I was bewildered by Theseus's sudden appearance outside my house. I was even more bemused when he entered and started kissing me with such passion that I almost fell over.
As I relaxed into the gentle rhythm, I wrapped my arms around his neck, standing on tiptoes to be in the best position for the kiss. Theseus's hands held my waist, the contact with my body creating a strong sense of security.
When I heard the door open behind me, I pulled out of Theseus' embrace a little too fast in my alarm. I could see the pain in his eyes this caused him but couldn't apologise right this second because standing behind us was my dad.
I turned and wondered if this would be any better if Mum hadn't gone out shopping and come upstairs rather than Dad.
"Dad," I whispered.
He turned on the light and looked impassively from Theseus to me.
"Sarah," he stated, with no inflection whatsoever.
Three ways to tell an angel is mad.
- Their face is smooth and expressionless.
- Their tone is inflectionless.
- They radiate coldness that sends real chills down your spine.
I started to feel ice along my backbone as Dad continued to look at me.
"Who's the visitor?" he asked. "Did he not know where the door was?"
I winced. "He's called Theseus. He's an archangel. I let him in through my window."
"And you didn't think to let me know he was here?"
"Um... I was kind of ... taken aback by his visit."
"Is he unwelcome then?"
The emotion in my voice caused Dad's brow to crease slightly. But it straightened out.
"Dad, it's not what you think," I told him. "Theseus... He /is/ courting me but he wouldn't ... be a threat to my ..." I broke off, blushing.
"He's your boyfriend?" Dad looked surprised, but the anger still reigned. He would bide his time, becoming more and more enraged until he suddenly exploded.
"Yeah," I mumbled, looking down.
"Answer properly, young lady."
I looked up. "Yes, Dad."
Unexpectedly, Theseus stepped in. "Mr Windfall, this is all my fault. I'm sorry. I was just missing your daughter and I needed to see her again."
Dad turned to Theseus. "How long have you been seeing my daughter, Mr Wright?"
Theseus looked momentarily confused until comprehension dawned on his face. He had obviously remembered that angels were psychic.
Theseus winced slightly as he replied "One day, sir."
"A day," my dad said. Emotion left his voice again. A fresh cold wave rolled down my spine. This was it. Theseus grasped my hand and squeezed it.
And then the volcano erupted.
"One day?! You've been seeing her for one day?! And you're already paying her moonlit visits? What do you value in your relationships, Mr Wright?"
I cringed. "He's not like that, Dad."
"Silence, Sarah. You will not interrupt me."
I shut up.
"Mr Windfall, I would never take advantage of your daughter. I, like any decent archangel, am patient and in full control of myself."
"Evidently you aren't if you came in here and started kissing her wildly as if you were on fire."
Theseus's cheeks reddened. "Emotions are different from ... what you're thinking of, sir."
"I hope very much that they are. But I am still disturbed by the pace at which you are going."
Dad turned to me. "How long have you known this boy, Sarah? Why has he never been introduced to your mother or I? Did you wish to keep him a secret from us?"
"No, of course not, Dad. I only met him today. But he says he's known me for a long time."
My dad looked furious. "You started courting someone you only just met? Your stupidity and irresponsibility insults your parents' methods of upbringing. And surely you should be wary of men who claim to know you when you don't know them?"
"He's an archangel! He's really decent..."
"You don't know that," Dad interrupted. "He could be a fallen angel for all you know."
"Dad!" I cried, horrified. "How could you accuse him of that?"
"How could you be so naive as to forget that there are bad people out there?"
"Mr Windfall, I would never hurt Sarah," Theseus interjected.
"I did not ask for your input, Mr Wright," Dad replied without looking away from me.
"There's no darkness in his eyes or in his aura! Seraphs can detect a threat the second they mett someone. And he's kind. He took me to his apartment to recover when I fainted."
"HE ABDUCTED YOU?" Dad roared.
"No!" I cried. "He's not like that."
"I repeat, you don't know what he's like. How could you know? Did you suddenly develop the ability to read minds overnight?" His tone was scathing now.
A tear sprung to my eyes. "I don't need to read his to know. The way he's been treating me has never given me reason to suspect him of anything other than the best intentions a guy could have.
"Sarah, he has kissed you! You have become blind to the world, where danger waits around every corner. You act as if we are all in Bliss! We're not! Earth is a cruel, cruel place and anyone who lives here should be treated with caution until it is certain that they are well-intentioned."
"I know, Dad. It's like instinct, deep inside me. We share a connection! I truly believe, with all of my mind, heart and soul, that Theseus is good."
"You know nothing."
He turned to Theseus. "You have precisely two minutes to leave this house. After that, you have a week to consider your recklessness and think about what my daughter really deserves in a relationship."
"Dad, please!" I cried, a tear springing from my eye.
"This is not up for discussion, Sarah." To Theseus, he said "After that week, you may attempt to approach Sarah in the proper way, asking her mother and I for permission to court her, stating clearly your reasons for wanting to be in a relationship with her. You shall proceed at an appropriate pace. If we do not disapprove after a couple of months, you may enjoy a relationship with no limitations (within reason, naturally). If you give us any cause for concern or ignore my advice, then you will find yourself banned from this house and from seeing Sarah ever again. Do you understand?"
Theseus bowed his head, looking serious. "I do, sir."
"Dad," I moaned.
"Two minutes, Mr Wright," Dad reminded him.
Theseus hurriedly kissed me on the cheek and rushed downstairs, seeming to sense that my dad would be unhappy if he left through the window.
"Need I say that you will suffer if you attempt to visit Mr Wright within the next week?"
"No, Dad," I answered bitterly.
He left, looking satisfied.
Once he had gone back downstairs, I threw myself onto the bed and burst into tears.
This was not fair. This was so not fair.