Who knew I could ever be so anxious, so excited?
My fingers are shaking, my heart is pounding, and I can't sit still. A full semester. That's how long I've waited. I've been back in my old community, and every day felt like a month, a year even. I hadn't realized since being home from England how boring and horrible my community was; is. And now I'm sitting where I sat months ago, on a small plane on my way to London. I haven't seen William in months. Though he is my Protector, he still can't officially see me. It made every day go slower as I counted down the days until my sister, mom and I would travel to London again. It turns out Mia wants to do some studies there this summer, and finally my semester of school is over and we can go.
I've been doing so much thinking over this long period of time away from Will, and now that I can be with him for about two months, we could figure out what's out there that is so dangerous, and maybe even bring back my dad. I know; it's a huge thing, and not something I'll bring up within the next few days. I'm sure I'd forget anyways; I want to embrace this time I have with Will because it's just limited.
You're probably wondering why he didn't come and move to my community with me. Well, though he is much more than just my boyfriend, he is still a Clauss. Well, that's what everyone thinks. Anyways, Charlie and Michael couldn't possibly move to my community; there's so much change they'd need to go through, it'd just be too hard. And from what everyone else thinks, Will is still just as old as me; seventeen. So he couldn't live here by me, not yet.
As for me, I guess it's the likewise situation. I am still only seventeen, and I cannot go anywhere unaccompanied. Mom refuses to let me even take a weekend trip to meet up with Will, often claiming I wasn't old enough and she had to worry about the things I'd do. Will set up a pretty bad reputation for himself, just to make us dislike him. And it definitely worked for Mom. Sometimes it's funny how things end up.
So now I stare at the window of the plane, waiting to drop below the clouds of England so I can see Big Ben, and even more importantly, the manor. Though the building is old and sometimes creepy, it is unmistakably beautiful. I smile, thinking of the building. I can't wait to get there.
"Are you excited?" Mia asks, patting my leg and busting me out of my reveries. Excited isn't the word I'd use at all. That's an understatement. I'm ecstatic times about a million.
"Yeah." I say with a smile. I don't want to explain how much happier I am than just 'excited'. I can't seem to wipe off a smile off of my face.
"Don't be disappointed if he isn't as happy to have you here as you are." Mom says, not looking up from her magazine she picked up at our community's Port. She's not as excited as I am, clearly. She hates Will. Despises him. But little does she know that it's all for our protection. To hide his identity.
"Okay, Mom." I say, turning away from her and looking out the window. Mia seems excited; she wants to travel abroad for her studies. And who knows, she may meet someone here.
I almost jump out of my seat when I see the top of Big Ben standing tall and beautiful. But then I remember that I have to contain myself; I need to act like a proper young lady. I bite my lip to keep from exclaiming out to Mia, who's asleep. I force my hands onto my lap, and watch the buildings get closer, magnifying and soon the beautiful manor comes into view. I grin, and breathe slowly to relax. I'm seeing him today. I'm seeing William! After these long weeks of not even talking to him except receiving touching letters each week, I'm so happy to see him.
"Mia," I start softly. I shake her leg. "Mia, we're here." I can't believe how calm I sound. I'm almost shaking with jitters on the inside.
"What…" Mia says, sitting up in her seat and rubbing her eyes. She lets out a long yawn. "Mom." She calls to my mother whose sound asleep next to me. "We're here."
We walk down the tiled paths of the airport in London. I clutch the handle of my bags so tightly that my knuckles turn a bright white. I know how calm and normal I look on the outside, just like everyone else does, but on the inside I'm screaming.
We walk down different confusing walkways after receiving the rest of our luggage. It's when a family of six clears from the middle of the path do I stop in my tracks. My eyes widen against my will. I see him. He's here.
I see Will. And he sees me.
All of my natural senses and controls have vanished. All I can hear now is the pounding of my heart so loud it's echoing in my ears. My pulse is racing, faster than it's ever been before. And it's because of this, this boy, this man who is everything to me. Will stands at the end of the pathway, almost glowing. His blond hair is casually tousled. His blue eyes immediately brighten as he spots me, and his lips part. Mia and Mom look back at me, and I swallow back some excitement to hand my suitcase to Mia. She takes it, smiling, and I start making my way down the long hallway to Will. He's started walking too, taking quick strides towards me. My lower lip trembles as I pick up my pace, and the closer I get, the harder my heart pounds, and everyone around me starts to vanish until it's only Will and I in the huge room. I hear my fast breaths, getting quicker after every step.
When I reach Will, it's like an explosion. He lifts me up into his arms, hugging me so tightly to him. I can feel his heart beating as rapidly as mine, and I realize that he's been feeling the same way. This pounding excitement is something we both share. My arms slide around him, hugging him tightly against me. I let out a sigh of pleasure and relief. This moment isn't what I'd thought it would be. It's so much more. I feel electricity when he and I touch. And now we're squeezed together like letting the other go would be the end of life. His hands run up and down my back, spreading warmth throughout my whole body.
"Will," I can only manage to say his name before he kisses me. I feel my body relax, as if it's been tense since the second I left him. My lips part under the tremendous pressure of his lips over mine. We are so packed together it's like we're one. My heart beats as rapidly as his, my breaths, short and fast, match his. His hands stroke back my hair as I let my legs slowly down from him when he lifted me up. But I don't want him to stop kissing me. My eyes are squeezed shut, and all I let myself focus on against my will is this kiss. One out of many more to come, I'm sure, but it means so much. It's like we're spilling our heart out from this one touch. My hands hook around his neck as I stand on my toes and lean up further towards him. Will's hands stroke my back now, sending shivers down my spine.
It isn't until I hear someone behind me clear their throat do I stop. I'm almost sure it's Mom or Mia. I slowly pull away, opening my eyes and looking up at Will as I do. His eyes are so, unbelievably bright, which only makes me happier.
"Hi." He manages to say to me. I still hold close onto Will as I let my toes relax and stand at my regular height. I smile at him.
"Hi." I return. He still strokes my back.
"Hello." Mia says happily from behind me. Will glances away from me to smile at my sister.
"Hello." He replies. He finally lets me go when he sees my mom awkwardly staring at the both of us. I clear my throat and straighten my dress. "Good day, Mrs. Hale." He says, nodding towards Mom.
"Mm." she says, handing me my suitcase. I can tell she doesn't approve of Will at all, not after what she knows happened with the police the last time we were here.
"Would you like me to carry your suitcase?" he asks. I know he's trying to regain her respect, but it doesn't seem to work for her.
"I'm quite alright." She says, starting to walk down the tiled floor again. I slide my hand into Will's as he takes my suitcase from me and starts walking with me. We follow behind Mia, who quietly mutters things to herself about how 'cute and adorable' Will and I are.
"How was the flight?" he asks from next to me, gently jerking me closer to him by our intertwined hands and fingers. He strokes the back of my hand with his thumb.
"It was fine." I somehow manage to say calmly.
"I've missed you so much." He whispers. I smile and look up at him.
"I did too." We continue walking until Will directs us to a taxi and packs our suitcases in the car. "Mom," I say. She looks back at me from a seat in the yellow cab. "I'm going to go with Will to the manor for a little while." I tell her.
"Well how will you know where we're staying then?" Mom asks flatly.
"Mia," I say. It's amazing how close we've gotten since the wedding. We're closer than ever now. "You can call the manor and just tell me where you're staying."
"And I can drive her over there." Will says. "I know all of London." He says. Mia nods happily while Mom makes a distressed sound and silently nods. She shuts the cab door and Will gets another taxi for the both of us. "Your mom hates me." He says, waving a car over.
"No she doesn't." I say. "She just…" I try to think of something nice to tell him.
"Hates me." He finishes with a smirk. "But at least you don't." he adds, opening the car door for me. "Not anymore."
"I don't think I ever hated you." I say, taking a seat in the car. Will tells the driver the address of the manor and we start to drive off. "I think I've just wanted to figure you out."
"And you have." He says. "I've missed you so much, Love." He whispers into my ear, his lips tickling my ear. I think he did this purposely, because now I've received the urge to kiss him. I turn to look at him and instead I find myself leaning into him, kissing him again, clutching onto the fabric of his shirt. He smiles against my mouth, bringing his hands around me.
When the car arrives at the manor, Michael is standing, smiling, waiting for us to exit. Will opens the door for me and we walk up the steps of the building and approach Michael.
"Aria," Michael says in a warm tone, hugging me. I'm not really sure how pleased he is to know that my sister broke off the wedding with his son. "How are you? How's the family?"
"They're doing fine." I answer. Charlie peers around Michael from behind.
"Aria!" he says happily. He finds his way around his father and greets me. "How wonderful of you to come visit!"
"How are you doing, Charlie?" I ask with a smile.
Much of the first hour goes like this. I stay and talk to the Clauss' for a while before Will and I finally get a chance to be alone. He has a blindfold over me, guiding me through the manor now. I walk behind him, clutching on to his hand.
"You're not going to make me run into a wall or something, are you?" I ask curiously, as he brings me somewhere. He said it was a surprise. Will laughs and says no, so I guess that's a relief.
"Okay." He says, as I walk outside. I can tell it's outside, because the warmer summer air hits my face but I'm confused when I smell….flowers? "You can take off the blindfold." I pull it off of my eyes, eager to see what lies before me and when I do my mouth opens and a gasp escapes my mouth.
"Will…" I stand outside-I was correct-in front of a beautiful courtyard filled with red and white roses and all different kinds of flowers and benches with small torches to light up the night. I walk down a small stone path and touch a dark red rose.
"I wanted to do something for you when you came to visit." He says softly from behind me. I turn my head to look at him and smile. "I figured I'd find some flowers and make something nice for you." His hands are behind his back as he approaches me.
"Will, these are absolutely beautiful." I whisper. He pulls a hand out from his back and reveals a small bouquet of pure, white roses. I get a picture in my head of Will's white feather; the roses are just as bright as his wings once were. "Will…"
"You know," he starts, looking down at the roses. "White roses represent innocence and purity." He hands me the flowers, and I just stare at them in my hands in awe. "The white rose is also a symbol of honor and reverence." He laughs softly. "It means, 'I'm-"
"Worthy of you'." I finish. I look down at the roses, smiling. Will's hand comes up to my chin, guiding my lips to his. I wrap my arms around his neck and let him pull me against him and kiss me.
It's not until after a while of this do I hear the doors behind me that I originally entered open. I pull away quickly, hastily taking my hands away from Will to look behind me.
"Miss Aria," he says softly. He lightly clears his throat as I stare at him, wide-eyed. "You've come to visit."
"Nathaniel," I say tightly. "It's nice to see you again." I can feel the tension between everyone here.
"I can see you're busy, so I'll leave you be-"
"Actually, I think Mia is going to be calling here soon." I look back at Will. "Maybe we should…"
"Yeah." His face seems distraught, and I feel guilty, but it's too late. We're already inside by the time I see his gloomy eyes.