Welcome Romance Readers! In this excerpt from Parallel Lives, Part 1, Leah is in New York and has received a message from Irene, who is babysitting for her granddaughter, Zoey, in Florida. (Irene is Zoey's other grandma.)
Leah disconnected from the Internet so she wouldn’t be tempted to check email or get back online. She was about to power her phone off when it beeped. Leah saw that several more text messages had come in from Irene.
“Oh, good. More pics of my little ray of sunshine. Couldn’t have come at a better time.” Leah grabbed her smoothie and brought it with her to the couch, where she stretched out, feet on the coffee table, to enjoy a few moments with her granddaughter before digging into the day’s writing.
In the first picture, Zoey was still in her onesie from the night before. Irene must have gotten there early before Ali had a chance to dress the baby. There was Zoey, a plump little ball covered in the pink and purple hearts of the one-piece pajamas, sitting up in the crib playing with some stuffed animals. She had a big grin, which showed her two bottom and two top teeth.
Leah read the text beneath the photo. “Seeing her get this happy just to see me walk in the room makes getting here at 6:30 in the morning totally painless. Had to share. Hugs, Irene.”
“Oh, I am so jealous! Look at that face!” Leah kissed Zoey on the nose through the phone. She clicked on the next text. Zoey was now dressed in a two-piece pink, purple, and turquoise tie-dye leggings set, trimmed in lace, with a big purple heart in the center of her chest.
Irene wrote, “All dressed up with somewhere to go. Off to Mommy and Me class—or in this case, Grandma and Me.”
Now Leah was really jealous. She longed to have the baby for a day and take her for fun outings. She caught herself in the pout Jonathan described and quickly straightened out her face, running her hands around her lips and between her eyes to smooth out any lines. She laughed out loud and spoke to the photo on the phone.
“Zoey, you would love me, wrinkles and all, wouldn’t you?”
She made a face, probably causing more deepening of the lines, and shrugged. “Grandmas are supposed to have wrinkles.”
She clicked ahead to the next shots, but they weren’t very good. None of them were close enough to get a good look at that beautiful face, so Leah clicked back to the photo of Zoey in her pajamas.
Leah kissed the baby’s face on the screen again and placed her cell phone flat on her chest as she closed her eyes to imagine what it would be like to walk in early in the morning and find that little bundle of joy waiting for her with outstretched arms.
She’d pick that baby up and give her a big hug and special grandma kiss. Then she’d bring Zoey over to the futon on the other side of the room and spend some morning love time playing peek-a-boo and other silly games that delight nine-month-old babies.
Leah could smell Zoey’s sweet baby smell and feel the softness of her smooth face. She could even hear the soft baby gurgly laugh. It sounded so real!
She opened her eyes, and there was Zoey on her chest, poking her, wanting to play more. Leah’s mouth stretched wide open, but nothing came out.
Where was she?
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Hope you've enjoyed the excerpt. Thanks for the visit!