Happy Mother’s Day to everyone in the UK. We hope all the mums out there have lovely days and are thoroughly spoilt! For the first treat of the day, we’re happy to present to you the last part of our Round Robin by Kathryn Freeman. Find out what happens to Lily and Rob, as well as the star of the show – the little cat who’s just successfully delivered four kittens into the world
Make sure you read right until the end so that you can find out the final question for our competition and the details to enter.
In order to make sense of the story, make sure you read all of the preceding parts, which you can find below:
Part One by Berni Stevens
Part Two by Sarah Waights
Part Three by AnneMarie Brear
Part Four by Clare Chase
‘Bugger.’ A grimace fell across Rob’s handsome features as he looked down at his phone. ‘Sorry, I need to take this. I’ll be back in a minute.’
As he strode out Lily glanced at Jo, who nodded frantically in the direction he’d gone. ‘Go and listen,’ she hissed.
‘So? How else are you going to find out if he’s taken?’
‘I don’t care one way or the other.’
Jo gave her a knowing smirk and Lily gave up the pretence, sneaking out of the kitchen and through to the lounge next to the hallway where Rob was talking. Not wanting to be caught with her ear to the wall, she opened the top drawer of the sideboard and pretended to search through it.
‘Yes, look, I’m sorry I had to dash off.’ His deep voice permeated easily through the thin walls of their apartment. ‘No, I was delivering kittens this time.’ Lily stilled as he waited for the other person to talk. ‘I’ll ask her, if you like, though really I’m not sure we can manage any more animals in the house.’
Sighing, she pushed the drawer shut. She’d heard enough.
‘I’ll be home soon. Love you.’
And now she’d really heard enough.
‘Oh, there you are.’ Rob seemed understandably surprised to see her in the lounge, rather than watching over the kittens.
‘Yes, I came to find some, err, matches.’
Thankfully he didn’t ask her what she needed them for. Instead his gaze wandered over her face and he smiled. It was more than just friendly. It was interested. ‘So, I hope you don’t think this is inappropriate but …’ he trailed off, running a hand through his soft, dark hair. ‘Sorry, I’m pretty useless at this. I was wondering if, maybe, you fancied going out for a drink sometime? Christen the kittens?’
Five minutes ago she’d have been a mass of bubbling hormones at his suggestion. Now she just felt sad. ‘Umm, thanks but I’m not sure the woman you were just speaking to would like that.’ Before he had a chance to come up with a lame explanation she spoke again. ‘We should go and check on the kittens.’
She marched past him and back into the kitchen. Jo gave her a questioning look but Lily shook her head, bending down to the kittens. Rob crouched next to her, a frown on his face, before checking over the tiny balls of fluff with gentle – and very fine looking, damn it – hands. Afterwards he moved on to the mum, feeling his way over her shoulders. ‘They’re all absolutely fine. I’ll need to scan to see if she has a chip but there’s no collar so I believe she’s yours if you want her. They all are.’
Lily gulped, gazing down at the tiny cute faces. Mum was licking them diligently. A teenage mum perhaps, but who clearly loved her babies.
Rob’s brown eyes warmed a little as he studied her. ‘You want to take care of them all, don’t you, but you know it’s a huge undertaking.’ He stood back up, once more towering over her. ‘If it helps at all, I’ll waive my fee. And my mum said she’d love a couple.’
‘Your mum?’ Had she heard him right? ‘But how does she know about them?’
‘That was her on the phone.’
‘That was your mum?’
‘Yeah.’ He cocked his head, regarding her quizzically. ‘Why?’
‘Well, it’s just I thought … you talked about coming home and loving her. I thought it was your wife.’
He burst out laughing, deep grooves appearing on either side of his very sexy mouth. ‘She’ll enjoy that one.’
‘So she was the evening I interrupted? The slamming door?’
‘Yes and no. The slamming door was a disgruntled employee I fired for mistreating a stray pup. Mum was the phone calls. I’d promised to take her out for a meal, as it’s Mother’s Day.’ He shrugged. ‘That’s the evening you interrupted.’
Lily put a hand to her mouth, feeling terrible. ‘Oh no. I’m so sorry.’
‘Hey don’t be. I’m very happy it was interrupted. Very happy.’ His dark eyes glittered back at her, full of meaning.
‘Umm, I think this is my cue to leave.’ Jo shot her a wicked grin before slipping out of the kitchen.
‘So is that why you didn’t want the drink?’ Rob asked. ‘You thought I was married?’
He smiled, brown eyes lighting up. ‘So now you know I don’t have an angry wife waiting for me at home, though I do have a slightly annoyed mother, will you reconsider? And mum lives with me, by the way, not the other way round. She moved in when dad died, if that helps at all in your decision making.’
Lily felt her heart turn gentle somersaults in her chest. He loved animals and he loved his mum. ‘I’d be delighted to have a drink with you.’
Aww, lovely ending to our Mother’s Day story. We hope you all enjoyed it as much as we enjoyed putting it together – and a very big well done to our talented authors, who always manage to excel at these Round Robins regardless of subject matter!
Now that we’ve reached the last part of the story, it’s time to submit your answers from the last four days, along with one last answer from today for your chance to win a mystery prize! Here’s the question:
What does Lily pretend to look for when she listens in on Rob on the phone?
When you’ve read every part of the story and collected together your answers, send all FIVE of them to firstname.lastname@example.org. The winner (with five correct answers) will be picked at random. Deadline for entry is Wednesday 9th March and the winner will be announced on Thursday 10th March. Good luck!
If you enjoyed Kathryn Freeman’s writing, why not pick up a copy of her most recent book, Search for the Truth? It’s available as an eBook and will also be available in paperback from July HERE.