The first, and biggest, give away that what Beau was seeing as he opened his eyes was a dream was the bright yellow glow of sunlight filling the large front yard and making the small fragments of quartz and smooth pebbles of the stepping stone path softly shimmer. The second give away was the fact that as he looked around the sunshine filled area he could see Eleanor and Edythe on one side with Royal, Jessamine, and Archie off to the other seemingly playing some form of football but even in the direct light their pale skin wasn’t shining like it was made of shattered diamonds as it should have been.
It took only a fraction of a second for Edythe to glance his way and flash him a bright dimpled grin before she threw the ball, with surprisingly human force, to Eleanor before crossing the yard at a, yet again surprisingly, human speed until she was standing in front of him, her eyes warm like melted honey as they looked up at him.
“There you are, it took you long enough to get back out here and make the teams even.”
Beau couldn’t help the crooked smile if he tried as he took in the way the sunlight brought out the fiery red tones of his mate’s hair before glancing back to the others who were tossing the ball around waiting.
“I think you and El would’ve been fine, I’m too uncoordinated to be any help.”
Edythe rolled her eyes with a chuckle before gently tugging his hand and giving him one of her famous, irritable, pouts.
“You’ll do fine, come on.”
Beau hesitated for half a second, if only to hold her hand a second longer, but eventually let his mate tug him over to the sunny yard. Just like when he was human the sunlight was warm on his skin and he could feel the warmth seep into his chest as if it was nesting there creating a happy air around him, though if he had to take a wild guess he could assume Jessamine had something to do with the feeling. He’d almost forgotten the game even as Eleanor began counting, thankfully before she could pass off the ball Ernest stepped onto the porch Beau had previously been standing on with a soft smile as he called them all inside saying something about dinner.
Beau was about to start questioning things as Eleanor let out an excited shout before dissolving into laughs as Royal went to her side with his own fond smile and wrapped his arm around her shoulders as they headed for the house, Jessamine kept a smooth pace and a patient smile beside Archie’s excited steps as he rambled on excitedly about who knew what, leaving Edythe and her adoring smile alone with Beau as she loosely wrapped her arms around his and peered up at him through her lashes.
“Shame I was looking forward to seeing you play.”
Beau snorted a laugh through his nose as they slowly followed the others to the house.
“No, you just wanted to see me fall on my face and laugh.”
The redhead gave a small laugh that she tried to hide before flashing him a fond smile.
“I would never do that.”
Beau raised a brow at her as his own smile turned playfully predatory, making her honey eyes widen then narrow a fraction.
“Oh sure you wouldn’t, you and El would just be howling on the ground in tears but I’d get my revenge.”
Edythe paused in walking, scrunching up her nose in the way that made Beau’s unbeating heart want to skip a step.
“You wouldn’t dare.”
Beau chuckled, turning back to face his mate before stalking forward, reaching out to place his hands on her hips to pull her close, surprised when she hardly resisted before putting her small hands on his shoulders. Perfect.
“I wouldn’t what? Take advantage of this little trick?”
Before Edythe could even try and move away, fast as she was, Beau began tickling her sides. At first she tried to resist laughing by clamping her mouth shut tight but as the assault continued pearls of musical laughter spilled from her lips as she gave in and tried to squirm away. Before long Beau was laughing along with her before finally ending his assault by wrapping her arms around her waist and holding her close to his chest, nose buried in her bronze toned hair. Slowly Edythe’s laughs slowed into a content purr like sound as she relaxed against his chest a smile locked on her face so wide her dimples showed.
“I hate you.”
Beau laughed before kissing her temple.
“I love you too.”
After another moment of content the pair finally made their way inside the house. What happened next Beau couldn’t really say because it passed like a blur, like a blurry memory scene from a movie. One second he’s sitting beside Edythe at the large wooden dining room table with the rest of the family, then the next he and his mate are sitting in a porch swing outside again, gently swaying back and forth with the light breeze. He wanted to question it, figure out what he missed, but once again his mate distracted his mind from it by snuggling close to his chest giving a dreamy little sigh of her own as her amber eyes fluttered closed and her body fully relaxed, she’d fallen asleep curled up beside him on the swing he didn’t have it in him to disturb her.
Sleeping in a dream should have been impossible, and yet Beau let his eyes close for the briefest of moments and his body instantly relaxed. After what felt like seconds something changed in the air and the scent of sun warmed jasmine encouraged him to open his eyes. As he did he first realized it was no longer late afternoon but rather just creeping into the golden glow of early sunset. Eventually his eyes looked down to find his mate already awake, watching him as if she was trying to commit every detail of his face to memory, the mere thought made a smile pull at his lips as one hand trailed up and down her back.
“Enjoying the view down there?”
The words pulled a soft smile from Edythe as she snuggled closer to rest her lips against his neck, one small hand over his heart, and gave a content sigh.
“Very much so, you still talk in your sleep.”
Beau was sure his face and neck would have been alarmingly blotchy if it were still possible, he must have shown some reaction because a moment later his mate chuckled and rested her head on his shoulder.
“Don’t worry you didn’t say anything embarrassing….this time.”
The words slowly pulled the tension from his body, aided by another jasmine scented breeze, before curiosity got the better of him as he placed his free hand over Eydthe’s on his chest.
“What’d I say this time?”
His mate laced their fingers together as she spoke, the smile clear in her voice as her thumb brushed the side of his hand.
“That you loved me.”
Beau let himself chuckle, more at his own absurd paranoia than the words, before dropping a series of kisses into her fiery bronze hair.
“Mmm that’s nothing new, even though it’s true.”
Edythe tilted her head back to meet his eyes, her smile still took his breath away as she leaned in close.
“And I love you.”
Beau closed his eyes and began leaning in for a kiss but just as quickly as the moment had begun it shifted. Edythe was suddenly on her feet, holding his hand and flashing a playful grin as her eyes shone in the fading light, she wanted to make it a game.
“Not so fast darling, I still get payback for earlier.”
Beau struggled for a moment to remember the event before letting himself be pulled to his feet, how own smile taking on the same playful nature as hers remembering her musical laughter as he tickled her in the sunshine.
“I guess you do, what are you going to make me do?”
Her smile widened until her dimples popped and she let go of his hand to step down the few porch steps before winking at him.
“Catch me if you can.”
And with that she was halfway across the yard in jasmine scented seconds. She paused at the edge of the trees to look back at him, smiling wickedly and curling her finger at him making him give a defeated chuckle before following after, reaching the trees just in time for her to slip away again. This game of cat and mouse continued with his mate staying just out of reach as the warm glow of sunset deepened the sky above. Finally just as the amber tones of sunset began giving away to the cool tones of twilight and the trees opened up into their meadow Edythe stopped running and turned to meet him.
Beau knew she’d let herself be caught but it didn’t stop him from wrapping his arms securely around her waist and lifting her off the ground to dramatically spin around a few times until she laughed. After a moment he slowed to a light swaying motion as their laughter died away and she pressed their foreheads together holding his face in gentle hands. A few quiet moments passed as stars began filling the navy blue-black sky above them before Eydthe broke it.
“What are you thinking?”
Beau shifted his hold, encouraging her to wrap her legs around his waist, before placing one hand over her’s on his face.
“How amazing you are, how your laugh sounds like the most beautiful music I’ve ever heard, the way your eyes shine when your trying to get your way, how much I love and adore you and don’t deserve you.”
Slowly Edythe opened her eyes as he spoke, her smile turning impossibly soft as she shook her head.
“No Beau, I don’t deserve you.”
Before he could protest her lips pressed against his and threw every cohesive thought or argument out the window. The hand still resting on her lower back held her closer as they kissed for a small eternity, lost in each other.
All too soon not only the kiss but the dream came to an end, the imagine of his moonlit mate fading away into darkness and the quiet forest drowned out by the loud sound of someone knocking, more like pounding, on their bedroom door. Once his mind caught up with the rest of his senses he registered Eleanor’s voice beyond the door shouting for them to wake up already or they were getting left behind. Beside him an annoyed huff let him know that his mate was roused by their sister’s shouting, it was further confirmed when in a flash one of the pillows went sailing at the door and hit it with a surprising thud.
“Shut up El! You guys go ahead and we’ll catch up!”
Beau chuckled looking from the door to his mate as Eleanor grumbled something along the lines of ‘family hunting trip’ before the sound of her retreating footsteps were heard. Beside him on the bed Edythe was laying on her front in one of his shirts, her bronze curls messy and hanging in her face, and the covers pooled around her waist; she had never looked more human or more perfect. Beau couldn’t resist, he leaned down and began placing hisses on her temple, down her jaw, over her nose and finally her lips as she giggled, far more used to the increasing level of affection he showed. If it weren’t for the faint sounds of their family in the house Beau might have sworn he was still dreaming because this was perfect, she was perfect, and he couldn’t imagine anywhere else he’d rather be than at her side forever.