FanFic - Other
"Sexual Temptations"
Part 10
by Jez
Disclaimer: I don't own a thing (but if I did, I wouldn't share Michael =0P)
Summary: In the mid 1800's, Father Maxwell Evans arrives in America...
Category: Other
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: Based Nehal's Sexual Temptations Challenge
I pick a rose azalea from it's leafy holding on the branch. The fragile bloom rests in my palm like mist above the white-capped waves of an ocean. I bring the velvety plant to my cheek, reveling in the fragrant perfume that is emitted from it's blossom. I add the gentle flower to the lovely bouquet in my basket. Humming softly to myself, I bend down to pluck another bloom from it's stem.

As I place my basket down on a rock, a pair of strong arms encircles me from behind as my love leans his head forward to nibble the curve of my jaw. I can feel a small smile taking form on my lips. Although our love must be hidden from the eyes of others, I have no regrets.

All my life, I have told others to listen to what their soul is saying. Now, I can say this with the knowledge of the jubilation can be obtained by listening to what messages God has left imprinted on one's psyche. Because my heart and my soul led me to him.

"I cannot stay." I can hear the melancholy edging his voice. I turn in his arms and bury my hands in the smooth black locks of his hair as he places a hand under my chin to lift my face to his own. His eyes plead with me to beseech him to remain, although we both know that he will depart in a moment's time. Obliging, I nuzzle his cheek, slipping my tongue from my mouth to taste the salt of his skin.

"You only just arrived. Forget with me awhile, darling. It's been too long since we have been able to leave behind our troubles. Just for now, look at the ocean, and pretend that what we possess is rational." My arms snake around his neck as his lips glide across my forehead.

"I am afraid the ocean must wait, my love. I have been asked to join Mr. Deluca and Judge Valenti tonight for private counseling." I laugh against his neck.

"I am certain that there must be a law against that or something. Come, stay awhile. You have hardly taken the time to breathe." I cover his mouth with my own before he can protest. Rubbing my hands along his back, I try to smooth out the muscles that reside there, tensed from a hard day of work. A low grumble of pleasure escapes his throat as he tightens his hold around my waist. His graceful hands tangle themselves in my long hair, capturing my face closer to his own. Alexander pulls away from me, his bright blue eyes memorizing my own.

"I will come for you soon, Isabel. I promise."


"So, I would that the service will be held on Monday."

I stare at Mr. Deluca in shock. "Sir, Monday is three days away. I have been striving to shift your daughter's affections towards Mr. Valenti, but it seems that her heart is beyond his reach. Have you decided in all certainty that this is a choice that you would like to make on her behalf?" Mr. Deluca glares at me. I sigh, knowing the argument that is impending. He is every bit as stubborn as Maria.

"Father Whitman, Maria is my daughter. It is my responsibility to make the best choices possible for her. Kyle can provide for her in ways that no other man in Ravensport can. Maria's heart will change in time." I lean forward in my chair, making sure to have both his and James Valenti's complete attention.

"But are you certain? What if your children never come to love each other? Are you willing to gamble with their happiness? If you feel that they have found love outside of the coupling you wish for them, then perhaps you should let them be contented within their own relationships."

"Father, Kyle is a good man. He will treat her well. My daughter will never lack of anything in her life. Michael Guerin cannot guarantee this in the slightest. How would she survive fending for herself all alone when he is on business? Maria was not raised to live in such a manner. This Guerin boy whom she seems to be infatuated with cannot give her the life that she deserves."

"She deserves what she wants, Mr. Deluca. She does not want Kyle." Judge Valenti speaks up in place of Mr. Deluca.

"But she will, Father. In time, Maria will appreciate my son and the life that he will give her. With that ruffian, she will have to take care of herself. Maria is a kind-hearted woman, but she has been pampered. Believe me, she is better off with a man of her own standing."

I run my hands through my hair. There is just no negotiation with these men. Lawrence Deluca is completely obstinate, and James Valenti is consumed by greed. How can I convince them that their decisions will only succeed in rendering Maria and Kyle completely miserable?

"I expect you to perform the wedding ceremony for my daughter and future son-in-law." Before I can think of another argument against their children's marriage, a servant girl enters the room.

"Mr. Deluca, the slave master wishes me to inform you that there has been another runaway." Mr. Deluca rises from his seat.

"I apologize for my discourteous departure, Father, but I must end this meeting abruptly. Please be prepared to marry Maria and Kyle on Monday."


I watch as Alexander walks towards the front door, his head hung low in troubled concentration. I can tell from the set of his shoulders that he has failed to sway my father in his decision.

"Good evening, Maria. How are you today?" I turn around to face Judge Valenti -- my father-in-law in three days time -- standing behind me, his face set in a practiced smile.

"As well as could be expected." I walk away swiftly, trying to ignore the echo of footsteps following my retreat. I enter my chamber and close the door swiftly. No sooner than I release the bronze handle than it turns seemingly on it's own, and the door opens.

"Do you not know that it is uncivil to enter a lady's rooms without her expressed permission?" Ignoring my obvious displeasure, Judge Valenti closes the door behind him.

"Maria, I beg you to be reasonable. You have no choice in the matter. Please, just give Kyle a chance. I am certain that you will find that he is a good match for you."

"Sir, I am confident that if you would consider this joining, you will find that neither I nor Kyle will ever find that we are a good match for each other. My father and yourself have doomed us to a life without love." I walk through the terrace doors, leaving my future warden to plan what purchases he will make with my father's money.

"Maria!" I turn to find Kyle skulking behind the hedge. He grins at me, his eyes alight with mischief. Knowing what circumstances must have painted such relish in his gray-blue eyes, I smile back. "Get yourself to confession at seven o'clock tonight. Do not be late."


I pull back the heavy curtain of the confessional and slip inside. The carved wood paneling is closed, and for a moment I wonder if Michael is on the other side. As I raise my hand to knock on the wall, a hidden panel in the flooring slides open. A familiar brown head peaks out from the black depths.

"Fancy meeting you here." I laugh quietly as he places a fleeting kiss across my neck. I watch as he takes in my appearance, a glow of admiration apparant in his beautiful eyes.

"Michael, what on earth are you doing?" He wraps his arms around my waist and pulls me down the steps into a hidden tunnel. His rakish grin widens as he places back the trap door, making the blood rush through my veins like quicksilver.

"I just thought that you would prefer some privacy, love. Do not worry. Isabel is keeping watch with Finola." I hear the scrape of a matchbox as my beloved lights a lantern. He takes my hand in his own and leads me down the musty hallway to another trap door. Opening the panel, we climb into an abandoned cell. Light filters over a wooden table in the center of the room, tea and cakes strategically left on the table. Off to the side, a small bed lays undressed with the absence of an owner.

I walk over and pull closed the curtains framing the window as Michael pours cups of tea. He pulls me into his lap as I approach the table and plants kisses along my shoulder. Sighing, I lean back against his broad chest, drawing strength from the warmth of his embrace.

"I am going to be leaving Ravensport in a few days." I pull away from Michael and look into his hazel eyes. They are cloudy with gloom, an expression that I wish I could erase from his eyes for all time.

"Wait a minute. What do you mean that you are leaving? Why? Leaving where? You cannot just leave me here to be married to Kyle! We need you now more than ever! Our fathers will not listen to reason and -- " Michael silences me with a passionate kiss, his tongue exploring every crevice in my mouth. I tremble with pleasure before I pull away. "And another thing -- " Laughing at my displeasure, my love covers my mouth with his own once again. This time, I cannot summon the determination to tear myself from his lavish affections.

Releasing my lips, Michael rests his forehead lightly against my own. "I will only be gone for a short while. A month at most. I am heading north with my stock, before winter comes. You know that I do this every year. I will be leaving after your wedding." I grimace.

"You are all too casual about this, Michael. It seems as if you do not care that I am to be wedded to another man." Michael pulls me closer on his lap, resting his head against my bosom. I brush my hands through his soft locks, twisting light brown strands around my fingers.

"Of course I care. There is nothing that we can do about it. The wedding will not be legitimate. You are my wife, always and forever. I am yours and you are mine. Never forget that." He places his hand on my abdomen, tracing slow circles along the fabric of my dress. It tickles mercilessly, but I do not struggle from his arms. I would rather die than waste a single moment's time with my sweet angel. Lifting his head, Michael looks me in the eye. "Maria, if I had no choice but to leave Ravensport forever, would you come with me?" I smile and place a kiss between my husband's knitted eyebrows.

"Without a doubt." I pull myself from his lap, although every fiber of my being begs of me to return to him. "I should go before my father believes that I am a wicked child." Grinning impishly, Michael walks over to the window and places the lantern through the curtains for a moment. A large clatter sounds itself outside. Pulling me over to the bed, Michael runs his hands down my arms.

"We have time."

Part 9 | Index | Part 11
Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours
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