Chapter 1


“Shh baby girl, mommy is asleep” I whispered to my little daughter who was in my arms. The two of us entering my and Kiara’s bedroom as to surprise her for our anniversary.

“But we are going to wake mummy up anyway” Lia whispered and I chuckled kissing her cheek before I put her down on the edge of the bed beside Kiara who was still asleep. Her head on my pillow where I left her this morning, the woman had been asleep in my arms when I woke up and wanting to surprise her. I slowly got out of bed and let her lay on my pillow, having been awake till almost four in the morning with our four months old son, she was barely getting enough sleep as it is.

I slowly set the present I got her down on the nightstand and sat on the edge of the bed beside her and Lia, slowly leaning in to kiss my beauty’s forehead in her sleep “good morning baby girl”

I softly ran my hand over her arm and Kiara slowly stirred awake to look me in the eye making me smile. Her green eyes meeting my blue ones before she took my hand in hers and intertwined our fingers bringing my hand to her lips. She softly kissed my knuckle making me chuckle and lean down to kiss her nose.

“Mummy!” Lia called taking Kiara’s attention away from me. Her eyes met our little daughter’s who smiled brightly at her mom and crawling to her side to wrap her arms around her, hugging her tightly “daddy says it’s your anni- alli…”

“Anniversary” I chuckled and Kiara smiled biting her bottom lip at our daughter who was struggling to merge the letters together. Kiara wrapped her arms around Lia who laughed as she laid on her mother’s chest before she sat up, the blanket falling on Kiara’s lap as she did. My beauty’s hair was messy from sleep, but she looked beautiful either way. She wore my grey shirt which reached her mid-thigh, having a three year old that could walk in on you in the morning to simply want to say ‘good morning’ prevented us from sleeping naked like we used to, and there was the fact that our little son, Daniel would wake up in the middle of the night wanting to be fed or changed.

“Yes, my sweet princess, it is” Kiara said smiling at Lia before she looked at me. The smile on her lips made my heart swell as I looked at the beauty who I was blessed with marrying years ago. I laid by her and Lia’s side, wrapping my arms around my wife who had our daughter straddling her lap. I kissed my wife’s temple and watched as Lia told Kiara about the surprise I had prepared for her. Not that I didn’t expect Lia to just hide it from her mom. But then again, it wasn’t like the little girl wasn’t three.

“Sweetheart, didn’t you have something to prepare with Auntie Maddie?” I asked and Lia’s eyes widened and she nodded making Kiara frown in confusion. Lia struggled to get down from the bed making me chuckle and help her down before heading toward the door and opening it for her, letting her walk out the door where her nanny was waiting for her “take her to Maddie, and be sure to keep and eye on her”

“Yes boss”

Nodding, I walked back inside and closed the door behind me, locking it to be more exact and walking toward my wife who was staring at me with an amused expression.

“Hi” I smirked at my wife who laughed and got up, crawling to the edge of the bed and standing straight on her knees as she looked at me. I wrapped my arms around her waist and hugged her before kissing her lips and pushing her to lay down on bed, getting on top of her. Hovering her body.


“Don’t worry baby girl, there will be time for that later. But I like watching you submit to me” I teased my wife who rolled her eyes at me. I laid down beside her and wrapped my arms around her just as Daniel began crying in his nursery. Kiara’s eyes widened and I shook my head at her and tightened my arms around her “the girls will take care of this. You will rest for a little while”


“Not a word tonight princess, Valerie and Beatrice are with him. You chose them to care for him yourself. Yet, none of them is doing her job because you’re the one always there” I said raising an eyebrow at my wife who laughed.

“But I’m his mum”

“And I’m his dad” I said gently “but you need to care for yourself baby girl, you can’t keep staying up all night to care for Daniel, and waking up early morning to care for Lia, not to mention stay on top of your duties at home. You’ll end up getting sick”


“No, this time I’ll be the one to manage things. You’ll be taking care of yourself and health, I’ll be taking care of you. We’ll be raising our children together, but you won’t be exhausting yourself to do so” I said gently. Kiara smiled and laid her head on my chest, I tightened my arm around her waist and kissed the crown of her head “I am serious babe, you can’t tire yourself like this. I won’t allow you to”

“Okay! I won’t tire myself Nik, but I can’t hear my baby cry and not do anything about it” Kiara said and I chuckled at her.

“He’s a baby princess, he’ll cry, and you’ll calm him down, I will, Maddie would, Vladimir, mom, Dimitri, Ivan. Do I need to count how many people are in this house that would care for him? And I didn’t even mention Richard, Grace, Claudia, or Adrian” I said raising an eyebrow at my wife who laughed raising her hands in mock surrender. Kiara laughed, it’s been like that for a while now, the two of us taking care of the kids. Lilian had caused us trouble when Lia was born, drama like trying to killing Sebastian or his loyal men, as well as Amalia. But since Daniel was born the woman went MIA, she just seemed to quiet down and disappear and judging by her history that couldn’t be good.

“Okay! Okay! I understand” Kiara laughed and I smiled at her.

“Good” I whispered to her kissing her forehead. Kiara smiled and laid her head on my chest, the two of us were quiet for a little while before I brought the present I got for my wife and handed her the black box. She looked up at me and frowned in confusion before I opened the box for her revealing a diamond bracelet.

“Oh, Nik” Kiara whispered turning around in my arms. I smiled at her and wrapped my arms around her waist as she straddled my lap. She wrapped her arms around my neck and hugged me tightly. She kissed my cheek and I smiled at her taking her right hand in mine, I put the bracelet around her hand softly.

“You deserve a lot more princess, though I know that you wouldn’t accept getting anymore if I offered it anyway” I smiled at my wife who shook her head at me, the two of us smiling. I tightened my arms around my wife and she laid her head on my shoulder “you’re mine for the day, then we can come back home and celebrate what’s left of the evening with the guests that are to show up”

“Are you sure you’re okay with mum coming Nik? I know that you don’t want to see her” Kiara said gently and I smiled at her care. I was the one that invited Lilian despite everything, I knew that her daughter would want her here regardless of anything. The woman was still her mom, the woman may have been in pain after losing her husband. She had done enough to try and break everyone, and I was sure that this wasn’t the last of what we’d get from her but we would just need to keep a close eye on her for now.

“Whether or not I want to see her baby girl, she’s your mom and she’s coming here to be by your side” I said gently “now, how about I let you get ready while I go check on Daniel?”


I smiled as I entered the nursery to find mom holding Daniel in her arms, rocking him softly on the rocking chair as he slept in her arms. His head resting on her chest as she fed him his bottle. Her and Kiara’s relationship grew stronger after everything had happened over the past four years, mom apologized to Kiara for how she had treated her and though she was hesitant. Mom had apologized to Kiara on the dinner table that night. Richard who was sitting by Kiara’s side nodded at her to forgive the woman. He knew that she was acting the way she was due to being nervous and frightened. In her eyes her daughter’s life was in danger in being a contestant of the Bloodlust games. Thankfully, we managed to save the girl before she got into them.

That was one of the reasons why Lilian hated us, her husband had designed the games long ago. Having put Kiara through them to either kill her or watch her turn into a weapon. She was a well trained assassin and she was the one person who had managed to win the games back then. Richard was the one hosting the games, being forced to do so in fear of losing his little sister Crystal, who was now turning fifteen. She was even treated as so, we all took care of her as if she was family. Which in a matter of fact, she was. She may have been a Bernard being Richard’s little sister, but she was an Ivanov as well. I had made sure to treat her as so. Taking the place of the father she lost, I was sure to treat the girl like family.

I smiled at mom and kissed her forehead making her smile. She gently removed the empty bottle from Daniel’s mouth and his eyes opened to look at me making me smile when I saw his big blue eyes meeting my own. I slowly leaned to him and kissed his forehead before taking him in my arms and burping him gently.

“I take it you gave your beauty the new little rule” mom teased and I chuckled. She knew how worried Kiara got when the kids cried or got upset. She had neglected herself a lot when Lia was first born that she got sick for a week after that. That earned her a scolding from everyone who was in the house, and though she didn’t stop her ways.

“Yes, she’ll follow it, for now. But you know how she is” I said smiling when Daniel burped. Bringing my son to my chest, I smiled and sat on the chair in front of mom.

“Well, all mothers are like that, are you forgetting Grace and Maddie?” Mom asked and I laughed shaking my head. Grace was also extremely protective over her son, Nail. The kid was Lia’s age, there was barely two months between the two. I swear the house had turned into a nursery when the two were born and seeing that Maddie was now pregnant with her and Vladimir’s second baby. Yeah, I could already tell that these kids would be the future of the family. But until they grew the house would have to be baby proofed and we’d have to be listening to babies cry or a bunch of nursery songs. Not that I minded. It was nice seeing them grow in front of us, raising them all together. One big family.

“How can I forget, Maddie once cried because Xavier got a fever” I said laughing and mom smiled.

“I always cried when one of you got sick, so it’s not really surprising me” mom said and I smiled at her shaking my head “I’m serious, you should ask your dad how many times he had to wrap his arms around me, comforting me that it was a normal fever and that you were kids. You had to get sick sometimes. But then I’d find him standing over your heads all night”

I smiled and got up putting my son in his crib as he fell asleep in my arms, he was sucking his thumb as he did and I smiled running my hand over his her gently. His beautiful angelic, peaceful face.

“We’ll be back for the gathering tonight, okay?” I told mom who smiled and wrapped her arms around my neck, hugging me tightly.

“Stay safe you two, okay?”

“We will mom, don’t worry”

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