day theyâd first run him over. The memory made him smile. âYou boys are all right. You know that?â They beamed at the praise just as Lynn came out the front door. Sheâd gone inside to change out of her slacks into jeans and an oversize, cream-colored sweater that hung below her hips. Sheâd pulled her hair into a ponytail once more and Chance missed the way it hung around her face. She also had changed from boots to canvas shoes that had seen better days. The outfit looked as if she had loved and worn it for years. He sure missed her hair hanging down though, no matter how much he tried not to think about it. âDid you come to help, too, Momma?â Jack asked. âSure did.â She hugged him and gave him a kiss on the head, making him giggle. âIs that okay with you fellas?â Gavin crunched his brows together skeptically. âLong as you donât use the hammer. Youâre worse with it than me.â âHey!â Lynn laughed cheerily. âThatâs not a nice thing to say about your olâ momma.â She engulfed him in a swooping hug and growled against his neck. He squealed and wiggled attempting to escape. Jack hopped from foot to foot excitedly. âGet him, Mom ma! Get him.â Chance had climbed the first two rungs of the ladder but paused to watch them. They were good together. The three of them. Lynn had done a great job. She should be very proud of herself. Laughing and breathless from romping with Gavin she let him go and smiled at Chance. Her cheeks were soft pink and she had a happyglow about her as she held his gaze. His stomach tilted looking down at her and he felt peaceful. âI wish I had some of those plastic gadgets you hang lights with. It would make things a lot easier, I think.â He held up the staple gun. âWeâll do it the old-fashioned way.â âYou ainât usinâ a hammer?â âNope, Gavin, Iâm afraid Iâd hit my thumb if I tried to hang lights with a hammer.â âYou donât want ta do that. It hurts.â âYeah, I reckon it did.â He climbed the ladder carrying a strand of lights and all three jumped to hang on to the ladder. âWe wonât let you fall, Mr. Chance,â Jack yelled at the top of his lungs. âThanks. Iâm in good hands. I can see that.â âThere are none better than my boys,â Lynn called, her voice bright with affection. Chance looked down to find her smiling up at him as she said the words. She looked so pretty and so happy at that moment that he almost missed a rung on the ladder.
Chapter Eight âS o, what do you think?â Chance asked as he hopped to the ground. Heâd hung several strands of lights, and the old house was looking great. He was standing close to Lynn and she could feel the warmth from his body through the down vest that he wore. Sheâd helped him for the last hour and heâd been great with her boys. And, okay, the man smelled wonderful. âMomma, donât ya got yor ears on? What do you think?â Jack asked, tugging on her arm. It was what she always asked him and Gavin when they werenât listening to her. Boy, where had she been? How embarrassing was that? âEar one and ear two are both on and ready to do their jobs,â she said lightly, careful not to look at Chance. She hoped Chance hadnât noticed her embarrassing lapse. She stole a glance at him. He caught her and the wink he gave her said heâd noticed plenty. âYou were taking a nap,â he drawled, a teasing smiletugging at his lips as he grabbed the ladder and moved it down three feet. A flutter erupted inside her chest at his words and she watched him. He moved with an athletic grace sheâd been admiring all morning. Leaning the ladder against the house, he placed a hand on his hip and grinned. âSeriously, I think a mother of active twin boys deserves to grab a