He always reminded her of an animal, a big friendly beast she would never quite understand. His huge hands and gentle eyes belied the power she felt emanating from him, it oozed from his pores and caught her up in his hidden glances, she was willing prey. He didn't speak much, words were not his thing but he moved lithe and easily, covering ground with his characteristic gait. He was tall and beautiful and his long dark hair fell forward over his face as he bent to gently kiss her.
Muffled but still she hears it. She can just about make out her name, repeating, insistant. It beats out a primal rhythm, a heartbeat, calling to her. She takes another step further away and puts her hands up to cover her ears.
Sometimes there was a screaming inside her, raging against all that was and longing for all that could have been. She heard it as if it were in the far distance, a tinny, fragile echo.
Carefully, quietly and quite deliberately she patrolled those hidden corridors and took each big solid oak door and firmly pulled it shut. Taking the large ornate key from the chain around her graceful neck she systematically made sure each was locked before moving on.
She kicked off her red shoes and padded gently over the thick carpet into her bedroom. She firmly closed the door behind her and leant back against it and stared up at the ceiling. I wonder, she thought, is it always going to be like this.
He took a long slow breath and inhaled, pulling the smoke down deep into his lungs. Still and silent he held it there, eyes closed, head laid back against the overstuffed chair. Moments passed until he exhaled, filling the room with clouds of the sweetly scented blue grey smoke. It hung in the air. He was home.