Read Two Hearts for Christmast Online

Authors: Lisa Y. Watson

Two Hearts for Christmast

TWO HEARTS FOR CHRISTMAS

Book II in the Love at Christmastime series

 

 

 

Lisa Y. Watson

Copyright © 2013 Lisa Y. Watson
 

All rights reserved.

This is a work of fiction. Any references or similarities to actual events, real people, living, or dead, or to real locales are intended to give the novel a sense of reality.

Any similarities in other names, characters, places, and incidents are entirely coincidental.

DEDICATION

 

 

For my mother, Harriette Y. Dodson

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

 

 

Thank you to Karen Rodgers for being such a wonderful editor.  My special thanks to the readers out there for connecting with me to let me know how much you enjoyed this story.  It has a special place in my heart, as do all of you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 CHAPTER one

 

 

Is it possible for anyone to be this happy?  
Yvette Stilwell-Darcy had not been looking for love, but it had found her.  A widow for three years, Yvette had run into Christopher Darcy on a return flight from London two years ago.  The two had hit it off from the moment they introduced themselves.  Or more like Christopher re-introduced himself.  It turned out he already knew her from college, and had been very aware of her during that time.  In fact, he later admitted that it was love at first sight for him.  Their renewed acquaintance years later, courtship and eventual marriage had taken place in a span of a few months.  The last two years of her life had been a whirlwind of non-stop excitement.


Mommy, look!  Robby is an astronaut.”  


Hi, Lacey.”  Yvette plopped the spoon back into the cookie dough and observed her ten-year-old daughter, Lacey standing proudly next to her twenty-three- month-old brother, Robin Anthony Darcy.  It was clear Robby had help with his futuristic costume.  Her son’s proud and excited expression tugged at her heart.  He was such a happy baby, and had everyone in the family wrapped around his chubby little finger.  Her son was so much like his father, both in looks, and temperament.    

She walked over and stooped down in front of Robin.  “Wow, look at my little space commander.  How was your space mission, Captain Darcy?”


Robby fly!”

He flew into his mother’s arms.  Yvette caught him and picked him up.


Whoa there, commander.  You’re losing space gear.”

Yvette braced herself for him crying, but he had other plans.


Cookie,” he said, glancing over her shoulder.  “Mommy, cookie.”

She carried him to the kitchen island and set him on the counter.  “What do you say?”


Peace.”


Please,” she replied, handing him a cookie.  “Very good, Robby.”

He took a bite and smiled.  “Layshee, ‘mere.”

Lacey came over to her brother.  He handed her a cookie.  She kissed his cheek.


Thank you, Robby.”

Yvette sat him in his high chair with a loud crunch as the aluminum foil bent to accommodate the shift.  She gave him a sippy cup with milk.


Thank you, Mommy.”


You’re welcome, honey.”  She turned to her daughter.  “You just got home from Track Out Camp.  How’d you outfit your brother so fast?”


I had the foil in my room.  He was up from his nap, and I promised I’d make him fly as soon as I got home.”

Lacey attended year-round school, as opposed to the traditional calendar option.  The students received breaks every quarter that lasted several weeks at a time.  There were lots of local activities at Track Out Camps that provided students with things to do during the normal school hours.  This made it convenient for working parents to continue to give their children quality care.  Lacey’s camps were with the YMCA.  She had a lot of friends that went there, as well, so it was a lot of fun for her.

Yvette poured a glass for her daughter, and handed her a small plate of cookies.  “Ah.  So how was your day?” she asked now that Robin was happily occupied.


Good.”  Lacey sat down at the kitchen table.  “We have a Christmas concert coming up that we have to practice for.  I’ve been given the lead,” she said, excitedly.


What!?  Congratulations, Lace!”  She hugged her, and then sat down at the table to finish dropping cookie dough on the baking sheet.  “Your dad will be thrilled to hear the news.”  They chatted and baked while Robin watched a video and played with his toys in the adjacent family room.

After the cookies were done, Yvette and Robin went upstairs to play in his room while Lacey chatted with a friend via video chat on her laptop.  They built a very intricate fort out of sheets and stuffed animals to hold down the ends.


I think this is the best fort we’ve ever made, Robby.”


I agree,” a man’s voice replied from the bedroom door.

With a cry of delight, Robin ran over to his father.  “Daddy.”

Christopher was already crouched down and waiting for his son to launch himself into his arms.  “I gotcha!  How’s my little man?”

He walked over and leaned down to give his wife a sound kiss.


Hey there, beautiful.  How goes the new construction?”

She laughed as she made a show of studying her and Robin’s handiwork.  “It’s coming along.  How was your day?”


Good, and getting better by the minute,” he grinned.


You don’t say?  Well, I’m sure I can make it even more exciting.”

A glint of fire lit his eyes.  “Is that so?  You’ve got a babysitter tonight?”


No, not that exciting,” she blushed.  “Lacey’s got something to tell you.”


Really?”  He gazed down at his son.  “Robby, let’s go see what your sister has to tell us.”

 

Christopher held on to Robin as he walked down the hallway to Lacey’s room.  He knocked on the door.


Come in,” Lacey called from the other side.

Christopher poked his head in, and Robin followed suit.  “We hear you’ve got some news to tell us.”


Hey, Dad!” Lacey grinned at her father.

Seeing her smile at him never failed to tug at his heart.  She was so loving, and had accepted him into her life without hesitation when he and her mother got together.  Though her biological father died in a car accident five years ago, not once had Lacey made him feel like an outsider.  She missed her father, Michael, terribly, but had more than enough room in her heart for Christopher.  When he had broached the subject of adopting her with Lacey and her mother, he prepared himself for the possibility that Lacey may decline.  He hadn’t wanted to force her, and assured her that her decision would never change how much he loved her.  When she said yes, and that she was happy he wanted to become her father by law, he’d been overcome with emotion.  When it was official, the three of them had embraced each other and cried tears of joy.  She was now his daughter, Lacey Stilwell-Darcy, and he loved her unconditionally.        

He set Robin down and walked over and kissed her on the forehead.  “Hey, munchkin.  Your mom said you have something to tell me?”


I got the lead in a play,” she blurted out.  “I tried out, and I got it.”


Way to go, Lace!” he praised, before pulling her up and giving her a huge hug.  “I’m so proud of you.”


We all are,” Yvette said from the door.  “Aunt Adelaide’s on the phone for you, Lacey.  A birdie told her that you had news to share, so you’ll have to fill her in.”

Her daughter rushed out of the room with Robin close on her heels.  Christopher walked over to his wife.  He gathered her up in his arms, and then kissed the sensitive area of her neck.


How are you, Mrs. Darcy?”

She shivered with excitement.  “I never tire of hearing that.”


Good because I never tire of saying it,” he murmured in her ear.

Yvette giggled.  She wrapped her arms around his neck.  “You hear that?”

Christopher cocked his head to the side.  “What?”


Exactly,” she grinned.

He nodded knowingly.  “Ah, silence.”

No sooner had he said it, they heard Robin crying downstairs.


You take some time and relax,” he told her.  “I’ll get him.  The kids and I will set the table for dinner, too.”


Thanks, honey,” she said, gratefully.  “I’ve got a few emails to send out and—”


That’s work,” he chided.  “You’re supposed to actually do something that helps you relax.”


Wish you were joining me.”  


Later,” he promised, with a wink.

Yvette headed for their bedroom.  She waved at him before disappearing inside.

Christopher smiled, and then went downstairs to see about his brood.

***

Later that night, the kids were asleep, and Christopher was lying in bed.  


Are you coming out any time soon?” he called out.

Yvette had showered and was drying off.  “Be out in a second,” she replied.  

She slipped into a long, silky nightgown in lieu of the flannel pajamas hanging up by a hook on the back of the door.  She was looking forward to much needed alone time with her husband.  Adding gloss to her lips, Yvette gazed into the mirror with approval.  She opened the door, and sauntered out into the bedroom.  Christopher was lying there with his eyes closed, and a magazine on his chest.


Chris?  Christopher?” she called again.

Nothing.  He was sound asleep.  She smiled and shook her head.  Once she got in bed, Yvette leaned over and kissed him lightly on the lips.  He didn’t stir.  “Rain check,” she whispered, and then turned out the light.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 CHAPTER TWO

 

 


Mom, Robin threw his shoe in my cereal,” Lacey complained.

Yvette poked her head out of the pantry and frowned.  Cheerios and milk were scattered all over the table, and Robin was all smiles.


Robin Darcy, that’s a no-no,” she said, sternly.


Uh-oh,” he said, holding his hands up in front of his face.  


Uh-oh indeed.  Tell Lacey you’re sorry.”


I sorry, Layshee.”

Unable to stay mad at her brother, Lacey got up and put the cereal bowl in the sink.  “It’s okay, Robby.”

Christopher walked in and surveyed the mess.  “I see Superman’s been at it again.”

Yvette went over and wiped the mess off the table.  “Yes, he has.”

Mornings were always hectic at the Darcy household.  It was a mad dash to get the kids dressed, fed and Lacey out the door.  Yvette and Christopher worked in harmony to ensure that everyone had what they needed.  Since having Robin, Yvette had cut her work hours back to part-time after returning from maternity leave.  Thankfully, her company was very laid back, and allowed her to work from home.  She was a software trainer, so all the materials she created were done on her laptop.  She only had to go into the office when she had a session.  The arrangement made it possible to keep a foot in the corporate arena while being able to spend as much time as she could with her son.  

A part-time nanny took care of Robin in the morning, and then she spent her afternoons with him.  So far it was going well.  The only difficulties were when Christopher had to drive to Waynesville, which was more prevalent these days.  His parents were easing back from the day-to-day operations of the Winter Wishes Christmas tree farm they owned.  The farm had belonged to Christopher’s grandparents, and they bequeathed it to his mother.  It was comprised of one thousand acres of land, with one hundred acres dedicated to growing Christmas trees.  They also had livestock: horses, chickens, cows, and other farm animals, and grew the bulk of their vegetables themselves.  

They also had a seasonal Winter Wonderland general store with Christmas gifts and treats hand baked by Margaret Darcy.  It was fun to turn their store into the North Pole every year, but it was a very large undertaking.  For the last two years, Yvette and Lacy had helped out during the holidays.  Now that Christopher had more responsibilities on his plate, Yvette worried about him being able to handle everything.  With them living in Raleigh during the week, it was a long commute for Christopher.  A large portion of his work could be done remotely from his laptop, but sometimes he drove up there at least twice a week, and some weekends.  The Darcys had employees, but Christopher had been insistent that the bulk of the duties of running the farm sat squarely on his shoulders.

Yvette and Christopher sat down to eat breakfast.  They discussed their respective days while they ate.

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