Maggie's Marriage (The Cloverleaf Series Book 2)(6)

By: Gloria Herrmann


Michael was serving himself some more beef and broccoli when he bent toward his daughter and gave her a kiss on her head. It warmed Maggie’s heart to see him act so tender and sweet to Melanie. It was moments like these that made her fall in love with him all over again. These moments were fleeting, and she wanted Michael to see that.

“Mel, you want some more?” Maggie offered as she lifted a container filled with fried rice.

“No, I want to save room for my fortune cookie,” Melanie answered as she struggled to grip her chopsticks.

“Daddy, are you excited about my concert on Friday?” Melanie gazed up at her father with the admiration that only a child can possess.

Michael looked at Maggie. “I can’t wait to see you on that stage singing your little heart out.”

Maggie said a silent prayer that Michael would live up to his promise of showing up to the concert, knowing how much it meant to their daughter. She couldn’t bear the thought of how hurt Melanie would be if he didn’t attend.

“Maggie, what time is the concert?” Michael asked from across the table.

“It starts a little after five.” Suddenly the chow mein no longer agreed with Maggie as she fought a crashing wave of nausea.

“You okay, hun? You look a little green around the gills,” Michael commented, concern present in his eyes as he narrowed them and watched her.

“Yeah, just getting over a little stomach bug,” Maggie replied quickly as she bounded up from the table as gracefully as she could, given she felt like she was about to lose all their dinner.

Maggie heard Michael whispering in a soft, soothing tone to their daughter, “Mommy will be okay, sweetie. Let’s clean up the table for her.”



***



Michael was sitting at the table with his laptop out and open, a stack of files neatly stacked next to it. Maggie watched him as he hunched over the blue glint of the monitor and typed insanely fast, only to pause to rub at his eyes. The man was always working.

The house was quiet, except for Michael’s rapid typing. He suddenly stopped. He must have sensed her presence.

“Feeling any better?” Michael asked softly.

Maggie shook her head, “A little. Did you put the food away? Where’s Mel?”

“It has all been taken care of. Mel’s in bed.” Michael slowly stretched his long arms above his head and rose off the dining room chair.

He approached her slowly, with a great deal of caution. She inhaled the clean smell of his expensive aftershave. She wanted to smother her face in his chest and drown in his scent. She felt her body stir; she missed her husband.

Michael’s arms encircled around her slender body as he pulled her closer to him, removing any space between them. “I’m sorry about the other night,” he apologized in her ear as he left a trail of quiet kisses along her neck.

“Me too,” Maggie answered, allowing herself to be swept away in desire, swayed by the undertow of passion as Michael’s hands roamed her tender body.

A nagging thought poked Maggie’s brain, but her body quickly shoved it away. She desperately needed him. She brought his solid body to hers, and she hushed her thoughts, quieting them as she deepened the kiss.

Before she knew it, she was laying in the warm afterglow of some of the most passionate love making she had ever experienced. Maggie gazed at Michael. His eyes were closed, his sculpted, naked chest steadily rising and falling, almost hypnotizing her. His dark hair strayed from its usual combed style, lay messy on his head. This gorgeous man made Maggie feel almost maternal towards him. She could see bits of gray hair and tiny smooth lines on his face that weren’t there a year ago. Her heart squeezed with love. Maggie laid her hand gently on his stomach and felt her eyes grow heavy. She said a silent prayer that they could figure things out.



***



Maggie kept looking at her cell phone. The auditorium was packed tight with families there to watch their children perform. Maggie had managed to snag a seat close to the stage, and she placed her purse on a vacant seat next to her to save for Michael. She had received several dirty looks for saving the seat. Where was he? The performance was going to start soon, and Maggie kept turning around in her chair to see if she could spot Michael. She had already sent him several text messages and hadn’t heard back yet. She felt gnawing frustration biting at her when the lights in the large auditorium grew dim, and a group of children walked quietly onto the stage. Maggie spotted Melanie in her lavender dress, her red hair shiny against the stage lights. She smiled and forgot about Michael as she saw how lovely her daughter looked amongst her classmates. Music started playing, and the angelic voices of the first grade class filled the room.