Resting both his elbows on the table, Curt clasped his hands together. “You know I love Reese like a daughter. I can’t even imagine my life without the two of you.”
If this was what he wanted to discuss, there was no need. She knew how Curt felt about Reese. From the very beginning of their relationship, he’d showered her niece with love and attention. And in all the ways that mattered, he acted like Reese’s dad. “I know how much you love her, Curt. So does she.” Not only did Reese know how Curt felt about her, but she loved him too.
“I want to adopt her. I’d like to legally be her father and for her to take my last name,” he explained.
Taylor considered herself an astute individual. However, she’d never expected to be having this conversation with Curt. Instead, she’d assumed the only thing that would really change after they got married was where she and Reese lived—at least until they had children. Yet here they were, and once again, she wondered how she’d gotten so lucky.
“Obviously, I want to adopt her because I love her, but it’s not the only reason.” Curt continued while she processed his previous statement. “If she’s my daughter when we have children, they will be her siblings. And if something ever happened to you, legally, there would be no question about who would take care of her.”
She wondered how long he’d been considering this decision because clearly he’d put a lot of thought into it.
He didn’t give her a chance to offer an opinion or ask a question. “This afternoon, I spoke with an attorney. According to him, since you are her legal guardian, the adoption process would be more or less the same as if you were her biological mother and I wanted to adopt her after we got married. He said it wouldn’t take long.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out a slip of paper. “The attorney’s name is Christian Stratford. He specializes in family law and adoptions. He said you can call him anytime if you have any questions.”
Taylor glanced down at the slip of paper Curt held, but she didn’t reach for it.
“You don’t have to decide today or even this week. But if you agree, I’d like to get the process going as soon as possible.”
If he’d given her a chance to talk, he’d already have his answer. “Can I speak now?”
He set the paper with the name and number down in front of her. “Yeah, of course, but you don’t have to make a decision now. It’s not like I’m going to change my mind. And no matter what you decide, it won’t change how I feel about Reese.”
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