For Your Love
Blessings # 6
By: Beverly Jenkins
Releasing April 28th, 2015
NAACP nominee and bestselling author Beverly Jenkins returns to Henry Adams, Kansas-an unforgettable place that anyone would want to call home-with a story of family, friends, and the powerful forces from our past that can irrevocably shape our future.
Mayor Trent July and his wife Lily are enjoying life as newlyweds and embracing the challenges and joys that come with being adoptive parents to two wonderful boys. But being a father has inevitably forced him to think about his own birth mother. Raised by his grandmother Tamar—and in many ways the good people of Henry Adams—Trent was blessed with a childhood full of love.
But now he can’t help wondering what happened to the scared teenage girl who gave birth to him. And questions that he’s never voiced are now begging to be answered: Who was she? Is she still alive? Why didn’t she want him?
Trent has always believed no good comes from dwelling on the past, especially when you have a loving family, a strong community, and folks who depend on him. But when the past comes to Henry Adams, Trent has no choice but to face it—and the woman who left him behind. The truth will shake his very being and everything he thought he knew about life, love, and the bonds that hold families together…yet can also tear them apart.
When Trent and the boys returned home, all the ladies’ vehicles were gone and the interior was quiet. They found Lily in the kitchen feeding the dishwasher.
“Hey baby,” he said affectionately. “Did you and your girls have a good time?”
Her smile said it all. “Yes we did. No one wanted to go home. How was your afternoon?” Her eyes brushed her sons.
“The Chiefs lost.” Amari said speaking first.
“We saw Zoey and Wyatt,” Devon said.
“Did you wave?” Lily asked.
He shook his head.
“Did you want to?” she pressed gently.
“She doesn’t want to be friends with me so I don’t want to be friends with her.”
“She might be waiting for you to make the first move, Devon.”
But her son wasn’t buying. “She’s the one who started it, so she should make the first move.”
Apparently Amari wasn’t buying either. “No. You were the one who started it.” Devon tensed but Amari ignored him and asked, “Is it okay if I go hang out at Brain’s for a little while?”
Devon’s eyes shot daggers.
Trent asked, “What’s wrong, Devon?”
“Nobody ever agrees with me.”
“That’s because you’re always wrong,” Amari pointed out.
“Amari,” Trent cautioned.
“Well, he is.” Under Trent’s mild look of censure, Amari amended his answer. “Okay, maybe not all the time, but for sure ninety-nine point nine percent of the time. So, can I go?”
“The colonel’s out of town but if Mrs. Payne’s okay with it, you can stay until half time.” He then sent Amari a speaking look.
Amari sighed loudly before asking his brother, “Do you want to go?”
Trent and Lily had been encouraging Amari to include him in some of his activities with the hope it might help Devon chill out. They knew Amari would rather walk to Topeka through the snow with bare feet than do so, but he never overtly balked.
“No. I’m going up to my room and watch some videos.”
“Okay. Be back at the half.” Amari left to get his coat and Devon headed for his bedroom upstairs.
Once both boys were gone and Trent was alone with his wife, he draped his arms around her waist and looked down into her dark eyes. To him she was still beautiful as she’d been when they were in high school together. “This parenting business is more than a notion.”
“Have I kissed you today, Mrs. July?”
She made a point of thinking, “Hmm. I don’t remember so you should probably get busy.”
Chuckling softly he did as requested. When they finally came up for air, she whispered, “Very nice.”
“Do you want help cleaning up?”
“Men who help with housework are considered very sexy.”
“Yes, and later, after the knuckleheads are snuggled in their beds, I’ll show you just how much.”
“I like the sound of that.”
She waggled her eyebrows. “Thought you might.”
It took only a short while to remove all the spent plastic cups, plates, and reposition the furniture. As they worked, Trent watched the way she moved, the flow of her walk and savored the way his heart rate accelerated like a teenage boy each time she glanced his way and smiled. Circumstances tore them apart after high school but after nearly two decades apart they’d settled their differences and were now man and wife. He loved her as much as he did breathing. When his first two marriages crashed and burned, he never thought his life would ever hold happiness again, but his Lily Flower brought all that and more. He felt blessed.
When they had the space cleaned to their satisfaction, Lily walked over and circled her arms around waist. “Have I thanked you for my beautiful room?”
Mimicking her, he paused for a moment to think. “Hmm. Not today, so tonight, I’ll be looking for a little extra in my reward package.”
“I think that can be arranged.”
“You know that silky little black number you brought back from Spain?”
Mischief shone in her eyes. “Yes.”
“I want my reward package wrapped in that.”
Laughing she nestled against him. “You got it.”
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About the Author
Ms. Jenkins is the nation's premier writer of African American historical romance fiction and specializes in 19th century African American life. She has over thirty published novels to date.
She has received numerous awards, including: five Waldenbooks/Borders Group Best Sellers Awards; two Career Achievement Awards and a Pioneer Award from Romantic Times Magazine; a Golden Pen Award from the Black Writer's Guild, and in 1999 was named one of the Top Fifty Favorite African-American writers of the 20th Century by AABLC, the nation's largest on-line African-American book club.
She has also been featured in many national publications, including the Wall Street Journal, People Magazine, Dallas Morning News and Vibe Magazine. She has lectured and given talks at such prestigious universities as Oberlin University, the University of Illinois, and Princeton. She speaks widely on both romance and 19th century African-American history and was the 2014 featured speaker for the W.W. Law Lecture Series sponsored by the Savannah Black Heritage Festival.