At that, I wrapped my fingers around his dick and squeezed a little too tight for comfort.

“Noted,” Horse said, smiling against my mouth. “You got a gun?”


I laughed, shaking my head, brushing my lips against his.

“Okay, we’ll take care of that today,” he said, nuzzling my mouth. “Gonna f**k you first though. Honest to God, you wouldn’t believe the checklist I’ve got in my head for us to work through.”

Horse wasn’t kidding about the checklist. We got a good start on it, but after a couple hours I needed a break for food. We ate breakfast together and cleaned up, basking in each other’s presence.

Then he took me out to the barn and I learned Horse wasn’t kidding about the gun either.

“Okay, hold it straight like I showed you. Left hand down low to brace your right. Keep your finger off the trigger until you line up the sights. Good. Now put your finger on the trigger and pull back until it just stops. Double-check your aim and fire.”

I shot the little semi-automatic .22 pistol at the target pinned against a hay bale three times, then pulled my finger off the trigger like he’d taught me and pointed the gun at the ground.

“You like it?” Horse asked, looking pleased with himself. He’d presented me with the pistol like it was a diamond ring or something. Probably best not to think about that too much.

“It kicks ass,” I said, because it did. Firing it made me feel sort of powerful and tough. “But are you sure it’s big enough? Those are really tiny little bullets, Horse. If I’m gonna be a badass biker chick, shouldn’t I have a bigger gun?”

“A .22 was big enough to kill Bobby Kennedy,” he replied, and I stopped smiling and raised my brows.

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“No shit. Honestly, it’s about accuracy, not size, babe.”

“Did I seriously just hear you, Marcus “Horse” McDonnell, tell me it’s not about size?”

“Yeah,” he said, ignoring my little jab. “It’s true it doesn’t have the stopping power that a bigger gun does, but I’d be more afraid of a woman with a .22 who really knows how to shoot than a man with a .45 he bought because his dick’s too small. It’s not like the movies, Marie. A handgun isn’t gonna stop someone in his tracks unless you hit something important, not even a big handgun. You need a shotgun for that. It’s just physics.”

“So even this little thing could kill someone,” I asked, looking at the pistol with new respect. I handed it to him very carefully. “It just looks like a TV prop or something, you know?”

“No shit,” he replied. “I want you to practice with it, really get used to it. We’ll do it every day. Just remember, you ever point this at a person, you shoot it right at his heart and you shoot to kill. Never point a gun unless you’re ready to end a life. And don’t fool yourself that you can shoot them in the foot or some such shit. If it’s bad enough to shoot, it’s bad enough to kill. And nobody’s that good a shot anyway.”

“What about that night at the party?” I asked, my voice soft.

“What about it?” he asked, grabbing another, larger pistol out of his bag and sliding in the magazine with a click.

“You pointed a gun at that man. You didn’t kill him, you shot next to him. But you could have killed him.”

“Yep, I could’ve,” he said. “I got real lucky that night because when he shot near you, he didn’t hit you. Then he got lucky, because I put him in the same situation and he didn’t get hit either. The difference is, he chose to pull his gun on a bunch of innocent women at a party. Then he chose to pull the trigger three times. No excuse for that. He deserved more than he got.”

“You’re scary sometimes, you understand that, right?”

Horse grinned at me, leaning over to kiss my nose.

“Try the .38, little Miss I-don’t-know-if-my-gun-is-big-enough. It’s what I like to carry, big enough to do some damage but small enough to be discreet.”

I picked it up. This one was heavier and my hand shook just a little as I aimed it. I lined up the sights, braced my body with one foot back and pulled the trigger. The pistol bucked and while I didn’t lose control, I didn’t like how it felt either. The gun seemed kind of wild to me, and I decided an even larger one would probably knock me on my ass.

“I see what you mean,” I said. “That one’s harder to hold.”

“Yup,” he said. “And they have more kick as you go up. I’d rather see you with a gun that feels comfortable. Otherwise you might hesitate to use it when you need it. It’s your choice and if I don’t have what you want, we’ll go find it.”

“I want to try the .38 one more time,” I said. He nodded, and I took my stance. This time when I shot, the shell casing flew back and hit my face, bouncing down my neck and into my cle**age.

“Holy shit!” I yelled, dropping the gun and jumping round, trying to shake the hot metal out of my clothing. It slid around, burning me until I managed to pull my bra away from my body and the shell casing fell to the ground.

“Jesus, Marie!” Horse said, picking up the gun. “You drop a gun like that it might go off. You could’ve killed yourself!”

I stood and looked at him, breathing hard.

“The casing burned me,” I said, my voice faint.

“Honey, that sucks, but it’ll hurt a lot more if you shoot yourself. Or me. If you’re gonna shoot me, I want to do something to earn it first. Seems only fair.”

“I think I’ll stick with the .22,” I said, biting my lip. He set down the gun and then shook his head, smiling at me.

“You’re not boring, you know that?”

“But you like that about me, right?” I asked hopefully.

“Yeah, I like it,” he replied, leaning down to kiss me. “Now practice loading your gun so you can shoot it some more. If you ever need it, I want it to be more than a paperweight.”

“Do you seriously think I’ll need a gun? Is life as an old lady really that rough?”

He shook his head.

“Probably not,” he replied. “No more than life is rough for any woman, depending on her circumstances. It’s an ugly world. But if you know how to use one, and you take it seriously, it’s not going to hurt you. You don’t and you need it? I couldn’t live with that, Marie. Shit, you needed it last night.”

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