Ellie's smile faded. She still felt troubled when she remembered how Timothy had shot himself that horrible day in the favela. And yet, she admitted quietly to herself, she was glad to know that he would never threaten her family again, or try to steal another woman's baby for his own profit.
Snuggling her son a little closer, she watched her grandmother, now chic in her signature bright orange lipstick and wearing a black puffy coat, run outside to play with Catia in the snow.
“Papa, you have to come, too!” the little girl insisted, pausing at the door. “Come now!” she ordered, every bit as bossy as her father. Then she ran into the backyard to play.
Diogo stared after her ruefully then shook his head. “I guess I have to go play in the snow.” He sighed. “Unless you need me?” he added hopefully.
She smiled at him, loving him with all her heart. “I always need you. But at the moment, I think Catia needs you more.” Ellie looked down at the hungry baby making contented gulps against her breast. His eyes were closed and he slept drowsily as she stroked his soft, downy hair. “Your son will keep me busy for some time.”
For several moments, they both looked down at their babies.
“Thank you for the best Christmas gift any man has ever had.” Diogo's dark eyes met hers. “I love you, Ellie.”
She opened her mouth to reply, but he stopped her with a light kiss that soon deepened into something far more provocative.
He looked down at her wickedly, quirking an eyebrow. “I'll give you your Christmas present later.”
“Another present? You already gave me this house!”
“I have something else in mind.” By the hungry look in his face, she knew exactly what he meant to give her, and she shivered. Her heart started to pound. It had been so long since they'd last made love. They'd been so busy since the babies were born….
“As soon as they're asleep, you're mine,” he whispered. Reaching into the hall closet, he tossed his black cashmere coat over his T-shirt then paused at the door, looking at her. “I've always wanted to make love to a woman wearing nothing but a hundred-carat diamond necklace.”
“But I don't have—”
“You haven't seen what's under the tree,” he said mischievously, and scampered outside.
Watching her grandmother and husband and daughter throw snowballs at each other through the back window, Ellie realized she'd never been so happy. She glanced at her two sleeping babies. She'd never dreamed life could be like this. Fate had created a life far better than she'd ever imagined for herself.
Fate, and Diogo.
“I love you, too,” she whispered aloud, and as she heard the soft whistle of the wind and the warm sigh of slumbering babies, she blessed the day that her boss had first seduced her in Rio.