Must Keep You ~ Excerpt

“You proposed to me because you were drunk?”

“Do you think that?” Carter ran the water in his kitchen sink and stuck his mouth under the faucet. After, he raised his head and settled bloodshot eyes on her. “Don’t go all amnesiac on me and forget the person I am.”

“You didn’t answer my question.” She folded her arms, an inner voice speaking up, Uh, are you trying to start a fight?

“Yeah, because whiskey turns assholes into good guys,” he shot back.

“Look, my hormones are just firing all over the place here, okay?” She dumped her head in her hands. When she looked back at him, he was staring at her, looking as out of his depth as she felt.

Carter brushed his hair back and said, “I’m gonna take a quick shower to sober up a bit. Do you remember where the menus are?”

She nodded.

“Okay, good. Lil you know what I like. Whatever you want is fine with me,” he said brushing her arm, her blood reacting to his touch.

After he disappeared down the hall, she reached for the corner cabinet. Not only did she know where Carter kept the takeout menus in that place, she knew where the whiskey glasses were. And the silverware. And the dishtowels. And the pots and the pans. And the serving utensils. Everything.

Next, she was shaking. Had she and Carter started some kind of relationship? In the living room, the magazines, throw pillows, his collection of dumbbells strewn about, the remote thrown lazily on the sofa cushion, were all sitting in spots she could easily find if they were playing Marco-Polo.

Lily had not only spent a lot of time in that apartment, she’d paid attention to rooms other than the bedroom. Must be the old reporter in her still going strong, she argued with herself, not wanting to believe she’d grown attached in any way to a man as unattainable as Carter Holden.

Sifting through the menus, she fingered the leftover drip-drop from his leaky sink to dab the back of her neck. She might be pregnant but she swore she was having menopausal hot flashes. Plus, everything on these paper trifolds twisted her stomach in knots again.

Knowing Carter was a meat and potatoes man, she thumbed through the Texas BBQ menu, figuring a good meal in his stomach was a better way to start negotiations if she wanted to keep this baby and raise the child by herself. Nothing from Carter. No relationship. No money. Not even acknowledgement as the father. Not even his name on the birth certificate.

Wild instincts had invaded her when she’d seen the faint blue lines. Mine. Years of feeling so alone had zipped up closed. The idea of sharing her baby, even someone just taking the baby away for a weekend had driven her to the maddening idea of shutting Carter out.

Tomorrow, she’d ask Faith if her sister-in-law, Skye the attorney, could draw up the legal papers. Legal Zoom didn’t have a template for a Parental Rights Termination agreement on their website.