I hold my breath and wait. I keep my eyes on Cohen’s parents for some sort of clue of what’s happening beyond the wall of Cohen’s body.
It feels like a lifetime passes before I hear my father’s laughter boom through the room.
What in the hell?
“Well. Why didn’t you just say that to begin with?”
I repeat; What in the hell?
“You didn’t really give me a chance, Axel,” Cohen says.
“Right. Well, now that that is out of the way, let’s talk.”
Jesus Christ. I’ve entered the Twilight Zone.
It doesn’t take long for us to settle back down. Cohen turns and gives me a kiss, and when I hear my father’s growl again, I pull back and look over at him. He throws his arms up and gives me a tired look back.
“What? You don’t expect me to just flip a switch and turn it off, do you?”
“Crazy old man,” I mutter.
Cohen takes his seat again and pulls me back onto his lap. One hand goes to my belly and the other is resting back on my thigh. Without a thought, I wrap my arms around his shoulders and settle in for what promises to be a long chat.
“My dad filled me in on everything that’s happened between the letter, flowers, and . . . yesterday.” He pauses to look down at me. “I want to be fully briefed so that I’m able to understand this from every angle that I’m sure you have worked. My gut tells me that it’s someone she knows. Someone she trusts. But until I have all the intel, I’m not comfortable making that call. I’ve been told that the police also have run into nothing but dead ends?” He looks between my father and his and they all nod. “This bastard is slick, I’ll give him that,” Cohen mutters.
“Slick, but he’ll fuck up. I heard from my contact at the department that there was a print lifted from the bag. Dani’s has been ruled out, so they’re running it through their database to see if they get a match.”
Cohen nods his head at my father’s words but doesn’t speak.
“I agree with you, son. This is too personal of an attack for it to be someone that she hasn’t come in contact with.”
I shiver when Greg’s words hit me. Someone I know? I can’t even think about who it might be.
“You think it could be a client?” I ask. “I have plenty of male clients, but until yesterday, no one really knew about the pregnancy. Until recently, I wasn’t really showing much and I had been able to hide it well. I . . . well, yesterday, with the cameras back, I wanted to show my belly off.”
“Client, or someone that you’ve been in contact with. However brief, it doesn’t matter. They’ve latched on, and judging by everything that’s been said with the two messages, they aren’t happy that you’re in a relationship with my son—well, anyone for that matter. You’ve always held back, Dani, and until Cohen, you didn’t really date seriously. I don’t think that this person saw a threat until Cohen.”
I try to make sense of what Greg just said, but I just can’t seem to wrap my mind around it.
“Little princess,” my daddy says gruffly. “Think about this. The flowers started when Cohen left. I don’t want to know details, but if this person has been watching you, it’s reasonable to believe that he saw the connection between you, and when Cohen left, he pounced and attempted to make his feelings known with the flowers. When that didn’t work, something triggered that first note. I’ve been over this with your mom, and she told me that you two had spent that afternoon discussing the seriousness of your relationship with Cohen. I have no doubt that, if he’s that close, he didn’t handle overhearing that very well.”
I nod, following so far. Cohen’s breathing has gone wild, and I look up into his eyes to see that he’s having a hard time holding on to his cool after hearing all of this.
“After that, things calmed down, but the flowers continued,” Greg adds.
“Right,” Daddy starts and looks between Greg and Cohen. “Dani, you don’t know this because, between all of us, your brother, and Liam, we were able to grab most of the deliveries before you even knew they had come . . . but they never stopped. I think they would have probably continued until Cohen came home and, once again, that threat against whatever he sees in his sick mind of you having with him is back. That is until you went out with your belly the focus and he realized that something he considered his had been touched by another.”
“Oh my God,” I gasp.
“I tell you, sweetheart, this motherfucker will pay. Not only has he threatened you, but as of yesterday, he’s now threatening my grandbaby.”