Nancy Powell, Marcus’s secretary, walked into his office. “There is a Debbie Lancaster on the phone. She says it is important to talk to you. It’s about a Nicole.”
“Thanks.” Marcus picked up the phone. “This is Marcus.”
“Mr. Blackhawk, I’m calling you about Nicole. She has just been released from the hospital and…”
“What is wrong?”
“I’m afraid I can’t tell you that. But if you have any concerns for her, it would really help her I think, to hear from you.”
“I’ll be there as soon as I can.” Marcus hung up the phone and called his secretary in. “Reschedule my meetings to next week. I have to take off on personal business for a couple of days. What can’t be rescheduled, see if Mike can handle it or one of the associates until I get back.”
“Is everything okay?”
“I don’t know. I got to go to Mason and see someone.”
Marcus drove straight through to Mason and pulled into the parking spot next to Nicole’s vehicle that evening. He knocked at the door.
She opened the door and peered out at him. She didn’t say anything.
“Hi, Nicole. Can we talk?”
She stood looking at him, then finally, opened the door wider and let him in.
He came in and sat down in one of the chairs, and she sat down on the edge of the bed.
“How are you doing?”
“I’m okay,” she said, abruptly.
“I was told that you were just released from the hospital. What happened?”
She leaned forward and hugged herself. “I was in the hospital, yes.”
“Is everything okay? Are you ill? Talk to me, Nicole.”
She glanced up at him, then dropped her gaze to the floor. “It’s really none of your business, I’m fine now.”
“Okay. I deserve that. But I am concerned for you. You look pale, and thin. You’ve lost weight. I know you find this hard to believe, but I do care a lot, about you.”
“Oh, really,” she said sarcastically.
“I know my actions have said the opposite. But some things stood between us, things I had to clear up and take care of.”
“I’m sure your wife would not appreciate you being over here in Mason, with me.”
“I don’t have a wife, Nicole. My ex-wife thought we were going to get back together, but I had no intention of that ever happening. I should have never left without talking to you. I should have never left things the way they were. Can you forgive me for this?”
She wouldn’t look at him. She kept her eyes on the floor, rocking herself on the bed.
“Talk to me, honey. What happened?”
“If you must know. I was pregnant. I lost the baby.” She started to whimper.
Marcus sprang up in the chair and pulled her up to him and held her tightly in his arms. “I’m so sorry, Nicole. I didn’t know you were pregnant, but I should have expected that it might have happened.” He whispered in her hair as she quietly sobbed on his chest. “Please, please forgive me. Honey, I love you. I knew what I did back in that cave was wrong, and I hurt you so badly. I’m so sorry. I wished that I had been with you when you lost our baby.”
She looked up into his eyes. Her eyes and face wet with tears. “Y…you love me?” she faltered.
“Yes. I love you. I think I loved you from the moment I saw your silhouette in the moonlight the first night I stayed here. You were out walking with Sierra.”
“H..how could you love me even then?” she asked as if she found that incredible.
“There was something about you that really got my attention. You are so beautiful, you don’t know how beautiful you truly are. Then when Nathan came for the weekend, he took to you. He never did that with any other woman I met and introduced him to. He really likes you and talks about you often. Then with us hiking to the cave to get the arrows, I don’t know how to explain it, Nicole. I never dream, but every night since I arrived here at the motel, I’ve had dreams about you. I tried to keep my distance from you, but our last night together, well, I just selfishly had to make you mine. That night has been cemented in my brain since.”
“You…You really love me?” she asked incredulously.
“I really love you, Nicole. Do you love me? Do you think you can forgive me?”
Her eyes shined from the tears that built up and glistened. She could only stare up at him, she looked as if she was speechless, trying to gather her thoughts, and take everything in. Finally, she spoke softly.
“I love you, Marcus. I love you so much. I want to be with you the rest of our lives. I want to be Nathan’s mommy. I forgive you, Marcus because I just love you so much.”
* * * *
The moon shined into the room through the back window in the room, and in the shadow, there was a silhouette of a man and a woman, deep in a kiss. The only world that existed was the world they were encircled within.
This concludes the story of Elkhorn In The Moonlight. I will be putting the story before my critique partners, and beta readers soon, however, I would love to hear your feedback on the story. What resonated with you? What didn't you like? What would you like to see more of in the story? Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know what you think. Thanks so much, and happy reading!