft window with torn curtains showed the moon glowing. The light was enough to illuminate Cherry's face as she looked way up at the giant pipe organ looking down at her. At least, she thought he was looking at her. It looked as if he had no eyes, just giant holes in his "face". They seemed bigger and dewy with fright as Cherry spotted wolves with glowing yellow eyes rush out in the forest where her new friend was.
"Ah, you must be the adorable little girl I've spoken to..."
"Umm... Sure..." Cherry was never really social when it came to her looks. She never liked her appearance, even though a lot of adults had called her adorable and beautiful. "Who are you?"
"I am Maestro Forte, court composer and your most humble servant..." the organ smiled at her.
"GET OUT!" a sharp voice called outside the music room.
"Oh dear..." Cherry gulped, hearing the Beast in a horrible mood.
"Now, now...." Forte closed the door using green laser sheet music while Cherry cupped her mouth and looked back at Forte with her big brown puppy-like eyes. "It's best not to be with Master Adam when he is in a bad mood. Why don't you have a seat?"
"Okay..." Cherry found a giant chair which probably belonged to the Beast. She pushed it against the organ, climbed onto the chair and rested her arms and kicked her legs back and forth. She looked back around the organ. "Are you a piano?"
"I'm actually a pipe organ," Forte corrected. "Major difference, my dear. Do you play piano or organ?"
"My mother played the organ for her church when she was a kid," Cherry shrugged. "I've wanted to play myself, but I don't know anyone good enough to give me lessons."
"Why don't I help you, Cerise?" Forte smirked. He had a fascination in her, but Cherry didn't realize it. "I used to give lessons all the time, I once had an apprentice named Reuben Fife, but after he grew up he felt like he didn't need me anymore."
"I am sorry, Mr. Forte..." Cherry looked back up at him.
"Please, call me Maestro. It makes me feel professional."
"I'm sorry, Maestro." Cherry pushed her glasses back.
Forte chuckled at her. "You're so cute when you try to speak French. Do you know anything French on your own?"
"Do french fries count?" Cherry sheepishly asked.
"Non," Forte shook his head. "But you're trying, I respect that."
"The Master has returned!" a voice called from behind the doors.
"Oh, he must be bleeding!" another voice gasped.
"Mrs. Potts, get some hot water, I need to take care of him," Belle's voice called.
Cherry jumped from the chair and rushed out, opening the door. She saw indeed that Belle and the Beast have survived the wolf battle.
"Belle!" Cherry gasped with delight that her friend was still alive.
"Belle..." Forte snorted in disgust. "What makes her so special? Cerise! Where are you going?" Forte could sense Cherry leaving as she opened the door wider.
"I need to check on my friend, I'll be back though!" Cherry rushed out, leaving the organ alone in his dark, cold room.
"You had better be back..." Forte glared harshly as she left, but once she was out of ear and eye shot, his mood softened. "You delicious little crêpe...."
Cherry met Belle and the others in the den of the castle. Belle had her hair down as she lost her favorite ribbon back outside the forest. She took a damp cloth out from the tub filled with steamy water Mrs. Potts provided and was about to apply it on the Beast's wounded arm.
"Don't do that..." Belle told him like a mother of a fussy child. "You'll only make it worse. Just hold still!" Belle put the cloth on the Beast's arm which made him roar in anger and pain as Babette, Chip, Mrs. Potts, Sultan, Lumiere and Cogsworth backed away with intense fear.
The Beast roared in Belle's face which made Cherry angry. "THAT HURTS!" the Beast shouted with no indoor voice.
"If you hold still it wouldn't hurt as much!" Belle yelled back.
"If you hadn't run away, this wouldn't have happened." the Beast sassed.
"IF YOU HADN'T FRIGTHENED HER SHE WOULDN'T HAVE RUN AWAY!" Cherry growled.
"Cerise!" the servants cried.
"YEAH, I SAID IT!" Cherry hissed.
"This doesn't concern you." the Beast glowered at the child.
"Leave my friend alone!"
"Don't you dare speak out of turn to me, young lady!"
And with that, the Beast struck Cherry across the body, knocking her down.
"Cerise!" Belle attended to Cherry to see she was bleeding in her arms and side. "Oh dear... Mrs. Potts, go get some bandages, please."
"Of course, luv." Mrs. Potts hopped away.
"You should learn to control your temper." Belle glared at the Beast and looked back at Cherry in intense pain. "I understand we shouldn't have gone to the West Wing. I'm sorry this had to happen to you too, Cerise."
"Why are we still here?" Cherry's voice was rather weak from the blood loss. "Can't we go home?"
"Well... He did save my life, Cerise..." Belle said in a motherly tone. She then turned back to the Beast as he was healing slowly. "Thank you for saving my life, by the way."
"You're welcome..." the Beast sounded a lot calmer now.
Later, everyone had gone to bed for the night. Cherry had bandages across her waist and arm now however and it was rougher to sleep with. She then decided to go visit Forte for a story, she was still a little kid who tended to fall asleep with a bedtime story. She went in the music room as Forte was up late as her, playing a funeral like melody. As he finished, he looked down and noticed the young girl.
"Ah, good evening, Cerise..." Forte greeted.
"Good evening, Maestro." Cherry hopped back in the chair.
"Good Heavens!" Forte gasped, noticing her bandages. "What happened to you?"
"The Beast hurt me and Belle gave me first aid." Cherry replied with her head lowered. She then looked back up at him. "I can't sleep, will you tell me a story?"
"Of course, child." Forte smiled eerily down at her. "What story would you like?"
"Umm..." Cherry thought about it for a moment. Then an idea came to her as she remembered everybody else in the castle. "How did your master become a beast anyway?"
"Ah, good question." Forte smiled. "I'll start from the beginning." Forte cleared his throat as Cherry got adjusted in the chair for comfort. "Once upon a time in our far away land, a young prince lived in our once shining castle. Although he had everything his heart desired, the prince was spoiled, selfish and unkind.
"But then, one winter's night, an old beggar woman came to the castle and offered him a single rose in return for shelter from the bitter cold. Repulsed by her haggard appearance, the prince sneered at the gift and turned the old woman away. But she warned him not to be deceived by appearances, for beauty is found within.
"And when he dismissed her again, the old woman's ugliness melted away to reveal a beautiful enchantress. The prince tried to apologize, but it was too late, for she had seen that there was no love in his heart. And as punishment, she transformed him into a hideous beast and placed a powerful spell on the castle, and all who lived there.
"Ashamed of his monstrous form, Adam concealed himself inside his castle with a magic mirror as his only window to the outside world. The rose she had offered was truly an enchanted rose, which would bloom until his 21st year. If he could learn to love another and earn her love in return by the time the last petal fell, then the spell would be broken. If not, he would be doomed to remain a beast for all time. As the years passed, he fell into despair and lost all hope. For who could ever learn to love a beast?"
"Wow..." Cherry whispered as her eyes felt heavy and she yawned slightly. "Looks like Belle can maybe change that..."
"Perhaps..." Forte then noticed Cherry had fallen asleep. He smiled as he put a warm blanket around her. "Good night, Cerise...." Forte smirked, then as she was right asleep, he smiled creepily at her. "My love..."