John and Father Landover got into a whole long theological question and answer exchange.
Barbara folded herself into Ambrose’s arms again.
Ambrose kissed the top of her head.
“Can we just stay like this?” he whispered.
“What? Here in the rectory?” She giggled. “That seems wildly inappropriate.”
He laughed. “Such a brat. Would it be overly repetitious if I tell you ‘I love you’ again?”
“Oh, it will be very repetitious. But go ahead. I don’t mind.”
He kissed her again. “I love you, Barbara Addleston.”
She looked at him with so much love it almost hurt. “I love you, Ambrose Smith.”
“Till the day I’m staked.”
“Till the day I die.”
John drove them home.
Barbara leaned her head against Ambrose.
“mm. It’s way past my bedtime.”
“Hm. It’s a long ride home.” He wrapped his arm around her. “Just sleep.”
She sighed and snuggled in closer.
Everything’s going so well.
Everything’s just…so perfect.
I’m so happy.
Something’s going to go wrong.
Maybe it will be my results.
Maybe it will be me. I’ll go into full bad vampire mode and hurt her.
I’ll change her.
He held her tighter.
That will never happen. Even if I were starving.
I’d rather starve.
I will never hurt you again, Barbara.
He kissed her head.
No matter what.
John pulled into Raven’s driveway. “Well. Here’s your stop.”
“Thank you, Mr. Addleston.”
“Seriously. Just call me John.”
Ambrose smiled. “And thank you for driving us there.”
“Not a problem. I’m glad I came with. I had a nice conversation with him.”
“He is very easy to talk to.”
“Indeed he is. I could have stayed there for at least two more hours, but you guys were looking pretty wilty.”
“We’ll have to get together some other night. I don’t think she’s up to going out to eat.”
“Not right now. Sir. I mean, John. Thank you.”
“For granting me your permission. For giving me this chance…this wonderful woman. I love her.”
“And she clearly loves you.”
Ambrose looked down at her head. “She loves me.” She sees what I am. She knows how I am.
She loves me.
Oh my God, she loves me.
“I will never betray her.” He kissed her one last time before guiding her down to the seat.
Ambrose reluctantly released her and got out of the car. He came around to the driver’s side window.
John lowered it.
“Let me know when you want to meet up for dinner.”
“Sorry, but that sounded so wrong coming from a vampire.”
Ambrose chuckled. “I suppose I should mention that there will be fava beans and a nice Chianti.”
“Well. Then, we should have a very good time.”
The two men laughed.
There was no tension or uncertainty in their laughter.
Just simple happiness on both sides.
Ambrose smiled as the white Dodge Durango pulled out of Raven’s driveway.
I can see where Barbara gets her sense of humor from.
The car drove off, leaving Ambrose alone.
He thought about Barbara all curled up in the back seat.
Her messed up hair.
Her closed eyelids.
The peace on her face.
I want to touch her again.
I want to hold her in my arms.
I want to…
He looked up at the night sky.
There’s still time.
He walked down the driveway and out into the street.
Time for me to keep my promise.