Aarabelle sits in her highchair as I feed her dinner. She’s growing so fast. Already she’s eating cereal and a little baby food. Soon she’ll be crawling and I have no one to celebrate with. Her father will never see these milestones and it breaks me apart.
“You should really lock the door,” Liam huffs as he throws his coat over the chair.
“But then I’d have to get up to let you in,” I state matter-of-factly and go back to feeding the baby, trying to put aside my worries. The fact is…this is reality. I have to deal with it.
“Uh huh. Hey, Pumpkin,” his eyes alight as he crouches down by Aara. It’s adorable hearing grown men use a baby voice. It gets a little softer and higher pitched.
The corners of her mouth lift and she throws her arms in the air when he gets close. My heart sputters seeing how happy she gets seeing him. Liam kisses her head and she giggles.
“At least someone is happy to see me,” he says playfully.
“I’d be happy if you brought me a present,” I joke.
He laughs and goes into the pocket of his coat. “Just so happens I did, but since that’s the only way you’ll be nice, I’ll hold on to this until you’ve earned it.”
Practically leaping out of my chair, I rush over. “What is it?” I try to peer around his back as he holds the mystery item.
Liam’s lips curl as he sees how much I want this. I don’t even know what it is. Jeez, I’m an idiot. “Nope. We eat first, then maybe you’ll get it.”
“Watch, it’s a freaking Pez dispenser or something stupid.”
“Guess you’ll have to be nice to find out.” He shoves the item into his back pocket and I fight the urge to reach and get it. “How was work?”
We spend the next thirty minutes going over my day and Jackson’s return. Liam never mentioned that they spoke, but he’s surprised to hear he’s in Virginia. After we finish the pizza, Liam somehow convinces me we should watch a movie. I get Aarabelle to bed and come down to find him sprawled out on the couch.
“By all means, make yourself comfortable.”
Liam pulls his beanie higher on his forehead and his eyes glimmer with amusement. He sits up and puts the TV on. “I picked the movie.”
“What?” I ask with mock incredulity. “It’s my house. Why do you get to pick the movie?”
“Ummm, I’m the guest.” He shrugs as if this should be an obvious answer.
I groan and lean back. “What crappy, shoot-‘em-up movie do I have to endure?”
“You’ll see. It’s a classic.”
Meet Liam in Consolation!
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Liam wasn’t supposed to be my happily ever after.
He wasn’t even on my radar.
He was my husband’s best friend—forbidden.
But my husband is dead and I’m alone. I ache for him and I reach for Liam.
One night with Liam changed everything. Now I have to decide if I truly love him or if he’s just the consolation prize.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Corinne Michaels is an emotional, witty, sarcastic, and fun loving mom of two beautiful children. She’s happily married to the man of her dreams and is a former Navy wife. After spending months away from her husband while he was deployed, reading and writing was her escape from the loneliness.
Both her maternal and paternal grandmothers were librarians, which only intensified her love of reading. After years of writing short stories, she couldn’t ignore the call to finish her debut novel, Beloved. Her alpha Navy SEALs are broken, beautiful, and will steal your heart.