Back at Nathan’s, they were settled in front of the Christmas Tree mocha coffees in hand.  “That was a productive day when all is said and done,” Emma remarked.

“I have several inquiries in the works regarding Lamott and I’m digging deeper into Jessop.  He’s hidden his enterprises well.  Having said that, if he’s using hired help, if I dig under enough rocks, I’ll find what he’s hiding.”

Emma nodded.  “You interested in an hour or so of puzzle conquering?”

“Surely.” Just as he’d agreed, his phone rang.  Nathan headed to his home office and was gone for quite awhile.

“I’m sorry, Emma, I have things to do.  Not sure when I’ll be back, so please make yourself at home and I’ll see you later.”  He dropped a kiss on her upturned lips and left.

Puzzle making had lost its interest so Emma decided to enlist the kitchen staff’s assistance to do some Christmas baking.  It was a well-stocked kitchen and all the ingredients required were present.

They tackled Christmas Cake first (using a tried and true recipe she’d grown up with) and made eight in total.  Then she went on to make Christmas Stollen and Gingerbread men.  Because there was a large staff, she suggested a large batch of Christmas Cookies and her father’s favourite, date cake.  They’d spent hours cooking and decorating and when all the baking was done, the kitchen smelled heavenly.

Emma asked Jim to take her shopping so she could buy proper canisters to transport a few of the goodies home for Christmas.  She found several brightly and oddly shaped designs she knew her family would love.  The one she loved most was a horse-drawn carriage romantically back lit and this one was for Nathan, a thank you for the beautiful evening they’d spent together. Since she wasn’t sure what type of interests Jim had, and she couldn’t very well ask, she bought a canister with a plaid design and several large bows to attach to each present.

She headed to a cooking center and bought a dozen aprons, each with a unique design and amusing quote about cooking.  Having spent only a few hours with them, she didn’t know enough about each to buy something individually unique.  The aprons were a safe bet.

When they returned, she began packing the cooled cooked items into specific tins. Pleased with the results, she picked up the rest of her packages and took them to the living room to wrap and place under the tree.

Nathan returned just as she placed the last of her presents down.

Walking to her he wrapped himself around her, “Seems you’ve enjoyed a busy day.”

Turning into him Emma smiled, “Indeed, I have.  Mostly thanks to your wonderful staff who were definitely in the Christmas Spirit.”

“I caught the aroma as I walked through.”

“Wasn’t sure what time you’d be back, so we have a roast and all the fixing in the oven.  Should be done about now though.”

“Good, I’m starving.”

They ate in the dining room as Christmas music played softly in the background.

“You are an amazing cook, Emma.”

“I love food!”  She winked.

“I’ve noticed.” His eyes warmed as he drew closer.  “You have many hidden talents.”

“Perhaps we’ll delve into some hidden and secretive talents a little later.”  Emma suggested with a provocative smile.

“Rest assured, I can’t wait.”

Page 90                                                                                               Page 88

 

 

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