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“I wanted my kids to have what I didn’t. I believed that, with time, we could find a way to be happy.”
“Maybe we shouldn’t talk about this,” I say, changing my mind as nausea and jealousy turn my stomach.
“You loved your ex, baby. I know you did. I didn’t have that. I wanted it but never had it with her or anyone else since you.”
“Please stop.” Feeling tears burn the back of my eyes for him, I close them tight. Max and I were happy and in love in the beginning, and I hate knowing Zach never had that… the kids didn’t see or feel that.
“I wish my past didn’t hurt you so much. I’m sorry for hurting you the way I have. If I could take your pain away, I would.” He gathers me against him and tucks my head under his chin.
“As sad as it makes me, I wish you would have had that with her or someone else,” I say, and his arms tighten so much that my lungs compress.
“I don’t,” he growls.
“What?” I wheeze, and he loosens his grip just enough for me to take a breath.
“I don’t want to think about what would have happened if I had been with her or someone else when you came back. I don’t want to face that demon inside of me that knows what I would have done.”
“I’ve been in love with you for almost eighteen years. I carried your missing pieces around inside me for that long, Shelby. I know it would have made me an asshole, but there is only one you. You’re the only place I’ve ever called home.” His voice is thick with emotion, and that wound inside of me fills up a little bit more. I hate his words, but a part of me is relieved he feels that way, that he feels so deeply for me.
“There’s been a wide open space inside me since we placed Samuel and I left you behind. But, from the moment I came back, it’s slowly been filling up.”
He goes quiet at my words. Several moments pass before he speaks again. “One day, that space will be full. I swear, with everything I have in me, I will make sure it’s overflowing and that you never feel empty again.”
Book Summary: Wide Open Spaces
Meet Aurora Rose Reynolds
That moment that changes your life.
That moment you love someone more than you love yourself.
That was the moment we gave our son up for adoption and the moment I was left bare. A wide-open space that would forever be empty.
There are moments that define you as a person, moments that prove just how strong you are, moments you push yourself to keep going forward when all you really want to do is give up. It was in one of those moments when I reached out and found him waiting for me.
When Shelby Calder left home fifteen years ago, she never planned on returning to the Alaskan town she left behind. But after the death of her grandfather and a bitter divorce, she hopes going home will be a fresh start for her and her ten-year-old son.
Zach Watters has made a lot of mistakes in his life. But when he sees Shelby Calder, looking more beautiful than ever, standing outside her childhood home, he promises himself that letting her go won't be a mistake he ever makes again.
Some things never change and love is one of them.
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