- Genre: Romance
- Age: 18+
- Status: Completed
- Language: English
- Author: Essie Neh
“So, this is what it feels like being happy,” she whispered in awe, touching plants as she walked around silently, almost reverently. It was almost as if her happiness had taken control of her. The boy, turned man, whom she had loved since she was nothing but a kid, had professed his love for her and had asked her for her hand in marriage.
She smiled and ran through the fields, passing her hand through the flowers. It was the happiest day of her life. She had gotten her soulmate. She thought what she had was nothing but a one-sided thing, but it turned out she was wrong. Patrick was the best thing or person that had ever happened to her.
She smiled as she pictured his face in her mind again, sighing softly. She never wanted to lose this feeling.
“Baby...” a voice whispered.
She frowned. The voice was familiar, but she could not place it. She inched closer. She felt bad for eavesdropping on what sounded like a very intimate moment, but she wanted to know who the voice belonged to. She was just too curious.
“Babe, relax. Just let yourself feel,” the voice said seductively, making a gasp come from the person he was speaking to.
The girl inched closer, and what she saw left her shell shocked. The man she was in love with, the man she was promised to, was with another woman, whispering sweet nothings into her neck. She stood there watching the woman gasp and moan as the man pleasured her. Tears pooled in the girl’s traitorous eyes.
She turned hastily and ran off, not caring where she was going. She found a tree stump and sat on it before weeping quietly, soundless gasps escaping her mouth and painful sobs racking her petite frame. Soon enough, she fell asleep, forgetting the warnings of the others completely. Do not venture into the deepest parts of the forest.
She slept on, oblivious to the gentle hands lifting her and taking her to a place unknown, a place she would come to love and dread equally.
He sat there, looking at the small thing sleeping in his bed. He had no idea why he had simply not frightened her into running away from that part of the forest. Instead, the dried tear marks on her cheeks had made him bring her into his home, a place where no creature but him had lived for a long while.
He watched her sleep, the up and down movements of her chest strangely fascinating. He knew that when she woke up, she was going to be frightened of him, like all other humans, but she evoked emotions in him he did not dare place names on.
‘How could an ordinary human keep me this preoccupied,’ he thought in bewilderment, suddenly growing angry at the innocent girl. She had done nothing but evoke unfamiliar feelings in him, and just for that, he resented her. He got up angrily and stalked out, decided to go and hunt for when she woke up.
Jessie woke up in an unfamiliar room. She sat up quickly on the bed she found herself on. She gasped; she had gone into the really deep parts of the forest, and the only person whom she knew resided there was... The Beast.
She looked around the room, which was quite spacious and surprisingly clean and organized.
Jessie quickly swung her legs over the bed and decided to go in search of the beast. She couldn’t help her curious nature. Even though he could be dangerous, she wanted to see him. She opened the door cautiously and walked out, having difficulty seeing the dim lights. She followed what she thought was a hallway and found herself in a kitchen.
It was very big and as organized as the room. The pots and pans in one corner, the plates in another, and so on. She stalked hesitantly into the room and sighed in bliss. This was the type of kitchen she had always wanted, spacious and organized.
‘Maybe...’ she thought hopefully, ‘maybe it’s not the Beast who lives here after all?’
Theo sighed as he went into the woods. He didn’t know why he felt so attracted to this human. She was a simple human! She wasn’t perfect. He had seen far more beautiful women in his lifetime, but there was no pull toward them.
He caught sight of a buck that would make an excellent meal for that night’s dinner, that is, if the human survived looking at him. He chuckled bitterly at his thoughts even though they were not so far from the truth. He had learned to accept over the years the fact that he would always be alone, but that did not mean that he did not yearn for companionship.
He took aim and shot the buck, making it fall with a thud. He stalked toward it and shook his head as if trying to erase the thoughts he was having from his head.
Jessie was still in the kitchen. Surprisingly, even though the house was situated in the heart of the forest, it still had all modern amenities like a refrigerator, a dishwasher, an electric cooker equipped with an oven, and a microwave.
Seeing this, Jessie managed to convince herself that it was not the Beast but a really kind soul who had taken her into his home (his because of the mainly masculine articles of clothing she had seen in that room).
She knew she shouldn’t intrude, but curiosity had always been one of her biggest faults. She opened the fridge cautiously and saw that it was fully stocked with normal stuff. Eggs on the egg rack, milk, and all that stuff. She did not know what she expected to see, human heads maybe? Jessie closed the fridge and went to the cupboards. She took a glass, and just as she wanted to open the tap, the door flew open, making her drop the glass.
Theo reached home and opened the door with a bang, just to hear something break. She was standing there, her brown eyes comically wide and her blue hair all over the place.
“I-I I’m s-s-so sorry. I-I,” she started stuttering, fear evident in her voice.
Theo grew angry and growled, “It’s okay.”
She bent down to start picking the glass.
“Leave it!” he growled again, scared she was going to hurt herself.
But stubborn was Jessie’s middle name, and she persisted, hurting herself in the process. She let out a small cry that made Theo take her up forcefully.
As soon he touched her, she let out a small gasp, making Theo grow even more angry. He knew he was scary, but it was just a touch. Nothing more. He took her to the sink, where he washed her hand. Then proceeded to use the items in the first aid kit to disinfect and put a band-aid on her wounded finger.
As he was taking care of her injury, she kept looking at him with her big brown eyes, making him unsettled, something that rarely happened.
Jessie could not keep her eyes off the man who was in front of her. The one question running through her mind was. Is he the Beast?
He was incredibly attractive, and he just had something that made her attraction to her fiancé seem like a lit match next to a wildfire. She had not forgotten him, the hurt and the feelings she had for him were still there, but they seemed so juvenile compared to the lust she was feeling right now.
“I can smell your arousal,” the man said in his gruff voice, making Jessie blush intensely and thank the heavens for her dark skin, the color of chocolate that hid her embarrassment.
“You should have done the gentlemanly thing and not mentioned it. And what do you mean you ‘smell’ my arousal?” she retorted. Jessie was never one to keep her mouth shut.
He ignored her question and said, “I never pretended to be a gentleman.”
Jessie kept her mouth shut, at a loss for words, for once. She let him clean her wound, looking around the kitchen, trying to avoid his piercing gaze.
“I’m done,” he said gruffly as if he was not used to speaking.
“Are you always this abrupt?” Jessie asked and regretted her question immediately. He could be anything, and he could easily hurt her, and she was sure her insults were already grating on his nerves.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean that,” she apologized.
Theo looked at the girl – no, woman – in front of him. She barely reached his shoulder, her wild blue hair framing her round face. She was the first person to talk back. The others usually got scared and kept quiet, not trying to get him mad.
“Are you always this chatty? Especially with people you barely even know?” Theo asked angrily, even though he was not angry at her. He was angry at himself for his reaction toward her.
He saw her shudder, then it looked like she was steeling herself to say something cutting.
“I didn’t ask you to bring me here, you know!” she said. Theo rolled his eyes. Interiorly, of course. There was no way he was revealing any emotion to her.
“You’d have died if I left you out here,” he grunted in reply, turning his back on her, focusing on cleaning the glass pieces on the floor.
“Well, maybe I’d have preferred death over coming here. Where are we, anyway?” she asked noisily.
“Maybe I should have let you die,” he muttered. “You’re too nosy, girl.”
If she felt any offense at the tone he took, she didn’t show it. Instead, the small human took a step back and then said nervously, “I think I should leave. You don’t want me here anyways. And I hate being a bother to people.”
“Sorry to crush your dreams, but the only way you’re going to be able to leave from here is if you’re a corpse,” Theo said, in his constant need to keep her frightened.
“W-what?” she stuttered, and Theo let a small smile slip. Good. He had managed to frighten her.
“You’re on my territory now, human. Don’t think I don’t know that as soon as you run off, all your little human friends are going to be running around here.”
“I-I wouldn’t… I couldn’t,” she replied, though not as confident as she had been when he just came in.
“I’m sure you won’t mind if I say I don’t trust a perfect stranger, would you?” he asked and smiled when she nodded numbly. “Now sit your ass down on that couch and wait for me to finish so I can show you to your room.”
Theo said all this, then turned away from the girl – no, woman – in his house. He did not know how long he was going to keep her here, but he knew each second was going to be a test of his patience.