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Birth of a Baby Daddy

If you’re having fun living your bachelor life in your Alaskan hometown and out of nowhere a woman shows up holding a baby she insists is yours, you need a plan-a birth plan.

BP Step #1 – Lift your jaw off the floor.

BP Step #2 – Figure out the baby’s age-do the math.

BP Step #3 – Try to remember the woman and with any luck, her name.

BP Step #4 – Double check that she’s not confusing you with your twin brother.

BP Step #5 – Ignore your five sister’s scowls as your entire family watches the drama unfold.

There’s only one thing you shouldn’t do.

BP Step #6 – Don’t assume she’s there because she wants your daughter to call you Daddy. You’ll only end up disappointed.

Time to figure out a new plan-one that changes her mind.

 

Birth of a Baby Daddy by Piper Rayne is now available to read on the Galatea app! Read the first two chapters below, or download Galatea for the full experience.

 


 

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Read the full uncensored books on the Galatea iOS app!

1

SUMMARY

If you're having fun living your bachelor life in your Alaskan hometown and out of nowhere a woman shows up holding a baby she insists is yours, you need a plan-a birth plan.

BP Step #1 – Lift your jaw off the floor.

BP Step #2 – Figure out the baby's age-do the math.

BP Step #3 – Try to remember the woman and with any luck, her name.

BP Step #4 – Double check that she's not confusing you with your twin brother.

BP Step #5 – Ignore your five sister's scowls as your entire family watches the drama unfold.

There's only one thing you shouldn't do.

BP Step #6 – Don't assume she's there because she wants your daughter to call you Daddy. You'll only end up disappointed.

Time to figure out a new plan-one that changes her mind.

Book 3 in the Baileys Series

Author: Piper Rayne

Harley

I hoist Calista higher on my hip while our suitcase bumps along the half-melted ice as I drag it up the quaint path that leads to the front door of Cozy Cottage Bed and Breakfast.

This is the cheapest place to stay in Lake Starlight. The place doesn’t look as rundown as I expected. It actually looks well cared for, but a little…peculiar.

I’m not a judgmental person—not with my own past being what it is—but most people wouldn’t match pink siding with yellow trim.

The plethora of garden gnomes and metal sculptures poking out from the clumps of snow around the yard ramp up the weird factor.

I don’t remember them from the online pictures when I booked, but it wouldn’t have made a difference.

I’m here for one reason and one reason only—to track down my baby daddy.

God, that sounds so cliché, but it’s true.

Denver Bailey.

My one-night stand turned baby daddy.

I had no intention of seeking him out.

It wasn’t until his picture was plastered all over the news when a plane went missing in Alaska carrying a famous Hollywood music producer inside that I knew where I could find him.

Denver was the pilot and that was when I learned his last name.

But now six months later, here I am in his hometown. Only because I need something from him.

Calista’s fussing draws me from my thoughts, and I stop to readjust her. I don’t have a chance to knock before the door whips open revealing a waiting woman.

She’s middle-aged, maybe mid-fifties, wearing a colorful dashiki with black leggings. Her shoulder-length black and gray hair sticks out from under the scarf wrapped around her head.

She frantically waves with dried paint-covered hands. The neon pink color of the paint is set off by her dark skin.

“Heeelllooo,” she draws out the word with a huge smile on her face. “You must be Harley!”

She steps onto the porch and wraps both my daughter and me in an embrace. My back stiffens and I let out a breath of relief when she pulls away, directing her attention to Calista.

“Hello, you sweet thing.”

She scoops up Calista and my arms instinctively reach out to grab her back, but the woman pulls her securely into her chest. I open my mouth to say something, but she beats me to the punch again.

“Bring your suitcase in. You’ll catch your death out here. It’s not too spring-like yet.” She turns and heads into the house with my daughter. “Is this your first time in Alaska? How was your flight?

“What brings you here? I’m Selene, by the way, like the Greek goddess of the moon.”

My brain stutters to keep up with her rambling. I have no idea which question to respond to, so instead I drag my suitcase through the door and close it.

Selene undresses Calista from her heavy coat.

I peek around what will be our home for the next few days. The inside is just as colorful as the outside.

Bright abstract oil paintings cover the walls and trinkets decorate every available surface which will be a nightmare now that Calista puts everything into her mouth.

“Did you paint all these?” I ask Selene who’s busy tickling Calista under her chin, but Calista isn’t giggling. She’s staring at her like she just stepped off a UFO.

“I did. I’m not only a patron of the arts, but I’m an artist myself. Made all the lawn decorations you saw outside, too.”

I smile. “Cool.”

An awkward silence hangs over the room and I use the moment to get another word in before Selene starts up again.

“It was a long day of travel, so I think we’re just going to go lie down for a bit before we head out to get a couple things done.”

Selene frowns. “I can keep her with me if you want to rest.”

She seems genuine, not like a crazy murderer who will hurt my daughter but I’m not about to leave my infant daughter with someone I don’t know.

“That’s okay, she’s due for a nap, too.” I reach out to take her from Selene. “I think we’ll just go lie down and I’ll grab my bag and unpack if that’s okay?”

“Of course. No problem at all. Dinner is at five. Is that too early for you? I’m an early riser which means early to bed, but I know some people prefer to eat late.”

Calista whines because at this point, we’re way past nap time, so I bounce her on my hip hoping to speed this conversation along.

I worried about staying at a bed and breakfast instead of a hotel because of the nosiness from owners and other guests, but it’s not like I have money to blow on the Glacier Point Resort.

“Five is great.”

Selene claps her hands and startles Calista. “Perfect. We’re having zucchini noodles with avocado pesto. It tastes better than it sounds, I promise.”

I smile and head toward the stairway. Guess I’ll grab something to eat while we’re out.

“You’re in the light blue room.”

“Thanks.”

“By the way, what’s your daughter’s name?”

I stop to face her. “Calista.”

“Calista.” She smiles. “Most beautiful. Did you know that’s the meaning?

“In Greek mythology, Calista was a mythological Arcadian who transformed into a she-bear, then into the Great Bear constellation.” She ends the conversation in baby talk like she’s telling Calista instead of me.

“That’s good to know.”

My chest weighs heavy as I walk up the stairs. I hope my daughter is a she-bear because she’ll need to be fierce for what lies ahead.

***

Selene was right. Dinner did taste better than it sounded. I grab our coats and button Calista up to venture out to find out more about Denver.

Lake Starlight appears to be a small town where everyone knows one another and hopefully I run into someone who might be able to tell me where he lives or hangs out.

As luck would have it, the Uber drops me off downtown in front of the local hardware store, Hammer Time. Well, he was good with his hands.

The memory of his skilled callused fingers over my nipples surfaces, but I shake my head to push those thoughts away.

The bell rings on the door when we enter. Once I’m inside, I inhale a deep breath, loving the smell of cut wood and building materials.

“Can I help you find something?” A man stands behind the counter bearing a genuine smile.

I return the smile and walk over, taking a quick glance at his nametag. “Hi Jack. This is going to sound strange, but I’m wondering if you can tell me where I might find Denver Bailey?”

“Well I talked to Austin earlier and he had some big plans tonight, but then they were all going to meet over at Rome’s new restaurant. It looks over the town courtyard.

“It’s not open yet, but I’m sure if you knock, they’ll hear you. It’s just down the street to your right a couple of blocks. Called Terra & Mare.”

“Great, thanks so much for the information.” I turn and head for the door.

“Hey, what’s your name?” Jack calls out.

“It’s not important,” I say, the door chime ringing as I leave.

I poke Calista in the belly. “Your mommy made a smart decision by going into that store. Jack is like an encyclopedia.”

She giggles and I kiss her forehead.

As I walk the streets of Lake Starlight in the direction Jack sent me, my stomach turns over and bile creeps up my throat.

Calista busies herself staring up at the sky, and every once in a while she juts out her mittened hand to catch snowflakes.

Only minutes later, the sign Terra & Mare in gold script with a maroon background comes into view. It’s definitely a classy place.

When I peer inside, the restaurant is empty except for a long table in the center that’s surrounded by a bunch of people.

It’s been more than two years since I’ve seen him, so I’m going on fuzzy memories at best. .

More than what he looks like, what I remember most about our night together is how he made me feel.

I inhale a deep breath, reminding myself of the reasons why I’m here. The wind picks up when I push the door open and a cold draft travels into the warm restaurant.

All heads turn simultaneously in my direction.

I quickly take each one of them in as I step toward the table. I scour each of them for familiarity but when my eyes land on Denver, my heart beats triple time.

All the memories of that night and what drew me to him rush to my mind. His good looks and hazel eyes. The way his arms and chest fill out his shirt.

How the stubble on his face scraped against my inner thighs.

But he’s clearly not on the trip down memory lane with me because there’s zero recognition on his face, which stokes my anger.

“I’m sorry, this is a private party. Family only,” a pretty blonde woman says, sliding out of her chair.

“Well, then I guess we’re in the right place,” I snip.

Everyone at the table exchanges looks of confusion.

A man in a chef’s uniform emerges from the kitchen, walks across the dining room carrying a platter of beef.

Wait… what the hell is going on?

I glance from the chef to Denver.

The chef doesn’t notice me, placing the tray in the center of the table. “Why is everyone so quiet?” he asks, following the others’ gazes over to myself and Calista.

My mouth drops open and I prop Calista higher on my hip. “There’s two of you?”

Denver tilts his head and the chef rounds the end of the table growing closer.

“I’m sorry, how can I help you?” he asks. The fact there’s zero recognition in the chef’s eyes either fuels my anger like gasoline thrown on a fire.

My eyes narrow. “You can tell me which one of you is the father of my little girl.”

Everyone’s head at the table swings from one man to the other.

I glance from the chef to Denver, who both wear an expression of panic.

What have I gotten myself into?

 

Read the full uncensored books on the Galatea iOS app!

2

Rome

“Which one of you is Denver?” The woman looks between me and my brother.

I’m not ashamed to admit that relief envelops me like that heavy blanket Savannah bought for herself last month.

The relief is bone-deep that I have no idea who this woman is and with a quick calculation of her daughter’s age, it’s easy to figure out I was in Europe when she was conceived.

Win for me.

Not so much for my brother.

My brother glances back to me, slowly standing from the chair and steps in her direction like he’s about to be sent to jail with no chance of parole. “I’m Denver. You are…”

She cocks her hip farther out, raising an eyebrow. The baby tugs at her hair, but she absentmindedly lowers her hand without a complaint. “Really?

“I know we’d both had a few that night, but I thought you might remember my name. It’s Harley.”

Harley? The name rolls around in my head. Nope. Not the baby daddy.

It’s clear the way Denver keeps turning in my direction with his pleading stare of ‘it’s yours, right’ question, he has no idea what the hell is going on either.

If neither of us recognizes her than maybe we’re both in the clear. Maybe we’re being set up. This is totally something Liam would do.

My eyes shift to him. He’s leaned back with both arms resting along the back of the chairs.

The life-is-great grin splashed across his face says he’s enjoying this, but there’s still a note of surprise in his features that tells me this isn’t an early April Fool’s prank on his part.

By the time I scan the room to make sure no other assholes in my family thought it’d be funny to play a prank, I cross-examine G’Ma D twice because this would be up her alley.

Asking a woman to come in and pretend and then lecture us about safe sex and how if we don’t start settling down, this day will likely come.

“Rome,” Denver’s soft plea brings my attention back to him.

Shit, he wants help. What am I supposed to do? He knocked her up.

“Listen,” I say, stepping forward. “I think maybe you have the wrong person.”

Harley’s eyes narrow and her head whips in my direction. “And you are?”

“Rome Bailey. His twin brother.”

“I’m not blind,” she murmurs.

I refrain from reminding her that she’s the one who asked. This is a stressful situation all around, so I keep my sarcasm to myself. “If he thought he was this cutie pie’s father, he’d say so.”

The baby interrupts all the dramatic tension by patting the woman’s face over and over again, saying, “Mama. Mama.”

“Would you like me to take her so you can—” Brooklyn rounds the end of the table with her arms out.

Harley swivels so the baby is as far from her grasp as possible.

“Or not.” Brooklyn puts her hands up in the air and sits down in an empty chair. She’s closer now and I watch her scour the little girl’s face for any resemblance to the Bailey features.

The little girl is adorable and I’m totally on board to play favorite uncle. Her hair isn’t blonde like her mother’s, it’s a light brown, but her eyes are the same green color as her mom’s.

Her chubby cheeks are pink from being outside. She throws one of her mittens off and tosses it across the room, hitting Savannah in the face.

My family laughs and Savannah picks it up, slowly approaching Harley like she’s a hungry tiger wanting to feast on us all.

“Thanks,” Harley says, holding the mitten in her hand. The little girl takes off the other one and throws it, so it lands in the cream sauce I put out earlier.

“I’ll go clean this up.” My soon-to-be sister-in-law, Holly, picks it up and heads to the kitchen.

“It’s no—” Harley’s words die on her lips because Holly’s going to do it no matter what.

“Where were we?” Harley grabs a hold of the baby’s hand from her face, kisses her palm and places it by her side then lasers those green eyes my way.

“Since your brother Denver is playing dumb, let me fill everyone in. We met in Seattle a little over two years ago. He had a layover and came into the bar I worked at.

“He stuck around after closing time. One thing leads to another and this is the result of our one-night stand.” She nods at the baby who’s now looking at me with rapt attention.

Denver raises his hands up in the air like we’re in the principal’s office in high school again. “I wasn’t in Seattle two years ago.” He looks around for a witness or someone to agree with him.

What are we on Maury Povich here?

“You sure you’d remember?” Austin asks.

Denver turns to our eldest brother with a scowl like he’s losing his man card once we figure out this situation.

“Because I think I could remember if I took a trip to…” Denver continues on, stating facts about how he couldn’t have been down in the lower forty-eight when the baby was conceived.

We all know he rarely leaves Alaska since his schedule can be grueling and busy. The man makes his living as a bush pilot and ninety percent of his business is in Alaska.

As my family starts arguing about it and the woman grows quiet, the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.

Seattle? Layover? Two years ago?

Fuck.

Denver might not have been in Seattle, but I was. I had a layover right before flying to New York and then on to Florence.

There was a snowstorm out east and I remember being pissed about it because I had to call my new mentor in Italy and tell him I’d be a day late.

I examine the woman in front of me again. Her green doll-like eyes had to be what captured me first. I’d remember those, wouldn’t I?

The thought triggers something in my mind and déjà vu hits me like a brick to the head. I’ve said that to someone before—doll eyes.

My mind was all over the place that night. The fear that my mentor would say the hell with you. The fear of leaving my family for so long.

The fear of my dream being only a few flights away but being delayed once again.

“Holy shit.”

Denver’s head whips around with wide eyes and blanches when he sees my expression. “You?”

The sound of a chair scraping across the floor breaks my trance. Austin stands, walking over to us. “I’m sure we can figure out what’s going on here,” he says, taking control.

I’m surprised Savannah hasn’t demanded a paternity test and kicked her out before any further talks commence. And I haven’t heard this much silence from G’Ma D since our parents’ funeral.

“Can I talk to you in the back?” I ask Harley.

“It’s admirable that you want to help your brother out here, but Denver is the father.” Her eyes narrow on Denver and he coughs like he might vomit all over my new floor.

“About that…”

She tilts her head, waiting for me to fill in the blanks. “I saw him on the news.

“He’s the pilot and unlike him, I remember his face and his name,” she finally says when she gets tired of waiting for me to speak again.

“Well…” I run a hand across the back of my neck, gripping tight enough to spur me to speak the truth.

Denver stares at me, his eyes conveying that he’s not taking one for the team this round.

“I gave you his name in Seattle.” I blow out a breath again. “It’s this thing we used to do when we were younger. He’d tell girls he was me and I’d do the same. It’s stupid, I know.”

The entire room groans. Whispers commence between all of them questioning when I’ll grow up.

She blinks a few times staring between the two of us. For a new mother, she’s sure got the disappointed look down already. “Unbelievable.”

“I didn’t think we’d see each other again.”

“So why give me your twin brother’s name then?” She swings the baby around to rest on her other hip like a pro. Of course, she’s a pro she’s been doing this for a while now.

It’s then that the realization that I’m a dad and my daughter is right in front of me hits me.

A heavy feeling invades my chest and before this moment if you’d asked me I’d have told you it’s because I don’t want to be a father.

But instead it’s the fact that I’ve missed out on a helluva lot in my daughter’s life.

A million questions rattle my brain. Why is Harley here now? Why not before? Is she here for money? Has she been looking for me for two years and does she want a relationship? Like an instant family.

I’m not one to settle down. Regardless, we need to clear some things up now and the last thing I want is my family more involved than they already are.

“Can we talk?” I step forward toward Harley and the baby.

Holly rushes over with a cleaned mitten and Harley thanks her with a tentative half smile.

“There’s no need for that. All I need from you is a swab of your DNA.” She shifts the baby again and digs into her purse, handing a business card to me. “Go there. They have the instructions.”

“WAIT!” I call out.

She stops but doesn’t turn around.

“What’s her name?”

The room silences and she pauses for a moment as though she’s not going to tell me.

“Calista,” she finally says and leaves like she didn’t just up-end my life.

 

Read the full uncensored books on the Galatea iOS app!

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