Promise Me Always(113)

By: Rhonda Shaw

She nodded as I paused and took a deep breath.

“You two are my life. I never believed someone would love me, or that I even deserved to be loved. I certainly never believed I could love anyone more than life itself. I didn’t believe I could ever have a family filled with love and happiness and all that cheesy shit. That’s not what I knew, but you showed me not only that I can be loved, but I can return that love and have the family I always dreamed about. And I thank you for that.”

I gave her a small smile, which she returned as her eyes flooded with tears. I caught her mouth, briefly tangling my tongue with hers, before pulling back and resting my forehead against hers. Dusk was settling around us, the light of the day making the slow transition to night as the lights of the city burned in the background.

“You are my life, Gabrielle,” I continued in a low voice. “Even when we weren’t together, you were still in my head and my heart every day. You’re the reason I’m a success, the reason I went to rehab, got clean, and the reason I’m still standing here today. I’ve always promised you always, and that’s what I want, what I want to give you.” I straightened so I could gaze into her eyes. “Marry me.”

She gasped and her eyes widened. “Marry…? Danny, are you serious?”

“I’ve never been more serious in my life.”

“Omigod!” She threw her arms around my neck. “Yes!”

I took her mouth with mine. When we separated, we smiled as I took her hand in mine.

“Well, I guess I need to get you a ring.”

“I don’t need one.”

“What the hell do you take me for?” I chuckled and reached into a pocket. “I’m not that white-trash.”

I opened the small box facing her, and her eyes widened as she took in the ring. “It’s probably a little bigger than what you would have picked out, but I designed it, and it will look awesome on you.”

“A little bigger?” she said, short of breath. “Danny, it’s huge. I can’t wear that. It’s too much.”

I pulled out the large emerald-cut diamond surrounded by rubies and aquamarines, reminiscent of the necklace I’d given her for our first Christmas, which hung around her neck. “You can too wear it.” I put the ring on her finger and held it up to catch the light as I grinned. “Like I said, you can wear the hell out of that thing.”

“It’s beautiful.”

“Nothing’s as beautiful as you, but it will do.”

I kissed her again, and this time when I pulled back, we were both breathless. Grabbing her hand, I turned her toward the car. “Let’s go get started on a little brother or sister for Dani.”

* * * * *