52 - Bless the Broken Road II

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This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you
Yes it did

I think about the years I spent just passing through
I'd like to have the time I lost and give it back to you
But you just smile and take my hand
You've been there you understand
It's all part of a grander plan that is coming true

March 21, 1481

Venice, Italy


Catherine's eyes shot open at the curse, which had made an attempts\ to be quiet, but the one who uttered it jerked beneath her. It was dark, but she could just barely make out Ezio sucking on his index finger, his expression reflecting pain. Her gaze flicked to the night stand, where she expected he might have put out a candle-it was dark after all-but she couldn't even make out the lingering glow of the flame. She did, however, notice a familiar object beside the candle.

Her clock.

Her heart raced a little and she instinctively clutched at the young man's shirt. She had an idea what he had tried to do, and, knowing the one reason why the artifact would burn him, she had a feeling she was right.

"Oh-did I wake you?" the young man inquired softly, arm wrapped around her waist tugging her a bit closer. "Sorry, kitty-'Cat. Go back to sleep. You need your rest."

Catherine made a hum of acknowledge and settled her head on his chest, but sleep she did not come. No, guilt had invaded her heart and mind, and it consumed her. She knew why Ezio had tried to take the Clock; he meant to keep it from her-to keep her safe, but he couldn't. It wouldn't let him. She could feel his grip tighten a bit more, and an exasperated breath of air left him. He was frustrated. She knew him too well to not know when he was. The redhead sighed as she closed her eyes, hating she was causing him this pain.

"I'm sorry."

"What? For what?"

"You can't keep the Clock from me... it... it has a special... mechanism. It will always find its way back to me, no matter what anyone does," she explained, again clenching her hands. "I'm sorry-I... I know it's hard for you, and I don't... I don't mean to... but... please don't be angry..."

"No, no, no, I'm not angry," Ezio replied quickly, kissing her brow gently and using his other hand to cup her cheek. "It's not your fault. I just... to know I can't protect the one I love... there is nothing more infuriating..."

"I know... but... but we will find a way to keep it from hurting me again," she told him, leaning into his touch.

"Indeed... and I suppose the artifact is not all bad-it did bring you to me," he chuckled.

She chuckled back, "That it did... and thank God for that. Although... I do wish you could have met my Mom and family, too. I think you would have found my time fun, although confusing for a while."

"I would have loved to meet them as well, and it wouldn't be fun without a little confusion."

"God, I'd love to see you freak out over cars and planes and trying to figure out phones and TV's," the redhead snickered, turning to lay her arm on his chest and settle her head on her limbs.

"I have no idea what you mean by any of those things," he grinned in reply, reaching up to stroke her hair. "But I would be happy to learn them-all that really matters is that we're together."

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