Font Size:  

“I think you’re pretty much perfect, Prince Tristan.”

“Don’t I know it.” He winked and brought their clasped hands to his lips, kissing her knuckles.

She sighed, just wanting to kiss him, but she had to tease. “Oh my, Mr. Crown Prince, how overly confident you are.”

“All the better to keep you on your toes, my dear.”

“Ha! Good luck,” she teased back.

They arrived at the waterfall pool and for a few moments simply stared at the array of fall colors—orange, red, yellow, and green decorating the mountain and forest around them, mossy rock under the waterfall, and the blue water of a chilly mountain lake underneath.

“Truth or dare?” Tristan asked, his blue eyes twinkling.


“I dare you to jump in the pool with me.”

Her eyes widened. Just like the first night they fell in love, but it would be freezing cold.

“Dare accepted.”

She ran for the water. Tristan kept pace with her and then they both leaped off a small ledge they knew was a deep part of the pool.

Bitter cold water surrounded her, and she gasped. She came up sputtering and coughing. Tristan hauled her close, swam with her to where he could touch, and held her as her coughing settled and she caught her breath.

Her body trembled with cold.

“You’re very brave,” Tristan said. “I think you are worthy to be a princess and someday a queen.”

She stared at him and then laughed. “Well, thank you for the commendation. I think I have to marry a crown prince to have such a future.” She gave him a daring look.

Tristan arched an eyebrow and then entangled one hand in her hair. The other pressed into her lower back, pulling her flush against him. He kissed her then. It was deep and all-encompassing, and she forgot all about how cold she was.

The unmistakable sound of helicopter rotors sliced through the quiet forest. Tristan released Jennifer from the kiss and they both glanced up as a helicopter swooped over the lake, sending ripples out. Jennifer shivered and then started to shake.

Tristan escorted her out of the water as the helicopter landed in the small clearing. Chad saluted them both while Lieutenant Mason Henson and another man she didn’t recognize quickly set up a folding table and two chairs, covering the table with a white linen cloth. They set covered platters on the table, candles in the middle, and a small box of matches. Then they laid blankets across each chair, saluted crisply, and climbed into the helicopter. Chad grinned at them and lifted off, soaring above the trees.

“T?” Jennifer questioned.

Tristan walked her over to the table, picked up the blanket, and wrapped it around her. The blanket was fleece and felt like it had been recently warmed. He wrapped her up tight with his strong arms. She was instantly warm and in the perfect spot for her.

“A crown prince is expected to have a certain level of originality and appropriateness to our true love story.”

“You’re a crown prince? I thought you were my Big Bad Wolf.”

“I’m both.” The heat in his blue eyes made her catch fire. Her teeth stopped chattering, and she leaned into him, staring up into his alluring gaze.

“Oh my, Mr. Crown Prince, what big plans you have.”

“All the better to woo you with, my dear.” He grinned and dropped to one knee, taking her hand from inside the blanket and grasping it with his. “Truth or dare.”

She debated. “Truth.”

“Do you love your Big Bad Wolf with every fiber of your being?” he asked. “Is this true love, Jenn?”

“Yes,” she admitted.

“Truth or dare?”

Articles you may like