Chapter 66 (Vinnia)Mature


Watching her pupils work on their parts, Vinnia's heart swelled with pride. Lisha's rich alto tone lent an air of seduction and compulsion to the first verse. Morgance's soprano, though strained with anger, sounded sweet and fragile, which lent a rather ironic air to the second verse. And Casady's plaintive, wailing tenor really drove the point of the third verse home.

And when the three voices joined together in perfect, blended unison, then split off into their separate parts...Vinnia was left completely speechless.

There was something beautiful at work; something beautiful...and scandalous.

Once the day's work was complete, Vinnia headed to her apartment, where Trace was waiting with something behind his back. Confused, Vinnia closed the door behind her. "What are you doing here? Don't you have a meeting to attend?"

"I skipped out," Trace said. "I realize I've been somewhat cold lately. Listen, I'd like to apologize and perhaps watch you accept a humble token of my affection?"

Vinnia rolled her eyes. "What do you want, Trace?"

"I've brought some flowers for you."

Blushing, Vinnia turned her face so that Trace could not see her heated cheeks. "Ah, Trace, you're too kind," she muttered, both honored and confused. This gesture of kindness still did not explain Trace's distance as of late. "You didn't have to do that." She found herself blushing again. Stop it, Vinnia!

"Do I have your forgiveness, then? Don't tell me you haven't noticed my...moodiness."

"You've always had my forgiveness, even before you asked for it," Vinnia replied.

But I'd still like to know what was going on.

Sitting down at her table, Vinnia placed the flowers from Trace in a vase and handed it to him. "Well, don't just stand there. Fill this up with some water."

"Yes, ma'am," Trace said, a smile crossing his face. "Whatever you say, ma'am," he called over his shoulder as he walked to the kitchen.

Will you just tell me what was going on? Vinnia found herself doubting Trace's sincerity. "So..." she began, then stopped. Then, she began again. "So why were you in such a...strange mood?"

The dishes in the kitchen sink clattered. Either Trace was being clumsy for no reason, or Vinnia's question had disturbed him. And Trace was never clumsy...

"That's good of you to ask. I've been wanting to talk."

Vinnia waited.

The End

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