My name is Ezra Vasher.
And I'm the worst kind of sinner.
Pray for me.
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“It's called Devil's Trill.” Pastor Cabot spoke once he put his violin down.
“That's a peculiar title for clergy to play in a church.” I was surprised.
I got a grin with teeth for that.
“There are legends. I don't know which is true. His name was Tartini. Born in Italy, I think. Late seventeenth century. One rumor is he had six fingers on his left hand, all functional, so he was remarkable. Another rumor was he dreamed of the Devil, and lent him his violin, and the song he played was unparalleled to anything Tartini had ever heard. And Devil's Trill was his reimagining of it. Another rumor, and the most interesting, to me at least, was that the rest of the music written after Devil's Trill was to entice the Devil, and nothing Tartini ever did brought him back.” Pastor Cabot smiled again and put his instrument away. I couldn't stop looking at him.
The room was dark and dreary. All wood and leather, and a magnificent fireplace. It was too warm for a fire, but I imagine it made the room a hundred times more hospitable. I wasn't sure if this belonged to the church or to the Cabot home, but I guess it was irrelevant since they were all connected.
“It changed the music for me. To listen to the rest of it, the...enticement, it does feel sacrilegious. Gorgeous blasphemy.”
I never thought a pastor would speak like that. I smiled. “But it's legend. He could've easily just had six functional fingers,” I said, and licked my lips quickly.
“Which is likely,” he agreed, and sat on a chair in front of his fireplace. Even though his living quarters attached to the church, it still felt novel being in a room he clearly spent a lot of his time in. “Sit.”
I did. In the chair across from him.
“Remind me when are you meant to wed?”
“In two years.” I felt lead drop. I didn't like it.
Pastor Cabot sat back and 'hmmed'. “So, she would be fourteen, then?”
I nodded and looked toward the fireplace.
“You don't look very happy about it.”
“I don't know how I feel about it.”
“Two years is a long time at your age, especially once you start thinking about intercourse.”
I didn't think about intercourse, but apparently it was normal, so I wouldn't refute him. I thought of mouths and hands...but now I was curious. “It is a long time, but then she's expected to lie there and let me, and it doesn't seem fair.”
“That's the first time I've ever heard anyone mention what might be fair to the girl. She knows what's expected of her.”
“But isn't it nicer if both parties want it?”
“They aren't raised to want it.”
“So, they don't get...aroused? Ever?”
“If by some fluke they do, it probably confuses them, or it might be the Devil. I don't know.”
He was speaking of women as if they were a completely different species. “Honestly, I've never even considered that they couldn't get aroused. I've seen my parents hug with affection, and smile at one another as if they appreciate each other‒”
“Well, I didn't say she would hate it. She would just...take it. Like she's supposed to.”
Arden Aoide lives in San Antonio, Texas, with her husband, two daughters, and three cats. Turn ons include men who cry during sex, long walks on the beach, and talking about herself in the third person. Turn offs include mean people and trying to figure out how to write an interesting author bio.
She doesn't write about the typical men you normally read about in erotic romance novels. She likes her men brainy and just this side of manic.
She's an introvert, she loves coffee, Internet, British television, and pot stickers. And pie. She loves pie.