He needed children for an advertising campaign. . .
All Cesar Machismo wants is to ensure the bambinos of the world experience the flavor explosion of his company’s newest baby-food, Thai Shrimp in Peanut Dressing. But when he goes to an orphanage looking for a new spokes-baby, he finds twins with eyes the color of pureed Cornish game hens. Mama Mia! He must take them home!
What he got was a ready-made family!
Content with her lot in life, Chastity Bliss slaves for her stepmother at the orphanage. This way she stays with her babies, though she can never acknowledge them. When Cesar adopts her twins, she follows as their nanny. What can she do? She has no choice, because though he doesn’t know it . . .
Cesar is their father!
This stunning conclusion and saccharine-sweet epilogue is brought to you by our friend, Lorelei Brown.
Charity gasped awake, shrinking desperately against the filthy wall. A looming, ominously dark shadowy man filled the doorway. Undoubtedly it was Mr. Bambinioni, come to wreak his terrible revenge before the fighting overhead prevented him. What could she do if he ripped her blouse away? She’d have no choice but to submit to his lascivious demands. Should her body betray her by responding, it would only be due to her thoughts of Cesar, her one and only love, and her cherished memories of his strong, manly body.
But no! Her gaze was drawn to the betraying bulge in his trousers. It was Cesar, come to rescue them!
He stepped over her tiny, yet still slenderly curvy legs and bent down to the babies. “Mama mia, mi bambinos! How glad I am to see you safe!”
“Voi figlio-di-battona! Che cosa ha preso così lungamente?” groused Marvel.
“Oh, you adorable thing. So brilliant!” Cesar tousled his riotous titian curls. “Just like your papa, though not so much like your mama. But at least she is beautiful, si?”
Charity’s breath caught in her throat like an unchewed piece of apple. Cesar still thought her beautiful, even though she’d been abducted and manhandled by such villains. Her soul sang with joy, the thumping bass beat of Kanye West driving her aching heart.
Cesar scooped Miracle and Marvel into his strong left arm, then turned to Charity. He picked her up with his free right arm and cradled her small, delicate body just like a third baby. Not his baby, though, because that might be a little creepy.
“Oh, Cesar,” she breathed, daring oh so bravely to trace her fingers over his thick wrist and the sprinkling of dark hair there. “How ever did you find us? It must have been so difficult.”
He chuckled as he went up the stairs, carrying their small family out into the brilliant sunshine. Charity winced against the reflection of the sun’s blinding rays off the crushed diamond pathways, then tucked her face into the immense planes of his chest.
“Oh, it was easy, mia prostituta dolce. After all, I have every millimeter of this estate wired for both sound and video! Even all twenty-two bathrooms. Not to watch my guests in their private activities, because that would be strange, not manly, but for security purposes!”
“But then wh-” Charity choked off her ungrateful question like she were choking a chicken. He’d rescued them, that was all that mattered. Not how long it took. She should count herself lucky he hadn’t left her to fester in that damp basement, at the mercy of Mr. Bambionini’s rough hands, with only sub-par baby foods to eat. Still, she couldn’t help but say, “I heard the helicopters leave.”
“Of course you did,” Cesar replied.
His voice rumbled through her body where she was tucked up against his side, sending unwanted trembles of pleasure through her flesh. This wasn’t the time, nor the place for Charity to be overwhelmed by her own whorish nature. Her gaze tried to drop to the bulge behind his trousers, but she found only her own knees and the pink, precious toes of her babies. Well, they were surely pink and precious beneath the layer of grey and green goop.
“The helicopters were merely a diversionary tactic,” Cesar continued, as his long, thick legs strode up the miles of garden paths toward his magnificent house.
“So Mr. Bambionini wouldn’t know you and your men were about to swoop in and rescue us? Oh, Cesar you’re so amazingly smart.”
“I know, mia cara. But that’s not what I meant. It was so I would have time to prepare this.”
One of Cesar’s half dozen assistants darted in front of them and threw open the monstrously tall doors to reveal an indoor, magical, winter fairyland. Every surface was draped in jewel encrusted evergreen boughs, or had thick, white candles, which lent the room a pale yellow glow. Charity wondered how many candles it had taken to light the enormous room, which was half the size of a football field. And how long would it take her to scrape up all the fallen wax tomorrow? At one end, flanked by two massive fireplaces, was a Christmas tree that stretched nearly all the way to the ceiling. Myriad jars of Machismo Gourmet Baby Foods dangled from thick branches by way of glistening ribbons, as ornaments.
What could this mean? Had Cesar discovered her secret hatred of the commercialism of Christmas and designed this scene to torment her? Of course not, since she’d never breathed a word of how she felt about the holidays, knowing it would brand her a heathen trollop who didn’t deserve to have such beautiful babies. Heavens forfend, it could even get her two precious children taken away, surely!
So Cesar thought he was making a grand gesture. Though he’d always think her a gold digging whore, she’d take what she could get, even if that meant faking a love for the sickening pseudo sweetness of the Christmas season. What could she do? She had no choice, for to tell Cesar how much she hated the 25th of December would be equivalent to saying she hated him, which was not at all true.
“I knew you would be speechless,” Cesar smirked. He handed the Miracle and Marvel off to an assistant with brisk orders to have them evaluated by a male doctor. Then he carried Charity to their bedroom and deposited her on the enormous four-poster bed. Her gaze was drawn to the betraying bulge in his trousers. “You are not ready for that yet, mia cara. Soon, however, I will satiate your powerful lust.” His voice was rough edged, yet tender in a way she’d never heard from him before. “First, you will be examined fully, so that I may know the full extent you have been sullied.”
A fiery blush pillaged her skin, much like Cesar soon would with his demanding caresses. “But I haven’t – that is, he didn’t –“
“Per meravaglia, I understand, with your tender sensibilities you do not wish to reveal the truth. It is ok, the doctor is right here.” He stepped out of the room, allowing a short, round man to enter past him.
The doctor was as kind as possible, searching every inch of her body, and apologizing all along. Charity didn’t understand why. What could she do? She had no choice but to allow herself to be checked like a run away puppy. Finally, the doctor gave her a small pill and beseeched her to swallow it with a draught of cool water from the crystal glass beside the bed.
“What was that?” Charity asked, after she’d taken it.
“Valium. You needed it after such a traumatic day. I’ve left a bottle right here for you, and I’ll refill it any time you like. Just call.” He stuffed his stethoscope away in his black doctor’s bag and muttered, “I’m sure you’ll need plenty, living with him.”
She blinked, confused at what he could mean. Any woman would be lucky to live with Cesar. She was blessed that he would have any interest at all in her coltish, too-teeny self. The doctor let himself out, and Cesar swept past him, sitting down on the edge of the bed.
“Mi inamorato, are you ready to hear my declarations?”
“As you wish, Cesar.” Now he would berate her. She should have fought off the cruel men who had abducted her and the babies. As punishment, he would send her away to some horrible place. She wouldn’t even be lucky enough to scrub floors. She’d be forced to actually work as a nurse, away from her poor, sweet babies and without the loving support of any man. How could a woman survive like that? It was horrid to think of.
“I have decided to keep you right next to my side forever! I will dazzle you with an amazing Christmas display each and every year, each one grander and more lavish than the last! For you are not a whore, at least for no man but me. And you love me, I know you do!”
Charity gasped. It was so much more than she’d dared hope for! Cesar knew she loved him and was not disgusted! A lovely lassitude stole through her bones, much like how she used to feel when she smelled her beloved marker. She wondered briefly if it was due to the doctor’s little pill, then decided it had more to do with the soul-quaking love that wrapped through her.
“Cesar, it’s true! I love you. I love you more than I love Miracle and Marvel, even!”
Cesar gave a rough, masculine gasp, and put a hand to his heart, crisp dark hairs sprinkled over his wrist. “Don’t say such a thing! Our babies are the most precious bambinos in the world.”
“Of course, Cesar, I’m sorry.” She dropped her gaze, which was drawn to the betraying bulge in Cesar’s trousers. Was it healthy for a man to walk around like that all the time?
“Now that, I can help you with!” He bore her back into the massive piles of pillows, her narrow shoulders dwarfed by his, which were more than three times as wide. “I swear, by la Madre Santa, to satisfy your unnatural lusts! Forever!”
Charity leaned back against a brocaded sofa in their large living room and shifted uncomfortably. The quail egged sized rubies set into the center of the embroidered flowers looked beautiful, but made for a painful seat. One seemed to be attempting to dig into her most delicate flesh, which was a bit tender after Cesar’s rough attentions the night before.
“Look, mama, look! It’s an impressive display, is it not?” asked Miracle, from where she and her brother were assisting Cesar in placing the custom made topper on the newest Christmas tree. They were up to three, in this room alone. Wonder and Vision, their three month old, newest set of twins, toddled unsteadily around the bottom of the ladder.
“Amazing, my sweet,” she cooed. She dug in her pocket for her pill bottle and rattled it before fishing one out to swallow dry. She was running low on her prescription. No worries, one call would solve that.
Cesar threw himself onto the seat next to her, pushing her over so that a ruby dug into her spine. “I fulfill all my promises, do I not, mia cara?”
“Certainly,” Charity murmured.
“Then know this! We will be just this happy, forever!”
“Oh, gee. That’s wonderful.”
Stay tuned for more good times in the coming year. Happy Holidays, everyone!
Last 5 posts by bam
- Lover Eternal by J.R. Ward - April 24th, 2015
- A Man in a Million by Jessica Bird - April 21st, 2015
- Harlequin Presents: The Unforgettable Husband - April 20th, 2015
- Harlequin Presents: Passionate Stranger by Flora Kidd - April 17th, 2015
- Harlequin Presents: Heartbreaker by Charlotte Lamb - April 16th, 2015