Creature of Unknown Origin: Together for the Holidays


I gulped, realizing he was lea ving this decision up to me, even though it really should’ve

been his. “You’re the one pulling the trigger. I can’t make this decision for you.”

He nodded, bringing our joined hands to his lips. He brushed his lips against the back of

my hand, but didn’t let go. My heart pounded in my chest. I didn’t want him to keep doing this.

He — we —deserved a better life, a normal life. “I think I’ d already decided a long time ago that

Richardson was my last case . Delia?”

Her hardened face and posture lost all tension. Letting out a humorless laugh, she looked

over at Howie. “What are we going to do now?”

“Whatever we want,” he breathed, taking his hand in hers.

“Well, right now, we need to clear the table for dessert.” Spencer rose from his chair .

Letting go of my hand, he scooped up both of our plates and gave me a quick kiss on the top of

my head.

I smiled, shaking my head as I stood and began to help clear the table. Howie and Delia

pitched in even though Spencer and I had told them not to worry, that they were our guests.

Our guests, in our house, at our table.

Spencer was willing to walk beside me into the great unknown as we wrote the next chapter

of our lives, together for the foreseeable future . I couldn’t stop smiling over dessert, and it had

nothing to do with the pie — though it was delicious and gooey and everything you could want

from an apple crumb pie with flakey crust and just the right amount of apples and spices to

compliment the sweetness.

Glancing over at Spencer, I wondered what we would do with our lives, our future. Would

it be ours? Or would we eventually part ways and lose touch with each other?

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