“Don’t talk to me like that.”
“I will if it’s true. I saw that letter. He’s just another pussy-chasing asshole, and writing to him in jail is desperate and pathetic. You’re smarter than me, so why don’t you act like it?”
Mellie’s mouth dropped and so did mine.
Then the doorbell rang.
Melanie stomped past me toward their shared room, leaving Jessica standing in the center of the living room, eyes bright with fury. The bell rang again and I decided they were big girls who could figure this out on their own. Grabbing my backpack, I walked over to the door and opened it.
Then I smiled because everything was okay again.
Reese was here.
Christ, but she was gorgeous.
I took London’s hand and tugged her out onto the porch for my kiss, because I didn’t feel like dealing with whatever girl drama was brewing in the cabin. And there was major drama brewing—after raising Em and Kit, I could fuckin’ smell that shit in the air.
Fortunately, the sweet softness of London’s lips more than made up for the girls and their games. My hands found her ass, lifting her up and into my body. As always, my cock was as happy to see her as the rest of me.
Rap music blasted out through the window, all but knocking us off the porch. Just as fast it turned off again.
That’s when the screeching started.
“We have to get out of here,” I growled, dragging London toward my fully loaded bike. Being the clever woman she was, she didn’t argue. Let the girls kill each other—this was our weekend, and they weren’t gonna fuck it up for us.
Five minutes later we were pulling off the road and onto the highway, heading north toward the Canadian border. Over the past month London had gotten more comfortable riding with me, which was great for the most part … Although I sort of missed the way she used to cling to me like her life depended on it. Now she felt comfortable enough to raise her hands, weaving and dancing them through the air as we flew down the road.
Things had been fucked up and tense for a while when we’d gotten back. Some of it between me and her, but mostly just getting shit settled with the club. Painter and Puck were facing jail time no matter how you looked at it, and of the three brothers lost, one had been from the Moscow chapter, ninety miles south of Coeur d’Alene. He was a good man, and I’d known him more than a decade. London had come down with me for the funeral. Our relationship might be new, but she’d earned no small amount of respect when she killed that Medina fuck back at the warehouse.
She’d handled herself well at the memorial, too, and afterward more than one brother asked me why she wasn’t my old lady already.
Hard question to answer.
This weekend wasn’t about answering questions, though. It wasn’t about the club, the girls or anything to do with the cartel. Nope, this was about camping out, spending time together, maybe gettin’ my girl drunk and takin’ advantage of her. Perfect.
It was still early by the time we reached my favorite campsite up on the Pack River. Calling it a river was a bit of an exaggeration, at least this time of year. The Pack was fed by snowmelt, and by late summer it wasn’t much more than a foot deep in any given spot. It meandered through a wooded valley, the central channel running across a wide bed of rounded rocks, small sand banks, and waterfalls two or three feet high at most.
Our campsite wasn’t anything particularly special—tucked away off a dirt road, just a little clearing in the trees with a fire pit next to the river. I’d been coming here since I was a kid.
Had to be one of the most gorgeous places on earth. Couldn’t wait to share it with London.
I set up the fire while she rolled out the sleeping bags. Still too early to light it, which was fine because I had other things I wanted to do. And no, I’m not talking about fuckin’ her, although that was on the list, too.
“You ready for some fun?” I asked, and she smiled back at me.
“What did you have in mind?”
“When’s the last time you shot a Super Soaker?”
She stared at me blankly.
“Water gun, sweetheart. Plastic? Pump it up, water sprays out?”
“I know what they are, Reese.”
“Excellent. I couldn’t carry the big ones on the bike, but the smaller ones are great, too. I’ll give you a head start ’cause you’re new at this.”
With that I pulled out the plastic gun I’d brought for her with a flourish. It was neon orange and green, and it held about two cups of water. More than enough for a good fight, especially since we’d be in the river. Easy to reload.
Her mouth dropped.
“Did you seriously bring me up here for a water fight? I thought this was a romantic weekend?”
I cocked a brow at her.
“Sweetheart, you gotta look at this from my perspective. I shoot right, your T-shirt gets all wet and then I get to roll around with you in the water. Tell me that isn’t romantic?”
London snorted, but I could see a hint of playfulness in her eyes. Yeah, she was on board. I tossed her the gun and turned away.
“You got until I hit a hundred,” I told her loudly. “And you’ll do better if you ditch your shoes. The rocks aren’t sharp but they’re slippery, and there’s lots of places where you can only walk in the water. Now run, unless you want it to be a real short game. Upriver there’s a pool where we can swim, and if you get there before I catch you, you win. If you hit me with your gun, I have to stop and count to ten again. If I hit you, I get a kiss. One. Two. Three. Four …”
Because I’m an asshole, I stopped at fifty. No reason to make it too easy for her.
Turning toward the river, I looked upriver. Couldn’t see her, which wasn’t a huge surprise. The swimming hole was only about half a mile away, but it took longer to get there than you’d think because of the rocks and the way the Pack twisted around. I leaned down and filled my gun, then pumped it up, ready for action as I started up the river.
Five minutes later I still hadn’t seen her. There were a lot of ways to play the game—if she just booked ahead as fast as possible, she’d probably beat me. But that wouldn’t be nearly as much fun, and I knew London.
She wouldn’t be able to resist an ambush.
The first one hit out of nowhere. I’d just come around a bend when cold water slammed me in the side of the head. I heard her laughing hysterically, but I closed my eyes and started counting. Fast. Now I knew she was nearby and I listened carefully for the sound of splashing. When I opened them again, she was still in range, so I lifted my gun and shot her in the back.