A Vision…

She came as surrender, as my fate…

Renewed, merging with the very depths of my soul.

She touched a part of my heart that no woman had ever touched.

Sienna was all I had ever wanted, what I had dreamt about in such a time when I had thought and believed she would never find out what my true intentions were—the truth that had been hidden in the depths of my heart. She was like I drug—a possession I wanted to hold, to conquer.

When the perfect opportunity had presented itself, I had chased after her like I had never done in my life, giving my all to a woman even though I had no clue if she felt the same way as I did. Her newly broken heart hadn’t deterred me. I hadn’t pondered for a second or hesitated to capture her as mine. I couldn’t stand idly by and be the gentleman she once thought I was. When it came to her, I was all or nothing. The addictive, lust-filled needs I had for her in the very beginning spiraled into something so much more unexpected, something I hadn’t fathomed ever happening to me.

Falling madly, deeply, and ceaselessly with abandon was a new emotion for me. Furthermore, even though it came as a surprise, I embraced this newfound yearning I had developed for another being. I needed her to breathe, to signify my life as a whole.

My love had no depth. It was a bottomless pit of overpowering emotion I couldn’t control…

And even though I loved her to no end, there was something else I craved, maybe just as much as I wanted the very woman herself. It was a troubling fact, and yet it was something I couldn’t ignore. It gnawed at my soul.

Like everything in life, nothing came easy.

Thus, I was chasing Mrs. Knightly.

Pillow Talk

Approximately 6 months ago

“Sienna?” I murmured softly as I kissed her forehead while mindlessly stroking her hair with one hand as I gathered her hand, entwining it with my other.

“Hmm?” she responded, sounding sleepy and exhausted from the rigorous physical exertions that had gone on for about an hour.

I had recently purchased a small island off the West Indies, and it just so happened I needed an exotic, secluded place to take my newly wedded bride. This came as a perfect solution.

Shutting my lids, my mind immediately went back about fifteen hours ago, when my ever loving beautiful Sienna had proposed to me. The shock, the immediate rush of blood into my heart, thinking a heart attack was about to seize me before I made her mine, had actually flagged my mind for a second. But then the shock had worn off and it had been replaced by an overwhelming sense of joy and the profound love I had for her.

I still felt raw and couldn’t believe that she—Sienna, who I had been chasing for months on end—had finally wanted to marry me. Who would have guessed she was going to end up mine after she’d mercilessly broken my heart by turning me down following my epic disaster of a proposal on the side of the road outside her building—my desperate attempt to make her see I was in love with her?

Beaming like the mad, besotted fool I was, I held her tighter in my arms, feeling quite blessed and content. “Thank you… for surprising me. I don’t think I ever told you how much it meant to me. I have never felt such love and affection. It’s flowing abundantly.”

Her golden eyes met mine before she parted herself from my body and lifted her face to match mine. “It was all for you…” She was smiling, though there was a thin film of tears in her eyes. “After what you did—never thinking about your safety and putting yourself in danger to save me—I could never repay you.” Her lip trembled as her eyes sought my depths. “Your love puts mine to shame, Blake.”

Our love hadn’t been easy. Even from the very beginning, it had been tumultuous and, some might even say, hazardous to one’s health. But all the fights and damning struggles we’d fought together were worth everything I had put on the line for my life. From the mind-bending battle with Camilla to Amelia’s wrath, Ivanna’s stupidity and Adriana’s attempts to separate us, it had been a never-ending cycle of destruction. Amidst it all, however, we had prevailed, stronger by the day.

How often had we doubted ourselves? Countless times. Yet, there was depth between us, an unspoken, inexplicable connection that bonded our souls. We were one. A whole. I would give my life every single time my wife was in danger. As for the ones who wished her harm, I’d settle that score myself. I had failed her once, and that fault had cost me greatly. I never would forget that error.

“Your childhood wasn’t easy. You were beaten and traumatized, and as the expected result, you carried these emotions to adulthood.” Her family was a toxic piece of the puzzle that didn’t contribute to her livelihood. Instead, they poisoned her naiveté and took pleasure in her suffering. They were monsters. What kind of adult would harm a defenseless child? Only a monster would. “I cannot fault you for something that was out of your hands, though it took me a while to understand, I shouldn’t have lashed back when you managed to hurt me. I was a fool, not realizing the profound pain you had buried within you. I promise, I’m going to be a better husband than a boyfriend.” My temper was rather horrid. It was like a short circuit, and it detonated when only slightly prompted, but I was a husband now, which brought vast responsibilities. I would try my damned best to cater to our marriage. “I cannot fully avoid not going on business trips, but I assure you, I will lessen my travels as much as I can. And when we do decide to have children, my trips will be much fewer.”

“Children, hmmm?”

Yes, children. Although, there was no rush, was there? It had been merely fifteen hours since I’d made her my missus.

“It is entirely up to you. Whatever suits your happiness, poppet.”

She remained quiet, almost too quiet for my liking. When she did decide to speak up, what came next was rather unexpected.

“So if I decide to wait for…” she made an ominous pause before continuing, “Let’s say five years, you’re okay with that?”

“Five years?” That was half a decade. I would be thirty-three, pushing thirty-four. Add another nine months before the baby’s born… “Surely you must be joking?”

Was she? I hoped she was, but when I saw her face, that mighty feeling went from small to miniscule.

She arched her brow, giving me a face that brought the axe to any man’s hopes.

Bloody hell. Oh, what of it! Surely she might change her mind, hopefully.

“Well, then…” I sighed with a heavy heart, “five years it is, amore.”