“Yes. A liver has become available for a patient who has been waiting too long. I won’t be home tonight. May even be gone most of tomorrow.”
“I understand. I’ll see to Lily.”
And he could trust that she would. “Why don’t you ask your father to sleep in the small room off the kitchen so you don’t have to be in the house by yourself?”
She shook her head. “I’ll be fine. I’m getting better about knowing the sounds of the house.”
He caressed her cheek. “I don’t want you to be scared when I’m gone.”
“I won’t be as long as I know when you’re coming and going. Thanks for caring.”
A few minutes later as he backed out of the carport he noted the light was already on beside the kitchen door. It would be shining when he returned. To his amazement he liked the idea that Sara would be waiting on him. They were already acting like a married couple. Why didn’t that idea bother him more?
* * *
Grant had been gone over thirty-six hours. All he wanted was to get some much-needed sleep. He wasn’t going to take the chance of waking Sara to let her know that he was home. She would just have to find that out on her own.
He stripped and climbed into bed, hoping to get a few hours of sleep before returning to the hospital. The alarm went off what seemed like only seconds later. He climbed out of bed, found fresh underwear and headed for the bathroom. He opened the door and blinked.
Sara stood there wrapped in a towel, combing her wet hair.
“What’re you doing?” Her high-pitched words nearly hurt his ears.
“Sorry. I didn’t hear the shower running.”
Her eyes didn’t leave him. “Why’re you using my bathroom?”
“It’s mine too.”
“I thought you were staying in the master.”
That idea made his skin crawl.
Her gazed went south and her eyes widened. She said calmly, “Grant, you don’t have anything on. We talked about that.”
“I don’t usually wear clothes when I shower. You want to join me?” He tried for his most wicked look.
“I don’t think that would be a good idea.”
“You start off everything between us with ‘I don’t think.’ Maybe you need to think less and enjoy more.”
She shook her head. “I’m done here so you’re welcome to the bath.” Sara disappeared through the other door.
He watched her go with disappointment. What he really wanted to do was jerk that towel off and pull her into his arms. Being married to Sara was going to be interesting, and physically demanding.
Boxers still in hand, Grant turned on the water. He had to admit this was the most fun he’d had with a woman in a long time. Seeing Sara flustered, turning the prettiest shade of pink he’d ever seen when her gaze had been fixed on his morning erection, delighted him. She’d not shied away from looking.
After her surprise that they’d been sharing a bathroom for weeks, what would be her reaction when she learned that she’d been sleeping in his childhood bedroom all this time?
* * *
A couple of evenings later Sara was upstairs, putting Lily to sleep, when car lights shone through the window and the vehicle pulled into the carport. Grant had had another long day. The faint sound of the outside door opening and closing rose to the second floor.
Was he coming home every night because she was there? Her vanity wanted to say yes. But she knew better. It was more likely him making every effort to convince himself that he could do the job of being a good surgeon and parent to Lily. With a little help he was succeeding. She’d been very impressed with his efforts on Saturday. Both he and Lily had survived. And, from what she could tell, had bonded.
Her father had settled on the house they had liked. It was in a small neighborhood between Highland Park and Chicago. It had everything they would need close by. There was a senior citizen building, a park, shopping and easy access to the train into downtown. Maybe Grant was being far too generous but it was nice to know her father would be safe and secure from eviction ever again. Her father planned to move in right away.
It took Sara another thirty minutes to get Lily down for the night and her clothes laid out for the next day. Grant still hadn’t stuck his head into the room to say he was home or check on Lily. He’d been vigilant about both over the last week. Why hadn’t he tonight? Because of her reaction to him in the bathroom? Was he afraid that she might jump him and demand to have his body? The thought had occurred to her. He’d looked breathtakingly gorgeous in all his glory. She could only imagine the pleasure of having all of that as her own. But thinking that way was going to get her nowhere.