Chapter Sixteen

“Seriously, you would not believe how big it is,” I slurred, leaning forward and holding out my hands for scale.


“That’s disgusting,” yelled Dancer, slapping at me, and I burst into giggles, almost falling out of my chair. “That’s my brother you’re talking about. Stop it before I puke!”

I held my hands farther apart, opening my mouth wide and flicking my tongue at her like a snake. We all exploded into fresh gales and I nearly peed my pants. Potty break time.

“I’m gonna pee. Anyone?”

Em stood up and we stumbled toward the bathroom together. Seriously, I loved each and every one of those girls. I couldn’t imagine why I’d been worried about Horse. Horse kicked ass. In fact, when I saw Horse tonight I was going to rip off all his clothes and give him the best blowjob he’d ever had in his life. And Jeff was going to be fine too, because despite what everyone thought, he really wasn’t totally stupid. I knew that for a fact, just like I knew that I really, really needed just one more shot to make the evening perfect.

Old ladies kicked ass.

A couple of guys met us on the way to the bathroom, one of them holding out a hand to steady me as I lurched into him.

“Can we buy you girls a drink?” he asked, smiling at me. I smiled back. He was kind of cute in a college-freshman way. Horse would eat him for breakfast, I mused.

“Not gonna happen,” came a low voice behind us. I turned to see Painter, one of the Reapers’ prospects, standing behind us looking mean. With his honed muscles, sneer and white-blond hair all spiked up, he was pretty hot. Yum. Oops, too much booze… I couldn’t check out Painter, that was just weird. “You need to step the f**k away from them right now.”

Painter might not have had his top rocker but he was still a scary biker guy. He’d showed up at Horse’s house about twenty minutes after Dancer hung up on Horse and had been following us around ever since. The guys backed away instantly, mumbling apologies. Em turned and smacked Painter’s chest. He grunted and narrowed his eyes at her, but he didn’t say anything. I watched the exchange with wide eyes. Em grabbed my arm and pulled me away toward the bathroom. She slammed the door open, banging it against the wall as she dragged me in.

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“I cannot believe him,” she muttered, walking over to the stall, which was just an open toilet separated from the rest of the room with a wooden partition. “How am I supposed to meet anyone like this? I am never going to find a real boyfriend. Never.”

I swayed, trying to follow her words.

“I don’t get it.”

“Imagine being the oldest daughter of the president of the Reapers MC,” she said. “How many guys do you think asked me out in high school? I had to go to my prom with a prospect. A prospect who wasn’t allowed to dance with me.”

Oh. Now I got it.

“That sucks,” I said, feeling very sage. “But it’s probably better than having some guy take advantage of you.”

My own prom was an excellent example—Gary had been like an octopus on Viagra and I’d been stupid enough to find it flattering.

“I want a guy to take advantage of me!” Em snapped, pulling up her jeans. “You have no idea how many guys’ve ditched me once they learned about my dad. I tried to get away. I even went to college in Seattle. Picnic had his friends over there checking on me. For about three months it was great, and then the rumors started that they’d kill anyone who touched me. You’d think I have two heads or something. I’m a virgin, despite my very best efforts to give it away, and at this rate I’ll be dead before I find a penis to put in my vagina.”

I took her place, pulling down my own jeans and peeing. She made a good point. I decided to tell her that.

“You make a good point,” I said, standing back up. I swayed again, and she laughed, catching me.

“Wow, I think you ate too much jello.”

She helped me over to the sink. I washed my hands and we both took a few minutes to check out our hair and makeup. I thought we looked pretty good—no wonder those guys wanted to buy us drinks. I’d buy us drinks if I was a guy.

“So who would your dad let you date?”

“I don’t know,” she said, shaking her head. “I’m not sure anyone is good enough. He’d like me to be with someone in the club though. That way I’ll never move away from him.”

“Aw, that’s kind of sweet,” I said. “I mean, at least your dad cares about you. I hardly even remember mine.”

She shrugged.

“Yeah, I guess you’re right,” she said. “I guess I wouldn’t trade him. Mom was pretty great too. I miss her.”

“What happened to her?” I asked, and then bit my lip. The booze had apparently dissolved the filter between my brain and my mouth.

“Breast cancer,” she said, clearly not wanting to talk about it. “Long time ago. Let’s get shots.”

“Sounds good,” I replied, following her out the door. Painter stood outside, leaning against the wall with his arms crossed, looking bored. I grabbed Em’s arm and pulled her into me.

“Why does he have to be here?” I stage-whispered. “Are they afraid I’ll run away or something?”

“Oh it’s not personal. They send someone with us every time we go out,” she said, shrugging. “Usually a prospect, but every once in a while Ruger tags along. He’s fun. They don’t want anyone bothering us. That way we can party and they know we’re safe. It’s no big deal, at least not for you because you already have a man. For me, it sucks.”

“So all old ladies get watched all the time?” I asked. “Isn’t that creepy?”

She laughed and shrugged.

“Mostly just when we go out at night,” she said. “It’s a security thing. There are a lot of clubs and not all of them are friends to the Reapers. This is their way of making sure nobody hassles us. Knowing we have a sober ride home. It’s great, unless you’re looking to lose your virginity.”

I giggled and she glared at me, which made me giggle more as we headed back out onto the main floor. Then I stopped, because a tall man wearing Reaper leathers suddenly blocked my path. I looked up, trying to focus. Max.

“Hey, Max,” said Em. “What are you doing here?”

“Just felt like getting a drink,” he said, looking us over with a gleam of approval in his expression. We looked good and Max noticed. Nice. “Talked to Painter, heard you ladies were here. Thought I’d offer to buy a round. You look great tonight.”

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