River Bonus Epilogue


Pulling the cruiser up in front of our house, the hairs on the back of my neck stand at attention.

Though the sun is still high in the sky, and it’s one of the warmest days we’ve had this summer, none of the kids are outside playing. There are no sounds of laughter or rough-housing coming from inside either. The odds of that happening when you have three rambunctious kids under the age of six aren’t great.

Hell, in my experience, they’re non-existent.

Something isn’t right. Granted, I might be jumping to conclusions. Penny would say I’m being pessimistic. So maybe it’s not that something is wrong, but it is definitely not normal.

Fighting the gnawing concern in the pit of my stomach, I head for the front door. I’m in a full sprint by the time I reach the steps. Springing up, I unlock the door. I’m about to throw it open when a piece of paper taped to it catches my attention.

Tearing it off, I find that it’s addressed to me.

The fear melts away and a grin spreads across my lips as I unfold it. There’s a drawing of our home’s floor plan with a dashed line leading to different rooms. It ends in our bedroom.

X marks the spot of your treasure.

I can only imagine what’s waiting for me there. Maybe Penny is wearing one of those lacy numbers that drive me wild. Or, better still, maybe she’s wearing nothing.

My cock grows hard. For a second, I’m tempted to skip over all of the other stops to go claim my treasure. But, since Penny went to the trouble of putting this together—and, apparently, packing our kids off to their cousins’—the least I can do is play along.

I make quick work of visiting each of the stops along the way. In the living room, I find a bottle of chocolate sauce. In the kitchen, there’s a canister of whipped cream. On the table in the hallway, I find a jar of cherries.

It looks like my bombshell wife and I are making sundaes. By my guess, we won’t need any ice cream for this one.

Following the trail of rose petals down the hall, I reach for the handle to our bedroom door. My heart is pounding in my ears. My body is tightly coiled, desperate to be unwound and spring into action.

Patience. Penny gave me all of this. Now, I need to give her the courtesy of savoring the moment.

Taking a deep breath, I turn the handle and push the door open. Inside, dozens of candles are scattered around the room and lit. Rose petals lead to our bed.

There, with a thin silk sheet pulled up to her chest, is the most beautiful treasure in all the world.

“Hey, there sheriff,” she says, her voice is low and sultry.

It takes all my willpower not to pounce on her right this second.

“Hello, yourself.” I hesitate a moment, as a flash of concern shoots through me. “Hey, I didn’t forget an anniversary or something, did I?’

“Of course, not. You’re better at remembering than I am.”

I don’t know about that. But I do make a point to set notifications on my calendar. My father raised each of us to be attentive partners. Remembering anniversaries and birthdays is part of that.

“Then what’s all this?” I ask.

“I just thought we were both due for a little fun and adventure.” She arches an eyebrow and moistens her plump, bottom lip. “What do you say?”

“I say let the fun begin.”

Then I kick off my shoes and pounce onto the bed to claim the greatest prize in the world.