I knew I was waiting for Beast.
I could already hear his heavy steps thundering through the house, making even the floor quake with fear. In my dream, I felt no fear. Calmly, I stood and turned towards the entrance of the beautiful room. As the Beast’s footsteps came nearer even the huge double doors started to shake.
Just as the golden handle turned, I suddenly woke up.Chapter 7SkyeAnd now... here I was.
It was too surreal to believe I was at the house of my dreams until the limo rounded the unforgettable and massive fountain of a group of lions shooting water from their mouths, and stopped in front of its limestone steps.
My hands trembled slightly as the driver got out of his seat and came over to my side to pull the door open. His face was still and expressionless and his eyes did not meet mine. And yet I could feel the judgment in his body. I was there for his master’s entertainment. Just a slut.
A wintry night breeze had picked up when I stepped down from the vehicle, I felt the cold rattle my bones. My old coat didn’t have any pockets that I could hide my hands in so I held my hands behind my back, and followed Luca silently, in awe of my surroundings and the colossal wealth, beyond anything I could comprehend, that was necessary to own such a place.
The stunning mansion and its environs were generously lit. Rays of light shone from the buried lamps scattered amongst the surrounding shrubbery and dense trees. As we climbed the steps, I noticed the massive lion-head knocker. There were two lamps on either side of the great doors, and I noted that there was no switch for a bell, and decided that it was reasonable since only those granted access through its gates would be able to arrive before this door.
In seconds, the door was pulled open revealing a uniformed woman with a healthy amount of white in her dark chignon. She had a round face and a motherly figure, but her sharp gaze on me through round rimmed glasses was discomforting. She stepped aside so that we could come in.
“Melania, this is Skye. She will be staying for a month. Settle her in the Oyster room,” Luca said.
“Yes, Sir,” she replied immediately with a deeply respectful nod.
Without another word or glance at me Luca took his leave, and I was left standing in the midst of a gigantic foyer with a woman who very obviously disapproved of me.
“Follow me,” she said coldly, and started walking away quickly.
My throat tightened with emotion because some small piece of me secretly knew and recognized that was what I had become, but I swallowed my feelings of despair. So what, if she and the driver thought I was a whore. Their condemnation changed nothing. They knew nothing of my circumstances. I was doing this for my father and nothing anyone said or did could change my mind or make me feel as if I was doing something wrong.
I caught up with her quickly and followed her ramrod straight back through wide hallways dotted with marble statues and walls decorated with huge chilling dark art until she opened a door and we reached a different section of the house. A much poorer section with plain walls and poorly lit, narrow corridors. It was also much colder here. We went up a wooden staircase and walked through another corridor so badly lit that my shoes caught on the edge of a strip of carpet.
At my gasp, she stopped and turned around to glare at me.
“Sorry,” I whispered. I was no shrinking violet, but the things that had happened that night, meeting Luca, this intimidating house, her stern disapproval had all made me feel unsure of myself.
She turned around and continued on her way. Suddenly, she stopped and opened another door, and to my surprise we were back in the majestic part of the house. Halfway down the wide corridor full of doors, she turned the handle of one of the doors, and opened it.
I followed her into an absolutely stunning room and looked around me in awe. At the exquisite wallpaper, the wonderful huge bed full of snowy white pillows, the fairytale lead windows, the gorgeous velvet curtains. It was an almost magical room. When I was young, living in my tiny home, I would read fairy tales about princesses and always imagine rooms like these.
“This will be your room,” she announced robotically.
I turned to look at her unsmiling face and it dawned on me then, she had deliberately taken me through the servants’ quarters to demonstrate how lowly my position was.
“This way,” she said, and proceeded towards a pink marble bathroom. There was a claw feet bath on a pedestal. I was so in love with it I could hardly pay attention to her as she explained how the shower and bath worked.