Outside, the snow fell, and Riza remembered enough of her life as a child to know it was what was considered to be a ‘sticky’ snow – wet and heavy, the kind likely to break branches from clumping in them. Inside, a fire crackled, the scent of applewood perfuming the air, and the remains of a meal lay on a low table. Fire, contained as in the fireplace, could be a comfort, especially with the frost flowers growing on the windows, and the sight of flakes drifting past them. Riza sighed, stretching her socked feet toward the flames.
“Here.” Roy’s warm voice caught her attention and she turned to accept the thick ceramic mug, steam curling out of it. “Mulled cider.” He settled down next to Riza, wrapping an arm around her shoulders to pull her closer. “Since you can’t have wine.” His hand went to her stomach, caressing the swell that could just be seen through her warm sweater.
“Thank you for arranging this, Roy,” Riza said, laying her hand over his. She rubbed the bright gold ring on his finger.
“Anything for you,” he murmured, kissing her ear softly.