The Billionaire's Christmas Baby

By: Victoria James

What kind of a jerk would let a woman go out alone during a blizzard anyway?

What kind of a jackass yells in a woman’s face and then lets her drive away in the middle-of-nowhere Northern Ontario, during a blizzard, at night?

Jackson looked out the window at the petite brunette as she tried to brush the snow off the windshield. But every time she did, the wind would blow on even more snow. By the looks of her, one strong gust might carry her away too. Even that grandma hat she was wearing was all white with snow.

He continued to stare out the window, his fists jammed into his jeans pockets. Guilt was ripping a jagged hole through his gut, as he recalled the shocked look in her eyes. He’d been an ass. He rarely lost his cool, and yet, a few minutes ago he stood yelling at this tiny slip of a woman at his front door. Would it be so bad to let this Hannah woman spend the night? How much of a threat could a woman who barely reached the top of his chin with the pom-pom be? He’d find out what she wanted and then make it clear that he had no intention of speaking to anyone about his family. Then tomorrow morning, when the storm was over, she’d leave. Easy. Done.

Jackson shook his head as she disappeared into a giant mound of snow. With a rough sigh, and a few of his favorite curses, he shrugged into his leather, sheepskin lined jacket and flicked on the outdoor lights. One way or another, women were always complicating his life. Even when he was trying to get away from them, they found him.

“Hey!” he called out, approaching her. The snow was past his shins and showed no sign of slowing. He squinted as snow and ice pellets beat into his face and eyes. She either couldn’t hear him above the wind or she was purposely ignoring him.

She didn’t bother to look at him when he reached her side. She kept brushing off the snow with angry bursts.

A cloud of snow hit him in the face. He wasn’t so sure it was an accident.

“Look, you can spend the night here. Leave in the morning when the storm is over.”

She paused and went back to fruitlessly wiping off the windshield with one arm, while clutching a round container like a football under her other arm. He spotted a Christmas wreath attached to the front bumper of her car. He tried not to groan out loud at the absurd ornament. He had never actually met anyone who went to the trouble of decorating their car for Christmas. She was working on her side windows, still ignoring him. Stubborn was the last thing he needed right now.

“Well, we both know you can’t get anywhere with this weather tonight.” He felt the ice pellets drumming against the back of his neck like a bunch of nails. She continued to pay no attention to him. Enough was enough. He walked over and grabbed the scraper from her hand. She glared at him and yanked it back.

“I’m not staying here. You’re mentally unbalanced.”

“What were you thinking coming here alone, at night? Obviously you intended on staying.” He tried to pry the scraper out of her hand again, but it was as though that giant red mitten was super glued to the damn thing.

“Stop being a bully. I didn’t think it would take me over six hours to drive up here. I never planned on staying here, so stop flattering yourself. I don’t like you. I don’t trust you. So leave me alone and let go of my brush!”

She yelled that last part and he let go, his hands up in the air in a surrender motion. He wasn’t going to beg her to stay here.

Jackson watched as she fell backwards into a mound of snow. A tin flew in the air and what looked like cookies fell out. Uh-oh.

“My cookies!” She sputtered out and struggled into a sitting position in the snow.

He watched her collect the array of brightly colored cookies in the white snow and an odd feeling of regret came over him. Of all the absurd… Jackson felt he had no choice but to kneel down and help.

He cleared his throat, momentarily forgetting the cold. “Sorry, I didn’t mean…”

“Save it,” she snapped and he ignored the tears he thought he heard in her voice. Not tears, please no. He found a cookie and noticed with dread that it was shaped like a Christmas tree and covered with green sparkly looking things.

Jackson tried to place the ruined cookies gently in the tin, as though there was still some hope of salvaging them. She, on the other hand, tossed them in with a force that suggested she was royally pissed. At least she wasn’t crying. Finally, she placed the lid over the round tin, banging Santa’s happy face shut with her giant red mittens.

Jackson stood up and held out his hand. She glared at his hand and stood on her own. He shouldn’t be surprised. He could have sworn he heard the word jerk, but with the howling wind he couldn’t be sure.

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