Chapter One: People Are Scary Because They Don't Differentiate Between Love And Obsession
AN: This is the story of Emile LePugh and Deimin Yeargan (Natbakka) from my other stories, Cri de Coeur and Cri de Coeur: Encore. I will do my best to make sure that this story stands fine by itself, but you might want to check it out anyway! And if you do, drop a review, even if it's just on the last chappy. Please?
By the way, in this story, when quotes are in italics, that means they're in French, But I don't think I can deal with translations, and I probably couldn't anyway cause I only took one year of French. Now, enjoy!
Ah, Paris. The city of love. Rich in art… and culture… and wonderfully smelly cheese.
I had been there for a month already and I had made no headway in finding my parents. Of course, there was a good chance they weren't even in Paris, but I had really hoped to find them. That's why I moved all the way from the states to France, gotten an apartment and a job (I was working in a coffee shop. It was nothing glamorous but hell, it paid the bills), and dedicated all of my time to finding my parents.
I had started with the phone directory. I should have known that it wouldn't be that easy, but I had no idea where else to start.
When that didn't turn up anything, I didn't really know what to do. When I could I took to the streets, showing anyone who would stop the most current picture of my parents that I had, tell them their names, and ask them if they knew where I might find them. Nothing. No one seemed to know who they were.
I didn't even know what I was thinking anymore. Why had I come all the way to Paris to find the parents who had abandoned me before I could even talk? What had I hoped to accomplish? I wanted to ask them why they had left. Why did they leave my sister and me to fend for ourselves? How could they just… leave us? Didn't they love us?
But what would it help to ask them? What could they possibly say to remedy the situation?
So I planned to return to the states. I may be French, but that doesn't mean I like France. I could have lived my whole life without going there.
I put in my two weeks notice. By the end of the first week I just didn't care anymore. Someone approached the counter of the café and I sighed.
"Hello, what can I get you?" I asked without looking up.
"I'll just have a coffee and a chocolate biscotti," a familiar voice asked. I looked up and saw that they weren't looking at me either, their blue head bowed as they counted out the money for their order.
"Natbakka?" I asked hesitantly.
"Hmm? How do you—" he looked up and stopped speaking abruptly. He blinked at me for a second before stuttering, "E-Emile?"
"Nope, Pepé," I said with a grin. He smiled, understanding the reference.
"I just didn't expect to see you in Paris, that's all," he said.
"Yeah, why would a Frenchman be in France?" I said.
"Ah, you're so quick-witted today," he said, pushing his blue locks out of his face to grin at me. "That's a nice change." I stuck my tongue out at him. "So when do you get a break around here?"
"I actually get to leave in about ten minutes," I said, handing him his coffee and biscotti.
"Great. Maybe we can hang out? You can show me around this lovely country of yours."
I snorted. He didn't know the half of it.
"Yeah, that would be great," I said with a smile. He nodded and went to find a table.
It was nice to see a familiar face again.
"So what brings you to the city where you can't drink the water?" I asked. He laughed lightly.
"I was going to NCU to study theatre, you know, and the opportunity came up for me to study here, so I took it. Tanya was upset at first, but then she got the opportunity to study in England."
"Madame prepared us well, huh? We're in high demand," I said. He shook his head.
"I'm nothing compared to the others in my class."
I found that hard to believe. Natbakka was a wonderful actor, especially with interpretations. I had always loved to watch him. In a completely platonic, friendly way, you know. I admired his acting skills, not him, exactly.
"So what about you? What really brings you to France? Or was it simply your homeland calling you?" he asked.
"I came to find my parents, but then I realized I had no idea how… and I don't really know where to start… and that I really don't care if I see them again. It wouldn't change anything," I said. He nodded. I had known Natbakka for a long time. We had grown up less than a mile away from each other. So of course he knew the story of my parents and how I felt about it.
"It might be better after all this time to just make peace with it and… I don't know, try to forgive them for not being there," he said. "You're not that bad off for it. One might argue that it was better. If they had been around they probably would have been distant, neglectful, and that might have hurt you more in the long run."
What he was saying made sense. But it didn't make it any easier to live with.
"So you aren't in school here?" he asked. I shook my head.
"No. I'm actually leaving in a week. But I thought I might enroll in a New York art school. You know, live in the city once."
"Raleigh is a city."
"But it's not the city."
"It's the capital."
"Of North Carolina."
"Good point," he conceded. "Well, it's a shame you're leaving so soon. I thought I had finally found someone I got along with fairly well. And I think you would do well in school over here."
"They've already been in term for two months," I pointed out.
"Yeah, but you could start next semester."
I thought about it. It was an interesting idea, studying in Paris. And I loved the theatre. I missed that hour and a half every day. I would love to get back up on a stage. And it's not like I had many other pressing plans.
"I might," I said. "Now, didn't you say you wanted to see Paris?" I asked. He smiled and nodded eagerly.
"This is Paris?" he asked incredulously.
"This is my Paris. What, you don't like it?"
"No, it's nice. I was just thinking you know, the Eiffel tower, Le Arc de Triumph, the Louvre, the Luxembourg gardens, all of that."
"Yeah well, you can find your own way to those places. But you'd have a time getting someone to show you these places, and if you tried it yourself you'd probably get lost."
It was true that I hadn't taken him to your everyday average tourist spots. What fun would that be? We were currently walking down one of the narrow back streets that lined Paris. This particular one was home to florists, bakeries, and other assorted good-smelling shops.
Now before I say this, let me tell you that I have nothing, nothing against Europeans, especially the younger generations. But some of the older generations do not find it necessary to bathe as often as Americans and they do not shave anything. That means that to someone who's not accustomed to it, the city smells kind of bad at times. So it was nice to get away from that to a place that smelled wonderfully like flowers and fresh-baked bread.
I pointed out my favourite places to him on that street and many others similar to it, and after promising that we would do the whole tourist thing before I left I helped him find his way back to the university and then walked back to my apartment.
My few belongings were already packed, save a few items of clothing and toiletries, but I found myself resenting that reminder that I must leave soon. This puzzled me, as just that morning I had been counting down the minutes until I could leave. What had changed to make me suddenly want to stay?
AN: So there you have it, the first chappy of Rendezvous. I hope you enjoyed it!
So please review! Constructive criticism is welcome, flames are not. I will set you on fire with the lighter you used.
♥'s and X-Rated Thoughts—Luci-chan