The Draw

by J. Lynn

Standard J. Lynn Disclaimer: None of the recognizable characters belong to me, Marvel owns them. I'm not making any money of this, I'm just gaining creative satisfaction.
Author's Note: This story was written to be a sequel to Ascian's beautiful "Late Fragment". I firmly suggest that you read it.

As I rush towards the tram station my heart hammers with in my chest. I can't miss it, not when I just spent the last of my money buying this stupid, non-refundable ticket.

Sliding through the gate I grab my bag from the x-ray machine's roller-ramp. Stupid leftover from the twentieth century. If they're gonna spend nearly fifteen trillion platni-coins on these international sim-tram's they ought to at least get some decent technology.

Move it buster, I don't care if you're Elvis re-animated, whoever that may be, you have absolutely no right to be moving that slow in the middle of the walk. Don't you realize that some of us have tram's ta catch.

*Last call for tram-line 342 to Sydney Australia*

"Flonq it!" I growled savagely, putting on the speed and just barely making it to the train.

As the train pulled out I looked around for an empty seat. Nothing. I pulled out my ticket to see who had my seat.


Cursing under my breath I settled down on the floor.

* * * * * *

Still shaking the stiffness out of my legs I lugged my duffel bag through the Sydney tram station. As I left the ridiculously ostentatious building I could feel the pull of the compulsion I had been following all my life.

I had known that I was missing something vital since I was a little girl. As soon as I was old enough to make a decent wage I left the foster home I'd been living in for as long as I could remember. I'd go from town to town looking for whatever it was that I'd been needing. Sometimes the feeling would get stronger, like I was closer to whatever it was I was looking for, but then in the middle of the night it'd fade to a dull ache and I'd start trying to scrape together enough money to go to the next stop on the tram.

Over the last five years I've been across the world, picking up new languages, odd jobs and a multitude of bad living arrangements. And even though I must have met a quarter of the world's population in my search I still haven't found who or what I'm looking for. Being the restless person I am, I decided that if I didn't find it by the end of the year I'd leave Earth and start poking around some of the colonies.

Shaking off my reflective mood I headed towards the nearest data upload to look for a job.

* * * * * *

Three weeks later I'd found a job, an old, barely functional, speed-cycle, and a sweet old guy who let me crash at his place. It's amazing what an innocent act and big blue eyes will get you. Yeah I know I'm taking advantage of a lonely old man, but I didn't feel like finding a jerk of a boyfriend, or sleeping on the street. I've done both a far too many times.

It was my day off and I was heading towards some old ruins I'd heard about from my new friend the candy vendor. Stan firmly believed that the old place was haunted. Of course Stan also believed that you could buy chocolate in every grocery store in the twentieth. Now I'm not saying that it isn't possible, but I've never had a single bite of the stuff, it's ridiculous to spend the amount of a new speed-cycle for an ounce of food that's not even that good for you.

Anyhow, I figured I'd check out the remains of this old twentieth tumble-down, see the country around this side of the planet, and then head back to gloat over Stan. As I pulled up I noticed that the ache, or whatever you want to call it, was stronger than I'd felt in a long time.

Keeping my eyes open I walked towards the entrance. It was ancient, falling apart, and one of the biggest twentieth buildings I had seen. Most of the buildings from the twentieth century have been pulled down and the materials put to better use, the only times you see one is if it's to far out for the recycle crews to bother with.

As the wind whistled through the broken windows and I repressed a shiver, it was easy to see how this place could be thought haunted. It was just like looking in on someone's life. There were old, tattered pictures on the walls. Some of them were hand drawn, a black woman with a white mohawk, a old bald man in a wheelchair, and a striking red haired woman.

As I looked at the pictures I felt them calling to that missing part of me. Shadow memories haunted me, it seemed I could almost see the black woman with her hair grown out, tending to a garden.

Turning I saw... him. I moved closer and touched the picture, his wild blue eyes starred out at me. Those eyes might frighten someone else, but to me they were as familiar as my own. He was the one who I had been dreaming about all my life. Him, the man who would sit and meditate one night and the next he'd be slaughtering dozens of assailants. Even after a night of dreams filled with fighting I would never wake up scared, they weren't nightmares, they were comforting, memories of a friend I had never met.

I reached up and reverently took the picture off the wall. Though I couldn't bring myself to move the other pictures I knew I wouldn't be able to leave this man in this life or any other. Sliding the picture into my backpack I began to explore the rest of the house. Each room was somewhat familiar, but there were no shadow memories like I had when I looked at the pictures.

After several hours of exploring the house I went out the back door. Sighing as the slight breeze blew my short hair into my eyes, I looked around. Off to my right I saw an old swimming pool. Filled with rain water, it was scummy, but still enticing. Stripping of my clothes, I jumped in.

Turning to float on my back I starred up at the clouds, eventually drifting off into a light doze.

* * * * * *

"What the hell do you think you're doing here?" A voice woke me.

Startled, I instinctively reached up and grabbed the foot on the deck above me. Whoever it was lost their balance and fell into the pool with a mighty splash.

Quickly turning to pull myself out of the water I got halfway out before a large hand grabbed my leg and pulled me back in.

"I asked you a question," the voice growled in my ear, "I want an answer."

"I was swimming, what'd it look like I was doing?" I shot out. "Now, if you wouldn't mind..." I kicked out and connected with his torso, driving the breath out of him. As he sucked in air desperately I climbed out of the pool and started pulling my clothes back on.

The gasps turned to chuckles as he hefted himself out of the pool. "You're pretty good at that whole disabling your opponent trick," He said.

I peered into the darkness at him, "Yeah, well I'm the best there is at what I do, and what I do ain't pretty."

He seemed to freeze in place. "Where'd you hear that kid?"

"What do you mean where'd I hear that? I've been saying that as long as I can remember. And don't call me kid," I snapped.

"What's yer name then kid?" he asked softly.

Shrugging off the sense of de ja vu I answered. "Not that it's any of your business, but it's Jae Lea."

"Huh," he grunted. "So why'd you come out here?"

"I came to look at the ruins," I gestured at the building to my back. "What're you doing out here?"

"I own this place," he said simply.

"Oh... I should probably tell you that I took one of the pictures..." I trailed off. Pulling the picture out of my bag I handed it to him.

He sat there looking at it for a minute, though how he could see anything in the dark was beyond me. Finally he broke the silence, "What made you pick this one kid? There are plenty better ones in there."

I paused for a minute, gathering my thoughts before I spoke. "He reminds me of someone."

"Who?" he inquired softly.

"I don't know," I answered honestly. "I've never met him."

The man seemed content with that answer and we sat there, on the old, dust covered concrete for... well I don't know how long, but it was long enough for me to start shivering.

He roused himself, "Come on kid, let's go in the house an you can get warm before ya go home."

As I followed him inside the house I felt strangely at home. It was as if what ever I'd been missing for all those years had suddenly rushed back to fill the void.

"Who are you?" I asked suddenly.

He paused and turned slightly. In the darkened house I still couldn't see a thing, but that didn't seem to trouble him. "Patch," he said finally.

"Patch," I said rolling the name around. "Are you sure?"

He let out a snort, "What's a'matter kid? Ya think I don't know my own name?"

I frowned. Why had I asked that question anyway? "No," I said finally. "It just doesn't seem like I should be calling you that."

"I've been called a lot of things," he said as he led the way down the hall. "Logan, Patch, Wolverine, Sorry S.O.B.," he chuckled. "You pick the expletive I've been called it. If you think Patch doesn't suit me you can pick somthin else."

Before I could even think about it for a second some hidden instinct inside me blurted out, "Wolvie. You should be called Wolvie."

The man stiffened and then abruptly ran forward. Caught off guard I tried to catch him. Turning round a corner to quickly I grabbed the counter top of the kitchen to stop myself. Suddenly a light shone in my eyes.

"Who are you?" The man asked raggedly. "How the hell do you know me?"

Squinting my eyes to cut down the glare from the old fashioned flashlight I answered him. "I already told you who I am. And I don't know you. I've never even met you! I just knew what to call you. "

Changing tracks suddenly he asked, "Who are your parents? Do they live in Sydney?"

"I don't have any parents. I'm one of the population replacements, grown after the Shi'ar-Earth war with the Drathmorians. I'm not from Sydney or any other place in particular. I just came out here to see the building. Now, if I've answered all your questions, would you mind telling me what bug just crawled up your butt?"

The man relaxed slightly and clicked of the flashlight, just as I was getting used to it I might add. "Sorry, I just..." He took a deep breath, "No one's called me that in a long time, and it brought back some memories."

"I'm sorry," I said soothingly. "If you like I'll call you Logan instead."

"Nah, ya can call me -" his voice caught for a moment, "Wolvie if you want. Sometimes I could use some remindin."

I smiled at him, "I should be goin."

He handed the picture to me, "You can keep it if you want."

"Nah, it belongs here. And I'll come back and visit sometime," I said.

"As you like," he said in his rumbling voice.

As I started to walk out of the door I turned to him, "You'll take good care of him, won't you?"

"Yeah kid," he replied. "I'll take care of him."

"Good," I said walking out. As I started up my speed-cycle I yelled over my shoulder. "Hey Wolvster!"

"What kid?" He asked.

"Don't call me kid!" I yelled before speeding off and leaving him, still chuckling, standing in the door.