Once more among the Shine Clan, Fiddlestix finds herself in an emotional upheaval. Deacon Scott, leader of the Shine Clan, has declared his love for her on more than one occasion. She’s reluctant to commit, but why? Not even she knows the answer. But as he’s a “persistent hillbilly”, Deacon never gives up.
“You’ve done what you can, it’s time for bed,” Deacon said.
“Thanks Jasper,” she hugged him briefly, kissing his cheek.
Fiddlestix and Deacon headed to his quarters. She leaned against him the last few yards. She undressed and collapsed on the bed. Deacon lay down behind her as she curled on her side. He slipped his arm around her, holding her close. It felt good to sleep like that; safe, secure, loved.
The next morning, she woke alone. Knowing Deacon to be an early riser, she was not disappointed to find him gone. Hearing sounds in the front room, she dressed in the clothing she found neatly folded on a chair.
Deacon was fixing a huge breakfast. He smiled broadly as she walked into the dining area.
She nodded, smiling up at him.
“Good, I have plans for you this morning.”
She paused, raising an eyebrow, head cocked to one side. “Really? War plans, infiltration scenarios?”
Chuckling deep in his chest, Deacon held out his hand to her. She knew that look in his eyes well. His plans were of a very personal nature.
Deacon loved her dearly, and offered a secure, stable relationship. To top it off, he didn’t want anyone but her. He had said he loved her many times, but she never had.
She whispered, “I do love you, Deacon.”
If she expected him to be surprised, she was disappointed. He smiled, kissing her gently, and whispered in her ear. “I know, Hannah-Belle.”
Several hours later, a persistent beeping disturbed them, causing Deacon to sit up suddenly on the side of the bed, swearing loudly.
“Dammit, I forgot a meeting! The representatives from Virginia and Texas are gonna just love this! That chick from Texas already has it in for me.”
“If you call her a chick to her face, I can see why,” she replied, laughing while she dressed.
“I wouldn’t ever do that. My mama raised me to be a gentleman at all times. Well,” he looked at her naked body dreamily, tracing the line of her shoulder with his finger. “Most times anyway. I wouldn’t ever call a lady a chick to her face, but this girl has an attitude problem. Want to meet her?”
“Am I gonna want to kill her?”
Deacon threw back his head, long, blond curls cascading around his deeply tanned shoulders and well chiseled profile.
“Hell, maybe she just wants to get in your pants.”
“Well, it might help negotiations.”
“You just remember what’s in those pants is mine,” she grabbed playfully at his crotch.
“I’ll keep that in mind. Seriously, you should meet these people.” He hesitated. “Does this mean you will take me up on my proposal, Hannah?”
She looked away, unable to meet his penetrating, crystal blue eyes. “I don’t know if I’m ready for that, Deacon.”
His manner changed markedly as he put the finishing touches on his uniform, tying back his hair save for a long war braid draped over his left shoulder. She could tell his feelings were hurt.
He looked at her, pained expression on his handsome face.
“I meant what I said before. I do love you. If I ever get married, I want it to be you.”
Deacon whooped, picking her up and swinging her in a circle. He dragged her from the room toward the conference room, making a loud and buoyant entrance. As if he were not fifteen minutes late, he headed to the table, holding a chair for Fiddlestix to sit before taking one himself.