Claiming the Duke – Extended Epilogue


Even a character, a scene, or anything. You could say no if nothing bothered you.
It can be a character, a scene, or anything that made the book better for you.

Three years later


The rolling hills of the Scottish highlands seemed endless, and the blue sky appeared farther away than in England, Chloe thought as she looked up, birds soaring through the air. She took a deep breath, tasting the cleanness of the air.
The warm Scottish sun bathed the garden in a golden glow as the group sat together, basking in the joy of their reunion. Alicia and George’s children, Edmund and Elizabeth, played nearby, their laughter filling the air like the sweetest melody. Lady Christianna’s little girl, Amelia, toddled around, her curious eyes taking in the world around her. Beside her was Chloe’s own child, a little boy, taking in the world with large eyes.
Nestled against Fraser, Chloe felt a flutter in her belly, a tender reminder of the precious life growing inside her.
Christianna’s gaze met Chloe’s, a knowing smile gracing her lips. With a gentle hand on her own rounded stomach, Christianna whispered, “Isn’t it grand we are with child at the same time?”
Chloe nodded, her eyes shining with a mixture of anticipation and gratitude. “Yes, Christianna,” she replied softly. “We have both been blessed, although I worry Adam will find it a little too much.”
“He will manage,” Christianna said and waved a hand dismissively, glancing at her husband, who stood a distance away, conversing with the innkeeper. They were all staying at a little inn in the Scottish Highlands to celebrate the wedding anniversary of George and Alicia. While the scandal of their running away was no longer talked about, they had decided to remain in Scotland, where they were afforded both anonymity and respect. Chloe rather enjoyed this, as she liked coming to visit them in the north.
This time, they had been joined by Christianna and her husband, both eager to escape the London Season which was in full swing.
As the conversation flowed, Alicia’s current endeavors as a companion in the laird’s household became the topic of discussion. Alicia beamed with pride and delight as she shared.
“The laird and his wife are truly wonderful people. However, the recent debut of the lady’s younger sister was quite eventful, to say the least. Finding a suitable husband for her will be quite the challenge.”
Chloe chuckled, her memories of the spirited young girl resurfacing. “Ah, I remember her well,” she remarked. “Her fiery nature will certainly make the task a formidable one. But I have faith that the right match will be found in due time.”
As her friends chattered on, Chloe’s gaze shifted from one face to another, taking in the love and happiness that radiated from each person present. She huddled closer to Fraser, his presence a comforting anchor amidst the merriment.
“We have been truly blessed, haven’t we?” Fraser mused, his voice filled with a mix of awe and gratitude. His eyes glimmered with love as he watched their little son, Alfred, tumbling on the lawn with the other children.
Chloe’s heart swelled with affection as she observed their playful son. “Alfred surely seems contented,” she murmured. “I can hardly believe he is almost three already.”
Fraser’s gaze softened, and he pressed a gentle kiss to Chloe’s cheek. “And soon, he will have a sister to share his adventures with,” he whispered, his voice brimming with tenderness.
A smile graced Chloe’s lips, and she glanced toward her parents, who were eagerly awaiting the arrival of their next grandchild. “They can hardly contain their excitement,” she shared, a touch of warmth in her voice.
Contentment enveloped Chloe, filling her like a warm embrace. Fraser’s voice broke through her thoughts, bringing news of his and her father’s latest business venture. “I received a letter from Mr. Waverly,” he announced, a note of satisfaction in his tone. “Our latest endeavor is going remarkably well.”
Chloe’s eyes sparkled with delight, her heart swelling with pride for her parents’ success. “I am pleased to hear that,” she replied, her voice filled with genuine happiness. “Father is so happy not to have to worry about debt anymore, and my mother surely has never held her head higher.”
Fraser’s expression brightened, his eyes shining with excitement. “Indeed. Say, I have a mind to have a larger Christmastide celebration this year,” he declared, his voice brimming with anticipation. “What do you think? Your mother is eager to plan it.”
“Christmastide?” George interjected, a note of surprise in his voice. “But we’ve only just passed Easter!”
Alicia laughed, her voice melodic and light. “Oh, George, it is never too early to plan for Christmas,” she teased, a mischievous glint in her eyes.
Fraser nodded in agreement, his smile infectious. “Indeed,” he affirmed. “We shall gather together, all of us, and celebrate the joy of the season. It will be a time of love, laughter, and cherished memories.”
Christianna clapped her hands, her laughter echoing through the garden. “I wholeheartedly agree!” she exclaimed, her eyes sparkling with excitement. “It will be a splendid occasion, and if your mother is in charge, an expensive one.”
They chuckled, for they all knew this to be true when Chloe turned to Alicia and George.
“You’d come, would you not? It would not be a true celebration without you.”
“Indeed, enough time has passed since your scandal,” Christianna added. Alicia and George exchanged a glance before Alicia answered.
“I should think so. The children could see their grandparents.” George nodded.
“Indeed, I dare say I am looking forward to it.
Chloe looked around at the faces that had become her extended family, her heart overflowing with love and gratitude. “Finally,” she whispered, her voice filled with a deep sense of peace. “All is as it should have been. We are happy, united, and nothing will ever tear us asunder again.”
“That is quite right, Chloe,” Fraser whispered into her ear and kissed her temple. “All is as it should be.”
And as their laughter mingled with the gentle breezes, Chloe knew that this gathering, this moment, would forever be etched in their memories as a testament to the enduring power of love, friendship, and the bonds that held them together.

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  • Too many lies for no reason. And to protect Alisha and ignore her parents” problems was totally selfish

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