12 Bells and a Baby

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12 Bells and a Baby

Jennie Jones

Every big thing in Kate and Jamie’s lives happens in a heatwave, and today is no exception.

12 Bells and a Baby is an additional scene taking place five years after Kate and Jamie met in 12 Days at Silver Bells House, book two in the Swallow’s Fall series, published by Escape Publishing in December 2014.

Kate Singleton knew how to walk onto a fashion shoot, into a high-powered meeting or in this case, into a restaurant. Kate Knight, however, had forgotten that Singleton’s legs were no longer executive and therefore not used to spike-heeled stilettos.

“Holy mackerel,” she said to the solid wall of muscle at her side. “Feet are dead.”

Jamie Knight, husband of five years, tower of strength and the best guy she’d ever been to bed with, chuckled; his leather-brown eyes twinkling, his sexy forty-six-inch chest filled with his solid, sensational heart.

Kate smiled back, acknowledging but not mentioning his earlier softly spoken observation that she might be better off in flat pumps. She ran a hand down her ponytail, clasped high on the top of her head so that any cool air around might find the back of her neck. Why did all the important things in her life happen in a heatwave? She’d met Jamie in a heatwave, wearing wellies and a straw hat while trying to find her way in the country, now here she was back in the swanky society of Sydney, sweltering in Collette Dinnigan linen.

“Told you we should have taken a water taxi,” Jamie said.

Two weeks they’d been away from home, living out of a suitcase at the Park Hyatt. Walking was better for Kate—what with her stomach going weak on her since they’d arrived. “The water smells.”

“No it doesn’t, it’s great.”

“It’s the churning.” She glanced around Cafe Nix ground floor restaurant. “They won’t remember, will they?”

Jamie put his hand to the small of her back and led them further into the cafe. “Of course not. Breakfast was hours ago.”

“And I wasn’t actually sick,” Kate said. “I was only nearly sick.”

“No one will remember.”

A young waitress popped up at their side, giving them a bright, dimply smile. “Hi, again. So how are you feeling?” she asked Kate.

“I was only nearly sick,” Kate said, forgetting the pain on the balls of her feet as the memory of her public humiliation at breakfast bounced to the fore. She’d made a run for the ladies, almost gagging—but hadn’t been sick after all.

“Your restrooms are safe tonight,” Jamie said to the waitress. “She’s hungry.”

“Starving.” It wasn’t true. Kate’s stomach was doing an un-synchronised swimming routine. It’s just nerves, she told herself, and studied the waitress. “Tamsin”, the cute little name tag said.

Kate was no longer a fashion guru at the forefront of the industry spotlight, she was a country-dwelling wife and an online fashion designer whizz, which meant she kept her eyes peeled and her brain whirling. She ran her mental tape measure over Tamsin. Vogue. One of their water nymph shoots. Or maybe something for Alannah Hill.

“We’re in for an early dinner,” Jamie told the waitress. “We’re off to a show.”

“I’ve never had a child before,” Kate said, used to ignoring the agony of this fact. Things were about to change and she was as grateful as a bursting watermelon for the astonishing joy she’d been shown since she’d met and married Jamie Knight.

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