Hello, All!

This story is the sequel to my stories "Wonder(ing) White" and "Don't make me say I'm weak" so if you haven't read them please go do so. They are required reading for this story, so please go read and review!

I hope you enjoy this story. :)

...

The door opened in front of the former angel after the third knock, and she took a breath as she took in the familiar face of her once mortal, the person who was now his own man.

The first thing she noticed was his smile, the kind of smile that could light up a room, and it was all for her. It was a smile she didn't deserve, so she turned her gaze away looking over his body silently, noting the small changes from months ago.

His eyes, however, hadn't changed. They were still the same brown orbs that could pierce every defense she could ever erect, and they stared into her blue ones, turning any thought of forming a working sentence into mush.

"Serina, you look awful, get in here."

She walked into the house, taking a moment to look down at herself. She had been wearing the same clothes for two weeks and had been sleeping in trees or on the ground, dark bags dragged her eyes down, and her hair hadn't seen a ponytail in a long time.

She did look awful.

The door closed behind her and the awkwardness set in as her avenue of escape sealed itself off.

She shuffled her feet, looking around at the modest home. It had a fireplace, chairs, paintings, a kitchen area and an upstairs area. The bear skin rug that covered most of the hardwood floor was soft under her feet, and she slid her shoes off, letting the strands form a cushion for her aching soles.

"Please sit, I'll heat up a meal for you."

She walked across the room, sitting down in the chair and feeling the cushions embrace her body. Her blue eyes studied the fire, trying to avoid looking back at him.

"So, how have you been?" He asked her, his voice jolting her from her thoughts.

The question, even from her sweet well-meaning best friend, came with a prepackaged load of bad memories. She bit her lip and ran her fingers through her hair, trying to force them all back. "Well, I'm okay."

I'm just not a princess, not an angel, and racked with guilt and shame for hurting you the way I did.

She heard him chopping something on a wooden board, then he responded "I'm okay. Just scratching my way by in this town. It's been a hard few months, but I'm getting by."

Serina froze "What do you mean?"

He walked over to her and placed a tray in her lap. She inhaled as the steam and smell of vegetable stew and fresh baked bread wafted up to her nose, and she picked up the wooden spoon eagerly.

He sat down in the chair next to her and answered her earlier question. "I'm working as a blacksmith now, and it's been a bit hard getting set up in the space I have. After I… left, I got a fresh start. But enough about me, why are you in town?"

Serina swallowed her spoonful and inwardly groaned. That was him, always thinking of others and listening instead of talking. "I'm-I'm… I don't know."

She cursed as her carefully structured story for why she was here fell apart like a deck of cards, and she stared down at her soup wishing it would swallow her whole.

His answer didn't surprise her "Well until you get an idea, you'll stay here."

Heat rose to her cheeks as she attempted to protest, but he cut her off. "No, the inn is expensive and you'll find yourself with an empty purse after the third night. Besides, I cook better food than those greasy cooks do and the room is free. In exchange, you can help me with blacksmithing and small jobs. Deal?"

Serina knew that he wasn't giving her choice. He was offering her the hook, line, and sinker, and she took it numbly. "I… guess that'd be okay."

He smiled and reached out to squeeze her arm softly. "You must be exhausted, I'll get the bed ready for you."

His footfalls went upstairs and Serina took a moment to reflect on the situation.

She had managed to land herself an abrupt pact with her best friend, making herself a houseguest to a tactile man who she hadn't completely stopped having lustful thoughts about. She couldn't, no wouldn't touch him. Her body had heated up as his fingers pressed into her arm, and that heat wasn't going to leave her be.

What if he hugged her? Kissed her? How would she cope without letting the heat overwhelm her or hurting him again?

Deep inside her heart, she knew that the solution was to bare the pain and talk out the problems they had. They needed to delve into the hell of their memories and free themselves from the cages of their own emotions.

That thought terrified her more than anything else. He was her best friend, and she was already grasping at the threads that their friendship had become. Could she risk it all on one confession, the confession that she loved him?

No.

"The bed's ready Serina." He called, giving her no time to reflect on her decision.

She placed the empty tray on the table and stood up, walking up the wooden stairs.

The upstairs area was a sitting room with three bookshelves, an armchair, a table with a candle and a small box, and piles of more books that couldn't join their brethren on the shelf.

And a door that led to the bedroom.

He beckoned her inside and motioned to the bed, pointing to another smaller door. "Chamber pot and washbasin are in there. First thing tomorrow we'll buy you some new clothes."

She froze as she realized she was in his bedroom. The only bedroom.

Sweat ran down her temple and her stomach turned, feeling as if she were trespassing on sacred ground.

His smile didn't put her at ease as he killed her protest, not even letting it escape her lips. "I've got a book I've been working on for the past few nights anyway, so I've fallen asleep in the armchair before and will be outside if you need me. Goodnight Serina… and it's good to have you here."

Then he closed the door and left.

Serina took a deep breath and slid under the covers, noticing how big the bed was, as it was built for two.

Traitorous thoughts sprung into her head, faster than she could banish them. Did the house come with this big bed or did he get it himself? Has he ever brought any other girls here? What if he's in a relationship and hasn't told me?

She frowned and inhaled, letting his scent fill her nose. Everything from the pillows to the sheets to the covers smelled like him, and it hurt.

Was he completely immune to the pain that had been racking her since she had laid eyes on him? Had he forgotten the hell that they had gone through just several months ago? Maybe he had forgotten, maybe he had a perfect life and maybe she was shattering it.

He just seemed so at ease with her turning up on his doorstep after all this time and after all, they had gone through. Like the pain didn't affect him anymore.

Still, the thought of him being with another woman stabbed her like an icicle in the gut, causing the cold to reach out into her bloodstream. The memory of their first kiss was still vivid in her mind, and she hated the thought of another woman defiling his lips with her own.

This is stupid! She thought, tossing onto her side, He's my best friend… but just because we kissed doesn't mean I own him. That's all in the past, and if he's forgotten it maybe I can too.

These thoughts plagued her until she fell into an uneasy slumber.

….

Her dreams came alive with the events of the Underworld, but not the pain or the hurt… now it was that night. The last time when she had shared his bed and inhaled his scent so intimately.

The familiar feeling of lust filled her as she replayed the night in her head:

Her back was pressed against the door as she surrendered to his strong arms.

His lips were pressed on her neck, causing her to scream out his name in the angel tongue.

Her tongue had played with his as he laid her on the stone bed, and her legs had wrapped around him.

Their hands had wandered to backs and arms, caressing the clothing and the skin underneath.

In her dreams, however, they always went much further than simple kisses and touches, electing to toss the consequences away.

She'd worship him with her very being, becoming one with him mind, body, and soul. He'd do the exact same thing to her… each knowing that even if they never escaped the Underworld, this would be more than enough.

She awoke with a deep moan and turned, almost expecting him to be there. The dream, the feelings, the passion had been so real…

Instead, she met empty sheets and stumbled into the bathroom thanking heaven that cold water was in the washbasin.

She washed her face and took several deep breaths, trying to keep her temperature down. She couldn't be having any lustful thoughts about her best friend, while she attempted to rebuild their relationship from scratch.

She crawled back into bed, cursing herself for getting in this situation. She was out of the Underworld, but she was still plagued by lust. Why?

She fell into a dreamless sleep and then her eyes opened as the sunlight streamed through the window.

Serina got out of bed and smoothed down her clothes, making herself look as presentable as possible, before opening the door and walking out.

He was still asleep in his armchair with a book in his lap, and Serina took the chance to study him. He had put on more muscle in their months apart, and his skin was slightly darker. Her eyes lingered on his hands, much more calloused that before, and his hair was a mop of black strands.

Her fingers twitched with the urge to run them through his hair, or to grip his strong hand in her own. She could easily slide into his lap, fiddle with his hair, show him that she was much more interesting than whatever world that the book had taken him to…

"No!" She squeaked, regaining control of herself, as she hurled herself away from him. She forced the lustful thoughts to the back of her brain as he stirred, awakened by her squeak.

"Serina? Are you okay?" He asked, placing the book aside as his eyes caught hers, filled with concern.

"Y-yes…" She nodded with her face as red as a beet "I'm fine."

He nodded in understanding "Alright, I'll make some breakfast and then we can go to the Blacksmith and get working."

He went downstairs without another word and she followed, equally silent out the outside but raging with her emotions on the inside.

She had come to one inescapable conclusion: this was going to be harder than she thought.

...

I had a lot of fun writing this chapter and I'm excited to work on this sequel and make it better than the original!

So please leave a review! I will take any suggestions, constructive criticism, tips, and positive feedback. I need all the help I can get! :D

I'm not sure how long this story will be, but it will be at least 4 chapters long as possibly as long as 6 or so.

Please leave a review, feel free to check out my other works, and have a great day! :)