Crows circled the house as my footfalls cracked branches and dirt sank between my toes. The old house was my safe haven, the darkness my hiding place when the light seemed too oppressive. Weeds clung to the worn slats of siding, vines crept up the walls, their small fingerless leaves reaching for the light and overgrown trees and foliage blocked the sun like living gravestones. I looked up to the ominous birds again, and asked, “Why do you circle crows? You shouldn’t be here.”
I walked faster, my steps uncharacteristically thoughtless. My worries were my own here in the dense woods, as I wandered outside the walls of my secret world. Then a tinkle of laughter filled my ears. I turned my head to listen closer. The delightful but abrupt sound echoed inside the abandoned house off its walls as I drew closer. I stopped, my throat closing in anger. This was my place. Unsheathing my dagger, strapped to my chest, I prepared to defend what was mine.
I listened for the sound again. Not hearing anything, I moved up onto the back concrete porch where the backdoor was wide open, broken from its hinges long ago. This time, I entered without a sound, my eyes scanning for any disturbance in the familiar landscape. I wondered what the humans were like who had lived here. Did they eat their meals together and talk about their day, or did they find the nearest pub to paw up the skirt of a wench. My long hardened fingers clenched and released.
I heard the laughter again, and sucked in a painful breath. I would have to find another place to go to for solitude. My shoulders slumped low, my fists clenched and my chin fell nearly to my chest, my mood slowly moving onto rage. I didn’t get very far. My name seemed to come to me on the wind from the next room, making my skin prickle and shiver with need.
“Silas Anastad,” the voice said joined by her tinkling laugh. “Do not leave.” The feminine timber singed my body. I turned to the voice unwilling to leave but my feet carried me closer.
“I’ve waited too long to meet you.” I smiled again as she spoke. “Come to me, male of the Sidhe.” That got my attention even more. How did the female know I was of the Fae?
“Because silly, I’m special.” She continued to laugh, the wonderful sound finally dropping off as I walked through the grand archway into the core of the dilapidated home. I held my weapon firm.
What greeted me was nothing less than astounding, the most beautiful human woman I’d ever laid eyes on. She seemed to glow from the inside out, her warmth radiating onto my dark, flesh, like a soft caress from her lips. I closed my eyes and felt it sink into my soul, opening a part of me that had been stuck in an abyss of hate. My body swayed forward.
Blinking my eyes open, I couldn’t help but stare. Her cerulean colored eyes were luminous. They glowed as if they were jewels filled with laughter. Soft plump lips, painted a glossy crimson, curled up in a mischievous smile. Her dark chestnut hair lay in soft curls winding down and over her full pale breasts that a black lace and blood red satin corset hugged so lovingly. Her lush hips flared out draped with more red satin accentuating her full figure so well, I wanted to grip those curves bring her hips flush with mine. When I trained my eyes on her feet, they were bare, her small delicate toes adorned with black paint on her nails, just as she’d done to her fingernails.
I cleared my dry throat, but the word stuck. I tried again. “Hello.”
She waved and looked at me coyly from under her lashes, her skirt twirling back and forth.
“Hello, Silas.” She stopped moving, her stature growing as she straightened to her full height, which was still much shorter than my six foot four frame, but no less commanding. She seemed luminous in her confidence, her age somewhere in her twenties, belying the number. It was amazing to watch the transformation from the shy but excited female to this more regal woman who stood before me.
I cleared my throat again, “How do you know my name?”
“I’ve seen you,” she tapped her temple, “up here, since I was very young.”
She was so beautiful, I lost track of what I was going to say. I shook my head to clear the confusion of her appearance, and finally asked, “But how? You’re human. How do you know about my kind?”
Her lips twisted up at one corner and her head tilted to the side, as if to tell me I was an idiot. I laughed. I couldn’t help it. I returned my dagger to my harness. She seemed so excited to see me, but I shook my head. “I don’t understand,” I said.
She started to twirl in a circle and hummed to a tune I couldn’t hear. I finally had had enough and quickly moved toward her, grabbing her by the shoulders, bringing her to a standstill, or so I thought. But she swept me up in her joy and my arms easily wrapped around her, one hand going to her little waist and the other gripping her nape at her hair, and we started to dance around the grand room. The music I hadn’t heard suddenly flit across the room as it transformed into something wild. The chandelier above us sparkled anew and the floor became a polished marble, the walls a rich tapestry of fabric, as the magic emanating from her touched us both, carrying us in the dance. Her head went back, she smiled through her laughter, and all I could do was hold on.
“Finally,” she kept saying, “Finally.”
When the music dwindled and we came to a stop, she looked up at me and the world came to a sudden halt as our heads came closer together. She lifted a hand to my face and brushed her slight fingers against my cheek, up, over my pointed ear, and down my jaw, stopping on my lips. Her fingers touched me, where her eyes focused on my lips, in a lazy back and forth motion. Her tiny pink tongue swept across her own lips making them wet and I groaned. My head bent down to hers and…
I snapped my head up, but still held her close, my hand twining in her soft hair, tipping her head further back, not loosening my controlled grip. “You’re a witch.” It was a statement of fact and she gave another one of her tiny coy smiles. But there was nothing really coy about her. Her eyes flared with sexual heat and power that made my body stir as only a males could. I leaned in again, her lips parting, her breath hot, and my blood pumping hard as I leaned in once again. “What’s your name?” I whispered so close I could almost taste her.
“Analise,” she said, her voice a shiver across my skin, as her body started to tremble with a need as strong as mine, her scent sharpening as I breathed her in.
“Who are you?”
“I am yours.”