‘And then...?’ Sylvie had demanded challengingly.
‘And then I would have remembered how he came into being and then somehow I’d have found a way to become a part of his life— and yours,’ Ran had told her quietly.
‘Because he’s your son?’ she had asked him.
‘Because you’re my woman...my love...’ Ran had corrected her.
Sometimes, even now, she couldn’t believe how lucky she had been, how wonderful her life was. Living at the Rectory was fulfilling part of her childhood dream—the house so closely mirrored the secret home she’d used to create for herself. But it wasn’t, of course, her home, wonderful though it was, that made her feel that she had been so especially blessed... She looked tenderly at Ran.
If the Rectory was her dream home then Ran was certainly her dream man, although to describe him as such in no way did either him or the depth and intensity of the love they shared true justice.
Ran was her man, her mate, her soul and the real heart of her life... Without him... Without him she wouldn’t have her beautiful kitchen floor covered in mud as it had been the other morning when he had come in shouting triumphantly that the poachers he had suspected of taking their stock had finally been caught poaching from a neighbour’s property.
She smiled secretly to herself. Rory was six months old and she suspected that well before he reached his second birthday he would have a sibling, a brother or a sister.
‘What are you smiling for?’ Ran asked her as he came over to her with Rory and kissed her lovingly on the mouth.
‘You know that avenue of limes we planted at Haverton to mark Rory’s birth?’
‘Well, do you remember you said that we’d plant a cross walkway to mark the birth of our second child?’
‘Well,’ Sylvie told him with a twinkle in her eyes, ‘I think you’d better think about ordering saplings now...’
‘Sylvie...?’ Ran queried, but she was already turning away from him to speak to someone else. ‘Just you wait until later,’ he mock-growled in her ear, but as she answered the interested questions of one of his elderly aunts about the restoration work on Haverton Ran looked down into the alert eyes of his son and told him softly, ‘Something tells me you’re going to have to get used to the idea of being a big brother, Rory.’
* * * * *