Too Late

“Look. I’m gonna tell you the same thing I told her. My name isn’t Gabriel! She’s got the wrong guy!” Bree yelled at the top of his lungs. He refused to get pulled into this shit just because some blind woman had a case of mistaken identity on her hands!

Michael snorted at the psychic. One vampire held Evangeline from behind, one arm around her neck, and the other around her arms, keeping them tight. Two other vampires held Gabriel. One for each arm and they forced him down on his knees. He struggled for all he was worth but he could tell he was beginning to tire.

“Too late for him,” he replied, walking up to the man who used to be one of the most powerful vampires in the world. Now on his knees and nothing more than a human. How disgusting. But harmless human or not, he had to get rid of him. He was still a threat. “Keep him still.” He reached over and grabbed Gabriel by the hair. Oh, he was going to enjoy this and the grin on his face said as much. He could feel his fangs growing and it gave him no small amount of satisfaction to see the fear in his twin’s eyes. His eyes grew wide. His heart was beating faster.

Michael ran his tongue over his fangs. “Poor little Gabriel … I told you I would taste your blood,” he whispered into his ear as he lowered his head. “It is fitting that after all I have taken from you, I finally take the ultimate prize.” He licked the base of his neck, felt the pulse beating there and could feel the involuntary shudder that went through Gabriel. “Your life.”

“No! Gabriel!” Evangeline cried. She tried to break away but the vampire’s grip was too strong and her cane was too far! And Brutus! Oh no, where was Brutus?!

From the swirl of fear and desperation in his mind, Bree felt a twinge of anger. How many times did he have to tell them his name wasn’t Gabriel?! But this whacko was whispering about shit he didn’t even know about and … he was seriously going to bite him?!

“I told you, my name isn’t–AAAAGGGH!” It was like a dog had sunk its teeth into his neck but these teeth were bigger and the guy standing over him was pulling his hair so hard, it probably wouldn’t be long before he pulled it all out!

As soon as Michael tore into the skin, he felt the blood swelling up. He tightened his hold on Gabriel’s hair and forced his head back at an even more uncomfortable angle. The other two vampires had loosened their hold on Gabriel, seeing no reason for it now that the boss had him right where he wanted. Michael didn’t bother being neat. He just ripped his fangs out and felt the blood gushing out now. He clamped his mouth on the wide wound he left as the life began to flow out of his twin.

Gabriel could feel his blood draining out of him. He was slipping into shock. All he could register was the sound of sucking, the feeling of becoming weak, empty. Someone was holding him up by the hair and there was a hand on his back. All he could see was black …



A black-haired man with golden eyes and an evil smirk. Another black-haired man, younger than the first with dark gray eyes. Then a blonde woman with a sad smile. And a brunette with pain in her eyes …

Michael had finally drunk enough. He ran his tongue over his blood-red fangs as he lifted his head, dropped the body. Gabriel was looking pale and his eyes were unfocused, distant. His blood was beginning to slide down his neck, gather in a pool beneath him. It was only a matter of time before he bled to death.

“Now that, that is taken care of,” Michael announced. He was unable to resist the smug grin. That had been so very satisfying! After all the pain Gabriel had put him through! He turned and set his sights on the psychic. “As for you … I find it fitting that you return to being my doll.”

“NO!” Evangeline cried. She was never going to be his doll again! NEVER!

The two vampires who had held Gabriel now left him on the ground and flanked either side of their boss. The other vampire, still holding Evangeline, held her tighter. Maybe, just maybe the boss would let them feed now! All three vampires‘ fangs were already growing in anticipation!

No one noticed that Gabriel’s wound had stopped bleeding or that the wound itself was beginning to seal up. His eyes flashed red. His hands slowly tightened, grew into claws. Fangs emerged from under his lips. His lips were dry, his throat was parched. He could hear the beat of a heart, laughter, weeping. But the only thing that mattered was the hunger. He was hungry, thirsty.

He stood.

“LET GO OF ME! GET OFF–!” Evangeline was struggling for all she was worth! She was tired, maybe, but she refused to give up! She couldn’t possibly give up! “GABRIEL?!”

One of the vampires at Michael’s side laughed. “Yeah, like we’re gonna fall for that!”

“Man, look!” The one holding Evangeline saw him, though and he wasn’t laughing. What the fuck was going on?!

All three vampires turned but Gabriel wasted no time. He grabbed the vampire who had thought Evangeline was joking by the collar and pulled him close. Then he sunk his fangs into his neck, not even feeling the vampire kicking and screaming. For what seemed like an eon, the only sounds in that alley were the sounds of Gabriel feeding and the vampire crying for help.

Gabriel finally let go but by then he’d drained the vampire completely. “What the fuck …” Michael muttered, stepping backwards. He couldn’t understand it! Why was Gabriel still standing?! How did he become a vampire so suddenly?! “Get him!” He pointed!

Evangeline found herself suddenly let go and she scurried to get out of the way! Gabriel. A vampire?! And from the feel of things, he was more animal than man! Just like when he’d gone berserk on the tanker!

The two vampires charged him at once! They weren’t going to let him get them! But Gabriel proved too fast! He caught a fist in each hand and tightened his grip. Then he twisted their arms and flew them into each other! There was the sickening CRACK of bones breaking! He’d suddenly let go of their fists to grab them by the collars of their shirts and drove both of their heads through the brick wall!

They were still stunned when Gabriel pulled one of them out and sunk his fangs into his neck! He had only started drinking when he ripped his throat out and dropped him! The same fate awaited the next vampire! When they were both on the ground, writhing, he slammed his fists into their chests, pulled out their hearts and crushed them!

Michael was nowhere to be found!

The coast seemed clear. She stood, still unsure of whether it was safe or not but knowing she had to try and get through to him. Perhaps figure out what was going on. “Gabriel …?”

“…” He turned, looked at her hard for a moment as he stood and took a step toward her. His fangs were disappearing but there was blood on his mouth, on his clothes. It was everywhere. And the way he was looking at her. He didn’t recognize her. Nothing seemed to register except that she was food.

Then his knees suddenly gave way and he collapsed.


“What’s wrong? Why isn’t he responding?!” Evangeline had managed to contact Oracle and gotten Gabriel rushed into the nearest branch’s Infirmary. Now she was in the waiting room, hysterical and wringing her hands as the doctor sat down beside her to explain things.

“Please, Ms. Clark. We’re doing all we can. The truth is, there is only so much we can do.” The doctor took a deep breath. “In fact, I don’t think there’s anything we can do. We don’t have the necessary knowledge to treat a Carnatelli. He’s a different type of vampire than the ones we’re used to treating.”

“But he’s not a vampire, he’s a man!”

“Not according to our readings. It’s amazing. Really. Never before in our studies has a master vampire been able to produce another master vampire purely by blood transfusion. It’s been a general rule that a vampire always produces a weaker vampire, if any at all.” The doctor sounded very excited about all of this but Evangeline, for one, did not.

“What will happen to him now?” was all she could ask.

“Well, we’ll keep quartered here either until he wakes up or …”

“Or …?” She didn’t like the way he sounded.

“Or … we get the orders to destroy him. I’m sorry, Ms. Clark. But the higher ups believe it is too risky to let a Carnatelli lie around here. Someone is bound to realize who he is and when they decide to come for him … it’s too big a risk for the humans here.”

“Then move him! Or–or swear everyone to silence if you have to!”

“Ms. Clark, please. I can’t begin to imagine how difficult this is for you but … orders are orders. If you like, you can go in and see him.”

“Thank you, doctor. I’d like that very much.”

The doctor nodded and took Evangeline’s arm, gently guiding her into the room.


The Crossroad

It was cold. It was dark. The first snow of winter was still falling. He stumbled through the forest, numbe both inside and out. It wasn’t from the cold. He could never feel the cold anyway and the thick darkness he could see in. It was because … because …

“I used you …” a voice said.

“The hate in her eyes …” another voice whispered.

“I needed her blood …” the first voice continued.

“I played with her …” the second added.

He fell forward, tasted snow. He’d never felt this way before. This was worst than when Anthony had run a sword through his chest and left him for dead. He had often wondered about that. How could something who was never born die?

Now he could feel that sword inside of him again, twisting, slowly twisting. It hurt to breathe. No, it was worst than that. Each time he drew breath, his whole body was racked with pain. Pain. Throbbing, aching, burning pain.

It made him think of her being tied to that stake. How the fire had started from the bottom, a small flame and quickly grew into an all-consuming thing. Only too soon did the fire find its way to her feet, catch a hold of her skirt.

He remembered how he had struggled, fought, tried to twisted and claw his way out from under Michael. He remembered the barbed whip tight around his throat, the same whip that kept his wrists bound behind his back.

He remembered watching the fire move farther up her body, turning her flesh to black. How she had so desperately struggled, her cries interrupted by coughing as she inhaled the smoke. Somewhere along the way he had started waiting for her to suffocate, to spare her, to end her suffering. But she had been alive to the end, until the fire had claimed her, inside and out …

He lifted his head from the snow. He heard something on the wind and smelled smoke in the breeze. The snow had stopped falling and he remembered how it had been unable to extinguish the fire, too weak to combat the blaze.

He started moving again. He stumbled and fell forward. Then he got to his feet and staggered in the direction of the smoke and the noise ahead.

It took him hours to cross a distance it should have taken him a heartbeat to. Steadily the scent grew stronger and the sounds louder. Now he could make out the sounds of stories being told, jokes being shared. He could smell meating being roasted–deer–and wood being burnt.

He came to some bushes and peered through the leaves. Men, women, children, and livestock were camped in the large clearing. He remembered them. They were the ones who’d dragged her away, mocked her and thrown clumps of mud and rocks at her while she went without a struggle. He remembered how she had hung her head as she was dragged, the trail of blood left in her wake. He remembered the hate in her eyes when she looked at him, when their eyes met. He had betrayed her, he had beaten and raped and broken her spirit. He was every bit the demon he had said he was.

As he remembered, the numb sensation left his body. He had betrayed her but he would redeem himself, he would make it up to her. And he would start–by avenging her death. Silent, he sunk his fingers into the ground and began to remember farther back.

“Humans are merely cattle, my boy,” the voice said. “Pawns in our little games, toys we use to entertain ourselves.”

Yes, cattle, pawns, toys, he thought as he clenched his teeth, shut his eyes. They didn’t deserve to live. They deserved to be destroyed!

Another memory came back to him without him willing it to. “Do you know what kind of a name Gabriel is?” she had asked, studying him.

He looked at her. “No.”

She had smiled then, a small little smile as she handed him a bowl of soup, let him drink himself. “Gabriel is the name of an angel. You are named after an angel.”

He had looked at her oddly then. “I am no angel.” She had told him what angels were and he knew for a fact he was not an angel.

She had chuckled. “No … But you could be a sort of angel, if you wanted to. Or … more like a guardian. Yes, a guardian angel. To humans.”

He had snorted. “You humans are weak if you need someone to protect you all the time.”

She had blinked and looked as if he had slapped her. Then she had smiled again. But this smile was … different. It made him feel … like he had done something wrong. “Yes but … we have a strength all our own. Just like you have a strength all your own. I hope one day … you use your strength for the right reasons …”

He opened his eyes, looked down at his hands which had become claws. Perhaps he could make it up to her after all. He stood and peered over the brush to the camp beyond…


“Momma! Momma!” the little boy cried as he ran into her arms.

His mother caught him easily and cradled him against her. He was growing so quickly, her little baby. In no time at all, he would be running around, getting into the type of trouble only growing boys could. “What is the matter, little one?” she asked as she stroked his hair.

“A stranger! A stranger!” the little boy cried.

“A stranger?” On one hand, it could have been just a child’s fear but on the other … These were strange woods. It was best to put him at ease before she thought of doing anything else. “And where is this stranger, my little one?”

“Over there!” the boy lifted his head and pointed across the clearing.

The mother smiled as she turned in the direction he had pointed, ready to tell him it was nothing–only to freeze. It was like something out of a dream. A stranger with such a dark and intense aura, staring at her with something that shifted from malevolence to indifference and back again. She was about to scream for help when she met his eyes. There was something about those eyes. Loss. Despair. Darkness. It sent shivers down her spine and made her feel so vulnerable, so open, so human … No matter how much she wanted to look away, he held her gaze and it felt like ages had passed.

And then he turned and just like that disappeared …


Mark My Words

Some long overdue smut for Gabriel and Evangeline! They are so cute together!

Gabriel lifted his head, tugged on her gown. He wanted her out of it and he wanted himself out of his clothes. He wanted to feel her body against his and press himself against her, know what it was really like to lose yourself in someone and not do so out of anger. She made him feel complete, she was that missing part of him.

Evangeline could tell something was different. Maybe it was the way he pulled at her gown, as if it was something in the way. She smiled at that but then she reached up to cup his face. She could feel his eyes on her, as if she was the only person in the world, the only person who mattered. It made her feel warm and fuzzy inside but the intensity of his gaze also made her heart beat faster. “Gabriel …?” she asked, uncertain.

Gabriel turned his head to kiss her palm. “I am fine, Evangeline. Better than I ever thought I could feel.” And he meant it. He lowered his head to brush his lips against hers. “Let me love you, Evangeline,” he asked, whispering. “I’ve showed you I care in so many ways except one.” His body was tense. He was nervous but he was determined to do this. That was … if she let him. He was through with hurting her. He wanted to heal her.

Evangeline smiled and nodded. Her heart swelled and she could feel tears of happiness beginning to burn. But she willed it away. If she started to cry now, Gabriel would stop and think he was hurting her. Her Gabriel. Her vampire in shining armor who always saved her and never hesitated to do it, no matter the danger to himself. She wanted to answer him but she didn’t trust herself to say something before she really burst into tears.

Gabriel kissed her again, deep and long. His mouth moved against hers, hot and demanding, and he growled softly when she responded in kind. His hands went to her hips and then moved up, trying to figure out this damn piece of clothing or else he’d rip it off of her or make it disappear altogether. He didn’t want to do either of the last two because he didn’t want to scare her. This was a special time. He realized something and slowly broke the kiss. “Evangeline, have you …”

Evangeline felt her cheeks turn hot as it dawned on her what he was asking. Would he change his mind about this, if he knew? But she realized it didn’t matter if he knew the truth or not. Gabriel loved her for who she was. She shook her head shyly. “.. Have you …?” She had been his first kiss but that didn’t mean he couldn’t have made love to someone before!

The smile Gabriel gave her was warm. “No. You will be my first.” And he was going to make it the best time for her that he could. He nuzzled her cheek as his hands moved and his fingers found the fastenings for the corset. They were quick and just as he had opened it completely, his mouth took hers in another deep kiss. His tongue slipped into her mouth and licked at hers as his hands moved away to take care of the rest of the gown.

Evangeline moaned into Gabriel’s mouth. He was so intense, so passionate. It would have scared her if she hadn’t felt the same way. It felt like she’d waited so long for this moment and now it was happening and he was leaving her breathless. All she could do was grasp his shoulders and be grateful she was lying down; he was making her melt. She felt him pushing her skirts up one hand stole underneath. She broke the kiss, gasping when his hand slid between her legs.

“Open for me, Evangeline,” he whispered, looking up into her face to gauge if he was doing something wrong or making her have second thoughts in anyway. But her expression … It took his breath away. She was the greatest gift ever, a woman with a pure, innocent soul who’d dealt with so much and asked for so little in return. He could sense her uncertainty but ultimately trust won out and her legs opened. He smiled again and gave her a kiss on the mouth for encouragement at the precise moment that his fingers found her slit and stroked her. “You are the greatest gift ever.”

Evangeline swallowed and gasped! Her body was tingling in places she never thought you could tingle and so warm. And the way he was touching her and the words he said … It all made her feel alive and … It was wonderful! She blushed and smiled up at him. “Oh, Gabriel, I love you …” She cupped his face, leaned up to kiss his mouth. “You’re in my heart,” she whispered, remembering that part of their vows to each other.

Again, he kissed her lips back, turned his head to kiss her palm. “And you will always be in mine,” he replied just as he felt his fingertips grow wet against her hair, slid one finger inside of her gently. He forced himself to be patient, to just watch and wait as her muscles stretched and tightened around his finger. Her hips jerked, her hands clutched his shoulders. The gasp she let out was not one of pain but surprise and as he slowly moved his finger inside of her, the moan that followed was one of pleasure.

Evangeline’s heart was beating oh so fast! She tried to bite her lip to keep from crying out but suddenly she gasped and moaned! She was so wet and he was making her even wetter! And hotter, yes, he was definitely making her hotter! Her body was doing strange and unusual things, new things that felt incredible! And she was doing them with Gabriel. “What are you …?” Her voice trailed off. It was a wonder she could focus at all!

Gabriel’s finger stopped. “Stretching you,” he answered. “This way your body is ready for me. Pain will be at a minimal.” At least he hoped it would. But he would not let fear stop him now, not when he wanted to make love to Evangeline. It was the one thing he found himself ever wanting so badly. To show Evangeline just how much she meant to him. Then he started to thrust into her again, slowly, gently, shallow thrusts. He wanted to give her a taste of what was to come.

Evangeline lay her head back as her body moved with his finger. She would have been fairly certain this was a dream except … the sensations she was feeling were definitely real! Her muscles stretched and tightened around his finger. He never went too deep as to break her hymen but his finger was beginning to move faster and harder. She was breathing hard and something was … building and … Oh God, building! Especially when he added that second finger! She didn’t know she could stretch so much and yet, she was! Those fingers moved faster and faster and when she had her first climax, she stiffened and gasped and just lay there, to catch her breath.

Gabriel smiled and pulled his finger out. He leaned up to kiss her lips and then moved his attention to that gown of hers. Even with the corset open, he found the only way to get rid of it without tearing it would be to pull it over her head. His lips quirked up at one corner and he tugged on her gown. “Did you want this in one piece?”

Evangeline laughed. She couldn’t help it. His question came out of the blue and despite the fact his tone was as indifferent as ever, she could feel the impatience underneath. “Yes, please. It feels exquisite, doesn’t it?” she asked, running a hand over her gown. Although it reminded her of her time spent in the Devil World as Malsuada’s slave, it also reminded her of being bound to Gabriel. And, as Caroline had put it, it was like her wedding dress. That fact alone made it precious to her.

Gabriel raised an eyebrow at it. Exquisite didn’t quite describe it. But Evangeline wanted it intact and he couldn’t refuse her. He nuzzled her cheek. “Not as exquisite as you.” He kissed her lips softly before he took her skirt and began to pull it over her head.

Evangeline blushed and kissed him back. He always knew just the right thing to say. She had a feeling he’d be giving her warm fuzzies for a very long time to come. As the gown began to lift higher, she found herself becoming uncertain, shy, nervous. This was still all so new to her and she wanted to give Gabriel back for how he was making her feel. “… Gabriel?” she asked.

Gabriel paused. The gown was up to her breasts now. “Yes …?”

Evangeline reached up to caress his cheeks, then run her fingers through his hair. She loved his hair. It never ceased to amaze or amuse her that for a vampire who wasn’t too eager to take baths regularly, his hair was always soft and easy to run her fingers through. “Maybe … I can … return the favor …?” she asked, hopeful and nervous, too. She had never done this and she didn’t want to ruin things but she wanted to show Gabriel how she felt about him, just like he was doing for her.

“Of course,” Gabriel replied, turning his head to nuzzle her fingers. He nipped them playfully, smiling softly when she squeaked again. “But first, I want to do this for you, for me. And after … I am all yours.” He began pushing the gown up again. Evangeline had the most beautiful skin, a fair complexion that seemed to glow slightly with the light of her soul. And to him, she was the most beautiful woman in the world. He sighed softly. “You have no idea how beautiful you are.”

Evangeline smiled and felt herself blushing again. She was pretty sure she had exactly an idea. It was there, in the way he spoke, the way he kissed her, nuzzled her. He thought she was the most beautiful woman in the world. No, he believed in it. And he really was all hers. She opened her mouth to tell him how lucky she was only to gasp and arch her back when his tongue licked a nipple, then slid his mouth over it. He sucked on her breast, slow but firm as one hand moved up to caress the other. She clutched his shoulders as her body grew hotter and wetter and she moaned his name.

Gabriel quickly learned that there was no sound sweeter than Evangeline moaning his name. She shuddered, her blood raced, her heartbeat sped up. He gave her nipple one more lick as he pulled his mouth off before he withdrew to take care of her gown completely. And not a moment too soon, he found as he draped it over the dresser close to the bed and returned to stroking her body. She was so warm, so hot and willing. It was a testimony to how patient he was being, not to rip off some clothing and take her now. He quickly returned to her breasts. Now both hands cupped them as he rubbed them in circles against her chest as his thumbs brushed her nipples. He blew on the wet nipple he’d sucked and licked earlier making her gasp again and arch her back.

Evangeline was in heaven! Her hands covered his, then moved up his arms, smiling. He was still fully clothed. Yes, he was a very eager vampire and she loved him with ever fiber of her being. “Gabriel …” she whispered, tugging on his sleeve. “I shouldn’t be the only one naked here,” she said with a smile.

There was a soft chuckle above her. “My apologies.” He broke away from her to undress. He was a little more carefree about where he put his clothes, except for his gun holster, which he put on the dresser next to her gown. Everything else from his boots to his coat wound up on the floor or at the foot of the bed. When the last piece of clothing had been taken care of, he moved between her legs and nuzzled the spot between her breasts.

Evangeline blushed as she spread her legs wider to accommodate him. He was hard and lean and it was far different to be naked with him now than those times when she’d managed to make him take a bath. There was not an ounce of fat on him. She reached up to run her fingers through his hair and hold his head to her. He was the sweetest man ever and she really was mad … madly in love with him. She swallowed when she felt his length pressing up against her thigh.

Gabriel felt her stiffen slightly and he paused. He moved his head up to nuzzle her neck, where her pulse beat strongest. Later, he would have to feed but for now … now he wanted to make love to this woman and make her completely his. It had been a fool’s move not to have done it before. “I love you, Evangeline Clark,” he whispered into her ear, nibbled on her earlobe. “Do you accept me?”

Evangeline blushed and a shiver ran through her when she felt his teeth on her ear and his words … Sweet heaven! She could feel how hard he was and realized that the choice lay with her. If she wanted to, she could refuse him, and he would stop. He wouldn’t force himself on her, he would never force himself on her. But he wanted her so intensely. No, he needed her and she needed him. She nodded. “Yes, Gabriel. I love you and I accept you.”

Gabriel’s heart soared when he heard her say that. He brushed his lips against hers. “Thank you, Evangeline,” he whispered just before he seized her mouth in a long kiss and, with both hands on either side of her, sunk himself inside. He groaned into her mouth. It took every ounce of control not to just drive every inch of his cock into her body but she was already so tight! He didn’t want to hurt her.

Evangeline gasped into his mouth. He was so big! Her muscles tensed and stretched and she was glad he had taken the time to stretch her in the first place. She didn’t stop kissing him though but she cupped his face when he suddenly stopped. He had come up against something, her hymen. She finally broke the kiss and felt him clenching his teeth. “Are you alright …?”

Gabriel’s smile was a tight one. He nodded once. “Your hymen. I need to break it. It will hurt but–” He stopped when she put a finger to his lips and he looked up at her.

There was a soft smile on Evangeline’s face. She nodded. “But I want you to do this. I trust you.” She moaned into his mouth as he kissed her again and when he drove deeper into her, breaking that barrier, she cried out into his mouth. It really did hurt! But as he held his hips and made small thrusts inside of her, the pain dulled and it wasn’t long before he drove every inch of himself inside of her.

Gabriel groaned and broke the kiss once he was completely inside of her. She was so tight! He stopped to slip her legs around his hips as he raised himself above her, hands on either side of her. Her muscles were stretching for him, her slit was so wet and as he thrust into her over and over, he broke the kiss and she began to moan his name.

Evangeline clutched his shoulders. “Uhhh …” she gasped. One hand moved down and she heard Gabriel groan again above her when her hand reached between them. This was … Oh God, this was divine! It fascinated her even as her body moved with his and her legs wrapped around him, pulling him deeper. He was filling her completely. In and out, in and out. He drove deeper and his thrusts sped up. Her hand returned to his shoulder and her nails dig into his flesh.

Gabriel hissed under his breath. He was moving faster inside of her, wanting her to climax first. He didn’t have to wait long as she nearly bounced beneath him. She was panting and moaning and suddenly she arched her back and screamed his name! He smirked as he paused when her muscles clamped even tighter around him. It only took him a few more thrusts before he, too, reached his peak. He groaned and pushed himself as deep as he could before his orgasm hit and he filled Evangeline with his seed.

Evangeline was very aware of Gabriel climaxing but could only moan. “Hmm …” She smiled in contentment as Gabriel lay on top of her, wrapped his arms around her waist and moved to lie down on his side. He didn’t break away from her so she rolled and wound up on her side as well, snuggled up against him. She put her head against his chest as he pulled the covers over the two of them. “Are you sure you’ve never made love to someone before?”

Gabriel took her hand and kissed the palm. “Indeed. But it will not be the last time I make love to you, Evangeline. Mark my words.”