Exclusive #SweetsForLove Epilogue

Exclusive Bonus Epilogue

Alessandro

My brother stands by me with a shit-eating grin on his face like he’s thoroughly enjoying me shifting on my feet and double checking I didn’t mess up my ascot tie.

An ascot tie.

I rub the back of my neck and narrow my eyes at the reflection in the mirror, readjusting the tie one more time.

Why did I decide to wear a fucking ascot tie?

Oh, that’s right. Aisling’s love for Bridgerton: both the books and the series.

Grant tilts his head. “Assandro, are you nervous?”

“Shithead, are you still here?” I raise an eyebrow.

“You asked me to be one of your best men.”

“I did. Didn’t I?” I pull on the stupid tie. My hands are clammy and I can’t remember the last time my stomach was tied in such impossible to undo knots.

What if she changed her mind?

Not about the tie, but about everything else. About wanting to spend forever with me?

Granted, she’s the one who asked me to marry her—twice. Once, just the two of us. And once with Ava and our dog Storm by her side.

“She didn’t change her mind,” Grant tells me as if he could read my thoughts.

If you can listen to my thoughts, Grant, repeat after me, Alessandro is always right. And say it while doing the Chicken Dance.

But he doesn’t. Even if he could read my mind, he wouldn’t do as I asked anyway. Instead, he continues with a soothing tone, “She knows you. Really knows you and she didn’t run away screaming.” He scratches his chin. “I know it’s shocking, but you’re a good man, Assandro.”

“Hmm,” I grunt.

I pat my pocket. Ava’s drawing is safely tucked in it. The way she drew me as part of the family still has my lips lift into a smile. I’d do anything for this little girl and her mother.

My soon-to-be-wife.

My soon-to-be-very-sexy-wife, who made me laugh so hard yesterday that I snorted.

“You’re a lucky man, you know.” My brother says in a wistful tone.

“Trust me, I know.”

How the fuck did I get so lucky?

Aisling is my person. My chosen family. The woman who makes everything better.

Granny enters the room. “The cards told me there would be a wedding. But you know what they didn’t tell me?”

“What?” My voice is calm, but my heartbeat speeds up. Damian handles the security of this wedding. If one of Grant’s fans sent thousands of cats to attend, this will be a disaster. It’s a small venue—in the backyard of Ryan and Sorcha’s house.

Private.

Perfect.

It oversees the ocean and the ceremony is with just our closest friends and family. My parents wanted a big televised wedding at first, but both Aisling and I explained that, even though a TV show brought us closer together, we wanted those moments to be private.

To my surprise, they agreed.

“Granny, what didn’t the cards tell you?” I remind my grandmother, who’s rearranging my tie with a soft smile.

“That you’d be so stressed. This isn’t like you.”

“I want everything to be perfect for her.”

Granny pulls out an envelope from her purse.

“Well, you’re marrying someone who knows you so well. She wrote you a letter.” Granny links her arm into Grant’s. “Let’s leave the groom alone.” She steps away. “We’ll see you outside, love.” And she kisses my cheek before strolling outside of the room with my brother.

I lean against the chair and inhale the paper. Honeysuckle. She must have sprayed her perfume on the paper. And I chuckle as I start reading.
Dear Thor Of Mine,

Dear Best Book Boyfriend Ever,

Dear Alessandro,

Yes. The paper is scented. I thought that’s what Elle Woods would do.

I laugh and inhale the paper again. That is what Aisling would do.

I know you. And I love you. And I’m so very lucky to get to spend the rest of my life loving you, creating memories together, laughing with you.

As I’m getting ready to meet you outside for our Winter Wonderland wedding by the water, I remembered something you said two nights ago. Right after making me lose all control in the best possible way. Your lips on my neck and the words you whispered in my ears as you held me tightly while bringing me to ecstasy with that hammer of yours? I’m tingling all over just remembering.

You *are* better than a book boyfriend. (And not only because you’re not only in the pages of my favorite romance novels but because you’re you).

I can’t wait for the honeymoon and for all the days after.

But you know what else I can’t wait for?

Standing at the altar next to you.

Promising forever to one another.

That night, after making sure I came first, you said that I’m the person who knows all of you, the good and the not-so-good, the scars underneath the armor, the nightmares that wake you up less often than before and the dreams you talk about more and more and everything-in-between.

Love of mine, the way you said it? I know that there’s still a tiny part of you (yes, one part of you is small – not that part but…).

I chuckle again. And I keep reading, my hand tightening on the paper.

That piece of you that wonders underneath your strength and your self-confidence and your courage and your laughter if, maybe, I’d change my mind because I know you oh so well.

And I want you to know that the more I know you, the more I can’t wait to spend my life with you. You’ve shown me how it is to have a partner, a lover, a best friend. And you’re the best Daddo to Ava. We’re lucky to have you.

I love you, Alessandro Torre. My Thor.

Your Jaime Bond.

Your soon-to-be-wife.

Aisling.

Are those tears brimming at the corner of my eyes?

Happy tears.

I slide the piece of paper next to Ava’s drawing and march outside. My heart thumping and warmth spreading in my chest, I need to see her.

Our friends and family stand in their winter coats and hats in the decorated yard.

Ava’s standing next to Grant. I asked her to be part of the wedding party. And she whispers, “Mommy is the most beautiful. You’ll see.”

I crouch down to her level. “Your mom is so beautiful every day.”

Ava’s lips tilt up. “Even when Storm made her fall into the mud?”

“Even then.”

“Even when she doesn’t take a shower until late at night?”

Sometimes she’s especially beautiful then, because I join her in that late-night shower. But of course, I keep that part to myself. I nod. “Even then.”

“Even when …” Ava pauses. “Even when she’s grumpy or sad or mad?” Her voice wobbles.

“Even then.”

Not every day will be perfect or even easy.

But every day, I will love her.

As the music starts, Aisling appears at the end of the aisle, wearing a dress designed by her sister. One that incorporates swans in tulle at the bottom of the dress—Sorcha told me that detail, and her grandmother’s veil attached in the back to her dark red hair.

Her father is on one side and her mother on the other.

But I only see her.

Her smile and her kindness. Her eyes and her humor.

My past. My present. My future.

And I march toward her.

Her smile turns into a grin.

She doesn’t tell me to wait.

She doesn’t shake her head.

The woman I love gives a kiss to both her parents and strides toward me. And as we meet in the middle, the crowd laughs and my grandmother, who’s officiating claps.

I wrap my arms around her and kiss her, in front of everyone, before our vows, and she kisses me back, holding on to me.

Her honeysuckle scent both calms me and sends a fire through my veins. Her body against mine, part of me wishes we could start the honeymoon now but before … I stare into her eyes.

“Will you make me this honor?”

She nods and we stroll back to our best man, our matron of honor and lady of honor, and to my grandmother.

I lean toward Aisling. “You’re breathtaking.”

“As are you,” she whispers back. “I love your tie.”

My chest expands, and my fingers caress her palm. I see her on that very first day in Vegas, her cool and collected attitude as we picked up the sex toys that tumbled out of her suitcase. I see her in that bar, striding my way and the way she fit into my arms. That elevator ride. The overpowering lust mixed with a feeling of ease. Already then, she made me feel so much lighter. She made me feel like myself when I had hidden who I was for so long. Seeing her again in Swans Cove and the feeling moving in my chest that I didn’t want to admit then, but that I’m embracing now. I see in her eyes how we got to know one another during that TV show, those moments that were just ours despite the cameras all around.  

I see my wife.

I see my family.

As pledge our love to one another. As we promise to respect each other and support each other, we hold hands, knowing that our happily ever-after is just starting.

THE END (AGAIN) … OR IS IT?

“Roisin Fiona O’Connor!” A voice booms outside of the garden. The guy enters via the door leading to the alleyway. He seems familiar. Damian is holding him back.

The crowd turns to Aisling’s little sister who is sitting in the front next to her parents. I stand in front of Aisling and Ava, protecting them, but the flash of panic over Roisin’s face has me tensing and ready to shield her.

Aisling caresses my arm and whispers, “I have a feeling this has something to do with what happened a couple of months ago.”

Sorcha leans into the conversation. “Right? I thought there was something, too.”

“Roisin Fiona O’Connor!” Connor calls out again.

“Why are you full-naming me, Connor? What are you doing here? You weren’t on the guest list.”

“You don’t think your husband should get invited to those family events?”

Roisin winces as Aisling, Sorcha and Liam all turn to her. “You’re married?”

AND … THE END YET AGAIN

(OR RATHER THE BEGINNING OF ROISIN AND CONNOR’S STORY 😊.)

Awwww……… Aisling and Alessandro. I love them so much. ❤ How about you?

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