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Craving Danger: Chapter 45


Scott sits at the kitchen table, watching as I roast the potatoes with herbs until they’re crispy.

“Where did you learn to cook?” he asks.

“My mom.” I glance at him from over my shoulder. “She practically lived in the kitchen.”

“Do your parents live in New York?”

I shake my head. “They passed away a few years ago.”

“I’m sorry to hear that,” he murmurs.

“They lived a long life,” I mention.

His eyebrows fly up, “How old are you?”

“Thirty-five. My parents had me late in life.” I take the pan off the stove and prepare three plates. Walking to the back door, I tell Milo, “Food’s ready.”

“Coming, boss.”

“Let’s eat here,” Scott says. “If we make a mess in the dining room, my wife won’t let me hear the end of it.”

I let out a chuckle as I place his plate in front of him. “It sounds like Samantha takes after her mother.”

“She does.”

Milo grabs his food and heads to the living room while I take a seat across from Scott.

There’s a nervous tension in my body as I lock eyes with him. “I need to talk to you about something important.”

His features tighten as emotion washes over his face. “I was trying to brace for it.”


“You asking me for my daughter’s hand in marriage,” he says.

Nodding, I lift my chin, and after sucking in a deep breath, I murmur, “I love Samantha more than anything. Your daughter is the most amazing person I’ve ever met. She’s vibrant, intelligent, caring, funny, and so stubborn it drives me insane at times. I can’t live without her.”

He nods. “I know the feeling.” The corner of his mouth lifts. “I feel the same way about her mother.”

We stare at each other for a moment, then I say, “Your blessing is very important to me.”

“It’s up to Samantha. She’s the one who has to say yes.”

I nod. “I’d still like your blessing.”

He stares at me again. “Treat my daughter right.”

“Yes, sir.”

“She always bottles up her worries. You have to pry it from her.”

I nod. “I’m aware of that.”

The corners of Scott’s mouth tremble, and it makes me feel emotional. He takes a deep breath, then says, “You have my blessing.”

“Thank you, sir. I promise to protect your daughter. I’ll do everything in my power to make her happy.”

He nods before he cuts a chunk of steak and shoves it into his mouth.

An emotionally loaded silence falls between us as we eat our food.





Cradling my baby nephew in my arms, there’s an intense need in my soul to have a child of my own.

It totally catches me off guard, and I can’t tear my eyes away from his wide blue eyes and chubby cheeks.

“You’re so precious,” I whisper to Josh, brushing my palm over his white hair. “You’re going to be blond like your Aunty Sammie.”

Franco’s arm rests on the back of my chair, and I can feel his eyes on me.

I want a child with him.

Suddenly, a potent smell drifts from Josh, and I scrunch my nose.

“Christ,” Franco mutters before letting out a chuckle.

I stand up and walk to Wendy. “I think he needs a diaper change.”

She takes Josh from me and sniffs his butt before she says, “Yep.”

I return to my seat and let my eyes drift over my family. We already had Thanksgiving dinner and moved to the living room to relax.

Matt is talking to Dad about the latest sports while Mom watches them with a smile.

Franco leans closer to me and murmurs, “You looked like a natural holding Josh.”

A smile stretches around my lips. “He’s so cute.”

When Wendy returns, she hands Josh to Mom before taking a seat next to Matt.

Franco gets up, and Dad clears his throat and gestures to Matt to stop talking.

I frown at Dad, then my eyes widen as Franco drops to one knee in front of me.

“Oh my God,” Wendy gasps.

I lock eyes with Franco as he says, “I didn’t know there was a chunk of my soul missing until I met you.”

My heart.

“You gave me a chance for which I’m eternally grateful. You’ve shown me the true meaning of happiness. You’ve taught me to be patient.” He clears his throat, then continues, “I can’t live without your sass, your bravery, your strength. I want you to be the mother of my children and my wife.”

My chin begins to tremble as I stare deep into Franco’s dark eyes.

“Will you marry me?”

I suck in a deep breath and fight to control my emotions as I tease him. “I’ll have to think about it.”

With a chuckle, he pulls a small blue box from his pocket, and when he opens it, I see an oval diamond with a dainty leaf pattern.

Franco tilts his head, then asks, “How long do you need to think about it?”

“Not long,” I whisper. I stare at my man, memorizing everything about this moment. “Yes, I’ll marry you.”

He lets out a breath of relief as he pushes the engagement ring onto my left hand. Then he mutters, “Thank God you didn’t make me wait for weeks again.”

Leaning forward, I press my mouth to his in a sweet kiss, and as I pull back, Mom’s wiping tears from her cheeks while Dad keeps clearing his throat.

“Congratulations,” Matt says, breaking the silence.

Asking me in front of my loved ones shows how well Franco knows me. It was perfect.

We both get up and while Mom and Wendy admire the ring on my finger, Dad and Matt shake hands with Franco.

Milo comes into the room with a tray of champagne glasses, and as I take one, he says, “Congratulations.”

When everybody has a glass of bubbly, Dad toasts, “May you have a long and happy life together.”

Franco comes to stand beside me, and wrapping his arm around my lower back, he presses a kiss to my temple. “Do you like the ring?”

I glance down at the diamond and nod. “It’s beautiful. Thank you, Franco.”

Tilting my head back, I look up at him, and seeing the happiness in his eyes, I feel it flow through my soul.

He lowers his head and brushes a tender kiss against my mouth. “I love you, baby.”

I take his glass from him and set it down on the coffee table. Turning back to my man, I wrap my arms around his neck and hug the everloving hell out of him.

His arms engulf me, and with my mouth by his ear, I whisper, “I love you too, my mystery man.”


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