SOON AFTER SUNRISE, THE FAMILY gathered for the morning meal. On first sight, Cain and Lilith stepped silently into one another’s arms, where they remained. Cain kissed Lilith’s forehead repeatedly. Abel had multiple facial injuries, one eye swollen completely shut. Cain’s knuckles were bruised and torn. He had a large, purple knot on his chin and a weeping shoulder wound. The children who had awakened in the night had talked with the others. Everyone seemed to know about the night’s sleeping arrangements.
This was no secret. Adam knew an announcement needed to be made.
“Everyone, give me your attention.”
Standing in the midst of his family, he waited for each to take seats on the logs and stones that surrounded the firepit. Some moved where they could see him. Still embracing, Cain and Lilith remained right where they were.
“Cain and Lilith have made a promise to become husband and wife.”
As Adam had expected, this prompted whispering and looks of consternation.
Over Lilith’s head, Cain gaped at him, triumphant joy shining in his eyes. Smiling broadly, he grabbed Lilith up in his arms and gave her a smacking kiss. A murmur of voices rose up, some jubilant and concurring, others shocked and opposing.
Settling Lilith back onto her feet, Cain frowned at his siblings. Obviously, he hadn’t considered their reaction. It was clear he hadn’t thought anyone would object. He didn’t seem to understand why anyone would judge Lilith and his decision.
Sifting through the ramifications, Adam realized he needed to say more.
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