Bayou Baby (Butterfly Bayou 2) - Page 31

Make him hate his own mother. Or worse, teach him she wasn’t even worth thinking about. “The courts wouldn’t have a reason to take Luc from me. I’m a good mom.”

Angie’s gaze turned sympathetic. “I know you are. You’re a genuinely good person, and I honestly think if my brother had lived, you two would have found your way back to each other.”

She hoped they could have been friends again, but she’d never felt a spark with Wes. She’d loved him. She genuinely had, but she hadn’t been in love with him. What would have happened if he’d lived? There was no question in her mind that he would have asked her to marry him. She might have done it since she’d been terrified at the thought of having a child on her own. She’d made the decision to tell him when he came back on leave, but he’d never come home. Would she have married him and fallen in love with her husband? Had she been foolish to want passion and romantic love in her life?

“I don’t know about that. It doesn’t matter now anyway.”

Angie took a long drink before sitting back. “No, I suppose it doesn’t, but I think about it. I think about what would have happened if Wes hadn’t died. I wonder if my mother would have even bothered with my wedding. She didn’t pay much attention to me while Wes was around. Well, except to tell me how I should dress and how I was embarrassing her. It’s like she remembered she had other children when Wes was gone. I hate that I think those things, but you need to remember that my mom was obsessed with Wes. And just because you’re a good mom doesn’t mean my mother won’t try to get custody of Luc. She’ll think she can give him a better life.”

“The courts won’t take him away from me without cause.”

“Maybe, but will you have the money to fight her?” Angie asked. “You’ll need a lawyer, and one from out of town because Quaid has represented our family for a long time. You’ll have to find a lawyer and he’ll want a retainer. My mother is patient. She can keep the legal battle going for years.”

It was her worst nightmare. The thought made her stomach turn. This was the conversation she’d had with Angie when she was six months along and she’d decided to let the Beaumont family know she was carrying Wes’s baby. She’d thought it would bring them some peace, to let them know Wes wasn’t entirely gone.

Thank god Angie had stopped her. Angie had opened the door that night and had hustled her out. They’d talked over tea in the back booth at Dixie’s Café, and Sera had realized how close she’d come to making a huge mistake.

Was she still trying to make that same mistake? Still trying to believe that somehow she could find her place here again, be enough for anyone outside of her family?

Angie stared at her with sympathetic eyes. “Let me help you. I can talk to Mom. If I let her know you’re not going to stay, she won’t have a problem with it. Let her make you an offer.”

“I can’t sell it until I restore it. It’s not allowed by the terms of the will. Technically it’s not mine until I’ve spent the money Aunt Irene left on restorations. Quaid has to sign off on everything. Tell her I’m going to honor the will and then I’ll sell it.” She still wouldn’t sell to Celeste, but she would sell. “And then I’m probably leaving town.”

“Oh, I hate that, but I know it’s probably for the best.” She reached out and put a hand over Sera’s. “I love you like a sister. I wish my mom could see how good a person you are. She’s not capable of seeing past her own grief.”

“I didn’t make Wes join the Army. I didn’t even suggest it.”

“I know that, but she won’t believe you,” Angie argued. “She can’t believe that her perfect boy could be so reckless. Besides, he did tell all of us he was joining up to prove to you that he was a real man.”

She shook her head. “I never suggested he wasn’t. All I ever told him was I didn’t want to be his girlfriend. I made a mistake that night and I hated the fact that I hurt him, but I couldn’t pretend to feel something I didn’t.”

Angie sighed, a weary sound. “And he couldn’t stand the fact that he didn’t get what he wanted. I blame my mother for that, too. There was a lot to Wes you didn’t see because he was in love with you since you were children. He could be petulant.”

She’d seen that side of him the morning they’d last spoken. Maybe she needed out of here if only to get away from the ghosts that haunted her.

Tags: Lexi Blake Butterfly Bayou Romance
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