Categories: Romance, completely AU, playing with time, kinda-sorta-not-really fusion (well, it was inspired by Moulin Rouge, and the plot is based on it too, though lots of things have been changed)
Warnings: Nothing as of yet.
Disclaimer: The G-boys are not mine; Moulin Rouge is not mine.
Summery: A nut-so version of Moulin Rouge using GW characters. Duo visits Paris and sees Moulin Rouge (the show) and meets a group of strange people...people who aren't what they appear to be...
Note: Chapter I is from Duo's POV, and it does take place in AC195.
A Parisian Dream Part 1
I.: The Red Mill~
Ah...Paris. The city of love, a dazzling history, and somewhere I've always wanted to go all my life. Those were my thoughts of one of the most fantastic places in the known world as we drove through the crowded streets to my hotel.
The cab driver, Pierre, was being awfully cooperative, giving me more information on Paris than I could take in at once. Or a week, for that matter.
I petted my braid absent-mindedly out of pure habit and gazed out of the window, noticing for the first time a turning mill made of blinking red lights.
"What is that?" I asked Pierre, continuing to stare at it as we passed. There was a shockingly long line of people at what I guessed to be the ticket booth and spilling out onto the sidewalk.
He smiled in the rear-view mirror, his funny little mustache turning up-wards and reminding me was a walrus that got its tusks on upside-down somehow. "Eh? That is le Moulin Rouge," he replied as if that explained everything. His accent was strong and clearly Parisian, but at least he knew how to speak English to a fair amount. He even said 'konnichiwa' after I mentioned living in Japan for over two years.
"...I beg your pardon?"
"The Red Mill," he translated.
I nodded, fingers still lingering on the window even though I'd turned away. I made a quick note to take a closer look sometime.
That 'sometime' came the next evening when I was taking a late-night stroll. Turned out my hotel was barely a block from the Moulin Rouge, and I was walking past it when I heard three men arguing rather loudly from somewhere near-by. I wondered what was so urgent that they had to fight over it after eleven PM by the closed entrance of the building.
"We can't go on without a stable leading lady!" one was saying heatedly. He looked Chinese, with black hair in a tight ponytail
"I know, Wufei, so why don't you go a little easier with the auditions?" sighed the blonde with him. He was small, and quite frankly, very feminine. I couldn't see his face that well because the street light nearest to where I was standing just went out and I was left with a dim one several yards away.
The Chinese suddenly stiffened and nearly shouted. "Go EASIER?! You CAN'T 'GO EASIER' if you want quality, Quatre! You of all people should know that."
The third person, who'd been silent so far, now pulled the blonde against his chest protectively. "Calm down; it's not his fault Relena's health is failing." He had the longest bangs I've ever seen, and the rest of his hair...well. He was tall, lean, and carried himself with an air of an aristocrat. Infact, they all did, just in different ways.
The guy--Wufei--relaxed and I think he actually cracked a small apologetic smile. "I'm sorry, Quatre, Trowa. I guess I just got carried away."
The other two nodded their forgiveness and all three went into the building. I stood where I was for a while longer before turning back in the direction of the hotel. What an interesting conversation to be holding in the middle of the night, and why the hell had I stayed to eavesdrop?!
I sat in my bed, a pair of reading glasses perched on my nose and a Paris tour book in my lap. I'd scanned through it when I was still in California, but hadn't found anything extraordinary that I hadn't already known. But now, I was curious about the chapter on the Moulin and finally found it. The book gave a brief description of its history, previous owners, and a few of the leading dancers. A Relena Peacecraft was amongst the names I read, and figured she must be the one those three men had been talking about. As well as Chang Wufei, Quatre R. Winner, and Trowa Barton. Those three were obviously the men I had seen. They were all dancers at the Moulin (Trowa as the male lead), but Wufei was also in charge of the auditions and Quatre the finances (I had a feeling he was in the dancing part because of Trowa).
I read the chapter carefully, then made up my mind and called the Moulin Rouge office first thing next morning.
I sat at my table in the moderately sized theatre, sipping wine and trying to keep myself from plugging my ears at the singer on stage. The show hasn't started yet, so they had a (very lousy)...er, vocalist entertaining the guests who had arrived early. I'd finally managed to get tickets for tonight's performance after four tries. But only because just when I was about to give up, some person cancelled his ticket and the nice clerk lady gave his spot to me.
What I hadn't known, however, was that this was a dinner show, and while the ticket had 7:30PM as the opening time, the actually show didn't start until 9:00.
I also neglected to dress formally. How embarrassing! Then I noticed nearly all of the young people my age didn't have suits and ties either, so I felt much better.
Tired of waiting and my stomach grumbling, I'd ordered a Salty Chicken Breast. $30.00 for a piece of poultry the size of my palm?! It was very good, but no chicken, however tasty, was worth what got sucked from my wallet.
About fifteen minutes before the actual show started, someone slid into the table next to mine. I looked at him and pretty much had to scrape my jaw off the floor with a fork. My GOD, he's HOT!
I never considered myself a homosexual, just one that likes to keep his mind open to both options. One look at this guy and I've never been so glad I did. He was obviously Japanese, even with tousled brown hair and the fieriest tiger-like blue eyes I've ever seen. He had with him a laptop that he was now just booting up, and damn, even that simple motion almost had me drooling.
I pasted on what I hoped to be a welcoming smile and tried to be casual as I greeted him. "Hi!" I chirped. "Is this your first time here? Or are you a long-timer?"
He ignored me and started typing.
My grin faltered--I know it did, but I still tried again. "I'll take that as a 'this is not my first time here', since you knew to come at 8:45 instead of 7:00 like I did," I said cheerfully.
The bastard continued to type. I was starting to get pissed. I've had my fair share of boys and girls alike trying to hit on me, but I've never just ignored them! Then it occurred to me that he might not speak English. "Parlez-vous anglais?" I tried, my tongue tangling over itself. (Do you speak English?)
Mr. Sexy Stranger paused in the clacking of the keys and flicked me a glare and muttered to himself (or was it at me?): "Baka."
Ah! So THAT's his language. I felt like kicking myself for not thinking about it earlier. Duh! Japanese speak their own language! Lord, I felt like an idiot.
"Maaaaaaa." I scratched my head, a sheepish gesture I picked up from somewhere when I was a child and never got rid of. "Sorry about that," I said in Japanese, my second most fluent language.
He STILL chose to ignore me. So I gave up and sighed. It was time to start anyway.
It was fantastic! I've never seen anything like it! I especially enjoyed that bit with the snakes in the water tank and one of the dancers jumping in after them. She had super long pale blonde hair and strangely split eyebrows. Very attractive...then again, they all were. Upon looking in the program, I saw that she was taking the lead for tonight.
Dorothy Catalonia. Didn't sound French to me. European to be sure, but not very French.
Mr. Sexy Stranger kept typing through the entire show, pausing once in a while to watch the happenings on the stage, then he would go back to his laptop. The noise was annoying at first, then infuriating, but when the show began to get interesting, I managed to tune out the clacking.
As I walked out of the theatre, I noticed he was nearly instep with me. My heart began pounding, because he damn well had a nice motion.
"Monsieur Yuy!" a familiar voice called. I paused to look, and saw Quatre running towards the Japanese guy. He was still in his dance costume and had Trowa (also in costume) in tow. God, I sound like I've known them all my life, don't I?
"Nanda?" He had a deep voice, quite nasal.
Quatre stopped in front of him, panting and wheezing. I can't say I blame him, since trying to run in those decoration shoes seemed like hell of a lot of work.
He finally caught his breath and said to 'M. Yuy': "Monsieur Treize wants to see your latest caption of the Moulin Rouge," he said in English. So the sexy bastard DID know English! ARGH!
Yuy-san blinked and nodded, ready to go when Quatre suddenly caught sight of me. "Miss Lorenger!" he called, running up to me.
Miss? Oh no, not again...
"Miss Lorenger, there you are! The audition for the leading role of the 1897 show will be held in a few minutes--oh dear...!" he gasped, hand rising to his mouth. His face turned from normal to white to scarlet in mere seconds.
I sighed, waiting patiently for him to correct his mistake. "Yes?"
He looked ready to either scream or cry, I wasn't sure which. "I--I'm so sorry! I just saw your hair and we were scheduled to audition a young woman with long brown hair...sorry!" he gushed in one breath.
I grinned and patted him in the back lightly. "Don't worry about it," I assured him easily. "It's not a rare circumstance that I'm mistaken for a girl."
He gave me an embarrassed smile. "Yes, for me too."
We both laughed, then he invited me to the backstage. I had no idea why, but I accepted, and Trowa led Yuy to this 'Treize' fellow while I followed Quatre.
Blondie was a nice guy, and my suspicions regarding him and Trowa became concrete when I brought up the subject and he nearly swooned. When he brought up the subject of Yuy, though, I nearly swooned. His name was Heero Yuy; he used to be a soldier but has now taken up writing. The sponsor of the place, Treize Khushrenada, took a strong liking to his style and descriptions of the Moulin, so had hired him as the official reporter of it. Heero was the one whose articles of the Moulin Rouge I'd seen in the papers that morning.
He showed me the equipment used for certain effects and I asked him questions about the history of the Moulin Rouge. He really knew a lot, and I considered this my history lesson of the month.
Apparently, it used to be very different than it is now. In the 1800's, it was a nightclub, a whorehouse, and over-all The Underworld, he called it. Very interesting.
By the time I left, nearly everyone else had already done so. Trowa and Quatre were packing up, Treize Khushrenada too. Heero Yuy was just emerging from the building.
I ignored him like he did me while we waited for a taxi--I was still on major jet lag...completely worn out and I didn't think I'd last the way to the hotel on foot. He tapped me on the shoulder and I turned to him coolly.
The scowl that was stuck to his face earlier softened slightly. "Sorry about my earlier actions. I tend to be very rude when others interrupt my work."
I sighed and leaned against the lamp pole beside me before I could collapse out of fatigue. I waved off his apology. "Nevermind about that. I was peeved, but I guess it's understandable." I gave him a weak smile and wondered why there was suddenly three Heero Yuys before me.
The hum of a cab drew my attention to it. "You were here first," I said, gesturing to the car.
He considered, looked around for another taxi, then got in and pulled me after him. I realized with no small amount of shock that I was nearly in his lap. I think I blushed, but couldn't be sure.
"Marriott Renaissance..." I mumbled.
He translated what I said to the driver, and we were off. I'm pretty sure he paid for the fare, and more or less carried me to my room (I'd told him 372 because I couldn't remember, but when he gave me a blank look, I realized my mistake and corrected it to 427--there was no room 372). I unlocked the door and leaned forward for a good-night kiss. His eyes widened and this time, I was certain I flushed.
"A-ano..." I stuttered. "Good night!"
I slammed the door in his face, then remembered something. Grabbing a wad of franks, I yanked open the door again and shoved it into his hand, then closed it again.
I felt like an idiot. But a happy idiot, I reminded myself as my fingertips brushed over my lips.
My dreams were of the Moulin Rouge. What would it be like...if I'd really been the star of the Moulin Rouge back in 1897?
:D No, this story is not going to be about Duo's dream.
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