“Can I open it?”

“Of course,” he says, with an odd twinkle in his eye.

I open the box only to find a smaller velvet box inside. My chest starts to feel a bit tight, and my skin feels all tingly. I tell myself not to jump to conclusions as I pull out the velvet box, open the hinged top, and gasp when I see the platinum-set diamond solitaire winking in the lights.

My knees go weak, and I’m glad of the door frame at my back. “Damien,” I whisper, terrified of reading more into this than simply a beautiful ring. Another fabulous gift. “You bought this before the trial?”

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“I told you,” he says gently. “I never truly believed I could lose. Not the trial. Not you. Now I know better than to take anything for granted.”

The words are still hanging in the air when he drops down on one knee. He takes my hand, and I get chills. I feel the pull of my facial muscles, but I fight it—I’m simply too scared to smile.

“There’s only one woman in the world who can bring me to my knees. So tell me, Ms. Fairchild. Will you do me the greatest honor? Will you be my wife?”

My smile breaks free in a burst of glorious, delighted laughter. I beam at him, this man I love. And as I draw him to his feet and into my embrace, I say the only word I’m capable of speaking, the only word that matters. “Yes.”

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