Lost & Found Love

Lost & Found Love by Laura Browning

Book: Lost & Found Love by Laura Browning Read Free Book Online
Authors: Laura Browning
bed, Joe hovered next to the window to give them space and some measure of privacy. Jenny stretched her hand out, and Tabby took it. Joe’s chest tightened. Tabby needed this sense of family—of normal family. If a sister was all she could have, then so be it. They needed that chance to bond.
    “Did Mama ever talk about her life here?” Jenny asked.
    Tabby shook her head. “Until she had me write the letter for you, she never said a word.”
    “Evan said he first saw you up at the top of the hill above the old home place.”
    “I went there to find you. That was the address Mama had given me.”
    “Instead you found the gravestone.” Jenny captured Tabby’s hand. “Neither one of us have had an easy life. Do you have any idea who your real father might be?”
    Tabby shook her head. “Mama would never say a word about him.”
    Jenny squeezed her hand. “Well not only will my baby have a mama and daddy to love him, he’ll have an aunt too. That is if you can forgive me for the way I acted to begin with.”
    “There’s nothing to forgive. You’re my sister.”
    “And we’re overjoyed to have you in the family,” Evan said as he walked in the door. His head swiveled to Joe. “Hey, Preacher.”
    As Evan’s sharp gray stare became speculative, Joe felt his cheeks flush. Evan laughed. Joe stepped forward. “Maybe I should run you home, Tabby, so Evan and Jenny can have some time together.”
    Tabby smiled at him, and Joe’s heart lifted. He had worried she might be overwhelmed by the sudden welcome into a family, but she seemed okay. He decided to ignore Evan’s knowing look as they left.
     
     

Chapter 6
     
    Joe wanted more time with Tabby, but it was too late to watch a movie. Tabby needed to get up early for school. He thought about ways to get what he wanted without depriving her the whole way back to their houses. In fact, he’d thought of little but Tabby since the kisses and caresses they’d shared the previous night. When he parked the car around the back of the house, he was still no closer to coming up with an excuse to spend time with her when Tabby unexpectedly helped him.
    “Joseph? W-would you sing for me before I go home? You have a guitar, don’t you?”
    He could have kissed her in sheer relief that she handed him the means to keep her with him.
    “Yeah. Come on in.” He brought her to the living room, closed the drapes, and turned on a single lamp. “Sit on the couch. I’ll get us some sweet tea and be right back.”
    After handing her the glass and setting his down, he took off his tie and loosened his collar before rolling back his sleeves. Tabby sipped her tea and closed her eyes. He could almost see the tension ease from her.
    “Play for me, Joseph.”
    He would do anything for her. The sudden realization startled him but didn’t disturb him. He set his glass aside, lifted his guitar, and sat cross-legged on the floor in front of her. He checked the tuning, then began to play. As his voice joined the music, he watched Tabby sigh with pleasure. Joe wasn’t sure how long he played. When he stopped, she was asleep. He didn’t take it as an insult. It was not a commentary on his music or his singing as much as it was a sign of her trust. She felt secure enough to fall asleep. He eased down next to her and cradled her head against his chest.
    He loved her. The thought slipped into his brain quietly and peacefully. He had always figured it would be some sudden and overwhelming revelation. Instead, it simply was. He hadn’t looked for it, and it didn’t matter they had known each other for just days. He felt complete when he was with her.
    Loving Tabby wouldn’t be easy. Joe was enough of a realist to know that. She didn’t fit other people’s image of a preacher’s wife. That was one factor, but the biggest obstacle might be Tabby herself. Marrying a minister, even dating one, wasn’t on her list. Somehow, someway, he would convince her to trust him enough to marry him.

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