Made to Riot_The Ancestors MC, page 2part #5 of Beards and Leather Series
“Yeah,” I said, holding out the small, angled glass, “hit me again.”
Mike, my usual bartender here at Flannigan’s, gave me a smile and a nod. Within seconds, I had another couple of fingers in my glass, maybe even a little more. I nodded my thanks to Mike.
“How’s your night going, brother?” he asked, speaking over the music and commotion of the bar.
“Just the usual bullshit,” I said.
Mike nodded at that, getting the message that I wasn’t in the mood for idle chatter. I was glad to see this, and made a mental note to give Mike a little more tip than I usually did. In my opinion, the best bartenders know when to talk, and when to not talk. And right now, I was all about the latter.
Taking a long slow sip of my whiskey, I thought about the last week, my mind on the Ancestors, the motorcycle club that I belonged to. It’d been a year since Anton, my father, one of the higher-ups in the club, took off without a word. Well, not without a word. Before he’d left, he’d vouched for me with the rest of the gang, telling them that in his opinion, I was ready to be an official member. The next day he was gone, not a shred of evidence as to where he’d headed.
And just like that, nearly a decade after getting my first hog and telling my pops that I wanted to be part of the gang, I was in. I got my patch, my tattoo, and went through the initiation ceremony, making me officially one of the gang. For the first few weeks, I thought that I’d be, well, less than welcome as an official member, being Anton’s kid thus someone who might not’ve had to fight as hard to get in as some of the others. But aside from a few grumbles here and there from some of the newbies, I was eagerly brought into the fold. All it took was a few well-placed punches for the riff-raff to keep their opinions to themselves.
Now that a year had passed, however, I wasn’t even sure if the MC was where I wanted to be. It’d just seemed like the life that I was destined for, and by the time I’d had the choice I was so eager to please my pops that I didn’t even take the time to think about it. I took the money that I’d been saving, bought a brand new Harley touring bike, and that was that.
The years flew by. I stayed close to my pops, learning the ins and outs of the club from him. He gave me my first leather vest, what we call a kutte, and kept a close eye on me, making sure I got into just enough trouble to toughen me up.
My father had always been a distant guy, the type to keep things close to the chest. Never told me about my mother; as far as I knew she was just one of the old ladies that hung around the club—the one he happened to knock up. He wanted nothing more than for me to be the tough, take-no-bullshit kind of man that he was, and was never much for the kind of father-son bonding that more normal kids had. For him, driving down the open road with his son on the bike next to him was all the bonding he needed. Never once did he ever let me in on just went on in that head of his. But this was the kind of man that you needed to be to run a club like ours—no weakness and no softness. Fear was the worst scent to have a rival sniff out, and once a rival caught the scent, it was kill or be killed.
So, just like he wanted, that’s the kind of man I became. But now that he was gone I had to face up to the fact that I really didn’t know what I wanted. I hadn’t realized it with him around, but my father had been like this great force that had pushed me into the path that I was on. Now that he’d left, I was free to make my own decisions. Sad thing was, I didn’t know where to begin.
I turned in the direction of the voice, my eyes settling on a petite little brunette who’d slid into the seat next to mine. She was a looker with dark green eyes and a killer body packed into skin-tight denim and a low-cut shirt that gave quite the view to any man who cared to look.
I said nothing, instead letting out a grunt that gave her the barest indication that I’d heard what she’d said. Taking another sip of my whiskey, I considered whether or not I was in the mood for what this little number was clearly after.
“You ride?” she asked, tracing the lines of the skull tattoo on my bicep that’d caught her eye.
I knew exactly what kind of riding she was referring to. And I wasn’t in the mood.
“None of your business,” I said with a gruff tone.
I regretted the words as soon as they came out of my mouth; with girls like her, taking a firm hand d didn’t get them away from you. On the contrary—it made them stick to you like glue.
“I’d love to make it my business,” she said, leaning in close and looking up at me with her big green eyes.
She wanted it right then and there. I could’ve probably bent her over the bar without another word and she’d have been into it. But at that moment, all I wanted was silence and some whiskey.
“Not interested,” I said, not even looking at her.
“Oh, I think you’re definitely interested,” she said, her hand sliding up my thigh and moving close to what she wanted.
“I’m serious,” I said, turning and looking at her with the annoyed glare of a parent scolding a misbehaving kid. “Back off.”
She got the hint. With a huff and a glare, she snatched her drink off the bar and stomped off. Once she was gone, I took another sip of my whiskey and tried to get my train of thought back on the tracks.
I thought about Donny Court, the other MC rider that was bitter as hell that I’d gotten the spot in the gang with what he’d considered to be less of a fuss than him. “Didn’t pay my dues,” he’d said to one of the old men that’d known my father. It was a bullshit claim. If anything, I’d been busting my ass harder than any of these chumps in order to make it known that there was more to me than just my last name. But Donny didn’t give a shit about any of that; he was jealous and protective of his position, and he was one of those guys who considered everything to be a zero-sum game; every little bit someone else got was something that he didn’t. I wanted to keep the peace among the gang, but shitheads like him made it hard.
My blood started to boil, and I felt my face get hot. It might’ve been the whiskey, but just thinking about the situation was enough to get me riled up.
But before I could work myself up into too much of a froth, Mike was in front of me once again, whiskey bottle in hand. I nodded, and he topped me up. I brought the glass up to my lips and took a long slow sip of the stinging, bitter drink. I wasn’t ready, however, for what it’d see when I lowered the glass.
Standing on the other side of the bar, one arm wrapped around her body, was what must’ve been one of the most goddamn gorgeous women I’d ever seen in my life. With milk-white skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes that I could spot from dozens of feet away, she stuck out like a beautiful sore thumb among the tatted-up trash that tended to hang around a place like this. She was so pretty that she almost seemed to glow. Clearly out of place, she stood awkwardly, one arm wrapped around her stomach. And as I wondered just what had brought a girl like that to a place like this, her eyes fell on mine.
A strange feeling overcame me as we locked eyes; it felt like a warm finger had slid into my heart. My stomach tightened, and I could’ve sworn my cock moved just looking at her.
What the hell was she doing, just staring at me like that? I wondered, her eyes still on mine. She must really be out of her element.
Plenty of guys would’ve been over there right then, a drink shoved in her hands and slick game being spun. Hell, maybe on another night I’d be doing the same thing. Something about this girl, though, an innocent-looking thing like her in a shithole like this … it made me more curious than anything else.
Before I could think too much about it, however, the masses on the dance floor pulled her in and out of sight. Shaking my head, I turned my attention back to my drink, wondering just how long it would take for a girl like her to get eaten alive by the kind of men who came to places like this.
Then, a crash sounded, followed by a loud commotion that could only mean one thing: a fight.
“That time of the night already?” I asked Mike, who was cranin
“Looks that way,” he said. “Oh, goddamnit!”
The crowd was shifting, giving the fighters some room. The girl invaded my thoughts, and I couldn’t help but wonder if she was getting caught up in this shit.
“What’s up?” I asked, taking a pull of my drink.
“It’s those fucking Wynn boys,” said Mike. “Goddamn trash.”
I wanted to ask for more details, but before I could, the fight took on a life of its own, more noise and commotion breaking out, fists lying here and there, and glasses breaking.
And here I’d beenhoping for a quiet night.
Soon, the brawl made its way over to me. Some drunk little twerp bumped into me, turned on his heels, and started up at me with the beady, bleary eyes of a punk kid who’d had just enough to drink to think he was hot shit.
“What the fuck’re you lookin’ at?” he asked, his words slurred.
I was ready to cut the kid some slack, to give him a little shove and send him off. A sloppy right hook, however, got me thinking otherwise. I dodged the swing with ease, the kid stumbling on his feet, barely able to keep standing.
Now he needed to be taught a lesson.
I balled by hand into a tight fist, and all the quickness the fights I’d been in had instilled in me, I gave the kid a quick jab right to the nose. His face twisted into an expression of shock at the impact, blood trickling down his nose. His hands shot to his face and as soon as he felt the blood, he went scampering off to the bathroom, whimpering like a puppy. A hit like that wouldn’t do much damage—more scary-looking than anything—but he needed to learn a lesson about picking fights with strangers.
Mission accomplished, I’d say.
I strolled back to the bar and picked up my drink. A big, dumb brawl like this breaking out was as good a sign as any that it was time to get going. Bottles continued to crash here and there, shouts went out, and the music just kept playing. At any other bar, a brawl like this would have been something to write home about, but here, it was just another Friday night.
But in the middle of turning back to the bar, someone else slammed into me. My blood instantly started to boil. If I had to punch my way through a crowd of dumb kids barely old enough to drink in order to get out of here, I wasn’t going to be happy.
“Watch where you’re fuc—”
Right as I looked down, however, I saw that it wasn’t just some kid who’d bumped into me.
It was her.
I looked up at him, a strange mixture of fear and … something else rushing through my body. My heart rate quickened, sweat formed on my skin, and I could feel my breath become quick and shallow. I felt scared and excited all at the same time. His face was even more gorgeous in person; his face was dusted with a little scruff, his lips were full and sensual, and his hazel eyes were narrowed like some kind of animal. He had an odd quality to his good looks … almost reminding me of a wolf. When he realized it was me, the girl who’d been staring at him from the other end of the bar, the corner of his mouth crinkled up.
“You definitely don’t look like the type who should be in a place like this,” he said, raising his voice over the crowd.
He was right. But although moments ago I’d wanted nothing more than to leave, standing here next to this strange dangerous-looking man, feeling the warmth of his body on mine, I felt a change of heart coming on.
“Hello? Anyone in there?” he asked, waving his large hand in front of my face.
I realized then that I’d been doing nothing but staring and looking up at him, my eyes wide like a doe and my mouth slacked open.
“Um, I,” was all I could stammer.
The man rolled his eyes as if he’d just realized he’d been saddled with babysitting some kid, and a not particularly bright one at that. He grabbed me by the upper arm and pulled me towards one of the faraway booths. I wanted to protest, to act indignant, to demand to know why this man thought he could put his hands on me like that, but not a single word came out of my mouth. Instead, I just went along with him.
We arrived at a small two-person booth and he plopped me down into the seat.
“Stay here,” he said, holding his finger up to me.
I felt stupid and silly, but to be honest, the whole fight situation had me on edge and it was good to be finally away from it. I watched as the man went off to the bar and made a gesture to the bartender. Behind him, the fight was still going on, now far enough away from me that I could almost watch it like a TV show. Eddie and Connor were in the middle of it still, swinging punches here and there, their fists connecting with whoever was nearby. Brandi and the rest of the girls were off to the side with some other tattooed, bad girl chicks, watching the show while giggling and pointing, as though they were observing a gladiatorial competition and were calling dibs on the winners.
Then, the man returned, a glass of whiskey in one hand and a glass of something ruby red colored in the other.
“Here,” he said, putting the drink down in front of me.
“What … what is it?”
He slid into the small, tight booth, his body right next to mine, the bare skin of his arms grazing my own. My stomach tightened, and a tight, hot feeling formed in me.
“Vodka cran,” he said, taking a sip of his own drink.
It was my favorite.
“How’d you know?” I asked, looking at the drink in front of me as though it were a mirage.
“You’re a girl,” he said, his tone gruff, “every girl loves a vodka cran.”
I blushed. Was I that much of a cliché? Another breaking bottle cut sounded, derailing my train of thought.
“You look lost,” he said.
My eyes shot up to his, and I felt small once again. He was still talking to me as though I were some annoying little kid. My eyes moved along his body, paying special attention to his bare arms, which were tanned, toned, and thick as hell. And not to mention covered in tattoos. I could stop staring. But before I could make too much of a gawking idiot out of myself, I remembered that he had, in fact, said something to me.
“This … isn’t my kind of place,” I said.
He let out a quick bark of a laugh.
“No shit,” he said.
Again, I wanted to say something, to tell this guy that while I was thankful that he’d gotten me away from the fight, he couldn’t talk to me in such a rude, contemptuous way. But I said nothing, instead focusing on the tight, hot feeling that was forming deep inside of me. Against my better instincts, just being here next to this man, being in the aura of his raw, animalistic energy, was enough to get me turned on as hell.
“Is it that obvious?” I asked.
He gave me a quick look up and down, his eyes dragging along my body.
“Oh, yeah,” he said. “This place is for the guys who like doing the shit like that”—he pointed to the fight—“and the girls who like to fuck guys who like to do shit like that. You look like a Disney princess that didn’t make the cut.”
What?! I thought, anger rising up in me. Where does this guy get off insulting me like that?
I knew that I should’ve gotten up right then and there and stormed off, but I didn’t. I was exactly where I wanted to be.
“Well,” I said, struggling for a retort. “If you’re so tough, then why aren’t you right in the middle of that?”
He scoffed as he sipped his drink.
“Trust me, I get enough of that shit on the regular; I don’t need to go out looking for it.”
I wondered what he meant. Was he talking about the fighting, or the women? Or both? Either answer just made me more intrigued. Who was this guy?
He took another long, slow sip of his whiskey. I did the same, sipping my vodka cranberry as we sat saying nothing. The fight now had every bouncer in the place stomping through it, pulling drunk guys apart from one another, trying to restore some semblance of order, but the addition of new
“You look fine now,” the man said. “I think it’s time for you to call yourself an Uber and get back home.”
That was the last thing I wanted to hear. In spite of my better thinking, all I wanted was to be near this man, to stay warmed by the raw heat that radiated from his body. I knew I shouldn’t, I knew that he was right, that I should just get going, get back home where it was safe.
But I didn’t want to be safe.
As though possessed by someone other than myself, my hand dropped, falling onto the man’s thigh, the denim of his tight jeans rough against my skin. Seeing what I’d done, he turned to me, a sly smirk on my face.
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