Innocence Reclaimed Part 19

Meia was setting a plate in front of one of the many customers in the diner when a flash of gold caught her attention. Looking up she started at the sight of Quatre Winner walking into one of the shops across the street.

He came back!!! Was her single thought as she ran out the door, ignoring the calls of her employer from behind her.

Quatre moved slowly around the small antiques store, peering at various items. He had another hour before his meeting with Wufei and Ms. Po and was bored. Glancing towards the back of the store, his attention was drawn to a display of old swords and daggers and he walked slowly towards them.

Slowly looking over the ancient blades he found pictures running through his mind. Trowa... his expression serious... handing him a slender dagger, its hilt bearing a single bright sapphire.

"I can't protect you all the time." His voice floated around the blonde. "I fear that you may be in danger... take this... keep it near you in case it's needed."

Quatre blinked and stepped away from the display, turning to see Meia standing in the window, her blue eyes wide. Why is she wearing those clothes?He asked silently, taking in her long cream-colored gown... and her hair was longer. He shook his head... a hallucination. With a mumbled good-bye to the shop owner, he left the shop quickly.

"Mr. Winner!" Meia called after him.

He turned around and stared at her, she was back to normal... jeans and tee shirt, short bright red hair. "Stay away from me!" He snapped. "Just stay away!!" He turned and bolted down the street.

Meia watched his retreating form before going back to the diner. He came back... he never comes back... what does this mean?


"Soul to soul... heart to heart... life to life... through incarnations to come these lovers shall be reborn... until they meet, remember, and love again, shall the pattern repeat itself. As it is said... it will be done..."

"Mr. Winner?"

Quatre blinked and glanced over at the black-haired young man. "I'm sorry, I was thinking."

"Obviously." Wufei Chang snorted as he shuffled a stack of papers in front of him. "As I was saying... the demands put forth by the sellers are utterly ridiculous..."

"They will not change their contract." A woman leaned on the table, her blue eyes sparking a silent challenge to the brown-eyed boy. "There is no negotiating!"

"The contract is fine." Quatre broke in.

"What?" Wufei slammed the papers down. "You can't mean to just give in?!"

"Look... we've already decided to keep the old structure." The blonde pointed out. "Renovations are currently under-way. The contract says it has to be restored to its original form. Fine... that's what I have ordered done. I'm sure there are no problems with adding some modern conveniences as long as they look the part."

"The other problem is that the owners say they do not wish the property to be used for business." The woman added. "They were very adamant that this particular structure was to be renovated for private living only."

Quatre sat back and studied the woman. "What did they specify about the manor house?"

"Nothing. They don't seem to be concerned about what you do with it."

"Look! It's just a dammed legend!! A ghost story!!" Wufei snapped slamming his fist on the table.

"Mr. Chang, I know you aren't familiar with these people, but let me point out to you that this nation was built on legends and ghost stories. Such things..."

"Are very important to these people." Quatre finished for her.

"Yes." She replied. "The owners believe that the legend is very real and they wish to preserve the land for that reason."

Quatre got up and walked over to gaze out the window at the little village. "I have one question... I guess it doesn't really have much to do with the sale itself, but I am curious."

"Yes?" The woman replied.

"Just exactly what is this legend... everyone alludes to it... but no one seems to talk openly about it."

The woman leaned back in her chair. "Well, I am not from here, but I have done some research into it because of this property. All I've been able to find is references to two pairs of lovers that lived in this area. I guess, from what I've read, it's almost a story for a romance... how they got together. They were murdered by the family of a defeated enemy... the night they died the daughter, a witch of sorts, of one of the couples cast a spell... trying to guarantee that they'd come together again in the future."

"This is foolishness!!" Wufei sputtered.

"Nonetheless, it's part of this town." Quatre told him. "Please, continue, Ms. Po."

"There's not much else." She said. "The family that killed them was cursed... and the town still waits for them to return. That's all I was able to find."

Quatre looked back out at the town for a moment... the words he'd thought of earlier ringing through his head. Finally he sighed. "What if we were to use the manor house as the offices and the keep as a place for employees, clients, and myself, when needed, to stay?"

"I'm sure that would be acceptable to the owners."

"Fine then let's get these papers signed and get this done with."

"I can't believe you are going to give in to this!" Wufei growled.

"All I wanted was one building to use for the offices and another for living purposes." Quatre pointed out. "What difference does it make which one I use for which?"

The blonde quickly signed several of the papers and then stood. "Wufei, I'll leave the rest of it to you. Ms. Po, it was nice to have met you."

"Thank-you." She stood to shake his hand. "I'm glad to be able to resolve this in a way that is acceptable to both parties. Hopefully my other sale here will go just as well."

"You're selling another property in this town?" Quatre asked.

"Yes. It just came up yesterday. I'm to handle the sale of the Barton land and the stables associated with it."

Quatre felt a cold wave wash over him. "The Bartons are selling their stables?"

"Yes... as soon as the hunt, this weekend, is over Mr. Barton and his sister, Ms. Bloom, are putting it on the market. Looking for more property from what I gather." She replied.

Quatre thanked the woman quietly and shook Wufei's hand before leaving the offices. I thought that they loved it here... why would he decided to pack up and leave? The blonde wondered numbly.

As he stepped out onto the street he saw Trowa walking into the small grocery located across the street from the lawyer's offices. He watched silently as the tall brunette leaned over to say something to the young woman with him and then as he straightened he glanced across the street, his green eyes meeting Quatre's blue ones.

The blonde saw Trowa stiffen as they stared silently at each other. Then something Quatre couldn't identify crossed Trowa's face before he turned and took Catharine's arm, guiding her into the store.

Quatre struggled with himself to not run across the street and follow the pair inside. Suddenly, he wanted to talk to the slender man... wanted that more than anything else in the world. On the other hand, he was terrified of what Trowa might have to say to him.

Of what he might make him feel.


Trowa stood beside the young bay, running a brush over his coat until it gleamed in the light from the stable. He'd been out here almost since Cathy and he had returned from town.

Of all the things he expected, he never thought to see Quatre Winner around here again. It had torn his heart out to turn and walk away when he saw the blonde watching them from across the street.

"What do you think?" He asked the horse softly as he set the brush aside.

The horse snorted and turned his head, his soft brown eyes watching the young man.

"Yeah, I know. I'm an idiot." The brunette laughed sadly. "I seriously thought about going up there to see him... like he'd want to see me." He walked around to the front of the animal, pulling a sugar cube from his pocket and giving it to the horse.

He smiled gently as the horse nudged his shoulder. "How about it, huh? No competing, just the two of us... one last run before we find ourselves somewhere else?"

Another snort and the animal bumped his shoulder again. Trowa laughed softly and grabbing a handful of mane, pulled himself onto the bay's back.

Catharine stepped out onto the porch just in time to see her brother race madly by on Raberba's Dream, no saddle, no bridle... nothing but him and the horse.

"Trowa!!" She cried out as the brunette galloped by her, leaning low over the animal's neck.

"Be careful..." The young woman whispered to the night, knowing that he couldn't hear her over the thunder of the horse's hooves.

He gave the horse its head, there was no place around here that the animal could go that he couldn't find his way home. So, he leaned against the bay's neck, reveling in the feel of his mane whipping against his face and let the animal run.

As Raberba's Dream slowed, Trowa found them outside the newly built wall around the old keep. Sitting up he stared up at the solid rock, suddenly realizing that the gate was open. A frown crossed his features as he jumped down; knowing that he'd trained the animal well enough that it wouldn't go anywhere.

Slipping through the open gate his eyes widened as he looked up at the staging that covered one side of the structure. Winner was restoring the keep. Of all the things he thought might be going on here that had not been it.

He walked slowly under the intricate framework and into the keep, his eyes scanning the expanse of the main hall. Coming to a stop, he pulled forth an old memory, from another time, of him sitting in a chair in front of the fireplace in his old chambers. Quatre, his bright head bent over something that he was reading, was in his favorite spot on the hearth.

He missed times like those... and there was no way to reclaim them.

"Why are you here?"

Trowa turned to see Quatre standing on the staircase. "I saw the gate open."

"Ah." Quatre walked down the stairs and crossed the hall to where the brunette stood. "I have this place sealed off for a reason."

"You're right... I'm trespassing." Trowa said quietly. "I'll go."

He turned to leave and Quatre grabbed his wrist. "Trowa..."

"What?" The brunette's green eyes showed his surprise as Quatre moved around in front of him, standing very close.

Sliding his hands up Trowa's arms Quatre leaned up so that their lips were almost touching. "Do you remember the last time I came down those stairs and found you here?"

Trowa drew in a sharp breath as Quatre gently brushed his lips across his. "What game are you playing, Quatre?" He asked shakily.

"I'm tired of being led around and toyed with." Quatre murmured, pressing a kiss to Trowa's throat. "Tell me, what is my connection to this place? Everyone seems to know but me." He nipped lightly. "Tell me and I'll let you have me again."

Quatre's words were like a shot of cold water to the fires of Trowa's rising desires. He took the blonde's hands and set him firmly backwards; his green eyes flashing. "I'm not interested in just satisfying base desires... you'll have to find another way of finding out what you want."

"So you do know!" Quatre accused angrily.

"Yeah... but you have to find out on your own." Trowa looked at him for moment and then turned. Stopping at the door he lay one hand on the frame, sagging lightly against it. "I know you don't believe me... you don't think I know you well enough, but I love you, Quatre."

The blonde stared opened mouthed at the door as he listened to the sound of hoof beats fade into the night. He could barely believe he had done such a thing... what in the name of all that was holy was he thinking????

Then another thought crept across his mind, laced with sadness and joy... Trowa had said he loved him. Why did those words from that man affect him so deeply?



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