“I am your heaven. I am your hell. I’m under your skin, in your veins, in your soul. I am everywhere.”
Liz Triest just moved into a row house in an historic neighborhood of Albany, New York. After a break up with her fiancé of seven years, she is determined to make a fresh start, and most of all, never to fall in love again. But even Liz’s self-protecting walls built from a broken heart are not strong enough to withstand the unrelenting force of the beautiful, mysterious, and supernatural Isaac Ainsley.
“You scared me!”
“Forgive me; that was not my intent.”
“Now my suspicion has been confirmed,” said Liz.
“That you are stalking me.”
The man threw his head back and laughed. “Did it ever occur to you that you are everywhere I go?”
“On Charlie’s roof?” Her eyebrows furrowed.
“I just wanted to see the city from a different vantage point.”
“What vantage point would that be?”
They stood there for a moment gazing at each other. His presence was enchanting, yet ominous. Intriguing, yet scary. Liz swam in a sea of emotions. The man stood by patiently, as if he were waiting for her to come around.
“Who are you?” Her voice was so soft that she didn’t know if he would hear.
She noticed that he wore a black trench coat, which seemed to flow behind him like a cape. He moved toward her slowly, as if he were trying to tame a wild animal. Silly. If anyone were wild, it was he. He stood about two feet from her, and Liz looked up at him, astonished again at how he towered over her.
“May I ask you something?”
She nodded with hesitation.
“What are you searching for?”
“I don’t know what you mean.”
“Yes, you do.” He lowered his eyes.
Liz shrugged. “If you mean in life….health, happiness….”
“No, that’s not it,” Isaac’s accented voice echoed. “There is a burning in your soul so great that it seeps through your every pore. It radiates from you. Tell me what it is.”
“I’ve had a long night. I’m not trying to be rude, but….”
“Would you like me to leave?”
But strangely, Liz did not want him to leave. She ignored the question, hoping he would not notice. But she knew he would, as he was keen and perceptive.
“How do we keep meeting this way? How do you always know where I am?” she asked.
“I believe you know how,” he said, with a smile in his eyes.
Liz could hear The Killing Moon by Echo and the Bunnymen playing in the bar beneath their feet.
Fate up against your will….
Through the thick and thin
He will wait until you give yourself to him….
He edged closer to her again, this time taking ownership of the space between them. Isaac was a mere six inches from Liz. She was mesmerized by his blue eyes, which seemed to glow in the dark.
“May I answer the question for you?” Isaac said, as if he were asking Liz permission to help her.
She was silent. She felt paralyzed, and her breathing became shallow. Placing his hands on her shoulders, Isaac leaned in and put his mouth to her ear. His breath was warm and sweet smelling, like honey.
“You yearn for a love that is unrelenting, a love that is obsessive and addictive. You long to be dominated and enslaved by this love. You crave a level of eroticism and lust that is sinful.”
Liz closed her eyes as his voice swirled around her, making her head swim. Isaac took a step back, releasing her shoulders. When she opened her eyes, Liz found him looking at her, the way someone would look at fish in a bowl: observing, waiting.
“Ahhh.” He exhaled in pleasure. “Now we are getting somewhere.”
Danielle E. Gauwain is an avid freelance writer of fiction, usually found lost in stacks of books at the library. When not busy writing stories in her journal, she spends her time as an Occupational Therapy Assistant. A native New Yorker, Danielle lives in San Angelo, Texas with her husband and daughter.