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The Hot Guy in the Woods
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He hides in the woods, determined to fix a tragedy that stole his heart.
She’s lost everything, including herself.
And all the truths come out…
* Full length standalone romance with guaranteed HEA and no cheating *
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Her Point of View
The moment I saw the weeping willow hanging over the old stone park bench, I knew she was going to want a picture of it. How the hell did that bench get all the way up on the mountain? I didn’t know. I was sure there was some crazy story to it, because that was just how life went.
My realtor kept driving, heading to the cabin I would eventually buy as a place to escape from reality. A proof of promise to her that things would ease up and get better. We were a family now, and I didn’t want to lose that. Neither did she. We loved each other. We loved Mila. What more did we need?
Apparently, we needed a cabin on the top of a fucking mountain.
I grabbed my cell and took a picture of the willow and the bench.
I shook my head, smiling, as I text her the picture.
It was always the simplest stuff that gave her the biggest smiles. That was something I’d never really understand, even though I was a man who worked on the smallest of details to make a living.
By the time I pulled up to the cabin, she had replied with the word LOVE followed by about a hundred exclamation points.
I laughed as the realtor stood on the porch, arms crossed, a big grin on his face.
I took one look at the cabin and nodded. I didn’t even need to look at the inside to know I was going to buy it.
I should have known better.
But how I could really know that the weeping willow and the stone bench would make me lose everything…?
The STILL MISSING sign
I imagined the conversation. Probably one of the most important conversations a person could have with someone. No matter the circumstances, muttering the words I’m pregnant changed everything.
I put a hand to my stomach, and I turned away from the refrigerated glass case where roses and some bunches of flowers were held to keep them extra fresh.
I tried really hard to envision it.
Just two words.
The conversation that would follow.
The shock. Then the fear. There had to be fear, right? Whatever you’re doing at the exact moment will never be the same for you again. Then after fear…excitement? Of course, that depended on the circumstances.
Shock. Fear. Excitement.
My fingers spread across my stomach.
“Lara, are you okay?”
I turned and took my hand off my flat belly. I threw a smile across my face.
“I’m fine,” I said.
“Look what I found in storage,” Kim said as she showed me a sleeping bag rolled up tight. “So now you have no excuse not to go with us.”
“Yeah, yeah,” I said.
“There’s going to be guys there…you know Alex has a thing for you.”
“Stop,” I said with a roll of my eyes. “Go finish packing up. Are you sure we’re okay to leave?”
“Yeah. Percy is closing up for us.”
Percy was Kim’s brother. Her parents owned the local flower shop. And I was lucky enough to have a job there.
“I’ll meet you outside,” I said.
Kim walked away.
I turned and looked at myself in the reflection of the glass.
My belly was flat. And it would never grow. There was no baby inside me. That was for absolute certain. Yet I had been on the end of a pregnancy confession…
And it wasn’t shock, fear, excitement.
It was shock, fear, anger.
I forgave him once, and now I’d never forget what he had done.
I had no desire to go to a party in the woods to celebrate Megan’s engagement to Josh. I felt too old for that kind of crap, but Megan and Josh met in the woods at a party. He proposed to her in the woods. And allegedly, there was a really sweet spot to party.
There was only one reason I agreed to go.
To hide from my embarrassing reality.
I was in the passenger seat of Kim’s SUV. She had her phone connected to the car, and music from when we were in high school blasted through the speakers. She sang at the top of her lungs, missing ten notes for every one she actually hit. What she didn’t understand was that he was my entire high school life. And beyond that. From the last week of eighth grade when Thad looked at me after finals in science class, all the way to graduating high school, he had been everything. We were far too serious, far too young, but it didn’t matter.
He was everything.
And now he had to become nothing. A memory. A lasting memory. One that would fade. But I was dumb enough to really let it get me down. To the point where I lost my finance job working with investments and almost had to give up my apartment and car. Luckily for me, Kim and her parents saved my butt by letting me work at their florist shop.