Xavier Cold

Page 61


“Probably over twenty eight years,” I mutter, still in shock. “No wonder Grandmother hated me. I was probably a constant reminder of the evil thing she did to the man she locked in her closet. This . . . it explains so much.”
Anna rubs my back. “Yes it does.”
Finally, all the questions I’ve had lingering my entire life finally have answers. My father never abandoned me and my mother. He was killed—murdered by my Grandmother who spent the rest of her life concealing her evil to the public. But I knew the truth about her, and now so will the rest of the world.
Chapter 35
I set my coffee down on the desk, and then creep over to place a cup on the nightstand by Xavier. He didn’t sleep well last night. We were up discussing the things that were found in his childhood home. It was hard for him to digest everything that’s happened to him. It was a heavy load to take in, but at least we’re at a point in our relationship where he feels comfortable enough to talk to me about the things he’s feeling.
I attempt to tip-toe away, but Xavier’s hand snakes out from under the covers and snatches my wrist. “Where you going?”
He playfully pulls me down in the bed with him and then wraps his arm around me, snuggling against me. “You smell good.”
“I showered.” I giggle. “It’s called soap.”
“Mmm. Maybe we shouldn’t go out today. I still owe you a day in bed.”
I trace the ridge of his nose with the tip of my finger, careful not to touch any of the bruises on his face. “We could do that, but I think finding an apartment before we leave for Tension might be a better option.”
He nods. “You’re right. And we need to find you a ring.”
“We don’t have to do that today.”
“Yes, we do.” He nuzzles his nose into my hair and kisses my neck. “Since I’m not allowed to fuck up assholes for checking you out anymore, a ring on that finger of yours will be the next best thing to let every man in the world know you’re taken.”
“I don’t need a ring for that. All they would have to do is look into my eyes and see a woman whose heart has already been claimed.”
Xavier touches my cheek. “I love you, beautiful. You’re the best thing that’s ever happened to me—my angel—my everything, and I’ll never let you go again.”
The list I’ve kept in my purse over the last eleven months is tattered. I must’ve triple checked it over a hundred times, making sure I don’t forget anything for the day we’ve been counting down for nearly a year.
Quinn rips several tissues out of the box sitting on the table and stuffs them under her arm, then repeats the scenario for the other armpit. She looks ridiculous standing there in her wedding dress with tissues poking out from her underarms.
“It’s hot as Hades in here,” Quinn complains.
I laugh. “It’s not that bad in here. You’re just nervous.”
“Am not. Why would I be? I’m marrying the man I love and we’re going to be together for the rest of our entire lives. No pressure.” I’ve noticed Quinn rattles on when she’s a bit panicked.
I stand up and grab her hands, trying to calm her down. “You’re going to be fine. There’s nothing to getting married.”
“Easy for you to say.” She rolls her eyes. “You and X didn’t get married in a church full of people watching your every move.”
“No. We didn’t. But getting married at city hall was the quickest way we could get it done.”
I smile thinking about our spur of the moment wedding. We didn’t tell anyone we were doing it. But after what happened with Bishop, we decided life was too short and we wanted to officially make our love eternal.
A knock sounds on the other side of the door. I cross the small room the church provided for the bridal party to get ready in, and pull open the door.
Xavier stands there, cradling our baby boy in his massive arms. He looks very dapper with his hair slicked back into a bun while in his black three-piece suit. I’m convinced my man looks good in anything he wears. Xavier grimaces. “Sorry, I know this is girl time, but someone wanted to see Mommy before she had to go perform her maid of honor duties.”
I pull the blanket away. “He’s sleeping.”
Xavier grins. “I didn’t say it was Simon who needed you.”
“You’re too much.” I lean in and kiss his lips. “Are my parents and my brother here yet?”
“Yep. We’ll all be sitting in the second row together.”
I bend down and place a light kiss on our baby’s forehead and then kiss Xavier one more time. “I’ll see you at the reception. I’ll be the one in the puffy bridesmaid dress.”
He steps back and checks out what I’m wearing. “Is it easy to get out of?”
I grin. “You’ll find out tonight.”
He wiggles his eyebrows. “It’s a date. Later, beautiful.”
He turns and heads back out to the chapel where everyone else is waiting.
I turn to Quinn. “You ready to do this?”
“Yes,” she confirms and begins heading toward me.
I grimace and then point to her shoulder. “The tissues?”
She quickly jerks them out and tosses them into the trashcan and then takes a deep breath. “Let’s do this.”
I follow her out the door, and it hits me I have a pretty great life. It was a long, hard road to get here, but together Xavier and I made it out on the other side, stronger than ever. Things tested us along the way, but learning to lean on each other helped us get through testifying against Bishop and Kai. Thanks to me and Xavier taking the stand, Bishop and Kai will be serving nearly seventy years between the two of them. The streets of Detroit are a lot safer without them around.
Deena and Rex are still a pain in the ass from time to time when Xavier and me are on the road doing Tension, but they’ve decided it was no longer worth their efforts to break us up once word got around I was pregnant. Xavier’s been on the road without me since Simon was born, but as soon as he’s a little bigger, we plan on taking him on the road with us until it’s time to start school.
My mother offered to babysit for us if we move to Portland, but I explained Detroit is home for us now. In place of rebuilding the house on Sycamore, Xavier built a recreation center for underprivileged youths in the neighborhood. Cole, Nettie, and Quinn have pitched in a lot to really get the project off the ground and run it for us when we’re on the road. It’s a very personal project for Xavier. He loves the idea of providing a positive place to keep kids off the streets.