Carrying the Rancher's Heir

Carrying the Rancher's Heir by Charlene Sands Page A

Book: Carrying the Rancher's Heir by Charlene Sands Read Free Book Online
Authors: Charlene Sands
met her eyes again. There was no need to ask about the pregnancy. Though her flat belly showed no signs yet, her guilty expression gave her away. She was carrying his child.
    He didn’t want Hawkins Sullivan anywhere near his kid. There was no way he’d allow his child to be influenced byhim, much less grow up in his household. And there was only one way to ensure that. Callie had to agree. He wouldn’t take no for an answer.
    â€œDon’t say anything, Callie. Not one word. Not until we’re off this damn ranch.”
    He wouldn’t look at her. He stared straight ahead, peering out the Jeep’s windshield, shifted into gear and hit the gas pedal.
    Callie’s stomach churned at Tagg’s tone. She didn’t want it to be like this. She didn’t want Tagg to find out about his child until she was sure he had feelings for her.
    He does have feelings for you. He hates you.
    Callie closed her eyes. She’d had a rough few days. The doctor said the morning sickness would subside but there was no telling when. She’d been sick for three days straight, almost from the minute the plane had landed back from Las Vegas. Initially, she had thought she’d picked up a virus, but her doctor confirmed what she was experiencing was first trimester morning sickness. For some women, it lasted only days, others weeks, and the really lucky ones were blessed with emptying their stomach contents for the majority of their gestation.
    Please, no.
    She laid a hand to her belly.
    Tagg noticed. He turned his head and peered at her stomach. The hard glare in his eyes softened for a millisecond before his jaw set tight and his lips pursed again.
    Callie leaned against the side of the cab and drew oxygen into her lungs. She felt better being out of the house and off the ranch. And crazy as it seemed, she felt better being with Tagg, even with him being as angry as he was.
    She should have told him about the baby right away. Sheshould have been honest and let the chips fall where they may. She’d experienced enough guilt over this to last her a lifetime. It had all been so clear in her head when she made the decision to wait before telling Tagg about the baby. She’d wanted time. She’d wanted a courtship, to have a real relationship with him. She’d wanted a chance.
    Instead, her father had witnessed her morning sickness and had instantly known that she was with child. He’d demanded to know whose child she carried and Callie hadn’t any more deception left in her. Her body physically ached and she had little strength. In a weak moment, she’d confessed everything to her father, including blaming him for making her so darn angry that she felt she needed to defy him with Tagg.
    But she never expected that Tagg would come over, and when she’d heard him arguing with her father from her bedroom upstairs, she was shocked. Then she’d taken one look at Tagg racing up the steps like it was an Olympic sport and knew he’d learned the truth and was furious with her.
    After a ten-minute drive at seventy miles an hour on the open highway, Tagg slowed down and turned down a long winding road. They drove through a cropping of tall cottonwoods and farther on to where green meadows filled the panorama with colorful wildflowers nurtured by spring rain. Elizabeth Lake came into view, and as they approached Callie saw the reflection of dark blue waters glistening under diminishing sunlight.
    Tagg parked by a shallow embankment. His mood seemed calmer now, the planes of his face more relaxed. She hoped her optimism wasn’t merely wishful thinking. He bounded out of the cab and strode around the front of the vehicle to open the passenger side door. “Take a walk with me.” She slipped her hand in his and he helped her climb down.
    Her fingers tingled from his touch. But Tagg dropped herhand as soon as she was on solid ground. She’d been wrong. His anger hadn’t

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