“You’ve been home every night this week and I just assumed you’d have something else to do on a weekend night.”
“Are you tired of me?”
“No, that’s not what I’m saying.”
He smiled. “Good, because I kind of like coming home to someone at the end of the day.”
With his relationship with his father on the rocks and his mother and brother living so far away, had he been lonely?
“We’re glad to have you here. This house is too big for just Lily and me.” And she meant it. She stepped to the counter to get Lily’s bottle. “Your mother called again today.”
“Does she have all the wedding arrangements made?” Grant took a seat at the table and played with Lily’s foot.
“She wanted to know if I have a flower preference.”
“Mind if I do that?” He indicated the bottle. “Do you?”
In regard to Lily he’d certainly turned over a new page. He made a few false starts but soon caught on to the process of feeding Lily. Watching a man take care of such a small human was a type of pleasure she’d not experienced before.
“I hate to say this but I think my father is waiting for you to have that discussion about marrying me. I know ours is a business arrangement but he doesn’t. He’s sort of old-fashioned about things like that.”
Grant looked at her. “I should have already done that. I’ll take care of it right away.”
“Thanks. I know he would appreciate it. He’s sort of been hinting.” There would be questions later about their marriage but maybe his and Grant’s discussion would ease the pain. It would at least look like Grant had asked for her hand in marriage, which would make her father happy. He’d had such a hard time when she’d agreed to be a surrogate mother that she could only imagine his reaction to her involvement in a trumped-up wedding.
She focused on Grant and Lily again. With the skills Grant was exhibiting with Lily he could be nothing less than a caring and compassionate surgeon as well as father. When he was done he wore a self-satisfied grin.
“Would you like to bathe her?”
He looked uncertain but the terror that had once filled his eyes was missing. “Do you mind if I assist you? I don’t think I’m ready to do it alone.”
He needed to learn. One day she would be leaving, no matter how difficult it would be to do so. “You’re welcome to help but it’s nowhere near as difficult as transplant surgery.”
“Maybe so, but I did train for that and I have zero experience in bathing a baby.”
She smiled. “You’re in luck. I did train in nursing school for it. Why don’t you carry Lily up and undress her? I’ll wash up her bottle and be there in a minute.”
By the time she made it to Lily’s room Grant had her completely undressed. He stood in the middle of the room, humming a current tune as he did a box step with Lily in his arms. It was the most uninhibited she’d seen Grant. Almost as if he’d let go of some of the animosity he’d been carrying. This was a side of him she was sure few had seen. Sara felt honored that she was one of those.
He looked at her. “Hey.”
“You want to join us?”
A ripple of uncertainty went through her. She shook her head. “I don’t think so.”
He opened one arm wide and said, “Aw, come on. You never know. It might be fun.”
Sara wanted to. What would it hurt if she did? Ignoring her fear, she stepped into his arm and he lightly wrapped it around her waist. One of her hands went to his forearm and the other rested on Lily’s back. Could she ever have a true moment like this in her life? Her child. Her family.
Just a crazy dream. She couldn’t get caught in the trap of thinking theirs would be a marriage in reality.
Together they shifted in a small circle.
Being this close to Grant was heady. His deep hum filled the room as he moved smoothly around the floor. He smelled slightly of Betadine, which was so much a part of his profession. She didn’t find it offensive. It just reminded her that his business was to save lives.
She looked up to find Grant’s rich coffee gaze on her. There was a question there. Desire. Her heart thumped hard but she managed a smile. His head lowered. Her breath caught. He hesitated as if waiting for her permission. Her lips parted. Grant’s mouth moved closer. Time slowed. Lily cooed between them, her head resting on his shoulder. Sara silently begged for his kiss. He no longer moved his feet. Finally, blessedly, his lips found hers.