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I open my eyes and look up into Lucas’s beautiful eyes when I feel his fingers trail down my back. “You okay?” I ask, sounding sleepy even though I just woke up a little over an hour ago. Then again, he did just give me two great orgasms.

“I hate that we gotta leave here tomorrow, but I miss Maddi.”

“I miss her, too,” I agree. “Next time we’ll bring her with us.”

“She’d like that.” His fingers skim up my back, then move at random on my spine.

“Mmm.” I snuggle closer to him.

Suddenly I’m not pressed to his side any longer, I’m on my back, and his mouth is covering mine. The kiss is deep and hard. I know he’s saying something, I just don’t know what it is.

“Fuck, but I really fucking love you,” he says when he pulls away. I start to open my mouth but stop when he continues. “I thought I lost my shot at this when I screwed up and married Eva. I never thought I’d have what we have, never thought that I would be as happy as I am. You changed everything in my world.”

Holy crap.

I breathe in deep, but it doesn’t seem to be helping.

“You’ve given me back my dream, baby. Given me back the life I always wanted—a good woman, a solid family. Thank you.”

“You’re going to make me cry,” I whisper, cupping his stubbled jaw.

“Please don’t.” He smiles. “I just want you to know that the things that are important to you are the same things that are important to me. Family. You, Maddi, and me.”

“And Merida?” I swallow back tears.

“Yeah, and Merida,” he agrees softly.

He slides back inside me and makes love to me once more.

Later that night, lying in the crook of his arm, watching the moonlight reflect off the ocean, I say a silent thank-you for the man next to me, the little girl who holds my heart, and the family I always wanted. Because of them, I know that dreams do come true.



Three years later

“Mrs. Fremont?” Dr. Christine Hoffman smiles at me as she comes into the room. “Michelle said you haven’t been feeling well. What seems to be the issue?”

“I’m not sure.” I tuck my hands between my thighs to warm my fingers. “I keep getting headaches, and I feel tired all the time no matter how much sleep I get.”

“When was your last period?” she asks, taking my temp and then looking in my ears.

“Last month. I’m not pregnant. I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but I do know it’s not that. My ex-husband and I tried for years to get pregnant. We even tried IVF, but it never worked. The specialist I went to told me after five rounds of IVF that I would never have a child.”

She nods in understanding. “Lean back for me.” I lie back on the table, hearing the paper crunch under me. She lifts my shirt and pulls down the leggings I have on. She pushes down just above my pubic bone and feels around on my stomach before jotting something down. “Do you mind taking a blood and urine test?”

“No. Do you think everything is okay?”

“I’m sure everything is fine. I just want to check your numbers to make sure that everything is where it should be.”

“Okay,” I agree.

“Go use this in the bathroom in the hall. Just leave it on the counter.” She hands me a clear plastic cup. “Michelle will be in after to take your blood. Once I get the results, I’ll give you a call.”

“Sounds good. Thank you.” I give her another smile before she leaves the room.

I go pee in the cup, then leave it where she told me to and head back to the room. Once there, I hop back up on the table and pull my cell phone out of my purse. I send a text to Lucas to ask what he wants to do for dinner. He’s been responsible for cooking for the last month, since Maddi has swim at the local YMCA. Her practice and meets normally last until six fifteen, meaning we don’t get home until close to six thirty, depending on if the swim meet is away or at home.


We’ll order in Chinese. You want your usual? How’s work?

I bite my lip. I didn’t tell him I had a doctor’s appointment today. He worries about me and Maddi all the time. I know it’s because he loves us and wants to protect us, but if he keeps going the way he is he’s going to have a heart attack from the stress.

Work is good. I’ll be home by five to change before heading over to the school.

Okay baby, call me when you’re home and I’ll see you girls when you get home tonight.

KK Love you.

I press “Send” and smile when his next text comes up on the screen.

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