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Authors: Kathryn Shay

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BOOK: Risky Business
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They finished presenting their findings at noon. Thomas leaned over the table. “I’m
impressed. This couldn’t be more thorough. You two worked your asses off for this.”

His brows raised, Logan said, “Thank you, Thomas.”

“So,” Philip put in. “Your recommendation is to invest.”

Together they said, “Yes.”

“Then Thomas and I will meet with the board tomorrow. We should have an answer by the end of the workday.”

After they left the office, Logan accompanied Magdalena
down the hall. “Lunch?” Lower, he said, “I haven’t seen you alone for hours and I want to at least hold your hand across the table.”

As they reached their offices and Logan opened the door to his, she responded, “Yes, I—”

“Logan?”

Both Magdalena and Logan startled. Coming to a seated position on the couch was his girlfriend—former, now—Teresa Allen. “Teresa, I’m surprised to see you
here.”

And how the hell had she gotten into the office?

“I asked your secretary to let me in. I wasn’t feeling well in the reception area. I’ve been resting in here.”

Magdalena said, “I should leave you two.”

Teresa stood. She was pale and shaky. “No, this will concern you, too.”

“Me?”

“Yes.” She faced Logan. “I’m pregnant, Logan. And the baby is definitely yours.”

oOo

It was like getting hit over the head with a sledgehammer. Stunned was too weak a word to describe the effect of Teresa’s news. Logan looked to Magdalena; she was wide-eyed. “Let’s sit.”

Teresa dropped back onto the couch, and Logan and Magdalena took the two chairs
.

“This is a surprise, to say the least,” Logan began. “How long have you known?”

“I had my suspicions,
but I didn’t want it to be true. When you left two days ago, I decided to do an early pregnancy test. It was positive, so today I went to the doctor’s office and had the pregnancy confirmed.”

“How far along?”

“Ten weeks.” Teresa shook her head. “Logan, before you left, you told me you’re more involved with Magdalena than you thought. Which is why I asked her to stay. We have a decision
to make.”

He arched a brow.

“Whether or not I’ll get an abortion.”

Logan suspected his face turned pale. He was liberal, believed a woman had a right to choose, but this was his child and a miracle, no matter what the circumstances. Still, despite his gut reaction, he asked, “Is that what you want?”

“I don’t know what I want. It would be best for my career if I did. I’d have to
leave the play around five months. But even if I could come back to it after the baby’s born, my hours are crazy. How can I possibly take care of a kid?”

“There would be ways around all that if you want to have the child.”

“I know.” She glanced at Magdalena, then back to Logan. “I couldn’t do this alone, Logan.”

“You wouldn’t have to. I’ll do whatever you need during the pregnancy
and share care after. I’d
want
to do that.” As soon as he said the words, he realized he should have discussed this with Magdalena first. But would her opinion really have changed his mind?

Teresa came to edge of her seat. “If that’s true, we have something to talk about.”

“All right.”

“I’d like Magdalena gone for this.”

With grace and probably faked aplomb, Magdalena stood. “Fine.
Why don’t you two go out to lunch and hash this out?”

“All right.” He followed Magdalena to the door. Through it. And into her office. “Wow!”

“Yeah, wow! I don’t know what to say, Logan.”

“There’s only one thing I want to hear.”

“What’s that?”

“That you’ll stick by me during this, no matter what happens.”

She looped her arms around his neck. “I promise you I will.”

He hugged her close. “I’ll be back as soon as I can.”

“Go ahead. I’ll be here waiting.”

oOo

Magdalena watched Logan shut the door, then she dropped down onto her own couch. The first thing that came to mind was her objection to becoming lovers
.

What’s most important to me is to have you in my life, Logan. I don’t want to lose that.

Fear gripped her. Had they not taken
the giant step they had over the last few days, she could have been more objective about his circumstances. Now that would be more difficult. For him and for her. But something else took hold in her heart, too. She’d loved Logan as a friend for years and she wouldn’t abandon him, no matter what.

When the magnitude of Teresa’s news became overwhelming, she went to her closet, got out gym clothes
and headed to the fifth-floor gym the company provided. Once she was in sneakers, leggings and a long shirt, she put her earplugs in, turned on a rock station and began to walk around the track. Then she started to run. When the sweat began to fall into her eyes, she slowed back to a walk. She checked her watch. A whole hour had passed. The hard workout had succeeded in blanking her mind.

Because she had a private bathroom with a shower, she headed back upstairs and, unfortunately, bumped into Thomas when she reached her office. He gave her a male once-over. “Working out?” he asked. “It suits you.”

She tugged at the braid in her hair. “Yeah, I’m
America’s Top Model
for sure.”

He nodded to Logan’s office. “Did I see him leave with his little hottie earlier?”

Magdalena
bit her lip to keep from snapping at his word choice. “He and Teresa had lunch together.”

Thomas checked his watch. “Must be some lunch.” His tone was sexual. “That’s my baby brother for you. Women flock.”

She excused herself, practically closing the door in his face. Thomas made her nervous—and today, he also made her uncertain of the situation she thought she had in hand
.

Mindlessly,
she showered and changed and was back at her desk by three. Logan’s office was still dark, so she called up her email to distract herself from negative thoughts.

One from Ana:
Thanks for being there two nights ago. Opal stayed home today. Jared and I are still arguing about how to take care of her. Why does life throw you so many curves, Mags?

Magdalena was pondering the same thing right
about now.

A second email from Luke:
How’s my sister? Remember when you pushed me at Christmas to let you babysit for my kids sometime? February break is coming up. I want to take Kelsey to a tropical island before the baby’s born. Want two little darlings in your life for a few days? Matka said she’d help while you were at work, but I don’t want her to be responsible for them. It appears
she’s got her own life, now
J.

She was glad for her brother’s request. That was definitely something she wanted to do. Maybe Logan could help. The girls adored him.

Several work-related emails on her other address demanded her attention. She tended to those, and still, at four, Logan was not back. She wondered what that meant.

oOo

“Did I ever tell you my mother was alone
when she had me?” Teresa’s voice was sad, making Logan feel bad for her.

“Yes. I’m sorry that happened to her, but if you’re drawing a parallel with your pregnancy, you wouldn’t be alone in this. I promise you I’ll be there.”

She picked at the Caesar salad. “How would you be there, Logan?”

“What do you mean?”

“Would you fit me in between your demanding job and your new girlfriend?”

Take it easy
, he told himself.
You have to do the right thing here.

“Teresa, I imagine you’re scared. And concerned about your future. I’ll help with that, too. Financially and in other ways.”

“I’d need more of your time.”

“I’d give it to you.”

“What would Magdalena think?”

“Magdalena only wants what’s best for us.”

Her dark brows knit together. “You’re so sure?”

“Absolutely.”

Leaning back into her chair, she sighed. “So, you want me to have this baby?”

“If it was my choice alone, yes, I’d want you to have the child.”

“Okay, then, let’s give it a shot. My first prenatal is next week. I want you there.”

Taking out his blackberry, he punched in the date and time. “There, that’s a good start.”

He’d had to keep himself from checking his
watch. He’d been gone a long time, and he wanted to head to the office to see how Magdalena was doing. Now seemed like the time. He’d paid the bill and stood. “I’ll see you home if you want.”

Her gaze turned hard. “Anxious to get back to Magdalena?”

“Did we not talk long enough?”

“No, we did. You can just grab me a cab.”

Outside, he hailed a cab, and before she stepped into it,
she turned and hugged him. A big, full-bodied hug that made him uncomfortable.

But on his trip back to the office, Logan realized he was happy about impending fatherhood. Really happy. On the heels of that, though, he frowned. Because another thought came to him, crystal clear and in 3-D: he wished it was Magdalena who was having his baby, not Teresa. The notion dimmed some of the elation
.

He went straight to her office, where he found her sitting on the couch, reading a business journal. She glanced up. God, she was beautiful. She set his pulse dancing with just a look. “Hey, you’re back.”

He joined her on the couch. Up close, her face was rosy and her eyes clear. “Uh-huh.” He brushed those lips with a finger. “What’d you do while I was gone? Your face is rosy and your eyes
glow.”

“I worked out. Hard.” Reaching up, she brushed his hair back. “How’d it go?”

“As well as can be expected. There are no easy answers to this.”

“Did you come to any conclusions? Decisions? Or is it too early for that?”

“Actually, we did. She’s going to have the baby.”

This wonderful woman in his life smiled. “I’m glad for you, Logan. I’d hate the thought of erasing the
life of a child of yours before it begins.”

He sighed. “I’m glad you feel that way.”

“I do. And I promise, I’ll be with you through it all.”

“Thank God. Teresa seemed amenable enough. I don’t think she’ll cause us any trouble.”

“You can’t control the actions of others. Trying to do so will make you unhappy. You can only control what you do.”

“Is that another one of your sayings?”

“I probably read it somewhere.”

He checked his watch. “What do you say we leave work? We’ve got to wait until the board decides on the investment, so let’s go home, to your house or mine, I don’t care. We’ve a lot on our plates right now, and I need to be with you.”

“I’d like that, Logan. Let’s go.”

 

Chapter 10

 

Thumpthumpthumpthump…The baby’s heart beat fast and strong when the doctor put the Doppler probe on Teresa’s belly. “Oh, my God,” she said. “Logan, do you hear that?”

His own heart began thrumming. “It’s a miracle.”

The ob-gyn indulged them. “Let’s do the ultrasound and I’ll give you both pictures.”

The photos of their unborn child consisted of
squiggles and fuzzy whiteness that made it hard to decipher the image. Nonetheless, Logan was mesmerized. When they left the office, the February wind whipped and snow drifted around them, but warmth rose inside him
.

“Logan, can you see me home? I’m afraid I might fall, so I took a cab here.”

He checked his watch. “I have an appointment.” With Magdalena. “But I can do that.”

They reached
Teresa’s place, and she asked him to escort her inside, where she said, “Would you stay? I’m shaky from the excitement.”

“Then you should rest.”

“I will. But I want you here.”

“Don’t you have a show tonight?” he asked, trying not to sound impatient.

“No, the understudy is taking over for a few days while my body adjusts to the pregnancy.”

“All right. Let me just make a call.”

“To Magdalena?”

“Yes.”

Again, her expression turned hard
.

And that bothered Logan
.

A lot.

oOo

Magdalena arrived at her childhood home in Queens for dinner at five. Sofia and Elizabeita were already there, and the latter met her at the door. Dressed in leopard tights, a long black sweater and black boots. While Magdalena’s hair was drawn back in a neat knot,
Lizzie’s was in two long pigtails practically hitting her waist. “Hi, big sister.” Elizabeita gave her a hug and then stepped back. “What’s wrong?” She nodded out the door. “I thought our wonderful Logan was coming.”

Their “wonderful Logan” had planned to attend so they could tell the family they were dating. But the information had to be put on hold. “Last-minute schedule change,” she said,
trying to sound unconcerned.

“Come on out. Rafe and Nia and Sal are here, too, and they seem so happy, Mags.” She linked her arm with Magdalena’s. “Maybe there’ll be an announcement.”

That would be welcome news, but it had been only two months since Jonas died, and Magdalena knew Nia and Rafe hadn’t wanted to make any decisions while he was still in the early phases of the grieving process.

Magdalena kissed
Matka
, poured a glass of wine from the kitchen and went into the family room. She sat on the couch with Sofia and Lizzie, then Caterina walked in from the playroom.

“Hey, Cat,” Magdalena said to their oldest sister. Aidan was out of town on a photo shoot, and Cat had jumped at the chance to come to dinner.

“Hi, Mags. I’m glad you’re here. I wanted to ask you something.”

“First, let’s get you some wine.” Magdalena met her in the kitchen. Caterina’s long, lean body was accented by simple navy slacks and a matching sweater. “Where are the kids?”

“Mama O’Neil has them. I swear that woman never slows down.”

Glancing over to
Matka
at the stove, Magdalena smirked. “Like somebody else we know. What did you want to ask me?”

“Dylan wants to interview you
and Logan. He saw the
TIME
magazine article, and he’s thinking of doing a private-equity–venture-capitalist thriller. His writing career has taken off.”

“Sure. Tell him to call me.”

BOOK: Risky Business
8.89Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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