Without another word Jillian hung up and took a deep breath before standing up and turning around. But, as soon as she stood and turned, she crashed right into a solid rock-hard wall.
Clutching her heart she said, “now that we’re together, I’d hoped you would stop scaring me. You’re like a ninja. My God, one day I’m going to have a heart attack, I just know it.”
“Who was that?” Alexander asked. His jaw set tightly and his arms crossed.
She was prepared to lie but the look of concern plastered on his face and the love that seeped from his pores. . . well, she just couldn’t do it. “It was Rocco,” she admitted.
“I figured as much.”
“I don’t want you to see him Jillian.”
“I don’t like myself like this.” She waved her arms around. “Crouching down, whispering, keeping secrets, all to avoid you acting all crazy possessive.”
“It’s not possessive. It’s protective.”
“I know it is and I appreciate your concern. I really do. One of the reasons I love you so much is because of your crazy-protectiveness. It reminds me that I’m not alone in this world anymore. But, I’m still the same Jillian. The independent woman that has to be able to make her own decisions and you’re just going to have to trust my judgment from time to time.” She reached forward and placed her palms on his chest. “He’s my father. I want to hear him out. I’d like to get to know him. I made plans to have breakfast with him on Sunday.”
“Fine, we’ll go Sunday but---“
“No. no. no. We, “ She moved her fingers back and forth between them, “will not be going to breakfast. I will be going to breakfast. Alone. Listen, Xander. I appreciate your concern. I really do. I’ve been on my own for a long time. It’s going to take some time for me, and patience on your part, to get used to being accountable to someone else. But, I also need my independence. I can’t be smothered and you love to smother. It’s your thing,” She air-quoted the word ‘thing’. “I have things I want to understand about myself and he’s the only one that can help me. I would like to go on my own. Please. I’ll give you the address so that you know where I’ll be. I will even give myself a time limit. Three hours. If I’m not back within three hours you can call the police or break down the door—whatever a caveman does to get his woman back.” She smiled, trying to lighten the tension.
“I like that. My woman. I like when you say that. You are my woman. Fucking finally!”
Jill laughed. “Seriously? Is that all you got out of my entire little speech?”
“No, I also got that you need some independence. So, fine, I’ll lay off. But, you have two hours. Okay?” He held out two fingers. “If you will be longer than that, you’ll call me?”
“I don’t like this, Jill.”
“I know but thank you for understanding, Xander.” She reached up and pulled his head down to meet her lips and planted a soft gentle open-mouthed kiss on his lips and in that kiss they both forgot all about Rocco or any impending problems that awaited them.