Bridal Boots by Mary Winter
erotic romance short story
approximately 6-8K words
Cover Art by StonyHill Productions
After being on her own for so long, Lainey finds the family she’s always wanted in the union of her Conclave with Cord’s. And she discovers that he has plans that will change the course of Yellowwild Conclave forever.
Under normal circumstances the smell of hay and of sun-warmed horse would calm Lainey Murphy’s nerves. Today wasn’t a normal day; it was her wedding day. Daisy stretched her head over the stall door to reach for Lainey’s shoulder. “Hey girl,” Lainey said, reaching forward and scratching the mare behind her ears. Currently several months pregnant, Daisy wouldn’t be a participant in this wedding. Instead, Cord had secured a couple of old riding horses from Starmyst Conclave in Illinois. He’d also brought Te and Jacy along too. Reid and Laura had driven separately.
“They’re just waiting for you,” Jacy said. She stepped into the barn, stopping when she saw Lainey still in her jeans and shirt. “That’s not a wedding dress.”
Lainey shook her head. “I was just going into change.” She stepped back with a last, affectionate pat on Daisy’s neck. In the stall across the aisle, one of her other mares with her foal, nickered. Turning, Lainey crossed the aisle and gave that horse a pat too. Her stomach churned. Her wedding day…so many times she’d imagined this moment, and yet, here it was.
She’d been cleared of the false allegations brought against her by the governing bodies of her sport. So, both she and Cord were rodeoing again. Taking a week off for a wedding, then hurrying to the next rodeo had been all the time they could spare.
She swallowed hard. “I’m going now.”
“Hey, it’s okay.” Jacy stepped forward and rested her hand on the other woman’s arm. “It’s expected that you’d be nervous. I know I was when Te and I went through our commitment ceremony.” She smiled and pulled the other woman into a hug. “It’s obvious that you two love each other. Why don’t I help you get dressed? I think Laura’s up at the house, so she can help too.” Like the sister Lainey never had, Jacy ushered her to the house.
She breathed deeply and managed a wan smile. Maybe this was what she’d been missing for a long time, family to crowd around her. Helping her, bringing all the joy and enthusiasm to a wedding that families should. Lainey hurried upstairs, finally starting to get excited about the day. In one of the spare bedrooms she stopped; her wedding dress hung over a large freestanding mirror. She paused to admire the modified dress. The full skirt actually was split for riding, and the lace and sequins were done in a western trim. A white cowboy hat hung over the corner of the mirror, a small veil dipping down over her eyes and a longer one hanging in the back. It might not be traditional, but it was her.
She turned to see Jacy and Laura waiting there like mother hens. Well, in Laura’s case it was true. She’d given birth a month ago, and a sleepy little Tomas nestled in his carrier against her chest. “I think I can get into it on my own,” Lainey said.
“Nonsense,” Jacy stepped into the room, glancing from the hanging dress to the quilt-covered bed. “I don’t see any underwear. You have to wear something fancy beneath your dress.” A mischievous grin covered her face.
Lainey fought against the blush creeping over her face. Sure, she had made love with Cord on numerous occasions, and even had worn some pretty risqué lingerie for him. But discussing that with his foster-sister made her awkward. “It’s in my bedroom.”
“Well go get it,” Jacy said. “Right, Laura?”