Abby chuckled, which only irritated Dominic more.
“It’s not funny. He’s unpredictable, and that’s dangerous. He’s charging full speed into international alliances, many of which he won’t disclose, with no regard for the danger it could bring him and anyone associated with him.”
“He reminds me,” said Abby, as she stopped laughing to lay a hand on her husband’s shoulder, “of someone else I know.”
“He’s nothing like me. He thinks just because he has never lost in the virtual world that he’s invincible in real life. That kind of arrogance can get a man killed.”
Abby countered gently, “Then it sounds like he could use a mentor.”
Abby simply gazed patiently up at him.
Dominic admitted another uncomfortable truth. “He mocks me to my face. If it wasn’t for Marie, I’d give him the smackdown he’s begging for.”
Abby waited a moment, then said, “Marie took his mother out a few times. I know why Marie wants to see Jeremy succeed.”
Dominic scowled down at his wife. “There is nothing you could say that would make me like that kid.”
She gave him that stubborn look he’d fallen in love with their first week together. “I think you’re wrong, Dom. He grew up in a two-parent home, but his father was bedridden for most of his life. Jeremy took care of him from a young age—too young, so his mother could work. They had nurses, but nothing full-time. Jeremy was homeschooled so his father would never be alone. His mother said Jeremy was her rock. As the medical bills piled up, Jeremy used that online world to help pay for his father’s medical bills. His father passed away at the beginning of what would have been his final year of high school. Can you imagine what his life was like? If he’s angry with the world, doesn’t he have the right to be? You know what anger can do to a young man.”
“Stop. I hate it when you do this.” He felt an unwelcome twinge of compassion for Jeremy and his stolen childhood.
His wife sensed the crack in his armor and went in for the kill. “I’m serious, Dom. From everything I’ve heard about him, he’s a good man. With your help, he could become a great one. Marie looked past your reputation and saw who you really were. Maybe you should trust her instincts with Jeremy.”
He was beginning to agree with his wife, but he wasn’t yet ready to admit it.
Abby said, “There must be something you like about him.”
Dominic conceded, “Sometimes he makes me laugh. He’s such a shit, it’s funny.”
Abby smiled and nodded with approval. “See. You have something in common.”
Returning his wife’s smile, Dominic admitted, “He’s taking boxing lessons with someone whom he’s paying to beat him senseless. It’s pretty amusing.”
Quickly concerned, Abby said, “Is he okay? Why would he do that?”
Dominic shrugged. “I guess he wants to toughen up.”
Abby kissed her husband lightly on the lips and said, “You think he has no respect for you, but I’ll bet he admires you.”
Dominic gave his wife a cocky smile. “What’s not to admire? I’m handsome, rich, and married to the most incredible woman on the planet.”
That earned him a second chance at the warm welcome she’d offered him earlier. She pulled his head down to meet her lips again. “And humble . . .” she laughed between kisses.
He raised his head, looking serious for a moment, and corrected her. “Grateful.”
Their eyes met and held. Abby said, “We both have so much to be thankful for. Would it hurt you to help Jeremy find his way?”
He ran a thoughtful thumb lightly over his wife’s pink lips, which at that moment were turned up into a knowing smile. “Will I ever be able to say no to you?”
“Not when you know I’m right.” She sat up and slid her satin nightgown over her head, revealing her amazing breasts, which were growing even larger as her body changed with pregnancy. “Like right now, I think you’re wearing too much clothing.”
Dominic quickly discarded his boxers and rolled onto his back, pulling his naked wife with him so that she straddled him. He ran an appreciative thumb in a slow circle around one of her erect nipples. “Tell me what you want, wife.”
She smiled down at him, her eyes brimming with love, and said, “You, Dom. Tonight. Tomorrow. Forever.”
His erection swelled against her moist center. “Let’s work on tonight first. I didn’t think you could get more beautiful or sexier, but knowing that all of this also has given us,” he laid his hand gently on her stomach again, “a family. I don’t have the words to tell you what it means to me.”
Abby leaned down, kissed her husband, and said against his lips, “Then show me.”
And he did.
And then again the next morning as they showered together.
Two weeks later, Jeisa’s phone rang in the middle of the night. She rolled over and hid her head under her pillow, but the phone kept ringing. Eventually, she gave in and answered it, her voice thick with sleep. “Alô?”
“English, Jeisa,” Jeremy said cheerfully. Way too cheerfully for—she opened her heavy eyes and groaned when she saw the time—three o’clock. “Sorry to wake you, but I have to ask you something.”
Jeisa fell back into her pillows and resigned herself to the conversation. It wasn’t the first time he’d called her from another time zone. For a man with such a high IQ, he had a hard time understanding that just because he was awake, it didn’t mean the rest of the world shared that state. “What?”