Delicious(Buchanans, Book 1)(28) by Susan Mallery
“I can’t tell her. It would hurt too much,” he said.
“It’s going to hurt more when she finds out another way.”
He bit into a piece of fish. She recognized the stubborn set of his mouth and sighed. Fine. She couldn’t make him tell Dani, but she could keep on him until he caved.
“I will say this,” she told him. “Talking about your family always makes me appreciate my own a lot more.”
“How are your folks?” he asked.
“Good. My dad is still busy with the dealership and making both his sons-in-law sweat about who is going to be left in charge.”
“Do they know?” he asked, glancing at her midsection.
She touched her stomach. “Yes. I told them about the baby. Actually I told them when I started thinking about getting pregnant. Mom wanted me to wait to get married, but it wasn’t a big argument. They’ve stopped expecting me to be conventional.”
“Because you didn’t decide to be a stay-at-home mom like Emily and Julie?”
She nodded. Both her sisters had married within two years of finishing high school. Penny had never seen the point of hooking up with a guy, then locking herself in a house and popping out babies. Of course she’d never planned on being a single mom, either.
“I’ve made my way in a man’s world,” she said brightly. “As soon as word gets out about the baby, everyone will be really nice to me and if they’re not, I’ll have Naomi to protect me.”
He glanced around the empty restaurant. “She’s with Reid tonight?”
“That’s my guess. I’m sure they’re off having hot monkey sex even as we speak.”
Cal grimaced. “Don’t go there. It’s not an image either of us want in our brains.”
She grinned. “You have a point. Naomi is far more sexual than anyone I’ve ever known.”
“Tell me about it. That time she walked in on us, I was sure she was going to offer to join in.”
Penny laughed. “If we hadn’t been married, I think she might have. Later she told me you were much more impressive naked than she’d ever suspected.”
“Great. Not something I needed to know.”
“But Naomi is practically a legend,” she teased. “Don’t you want to know what all the fuss is about?”
He glared at her. “I’m not interested in having sex with your best friend. Okay?”
“Fine. It’s your loss.”
“If you want details, ask Reid. I’m sure he’ll share.”
“No, thanks.” Penny enjoyed teasing Cal about Naomi, but she didn’t actually want to know what her friend was like in bed. That would just be too weird.
“So if you’re not interested in Naomi,” she said, “who are you interested in?”
“Asking about my love life?”
“Uh-huh.” She suspected there wasn’t anyone right now. Cal wasn’t the type to have kissed her if he’d been involved.
“I’m between women. And you?”
“You talked to Reid,” she said, knowing it was the only place he could have disappeared to so he could get answers. “You know there isn’t anyone.”
“That’s why you chose in vitro?”
“Sure. I got tired of waiting for Mr. Right to show up. Apparently his flight was delayed or he married someone else by mistake.”
Cal didn’t like the sound of that. Once he’d been her Mr. Right. Of course, that had changed when their marriage had ended.
“Is that what you want?” he asked. “A traditional marriage?”
“Sure. Being a single mom was never part of my master plan. I’m not afraid to do it on my own, but I would have preferred to be part of something more. Still, I can do this.”
Penny had always been stubborn about achieving her goals. He didn’t doubt her for a second.
“You said September. When?”
“The twelfth. I have the advantage of knowing the actual day I got pregnant.”
“Are you okay in the kitchen?”
“Sure. I’ll need to sit a little more after my seventh month, but I can still handle things. The pregnancy is one of the reasons I wanted Naomi with me. She’ll help pick up the slack. I’m going to take a short maternity leave, then come back after three weeks.”
That surprised him. “Don’t you want to stay home longer with the baby?”
“I’m bringing the baby to work with me. Why do you think I took the larger office?”
A baby? Here? “You can’t.”
“Really? Why not?”
He stared at her and couldn’t think of a single reason.
“That’s my point,” she said. “Why can’t I bring in the baby? At least for the first few months. I’m going to be breastfeeding, so I’ll need the baby around. I’ve already lined up a fabulous nanny. She looks like Mrs. Claus. By the time my son or daughter is ready for preschool, I’ll have my own restaurant.”
She’d always been a planner. “The kid’s going to know what a sauté pan is before he or she can walk.”
“I hope so.”
He ate a forkful of potatoes. Four months along. No wonder her br**sts were larger. He held in a grin. Penny would accuse him of being a typical guy for noticing that first.
There would be other changes, he thought, remembering the first time she’d been pregnant. They’d both been so excited. Scared, but happy. Then the guilt had set in and he hadn’t known how to handle it.
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