Welcome to part 2 of this short romantic story written by Ted Phido. It is as close to 50 Shades of Grey as you can get. There are six parts in all and you can find part 1 here. Read the story below…
Alexander She looks much better in real life than her pictures. Not that she looked that bad in the pictures. She seems pretty relaxed about the house, although I notice her eyes perk up at the pool. Good, I can use that.
I mention my sister and her mask of calmness slips briefly. I feel my eyes cloud over as she asks about Rebecca. I answer shortly, and she realizes I’m uncomfortable.
I change the subject. I ask her about her job. She’s a surgeon at Western General. I look at her life-saving hands and find myself imagining what they will look like impaled with one of my arrows. My mouth waters and I swallow hard.
“So what do you like best about surgery?” I ask after swallowing a divine piece of crab cake. Mr Hound outdid himself this time. “Must be an incredible feeling to know you’re saving lives.”
“Honestly, it’s the warmth,” she says. “When I stick my hand or finger in a fresh incision, and it’s just so…incredibly..warm …” She revels in the memory, eyes dilated, a far away look on her face. She catches herself. Embarrassed.
Sophia Why can’t I just act normal? How am I supposed to get him to let his guard down if I say stupid things? I steal a glance at him, expecting a look of revulsion. Instead he stares calmly at me.
“Isn’t it great to be alive?” he says. “To feel that?” He cracks a secret smile.
He’s so nice, trying to make me feel better, throwing me a lifeline. I seize it like I’m drowning.
“Yeah, it’s just a sign of life, you know? When you feel how warm they are it’s almost like you just touched their soul.”
He laughs and takes a sip of wine. “Well put!”
I relax. Laughter is a great icebreaker. “So what kind of things do you write?” I ask.
“Nature books mostly. Hunting, fishing, that kind of thing. I could show you some later if you like.”
The butler brings out the next course. Crown roast of lamb with garlic and rosemary baby potatoes. It smells heavenly and for a brief moment, I hate myself for not being able to just savor this. But all I can think about is how I’m going to execute my plan.
Alexander I watch her closely. It seems a little creepy, I know, to gaze at her, to watch her eat, but let’s face it; it’s not as if she’s leaving this place alive. I’m not worrying about a second date, if you catch my drift.
Her profile made her seem boring. No close family or friends. No real hobbies besides work and books. She loves Sense and Sensibility. I knew then that my house, with its Regency style grounds and the Maze, would intrigue her. My trap was set.
She was the kind of target I preferred. Lonely and trusting, the kind of person who dies alone in their apartment and never gets found until her money runs out, her direct debit starts failing and her utilities get cut off. Or maybe it doesn’t even take that long. Maybe the neighbors complain about the dead animal smell coming from 3B. Maybe the building manager or the super enter the sparse apartment and see her, undignified in death, half sitting in her chair. No, this will be better. This is more fitting.
I feel almost bad about it, though. I catch a glimpse of her eyes. They remind me of a hawk. Sharp, wild and full of life. I think about what would happen if I could be different. If I could lie to her stupid, unremarkable face and pretend I was a normal person. If I could do without the Hunt every February. If I could maintain this mask longer than a single dinner.
She seems nervous. I wish she would calm down and enjoy the meal. It is to be her last, so she really ought to savor it. I can’t help but giggle at the thought. Her head snaps up at the sound. “What’s so funny?” she asks.
“You.” I reply. “You’re so nervous and awkward. Its kind of cute actually.” I smile so she knows I’m laughing with her and not at her.
“You laugh like a 5-year-old girl.” She says, laughing.
I laugh harder. This is good. We are going to have so much fun.