The Cowboy's Virgin Baby Momma - Page 9

Jade. Pretty name for a pretty lady.

Instead of saying the words out loud, Dallas quickly shoved that observation from his head. The last thing he needed was to piss off Colton even more.

“It’s a long story.”

“Pop a squat and start talking,” Colton instructed, nodding at the vacant seat across from Jade.

With a contrite nod, Dallas eased onto the padded chair and promptly apologized before quietly explaining the proposition his dad had offered that evening. As expected, Colton and Jade were visibly shocked.

“And you drove straight to Toot’s, because…?” Colton asked.

“I would have rather gone to the Hangover, but I’m only a month shy of my three-year coin.”

The coin that represented one thousand and ninety-five days of sobriety. The struggle to break his alcohol addiction had been brutal and real, especially the days before and after his mom died. But Dallas had faced his grief head on, never once slipping back to drown his sorrow in a bottle of whiskey.

To this day he could still taste the smoky oak flavor igniting his tastebuds, feel the slow burn slide down his throat before warming his belly. Dallas had never stopped craving the calm alcohol had provided, albeit temporary, or the courage it granted. Though he literally ached for that courage to find a bride, he refused to destroy all the hard work he’d achieved.

Courage is the ability to continue in spite of fear, he mentally reminded.

“Shit, man. I’m sorry.” Colton frowned. “Of course you came here. Do you want some coffee?”

“Coffee nothing,” Jade bit out, pinning Dallas with an incendiary glare.

Whoa. What happened to the shy, skittish woman I met a minute ago?

“Let me get this straight,” Jade spat. “If I agreed to marry you and have your child, you’d net five million dollars but only offered me one?”

Dammit! I should have offered her more money.

“Y-yes, ma’am. I’d be willing to go higher, it’s just—”

“No, please.” Jade held up a hand. “I get it, I do. Now I don’t know when breeding season starts, and I don’t care, because I’m a city girl. Did you hear me? I said a city girl, not a damn heifer you impregnate then kick back with a jug of sweet tea and a lip full of chew and watch its belly grow, waiting for a calf to pop out so you can run to the bank like Elon Musk.”

From the corner of his eye, Dallas saw Colton grinning like a loon.


“We women in America, all hundred and sixty-some-odd million of us, do manage to make it through the day all on our own. We have our own minds, our own dreams, our own desires, and some of us even run our own businesses. I’m sure you’ve heard the adage why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free, right?”

Dallas nodded as the gorgeous little hellcat continued chewing him a new asshole.

“Pay close attention to what I’m about to tell you, Dallas. I’m afraid finding a woman who’ll accept your proposition without you investing an ounce of time, attention, or love is going to be like finding a needle in a haystack.”

Though he hated Jade’s condescending tone, he was enthralled by the feminine insight she provided. Dallas quickly realized he had a lot of things to ponder besides changing his tactics.

“That or you’re going to have to seriously sweeten the pot and cough up more than a measly million,” she continued.

I can do that.

“See, most women aren’t going to waste their money on buying a whole pig for a little bit of sausage. Especially not when they can order an uncomplicated, battery-operated boyfriend that comes in all colors, shapes, sizes, and speeds from Amazon.”

“This finding a wife thing is a whole lot more complicated than I thought,” Dallas mumbled.

“It’s not just the wife thing,” Jade softy screeched. “Have you even thought about the baby?”

“No.” Dallas cringed. “I haven’t had time to sort out all the details yet.”’

“Then you’d better get to sorting and remember that you’re messing with two innocent lives.”

“I will. Thank you for…opening my eyes, Miss Jade. I truly appreciate it. And again, I’m sorry for being so rude.” Dallas stood, shoved his hat back on his head, and nodded. “Y’all enjoy your supper. I think I’m gonna go take a drive and…think.”

“Good luck, man,” Colton murmured. “Make sure you tell the rest of your brothers that Jade is taken.”

“I will. Thanks for not beating my ass, man.” Dallas turned to leave, then paused and looked at Jade. “You wouldn’t happen to have an unwed sister or-or a single girlfriend, would you?”

“Out!” Colton growled lowly as he pointed to the door.

Realizing he’d pushed his luck too far, Dallas scowled and strolled out the door.

As he headed back to the ranch, Jade’s words continued rolling through his brain. Clearly, he couldn’t approach another woman until he revised his strategy. Finding a wife was going to take time and a whole lot more finesse. Even if Jade hadn’t been with Colton, she would have turned Dallas down, and rightfully so. His approach had been sloppy and selfish.

He’d been blinded by dollar signs and hopes of winning the money to realize his own dreams. If not for Jade, he might never have considered the sacrifices he expected his new bride to make.

Money buys things, not happiness. His mom’s voice floated through his mind.

“I know, Ma,” he murmured, angry with himself for behaving so foolishly.

It was time to take a long, hard, and brutally honest look at his life.

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