ROMANCING THE EMOTIONAL DUKE
Anne nodded, gently stroking his cheek.
“I believe it is time,” she said.
Duncan’s feet were on the floor before his body was completely upright in the bed. He rushed over to the outfit he had draped over a nearby chair and tugged himself into it, nearly toppling himself several times as he did so. Anne bit her lip to stifle a giggle as he rushed to dress. Once he had done so, however, he helped Anne back to bed, ensuring that she was as comfortable as he could make her.
“I shall send for Maria for you, and then I will go and fetch the doctor myself,” he said.
Anne nodded, accepting her husband’s quick but affectionate kiss before he hurriedly exited the room. Within moments, Maria was at her side, looking as excited as she did nervously. She brought a basin and a pitcher to the bedside, filling the basin with water and fetching clean, dry clothes and linens. Then, they sat together, talking excitedly about names that Anne and Duncan had discussed for the baby.
A short time later, the physician arrived. Duncan kissed Anne once more and then left the doctor to his duty. She watched him go, squeezing her maid’s hand, as the physician got everything set up as he needed. As she had with her first childbirth, she said a silent prayer, for the health and safety of both herself and the coming child. As she did so, she thought she could hear little voices blending with her husband’s outside the door, and she smiled. The twins must have been roused by the commotion throughout the house, and they must be waiting anxiously for the arrival of their new sibling. The thought warmed Anne’s heart, and she felt her nervousness give way to excitement.
Just after three in the morning on Christmas Eve, the physician handed Anne a tightly swaddled, tiny bundle. She embraced the baby, as the doctor stepped outside to speak with the rest of the family. Within seconds, Duncan, Chloe, and Marcus, holding a sleepy little Will, entered the room. They rushed over to her, each of them fighting to peek at the small face barely visible beneath the blankets.
“It is a girl,” Anne announced, tiredly but proudly.
Chloe squealed with delight. Marcus feigned a groan, but the smile on his face said he was every bit as pleased as his sister. Upon seeing his mother, Will began reaching for the blankets she was holding, and Marcus took his hand, bringing him carefully closer to the small baby.
“That is our sister,” Marcus said, holding Will so that he could see the tiny girl’s face. “Her name is … um … what is her name?”
Anne laughed, looking at her husband.
“What is her name?” she asked.
Duncan gently stroked his brand-new daughter’s head, then looked at his wife, his eyes full of joyful tears.
“Abigail,” he whispered, kissing his wife’s forehead. “Abigail Wentworth.”
Duncan held her close, kissing the top of her head. Though she could not see his face, she could feel his smile, which she was certain stretched as far across his face as it could, against her head.
“We most certainly are, darling,” he said.
At eleven o’clock in the evening, on the night before Christmas Eve, Anne woke Duncan from his sleep.
“Darling,” she said softly, cradling her large belly tightly.
Duncan stirred, looking up at his wife sleepily.
“What is it?” he asked. “Are you all right?”
This is the end of my novel “Romancing the Emotional Duke”. I hope that you enjoy it! Your effort to read it means a lot to me and I have to thank you for your love and support these difficult days!
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