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The Cowboy’s Twins

Written by Linda Warren

Chapter Eleven

Before Abby could make her escape, Lane and Lizzie pounded on the back door, shouting, “Daddy, come play with us.”

Jess rolled up his jeans and went outside. Abby stood at the window and watched. He flipped the swings to the top of the swing set and attached the hose like a showerhead. The kids ran through it screaming and laughing.

Their parents had kept them apart, but the feelings from the past lingered. She had to figure out what was most important to her. Seeing Jess laughing and happy, she knew she still loved him.

The doorbell rang, startling her. It had to be Jess’s dad. She opened the door. Lane McQuire, otherwise known as Mac, and T.J., Jess’s brother, stood on the doorstep.

“Come in.” She stepped aside. “I’ll get Jess.”

“What’s he doing with your kids?” Mac asked, frowning. He’d spotted his son through the window.

“I gotta take a picture of this.” T.J. pulled out his phone and snapped away.

Abby opened the back door and shouted, “Jess, your father’s here!” Then she hurried to the bathroom for towels and clothes for the kids. She handed a towel to Jess as he poked his head in. Walking past him, she whispered, “Your turn.”

***

Jess was wet from his head to his toes. “Come outside,” he said to his dad.

His father stopped when he saw Deb and Ron sitting in lawn chairs. “What’s going on?” Mac demanded.

Jess rubbed his face with a towel and then looked at his father. “You remember Abby calling and asking for my phone number? She wanted to tell me she was pregnant.” He glanced to where Abby was drying the kids and putting clean clothes on them. “Those are my kids. They’re twins. I met them for the first time yesterday because you saw fit to make a major decision concerning my life.”

“No!” The word came out as a moan, and T.J. shoved a chair behind his dad and Mac sank into it. “I didn’t know. I’m sorry. Oh, Jess, I’m sorry.”

The kids came running, preventing Jess from saying anything else. At his father’s obvious pain, words eluded him and he now understood how Abby felt about her parents.

“Why is he so sad?” Lizzie asked, pointing to Mac.

“I think he needs a hug,” Abby said from behind him.

Jess picked up Lizzie and placed her on his dad’s lap and then he placed Lane on the other side. Lizzie hugged him and tears filled his dad’s eyes and for a moment tears stung the backs of Jess’s eyes.

“This is Jessica Elizabeth and Jess Lane,” Jess introduced his kids. “And this is my father, your grandfather.”

Their mouths formed big Os.

“You’re so beautiful,” his dad said to the kids.

“People tell us that all the time,” Lizzie replied, and everyone laughed, easing the tension. Forgiveness for their parents came easy. It was forgiving each other that would prove a challenge.

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About the author

Since I sold my first book to Harlequin, my life simply hasn't been th...

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Linda Warren

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