A/N: I know a lot of stories have been done like this, but I'm doing my version of it anyway. I own nothing.
Anneliese Héderváry- Nyo! Austria
Peter Kirkland- Sealand
Wynona Martin- Wy
Marcello Vargas- Seborga
Bruno Héderváry- Kugelmugel
Vladimir Popescu - Romania
"Bring it over here!" Peter Kirkland grinned at sight of the old safe as it was lifted out of the Atlantic Ocean. After years of searching through the wreckage of the Titanic, he had finally found the Heart of the Ocean. It was a rather famous diamond necklace that sunk along with the ship and finding it would bring anyone fame along with wealth after it was sold. His friends Wynona and Marcello ran up behind him, just as excited as he was. The three of them had been working on finding the necklace for three years and today all their hard work would soon pay off.
When Peter had found out that a distant relative of his had died on board the Titanic, the topic of the ship and its passengers' stories intrigued him even more. What were the lives like of the passengers before the ship? And what were their lives like after? As he expanded his research, he found others who had had family on the ship which was how he had met Wynona and Marcello. Wynona's great grandfather had worked in the boiler room while Marcello's great uncle had been a 3rd class passenger. The necklace had also stirred up his interest and lead to him finding out that there was a possibility of it still being in the wreckage.
"I'm telling you, today's the day." Peter said, turning to Marcello.
"You say that everyday, you crazy bastardo. What makes you so sure about that?" He asked, a large grin spread across his face.
"I can feel it." He replied.
"And what if its not there?" Wynona asked. "That safe is the biggest lead we have, you know. Almost everything we've worked on is ridding on it."
"I know, I know. Honestly, you could have a little more faith in me, Wy." Peter gave her a small nudged.
Once it was set down, a welder was used to cut the door open, leaving the workers of the ship cheering, knowing that their hard work was about to be paid off. Peter knelt down beside it and began pulling out what was inside. All that was pulled out were several soaked pounds, leaving an almost mud-like texture on his skin. There was a thin slot that the necklace could have possibly fit into, but his face fell as he pulled out a notebook rather than a necklace. Setting it down, he reached his hands in the safe one more time before admitting to everyone and more importantly, himself, that the necklace wasn't there.
"Shit." Peter muttered under his breath. It was as though he had had cold water thrown onto him. All of his research was for nothing. Three years of hard work was down the drain.
"For all we know, it could be anywhere in the suite. We still have the mother's room to look through too. It'll take a little more time, but we'll find it, Peter. It's not impossible." Wynona had knelt down beside him and picked up the notebook. "The partners will want to talk to you. I'll go finish cleaning what we've found so far. Some of it could be useful."
Peter went back into his office and reluctantly picked up the satellite phone, hearing shouting on the other end.
Music filled the nearly empty recreation room as Bruno Héderváry walked in to find his great grandmother at the piano. It wasn't unusual to find her there. She had been a well known pianist about 25 years prior and had shown her children, her grandchildren and her great grandchildren how to play. It wasn't until the death of her husband did she allow herself to be placed in a home. Her first few days had been hard, but over time with visits from her family and the allowed use of the piano, she had been able to adjust. At 101, Anneliese Héderváry found that she had outlived her husband, both of her children, and one grandchild and it pained her to no end. She sought comfort in the fact that she still had living family members.
"Morning Gran." Bruno greeted as he pulled up a chair next to her. The music stopped playing and she turned to face him. She smiled and kissed both of his cheeks before taking him in. At the age of twenty three, Bruno had started to follow along in great-grandmother's passion for the piano and was starting out doing private shows. She let her hand stray to his hair and filded with one of the braids in distaste. He had long, light blond, almost white hair that was tied back into two braids and had refused any of her complaints of how he should cut it.
"Here I was thinking that you had finally gotten a haircut." She smiled softly. "I'm surprised to see you. I thought you said you were coming next week."
"I decided to surprise you." He replied. "What were you playing?"
"Who knows. Half the time I find myself just playing whatever pops into my mind." She replied, smiling slightly. "I think I'll take a break for now since you're here."
"How about I play something for you instead." Bruno offered. She moved over so that he could sit down.
"How's your mother? Is she well?"
"She's doing good. She wanted to be here herself, but something came up back home, so she sent me ahead." He answered as he sat down next to her. "She sends her best though."
Bruno had just started playing Chopin Waltz No. 7 when the T.V. in the background was turned on. They did a good job of just ignoring it until the announcer spoke once more.
'There's no denying that the subject of Titanic has been a topic of interest for several years. I've been planning this expedition for the last three years and so far, we've recovered some amazing things that show that there's more to the passengers that had traveled on the ship."
"Gran, are you alright?" Bruno looked over at his grandmother who was watching the T.V. with wonder in her eyes.
"Mr. Kirkland, some say you're nothing more than a thief with a rather large agenda." The T.V. news reporter was saying. "What is your response to these comments?"
"I'm merely trying to preserve a piece of history." The man replied. "You look at those who found King Tut's tomb and they aren't called grave robbers. I have museum workers here that a fully trained to make sure whatever we find in the wreckage is preserved and catalogued properly." The camera panned to what was on the table. "Earlier today, my team uncovered this drawing and we manged to clean it up and keep it intact up here in the lab."
The camera showed a portrait of a young woman who was nude and was laying across a divan. The artist had captured her facial features quite well. There was a mole located on the right side of her mouth and she had long, dark hair that was strewn across the pillow. What drew Anneliese's eyes the most however was the necklace that was around the woman's neck.
"Bruno?" She looked over towards him. "Would you be a dear and get me a phone?"
Peter was watching the subs go into the water and was about to get in the other one when Marcello came up behind him, out of breath.
"Pete, I've got someone of the phone for you." He held out the satellite phone, breathing heavily.
"Just take a message. I've got to go pilot the sub and see if we can find the necklace in another room." He pushed the phone out of his face and started walking away. Marcello followed after him.
You're going to want to take this call." Peter glared at him for a moment before taking the phone. "You're gonna want to speak up, she's a little old."
He wasn't sure what to expect on the other line, but soft-spoken woman surprised him and he had to move away from the noise in order to hear her voice clearly.
"What can I do for you Mrs. ?" He looked towards Marcello from confirmation.
"Héderváry." Marcello told him. "Anneliese Héderváry." Peter nodded before going back to the phone.
"I was wondering if you've found the heart of the ocean yet, Mr. Kirkland." Her voice sounded cheerful. Peter's eyes widened as he looked over to see Marcello smirking at him.
'Told you so.' He mouthed.
"You've got my attention now, Mrs. Héderváry. Do you know who the woman in the picture is?" There was a pause. Peter tapped his fingers on the railing, waiting for his response.
"I do actually. That woman in the picture was me."
"I managed do a little research and found that she used to be a part-time actress back in the 1920s along with having written and preformed a few musical pieces. Not to mention she was quite the donna bella when she was younger." Marcello pulled up an old picture of Anneliese Héderváry that he had managed to find. Peter looked between the drawing and the photograph and was surprised to see how well her features matched the picture. Whoever had drawn her clearly knew what they were doing. "Of course she's got nothing you." Marcello directed this last part towards Wynona who was cleaning off the other objects that had been found in the room.
"Thanks Marci, that means a lot coming from you." She replied sarcastically. "Mrs. Héderváry's arriving today on the helicopter, so go get her room ready."
When Anneliese had arrived on the ship, it took nearly an hour for her to get settled in. It appeared as though she had brought everything she owned and was taking great care to place them accordingly in her room. Soon she was wheeled over to where the lab was by Bruno. Bruno's mother had been rather reluctant about letting Anneliese go to the ship, but Bruno had promised that he'd keep an eye on her and had gone with her.
"This is Bruno, my great-grandson. He helps take care of me." Anneliese smiled at up at Bruno.
"It's nice to meet you both." Peter extended a hand toward her, which she took, then a hand towards Bruno who looked at it for a moment before taking it. He was suspicious of the man, who wasn't much older than he was, in front of him.
"I'll catch you up on what we know of the necklace so far." Peter went over to a cabinet and looked through the top drawer before pulling out a file and opening it. "Popescu had bought the necklace for his fiancée Anneliese Edelstein, which was you." Peter read off the paper and looked at the woman sitting in front of him. "After it sank along with the Titanic, he filed a claim for it, but came up empty handed from what I learned. If what you say is true, then you are now my new best friend." He joked. Anneliese smiled. "I can show you a few items we managed to recover from your room."
She was lead over to a table that had a few broken trinkets. Her hand grazed over an old hair comb that she had worn to a hand mirror. She picked it up carefully as though it would break at the slightest sharp movement and turned it over. In her reflection, she saw her now gray hair and the lines on her face.
"The reflection's changed a little." Anne said, setting it down. Bruno looked at what was on the table. His great grandmother had never really talked much about her life before meeting his great grandfather. All he knew was that she had manged to live the way she wanted before she had settled down. He looked at the portrait, admiring the handiwork of it over all. It was hard to see his great-grandmother as anything other than old, but the proof was in the drawing.
"Are you sure you're ready?" Bruno asked her, putting a hand over her's. She nodded.
"I have to. I've never really told anyone about this. Your great-grandfather only knew a little bit, never the whole story." Anneliese answered. "Now wheel me over to the monitor. I want to see the ship."
Bruno nodded before rolling her over to the where the the wreckage of the ship was on display. She slowly got up and placed a hand on monitor as the screen showed the helm of the ship. She closed her eyes and for a brief moment it felt as if the sea breeze was on her face. The moment was interrupted when she heard footsteps behind her. She turned to see a young woman in a pink smock for some odd reason coming in followed by a young man holding a few files.
"Mrs. Héderváry, it's nice to finally meet you." Wynona walked over to her and extended her hand. "Wynona Martin. I was in charge of preserving what was found in your room." Anneliese gave her a slight smile before taking her hand.
"I must say you did an excellent job. The picture looks almost the same as when I last saw it." She replied.
"And you are?" Wynona had turned to Bruno.
"Bruno. I'm her great-grandson." He held out his hand for her to take which she did.
Anneliese sat back down in her wheelchair. Bruno turned her chair around to face everyone else in the room. "I'm sure you're all eager to know about the Heart of the Ocean." She said.
"How about you start at the beginning?" Marcello said from where he was standing in the corner. "That's the whole point of this expedition, isn't it? To know what the lives of the passengers were like."
"Why don't we just start with what you remember." Peter suggested as he turned the camera on before sitting down. "Tell me Anneliese. Tell us about what your life was like before Titanic." He paused for a moment. "And how it changed you."