|Image credit: Brandon Holmes on Unsplash|
Hey now! Here is a lil sumn sumn from my next/upcoming release, To Build a Vow, which is book 2 of the Vow series. These words are unedited and subject to change. Enjoy!
The welcome party that greeted me when I exited the baggage claim warmed my heart. Jeremiah and Ja’mya stood together, holding up a sign that read “Welcome Home Ms. Sutton!” in bright pink letters with pictures of airplanes and masquerade-style masks glued onto it. As soon as my baby girl saw me, she dropped her end of the sign and ran toward me, wrapping her arms around me in a tight hug.
“Hey, Mommy. Welcome home.”
I pressed a kiss to the cheek of my preteen, whose brown eyes I could stare straight into. “Thanks, baby. Did you miss me?”
She nodded and shifted to my side with one arm around my waist so we could continue moving forward and out of the way of the rest of the passengers coming out of the baggage claim.
“Yes, ma’am. Did you bring me anything?”
I laughed and pursed my lips briefly. “How can you say you missed me when the first thing out of your mouth is ‘Did I bring you anything’? How does that work Ja’mya?”
She smiled sheepishly and shrugged those slender shoulders of hers. “I was just asking, mommy.”
Shaking my head, I squeezed her to me. “Mmhmm.” Of course I’d brought her something. I was incapable of going anywhere without finding a gift that I thought she would love. This time it was a collection of colorful bangles that caught my eye. They were a great way to add some variety to the navy-blue and white school uniform she wore daily. Although the bangles were in my carry-on bag instead of my suitcase, I would wait until we got home to present them to her.
We reached Jeremiah and I smiled up at the man whose genes were so strong, my own family had questioned whether or not I had a hand in Ja’mya’s creation. His full lips were curved into a smirk as he watched me rake my gaze over his body. Unless he was working, Jeremiah always dressed casually. He wore a black t-shirt with the Hawkins Realty logo printed across the front in red letters, dark gray cargo shorts and black and red canvas tennis shoes. The shirt stretched across his broad chest and hugged his biceps, revealing muscles that received regular attention during his thrice-weekly gym visits. The shorts stopped just above his knees and I eyed his defined calves and smooth ankles. His feet were shoulder-width apart and his arms hung at his sides with his hands hiding in his pockets. He just stood there, relaxed, as my greedy eyes drank him in. Good God this man was so fine. When I finally dragged my gaze up to his face, my eyes met his and I bit my lip at the heat I saw there. It was a powerful feeling, knowing I put that look there, that I could still put that look on his face even after all of these years.
His hands came out of his pockets and I released the handle of my rolling suitcase and removed my arm from Ja’mya’s waist. He spread his arms wide and I stepped forward into his embrace. Jeremiah bent down and wrapped his arms around my waist, pulling my body flush against his. Without saying a word, he pressed his lips to mine and showed me just how happy he was to see me. This wasn’t a quick or chaste kiss. His mouth moved against mine, slow and intentionally, devouring my exhaustion and filling me with renewed energy.
The sound of someone clearing their throat behind me popped the bubble that had formed around Jeremiah and I. After one last kiss, I leaned back slowly, a satisfied grin on my face. This man was absolutely going to get the business when we got home.
He dropped a hand from my waist and squeezed one of my rear cheeks. “Hey.”
“Okay, you two. We’re in public. Y’all can save all of that kissy face shit until you get home.”
I turned my head and glared at Trisha, who stood to my left with one arm wrapped around Ja’mya’s shoulders. She winked at me teasingly before acknowledging Jeremiah.
Jeremiah smirked and lowered me back to the ground. He walked over and hugged my best friend to his side. “What’s good, T? Y’all have a good time down in the H?”
Trisha nodded. “Just barely. We managed to enjoy ourselves despite Candice’s raggedy cousin trying to ruin our trip.”
“Wait a minute,” Jeremiah frowned and glanced my way. “Tried to ruin your trip? What’d she do?”
Trisha exhaled loudly. “She just complained the whole time and was being a general asshole.”
I slapped my hands on my hips. “So you’re just going to keep on cussing like my baby is not right there, huh?!”
Trisha looked down at my daughter and smiled. Ja’mya’s eyes were bouncing back and forth between the three of us.
“My bad lil’ J. Unlike ya mama, I know you’ve heard these words before, but you better not let us catch you using them. Ya hear?”
Ja’mya nodded. “Yes, ma’am.
Trisha looked over at me with a smug expression on her face and I curled my lip, mugging her in return. Jeremiah laughed and walked over, wrapping me in a bear hug and placing a kiss on the side of my neck.
“Don’t act like that,” he whispered in my ear.
I shivered at his proximity and the feel of his warm breath dancing against my skin. I couldn’t do anything but nod. That was the effect he had on me.