Harbouring an unmentionable secret is not an obvious route to maternal bliss….. or is it?
Alo Kirk’s had a bad year. An ambitious London lawyer, her courtroom performances have started to slide and her obsession with having a baby is undermining her relationship with boyfriend Adam. Come January 1st she resolves that in the next twelve months her life has to turn around.
Life, however, is about to get worse. Buy juggling fertility tests with a high-profile-criminal trial at the Old Bailey, Ali starts burning the midnight oil with powerfully handsome colleague Anthony de Klerk. On a night that she’s slipped on some sexy underwear to boost her flagging self-esteem, Ali and Anthony finally end up in bed together. And then she falls pregnant. Ali becomes the ultimate woman sleuth – who is the father, Adam or Anthony?
En route from pregnancy to having a baby there’s romance and rows, mystery and denials, suspense and comedy. And the ultimate, uncomfortable realization that only one thing will set Ali free: the truth.
My pink panties are lying somewhere on Anthony’s bedroom floor, strewn with the rest of our clothes. They’d been lying at the back of the cupboard, unworn since that day I tried them on in France. Why I put them on this morning, of all mornings, is probably best understood by my subconscious. There were the last item of clothing to be removed and didn’t go unnoticed. They should have though, because they should never have come off, but it’s as much as I can do to concentrate on the here and now. On Anthony running his hands masterfully over my body, up and down the insides of my legs, tracing a teasing line from my collar-bone to my navel, dwelling lightly on my breasts as I arch to meet his touch, telling me they’re not too big, not too small, but perfect. I writhe underneath as he lies on top of me, softly kissing the sides of my neck, the front and then my mouth, more ugrently. I dare a man to have a better body than his. His frame is tall, perfectly proportioned, broad yet lithe, naturally athletic with beautiful muscle definition. His is, quite simply, gorgeous. And the feel of his skin, oh his skin, on my hands and my body. It’s soft and smooth and I can’t get enough of it as my hands stroke up and down his back, from his shoulders to his sculpted buttocks, pulling him tighter and closer, yearning to have him inside. His eyes, big dark brown eyes with felcks of black and green, his thick yielding, sexy mouth and the deep, rick, coffee-colour of him are intoxicating. In all my life I’ve only ever been with one man. I never knew I could feel so heated, this animal, this nexessity, this pleasure and such exstasy as he finally enters huge and deep and slowly and expertly, exquisitely brings us to climax.
“Don’t go,” he says, trying to catch my arm as I roll over to get up.
“I’ve got to,” I say.
It doesn’t feel right to stay the night, even if Adam is away. Anthony offered to drive me home but I opted for a cab, which is on its way. I get dressed, item by item, as he lies there, watching.
“You have got the most beautiful body. You know that, sexy lady?”
He must be talking about somebody else,
“You’re not bad yourself.”
I turn my head. I shouldn’t be here, having this conversation. Accepting and paying compliments this way.
“What is it?” he asks.
He can’t see my face, but the way I’m holding my body, so very, very still, probably gives away how I’m feeling. Tense, confused, excited and yes, the first soupcon of guilt is seeping in. I’ve never done anything like this before, never even been tempted.
“I’m sorry,” he says. “I know you’re attached. I should have left well alone. It’s just there’s something about you,” he peters out.
I don’t want to ruin the beauty of what we’ve just shared and it’s not about attributing blame anyway.
“Don’t apologise,” I say. “It takes two to tango.”
“I know, but I want you to know that I don’t make a habit of this,” he carries on. “Seducing women who are attached isn’t really my style.”
The buzzer rings.
“Right then,” I say, picking my jacket up off the floor. “I guess I’ll see you tomorrow.”
Anthony pulls the sheet round his waist, gets out of bed and follows me to the front door. There’s an awkward moment. I’m not quite sure what to say. I turn the latch.
“Right then. See ya.”
“See ya,” he replies.
He bends down, kisses me on the mouth, I open the door, kiss my finger, place it to his lips and leave.
About the Author
Jo Kessel is a journalist, working for the BBC and reporting and presenting for ITV on holiday, consumer and current affairs programs. She writes for several national newspapers in the UK including the Daily Mail, the Telegraph, the Guardian and the Express and was the anonymous author of the Independent’s hit column: Dairy of a Primary School Mum.
When Jo was ten years old she wrote a short story about losing a loved one. Her mother and big sister were so moved by the tale that it made them cry. Having reduced them to tears she vowed that the next time she wrote a story it would make them smile instead. Happily she succeeded and with this success grew an addiction for wanting to reach out and touch people with words. Jo lives in London with her husband and three children. She loves traveling and since becoming a mother anything even remotely sad makes her cry. She’s a sucker for a good romance and tearjerker movies are the worst. She’s that woman in the cinema, struggling to muffle audible wails as everyone else turns round to stare.
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