FanFic - Other
"Sexual Temptations"
Part 4
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
"What do you search for, Father?" Sister Mary Elizabeth Parker stares up at me with her beautiful, endless eyes. My Elizabeth, my angel.

This is completely irrational. She is a nun. A NUN, for the love of God. And a dedicated nun at that. She is the bride of Jesus Christ, the head of her convent despite her early years. And I am only a few months away from becoming a priest. I have always wanted this for myself. Haven't I? If this is the life that I have always worked towards, then why can't I take my eyes away from her? Why do her eyes haunt my soul and torment me with a longing that could never be fulfilled?

"I search for hope."

I have been in Virginia for five days. How is it that my soul, my very essence, belong to a woman I have known for so little time? A woman to whom I have had the pleasure of conversing with only a few meager times? Is this what love is? If it is not love, how is it that I have felt a connection between us from the moment I arrived at the church? This must be love. If it is not, then this must be madness.

"Father Evans, you are a good, kind man, but I wonder if you looking in the right place? A search for hope need only possess mere seconds of time. How is it that a man of God does not gain hope from the small miracles that are performed every day of our lives?"

Am I mad? Is this all a grand ploy of the devil to bring me into the darkness where the light of my Lord is powerless to reach? But then, how could an angel of my Lord harbor the intentions of a demon of Lucifer? Is that not in itself madness?

"I suppose I have been mislead."

How is it that a man could not find hope in you, sweet beloved? How much farther than the gloss of her hair do I need to look to find hope? How could hope elude a man with such a woman in his presence? I have all the hope I need in the curve of her smile.

"Well, permit me to lead you back! Look around you. There is hope in the kindness of a mother, in the love of a father. Hope is in the innocence of a child. It is our duty to preserve hope at St. Patrick's Cathedral."

Preserve hope? Preserve me. Five days and my soul is filled with love so bright and pure that the stars fade out under it's magnificence. Five days and I, a dying soul, have been brought into a passion that no God could have foreseen. A passion that must remain unsatisfied until the end of time.

Sister Mary Elizabeth studies my face critically. "Father, you cannot save the world. It is not the job of a priest to right all of the wrongs in life. It is only the job of a priest is to try." She stops the carriage in front of a long dirt road. "Here it is."

The Deluca Vineyard. The shear size of the vineyard is spectacular. Acres of grapevines stretch across the land, meeting the horizon in a gentle kiss. A mansion that takes the height of three stories, with seven windows across the front, stands tall and proud against the setting sun. Turning the carriage, my Elizabeth takes us to the imposing palace.

"Good evening, Sister, Father." A tall man with silver hair helps the woman beside me out of the carriage. His wife stands beside him, dark brown hair tied in a knot at the crown of her head.

"Good evening, Mr. Deluca. Good evening, Mrs. Deluca."

Leading us into the mansion, Mr. Deluca started to speak. "As you may have heard, my daughter, Maria, is less than enthused about her upcoming marriage to one Kyle Valenti. . . "


"Father, would you take me to confession?" My beloved's eyes are wide and immaculate as she speaks nonsense. What sins could such a woman harbor?

"Of course." I lead the way into the confessional, and it is all I can do not to place my hand on the small of her back. She is so dainty, like a child crafted out of the finest china.

I can hear her mumble a slight prayer as I pull the curtain of the confessional closed. Her head snaps up -- shock fleeting over her delicate features -- as I slide open the wood panel. Light filtering through the mesh places tiny patterns in gentle caresses across the polished curves of her surreal face.

"Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned. It has been eight days since my last confession." Her voice floats on the air like the sweet music of bells. I can't help but feel faint at the sound of her siren's song.

"Go on."

"I have become distracted in my work with thoughts that betray my standing of a servant of God."

Thoughts? "What sort of thoughts could you have that would be such a betrayal?"

Her voice came as the slightest of whispers. "Thoughts of envy. Of those who have not pledged their lives to servitude."

I take a deep breath. Is it my place to give forgiveness to her for a sin to which I am also guilty? "Sister, I do not pretend to know the mind of God. However, I do know that the sin you have committed is not one that is punishable by the laws of our Lord. God may know the error of your thoughts, but it is in your actions to which you will be judged. You can only follow the path your heart and your faith will lead you to."


The party is going well. As well as could be expected, anyhow. The Delucas decided that a social function at the church where their daughter and Kyle Valenti could interact would do them some good. It is obvious to all that they are both reluctant to join in holy matrimony. They have hardly spoken to each other all night -- Maria has spent most of the night cooing over the orphan children, and Kyle seems enthralled by a young Irish woman with curly blond hair. At least, now that his father has given up on trying to force him to interact with Maria.

"What do you think, Elizabeth? A match made in Heaven?"

I turn around to see Michael. "What do you mean?" The ruffled Irishman rolls his eyes.

"Lizzie, every one in Virginia knows that they treat each other like the plague. They do not love each other. Three times when the lad was to be courting, he had brought Maria to my farm so they could properly ignore each other. Either that, or the boy has a fetish for horses."

Interesting. "Is that why you and Kyle have been exchanging looks all evening?"

Michael looks at me, his eyes wide with shock and his skin paled. He opens his mouth as if to say something, but no words come out. Michael runs his hands through his hair and tears his eyes away from my own in avoidance. What under God's blue sky has him so dumbfounded?

His gaze roams behind me, and his expression changes from one of panic to one of engrossment. I turn to see what it is that has caught my friend's attention with such rapt intrigue. I turn back to watch Michael watch Maria approach us, her hair glowing in ethereal ringlets around her head. Shaking himself out of his stupor, his rakish smile returns. "Would you like to dance, Miss Deluca?"

Maria beams back at Michael, with her eyes sparkling like the most precious emeralds as she flashs him a flirtatious smile. "Certainly, Mr. Guerin."

As soon as Michael and Maria dance away, my thoughts return to a more. . . intimate matter. That being the subject of one Father Maxwell Evans. What am I going to do about him? He has bewitched me with unholy thoughts. But I cannot help it. There is just something about him. . .

Just the way he is standing there, talking to Judge Valenti, is completely mesmerizing. Maxwell makes the most simple, repetitive tasks seem like the most enticing opportunity. It amazes me to no end the emotions that I can read in his dark, soulful eyes, half hidden under soft black locks. It is like seeing the mysteries of the universe unveil within the two brown orbs of a man so amazing that I can scarcely believe that he is not some figment in my imagination.

But I cannot love him. It must be impossible. Have I not dedicated my life to God and his work? I love my work. But somehow, I feel as if I did not live a day before a certain group of Irish immigrants arrived on the steps of St. Patrick's Cathedral one week ago. Can I give up on everything for a man? Just one, simple man. Who is kind, and loving, and everything I could have every wanted in a soul mate. The part that frightens me is that I think that it would be worth it if I gave it up -- if I gave it all up -- just to be with him.

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