Even though his face was angelic, his eyes were hell

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They were a deep, swirling brown, with little flecks of gold and green that could swallow all the goodness in the world with a single glance. His lips were perfectly angled, much too feminine to belong on such a well-formed chin and strong jaw. His cheekbones, set high in his face, made his eyebrows perfectly arched above his almond-shaped eyes. His black hair tumbled with unreal grace to his mid-back, where it swayed and shined with elegance that was painfully untouchable. A single look towards him was enough to make the breath seize in my chest and the rest of the world slow to an agonizing, larghetto tempo.


No one knew much about him; most people just called him Blackie, or Ebony, or an assortment of other names associated with the infamous pigment. His name tag read, “hello. My name is


. Can I help you?” He worked quietly and diligently, with his head low and those gorgeous eyes always sitting at the floor unless he was instructed to do otherwise. If there was one thing that kid was good at, it was listening. He never asked for directions twice, and always did the job three times better than anyone else could manage.


The first time I laid eyes on him, I was sitting at the bar with the date from hell. His name was Max, and he blathered on about cars and dumb action movies that didn’t mean a thing to me for what seemed like hours. The only reason I had agreed to go with him in the first place was because I was aiming to avoid an ex-boyfriend who constantly plagued me with phone calls and notes that said “I love you”. It was on a whim that I had agreed to Max’s proposal for dinner at the best Italian Resturant in town… and that decision was proving to be worse than the decision to stay home and suffer through a grown man moping like a three-year-old who had lost half his legos.

“So what do you do for a living?” Max asked, taking a hefty swallow of his vodka glass.

“I write,” I answered quietly, suddenly extremely interested in the football game on TV. Max grunted in what I assumed was approval, and I saw him wave someone over, but I had already lost interest in the drunken swine and was beginning to slide out of focus. Uninteresting dates have a tendency to do that.


I didn’t hear him the first time he spoke. He was so quiet that I hadn’t heard him approach; I was too busy absorbing cigarette smoke and drunken slurs to notice that he had suddenly appeared by the tableside. Max nudged me sharply with a finger, and I got really annoyed. I spun around in my seat, ready to give him the biggest bit of sarcasm I could find, but instead of Max the hellion I was greeted by the most beautiful pair of eyes I’d ever seen in my life. To my surprise, he first looked pained, and then mistakenly scared, and then pissed off.

“Can I take your order?” He asked quietly, dropping his eyes to the paper even though the bitterness in his eyes had leaked into his voice. The breath hitched in my chest. His voice was smooth, and carried with it the dominance of a King and the gentle touch of a summer breeze on the skin. It was like hearing God whisper into my ear; I got so distracted by his fingers effortlessly grasping the pen, the smooth curve of his lip that by the time I looked into his face again, he had one eyebrow raised and looked extremely concerned.

“Water, please,” I mumbled. Max frowned, already buzzed very early on in the date, and ordered himself a large dinner and expensive wine. I wasn’t very hungry; the pit of my stomach seemed to have fallen somewhere around my toes when I laid my eyes on the stranger. I didn’t care what Max ate; I just wanted to catch a glimpse of the dark-haired man again. Something about him was unsettling while still being incredibly attractive. He had very obviously been either offended or shocked by the mutual gaze, and had immediately put up a twelve-foot barrier between us. It was like he was completely off-limits, and no one could touch him no matter how hard they tried to break through the ice-cold wall he had surrounded himself with.

I was more than prepared to plunge into the snow if it meant that I could know even just his name.

I was young, I was naive… I can make excuses all day if I want to, but there are always some things that other people will never understand about legends, kings, and gods. I mean, really—who would believe me if I told them that Morpheus, the King of the Dream realm, really did exist?

And who would believe me if I told them that I was in love with him?





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