From the Author
Their breakup had been agony for her, but it was nothing compared to the raw squirming torment that accosted her under that accusatory glare of his.
"How, um..." Wait. If Trella hadn't told him, did he even know she was pregnant?
She scooched her chair a little tighter to the desk and tugged her lapels over her noticeably more ample breasts, adjusting the angle of her laptop one more inch, hoping to hide what was pressing up against the edge of her desk.
"Why are you here?" she asked shakily.
"You know damned well why I'm here." He planted his hands on the two-hundred-and-fifty-year-old Chippendale masterpiece that her mother refused to sell. "Stand up."
"You came to school me on my manners?" She pretended she wasn't torn to shreds inside and lifted haughty brows. "Sorry I didn't rush around to greet you like a long-lost relative!"
He made a choked noise.
"Yes, chéri. I think there is a certain courtesy concerning relatives that you have grossly overlooked." His hazel-green eyes were stainless steel. Chop, chop, his gaze warned. Prepare to be sliced and diced.
She had known he would be angry, but this was so unfair. Her hand wanted to go protectively to the bump that had sent him away and was now bringing him back, but not with so much as a hint of pleasure at seeing her again.
She had been trying to work up the courage to call him. Her ego had held her back. Pride and ego. Pride because she was still devastated that he had let her go, obviously feeling nothing toward her despite the fact they'd essentially been living together, and ego because she looked ridiculous.
She gathered her courage and stood, bracing to take it on the chin.
He slid his gaze down and jerked, pushing off the desk, clearly taken aback by the small planet that shot straight out of her middle and arrived a full minute before she did in any room she entered.
"Thanks," she said acerbically, but couldn't blame him. While she was a little plumper in the face and chest, she really hadn't gained much weight except in her middle, where she looked like she'd stuffed a sofa cushion under her shirt. The whole sofa, actually, and she was only midway through this pregnancy!
Henri took a long inhale, cheeks hollowing as he stared at her belly with such laser focus she was compelled to block his fierce stare with her hand.
His own hand went into his hair. His nostrils flared as that cutting glance swung up to pierce hers. "Why would you do this?"
He was gray beneath his swarthy skin. Obviously he was shocked.
She had expected this accusation. It was precisely the reason why she had left him and had worked so hard to put in place a means to do this alone. It still went into her like a knife. Nearly two years, two years of never asking him for one damned thing except "do you love me?"
"I did this to you?" she said, barely managing to keep a level tone. Oh, she felt so discarded and misused in that moment, worse even than when he'd shrugged off their breakup. "I suggest you take a hard look at which one of us is carrying three stone of our combined DNA."