Cocky Fiance(67)

By: T.L. Smith & Melissa Jane

Her. It’s her I want to see. Nothing else.

If I could see her every day I would die right now a happy man, but that can’t happen. Not seeing her in forever has done that to me. The only memory I have of her is from years ago, the memory as I watched her walk out the door. It wasn’t as easy as that. It was something I would have chosen not to do if I had a choice, but I had to do it to protect her. And now, I’m not even sure what I’m doing.

My hands start moving, but as my vision begins to blur, I see her. Her hair. The way it hangs over her shoulders, red, as bright as the blood that stains my hands every day, to her creamy skin that my lips touched on a daily basis.

She wouldn’t approve, that isn’t who Lotus is. Yes, her name, funny, isn’t it?

The house I own, the one I can never bring myself to leave, has a large pond—or as some call it, a dam—and it’s full of lotus flowers and lily pads. Each night, when everything is at its worst, my tired feet drag me to this very spot, and I let it consume me. Because no matter who I lose, who I hurt, when I come here I see an angel amongst the putrid, a lotus above the murky water. And I can’t seem to let her go.

Her eyes come into view, that’s when I know it’s time to move. So I don’t let the water that feeds the lotus, consume me. My hands push up, my hair touches the surface followed by my mouth, which takes a large breath to fill my lungs with lifesaving air.

The moon shines its bright beams of silvery blue down on me now that I can see clearer. I wonder where Lotus is and what she’s doing at this very moment. Finding her wasn’t an option, she moved out of our small town, and left to accomplish bigger and better things with her life. It’s what was planned for her all along—bigger and better.

Not me. I was a mistake she made along the way.

The women I fuck and touch now are nothing like her, and they could never be. They don’t challenge me, fight me, love me the same way she did. Lotus Vein fucked with my heart so badly not a single soul can replace it.

Maybe that is what’s made me so cold.

So disconnected from the world.

Maybe she was the last irredeemable tower in my life that had to fall, to make me who I am today. Even if I could rebuild every wall to have her never leave again, I know it wouldn’t be the wisest decision for Lotus or me.

“Breathing again, I see?” His voice comes from behind me, and I turn to see him through the darkness. His hands are in his pockets, and his head is shaking at me. I still haven’t moved, the water wants to pull me down to its murky depths again. But what makes that even worse is I want to go back down just so I can see her again.

Now I have eyes on me, I know I can’t. Lotus doesn’t come to me when other people are around, she only visits when I’m alone, lost in my mind.

Cole drops to his knees and touches one of the Lotus flowers, then picks it from the water. “She will be there tomorrow night. Do you want to go instead of me? Sebastian did ask specifically for you to attend.”

“How do you know?” I don’t intend to sound hostile, but it comes out that way. He pulls the lotus flower closer to his eyes and studies it carefully.

“Sebastian may have mentioned it.” Cole stands with the lotus flower still in his hand, then drops it back to the water. It sinks past the lily pads. The pink that colored it, and made the flower so vibrant, is now covered and hard to see as it sinks further down. I watch as it drops until I can no longer see it. “Be prepared though, she’s moved on.” Cole doesn’t wait for me to ask any questions, he simply turns, walking away and getting lost in the long grass as it licks at his ankles.

Moved on.

My head goes back under, the water my friend once again. The moon shines brightly through the murky liquid, the pink from the lotus that Cole dropped the only color I see as I sink along with it.

Years have passed.

I haven’t had my fill.

Still can’t seem to find my breath.

Lotus is like a breath you take on a cold night, one you know you don’t want to breathe in because the frost will bite you. Yet you can’t resist it.

I need her like that frosty air.

Even after all these years, all the deaths, all this destruction.

It’s always been her.