Destiny and a Bottle of Merlot

Destiny and a Bottle of Merlot by Bria Marche

Book: Destiny and a Bottle of Merlot by Bria Marche Read Free Book Online
Authors: Bria Marche
husband.”
    “Jack? As in Jack Barnes? Why? How?”
    “I thought I had a relationship with a single man. As it turned out, we were dating when he was married to Karen too. I was the ‘other woman’ to both of them for years. I’m so ashamed, but I swear I didn’t know.”
    “How in the hell did Mia and Karen ever become your friends?” he asked, as he warmed up both coffees.
    “Let’s just say they’re very special people. They’re my personal angels, and I love them so much. Josh, I lied to you a few weeks ago when I changed my appearance, and I’m sorry. The truth is Jack called me and sounded threatening. I went to these extremes to keep him from recognizing me in town.”
    “That’s why you changed your hair, because of him?”
    “Yes, and my phone number. But that isn’t all I changed. Last Monday I changed my name too. Crazy, huh?”
    “Wow, my news is small potatoes compared to yours.”
    “What’s yours?”
    “I was married years ago, that’s all.”
    “It’s okay, that doesn’t bother me. Here’s the part I’m excited to tell everyone tonight. Monday, when I went to the courthouse for the name change, I saw Jack. He was sitting with his attorney in the hallway I had to walk through to get to my courtroom. He didn’t recognize me at all. The relief was so overwhelming…” Sasha began to cry. “I’m sorry, I don’t mean to act like a baby. I guess it still gets to me. I’ve been so afraid he’d find me and I’d have to move. I love Tarrytown and this house. I love all my new friends.”
    “Sasha, or whoever you are, I’m falling in love with you,” he said, smiling. “I truly mean it. You can do whatever you want with that tidbit of information. I don’t want to overload you.”
    “I’m going to hang on to it for a little longer. Can we talk more about it in a week or so?”
    “We sure can. I’m going to start spiffing this house up. There’s going to be a party here tonight. You, sweet woman, should go take a leisurely bubble bath. I’ll watch the kid. Sasha?”
    “Yes?”
    “What’s your new name?”
    “I’ll tell you tonight,” she said, as she walked up the stairs, trying not to trip over her pink, fuzzy slippers.

Chapter Fourteen
    The guests began trickling in at four-thirty. Mario and Max spent most of the morning at Geared Up in Peekskill helping out in the store. They arrived at Vic’s house at two o’clock.
    It was like Christmas with everyone’s arms full as they walked up the long brick sidewalk toward the Victorian. Each person commented on how beautiful the new paint looked as they got out of their cars. The coach lamps illuminated the front porch, like welcoming beacons. The scent of wood burning in the fireplace lingered in the cold air outside, hanging above their heads.
    Sasha greeted her guests with Josh at her side. A few surprised looks were exchanged. Little Kismet barked happily underfoot. Sasha proudly showed off her antique dining room and living room furniture. Food was deposited on the kitchen counters while the bundles of wood went in the boxes next to the fireplaces. Max threw extra logs on the fire in the dining room.
    Earlier in the day Josh wheeled Sasha’s grill out of the shed and moved it to the front of the house for Aaron’s use. The French patio doors off the kitchen would have to wait until next summer when the deck was built.
    Mario brought a squeaky toy and a ceramic food dish with her name written across the side for Kismet.
    Everyone gathered at the dining room table and enjoyed a bottle of Merlot between them as they listened to Sasha’s story of the wonderful furniture at Devonport Antiques.
    With Aaron leading the way, the guys gravitated to the porch while he lit the grill. The chicken would take the longest. Gathered in the kitchen, the girls clucked loudly. Barnyard hens couldn’t outdo this flock. They shot questions at Sasha like a fully automatic rifle.
    “What gives?” Karen asked. “Are you getting

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