Read A Baby And A Wedding Online

Authors: Lorhainne Eckhart

A Baby And A Wedding

Praise
for Works by Lorhainne Eckhart
...

A Father’s Love ~
I LOVED this story. It was very heart warming. It

s the kind of story I think every father should read to the
i
r children.

Mimi

The Forgotten Child ~
READERS FAVORITE 5
-
Star Review
:
A real page turner
with … a
fast moving plot
. A
must read!

Reviewed by Brenda C. for Readers Favorite

Danger Reunites a family ~ The Search

Nancy Radke

This was a very compelling and well written story. I couldn

t put in down and finished it in two days with off and on reading.

Bonnie – Amazon Reviewer

The Forgotten Child ~ Wonderful ~ Really hit home when Trevor came into the picture with autism. Real dramatic issues that could
happen. Great
plot! Expertly crafted.

Short Stuff ~ Amazon

Lorhainne has a way of making you crazy about her characters, whether it

s hating them or loving them...on the edge of my seat for both and can

t wait for the next.

Amazon Reviewer ~ Skybabe

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Afterword

Other Works by Lorhainne Eckhart

About the Author

Contact Information

Copyright Information

Table of Contents

 

Chapter 1

Emily frowned as she leaned against the round, white beam on the front porch and stared at the rusted-out 70s Ford truck, an old Ford Escort and a wagon once pulled by a team of horses, all parked in front of the two-storey Victorian house, which was now her home. Brad was in the north field with the vet, who was checking the herd of cattle, taking blood samples and deworming them. This was something he took care of every summer.

Emily had meant to speak with Brad about the junkyard that was parked in front of their house; not because it had just moved there, but due to it having always been in that exact spot since the first day she arrived here, to apply for the job of caregiver to Trevor.

Not one of those vehicles had moved and, if she remembered correctly from what Brad had said, they never would. The truck hadn’t moved in over five years, Emily was sure, and the broken-down car belonging to Cliff, one of the hired hands, was another eyesore. Apparently, the wagon had always been parked there since Brad had taken over the ranch from his father, Rodney.

Emily rubbed her swollen belly, which was expanding faster than she’d expected since she was only five months pregnant. Normally the vehicles wouldn’t bother her, but with the wedding only a few days away, Emily wanted the house and its surroundings to be perfect. Yet, Brad didn’t seem the least bothered by the junkyard of rusting metal. To her it was an eyesore, but his answer was to toss a tarp over it, while reminding her that being pregnant made her “pickier than usual.” That was, word-for-word, what he had said the night before when she’d been sitting on his lap, leaning into the comfort of his wide chest, surrounded by his strong arms, after Katy and Trevor were tucked up in bed.

Normally, the couple acted like two teenagers, holding hands and touching every time they were in the same room together. Emily couldn’t get enough of touching Brad. But after he called her picky, she’d stiffened and tried to slide away. He, of course, held onto her and wouldn’t let her go; sliding his hand under her pink T-shirt, over her rounded belly, and upwards, caressing the outline of her lacy bra and teasing her sensitive nipples until she leaned back against him.

Brad knew just how to touch her and have her melting against him. He had lifted her long, dark hair, exposing her creamy, pale neck, and kissed her until his lips reached her earlobe, which he gently nipped as he used his other hand to spread her legs and run his fingers…

“What are you doing?”

Emily jumped inside. Her eyes widened at her soon-to-be-husband, who rested one booted foot on the bottom step of the porch and was watching her in such a way that he knew exactly where her mind had wandered.Her face warmed and she covered her cheeks with the palms of her hands.

Chuckling, Brad strode up the steps until he loomed over her. He lifted her chin up so that she couldn’t hide her face from him. Emily stepped closer until she was pressed against his hard, muscled thighs. Sliding her hands over his strong, broad shoulders, Emily linked them around his neck while she rose up on tiptoes, loving how tall and good looking was this man whom she loved so deeply. His whiskey-colored eyes twinkled mischievously as he slid both of his hands down and around her derriere, cupping both cheeks and pressing her closer to him.

Emily pulled Brad’s head down to kiss him, but he had no intention of letting her off that easy. “Uh, uh,” he said, “first I want to know what caused that faraway, dreamy look on your face and made you blush just now.”

She thought he was breathtaking, even when teasing her; his solid jaw and sharp, square features, and weathered lines around his eyes. He was still the most handsome man she’d ever seen. But he was a devil too, in the way he goaded and played with her, both in and out of bed.

The passion that burned between them sizzled to the point that anyone within a fifty mile radius felt the sparks, as was pointed out by Brad’s foreman, Cliff, who had said on more than one occasion that the couple made it damned uncomfortable for anyone to be in the same room alone with them. And that was why he always slipped away.

But Emily couldn’t help it. Brad twisted her insides up with such longing that everything else became secondary when she was with him, except for the kids, of course. The children, too, were caught up in the joy and love that now filled this house. After all, it wasn’t that long ago that Crystal had finally left, taking her lies and deception with her. The entire farm had breathed a sigh of relief on that day.

“You,” Emily breathed, answering Brad’s question. She felt herself being pulled into the mischievous twinkle that lit his eyes.

“Me, what about me?” he asked.

Now he definitely was teasing.
Emily couldn’t help it when her face warmed. He was a fiend truly, in how comfortable he felt talking about their intimacy. She was only just beginning to crawl out of her prudish shell, and Brad took great joy in dragging her out faster than she wanted.

“What you did yesterday, here on the porch, to me. That’s what had me… you know…” She couldn’t say it.

Brad must have realized it, as he slid both hands up her back, over her shoulders and pressed them to her cheeks, holding her face up for him to sample her lips, as if she was the most precious thing in the world. He leaned in, his lips molding themselves to hers perfectly as she opened her mouth for him.
Lord, how the man could kiss!
That alone made her knees weaken.

The porch step creaked and a heavy thud rocked Emily’s insides. A man chuckled and she jumped, trying to pull away from Brad, but he wouldn’t relinquish his hold. She turned and blinked at the very tall, rugged-looking cowboy who was standing on the bottom step. A canvas bag rested on the whitewashed porch.

“Hate to interrupt, but it was getting kind of embarrassing to watch,” said the man.

The stranger wore a ratty, tan cowboy hat that shadowed his eyes, but the crooked grin he flashed was identical to Brad’s. Emily was positive that she was gaping. The man tilted his hat back and looked at her with a pair of light brown eyes that let her know he wasn’t a man to be trifled with. He had a square jaw on his hardened face that was etched with tiny lines, which showed he worked outdoors. But make no mistake, thought Emily, as she leaned in closer to Brad, this cowboy watching her was a devastatingly handsome man.

“Jed, I’d like you to meet Emily. Emily this is my baby brother, Jed.”

Brad didn’t let her go. Instead, he wrapped both arms around her waist as she turned to face his brother. Pulling her against him, he rocked softly back and forth.

“Jed, it’s wonderful to meet you,” said Emily. “Would you like a coffee or maybe I could make you a sandwich? I was going to start something anyway.”

Brad squeezed her waist and she stopped talking, because she was rattling on. He knew she did that when she felt nervous—nervous for being caught necking by his brother. Unlike Brad, Emily couldn’t just shake it off. He knew her so well that it terrified her sometimes. It was as if he knew her better than she knew herself.

Jed must have understood, because he grinned again and lowered his gaze from her burning cheeks. “Emily, if it isn’t too much trouble, I am hungry. I haven’t eaten. Drove straight through to get here, so I’d be much obliged for a sandwich and cup of coffee.”

“N-no trouble at all,” she replied.

Emily stepped away from Brad, who finally relinquished his hold, perhaps because he saw the relief that she knew must show on her face; allowing her to escape and regroup.

“Em, we’ll be right in.”

How she loved to listen to his deep, baritone voice. As Emily stumbled through the doorway, she let out a breath that she hadn’t even realized she’d been holding. As she strode into the kitchen, she gave herself a talking to, because in the next few days the house would be full of Brad’s family for their wedding on Saturday. This nervous bride needed to get her ducks in a row and kick-start her hard fought-for self-confidence once again, or she was going to be a bumbling mess by the time Saturday arrived.

The phone rang and Emily’s insides shook. She grabbed the phone before it made another sound and woke Katy, who was upstairs napping. “Hello?”

“Emily, this is Dean.”

Emily froze with the empty coffeepot in her hand. Her imagination immediately leaped to worrying thoughts since Dean, the principal of the new school that Trevor had joined, had never called her at home during the day before.

“Is everything alright?” Emily asked with a shaky voice. Her heart seemed to thud so loud for a second that all she could hear was the roar of the blood pumping through her veins.

“Oh, Emily, I didn’t mean to worry you,” he replied. “I was wondering if maybe we could meet sometime today? There’s a matter I’d like to discuss with you, and I’d rather not over the phone.”

Emily immediately felt contrite, knowing how she overacted to everything at the drop of a hat lately. She needed a warm bath and a book, or maybe just a walk in the fresh air, and then perhaps she’d feel more like herself, instead of a pregnant woman about to be married in two days’ time.

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