He sat on the bed as he caressed her pale cheek. The warmth of her skin was incomparable to the coldness of his hand. He had waited three centuries to get to this exact moment. This very moment. And time traveling wasn’t something he would like to do. But for her, he would search for her to the end of the world.
“My Lord,” The housekeeper entered and bowed down.
“Josef, I told you not to disturb me.” His voice was soft but sharper than the blades.
Josef bowed slightly, “Forgive me, My Lord but Madame Eleanor is here.”
The Lord tucked her hand under the duvet softly as if his sudden movement could break her bones. He didn’t want to leave her side yet but with the current guest in his home, he had to.
He got up from the bed and walked past the housekeeper to leave the room but not before he gave another instruction, “Keep the fire burning. The atmosphere is still cold for her.”
“Yes, My Lord,” Josef replied, opening the door for his lord.
He walked out of the room. The castle looked like it hadn’t age even the slightest with rich and sophisticated Victorian design and some modern design to accommodate the changes in time despite the fact that the castle was built centuries ago. This place had served as his home for as long as his memories allowed him to remember.
This castle was too big for one person to live there. He had over fifty servants were working in the castle. Far ahead of him was a brunette woman with green eyes. Her pale skin was just like his own. She was wearing a dark blue Victorian style dress with pearl accessories.
“Stefano Michelangelo de Lucca!” His stepmother, Eleanor, looked at him with stern eyes. “How dare you disgrace this house by bringing that woman in here?!”
“Leave us,” Stefano commanded everyone on the hallway.
They all scampered without a word. Nobody questioned his authority in his own home. Not even his stepmother. It had always like that and would always be.
Stefano clasped his hands on his torso, looking at her calmly. She never came here unless she needed something or to question him.
“You never liked her, mother.”
Eleanor’s eyes softened as she came forward to her son and held his hands, “Stefano my darling, Adeline is gone. This person you brought in here that is not Adeline.” Her eyes met his then she let go of the hold abruptly as if her stepson’s hands burnt her skin. “What have you done?”
“It had to be done.”
“There is always a price for that.”
Stefano turned abruptly, walking away, “I know. You should leave, mother. There is nothing for you here.”
“The Council is going to have a hearing about this, Stefano. You’ve broken the most sacred law of all time.”
“Mother!” He shouted in anger caused the clear sky to erupt with thunder. Stefano gained his composure just as quick as he lost his temper. “Leave for there is nothing for you here.”
“Your father would be disappointed in you.”
“Would he?” His words laced with a challenge.
As much as he wanted to stay calm, his stepmother was unbearable at this moment. Stefano didn’t know how his father could bear her attitude like this for many centuries. All she ever did in her life was barking orders.
“As far as I could remember he was very fond of her,” Stefano added. “Very fond of her than you, his own mistress.”
“You’ve said enough, Stefano!”
Once again the clear sky erupted with thunders.
His hands balled into fists on his side. “Leave now.”
Eleanor glared at him before she admitted her own defeat. She stormed out of the castle without another word. Ever since Stefano received the castle from his father last will, Eleanor was always at war with Stefano. He didn’t want a war within his family. She was all he had left. All he ever wanted was her to become the mother he always wanted her to be. A caring and loving woman. Instead of a cold and selfish woman.
“My Lord,” Josef ran up to him. “Mistress de Lucca is….She is not in good sleep.”
With that, Stefano ran up within seconds, he arrived in front of his bedroom’s door. Adeline was screaming and thrashing on his bed. In the blink of an eye, he was sitting next to her and pressed his pale and cold hand on her forehead.
“It is just a bad dream, my love.” He whispered softly. “You are safe now. You are home with me.”
The scream and thrashing stopped and she let out a soft breath from her red lips. Stefano reached for the wet towel soaked with a lukewarm water in the bowl and softly tapped it on her forehead to get rid of the cold sweat. She had been this way since he brought her home. Every day he would sit by her side, tapping the wet towel softly on her forehead. She might not be his real Adeline but he would care for her as much as he cared for the real one.
“If Clavier is not here in the next hour, he would not see the sunlight until the next century.” He told the housekeeper.
Josef hurriedly nodded and left. When Stefano commanded someone and it was not done, there was no telling what the repercussion would be. The only person who could penetrate his cold and commanding behavior was the love of his life, Adeline Domenico. But, it all changed after she died. Stefano refused to talk about her death and how it happened. He had been time traveling since then, looking for her — or looking for someone who looked like her.
Perhaps this woman could control the madness inside Stefano just like how Adeline did. The love he had for Adeline had strayed him further down the darker path. Resurrection was considered as a dark magic and resurrecting someone from the dead was like an insult to the Goddess. But for Stefano, nothing else matters except the love of his life. If he had to answer to the Goddess herself for what he did, he would gladly do so.
Everyone feared him for what he would do just to have her back into his arms again.