Author's webpage: http://members.tripod.com/luxshine/
Author's notes: English Version of Descubrimientos.
By: Adalisa Zrate
-Then, since my legs weren't responding, Ray loaded Dief with our bags and kept walking with me over his bag... It was curious, since I couldn't see, and I hadn't any means to locate our position since the compass had fallen from a hill some hours before... but Ray seemed very sure of himself as we walked without direction. Of course, I couldn't argue or protest since it was because of me that we were chasing that man. Ray only wanted to stay on the plane to wait the rescue, but as my duty as Condestable of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police forced me to capture the killer, I was ready to do it even when I was... incapacitated, to put it that way. I would have died trying to capture him, possibly. But Ray, being my friend, didn't leave me alone and risked his life to help me. We would have died if it wasn't for him, I never finished thanking him for it.
-And the point is?- Stanley Raymond Kowalsky looked at Benton Fraser with complete boredom. They had been together for two months, in the middle of the tundra, searching 'the hand of Franklin pointing to the Beamount sea', and, even when it had been a nice trip from his point of view, he was getting tired of one little detail.- I don't know if you have noted it Fraser, but you have just spend an hour talking and I still don't get the sense of this story... One thing is solve cases in Chicago with Inuit stories and other, very different, is to pass time in the middle of the Yukon with Chicago tales.
-This didn't happen in Chicago, Ray- assured Fraser, as he stoke the fire in their camp - We were going to rebuild my father's cabin... Which is what we're going to do as soon as we get there. You see, after he shoot me, Ray proposed that we rebuild it together. I think it was his way of asking for forgiveness... But thanks to the accident we couldn't get there... Ray never liked coming to Canada, and I can understand him, since the first time he came... well, it was when Gerard's men tried to kill us, and after that, when he helped me to bring a prisoner to canadian soil, in order to save our lives he had to blow up his car...
Ray Kowalsky sighed, since he knew perfectly well that once Fraser started to talk about his old cases with Vecchio, he wouldn't shut up in a while... That usually confused him, since Fraser called Vecchio Ray, and the Mountie also called Kowalsky Ray, and sometimes, Kowalsky wondered if Fraser wouldn't prefer to be with Vecchio in the middle of nowhere.
-Sure... That's why he kept helping you- insisted Ray, praying that it would be the end of that subject. His mind was starting to show him many reasons why Vecchio would follow the crazed Mountie, and really, he didn't want to consider any of them, not when in that same moment, Vecchio had to be enjoying life in arms of Stella, his own ex-wife.
-I never asked him... -continued Fraser, ignoring the pleading tone of his friend, immersed in his own thoughts.- But... if he didn't want to help, to do his duty... he wouldn't have helped me. At the end, all our cases ended up as important cases for him at the Precint...
-And he knew that before he helped? I think he was using you.
Fraser turned to see Ray, shocked... In all the times Ray Vecchio had followed him, complaining about everything, but never refusing anything... Fraser never had thought that Ray was using him. After all, only in clothing, Fraser had cost Ray thousands of dollars... Welsh had threatened Ray with his job every time they were together on a case. No, it was impossible that Ray was using Fraser, and he say it so to Ray.
-The only time when his help could have been with a secret agenda, was when I lost my memory. I was the only one who had seen the license plate in a car used in a kidnapping... But even then, it wasn't at all necessary that Ray spent all his time with me... I remember that Welsh ordered to use normal police procedures. But Ray ignored him and continued helping me to remember everything. He was patient with me, he had a lot of tact when he told me my father was dead... Like when he shot me...
Kowalsky turned his eyes to Diefenbaker, as his mutual friend returned to his memories. The wolf only looked at him, with something close to pity. Although judging by Stan's knowledge on lupine behavior, Dief could be missing the precint donuts. That was too much for Ray, an ex-cop from Chicago who had only got himself in Ray Vecchio's life because his own was a disaster. He hadn't counted with the fact that said life wasn't exactly a bed of roses.
-And then he put his newly found Riviera between the mobsters, Mark and myself, even when he had just bought it to replace the one I had destroyed before....
Fraser's voice was even and calm, in the tone that Ray could identify as 'this story is never going to end', which made him look at his watch.
-Fraser... Fraser... Fraser!- Finally, Ray Kowalsky lift his voice enough to interrupt the endless flow of words from his friend mouth.
-Is there a problem, Ray?- Fraser looked at his partner, frankly puzzled to see him angry.
-Problem? No buddy, no problems here...But, I don't know if you have noted that you just reached two hours talking only about Ray Vecchio and your life in Chicago.
-Oh dear... Two hours, Ray? It didn't seem that long...
-That you got right. If we add all the time I spent the last two months listening about your old pal, I have a week doing just that.
-A week? I think you're exaggerating, Ray.
-Stop calling me that. -The words where out from Stan's mouth with difficulty. It was impossible that Fraser hadn't realized that he spend all his time talking, it was impossible that he didn't noted how his voice changed when he mentioned Ray Vecchio... It was impossible that he didn't realize his own feelings. And at that thought, Stan stopped... What did the Mountie feel for Vecchio?
-You told me that everybody called you Ray, Stan...- Fraser was very surprised, but that didn't stop Stan from noticing the change of name. Oh, and if that wasn't a clue to note that the thoughts of the Mountie were very confused, Stan hadn't seen one. But it was obvious that the Mountie didn't know what went through his own head. Sighing deeply, Stan began speaking.
-Yeah, I know Fraser. Everybody calls me Ray... But when I'm with you I don't know if you mean me or Ray Vecchio... So it's less confusing if you just call me Stan.
-Ray is not here, Stan... How could I confuse him with you?
-Fraser, I'll just say it one more time... Every time we have some free time, you know, doing nothing, you start talking about Ray Vecchio. Last week you congratulate me for his birthday! You think about him all the time, and you can't admit it! I just one to know one thing... Exactly what you feel for him?
Fraser looked at Stan with a surprised look. He opened his mouth to tell him that he and Ray were only good friends, but nothing came out if his vocal cords. He remembered the question Ray had made to him a long time ago 'And how many best friends do you have, eh?' and he smiled. And just then, Fraser realized that Stan was telling the truth... He couldn't stop thinking about Ray Vecchio, the Italian cop he had met four years ago in a holding cell of the 27th Precinct.
Stan just watched his partner, as his friend reached a conclusion. It wasn't easy to know what Fraser was thinking, but with some practice one could get lucky and guess it. So the American began packing the things in the camp, convinced that anyway, given the circumstances, he wouldn't sleep anyway.
-What are you doing, Stan? -Fraser had a strange expression in his face. Now, his eyes had the same sad gleam that Stan had noted the first time they met, when the Mountie expected to find Vecchio and had found only ashes...'So, even then your heart knew' Stan thought, closing one of the bags.
-What does it looks like? For what you have told me, every time you needed to talk with Vecchio, he appeared at your door, didn't he? -Fraser just nodded, remembering Ray, still hurt because of an explosion, at his father's cabin door, thinking about Ray, wounded by Muldoon's bullet, as he returned to Canada.- But this time that ain't going to happen. You have a lot of things to talk with Vecchio, and you can't wait for him to think about coming him when he is enjoying life in Florida.- That sounded full of rancor. After all, Stan still loved Stella.- So we're going to go to the nearest airport, you'll take the first plane that takes you to Florida and... well, you'll think about the rest in your way.
Two days later, Fraser was in the waiting room in Ottawa's airport, ready to take the flight which would take him to Chicago, before going to Florida. As Stan made the arrangements, he pulled out his wallet from his pocket, the same wallet that Ray had given him when Fraser needed money to pay Willy and that he had never returned. Inside it, he had a magazine clipping, a little crumpled due to it's age, from the Bolt trial. In it, Ray smiled at his side, with one arm resting over Fraser's shoulder, who had a tiny smile, knowing he had done his duty. It wouldn't be long before he saw his old friend again, and his heart knew it, since it seemed to beat with more energy than before.- You're my best friend, Ray.- he whispered, putting the clipping in it's place as Stan returned.- And no one can replace you in my heart.
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