Epilogue

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I'm rinsing our after lunch dishes and look out the window. Beau and the two kids are playing tag in the backyard. I laugh to myself while I see him pretending to trip, so Carter could tag him "it".

As I feel a set of arms wrap around me and settle on my swelling belly, I give a satisfied sigh. "Leaving for work?" I ask Luca.

He kisses my cheek before responding, "Unfortunately. I wish I could have taken off more time during Beau's visit."

"Well, when you are the owner, I don't think you have that privilege." I smile.

He dramatically rolls his eyes. "Don't remind me." He is kidding. He opened up the only tattoo shop in town three years ago and loves every second of it.

"I love you," he says while walking out the door. "Don't have that baby while I'm gone." I shake my head and turn back towards the window. I see Luca and Beau exchange quick "See ya later!"s before Luca grabs Madeleine and lifts her over his head while she is squealing with delight, "Daddy!".

It took some time before Beau was ready to be around Luca regularly, but that all changed after she was born. He took one look at Madeleine's sweet, angelic face that looks so much like Nancy and knew he needed to try to make the relationship work.

In hind sight, it may not have been the best idea to dive into it by all staying in a cabin together on vacation. That trip included several passive-aggressive comments which eventually led to one enormous screaming match which ended with Luca and Beau crying on each other shoulders. I suppose it was worth it considering their relationship now. Beau and his wife, Virginia, are even considering moving back to Illinois to be closer to us. Nancy is thrilled at the idea of having her family together again.

Virginia and Nancy walk into the kitchen quietly. "Sorry that took so long, she did not want to go to sleep. Thanks for your help, Nance."

"You know I love to help with my grandbabies every chance I get. I'm just ready for Shelley to add the next little girl to the mix." I smile and place my hand on my belly.

After many months, I decided to forgive Luca completely, and he has proven to me time and again that I made the right decision, including when I found out I was pregnant eight months before our wedding date was set. Even when I was waddling down the aisle in a wedding dress that I had had to let out three times, he still made me feel like the most beautiful woman on the planet.

And now sitting here with his family--my family--I realize that it doesn't matter where life took us or what happened in our pasts. He always has been and always will be home to me.






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