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“Sophia, please – talk to me. If there is anything I can do – let me help. If it is something I did – let me fix it, please.” I inhale deeply, wondering how or where to start. Just before he arrived, I had broken down – becoming overwhelmed trying to figure out how I was going to tell him about the baby. I’m more than three months now – October seems so long ago yet the future is approaching faster and faster every day as my encroaching deadline keeps coming.

When words fail me, I take Hayes hand and place it flat against my still flat stomach. I watch his face carefully for his reaction as he slowly registers what I’m telling him. Disbelief, shock, incredulity, then finally… joy.

“A baby?” He asks, trepidation in his voice as if he’s scared to believe it’s true. “Our baby?” I nod, smiling gently. “My baby…” he whispers, almost as an after-thought. His face erupts in the largest smile I’ve ever seen it display as he throws his arms around me in a tight hug. He holds me close, not moving and simply holding me tight. “You’ve made me so happy, Sophia,” he tells me, instantly setting my mind at ease. I’m relieved to know I won’t be doing this on my own.

Treating me like glass, Hayes guides me to the couch and helps me to sit down. Asking me if I need anything – which I decline, he then sits down beside me, holding my hand with one of his, the other on my stomach.

“I love you, Sophia – both of you,” he tells me, setting my heart soaring, then crashing. Does he love me, or does he love me because of the baby? Did he love me before? Yes, I think he did – I know I have been in love with him for awhile, even if I didn’t say it.

I decide to soar.

“I love you too, Hayes,” I respond, leaning toward him for a kiss. Our lips meet and it is a different kiss from any we’ve ever had before – yes there is passion, yes there is lust and yes there is respect but now there is something else, a whole new component that wasn’t there before.



I shoot a quick text to Aidan while in the bathroom, otherwise I spend the night with Sophia and barely let her leave my arms. She’s off the next day, which I knew and why I came down when I did and she agrees to spend the day with me. Following breakfast at a nearby diner she likes, we start the day I have planned out, thanks to a little help from Aidan.

We tour her favourite museum together, something I don’t enjoy but she loves so we spend hours examining the different pieces and discussing the history behind them. Afterwards, we enjoy lunch at the same hotel restaurant we ate at before – the food really is that good. When we finish our lunch, we head to a nearby movie theatre that I have booked completely but it won’t be showing the listed movie, instead, it will be playing her favourite movie of all time – ‘Love Actually’. Not normally a fan of these types of movies, I laugh my ass off and end up thoroughly enjoying myself. Sophia and the baby thoroughly enjoy all the candy and popcorn they can eat, which it turns out – is a lot.

She still manages to eat some dinner at the café we stop at on our way to our last stop for the day – skating on the frozen lake in the downtown core. There are dozens of other skaters out, braving the cold and we get our rented skates on in no time – getting onto our feet and onto the ice is another matter all together. We skate, we fall, we laugh and we ‘dance’ to the music playing over the tinny speakers. When we start to get cold, we move to the side where the benches are to remove our skates. Insisting on helping, I kneel in front of Sophia to untie her laces for her.

“You don’t have to do this, Hayes –” she laughs, enjoying the sight of me on my knees in front of her. I start unlacing one of her skates, while shaking my head.

“Yes, I do have to do this and I want to do this,” I tell her as I unlace her second skate. “I needed an excuse to get on my knees, Sophia,” I tell her while pulling the small black box out of my jacket pocket. She gasps as I take her hand in mine and slide the four-carat ring onto her finger. “Will you marry me, Sophia Carson-Robertson?” Sophia sits there for a moment, stunned as she stares first at me then the ring, then back at me. Her mouth is gaping open like a fish and she looks absolutely adorable – but the longer she goes without answering, the more nervous I’m becoming.

Is it possible she’s going to say no?!

‘Love Actually’ © Universal Pictures 2003 – Present

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