Along Came a Spider 2/C27

A/N: Thank yous to Team Spiderward for all you do. xx

Disclaimer: Stephenie Meyer owns Twilight. The NHL owns anything that sounds familiar. I’m here having fun.

/ /\ (oo) /\ \

Chapter 27

Settling into my spot on the bed, I jam another pillow behind my back and text Bella.

Are you in bed?

I realize it’s early,
but I’m exhausted.

I’m calling.

It takes a few moments before she answers with her gorgeous face filling my phone screen.

“Hello, beautiful.”

“Hey, handsome. A video call?”

“Always my first choice.”

“Like what you see?”

“I love seeing you in our bed. Is that my shirt?”

Bella grins. “You know it is.”

“You could give me a little boob flash or just take off the shirt completely.” I wiggle my eyebrows suggestively, prompting her giggles.

“I’m sleeping on your pillow tonight too. It smells so good. How is Toronto?”

“We finished dinner and are done for the night. Did you read the letter Steve drafted, giving Jake ninety days’ notice?”

“I did.”

“What did you think?”

“I think it’s time to move on from him. We’ll find someone else to represent you—someone without an agenda,” Bella reassures. “Someone interested in what’s best for you and us.”

“I know a few guys we could consider, but Steve is waiting for the green light from me to send the letter.”

“How much greener can it get? You know it’s time to part ways, and unless Jacob does something to warrant his immediate termination, I think you should start the clock as soon as possible.”

I nod. “Okay. I’ll text him tonight to send it. Steve is probably still in the office. We don’t have to give a reason this way, but I know Jake is going to want one.”

“We’re legally working within the terms and conditions of the contract at this point. Let’s see how he responds.”

With her input on the letter, I can focus on the real reason for my call. “I miss you.”

“You just arrived.”

“I still miss you. How was your day at work?”

“Good. It was full of checkups, fillings, two crowns, and a root canal. Our appointment schedule is filling up a little more each day, thanks to your sister.”

“Missing your favorite patient yet?”

“You’re not my patient any longer,” she reminds me.

“How about your fiancé? Are you missing him?”

“Yes, I’m definitely missing him,” Bella concedes with a grin.

“I finally got you to say it. Guess what?”

“I have no idea. What?”

“Pumpkin is the size of an apple seed now.”

“That’s still so tiny.” She chuckles. “You and that app.”

“It’s great information.”

“I suppose that’s true. What else did it say?”

“See, now you’re curious,” I point out excitedly.

“Maybe a little. I still don’t feel any different.”

“Good to know. Have you made an appointment with your doctor yet?”

“Yes. The afternoon of Thursday, February twentieth. You should be home. I checked your schedule, and there is a game the night before with Arizona, then the following night against St. Louis.”

I grin. “I’m excited.”

But some of that fades once I notice the concern on her face.

“What’s wrong?”

“I’m taking the entire day off. I reached out to Dr. Sadarangani and he gave me the name of a brain cancer survivor here in Dallas. We’re going to meet with her that morning for breakfast at a juice bar.”

“That sounds . . .”

“Healthy? I know. I wish it were at a bakery because I’m positive I’ll want to eat my feelings afterward. I’ll be ready for all the possible combinations of dough and chocolate available.”

“I was going to say it sounds promising.”

“Maybe. I suppose we’ll find out. I also connected with a couple of cancer support groups he recommended nearby. One is only for caregivers—which Dad and I need. We’ll take Mom with us to the other one. I’m hoping either will compel her to move forward. It’s such an emotionally taxing situation that I’ll probably be in tears by the time we get to my appointment later in the day. So, don’t judge me. I realize that I’m under your pregnancy microscope too.”


She swipes away the corners of her eyes before sniffing back the tears brimming just below the surface.

“Hey, you know I only want the best for you and to see my radiant fiancée happy and healthy. It’s why I ask how you’re feeling or if you’re experiencing anything new,” I reassure.

“Well, sometimes I need a good cry. So, don’t be alarmed. It doesn’t necessarily mean anything is wrong. It’s like a pressure relief valve. I just have to get it out. Other times I can’t hold it in any longer because the emotions are too overwhelming. Like now.” She gives me a forced smile.

“Okay. I understand, and I’m really proud of how you’re handling everything with your parents. It isn’t an easy situation. I get that.”

“Thank you. Sorry, we’re a little off-track, but you asked about my first appointment and that’s going to be a loaded day for me. What else does the app suggest?”

“That you should keep a pregnancy journal.”

Bella shrugs. “Maybe we should both do that. I’ve never kept a journal of any kind, but it might be cool for us or our kid to look back on them one day and read about what we were both experiencing during the pregnancy.”

“I don’t know. I’m not a big writer. Not really my thing.”

It sounds like homework, and I’ve never been good at sitting down to do something like that. My grades during school were barely above average when all I wanted to do was be at the rink.

“Which would make it that much more valuable in the future,” she encourages. “Even if it’s only a few sentences. You’re probably better at it than you give yourself credit for. What else?”

I grin. “You should go to the gym regularly.”

“Ha! I’m going to disagree. I’m not a gym person.” Bella chuckles.

“It also believes we need a budget for all the baby stuff, but I’m going to disagree with that one.”

“Budgets are a good thing. How will we ever keep Al under control? Between his nursery ideas and the engagement party he mentioned throwing for us, I’m a little concerned. He’s changed locations twice already, opting for larger ones, and has been hounding me to pick a theme for Pumpkin’s room,” she shares.

The mention of a theme sends a thrill through me. “I’m excited for the nursery.” And the bedroom I’m having turned into a new closet for Bella.

It’s another surprise I’m working on with Al because I’m determined to get everything of hers out of the townhouse. The more I help her settle into our home, the less likely she will want to move.

And I don’t want to find a new home. I like ours and the neighborhood—especially living near Marcus and Deedee. I can picture our families always doing things together and me teaching our kids to swim in the pool. With Pumpkin on the way, I can see us staying here for years, if not indefinitely.

“You mean once it’s complete.”

“Yeah, but I’m ready for all of it.”

“Then you can pick a theme,” she proposes.

“How about we pick a theme? Is he still pushing for the Pumpkin Patch idea, you mentioned?”

“Yes, but now he’s evolved that to mesh with new Peter Rabbit ideas.”

“I’m sure whatever he creates will be amazing. I thought your parents’ wedding was perfect,” I commend.

“Me too. I’m just not into all those little details like he is, and he can be overwhelming. I guess I just want it to be done. Open the door and insert Pumpkin.” She grins. “Is that horrible of me not to want to fuss about everything?”

“Not at all. Tell him that you trust his judgment and to surprise us. I think he’ll appreciate the vote of confidence, giving him the creative freedom he craves.”

“Which is why a budget is important. Al wants new paint, a variety of lighting changes, new flooring and decor―all of that doesn’t include furniture.”

“Then, let’s give him a budget. I trust him.”

“He went over budget for my parents’ wedding,” Bella reveals.

“And no one will think about that in years to come. Everyone will remember what a wonderful day it was.”

“Okay. We’ll give him a budget and I’ll take a step back.”

I like the idea of keeping her curiosity off the second level of our home. If she wants a more hands-off approach for Pumpkin’s room, then that will make completing all the changes easier.

“I also believe we should move our bedroom upstairs for once Pumpkin arrives, then we’ll be on the same level.”

“It’s something to consider. I don’t know.”

There’s no keeping the smile from my face because I know her well enough to know that’s her way of saying no. I’m positive she’s freaking out with how small the closet is in the largest bedroom upstairs, but we’re going to fix that with the expansion into the bedroom next door. I’ll keep the current closet for my clothes and she’ll have a new one to contain all her things.

Pumpkin will get a newly remodeled space and so will we.

I nod. “Back to Pumpkin, I want to ask what you think about doing the cord blood registry? I haven’t clicked on any links for that yet, but—”

“Wait.” She sits upright. “What did you just say?”

“Cord blood. It’s from the—”

“The placenta and umbilical cord after childbirth. I know that. Edward . . .” She pauses, then whispers, “It’s full of stem cells which can be used to fight cancer.”

“Your mom’s type?”

“I don’t know. I would need to ask her doctor. I think they could possibly help her body recover from radiation and chemotherapy treatments.”

I doubt her mother can wait another seven or eight months without either of those.

“Do we have—”

“Time? Probably not. But if it can’t help her, I believe it could help someone else who is in their own cancer fight. Something repeated throughout Mom’s packet of information we brought home from her doctor, is to find a way for helping others. Send me all the links you have. You know I’m not going to be able to sleep tonight researching those, right?” She chuckles, then her voice softens. “What if our child—her grandchild—is part of her solution?”

I smile. “Doc, that would be incredible.”

One of the many things I love about Bella is that she believes in giving back wherever possible. To think our child could help her mother or someone out there struggling feels as if it’s the right choice for us, and an easy lifesaving decision.

“So, we’re a yes on the registry?” I double-check.

“We are,” she confirms. “Send the links. I’ll read them all and probably find new rabbit holes.”

I grin. “Did you hear yourself?”


“Are they Peter Rabbit holes?”

“Oh, Lord.” Bella rolls her eyes.

“You know Peter can be another name for—”

“I know! And now you’ve contaminated that sweet gender neutral idea with your dirty, dirty thoughts.”

“As if you couldn’t get there too.”

“There’s no way we can have it as a part of the nursery’s theme now since I know exactly what we will both be thinking any time we’re in there.”

“I love you.”

“I love you too.”

“Don’t stay up too late reading. You need rest.”

Bella smiles. “I won’t. Good luck with your game tomorrow night. Is Ben starting?”

“Yeah, he is. And thank you. We’re flying to Montréal after the game. I’ll send you a text once I’m in my hotel room, but it will be late,” I warn.

“I’ll be awake. As you probably guessed, I have trouble sleeping while you’re traveling, especially if you’re flying.”

I don’t like the sound of that because the last thing she needs to be doing is worrying about anything, especially my required travel.

Not sure what I can do to eliminate those concerns, I change the subject. “I’m looking forward to our dinner date Friday night.”

“Me too.”

“Good night, beautiful. Hug Scout and Shadow for me.”

“I will. They’re right here next to me.” Bella tilts her phone toward where they’re snuggled together on the bed, then back to her before blowing me a kiss. “Good night.”

/ /\ (oo) /\ \

I close my eyes and lean my head back against the headrest of my window seat, blowing out a steady breath. We’re leaving Toronto with another win—three-to-two in regulation and adding two points to our total in the standings. Vladdy sent a message tonight, dispelling anyone’s worries that he isn’t back to normal with a fight he easily won against one of Toronto’s well-known instigators. Ben had a good night, which he needed, making twenty-seven saves. James added another goal to his total, bringing him to one away from scoring three hundred career goals. After meeting with our goaltending coach and finishing dinner, I’m left with only my thoughts before we land.

Returning to Montréal, even years later, is always a challenge for me. The good times were too few, hockey-wise, and I wish I could somehow write over all those old memories. Maybe then, I wouldn’t feel such an aversion toward this place since my time was filled with stress and drama while dating Bree. I have no idea where she’s living now, but undoubtedly, her family is still there. She had bigger aspirations than Montréal and, ultimately, those did not include me.

Well, they did include me, but without hockey. And that just isn’t my reality, putting us on entirely different paths. Hockey will always be a part of my life in some form. Bella understands that. I know, mentally, I’m in a better place now than I was back then. I’m a different player. After being traded to the Islanders, I found my love for the game again.

My commitment to our team today is solid and growing stronger as we grind through this part of the season. Most importantly, I have Bella now with Pumpkin on the way. Two major differences.


I open my eyes to find James missing and Ben sitting next to me.

Glancing around for him, he’s nowhere to be found and I return my gaze to Ben. “Hey. What’s up?”

“I want to talk to you about something.” There’s a touch of nervousness in his voice.


“I’m just going to say it.”

“Sure,” I encourage.

“I didn’t know who she was at the time, but I hooked-up with your ex while we were in New York during this last road trip,” Ben reveals.

It takes me a moment to register what he’s saying. “Heidi?”

“Yeah, she was at our hotel and approached me. One thing led to another . . .”

“What about Angela?” I ask. “You said everything was good between you.”

Ben huffs. “I thought we were okay. Not great, but good. I mean it was a little bumpy in Mexico, but she agreed we should move past all that. Now, I haven’t seen her for weeks. I can’t get her to respond to my texts, and phone calls go straight to voicemail. How do I break up with someone like that? It’s as if she knows what I want to talk about and is avoiding me, so I can’t make a clean break.”

“She’s putting you in a tough spot,” I agree.

“I mean, I feel a little guilty for cheating on her, but as Crow said, I wouldn’t have done that if we were solid. And I don’t want anything to be weird between you and me because of Heidi.”

I chuckle. “Trust me. We’re fine. Heidi and I have been over for a while. She’s a friend. Nothing more.”

He nods. “I like her. Heidi. But I know it was a one-time thing. Maybe that’s why it was so good.”

I’m a little concerned that he could believe breaking up with Angela would mean Heidi is an option. I’ll admit Heidi would be good for him, considering how Angela is treating him. His ego is probably a little bruised right now, and I know he would treat her right. But they’re both under long-term contracts, him in Dallas and her in New York. He would need a trade if that relationship would have any hope of surviving because Heidi’s first love is New York with zero interest in living elsewhere. Her second love is her modeling career, followed by traveling with her girlfriends. I know for a fact that being fourth on the list was humbling at times.

But if it’s causing him concern, maybe I can ease any burden he’s carrying about hooking up with Heidi.

Choosing my words carefully, I ask, “Ben, do you believe Angela has been . . . faithful to you for the entirety of your relationship before you were with Heidi?”

If she’s been with James, there’s a possibility he isn’t the only one. Or maybe they have an open relationship of some sort and Angela being with other people isn’t a big deal.

“Yes? Why?” He frowns. “Do you know . . . is there something I should know?”

Okay. Not an open relationship. At least from his perspective.

“I’m just saying, if she hooked-up with someone else, then you wouldn’t feel guilty about Heidi, would you?”

“No. No, I wouldn’t.” Ben lowers his voice. “You do know something. Who is it? Spider, tell me.”

“It was just rumors,” I downplay, stretching the truth.

“But you believe they’re true.” He realizes. “Is it somebody on the team?”

“I’m not going to let Angela tear this team apart,” I promise.

“Fuck, it is. Is it Johnny? Burger? Wally?” Ben lists some of the single guys on our team, even though they have girlfriends.

“No. None of them,” I confirm.

His eyes go wide suddenly when I know he’s figured it out.

“It’s Cap. Son of a bitch. He confided in you, didn’t he?”

I whisper. “He was drunk. It isn’t excusable, but she took advantage of the situation and him at the time. I saw him . . . afterward. He came to my room. Given his condition then, I don’t believe earlier in the evening he would have been sober enough to give . . . which means . . . fuck. I don’t know. He remembers a majority of what happened—realized it was her, but didn’t stop it. So, maybe he wasn’t as drunk as I thought.”

“Your room?”

“Yeah. In Mexico.”

“I knew it. I should have never let her back in my room. We . . .” Ben is lost in those memories until he nods. “Fuck. I still cheated. Just because she did whatever she did, doesn’t make what I did any better. I should have known it was Cap. Man. I just didn’t think he would do something like that to me. Does everybody know?”

“No. And he knows what happened was wrong, but he doesn’t want to stir up any shit between you. Talk to Cap. Clear the air.”

“Spider, the next time I see her, I have to end it. I can’t keep going on like this. It’s fucking with my head.”

“And you’ll talk with Cap—not letting this come between you?”

“I’ll talk to him,” Ben agrees.

/ /\ (oo) /\ \

Following my afternoon nap, I shower to help me wake up, but I don’t shave, knowing Bella likes me with a little scruff. Of my two suit choices I brought with me, I select my light gray suit with a white dress shirt and a skinny black tie. As I’m getting dressed, I consider foregoing my pants, dress shoes, and socks. Since she’ll only see me from the waist up, I could just wear shorts with my flip-flops. Ultimately, I decide against those, wearing my full suit with shoes and socks, and fuss over my hair a little, running my hands through its messy strands.

Releasing an eager sigh, I’m ready, and it’s too early to call Bella for our dinner date. Unable to sit still, I take a few selfies next to the window of my room with the early evening natural light before rereading her texts from this morning. Our conversation started with my text after midnight and our arrival in Montréal at our hotel.

Happy Valentine’s Day, beautiful! X

Thank you.
Congratulations on your win!
And Happy Valentine’s Day to you too! xx
Will you be my valentine?

You’re stuck with me.

I like the sound of that. 😉

While at work, Bella texted during our morning skate and included photos of my gifts for her.

Thank you for my beautiful roses!
And the HUGE box of chocolates.
Dear goodness! There are so many of both!
My office isn’t that big. lol
I’m sharing the chocolates with everyone here.

You’re welcome.
I love you.

I love you too.
Your gift will be delivered
to your hotel this evening.
I hope you like it.

If it’s from you,
I’m positive I will love it.

Have a great day!

You too. X

I haven’t heard from her since then. She’s probably been busy at work all day. A knock on my hotel door grabs my attention and I wonder if it could be my dinner or whatever gift Bella mentioned having delivered. Peering through the door’s eye hole, I notice someone standing close, but I don’t see a room service cart or tray. Maybe it’s the concierge or someone from bell services.

After opening the door, my curiosity morphs to surprise over the gorgeous woman leaning against the doorframe. Her hair is straight and pulled away from her beautiful face with barely any makeup other than those enticingly plump lips of hers. It’s nearly impossible to pull my eyes away from them since I know how incredible they feel wrapped around my cock. When I glance lower, my eyes travel past her silky bare legs to the incredibly high black heels she’s wearing, which bring her closer to my height.

Damn, I need a photo of her only wearing those heels. I have my doubts she’ll agree, but a guy can dream.

With a lick to her full lips, her eyes pass over me appreciatively from head to toe. “Hello, handsome. Did someone order room service?”

Now, I’m glad I chose to wear my pants, which are tightening in one particular area by the second.

I grin. “I don’t remember seeing you on the menu.”

“I’m part of the often overlooked secret menu—under sex toys.”


“Busy? Or would you be interested in some wild hotel room sex with your fiancée?”

I’m glad we’re on the same page.

With words like that, I need to get her in my room before I lose my mind and fuck her in the hallway against Ben’s door across from mine.

“We’re not supposed to have guests in our rooms, but get in here.” I open my door wider for her to enter. “It appears as if I’m breaking the rules tonight.”

“Ooooh, a bad boy. My favorite.” She reaches out, grasping my tie and tugging me close. “Do you want to break some rules with me?” Her eyebrow arches in challenge.


I’m not sure what we’re breaking yet. It could not only include rules, but also my bed or the table near the window.

“You’re making me feel like a teenager who’s in way over his head.” I glance lower and my eyes pass over the sheer material of the shoulders of her dress. “Are you wearing a bra?”

“I know one way you can find out,” she suggests.

Backing her against my closed door, my dwindling will power evaporates, and I can no longer resist her perfectly teasing red lips. I hold her hips in place, grinding my hard-on against her while her arms wrap around my shoulders. Sliding my hands lower, they move over the material of her dress and past the hem. I dip a little to clutch her bare thighs, lifting her higher and prompting her legs to lock behind me at my waist.

Without an inch of space between us, her fingers comb through my hair tugging and tilting my head as my mouth devours hers with pure desperation. I can’t get enough as my tongue tastes and probes deeper, prompting our moans. Kissing her until we’re both breathless, Bella is the one to pull away first. My lips travel along her jaw and neck until my tongue peeks out to tease the lobe of her ear.

She smells fucking incredible.

I kiss that spot behind her ear I know drives her wild.

“Oh, God.” Bella gasps, slides her hands under my suit jacket, and roams my chest.

“Mmmm.” Pulling away from her neck, I hum my satisfaction at her touch, but know I need more. “I missed you.”

“I missed you too.” Her accelerated breaths fan across my face.

I shift my hips against her. “How are you really here?”

She shrugs a shoulder nonchalantly, reminding me of those nonexistent bra straps, then shares a few coy words with a smirk. “I know a guy.”

“You know a guy,” I repeat, then guide her legs to release from around my hips until she’s standing on her own. “I’m not sure how I feel about that.”

“Don’t overthink it.” Bella slips past me, walks farther into my room, then turns around. “As you may have figured out, I’m delivering your Valentine’s Day gift in person. Are you ready to unwrap me?”

My eyes linger over the see-through portions of her sheer black dress. It’s covered with bright pink and red flowers with small green leaves in all my favorite spots.

When I don’t respond, she notices my perusal, then asks, “Do you like my dress? Deedee said it wasn’t sexy enough—too romantic and not enough skin, but I like the contrast of the florals on black. It reminds me of the dresses I brought home and wore while we were in Mexico.”

“Deedee?” Her mention gets my attention.

“She’s here too. With Marcus by now,” Bella shares.

“Well, Deedee is wrong about the dress. And those shoes should be illegal,” I state without question. “You’re blowing my mind right now. I can’t believe you’re here.”

“That’s not the only thing I hope to blow.”

As much as I can appreciate the idea of unwrapping her, I need to know who made it possible for her to be here. I have a suspicion it’s the man who loves to yank my chain whenever she’s involved.

“Tell me. Who’s the guy?”

“We flew on Roy’s jet.”

I knew it.

“We?” I prompt.

“Deedee, Jess, Lauren, Angela, and Victoria. Roy came with us too. We’re staying tonight, then watching tomorrow night’s game from the owner’s box with him. I did a little favor brokering to make the trip happen, but hopefully, our arrival will make everyone happy, especially you.”

She has no idea how happy she’s making me and continues to do so.

“Favor brokering?” I ask.

“I’ll tell you more about that later,” she promises.

“And you’re my gift.”

“Part of it. I think we both need time to shut out everything else and focus on us. So, for as long as I’m allowed to stay here tonight since I’ve heard from a very reliable source that curfews exist, you have free rein to take any photo of me you wish.”


Any fucking photo. Or pose. Or position.

“Unless we’re breaking that curfew rule too. Then I’ll be here all night.” Bella smiles, removes a small heart-shaped purse I somehow missed from across her body, and sets it on the long dresser holding the television. “Some people take those sexy boudoir shoots for days like today, but I figured you would only enjoy something like that if you knew you were the photographer. So, that’s my gift to you.” She holds out her arms from her sides. “Undoubtedly, this will be as good as my body will ever look with Pumpkin on the way, and we should take advantage of this moment since we’re at the beginning.”

“Not true. Your body will always be beautiful to me.” If she likes the photos I take, there’s a chance she will let me do this every Valentine’s Day, which will always be the perfect gift for me. “I was hoping you would agree to documenting the changes in your body throughout the pregnancy. I just didn’t know when would be a good time to bring it up.”

“Then it sounds as if we’re in agreement, but tonight’s more revealing photos are only for you.”

My heart is racing at the possibilities, and I hope for a little clarification.

“Understood. You said any—”

“Any photo,” Bella confirms without hesitation, then leans toward the mirror above the desk. “I may need to touch up my lipstick if you keep kissing me like that. I should clarify that we aren’t making a porno. No video.”

She allowed the video of her in the bathroom of my financial manager’s office, but she was mostly clothed in that one. I’m guessing clothing will be optional soon.

“Sex with your photographer is on the table?” I wonder.

“Or the bed. Against the door. In the shower.” Bella smirks and her eyes dance with mischief. “You tell me. Where do you want me first?”

I feel a little like a kid who has been given the keys to a candy store with no limits for trying everything. And that’s exactly what I want to do. Fuck, I don’t know where to begin.

“Are you hungry?” I wonder because we could be interrupted with my actual room service order soon.

“Yeah, but I stopped at the front desk. They promised to add my dinner selections to yours, then deliver them in an hour or so since the kitchen is slammed and they’re running behind this evening.”

Her unhindered arrival has me curious. “How did you get on our floor?” It requires a key card for a room on this floor to get the elevator to stop, adding an extra layer of security for us from receiving unexpected guests.

“Some of your teammates were in the lobby, working out their dinner plans. Vladdy vouched for me with the staff, volunteered to escort me up here, then showed me to your room.”

I nod. “Obviously, I need to thank him.”

“You do. How about we take selfies that are something you could share first? At least then you’ll have a few while we’re fully clothed and you haven’t completely wrecked my hair or makeup,” she suggests with a wink.

Fuck, she knows me so well.

“Good idea.”

After a variety of selfies together, I take shots of Bella by herself while looking out my window as the twinkling lights of the city below begin to emerge. She leans against the sil, glancing back over her shoulder at me occasionally. I approach her and ease the hem of her dress higher at the waist until I can see the lower seductive curve of her ass cheeks.

“Don’t move, and arch your back,” I direct through a whisper.

Once she follows my instructions, more smooth skin is revealed. and I wonder how long my cock will be able to take this sweet torture. Not long, at this point, would be my guess.

“This would be easier, at least for me, with a bottle of wine.” Her smile is easy and natural as I capture the knowing look she’s giving me.

“It’s funny the mention of wine is enough to make you seem more relaxed,” I tease. “No wine for either of us.”

“I know.”

I’ll have endorphins surging through both of us soon to ease any of her nervousness. I can’t wait for those shots of her. Happy Valentine’s Day to me.