A Wonderful Kind of Love(3)

By: Krista Lakes


“If you say so,” Ivy said with a shrug. She yawned. “I liked Ethan. He was nice.”

Laura nearly sat up. “When did you meet Ethan?”

“At Mia's fundraiser,” Ivy replied like it was the most obvious thing in the world. “He helped you look for Dallas when he got lost. Remember?”

Laura needed more sleep. “You're right. I forgot that you met him during that.”

Laura relaxed. Ivy didn't know Ethan from her one-night-stand. She knew him because her little brother Dallas got lost with another little boy at a fundraiser for the ranch Laura worked at a little over a month ago. The two boys had followed a dog out into a snowstorm. The entire ranch shut down to find him.

Ethan had helped her look for her brother. She was surprised he'd done it, given that he supposedly hated her. He was with her when they got the news the boys had been found, safe and sound.

She purposefully pushed the rest of the memory away. Especially the part where she'd kissed him at hearing the news. It was a stupid thing to do. She still couldn't believe she'd done it. She told herself it was all just the emotion of the moment. Hopefully, he did too.

Ivy sat straight up, bumping Laura's shoulder in the process and keeping them both from sleep. Ivy looked around, panic filling her small frame.

“Where is it?” she whispered, pulling at the sheets. Her breath came in tiny gasps.

“Where is what, Ivy?” Laura asked, sitting up. “Don't wake up Dallas.”

“Dad's shirt!” Ivy wailed, pulling at the comforter. “I can't find it!”

“You had it two seconds ago,” Laura replied. She felt around on the bed and quickly discovered the t-shirt Ivy now used as a security blanket. “You were laying on it.”

“Oh.” Ivy scooped it from Laura's hands and held it up to her face, breathing in the scent of it. It was just an old t-shirt their dad used to wear. There was nothing special about it, other than the fact that it had belonged to him. Ivy had found it in the laundry after he died and started using it as a security blanket. She couldn't sleep without it now.

“Does it still smell like him?” Laura asked. Her throat tightened with the question. It had only been about ten months since the plane accident that killed their parents. Just thinking about them still hurt. She wondered if it would ever stop hurting.

“A little,” Ivy replied. “It's starting to go away, though.”

Laura's heart broke a little. She sounded so sad and resigned. A seven-year-old shouldn't have to know this kind of pain, Laura thought. To be honest, a twenty-five-year-old shouldn't have to know this sort of pain.

“I know where his cologne is,” Laura said after a moment. “We can spray some on it tomorrow. That way it will still smell like him.”

“I'd like that,” Ivy murmured, sleep finally pulling at her. “I don't want to forget them.”

“We won't ever forget them,” Laura promised, smoothing the girl's hair as Ivy snuggled closer into her. “Never ever.”

“Good,” Ivy whispered, her voice trailing off as she found sleep again.

But now, Laura was awake. She couldn't help but think of her parents. As soon as she closed her eyes, she saw the pictures of the wreckage from her parents' flight. It was just a small private plane, but the crash had killed the two of them and the pilot instantly in the mountains.

Laura took a deep breath and tried to steady herself. She didn't want to hear the drone of an airplane engine in her dreams. She didn't want to remember having to tell Ivy and Dallas that she was going to have to take care of them now. That it was just the three of them.

It sucked, and she hated it.

Dallas mumbled and reached for her in his sleep. He rolled over, his hand finding her stomach. As soon as he found her, he quieted and went back to peaceful dreams.

She hoped she was enough for them. That was she was doing was enough. It didn't feel that way. She wasn't ready to be a parent, but here she was anyway.

Her phone vibrated on the nightstand. Rather than being annoyed at the message at such a late hour, she was grateful for the distraction. Being careful of her sleeping siblings, she reached for it and read the text.



Going to the hospital! It's time!

-Mia





Laura smiled. Mia was not only Laura's good friend, but she was also the wife of Laura's boss. The two of them were so excited for this baby that it was all they had talked about for the past few months. She couldn't be happier for them as she sent a text back.



Good luck. May 15th is a great birthday!





Laura smiled as she turned off her phone and put it back on her nightstand. A new life in the world was always something to be glad of. She closed her eyes and tried to find sleep, this time thinking of how cute the baby was going to be and whether it would look more like Mia or more like Carter.

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