Wings of Fortune - Part 7
“So when are you planning to move into the dorms?” Sam said, wanting to change the subject to something more in his comfort zone.
“Probably the day before classes start. I think Dad wants to delay it as long as possible. He still thinks of me as his little girl,” she smiled, her eyes becoming radiant and distant. “He’s so sweet.”
“I was reading my orientation materials earlier today. It’s a lot to get used to…”
Candace’s eyes focused on him again.
“Yes, it is. But we have time before all of that. I’ve been thinking about volunteering at the church some before I go. To leave a positive mark on this place before I move on, you know?”
“Really? Wow! I never knew you were so into that kind of thing…”
“I haven’t been. But as I think about leaving, it just feels right somehow.”
“Well good for you!”
Candace looked at Sam imploringly.
“I was kinda hoping you might join me…?”
“Are you kidding? I’d love to! I’m all for any chance to spend more time with you before we head off to school!”
Sam winced internally. He didn’t want to come across as overly eager. He should probably be trying to play it cool right now. So much for that!
Candace giggled and clasped her hands together in excitement.
“I’m so glad!” she said. Her face seemed to take on a slight golden glow. It was probably just the lighting.
She placed her hands across the table on his again for a moment, pulling them back as their food arrived. As various plates and bowls were placed in front of her, covering every available inch of table, she flushed red and shrugged. Sam laughed in response.
“Maybe we should volunteer at the food bank instead, so you can, um, snack…” he winked at her.
Her blush deepened, but she began to nibble at her food. As she continued to eat, she began to really dive in.
She must really be ravenous! thought Sam, slowly munching his own dinner.
When they each finished, the waitress came back to ask if they wanted any dessert.
“I’m full, and I can’t imagine that Cand…” Sam trailed off as he glanced at his date, noticing the disappointed look written all over Candace’s face.
“...but I stand corrected. Dessert menus it is!”
Candace clapped her hands together in delight, tapping her fingers together as she pondered her choices.
“I’d like the devil’s food cake, please,” she said with a dark glint in her eye.
“Just one?” the waitress asked hesitantly.
“Good point. Make it three.”
“Th-three! Yes. Got it,” said the waitress, fighting a frown.
“And I’ll take one as well,” said Sam. Candace gave him a hungrier look than the one she gave her food earlier. Her eyes were glued to his. Sam shifted in his seat, slightly uncomfortable under the intensity of her gaze.
“Right.” The waitress snatched up their menus and left.
“I love it when a man knows how to indulge himself,” Candace said, eyes still burning a hole through him.
“Um, me too,” Sam agreed. Wait! That didn’t sound right! “...A girl… who knows... I mean.”
Candace gave him a languid smile. Sam felt beads of sweat forming on his forehead.
“It makes me wonder what other indulgences you enjoy…” she said, her voice dropping slightly.
“I like watching movies and stuff, you know,” said Sam. He wasn’t exactly sure what she was after here. She was moving more slowly, with a vaguely sensual grace. It was difficult to describe, but it was slightly mesmerizing. If he didn’t know better, he would think she was insinuating something sexier.
She touched his hand with hers again. It felt completely different, her fingers glided along the slopes and valleys of each finger as if she wanted to take her time enjoying the sensation. Sam shivered as the contact ignited a spark of desire inside him.
“What kind of movies?” she said. Did her lips look redder than they had a few moments ago?
“You know, like comic book movies and stuff…” Sam said, his eyes slightly widening, locked, still, to hers.
“Ooooh, I liked comics. Can you just imagine me in one of those skimpy little outfits?”
What the hell? She really was coming onto him!
“I, uh, yeah… you’d look amazing in them. You always look amazing,” Sam replied, relatively pleased at how he’d fielded her question.
As she was about to say, something else, our desserts arrived. She licked her lips and made short work of the three chocolate confections.
During the ride home, Candace was quiet. She seemed to be thinking to herself. As he pulled up to her house, she turned to him with conflict in her eyes. He was a bit conflicted himself, unsure whether to kiss her or hug her or…
She leaned toward him and gave him a quick peck on the cheek.
“Good night!” she murmured rapidly, then got out of the car and hurried into the house.
Well, decision made, I guess, thought Sam, slightly disappointed after their dessert conversation, but happy that she still seemed to like him. Dinner seemed to have gone well. That was all he could ask for. Right?
When he arrived home and entered his room, his phone pinged.
“So howd it go ladykiller?”
It was Mara. Of course.
“Great! How bout yours?”
“Okay youve got to give me more than just an emoticon”
A kissyface emoticon appeared on his screen.
“How bout two?”
Sam laughed. Leave it to Mara…
“Matt is seriously yummy”
That was high praise coming from her. “Yummy” was even higher on the hotness scale than “nummy!”
“So did you do him?” Sam smirked as he sent the message, knowing this was bound to provoke a reaction.
“OMG fucker. First you accuse me of dressing like a slut, then you accuse me of BEING a slut? Dont make me hurt you…”
“You didnt say NO,” Sam smiled in anticipation of her next message.
“I didnt... but I may have wanted to ;)”
Sam laughed again, happy that Mara was into someone now, just as he was.
“Congrats. Invite me to the wedding, K?”
“Pfft. So you and Cand working on your first baby yet?”
Oof. Turnabout was fair play, he supposed. Sam considered what to tell her. He had gotten some pretty mixed signals from Candace tonight, courtesy of her recent brush with death, or whatever it was.
“Saving that for the second date”
“Good so you didnt screw up the first one too bad? DIDN’T and SCREW being the operative words”
“Har har” replied Sam.
“You know you love me LOL”
“I do, you know”
“Me too :)”
Sam walked into the church and looked around. His family didn’t really go to church, but when Candace had asked him to volunteer with her today, he wasn’t about to say no.
“Sam!” came a voice from behind him. He whirled. It was Rob. And Megan.
“Hi, guys!” said Sam, relieved to see some familiar faces in the strange environment. “Are you here to volunteer for the kids’ fundraiser too?”
“Yeah. But only ‘cause Megan made me,” said Rob.
“Well, if I didn’t, you would just play X-Box all day,“ Megan said with a smirk before elbowing him in the side.
Focusing on something behind Sam, Rob’s eyes began to widen.
“Wow! Look at Candace! Her body is goals as fuck!” Rob gave a quiet wolf whistle.
Megan glared at him with the stare of death, fuming.
“First, I’m standing right here. Second, don’t say the ‘f’ word when we’re standing in the middle of the fucking church. Third, I’m standing right here,” she said in a hiss.
Sam felt a soft hand grab his shoulder.
“You made it!” squealed Candace’s excited voice.
“Of course,” he said, turning to her as he felt her hands reach around him in a hug. He hugged her back. Her body felt so good against his, her floral scent filling his nostrils and fragmenting his thoughts.
As Sam reluctantly released the hug, Father Ryan came up to the group with a broad smile. There was something odd about his expression, but Sam couldn’t quite put his finger on what it was.
“More volunteers? Wonderful!” He shook each of their hands. “I’m Father Ryan.”
“What happened to Father Thumbe?” asked Candace.
“He’s no longer with us,” said Father Ryan quickly, a dark look flashing across his features before he changed the subject. “We could really use the help getting the bake sale stuff wrapped. If you could just come this way…”
“Yeah, ‘cause you’re not coming any other way…” murmured Megan into Rob’s ear. He stiffened, then scowled, as Father Ryan explained what needed to be done.
That night, Sam awoke to a clatter on the window of his second-floor bedroom. He heard a startled shriek as his eyes shot to the source of the sound and caught the edge of a translucent white shape dropping from view.
What the heck was that?
He shot out of bed and ran to the window, sliding it open and sticking his head out to investigate. Looking down, he saw Candace, wearing a white, lacy nightgown. She was tangled in the branches of the tree outside his room.
“Help!” she cried, looking up at him.
He reached down and took her hand, then pulled upward with all his strength, bracing himself against the wall inside the room. Her grip was so strong that it was painful. His hand was going numb! There wasn’t much he could do about it, however. He certainly wasn’t going to let her go. Grimacing, he continued to pull.
He managed to pull her the rest of the way up and into his room. She landed on top of him, her dazzling green eyes staring directly into his.
“What on earth were you doing out there?” Sam asked, breathing heavily. Her lips rose and fell with the rising and falling of his chest, coming tantalizingly close to his with every exhale.
“I-I don’t know. I was in my bedroom falling asleep, and then I just woke up just outside your window hanging in the air somehow. As soon as I realized where I was, I fell into the tree!”
Sam saw fear in Candace’s glassy eyes. He wrapped his arms around her in a firm hug, instinctively moving to comfort her.
As his arms pulled her body more tightly into his, however, her eyes began to change, becoming darker. Her eyelids lowered slightly, the fear disappearing, replaced by something else. Sam breathed in her scent and felt carnal desire rise within him. He felt her delicious body shift sinuously over his, her smooth, bare calf rubbing along the inside of his leg.
Sam swallowed hard as he saw the predatory look in her eyes… right before she pressed her full lips into his.
It felt wonderful. And wrong.
This wasn’t right. Candace’s personality shifts seemed to be getting more—not less—extreme over time. That couldn’t be good, could it? Did she really want this, or was this the result of some kind of post-trauma thing?
God, how he wanted this, though. He felt the softness of her breasts against him, the velvet touch of her legs entwining with his. Her lips slid along the sensitive flesh of his own. His entire body quivered with desire for the girl he’d been pining over for years. This was his chance wasn’t it?
He had wanted this for longer than he could remember. Who cared why she was doing it? Why should he give it up now? She clearly wanted...
As the thoughts ran through Sam’s mind, Candace laced her fingers into his and slammed his hands down to the floor violently, his arms outstretched to each side of his head. He struggled and pushed upward, but her hands didn’t move an inch, overpowering his with ease. She bit down on his lower lip, mixing the bitter taste of pain with the sweetness of pleasure.
She smiled hungrily.
That’s it! This was like her at all. He needed to do something.
“Candace, what are you doing? What is all this?” he whispered. His words seemed to change something in her, and she blinked once. Twice.
“Sam?” she asked, then shook her head. She released his hands and sat up, straddling him. “I’m so sorry. I don’t know what came over me…”
She rose to her feet and stepped away from him, offering him a hand. He accepted it, and she pulled him into the air, a good foot off the ground. He landed on his feet, knees bent, astounded at her strength.
“You’ve been working out!” he commented, but she didn’t seem to hear him. She seemed lost in her thoughts again. When she finally turned to him, her lower lip trembled.
“Sam, can I stay here tonight? Sleep on the floor, I mean? I just… don’t feel like myself, and I’d love it if I had my guardian angel watching over me,” she said, eyes luminous and hopeful.
He couldn’t say no. Not when she looked at him like that.
“Okay… but there’s no way I’m letting you sleep on the floor. Here…” He fluffed the pillow and straightened the blankets, then gestured for her to take the bed.
Candace walked up to him, rose on her tiptoes and kissed his cheek.
“Thank you so much, Sam,” she said, then gracefully slipped under the covers. She smiled, then closed her eyes. Sam watched her for a moment longer. She looked so serene, so beautiful with her red hair splayed across the pillow in the moonlight, face relaxed.
Sam lay on the floor, shifting until he found the least uncomfortable position. He lay there with his eyes open for a long time, jealous of how easily Candace had seemed to fall asleep. He supposed that having a bed helped...
He awakened slowly, hazily to the light of the morning sun streaming in through the window, realizing that he must have fallen asleep at some point. He rose stiffly to his feet to see Candace in the same place he’d left her, sleeping peacefully, long lashes still resting on her cheeks.
As the sunlight descended to touch the top of her head, turning her silky hair to glowing embers, Sam gasped.
Candace began to rise from the sheets.
Floating to a vertical position over the bed, her bare feet remained several inches above the bed, toes pointed, as diaphanous white wings coalesced behind her. Her wings extended as she floated forward toward the window, toward the sunlight.
Sam circled around one of her wings and waved a hand through it. It passed through unobstructed. Her wings were ghostlike but plainly visible. He glanced over to the rest of her ethereal form, ivory nightgown hanging from its shapely curves. Her milky skin glowed, her ginger hair aflame as her body bathed in the amber vibrancy of the sunrise.
His eyes had never gazed upon anything so beautiful.
She looked… angelic.
*BAM* *BAM* *BAM*
Shaken from his reverie by the knocking on his door, Sam tore his gaze from the gorgeous girl floating in front of his window to look at his shuddering door.
“Sam? Sam? Is Candace in there with you? She wasn’t in her room this morning, and I…” came Candace’s father’s voice.
As Sam’s stomach dropped from this surprise, he suddenly heard a hideous shriek from the opposite direction. His attention shifted back toward Candace until it found the source of the sound. It was black as night, with batlike wings, and it was hovering just outside his window, staring right at Candace.
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I'm going to let this story rest here for a few days while I work on novel editing and some other projects... but I'll get back to it before too long. I love these characters! :)
.... Aaand there is a cliffhanger....
It seems established that Candace ‘might’ be more inclined to her angelic side while still having, strong, urges from the other.