The perfect life Mick and Kate thought they had was slowly dissolving. With Mick obsessing about the farm and Kate thrown into a life of domesticity, both lose some of what they'd fought so hard to regain.
It all comes to a head when Kate suspects Mick of having an affair. Kate’s parents step in to give each of them advice from their own years of marriage.
Now, both Mick and Kate have set their own romantic plans in motion, but it could all fall through when Kate nearly blows up the kitchen.
“Mick, we need to talk.”
Those were definitely not the words he wanted to hear first thing through the door. He’d put in a full day on the farm, which included working on the new extension on the house and the fire-damaged barn. He was hungry, tired, and smelled worse than well-aged slurry on a hot day. The last thing he needed was to hear Kate needed to talk to him. By the tone of her voice, it wasn’t going to be a good talk.
“Can’t it wait, love? I’m only just in the door.”
“This is important.”
He made the mistake of meeting her emerald gaze. The look on her face pleaded with him to relent. He was already struggling to stay on his feet and her persistence pecked away at any energy he had left. Sheer will alone kept him upright—and the beckoning of a hot shower. It was like one of the Seven Deadly Sins he couldn’t deny. His knees almost gave out at the anticipation of the hot water sluicing over his body.
“At least let me shower first. It’ll wake me up and you’ll have my undivided attention. All right?”
Her shoulders slumped. She looked tired too. He wanted to gather her in his arms and stroke her hair while soothing away what had upset her. But his exhausted body cried out for soothing of its own. He wanted a shower so desperately he could almost feel it.
“I won’t be long, then I’m all yours.” He started up the stairs.
“Mick,” she called after him, but he took the stairs by twos to make a quick escape. It was an effort that nearly floored him when he gained the top step. Supporting himself with a hand on either wall, he made his way into the bathroom and shut the door behind him.
* * * *
How could he do this to her again? This was the second time this week he'd dodged her.
Kate watched him disappear up the stairs. Within seconds she heard the shower switch on. Two thuds signaled his boots were off and a groan meant he was nude and in the shower.
She would have liked nothing better than to race up the stairs after him to soap him down, but the crying coming from the kitchen reminded her the days of sharing a shower with her husband were over. The sound of his boots hitting the floor must have awakened the twins.
The familiar pain of sadness twisted inside her. She couldn't cry now. Her babies needed her. She tried to push her feelings aside and went back to the kitchen.
Her kitchen. Her domain.
The entire house was her life now. She rarely stepped out of it unless the pounding of hammers and whining of electric saws drove her away. Even then, she only went as far as Conneelly Farm to see her mother.
Her lips twisted in a derisive grin. Visits to her mother had originally been to get away from construction noise. Her mother seemed to suspect something else was wrong, but Kate didn't want to air her dirty laundry, and not to her mother-she didn't care how close they were-yet she certainly wasn't going to refuse a few hours of child-minding so she could get a bit of sleep in her old room. If it weren't for this little bit of rest at home she was sure she would have gone insane by now.
Fairhill Farm was her home now, she reminded herself, not Conneelly Farm. But since the twins were born she felt anything but at home. She cooked, cleaned, looked after the babies. It was no different from caring for Mary and Donal during their illnesses while Mick was living in Dublin. Only this time, the infants were hers and this was her home now, not her late in-laws.
Excerpted from "Constant Craving (Irish Pride Series)" by Kemberlee Shortland. Copyright © 0 by Kemberlee Shortland. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.