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Protecting His Own Part 20

Chapter Seventeen.

ON FRIDAY, BETH heard the doorbell ring. Price was here.

On Monday, shed spoken to him about their wish to adopt the boys. Hed been awfully casual, saying hed make a note of their interest and would review their records. Hed made a point of warning her not to mention their hopes to the children.

After that, nothing. Not a word.

Shed left a voice mail on Thursday.

Nothing.

Half an hour ago, hed called to say he was coming by. Didnt it just figure? Nolan was off helping Cullen build a deck extension and wouldnt return until later. Price hadnt cared that Nolan wasnt home. If he wasnt visiting to talk about their adopting the boys, then what? To check on the children?

Fixing a pleasant expression on her face, she opened the door. Good afternoon, Mr. Price. I hope youre here to discuss Nolan and me adopting the children.

On the contrary, Im taking them off your hands for a couple of hours. Price glanced at his watch. Get them now, please. We have someone to meet shortly.

Beth stared. What? Who?

Their grandmother plans to give them a home. She feels its her Christian duty, even if they were raised for the first few years by her dreadful daughter.

Youre talking about Drusillas mother? At Prices nod, Beth wanted to swear at him. Drusilla said her mother was a fanatic who whipped her for talking back, for swearing, for anything. She had to read the Bible on her knees for hours. Thats why she ran away at sixteen.

Consider the source of your information. Besides, if Drusilla had remained with her mother, shed be alive today, now wouldnt she?

Maybe. But the grandmother doesnt sound like a healthy choice for"

Relatives have priority over foster parents, Mrs. King, even if the foster parents have influential friends. His sneer wasnt disguised.

The low-life bastard. Hed probably talked the grandmother into taking the children just to get back at her and Nolan. I see.

I would remind you, Mrs. King, not to let Grant or Connor know you want to adopt them. Foster parents arent allowed to interfere"in any way"in a legitimate placement of the children temporarily placed in their home.

With an effort, she throttled back her anger. Nothing could choke back her growing sense of grief. I understand.

He followed her to the patio where Connor and Grant were drawing a chalk mural on the smooth concrete.

Awesome job, guys. It really was. Grants portion of the creation was orderly, the forest animals cleverly drawn, evenly spaced, everything balanced.

Connors half was asymmetrical, yet pleasing. She could even distinguish"mostly"which animals were which, although the rabbit was the same size as the horse.

This is you, Beff, Connor told her, tapping the bunny.

At Prices quizzical regard, she felt her cheeks warm. Connor must have heard Nolans nickname for her. Put the chalk into the container, please. Mr. Price is taking you to visit your grandmother.

The two stared at her blankly.

As shed figured. Have you ever met your grandmother?

Grant shook his head as Connor asked, Whats a grandmuvver?

IN A LONG hallway, Grant tried to hurry after Mr. Price, but Connor was behind him, pulling on his shorts pocket. They were going to see their grandmother. Beth said this grandmother was Mamas mother. Would she look like Mama?

Why hadnt she ever visited them?

Some of the kids in school had grandmothers who gave cool presents. Food. Hugs. Mama had never talked about her mother. How come?

Mr. Price walked through a doorway and motioned them to follow.

Inside, the room was a sunny yellow with kid-sized tables, and shelves with books and toys. An old lady in a brown dress sat in a grown-up chair beside one of the tables. Her gray hair made a ball behind her head. The long lines beside her mouth werent happy ones.

When she saw him and Connor, she didnt smile.

Mrs. Brun, these are Drusillas children. Mr. Price set his hand on Grants shoulder. This is Grant. And Connor.

Those arent Christian names.

Grants heart kicked inside his chest. Her brown eyes held the same I-dont-like-you as Jermaines had.

Boys, this is your grandmother. Your mothers mother.

Connors cold hand closed on his. Hi.

She looked at Connor. You may call me Grandmother. She motioned toward the small table. Sit there and well talk.

Grant slid onto one of the chairs. As Connor dragged a chair closer to Grant, the legs screeched across the floor.

Grandmothers mouth turned down.

THE KIDS HAD beenoffsince meeting their grandmother yesterday. Beth sighed as she stirred the gravy on the stove. Maybe she was being too judgmental, though. When Connor had wet the bed last night and she decided the woman must be horrible, Nolan said the boys might react poorly to any change, especially one reminding them of their mothers death.

Of course, he was right, yet to see them sad and fretting filled her with misery.

However, tonight, after spending all Saturday with Sir"whod undoubtedly exhausted them with chores and games"they appeared happier.

Hearing footsteps, she smiled at Nolan over her shoulder.

Fresh from his shower, he sat down at the kitchen island and eyed her pre-dinner plate of cut-up fruit"healthy food: what was the world coming to?"before picking up an apple slice. Howd your meeting with the Dragos go today?

She rolled her eyes. Theyre fun to listen to, the way they disagree. Alastair prefers muted colors and a formal design, although hes open to random if its mostly symmetrical. Max couldnt care less about the actual design as long as the colors are bright. Theyre so different.

An English doc and a cowboy cop who top together. Nolan shook his head. At least Vance and Galen have similar styles. Itll be interesting to see Max and Alastair doing a scene.

I know. She dumped the potato water and pulled out the masher.

Without speaking, Nolan made a gimme motion with his fingers.

Pampering him was sure difficult. Beth set the boiled potatoes, butter and milk, salt and pepper, and masher in front of him. But they bicker like family. I guess that makes sense since Alastair did summers on the Drago ranch, and Max lived in London with Alastair and his mom for a while.

Got it. Theyre more brothers than cousins. Nolan popped an orange slice into his mouth and started whipping the potatoes.

Mmmhmm. Speaking of brothers Beth raised her voice. Guys, time for supper.

At the thundering of little feet, Nolan snorted. Ive heard cattle stampedes less noisy.

Cheering, the two tore into the kitchen. When Grant skidded to a stop, Connor bounced off his back and grabbed Nolans leg to catch himself.

Sounds like yall are hungry. Nolan ruffled Connors hair.

Grant, can you set the island with plates and glasses? Beth reached into the cupboard and got out the dishes. Connor, heres silverware and napkins if you would help, please?

Both children jumped to their duties as if shed given them a quest worthy of a Disney movie.

As Nolan scooped the mashed potatoes into a serving bowl, she put the fried chicken onto a platter. Bad Beth. She should give her men a nice healthy roasted chickenbut fried chicken was a favorite of her Master.

The boys had their own favorites.

Mashed-toes, Connors eyes went wide and happy.

An gravy, Grant breathed.

Neither boy nor man commented on the pretty salad. Typical males. She started to sit and realized the big cookie jar was in the way, so carried it to the counter. Odd how light it felt.

A quick check showed three cookies left. Three? Hadnt she filled the jar yesterday? Guys, I know you like sweets but"

Beth.

She turned at Nolans warning tone. Brows drawn, he tilted his head toward the boys.

Grant stood stiffly beside his chair, worry in his eyes.

Connor, though Every speck of color had drained from his face, and he was slowly backing away.

Oh, dear. She leaned against the counter in a nonchalant Im-not-angry posture.

He stopped.

Well, baby, I figure you didnt eat all those cookies, or youd be sick to your stomach. She held out her hand. Why dont you show me where you put them?

His little legs were stiff as he approached her. As he led her into the hall, she heard Nolan talking quietly to Grant and keeping him in the kitchen. Nolan said divide and conquer was his parents favorite system for his brothers and sisters. Figuring his folks knew what they were doing, hed suggested they use the technique for the boys.

In the bedroom, Connor pointed toward Grants bed. In our cave.

She knelt beside the bed, noticing how theyd scavenged boxes and pillows to form an under-the-bed barricade. You two make the coolest caves, she said in admiration and watched Connor blink.

After pushing a box to one side, she pulled out an ancient lunchbox. How amazing is this? I bet my mom carried one of these to school.

Upon opening it, she found cookies as well as molding cheese, stale biscuits, and a hot dog. Ew. She barely kept from wrinkling her nose at the stench. Foodhoarding, was that the term? Careful, Beth. You know, in colder areas, squirrels will run around gathering nuts to store them away for the winter. Youre like a little squirrel, honey.

A tiny bit of color returned to his cheeks. Oh, she wanted to hug him so hard right now.

But squirrels store food that doesnt need to be kept cold. Eating food this smelly can make you dreadfully sick, Connor.

His thin shoulders hunched again, and tears brimmed in his eyes.

How could she reassure him she didnt care if he hid food, yet prevent him from taking food requiring refrigeration?

Nolan and Grant appeared in the doorway. Grant gave her a wary stare and edged closer to stand between her and Connor, as hed done after the bandsaw fracas in the workshop.

Workshop. That was it. Beth looked at Nolan. Remember the mini-fridge you bought for my garden shed? I never remember to stock it with drinks. Why dont we put it in here"on Connors side of the room?

Nolans quiet smile held approval. He set his hand on Grants shoulder. Cmon, tiger, lets fetch us a fridge.

As they left, Beth held out her hand to Connor. After we toss this smelly stuff, well get fresh stuff for your refrigerator. Then, whenever I get groceries, you can do what I do"throw away the old food thats going bad and start over with new. Okay?

Kay. When he took her hand, she felt as if she could conquer worlds.

THE NEXT NIGHT, Nolan lay in bed with Beth a warm weight on top of him. Her forearms on his chest propped her up"and kept her breasts available for his enjoyment. Within her, his cock was slowly softening. Her lips were swollen from his kisses and a damned fine pre-fuck blowjob.

Her breasts were also swollen, the nipples red and sensitive. He wasnt a real sadist"but what Dom wouldnt enjoy the involuntary clench of her cunt when he rolled a nipple? Yeah, nice. He did the left breast next.

Where do you get all this energy? With a laugh, she tipped her head down and sleepily rubbed her cheek against his forearm.

Clean living. As her long hair pooled in a silky-cool mass on his bare chest, he ran his fingers through it. Good length, sugar. Keep it this long.

When she rolled her eyes at his order"and an order it was"he smacked her ass. Dont sass your Master, little rabbit, or your tail will be too sore to sit on.

My tail is already pretty sore, thank you very much. Her voice was husky, not from pain, but from pleading and her high cries as shed climaxed. Good thing hed put in a ton of extra soundproofing when he built the place. Hed have hated to forego the noises his Beth made when thoroughly spanked and thoroughly fucked.

He glanced at the portable monitor on the nightstand. Green lights indicated the childrens bedroom door remained closed. With the volume turned up, he could also hear the sound of their even breathing.

Knowing they were planning for children, Zs buddy, Simon, had recommended the kiddy equipment when he was putting in the security system.

Curious about the keypads, the boys had been thrilled when Nolan had demonstrated the alarms. On the past couple of evenings, theyd joined Nolan during his evening rounds, checking everything was safe, securing windows and doors, closing things up for the night. Theyd been pleased as all get out to help him pertect Beff.

Good kids.

Beths gaze had followed his, and with her uncanny ability to follow his thoughts, she snickered. If I tossed your monitor in the lake, youd have to leave the doors open to hear the children"and you wouldnt be able to abuse your poor submissive.

Chapter end

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