I don’t actually have anything scary today! Instead I offer you a sneak peek at TART!
Delicious: TART by LAUREN DANE
Copyright 2012, Lauren Dane
All Rights Reserved, The Berkley Publishing Group
Cal sat next to Patrick Carter, listening to a really great story about the ways Bainbridge Island had changed over the years. The man was a font of knowledge about so many things. Cal loved his stories and his asides. But what he loved more than that was the way the man simply accepted his grandson and his grandson’s two lovers. Without blinking an eye.
Cal hadn’t told his family yet. He was still working out a way to say it to communicate to them just how important Jules and Gideon were to him without making it sound like it was all about the sex or whatever. But Patrick, at eighty-four, didn’t seem bothered by it at all. If he was in town and saw Cal, he waved and always made the time to talk to him. He stopped in at Tart all the time, he knew as well.
Gideon was fortunate to have this man in his life, and Cal supposed he and Jules were too.
He glanced around the area for her. She’d been slightly off over the last week. At first he’d chalked it up to stress over the party. Jules had wanted it to be perfect for Gillian and Adrian and the need to control every last detail had consumed much of her time.
But after she’d been back a day or two it had become clear to Cal that something had gone down the weekend before when she’d gone down to Portland to her brother’s place. When Cal or Gideon had asked about it, Jules had been full of description about the party and her nephews’ reactions to the things she’d done. But she’d avoided talking about anything else.
He and Gideon figured she’d had some sort of spat with Ethan regarding their mother. She had tomorrow morning off so he and Gideon would push her then. Damn her mother.
“Your girl sure looks fetching tonight.” Patrick nodded toward where Jules stood with a plate of food in one hand, the other on Miles’s forearm. The boy clearly adored his godmother. His grin was huge and he leaned toward her.
“She sure is, Patrick.”
“First time I saw her she was not more than four or five. We used to eat in her parents’ diner a few times a month and she’d be there. Over the years she waited tables or cooked there. Grew up fine, that one. Better’n her folks I wager.” He shook his head. “Gideon came out of that damned marriage of his lucky. What he has now is better than what he had. I figure it takes the both of you to manage that woman of yours. But . . . with you too.”
Cal choked out a laugh.
“I’m an old man, Calvin, I don’t bother to beat around the bush. I don’t much care for judging what people get up to in the bedroom, long as everyone there is on board. But I can see your heart. You wear it on your sleeve. You love my grandson and he loves you right back. And her too. So what difference does it make to me that there’s three of you instead of two? Or that two of you have the same equipment? I’m going to die soon enough; I don’t need to carry anyone else’s choices. I just need to love my family. If you were bad for him, I’d show you just how well I can still throw a punch to the face. But you’re all right. For a lawyer.”
Cal just bet Patrick could throw a punch. The man was hale and had fists the size of small hams. He worked outside every day. Cal had no doubts at all that should Patrick get to feeling someone was out to harm his family he’d do what was needed to set things right.
“I’m glad you approve. I never . . . well, I didn’t set out to end up here. But I’m glad I have.” Not that it was easy. But it was worth the struggle to get things right.
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