Eric looked up at the large house. He frowned. Was this right?
It had to be.
He knocked on the door.
A man opened it. A man? Not quite a man. He looked more...ancient.
"I'm sorry, I must be in the wrong place. I'm looking for Ophelia."
The man with the long hair narrowed his eyes.
Eric reared back. His voice was like thunder. He really was more god than man.
"I-I'm sorry? Why?"
The man cocked his head, looking over him. His lips tilted.
"Ah...I see now," he thundered. "You're the poet."
"P-poet?" Eric chuckled nervously. "Do you know Ophelia?"
"The one who couldn't put food in her belly. Or clothes on her back. A roof over her head," He sneered at Eric.
Eric flinched. "If you know where she is, just tell me."
Adrian glared down at him. "Do want to know a secret, young man?"
Eric frowned. Weren't they about the same age?
"No woman wants a man who can't feed her, and keep her warm in the winter. If you want to hold on to a woman, you need to weigh her pockets down with money."
Eric looked up at the house. "And I'm guessing you've done that? Is she there? I need to speak with her?"
"Mr. Hades, I'm hungry," she called from the living room.
Adrian blinked. "Not quite. But I won't let her starve either."
Eric swallowed. "I need to see her," he glanced passed Adrian.
"Ophelia, your poet wants to speak with you. While you're at it, ask him how he got my address," Adrian told her nonchalantly.
Eric frowned. "Not the jealous type?" he proved.
Adrian glanced at him. "You're no threat to me, poet. Come in. You have 20 minutes."
Eric wandered into the house, where Ophelia sat.
"It's been...months. You look good Ophelia."
She nodded, smiling. "Thanks, you too."
"I got signed," he smiled. "I went to your mother when I couldn't find you. She told me you were here. We can finally be together. I can take care of you."
She looked away. "I'm happy for you, Eric. I knew you'd make it."
"Right. But now that I have money, now that I can provide for you...you can come home. You don't have to be here anymore."
She swallowed. She wished it was as easy to say what she thought.
Like she could with Adrian.
"I..." I want to stay here. "Feel like our relationship ending was the right thing to do."
"It was at the time. And I completely understand why you left. But...I made it. So you don't have to get by anymore."
Ophelia really wished he would leave. He was making her sad. It hurt to see him and it hurt that he didn't even understand why she'd broken it off.
He didn't even try.
He was content seeing her suffer because he thought he would make it.
"I don't think we're meant to be together."
Adrian frowned. "Say it," he ordered in irritation.
She looked up at him. "Say what?"
"What you really want to say. Tell him like you would tell me."
Like she would tell him? She'd say, I don't want to be with you anymore and I don't want to see you either so go away.
Just like that.
But...for some reason, Adrian was the only one she could do that with.
"Sing for me, Songbird. Say what you want to say," he urged her. "I'm right here. Tell me instead."
She swallowed, looking at Adrian.
"Eric," she said, facing Adrian. "I don't want to be with you anymore. You don't understand me, and you didn't care to. I don't want to see you. So don't show up in front of me again."
Eric frowned. "He's making you say that isn't he? You bastard what did you do to her?"
Adrian approached him. "Do you know how long I've know her, poet? Two months. And I know her better than you. Instead of being petulant, recognize your faults, and the reasons she doesn't want to see you."
Eric tried to catch her eyes desperately. She refused to look his way.
She couldn't be honest unless she was talking to Adrian.
She couldn't be greedy. Adrian escorted him out of the house.
The door shut and Ophelia immediately started talking.
"I didn't like that. Don't answer the door for him anymore it makes me uncomfortable."
He smiled, touching her cheek like he always did.
"When you just spit things out like that," he said lowly, "I think you're so adorable."
"Can you hold me. My heart hurts because I still love him a little bit."
He chuckled, opening his arms.
She snuggled into him.
"Ophelia. You should go home soon. You can't stay at my house forever."
"Not forever. But for a little while longer?" She asked.
He looked away. "Sure."