Dante's Honour-bound Husband(64)

By: Day Leclaire


“There’s a reason for that.” He spared her family a brief shamed look before his gaze settled on his sister, Ariana. Gianna saw compassion in his sister’s expression, along with understanding. “Growing up, there was no money. My grandmother Penelope helped out the best she could, but it wasn’t nearly enough, not for an estate the size of ours. Do you know how we survived?”

Gianna shook her head.

“My father traded on the Romano name.” Considering Constantine’s pride, it must have been the most difficult thing he’d ever admitted. “We lived off the charity of others, including the d’Angelos. We sold our illustrious heritage and scintillating company for the bread we ate and the beds we slept in. For loans that were never repaid.”

“That’s why you wouldn’t come to me empty-handed.”

He nodded. “And that’s why I don’t take off my shoes.”

She frowned in confusion. “I don’t understand.”

“Our visits didn’t always end well,” he explained gently. “When they didn’t, we soon learned to be ready to leave at a moment’s notice. Fleeing into a cold winter night without shoes is a memorable experience. You learn very quickly not to make the same mistake twice.”

“Oh, Constantine,” she whispered.

He set her aside and toed off first one shoe, then the other. Crossing to the window, he opened it and tossed his shoes outside. Then he returned to her. “You are all I want. All I’ll ever want. Do you understand now, piccola?” He cupped her face between his Infernoed hands and kissed her with all the pent-up passion he possessed. “I don’t need to keep my shoes close by because I’m finally home. This is where I belong and I’m here to stay. My sense of honor bound me to you. Our love is what will keep us together.”

Primo rose to his feet. “Salute! Alla famiglia!”

The rest of the family picked up the cheer while Constantine swept his bride into his arms. As one they exited the room in a grand procession to the chapel, laughing and crying, their happiness spilling out in great joyous waves over those assembled in the church. Down the aisle they came.

They were Dantes. La famiglia. And that said it all.

One Inferno family.

One Inferno heart.

Soul mates found.

Soul mates bonded—united for all time.