Delphine laughed through her tears. "You look like my sister."
Leta laughed until her gaze returned to Jericho. It was condemning once more. "Why didn’t you tell me she lived? How could you have kept that from me?"
"Zeus punished him mercilessly," Delphine explained.
Jericho met Leta’s gaze levelly, wanting her to know that he hadn’t hurt her on purpose. "If there had been a way to get word to you, I would have. I swear. But had they known she lived, Zeus would have killed her."
Leta reached up and touched his scarred cheek. "Was that. . ."
"From saving her? Yes."
Leta’s tears fell even harder as she pulled him into her arms and kissed his scarred cheek. "Thank you, Cratus. Thank you for saving my baby and for bringing her back to me."
Delphine saw his own eyes mist as he looked at her. "Believe me, I’m the one who owes gratitude here."
Leta pulled back with a frown. "What do you mean?"
Delphine sniffed as she reached out to take Jericho’s hand. "He’s my husband, Mom."
"You’re married?" Leta returned to hug her. "Oh this is… this is… wonderful!"
"Leta? Are you all right?"
Delphine wiped at her tears as a tall blond man came through the door. But what surprised her most was that she knew him.
Aidan O’Conner. The famous actor. She didn’t know how many dreams she’d been in with women who fantasized about him.
How very odd.
Yet the most shocking thing was the black-headed toddler swathed in a pink jumper in Aidan’s arms.
Laughing, Leta took the little girl and held her close. "I couldn’t be better, Aidan."
"Then why are you crying and standing out here where it’s freezing without a coat on?"
She kissed his cheek before she turned back to Delphine. "Kari, meet your big sister, Iole."
Delphine laughed as the baby waved at her and said a very shy hi.
"I have a sister?" she asked, delighted by the news.
"I have another daughter?" Aidan gasped.
Leta nodded. "Aidan, meet Cratus-"
"Jericho," he corrected.
Leta scowled in confusion. "Jericho?"
He nodded. "Cratus died a long time ago."
She inclined her head as if she understood completely. "Jericho saved my baby from Dolor when he attacked us and raised her."
"Uh, no," Jericho corrected with a nervous laugh. "I gave her to peasants who raised her, otherwise that would be really creepy."
Delphine shook her head at him and his paranoia. "And I go by Delphine."
Leta looked surprised by that.
Jericho gave a sheepish shrug. "I didn’t know what name she had, and you weren’t exactly being helpful to us that night. Not that I blame you. I just handed her off and went back before anyone realized what I’d done with her. They gave her their own name. Sorry."
Leta waved his words away. "Never apologize for what you did. I would never question you on that topic." She stroked the baby’s back as the girl sneezed. "But Aidan’s right. It’s really cold out here, and we have a nice fire inside. Please come in and join us."
Jericho followed them into a quaint cabin that was decorated in navy and green with country bears. The view of the mountains through the picture windows was incredible. "Nice place you have."
"Thanks," Aidan said.
Leta set Kari down so that she could stand by the coffee table where her toys were scattered. "Can I get you something to drink?"
"No, we’re fine." Delphine sat on the couch.
Her mother sat down beside her at the same time her sister left her toys to slap at Delphine’s knees. Delighted by her, Delphine picked her up and placed her in her lap so that she could cuddle her.
Aidan and Jericho hung back in tough-guy poses. "So when did you guys get married?"
Jericho shrugged. "A few weeks ago."
Aidan frowned. "I wish we’d known. We’d have definitely been there."
Leta smiled at him. "Actually, that’s not how the gods do it, sweetie. You merely declare yourselves married and you are."
"Kind of anti-climatic, isn’t it?"
Jericho shook his head. "Maybe, but in marriage it’s more about the commitment than it is the vows."
"No," Leta said as she hugged both Delphine and Kari. "Marriage is about the love more than anything else."
Delphine looked up at Jericho and smiled. Her mother was definitely right. And she was grateful that she had the people in her life who made up her family. Both those related to her by blood and those related to her by choice.
Madoc sat alone in his office, watching the scene with Delphine and her family. Yes, he was prying, but she’d talked about it so much that he was afraid of it turning out bad for her. Luckily it hadn’t.
But then Leta had always been kind-hearted and loving. Too much so at times.
And in truth, he envied her that happiness. There had been a time when he’d craved that kind of domesticity, but too much had happened to change him.
Now he had much more pressing things to deal with.
The winds of change were blistering as they gathered force, and soon they would be rolling in. He felt a sudden shift in the air behind him. It was Jared.
Madoc glanced at him over his shoulder. "What are you doing here?"
"I’m helping to train the new Malachai and I just wanted to know something."
"Does anyone else know you’re related to him?"