The Unexpected Wedding (Comfort Crossing Book 5)(10)By: Kay Correll
Becky Lee flinched.
“I don’t think either of us considered she might survive the surgery but not wake up. I stayed there as long as I dared, thinking she’d come out of the coma, wanting to be there for her. I talked to her. Scotty talked to her. But she wouldn’t come around. Eventually, I knew I had to take Scotty and leave.”
“I don’t understand that. Why would you leave her all alone like that?”
“To keep Scotty safe.” Cal leaned forward on the table. “It’s a long story, but the short version is that we need to hide him for as long as we can.”
“Hide him?” Becky Lee’s brow crinkled. “From whom?”
~ * ~
“Your father? His grandfather? Why does he need to be hidden from him?” Becky Lee’s mind was swirling with questions. Where was Theresa Jean? How did all this happen? How could she not know that her sister was married? She had a son for Pete’s sake. A son. “You need to explain this to me.”
“My father tried to take Scotty away from her before. That’s not something anyone would want for their child, to be raised by my parents. Trust me on that.”
From the serious, wrinkled forehead and the clench of his jaw, Becky Lee had no reason to doubt him.
“But how could they take him away from Theresa Jane and your brother?”
“My brother was… away… for a while.”
“He left her?”
“No, it wasn’t like that.”
“What was it like?”
She watched him clench his fist and open it along with his now telling twitch of his jaw muscle. She waited for him to continue.
“He was in prison.”
Becky Lee sat back in her chair, pretty sure she couldn’t handle even one more shocking revelation today. Or ever for that matter. She cringed before she had the courage to ask, “What did he do?”
“White collar crime. He was gone—in prison—for eighteen months. My parents sued for custody while he was gone. Said your sister wasn’t fit. They had the money for good lawyers. Great lawyers. Your sister—well, I helped her as much as I could—but she didn’t have much money. Worked long hours to make ends meet. Luckily my brother got released early and they had a stronger case to keep custody. I have no doubt my father will try again now that my brother’s… gone.”
“So you took Scotty and ran?”
“Seemed like the best plan at the time. Keep him hidden and give TJ time to heal and wake up.”
“Do you have kids of your own?”
“To be honest, I know nothing about raising a kid. I mean, I was around Scotty some while he was growing up. Moved to TJ’s town while my brother was in prison. That is the sum total of my experience. But TJ trusted me with him. I’m not going to let her down.”
Becky Lee wondered how her sister could think a single guy, with no experience with kids, would be a good guardian. The corners of her mouth scrunched into a scowl. “You do have legal custody, don’t you?”
“I do for now. TJ made sure of that. But let’s be honest, I’d be a poor choice if there is a big custody battle. So, for now, we’re going to fly under the radar. But before she went into surgery, she made me promise that if something happened, that I’d come to Comfort Crossing and get you to help me with Scotty. She said you were the best older sister ever, and you’d be able to—I don’t know—guide me?”
Theresa Jean thought she was the best sister ever? All Becky Lee could remember was how Theresa Jean tagged along and Becky Lee was always telling her she was too young. What kind of sister was she anyway? She didn’t even know Theresa Jane was married or had a son… or was widowed. Becky Lee’s heart ached for her sister, for all she’d gone through and without the help of her family. Losing her husband, raising Scotty alone when Cal’s brother was in prison, fighting for custody.
“I still want to go see her.”
“I’m sure my father has already found out what happened by now or he will soon. He’ll have her room watched. He’s that kind of man. You could lead them right back to here. Please. I promised TJ I’d keep Scotty safe and away from my parents. Will you help?”