Alpha’s Virgin in Trouble by Casey Morgan

Chapter One

Christina

“Jesus, son of God, please let my father know peace. I don’t understand why he was taken away from us so soon, but I believe in your plan for me…”

Tears ran down my face as I tried to pray over my father’s recently covered grave. The funeral had been yesterday. His coffin was in the ground, but I wasn’t ready to say goodbye yet.

I still couldn’t believe he was dead. A man like him—a man of God. He didn’t deserve to die… Not the way he did.

Dad would always tell his congregation and me that there was a larger plan for all of us at play. We only had to believe. But how was I supposed to accept that his murder was meant to have some meaning? It all felt so senseless, so violent.

I wished my sisters were here, so we could comfort each other. But Emma’s flight home from college was delayed, and Sandy was gone when I woke up this morning. It was just me, my mother, and Dad’s assistant, Billy, at the Dallas cemetery. I loved my mom, and she always tried to make me feel better, but my sisters and I had the special bond that comes from growing up together. They were the only ones who truly accepted me the way I was.

“Christina,” my mother said softly.

I felt her place a hand on my shoulder and knew what that meant; she wanted to go. She had been willing to bring me here to pray, but it had been hours. Mom was probably tired. She had barely slept since that awful day. But I couldn’t leave just yet. There was more I wanted to say, and maybe it was irrational, but in my mind, this was where my father could hear me best.

“Can I just stay a little longer? I promise not to stay too late, and I can take the bus home.”

“Christina!” she gasped.

My mother was clearly not a fan of the idea. Her ivory skin whitened further in drastic contrast to the black suit she wore. Taking my hand, she tried pulling me away from the gravestone.

“Mom, please!” I pulled back, reluctant to leave the grass patch that marked my father’s burial plot.

Mom’s cheeks reddened. “You cannot take the bus. Just the idea of it—why would you suggest such a thing?” She put her nose in the air slightly. That haughty look sometimes made her look snobby. She wasn’t, really—just used to an upper-class kind of life.

“It’s not that big of a deal! I’m almost twenty-three! I can get home by myself!” I wasn’t used to raising my voice at either of my parents, but I felt very strongly about this. I needed time to pray for my dad.

“Christina, you don’t understand. You need to—”

“I can take her home in my car, Mrs. Johnson.”

My mom and I stopped arguing when Billy spoke up. He had met us here earlier, wanting to pray himself. Almost part of the family, Billy had been my dad’s assistant for years. He had watched us grow up, was around the house every day, and sat with us on Sundays as my father preached. I think he was just as rocked by Dad’s murder as we were. It was like he lost his best friend.

Billy and my mother looked at one another for a while. It was weird. It was like she was going to say no, but instead, she dropped the whole thing and agreed to let Billy take me home. Yet, it felt like there was something they were both not telling me.

“Just have her back by five, William, okay?”

I was the only one who called Billy by his nickname, and I only did it because it would make the handsome man blush.

I nodded, happy that I was able to stay a little longer. I did find the request to be home at five odd, but I chalked it up to my mother being affected by my father’s death. She had been extra clingy ever since he died, which I could understand. She was probably just worried about losing another person, but my dad died in an act of senseless violence. My mom couldn’t protect us from everything. Hopefully, as time passed, she’d calm down a little.

“Don’t let Christian bully you into staying late, William. You know she can’t.”

Billy just nodded.

My mom looked back a couple times, but in the end, she left. I put the oddness out of my mind and went back to praying over my father’s grave.

I could feel Billy standing behind me, watching over me. I tried focusing on my prayers, but my mind kept wandering back to having his body so close to mine.

Billy had been a constant in my life. I was used to having his light-blue eyes looking at me—a slight frown on his rugged features. I’d always thought he was hot. The man was built. I had seen him exercising once, but you could tell he was muscular even in a suit. I’d even had some dirty thoughts about him, and his eyes were something that plagued my sinful dreams. And God in heaven, I prayed for forgiveness right after each one.

However, I was never meant to be in a relationship, and I could never be attractive to someone like Billy. He was… insanely hot, and I was just a preacher’s ugly daughter. I had made my peace with the fact that my mission in life was to serve the poor. I wanted to give back, and I felt like that was that.

Still, I did allow myself a little something in the form of teasing Billy with his nickname. He always made a weird face. He never outright told me to stop, but everyone else called him William, so I knew I was an outlier.

I shook my head. I wasn’t there to think about Billy. I was there to pray over my father’s grave, which was what I went back to doing.

While I sought clarity and guidance, I heard a click sound. It was loud enough for me to pay attention to it. Maybe a twig breaking? I wasn’t totally sure. I knew Billy heard it too because he looked around as well, making a weird noise. Like a grunt? Maybe a growl? I wasn’t sure. And there wasn’t anyone else in the cemetery—no one we could see at least. It could have been an animal or something, maybe… It didn’t seem like a big deal, even if it was a person. There were many other headstones here, so perhaps someone else was just mourning a lost loved one.

I went back to praying, but my focus was shot. The combination of Billy and the general anxious mood—I was just having a hard time. I felt Billy take a few steps closer to me. He was just overprotective. That was it. There couldn’t be any other reason… no way.

I was able to find some sort of spiritual groove again, but then there was another noise. This time, it was louder, which freaked me out. It was like whoever it was, they were getting closer, but there was no one in sight. Were they trying to hide from us? Why would they be hiding?

I froze in my spot, unsure what to do. I was about to ask Billy for help, but suddenly, he grabbed me and placed something over my mouth.

All thoughts left my head. I fought to get out of his hold since I had no idea what was going on. Typically, I trusted this man, but it didn’t feel right. Billy was so much stronger than me. There was nothing I could do. Soon, I started to feel hazy, and the world went dark.