Page List


Kira struggles to her feet and reaches for me. I allow her to hug me and awkwardly put my arms around her. She says, “I love you too.” She says it quietly, and I doubt what I heard for a moment.

I look into her eyes, and I can see the love she has for me. I’ve always felt ignored and unloved, but now, I can tell my sister would kill for me.

I kiss both her cheeks. “I love you too.”

We hug again, and then she escorts me to where Aleks is waiting. “I’m ready to go, Aleks,” I say, smiling.

Aleks throws his cards down. “Full house,” he says, taking the three cigars in the middle while Kira’s men complain. Kira clicks her tongue. “He won fair and square, so stop moaning.”

Aleks escorts me to the car, and when I get in, I snort. “How do you know to play poker so well?”

“My mother was a blackjack dealer at a casino. I’d sit at the poker tables when they weren’t busy, and the guys would teach me.”

I think it’s the most I’ve ever heard him say. I smile and sit back, a hand absentmindedly stroking my belly. Should I tell Alessandro? I need to decide soon because Kira is right. I’m going to start showing soon, and then I have no option.”

Chapter 22 - Ivan

I’m sitting out front enjoying a cigar, something I don’t often do when Tori arrives home. When she gets out of the car, I can see worry etched on her face. She’s upset about something.

I put out the cigar and catch her as she walks up the stairs. “Hey, what’s wrong?”

She shakes her head. “Nothing’s wrong. I’m just hungry and need a rest.”

I frown. “Tori, I’ve come to know you better than that. If something is bothering you, you can tell me. I can help you fix it.”

She shakes her head again. “It’s just silly family politics with my sister. I don’t really want to talk about it right now.”

I kiss her forehead. “I hope it gets sorted out. Having siblings is a blessing in any family.”

She nods, and I let her go inside, but I wait for Aleks. As soon as he comes up the porch, I ask, “What happened?”

“She was fine one minute, and the next, she was emotional,” Aleks comments. “Don’t know what’s wrong.”

I frown and glance down the hallway she walked down. “I don’t like to see her unhappy.”

Anastasia comes toward me as I walk into the house. “Father, who I love,” she says sweetly, and I snort, “What do you want?”

“Come with me,” she says, taking my hand and leading me inside to where Tori sat down in the lounge.

“Sit,” she instructs me, pointing at the couch beside Tori. Tori glances at me, but I shrug. I don’t know what this is about.

Anastasia smiles brightly. “Father, who I love,” she teases again. “Whatever are you up to tonight?”

“Relaxing?” I suggest. “That was the plan, at least.”

“You relax too much,” she says with a clap of her hands. “I’m in the mood for some good-hearted old-school fun. The three of us are going to the arcade to play games and bowl.”

I shake my head. “Ana, don’t you have friends to do that with? I’m far too old to be playing arcade games.”

She widens her eyes and juts out her bottom lip. “Don’t you want to spend time with me?”

I groan and look at Tori. “See what I live with between the two of you? Fine,” I concede. “Fine! We will go with you tonight.”

“Thank you,” she squeals and hugs me tightly. “Like, we’re leaving in half an hour.” She prances off, and I shake my head. “Change into something comfortable. This child can bowl for hours.”

Tori gives me a sad smile and nods, getting up and kissing my head before she makes her way to the bedroom. Maybe this will cheer her up. I go into the bedroom after her, changing into some track pants and a golf shirt. Nothing fancy, but I’m still presentable.

Tori side-eyes me, and I smirk. “What?”

Tags: Veda Rose Erotic