Having the boss's baby?Lianne O'Mallory is longing to have a baby, but time is running out! She's even created a secret wish list of her perfect man, but after a string of dating disasters, that list ends up in the bin.... Only to be discovered by her sexy boss! Tray Elliott can't work out why his beautiful, intelligent colleague would need to put together such a list, but it intrigues him. A man like him would never admit his own secret desire for a family--but this boss has a pregnancy proposal that Lianne might not be able to resist....
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June 09, 2008
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Excerpt from The Pregnancy Promise by Barbara McMahon
Lianne O'Mallory sat bundled up in an old quilt. The wind blew from the sea, the tang of salt filling the air. It was too cold to be outside, but she snuggled in the warmth of the quilt and stared out at the gray sea. It had been raining until a half hour ago. The gray skies looked as if they melded into the water at the horizon. It was a dreary day. One that suited her mood to perfection. Tears welled again. Sniffing, she refused to cry.
Staring over the deserted beach from the family cottage, she tried to make her mind go blank--but the doctor's words echoed over and over. Her recommendation--a hysterectomy. Lianne blinked back the tears. She was only twenty-eight, far too young to face this. Never married, she still held the hope she'd find the man of her dreams one day and get married and start a family. That wouldn't happen if she had the operation. She'd thought she had all the time in the world. Instead she was limited to months.
The painful menstrual cramps and heavy bleeding contributed to her being almost incapacitated several days each month. If she wanted relief from the pain, this was the option her physician recommended. She snuggled against the hot water bottle pressed to her abdomen. Pills and heat helped, but nothing fully relieved the pain.
Not that she'd get an operation based on one doctor's opinion. Lianne believed Dr. Wright, however, and expected a second and even third doctor to support her prognosis. But not yet. She couldn't bear to end all hope of having a family one day. She had already made an appointment with another ObGyn. But she knew it was only a matter time. Her doctor would not have recommended the procedure if she hadn't been certain it was the only option left.
The pronouncement had been unexpected. Visiting the doctor yesterday afternoon, she'd been hoping for a new treatment, something that would work after five years of trying different medication. But the miracle she hoped for hadn't appeared. Each month the pain grew worse. This month she'd been driven to the doctor's again. Too distraught to even think after the doctor's recommendation, she'd hopped in her car and driven to the beach; to the cottage that had been in her family since her grandfather had been a little boy. It was a refuge, a haven. She sorely needed some time to come to terms with the change in her life.
Cottage was a bit of a misnomer--the house had five bedrooms and a kitchen large enough to feed a family of twenty. And there were usually that many in and out all summer long.
October it was deserted. The perfect place to hide away and come to terms with the realities of her life.
Lianne hadn't even told her twin yet. Annalise would drive out to join her as soon as she heard and at this moment, Lianne didn't want anyone around--not even the closest person to her in the world.
Her cell rang. It had rung a dozen times already today. Each time the chirpy ring startled her, bringing her out of her reverie for a few seconds. It lay on the counter in the kitchen. She could hear it but not bring herself to leave her warm cocoon to walk inside to answer.
The relentless wave action of the sea mesmerized. The cool breeze chilled her cheeks. Tucked inside the warm quilt, getting up would mean being enveloped in the cold until she went inside. Maybe she'd just stay huddled in the quilt forever.
The phone went quiet. No one knew where she was. She'd phoned in to the office after she'd left the doctor's office and just told her assistant she'd be out for a couple of days. Not stopping to check in with any of her family or friends, she'd driven straight to the beach. Sooner or later she'd have to call someone or they'd all worry. But not yet.
The phone rang again. For a moment Lianne thought it sounded angry. She smiled for the first time since seeing the doctor yesterday. Phone ring tones didn't sound angry. They just played whatever ring tone was set. Sighing, she rose and went inside. Her cramps were manageable, but she hunched over slightly. It would be Traynor Elliott--she could tell by the intense vibes winging their way over the airways. Her boss didn't do things by half measures. If he decided he needed to speak to her, she'd better answer or who knew what he'd do next.
She grabbed the phone and flipped it open. "Yes?" The door hadn't latched behind her and the wind whipped it wideopen, slamming it against the wall. Lianne winced as the cold air whirled around the kitchen.
"Where the hell are you and why isn't the Schribner folder where I think it ought to be?" Tray growled.