“Of course,” Luca nodded, not willing to explain that his nephew couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Grace stood on her knees and shuffled to where Milo sat. She grabbed his tummy in a motherly manner.
“Milo, I think Katie wanted to take you to the park. It won’t be too long before the snows are here, and you won’t be able to go anymore.” His face lit up at the prospect of going out to play.
“Where is she?” he asked, bouncing a little in Grace’s grasp.
She leaned in close to his ear, like she had an important secret to tell him. “I think she went to get her coat.”
“Okay.” Milo wiggled out of her arms, and sprinted out of the room to find the maid.
“Don’t forget your coat! I won’t have you catching a cold,” Grace called after him, sounding very much like a mother.
Luca smiled. “You’re very good with him.”
Grace sent him a tight-lipped smile. She really was in no mood to confront him about their fight.
The house grew quiet once Milo left with Katie. Only the familiar scratching of the radio was left.Everyone else was out for the day, Vincent and Nina had gone into town for the day, Gia was out shopping for some wedding surprise, and Valentino and Russo were at work, leaving Grace and Luca alone in the big house.
Grace turned and met Luca’s soft gaze. Quickly, she swung around to face the other direction. She was not going to pay any attention to him. He was the reason she had cried herself to sleep last night.
To distract herself from his looming presence, she began to pick up after Milo. She placed all the trains back in their bin behind the sofa. She smoothed a wrinkle in the rug, pulled the curtains closed and straightened a few throw pillows, all whilst trying to ignore Luca’s soft smile.
After a while, there was nothing left to clean. Grace stood awkwardly in the middle of the room, still turned away from Luca.
A new tune began to play through the radio. She moved her body slightly in time to the music, hoping that Luca had left the room. No such luck.
She felt a strong pair of arms wrap around her middle, pulling her flush against a hard chest. Grace heard her breath catch.
“I’m sorry,” he whispered in her ear. She could feel his warm breath travel down her neck. It sent shivers down to her toes. Her skin felt hot all of the sudden.
“No, I’m sorry,” she whispered back. She rested her hands atop his on her stomach.
“Grace,” he turned her in his arms so she was facing him. He tipped her chin upwards so she was forced to look into his eyes. “You have nothing to be sorry for.”
“What you said last night, you were right,” she muttered.
“What I said was wrong. I was pressuring you, and I never meant to do that.”
“But you’re right. There are certain things a wife must do for her-“
“Only if she is comfortable doing them,” he cut her off.
She dropped her gaze to the ground.
“When you kiss me,” she stuttered. “There is a part of me that enjoys it. It is just such a strange thing; I guess I’m not quite sure how I’m supposed to feel,” she almost sounded ashamed of herself.
Luca was amazed at how innocent she was. She was fighting herself over these new feelings.
“I would hope that you enjoy it.” His breath was hot on her face.
He leaned down to kiss her lips. They looked sweet, plump, and ready for the taking. She shied away at first, but eventually allowed him to press his lips against her own.
Grace found the new sensation to be oddly wonderful. Their lips moved together in synchronization, melding together perfectly. After a while, Luca let his tongue creep out to press against Grace’s lips, asking for entrance.
She gasped, and jumped back. The expression on her face was one of confusion and scandal.
Luca laughed, pulling her back to his hungry lips. In the flurry of a moment, Luca’s tongue found its place exploring the caverns of her mouth, tasting her. She tasted sweet, like fresh tomatoes and black tea.
It did not take long for him to coax her tongue into his own mouth, teaching her how to truly kiss. She was a quick learner. He breathed a moan into the kiss as she tried to fight him for dominance he was not willing to give to her.
Grace felt her head whirring. She had never experienced something like this in her whole life. Luca was intoxicating. He smelled like cigarette smoke, liquor and pine. It clouded her brain. She wrapped her arms around his neck, holding on for support, fearing her own legs may give out. He gladly welcomed her with strong arms supporting her lower back and pressed her tighter against his chest.
Eventually, they broke the kiss for lack of air.
Grace’s chest heaved as she attempted to catch her breath.
“Sei così bella,” Luca muttered, intently watching the woman in his arms.
“Bella, what does that mean?”
“Beautiful,” he replied. “You are so beautiful.”
“Bella,” she said, trying the word out on her tongue as if it would sound different now that she knew its meaning.
She laid a hand on his chest, drawing lazy lines with her nail. “How do you say ‘handsome?’” she asked, looking up at him with wide eyes.
“Bello,” she repeated. “Sei…così bello?”
He nodded with a smile. She had called him handsome.
Grace breathed a laugh, hugging Luca. He hugged back and rested his chin on her head.
“Dance with me,” he whispered into her hair.
She moved her arms to wrap comfortably around his middle and felt his hands drop to rest easily on her lower back. They moved in time to the jazz floating through the radio, unaware of everything but each other.
In fact, they were so unaware, they didn't even notice the figure popping its head around the corner to watch them.
Another chapter for my lovely readers. So, I'm wondering... if I were to finish (or come close) this story by the end of the summer, do you think if I entered this in the WATTY AWARDS I'd have any luck?? Please let me know what yoy think. I'd be very interested to know. Also, since I know we are all guilty of not reading author's notes, I'm going to offer a little incentive to you guys. If you actually read these, and private message me discussing whatever it is I have discussed in the note, I will private message you back something to do with the story. There's lots of extra stuff that I have saved on my computer that I'd be willing to share as reward for knowing you read these ;)
As always COMMENT and VOTE.
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Love and LiquorHistorical Fiction
Its New York, 1924, and Prohibition is in full swing, which means so is the Mafia. Grace Hanson is a seventeen year old that's just graduated from high school, waiting for her life to begin. In the meantime, she lives with her father, Dr. George Ha...