Allie Marshall, PA student, and Dr. Donovan Callahan have overcome such intense drama in their short relationship. Dealing with thoughts of Claire, his ex who sits in jail for murdering her husband, to Allie's secret past, has been extremely stressful. From the day they met, it has been hot and heavy; both of them giving into their wants and needs. The pair have thrown caution to the wind and ...just went with their hearts. All seems well, finally, and Allie is letting go of her insecurities, which could ultimately threaten to be her downfall. That is, until someone from Donovan's past decides to make a surprise and unwelcome appearance at a wedding the couple attends. A shocking announcement is made that will force Allie to question everything about Donovan-- his honesty, his character, even his feelings for her. Will this be the final straw, or will this be a test of strength of their feelings for each other?
(This is a deleted scene from Donovan’s point of view. He and Allie are on the Callahan vineyard property, overlooking his favorite place as a child.)
When I look out on this pond, a warm feeling washes over me, thinking about the times my dad and I spent as a child. As I hold Allie in my arms, I close my eyes and remember one of those times of my childhood.
Dad ties the horses to one of the skinny trees next to the water, then sat next to me. We both dangled our feet in the cool, refreshing water. I loved times like this; hanging out with just my dad and not my stepmother. She hardly let him out of her sight, unless she was going shopping and spending his money.
“Dad, why did you marry Donna?” I asked with the innocence of a child. I was only eleven at the time and I didn’t understand why he did it.
He sighed. “Son, I wanted someone to spend my life with. When your mother…left, it was so difficult. She chose drinking over her family and it left my heart broken. I can only imagine what it did to you and Megan.” He hung his head, almost like he was ashamed. “I tried my best to raise you kids on my own, but as much joy as you both bring me, I was still lonely. I missed having a lady in my life.” He chuckled. “You probably don’t understand. Are girls still gross to you?”
“Um, yeah, girls are gross,” I said, embarrassed to tell my dad that I actually had a crush on this girl in my class.
This made him laugh. “Well, when you get older you will understand what it’s like to have someone in your life you feel you can’t do without.” He patted my shoulder. “One day, you will find the person you are supposed to be with and you will just know it when you see her.” I had a feeling he wasn’t talking about Donna, but about my mother. He never really got over her picking up and leaving our family. My feeling was right.
“Evelyn meant the world to me, Donnie. When she left, my world was turned upside down. It still is. But Donna, she helps fill the void. She’s no Evelyn, but she loves me just the same.”
“Where is Mom?” I felt myself getting teary eyed even thinking about her. As much as she hurt us, I knew somewhere deep down, she loved us. Maybe she still does. I wanted to cling to that hope that she would come back.
“I don’t know, son. I wish I did. I would ask her to come back home.” That was the first time I saw my dad cry.
About the Author
AC Marchman lives in Virginia with her husband Dan and their three children, Hannah, Jacob and Sarah. By day, she is a wife, mommy, and an x-ray tech for a doctor’s office. By night (and nap time) she is a writer. She loves spending time with her family. She also loves to read. Her favorite authors being EL James, Sylvia Day, James Patterson, and Tess Gerritsen.