Falling for the Pregnant GP - Page 22

Ethan headed out to the kitchen, stopping in the doorway to check that the coast was clear. Had CJ been up already? He glanced around the darkened room. There were no signs that anyone had been in the kitchen. No jars of chocolate spread left out, no dishes in the sink. Perhaps she’d packed everything away in the dishwasher.

Regardless, the kitchen was empty now. Ethan hurried over to the sink and filled the kettle with water then switched it on. While he was waiting, he looked through the herbal teas CJ had in the cupboard, and decided on Sleepy Baby tea, as it prescribed a relaxing outcome.

Herbal teas had been a more recent addition to his ‘new lifestyle’ campaign. Melody had suggested it, saying that it often helped her to get a good night’s sleep. ‘You need at least six hours of REM sleep, Ethan.’

‘I get six hours of sleep,’ he’d argued.

‘In one block?’ Her questions had been pointed. ‘Didn’t Leo suggest you cut down on your caffeine? How many cups do you usually have?’

Ethan had shrugged. Most days he lost count but even he knew it was too much. He did what he needed to do in order to get through his day, being as effective as possible, and he said as much to his sister.

‘But you’re not being effective.’ Melody had reached out and taken his hand in hers. ‘Don’t you see that? You may be keeping up to date with your paperwork, your research projects, and being a brilliant surgeon to your patients, but at the end of the day you’re being ineffective to your own health.’

‘I don’t care,’ he’d told her, the soft, caring tone doing more to damage his self-control than anything else.

‘About your own life?’ Tears had instantly sprung to Melody’s eyes and it was then, seeing his sister’s worry and concern, that Ethan had started to actually listen to her biggest fears for his health. He’d tried to change, tried to cut down on the caffeine, but about four weeks after that conversation his body had decided to take control of things by having a mild heart attack.

‘Morning.’ CJ’s soft, cheery greeting startled him, and it was only then he realised that the memories had brought tears to his own eyes. Ethan quickly sniffed and turned his attention to finding a cup and putting the teabag into it. ‘Junior’s doing the morning exercise routine a little later today. Maybe there’s hope.’

‘For what?’ Ethan glanced over his shoulder at her, noting she looked absolutely adorable with her hair all messed up and stuck out at funny angles. Her robe was hanging open and her feet were in those ridiculous fluffy slippers. She looked…good enough to eat. Ethan cleared his throat, willing the kettle to hurry up and boil.

‘That Junior’s going to grow out of being an early riser,’ she answered.

Ethan’s lips quirked slightly. ‘Wishful thinking?’

She crossed both her fingers and held up her hands, making him smile even more. ‘Something like that. What are you drinking?’ She peered into his mug on her way past him to the fridge.

‘Herbal tea.’

‘Mmm. Sounds good.’

Without saying another word, Ethan took another cup down and added another teabag. ‘Sugar or honey?’

‘Honey, please.’ She took some cheese out of the fridge and headed over to the bread bin where she retrieved a small baguette. ‘Hungry?’

‘No, thanks.’

She closed the bread bin, picked up a knife and a plate before seating herself at the table. ‘So why can’t you sleep?’ She spread some cheese onto the bread.

Ethan looked at her, his mind filtering through several different things he could say. Thankfully, the kettle switched itself off and he almost pounced on it, pouring water into the waiting cups. ‘Adjusting to a different place.’

She swallowed her mouthful. ‘Miss your own bed?’

‘Something like that,’ he murmured. When the tea was ready he took hers to the table before walking towards the door with his own mug. ‘See you later in the morning.’

‘You’re not going to stay and keep me company?’

She’d asked him that before and he’d stayed. Because he’d stayed, he’d become better acquainted with her. After their time picking grapes together, he would now say that they were becoming friends and if that was so, wouldn’t that mean she’d want him to talk about his own life? Part of him did want to tell her about Abigail, to open up and be free from his self-imposed exile, but the other part—the logical part—wanted to leave the kitchen and find a way to return their relationship to one of strict work colleagues. However, it was because she was an open, honest, giving person, that he knew if he didn’t stay, at least for a few minutes while he drank his tea, and keep her company, she might be offended.

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