Hello and welcome to another Snippet Sunday!
Today we're getting another serving of Wildcat hockey romance as I share a snippet from the novella, Roster Addition. It seems as if things have become rather strained between Derrick and Veikko for some reason. In this scene we get to hear a conversation between Liz and Veikko, as they wait for Ashley to deliver their soon-to-be new daughter. Perhaps as we listen to them chat we can pick up just what is happening with both couples as the birth draws closer and closer. Maybe the stress of the situation is getting to everyone? Time will tell.
When you're done reading my offering, skate on over to Cathy Brockman and Ellie Mack's blogs to see what they're working on. This excerpt is unedited so please forgive any errors you may stumble across.
Thanks for stopping by!
I sat at a small round table, sipping on a cup of coffee, staring at my husband's incredible golden hair. How did he train it to fall into place so well? It was a mystery for the ages. Mine must look like I had forgotten to comb it, which I had. The call had made me forget just about everything such as putting on a bra. Good thing my boobs were so small no one would notice.
Veikko was stirring a spoonful of sugar into a cup of coffee that was so strong we had commented on our fear of it eating through our mugs. He still had gone back for a third refill even though he made a face every single time he took a swig. The man was so polite it made me wince at times.
"You really don't have to drink that," I softly said. His light blue gaze moved from his coffee to me.
"That young man worked hard to make this coffee," he replied as he continued to stir."Do you think Derrick feels that we should have consulted with him and Maggie about naming the baby?"
I reached up to tuck a strand of hair behind my ear. "Yeah, I kind of think he does feel that way. I don't know what to do about it either. I thought we had been really open about everything with them."
"I'm not sure we need to do anything to be honest, Piglet," he sighed then dropped his gaze back to his well-stirred coffee. The term of endearment helped make me feel a little better. I hated disharmony. It had a way of infecting people. That was a lesson that I had learned from living with a person who suffered debilitating social anxiety issues coupled with compulsive hoarding. Above all, keep the ship on calm waters even if that meant swallowing down anger and pain. Not a healthy way to live, I know, but it was all I knew. "Maggie and Derrick are not part of the legal equation."
"No, but they are part of the family equation," I said as an older couple walked past carrying bowls of soup and rolls on their trays. "Veikko, we can't just ignore their feelings or wishes. They're Marja's grandparents."
"Yes, they are, but they are not her parents. We're going to be her parents," he reminded me in a tone that made me bristle just a bit. "It is not my fault that Derrick never took the time to make children."
"And it's not Derrick's fault that you can't." As soon as the words left my mouth, I knew I had stepped on some extremely thin ice. Veikko's sight flew from his coffee to me then his lovely fjord colored gaze flicked around the tables located inside the gift shop. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to say that."
"Yes, I think you did," he whispered, leaning over the table to ensure that only I heard him. "This is not a question of whose sperm fertilized whose egg, Elizabeth."
"I know. I'm sorry, so sorry." I reached up to run my fingers along his scruffy jaw. The dark blonde whiskers were short and abrasive under my fingertips. "You know I would never use our problem to hurt you."
It felt odd to call his infertile state our problem but I had not yet found a way to say it that made it hurt the man less. Some creative fiction writer I am. Give me elves, wizards, and sexy times in the magical forest and I was golden, but hand me the job of trying to light upon a way to say "the fact that you cannot make a child" in front of my extremely proud, sensitive, and super masculine husband and I dried up like a husk.
"This is not the place to be tossing that around, Elizabeth," Veikko murmured, his broad shoulders looking a little bowed. I cupped his face before he leaned back into his chair leaving my hand to drop to the table. Our spoons rattled. "What we should be talking about is how to handle Derrick and Maggie's obvious troubles with our adopting their grandchild."
"I honestly don't think there are troubles, Veikko," I countered then pulled my hand back to my lap. I flattened out some wrinkles in my slacks, taking a moment to begin running a finger over the crisp crease. "I think they're just worried about us taking over."
"Shouldn't we?" I glanced up from the crease in my gray slacks to my husband. "Shouldn't we take over? We are Marja's parents, or will be as soon we attend to the final legalities. We have paid for all of Ashley's medical care, we have covered all the costs to the lawyers, we have set up a college fund for Marja's biological mother, and we have been as accommodating as we can. Many of those things we did were above and beyond what we were legally bound to do," he reminded me. I nodded dully. Everything he was saying was true. Veikko and I had gone out of our way to make sure not only Marja, but also Ashley, had the best start in life that we could give them. Yes, that meant making sure Ashley could go to college if she wished. The girl had not asked for that, Veikko had offered.
"I know," I sighed then went back to pressing my crease with my finger.
"But you think we should be doing more?"
I looked up at him. He wasn't being curt, he was just asking."I don't know to be honest," I confessed then forced my hand to flatten on my thigh.