His eyes dropped to my phone and a muscle worked in his cheek.
“Roarke,” he clipped.
I closed my eyes.
“Dog!” Tack barked and my eyes flew open to see his neck twisted and he was looking over his shoulder at the bays.
“Tack,” I whispered, my hand came up and I curled my fingers in his tee so his head twisted back to me. “I know that you and Hawk… you and me… I know… I…” I shook my head again. “I have to get him back.”
“What’d I say to you?” His gravelly voice rumbled deep.
I blinked. “What?”
“What’d I say to you, Gwen?”
“I… I don’t know,” I whispered.
His hand came up and curled around my neck and it did this tight just before he jerked my neck gently and his face got in mine.
“I said anything for you, Gwen, anything. That means anything. Yeah?”
My eyes filled with tears, I pressed my lips together and I nodded.
“You willin’ to give up Ginger?”
“Do I have to?” I asked.
“You gotta tell me what you’re willin’ to do.”
I closed my eyes and he jerked my neck gently so they shot open again.
Was I going to say it?
I was going to say it.
“Anything,” I whispered, my heart breaking.
He stared into my eyes then he nodded.
Then he let me go and ordered, “Get home. I’ll call.” I nodded but didn’t move and noticed Dog and some other bikers had surrounded us. “Now, Gwen,” Tack prompted.
I nodded again then rushed to my car.
But I didn’t go home.
Because if I was willing to trade my f**ked up sister, who I still loved, for my man, I was willing to do anything.
“Have you lost your f**kin’ mind?” Cam screeched.
My eyes jerked to the commandos who were manning their stations in Hawk’s command center outside Elvira’s office. I’d called the girls for an emergency meeting, both Cam and Tracy were off, Elvira was working so base it was even though I wasn’t sure base was the right place for me.
And I’d just told Cam what I needed.
“Keep your voice down,” Elvira ordered and I looked back at Cam.
“I need you to do it,” I whispered.
“First, babe, that info is not easy to come by and second, I pulled off that miracle and told you and the Feds lost their key witness in three big cases, I’d not only get my ass fired, I’d probably get it tossed into a jail cell,” Cam replied.
Shit. I hadn’t thought of that. Why hadn’t I thought of that? Shit.
Cam providing the intel on Ginger’s whereabouts was out.
Elvira had moved to her computer. “Let me work on this,” she mumbled.
“Work on what?” Tracy asked.
“I’ll pull together a file, talk to some boys, see what they got in places I can’t look. There isn’t much I can’t access but Hawk kept the Ginger shit and therefore the Roarke shit under heavy password. Zero access except him and Jorge. That don’t mean boys don’t know shit and Jorge disappeared this mornin’, off-line. He won’t know I’m tryin’ to hack.”
I looked back out at the commandos. It seemed a skeleton crew but it was business as usual. They didn’t know their boss was hanging unconscious somewhere, bleeding from his ear.
What did that mean, blood coming from your ear?
I shook my head to clear this thought and looked back at Elvira.
“Do it,” I ordered. “But proceed with caution and if you think they can help, you give it to them and mobilize but only if you think they won’t go commando and put Hawk in jeopardy.” Elvira nodded her answer to me but she did it looking at the computer screen and I turned to Cam. “But Lawson doesn’t know, nor Leo.”
“Babe, I love you and I know you care a lot about Hawk but you gotta let the cops in on this,” Cam warned.
“No!” I snapped. “No cops. I’m already taking enough chance with you being here. They’re probably watching me.”
“Oh God, do you think that’s true?” Tracy asked.
“Yes,” I replied immediately and then turned to Elvira. “You get anything, call me, I’ve gotta go.”
“Where?” Elvira asked, her eyes not leaving the computer screen.
“Nightingale Investigations,” I answered.
“Shit,” Cam muttered.
“I’ll come with,” Tracy offered and I looked at her.
“No, babe,” I told her.
“I’m coming with,” Tracy repeated.
“No, Trace, this is dangerous. Stay here, maybe you can help Elvira,” I suggested knowing this wasn’t true.
Elvira’s fingers flew over the keyboard.
“I’m coming with,” Tracy stated again.
“Trace –” I started but stopped when she grabbed my hand.
“I’m… coming… with.”
I stared into her eyes.
Then I whispered, “Okay.”
“Shit,” Cam muttered again.
Tracy sat next to me in my car. I drove and tried to be focused as panic threatened to overwhelm me. Tracy was beeping buttons on her phone.
Then the beeping stopped and she put the phone to her ear.
“Troy?” I heard her say and nearly ran off the road.
My eyes flew to her. “Trace! What are you –?”
She waved a hand at me and I looked back at the road.
Tracy kept talking. “Yeah, listen, now’s not a good time. You know those baddies who were after Ginger?” Pause. “Well, they have Hawk.”
“Tracy!” I cried.
She ignored me. “I know, I know, they want to trade him for Ginger and I need you to do your thing, find any properties owned by Nelson Roarke or any owned by any companies he’s involved with.”
Wow. That was a good idea.
That would also probably ping on some Federal Bureau of Investigation Super Nerd Computer in the basement of some federal building.
“Trace,” I tried again.
“No, of course we’re not going to do anything stupid,” she lied through her teeth.
I closed my eyes then quickly opened them and turned off Speer heading to 15th.