Vincent realizes it as soon as his eyes are drawn to her, lingering along the curves of her body, the suppleness of her hips and the soft roundness of her bosom even when restrained by tight corsets, that he isn't looking at Ada because that is what a man would do when faced with a woman of her beauty.

He is looking at her because he wants to.

Strange and troubling, that. When has he ever looked at another in such a manner except for Gilbert? And Gilbert Ada is certainly not. She is no tall, lean, willowy thing, but a girl with touchable skin and flesh that he can sink his hands into, not bony, moonstruck marble but faintly sunkissed, sunlit silk and cotton. The wisps and waves of her hair are thick and golden, not some shadowy thing when they kiss her cheeks, and she flushes when she laughs and smiles when Gilbert does neither hardly at all – least of all around him.

Perhaps most of all, she wants him.

The realization is thus a beguiling one in shades of gold and green and whatever dress she is wearing that day – always trimmed in lace, white lace on green, on pink, on blue, as she looks good in nearly all of it. Vincent finds himself even inclined to consider the notion of doting and dressing her himself, as if she is his doll – no, his lover, but he shoves the thought away with a grimace.

Gilbert looks best in black, but Vincent does not want to see Ada in such a color except to mourn his death.

And he knows that she would mourn for him, should he die that very day. Would Gilbert? Doubtful, at best. Ada would not only mourn, but she would fight to keep his death at bay, Vincent knows this. Finds it intriguing. Wants to see it.

The things he wants from this girl were probably best to remain unspoken, lest they come to haunt him in the end.