The villa was unusually quiet. After Petrus and Skye had insisted on taking me out to some underground club in Rome, they had simply disappeared, leaving me once again to my thoughts. And so, I sat quietly tracing a painting I had done of Piran many, many years ago. I had always wondered what had happened to him. I wondered if I could truly be happy with Petrus, the way I had once been with Piran. Piran whom had promised to wait for me until I was no longer a Priestess of Vesta. Piran whom had taken my heart with him when he died. I traced the bracelet I still wore that he gave me and closed my eyes. Petrus wanted forever, but was I willing to give up Piran to be with Petrus?
For some reason now matter how many people came into my life, I could never shake the past away. It continued to haunt me, to creep up on me when I least expected it. And while, I had thought that perhaps living in my families villa would help ease the pain a bit, it only brought me more sadness.
I would look towards the spots in rooms where I knew my loved ones would have stood or sat, yet no one would be there, only shadows of what once was. One would think that after two thousand years I would be willing to give it up. But could a person truly forsake their past and family? I supposed most vampires did let go. It certainly wasn’t healthy holding on to human memories when there was nothing for it. Except perhaps heartache.
And then there was Petrus and Skye. With each single day I felt as if I knew them both from somewhere or someplace long ago. Perhaps Petrus was Piran and Skye. . . I had no idea whom she could be. But I was certain it was someone I had once known. But Petrus, though his eyes were red, I was certain they could have once been Piran’s liquid brown ones. Petrus had his smile, his manner of speaking sometimes. I could see Piran in Petrus. But I was terribly afraid that I was seeing Piran in Petrus because I wanted to see him in Petrus.
If only these things were certain. However, unlike being a vampire or shape shifter, reincarnation wasn’t certain. At least. . . I didn’t think it was. I wondered if anyone knew if reincarnation could be certain. Perhaps Alice might. But then, Alice only saw the future according to people’s decisions. So maybe she wouldn’t know. I wished that there was still some sort of oracle in Rome. The Oracle, I was certain would know if Petrus was Piran. Petrus himself didn’t seem to truly know.
Yet he knew things Piran would have known. For instance, he knew where to place my little sister’s bedroom, where Skye now slept. He knew where my parents had slept. He even knew where to put my bedroom. He knew what flowers and stones went in the gardens. He knew the types of fabrics I liked before I had to tell him. He knew so many things. I supposed he could easily be Piran reincarnated. I had once heard that when two souls meant, and were torn from one another that they couldn’t help but continue to find one another.
While my soul was forever lost to whatever happened to souls who became vampires, Piran’s wasn’t. Was he still searching for me? And could I really give him up to be with Petrus forever? I truly wanted to be happy. I knew my family would have wanted me to be happy. Especially Piran. Piran had always longed to see me happy. But would giving up the tiny bit of myself that I held onto so dearly, truly make me happy?
I wasn’t sure if I was ready to give up Piran yet for Petrus, but at the same time I certainly wasn’t sure if I was ready to lose Petrus because I said no to him when he asked me to say yes. Love was such a funny thing. I thought. It was truly no wonder why I had for so long shut it out. And now that I was finally letting it seep into my life, I was just as confused as I had been before I had let it in. Was it better to shut everything out and live without love and life? No, I didn’t think so.
I sat back on the heels of my bare feet and glanced up to see Petrus gently looking into my eyes. I had of course known he was there.
“You’re pondering something.” He said softly. I nodded. I wouldn’t deny that I was pondering something. Why should I?
“Tell me.” Petrus said sitting down next to me.
“Do you remember anything at all . . . About. . . “
“About you? In this house?” Petrus asked. I nodded.
“Is that Piran? In the painting?” Petrus said suddenly changing the subject and I nodded my head. “I look nothing like him. Yet I sometimes think I remember things. I know things that I shouldn’t know.” He tried explaining.”
“Yes.” I agreed.” Yes you do seem to know things you shouldn’t know. Petrus?” I asked suddenly staring into his red eyes. I had suddenly decided that I didn’t want to lose him, not the way I had lost Piran.
“Um?” He asked still staring gently into my eyes and tracing my cheek with his soft touch.
“Would you do something for me? If. . . If I said yes to you? If I told you would I spend forever with you?” It was no or never. I was going to ask him. I really was. I lowered my eyes a bit nervous. But I could never be with someone who drank human blood. The person I chose to be with had to have the same opinions as I did. I wondered if I could sway Petrus.
“What?” Petrus asked.
“Would you change your diet for me?”
“You mean drink animal blood?” I nodded. Jasper had changed his diet for Alice because he loved her so much. Why wouldn’t Petrus for me? Especially if he said he loved me as much as he did? He took a deep breath and let it out.
“That’s asking a lot. But if that is what it would take. . .” He said looking gently at me. “Then, I will try.” A try was better than a no, and I smiled brightly up at him. I felt tears shining in my eyes. If Petrus was willing to try, perhaps, it was time to put the past away, and embrace something new. I snuggled down into Petrus.
“Then, I will say the same thing. I’d like to try forever.” I said softly touching his cheek. Piran, I prayed would forgive me wherever he was.