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Daisy scurried about the spacious living room, picking up toys, folding blankets, plumping pillows and generally doing anything she could to stay busy. It had taken forever to get her friend Maddie's three-year-old son Thomas into bed. He'd been excited to have Daisy babysit for him and his sister Hailey, and Daisy was praying she'd heard the last of both kids as she prepared for her special guest.
Thinking of him made her stomach flutter with nerves. Why in the world had she invited him to come over to keep her company after the kids went to bed? Why in the world was she running around Mac and Maddie's house, straightening up as if it were her own home? As if she'd ever live anywhere this nice.
Maddie sure had tumbled into a pot of gold when she met and married Mac McCarthy. Not that Daisy begrudged her friend's happiness. Quite the opposite, in fact. Maddie was one of the best friends Daisy had ever had, and no one deserved to be happy more than Maddie did.
It's just that sometimes Daisy wondered if she'd ever find the kind of happiness Maddie had with her devoted husband. Daisy's most recent relationship with Truck Henry had turned into a disaster when he got violent with hermore than once. That was over now, and for good this time.
She'd learned her lesson about giving second chances to people who didn't deserve them. Too bad she'd had to suffer badly bruised ribs and a host of other injuries before she wised up. She'd rather not think about those unhappy memories when her new friend David Lawrence was coming over to hang out with her.
Whyhad she invited him?
It had been a weak moment the night before. He'd taken her out for a lovely dinner at Stephanie's Bistro and had asked what she was doing the next night, which was how she'd ended up inviting him to her babysitting gig.
Now she felt like a foolish teenager waiting for the captain of the football team to show up. No doubt he had far better things to do than hang out with her on one of his rare nights off. He'd probably felt obligated to accept her invitation, and the whole thing would be painfully awkward.
When it came right down to it, they had absolutely nothing in common. She was a hard-workingif perpetually poorhousekeeper at the McCarthy's hotel, and he was the island's only doctor. She'd come from a family that invented the term dysfunctional, whereas he'd been raised with his sisters on the island and gone to a top college and medical school in Boston.
She'd dated one loser after another, while he'd been engaged to Mac's sister, Janey McCarthy Cantrell. Janey was married now to Joe Cantrell and expecting their first child at the end of the summer.
Daisy had never heard what went wrong between David and Janey, but their long relationship had ended suddenly two summers ago. She could've asked Maddie and almost had a few times, but she'd been unable to bring herself to actually ask.
In the meantime, David had been so nice about coming by to check on her injuries and gentle with her as she recovered. They'd fallen into an unlikely friendship that continued when she stopped by the clinic a couple of times to share the influx of food her friends had brought her. David worked so hard that he often missed meals, and it had seemed only fitting to share with him when he'd been so good to her.
It was foolish, she knew, to let her heart get all pitter-pattery over a guy who was just being nice to her because that was his job. It was doubly foolish, she also knew, to nurture the world-class crush that had come from his many kindnesses. Thus, it was triply foolish to be hoping that something might come of the time they'd been spending together.