This was a nightmare. I was going to wake up soon. I had to. I. Had. To. I would wake up back in the compound beside Spider and he would make love to me again before I got up for my run. He hadn’t broken my heart last night. My mother wasn’t dying…
Clara Blackstone’s fingers were so cold against my cheek it physically hurt and I knew that I was awake. Her fingers trembled and I pulled her closer to me, trying to let my warmth heat her up. “I…I have six more months, Willa. Maybe a year if…if I’m lucky.”
The tears were pouring from my eyes so fast I could barely see her face. “But you’ve been taking chemo and radiation.”
“They didn’t help. The cancer is…too advanced. I’m sorry, baby. So…sorry.”
The door to Razor’s Ink Shop opened, but I didn’t bother to look up from the back piece I was designing for Jet Hannigan. The dark angel was going to be very detailed and would require a lot of shading, so I needed to get this right before I started inking it on his back later in the week.
For the last two months I’d been working myself to death. The busier I was the easier it was to keep thoughts of Willa out of my head. Of course that didn’t help when it came time for bed. I had tried to drink myself into oblivion so I wouldn’t dream of her, but that had only made the dreams that much more real.
Two weeks after I’d gotten home I’d tried to call her cellphone. She had changed her number so now I had no way of making contact with her. I knew that she lived somewhere outside of Seattle, but I was fighting with myself about going nomad and going searching for her. I couldn’t breathe right without her, though.
The only thing stopping me was that I knew she hated me. When I had woken up the next morning with two girls lain out around me I’d known I’d screwed up even if I didn’t remember doing any screwing. Cletus had told me that Willa had walked into my room and seen the two females then taken off. I’d fucked up bad and I wasn’t ever going to get that girl back.
“I am officially linked to Satan for the rest of my fucking life.”
I dropped my pencil at the defeated tone in my best friend’s voice. Glancing up, I found him standing at the front counter, leaning on his elbows that he had propped on the glass top. His shoulders were slumped, his head bowed. Last month Tasha had called Bash and told him she was pregnant. She had no idea who the father was, could have been any of up to six guys including The Red Dragons’ sergeant-at-arms her father had offed. She had planned on having a DNA test and Bash had to produce his sample. That had been the end of it. Bash hadn’t seemed to be worried about Tasha’s kid being his.
Apparently he should have been worried, because now he had a huge problem on his hands.
Bash hadn’t been in a good place since before we had gotten home. Raven was avoiding him and I knew that was killing him. The chick had come out and told him point blank she wanted to be his ol’ lady. Guess his way of telling her no had put her off for good. Bash was slowly losing his mind, fucking anything with a vagina that got near him to get Raven out of his head. I could have told him it wasn’t going to work, but now he had living proof what a bad idea it was.
“What are you going to do?” I asked the only question that really needed answering at the moment.
Bash ran a hand over his face. “I told her that I didn’t care what she did with the kid. I’d send her support checks and that was all she was getting out of me.”
His answer had my jaw clenching so hard it started to ache. I wanted to yell at him that with a mother like Tasha to deal with, Bash should take at least some interest in the poor kid. It wasn’t my place though, and I wasn’t sure if I would have been able to say I would be handling this situation any differently if I were in his shoes.
“Are you going to tell the club?”
Bash shook his head. “Not yet. Not until I have to. I can just see Jet getting all holy on my ass, wanting me to get custody of the kid. She’d be better off without a shit father like me.”
I raised a brow. “She?”
“Whatever DNA testing Tasha had done confirmed she’s having a girl.”
“Congrats, man.” I slapped him on the back and then picked my pencil up. “What about Raven? You planning on telling her?”
His face tightened. “She isn’t talking to me right now, so no. I won’t be telling her unless I have to.”
“It won’t be forever, brother,” I assured him as I started on the tattoo once more. “Raven will be eighteen before you know it and you can have what is yours.”
“Yeah, if I survive that long,” Bash muttered as he walked out of the shop.
2 Years Later…
I was going to kill someone tonight.
Frowning at the men sitting around me, I clenched my teeth and tried to concentrate on anything other than the fact that Raven was walking around with shorts on up to her ass and a hot pink bra on under her white Hannigans’ shirt. Didn’t she realize that I had trouble not looking at her when she was wearing her normal work outfit, so it was ten times as hard when she was showing off what only I was allowed to see?
Muttering a curse under my breath, I chugged the half full beer in front of me and practically slammed the bottle down on the tabletop. The secrecy thing was getting to me. Bad. For three months now I’d been sneaking around with Raven and I was tired of it. Tired of not getting to claim what was mine. Tired of having to keep my feelings hidden when all I wanted to do was watch her. Tired of not getting to touch her when every second she wasn’t in my arms I ached for her skin on mine.