(Please be aware this story contains adult sexual content.)
I awoke my wife in good time for the arriving of the pizza. I kissed her face softly and nuzzled into her, before whispering her name and gently shaking her. Raven moaned and tossed about. She’s a heavy sleepy and it takes awhile for her to come around.
‘Honey, come on,’ I whispered, ‘time to get up now.’
‘No,’ she mumbled.
‘Don’t you want to eat?’ I reminded her.
She muttered something that sounded like maybe.
I ran my hand down the fleece blanket that covered her naked body. A part of me was tempted to slip my fingers underneath and touch her soft skin. Instead, I went back to trying to wake her up.
‘I ordered pizza. It should be here soon,’ I stated.
Raven tried to pulled the fleece blanket up to block me out, but there wasn’t enough of it free as I was laying on it. She made a growling sound and twisted over. Her pretty face screwed up like an unhappy child.
‘It’s still early…’
I checked the clock and it was a few minutes to nine. So not as early as I’d first thought before.
‘Okay, I’m awake,’ Raven spoke.
I smiled and moved out of the way, ‘I’m going down to wait,’ I added.
‘I’m going to try the shower,’ she spoke as she stretched out across the bed.
I nodded and watched her get up and walk naked across the room to a door opposite the bed. It led into a nice master bathroom which wouldn’t have originally been there but the previous owners or the ones before them had created it out of what I guess had been the Lady’s dressing room or day room. It was hard to tell. After admiring Raven once more, I got off the bed, put a t-shirt on and went downstairs.
Turning on some of the lights which took a few moments to figure out, I drifted down the corridor and the grand staircase. No sooner had I reached the hallway, the bell let it a dooming dong. Hurrying, I unlocked and the door. There was as a short, Indian man with dark hair standing there carrying pizzas.
He glanced at me, struggling to keep the slight shook from his face. He mumbled the price and I handed him some notes without really checking them. My stomached had just remembered how hungry it was. I took the pizzas, sides and the free bottle of cola. He handed me my change and walked back to his little blue car that had abandoned at the bottom of the steps.
Juggling everything, I closed the door and went into the first room. The light from the hallway helped me find the table. Then I turned on the lights, sat down and began eating. The pizza tasted glorious even though it was a standard takeaway. A few minutes later, Raven joined me, wearing a plain black lacy dress and we ate our first meal in our new house. Afterwards, we went to bed fully satisfied.
In the morning, we were too excited to lay in, so we got up and spent the day exploring the house and unpacking. It was gloomy outside and it was raining heavily. The house felt cool, so we both dressed in jeans, t-shirts and hoodies. Whilst we were in the kitchen, Raven opened all the doors and began looking through them. I sat at the table sipping a glass of water and watching the rain falling.
One of the doors did led to a big utility room, another was a larder, the third was a staircase up to the first floor and want had been the servants bedrooms. Behind the fourth floor was a staircase going down.
‘What do you think is down there?’ Raven asked.
‘Cellars, I guess,’ I replied.
Raven flicked the light switch that was on the wall up and down. Nothing happened.
‘Where are the torches? I want to go down and see,’ she spoke.
I frowned into my glass of water, ‘upstairs in the bottom drawer.’
Raven nodded and padded out of the room on her mission. I had kept the torches with us in case they had been needed.
Getting up, I went to the door and took my phone out. Using the torch on there, I went down the wooden steps. They creaked under me and I kept my hand on the rail. The air smelt musty and moldy, it hadn’t been fresh for years. It was clear the last owners hadn’t used this space at all, just like a few other rooms; the third floor and the attic, they had shut them away and forgot.
One day, I would confess to Raven how I had gotten us this house and she would forgive me, but for now it was a closely locked away secret. I tried to get that thought out of my head. My wife had always been able to read me very well, especially when I was keeping something from her. Raven would never give up till she got the truth out of anyone.
Stepping off the last step, I shone my little light around. It was hard to breath down here and I couldn’t see much. They were the originally cellars of the house though and where food and wine had been stored. The lowest servants might have had rooms here as well as general storage. This first area seemed empty.
A squeal of wood from behind had me turning so fast I almost lost my balance. I saw the glare of a torch light then Raven’s voice calling my name.
‘I’m here,’ I responded, ‘it’s the cellars. Like I said.’
Raven made a pleasant O sound and came to my side. She handed me the other torch and I turned it on. Together, we made our way through the cellar rooms, most of which were empty. It seemed not even spiders had taken up residence down here, though we did find old webs in some of the nooks. There was a stacks of wood that had once been shelves, bottle racks, bits of coal and writing on the walls.
I became lost and dizzy with it all. Raven loved it; the way the shadows lingered on the walls, the guessing what might have been held in this rack, what could lay behind each door. Finally, we seemed to have entered the last room. I lent against the a wall, taking in deep breaths of stale air mixed with dust and mold.
‘This is strange, Crow,’ Raven’s voice called to me.
I looked over to where she was shining her torch light and there seemed to be a door blocked off in the wall. I walked over, thinking maybe it was just in shadow but also hoping it was nothing so that we could go back up. My mouth was dry and I was sweating even though it was cold down here.
‘Someone tried to hide this door, but look,’ Raven spoke, putting her finger tips on a worn handle made out of dark wood.
‘Maybe, they had a good reason….’ I trailed.
Raven pulled a face. Without warning, she yanked open the door and cream paint surrounding it cracked and began flaking. The door shook but didn’t swing. Before I could get the words out, she had tried pushing and the door flung open.
‘They didn’t do a good job did they?’ Raven said.
We shone our torches inside and found a long narrow corridor straightening before us.
To Be Continued…