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After four days of long naps, sensual bubble baths, and cooking simple meals together, Jacob and Rachel chose to have dinner with her sisters. Although not as awkward as the first meal they’d had together after his wedding with Leah, there was still an undeniable tension around the table.
The prior week, Leah had been his bride and main focus. This time Rachel was his bride, but Leah was also his wife. Jacob felt an overwhelming pull toward Leah and wondered how he’d not missed her these past few days. He wanted to take her in his arms and kiss her until neither of them could see straight.
Technically, he and Rachel were still on their honeymoon. He’d taken two full weeks off work, although no one at his job realized he’d had two weddings during that time. Not even his parents knew. Other than the five of them, only the twins’ father knew. Their mother had died when they were very young.
As far as the resort staff, the restaurant servers, and all their friends and family were aware, Jacob was married to Leah. Period. End of story.
And yet, this was only the beginning of their story. They weren’t sure how far into the future he would marry Bilhah and then Zilpah, because they were waiting for directions from God.
They had decided to move the girls up into their own suites on the same floor in the same wing of the resort so that the four of them monopolized their own little penthouse corner.
Eventually, Jacob would have to be selective where he spent the majority of his time. He had the distinct impression that he’d be choosing Rachel’s suite more often than not. He sensed that may cause contention. He wasn’t prepared for how quickly conflict would occur.
Five days after his wedding to Rachel, he left her suite with the intention of returning to his own apartment and packing a few belongings when he was startled by Leah opening the door to her suite. She had her purse strap over her shoulder and her car keys in her hand.
For a few seconds, they stared at each other, then looked around and found themselves alone in the hallway. They hadn’t been alone together since he’d left her bed the day before his wedding to Rachel.
“Hey, babe, how are you?” Jacob cleared his throat and stepped closer to Leah. She seemed at a loss for words, and he waited several seconds for her to answer. “Are you okay—?” His question was cut short by Leah pulling him to her and pressing her lips to his.
Leah had her door fully opened faster than Jacob knew what hit him and slammed the door behind them just as fast. She tossed her purse and keys on the floor as Jacob tugged Leah’s shirt over her head. In between kisses, they left a trail of clothing items into the bedroom, but they didn’t make it all the way to the bed. The plush carpet was plenty comfortable under the circumstances.
Afterward, they lay on the floor beside each other and stared at the ceiling. Out of breath, Leah turned to Jacob with glassy eyes. “Dang, I missed you.”
“I never would have guessed.” He chuckled and held her gaze for a long moment. “Missed you too.”
“This is crazy,” Leah said. “I can barely sleep. Going to my office is nearly impossible. I can’t even think about what you’re doing with my sister. This isn’t fair. I understand it’s part of some grander plan, but I don’t care about that. I just want you in my arms.”
“I’m sorry.” He gulped. There was nothing more he could say. He couldn’t pretend he wasn’t happy being married to Rachel. He couldn’t promise Leah anything beyond this moment. He wasn’t even supposed to be here with her. He was supposed to be packing a few things at his apartment and then returning to his wife. Well… his other wife.
Leah was right. This wasn’t fair. Nothing about this was fair. But life wasn’t fair and sometimes sacrifices had to be made for the greater good.
Suddenly questioning everything about this plan, Jacob felt tears spring to his eyes and found Leah was crying also. He pulled her into his arms and held her as she cried. “Hey, it’s gonna be okay, babe. I love you.”
“I don’t want to be alone anymore,” she sobbed. “I don’t want to live without you.”
“You have me. I’m right here. I’m with you.”
“But you’re not here, and you’re not with me, and I don’t have you.”
“How about if I stay with you tonight,” he asked, pulling back and drying her tears with his thumbs. “Would that help?”
Leah nodded with sad eyes and pouting lips.
Jacob couldn’t deny her anything if he tried. He scrambled away from her and found his slacks on the living room floor. He pulled his cellphone from the pocket and typed out a quick text to Rachel. Staying with Leah tonight. Didn’t want you to worry. Love you.
Then he dropped his phone on the floor, scooped Leah into his arms, and carried her to their bed.
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