With a sob of frustration and anger, Cassidy burst into tears and fled the chamber. When Rail finally caught up with her, after taking a few minutes to verbally rip Kaz apart, he found Cassidy sitting on the beach, letting the incoming tide crash against her. Just as her emotional pain crashed into him.
When Cassidy moved away at his approach, Rail sat off to the side and waited. After nearly two hours, the sun set and Rail felt Cassidy’s emotions settle from anger to exhaustion. Scooping her into his arms, he retreated to the cover of the palm trees lining the beach. Cassidy didn’t need the audience back at the villa.
Holding her tight, Rail took a seat with Cassidy in his lap and willed his heat into her body. She hadn’t stopped shaking since he found her. Whether from her shock or the damp, he couldn’t tell. “Please try and relax, sweetheart,” he whispered into her hair as he gently kneaded her neck. “Kaz is overreacting to a few lines of script taken out of context and so old I can’t count how many thousands of years have passed. Besides, prophecies are a dime a dozen. Look at Nostradamus.”
“Don’t joke.” She sniffled. “What if he’s right? What if we started something that will end the world?”
Rail inhaled deeply and let it out, slowly calculating what he was about to say. “Then what’s done is done. We have nothing that says the end can be stopped so I say we live out our lives as long as we can, doing the best that we can to keep the humans safe and in the dark.”
“You really don’t believe it’s true, do you?”
“I believe something is going to happen. But whether we start it or someone else does . . .” He lifted a shoulder to show he didn’t care. “I don’t believe the world is just going to stop dead like switching off a light.”
“What do you believe?”
Shifting against the tree to make himself more comfortable, Rail tipped Cassidy’s face to the side so he could look into her eyes. “I believe an ending is just the starting point of a beginning. Maybe it is us. Maybe it means the end of war and strife and that a new world of peace and prosperity will start anytime now.”
“That’s a bit unrealistic, don’t you think?” Cassidy laughed and wiped her eyes.
Cradling her cheek in his big palm, he wiped away another tear with his thumb. “No more than the world ending because two people fell in love.”
Cassidy’s eyes widened. “You really love me?”
“Honestly . . . I’m not sure. But I am sure I can’t bear the thought of being without you.”
She sighed as Rail kissed her softly, nipping her lower lip.
“I’m still trying to sort out my emotions, just like you. But trust what you feel inside me.” Locking his eyes on hers, Rail let all his barriers drop, flooding Cassidy with his emotions—as mixed up as they were.
“Oh, Rail . . . .” She gasped. “Stop, it’s too much.”
Rail blinked to break the connection. Cassidy sat in front of him panting, her hands resting lightly on his knees. “Did I hurt you?”
“No.” She sucked in a breath and let it out slowly. “But I couldn’t . . . I couldn’t tell where you ended and I began. It was a little scary.”
“I know what you mean.”
“Really?” Her tone spiked with curiosity.
“Every time I open myself up to you, I feel like I’m on a run-away horse.”
Cassidy leaned in, her hands sliding up his thighs, and returned his earlier kiss. Only her kiss was far from soft –it was hard, hungry, and demanding. When Rail’s hands slipped around her waist and under her shirt, Cassidy moaned with approval. “Can we go back to the house now,” she asked, her mouth moving along his jaw to his earlobe.
There was only one answer and it didn’t need to be said.