There was no mistaking the wince of pain as Zach crossed the room to stand beside her.
Like a fog clearing, Isla realised she’d been wrong. He wasn’t here to take her babies. Something dark had befallen Zach. Something that had changed his life forever.
‘What is it?’ she asked, all the other people and whirr of activity blurring into white noise. ‘What happened over there?’
His clear blue eyes widened and she watched as he went through a series of silent decisions. To tell or not to tell.
She gripped his hand tightly in her own. ‘Zachary Keating. I am about to have your sons. I do not expect a single thing from you except the truth. You owe me that much.’
He shook his head. ‘Maybe we should get this over and done with first.’
She knew it hadn’t come out the way he’d meant it to. He’d sounded curt. Cool even. Distant. And it hurt her to the quick. She hadn’t asked him for a single thing. Not loyalty. Not commitment. Not a single solitary penny towards raising the children they had unwittingly created. No trying to hunt him down. Naming and shaming. Not a single soul at the hospital had known who he was until now. She’d let people think what they wanted. Most of them knew she had more ‘family’ at the hospital than real family and had just presumed she’d gone for an IVF donor.
Trying her best to retain as much dignity as a woman could when her legs were slung wide open and doctors she’d worked side by side with were inspecting her birth canal, she lowered her voice and all but growled, ‘Did you just say I should get giving birth to your children ‘over and done with’?
‘Can we just add that to the list of mistakes I’ve been making?’ Zach replied, almost sheepishly. Almost.
‘What?’ Isla shot back. ‘Like showing up at the hospital with flowers for another woman?’
‘Another woman?’ Zach let out a low whistle and laughed at the crossed wires. ‘Those flowers were for—’
Zach stopped. This was his chance to come clean. Tell her the truth. That he was less of a man in more ways than the loss of his leg. That there would be no more children after this. At least not from him. ‘Those flowers were for you.’
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