Dark Longing

Selena Abbott discovers that she isn't what she thought she was and neither was her mother.
Plunged into a dark world will Selena be able to resist the darkness or will she give in to the dark longing?


22. Chapter Twenty Two: Age is Just a Number

“WOULD YOU LIKE to make this a regular occurrence?” Granddad asked as he cleared away the plates.

I dabbed the corner of my mouth with a napkin. “You mean that I would come here every Sunday for lunch?”

“Yes,” answered Grandma who was sat opposite me. She had raised her veil when eating enough that I had caught a glimpse of her chin which was covered with smooth, young-looking skin.

“That would be nice,” I said with a smile. I was happy that it appeared my grandparents wanted to be a part of my life.

Disappearing into the kitchen with the dishes, Granddad returned a few minutes later with a huge chocolate cake.

“I understand that it’s your birthday on Tuesday so I made you this.” He set it down on the table in front of me.

“Oh wow that’s . . . it looks amazing thank you.”

Granddad cut us a slice each of the rich but delicious cake and we ate it silently.

“I would like to show you something upstairs,” Granddad said, getting up from his seat.

Grandma’s fork clattered to the floor and her knuckles turned white but he ignored her. Looping his arm through mine, Granddad led me upstairs. “Please excuse Charlene.”

“Is she okay?” I asked worried.

“She is still coming to terms with your mother’s death.”

We walked down the corridor and stopped outside a faded pink door. Granddad smiled at me sadly before opening it. It was a child’s room; there was an elaborate dollhouse, a rocking horse and a bookcase filled with books and soft toys. I crossed the room, stepping over the sheepskin rug, and picked up a black and white photograph from the wooden table that sat beside an old fashioned bed. There was a man, woman and child in the photograph and they were all dressed in Victorian-style clothes. The man was obviously my granddad because he looked the same as he did now. I presumed that the woman was Grandma, even though I had never seen her face. She was beautiful and had high cheekbones. Her dark hair was piled on the top of her head. My eyes fell on the child.

“That is your mother,” Granddad told me quietly.

Feeling breathless, I gripped the metal frame tightly. My mum had grown up in the Victorian age.

“Charlene didn’t want me to show you all this but it would be unfair to hide it from you.”

“Thank you,” I whispered, blinking back tears. I had never known anything about my mum’s childhood. It felt good but weird to be able to see her old room. “Mum grew up in this house?”



“Thank you for showing me this,” I said, squeezing his shoulder gratefully.

Granddad pulled me into a hug and held me close. “You’re welcome. I’m sorry we didn’t contact you sooner.”

“Why do you think she was murdered?”

He tensed and muttered, “I don’t know. Maybe she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

I closed my eyes wishing not for the first time that Mum and I hadn’t gone to the forest that day.



That evening I was lying on my stomach on my bed in pyjamas. My iPod was blaring in my ears as I finished my art homework, moving my feet to the beat. Humming, I chewed on the end of my pencil and gave a start when I saw Hayden lying beside me grinning. I fell onto the carpet and quickly scrabbled to my feet, switching my music off.

“What the hell are you doing here? How did you get in?” I demanded flustered. I sat down on the edge of the bed and grabbed my sketchbook before Hayden could. I slid it into my bag so that he couldn’t reach it.

Amused, Hayden replied, “I climbed in through the window. I didn’t mean to disturb you.”

“Well you did.” I huffed, folding my arms. I was going to have to remember to lock my window 24/7. “Why are you here?”

A crease appeared on his forehead. “You didn’t reply to any of my texts. I was worried.”

“The battery in my phone died.” When Hayden didn’t react, I said, “You can go now that you know I’m still alive.”

“What if I don’t want to?” he asked with a smirk, resting his arms behind his head.

I sighed and said, “I’ll tell my dad.”

“No you won’t.” Hayden chuckled.

He was right. Even though Dad seemed a bit subdued at the moment he would still go crazy if he knew I had a boy in my room.

“So you’re just going to stay there all night?” I snapped trying to think of ways to get rid of him.

Hayden shrugged. “Maybe. I happen to like the view from here.”

I blushed realising that I was wearing only a tight fitting camisole top and shorts. “Jerk.” We stared at each other for a while as I racked my brain for ideas. Eventually I had a light bulb moment. “How old are you?” Surely asking personal questions would scare him away?

“I’ll show you,” Hayden said, standing up.

“What?” I watched in alarm as he pulled his t-shirt off. My eyes widened at the sight of his muscular chest which was covered in black tattoos. God he was sexy. The thought surprised me and Ash popped into my head. No, he has Marie. I reminded myself. He’s taken.

“Come here.” Hayden’s voice was gentle and I found myself doing as he asked. Taking one of my hands, he placed it over a tattoo. His skin was soft and warm to the touch. “This is a winged ankh, it means eternal life,” he explained huskily. Hayden kept his hand on mine and a shiver ran through me when he caressed my wrist with a thumb. Moving my hand over another tattoo which was an eye with lines radiating from it, he said, “This represents the sun god Ra. It also means eternal life.”

“Do all the tattoos mean eternal life?” I asked, aware that I was slightly breathless.

“Yes, I get one every hundred years.”

“Wait, you have . . .” I did a quick count. “Ten tattoos and you get a new one every one hundred years . . . That makes you over a thousand!”

Hayden merely smiled. I gaped at him. Talk about having your mind blown. I examined his face noticing that something had changed since I had seen him last. He looked older; there were crow’s feet in the corners of his eyes. Lifting my hand I grazed them with a finger. Hayden’s breathing hitched noticeably and his eyes darkened. He placed his free hand on my hip where my top had ridden up. Fingers trailed in circles around my hipbone creating Goosebumps.

“Do you have any idea what you’ve done to me?” he asked with a growl. Hayden slid his hand up my arm, shoulder and neck to bury itself in my hair. Increasing his grip on my hip, he said, “You’re all I can think about . . . Your skin, your smell . . .” Hayden ran his nose along my neck and inhaled. His warm breath tickled me. One of us was trembling but I couldn’t tell who. Maybe we both were. “I want to taste you . . .” His fingertips brushed my jaw and then my lips. “To kiss you until we’re both gasping for air.”

“Hayden,” I whispered. My heart was pounding in my chest and my eyes were fixed on his luscious mouth which was descending on mine.

“Selena?” Dad called, knocking on the door.

Hayden’s lips were millimetres away from mine. He groaned and reluctantly pulled away. Cursing, I shoved him towards my wardrobe, picking his top off the floor and throwing it at him. Once I was sure Hayden was out of sight I invited Dad inside.

“Did I wake you?” he asked, joining me on the bed.

I shook my head, resisting the urge to glance at the wardrobe doors. I must have been bright red but Dad didn’t say anything.

“What did you want to talk about?”

He hesitated a moment before saying, “I’m a good dad, aren’t I? I know I can be strict sometimes but I have your best interests at heart, Lisa too.”

“Of course you are. Is this about the baby?” I drew him into a hug and gave a laugh. “I turned out okay didn’t I?”

“That’s mostly because of your mum, sweetpea. She . . . she was amazing with you. She always knew what to do and say. I still love her. I think I always will.” Cupping my cheek, he had tears in his eyes as he said, “I’m so glad that part of her is living on within you.” Dad kissed my head before leaving the room.

I wiped my eyes and threw myself back on the bed, burying my face in a pillow. Arms wrapped around me and I was surprised when I didn’t push Hayden away.

“Go to sleep,” he murmured in my ear. “I’ll be here watching over you.”

Lacing my fingers through Hayden’s I slowly fell asleep.


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