Stay Close(27)

By: Alexa Riley

I think Ivan is making a business out of his tracking devices. He’s always coming up with cool ideas of what to put them into. Maybe I could help on the business side of that. Mom and Dad already have him making stuff for them for work.

“That man loves you. I feel like an ass that I ever tried to stand in the way of that,” Pandora finally says.

I walk up to her and grab her hand. “Then promise me something.”

“Anything,” she responds instantly.

“That when the day comes and you fall in love, you don’t stand in your own way.”

She stares at me for a moment like she’s thinking it over.

“Okay, I promise,” she says after a beat. “Not that I think that day will ever come,” she adds, and I shake my head.

“Okay, enough about me. We need to get the show on the road so Dad can walk you down the aisle. Mom and I have bets on how long it will take him to let you go when you get to the end.” She leans in close. “I bet ten seconds, so do your sister a solid.”

I laugh.

“For real, though, let’s do this thing. I don’t know how much longer Dad can hold Ivan back. The man already gave him the slip once.”

That makes me smile even more because I love the idea of Dad and Ivan hanging out. They have become close, my dad treating him at times like his own son. God, my family couldn’t be more perfect. They always say I’m the heart of this family, but in truth, it takes us all to make it beat.



Ten years later...

Penelope comes running into the room and jumps into my arms. I laugh as I kiss her lips and carry her to our bedroom.

“Are you happy, krasotu?”

“Happier than I ever dreamed possible.”

“Are you happy because our children are next door spending the night?” I smile at her and rub the stubble on my chin against her neck.

She giggles and then snorts as I drop her on the bed.

I hover above her, looking down at my beauty. The years have been a gift to her, because she is more beautiful with each passing day. The way she’s grown soft in her belly and the way her hips have widened... There is nothing more stunning than seeing my wife round with our little babies. We’ve had two, and she says no more. She says that we are blessed with one boy and one girl and that we are lucky.

I am the lucky one. To have Penelope choose me as her mate, as her lover, for all of our days is the dream come true.

We have made a family together, a life more precious than I could have imagined. After we were married she asked to live near her family, so naturally I built her a home next door to them. I will always give my krasotu what she wishes.

Now Pandora and her family live on the other side of us. We are one big compound of babies and babysitters. Penelope loves nothing more than mothering us all and was quick to become a stay-at-home mom. People joke and say we have a village, but I don’t see this as a bad thing. We are a family, and that’s something I never dared to hope for. But as years have passed, Penelope has made me understand that it is good to hope.

“I’m happy to have you alone for the night. Even if it’s only for a few hours before the kids try to sneak back over here.”

I pull off her sundress and sandals, kissing her feet. My mouth moves higher as her legs fall open for me.

“Do you wish for my kisses?” I ask, looking into the green eyes that hold my heart.

“You know I do.” She winks at me, raising her hips in invitation.

“Then you shall have all of them.”

I move my mouth between her legs and kiss her sweet nectar until she climaxes. We’ve been together ten years, and as I sink into her I think about how it’s always special. Every time we connect there is love—love of our bodies, love of our spirits, love of our souls.

She wraps her arms around my neck, and I pull her body flush with mine.

“Stay close,” she whispers, and I obey.

I hold her tight as I thrust in and out, leaving no space between us.

It’s hours later when she’s sated, and I wrap my body around hers. There are no more words, only kisses and light touches as she drifts off to sleep. I hum softly to her, the same tune I sang to our babies. She closes her eyes, and her dark half-moon lashes make her look like a doll, so perfect and sweet as she sleeps on my chest.

Although my life began dark and lonely, I am thankful for it. I would charge down any path that led to the love next to me, that brought me home to the happily ever after we have built. My beauty has taught me many things, but believing in fairy tales was the most important one. She shows me every day that dreams do come true.

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