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by Michelle Sutton

Genre: Mainstream, Inspirational

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"Did your mother know?"

"I think she did. She won't talk about it. She divorced my dad for cheating on her with another woman. Funny thing was she didn't seem to care that he did the same thing to me." Her voice cracked and she started sobbing.

Tony pulled her into his arms and held her close. Why had she never told him this before? Why didn't she trust him enough with that secret back when things were going good between them, and what did it mean that she trusted him enough to tell him now? Did he dare hope that she might care for him again?

"I'm sorry he hurt you," he whispered into her hair, inhaling her familiar scent. No matter what she'd done to hurt him, he still loved her. Maybe he was the crazy one in the family. He obviously still had feeling for someone bent on tormenting him. But maybe now that she'd told him this horrible secret, things would get better. He could only hope.

His mind drifted to Hope as he pondered everything. Had she been wounded in this way, too? Women were such complex creatures, but he was hopelessly addicted to them.

Brenda's lips grazed his neck. "Thank you," she whispered.

He shivered and pulled her closer. They lay side by side on the bed as he rubbed her back and kept her pressed tightly against him. She actually let him hold her.

That familiar stirring below started to distract him, and he forced himself to focus on her needs and her feelings rather the intense craving for her that was slowly building.

He would not start anything with her. She'd have to make the first move. Still buzzed from the wine, he wouldn't be able to resist if she started something. Not that he wanted to refuse her.

As he made that pledge to himself, she ran her palm down his back and squeezed his butt. She knew he loved that, so was she trying to encourage him? The last few times he thought she might be interested she'd turned on him. He didn't want that kind of humiliation again, but his body continued to stir and respond.

She ran her hands over his thighs until she rested her palm on him. She muttered something about him being such a turn-on. He couldn't believe his ears, or his eyes, when she started kissing his chest and heading toward his navel. Was his wife's desire for him back?

He touched her shoulder, "Why you do this?"

Glancing up at him from his chest, she smiled sleepily. "I miss it too, you know. I told you earlier that I was in the mood. From what I can see, you aren't complaining."

"I just want to make sure I am not dreaming."

She chuckled and kissed his navel. "This is as real as it gets."

The next thirty minutes was the most incredible experience he'd ever had with his wife. And the whole time they were making love he was very aware that it was Brenda he was pleasing. His thoughts didn't stray once. Something told him that Brenda wanted it that way, and if so, she'd succeeded.

Now he was more confused than ever.