VII. Maybe I'll Marry Your Mother?

-:-

-:-

-:-

She sauntered into the bookstore, pursing her lips the entire way. Leaving Vanessa after her long absence from home made her adament. Nervous, in fact. Would she return home and find her daughter, her precious only child, once again vanished? Ignoring the senseless fears, Mrs. Cleveland eased behind one of the shelves and began skimming through the romantic titles. Her heart sung at the sight of the covers, so deliciously sensual and enthralling. Oh, Fabio and your lustrous golden locks. That dazzling smile melted away her heart.

Her daydreams were cut short. The hairs on the back of her neck bristled. Her chest seemed to become empty, drained of emotion. Fighting back tremors on her skin, she slowly shifted around, only to be greeted by two luminous, shimmering green orbs on a hard-featured face. A man, fine hairs pulled back into a slight ponytail, stood just meters away, smiling crookedly at her, clad in neatly-pressed black suit.

"H-Hello?" she stammered, unsure as of what to say.

The man cocked his head. Observing her, actually. "You're quite beautiful," he boldly stated, inching closer. Blood rushed to her face, coloring her cheeks a bright flame of red. Her ears were hot and her heart pounded against the inside of her chest. The ring around her finger, the ring given to her years and years back when Dave was still alive, seemed to tighten. She felt foolish.

"T-Thank you, I guess?" She hadn't been hit on for so long, it seemed so foreign. And at the same time, despite the building pressure in her chest, excitement bubbled in the back of her mind. She couldn't help but a crack a faltering smile. At such a late age she could be hit on by men, especially ones who were so... She couldn't describe him. He was neither handsome nor hideous. Not even average! Something different, something so inhuman that she felt inotixicated by his very presence.

He held out his hand. "My name is Adam."

"Nice to meet you, Adam," she greeted, shaking his hand. His grip was tender, the flesh of his palm cool and smooth. "I'm Sarah Cleveland."

"Sarah," he whispered, seemingly enjoying the sound of her name on his tongue. "What a lovely name you have." She sensed that his speech was practiced, but something in her mind felt truly captivated. "I'm sorry for my boldness, but I can't help it. You're a fine, fine creature."

She flushed tomato red. A woman several paces back examined the spectacle, amused. Sarah, truly mortified, began fumbling with the ring on her finger, to which Adam noticed. His lips curled down. "You are married?" he questioned, seemingly dejected. "How disappointing."

"I'm not," she instantly responded, voice staggering. "My husband... h-he died around ten years ago."

"And you wear the ring for the sake of his memory?"

She rubbed her arms soothingly. His melodious voice echoed in her head. "Yes, I suppose."

"I'm sorry for your loss," he murmured, voice deep yet... strained. As if speaking in such a husky voice was exhausting to his vocal cords. "But we can skip this little charade, right? I would like to take you out to dinner sometime... Would you kindly agree to accepting my proposal?"

Her heart hitched, skipping a beat. The air rushed from her mouth and all she could do was gape. The blood escaped her head. With her body cold, hollow, and her legs rooted to the floor, she opened her mouth. Nothing came out. A rining in the back of her head sounded, slightly vague, and before she even realized, words flew from her mouth in a rush.

"Yes."

Adam smirked.