The priest entered first, his attendants each holding a heavy iron cross on either side of him. Then Marisa and her father, Count del Vasto beaming a smile that fairly reeked of self-pride.
You worthless fool, I thought to myself. All the vineyards in the world, including yours, are worth nothing compared to the treasure at your side. My hands balled into fists at my side and I felt my lips curling back to reveal my preternatural grimace. I quickly regained my composure, however, when I realized that it would not do to slaughter my bride’s father on her wedding day.
And then Marisa’s eyes locked with mine and all logical thought fled from my brain. I had never seen her looking so utterly beautiful. Youth fairly bloomed on her – she was like a perfect rose. I knew then my life, whatever those words meant, was no longer mine alone.
The actual ceremony was a blur. I remember the priest intoning the vows, our hesitant voices repeating after him. Marisa’s eyes never left my face. There was an otherwordly glow in them that made my insides ache. In the area where my heart used to beat I felt a burning sensation, as if a fire had set up residence there.
I tried smiling at Marisa, hoping to ease the ache, but careful not to reveal too much. Careful not to give everything away too soon. There would be time enough for that later tonight.
(I was always nervous in front of Marisa, before her change, because I always suspected that she knew something about me, about the real me. She assures me now that this wasn’t the case, that she was completely in the dark about me. But I was nevertheless prudent during those early days, knowing that to reveal myself too soon would be to risk losing her.)
Finally, the interminable ceremony ended and the wedding banquet began in earnest. In a few short hours, Marisa and I would be alone. Forever alone.