Chapter 33 - Last Ditch Effort

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Chapter 33

Last Ditch Effort

Dane shifted in the seat, folded his arms across his chest and leaned his head back.  He closed his eyes and wondered how Beth handled things with Berkley when she arrived at the office to discover that he had been rushed out of town.  This trip caught him completely off guard and unprepared. He would feel better, had he been able to get in touch with her before leaving.  Now his mind continued to wander about Jensen and how bad the damage really was but it always found its way back to Berkley.  He wanted to marry her now and make things right.  He wanted his family to be whole and he wanted his dad to accept Berkley as his wife and more importantly the mother of his children.  Berkley was the only mother that Ethan really thought of now.  Dane knew his memories of Laura were blurred and fading.  It made him sad to see Ethan lose touch with her but it was healthy for him to let go and embrace a new mother.  Kids need the female touch in their lives.  There was just something about the tender way a woman could console and reassure a child.  Watching Berkley with Ethan was almost magical for him.  He knew that he was blessed to have fallen in love with a woman who had her heart open to Ethan.  He sighed and hoped that his charger was in his luggage.  He needed to call her as soon as he settled into his room.

His thoughts turned to Ethan and how unfair it was to leave the little guy with no explanation.  He hoped that maybe, he would go to sleep easily tonight.  He worried about Berkley not getting enough rest and he worried about her health.  All the dizzy spells and fainting early on, followed up with the fatigue she had been experiencing always brought his mind back to the abuse BJ had inflicted on her.  Knowing the that she was already pregnant with Lily when she went BJ's apartment, was enough to make him upset let alone the images of BJ beating her kept haunting him.  It felt unresolved to him.  He was grateful to Blake being there but he wished he had been there instead.

He sighed to himself. Berkley and Lilly were his family now and because the thought of BJ harming either of them drove him mental, he had made a call to Dylan just last week to have his friend follow BJ for a few days.  Hiring a private investigator always made Dane feel dirty but sometimes it was necessary.  The news that BJ was seen with another woman offered Dane a little peace of mind for the time being.

"Dane, wake up."  Ana said nudging him.  "We're here."

Dane was surprised that he must have drifted off to sleep and he squinted as he opened his eyes, before releasing a yawn.  He climbed out of the car to see a beautiful cluster of cottages sprawled across the hills adorning the coast line.  "We're in the middle of nowhere."  He said, doubting he would have cell service, as he scanned the horizon.  A light house was near the edge of cliff that jutted out and overlooked the rocky shore below.  The sun was setting across the water silhouetting the lighthouse in an auburn glow.  It was picturesque.  He stood tall, stretched his limbs and inhaled the salty air.  He missed the ocean, his boat and the outdoors.  He smiled and tipped the attendant before following Ana to the reception area.

Moments later they were shuttled to a quaint little cottage to the north of the lighthouse.  Dane opened the door and made his way through looking for his room.  He opened one door to find a bathroom.   Another door opened into a linen closet.  There was only one bedroom.  Ana observed him nervously.  He was like a caged lion pacing the edge of his cage. "Ana, where is my room?  You said you booked a room for me too."

"No I said that the rooms had been booked solid for months.  You asked how I managed to book a room for you.  I never answered."

"Ana."  Her name escaped his lips in frustration.

"Oh Dane, come off it already.  It will be like old times.  No harm in that."

Dane walked over to the bar and poured a drink. Berkley would disapprove of his drinking.  He wasn't one to really drink too often and since he had been with Berkley, he hadn't really wanted to.  But he was going to need a few if he was going to survive this trip.  After a couple of drinks, he tossed his luggage onto the bed and rummaged through it until he found his phone charger.  He plugged it in and within a few minutes it was back on.  He worked his way around the room in search of a signal and finally found one next to the window. He called Berkley.

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