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Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Chapter 5

I’m back with more Dance with the Devil this week. This will put us about halfway through the story. I have the whole thing polished up and ready to post, so at least I don’t have to worry about that. And I’ll start revising the next story soon, so I may not have to wait too long in between them this time. Anyway, here is the beginning of Chapter 5:

It didn’t take me long to catch up to Hawk. He refused to respond to any of my attempts to get his attention. I was forced to follow behind him, steaming at how easily he ignored me.

I’d never been able to ignore his presence.

When he took a turn away from the clubhouse, I was surprised, but I followed anyways. We needed to have this out. Maybe we couldn’t go where he wanted us to. I wasn’t willing to lose the family I’d come into over it. I wasn’t willing to lose my riding partner, either. I’d known Hawk since before that was the name he went by and before I was Devil, before I was even a Marine. He was more than the guy I went out on patrols with for the club. So much more. Even if I didn’t usually let myself think about that.

Because I didn’t want to think about it, examine it, talk about it, I might be losing the one thing I would allow myself to have with him. It would kill me to lose that, too.

The sky darkened above us, and I looked up from under my helmet. Heavy clouds were rolling in. I flashed my headlight at Hawk, hoping to get his attention finally. His head moved, as if taking in my signal and the clouds above when I pointed up. But, he didn’t stop.

I really didn’t want to be getting wet while on the bike, but the only other option was turning around and abandoning Hawk, which would give him the idea I didn’t think he was worth it.

I couldn’t let him think that.

I kept following. Even when the first drops of rain hit the backs of my hands. Hawk didn’t react at all. He had his leather jacket on under his cut already. I hadn’t bothered to grab my coat before running out of the apartment. I had no protection save for the long-sleeve shirt I wore under my own vest. It wouldn’t take long for it to soak through if the rain continued.

Hawk turned down yet another road, and I swore a little. This wasn’t even toward the place he kept away from the clubhouse. Where was he taking me? No, that wasn’t fair. He hadn’t asked me to follow him. This was all my own fault. And it was too late to go back now.

The rain came down harder, pounding against the top of my helmet and soaking right through my shirt and jeans. He turned again, this time down what seemed little more than an overgrown trail. Maybe it had been a driveway once, but it didn’t look like any vehicles used it in some time. There was a barn at the end of it. Probably a miracle it was still standing, yet Hawk headed right for it.

I did, too, idiot that I was.

He rode straight into the barn, since the door hung open anyway.

I did, too. Sometimes, I thought I would follow him anywhere. Even into Hell. Or an old ramshackle barn.

If you want to read the rest of the chapter, you can find it here.

Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Chapter 3

I’m back this week with the next chapter of Dance with the Devil. You can check out Chapter 2 if you missed it last week. And for now, here’s the beginning of Chapter 3.

I probably shouldn’t have gone to town. It’s not like we’d been told to stay away, but I was already in quite a mood. From that messed up vote, to that last altercation with Hawk, and everything else that always mess up my mind.

We were supposed to do patrols together. They hadn’t said anything about not coming to town by ourselves. Still, it probably would have been a smart thing to buddy up even for that.

No one ever accused me of always, or ever, doing the smart thing.

I pulled my bike into a space in front of the Iron Heart bar. I should go down to the diner and grab something to eat. I needed something to calm me down. Hawk’s words were still bouncing around in my head, and I couldn’t take it. Still, as I walked down the sidewalk toward the door of the bar, my gaze took in everything. Three bikes sat in spots a little ways down from mine. My stomach twisted up tight at the sight of them. One of them had a decal of a white-ish bird in the corner of the windshield. A dove, I told myself. Except its wings were spread out, just the way the Ivory Crows’ patch looked.

I stood, frozen for a moment, fighting with myself. Part of me wanted to go barging right into the bar and calling them out, making a scene, taking them down. The other part wanted to ride back out of town. Icarus told us not to approach any of them, not to start anything. But, God, did I want to start something with them.

No. I had to be careful and watch my step. I was never good with that, though. Still, I headed down to the diner after all. Hopefully by the time I came back out, they’d be gone, and I could get a drink in peace before heading home.

I hated feeling like I was tucking my tail between my legs and skulking away. But, I didn’t want to disobey a direct order less than an hour after it had been given. Sure, I had a history of that, a full file of disciplinary actions during my time in the Corps. But, even that would be extreme for me.

I almost reached the diner when the door swung open. Three men in heavy boots stepped out. My gaze slid up their bodies. Two wore chaps, but the third just had on a worn pair of jeans. Before my gaze even reached above their waists, I admit my attention snagged longer there than it should have–Hawk had gotten me stirred up, and I couldn’t seem to help it–a glob of saliva landed in front of me. I didn’t need more evidence, still I kept looking up.

If you want to keep reading, and find out how Devil reacts to this, you can check out the rest of Chapter 3 here. And I’ll be back next week with the next chapter.

Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Chapter 2

It’s time to get Chapter 2 out there. If you didn’t start last week, you can always go check it out here. And here’s the beginning of Chapter 2:

I dropped my booted foot on top of the coffee table, not caring at the thud it made as I brought a bottle of beer to my lips. I still couldn’t believe Hawk hadn’t said anything to me about the Crows being around. He knew how I felt about them.

He was supposed to be my partner. Hadn’t he thought I might need that information during our patrols? Was this supposed to be some sort of punishment? Because I wouldn’t let us go back to one night that never should have happened anyway.

No matter how upset I was with him, he would never do that. He wouldn’t put the club at risk because of a grudge against me. That wasn’t Gavin’s way.

I winced then took another deep pull from the bottle. I had to keep thinking of him like Hawk. The lieutenant who could keep information from me.

Not Gavin, the boy who saved me more than once.

The knock on my door nearly had me dropping the bottle of beer and did have me sputtering some of it down my chin. I swore as I set the bottle down and wiped my face with my forearm. That couldn’t be Hawk, could it? I imagined he had stuff to take care of with the other officers. He was the last person I wanted to deal with right now. In my mood, who knew what would happen between us.

I couldn’t let anything happen between us.

When I opened the door as far as the chain would go—no peepholes in my crappy apartment—it wasn’t Hawk standing there. I released the chain and let the door swing all the way open. “What? Did Daddy send you over to check up on me?”

Trace stood there, staring at me. “Do you try real hard to be offensive, Devil? Or does it come natural as an asshole?”

I stared at him for a moment, then a laugh burst out of me. “Might as well come in. Since you’re here and all.”

And if you want to read the rest of the chapter, you can find it here.

Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Chapter 1

I’ve finally got Chapter 1 of Dance with the Devil up on Wattpad. I plan to add a new chapter each week. Here’s the beginning of that chapter:

I rested both feet on the ground on each side of my bike while I waited for the light to change. I just wanted to go. Of course, we still had to follow all the rules of the road. I didn’t want to be flattened, or have my bike that way, so I held back the urge to twist the throttle and let go.

It wasn’t easy.

There was so much going on lately, and my head was full of chaotic thoughts. I usually didn’t stop long enough to let any of them take root, but they were now. God, I needed to go. Just go, as fast and as far as I could. Icarus and Bull were expecting us back within the hour, so I couldn’t even do that.

After what happened to Trace on his last patrol, I couldn’t blame them for keeping a tight rein on our patrol times. It still sucked donkey ass.

Hawk’s bike idled behind me, and that had the back of my neck prickling. I shouldn’t feel that way, shouldn’t let him get to me. I’d known him a long time, and I’d always been able to feel when his eyes were on me.

Like they were now.

I shifted on my seat, keeping my gaze focused on the light, waiting for it to turn green. I ignored the buzzing phone in my pocket and everything but that light. If only the electricity I felt from Hawk could be as easily tuned out.

Finally. 

I twisted the throttle and shot through the intersection the moment the light changed. I heard the roar of Hawk’s bike behind me and something moved through me, knowing he was back there.

Stop it.

I couldn’t feel those things for Hawk. It couldn’t be. That’s all there was to it. We’d get back to the clubhouse, and we’d make our reports, then we could go our separate ways. It was the best way to keep peace in the club. None of them had to know the truth. We were only a couple guys who knew each other from the military. That was why Hawk helped me get into the club.

If they knew the truth, probably neither of us would be allowed to stay.

If you want to read the rest of the chapter, you can head over here and find it in its entirety.

Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Cover Reveal

I know it’s been a while since I finished posting Come Back Down to Wattpad. Well, I finally have the next book, ready to start posting to Wattpad…next week. This week, though, I do have the cover to show you. If I ever do more with these than posting to Wattpad, I’ll be getting professional covers done. For now, these ones I make up on Canva work pretty well. Anyway, here’s Devil:

Next week, I’ll have Chapter 1 ready to share with you.

Fiction Friday: Midas’ Daughter – “Show Around”

I’m back with another scene from Midas’ Daughter. This is a pretty short one, and we’re in James’ head as Calla shows him around.

James followed Calla out into the yard. She’d practically disappeared the day before after that meeting in her father’s office. He was pretty sure he’d seen hurt, and possibly humiliation, flash through her eyes before she’d shut it down. He’d almost wanted to tell her he didn’t want her horse. That wasn’t what had caught his eye out there.
It had been her.
And he wanted her. If it took using her horse to have that happen, he’d be perfectly fine with that. She’d learn to get over it.
Her father had been perfectly clear about that. She was strong-willed, and it would take a firm hand to control her. Just like an unruly horse. In fact, that was almost exactly how her father had described her. A creature that needed to be handled, broken, and trained to do what you wanted.
It troubled him, but he couldn’t put his finger on exactly what part caused that reaction. He wanted a woman like his mother. Who his father had molded into just the woman he wanted. Even if it meant breaking her a little first.
Calla described the buildings they were passing. He didn’t really care. They wouldn’t be living here once they were married. He’d move her into his own place. She’d have to get used to it.
She stopped and spun around on him. “Are you paying any attention to what I’m saying? Or are you just watching my…my butt.”
It was kind of cute how she stammered over saying that. That sweetness would definitely serve her well as his wife. But, there were some things she’d have to get used to doing and saying. They had time for that, though.
“I’m paying attention,” he lied. He reached out and stroked a hand down her hair. “Keep on. You have my total attention.”
She scowled at him, and he wasn’t quite sure he’d pulled off the lie. Then, with a sigh, she turned back around and continued on the tour. But, she no longer said more than a cursory description of whatever they passed.
She hadn’t bought it as well as he had hoped. He’d have to get better at charming her. His father was not going to be happy if he screwed up and let this merger fall through.

I may be taking a break from posting from this for May as I’ll be writing short stories each day for the Story a Day challenge. But, I will pick it back up in June most likely.

Fiction Friday: Midas’ Daughter – “James”

I’m back with another scene from Midas’ Daughter. Today we’re back to Calla, who is about to find out just what her father is up to.

“It’s about time.”
Her father didn’t even look at her as she walked into his study. Didn’t take the time to see what she’d done with her hair or that she’d put a dress on. He only knew she’d kept him, and whoever his guest was, waiting.
“Sorry, Father,” she said. “I didn’t know to expect company.”
Her father didn’t respond or even look at her. “You’re almost twenty-one,” he said. “It’s time you took on the duties of this household instead of wasting your time playing with that horse.”
Her throat burned, but she held back the tears. She wouldn’t cry, not in front of her father and certainly not in front of the man sitting across the parlor. What duties didn’t she already do? But, that wouldn’t be the right question to ask. He’d likely list them. Not that it was ever something he’d brought up before. She felt the other man’s eyes on her. She wouldn’t embarrass herself or her father in front of him.
“I understand, Father.” Even though she didn’t. Not at all.
“Good. Your birthday is in two weeks. We’ll be having a party here. The housekeeper and butler have the plans and guest list. Make sure they don’t screw anything up.”
What was she supposed to say? He expected her to oversee her own party. A party she hadn’t even asked for. Likely to prove a point. Or humiliate her when it all went wrong. Did he think she’d done that to him the other night? She’d been trying to help. Why was that so wrong?
Calla kept her hands at her sides but felt them trembling. She wanted to be back out in the stable with Ariadne. And Flip. No, she shouldn’t think about him, she knew he didn’t think about her. Instead, she had to be in feeling like she was a child having her hand slapped. She couldn’t believe he was doing this. What had she ever done to deserve him to treat her this way?
He didn’t wait for her answer anyway. “This is James Adair. He’ll be a special guest at your party. I expect you to show him around until then and treat him with the utmost respect.”
This was all hard to swallow, but she nodded. “Yes, Father.” This wouldn’t give her any time to spend at the stables with Ariadne. Which may be his point. He made it even clearer when he stopped her at the door to the study.
“After the party, you’ll be engaged or he’ll be buying your horse.”
No! She’d almost thought she’d shouted the word, but neither man reacted. They had her whole future planned out for her, and it wasn’t one she wanted. She either got married and got to keep Ariadne, or she’d lose everything. And without a penny to her name until he released her trust fund, there wasn’t anything she could really do. Anywhere she could go to get away from this.
“I understand, Father.” She only wished she didn’t.

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