Part Four

     Julia came out of the girl's room, her expression thoughtful.  She was considering going over to the Inn, just to make sure Barnabas hadn't thoroughly lost his temper.  But as the doctor considered, Barnabas and Angelique came down the hall.  He was angry.  She could tell from the way he gripped his cane and the way he moved.  "Are you all right, Angelique?"  she asked, looking past him to the other woman.
     "I'm fine, Julia.  Thank you."
     "Your concern, Julia, is admirable," Barnabas said. "Where is she?"
     "In there," she said, indicating the room behind her.  "She's asleep."  When he started past her, Julia placed a hand on his arm.  "Let's go to my office and talk first."
     For a moment, she thought he might ignore her and push past her to enter the room.  Instead, he turned and led the way down the corridor.
    Inside the office, Angelique sat down on the divan, content for the moment to let Julia attempt to handle the problem.  Barnabas turned on the doctor immediately.  "What's wrong with her, Julia?"
     "Sarah is-"
     Angelique felt Barnabas' reaction immediately.  She straighted, realizing that she hadn't told him.  "Sarah?"  he questioned, as his eyes burned into her.  "You had the-audacity to -"
     "I TOLD you that I felt her move for the first time just after your sister died," she defended herself.  "She-She looks like your sister -"
     His look promised retribution later, but now he turned back to Julia.  "I believe I asked you a question."
     "And I was attempting to answer it," Julia reminded him.  "I have to run some more tests, but I do know that it's a blood disorder.  Sarah fatigues easily, she's very pale.  As to the cause, I'm not sure.  Nor can I say with any certainty that I'll be able to cure it if I DO find it."
     "Is her life in danger?"
     "At his moment, no.  But if this - illness continues to sap her strength -" she lifted her shoulders to complete the statement.
     "I see.  I'll pay the medical expenses, of course."
     Angelique's pride made her speak up.  "That's not necessary, Barnabas.  I -"
     "She is my daughter, and my responsibility.  What have you told her about her father?"
     "As little as possibly.  Just that we were married only a few weeks before realizing what a mistake we had made and got a divorce.  I told her that by the time I realized she was going to be born, I didn't know where you were."
     He started toward the door.  "I'm going to see her."
     Angelique put a hand on his arm, only to withdraw it upon seeing his expression.  "Let her sleep.  You can see her tomorrow."
     "I won't wake her.  I just want to look at her."  He had addressed his comment to Julia, not Angelique.
     "It's Angelique's decision," Julia told him.
     He didn't look at Angelique, simply remained where he was.   Angelique sighed.  "Go on."  She stood looking at the closed door.  "He's so angry."
     "He's in shock, Angelique.  How did he find out?"

     She was so small, so pale, Barnabas thought, standing beside the bed where his daughter slept.  His daughter.  His - and Angelique's.  And she DID look like that other Sarah.  As if uncertain she was real, Barnabas lifted a shaking hand to smooth back the light brown hair.  Brown eyes fluttered open to examine him.
     "You're - him," she said quietly, her face filled with a curious contentment.
     "My father.  I always told Mother that I would know you if I saw you - You are, aren't you?" she asked, revealing a glimmer of uncertainty.
     "Yes.  I'm your father," he told her, his voice gruff with emotion.
     "Does Mother know that you're here?"
     "She's waiting in Dr. Hoffman's office.  I wasn't supposed to wake you."
     "I'm glad you did."
     "Why don't you go back to sleep?"
     "I'm afraid you'll be gone when I wake up."
     Barnabas smiled.  "Now that I've found you, Sarah, I'll never let you go.  Sleep now."

     Angelique stopped pacing when the door opened. "Did you see her?"
     "She's a darling child.  She knew who I was before I said a word."
     "You woke her?"
     "No.  She woke on her own.  She looked at me and said she knew who I was."
     "She told me that she would recognize him."
     "I waited until she fell asleep.  Julia, how long will she have to stay here?"
     "A few days - possibly a week."
     "Why do you want to know, Barnabas?"  Angelique asked.
     "I have to re-open the Old House and get Willie back from Boston-"
     "You're planning to take Sarah to the Old House?"
     "It's where she belongs," Barnabas told her.
     "And what if I have made other plans?  I've already found a place for us to stay -"
     "I'm going to rent the Evans cottage from Julia."
     "By all means.  But Sarah will be at the Old House with me."
     Angelique felt the situation spinning out of control.  "Just a minute, Barnabas.  I've tried to keep my temper, becaues I know you're the wronged party here, but Sarah is just as much my daughter as she is yours - I raised her for nine years without any help from you, and I can continue to do so, if necessary."
     "I admit that, but I wasn't aware of her existence.  Now that I am, I intend to take full responsibility for her."
     "And what am I supposed to do?"  Angelique asked, looking up at him.
     "I'm sure you could return to your career -" he suggested.
     "I am not leaving without my daughter," she told him.
     "Sarah," Julia interrupted, "won't be going anywhere for some time.  What she needs most is both of your support.  She doesn't need you to be constantly arguing, pulling her back and forth between you.  Sarah is MY patient, and I won't allow EITHER of you to upset her, is that clear?"
     "Yes," Angelique agreed.
     "Perfectly clear, Julia.  I'll be going now.  But I'll be back early tomorrow. I'm sure Elizabeth will be anxious to talk to you, Angelique, once I've told her about Sarah."
     "I'll go out to Collinwood tomorrow," Angelique told him.
     "Good night, then.  Do you need a lift out to the house, Julia?"
     "No.  I'll probably just stay here for the night.  Good night."
     He hesitated in the doorway, glancing at Angelique, as if he might wish her a good night as well, but finally he closed the door behind him.
     "The nerve of that man!"  Angelique declared, arms folded across her waist.  "He hasn't changed.  I don't think he ever will."
     Julia shook her head.  "Oh, he's changed, Angelique.  He's changed."

     As he had expected, Elizabeth's light was still on and she bade him enter when he knocked lightly on her bedroom door.  "I hope I'm not disturbing you."
     "Not at all.  I was waiting for you to come in, actually.  You went to see Angelique, didn't you?"
     "How did you know?"
     "I saw the way you looked when Carolyn read that article earlier.  And you were extremely preoccupied during dinner.  Was your suspicion correct?"
     "About the little girl?  Yes."
     "Do you want to talk about it?"  she offered.
     "If you wouldn't mind."  He went to the fireplace.  "I first met Angelique, several years before I left England.  A mutual friend introduced us at a party.  She was a very young, struggling model, and I thought she was the most beautiful girl I had ever seen.  We saw each other every day for the next week.  My father disapproved of the connection, and forbade me to see her again.  Perhaps if he hadn't -"  He frowned.  "We eloped and spent a week in the Greek Isles before returning to England - and my father's wrath.  He had used that week to have Angelique investigated."
     "Oh, my."
     "According to that report, it seemed that I was not the first wealthy man she had tried to become married to-I was the only one foolish enough to have actually married her.  She tried to deny it, but I ordered her out.  I didn't see her for over a year.  By that time, I
had decided that it might not have been her fault -her mother, according to that report again, had married several times, always to wealthy men.   I told her that I forgave her, and offered her some money.  She refused it, said that she had done nothing to be forgiven for, that her career was going well.  Then she asked if we might at least be friends.  Unknown to me, she had discovered that she was going to have a child after I had sent her away."
     "Why didn't she tell you about the baby during that visit?"
     "I suggest you ask her tomorrow when she comes to see you.  Sarah is ten now, and although I only spoke to her for a few moments, she seems a dear, sweet child."
     "Are they at the Inn?"
     "No.  Sarah isn't well.  Julia doesn't know what is wrong.  When she releases Sarah from the hospital, I intend for her to live at the Old House."
     "And what is Angelique going to do?"  Elizabeth asked.
     "I don't know.  All I know is that she kept my daughter from me for ten years."
     "Barnabas, I understand that you're angry and hurt, but try to remember that we all make mistakes."
     "I don't think I can forgive her, Elizabeth.  Not for this.  Thank you for listening to me."
     "It was my pleasure."
     "Good night."


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