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Authors: Janna Shay

Fair Play (22 page)

BOOK: Fair Play
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“I’ve been here with you all night, sleeping in a bed next to you.”

His gaze searched her face. “Are you all right?” Moving his hand to her stomach, he added, “And the baby?”

“We’re both fine, thanks to you. But enough about me, it’s you I’m worried about. Do you have much pain?”

“Some, although I don’t remember anything after getting stabbed. What happened?”

She took a deep breath before she began. “Barbara and Tony shot Henry.”

“And your mother, is she all right?”

“She’s here at the hospital for a couple of days to recover from her injuries.”

“Baby, I’m so sorry I didn’t get to you in time.”

She put her hand gently on his cheek. “You have nothing to be sorry for. You almost died trying to save us. You have no idea the horror I went through waiting to hear from the doctors if you were all right. I want your promise you’ll never scare me like that ever again.”

“I never want anything to happen to you again, but if something were to happen, I would gladly give my life to save you.”

“Don’t you think I feel the same way? Don’t ever do that to me again.”

He grinned, took her hand, then flinched with pain.

“Are you hurting? Do you need pain medication?”

“I’m fine, just a little sore.”

Dr. Stewart walked in, checked Jace, then declared him ready to be moved to a regular room with the possibility of being released in a few days if everything went well.

Dani spent the next five days with Jace. She refused to leave the hospital until they released him.

At home, she insisted he spend a couple of more days in bed. Jace, feeling the effects of confinement, balked at her overprotective treatment.

“I refuse to lie in a bed anymore. I’m getting up and going downstairs to get some work done.”

“If you move one inch out of that bed, Jace Nicholas Diamond, I’ll make you wish you never did.”

He protested. “I’m feeling fine. I can’t stand lying in bed anymore. I’m bored.”

Dani gave him a provocative look. “Maybe we can find something to amuse you.”

He grinned at her. “What do you have in mind?”

She knelt on the bed, then leaned over him and gave him a deep kiss, stirring his passion. He put his arms around her trying to pull her down on top of him. Resisting, she lifted her head.

“We’ll have to improvise because of your injuries, but you have to promise to lay in bed for the next three days, if you hope to make love to me.”

“I promise,” he answered.

“Will you keep your promise, no matter what?”

Anxious to continue, he agreed. “Yes, I will keep my promise, no matter what.”

Dani stood up and started fluffing his pillow. Jace grabbed her arm, and tried to pull her down to the bed. She looked at him, then explained, “No, not until you’re well. I’m not taking a chance of you opening up those stitches. As soon as the doctor says it’s okay, we’ll make love.”

“Then all bets are off.” He uncovered himself and tried to get up.

She put her hands on his shoulders, holding him down. “Where do you think you’re going? You promised me you’d stay in bed for three days.”

“Only if we made love, and since we’re not, then the deal’s off.”

She grinned wickedly. “No, you promised you’d stay in bed for three days no matter what, if you hoped to make love to me. I didn’t say when you could make love to me. And a promise is a promise.” She covered him back up, happy with herself.

Jace captured her face and brought her down for a kiss. “You’re beautiful and devious, and you don’t play fair.”

Dani gazed at him with love shining in her eyes. “I never said I played fair.”

Epilogue

Dani stood at the bay window of her living room, staring at the beautiful coastline in Carmel, California. The force of the ocean water as it came into shore, crashing on the rocks, spewing the water high into the sky, made the water twinkle as it returned to its beginning. The sand of the beach sparkled like thousands of miniature diamonds as the warm sunlight shined upon it. No matter how long she watched, she never tired of seeing the wonder of the ocean and all its complexities.

She turned at the sound of her husband’s call. “I’m here in the living room.”

“Are you looking at the ocean again, my love?” Jace asked as he came up behind her, putting his arms around her waist and kissing the side of her neck.

Dani leaned back against him. She also never grew tired of feeling his strong arms surround her or his mind-drugging kisses. “Yes, it’s so beautiful.”

They stood together for a few minutes watching the ocean when she spied movement on the beach in front of them.

Dani’s father walked with a child’s hand in his as he bent his head, trying to listen to what the child was saying. The little boy, tall for his age, was six years old but talked as if he were thirty. “Someday, Grandpa, I’ll have a house overlooking the ocean, just as my parents have, then this beach will belong to me,” Nicholas said, his head held high. “I’m going to be successful and rich, and will need a place to relax for vacation.”

Charles stopped, then looked at his grandson with love in his eyes. “Yes, I have no doubt that you will be successful. Do you know what you want to be when you grow up?”

With a twinkle in his mischievous green eyes, and the sun shining on his black hair, he said with conviction, “Of course I do. I’m not a baby anymore. I’m grown up. I’m going into the family business of course.”

Charles laughed at the answer this intelligent little man had given. “So which family business do you intend going into?”

“Well, both of them, of course. I can be a casino owner and a broker at the same time.”

“What about your sister, Cassandra? You need to think of her. She needs to be successful also. Do you intend to share the family business with her?”

“Yes,” he answered in frustration. “She can work as a casino host as mother used to.”

“Don’t you think as an owner in the family business she’d like to share the responsibility of running the business equally with you?”

“Yes, but we can’t all get what we want all the time.” Turning back to glance at his sister, who was holding his grandmother’s hand and holding a bucket in her other hand, he continued.

“She’s just a baby and has a long time to grow up, so I don’t have to worry about that right now.”

Nicholas took off running down the beach as he spied a seashell, forgetting to pretend that he was a grown up. Looking back he yelled, “Grandpa, come on. Look at this.”

Shaking his head at the precocious little man he loved so deeply, he answered, “I’m coming.”

Dani grinned as she observed what took place on the beach. “I can just imagine what Nicholas told my father to make him shake his head.”

“Something profound I’m sure. After all, he takes after me.”

Turning around in his arms, Dani snaked her arms around her husband’s neck. “How do you know he doesn’t take after me instead?” she teased.

“Because Cassi takes after you. Not only is she as beautiful as you, but she’d rather play with the sand and have fun than be profound.”

“Ahh ... so you think our handsome son doesn’t take after me at all. I guess you believe he has all your genes and none of mine.”

“Actually, both of our children have most of my genes. After all, mine are genetically superior to yours,” Jace teased as his mouth lowered to hers. He kissed her gently, feeling lucky to have been blessed with everything he had. As his desire flared, as it always did where his wife was concerned, he deepened the kiss.

Dani felt her body melt under his sensual assault, amazed after seven years of marriage, Jace still had the same effect on her as he did from the day they met. She drew back her head so she could look at him, then brought her lower body closer, feeling the evidence of his desire. She decided to tease him for his remark about his genes being superior. She rubbed her body invitingly against his. “Since your genes are so superior, then I guess I can’t tempt you anymore. We wouldn’t want to take a chance that we might have another child with any of my genes in it. I guess you’ll just have to go it alone.” She released herself from his embrace and started to walk away.

Jace growled at her, then grabbed her to bring her back in his arms, where he wanted her. He had every intention of ravishing that delectable body of hers that childbirth had not diminished in the least. When he first came into the room and saw her watching the ocean, thoughts of all the things he wanted to do to her flashed in his mind. After seven years, he still couldn’t get enough of her. Every time he saw her, he wanted her more than the last time. He knew that no matter how long they’d be together, he would never stop wanting her. He loved her with every fiber of his being, and knew he always would.

He hugged her tightly. “If I take back my comment, will you come to bed with me?”

Dani pretended to be thinking about it, then answered. “No.”

“Danielle Diamond, are you telling me, I can no longer entice you into my bed?”

“Yep. I have no intention of going to bed with you in the middle of the day when my parents and my children, who happen to have my genes, are outside.”

“Are you sure you’re not interested in a little midday diversion?”

“I’m certain,” she answered as indignantly as she could.

Jace shrugged his shoulders and released her from his embrace. “Okay, in that case I guess I’ll go down to the beach to play with the kids.” He turned as if to leave.

She was crushed with his blatant dismissal. “I never thought I’d live to see the day when you weren’t interested in sex. Your body is usually in hyper drive. Don’t I excite you anymore?” she asked, not being able to keep the hurt out of her voice.

“Well, we have been married for seven years. It’s not exactly as exciting as it used to be. I mean, we’re married parents now. It’s just not the same anymore.”

Dani turned to walk away, but before she took more than two steps, Jace grabbed her around the waist, spun her around, then pushed her against the wall, trapping her with his body. “You might be able to change my mind, if you were inventive enough,” he teased. He lowered his head and kissed her.

Dani decided to teach him a lesson, so she put everything into the kiss and ignited his passion. She lowered her hand to his pants and felt him harden under her caress. Pulling her head back and pushing at his chest at the same time, she extricated herself from his embrace. She stopped, then looked at him before walking away. “I don’t know, but I think you need to brush up on your kissing technique. It’s lacking just a little bit. That kiss didn’t have the desired effect it once did. Try again when you think you have it mastered.”

She walked into the bedroom with a smile on her face, thinking she’d hear a protest any second. When she didn’t hear anything, she turned around and plowed into Jace who was right behind her. “What are you doing following me so closely? You almost knocked me over. Next time ... ”

Jace pulled her into his arms and kissed her, deepening the kiss until he felt her melt against him, then released her.

“What in the hell are you doing? First you almost knock me over, and then you ... ”

He again pulled her into his arms, and kissed her until all thoughts left her mind, except that she wanted him. He picked her up and placed her on the bed, then turned to go to the door.

“Jace, I swear to God, if you walk out that door, that’ll be the last time I let you in my bed. You are not going to kiss me senseless, then walk away.”

He shut the door, turned the lock, then headed back to her. “Why don’t you want me to leave? I thought my kisses were lacking? Have you had a sudden change of heart?”

Dani opened her arms to him as he lowered his body to hers, and declared, “You don’t play fair.”

“I never play fair. I always play to win,” he answered as he lit their bodies on fire.

BOOK: Fair Play
10.9Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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