A Contemporary Suspense Romance, #2 in Hushed in the Storm saga
Jen has a new identity and life, until someone discovers her secret. However, that’s not the one which may destroy her one chance of happiness. When she unravels the family scandal within the walls of an English country manor, will she have to reveal the truth she’s hidden for so long as well? Or will she choose to live the lie in order to keep the man she loves?
As I peered into the baby’s face, I shared Marisol’s sorrow. She should be holding this child, not me. Had Marisol chosen to give this sweet thing up? Or had she been snatched moments after birth? I didn’t want to know. I ached inside—for this baby, for her mother, and for me. All naive victims tossed in the treacherous waves of deceit generated in the wake of my husband’s ambition and cruelty.
I drew her to me. “Oh, why on earth did your daddy have Tom bring you to me?”
The infant’s soft eyes blinked the answer straight into my soul. This little girl needed love, no matter how she came into this world. All babies deserved that much. But, was I the one to give that to her?
My little finger stroked her chubby cheek as I cradled her. The scents of baby powder and formula filled my nose. Her shiny eyes twinkled unabashed-trust as they focused upon my face.
Some innate motherhood gene awoke from deep inside me. A tingly, warm sensation spread from my chest to my eye ducts. My heart double-knotted with hers.
A grin crept across to my cheeks as I gently swayed her in my arms. She seemed so innocent. No one had hurt her yet. No one had stomped on her feelings, or lied to her face, or cheated on her. And now, in this new life the government had given me, I had to pretend that none of that had happened to me either.
Maybe, this baby symbolized my fresh start. I’d protect her. Ensure she had a normal, safe life. No one would be the wiser, right? Surely lots of kids grow up in WITSEC protection.
But would I be able to keep all the hurt she’d dredged up hidden? What if somehow, someday, she discovered her past…and mine? Could we love each other, then? Oh, how I hated living a lie.
With a swallow of my now-cold cup of Earl Grey tea, I washed down the tightness in my throat. I traced her forehead with my little finger. The impact of her presence tangled the words in my throat. I swallowed hard to release the question from my vocal chords. It came out louder than I wanted. “What do I do with you?”
“I guess what anyone should do under the circumstances, Mrs. Williams.”
I looked up to see the Bonita Springs’ deputy sheriff, Jorge Hernandez, gaze down at me and the newborn. “Josh told me you two found her on the steps outside. So, that means you have no idea who she belongs to, right?”
One of his thick black eyebrows raised in a tight arch.
Novelist, freelance writer and professional speaker, Julie B Cosgrove, writes for several inspirational publications and websites, as well as leading workshops and retreats. Her characters are strong, determined, and face danger head on with a prayer and a deep, cleansing breath. Follow her inspirational blog Where Did You Find God Today or visit her website at www.juliebcosgrove.com.