Authors: Kay Ellis
It was true, the old saying that prejudices were learned, not something people were born with. When Devon explained to the boys Jesse and he were going to be married and Anya would have two daddies, George had shrugged his indifference before asking Jesse if he wanted to wrestle. Oscar worried them for a brief moment while he gave the matter some thought. His little face screwed up into a concerned frown, he asked if there would be a party and cake. Once he was satisfied there would be both, he disappeared into the playroom with his brother without further comment.
Content, Devon watched Jesse from across the room. His lover. His
He loved being able to call him that. Jesse looked incredible, his eyes shining as he laughed at something Kenny whispered to him. And he looked happy. Happier than Devon had ever seen him. Losing his mother and Antonio would be worth it if it meant spending the rest of his life with this gorgeous man.
Jesse lifted his head and saw Devon looking at him. Leaving Kenny mid-sentence, Jesse smiled and walked toward him. Devon caught Kenny's eye, and Kenny smiled, too, with a resigned shrug. In Jesse's world, Devon came first. Always had. Always would.
He opened his arms and Jesse stepped into them, his arms slipping around Devon's waist as he rested his head against his shoulder. Hugging him tightly, Devon wished they could stay in that moment forever. They were happy now, but who knew for how long?
Jesse might not be a teenager for much longer, but he was still so young. Still twenty-two years Devon's junior. He would always be a victim of abuse, prone to bouts of low confidence and depression. Oh, he was fine now, but chances were either Devon's mother or Antonio would turn up again at some point and upset Jesse. Try to ruin what they had together. And who knew if Anya's mother would appear at some point and try to take her daughter back? Devon had already set legal proceedings in place to make sure she wouldn't succeed, but it wouldn't stop her from trying.
“Stop it,” said Jesse softly, guessing Devon's thoughts in that uncannily accurate way he had. “Not today, Dev. Promise me the only thing you're going to worry about today is taking me home and fucking me through the mattress.”
“Um, that's never been a problem before,” Devon pointed out, arching an eyebrow.
Jesse grinned. “Well, you are getting on a bit....”
“Too late,” Devon said smugly, pulling him close and letting Jesse feel for himself how little trouble he'd have making love to him. “You already married me.”
“Yeah, well,” Jesse gave a sly smirk. “I did it for the money. You know that, right?”
Devon swatted his backside playfully and Jesse peeled away from him with a chuckle, quickly crossing the room and sweeping his daughter into his arms. Anya, every bit as beautiful as her daddy, babbled excitedly and wrapped her chubby arms around Jesse's neck. Smiling, Devon glanced toward Mark and Kenny, who stood at the bar beaming with pride, all but patting themselves on the back, as though Jesse and him getting married was their doing. Devon supposed each of them had played their part, given the unwavering friendship they had provided.
At the grand old age of forty-one, Devon had everything in life he could want. Good friends, a good job, money, his health... all of those things were important. But infinitely more important were the beautiful man he had just married and the child they planned to raise together. Jesse and Anya were his family now. Nothing else mattered. From this point on, his life would be devoted to loving and protecting the pair of them.
Jesse couldn't keep the smile from his face as he came back to Devon's side. Devon took Anya from him and balanced her on one arm, wrapping the other around Jesse's waist. This was what Erica and Antonio were missing in their lives. Love. Affection. Family. Any other day, Devon might take the time to pity them. But not today.
The DJ cranked up the sound and was playing their song. Their guests were calling for them. With his husband and child in his arms, Devon took to the dance floor, feeling utterly content.
KAY ELLIS lives in rural Oxfordshire in the UK, where she's mum to two beautiful daughters. From an early age, she has written stories, with a sole readership of one â her mum, Sylvia. In 2013, someone suggested Kay enter a competition on national television to find a new âracey reads' author. Much to Kay's surprise, she made it to the final three, and although she didn't win, the high praise received for her work gave her the confidence to start submitting to publishers.
When not writing, Kay enjoys reading, eating out and the theatre.
Kay Ellis can be found at: