Trailer - https://youtu.be/EwjxcQuFXUg
Today was the big day, the day that her secret admirer finally revealed himself. Helen had been waiting for a long time to find out who had been sending her mysterious deliveries of flowers, candy, and other whimsical gifts, all with romantic little notes that sent her heart fluttering with delight. Never having had a true romance in her entire life, it was exciting. But she really couldn’t think of any man in particular she wanted it to be. Well…she could, but it wasn’t realistic. It was a secret she kept close to her chest, and had never revealed to a single soul.
I’m fifty-six years old. I’m about to become a grandmother twice over, and I’m acting like a teenager. I have no business fretting over a secret admirer at my age. Like any man is that crazy about me? More than likely, they want to get closer to my billionaire sons.
Helen sighed softly before answering. “I don’t know. It could be anyone.” She met single men her age or older every day, but most of them were just acquaintances, men she socialized with when she attended charity functions or who she chatted with here at her restaurant. Most of them were charming, a characteristic that she’d found came pretty naturally to the majority of wealthy men.
“But you must have some clue. Or someone you really hope it turns out to be,” Maddie said excitedly, her hazel eyes dancing with enthusiasm.
Helen looked across the table at Simon and Sam’s wives, two women who had become more like daughters than “in-laws” to her as she answered, “Maybe the mystery was better than the actual truth will be,” she admitted, knowing that she’d been flattered from the very beginning because of the romantic attention. She’d never had that kind of admiration before, and it was heady, even at her age. Sam and Simon’s father had been pure evil, a man who had forced himself on her when she’d been eighteen and naïve. She’d ended up pregnant and married to the devil, trying her best to raise her boys to grow up be different men—better men—than their father. And had they ever! Her sons had far exceeded even her wildest expectations, in both ambition and heart. Thank god!
A woman couldn’t ask for two better sons, and the two women sitting across from her had completed both her sons with their love, made them happy. What more could she want than that? She finally even had grandbabies on the way. Her boys were happy, settled, and her life should be complete, and yet…
“You have a right to find your own happiness, Helen. You’ve lived for your boys all of your adult life,” Kara told Helen softly, reaching out to squeeze the older woman’s hand. “You’re still young and beautiful. And you have enough energy to wear Maddie and I both out just by watching you.”
Helen squeezed Kara’s hand. “You’re both pregnant. I can’t say it would be difficult to outrun you right now,” she answered with a smile at both younger women, Kara’s huge belly hidden underneath the table. Maddie wasn’t showing yet, but she was experiencing symptoms of early pregnancy, including fatigue.
“You wear us out when we aren’t pregnant,” Maddie replied adamantly. “We just want you to get your chance to be happy.”
“I am happy,” Helen answered defensively. How could she not be happy? Her sons had made sure she wouldn’t want for anything. They hadn’t been pleased when she’d wanted to work for a living by owning her own restaurant, but they’d given her what she wanted. Honestly, much more than she even wanted. She made a very good living with her restaurant, but her boys always thought more was better. So they never stopped giving.
“I think it’s Michael,” Kara said, a dreamy look in her eyes. “He’s been coming around for years. He’s always had a thing for you"
Kara shot Helen an annoyed look. “He’s sweet on you. He always has been. And his daughters are grown up and married now. What does it matter if he’s a little younger? He doesn’t look younger than you. Tell me he still doesn’t come in at least twice a week.”
Helen squirmed in her chair, knowing she couldn’t actually look at Kara and tell her that. Kara had been a waitress in this restaurant for a long time. She knew Michael was a regular and probably still was. “He likes the food. He doesn’t like to cook,” Helen replied, wanting desperately to change the subject.
“Helen, do you want it to be Michael?” Kara asked softly, both her and Maddie leaning forward to hear her answer. “He’s wanted to be more than a friend for a long time"
“He doesn’t,” Helen protested, wishing it were true, but knowing it wasn’t. Michael had never given her any indication that he saw her as anything more than a friend, and he was much too young. And handsome. And virile.
“Oh, I don’t think he’s ever been drawn here by just the food,” Kara answered mysteriously. “Do you know that whenever he came by and you weren’t here, he’d leave without eating?”
“Hmm…doesn’t sound like a guy who just comes by for food,” Maddie agreed, crossing her arms in front of her with a smile.
“Nope. And I don’t think he’s here for the food today either,” Kara remarked drily as she scooted carefully to the edge of the booth. “I think it’s time to get your sons home and out of here. They’ve already eaten all the food from at least one side of the menu.”
Helen had her back to the door, but she knew Simon and Sam were seated in another booth close to door, both of them waiting for her secret admirer to show. “Take them. It isn’t like I need a babysitter. I’m their mother. I’m in a public place. My place. And I don’t want Simon and Sam to make a scene.”
Helen knew exactly why Sam, Simon, Kara and Maddie were here. They all wanted to see her anonymous male admirer. Actually, she had no doubt that her protective sons wanted to do more than gawk at him.
What if it is Michael?
“It’s not Michael,” Helen said, mostly to reassure herself, keep herself from hoping. Michael Prescott would never think of her that way. He wasn’t a billionaire like her sons were, but he had a very successful law practice and made a very nice living. He’d lost his wife when his two daughters were little more than babies and raised them himself, doing a very fine job with them.
Kara winked at her. “Keep telling yourself that and you might start believing it until he comes over here.”
Kara stood awkwardly and Maddie hopped out beside her. Helen peered up at the two girls, her arms crossed in front of her. “Are you trying to say he’s here?” Okay…that was a little disconcerting, but a complete coincidence. “He just came to eat.”
“Uh huh,” Kara answered in a disbelieving voice. “And I suppose he brought that beautiful bouquet of red roses just to get your opinion on gardening?” Kara said facetiously, her brow cocked, and a questioning look on her face as she looked down at Helen in disbelief.
“He has flowers?” Helen asked anxiously, afraid to turn around and look, her heartbeat racing faster.
Michael is here. It could be Michael.
“Admit it,” Kara said insistently. “You always wanted it to be Michael. You care as much about him as he always has for you.”
Shocked, Helen stuttered, “I can’t. He can’t. We…we…aren’t like that.”
“Admit it and we’ll go stop your sons from killing him,” Maddie said with a laugh.
Helen sighed anxiously. “Yes. I admit it. But he’s so caring, so handsome, so… young. I can’t pursue anything but a friendship with him.”
“He’s exactly right for you. He always has been. Don’t scare him off, Helen. Michael’s exactly what you need and you deserve a nice guy like him. And you’re the one he’s always wanted. Please,” Kara asked in a concerned voice. “Tell me you’ll give him a chance so I can go keep Simon from killing him.”
Helen gasped and turned, seeing both of her sons rising to their feet, scowling at Michael.
There hadn’t been a time when her heart hadn’t melted every time she saw his handsome face or wicked smile, and it was no different today.
She exited the booth, smoothing out imaginary wrinkles from her pastel skirt and top, and hurried over to where her sons had just finished eating their way through the menu, Kara and Maddie on her heels. “Take your wives home. They’re both tired,” Helen told her sons sternly, glaring up at one and then the other.
Her sons frowned at her and looked at their wives, who were both grinning from ear to ear. “We will. We just want to have a quick discussion with this guy,” Sam said gruffly.
“You are going home. Now. Don’t argue with me, Samuel. Take your brother and your wives home. Michael is a friend and I don’t want you harassing him.” She loved her sons, appreciated their protectiveness, but enough was enough. She was still their mother. Always would be.
Kara and Maddie claimed their husbands and started pulling Sam and Simon toward the door, both of her sons grumbling as they went and shooting warning looks at Michael as they exited.
Exasperated by the whole scene, Helen looked around the restaurant, glad that there were only a few customers who were looking at them curiously. “Come to my office,” she told Michael briskly, walking toward the back of the restaurant. He followed closely behind her. Not only could she smell his masculine scent, but she could feel his presence. She’d always been acutely aware of him whenever he was in the restaurant, and today it was even worse.
Could the man who had been sending her such ardent and romantic notes with his gifts truly be Michael? It didn’t seem possible, but her gut said it was, and her instinct was rarely wrong.
Why? Why would he do it?
She let him enter her office before closing the door behind her, and slumped against the door, looking up at a grinning, masculine face that nearly made her melt into a puddle at his feet. “I’m sorry,” she said quickly, embarrassed by Sam and Simon’s behavior, her face still rosy pink with mortification.
Michael Prescott was beyond handsome, his dark hair cut neatly and showing just a touch of gray at his temples. He was tall and fit, dressed neatly in casual slacks and a polo shirt that stretched across a broad chest. “No need to be sorry. You’re their mother. Single and alone. They should be protective. I was more than ready to answer all of their questions. They wanted to know if I was worthy of you. Honestly, I’m not. But I want to be,” he said in a husky baritone that vibrated through her body, causing her to shiver.
Straightening, Helen walked to her desk, her face aflame. “So you really are my secret admirer,” she asked, astonished, sitting on the desk, letting her sandaled feet dangle as she stared at him.
“Not so secret anymore. And I’ve always admired you,” he replied, walking to her and handing her the huge bouquet of red roses in his hand.
“But we’re friends,” she said desperately, his masculine scent starting to surround her as he moved closer.
“I’ve always wanted to be more than friends with you, Helen. But your sons are way
of my league. You’re way out of my league. Problem is, I don’t care anymore. I don’t want to have to search you out, hoping to find you here. I want you to be mine, in my home, close to me. I want to come home to you every night and wake up to you every morning.” He put his palms flat on each side of her body on the desk, trapping her. “I want you, and I can’t wait any longer to have you. Tell me you’ll give us a chance.”
Oh, God. It was him. It always has been him. Michael Prescott was indeed her secret admirer, and the one man she had actually wanted it to be. Never had she had any real hope that her mystery man would turn out to be Michael…but a woman could dream. “I’m older. You’re younger. We can’t possibly—“
“We can,” Michael rumbled. “The only thing stopping us is ourselves. I figured that out a while ago. I’ve spent years trying to get close to you. Please don’t shut me out now.”
Helen glanced up into his emerald green eyes, her heart racing as she became intoxicated by his masculinity and male scent. Michael had always been her friend, his lips readily smiling, his voice reassuring. But he wasn’t looking at her like he was her friend now. In fact, he looked downright dangerous, but in a sexy way that was nearly irresistible.
“Why the mystery?” she asked curiously, looking up a very dear, familiar face that she’d come to count on seeing often, the face of a man she knew she’d been in love with for years. “Why didn’t you just say something?”
“Maybe I was afraid you didn’t feel the same way. Maybe I’m still afraid you don’t. But I had to do something to get your attention, get you to at least think about the possibility of getting romantically involved with a man. I hope you’re not disappointed,” he said hoarsely, his eyes boring into hers with an intensity that Helen had never seen before.
He looked so vulnerable at that moment that she blurted out the truth. “I wanted it to be you. You’re the only one I was hoping it would turn out to be. But I didn’t think you felt the same way.”
Michael’s lips turned up into a delighted grin. “How could you not know? I thought I was pretty transparent. I’ve never been able to go less than a day or two without seeing
“You’re beautiful and have the energy of a woman half your age. Try again,” he said in a low, sexy baritone. “Tell me you don’t feel the same way I do. It’s the only way you’re getting rid of me. I’ve been telling myself you’re too good for me for years, but excuses don’t make the ache go away, Helen.”
“You’re the best man I’ve ever known,” she replied, jumping to his defense. Michael Prescott would be a man any woman would want to date. But he chose her, had apparently chosen her a long time ago.
Go for it. The past is in the past. You know Michael’s a good man. Start again. Try again. He's worth the risk.
“I couldn’t bear to lose your friendship,” she admitted quietly.
“You aren’t losing me as a friend. You never will,” he replied confidently. “But I want to be your lover, too.”
Helen flushed again, the thought of being close to Michael in that way enough to make her need to crank up her air conditioning and get a fan. “What if it doesn’t work,” she whispered.
“It will. Say you’ll give it a shot, Helen. Please. Don’t make me stay lonely without you,” he requested gruffly in her ear.
Helen shivered, his warm breath caressing the side of her neck. “I don’t think I have a choice. I do feel the same way, so I guess I’m not getting rid of you,” she admitted with a joyous laugh, dropping the flowers on her desk and wrapping her arms around his neck.
“You won’t want to get rid of me. I’ll treat you so good that you’ll never want to walk away,” he told her sincerely, resting his forehead against hers, a relieved look on his face.
“I can’t believe you know about my sons and you still want to date me,” she told him honestly.
“We’ll come to an understanding eventually. They need to know my intentions are honorable.”
“And are they?” Helen asked breathlessly, mesmerized by his incredible smile.
“Mostly,” he answered with a laugh. “I can’t say that I don’t want you, but I’ll never offer anything less than my whole heart and marriage.”
“I don’t think we’re ready to talk about marriage, but I do want to give this a chance. If I don’t, I’ll always regret it.” She knew herself, and she had to give this a try. “We can date.”
Michael groaned. “I’ve been waiting for years.”
“We have to see if we’re compatible.”
“You know we are,” Michael argued.
Helen sighed, knowing she’d never be able to resist anything that Michael wanted for very long, because it was exactly what she wanted, too. “Being friends and living together is two different things.”
“I think we should find out,” Michael answered, his irresistible grin widening. “Don’t be scared. I know what you’ve been through in the past, but I hope you know me well enough to know I’d never hurt you.”
Helen did know that, and she knew she was done fighting with herself. Michael Prescott wanted her. He actually wanted her. And when she looked at him, she could see forever in his gorgeous eyes. And the vision of their future looked pretty damn fantastic.
No more fear. No more doubts. For once in my life I’m taking exactly what I want without being afraid because of my past.
Her past was gone, and she was staring at her future.
Other than her sons, Michael had always been the one man who’d been there for her whenever she needed him. In truth, she’d trusted him for years.
“I’m not afraid,” Helen answered quietly, knowing it was true. “But don’t you think you should kiss me first before we talk about getting married?”
“Finally,” Michael groaned, lowering his mouth to hers and doing just that until she came away breathless, and any doubt about compatibility, along with any rational thought, was completely gone.
“I think Mom has a boyfriend,” Sam Hudson stated bluntly to Maddie as he walked intothe kitchen and dropped his briefcase on the table.
Maddie turned around from the dinner that was simmering on the stove and smiled at her husband, chewing on her lip just a little as she saw him. She wondered if there would ever be a day that his heartstopping, handsome face and masculine presence wouldn’t send her heart into overdrive. Every time she saw him, she wanted to drop her panties and jump on him. Even after a long day at the office, and just a little bit rumpled, her husband looked delicious in a suit and tie, his blond hair a little mussed, probably because he’d just run a hand through it from the frustration she could see on his face.
“And that would be a problem...um...why?” Sam didn’t look the least bit happy about the fact that his mother had an admirer, a fact that she’d already been aware of and hadn’t had a chance to mention to Sam. She’d just had coffee with Kara and Helen a few days ago, and she knew about the flowers, gifts and romantic notes Helen had been receiving. The older woman had been flustered, but she looked like she was glowing from the attention.
Sam came to her, wrapping his arms around her waist and moving her away from the stove, her ass hitting a cupboard behind her. “Because she’s my mother and she isn’t really sure where they’re coming from. It could be some nut job or a crazy stalker.”
Maddie pushed on Sam’s broad chest, lifting an eyebrow at him as she met his gaze, trying not to let herself fall into his gorgeous eyes. “Just because she’s your mother does not mean she can’t have a beau. If anyone deserves happiness, it’s her. And I doubt very much that a stalker or a nut job would send such thoughtful, respectful notes trying to court her.”
Sam looked startled. “You knew about it? And you didn’t tell me?” His surprised look turned into a frown.
“Yes. I just found out a few days ago and your mom looks happy. You and Simon need to leave her alone unless something inappropriate happens. This man obviously adores her and you don’t need to ruin it for her,” Maddie admonished him. “And I haven’t had a chance to tell you. We’ve been occupied the last few evenings.” Honestly, her husband had been insatiable. After returning from an overnight business trip a few days ago, it was like he had to make up for lost time by taking her straight to the bedroom. Or taking her on the couch. Or in the kitchen. Not that she was exactly complaining.
“We had to spend nearly fortyeight hours apart. I missed you,” Sam replied huskily, his eyes riveted on her lips.
“I could tell,” she told him softly, her core clenching at the memories of the proof of just how much he’d missed her. “Just let things evolve with your mom, okay? I think it’s all very mysterious and romantic.”
“She’s my mother,” he grumbled.
“She’s also a woman who needs love,” Maddie reminded him.
“Simon and I love her.”
“And she loves you. But didn’t you still want me? She deserves to be romanced,” Maddie argued, pushing out of his embrace and crossing her arms stubbornly across her chest, tapping her foot impatiently, waiting for her husband to be reasonable. “Let her have this romance, Sam. Please. For me.” Okay. She was playing dirty and she knew it, but Helen was so happy, and she didn’t want to see Sam and Simon destroy it.
“Fuck! I hate it when you play that card. You know I can’t say no,” Sam answered, disgruntled. “But I’m keeping extra security on her to make sure this guy isn’t a psycho.”
Yep. She knew he couldn’t say no if she asked him to do something for her. And she rarely used that tactic because she did know that Sam would do anything for her, and she didn’t want to prey on his vulnerability. But dammit...this was important. “Thank you. I’ll return the favor when you want something,” she told him solemnly, still in awe that this strong, powerful man would bend to make her happy.
“Sunshine...I do want something,” he told her with a naughty grin, his hands dropping to the counter, imprisoning her against the cupboard.
Maddie sighed and placed her hands on his chest, wanting nothing more than to let Sam have his way with her, any way he wanted it. But...
“Wait. I have something I need to tell you,” she answered urgently, knowing she had to get Sam’s attention before he kissed her. Once that happened...she’d be a goner.
He straightened up and put his hands on her shoulders, rubbing up and down her arms as he asked, “What is it, Sunshine?”
Her heart fluttered as she heard the genuine concern in his tone. Sam had transformed from horny lover to concerned husband faster than she could blink. Her man was made up of so many layers, every one of them appealing as hell. No wonder she couldn’t resist him, loved him with every cell in her body.
She had no hesitation in telling Sam he was going to be a daddy. She’d planned a nice dinner and wine, imagined telling him after they had relaxed. But the joy she’d been feeling all day bubbled up inside her, clamoring to be shared with the man she loved. “I’m pregnant,” she blurted out, far from the delicate way she had planned on delivering the news.
Sam’s expression went from astonished...to ecstatic...and then to one of apprehension. “Why?”
Maddie smirked, unable to resist her husband’s stunned reaction. Wrapping her arms around his neck, she reminded him teasingly, “You took the job of getting me this way pretty seriously. I’m not sure why you’re surprised. Does Dr. Hudson need to give you a refresher on how a woman gets pregnant?”
Sam let out a whoop and grabbed her around the waist. Her feet left the ground as he twirled her in a circle before gently dropping her back to her feet again. “I can’t believe it. Are you sure?” he asked, his voice vibrating with emotion.
Laughing softly, she answered, “Sam...I’m a doctor. When I missed my period, I tried not to get my hopes up. I’m irregular. But I took three different tests, and they were all positive. So yeah, I’m pretty sure.”
Sam speared a hand into her hair and lowered his head, resting his forehead against hers, “Are you happy?” he asked her nervously.
“You know I am. Sometimes I feel like this is all a dream. You. Us. A baby. I’m so happy it’s almost frightening,” she answered honestly.
“It’s no dream, sweetheart,” Sam said, stroking her hair lovingly, his hand trembling slightly. “Oh, Christ!”
“What?” Maddie jerked her head back to look at his face. He was obviously upset. “What is it, Sam? You’re scaring me.”
“We had sex, Maddie. Rough, crazy sex. Over and over in the last few days. The baby—”
“It won’t hurt the baby, Sam. Sex is perfectly fine,” she answered with a soft laugh.
“I shouldn’t have been so rough. God, if I’d known you were pregnant—”
“If you would have known, we still would have had the same outofthisworld sex. Sam...our baby will be fine. Trust me,” she replied, unable to wait a moment longer to kiss him. Jerking his lips to hers, she buried her hands in his hair and savored the taste of him, nipping softly at his bottom lip before soothing it with her tongue.
Sam’s control lasted about a second before he grasped the back of her head and slid his other arm completely around her waist, bringing her tightly against him as he ravished her mouth with his tongue, hot and hungry, just the way she liked it.
After he’d kissed her senseless, he groaned, pulling his mouth from hers and rested his forehead against her shoulder. “I hope it’s a girl. She’ll be a beautiful miracle just like her mother.”
“I honestly don’t care. I just want your baby. Our baby.” Maddie sighed, her whole body tingling from his kiss and begging for Sam’s possession. She pressed her body closer, rubbing against him sensually.
“Maddie, stop. You know I can’t control myself when you do that,” Sam told her sternly, but his voice was filled with longing.
“I’m hoping you won’t,” she told him sensually, sliding a hand down his chest and tracing the hard lines of his cock with her fingertips.
“If you don’t quit, I’ll have you naked and on your back in ten seconds,” Sam warned her, but his voice was almost hopeful now.
Her fingers continued to torment him, persistent, her touch becoming firmer as she smiled up at him. She started counting out loud:
“Are you sure it’s okay?” Sam asked, his desperate eyes meeting hers, his desire and concern appearing to be in conflict.
“Yes. Positive. I would never do anything to harm our child.”
“Fuck. That feels so good, Sunshine.”
Her shirt hit the floor.
Her bra hit the ground.
The shorts she was wearing and her panties fell to her feet at the same time.
Sam picked her up with growl, “Fuck it. I trust you, Sunshine.”
They never made it to the bedroom and Maddie never made it to the count of ten. Sam had her on her back and moaning in record time, right there in the kitchen.
They happily ordered out a few hours later.
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