A/N: Here I am, posting this after finally giving in to my muse. This idea has been bothering me for the past few days and wouldn't leave me alone at all, so I finally gave in and typed this up. This isn't the first time I write something...well I wouldn't call it original but it isn't fanfiction for once. I've written original pieces before but since then I lost the USB in which I had them saved. Writing this is actually somewhat new for me, I've never written romance before and it's impossible that this doesn't turn into romance sooner or later.

Also, I just thought that I'd point out that this story doesn't deal with anything paranormal. I just thought that I'd point that out. I read my summary over, and there was a moment where I thought that somebody might think that there will be paranormal beings in this and no, there won't be. Everybody's completely human, I'm sure of that.


"There's nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be…"

-John Lennon


Prologue

October 17th, 1888

"What am I doing?" Graciela breathed out as she took the paper she had been writing on moments before and crumpled it into a ball before throwing it over her shoulder.

She combed her fingers through her hair and closed her eyes when they began stinging with unshed tears. No, she couldn't do this. Dropping the pen she was holding which sounded against the wood with a clatter, she pushed herself away from the desk and remained in her seat wondering why she should write a letter to her mother in the first place. Should she contact her parents? Her mother would understand her, she could always count on her mother, but her father was a different story. There was no doubt in her mind that if she contacted them in any way that he'd send somebody to look for her. Not like he didn't already. Surely he sent somebody to find and retrieve her by now.

It wasn't long ago that she made the journey from Valencia, a city in Spain in which she was born and raised, to Paris where her brother lived with his wife of seven years. Valentin and Isabel were a childless couple, something considered odd now that they were only three years away from turning thirty but they never thought about having children up until that point. Graciela was witness to their many attempts to conceive a child; not visually of course, no she could hear them at night after Valentin returned from work late at night only to become intimate with his wife when the two thought that she was asleep. There were times when she wanted to go over to their room and tell them to keep it down but never did, having always been too embarrassed to do so. Besides, it was about time she finally had a little niece or nephew to spoil.

Her thoughts were interrupted by sharp knocking on her door followed by her Isabel, her sister-in-law, yelling outside her door.

"Graciela hurry! We have a lot to do today!"

"Yes, I'll be out in a few minutes!" she called back as she reluctantly stood up from her seat.

Isabel was lovely and she did love her like a sister, she was close to one she would ever have. Despite her mother and father's opinions about her brother moving to Paris to live with Isabel, Graciela knew that it was the best decision he could have made. Her father didn't particularly like Isabel, most likely because she wasn't of their social class but that was the thing, she and her brother never cared about social class and neither did her mother. However her father thought that what social class one belonged to was the most important thing in the world.

Her father, Felix Castillo, was a man nobody messed with. He was a wealthy banker, having earned his riches by hard work and dedication. He loved his children dearly, she knew that. However he seemed to forget his humble roots and believed that those around him had to abide his rules. Graciela believed that that was a mentality he acquired when she was born, when he decided that it was a wonderful idea to arrange a marriage between his daughter and the son of one of his most trusted friends in order to promise her a good life. She was forced to bond with her betrothed as they grew-up, and it was apparent that the boy, now a man of nineteen years of age , had an attraction towards her but she didn't want anything to do with him.

Graciela had been told by her parents that when she turned twenty-one years of age, which had been only about a week earlier, that she would have to marry and she hated the idea; she hated the thought that she would be reduced to nothing but a house wife, that most of her liberties would be taken away, that her one job would have to be birthing children, and that she would have to live the rest of her years under the control of a man she didn't love. So before all the wedding preparations could begin she sought her brother out for help and was ecstatic when he insisted that she live with him and Isabel in Paris for the time being. She had never lived outside of Spain before, much less the city she grew up in.

So there she was, living with her brother and sister-in-law in Paris in an attempt to start a new life as far away as possible so she wouldn't be forced to live one that was going to be forced upon her. She shuddered at the thought of consummating a marriage with that man, and as of then she was quite happy with the prospect of starting a new life in a city she had always wished to visit.

"Graciela!" Isabel shouted and she couldn't help but roll her eyes.

"Yes! I'm coming!" she called back as she fixed the skirt of her dress before she made to leave her room. When she opened the door she found Isabel standing in front of her with her arms crossed over her chest while holding a basket, looking none too pleased that she had taken her sweet time in leaving the room.

"About time you got out! Are you done with whatever it was you were doing in there?" she asked her.

"Yes."Graciela nodded. Isabel nodded her head and turned around.

"Then let's go." she said and made her way down the hall toward the stairs with Graciela followed after her.

They descended down to the main level of the house and made their way outside. When they both stepped out of the house they were greeted by warm sunlight and a cool breeze, the air was crisp and Graciela couldn't help but smile. Of all seasons autumn was by far her favorite. She followed Isabel and they both made their way down the street, presumably to go get whatever it was that they needed for dinner that night, but when Isabel took a detour down another street she wasn't at all familiar with she was confused. This was not the path they usually took when they went out shopping.

"Where are we going?" Graciela thought aloud. Isabel glanced over her shoulder to look at her.

"I want to go see your brother before we go shopping, if that's fine with you?" Isabel replied.

"Of course it's fine with me." Graciela nodded.

They were both silent as they continued making their way to the clinic where Valentin worked, well it was actually his clinic. He was a doctor and one of Paris' best, Graciela was sure to seek out medical attention from him if she ever needed it, not that she really had a choice anyway. Her mother and father were proud of him, their son: the doctor. At the thought of her mother her eyes began stinging as her vision was slowly blurred with tears. She could only imagine how her mother might have been feeling at the moment and her father…she wouldn't want to be around her father now and she could only imagine how furious he was with her.

"Isabel," Graciela began before biting her tongue as she considered her words for a moment before continuing. "Do you think it fine if I send a letter to my mother?"

Isabel didn't answer her, and for a moment she thought that she hadn't heard her or if she did then she was just ignoring her but then the woman turned to look at her and slowly shook her head.

"No, I don't think it would be alright if you did so. Not for the time being anyway." she replied as she stopped in front of a store front. It took Graciela a minute to figure out that they had finally reached Valentin's clinic. She frowned and shook her head. Of course it wasn't a good idea, what was she thinking?

"I guess not…."

"Graciela, I know that you have a tight bond with your mother and right now she is definitely heart-broken that you left so suddenly. But I believe that she understands you decision to leave, even if she had no idea where you are right now. And about your father, I think it's best if you stay as far away from him as possible for now, and I assure you that you're safe with Valentin and I here in Paris." Isabel turned her full attention back to her and offered her a smile which Graciela couldn't help but return.

"Thank you." Graciela said, relieved.

"It's really no problem." Isabel reached for the door knob and grasped it. "Will you be going inside with me to see your brother?" she asked, still smiling. Graciela shook her head.

"I think I'll wait for you outside."

Isabel nodded in response. "Alright, I won't be long." she said before entering the clinic, leaving Graciela outside.

She was glad that she could be free, even if for only a little while. With a relieved sigh she turned around to search for any benches to sit on while she waited and just as she did somebody ran past her, almost knocking her down. Startled, she leaned against the store front to regain her balance before looking down the street as a young man sprinted into an alleyway, his arm over his stomach. She stood there for a moment, dazed, before finally regaining her composure and pushing herself off the wall. Her heart raced in her chest as she looked around, wondering if anybody had been chasing him for him to have sprinted down the street like that only for her eyes to fall on a few drops of blood on the cobblestone before her.

Blood?

She looked up again, furrowing her brows as she wondered if it was his blood. Should she go see if he was still there? If he was bleeding enough to leave behind blood on the street then he couldn't go far. She considered leaving her post in front of her brother's clinic and bit her lip. It didn't really seem like a good idea to go do so. She was just fine where she was and who knew what would happen if she wandered away? However the thought that the man might have been hurt bothered her.

She glanced over her shoulder to look through the window of the clinic to see Isabel talking with a man she recognized as her brother. She then looked back down the street and took a step forward before stopping. No, she really shouldn't. If he was hurt then he could seek medical assistance on his own. He had enough energy to run and push her out of the way so he should have enough to go find a doctor. Why should she care? His condition didn't concern her at all.

She wished that wasn't a lie.


His heart pounded in his chest and his lungs burned with every breath he took, but he continued running nonetheless, his feet pounding against the cobblestone. He was determined to avoid being caught; his life depended on it though getting away shouldn't really be a problem. He was great at escaping sticky situations, and this was just one he needed to get out of.

Pushing past a few people, ignoring the remarks and insults he received as he did so, he clutched his stomach which still hurt after the beating he received earlier and he was actually surprised that he managed to escape despite being slashed by a dagger in the stomach in the process. He could feel the blood pooling through his shirt, his hand covered in the sticky substance but it wasn't a bad injury. He had gotten worse before. But each step he took only made the pain worse, and soon it hurt to even breath. He could get out of this. He just needed to hide.

Thoughts raced through his mind: Where should he go? Was there anywhere he could go without being found? His thoughts were interrupted when he pushed a young woman who couldn't be any older than he was out of the way, receiving a startled shriek from her and for a split second he thought about stopping to apologize. He shook his head.

What was he thinking? There was no time to consider his manners. Without another thought he ran into an alley but stopped upon realizing there was no outlet. A feeling of dread and panic washed over him as he banged the wall with his bloody fist.

"Shit!" he cursed as he took a few steps backwards. No, no, no! He couldn't die. He couldn't let him catch him. Looking down at his stomach he placed a hand over the small stain of blood on his shirt. His stomach flipped as he looked around in panic, wincing as he added pressure to the gash on his stomach to ease the bleeding. Where could he go now?

Deciding to sneak his way out of the alley, he turned around and let out a gasp when he was suddenly shoved roughly against the wall, yelping in pain as pain exploded in his stomach and his head came in contact with the wall behind him and rebounded off it, causing the back of his head to throb.

"Did you honestly think you could get away from me?"

His eyes widened upon hearing the voice and he looked up to see a man with shocking green eyes glaring at him. Those eyes were probably going to be the last thing he saw before his death. He could feel cool hands wrapping around his neck and tightening as he struggled to escape his captor's hold. All he could hear was laughter, and that sound made his stomach knot with anxiety. He was going to die right there.

"Oliver I didn't do anything!" he managed to say, letting out a choked cough when the man tightened his grip on his neck even more.

"How is it that I don't believe you? Alexander, you of all people should know not to mess with us. You betrayed us-"

"No!" Alexander let out, gnashing his teeth together as he struggled to keep his eyes open. Air. He needed air! Black dots started filling his vision and he was starting to feel dizzy from the lack of oxygen as he clawed at the man's hands, cursing the fact that it was then that he felt so weak. "I…didn't."

"I don't believe you." Oliver snarled as he loosened the grip he had on Alexander's neck, now holding him against the wall with one hand while he dug into his pocket with another and took out a small dagger.

Before he could say anything else, Oliver pulled him a few inches off the wall before slamming him against it again. Pain erupted in the back of his head once again when he made contact with the wall and he let out a sharp gasp, closing his eyes shut. He gritted his teeth as he felt the blade rip into his stomach again. He opened his mouth to let out a scream, a cry, anything but all he heard was silence.

Blood slowly bloomed out of the wound, staining his shirt with more blood. When Oliver finally let go of him he fell into a heap on the ground and immediately clutched his stomach as he coughed, grateful that he was finally able to breathe again. He wheezed as he tried to get up, but as he tried to hoist himself up more pain erupted through his lower torso. Everything seemed to spin around him and he found it difficult to think as he watched Oliver make his way out of the alley, his vision now blurry. The one thought that did stay in the front of his mind however, was the thought that his life was slowly bleeding away.

He opened his eyes upon realizing he had closed them when he felt the cool cobblestone pressing against his cheek. He didn't even realized that he had collapsed on the ground, and oddly enough it felt comfortable. He could feel himself becoming numb, his limbs growing heavier with every passing second. Maybe dying wasn't as bad as he thought. Dying...sleeping...he was so sleepy...

He closed his eyes again and took in deep breaths before forcing them open again. No...he needed to stay awake but he found it hard to stay alert as his eye lids continued to grow heavier. He cracked his eyes open one last time, refusing to fall into the depths of unconsciousness only to see the outline of a woman standing at the entrance of the alley followed by a shriek that pierced his ears.

He was too tired to care anymore about his end. If he was to die then so be it. He didn't try to stay awake anymore. Instead he allowed himself to fall into the darkness.


A/N: I know that this is just starting out, but I would really appreciate it if I got any feedback. Anyway, thank you for reading :).


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