Read My Once and Future Love Online

Authors: Carla Krae

Tags: #my once and future love, #contemporary romance, #jacob and beth

My Once and Future Love (60 page)

BOOK: My Once and Future Love
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I’m wearing the earrings you gave me, almost
every day. Darcy loves them, and now Andrew says you’re making
other guys look bad. He’s teasing, by the way. You should see my
dad--he’s turned into a big softie for little Sarah. She’s walking
short distances, and he hasn’t let her fall on her bum once. It’s
so cute.

We’ll do Christmas when I see you, okay?

Yours,

Beth.

It should’ve been the happiest Christmas of
my adult life. I was at Andrew and Darcy’s house, with my
dad
, on Christmas Eve for the first time
ever
. The
first holiday together for the Lawsons since Mom passed away. It
was snowing outside, the house was warm and cozy, but I couldn’t
get Jacob out of my head.

The time differences were a bitch, but we
tried to stay in contact. The last message came this morning, a
text that said “I’m OK. Don’t worry.” I hoped he was getting some
kind of Christmas with somebody. We could’ve parted with a better
goodbye.

I tried to hide how I felt, of course, for my
family’s sake. It wasn’t
their
fault my holiday was missing
something. Darcy kept giving me things to do, though, so maybe I
wasn’t fooling everybody.

Elvis’ “Blue Christmas” came on the
stereo.

I moved to the window seat to watch the snow
falling.
Blue Christmas
, indeed. Dad was taking a nap,
Andrew was somewhere with the baby, and Darcy was in the kitchen.
The tree mocked my pain, the cheery lights blink-blinking away. For
once, I would’ve welcomed some “adult” eggnog, but was anybody
making any?

No…

The song didn’t get to play all the way
through. I heard Darcy whisper loudly to my brother to “change the
song, now!” The “Frosty the Snowman” soundtrack came on,
instead.

I stretched and faked a yawn.

“I think Dad had the right idea. Wake me when
dinner’s ready,” I said, and went to my room.

****

Darcy glared at her husband. “Would you
monitor the stereo?”

“Huh?”

“Your sister is missing her boyfriend in a
major way, dumbass. The last thing she needs is
Blue
Christmas
!”

“Oh! She hasn’t said--”

“Of course, she won’t. It’s chick pain, for
one, and two, your sister is the most independent woman I know.
She’s not going to boohoo to her big brother that she’s jonesing
for her man. So, act normal, but try to avoid anything sad. The
situation just requires a little sensitivity.”

Andrew wrapped his arms around her. “That’s
why I married you--you’re smarter than me.”

Darcy snuggled into his embrace. “And don’t
you forget it.”

****

On Christmas Eve we could open one present
each after dinner. Andrew distributed everything, then took Sarah
from Darcy. Dad’s face lit up at receiving the Western novel from
Andrew. Darcy opened a sweater from me. Andrew’s gift was addressed
“to Daddy” and contained a new pair of slippers. Sarah got a
squeezable book from her Grandpa. That left me, who found a digital
picture frame from my niece already loaded with a few family
portraits.

I blinked away tears when I got to the last
photo, the five of us standing in front of their fireplace
yesterday.

“Thanks, you guys.” I handed the frame to Dad
for him to see.

“That’s a handsome bunch,” he said. His voice
was a shade more gruff than normal, revealing he was touched,
too.

“Well, I have a Christmas torte in the
kitchen. Who wants dessert?” Darcy asked.

We’d just get awkward if allowed to get
teary-eyed together.

Once we all had a plate and a mug of cider,
stories made the rounds. Andrew and Darcy talked and talked,
keeping me from having to share and Dad from accidentally bringing
up the subject of my relationship. Once Daddy called it a night, I
hugged my brother and sister-in-law, thanked them, and went to
bed.

I changed into my “Rudolph the Red-Nosed
Reindeer” pajamas, brushed my teeth, then checked my phone. No
messages of any kind. Blaming it on the snow, I settled into bed
and tried to think of sugar plums.

My dreams weren’t that pleasant.

There were voices in the hall.

I ignored them. It was just Darcy and Dad.
Darcy got up with the baby, and Daddy never slept past 6:00AM
unless he was deathly ill. I wished they’d move further away from
my room, though. I wasn’t a deep sleeper.

I managed to drift off again, not noticing
when someone opened my door a couple hours later. They crept in,
leaving the door ajar, and sat down by the side of the bed near my
face, waiting for me to sense their presence.

Patience must’ve been short. “Buh! Buh,
Buh!”

I yawned. “Hey, munchkin…how’d you get in
here?”

Baby Sarah smiled a toothless grin and
gurgled happily.

“Hey, somebody? Escapee baby in here!”

I didn’t have my glasses on and rolled over
when a male figure came in to get Sarah. The door closed a second
later.

“Too early for Christmas,” I mumbled in the
darkness.

“It’s nearing nine, lazy bones,” a voice
softly said.

Can’t be…

“I’m dreaming…” I reasoned.

“In
Rudolph
pajamas?” the voice
countered.

My eyes shot open. “It’s possible.”

“Is it possible to dream with you, love?”

“Ohmigod.”

I rolled over and came face-to-face with the
source. Only one person in the world called me “love” like
that!

“Are you here?” I whispered, afraid I really
was dreaming.

“You tell me,” he said, then kissed me. A
kiss of two months’ pent-up passion.

I felt tears running down my face, but I
wasn’t going to let him go for a second to wipe them away. He
seemed to read my thought, his hands coming up to my face, his
thumbs brushing the tracks away under my eyes. I slid off the bed
into his lap, wrapping my body around his.

“How?” I gasped into his mouth.

Jacob pulled back just far enough to break
the kiss. “I had to come. We’re on traveling days, and I finally
said
screw it
--we’re going to see our families one damn
bloody day out of the year. You have me for twenty-four hours.”

“I’ll take it! God, I’ve missed you!”

He kissed me again. “Missed you, too…so much.
I love you.”

“I love you, too.”


Bethie
…” He said my name with enough
reverence to break my heart. “Again?”

“I love you, Jacob.” Huh, not so scary the
second time. “I have for so long. I just didn’t have the
words.”

“Think your dad would kill me if I shagged
you right now?”

I giggled. “Save it for later, big boy. I
don’t want an audience.”

He sighed, then I felt him smile as wide as
his face would go. “Happy Christmas, sweetheart.”

“Mmm. Best Christmas ever.”

We would’ve stayed wrapped around each other
on the guest bedroom floor indefinitely, but it was only a few
minutes later when someone coughed very loudly outside the door.
Point taken, we reluctantly parted. I opened the door to find my
whole family eavesdropping in the hall.

“Something I can help you with?” I asked.

“Nope, just passing by,” Darcy said, then
winked.

Dad looked very relieved to find us both
still fully clothed. I stifled a laugh as they went back to the
living room. Jacob glanced at me and snickered, just as amused.

“Get dressed, woman. I have presents.”

I pouted. “But yours is at home.”

“Correction, I already got mine.”

I blushed. “Oh. Yeah. Gee, if I’d known you
were
that
easy to please…”

“Hush, vixen, or I withhold your gifts until
next
Christmas.”

I mimed zipping my lips shut and batted my
eyelashes, trying to look innocent. He rolled his eyes and wagged
his finger at me. I stepped back in the bedroom and closed the door
before he could tickle me into submission.

Keeping our hands off each other in front of
my family proved difficult. And
frustrating
. The normal
holiday rituals of Christmas breakfast and Christmas dinner and
everything else in between seemed to take
forever.
And to
top it off, Andrew and Darcy apparently shared a tradition with
their neighbors of having the whole town stop by to say hello!

Well, it
felt
like the whole town.

Jacob settled into the routine fairly
quickly, though. Ironically, it was me that sat there jittery and
looking for the quickest opportunity to pull him into a closet.
Couldn’t I get five minutes alone to grope my man? It amused him
greatly to see me so frustrated.

That lasted until we were left in the living
room alone for a few minutes. He motioned me over to the window
seat, out of direct line of sight, and kissed me breathless.

“What was that for?” I asked happily.

“Opportunity. Listen…” He fidgeted with a
small box he’d produced from somewhere. “I wanted to give you this.
We can exchange the rest at home, but I couldn’t wait.” He handed
over the box.

It was light blue, and my eyes widened.
“Jacob, this is--”

“Just open it.”

I slid the white ribbon off and removed the
lid. Inside was a silver fob with one key on the ring. “A key?”

“My key. Don’t wig out—I’m not asking for
anything, I just… I want you to know you’re welcome in my home just
as much as before, only--”

I stopped his rambling with my fingers on his
lips, and smiled. “I understand. Thank you.”

He let out a relieved breath and drew me into
a hug. “Merry Christmas, Beth.”

“Merry Christmas, Jacob. I’m so glad you
came.”

I laced my fingers with his and led him into
the kitchen where my family was sneaking cookies.

Out of bedrooms, Darcy put Jacob on the couch
for the night. Once the others were asleep, I snuck out to the
living room and snuggled up to him under the blanket.

“Mmm, my Bethie…”

“Didn’t mean to wake you,” I whispered.

He yawned. “Didn’t. I’m still on Russian
time.”

I caressed his face. “Sleep if you want to. I
just wanted to be close while you’re here.”

“I love you.” He raised his head up to kiss
me.

“Love you, too.”

I laid my head on his chest and slept better
than I had in weeks. He would have to leave in the morning, but it
was only for a week, and then…well, so starts my life with a rock
star.

 

The End

 

 

Author’s note: Thank you so much for reading
this book and taking this journey with Jacob and Beth. More info
about other books of mine as well as contact information can be
found at
my site
. Reviews are
always welcome.

BOOK: My Once and Future Love
13.56Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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