This is a short story I've been working on. I don't have a title for it yet, but I hope you enjoy this.
My family was real old-fashioned. Every choice we made, was made by Papa. Eva and I couldn't even date a boy, unless he approved of him.
And I was sure he would approve of Francis.
"Isn't your house back that way?" Francis asked, as I made a turn on Gingham Road.
"We're not going back to my place," I said, a smile on my lips.
The night was growing darker and darker by the minute. I couldn't even see the sun anymore. It was swallowed up by the angry black clouds that were rolling in.
A storm was coming. I could feel it in my bones. I could feel it under my skin. Francis could too. But he wasn't from Bristol. He didn't grow up chasing thunder claps. He didn't grow up wading through the swamps, and dancing in the rain.
"You think we should be out here, Ann?"
"Well, you got to meet my Papa. And tonight's the perfect night to meet him."
Just as I spoke, an electric-blue streak skidded through the sky.
One Mississippi. Two Mississippi. Three Mississippi. Four - the thunder sounded. The storm was three miles away and we were getting closer and closer to it.
Francis fidgeted in his seat. "Babe, where exactly are we going, again?"'
My smile grew wider. I wanted to kiss him. I wanted to do so many other things to him too, but not til he met Papa. No, not until he met Papa.
It was time for him to know,"The cemetery."
I kept my gaze on him, to gauge his reaction. They usually never took it well, but Francis, he was a trooper. He nodded his head, a couple of times, and sat back in his seat.
"The cemetery," he whispered.
"Don't worry, I won't let nothing get you." I reached over and found his hand in the darkness. His fingers looped through mines. They were cold and clammy like he had been holding it against the window this whole time.
The rain started to fall. It tap-danced across the roof of the car, sounding like a million shards of glass. I couldn't see through the thick, gray veil, but I knew these lands like the blood in my veins.
Francis squeezed my hand.
"Maybe we should wait the storm out. Park by the side of the road or something."
I smiled. It was so very tempting. Parking with him.
"One Mississippi. Two Mississippi. Three..." We were on the storm's tail now. The sky shook the earth, and then lightning was spider-webbing through my vision.
"I never liked cemeteries. Or storms," Francis breathed.
"They're not so bad."
I could feel his eyes on me as I drove. They were large and probing. Like he was trying to figure me out. None of them ever figured me out.
"There's something peaceful about tombstones and forgotten souls."
Francis nodded, "How long has your father been dead?"
"Not long. I mean, he still comes around, so it doesn't feel like a long time."
A soft, nervous chuckle filled the car. I was losing him. My fingernails were digging into his skin, but I was the one who was hurting. He let a gasp seep through his lips, and I knew what he was about to say.
But I wasn't going to give him the chance to speak. I pulled the car to a stop, and unbuckled my seatbelt.
"You're right," I said, looking at him. "We should wait this storm out for a bit."
I climbed over until I was in his lap. His heart beat against mine. Never have I heard something so vibrant, so strong. I wanted to devour the sound, but I knew I couldn't. Francis didn't need to know everything about me. He placed his hands on either side of my face, and pulled me down until my lips were hovering inches above his. I could smell the desire oozing off of his tongue.
"If you weren't so damn beautiful," he whispered, his mouth crashing against mine. I kissed him hard. I kissed him deep. Deeper than I have ever kissed his kind before.
The storm waged war around us. And the cemetery was calling my name. Papa was waiting, but he would just have to wait a little while longer.