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Already dressed for the dinner party, Mitch made a last walk-through to check the status of everything. The house was immaculate, and the food that Tess had spent two days laboring over was neatly arranged on trays and ready to serve. Guests would be arriving in an hour. His wife was upstairs getting ready, and his daughter was already passed out in the big girl bed they’d upgraded to just a month ago.
He couldn’t quite believe that Vivi was big enough for big girl bed. His baby was growing up, and Mitch wasn’t entirely sure his heart could take it. He was so damned lucky. Each and every day with his wife and daughter was better than the last. He couldn’t ask for any more, and yet he was thinking about it. Had been thinking about it for a while. But his very unconventional start with Tess had kept him from broaching the subject because he honestly wasn’t entirely sure how she’d react.
They had an hour. Maybe he’d go ask her now and test the waters. Open the door to negotiations, as it were.
He took the stairs two at a time, excitement and anticipation fueling his pace. Tess was in the bathroom, fussing over her makeup, still only half dressed in a confection of navy silk and lace that had all the blood draining out of his head.
“Damn. I think I am honor bound to pull you right back out of those.”
Those dark eyes he loved so much lit with heat and amusement. “That would defeat the purpose of you unwrapping me at the end of the night.”
He edged up behind her, skimming his hands from her bare shoulders down the length of those toned arms to wrap around her. “Studies show that spoilers actually increase enjoyment.”
“Is that so?”
“Vivi’s already down.” He skimmed one hand around her torso to settle over her belly. It was so easy to remember her ripe and round with his child. He wanted that again. Would she?
Tess his gaze met his in the mirror, her own going dark. “When you look at me like that, it seems like you’ve got ideas, Mitch Campbell.”
His hand slid a little lower, one finger dipping just beneath the waistband of her lacy underwear. “Oh, I do. I was thinking that it might be pretty wonderful to give Vivi a brother or sister.”
Tess went still, eyes widening. “You want another baby?”
For once, Mitch couldn’t read her reaction, so he tried to keep his tone light and easy. “I mean, the first one has been pretty amazing. And as you know, we Campbells rarely stop with just one. I know she wasn’t planned, and you’d prefer to actually go into things eyes wide open with an actual plan. So, yeah, I’m posing the question: Will you make another baby with me Tess?”
She turned in his arms, eyes searching his face as her own arms lifted to snake around his shoulders. “It might be pretty wonderful to try on purpose.”
‘Might’ wasn’t ‘no.’ Mitch could work with that. “I think the trying it a lot of the fun.”
Her lips curved. “You aren’t wrong. We can finally test my theory.”
“Whether deliberate conceptual sex is hotter than all other sex.”
He thought back to very early in her pregnancy with Vivi when she’d posed that very question. He slid his hands lower, curving them around the cheeks of her ass and drawing her closer. “Only one way to find out. Are you up to the challenge?”
With a grin, Tess pressed her hips against him. “I think that’s my line. And the answer seems to be a resounding yes.”
“Hell, yes. Now and later.”
Tess’s voice was already breathless when he lifted her onto one of the bathroom counters. “You have to hurry. I still need time to get ready.”
“I’m taking all the time necessary to give you exactly what you need.” Flashing her a wolfish grin, he hooked his fingers in the waistband of her panties and was just on the verge of stripping them down those long, long legs when a tiny voice slurred, “Daddy? Mama?”
Mitch dropped his temple to his wife’s. “Foiled again.” He loved his daughter. Adored her. But Vivi was a little escape artist.
Tess lifted a hand to his cheek. “It just means we’ll have to get more creative.”
With some regret, he let her slide off the counter and stride toward their sleepy daughter.
“And what are you doing out of bed, young lady?”
“Couldn’t sleep. Want to watch Mama get pretty.”
To emphasize the point, Vivi picked up a tube of mascara.
Mitch knew that stubborn face. There’d be no getting her down fast enough to still have a shot at his pre-party plans.
Tess obviously drew the same conclusion, because she set Vivi on the edge of her makeup counter. “Okay, but after I’m ready it’s back to bed for you.”
All signs of sleepiness promptly disappeared. “Okay!”
The little faker.
“You stay right here with Daddy. I’m just gonna put on my dress.” As Tess strode by him, she trailed a hand down his shoulder and whispered, “Definitely later.”
Taking in the daughter who was so much a part of them both, Mitch just grinned. “Can’t wait.”
* * *
This little family is so frigging CUTE! It just made sense to me that they’d want to expand it. I’m not one for writing the next generation (they’re totally still kids in my head), but it’s fun to see them as bitties! I hope you enjoyed this extra glimpse into their happily ever after.
Don’t forget to check out A Lot Like Christmas, Book 11 in the Wishful Romance series!