“I’m glad you do,” he said. Gavin pulled her hands from his face and held them in his. “That will make this next part less embarrassing. I want to ask again if you’ll marry me, but this time, even if the answer is no, please don’t laugh. A man’s ego can’t take that twice.”
“Okay,” Sabine said, her face now perfectly solemn in preparation for his query.
Gavin dropped down to one knee, her hands still grasped in his own. “Sabine Hayes, I love you. And I love our son. I want us to be a family. There is nothing on this earth—not a jet, not money—that I want more than for you to be my wife. Will you marry me?”
Sabine could barely withstand the rush of emotions surging through her. She really was on an emotional roller coaster. She’d experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows all in a few hours’ time. If Gavin wasn’t looking up at her with dark, love-filled eyes, she might start nervously twittering with laughter again simply from the stress of it all.
But she couldn’t laugh. Not this time. Gavin wanted to marry her and there was nothing funny about that.
“Yes. I will marry you.”
Gavin stood back up and swept her into his arms. His mouth eagerly captured hers, sealing their agreement with a kiss that made her blood sizzle through her veins. She wanted to make love to him on the leather couch of her new studio. The sooner she could start creating memories in her new home, the better.
Of course, that would have to wait for nap time.
Instead, she looked up into the dark eyes of her fiancé. The man she loved. The father of her child. There, in his arms, everything felt right. This is what she’d missed, the thing that made all those other apartments seem cold and unappealing.
“Gavin, do you know why I didn’t like any of the apartments we looked at?”
He gave her a lopsided smile in response to her unexpected question. “You wanted crown molding and granite countertops?”
He shrugged. “I’m out of guesses. Why didn’t you like them?”
“Because they were all missing something—you.”
Gavin laughed. “Of course. There’s only one apartment in Manhattan that comes equipped with Gavin Brooks. It’s a very exclusive address. The only way to get into the place is through marriage.”
“Well, wouldn’t you know that THE Gavin Brooks just asked me to be his wife?”
He picked up her left hand and eyed the bare ring finger. “This won’t do. The first thing everyone will do when you tell them we’re engaged is look at your hand. We need to get you an engagement ring.”
“We’re two blocks away from Tiffany’s. Why not right now?”
Sabine sighed. It had been an exciting couple of days. Too exciting if you asked her. She was happy to spread out some of the big moments to later in the week. “There’s no rush. I know you’re good for it. There’s a million dollars in cash lying around on the living room floor in a JanSport.”
“Okay, you win. What about tomorrow?”
“I have to work tomorrow morning.”
Gavin eyed her with dismay. “No, you don’t.”
“Yes, I do. I’m not going to abandon my wonderful, pregnant boss when she needs me. You’re the one that suggested a vacation. I at least have to stay at the store long enough for her to take one.”
“What about if we go early, before the boutique opens?”
“Okay,” Sabine relented. If he wanted so badly to put a dangerously expensive rock on her hand, she would let him. “But make sure you don—”
Sabine and Gavin turned to find Jared standing in the doorway of his new bedroom. He flung the door the rest of the way open and charged in the space that was custom-made for a little boy with dreams of being a superhero.
The workers had done an excellent job on the room. It was just as Gavin had described. Red walls, a loft with a rope swing for an adventurous young boy, and a comic-book motif sure to please. All it needed was his favorite toys from their place in Brooklyn and it would be perfect.
Jared crawled up on the new bed, bouncing ever so slightly on the new Spider-Man comforter. “Big bed!”
“Yep, it’s a big boy bed.”
“It is,” Gavin replied. “Do you like it?”
Jared flipped two thumbs up. “Love Spider-Man!”
Sabine was nearly overwhelmed by the joy and excitement on their small son’s face. Gavin turned to look at her and frowned when he noted the tears pooling in her eyes.