FOUR MONTHS EARLIER
I couldn’t help but watch her as she played outside with Harlyn. In the sun her hair changed, shimmering like copper as opposed to the dark auburn locks I’d seen when she first arrived.
She was beautiful, fucking stunning but completely off limits.
Maybe that’s what made the attraction so strong. Maybe that’s what pulled me in, knowing I couldn’t have her.
Look but don’t fucking touch.
I clenched my fists as I leaned against the doorframe, unable to draw my eyes away.
Sugar had been gone for years.
When the shit hit the fan with the club, Optimus decided to send Sugar and Harlyn away, hoping that it would keep the woman he loved, and his unborn child, protected from the war that had raged around us and killed his father. It was a brash move, but one I understood, knowing that he possibly would not have been able to cope with losing another person that he cared for in such a small space of time.
It was Sugar who’d decided to stay hidden and not return. From what I understood, it was from the fear that the danger which seemed to consistently surround the club would put her baby girl at risk. She did what she had to do, but after finding a mole within our ranks, it had jeopardized their safety, and Op had a duty and finally called her back.
I don’t remember Sugar having such amazing curves. Maybe it was something which had developed after Harlyn was born, or maybe at the time, I was content with knowing she belonged to my brother, and would never think of moving in on something so precious to him.
But now she was here, and while I knew it was wrong, lusting after my president’s child’s mother… Fuck! I couldn’t seem to keep my head on straight.
With the Mafia breathing down our necks, I’d been placed on babysitting duty.
Okay… so I hadn’t been placed exactly, I’d offered.
I pushed off the doorway and wandered out into the yard as Sugar settled herself onto one of the many outdoor tables while watching Harlyn as she leaped and bounded all over the playground.
“How do you keep up with her?” I asked as I took a seat opposite Sugar.
She turned and grinned at me, her teeth pearly white and perfectly straight, and a small dimple appeared on her left cheek. “I try my best…” she laughed, obviously a little out of breath, “… but this kid has far too much energy. She makes me feel so old.”
I snorted. “Yeah, because twenty-five is basically elderly.”
Her eyes brightened, and she smirked. “And how old might you be then?”
I placed my hand over my heart and gasped. “No one ever tell you that you shouldn’t ask a biker his age?”
A soft giggle left her lips and she rolled her eyes. “I’m pretty sure that’s women… you should never ask a woman her age.”
“Little sexist if you ask me. Bikers have feelings, too.”
“They do?” she asked mockingly. “And here I was thinking you were all these hard-ass men who ignored any sign of emotion.”
“That’s very assuming of you.”
She laughed and shook her head, the sound making my heart thump against my chest.
God, what I would give to hear that sound over and over again.
Fuck! Am I turning into a pansy?
“So you got dumped with us today, huh?” she continued, her eyes turning back to where Harlyn was swinging across a metal bar like a monkey.
“Not dumped, so to speak… I actually kinda like the kid. She’s got some sass.”
Harlyn, even though she’d spent five years away from Op, was actually a lot like him in many ways. She was confident and had an attitude, and when she spoke up, she spoke her mind.
She may have grown up far away, but there was biker brat inside her for sure.
“I’m not quite sure where the sass came from,” Sugar laughed.
I rolled my shoulders. “I’m gonna say… like mother, like daughter.”
Her eyes turned to me, sparkling playfully and making my cock twitch within my jeans. Thank fuck for the table between us, or I had no doubt that she would have seen the bulge slowly begin to grow and press against my fly.
“I’m not really sure we know each other well enough for you to make that kind of assumption just yet,” she threw back, but her face lit up and a cheeky grin pulled at her plump lips.
She was flirting with me.
I felt like a damn teenager with the way I was pining for her attention, my heart racing every time I got her face to light up.
Leaning back, I folded my arms across my chest and smirked. “I’m sure that will change soon.”
Her face flushed and I began to grin, knowing I could affect her with something so little as a few words and a smile was a boost to my ego. At that point, I didn’t even care whether she was off limits. I wasn’t doing anything, I was keeping my hands to myself—my words, however, those were a whole other ball game. And I was stepping up to bat.
“Mom, can you push me on the swings?” Harlyn called as she jumped from the top of the playground. My heart lurched, and I pushed to my feet, even though I knew I wouldn’t make it in time to catch her. She landed and stumbled a little, but straightened herself and looked over at us with a wide smile. All while I felt like I was going to fucking vomit.
Sugar just chuckled as she stood up and followed Harlyn over to the swing set, looking over her shoulder at me with a smug grin. “She’s a bit of a daredevil, you’ll learn that pretty quick.”
My heart continued to race as I watched her walk away
What was it about this woman that made me feel like a love sick teenager?
She was gorgeous, fucking stunning, but it wasn’t like the club girls that hung around weren’t as equally appealing to look at. They were sexy, and for the most part up for anything I wanted, which was always a high point when it came to my sexual fantasies. But Sugar, on the other hand, threw off this vibe that screamed ‘not just a piece of ass.’
And for some reason, I fucking loved that.
I was pretty sure that every brother in the club enjoyed having endless pussy at our doors, just waiting to be invited inside. That didn’t mean, though, that we all didn’t get to a point where that shit just wasn’t fulfilling enough any longer. The older we got, the more it seemed like having a woman by your side was more desirable than one that just warmed your bed.
I hadn’t thought much about it until recently with Kit claiming one of our club girls as his own, and Optimus losing his damn mind over his on and off relationship with Chelsea.
I questioned what it was that made them so crazy, so fucking obsessed with these girls. I mean, I cared for them both, they were sweet, strong and followed the rules of the club to a tee, without coming off as a bitch that could just be walked all over.
It was something I guess I’d never thought was possible for a long time—having a woman who could fit into this lifestyle without being a power hungry wench. My brothers had somehow found the best of both worlds, and the more it came to light, the more I wondered whether that was something I wanted too.
Did I want to have kids? Yeah, one day I wanted to have my own brats who would grow up within this life, and possibly join the club and continue a legacy that’d I’d started. But I didn’t just want any bitch off the street to mother them. I wanted them to have a mom like I did—strong, warm, beautiful and loyal.
I licked my lips as I stood, the picnic table creaking under the weight of my body. I wasn’t a small guy, the complete opposite actually. I hadn’t always been that way, though.
Everybody knew computers were my thing, they’d got me into trouble more times than I liked to count. Growing up, I’d been that scrawny, nerdy kid at school that everyone liked to pick on and torment. I was beaten up in hallways, crushed into lockers, and made the butt of jokes by almost every kid in school. It caused me to be a loner, because if they weren’t teasing me about my thick glasses and lanky form, they were avoiding me altogether, fearful that if they tried to befriend me that they’d be next on the hit list.
It was funny because I never blamed them for not trying to stick up for me. I didn’t want them to feel the way I felt or go through the hell I endured, and in the end, I knew that I’d have my revenge on those kids who did hurt me.
Never underestimate the nerdy kid. I may have not been able to fight back physically, but when jocks started getting suspended from school for looking at porn on the library computers and half my senior class was held back from graduating because their grades were shit, I walked away with a huge grin on my face and my middle finger in the fucking air.
My sister was the only one who knew what I’d done. She’d been my guardian since I was fourteen, and after years of watching me come home with black eyes and bruises—after she found out, all she did was high five me and laugh.
Danica was seven years older than I was. We had no dad around, and our mom was the most amazing woman—bright, beautiful, loving. Even as a single parent, she made sure we had everything we needed by working two jobs, and fought for us to be the best people we could be every day of her life. Unfortunately, she lost her fight with breast cancer far too early. There was never a day that went by where I didn’t question whether she was proud of the man I’d become.
I was a criminal, I’d done time, I’d hurt people, and I had blood stains on my hands that were a permanent reminder of my loyalty to the Brothers by Blood MC. Would she have looked the other way? Turned her back and been upset with the person I was? Or would she understand and see the love and commitment I showed for these people, a reflection of the way she’d brought me up.
Dani gave up everything, a high-paying business job in New York City to come home and look after me so I could finish school. I owed her my life, my education, and my sanity for not allowing the court to put me into the system.
I saw a lot of her in Sugar.
While some of the brothers criticized how she’d chosen not to return, and in some ways, I guess, kept Optimus from his child, I knew that she’d done the best with what she had at the time and her priority was Harlyn. She wasn’t accustomed to our world, she didn’t know a lot about how it worked. All she saw was danger and bloodshed. So she gave up her life here, her family and Optimus, in order to put Harlyn first.
I couldn’t fucking argue with that. In fact, I admired her for having the strength to make that decision. It couldn’t have been easy to walk away and build a life somewhere else, alone.
It was another reminder of how damn strong she was.
A woman with that kind of strength at my side… fuck.
“Lunch is ready!” The deep voice of my president boomed from the patio, causing me to freeze midstep. And there it was, the reminder of why I couldn’t have her.
Optimus had made it quite clear—touch Sugar, lose your patch.
The club was my life, my family.
But Sugar was everything I fucking wanted in a woman. And Harlyn? Fuck! That kid was cool.
I squashed the ache in my chest as I turned around and acknowledged the man who had pulled me in and taken me under his wing, giving me the most goddamn amazing family anyone could ever wish for—a family that I couldn’t walk away from.
“Yeah, Prez. No problem.”