Chapter 25 – Castle of Glass
I do not own Twilight, SOA, The Duke, or anything youtube related. RIP Chester. You will be missed. Warning: There is a racial slur in this chapter, because James is a dick and a half. 😉
“What the…” Opie muttered under his breath as he approached the penthouse.
The front door was wide open and the living room looked as if there had been some sort of scuffle. The coffee table was broken, a lamp was lying on its side, and one of the recliners had been flipped over. Opie withdrew his gun and entered the house with caution. It wasn’t until he was near the kitchen that he picked up on the voices. They were coming from the basement. Opie shook his head as there was a trail of blood going down the basement stairs. The door was cracked open, just enough for Opie to squeeze through. He was on edge however as he feared the door or stairs would creak and give him away. He came to a stop once he had a visual. He narrowed his eyes and quietly observed. He counted five Russians, each of them were carrying some sort of automatic weapon. They had the Phantoms down on their knees and with guns aimed their direction. Opie got a better look wondering were Dizzy was. It wasn’t until one of the Russians moved that he realized she was bound to a chair.
“Shut it.” One of the Russians ordered as Kip was beside himself and looking to Dizzy with desperation.
Opie grimaced as that particular Russian clocked him one.
“NO!” Dizzy cried and squirmed about in the chair.
The man standing behind her grabbed a fistful of her hair then forced her head back. Opie was thankful Bella wasn’t with him. She’d be losing her shit if she saw this. The Russian held a blade to Dizzy’s throat and each of the Phantoms recoiled and was begging for Dizzy’s life.
“All she has to do is answer our questions.”
Dizzy rolled her eyes.
“First one: Where is Clay Morrow? Second: Where is Wraith hiding her precious toys? And last but not least: Where is the SAMCRO armory?”
Opie reared back on this. The Russians were after their weapons? But why? It’s not like they needed them. Hell, Clay was making bank off these assholes and no one even knew it. Why would they want them back? Nothing about that made sense. And why were they interrogating the Phantoms, when they had ahold of his niece, just a few hours ago. They could’ve asked her these things. Or maybe they did but she didn’t give in? Was that the real reason behind her being so beat up? Had they tortured her for information and when she didn’t give it, they had no choice but to let her go. Wraith was too valuable to them.
“If you’re going to kill me then do it already. I’m not telling you shit!” Dizzy said and she was socked in the face, directly after.
“Dizzy babe…” Kip pleaded.
Dizzy cut him a look.
“We’re not telling them shit. You got that?! I mean it. ALL OF YOU! WE’RE NOT BETRAYING WRAITH. I’LL FUCKING KILL YOU MYSELF IF YOU GIVE IN! YOU MADE AN OATH, EACH OF YOU!” Dizzy roared with tears streaming down her face.
Opie nodded amongst himself and quietly made his way back up the stairs. He had to think of something, quick, before they used Dizzy as an example. Opie thought back to the garage and the alarm his niece had set up. He knew the breaker box was down there as well. If he could create some sort of distraction; he could help take a couple of them out, while the Phantoms made their escape. That would give them enough time to sneak into his niece’s hidden armory and gather whatever they needed. She hadn’t much left but it would be enough to take these fuckers down. He only hoped they were smart enough to think about that. Opie headed into the garage. He was quick to map everything out. His plan? To set off the car alarms, and kill the lights, by flipping the breaker. He’d be waiting right by the door and he’d shoot whoever entered the garage. If he could take out at least two, that’d better the Phantoms chances. The only one he was skeptical about was Dizzy. She wasn’t going anywhere. He’d have to make his way back to the basement, in order to get to her.
“…fuck…” he whispered amongst himself.
He’d call the boys but knew he hadn’t the time. The Phantoms would be dead by the time they arrived and his niece would go back to that catatonic state of hers. He recoiled in thought. No. He had no choice but to handle this one himself. Opie knew if he could set off one car alarm the others would be triggered as well. He remembered his niece bitching about how annoying that was. But now? That could work to his advantage. Opie tilted his head and made his way over to the nearest car. He jiggled the handle to the back door a few times and sure enough the alarm went off. It wasn’t long before it triggered the others to go off as well. He shook his head as it was loud as hell. But that’s what he needed. He couldn’t afford to be made. The Phantoms lives were counting on it. He headed to the breaker and flipped every switch he found. Just as soon as the lights were off, he carefully made his way back to the garage entrance. He had his gun aimed and ready to go.
He could hear the Russians hollering and throwing a fit. One of them called out some sort of order and Opie could hear them scurrying about. It wasn’t long before one of them entered the garage. They were waving a flashlight around and looking for the breaker. Opie waited knowing it wouldn’t be long before another entered. Just as soon as he heard the creaking of the stairs Opie fired. He hit the one coming down first then one at the breaker. Thanks to their flashlights he hadn’t that hard of a time making them out. Opie was quick to kick their weapons under one of the cars. He listened with attentiveness before making his way back up. Once he felt as if the coast was clear he inched his way out. He could hear someone making their way around the kitchen. But he hadn’t a clue if it was a Phantom or a Russian, so he couldn’t very well shoot. There were several footsteps heard along the second floor. Opie nodded amongst himself knowing those must’ve been the Phantoms heading to his niece’s hidden armory. Opie took extra precaution as he headed into the basement. He knew there was going to be one or two men left with Dizzy. They wouldn’t leave her alone. He only hoped to have the element of surprise on his behalf. There was no telling when the lights would come back on. Opie made his way down and it became a true struggle to find his way around. He just knew he was going to bump into one of those fuckers, any minute. Opie came to a stop as he could hear the two talking. He could tell that they too were listening, by the way they were whispering to one another. Opie stood perfectly still and merely waited. A solid minute passed before the lights came back on. The two Russians jumped and went to fire only to have Opie beat them to the punch. He was so focused on them, he hadn’t taken notice of the remaining Russian. He had snuck into the room and Opie looked over to see that he had a gun held against Dizzy’s head. Dizzy and Opie locked eyes and the both of them jumped however as a gun went off. This was followed by another shot directly after.
“Holy shit!” Opie shouted as he lifted his eyes and Kip gave a simple nod.
Dizzy shrieked out as she was covered in the guy’s brains. Opie tilted his head however wondering where that second shot came from, it was right after Kip fired.
“FUCK!” Opie hollered and was quick to throw his gun down.
Dizzy looked down in alarm as Opie held his hands over the wound.
“NO!” Kip shouted and ran on down the stairs.
When Kip fired the Russian must’ve had his hand on the trigger still. So when he fell the gun went off and the bullet hit Dizzy in the shoulder. Opie didn’t mention it but they were lucky it didn’t hit her in the head, and end her right there. He knew Kip was trying to save her but he could’ve cost Dizzy her life. You don’t ever shoot at someone that has a gun planted firmly to someone else’s head, not unless you plan on taking them out as well. This was a golden rule amongst anyone carrying. Kip knew this too as to why Opie didn’t get why he was so careless. He lifted his eyes however and could see it on his face. The kid knew he screwed up and big time. His eyes were as big as saucers as he looked to his gun then back to his girl.
“Opie…” He muttered looking downright ill.
“She’ll be fine. I need you to get your ass over here and help.”
Kip nodded looking like that of a ghost.
“I wasn’t thinking… I just acted.” Kip murmured as if reading Opie’s mind.
Shit… poor kid knows he nearly got her killed. Nothing worse than that. Opie thought amongst himself as Kip was beside himself. Opie had Kip replace his hands with his own. He patted him on the shoulder afterward.
“Keep her awake and talking.”
Kip nodded and went on to apologize to Dizzy, repeatedly. Opie was quick to take off his cut and he used the over shirt he was wearing to tie around the wound. The Phantoms entered the basement and had their guns in hand. Opie gave a simple nod.
“Late to the party… maybe next time.” The VP scoffed and the Phantoms looked to the Son in disbelief.
“You took them all out, by yourself?!” Derk questioned and Opie forced a smile.
“Didn’t Tig tell you?”
“Tell me what?”
“Well they don’t call me the Duke for nothing…” Opie was full of shit and knew it but he couldn’t help it. He felt the need to lighten the mood a little.
Besides these Phantoms were about the same age as his niece and each of them were pretty shaken up. They were all beat up and nervous wrecks. To Opie they were nothing more than kids with guns and he couldn’t help but to have that paternal instinct around them. Opie finished with the wrap then scooped Dizzy up.
“Where you taking her?” Kip asked.
“I’m coming too.”
“Then you’d better hurry it up.”
The other Phantoms looked to Opie as if lost as he was making his way out of the basement. Opie let out a reluctant sigh.
“Alright you little punks you can tag along to. But don’t get in my way.”
“What about the bodies? We can’t just leave them. That will backfire on all of us!” Dizzy scoffed and Opie froze in place.
“You want your niece to face life in prison?”
“Dammit… please tell me you have a place.”
Dizzy smiled, in a rather mischievous way.
“Of course we do.”
“Then I’ll call some of the boys.” Opie looked to the Phantoms.
“You two stay behind and help.” He said as he pointed to Eric and Derk.
Things were a little awkward as Dizzy sat up front with Opie. Kelly and Kip were sitting in the back. Opie shifted gears as he headed for the cabin.
“We don’t know where she is…” Dizzy admitted with this look of defeat.
Opie said nothing on this as he wanted to know just how far Dizzy would go with this. He kept his eyes on the road and with this stone faced appearance. Dizzy wiped a few tears off her face then looked out the window.
“I shouldn’t have listened to her. We shouldn’t have left her side.”
Opie cleared his throat and popped a cigarette into his mouth.
“What do you mean left her side?”
Dizzy went on to tell him about the mysterious racer and how it went from there. Opie nodded and rolled his window down. He lit his cigarette then took a long drag.
“So you think this Nomad guy took off with her?”
Dizzy nodded and Opie regarded the other two through the rearview mirror. They too were in tears and had these shameful looks about them. Dizzy covered her face with both hands and broke into sobs.
“We got her killed.” She cried and Opie saw the way Kip grimaced.
That grimace was followed by tears, and looking downright pissed.
“So Bell told you that she’d been made and you just went along with whatever she wanted…” Opie uttered and Dizzy nodded.
“If I could go back…”
Opie slammed on the brakes and cut Dizzy a look of hell. He hated what he was about to do. But these kids needed a rude awakening. Sure they had a bit of one with Wraith “missing” and the Russians showing up at their door. But that wasn’t enough… No. They needed to know HIS wrath.
“IF YOU COULD GO BACK YOU’D WHAT?!” He growled with tears of his own.
He was gripping the wheel so tight his knuckles were turning white. The VP’s face was beet red as he stared his niece’s wingman down.
“YOU’D WHAT, HUH?” He barked once again.
“I’D TAKE HER PLACE! THAT’S WHAT! I KNOW I FUCKED UP!”
“DO YOU?!” He thundered as a car passed them.
Opie ignored this and continued in staring Dizzy down.
“YOU GOT MY NIECE KILLED. YOU AND THAT PIECE OF SHIT CREW OF HERS. EACH OF YOU TURNED YOUR BACKS AND GAVE INTO HER WISHES. THE WAY I SEE IT? YOU WERE HER FUCKING VP AND WHAT IS THE VP SUPPOSED TO DO?! WHAT IS THEIR NUMBER ONE JOB?!”
Dizzy lowered her head on this.
“To keep their president alive.” Dizzy softly answered and Opie nodded.
“If that had been Jax… I wouldn’t have turned my back to him. No matter how much he ordered me to do so. Because that’s not my job. My job is to advise him, the best way I can, and if he’s facing death… then so am l. Each of you should’ve been standing there, alongside of her. Ready to take on whatever was coming, but no. You left her alone, to face those fears, and to deal with whatever she had coming.”
Opie narrowed his eyes as Dizzy took out her gun and started to aim it at herself. Opie was quick to knock it out of her hand.
“You don’t get to do that. That’s the easy way out.”
“WHAT THE FUCK?!” Kip hollered once he realized what Dizzy was about to do.
Dizzy just sat there and Opie sighed.
“She’s alive…,” he whispered in such a way.
Opie kept his voice down as he went back to driving and revealed what really happened.
“FUCK!” He shouted afterward.
Dizzy had decked the living shit out of him.
“YOU HAD US BELIEVING SHE REALLY DIED!” She sobbed uncontrollably and hit him once again.
Kip had to lean over the seat and hold Dizzy back.
“You bet your ass I did. Each of you needed a rude awakening and I’m just the one to give it. That’s my little girl’s life you’re playing with. I don’t care how fucking old she is or what the fuck she wants to do with her life. That’s her business. But it becomes my business when her so called crew is fucking her over. I’d do the same thing with the Sons if they were pulling this shit with Jackson. You guys need to buckle down and face reality. You’re into some heavy shit here. Now I know it’s not your faults. Not a single one of you wanted to get in bed with the Russians; I know my niece sure as hell didn’t. But you’re in and there’s not shit you can do about it now. Each of you needs to stick together on this. Bell calls you her family and she goes on about how she would die, for each of you. Well it’s time you start paying it forward and do the same for her. I get that you’re all young and got your heads up your asses half the time. But you can’t afford to do that anymore. We Sons know more than ANYONE what it means to be in bed with fuckers like this. And unfortunately, so does Bell. She’s been dealing with shit like this since she was just a kid. That girl knows all about fearing for her life and it’s been a constant battle. But she’s in way over her head now and that’s where you guys come in. She needs you more than ever. So it’s time for you to pull those heads out your asses, grow the fuck up, and realize that each of your lives are at stake. Wraith’s more than anyone’s. All it takes is one little fuck up and BAM> She’s gone. And there isn’t shit any of us can do about it after that. So how ’bout we fix this, while she’s still alive. Let’s avenge her while she’s here, rather than waiting for her to be six feet under. I’m not ready to say goodbye. I’ve done lost my wife and I’ll be damned if anyone touches my kids, that includes Bell!”
Opie cleared his throat and handed Dizzy’s gun back.
“Not a word of this leaves this truck. I mean it. If my niece knew you were about to take your own life. It’d kill her. She loves you. So don’t ever pull that shit again.”
Kip shook his head as he eyed his girl down.
“Looks like you two need to talk some shit out. Don’t be too hard on her, Kip. A lot of emotion goes into being the wingman. Dizzy’s under a lot of pressure. So just keep that in mind when you have that talk.”
Kip looked to Opie and was rather stunned. Opie had never referred to him by his real name before. Still, he was rather hurt that Dizzy would take her own life like that. Opie however understood. If Jax had died and he knew it was his fault… He’d wanna take his own life as well. But he wouldn’t for the sake of his kids and Bella. It would cross his mind however to pull that trigger and be done. No matter what hell Jax put him through, when it came to his niece. Jax truly was his little brother. Blood or not, Opie didn’t see it any other way. As to why it felt so awkward when he found out about him and Bella. He had to keep in mind that to Jax, Bella wasn’t family, at least not in that sense.
“Heard you needed a little hand…” Tig said as he was at the door with Happy.
Derk nodded and Tig wiggled his brows.
“So whatcha need, baby?” He seductively whispered and Derk gestured for him to follow.
Tig and Happy looked to one another then to the bodies Derk and Eric had gathered.
“Not quite the hand I wanted to offer.” Tig said with disappointment.
“Help us with these and I’ll give you whatever the fuck you want.”
“Anything…?” Tig uttered and Derk nodded.
“You got it!”
Happy sighed as he hunkered down.
“Guess that explains why he was so adamant about bringing the van.”
“It’s a good thing we’re not taking shots on these body counts.” Tig said and Happy chuckled.
“We’d be fucking wasted!”
Derk looked to Tig in question and Tig sent him a wink.
“Heard you got a place?”
Happy wasted no time. He flipped one of the bodies over his shoulder and headed to the van. Eric grabbed another but let out a grunt.
“Fat fucker…” he whispered and Tig chuckled as they watched him drag the body outside.
Tig came to his feet then leaned into Derk’s ear.
“I want this…” He murmured and grabbed a handful of Derk’s ass.
“I’m talking marathon, with you screaming my name.”
Derk raised his brows on this.
“Is that all?”
“I’ll take a milkshake afterward.” Derk swallowed back on the meaning behind that.
“For reals?” Derk asked.
Tig tilted his head as Derk had a hard on from hell.
“Damn baby… You’re making me wanna drop down and suck it right here.” But as he said this Tig felt a pang of guilt. He hadn’t realized just how much he received and hardly gave. He felt like a dick. He never intended for things to be like that. But Derk brought out this rather dominate side to Tig and he found himself giving into those animalistic needs. Tig however was rather curious. He wasn’t about to take it up the ass that was Derk’s role. But he didn’t mind giving some head. In fact, he’d be lying if he said the thought didn’t turn him on.
“Not with me around.” Happy remarked as he and Eric had made their way back inside.
Tig let out a disappointed sigh.
“Are you two going to help or talk about sucking each other’s dicks all night.” Happy mocked.
“I prefer the second option.” Tig said as he and Derk worked together in lifting one of the bodies.
Once they finished Derk went on to search the Russians wallets etc… Tig reared back as he pocketed whatever money he found.
“What are ya gonna use that for?”
“Wraith.” Derk said with a shrug.
Tig tilted his head on this.
“But we’re helping you.”
“And I already said how I’d pay you.” Derk handed Happy a couple bills.
“She thinks I don’t know… But she takes home less than anyone. It’s not right.” Derk muttered.
“Really?” Tig questioned in surprise.
“Yeah… She’s been doing it since day one.”
Happy overheard this and looked to be in thought. He said nothing as he handed the money back. Derk looked to him in question as Happy and Eric went on to load the last couple bodies.
“Buy the boss something pretty. She deserves it.” Tig said with a smile and Happy gave a mere nod.
“Happy…” Derk uttered with a look of guilt.
“Hey now, he don’t just do that for anyone. Take it, kid.”
“Would you stop calling me kid… It’s creepy.”
“Don’t tell me you’re not a Humphry Bogart fan.” Tig said and Derk looked rather astonished by this.
“You’ve watched Casablanca?!”
“You bet your ass I have.”
Derk managed to smile.
“Wonders never cease…”
“Hm and I’ll call you whatever the fuck I want, dollface.”
Tig looked to Derk in question as they pulled up to a farm.
“Friends of Wraith’s…” Derk said with a shrug.
“Okay…” Tig uttered and looked to Happy with concern.
Happy shrugged as well as Derk and Eric hopped on out of the van. Happy and Tig stayed back by the van as the two went to knock on the door. An older man stepped outside and the three of them talked for a couple minutes. Once they finished, the older man nodded upon Happy and Tig. He made his way over then shook hands with them both.
“And what has she got for me today?” The farmer asked and went on to open the van doors.
He smiled as if delighted by what he saw. Tig and Happy shrugged upon one another. Derk took notice of their odd behavior and chuckled.
“He’s a good friend of Wraith’s. We’re in good hands.” Derk did his best to assure.
“Pull her up to the barn.” The farmer called and Derk and Eric nodded.
“And I thought us Sons were twisted…” Tig uttered and Happy smiled.
They hopped back into the van and did as requested. Once they pulled up Eric and Derk went on to unload the bodies. Tig and Happy helped but hadn’t expected what happened next. The farmer stripped the bodies down then took an electric saw to them. Once he had them prepared the way he wanted; he threw them into an industrial meat grinder.
“SICK!” Tig hollered as the bodies were turned into literal hamburger meat.
“Where can we get one of those?!”
The farmer looked over and Tig had this look of hope in his eyes.
“I’ll give ya one.” He said with a shrug.
“Yeah, why not. I owe Wraith my life. I don’t mind givin’ ya one of my older models.”
The farmer nodded and went on to mold the meat into actual patties.
“What are you plannin’ to do with that meat?” Happy curiously questioned.
“Keeps the coyotes away from my cattle…” The farmer taunted with a wink.
Derk chuckled then leaned into Tig’s ear.
“He gives that shit to the ex-wife. Some sort of court order about sharing whatever meat was made using the cattle.”
“No shit…” Tig uttered in thought.
“Oh yeah. Bitch cheated on him then took him for all he had. He had to start over from scratch. The only thing he was allowed to keep was the cattle and this farm. She got everything else. She made some sort of false claims of abuse, as to her excuse for cheating on him.”
“Does Wraith know about this?”
“Who do you think came up with the idea?” Derk uttered.
Tig thought he was joking but reared back in shock when he saw that Derk was dead serious.
“Shit… Better hope our prez never pisses her off.”
“Right?!” Derk said but with a look of admiration.
“You’ve got a bit of a dark side to you as well, don’t you?” Tig remarked and Derk smiled.
“You never know…” He said with a shrug.
“God, I love you.”
“I know.” Derk uttered over the sound of the farmer grinding chopped up body parts.
“That VP of yours really came through. I can see why you call him The Duke.”
Tig narrowed his eyes on this.
“Yeah… You know because of his gun skills.” Derk said with a shrug.
“He took out four men on his own. And I bet he would’ve taken out the fifth if Kip hadn’t beat him to it.” Derk said looking to be in awe.
Tig felt a touch of envy. That and he couldn’t wait to give Opie Winston a little hell over that fib he told Derk.
“The Duke, huh…” Tig muttered under his breath.
Few hours later…
Tig looked to the time and shook his head.
“I take it we still got a mess to clean up?” He tiredly questioned as they were heading back.
“Yeah…” Derk said with a frown.
“We’ll supply the booze.” Eric said with a grin.
Derk laughed and Happy cocked a brow.
“Did someone say booze?”
“Oh yeah, Wraith would be pissed if we didn’t show our hospitality.” Derk uttered.
“Alright, so whatcha got?”
“A little bit of everything.” Eric said with a shrug.
“Nice. Guess we’re crashing at your place tonight.”
Chibs and Jax shot to their feet, the moment Opie entered the cabin with Dizzy in his hold.
“We need you.” He said with a firm nod towards Chibs.
Chibs nodded in response and Jax led them into a room. Opie laid Dizzy down on the bed and Chibs put on his glasses. He recoiled once Dizzy revealed the area.
“Aye, that’s gonna be a tricky one…” He admitted.
“But you can help her?” Kip asked as he entered the room.
“I’ll do my best.”
Dizzy looked to Jax in desperation.
“She’s here, right?”
“Don’t let her see me. Please. She can’t know about this, she’d freak.” Dizzy pleaded.
“That’s probably for the best.” Opie uttered in agreement.
“I agree. That’s the last thing she needs. Look, I’ll head into the room and make certain she stays put. But you gotta do your best to stay quiet. She’s just a couple doors down.” Jax stated.
“I can do that.”
Chibs lifted his eyes on this.
“Are ye sure aboot that lass? This isn’t goin’ be to pretty.”
“I’ll help. Just tell me what to do.” Kip offered and Chibs gave a reluctant sigh.
“Alright. But I guarantee she’s gonna need something stuffed into that mouth of hers. No way she’s gonna get through this one without the urge ta scream. Bullet’s in pretty deep. And I can’t promise that you’ll be able to use that arm the same way again. This is a little out of my expertise to be honest. I’m used to pluckin’ bullets but the way this one’s launched… Ye must’ve been hit at close range.”
“She was…” Opie and Kip chorused.
Chibs narrowed his eyes wondering why Kip looked the way he did. Poor kid looked as if he were about “done” himself.
“Alright, ye go and keep Bella distracted.”
Jax nodded and headed on out. He shut the door behind him and Opie and Kip stayed behind in order to help with whatever Chibs needed.
Jax entered the room quietly as possible. Bella was still out. He cringed however as he swore she looked worse than before. Jax took off his cut and shirt then lay beside her. He looked over however as Bella had tears in her eyes and she was crying the name Angie. He wondered if that was Bella’s name for Angela – The best friend that was raped and killed, right before her very eyes. Jax swallowed back as her hands were balled up into fists and she looked to be in some sort of struggle. What he wouldn’t give to enter her dreams and put an end to all this. Jax rolled onto his side facing her then he reached over and took her hand. He placed his hand along the area of his heart.
“I’m right here, sweetness.” He whispered.
To his surprise her body seemed to relax and her breathing grew steady.
“There you go…”
Jax placed a strand of hair behind her ear and kissed her. It wasn’t long before he too was out.
“Shite…” Chibs muttered as the bullet didn’t want to budge.
He looked to Kip and Opie and shook his head.
“She’s aboot ta be in a lot of pain and I can’t promise she won’t go and bleed ta death on me. Maybe we should be thinkin’ about a hospital instead.”
“And what would we tell them?” Kip questioned.
“Not sure but…” Chibs started to say but froze.
“Wait…” He looked to Dizzy as he finally had a good hold on the bullet.
“Ye ready… This is gonna hurt like hell and yer gonna bleed like a stuck pig.”
Dizzy nodded and Kip placed a hand over Chibs’s.
“Maybe we should rethink this. I can’t lose her.”
“I’ll be fine.” Dizzy did her best to assure.
“You two need ta make up your minds I’m gonna slip if I have hold this much longer.”
“Just do it.”
Kip went to argue this but Chibs gave into the young woman’s wishes and yanked it out.
“Shit…” Opie hissed and was quick to place his hands over the area as it was squirting blood.
Chibs shook his head and was quick to place the bullet onto the tray. From there he did whatever he could think off to solder the wound and stop the bleeding.
“Dizzy…” Kip called with concern as her eyes rolled into the back of her skull.
“Don’t let her die, man. Please.” Kip pleaded with tears streaming down his face.
Chibs didn’t comment as he was too busy. Opie placed a bloody hand along Kip’s shoulder.
“She’ll be fine.” He did his best to assure.
Chibs lifted his eyes on this but said nothing as he was doing everything he could think of. An hour had passed and the Scot was wrapping everything up. He used his forearm to wipe the sweat of his brow.
“Dizzy…” Kip called as she stopped breathing altogether and her lips were turning a nice shade of blue.
Chibs tilted his head and went on to check her vitals.
“Ah shite…” He mumbled and was quick to push Opie and Kip out of his way.
Chibs hopped onto the bed and straddled the young woman. He shook his head and started chest compressions. Opie was quick to grab ahold of Kip as he was losing it. Opie himself was tearing up, as he watched Chibs doing whatever he could to bring her back. Chibs gritted his teeth and kept pumping. The three of them let out a breath of relief when Dizzy shot up with a gasp. Kip broke out of Opie’s hold and grabbed ahold of Dizzy. Chibs raised his brows as he was still straddled over her. Opie chuckled on how awkward that looked from where he stood. The sergeant overheard this and cursed under his breath as he crawled on down. He cut the VP a look and Opie merely shrugged.
“Don’tcha even think it.” Chibs warned.
“Too little too late.” Opie taunted.
“Ye bastard.” Chibs uttered but with a bit of a smirk as he took off the gloves he was using.
He grabbed a cigarette and shook his head on the way out of the room. Chibs was just about dead on his feet. He needed to get some fresh air or they’d be scooping his sorry ass off the floor here soon.
The following morning…
“Whoa…” Gemma said and was quick to brace Bella against her.
“Sorry…” Bella uttered looking a little embarrassed.
“None of that now.” Gemma said and went on to feel for fever.
“Don’t.” Bella said and Gemma forced her into a chair.
“Jax would be pissed if he saw you up and walking around. He told you to stay in bed.”
Gemma handed Bella a bottle of water and some pain killers. Bella hadn’t a clue about the Phantoms arrival, or that they were passed out, in the room where Dizzy was recuperating. Everyone kept it hush hush for now.
“What are these?” Bella asked.
“Magic beans. Just take them.”
Bella went to pop them into her mouth but Gemma stopped her.
“On second thought… I got something even better. Follow me, sweetheart.”
Gemma handed Bella her jacket and they headed outside. Bella struggled with the jacket as she was swollen and sore to the touch. She followed Gemma towards the lake and they sat on a bench. Gemma opened her purse and Bella reared back as she pulled out a couple joints.
“You’re kidding me…” Bella whispered and was looking around the area.
“Oh please, don’t start acting all goodie-two-shoes now.”
“What if someone sees us?”
Gemma raised her brows on this.
“Like who? The boys? You think they give a shit if we’re smoking a little weed?”
“Guess you have a point.”
Gemma handed one of them over and a lighter as well.
“Nice and slow at first. Don’t overdo it.”
“Alright…” Bella murmured with a shrug.
“You’ll be feeling pretty good in about ten minutes or so.”
Bella choked back and hit at her chest as she took her first hit.
“Fuck, that shit’s potent.”
“That’s because I get the best!”
“I believe it…” Bella said while her eyes batted about.
“Ten minutes?” Bella scoffed as she was already feeling the effects.
Gemma smiled as she took a hit off her own.
“Man…” Bella murmured as the area around her started to spin a bit.
“Took too much on your first go.” Gemma murmured.
Bella closed her eyes and laughed.
“That almost sounds like a that’s what he said joke.”
“Are you getting pervy with your future mother-in-law?”
“Maybe…” Bella murmured and took another hit.
“What are you two doing?”
Gemma cleared her throat and lifted her head. Jax was standing behind them and shaking his head upon his mother.
“You gettin’ my old lady high?”
“Does it look like I have a gun to her head?”
Bella patted the area beside her. Jax took a seat and Bella was looking him over. He narrowed his eyes as Bella reached out and brushed his hair back with her fingers.
“You’re pretty…” She said with a goofy grin.
Gemma busted out in laughter.
“I’m pretty, huh?” Bella nodded as if it were a matter of fact.
“Well darlin’, you’re quite the knock out yourself.” He took the blunt from her hold then took a drag off it.
“Neither of you are winning any beauty contest anytime soon.” Gemma scoffed as to their beat up faces.
“Just being honest.”
Gemma reared back as Bella was petting Jax.
“Do I need to give you two a moment?”
“Couldn’t hurt…” Jax taunted with a wide grin.
Jax sent his mother a taunting glance and wrapped his arm around Bella.
“Alright…” Gemma said then came to her feet.
She grumbled under her breath and headed back inside. Jax pulled Bella into his lap and both let out a few painful grunts here and there. Jax sighed once he got her positioned.
“This sucks…” He uttered and Bella nodded in agreement.
“We gotta nurse one another back to fucking status.” He said as they were sharing the rest of the joint.
Bella laughed in response and Jax pecked her on the lips. He took another hit afterward but breathed it into her mouth. He couldn’t help but to find that a bit of a turn on. He’d never tried that before. He smiled as Bella was off in another world and looked to be in peace for once. Both of them looked as if they had been thrown into the ring with Mike Tyson. Jax wanted to be a little more passionate. But knew it would hurt like hell if he kissed her like he usually did. He himself wasn’t feeling that great and it was taking some effort just to hold her. But he welcomed the pain and pulled her into his chest.
“I love you.” He whispered and kissed the top of her head.
“We should get married.” She teased as she as half out of it.
Jax couldn’t believe how mellow she was. But he found it rather adorable. She had her hands all over him and was extremely loving. If it wasn’t for them being so sore, he’d have taken her right there. He kept this in mind as a future reference. He wanted to see how far she’d take things on a good day. Seeing his old lady high wasn’t so bad. Not that he wanted her to make it a habit. But Bella could afford to let loose every once in a while. Jax lay down and had Bella curl up beside him. She ran her fingers along his chest and had this grin like she hadn’t a care in the world. If only… He thought. Jax was determined to get her there, without the whole being high part of it. He swallowed back in thought and kissed her once again.
“Do you really think I’ll be a good mother?”
“The best…,” he said without a doubt.
“Do you think Abel will hate me when he finds out I’m not his biological mother?”
Jax narrowed his eyes wondering what was going through that mind of hers.
“That’s not even possible. It doesn’t matter if you gave birth to him or not. You are his mother and that’s how he’ll always see you. Abel loves you, don’t ever question that.”
“I just want to make you both happy.” She mumbled and her eyes came to a close.
Jax went to comment on this but Bella was already out.
“We’re after the same thing, darlin’.” He whispered as to wanting to make her and Abel happy as well.
Tig stretched his arms about then looked to the time. He reared back seeing as how it was nearly noon.
“…fuck…” He whispered as Derk was passed out beside him.
Tig chuckled as he had his hand around his dick still.
“That your pacifier or somethin’?” He whispered amongst himself.
Tig grabbed himself a cigarette off the nightstand and brushed Derk’s hair out from his eyes.
The man shook his head at the sight. He couldn’t get over just how sexy Derk was. He adored that boyish charm of his as well. There was just something about Derk’s innocence that pulled Tig in. Tig never felt this protective of anyone in his life. And never did he dream that he’d end up with a fucking man. But there was just something about Derk. He somehow satisfied all of Tig’s desires. That and it helped that they were both bi. That gave them plenty of fantasies to play around with. Tig couldn’t help but to wonder what it would be like… Bringing a woman into the room. He grew hard in thought. But that’s how he knew this wasn’t some fling. Tig was somewhat concerned that Derk would enjoy the woman’s entertainment, a little too much. Tig reared back on his own thoughts.
“What the fuck?” He whispered with a frown.
What a stupid thing to get jealous about. Of course he’s going to enjoy the company of a woman. So would he. What the fuck is there to get jealous about? But no matter how much Tig tried to convince himself there was nothing to worry about, those thoughts poured in and he couldn’t control them. In fact, he was on the verge of a panic attack. Would Derk leave him for someone else one day? Would he grow bored of him? Tig knew there wasn’t a chance in hell that he’d grow bored of Derk. But Derk was half his age and Tig felt as if he weren’t anything special, not in comparison to what Derk could get. He wasn’t an idiot. Derk was fucking hot and Tig hadn’t any doubt that Derk was hit on, constantly, by men and women. But even with that thought toying around with his jealousy, he found himself even harder. That’s right… He had a little trophy boyfriend, fucking arm candy even.
Derk rolled over in his sleep and Tig ran his fingers along the tattoo his father had left behind. He shook his head in thought. Everytime he saw that, he wanted to kill the son of a bitch all over again.
“Easy…” Tig murmured and had to pry Derk’s hand away from his dick.
“Getting a little too attached. Even he needs a break.” Those were words Tig never imagined he’d say.
But truth of the matter the two fucked like rabbits when they were together. He wasn’t lying about that marathon he promised and he did indeed get that milkshake at the end. Tig licked his lips in thought. He never imagined that fucking another man could be this hot. But then again there was more behind it and he knew that. Tig knew he’d do whatever it took to make things work. He couldn’t stand the thought of not having Derk in his life. If that meant giving up pussy then so be it. Not that he wanted to but he’d be damned if he went and ran Derk off. Even Tig was smart enough to know a good thing when he had it. He’d never been in love before, not like this. So it was messing with his head. Tig wasn’t used to being monogamous with anyone.
Tig snuck on out of the bed and let Derk sleep for a little longer. He entered the living room to find Happy passed out on the couch. He had a bottle of whiskey in hand. Eric had fallen asleep, in the recliner, with his sketchbook. It looked as if the two spent all night talking about tattoo designs as there were quite a few sketched out in Eric’s notepad. Tig hunkered down and gave Happy a little shake. Happy let out an unpleasant grumble. He frowned when he saw that it was Tig and rolled back over.
“Come on, bro. Need you to do me a favor.”
Happy flipped him off and stayed put.
“Look, do me this solid and I’ll give you three hundred bucks and a dime bag.”
“What’s in it?”
“Your fav…” Tig hinted and Happy opened his eyes.
“So what’s the favor?”
“Think you can meet me at the shop, in say a couple hours, with your guns ready?”
Happy showed that he was already carrying and Tig nodded.
“Not those guns. I need some ink, brother.”
“You want another tat?”
“It’s not for me.” Tig stole a glance towards the stairs where Derk was sleeping.
He softly explained what Derk’s father had done and wanted to know if Happy had any ideas on how to cover it up. Happy sat up with a nod and Tig handed him a smoke.
“I’m sure I can come up with somethin’.”
Happy gave a mere nod and scratched the area of his crotch. Tig had this apprehensive look about him.
“So you think less of me too?” He muttered and Happy narrowed his eyes in confusion.
“Wha..?” He said while taking a drag off his cigarette.
“You know…” Tig did his best to hint and Happy shrugged.
“What you do with your cock ain’t none of my biz.”
Tig nodded looking somewhat relieved.
“I’m gonna go home and hit the shower. See you back at the shop.”
Happy headed on out and Tig welcomed himself to Wraith’s fridge. He started pulling out whatever looked appetizing and went from there.
Bella was off in another world as she stuffed her face. She took no notice of Chibs. He had entered the cabin and was sitting right beside her at the dining room table. He just sat there and watched while she ate. She’d gone through an entire bag of chips, two sandwiches, a couple pickles, half a dozen cookies, and she drank three bottles of water.
Chibs just sat there in utter amazement wondering where all that food went. Jax and Opie entered the house and saw Chibs’s face. Opie looked just as lost but Jax broke into a fit of laughter. Chibs cleared his throat on this.
“Imma thinkin’ ye got yer wish after all.” The Scot muttered and Jax looked to him in question.
“She’s gotta be knocked up eatin’ like that.”
“Do what?” Opie damn near growled.
Jax had this wide eyed presence about him and he shook his head as if to scold Chibs.
“Did you really knock her up?!” Opie growled.
“No man, she’s fucking high!” Jax defended but it was then he realized that sounded just as bad.
“HIGH?! BELL, ARE YOU FUCKING HIGH?!” Opie roared and Jax grimaced.
“Oh man…” He whispered and was quick to step between her and Opie.
“Don’t. I mean it, Op. It was just a little weed. Don’t kill her buzz with that shit. You’ve smoked, plenty of times!”
“HOW?!” Jax challenged and Opie stumbled on his own words.
“It just… well it’s different!”
“That’s so fucking lame. Give the girl a break, Op.”
“I agree. Yer too hard on her.” Chibs defended.
Bella leaned back and looked to the three of them.
“Why is everyone yelling?” Bella uttered as she was still a bit out of it.
Opie sighed and went to grab a cookie. Bella slapped his hand away.
“These are mine. Get your own, Uncle Op!”
Jax covered his mouth, in order to keep from losing it.
“You can’t let me have one cookie?” Opie said looking offended.
Bella shook her head and held the bag close to her chest. Bella was cute as hell when she was high. Jax thought with a big as grin. It was nice seeing her like this. After everything she’d been through he welcomed this, wholeheartedly. Opie seemed to notice this as well and he himself was smiling.
“Fine. Eat your goddamn cookies. I’ll find something else.”
Bella nodded and stuffed another one into her mouth.
“Mamee! Dadee!” Abel called as he and Gemma entered the cabin.
They had been outside playing. Bella smiled and handed the bag of cookies over.
“Oh sure, he gets the rest of the bag!” Opie scoffed.
Bella went to lift him up but couldn’t, her body was too stiff and sore. Abel pouted in response.
Opie took notice and lifted him onto the table.
“Thanks.” Bella uttered and he gave a simple nod.
Abel kicked his feet about and happily dived into the bag.
“Mamee got owie…,” he said whilst biting into a cookie.
“Dadee got owie…,” Abel frowned as he looked to the both of them.
Jax and Bella looked to one another.
“We just had a little accident but we’re okay.” Bella said with a forced smile.
“That’s right, little man. We’re fine.” Jax said.
Abel nodded and kissed Bella’s booboos.
“So much better.”
He nodded and stuffed another cookie into his mouth. Bella cleared her throat then came to her feet. She gestured for Chibs to watch after Abel. Jax recoiled as she headed into the bathroom. He could see it in her eyes, she was on the verge of tears. And he knew why… Jax kissed the top of Abel’s head then headed towards the bathroom as well.
“It’s me…” He said after knocking on the door.
The door opened and he gave a simple nod, before stepping inside and pulling the door to.
“We can’t keep doing this. It could’ve been Abel or Gemma…” Bella said with a look of absolute horror.
“I know, baby. Trust me. I know how serious this is.”
“We have to send them somewhere. I’m sorry, Jackson. I can’t stand the thought of Abel going into hiding. But it has to be done. They were targeted, as a threat, and if anything ever happened…”
“I know. Trust me. I thought the same thing.” He said with a sigh.
“We send them some place safe, until we get this shit sorted out.”
“Agreed. One hundred percent.”
“Don’t be. I knew this was coming and you’re right. We can’t take that chance. I almost lost Abel once. I won’t go through that again.”
Bella nodded and Jax pulled her into his arms.
“I won’t lie. I wish I could send you with them. I don’t like the idea of you being in danger. Handing you off to the Russians, just in order to play along with this sick game of theirs… has me on fucking edge. Whatever you do, just promise me you’ll stay alive. Be smart and watch your back. And we’ll be doing our best to watch everything else. I won’t lose you. I mean it, Bella baby. We get through this, together.
Jax nodded and the two of them teared up, with the thought of having to send Gemma and Abel away. But Bella was right; this wasn’t a chance they could take. Abel wouldn’t survive a run in with the Russians. It was bad enough they had his mobile bugged. And even though it killed her to say it, Jax knew it was the mother in her talking. And it was the father in him that saw this coming. In fact, he knew this on the way to the cabin. He knew Gemma and Abel wouldn’t be heading back to Charming with them. He only hoped they could wrap this up, before too much time went by.
“What if he forgets me?” Bella sadly asked.
Jax placed his hands along her cheeks then looked her in the eyes.
“He won’t. I promise.”
“I say we take him to some fancy neighborhood with a shitload of candy. Then we send him off with my mother. They can head to my grandfather’s place.”
“Sounds like a plan.”
“All of this will be behind us when they return. I give you my word.”
“It’s our word, Jackson. We’re in this together.”
“You got that right, darlin’.”
“You alright there?” Happy asked as he was about halfway there.
Derk nodded and looked down to see that Happy was done with the dragon part of the tat and moving onto the tribal part around it.
“Lookin’ good.” Tig murmured as he handed them both a beer.
“How you holdin’ up?”
“I’m okay.” Derk said but with a grimace as Happy got back to it.
“Dude!” Derk called as he felt another sting going across his arm.
Tig laughed as Eric started another one on his arm.
“We thought it’d be cool if the tribal design went from your arm, on down to your abdomen.” Eric said with a shrug.
“Warn a guy next time. Jesus Christ!” Derk grunted as Happy and Eric were tag teaming him now.
“I hope you have something stronger than that fucking beer!”
“On it!” Tig said and skipped off.
“How you feeling, kid?”
“Been better, been worse.” Bella uttered and Piney nodded as he sat beside her.
Piney tilted his head as Bella had taken the cellphone Mr. Putlova had given her apart. She’d this confused look about her as she was in attempts to piece it back together.
“You could say that…”
“Why don’t you start with telling me what you’re doing in the first place?”
“Looking for a bug.”
Piney nodded and swiped everything over towards him. Bella narrowed her eyes as her grandfather looked everything over. Then he put it back together.
“Everything’s legit.” He said afterward.
Bella let out a breath of relief. But she jumped as the cellphone sounded and the ringtone was Let Me Put My Love Into You by AC/DC. This gathered everyone within the room’s attention. That included Piney, Opie, Chibs, Jax, and Gemma. Bella closed her eyes and picked up the phone.
“Such a beautiful voice…”
Bella shot up at this.
“I thought the song rather fitting, didn’t you?”
Bella darted outside the cabin.
“What do you want?”
“What do I want…?”
Jax had exited the cabin, just in time to hear her say his name. The president froze and listened in.
“Hm… Call to me again, sweetness.”
Bella recoiled as he sounded just like Jax. In fact, she thought that very thing when she saw him by the jewelry store. He used the same terms of endearment and accent.
“You’re not him. So don’t even try it.”
Jax tilted his head on this.
“Don’t play dumb. I know what you’re doing and it isn’t going to work. You can talk like him all you want but you’ll never be him.”
“You claim that all you want. But think about it… Same eyes, hair, height, build… I’d even go as far as to say he’s got the same dominating personality.” James taunted and Bella sneered at this.
“He’s no rapist.”
“That you know of. Trust me. It’s been on the back of his mind I’m sure. I bet he’d love nothing more than to giving you a good choking, while he’s got that cock of his buried within you. Right, Sweet thang?!”
Bella staggered back on his words.
“You’ve been watching us…” She whispered in downright horror.
“You’ve been a very bad girl, Isabella. You broke my heart. You were supposed to wait. But I heard you let that Injun fucker fuck you and by the time I found you, you were on your knees blowing some biker. I wanted to be mad. But when I saw the resemblance… It was easier to forgive. Being the patient man I am, I waited and merely watched. You’re submissive as a little kitten, letting him lead you around, and all while calling the shots. I find that rather intriguing, considering our history. It’s like you pretended not to enjoy what you were seeing. But deep down… You’ve been fantasizing about it, haven’ t you? You wanted to know what it felt like. My little ballerina wants a man that will force her to her knees, tie her up, and teach her a lesson. And all before getting the thorough fucking of a lifetime. We’ll darlin’ as he puts it… He’s lame in comparison to me. I can give you all those things. I will make you scream, like no other.”
Jax could pick up bits and pieces of what was said but not enough to know everything. What little he did pick up, had him on edge. This guy was going out his way to play the sickest of games.
“So here’s what you’re going to do. You’ve got two days. If you do not return to Charming by then, I will hunt you down. And trust me if anyone and I do mean anyone gets in my way; I will end them, where they stand. It’s time for us to pick up where we left off. I’ve a whole night planned for us. But not to worry, I will find you and I can be quite the romantic. Are you more of a jewelry or roses kind of girl?”
“You’re the stalker, you tell me.”
James chuckled on this.
“Adrenaline it is… I’ll give you a night you’ll never forget.”
And on this note he hung up. Bella reached to her heart and leaned against a tree. Jax recoiled as she struggled to catch her breath and was having another attack. Bella patted herself down and retrieved the pills from one of her pockets. But when she opened the bottle, the pills scattered everywhere and that only set her off. She dropped to her knees, in a panic, and was picking the pills up. Jax inched on over and hunkered down beside her. He said nothing as he helped. Bella lifted her eyes once she took notice of his presence. He gave a simple nod and placed the pills back into the bottle. Bella started to say something but all that came out was wheezing. Her eyes watered over and Jax was quick to grab ahold of her. He had a fistful of her hair as he brought her against him and rocked her.
“Shhhh…” He whispered as calmly as possible.
That was no easy task, considering Jax was on the brink of hunting the fucker down. Jax had no choice but to literally stalk his old lady now. It was a joke at first but now… Her life depended on it. He knew this James guy would be in the shadows and he’d yank her up, first chance he got. Jax had to find a way of beating him to the punch. Jax scooped her up then placed her onto the bike he kept at the cabin. He said nothing as he started the bike and hit the road. They spent a good hour just driving. That was the only therapy he could think of, besides sex and as much as he wanted that, neither of them was quite ready for that. It was killing him just to keep the bike balanced. And even though he loved having his old lady’s arms wrapped around him, it hurt like a bitch. Jax was certain the Niner’s broke a couple ribs and he knew for a fact that Bella had a few broken ribs herself.
Jax pulled into a nearby rest stop and parked the bike. He was cautious as he spun about and faced Bella. He stuffed one of the pills into her mouth and had her swallow it down. That was the whole reason for the ride. There was no way she could take that pill with the amount of wheezing she was doing earlier. The ride did just as he’d hoped. Bella leaned into his chest and Jax closed his eyes as they held one another. No words were needed on this one. Jax had his mind made up and there would be no stopping him. And he didn’t see the point in repeating what was heard. She’d been through enough. Why make her relive it? He gave her another half hour before they headed back.
Piney was waiting for them out front when they got there. Piney made his way over and hugged his granddaughter and Jax. He let them know he was heading on back. He didn’t want Juice running things back at the shop by himself for too long. Sure, he had a handful of prospects with him but half of them had their heads up their asses.
“I’ll send Happy your way. Let Tig know I want him here at the cabin. Bella needs a couple days, at least.” Jax hinted as to him wanting all the protection his mother, Abel, and Bella could get.
“I can’t stay long.” Bella whispered as she thought back to James’s phone call.
“We’ll be back in time…” Jax hinted in return and Bella narrowed her eyes in question.
Jax said nothing on it but gave her hand a bit of a squeeze. That was his way of letting her know…
“Jaysus…” Chibs whispered once Jax told him about James’s phone call.
“That’s where I need you to come in. I’m gonna be on practical 24/7 watch with Bella. But I can’t let her know that either. I’m gonna need you to cover for me. Opie’s sure to ask questions. But this has to be me, Chibs. I made her a promise and I don’t intend on breaking it. All I can do is ask for Opie’s forgiveness, afterward.”
Chibs nodded and looked to be in thought.
“So this James fella’s involved with the Russians?”
“It seems so. I haven’t a clue how or why exactly. But there’s certainly something there.”
“He really went all out on findin’ out whatever he could about Bella and Wraith…” Chibs uttered but with a look of concern.
“Something on your mind?”
“I’m just wonderin’ what’s in it fur him? Money? Weapons?”
“Bella…” Jax put out there and Chibs tilted his head on this.
“You think so?”
“Yeah. I think this fucker’s working for them, with the promise that Bella will be handed off to him, personally.”
“Big red bow and everythin’?”
Jax nodded looking rather ill.
“Ye maybe right. But what happens when ye take out one of their own? Ye know that’s sure to stir the pot, when their personal racer comes up missin’.”
“The pot’s been stirred already. I’m not about to let some other man fuck my girl.”
Chibs raised his brows as he gathered the cruel hint Jax had given.
“Come on, Chibs. Don’t tell me you wouldn’t do the same for Fiona and Keri.”
The sergeant was quick to snatch his VP, by the collar of his cut. Jax wrapped his hands around Chibs’s wrists as he lifted him up off the ground.
“I don’t get that option and I won’t ever get that option. Don’t ye go and make the mistake of comparin’ apples ta oranges because we’re not in the same boat. Ye got a girl that loves ya and wants ta be around ya.”
Chibs shook his head then placed him back down.
“I love ya, kid. But don’t ye go and say some shite like that again. I’m not yer enemy. So don’t ye go and guilt me on somethin’ I haven’t any control over. Ye know I wanted them here, more than anythin’. But Fiona and Keri weren’t havin’ it. They want ta be in Ireland, with Jimmy. I’m not aboot ta rip them away from the life they want. But don’t ye go and act as if I don’t give a shite. Ye know nothing, kid!”
Jax lowered his head in shame and Chibs walked away.
“Shit…” Jax uttered as a familiar pair of boots came into his vision.
He lifted his head to see Opie coming out of the corner. The look on his face was a good indicator that he’d heard everything.
Opie said nothing as he made his way over.
“If you’re going to do this. Then he better suffer. I mean, Jackson. Don’t put a bullet in his head and be done. Do it right.”
Jax swallowed back as Opie gave him a brotherly slap across the cheek.
“Don’t disappoint me.” He said before walking away.
Jax just stood there for a moment. He looked to his patch then shook his head.
“How long have you guys been here?!” Bella asked as Dizzy and the others were sitting before her now.
They looked to one another and shrugged.
“What happened to you?” Bella asked as her Phantoms were all beat up.
Dizzy cleared her throat on this. She told Bella the truth behind the attack but left everything else out, as that was the deal they’d made with Opie.
“The Russians got ahold of you?!”
Dizzy nodded but gestured towards Bella’s uncle.
“He saved our asses.”
Bella cranked her head back and Opie gave a simple nod.
“You saved my crew?” She asked and just as Tig and Derk had entered the cabin.
“That’s right, he saved them.” Tig uttered a certain way then smiled Opie’s direction.
“What is it we call you? The Duke, right?”
Opie flinched on this and the Sons were rolling in laughter.
“The Duke?!” Jax muttered with his arms wrapped around his gut.
Opie sent Tig a look of absolute hell.
“What? It’s what we call you, right pilgrim?”
Bella herself managed to laugh and her uncle shot her a glance.
“Sorry uncle Op, but I was always more of an Eastwood fan.”
“Are you now?” Jax said with this mischievous grin.
“Well darlin’, do you feel lucky? Do ya?”
“Alright… That’s enough.” Opie uttered looking downright miserable.
“Life is tough, but it’s tougher when you’re stupid.” Jax quoted The Duke with a wink Opie’s direction.
“Talk low, talk slow, and don’t say too much.” Tig added another quote and Opie sighed.
“Okay, I got the point.”
Bella was laughing so hard she had tears streaming down her face. Despite being pissed that everyone having a good laugh at his expense. Opie welcomed it, in the sense that Bella was laughing. This couldn’t have come at a better time. It only sucked that he was the butt of the joke.
“Thank you.” Bella said wholeheartedly once everything calmed down.
Opie nodded. Bella popped a cigarette into her mouth and was searching for a lighter. Opie whistled out then tossed his zippo over. It was the same one she stole from him last time. Bella lit her cigarette then went to toss it back. Opie held up a hand in protest.
“Hold on to it.”
Bella smiled in response. She knew this was her uncle’s way of saying all that shit was behind them now. And that alone meant the world to her. Bella said nothing as she made her way over and hugged him. Jax nodded amongst himself, as he caught this, from the corner of his eye. He was holding Abel and talking to his mother. The president was glad to see that things were officially patched up between his old lady and best friend.
“Where are Ellie and Kenny?” Bella asked and Opie flicked his ashes into a nearby ashtray.
“Juice picked them up last night. He and the prospects are looking after them. Figured it best to keep them at the clubhouse, for now. Can’t rip them out of school. It would raise suspicions if we did. Pops is on his way there now and I’ll be heading back in the morning.”
“You could head back now…”
“I’m not leaving you, kid. Besides, Ellie and Kenny made it perfectly clear they felt as well.”
“You told them?!”
“Not all the dets but they needed to know.”
“Hey, you know the code. There are somethings family has to know. That’s no different in this case. To me you are one of the kids. I don’t care how fucking old you are. If you’re in danger, I’m gonna be there. Ellie and Kenny are in good hands. I promise.”
Opie cleared his throat as one of Bella’s cuts reopened. She had this annoyed look about her and placed a napkin up against her lip.
“You probably need that stitched.”
“I look like the bride of Frankenstein as it is.”
“Well, Halloween is just a couple days away…”
“Funny…” Bella uttered as she headed for the bathroom.
Bella lowered the napkin and shook her head.
“Goddammit.” She whispered.
She was having the hardest time getting her lips to heal. She could still make out the punctures where they’d sewn her mouth shut. Bella gathered everything she needed, knowing she hadn’t a choice. That and she didn’t wish to scar more than she was going to already. She let out a painful yelp as she drove the needle through the area. Chibs had walked past and reared back at the sight of Bella stitching herself up.
“Ye need some help there lass?”
Bella’s eyes darted his direction.
Chibs shook his head and entered the bathroom anyhow. He lifted her up on the counter, put his glasses on, and took over.
“I said I had it.”
“Aye… But I’ve nothin’ better ta do.” He said with a smile.
“You look exhausted.”
“So do ye!”
In order to reach the area he was sewing, he had to stand between her legs and was pressed up against her.
“Sorry…,” he whispered as she flinched at the piercing of the needle.
“That should do it…” He uttered after placing a couple more in.
“I bet ye don’t scar much.” He said whilst cupping her chin and looking her over.
It wasn’t until they heard Jax clearing his throat at the doorway that they realized how awkwardly close they were. Chibs hand one hand up along her thigh and the other was still planted along her chin.
“Can’t leave you alone for a minute…” Jax teased and Chibs was quick to remove his hand from her thigh.
He hadn’t realized he placed it there to begin with. The Scot took a couple steps back.
“She’s all yours now…” Chibs lightened the mood with a wink Jax’s direction.
“She better be.” Jax said as he entered the room.
Chibs patted Jax on the shoulder then headed on out. Jax went on to check her over.
“That’s gotta smart.” He said as to the area Chibs had stitched.
“Not the greatest feeling in the world…”
Jax kissed the area then brushed her hair back with his fingers.
“Mom’s fixing everyone something to eat.”
“I should help.”
“No. You need to rest. Mom said so herself.”
“Quit being so difficult. You’d be doing me a favor by not arguing and taking care of yourself.”
“Fine…” She grumbled, like that of a child.
Jax chuckled on this.
“I’d punish you if we weren’t so beat up.” He murmured and was kissing along her neck.
“Oh yeah… I’m talkin’ about pulling those tight pants of yours down, bending you over this counter, and spanking that little ass.”Jax growled out the last part.
He cocked a brow however as he had a hard on.
“Huh… guess he’s back.” He said and gave her a little teaser.
“Great, I’m giving myself blue balls.” He said behind a moan.
Just rubbing against her like this had him riled up, beyond belief. But he didn’t want to push things too far and wind up hurting her. No. He needed to hold off until she was ready. Jax cleared his throat and forced himself to stop. Jax helped her down then lifted her shirt, just enough to see how she was healing.
“We really should get some ice on that.”
“You’re one to talk.”
He smiled in response.
“Fine. We’ll take a dip in an ice cold bath later.”
Bella frowned in thought. Jax laughed knowing how much she hated cold baths and showers.
“You’re swollen and bruised all to hell. It’ll help. Besides, I’ll be right there to keep you warm.”
“I don’t think that’s how it works when we’re both freezing.”
“Either way, I’m not leaving you alone. You could fall down or pass the fuck out.”
Jax tilted his head as he tested one of her rib areas. She let out a small gasp and Jax sighed.
“I knew it… it’s broken. We need to tape that one and…” He tested another suspected area and Bella nearly fainted at just the smallest touch.
“Damn baby… I’m sorry.”
“It’s okay…” She said while holding onto him for dear life.
Her face was awfully pale. Jax was quick to sit her at the dining room table. He grabbed an ice pack and went in search of the tape in Chibs’s medical bag. He taped the area of his own broken rib then went on to tape Bella’s two.
“All he has darlin’.” He uttered while showing her he hadn’t much choice.
Bella ran her fingers along the area.
“So hot in pink.” She teased and Jax chuckled.
“I’ll have to keep that in mind.”
Abel walked on over and raised his shirt too. Jax laughed.
“You want some tape too, little man.” Abel nodded and Jax went on to give him a little strip on his tummy as well.
“There you go. Now we all match!”
Abel smiled and showed Bella the tape on his tummy. Bella gave the area a raspberry and Abel giggled.
“Mamee…” He scolded while shaking his head.
Bella patted her lap and Jax helped Abel climb on up.
“Careful, mommy’s still got some owies.” Jax explained and Abel nodded.
“Otay. I no hurt her.”
Jax nodded and roughed his hair up a bit.
“You’ll protect mommy, right?”
“Good deal. I’m counting on you, Abel!”
Abel hugged Bella then leaned against her, lovingly. Bella kissed Abel’s forehead and wrapped her arms around him. She and Jax locked eyes and nodded amongst one another. They knew tomorrow wasn’t going to be easy, letting Abel go like that. That and Gemma hadn’t a clue what they were up to. Jax had to break the news here soon.
“I got a couple grand on me…” Bella softly said and Jax nodded gathering what she meant.
He took out his wallet and counted five hundred. He frowned in thought.
“That’s not near enough.”
“Whatcha need?” Opie asked as he’d picked up on this.
“We gotta send mom and Abel out of town for a bit. They’re gonna need some cash. Mom doesn’t know about this yet…”
Opie nodded and took out his wallet as well.
“Not much…” He uttered as he handed over a couple bills.
“Thank you.” Jax sincerely put.
“I’ll pay you back once we get into town.”
“Don’t worry about it.”
“If we were back in Charming I could get ahold of more, easily.”
“I’m sure we can find a way of mailing it, discreetly.”
Jax nodded in thought.
“I’ll figure it out.” He said as he joined her and they soaked up whatever time they could get.
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