Pregnancy of Revenge(67)

By: Jacqueline Baird


'Oh, yes, and I still do, always will,' he said huskily.

But she wasn't totally convinced, if that's true, then why after our wedding day, when we finally made love, did you never touch me again? I hardly saw you. You never came to bed until the early hours and when you did you made a jolly good job of ignoring me,' Charlie protested, his coolness still looming large in her mind. 'Then when we did make love after the party, you stormed off in anger again.'

'That bothered you, hmm?' And his smile had a hint of passion intermingled with a touch of humour. 'You wanted me to make love to you.'

'No—well, yes.' She was sure he was laughing at her.

'Ah, Charlott-a-a. You really will have to learn my language.' He kissed her again, his tongue curling and probing her mouth, and she felt the breath catch in her throat when he lifted his head and smiled down at her, his dark eyes gleaming with love and emotion.

'It was all Dr Bruno's fault. He told me when you had your examination that the first few months were the most crucial of your pregnancy and it was better to refrain from sex. But after a week of abstinence I could not resist and once again I was angry with myself—not with you—for being so weak-willed. And when I told you about the abortion, and saw the compassion in your eyes, and heard your soft voice telling me I had to trust, I so wanted to lose myself in you. I had to leave. How could I endanger our child after what I had just told you?'

'Oh, Jake, that is an archaic idea,' Charlie said. 'Even I know that.'

'I wish you had told me. It would have saved me a lot of sleepless nights, and cold showers.' He hugged her to him, his breath warm against her cheek. 'Every night I would sit in the study and watch the security videos just to see you relaxed and playing with Aldo, and when I finally dared to slip into bed beside you I used to watch you sleep for hours. I knew then I loved you, but I was still fighting it. But today when you stepped out of that cradle with Aldo, and I yelled at you, I knew I could hide it no longer. I had so nearly lost you and life would not be worth living without you in my world. But then everyone mobbed you and I never got the chance.'

His confession was music to her ears. She looked at him and the love was there for her to see. She doubted anyone had ever seen him so vulnerable or ever would again. He was laying his heart on the line for her, and it moved her overwhelmingly. Wrapping her arms around him, she murmured, 'You have now, and I believe you. I have to because I love you, have done since the day we met.'

'At last.' Jake sighed and she saw the awe, the brilliant gleam of triumph in his smouldering dark eyes, as his head bent. 'You're mine—now, and for all eternity.' And his mouth captured hers in a deeply possessive kiss.

Charlie felt heat spreading through her as his mouth slid to her throat and the soft curve of her breast. Jake raised his head and looked at her, his eyes dark and questioning. She smiled and her arms lifted to tighten around his neck, her body arching beneath him. And with a fraught groan his control went and he showed her just how much she meant to him.

Later he held her possessively against his hard body, and studied her beautiful face, the sultry blue eyes, and her light golden skin on which the aftermath of loving had left a golden glow. 'Are you sure you're all right, Charlotte?'

'For a brilliant, intelligent man you really are a bit of a worrier,' Charlotte teased. 'Frightened because I climbed a few rocks—and as for believing Dr Bruno! For heaven's sake, the man himself is archaic.'

'Oh, Charlotte, you are priceless,' Jake said with a deep throaty laugh.

'You didn't always think that,' Charlotte said soberly.

When she thought of how close she had come to leaving him, losing him...

'Forgive me, Charlotte, for every arrogant assumption, every harsh word,' he said softly. 'And I swear I will spend the rest of my life making it up to you and loving you.'





EPILOGUE

NINE months later Charlie peeped out at the beach from behind the corner of the villa. They had arrived on the Caribbean island last night. It was owned by a friend of Jake's who rented out his fabulous villa to a few selected guests. Absolute privacy guaranteed.

A mischievous smile curved her lush mouth as she spotted Jake wearing a pair of old shorts and stretched out on a lounger, a long arm reaching over the side to rock the carefully shaded cradle where their daughter of three months, Samantha, slept. She was the apple of her father's eye. Jake was totally besotted with her. Once a cynic about women, he was devoted to the brown-eyed cherub.

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