Willow leaned over and planted a kiss on Jasper’s cheek. “The most important thing is that your surgery was successful.”
“Hold off on the kisses for now. I still have that disinfectant scent,” he teased. She got up and kissed his cheek again. “I don’t mind,” she reassured him.
He smiled happily, thinking, This girl has a way of making me adore her endlessly, leaving me utterly helpless.
As night fell, Jasper struggled with the post- anesthesia fatigue, coaxing Willow to return to her room and get some rest. Nevertheless, she remained resolute, determined to stay by his side throughout the night.
“Willow, please, be a good girl. Not getting enough sleep isn’t good for your health.”
“I’m not going anywhere,” she insisted stubbornly. “Even when I returned to my room, I still couldn’t sleep. I’ll just rest my head on the side of the bed and nap later.” She made it clear that no one could make her leave his side.
Though he felt resigned, his heart felt warm and happy. He thought, I can’t do anything about this girl. He fell asleep shortly after taking his medication, while she, on the other hand, was not tired but excited.
At 5.00AM, Willow could no longer fight off sleep and drifted off while lying on the side of the bed. When Jasper woke up at 7.00AM, he noticed the young woman there and gently stroked her head.
She was still in a daze, grabbed his arm, and nuzzled her face into his palm before drifting back to sleep.
Later that afternoon, Antoine had found a wonderfully secluded place for them. It was fully furnished and stocked, so all the couple had to do was bring their bags and settle in. Since Jasper could move around a bit, a nurse would visit daily to change his bandages.
When Willow stepped out of the car, she was greeted by a pristine forest surrounding the house. It was clear that this place was incredibly peaceful.
She encouraged Jasper to rest in bed while she peeled an apple from a basket of fresh fruits sent from the military base. Meals were delivered at specific times, so they didn’t have to worry about that.
She also took the time to update her parents on their current situation. Elliot and Anastasia were relieved to hear that their daughter was in a safe location.
At that moment, Elliot sent a message to his daughter. ‘Richard mentioned that his daughter is also stationed where you are, so you can look for Shirley when you have the time. Willow was excited by the news. ‘Is Shirley training here too? It’s been years since I last saw her.’
Her memories of Shirley Lloyd as a young girl flooded back. Since they were only six months apart, they shared interesting conversations during family gatherings. Then, Elliot replied, ‘Yes. You can ask around. Sheila is at the training grounds in your area.
Willow replied, ‘Okay, Dad. I’ll definitely go and look for her.’ However, her immediate priority was nursing Jasper back to health.
After dinner, as the sun was setting, he was tired of lying in bed and took her for a stroll around the area. His hearing return was a relief to him.
In the peaceful evening, sunlight filtered through the leaves, casting a warm glow on the couple. She held onto his arm as they walked happily along the path. Her hair danced in the wind, although he couldn’t appreciate the scenery, as it occasionally blew onto his face.
As the sky gradually darkened, they returned home. The surroundings had grown quiet inside the room, and Willow was busy replying to emails on Jasper’s laptop.
She stumbled upon a cluster of confession emails among the emails related to work and personal matters. She recalled the wealthy young suitors who had pursued her while abroad but hadn’t expected them to express their feelings through emails.
Curious about the contents, she clicked on one and started reading. The emails were filled with affectionate words and abundant emojis, flowers, and symbols meant to convey love. Unbeknownst to her, a figure had silently appeared behind her. Arms crossed, he observed her reading the emails, his eyes narrowing with a meaningful glint.
Suddenly realizing the room was unusually quiet, Willow turned around in shock to find Jasper standing behind her, his presence entirely unnoticed until now.