Page 72

The Skull Ruler (Skull 3) Penelope Sky 2022/8/5 16:55:03

“There’s nothing to be scared of. I’ll take care of you like I always do.”

“That’s not what I’m scared of. Once I become a mother, my life will be totally different.”

“It will,” I said in agreement. “But you’re going to be a great mother.”

“You know, for not wanting kids, you seem awfully confident about this.”

“I’ve never been afraid to have kids. I just didn’t want them. I’ve had to pull off some incredible stunts in my lifetime, survive attacks that left most of my men dead. Honestly, raising a kid is easy compared to that. I’ll provide for both of you, I’ll always keep you safe, and I’ll always love you. There’s nothing to stress about.”

She smiled. “You make it sound so easy.”

“It will be easy. You’ve always wanted a family, right?”

“Yes…but it’s a big responsibility. And I didn’t expect you to be so good about it…”

Because I’d been too busy being an asshole. “I have a lot of making up to do.”

She took a few more bites, her eyes watching me. “My brother told me what you did…about Evan.”

I thought we’d agreed we would keep it a secret. Case must have told her for a reason. Maybe he was trying to convince her to take me back, putting in a good word for me like he said he would.

She watched me as if she expected me to say something. “He also told me the truth…that Evan betrayed me.”

“I would have killed him, but Case told me you wouldn’t want that.”

“I wouldn’t. He’s a father… It wouldn’t be right.”

“But I’m glad I put him in the hospital for a few days. He deserved worse, but I showed him some mercy.”

She watched me quietly, her eyes shifting back and forth. “I don’t know what to say…”

“There’s no reason to say anything. He got what he deserved. No one betrays my woman and gets away with it. Punishment will always be served…even if it takes a few years.”

She stared down at her plate without eating. “When did you do that?”

“When you started to live with me.”

“That was a long time ago.”

“I told you I’ve loved you far longer than you’ve loved me.”

She raised her gaze and looked at me, beautiful in the morning light that filtered through the window. Her pregnancy gave her a glow so bright that it was undeniable. Pregnancy suited her. “So now what?”

“Do you want to live separately while—”

She pressed her lips tightly together at my answer.

“We’ll sell this place, and move back to my apartment.”

“That doesn’t seem like an ideal place to start a family.”

“But we would share that space with the current Skull King. That doesn’t sound smart.”

I’d forgotten that Heath would be taking on new responsibilities. He would be the new target of the organization. “You’re right.” I’d been living in that building for a decade, and it felt like home. Now I would have to leave it.

“I’d prefer not to live in an apartment anyway. I moved here because this was all I could afford.”

“And where would you like to live?” I asked.

“In the countryside, like my brothers. A place with a nice yard and a wall with a gate to keep unwanted people away. Somewhere the kids can play outside without wandering too far. A place with enough room for all four of us.”

She was already talking about having our second child, but the idea didn’t scare me. I was already going to have one baby on my hands, but quickly, I would have two. I was already becoming a family man, a man who had traded in a life of crime for peace and quiet.

She studied my face. “Unless you had something else in mind…”

“No. My woman gets what she wants.”

“But I also want you to want it.”

“And having a second baby? That doesn’t bother you?” She studied my face like she couldn’t believe how different I was.

“Having two can’t be that much different from having one.”

A smile slowly spread across her mouth. “It’ll take me some time to get used to this…”

“Used to what, exactly?”

She shook her head slightly. “Having everything I wanted…”

My chest filled with warmth when I observed her happiness. I’d been the recipient of her hatred, and it was a relief to see the way she loved me, to know that our love had survived my stupidity. “It’s what I want too.”

“Are you really okay leaving the Skull Kings?” she asked. “It’s been your whole life. I know how much it means to you.”

“It doesn’t mean as much to me as you do.” That was the simple truth. It was my whole world before I’d found the right woman. Now it seemed like a tedious job I didn’t want anymore. “Heath will do a great job. I wouldn’t have picked him if I didn’t think he could handle it.”