Zachary had served his time. He never denied that he had made bad choices in his life but he had faced the consequences of those choices like a man. The reality was that everything he’d done, he’d done for her. Mackenzie. He’d given up 5 years of his life just to protect her and she never even knew it. The last time she saw him, words filled with rage spewed from her mouth like lava from a volcano. But he’d forgiven her, because it wasn’t really her fault.
Stepping out into the sunlight that wasn’t harnessed in by walls for the first time in 5 years felt like being born again. The small California town didn’t look anything like the way it had when he rolled through it on the prison bus so long ago. Finally he was free, and it was time get his woman back.
The tinkling of the bell notified Mackenzie that someone had stepped into her small flower shop on Main Street.
“Be right there!” She called out as she swept up some flower cuttings in her work room.
“Don’t rush on my account.” A deep husky voice responded. There was something hauntingly familiar but she just knew it had to be her imagination. She dropped the broom on the floor and walked to the front is if being pulled by a rope.
“Thanks for waiting. How can I….Oh my God!” Her eyes widened when she recognized the one person she thought she might never see again.
The last several years had only made Zach more handsome if that was possible. His dark hair was cut short and looked effortlessly perfect. The jeans he wore sat low on his waist and the white t-shirt outlined every muscle that he had no doubt honed into solid steel during his time in jail. And then there were the tattoos. His left arm was a full sleeve of intricate art work that hadn’t been there when she last saw him. Her nipples hardened in immediate response. It had been so long.
“Hello Mackenzie.” He said.
“What are you doing here? When did you get out?”
“I got out today. I came straight here because it’s time to set the record straight.”
“That’s not necessary Zach. Really. I know what you did.”
“What the fuck are you talking about? What do you know?”
“I know why you lied about leaving the gang.” She said as she finally walked out from around the counter to stand in front of him.
“Who told you?”
“My brother did. About a year ago.”
“I’m sorry baby, but I couldn’t allow your father to marry you off to that asshole. That alliance would have meant virtual slavery for you. I just wanted you to have a life even if it wasn’t with me.” He said as he reached out and stroked the beautiful brown skin of her cheek that he’d been dreaming about since the day he got locked up.
“I know. And I’ve been waiting for you to come back to me so we could start it.”
“How did you know that I would come back?” He smiled.
“I’ve known you my whole life Zach. And even when I thought you betrayed me, somewhere deep inside I knew you would come back and make it right.”
“I’m sorry it took so fucking long. I love you.” He said as he pulled her into his arms. His mouth took possession of hers as if he was dying of thirst and she as a deep well of life giving water. He had been her first and her only, and that would never change.
“Welcome home baby.” She said when he finally let her up for air.