Tiny pieces of the puzzle

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Fabiola and Patrick didn't always get along. Soon after Maria Valdez popped out Fabiola, she popped out Patrick. Patrick came when Fabiola was just a year and a month old. As toddlers they both vied for their mom's attention.

Their sibling rivalry spilled into childhood and teenage-hood. Patrick and Fabiola were just too different. Patrick preferred to run around in the forest behind his home and Fabiola screeched at the sight of mud. Things got better after Fabiola left for college in Spain. Patrick attributed it to seeing less and less of her. Distance certainly became beneficial. That year their relationship improved dramatically and when things turned very sour for Patrick, Fabiola was there. She didn't know the real reason why Patrick cried but she sat by his bed and comforted him.

Soon after, he left for the United States and spent his vacations at the family castle in Madrid or in Athens with his two brothers. Even though they kept the family house in Warlington, their parents arranged vacations outside Australia.

It didn't take long for Patrick to get to Steve & the blue bottle. It was a small restaurant just two blocks away from the hospital. Patrick walked there, greeting as many people as he could. He didn't remember all of them, but flashed them a smile anyway.

It was also something Fabiola didn't have in common with him. She hated the town and hated that she was forced to be there for a family reunion. It was in her opinion a dull town. She couldn't stand seeing the same people over and over again.

"As mom says, frowning will give you wrinkles," Patrick said as he spotted his sister and joined her at the table she was occupying.

Fabiola looked up from her phone, her recently-colored blond long hair moving on her shoulders. "You took forever," she said disapprovingly, narrowing her eyes. Her long eyelashes made them the more threatening.

"I met Susie and Mark by Bates and Co. Remember them? They are married now," Patrick said.

Fabiola looked horror-stricken. "You walked?"

Patrick shrugged. "Yeah. It's hard to see beauty behind tinted windows...and it's good for the body."

Fabiola rolled her eyes and clicked on something on her phone. "You have a beautiful expensive car! Your rose-tinted glasses are annoying."

Patrick just chuckled. He didn't expect Fabiola to understand something she'd failed to understand in all her 8 years at Warlington. And after all, beauty was in the eye of the beholder.

"I ordered you a drink," Fabiola said and raised her hand, signaling for the waiter to bring the drink she'd ordered.

Patrick looked up to a sight that made his heart ache. Given that his heart had been aching ever since he met Charlie in the hospital corridor, this time it ached more. Charlie was there in the restaurant, talking to someone who looked like the manager. The "manager" was shaking his head and Charlie looked like he had just received the most devastating news of his life. Hands together in a plea, he said something that looked like "please".

"How's work?" Fabiola asked.

Her words and the waiter bringing his juice distracted Patrick from looking at Charlie. The waiter obstructed his view, forcing him to turn his eyes back at his sister.

"It's okay. I'm doing some rotations for that certification and I have a few...um...things," he replied.

Patrick secretly cursed himself. He couldn't talk about his patients, but to call Charlie a thing?

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