Sharon’s Treasure, Part 2
Sharon woke in the night to the sound of a surrounding storm. The driving wind and rain were awful and the lightning striking loudly all around was terrifying. She sat bolt upright with a soft cry.
Aiden reached to pull her to him hard. He wrapped his arms around her protectively and stroked her cheek with his thumb.
“It’s okay, Shar. I won’t let anything harm you.”
They were words she had wanted to hear all her life but, just now, she was so terror stricken she couldn’t imagine how he could promise such a thing. Then she curled into him, tangling her limbs with his.
She expected him to be angry at having been wakened from a sound sleep, and began her apologetic explanation, “I’m sorry Aiden. It’s been years since I’ve seen a storm this fierce,” she said weakly, with her voice trembling.
“Shhh,” he cut her off gently with two fingers over her lips,
“You have no reason to be sorry. Whatever it is that frightens you so, let me protect you.”
“But,” she began to argue when he interrupted, speaking softly, yet deliberately,
“If you want me to stand in torrential rain and shake my fists at the gods, demanding they cease and desist, I’ll do that for you… only for you.”
Sharon smiled genuinely in the darkness, relaxed into his embrace slightly, and whispered,
“How did you get so amazing and kind, Aiden?”
“I make sure I care greatly for that which I value more than life,” he responded staring directly into her eyes.
Sharon lay in the protective circle of his arms until she realized that she must be dreaming.
“Nothing this good happens for real,” she thought, furrowing her brows.
Then a thought occurred and she knew what she must do. Softly, she removed one arm from his strong shoulders and reached down to pinch her thigh hard and yelped,
“What is it? What happened,” Aiden questioned, his voice filled with immediate concern.
Sharon rolled onto her back, laughing, kicking, and pummeling the bed, as she shouted joyously, “Nothing! I’m still Cinderella!”
With next to no understanding of what she meant, Aiden set about teasing her,
First, he pounced on top of her and stretched her arms above her head, smiling devilishly as he taunted,
“Its way past midnight and Cinderella has been a very naughty girl.”
“Oh really,” Sharon played along.
Aiden didn’t miss a beat, replying, “Oh yes, a very bad girl, that Cinderella! She missed curfew and the last pumpkin out of here! Now she will have to stay and be my love slave for-ev—er,” he said, drawing the word out for dramatic effect.
“How do you propose Cinderella make amends,” Sharon queried playfully.
Aiden pushed her wrists into the mattress, making certain she couldn’t run for the hills.
“I propose,” he started, and then paused, trying to figure out if she would bolt for the nearest exit.
“I propose several kinds of matrimony.”
Sharon’s jaw dropped as she realized this was no longer a game.
“I propose a union of souls that has only ever existed in books and fairytales. I propose that you marry me this Saturday at sundown, on Baker Beach, in the glow of the Golden Gate Bridge.”
Aiden stopped and studied her face harder, trying to make out her expression in the darkness.
Sharon was stunned silent, wanting to scream, “Yes!” to the rafters, but couldn’t speak at all, so Aiden finished his thoughts,
“I’m proposing marriage to you Sharon, and here’s a new reference for you. I want us to be like Catherine and Heathcliff, in ‘Wuthering Heights.’ When we must leave this life, and if it’s separately, then I want us to haunt each other’s thoughts and souls until it drives us mad. I propose a union of our minds, spirits, and bodies, for as long as we inhabit them. I propose that you be my love slave and that I be yours.”
Sharon lay silent for some time, digesting all that he said and letting conflicting emotions run rampant in mind. Eventually, she pinched herself black and blue, then stopped and said,
“You forgot the classic fairytale ending. I’m afraid I can’t give you an answer without that,”
It was her turn to make an exaggerated sad face. Feeling filled with the devil, she leapt from the bed and raced for the door, teasing him as she ran,
“If you can’t figure it out, I’ll lead you a merry chase, Aiden Cullen!”
He was immediately hot on her heels, chasing her through the mansion. Finally, he caught her at the waist, lifted her against him, and kissed her deeply.
Still holding her at eye level, he smiled softly saying, “And I propose that we live happily ever after,” then carried her to the bedroom and made wildly passionate, sweetly demanding, unstoppable, love to her all night.
With every last ounce of strength spent on each other, Sharon laid her head on his chest, letting the steady beat of his heart calm her.
As they closed their eyes to sleep, Sharon whispered, more to herself than to him,
“Yes, I will. We will.”
Aiden kissed her face, her hair, and threaded his fingers through hers, and replied,