The Cousins?

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He pounced. 

I shoved my body backwards, but it was futile. He was bigger than me and stronger than me. I was helpless.

I was able to give a small shout before his palm pressed down against my mouth, muffling any chance I had at alerting someone. "Shh, wouldn't want to wake people." His other arm circled around my back and pressed my body to his.

By doing that, he was able to clamp my arms to my sides, and despite my squirming he seemed to effortlessly contain my every movement.

The force of his jump forced us to the ground of the carriage. And the space was very tight, it was meant for feet, not two grown adults.

My protests came out muffled against his hand.

"Now, not many people know you're here and I would like to keep it that way. You're just going to have to behave yourself." He sighed deeply,  "Just be a normal woman for once." He leaned in closer, he seemed to be assessing me with his eyes.  They trailed across my face like a slow mist rolling in on a new morning.  

I felt exposed like I've never been before. My body stilled, my struggles ceased as I realized that I wasn't getting out of here, as I realized that something just kept pulling me back to this place.

If there was a reason at all for my being here then it had to do with this place, or maybe... maybe it had to do with this man.

This man who was drawing nearer. This man whose grip had softened to a slow caresses.

I'm sure he wasn't even aware that his hand, the one holding me down, was now lightly, almost mindlessly, stroking my back.

And myself, just laying there, not pulling him closer, but neither pushing him away. And then, as if him and I were set on a clock, or a timer, we came together.

There was nothing soft about it. And there was nothing soft about him. And when our lips touched, my body arched up to his.

Traitorous! How could I!

This damned man.

I hated him!

Plain and simple. My mind was made up.

But as I continued to assure myself in my head, as My mind conjured up images of his death by my strangulation, my body had other plans. My stupid stupid stupid body.

My arms snaked up and as one hand dived into his hair the other lightly clawed it's way down his back.

And as we each fought for dominance I was suddenly filled with a sense of loss. A need to be completed.

As if there'd been a pit in my very being that I was now just suddenly realizing was there the whole time.

I let my hands continue their dance as our lips continued their fight.

I needed that void filled, I needed more. But as we continued to kiss the empty space inside seemed to become more apparent, almost unbearable.

I was the first to pull away, "We shouldn't."

He ignored me and started to trail light kisses down my throat. And despite my words, despite the growing pit in my stomach, my body seemed to respond without my consent.

I was betraying myself. And I was betraying Oliver.

"I need answers!" I managed to find a strength I didn't know I possessed.

I pushed him from the carriage, and more He stood there, his hair askew and his eyes lite with fury.

His hands were fisted, that much I was certain. The darkness of the night perfectly silhouetted his dark countenance.  

"Why'd you bring me back here?" My words were short and choppy.

There was a long overdramatic pause.

"We'll speak in the morning, for now..." he trailed off as he looked over his shoulder, "I had hoped you would be cooperative, but I put certain... precautions in place in the case of certain instances."

His green eyes shot back to me and I couldn't help my body's natural reaction to a predator. And he was one. He always was.

I scooted back, "Theodore, let me go." My words were said in a forceful whisper as I heard steps approaching the carriage.

This was wrong.

I couldn't see anything besides Theodore, but the sound was enough for me to know that nothing good could come of it.

He shook his head. His eyes still trained on something beyond my sight, "I can't do that."

"Theodore." Panic began to claw its way up my throat, causing my voice to break on his name. He wouldn't hurt me. I was sure of it.

Fuck! At least I think.

He took a step back and the moonlight from the night spilled into the carriage for a split second before another figure, or figures, took his place.

"Theodore? What's happening?" I pressed my hands onto the bottom of the carriage as I tried to scoot my way back, but the space was tight and before I knew it the one of the men in front of me had reached out and grasped my ankle.

His grip was strong, firm, and crushing. I cried out as he tightened his grip. It felt like he was grinding my bones together with his simple grasp.

I kicked out with my free leg, but then the other figure was there, filling part of the doorway. He caught my leg and together they pulled me from the carriage.

My body landed on the ground as they did nothing to support me. I gave a small shout of surprise before looking up and trying to get my bearings. The night had twisted so much. I was unsure of what was happening.

I looked up to see the moon, full and bright, shining down on the three men standing before me. One was Theodore. That much was obvious, but the other two sent a wave of shock and fear so strongly throughout my body that I froze.

It was them. Their faces cast in the darkness of their hats. Their black coats were buttoned to their chins and their hands were gloved as they reached out for me. It was them.

I looked to Theodore as unbidden tears began to streak down my face, "Please, don't let them take me."

These were the men who stood at the cliff edge, these were the men who I saw from my window that day, these were the men I had overheard in the gardens that frozen night. And as one turned to the other and spoke, I realized that their voices pinged off a memory of a single fateful dinner party.

My eyes widened at the realization. I looked between the three men. "Theodore?"

They had sat there, not even five feet from me. That night. The night everything seemed to change. They were... they were... cousins?

Right? Yes. No! Maybe?

I pinched my eyes closed. No, that couldn't be right. But it was them. They were the two men who had sat at the table. And that voice, it was the one who convinced Hazel to kill me.

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