Part Twenty Nine

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ANGELICA

"You are so beautiful".

Gabriel.

Angelica stood frozen in the bathroom. The fingertips of her husband never left her back, but had stopped moving, settling lightly over the back of her neck. Her breathing matched her stance. Frozen. 

What was going to happen? The sound of running water echoed through the large and ornate bathroom, coming to an abrupt stop. Gabriel had reached over and closed the tap, not moving his other hand from the nape of Angelica's neck. A light amount of steam danced around the bathroom from the edges of the tub, rising up to the ceiling, only to dissipate into thin air. 

The bubbles in the water sat calmly above the surface, tempting, like a moth to a flame. The only thing Angelica had wanted to do was to relax, yet now she had a man on her hands. One who could at some points, not be tamed. 

She could feel his fingers slowly begin to move across her neck again, and his breath became more apparent. The light feeling of his closeness settles against her nearly bare back, as his other hand curled around a small set of her hair strands that had fallen out of her messy bun. 

"Out of everything I have ever seen, you are the most heavenly", he whispered. 

Angelica shivered under his  touch. His closeness was giving her goosebumps out of slight fear of the unknown. Without any warning, his lips came into contact with her bare shoulder. Lingering for ten seconds. Her breath was still as frozen as her body was. 

His lips were soft and warm against her skin that was aching to be in the tub. Moving his lips to where her neck meets her shoulder, her breath hitched. 

A minute passed and Angelica's eyes remained wide open, gazing at the tub. Without any clue, she was lifted up into Gabriel's arms and placed into the bath, gazing away once he had pulled away her robe, and making her sit down. Angelica watched him as he walked over to the lights and dimmed them down, walking back, and undoing his shirt buttons, casting the expensive piece of cloth to the floor. Looking down, Angelica made sure the soap suds covered up her bare body.

"Wh-What are you doing?", she softly whispered. She noticed he looked at her, deeply, longingly, but he didn't reply. Grabbing the soft sponge, Gabriel began to massage her upper back, fingers teasing her skin at each moment he could get. Angelica had never felt this relaxed since before Gabriel had taken her away. 

Her eyes snapped open. 

"Thank you", she softly said to her husband, "thank you for protecting my family". 

"They deserve to be protected. They are innocent, as are you, princess". He began to linger over her arms slightly. She subconsciously leant her had back, and rested it slightly against his hard chest. As time went on, they sat together in the bathroom, basking in each others presence, listening to each others soft breaths.

The next morning (Christmas Day)

The clock struck 6 in the morning, and Angelica had awoken from her long needed rest. What she wasn't expecting, was her husbands arms wrapped tightly around her. Wriggling around, trying to get out of his grip, she noted his arms tightened more. Without hesitation she screamed in his ear as loud as she could, making her husband freak out and roll off the bed. The sight was one to see. She couldn't hold in her laughter. The bright sound of her voice rang around the room, and Gabriel was more than happy to hear it.

"Well, that my darling was the best Christmas gift I could have eve asked for".

Angelica gasped and got up, tripping over the large shirt she was wearing. 

"LET'S GO!". Grabbing a shirtless Gabriel, she ran down the corridor, his hand in hers, knocking on every door that she could. Sprinting downstairs, she tried to make it to the bottom, but was dragged back by Gabriel's arm. Looking at him questioningly, Gabriel flipped her around, and placed her on his back. 

"What are yo-", before bing able to finish, he ran with her downstairs to the front room that had been littered with christmas decorations. Lights shone bright, and illuminated the large Christmas tree that sat in front of the large ornate windows. Hearing footsteps, Gabriel turned around and saw his wife's family trod down the stairs, Michael practically panting his way down from partial excitement. Everyone stopped and gazed over at Angelica, smiling slightly when they saw her perched on Gabriel's back

"Michael!", Daniel yelled from above the stairs. All heads turned his way. 

"Your gift is outside the front door". 

Watching the scene unfold, Angelica watched Michael walk to the front door, wondering what else Gabriel and Daniel had done.

Michael began to cry slightly, falling to his knees. In his arms ran a little girl, the age of what looked to be three. 

"Lily!", Michael cried, "Mum!". A sickly thin woman walked through the door with a drip attached to her. The family reunion was touching. Angelica had never seen such an adorable little girl before. 

"Gifts are under the tree for everyone", Daniel said out loud. Everyone, sat in the large front room, opening the gifts that had been set under tree. Angelica sat in between Gabriel and Daniel on the couch, watching everyone enjoy their time together. The greatest gift of all was the photo that Gabriel had printed for Angelica's mother. It was a photo of Angelica's younger brothers high school graduation that her father wasn't present for. He had died a year before. The photo was a previous one that had been taken, with a faded translucent picture of her father standing next to the family. 

It was beautiful, and bought light tears to Angelica's eyes. Looking up and Daniel, Angelica hugged him.

"Thank you for what you did for Michael today". Turning around she hugged her husband, and kissed his cheek lightly, blushing as she did so. She knew why they had done it. Michael must have reminded them of Caleb. 

Dropping out of her thoughts, she felt a tug at the long shirt she was wearing. It was Lily.

Moving her hands as if she wanted to be carried, Angelica lifted her up, feeling her snuggle into her chest and closed her eyes. In her left hand lay a little 'lucky blanket' of sorts. 

Running her fingers through Lily's hair, Angelica glanced up at Gabriel, feeling his intense stare. She noted that he was gazing at her with want and happiness. Looking down at Lily, she realised what he had been thinking. 

"One day, I hope you will grant me my only wish", he whispered in her ear huskily. Blushing at his words, Angelica looked down at Lily and then up at her mother and Daniel, who both wore knowing smirks on their faces.


MARCUS

New Years Eve

"Is it ready?".

"Yes Sir". 

"Good". 

Walking up from the basement of his home, Marcus took the stairs up to the top floor and then into the attic. A telescope lay in the middle of the attic, looking out to a warehouse, located by the River Thame's gates. To the public, it would look like a normal machinery warehouse, but this? This was the warehouse Gabriel used to get rescued sex workers away from their tormentors. He would rescue them and give them jobs, along with a small home.

"Pathetic". 

Just as the New Year's countdown had ended, the warehouse at the end of the Thames had blown into smithereens. Pieces of debris flew into the river, and onto other warehouse properties. The surrounds were on fire, and alarms began to blare in the distance. 

Marcus began to laugh to himself. 

"Strike one. Your move". 


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