I’d seen a dozen different ad concepts so far. Some of the messaging was clever, some was too clever, and some was just pedestrian.

“Refinements to the last round,” he explained, setting one hand on the back of the chair and the other on the desk, surrounding me with warm skin and delicious masculine scent. “And some new directions.”


Scrolling through the deck, I nodded at most, but one made me shake my head. “That’s a no.”

“I don’t like it, either,” Gideon agreed. “But why doesn’t it work for you?”

“I think it’s sending the wrong message. You know, the overwhelmed wife/mother/businesswoman can only find quiet time by distracting the family with the GenTen.” I looked at him. “Women are capable of wearing those various hats easily. Let’s show her playing the games with the family or enjoying the GenTen for herself.”

He nodded. “I said I wouldn’t ask again, but since we’re discussing women having it all … Are you still feeling good about leaving your job?”

“Yes.” There was no hesitation before answering. “I still want to work,” I qualified, “and helping you with things you don’t need help with isn’t going to satisfy me for long. But we’ll find a place where I fit.”

His mouth quirked wryly. “I do appreciate your take or I wouldn’t ask for it.”

“You know what I mean.”

“I do.” He swiped and tapped on the trackpad, bringing up a presentation. “These are a few of the projects currently taking priority. When you have time, look them over and let me know which ones interest you most.”

“They all interest you, right?”

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“Of course.”

“Okay.” I’d make a few lists, order them by interest, and knowledge base, and skill set. Then cross-reference. Most important, I would discuss everything with Gideon. That was what I enjoyed most about sharing his work with him—exploring that fascinating razor-sharp mind of his.

“I don’t want to tie you down,” he said quietly, his hand moving to my shoulder and brushing down my arm. “I want you to soar.”

“I know, baby.” I caught his caressing hand and kissed the back of it. The sky was the limit with a husband who loved you like that.

The sun dipped below the edge of the horizon, setting fire to the ocean.

Gideon refilled our flutes with champagne, a small splash of the golden liquid escaping the rim as the yacht rocked gently on the waves.

“This is nice,” he said, giving me a slow, easy smile.

“I’m glad you like it.”

It amazed me to see him so happy and relaxed. I’d always thought of Gideon Cross as a tempest. Lightning and thunder, fiercely beautiful power that could be both dangerous and compelling. Barely contained, like the vortex of a tornado.

I would describe him as the calm after a storm now, which only made him an even greater force of nature. We were both … centered now. Feeling confident and committed. Having each other made everything achievable.

All of which had led me to thinking about a dinner cruise.

“Come here, angel.” Standing, he held his hand out to me.

We carried our champagne from the candlelit dining table to the luxurious chaise longue for two. We settled there, tangled with each other.

His hand stroked up and down my back. “I’m thinking of blue skies and smooth sailing.”

I smiled. So often our thoughts followed similar paths.

Reaching up, I cupped his nape, running my fingers through the rough silk of his hair. “We’re getting the hang of this.”

Gideon dipped his head down to kiss me, his mouth moving gently, his tongue licking leisurely, reaffirming the bond between us that grew stronger every day. The ghosts of our pasts seemed like faint shadows now, beginning to dissolve even before we’d renewed our vows.

One day, they would vanish forever. Until then, we had each other. And that was all we needed.

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