Page 14 of Wild Night

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Kelli shrugged as if unconcerned. “I think you forget who you’re talking to. I’m currently the record holder in terms of wins.”

“Bullshit. We’re tied at three each, and you know it.”

“Fuck off,” Kelli said. “I’m not having the Baron Samedi debate with you again. You cheated that year.”

Colm shook his head, fighting like the devil to hide his smile. “Kelli, Kelli, Kelli, there is such a thing as a sore loser.”

“Nope. Not a sore loser. You found out what my costume was going to be—something I’ll never forgive Paddy for—and—”

“In his defense, he just asked me who Baron Samedi was. I figured out why he was asking on my own.”

“And then came as the same thing. Your whole family thought we’d planned it.”

“And crowned us both the winners. A tie.”

“I wore it better. Sunnie even said so, and since it wasn’t a planned,” she air quoted, “‘partner costume,’ I was the winner because it was my awesome idea. So I have three wins to your two.”

Colm let the debate end there, simply because they’d already had this fight approximately forty-two thousand times since that Halloween. He let his casual shrug tell her he wasn’t conceding. “Doesn’t matter. This year, I’ve got it in the bag. My family might even decide it’s the greatest costume of all time and stop holding the contest altogether since it’ll never be topped.”

“We’ll see.” Then she glanced at her phone and winced. “It’s after one, Colm.”

He groaned as he pushed himself up from the couch. “Tomorrow is not going to be fun.”

Kelli followed him to the kitchen as he grabbed both of them a bottle of water, then they locked up, turned out the lights, and headed for the stairs.

When they reached the top, she stopped at the threshold to Finn’s room, watching as Colm continued to his door. Once he was there, he turned back to look at her.

“Night, Kell.”

“Night,” she repeated. “And, Colm, thanks.”

He nodded and smiled before walking into his room and closing the door, trying to recall if Kelli Peterson had ever thanked him for anything before.

Then he tried to remember if he’d ever done anything worthy of her thanks.

That thought provoked a chuckle…until he shed his clothes and flopped down onto his bed.

Kelli wanted a baby.

Those words drifted through his mind as he closed his eyes, lulled to sleep by the image of him holding his own baby in his arms, rocking the little thing to sleep.

It was peaceful and perfect.

Until he realized Kelli was there too.

What the fuck was that about?

“Too much Guinness,” he murmured just before he fell asleep.

Chapter Three

Kelli laughed once again when Colm walked—or more accurately, stomped—by her in his Hagrid costume. The man had actually bought platform boots that added at least six more inches to his already six-foot-four height.

When she and Robbie had first arrived at the Collins Dorm for the Halloween party, it had taken her close to five minutes to figure out it was Colm in the costume. The majority of his face was hidden beneath a shaggy beard and wig, and he’d added quite a bit of padding under the long, tattered trench coat. No part of the well-dressed lawyer was present tonight, and though it killed her to admit it, he looked so much like the character, it was uncanny.

“I’m going to grab another beer,” Robbie said, pointing toward the kitchen where the keg was. “Want anything?”

She lifted her wineglass. “Nope, I’m good. Just refilled. Something I’m going to pay for tomorrow.” She really did need to get a grip on her wine consumption. She was out of control this week.

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