Dreams of Thee

Chapter 2

 

The world around them was filled with soft light, defusing their world into shimmering shadows.  A halo seemed to surround Catherine as she moved toward him in a gown of pale green silk clinging to every curve of her lush body.  All the night sounds stilled, as though they stopped to pay homage to the beauty that glided silently into his strong arms.  Gathering her close, he inhaled the intriguing perfume that clung in a whisper-light cloud.  This was his Catherine, his world, his life and soul mate.

The interior of her apartment was infused with firelight, beckoning them to draw near and become part of the dancing lights.  Stepping from his warm embrace, she tugged at his hands, indicating her desire.  Wordlessly, he followed, trusting and believing as she guided him toward their destiny.

Silently, the door to their world was closed and the drapes drawn; his black cloak lay draped across a nearby chair.  His arms slipped about her waist as they moved toward the dancing flames.  Two pillows waited invitingly and they slowly sank down then. Unable to bear the distance that separated them, he lifted her into his lap.  Delicate touches were exchanged as peace enfolded them in the simple joy of being together.  Her deep gaze continually told him of her love, assuring him of her commitment to a life together.

The feel of her body pressed tightly against his was both agony and a joy.  His control was perilously close to breaking.  The feel of her breasts pressed so invitingly against his chest, coupled with the closeness of her generous pouty lips, lips he longed to kiss, caused his arousal to strain within his tight jeans. 

He tried to speak again, to tell her of his desire, but no words came. Instead, she reached up, drawing his mouth towards her.  His lips were gentle as they tenderly touched hers, her lips moving hungrily against his in answer to the passion she felt.

His mouth opened, her tongue touched his lips, and sweetly Vincent’s tongue responded as Catherine’s stroked the smooth rich textures of his lips.  She settled back in his arms, their mouths still joined, his hand moving lightly over her arm, his fingers feeling the silken texture of her smooth skin against his coarse hand.

When a soft moan started deep in her throat, stars seemed to explode behind Vincent’s eyes as her mouth moved, sucking against his full lower lip. His arms tightened, pulling her closer; his need to feel her body against his own was strong.  His hand moved slowly down her arm and suddenly she captured it with her hand and guided him toward her breast.  His hand trembled there as he felt the heat pouring through her dress, and slowly he began to caress her.

Vincent jerked awake to find Catherine lying beside him, just as she had in his dream.  He quickly removed his hand from her breast.  He looked across the room toward Father, whose head was resting on his chest, the book folded across his lap.  Vincent’s face warmed.  He was glad Father had been asleep and had not witnessed his caresses of Catherine’s sleeping body.

Vincent’s eyes returned to Catherine and he rubbed his eyes, thinking that sleep had blurred his vision, and then looked again.  He saw the faintest hint of a smile on her lips.

“Vincent,” she murmured, her dreamy voice barely a whisper, “will you kiss me again?”

He could not believe she had felt his dream through their bond and that she was returned to him, wanting him to kiss her.  He lowered his mouth, softly resting his lips against hers, and tasted his own tears.

“Father!” he called, then he rose from beside Catherine, taking care not to jostle her.

Long years of training had taught Jacob to sleep lightly while caring for his tunnel family, knowing his quick response often meant the difference between life and death.  The book on his lap fell to the floor, the sound reverberating loudly in the quietness of the chamber.  The pipes had grown silent, so Father knew it must be very late. Vincent was standing beside the bed, a smile on his face. “Catherine is awake, Father; she has spoken to me.”

Jacob bent over his patient, speaking in quiet, gentle tones to her, asking how she felt, as he carefully examined her. Her pulse was still very weak from the loss of blood she had suffered. “I hurt,” she said in response to his questions.

Closing his bag, he looked at her and said, “I’m sorry, Catherine, but with a head injury such as you have, I can’t give you anything for your pain.  Sleep is what you need.”

Catherine’s nearly inaudible voice brought Vincent to complete attention. “Could I have some water?”

Vincent slipped his arm under the pillow, gently raising Catherine’s head and placing the glass against her lips.

“Only small sips, Catherine,” cautioned Father. Vincent lowered her slowly back to the bed.

Suddenly Father found himself in the air; Vincent’s arms holding him high as he whirled him around and around.  The joy on Vincent’s face caused any protest Father may have had to die before it passed his lips. Vincent put Father back on his feet, only to pull Father back against his chest, holding him tightly for several moments.  Father felt a shudder pass through Vincent’s body, and he knew to the depth of his soul the love his son had for Catherine and the anguish he had suffered during the dark hours since her injury. “Now, I think we should all get some rest,” Father said as Vincent released him.

Vincent turned to re-enter his chamber after watching Father move slowly toward his chamber. He noted how slowly Father moved, how very tired was his gait, his injury more pronounced.

Vincent crossed to the bed quickly as he became aware of Catherine’s movement.  He took her hand as he squatted down beside her. “I’m here, Catherine; you’re safe,” he whispered.  He brought her hand to his lips, his eyes filled with love, as he slowly kissed her fingertips.  She tried to speak, and he had to move his face closer, so soft were her words.

“Yes.” He moved quietly to the end of the bed, entered as he had before, and settled beside her, careful not to cause her pain. He gathered her close, slipping one arm under her pillow at the same moment that his other arm slipped across her stomach to enfold her in the warm circle of his love. She sighed softly as he kissed her cheek, then she drifted into sleep.

He continued to hold her, marveling at how right it seemed for him to be there with Catherine in his chamber, holding her here in his bed.  He thought of how soft her cheek had been to his lips and how peaceful his soul was lying close beside her.  Sleep at last claimed him, too, and he drifted again into the dreams which had always caused him to awaken ashamed.  Now those dreams brought him peace and hope for a future life with Catherine.

 

Chapter 3

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