Authors: Carol Marinelli
Tags: #Contemporary, #Romance, #Fiction, #Medical, #Past, #Painful, #Baby Boy, #Deceased, #Doctor, #E.R. Doctor, #Pregnant, #Widower, #Family Life, #Miracle Baby, #Marriage, #Healing, #Adult, #Trauma, #Heartbroken
Seven years ago ER doctor Cat Hayes was left heartbroken after losing her baby boy. Now she’s focused on her career. But when she meets gorgeous Dr. Dominic Edwards at a Spanish conference, resisting his scorching touch isn’t easy… Cat returns home sun-kissed and accidentally
Widower Dom never thought he’d ever find love again—let alone a family! As the promise of their miracle baby begins to heal
their hearts, Dom knows he can’t let Cat slip through his fingers. All it takes is one down-on-one-knee question…
“Has the cat got your tongue, Cat?” he asked as she stood in silence.
It would seem that it had, because still she said nothing.
“Well, I’ll make this very simple for you, then.” He pushed on. “A, B or C?”
Cat could feel her eyelashes blink rapidly as he sped through the multiple choices he had created just for her.
“Is the baby A—mine, B—not mine, or C—not sure?”
“Dominic...” she said, and how strange it felt to be saying his name while looking at him again. How odd it felt that he was here…terribly beautiful, terribly cross. “It’s not that simple...” Cat attempted.
But it was to him.
“A, B or C, Cat?”
She couldn’t meet his eyes as she delivered the answer. “A.”
Some stories write themselves. Not all. Often I’m tearing my hair out. But I wasn’t with Cat and Dominic. I actually had a plan with this story...my hero and heroine simply refused to stick to it.
I kept reminding them that
was the writer, but they refused to listen and I actually couldn’t type fast enough some days to keep up with them. I simply loved them both, and I wanted to get to their happy-ever-after so that I could see for myself how
worked things out.
I hope you enjoy meeting them as much as I did.
THE BABY OF THEIR DREAMS
Books by Carol Marinelli
Harlequin Medical Romance
London’s Most Desirable Docs
Unwrapping Her Italian Doc
Playing the Playboy’s Sweetheart
Bayside Hospital Heartbreakers!
Tempted by Dr. Morales
The Accidental Romeo
Secrets of a Career Girl
Dr. Dark and Far Too Delicious
NYC Angels: Redeeming the Playboy
200 Harley Street: Surgeon in a Tux
Baby Twins to Bind Them
Just One Night?
Visit the Author Profile page at
for more titles.
Praise for Carol Marinelli
“A compelling, sensual, sexy, emotionally packed, drama-filled read that will leave you begging for more!”
Contemporary Romance Reviews
NYC Angels: Redeeming the Playboy
July was supposed to be.
Catriona Hayes stood as her friend came out of her office but she was unable to return Gemma’s smile. ‘I’ve just got to go up to Maternity to see a patient and then we can...’ Gemma didn’t finish her sentence. Now she was closer she could see that her friend was barely holding it together—Cat’s green eyes were brimming with tears, her long curly black hair looked as if it had been whipped up by the wind and she was a touch breathless, as if she’d been running. It quickly became clear to Gemma that Cat was not here at the London Royal for their shopping date.
Cat had walked out of her antenatal appointment at the hospital where she worked and, like a homing beacon, had taken the underground to the Royal, where Gemma was an obstetrics registrar. She had sat in panicked silence on the tube and, despite being twenty weeks pregnant and wearing a flimsy wraparound dress and heels, she had been one of those people running up the escalator rather than standing and letting it take them to the top.
‘You’re not here for our shopping date, are you?’ Gemma checked, and Cat vaguely recalled a date that they had made a couple of weeks ago. They were both supposed to finish at four today and the plan had been to hit the shops, given that Cat would know by now if she was having a boy or girl.
They had had it all planned—they were going to head off for a late afternoon tea and Cat would reveal the news about the sex of her baby. Then they would shop for baby things in the appropriate colours and choose shoes for Cat and Mike’s wedding, which was just over three weeks away.
That was how it was supposed to be.
This was how it was.
‘You know how we discussed keeping things separate?’ Cat felt as if her voice didn’t belong to her as she spoke to her closest friend. ‘Can I change my mind about that?’
And, because she and Gemma had been friends since way back in medical school, she didn’t have to explain what she meant.
‘Of course you can,’ Gemma said, battling a feeling of dread. ‘Let’s go into my office.’
When Cat had found out that she was pregnant she had discussed with her family doctor, and also her fiancé, the potential pitfalls of having your closest friend as your obstetrician.
Against her own gut instinct, an esteemed colleague of Mike’s was now overseeing her pregnancy.
She had walked out on both of them today.
Now Cat walked into her friend’s office on shaky legs and, for the first time as Gemma’s patient, took a seat, wondering how best to explain what had been going on in her life. The past two weeks she had dodged speaking with Gemma as best she could.
Gemma poured her a glass of water and Cat took a long drink as her friend waited patiently. Finally she caught her breath enough to speak.
‘I had an ultrasound a couple of weeks ago,’ she started. ‘There were some problems...I know I could have spoken to you but Mike wanted to wait for all the test results to be in before we told anyone.
we told anyone...’ Tears were now falling thick and fast but she had run out of sobs and so was able to continue. ‘The results are not good, Gemma. They’re not good at all. I had an amnio and the baby has Edwards syndrome...’ Cat elaborated further. ‘Full-form Edwards syndrome.’ She looked at her friend and saw Gemma’s small swallow as she took in the diagnosis.
‘What does Mike say?’
Not only had Cat found out her baby was terribly sick, but also in these past two weeks her relationship had crumbled.
‘Mike says that it’s not part of the plan... Well, he didn’t have the guts to say it like that. He said that as a paediatrician he knows better than most what the baby would be up against and what we’d be up against—the anomalies are very severe. There really isn’t much hope that it will survive the birth and if it does it’s likely to live only for a few hours.’ Her voice was starting to rise. ‘He says that it’s not our fault, that we’ve every chance of a healthy baby and so we should put it behind us and try again...’ Cat’s eyes flashed in anger. ‘He’s a paediatrician, for God’s sake, and he wants me to have a late abortion...’
‘What do you want, Cat?’ her friend gently broke in. ‘Do you even know what you want?’
‘A healthy baby.’
Gemma just looked.
‘And that’s not going to happen,’ Cat said.
Finally she had accepted it.
She sat there in silence. It was the first glimpse of peace she had had in two weeks. Since the first ultrasound, at Mike’s strong suggestion, they had kept the findings to themselves and so she had been holding it all in—somehow working as an emergency registrar, as well as carrying on with their wedding plans and doing her best to avoid catching up with Gemma.
At first Cat had woken in tears and dread for her baby each morning. Today, though, she had woken in anger and, looking at the back of her fiancé’s head and seeing him deeply asleep, instead of waiting for him to wake up, she had dug him in the ribs.
‘What’s wrong?’ Mike had turned to her rage and she had told him they were through. That even if, by some miracle, the amnio came back as normal today, there was nothing left of them.
The amnio hadn’t come back as normal.
Cat had known that it wouldn’t; she’d seen the ultrasound and nothing could magic the problems away.
It had been confirmation, that was all.
Now Gemma gave her the gift of a pause and Cat sat, feeling the little kicks of her baby inside her as well as the rapid thud of her own heart. Finally both settled down as she came to the decision she had been reaching towards since the news had first hit.
‘I understand that it’s different for everyone. Maybe if I’d found out sooner I’d have had a termination.’ She truly didn’t know what she might have done then; she could only deal with her feelings now. ‘But I’m twenty weeks pregnant. I know it’s a boy and I can feel him move. He’s moving right now.’ She put a hand on her stomach and felt him, in there and alive and safe. ‘Mike keeps saying it would be kinder but I’m starting to wonder, kinder for whom?’
Gemma was patient and Cat waited as she rang through to the hospital where Cat was being seen and all the results were transferred.
Gemma went through them carefully.
And she didn’t leave it there; instead, she made a phone call to a colleague and Cat underwent yet another ultrasound.
Her baby was imperfect, from his too-little head to his tiny curved feet, but all Cat could see was her son. Gently Gemma told her that the condition was very severe, as she’d been told, and she concurred that if the baby survived birth he would live only for a little while.
‘I want whatever time I have with him,’ Cat said.
‘I’ll be there with you,’ Gemma said. ‘Mike might—’
‘I’m not discussing it further with Mike,’ Cat said. ‘I’ll tell him what I’ve decided and it’s up to him what he does, but as a couple we’re finished.’
‘You don’t have to make any rash decisions about your relationship. It’s a lot for any couple to take in...’
‘We’re not a couple any more,’ Cat said. ‘I told him that this morning—as soon as things started to go wrong with the pregnancy, even before things went wrong, I felt as if I didn’t have a voice. Well, I do and I’m having my baby.’
* * *
It was a long month, a difficult month but a very precious one.
Cat cancelled the wedding while knowing soon she would be arranging a funeral but she pushed that thought aside as best she could.
Her parents were little help. Her mother agreed with Mike; her father just disappeared into his study if ever Cat came round. But she had Greg, her brother, who cleared out all her things from Mike’s house.
He didn’t hit him, much to Cat’s relief.
And, of course, she had Gemma.
At the end of July and at twenty-five weeks gestation Cat went into spontaneous labour and Gemma delivered her a little son. Thomas Gregory Hayes. Thomas because she loved the name. Gregory, after her brother. Hayes because it was her surname.
Cat would treasure every minute of the two precious days and one night that Thomas lived.
Most of them.
His severe cleft palate meant she couldn’t feed him, though she ached to. She would never get out of her mind the image of her mother’s grimace when she’d seen her grandson and his deformities—Cat had asked her to leave.
For two days she had closed the door to her room on the maternity ward and had let only love enter.
Her brother, Gemma and her new boyfriend, Nigel, a couple of other lifelong friends, along with the medical staff helped her care for him—and all played their part.
When Cat had no choice but to sleep, Greg, Gemma or Nigel nursed him and Thomas wasn’t once, apart from having his nappy changed, put down.
His whole life Thomas knew only love.
After the funeral, when her parents and some other family members had tried to tell her that maybe Thomas’s passing was a blessing, it was Gemma who held Cat’s hand as she bit back a caustic response.
Instead of doing as suggested and putting it all behind her and attempting a new normal, Cat took all her maternity leave and hid for a while to grieve. But as her return-to-work date approached she felt less and less inclined to go back, especially as Mike still worked there.
She applied for a position in the accident and emergency department at the London Royal, where her baby had been born and where Gemma worked.
Four months to the day that she’d lost her son Cat stepped back out into the world... Only, she wasn’t the same.
Instead, she was a far tougher version of her old self.