"Boys," Ty hollered from the kitchen. "Close the door. I can feel the draft clear back here."
The smoke alarm chose that instant to go off, and the boys covered their ears. Josh’s lower lip trembled.
"On second thought, leave the door open, guys. We need to get this cleared out before Sophie comes. And remember, this’ll be our little secret."
Jesse opened his mouth, but Sophie shook her head.
"Shhh, let’s surprise him." She set the plate on one of the highest bookshelves, sent Trouble a warning look, then scooped up the still-distressed looking Josh.
She heard the back door open, then a window slid up. A finger over her lips, she tiptoed to the kitchen, the other two forming a giggling line behind her.
She stopped in the doorway. Ty, looking more handsome than any man had a right to, stood flapping a dish towel toward the open door. A pot sat on the stove, water boiling over. The oven door hung open and tendrils of smoke escaped.
"So, what’s for dinner?"
Ty dropped the towel and turned, looking for all the world like a five-year-old caught snooping under the Christmas tree. He looked from her to the boys.
"What’s that mean, Daddy?" Josh asked as Sophie lowered him to the floor.
"It means you’re supposed to sound the warning when the enemy shows up."
"But Sophie’s not the enemy." Josh wrapped an arm around her leg.
"And," Jonah said, "the alarm was already sounding. It hurt my ears."