Even the good turn bad sometimes...
Ariel sat on a park bench, enjoying the warm, sunny day as children played in the sand and swung high in the air. She never grew tired of watching them play. She enjoyed being their guardian.
Still…she longed for more.
When her sister, Sarafina, appeared beside her, Ariel acknowledged her with a smile and tip of her head. “Lovely day.”
“It truly is.”
They both sat in silence, as the youngsters frolicked about.
“Shall we discuss why you asked me here today?” Sarafina asked, smoothing out her long, white flowing skirt.
Ariel trusted no other like she trusted Sarafina. “I’ve longed for a change in my life.”
“What sort of change?”
A woman with a crying baby on her lap sat down between her and Sarafina. Ariel shifted positions to sit on her sister’s right. She was sure if the woman had noticed her, had known she’d nearly sat on her lap, she would have run screaming. Only children could see her, and Sarafina was invisible at this time, as well. “I’ve always been loyal and obedient. I’ve done my duty without complaint.”
Sarafina held her hand out and a tiny blue butterfly landed in her palm. “That is true.”
“I’ve considered…taking a lover.”
Sarafina sent the butterfly on his way. “We’re not allowed to engage in such behavior.”
“I’m aware of that.” The woman beside them got up and headed to the playground, her infant still crying. “Have you never desired to have more, a little change?”
“When I do, I change my wardrobe.”
Ariel sighed. “Something more than that? I see the humans engage in intercourse—”
“You observe them while they formicate?”
“Of course not! But I have come across it from time to time. It looks so…enjoyable.”
“It’s a sin.”
“I know what it is.” Ariel stood and captured the stray ball rolling her way. Smiling, she handed it back to a cherub-faced young boy. Taking it, he ran off and continued to play with his friends. “It’s just that,” she sat back down, shifted in her seat, “I want to feel their joy. To experience the pleasure I see in their faces, the way they writhe. The release as their body is satisfied. I want a man to hold me in his arms.”
“You know what will happen if you carry on with this idea?”
“The thing is…it’s more than an idea. I’ve…already started the ball rolling.”
Sarafina gasped. “What have you done?”
Her face heated. “I talked with Cupid and he suggested…a dating service.”
“It’s called 1Night Stand—”
Ariel cleared her throat. “It’s very classy, and Madame Eve has created a wonderful service.”
“What a fitting name for a woman in her position, given that the first Eve succumbed to temptation and indulged in a sinful act.”
“In any case. She treated me well and was so helpful. And…she’s found me a match.” Ariel cringed when Sarafina glared at her.
“You can’t do this.”
“Then stop it.”
“I need this. It’s one night. Please, it would mean so much if you supported me.”
“You’re asking too much of me, Ariel. If this were to be found out—”
“I know.” She would be banished to purgatory, a bleak, lonely place, neither hell nor heaven. “No one will find out…unless you tell them.” Her sister’s duty would prevent her from divulging a confidence, those dark secrets that no one spoke of.
“You’ve already made your mind up. I see no reason for pulling me into your ruse.”
“I need a friend.”
“Oh, Ariel.” Sarafina took hold of her hands. “I am now and always will be your friend. If this is what you require, then you must do it. Please, be careful.”
“I will. I promise. The gentleman I have been paired with is extremely handsome.” She held out the picture and sighed. “He has the brightest blue eyes I have ever seen, and his face is quite rugged.”
“And you can’t wait to meet him in person.”
Ariel giggled, nodding.
“Then you must go.” Sarafina gave her a hug. “Be well, my sister.”
ADULT: language and adult situations.
His foul aura struck her as if he had slapped her in the face. Edison Grey, the man she had admired in the photo, was none other than her sworn enemy, yet despite his evil persona, he was still beautiful to her. “You’re a demon!”
“And you are an angel.” Even his deep, husky voice was pleasing, despite his growl.
“There’s no need to say it with such disdain.”
He leaned against the jamb and lifted one eyebrow. “It’s how I feel for your kind.”
“My kind? You are the scourge of the earth.” How was it possible she’d been paired with him?
“Right. And your kind is perfect. I think not.”
“We do not claim what is not ours to take.”
“No, you possess the bodies of innocent souls to do your bidding.”
“They offer their service to the Lord.”
“Yes, ‘offer.’” He made air quotations with his index fingers. “I think we should discuss this in privacy.” He motioned to a couple who stood staring across the hall, then yanked her into the suite, and shut the door.
“Release me!” She was both aroused and repulsed by his touch. Oddly, his hands were smooth and not rough, as she had expected. “At least we give our hosts a choice. You take over their body without asking first.” How could she be attracted to such an abomination?
“Semantics. Now, isn’t this interesting. You and me, here, on a date.”
She wanted to wipe the smirk off his face. “This is a mistake. Madame Evangeline has made an error. I couldn’t be matched with such a detestable creature.”
“Pot calling the kettle black there, sweet cheeks.” She touched her face, confused. “Not those.” He motioned to her backside.
Her face heated. “How dare you!”
“What? You came here to fuck, right?”
His candor appalled her. “Must you be so vulgar?”
“It’s how I roll, sugar. Did you expect your date not to admire your body?”
“I did…well, I assumed he would. That’s not the point.” Great, now she felt hot all over. “Keep your eyes to yourself.”
“Happy to.” He let out a long breath. “So…now what?”
“Good luck with that. Storm’s brewing, and they will have shut the roads down until it clears. I hear it could be several days.”
“I have other ways of leaving.” A simple wish and she could be anywhere. No storm could prevent her from returning to heaven.
“Huh, that’s a new one. A cowardly angel.”
How dare he insult her. She was brave and had even been praised for her courage on more than one occasion. “I am not a coward!”
“If you leave, you are.”
“What do you suggest? I stay here, with you?” It was laughable.
“That was the plan.”
“I have no desire to spend time with the enemy.” What an atrocious idea.
“Come on. It might be fun.” He stepped toward her—no, it was more like he slithered toward her. His moves were so smooth, effortless. “I’ll tell you some secrets of my domain, and you can tell me some of yours.”
His smile made her knees a little weak. Still, this particular charmer came with fangs. “I have no intention of sharing anything with you, let alone secrets.” She turned to the door, ready to leave until Edison made clucking noises behind her. Spinning around, furious, she glared at him. “What are you insinuating?”
“I’m not insinuating. I’m putting it right out there. You’re a chicken. You do know what that term means don’t you, angel?”
She didn’t like his attitude one bit. “Of course I know what it means, demon.” Her wings snapped out and pointed at him.
“Ooh, she has a temper. Okay, then, prove you aren’t a chicken.” His lashes fell over heavy, seductive eyes. He leaned in a little closer and whispered in a low, sexy voice, “Stay the night with me.”
Despite the flutter in her heart, she stood her ground. “I will do no such thing.”
She wanted to rip his tongue out when he made that infernal clucking noise again. But there was no way she was walking away with him thinking her a coward. She did have pride, after all. “All right. I will stay, but you keep your distance.” She pulled her wings back in and grabbed her bag. She huffed, as she made her way to the sitting area.
“Party pooper. I don’t know about you, but I could use a stiff one,” he said.
His brilliant blue eyes glowed. “A drink, strong drink. Would you care for a stiff one?”
“I don’t drink alcohol.”
“I wasn’t referring to booze that time, sweetie.” He clutched his crotch, his tone mocking her.
“You’re disgusting.” She didn’t know why that surprised her. His kind were vulgar, repulsive, crude, and despicable, just to name a few of their better qualities. Ariel took a seat on the sofa and watched him carefully. She never let her guard down in front of an enemy.
Laughing, he poured his drink, then much to her surprise, plopped down beside her. “Should we see what’s on TV?”
“Do as you wish. I have no desire to partake in such mundane festivities.”
“My, that stick up your ass is jammed in there tight.”
“I have no stick up my…derriere, and how dare you insinuate such a thing.”
He patted her leg and made her pulse speed up. “Oh darling, you are too much fun. Okay, let’s see what we have here.”
One night of passion could be lethal!
“I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling rather keyed up.”