Unbreakable: An Unacceptables MC Standalone Romance, page 6
She bit her lip. “I don’t know if I can go in there.”
I put my hand over hers. “We don’t have to do this if you don’t want to. I can have Crickett and Collin come to our place.”
She shook her head. “If Crickett needs us there then it is only right that we respect her wishes. Dad would have wanted us to all be in that house anyway.”
We sat in the driveway in silence for a few minutes as Raine stared at her childhood home. “Did you know my mom and grandma were murdered here by my grandfather?”
I knew the general story of what had happened to Raine’s family when she was a baby, but I didn’t know the smaller details like that. “Abel left that part out when he explained things to me.”
Raine laughed. “He didn’t tell me either. I figured it out.” She blinked a few times before continuing, “How did Rave and Abel stay here after something so tragic?”
“Memories,” I answered. “All the wonderful memories they had there. You can’t let one tragedy define anything, not even a home.”
“Explain,” she commanded.
“Think about it, Raine. You had your first steps in this house. Abel probably snuck out of his bedroom window when he was a teenager to go meet up with your mom. All the family Christmases, birthdays, laughter, happiness—it all was contained in these four walls. It probably made him feel better knowing he would have all those memories with you as you grew up.”
“We should move back in,” she stated.
I shifted in my seat to look at her more directly. “Are you sure?” The thought of all the money we had dumped into our home renovations was a little overwhelming, but I wasn’t going to fight her on this. Wherever Raine wanted to live was fine with me as long as I was by her side.
“No…I don’t know. It could just be the hormones. Fuck if I know.” She threw her hands in the air before yanking them through her long dark curls.
“How ’bout we don’t make any rash decisions right now? Let’s just take this one day at a time.”
She gave me a weak smile. “Sounds like a plan to me.”
We decided not to have a funeral for my dad; it wasn’t what he would have wanted. He would have done exactly what we did: went to the bar, took seats at the old bar top, and drank in his honor. One by one, each member of my father’s beloved club members took a shot and toasted to the memory of one of the most amazing men to ever wear the Unacceptables skull on his back and over his heart.
I hated that he would have told us that enough blood had already been shed and that our thirst for vengeance shouldn’t be quenched, but he would have been right. It was the truth. Even though most of the guys didn’t agree, Ryder and Holt made the executive decision to not continue the war with the Sinners. If they came anywhere close to one of our members, they could do something about it, but our guys were not to pursue any more vigilante justice for the time being.
It was a fucking hard pill for me to swallow. I wanted to kill each one of them myself, but there was a time and a place for violence, and while honoring my father’s memory when we were not in danger was not the fucking time for sure.
I sat behind the bar with Crickett like I had done ever since I could remember. We were mostly silent, talking to the guys now and then as they all paid their respects. Even though we didn’t say much, it was all right. We knew we were there for each other, two pillars of strength, united just like my father would have wanted us to be.
While fighting back tears, Crickett grabbed my hand. “Do you remember the first day we met?” she asked, and I nodded.
I laughed a little thinking about my five-year-old self and how silly I had been that day. “I gave you a daisy and asked if you could be my new mommy.” I hadn’t thought about that memory in years.
“I hope you know that very moment was when I saw the love and kindness in your father’s heart. I saw him lift you up high in the air and twirl you around as we picked you up from school, and right then I knew your father was special and loved you unconditionally. I fell in love with your family instantly. It wasn’t just him that stole my heart, it was the entire package, you included. I have never once felt like you weren’t supposed to be my daughter, and I don’t think I have ever truly expressed that to you.”
I sniffled, pulling my stepmom to me. “I love you, Mom.” They were four words I didn’t say often enough. I couldn’t even remember the last time I had.
“I love you too, my sweet Raine.”
responsible for the entire situation. I had been so blinded by my own anger that I hadn’t seen what was obviously right in front of me. Of course it was too easy to find Raine. Of course one of Bear’s guys was in on it—it was entirely too easy to track where she was, to tail the transport vehicle. The first location wasn’t even on our radar in the beginning, so there was no need for the Sinners to move Raine. I should have fucking seen it.
But it wasn’t just that. It went back to the time in the garage forever ago when a Sinners member came into the shop looking to buy Holt’s bike.
Red and Jesse were sitting off in the corner of the bar. I walked over, taking a seat next to them. With the whirlwind of the last few months, I had barely spoken to either of them.
“How’re you holding up, kid?” Red asked before taking a shot of whiskey. They had about ten shot glasses lined up on the table, continually taking them and filling them back up. There was no way to know how many they had each thrown back at that point, but it was surely enough to kill a horse.
“I don’t really know,” I answered honestly.
Jesse put his hand on my shoulder. “It’s going to take time for all of us, brother.”
“Amen to that,” I responded.
We all lifted shots in the air.
“To the best damn president this club has ever seen,” Red slurred.
“Hey, how’s your old man taking it? I noticed earlier that he’s still wearing his vice pres patch.” Jesse looked over to where my dad was sitting with Collin at the bar, chatting with Raine.
“I’m not really sure, but I’m trying to just let the dust settle a bit more before I start prying any of this shit wide open.”
“Hey Holt,” Red said, way louder than necessary.
“How’s it going?” my dad asked as he approached, making small talk with Jesse and Red for a couple of minutes before turning to me. “Son, a minute?” He motioned for the back office.
“Sure. Catch you guys later.” Jesse and Red both saluted me as I followed him back.
“Everything okay Pop?” I asked as we stepped into the small space. He shut the door behind us.
“Yeah, of course, everything is perfectly fine. I just need to do something really quick before the questions about it keep popping up.” He opened the top drawer of Abel’s desk and pulled out a sewing kit, a bottle of whiskey, and two packages of blue raspberry Fun Dip.
“Questions? About what?”
He completely ignored my inquiry and for the first time, I understood how annoying it was to Raine when I did that shit to her. I picked up Abel’s favorite candy. I always used to think that it was ridiculous that a grown ass man loved the blue powder sugar rush as much as my father-in-law did. But, in that moment, I couldn’t imagine him any other way than with his boots up on that very desk and bright blue lips. I couldn’t believe that I would never see that again, make fun of him one more time, or get my ass handed to me for something stupid. Right then I truly started to miss Abel Hellock.
“Give me your cut,” he barked.
I did as he asked; no sense in questioning it if I wasn’t going to get a straight answer from the guy. My old man dug a patch out of the front pocket of his jeans and started to stitch it onto my leather.
He handed me the bottle. “Drink.” I took a long swig as he finished up his project.
“Here.” He held it out to me. “This is the way Abel would have wanted it.”
I took it from hi
“But, Dad…” I tried to hand it back to him.
He cut me off and refused to take the leather out of my hand. “I know what was supposed to happen, but I’m getting old and this chapter needs someone like you to get them through this. I’m a better VP anyway. I’ll be sitting right there to your left as you handle that gavel. I will teach you every damn thing I know. Abel taught me, and now it is your turn to learn.”
“What about Collin?”
Holt laughed before taking a long swig from the bottle. “He’ll have his time in the sun, don’t you worry. He’s still a little rough around the edges, but he’s growing up to be just like his old man.”
“What about Jesse or Red?”
My father just shook his head. “It has to be you. I know it doesn’t seem like it, but in time you will understand why this is the right decision for all of us.”
We both took seats, ripping open our packages of candy. “To Abel,” I said while dipping the white stick into the blue powder.
Raine popped her head into the office. “There you two are.” She leaned back on her heels, calling to someone. “Found them hiding in Dad’s office.”
Raine, Crickett, and Collin all joined us.
“This ain’t Dad’s office anymore,” Collin remarked. “I believe this little cave of solitude belongs to the president.” He pointed at my chest and Crickett gasped.
“You finally told him.” She slapped my dad on the arm. “And you didn’t give me a little warning first?”
“You knew?” I looked over to her as Raine took a seat on my lap.
“We all did, Mr. President. Does that mean I am finally the first lady?” Raine teased.
Crickett smiled sweetly over to her. “Honey, you can be the first lady all you damn well please, I am still queen bitch in these parts.”
“Yeah, yeah.” Raine rolled her eyes at her stepmom before stealing my Fun Dip right out of my hand.
“Hey, get your own.” I tried to snatch it from her grasp but she was too quick for me.
“You don’t even like this stuff. Besides, you should know better than to take candy from a pregnant woman.” She stuck her blue tongue out at me and we all started laughing.
“Is there any more in there?” Crickett leaned onto the desk as Holt searched through the drawer, pulling out a packet for her along with a legal pad.
“What’s that?” Collin asked, trying to get a peek at what was scribbled on the page.
Holt cleared his throat. “Son, why don’t you read this out loud for us.”
I took the notepad from him and about near fell out of my chair. “I don’t know if I can.”
“What is it, Ryder?” Raine tried to look, but I turned it away from her.
“I got this.” I took in a deep breath, reading the last thing Abel probably ever wrote in his life.
To my grandbaby,
I don’t even know if you’re a girl or a boy yet. I have no idea what your name will be or when your birthdate is going to come, but I do know this one simple fact: I love you more than life. I love you more than myself, my bike, my club, or anything else on this planet. I know you’ll probably have your mom’s nose and your dad’s eyes. You’ll most likely be as stubborn as I am and as kind as your grandma is. I don’t know if you’re going to be good at sports or enjoy the wide-open roads, if you’ll adore school or drop out like I did right when I turned sixteen. I don’t even know when you will read this letter…I guess I should have thought about that before even starting it. All I know is that today I found out that my precious daughter is going to be your mom. I know she’s going to be the best mother in the world, and Ryder, your daddy, is one hell of a man. I know Crickett is going to spoil you rotten and Collin is going to show you all the fun hiding places in the house because he was the master of hide and seek. Eventually, there may come a day where your loyalties and faith will be tested. Just remember that your family will always help guide you when you feel like your compass is leading you astray. We will stand behind you without judgement or question, without fear or regret, because that’s what family does and that is what we will always do. We love without boundaries and fight for what we believe in. So, I guess what I am trying to get at here is that you are stronger than you know, braver than you think, and loved more than words can express.
I barely got through the letter, fighting my tears the whole time. I didn’t give a fuck what anyone thought; I started balling my damn eyes out when I finished. Raine threw her arms around my neck.
“Thank you for reading that,” she whispered into my ear.
“Fuck, he was just the most amazing fucking man.” Collin was a blubbering mess.
“That he was.” My dad passed the whiskey bottle over to Collin.
“Do you remember that time Collin decided to hide in the storm cellar?” Raine asked Cricket.
“How could I ever forget that night? Abel thought he had up and vanished into thin air. It took us four hours to find you”—she pointed her finger at her son with a reprimanding tone in her voice—“and you were just sleeping away in the cellar, sucking your thumb in the back corner.”
“You heard Dad’s words—I am the hide and seek master!”
We sat and talked for a few more hours, telling funny stories and remembering the good times we’d all had with Abel Hellock.
In that small room, with the four people that meant the most to me in the world, we started to heal our broken pieces back together. It was going to take time and I knew the road was going to be rougher than I cared to admit, but at least one small part of me was put back into its place right there in that cramped office, getting drunk off of Abel’s last bottle of Old Crow, all of us with bright blue tongues.
Just about six and a half months later
Heaving up from the couch, I waddled my way into the kitchen. Ryder and I were finally living in our house full time. Even though it had been nice being with Crickett and Collin in our old home, the farmhouse was the last gift my father ever gave to me and it just didn’t seem right to not use it.
Ryder trotted down the stairs, his toothbrush still in his mouth. “Hey babe?” he slurred with white foam bubbling up at the corners of his mouth.
“Yes?” I responded.
“Have you seen my wallet? I thought I left it in the pocket of my pants last night but it’s missing.”
I grabbed it off the counter right next to me. “You mean this old thing?”
He spit into the sink before pecking my cheek. “What would I do without you?”
“Lose your damn mind misplacing everything you fucking own,” I teased.
“That’s a fucking fact if I ever heard one.” He grabbed me from behind, kissing down my neck.
I tried to shoo him away. “I feel like a walrus right now, Ryder.”
“A sexy walrus?” He continued down to my shoulder, rapid firing kisses in between words.
“No, not the least bit sexy.”
“Come on babe, you keep on complaining that you want our little guy out already and all those pregnancy books you insisted on me reading said sex this late in the game could help induce labor.”
He started to lift my dress up over my head and I couldn’t resist any longer. Even though I felt awful, an orgasm or two would probably help my mood and self-esteem quite a bit.
“Fine.” I pretended to just be giving in, but I was kind of excited. Ryder had been working so much and I had been feeling so gross lately that we barely had time for any type of intimacy at all. I missed the good old days when if we went more than t
He got down on his knees behind me. “Lean over onto the counter, baby.” He guided me into position. “Comfortable?”
“Yeah, I’m good.” I tried to relax a little as Ryder’s hands ran down my hips and over my ass. He pulled my panties down, helping me out of them and tossing them to the side. He buried his tongue into my wetness right away, licking my clit and teasing my opening perfectly. Ryder really had a magical tongue. I could have stood there all damn day letting him tease and pleasure me. He moaned against me, his hot breath coursing over my sensitive skin. “You taste so damn good baby. I missed this so fucking much.”
“God, me too.” I cried out as he sucked gently on my swelling bud. My knees were shaking. My eyes were slammed shut. I didn’t even think about my giant belly or my swollen ankles and feet. There was nothing else in the world other than the pleasure Ryder was giving me, and I started to grind my hips slowly onto his face as I cried out. My orgasm came on without warning and was more intense than I had ever felt.
Getting to his feet, Ryder dropped his pants down around his ankles. “I’ll go nice and slow, babe,” he whispered as the head of his dick tenderly started to enter me.
I gripped the edge of the counter as my body remained in a completely euphoric state of ecstasy.
“Fuck,” he growled, “you’re so damn tight.” He pushed a little harder with every thrust, making each time feel better than the last. I let my head roll back as I practically purred with excitement.
“That feels amazing, Ryder.”
Just like the first, my second orgasm consumed me without any buildup or warning. All of a sudden I was a shuddering, panting mess of feels and emotions, and Ryder followed closely. We stood there in the kitchen, naked, as he kissed the nape of my neck. A moment later, I started bawling crying.
KRISTEN HOPE MAZZOLA SERIES:
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