“‘She was not wrong in her assessment of my character’.” Missy frowned. “I wonder what he meant by that. Who is this ‘she’ and what did she say to make him doubt himself like that? I know he isn’t talking about me, unless he’s referring to how I freaked out at him before I burned down The Institute. But no. I don’t think that’s right. He said something about if Jeff knew what he’s done tonight.” She shrugged. “Maybe it’s a vampire thing.”
Someone knocked on the door
“Come in.” She sat up to get a better look at her visitor. A bright smile spread across her face as Raven entered the room. “You’re here! You’re finally here! I was waiting forever for you!”
Raven smiled and hurried over to the bed.
She stretched her arms towards him.
He leaned over the bed rail.
She flung herself into his arms the best she could.
He pulled her in close. “Missy. My Missy.”
“Raven.” She ran her fingers through his hair.
His black hair spiked up between her fingers. His longer side became rumpled, but Raven didn’t seem to mind. His eyes were bright and full of love. “I am here.”
She shook her head. “Don’t talk, Raven. Just kiss me.”
He smiled. “As you wish.” And so he did.
It was an absolute trial for Barbara to keep her eyes on the road. Ambrose sat in the front seat next to her and she could feel his nearness. She could almost feel his loving gaze.
She wanted to give him some long, admiring looks. But it was dark out and she was driving down the highway. Those were two very good reasons to keep her attention forward. There was also a third reason: Bigfoots.
Bigfoots tended to be reclusive creatures. However, they had a tendency to run across unsuspecting highways in the middle of the night, especially in areas with a lot of trees. Even though, there was the one time a bigfoot was seen running up the exit to Cincinnati.
Barbara had yet to see a bigfoot on the highway or elsewhere. But she had heard plenty of horror stories about the damage they could cause to a car. She kept her focus on the road.
I don’t deserve someone like her. Ambrose admired the silhouette of her profile. She’s so soft yet so strong. So certain of what she wants. So loving. So good-hearted.
What exactly does that mean? Do I deserve someone who’s hard and unloving? Do I deserve someone who is weak-willed and wishy-washy? Or does it mean I don’t deserve to be with anyone at all? Maybe, but I am so glad I am with her…with someone as wonderful as her. “I’m so glad you love me, that you want me after everything I’ve done wrong.”
Barbara side-glanced at him. “I’ve told you all along that I know what I want. And I want you, Ambrose Smith, even with the horrible messiness of your past.”
“You don’t know how much that means to me.”
She smiled and looked forward. “Oh, I have some idea.”
She turned onto the exit heading towards the airport. “I do.”
He lightly brushed his fingers against the side of her face. “Do you worry that I’ll take advantage of it? That I’ll assume I can do anything I want and you’ll automatically forgive me for it?”
“Hmm.” She drove to the end of the exit ramp. “I suppose that is something I should worry about.”
He jerked his fingers away from her face as if her skin had burned him.
She stopped at the end of the ramp and turned in her seat to face him. The city lights up ahead helped shed some illumination on the scene.
Ambrose lowered his hand and studied her expression. What is she thinking? What is she going to say? Would it have been better if I hadn’t asked that question?
“I’m not worried. I know you, Ambrose Smith. Perhaps there was a time when you would have thought and felt that way. But I know you. I know me. I’m not vapid, Ambrose. I can be hurt and hurt deeply. Say if you were to pull that stunt with kissing Elsie in the middle of Gendarme Kicker now—”
“I would never do that again.”
“I know, kitten. I know. But if you did—”
He shook his head in steady disagreement with the concept alone.
“—that would be a hard thing for me to forgive. It would hurt me so much more than it did last time.”
“That is why I wouldn’t do it. That and…Barbara, I love you. I want and desire just you.”
“I know.” She laid her hand along the side of his face. “I know you, my love.”
Her touch and her words stole his heart several times over. “My love. My Barbara. My–”
She leaned in. “Don’t talk, Ambrose.” She smiled. “Just kiss me.”
He unbuckled his seatbelt and very gladly obeyed.