She tucked a stray piece of lustrous brown hair behind her ear, her blue eyes angled downward, not daring to look up at him. He watched her bite her lip as she considered his proposal, brow slightly furrowed as if contemplating the solution to a serious mathematical conundrum. He’d seen her like this many times over, her petite body curled up on his sofa, slim, delicate arms draped over the cushions and head gently resting on the back of the over plumped settee. She had a birthmark just over her left breast, a minor imperfection on golden brown skin. Whenever his eyes came to rest on it he thought of the summer months spent butterfly chasing with his daughter. The dark purple blotch rested delicately on her skin, wings open, ready to take to flight at any moment. It suited her well, she reminded him of a butterfly: so beautiful and fragile. He was almost afraid to touch her lest she disintegrate under his fingertips, but she always survived.
‘So?’ he asked quietly, tucking his hand under her chin to compel her to look up at him.
The bruise around her eye was beginning to heal, the skin a dark yellow instead of the brutal purple it had been two days before. Her eyes were filled with tears and she tried desperately to avoid his intense gaze. Her lip had begun to bleed with the intense pressure from her bite and he wiped the blood away with his thumb. Resting his other hand on her bare thigh he noted that his touch made her tense, but she did not pull away. He smiled, pleased with her response. He doubted she would struggle again.