I don’t normally go back to a novel and muddle with it once published. But this time, I don’t see know I thought why not, an epilogue may be added, perhaps.
Recently published, Charming Mr Stewart is already getting reviews from around the world from readers and I’ve had a one or two request, or express curiosity of ‘what happened next’. So for those who have read the book and weren’t ready for it to end, here is a slice, or glimpse into the ever after. If your enjoy it, let me know, so I may be able to add this to the online version available on Kindle.
Here we go.
CHARMING MR STEWART
Epilogue: A Quiet Word
Elle stared at the pile of folders waiting for her attention. It grew inches taller every day she swore. Clients and potential clients applying for her to fit them into her busy schedule. Who would have thought that a year and half ago, as she covered one of the biggest weddings of her tiny career, that she would find herself amongst the elites. Whatever happened to Dean wanting to keep a low profile and family privacy? Guess he didn’t care anymore, and frankly neither did she.
It had been close to a year and a half since her spontaneous trip to Paris to woo the man she kind of loved. After hours of restlessness and extended nausea, a handful of false reading on expired pregnancy tests later, Elle had managed to get in a room alone with Dean in one of the poshest hotels she’d ever seen, and what did she do? She stood there like a silly little girl who had no idea what she was even thinking.
Fast forward to the present, and she’d moved back to her home town for now, living in her old room with Maya, who had wonderful grandparents to watch over her while mummy dearest was busy transitioning her business into a tiny empire, boutique that attracted all of Dean’s own circle and clients.
‘You have got to centralize yourself, El. You’re only gonna burn out this way.’ Dean had frowned at the state of her ‘office’, a tiny room at the back of another shop front. ‘Move to Sydney. That’s where all the clients are. Get a bigger office, I can help you with that, and set up a proper studio.’
‘No.’ Elle had stood on her tip toes and kissed those gorgeous lips playfully before strutting away in an outfit she was already not comfortable wearing, a pencil skirt with heels. ‘You keep your money and your charms, Mr Stewart, and I shall keep my pride.’
Dean chuckled. ‘Is this about all those bloody awards pumping your head big? Chloe warned me.’
Utterly scandalous, Elle turned around and lowered her voice, for fear her newly hired secretary would hear. ‘I’m making something of myself ok. Do you know how hard I’ve worked for this? I don’t want to be that trophy thing that hangs around your arms. I’m not a trophy.’
Dean laughed his heart melting laugh. ‘Great, and now you get feisty.’ He leaned in and kissed her cheek. ‘You know I love you, but seriously, you pack up like a grandma.’
Elle returned his kiss. ‘So I’ll see you there then?’ He nodded, walking away. ‘Tell them I won’t be too long.’
Dean waved vaguely as he went. ‘Just makes sure you come before you miss everything.’
‘Of course, I’m the bloody photographer!’ Elle yelled off, watching his figure disappear through the front of the shop. ‘Right, Maureen, where’s my camera case?’
‘What a milf,’ Dean whispered into her ears as she cheerfully snapped away at the family.
‘Excuse me,’ she turned around with a smile. ‘That’s my cousin you’re talking about.’ Elle spied Chloe and Peter from the corner of her eyes, little baby Symphony held loving in Peter’s arms, mingling with their guests in the garden.
‘I wasn’t talking about her, was I?’ He winked, eyeing her head to toe. ‘How about it?’
‘How about what?’
Dean pulled something out of his pocket in that moment and Elle’s heart began to ran. In the hubbub of people, no one seemed to be noticing and no one cared as Dean quietly slipped a ring on Elle’s finger. He leaned in with the sweetest smile on his face. ‘Can I have you for a wife? Say yes.’
The ring felt odd in her finger, somewhat home too though. It fit. They fit.
‘Maya already said yes, in case you are wondering.’ He squeezed her hand in his, nervous as ever. Elle looked around the gathering, people in their own worlds. Her gaze skimmed over how happy a Chloe looked.
Elle turned to him, and nodded before Dean leaned in for their first kiss that day. ‘I almost thought you were about to get down on your knee.’ Elle laughed. They had talked about it before, perhaps once or twice, and she had been adamant no one should go down on their knee in public. It puts pressure on the whole thing. She wanted quiet. Quiet meant no noise could interfere with the biggest decision in your life.
She kissed him once more, and squeezed his hand with her newly adorned hand. ‘We’ll tell them once the guests leave.’
Dean nodded and slipped out to mingle with the guests and let Elle get back to her photography.