“Makes sense.” She nodded and then I saw a gleam in her eyes.

“And no, Lucky. You’re not going to find someone to hook him up with.”

“Who said I was going to do that?” She pouted.

“I know you better than you know yourself.” I wrapped my arms around her waist and held her close to me as I stroked her hair. “I’ll miss you while I’m at lunch, but I won’t be gone long, okay.”

“I’ll miss you as well.”

“Oh, Noah said he will come to the parenting class with us.”

“Oh, that’s great.”

“But we’re not to book anything until he sees if Robin can make it as well.”

“Oh, he’s asking her?”

“I have no idea what he’s doing.” I shrugged. “They’re going on some picnic and I guess if it goes well, he’s going to propose.”

“What?” She screeched and I laughed.

“I’m joking. It was a bad joke I know.” I laughed at her expression. “Anyways, I’m not sure what he’s hoping is going to happen at this picnic, but supposedly if it goes well, Robin’s going to be Skylar’s new mommy.” I made a weird face and she hit me in the arm.

“You’re a jerk, you know that right?” She laughed at me. “You’re so mean.”

“I’m mean?” I put my hands up. “My brother has lost his head. What girl wants to become a mother after one date?”

“Zane, let’s just see what happens.”

“Well, that’s what we’re doing.” I grinned. “Just don’t go booking the parenting classes as yet, just in case.”

“Oh, Zane.” She leaned forward and kissed me and I squeezed her ass.

“That’s so you don’t forget me while I’m at lunch.” I gave her ass a couple of light slaps and ran out of the study as she yelped and tried to hit me. I ran up the stairs laughing and Lucky followed quickly behind me.

***

“I’m glad I’m not a pariah in the Beaumont household anymore.” Leo grinned at me as we finished up lunch.

“You were never a pariah, just slightly unwelcome.” I laughed back at him. “Who knew you dated, Robin though? You never mentioned her to me.”

“You know I don’t like to talk about girls I date.”

“But you didn’t really consider her someone you were dating, did you?”

“Okay, okay, you got me. I know I messed up.” He shrugged. “Oh well, she never looked at me the way she looks at Noah.”

“Which is surprising, you’re a whole lot better looking than him.”

“I know right?” He played with his hair and we both laughed.

“Seriously though, Leo. Thank you. This could have become a really complicated situation. Thank you for just walking away.”

“All Robin did was talk about Noah.” He made a face. “About how much she liked him, but that he lied to her and she wasn’t sure if she could trust him. Believe you me, she made the decision, not me.”

“I hope it works out for them.”

“Yeah, me too.” Leo continued eating and I shook my head.

“Liar, but whatever. Did I tell you I’m planning the wedding?”

“You’re what?” Leo sputtered and looked at me in shock. “Please tell me that Lucky hit her head? Whose idea was this?”

“She doesn’t know.” I laughed. “It’s going to be a surprise.”

“Why do I get the feeling that this is going to be a surprise that doesn’t go down well? When Noah brought it up the other night, I thought he was joking around. I had no idea you were seriously going to go ahead with this.”

“It’s romantic, you chump.”

“Says who?”

“Says everyone.” I shook my head at him and took two gulps of beer. “Remember Leeza, her crazy best friend? She have me some tips. She’s going to help me.”

“The Leeza that tried to hook up with you and me?” He raised an eyebrow. “Don’t tell me, she recommended Poison Ivy for the bouquet.”

“Haha, I know. I didn’t think she would be very helpful, but it turns out I was wrong. She’s given me a lot to think about.”

“So where is the wedding going to be held?”

“I’m going to find a place in Napa or Sonoma. A nice field or something. Maybe a vineyard.”

“Yeah baby, a wine tasting at a wedding. That would be awesome.”

“While that would be awesome, it’s not going to happen. My wife can’t drink as she’s pregnant.”

“She’s not your wife yet, Zane.”

“Oops, you know what I mean.”

“Yeah,” he laughed. “Though I never thought my boy would become so whooped. I never even imagined you getting married, let alone planning the wedding. Who stole your balls and how do I get them back for you?”

“Just wait until you fall in love.”

“I thought I did.”

“No, you didn’t. If you thought for one moment that Robin was the one you wouldn’t have given up so easily.”

“I miss her you know.” He sighed and his blue eyes looked at me seriously. “She was different. A little feisty and spunky, but I liked that. I liked that she didn’t want to just jump into bed. She wanted to get to know me. She wanted to really see if we had a connection. And I screwed up.”

“Can you sleep at night?”

“What do you mean, can I sleep at night?”

“It’s a simple question. Do you have trouble getting to sleep at night?”

“No, why?”

“When I first met Lucky in the diner and first started talking and interacting with her, she was all I could think about. Even in my dreams. And when I started dating her, I had trouble sleeping. I couldn’t think about anything but her. Do you spend your nights dreaming of Robin?”

“No,” he gave me a wry smile. “Not at all. Though a certain Playboy bunny did make an appearance in my dreams the other night.”

“You’re a pig.”

“It takes one to know one.” He laughed and finished up his steak. “Seriously though, you know I’m happy for you. Also, if you do anything to hurt Lucky, I’ll be waiting in the wings.”

“Why do I have a feeling there are many men waiting in the wings?” I shook my head and chugged the rest of my beer down.

“Because you’re marrying the best woman in the world.”

“I know.” I sighed. “Trust me, I worry every day that she’s going to wake up and think to herself, what did I do? I don’t want her to turn 30 and then look at me and all the kids and think what happened to my life.”

“All the kids? You guys are only having twins right?”

“Well, you know.” I laughed. “I’m fertile. We may have a whole basketball team, by the time she hits 30.”

“Do you want a whole basketball team?” Leo looked at me in surprise.

“Yeah, I wouldn’t mind.”

“Does she want a whole basketball team?”

“I don’t know.”

“Maybe that’s something you should talk about.”

“I guess we’ll discuss it in our parenting class.”

“I don’t think that’s the sort of thing you discuss in parenting class.” Leo shook his head at me. “Maybe in a marriage class.”

“A marriage class?”

“You know, one of those should we get married classes?”

“Oh hell no, I’m not going to anymore classes. I do not need someone to tell me that we’re not ready to get married; especially with her belly full of my babies.”

“Spoken like a proud sperm donator.”

“Leo, you’re a cad. I’m going to find you a woman to melt that cynical heart and you’re going to understand what it’s like to fall hook, line, and sinker.”

“It’s never going to happen.” He shook his head and I stared at him for a moment, wondering if I had been the same way before Lucky? How sad would it be if my best friend never found the love that I had found? I groaned to myself, as I realized I was actually contemplating letting Lucky hook him up with someone.

“You’re going to come to the wedding right? We’re going to pretend it’s a group summer vacation somewhere.”

“Just think about trying to stop me.”

“So are you still bouncing?”

“Nah, dad finally convinced me to give the family business a try.” He made a face. “Seeing as I’m the heir apparent and all that.”

“It must be so hard to be the heir to a billion dollar business.”

“It’s just not what I want to be doing.”

“I understand.”

“What about you? How goes the book?”

“It’s going slowly.” I shrugged. “The day job calls first and Lucky of course.”

“How hard is it to buy and sell stock?”

“I do a bit more than that, Leo.” I laughed. “But I’m trying to finish the book by the wedding, it’s my wedding gift to Lucky.”

“Oh?”

“Yeah.” I nodded. “She’s influenced a good amount of the book.”

“Cool, do you know what you’re going to call it?”

“Not sure as yet. Maybe First Love or something.”

“Could you be any sappier?”

“Not really.” I laughed. “Lucky put a spell on me and I can’t break free.”

“I’m taking it this isn’t the book about one man trying to take down Wall Street from the inside, is it?”

“No.” I shook my head. “I feel like that’s already happened in real life. A book about it would be mundane. The new book is about a man who was lost and meets the love of his life.”

“Oh, so it is art imitating life then?”

“Perhaps. It’s more of a metaphor in the book though.”

“How so?”

“The man is lost in the jungle.” I laughed at the look on his face. “And the love of his life is a monkey.”

“Please tell me this is a joke? Are you writing about beast…”

“Leo, really?” I interrupted him. “No, I don’t mean love as in man and a woman love. I mean the love of two best friends.”

“Please tell me I’m not the monkey.” His eyes looked at me hopefully and I burst out laughing.

“Idiot, I’m joking. The book is basically about my love for Lucky and how she has touched me.”

“Okay, so it is a sap story then. Move over Nicholas Sparks, there’s a new notebook writer in town.”

“Now that’s just sad that you know his name and the book that he wrote.”

“Dude, that movie made me cry.” He grinned. “And you better not tell anyone that.”

“Oh, Noah, Noah.” I said in a female voice and we both burst out laughing.

“If anyone saw us right now, we’d be right off to the loony bin.”

“I know, but at least I have a fiancé. I have an excuse for knowing the movie and the book.”

“Rub it in my face, why don’t you?” Leo pulled out some notes and placed them on the table. “Hey lunch is on me. Want to hit the driving range?”

“Lucky would kill me if she knew I was going to go drive race cars with you.”

“You only live once.”

“Come on then.” I jumped up and grinned at him. “But if I get in trouble, I’m sending her your way.”

“Sure thing, Mrs. Beaumont.” Leo winked at me and it was at that moment that I definitely decided that Lucky and I were going to find a woman that would make Leo fall to his knees.

Chapter 8

Noah

Picnic basket. Check. Wine bottle. Check. Wine glasses. Check. Bottle opener. No where to be found. Shit, where was the bottle opener?

“Skylar, have you seen the bottle opener?”

“What, Noah?” She looked up at me with a confused expression. “What’s a bottle opener?” She continued playing with her Barbie and I shook my head.

“Nothing, it’s just a contraption that opens wine bottles.” I paused for a moment and then continued. “And wine is something that you should not drink until you are 21, okay?”

“I don’t like wine.” She made a face. “I had some in Palm Bonita, it didn’t taste good at all.”

“Yes, it’s not good for you.” I said with a straight face, but I felt angry inside. I was mad that she had been raised by Monica, someone who would have fed her drugs and alcohol without a care in the world. “Do you want to bring Barbie on the picnic?”

“I want to bring my teddy bears.” Skylar jumped up excitedly. “I want to have a teddy bear picnic.”

“Well, you can bring one.”

“No, I want to bring all of them.” She folded her arms and looked up at me with a glare.

“You can’t bring all of them.”

“I want to bring all of them.” She screamed and I stood there in shock. I had never seen this side of Skylar before and I wasn’t sure how to react. I wasn’t even sure what had happened. Just a minute ago, she had been fine and now she was having a temper tantrum.

“You can’t bring all of them, there won’t be enough food for them to eat.”


Tags: J.S. Cooper Forever Love Romance
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