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Author's Chapter Notes:
Have another chappie for you! I know it's been forever, but this latest chapter took a little time. It really wanted to go one direction, but I wasn't ready for that yet so I had to force it to stay away from where it was headed. But, I got it finished and I'm posting it for you guys. I hope you enjoy it and I'm so sorry it's taken so long! I will try to do better in the future. To make up for it though, I do have a surprise I'll try to get posted later on today. :) Thank you for all the awesome feedback and please let me know what you think about this one; your comments really give me that motivation I need. And wanna follow me on Twitter and find out when I update? Go to http://twitter.com/HeavenlyTales :) Thanks and enjoy!


I spent most of Saturday at the convention with Dixon. He behaved himself and we seemed to get along well enough. Call me a nerd, but I even found myself enjoying the different displays and information we were able to gather and take back with us. There was a lot that I was excited to try once I got back to California.

I wasn’t sure how Alex was entertaining himself while I was down at the convention center, but he had told me not to worry, he’d find something to do. Our emotionally draining talk and the jetlag had left us both exhausted, so we’d climbed into bed early and let the sleep overtake us. He had still been in bed when I’d left the hotel room the next morning.

On the way back to the hotel, Dixon asked about Anna. I told him that something had come up with her daughter and she hadn’t been able to make it. I didn’t bother to tell him Alex had, or they’d both tricked me. He did invite me to dinner with him and Karie; however, telling me I shouldn’t eat alone. I declined politely, insisting that I would be fine to amuse myself for the evening. We planned our meet up time to head back to the convention for Sunday then parted ways as he headed off the elevator to his floor and I continued in it up to mine.

Upon entering the suite, I found Alex setting trays of piping hot food onto the table, a vase of white and yellow daisies was the centerpiece and flanking them were two tall, white candles, the wicks lit and flickering. The lights in the suite had been dimmed and the blinds covering the floor to ceiling windows turned to a near close, only leaving one window open to reveal the crystal blue water below.

“Wh…what’s all this?” I questioned as I quietly closed the door behind me and set the keycard onto a table there in the entryway.

Alex turned from the table and a warm smile lit his face. “I thought we’d have a nice dinner in tonight.” Then he blinked. “Unless, you um…wanted to go out.”

“No,” I shook my head and slipped my black heels off, “this is wonderful.”

“Good.” His smile grew and he straightened the dishes on the table then pushed the cart the food had been delivered on, to the side.

I watched him with a warm feeling in my stomach, setting my belongings into a chair and moving further into the room. “So, what are we eating?”

“Chicken Parmesan with Fettuccine and Alfredo sauce and garlic breadsticks.”

I couldn’t help the smile that grazed my face or the warmth that was spreading through me. Something so simple, yet touching, and I knew that he had put his whole heart and soul into this dinner. “It smells delicious.”

“Are you hungry?” He moved over to me and took my hands into his, lifting them and kissing my knuckles.

“I am.”

“Good.” He smoothed his hand to my cheek and drew me closer, placing a soft kiss on my lips. “I was hoping you would be.”

I felt myself melting at his touch, suddenly finding myself wanting to wrap myself around him and never let go. “I haven’t eaten since lunch; and that was at like, one or something.”

“Then let’s feed you, baby.” He drew back and took my hands again then led me over to the table.

I took in the décor on the table and giggled at the daisies. “Daisies.”

“Of course.” He pulled out my chair then helped me get seated, brushing his lips across my cheek before taking the chair next to mine. “I was going to get hibiscuses or roses, but I think the daisies are more meaningful.”

I knew he was referring to them being the flowers he’d had delivered to me back before we’d started dating. “I think they are too.”

He gave a nod and watched me a long moment before blinking out of his reverie and motioning to the covered plates of food. “Okay, let’s eat.”

“Right, I’m starving.” I lifted the cover and set it to the side, feeling that rumble of hunger in my belly at the sight of the mouth watering food before me. “Gosh, this looks so good.” Taking up my napkin and placing it in my lap, I surveyed the dish.

“I hoped you’d like it. I wasn’t sure if I should have waited and let you decide what you wanted to order, but I wanted to surprise you and have it all ready too,” Alex explained as he put his own napkin in his lap and took up his fork.

“I think it’s wonderful.” I leaned over and kissed his cheek. “Thank you.”

He caught my free hand with his and tugged me gently to him before I could sit back in my chair. “You’re welcome.” Then he kissed my mouth softly, causing a sigh to escape at the feel of his warm lips upon mine.

It was like an ice cube in the scorching sun; I was feeling this heat seep over me and began to melt. The kiss was slow and easy at first, just relishing in the fact that we had reunited, but before long it was escalating to something deeper, something stronger and I abandoned my food, leaning more into him and smoothing my fingers into his hair. The urge to be completely enveloped by this man was too strong to ignore and both our plates were forgotten as he smoothed a hand to my cheek and held my head to his, kissing me like he was trying to quell the fire that smoldered inside.

“Alex…” I murmured against his lips, trying to wrap my head around a single thought, but finding none.

“Hmm?” He tugged gently at my lower lip, his fingers moving up into my hair and curling around the long, golden locks.

I couldn’t think of a single sentence; my brain didn’t seem to want to click back into gear. “I dunno,” I mumbled between kisses.

Suddenly he pulled back and stood, taking my hand and helping me up as well. “C’mon.”

I blinked and caught my napkin as it tumbled from my lap. “Wh…where are we going?”

“To the bedroom.” He reached and covered our dishes again.

“But…what about dinner?”

“It’ll save.” He turned back to me and, before I could protest, scooped me up into his arms. “And if it doesn’t, we’ll just order more.”

“But, we’re hungry,” I protested weakly.

Alex got us into the bedroom and kicked the door shut then set me onto my feet. “Right now I’m hungry for something else.” Then he began undoing the buttons of my blouse. “And I think you are too.”

Pink tinged at my cheeks and I found myself nervous, like it was our first time all over again. “Alex, I…”

Nimbly he got the buttons undone and pushed the blouse from my shoulders, letting it drop to the floor. Our eyes met and I felt a shudder race right down my spine. “Are you okay?” He questioned softly, his strong arms weaving around me and pulling me close to him, holding me safe and secure in his embrace.

Slowly, I forced space between our bodies. “I just think that before we jump back in bed together, we have more to talk about.”

He blinked some then gave a sigh and ran a hand over his face. “I’m sorry; you’re right.”

I reached for my top, pulling it back on and getting it buttoned up again. “And I’m hungry. So, let’s go back out there and have a nice dinner, continue our conversation from last night and see where the night takes us.”

He nodded and smoothed his own shirt. “Right, I’m sorry. It’s just hard to keep myself in check right now because you’re so goddamn sexy,” he reached out and caught my hand, forcing our eyes to meet again, “and I’ve really missed you.”

I offered up a small smile and touched his cheek. “I’ve missed you too.”

His hand smoothed to the one on his cheek and his thumb caressed my wrist. “You know that I love you, right?”

I pulled back before I could fall into his mesmerizing spell and took his hand. “I know you do.” Then I led him back out to the table and we took our seats.

We got through dinner with pleasant conversation; he told me about his day and I shared mine. It was nice to just have casual and unpressured dinner talk with him and even though physically we weren’t together, it felt like we were becoming united again.

I was proud of myself for standing strong and not faltering and falling into bed with him. It didn’t mean I didn’t want to go there, because Lord knows I did; but sex wasn’t going to solve our problems. Instead, it would just disguise the truth and we wouldn’t be any closer than we were two days ago. We needed to work through this for the sake of ourselves and our relationship; especially if we wanted a future together.

Once the dishes were cleared away and we were nestled comfortably together on the love seat, things finally turned towards a more serious note and the drama of the last few weeks began to play back through my head.

“Can I ask you a question?”

Alex turned his head and met my gaze, sweeping his thumb over my cheek and pushing some hair from my face. “Of course.”

“What ex-girlfriends are you still footing bills for?” I made sure to keep the tone of my voice soft so he wouldn’t become defensive.

He gave a sigh. “Does it really matter?”

I sat up straight and turned to face him more. “It would actually. It would help me to know and understand why you’re doing it.”

He brought a hand up and rubbed the bridge of his nose. “Remember when I told you that I had almost gotten married?”

I gave a little nod.


My brows drew together as I processed the information. “What bills do you pay?”

“We used to have dogs together; I pay their vet bills and whatnot.”

“May I ask, why?”

“Well, they used to be my dogs too, so I kind of feel obligated.” He reached up and rubbed his forehead.

I half understood and half didn’t. “How long have they not been ‘your’ dogs?”

He mumbled something and I had to lean in more. “What?”

“Over seven years.”

Whoa, I drew back and sucked in a breath, my mind whirling. He’d been paying for his ex fiancée’s pets for over seven years? My Lord! That was mind blowing. “Baby, why have you been doing it for so long?”

“Because, she’ll call me up crying that they’re sick or they need their shots, but she can’t afford it, and she knows how much I love those pooches.” He spoke to me, but kept his gaze locked on the window, not wanting to maintain eye contact.

“Don’t take offense to this please, but it sounds to me like she’s just taking advantage of you.” I reached out and touched his shoulder.

“That’s what my mom says.” His eyes drifted to his lap and he brushed at his jeans.

“I think your mom is probably right.” I tilted my head. “What would happen if you told her no?”

Alex gave a groan and shook his head. “You don’t even want to know.”

I leaned over and kissed his shoulder. “I’m sure it won’t be pretty, but you have me here for support. You can do this; it’s time she starts paying her own way through life.”

“She won’t be happy.”

“Who is, when they’re told they have to stop mooching?”

He wet his bottom lip and met my eyes again. “You might run into her. Cuz she will make sure to come over and talk to me about it.”

I touched his cheek. “Then she can bring it.”

He chuckled and caught my hand, kissing my knuckles and it made my heart swell. “I love you, Morgan, you know that, right?”

“Yes, and you know I love you.”

“You have to if you’re willing to put up with my shit.”

That made me laugh and I kissed his cheek softly. “Who else are you footing bills for?”

Alex gave a drawn out sigh and slouched back into the couch.

“This girl, Trisha… we were together almost a year.”

“What bills of hers do you pay?”

“Her gas bill. She was in the middle of moving in with me when we broke up and she took it really hard; lost her job and everything. So…when I found out, I offered to pay the bill a couple times…” he shrugged some.

“And a couple times turned into every time, right?”

His shoulders drooped again and it was all I could do not to wrap him in my arms.

“Babe,” I reached out and turned his face to mine, “you are such a wonderful person and I know you want everyone to be happy and to help those that need it, but you have to learn when and where to draw the line.”

“You sound like my mom.” He chuckled low then kissed my palm.

I nodded some. “You cannot just let people walk over you. You don’t want them using you, so you have to stop them from doing so. Telling someone no is not going to make them hate you, and if they do,” I gave a little shrug, “then they’re not worth having as a friend anyway.”

He sighed and ducked his head. “I know.”

I pressed my lips together and watched him a moment before speaking, “Why do you let it happen?”

“Because I’ve never had someone like you supporting me before.” His eyes met mine and I could just feel the love and gratefulness in them.

I couldn’t help the soft smile on my lips and pressed a soft kiss to his cheek. “I’ll do whatever I can. You’ve done so much for me.”

“That is one of the reasons why I love you so much;” he stroked my cheek, “you are everything that I need even when I didn’t think I needed it.”

I felt my heart melt. “Are you trying to sweet talk me?”

“Maybe.” A grin tugged at the corner of his mouth. “Is it working?”

I chuckled and kissed his lips, pulling away before he could turn it up a notch. “We aren’t done talking yet.”

“Damnit.” He sighed and sat straight again. “What else is there to talk about? I told you about my dad and the exes.”

“Why didn’t you end up marrying that one girl?”

He frowned some. “That is something I try not to think about.”


“Because it was a long time ago and I was not in a good place. Can’t we just leave it at that?”

I pushed some hair over my shoulder. “How come you were so reluctant to tell me why you were still paying their bills?”

He shrugged and picked at the skin around his fingernails. “I was afraid you’d think bad of me and leave me.”

I was quiet for a moment then finally reached out and took his hand into mine. “Well, I’m still here.”

“I know and you have no idea how grateful I am of that.” He met my eyes and I could just feel the emotion in them. “I’m so sorry for how I’ve acted; so sorry.”

“I know you are and it’s okay.”

“No,” he pulled back some and shook his head, “it’s not okay. What I did was unforgivable and I wouldn’t blame you if you never wanted to see me again.”

I grabbed at his hands again and tugged them into my lap. “Hey, stop that right now. Yes, it wasn’t right how you behaved, but it happened.” I searched his face and held his hands to my chest. “I do forgive you. I know that you are sorry and I know that you want us to work as much as I do. So, we’re going to put the past back in the past and focus on the future and us. You’re going to stop paying their way through life and we’re going to be more open with each other. No more secrets.”

Alex closed his eyes a moment as I spoke then blinked them back open and rested his forehead against mine. “I don’t know how I got so lucky, but I do not deserve you.”

“Yes you do.”

“No, not really, I don’t. I’m not good enough a person to deserve someone like you.”

I touched his cheek and tilted his head some to see his face completely. “Please don’t think like that. I’m not too good for you and you’re not beneath me. We’re just right for each other.”

“I’m sorry.” He sighed and pulled back, tugging on his jeans a bit.

I watched him a moment, wishing that I could just erase the pain and self loathing he had deep inside. “We’re going to be okay, Alex. You’ve never had anyone like me loving you before and I’ve never had anyone like you loving me before. We just need to believe in each other and us as a couple.”

“I do.” He looked to me. “I believe in us and I want a future together as much as you do.”

Inside my chest, I felt my heart flooding with love. “Kay,” I leaned forward and placed a soft kiss to his lips, “what do you say to starting fresh? We put all this behind us and just start anew.”

“I say that’s a very good idea.” He kissed my lips again then again. “But that doesn’t mean I have to wait just as long as I did before to get you naked does it?”

I giggled low. “Hm, no, I don’t think it does.”

“Good,” he smoothed his hands along my arms and dipped his head, kissing my neck softly, “because I don’t think I could do that again.”

“I’m sorry I was such a prude.” I watched him with teasing eyes.

“You weren’t a prude. You were just making sure you were ready.”

That touched me and I kissed his cheek. “That’s right.”

He sighed and took my legs, pulling them over his lap and smoothing a hand on my knee. “So, we’re okay?”

I watched him, reaching and smoothing a hand along the side of his face. “We’re okay.”

“Good.” He kissed my forehead. “I’m going to be better, baby. I won’t fuck up like that again.”

“I’m gonna hold you to that, you know.”

“Please do.” He tilted his head and kissed the side of my neck before drawing me into his arms in a tight embrace.

I sighed and leaned into his chest, slipping my own arms around him and returning the hug.

“So, did you want to go out and see some of Hawaii?” Alex spoke, his voice next to my ear.

“You want to go out?” I pulled back and met his eyes. “What happened to getting me naked?”

“I have all night to get you naked,” he smirked then grew serious, “but I know that the last time you were here was for your honeymoon and I thought we could go out and make you some new memories; nice, new, fresh ones of us.”

I wanted to kiss his face all over. “That sounds wonderful.”

“Good.” He kissed my nose then my lips and released me. “You go get changed and I’ll push the dinner cart out into the hallway.”

“Deal.” I touched his cheek then pulled back and rose from the sofa.

Twenty minutes later we were strolling hand in hand along the gorgeous sandy beach, watching the sun setting over the horizon and feeling the warm surf tickle our bare feet.

“This is beautiful,” I breathed, watching the brilliant reds and pinks and oranges filling the sky as the sun began to slowly disappear.

“It really is,” Alex agreed. “Makes the sunsets at home look like nothing compared to this one.”

I tilted my head. “Wonder why that is. California sunsets are beautiful, but there’s just something about Hawaii that sets it apart from everything else.”

“Well, it’s Hawaii; land of exotic flowers and culture and scenery. A lover’s paradise, a dreamer’s sanctuary, an escape to free your mind.”

I chuckled. “When we get married, I want to honeymoon in Greece.”

Alex glanced at me. “What brings that up?”

A shrug. “Just thinking about Hawaii and romance and honeymoons and then I thought that I don’t want to honeymoon here again, I want us to create our own special place and Greece is a country I’ve always wanted to visit.”

He chuckled and gave my hand a squeeze. “Well, when we get married, we can honeymoon wherever you want to go.”

I grinned. “To Greece.”

“To Greece.”

We strolled along a few more minutes lost in our own thoughts before I suddenly remembered something I had wanted to tell him. “So, guess what?”

“Hmm,” he tilted his head, “you love me.”

“Yes, that I do, but no, that’s not it.” I giggled low. “Guess again.”

“Can I have a hint?”

“It’s about Dianna.”

“See, I never would have guessed it was about her.” He rubbed his chin with his free hand. “Hmm, she is moving?”

“No,” I chuckled and squeezed his hand with both mine. “She’s having a baby.”

Alex blinked and looked to me. “Really?” When I nodded, a grin broke out over his face. “That’s great news.”

“Yeah, I think so too, but she wasn’t too keen on the idea at first. But I think she’s starting to come around.”

“She wasn’t keen on it?”

I shook my head. “No, she’s never wanted kids, so she was freaking out at first, but Manny’s excited and I think that’s helped to calm her.” I kicked at a wave. “She doesn’t think she’ll be a good mom, but I think she will.”

“She’s done a good job with helping you and taking care of you.”

I chuckled. “Exactly. That’s what I told her.”

“Sometimes it’s the ones that don’t feel they have a motherly bone in their body that are actually the best ones out there.”

“That’s very true.” I slowed some and looked out over the sparkling water, watching as the beautiful colors in the sky mirrored over the surface.

Alex stopped and moved up behind me, wrapping his arms around my waist and holding me to his chest. “Beautiful, isn’t it?”

I nodded and relaxed back against him. “It really is.”

“Think anyone would notice if I pulled you down into the sand and made love to you in the surf?” He glanced around.

I laughed low at that before peeking around as well. “That might be something we need to wait until midnight for.”

“You’re right.” He nipped at my ear. “I had to ask though.”

I smirked then took his hands and pulled away. “We have all night for that. I thought you wanted us to have some fun out here.”

“Oh, I do.” And then he was coming up behind me and swinging me into his arms. “And I have the perfect idea.”

I laughed then gave a squeal when I saw him heading us right towards the water. “Ooh, no you are not!”

“Ooh, yes I am!” He laughed and waded into the surf, dipping me down so a wave washed up over us.

“Alex!” I jerked some then wrapped my arms around his neck.

“Morgan!” He smirked and pushed through the water as another wave descended. “Hold your breath.” And then he was diving into the wave, taking us both under.

It was a second before I could find my footing and surface, pushing the hair from my face and getting a breath.

Alex pushed up as well and wiped his face then sent a spray of water at me.

I giggled and retaliated with my own wave which ensued in an all out water war.

“Okay, okay, truce!” He called out as splash after splash doused him.

“Ha!” I smirked and sent one more. “That’s what you get for tossing me into the water.”

He laughed and wiped his face. “You loved it.”

“I love you.” I lowered down till just my head and shoulders were above the surface.

He drew closer. “I love you.”

“C’mere.” I nodded my head in a come here gesture.

Alex sidled up to me and as tempting as it was to dunk him under the water, I refrained. Instead, I slipped my arms around his neck and drew our bodies together under the water.

He smoothed his own arms around me. “Ooh, this is nice.”

I kissed the wet skin of his neck. “You taste like salt.”

He chuckled and stood with us, the water coming to our waists. “We are in the ocean.”

“True.” I continued to kiss along his neck, keeping our bodies pressed together.

“Mm, that’s very nice.” He tilted his head and snaked a hand to my rear, giving it a firm squeeze.

I giggled low against his skin, making my way up towards his ear. “I have a good idea.”

“What’s that?” His voice had lowered some to that sexy, soulful tone it took when he was being seductive and it always made me shiver.

“I think you should take me back to the hotel,” I nipped his ear then pulled back to meet his eyes, “and we can take a nice, long shower.”

He cocked a brow. “Together?”

I traced his cheek with the tips of my fingers. “Together.”

“You’re on.” Then he swung me back up into his arms and headed for the shore.