He walked over to the kitchen window, hearing laughter coming from the back yard. Jeremy Parsons smiled as he watched his next door neighbor gently pushing the baby in the swing as he giggled back at her. Tara Knowles had been beautiful in high school, but now as a grown woman, she was radiant, especially playing with little Abel. He was well aware of the story of Jax and Tara, having spent four years of high school with the on again off again couple, a typical cliche love story from the beginning. They didn't make sense to him then and even now as adults, it was even more baffling. Feeling her hands wrap wound his waist, he smiled realizing how damn lucky he was to have the woman standing behind him.
"Good afternoon." spoke Emily as she hugged her husband of almost five years noticing what he was looking at. "You crushing on the hot doctor next door?" she asked before turning toward the refrigerator for her favorite white wine.
Looking down at his humorous wife, he rolled his eyes at her obvious joke. "Did you drug yourself while you were out running errands?" as he turned around, keeping the petite woman in his arms. "Tara Knowles is a beautiful woman" pausing to tuck a strand of hair behind her ear, "but she doesn't even come close to my gorgeous wife."
"Good save, hubby." reaching up to kiss him soundly on the lips. Looking back out the window, she couldn't help but feel sorry for her next door neighbor. "Are you sure she was back over there last night?"
He was absolutely certain of it. "Trust me. This isn't something I'm happy to be right about." as he continued to rub her back. "Any chance you think Tara knows?" trying to be an optimist.
Emily truly loved the man she married and his ability to try and see the good in everyone. "No sweetie. There's no way that Tara knows she's been coming over. She's home way more than he is, so why doesn't she come over when it's just Tara at home." as she looked up at her husband. "No I'm afraid that Jax Teller hasn't learned a damn thing."
Checking her list one last time, she looked up in time to see the butcher walking back toward her.
"One two pound beef tenderloin as requested." as he handed the fresh meat over to Olivia. "Thank you so much. I really appreciate you cleaning it for me."
"It was my pleasure." smiled Bill, before removing the gloves from his hands. "Hope you enjoy it."
"Thanks again." as she turned pushing her cart toward the front to checkout.
He was parked a few rows over from her SUV. Although in plain sight, he blended in with the surroundings as he watched and waited for her to come back out of the grocery store. His heart rate sped up seeing her exit the store as she pushed the shopping cart to the black Range Rover, quickly unloading her bags into the back.
Time was no longer on his side. The deadline of having her locked away at the compound was fast approaching and he wanted his own time with her before turning her over. With his sunglasses covering his eyes, he drank every inch of her in, as his hand started to slowly stroke his jean covered crotch. Like a lion stalking his prey, he weighed the odds of just grabbing her, but he knew it was too dangerous this out in the open. No, he'd stick to his plan, but it had to happen soon, or all of his hard work and preparation would be for nothing. Watching her slide into the driver seat, he smiled. "It won't be long now."
Walking out of his bathroom, he ran the towel over his freshly shaved head as he walked toward the dresser. Pulling the top drawer open, he found it empty with not a single pair of boxers. He quickly closed the top drawer, deciding to check the second, only to find socks. "What the fuck?" questioning out loud as he made his way back toward the bathroom, to find the laundry bin empty except for the clothes he took off before his shower. Knowing she was expecting him around seven, he had no option but to go commando. Slipping on his jeans, it dawned on him that's where his clothes were as someone knocked on his door. "Yeah."
It had taken Tig Trager almost an hour of scrubbing in the shower before he was rid of the last trace of oil. "If I never see a damn Chevy Tahoe it will be too fuckin' soon." twisting the cap off a beer.
Pulling the clean t-shirt over his head, "You layin' low tonight?" asked Happy as he watched Tig shake his head.
"Me, Chibs and Bobby are headin' over to the rib joint." watching as Hap slipped his boots on. "When you leavin' for Bakersfield?"
"Early Sunday afternoon." as he noticed the time on the clock. "I'll be at Olivia's if anything comes up." quickly finishing the beer before tossing it into the bathroom trashcan.
She couldn't help but give her self a pat on the back at how well the beef tenderloin had turned out. As simple as it was to fix, she hadn't inherited her Nana's amazing cooking ability, so she breathed a sigh of relief that it wasn't ruined. Leaving it covered on the stove, she noticed the potatoes still had a few minutes, which gave her enough time to change before he got there.
Having a mental catalog of her entire wardrobe in her head, she knew what needed as she stepped into her massive walk in closet. Stripping off her worn yoga pants, she slipped on her favorite pair of jeans, complete with rips in several places and a dark gray razor back tank with a compass on the front. Shoes weren't an issue considering he let her know he wanted the two of them to stay in tonight, but being the fashionista she was, even a quiet evening at home required simple jewelry of her favorite diamond stud earrings. With a quick check of her make-up, she brushed her long hair, deciding on a casual top knot bun. Stepping back into her closet, she took in her appearance in the over sized mirror leaning against the wall. "Definitely casual."
Unable to keep the smile off her face, she quickly made her way out of her closet and down the hall toward the front door. Pausing just briefly, she recomposed herself so she didn't look like some silly high school girl going out on a first date, before she unlocked the door watching as he appeared on the other side.
Like clockwork, the instant he laid eyes on her, he felt a calming peace wash over him. Taking in her appearance, he smiled back at her, thankful she enjoyed a quiet night in as much as he did.
"Hey." he replied as he closed and locked the door behind him. Turning back toward her, he put his hands on either side of her waist, gently pulling her to him. Lowering his lips over hers, he could taste the cherry Chapstick she had recently put on. "Something smells really good."
Smiling back up at him, "Dinner's ready. You hungry?" she asked having no desire to move from her current spot against him.
"Starving." as he placed another quick, yet thorough kiss on her lips.
An hour later with the kitchen spotless, she lounged back against him with her legs stretched out in front on the couch. Watching as he put his now empty beer back down on the ottoman, she felt his right arm tighten around her waist. "Rough day?" Happy asked hearing her sigh against him.
"Actually it wasn't that bad." turning her head to rest her cheek against his chest. "Just enjoying the quiet."
It was a rare occasion for her to have a quiet evening at home, even more so to have a completely private night with her dinner companion. Her days consisted of constant interaction and conversation with people, not that she didn't love her job, but to have some peace and quiet was a gift and she intended to take full advantage, especially considering it was his request for the two of them to stay in.
She surprised him constantly, and tonight so far was no exception. With the club's focus on completing every gun order with no hiccups, there was little to no room to allow his mind to shut off, but somehow she always made it happen. Olivia Parker was classy and sophisticated, a woman that most would assume needed to be wined and dined, but he had learned over the past two and a half months, that she wasn't the diva her beauty and appearance lead people to believe. As much as his outlaw life ran effortlessly through his veins, a life he had no desire to change, he couldn't deny that his time with her had become something that he not only enjoyed but wanted.
"It is nice." he replied closing his eyes content in feeling her nestled against his chest as he absentmindedly stroked the fingers on her left hand.
Looking down as his large hand traced her fingers, she wondered if he was nervous about his mom's upcoming surgery, but decided against bringing it up. Knowing first hand at how stressful it was having a parent dealing with cancer, she didn't want to bombard him with questions if he didn't want to talk about it. Noticing that his hand was now resting over hers, she gently turned her head to look up at him and smiled. For someone who could no doubt terrify the devil himself, he looked so peaceful sleeping on her couch. Turning her body more into his, she closed her eyes feeling his arms tighten around her.
The unusual sound of laughter filled the typically subdued house. Since marrying Opie just two months ago, Lyla had gained some ground with the kids, although tension between them remained constant. She was even pleasantly surprised that her relationship with Opie had just recently improved, at least sexually. The past few days had been like a repeat of their brief honeymoon and she was enjoying every minute. They had rechristened just about every surface in the house...except the bed in their master bedroom. They may be sharing the queen size bed, but so far, only for sleeping. Lyla wasn't delusional to think that he didn't still love Donna. She wasn't naive to not understand that had Donna not died in a car wreck, she wouldn't even be in the picture, but she was doing her best to understand why he was unable to have sex with her in the bed they had once shared. It wasn't that she didn't feel sympathy for him with losing Donna, she just wanted to know that at some point she wasn't going to have to live in the shadow of his first wife. Shaking the never ending questions from her mind, she gathered up the laundry and headed toward the basement.
Finding more dirty clothes in the laundry room, she started sorting the piles, deciding to get Opie's work clothes done first. She truly did love her husband but she hated his habit of leaving his boxers inside his jeans when he took them off. Separating the last pair, she tossed the blue boxers into the washer, then shut the lid. As she put her hand on the knob, she noticed the red stain on her fingers. Quickly reopening the washer, she grabbed the boxers back out, instantly confused. Opie hadn't said anything about getting hurt, nor had she seen any wounds on him, considering they had spent the majority of the past two evenings naked. Thinking she was worrying over nothing, she was just about to toss them back in, when she noticed the red stain on his shorts. As she turned them inside out, she noticed that it was on the front. Looking back at her hand, she rubbed her finger through it, suddenly realizing it wasn't blood. It was lipstick.
They both were startled awake by someone knocking on her door. He pulled her tighter into him as he reached for the Kimber on the floor beside of him, instantly on guard. Olivia turned, looking up at him as he placed his finger over her lips, whispering back to her. "You expecting someone?" as he brushed his thumb over her bottom lip.
She just shook her head, letting him know that she didn't know who was at her door. With a quick glance toward her door, she felt him move from behind her. Watching as he flipped the safety off his gun, he bent down, his face just inches from hers. "Stay here." he stated as his lips brushed against her ear before quietly making his way to the door.
Peering out the peep hole, his body relaxed with the unexpected guest now identified. He looked back at her, seeing she was now fully awake, before he unlocked and opened the door.
"Jax?" he stated now staring at his VP.
"Hap. Olivia." said Jax, addressing both of them. "I hate to interrupt your night, but I need you on something."
With the portable monitor in her hand, she pulled the door almost closed, praying he stayed asleep. She had spent the past two hours doing her best to get Abel to do down for the night, who had decided he wanted no part in it. Tara had gone over every possible scenario that might be wrong with the ten month old. No fever, no new teeth coming in, his belly was full, when she concluded that his Teller temper just wanted to rear it's head.
Walking back into the living room, she heard his motorcycle pull into the garage, noticing it was a little after nine. She placed the half empty bottle back in the refrigerator as he walked in the kitchen.
"Hey." as she greeted him warmly with a kiss as he held her by the waist.
Staring down at her, he gave her one of his trademark grins, "Hey yourself." he spoke before pulling back from her. "Let me grab a quick shower to get the road off me." giving her another quick kiss before disappearing down the hall.
After another quick glance into Abel's room, she made her way into their bedroom, hoping for some adult time with a certain VP. Between her hectic schedule at the hospital and his runs, they hadn't had any alone time in almost two weeks. As she settled into bed, she heard the shower turn off. Turning on her side, she patiently waited on him to finish and join her.
Wrapping the towel around his waist, he stepped out of the shower and wiped off the mirror. Staring at his reflection, he looked as tired as he felt. Physically he was fine, nothing some sleep wouldn't fix, but mentally was another story. Even though he knew the situation could blow up in his face at any moment, his confidence that he had the delicate arrangement contained outweighed the risks. His mind drifted to the woman currently in his bed, curiously wondering what lecture she was sure to give him the minute he walked out of the bathroom. Deciding to give himself some more time, he pulled out his shaving kit from underneath the sink. Running a hand across his two day stubble, "Yep, time for a shave." replied Jax to himself.
Apparently she wasn't the only one in Charming in need of something sweet. With at least four people in front of her, it allowed her adequate time to study the menu, now unable to decide between peach and strawberry. Maybe I should get both thinking quietly to herself as the line moved in front of her.
"Hey. Olivia, right?" came a voice behind her.
Hearing her name, Olivia turned coming face to face with Sam. Trying her best not to look too shocked, "Sam. Hi. How are you?"
"Good. I'll be even better once I get a double chocolate milk shake." replied the blond doing her best to not check out the hot brunette standing in front of her.
"I understand that. My dilemma is trying to decide between peach and strawberry."
"Fruit just want cut it for me. I need chocolate, and lots of it."
Olivia laughed, "I've never been a big chocolate fan, plus a fruit shake can't count as dessert, right?"
"I like the way you think." commented Sam, noticing it was their turn to order.
Olivia had every intention of taking her shake back to her condo, but when Sam asked if she wanted to sit and talk, her curiosity about a certain biker's lesbian tattoo friend had her now sitting across a cafe table from the blonde woman.
After a few minutes of generic conversation, Olivia realized that outside of Tara and possibly Gemma, Sam was the first woman associated with the club who hadn't been catty with her. "So how are you liking California so far?"
Sitting her shake back down, "So far it's great, although I'll always be a Southerner at heart. Georgia's my blood." taking another sit of her drink. "Are you from Vegas originally?"
Sam shook her head, "No. Actually born in Oregon. My parents divorced when I was young and my mom relocated to Arizona for work. After a wild weekend in Vegas, I fell in love with the city and have been there ever since." After a few more minutes of general conversation she noticed the time, "Shit, you probably want to get back to Happy." noticing her milkshake partner's demeanor instantly changed. "I didn't mean to keep you from him."
This was definitely not a topic of conversation she wanted to have. "No worries. He had something to handle for the club." trying her best not to sound irritated about their evening being abruptly cut short. "I do need to be heading home though." as Olivia stood up from her chair. "Sam I've really enjoyed talking with you. Have a great weekend." giving the blond a genuine smile and wave before she headed toward the door.
***Station Street Apartments***
He walked in behind her into the small one bedroom apartment, instantly noticing the clutter and stench of smoke. After an uneventful evening at the strip club, Happy was still uncertain about why he was appointed to guard the bitch, but he had been tasked with the job by his VP, so he'd see it through.
"Make yourself at home. There's cold beer in the frig." as Melissa took off her jacket. "I'm going to take a long hot shower." before giving her surprise guest a small smile and walking into her bedroom.
Looking between the worn, clothes covered couch and the recliner, he decided the chair looked somewhat cleaner. Pulling out his phone, he flipped it open seeing no new calls or messages. This wasn't at all the way he had planned to spend the night. His fingers ghosted over the keys as everything in him said to call her, to at least check in, but something held him back. Noticing it was now after midnight, he ran a hand down his face as he wondered if she was asleep and found himself wanting nothing more than to be laying in that king sized bed with her curled up next to him. Hearing footsteps, he looked up to find a half naked woman wearing nothing but a g-string and see-through tank standing across from him with two beers in her hands.
"You know, I really appreciate you keeping me safe, Happy." as she seductively walked toward him extending a beer to him. Stopping right in front of the biker, "Is there anything I can do for you?" as her eyes traveled from his face down to his crotch.
It was now just after two o'clock in the morning and she was no closer to being asleep than she was an hour ago. She had spent the past few hours switching between being pissed off, hurt and in disbelief at how her night had abruptly ended. Truthfully, it hadn't been to much of a surprise that Happy had been called away on some club matter, considering it had happened several times before. As much as she had been hoping that she'd have him all to herself for the night, she also understood through their many conversations how important the club was to him. What she hadn't expected was for Jax to show back up after Happy had left.
...six hours before
Deciding against a Vodka martini, she opted for a glass of sweet tea as she heard a knock at her door. Grabbing her gun off the coffee table, she walked over to the door, seeing Jax through the peep hole.
"Jax. Hey." not sure why he was back at her place.
Noticing her shock, "Sorry to drop back by, but I just wanted to apologize again for messing up your night with Hap."
Moved by his thoughtful gesture she waived off his need to apologize. "It's okay. I'm sure we'll have another night. Stuff happens, right." choosing her words carefully.
She stopped herself from replaying the rest of their conversation, not wanting to refresh her mind at where he currently was. Closing her eyes, she took a deep breath hoping to relax her body enough so she could finally fall asleep.
She said Happy was handling something for the club, Sam's words kept looping through his head last night and even now as he stood looking out the kitchen window. He knew of nothing that his prized assassin needed to deal with and was even more unclear of why his VP felt the need to not inform him. Checking his phone, he hadn't missed any calls from anyone and couldn't shake his gut telling him something was up.
Clay watched as his wife made her way into the kitchen. "Hey baby." as she placed a kiss on his lips on her way to the coffee pot.
"Hey." walking over to the dishwasher to put away his empty mug, "Need to run by the garage before we head out." kissing his wife again on the lips. "I'll be back by the time you're ready." as he grabbed his keys and headed out.
***Newton County Sheriff's Department***
Nudging the detective's leg with his foot, "Walker! What the hell are you doing here on a Saturday morning?" asked the veteran sheriff.
Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, he sat up realizing how uncomfortable the lounge couch was. "Morning." he mumbled still not fully awake.
"Good morning. You look like hell, son." handing the young detective a cup of hot coffee.
Standing up so he could stretch his back, "I feel like it too." as he gathered up the file. "Found something I think you should take a look at."
For the next twenty minutes, the sheriff looked the evidence in front of him and had to agree with his detective, that it fit the hypothetical pattern. "Walk me through it."
"It's just my gut, but I think both cases are related. Ran our victim's injuries through the database and got it hit. Unsolved murder in a small town south of here called Charming." as he turned the crime scene photos around. "First of all, both women have similar wounds, not to mention, look closely at the two." hoping his boss and mentor saw what he did.
The physical similarity were uncanny. Both women were brunette, green or hazel eyes, and same body type. Looking up at his detective, "They could be sisters." glancing back down at the photos. "You think they're connected?"
He shook his head slowly in agreement. "Not going to confirm a connection yet, but I do think it's worth a visit to Charming."
Popping a fresh tooth pick in his mouth, he opened the next crate of guns as his anger continued to mount.
Flashback...earlier that morning
He had left the shitty apartment around seven thirty, with his back sore from sitting in the worn out recliner all night, and made it back to her condo in record time. As he pulled into the parking garage he saw her walk off the elevator and head toward her SUV. Quickly shutting off the engine, he places his helmet on the handlebar.
"Hey." watching as she opens her door.
Normally her stomach would be doing flips at the sight of him, but all she felt now was the need to throw up. "Hey". Olivia replied, suddenly unnerved that he had shown up. She felt for sure that leaving out this early would have prevented a run in with him, not that she truly expected him to come by her place. For all she knew, he was still tucked in with Melissa doing God only knows what, considering she knew he had spent the night with the stripper.
"Where you headed?" Happy asked, knowing from their conversation over dinner last night that she didn't have to work this weekend.
She could think of a hundred things she'd rather do right now than to try and have a civil conversation with this man. "Shopping." deciding to keep her answers short and to the point, but without sounding like a total bitch.
"How long?" he questioned, wondering why she'd made plans as he stepped closer to her.
"All day. Going down to the outlet center." as she silently scolded herself for giving him more information than she thought he needed or deserved.
He searched her eyes, unable to not detect the cold tone of her voice and direct responses. "Want some company?" watching her shocked reaction to his question. "Wanna talk to you."
Finally looking at him directly, "Actually, I don't want any company." watching his eyes narrow back at her. "What do you want to talk about because if it has anything to do with where you were last night, I'm not interested."
Her words momentarily stunned him as she turned to get in her Range Rover. "Hold on, talk to me." grabbing onto the the door to keep her from closing it. "I want to talk to you about last night." as his desire to explain things grew, just as his phone started ringing.
Using the phone call as the distraction she needed, she started the SUV as he pulled his phone out of his pocket. "I need to get going." was her parting words as she shut her door and started out of the garage.
As he assembled the last gun, he was still pissed off at how she had blatantly left him standing in her parking garage, although he soon learned why.
Clay had managed to keep the situation out of his head, as he'd spent the day with his queen, allowing her to indulge him in what she considered quality time away from the club. She was his anchor, his guiding force but this wasn't something he was willing to include her in. While he hadn't spoke with Jax directly yet, he knew in his bones the cocky bastard had manipulated Happy into guard duty, but neither Clay or Tig could figure out why out of the blue, a stripper suddenly was in need of protection and why it was tasked to Happy, when a less lethal member could handle it. The situation screamed of manipulation, but he couldn't pin point the motivation or why use Happy. In his earlier conversation with Tig, the Sargent at Arms confirmed that he, Bobby, and the two prospects had been at the club all night after they finished at the rib joint. He actually respected his number two, but he wasn't blind to his cocky swagger and ego. It hadn't been his decision to have his step-son fill the VP role so quickly after Otto's life sentence was handed down, but Gemma had used the mother card and the Teller legacy to ease her only child into the seat. While most saw Jax as a natural officer of the club, Clay never bought into nepotism, believing that regardless of your last name, a man needed to earn his place in the club in order to have the complete and total respect of his brothers. Feeling a headache coming on, he decided to put it aside for the night, but silently vowed to get to the bottom of it, regardless of the war it could bring to his own doorstep.
Her day of shopping had been extremely successful having found several new pieces for Spring, including a new bag to add to her Kate Spade collection. More importantly, the full day of personal time had allowed her to clear her mind, although he had text her twice. His persistence would normally be endearing had he not spent the previous night with a stripper who she knew without a doubt would want nothing more than to be another notch in his belt. Just the thought of him near another woman made her skin crawl, which in turn pissed her off because she could no longer deny she was becoming attached, something she had never experienced until now.
"No, no, no I will not think about him." she scolded herself out loud as she passed the sign showing Charming was now only 10 miles away. The song on the radio muted as her Iphone rang through the Bluetooth. Noticing the caller ID, she pressed the talk button.
"Everything okay?" she questioned, unsure why he was calling on a Saturday evening.
He shook his head, "Yeah, everything's fine. Just need a favor and was hoping you could help me out."
"I'll try. What do you need?" Olivia questioned as she sipped on her sweet tea.
"I have an associate that wants to see a unit in your building this evening and I've already promised Tristan we'd go to a movie. Was wondering if you could meet him there?"
Looking at the time, "I'm still about a half hour outside of Charming. What time does he want to see it?" she questioned, hoping she had time to freshen up before she met him.
"Would six thirty work? as he looked across his desk.
That would give her a little under an hour to get home and make herself presentable. "Sure, that works." as she was passed by a car load of teenagers. "Just let him know I'll meet him at the model unit."
"I'll let him know. Really appreciate you doing this."
"No problem. I'll see you Monday."
"Thanks again." spoke Elliott as he ended the call, dropping his phone onto his mahogany desk and leaning back in his leather chair. Running a hand over his jaw, he stared back at the man sitting across from him. "It's set. Don't make me regret this."
He could appreciate the subtle threat, but he had no intention of screwing things up. "You won't." giving a nod to thank the man before standing up and walking out of his office.
***Condos on Main***
She opened the front door to the model unit, thankful to see brochures waiting on the entry way table. Quickly making her way through the two bedroom unit, she turned on all the lights as she fluffed the pillows in each room. As she checked the time on her phone and gave the unit one last visual sweep, she heard a knock on the door. Checking her appearance in the mirror above the foyer table, she unlocked and opened the door.
He purposely stood to the side of the door, a grin threatening to appear on his face as he watched her open the door.
"What are you doing here?" she asked Happy as he stood staring back at her.
Taking advantage of her shock at seeing him, he stepped around her into the condo, before she had a chance to stop him. Turning around to face her, he could still see the look of confusion on her face.
"Happy I'm meeting an associate of Elliott's to see this unit. You need to leave." as she checked her watch noticing it was six thirty.
He could feel his heart beating in his chest and the sudden realization hit him, that he was nervous. "I know."
His response made no sense to her. "What do you mean..." she instantly stopped her question as his surprise visit became clear. "You?" as she let out a sigh of aggravation. "You're Elliott's associate." a statement more to herself than him. Walking past him, she made her way down the hall to start shutting off the lights, since her appointment had turned out to be a con.
"What are you doing?" he asked following right behind her, having caught the scent of her perfume as she walked by him.
"Turning off the lights, locking up and then I'm going home." making her way around the staged master bed, stopping as she noticed how close he was.
"We need to talk," Happy stated forcing her to look at him. "about what went down last night."
Shaking her head in disagreement, "Actually, there's no need to talk about it. You don't owe me an explanation."
"I know I don't owe you an explanation." watching as she looked as if he'd punched her. Tentatively he stepped closer to her, "but I want to explain things to you."
Olivia took a deep breath, keeping her composure. "Happy I don't want to know what you do with other women." the words coming out of her mouth making her feel sick on her stomach. Forcing herself to move past him, "In fact, I'd appreciate if you would keep your activities with who ever you're with to yourself. I don't need to see proof."
He now had his chance and he was going to take it. Blocking her path, he stepped in front of her, watching as she immediately stopped just inches from him. "What do you mean proof?" using her own words to get her to confess that she had received the text message.
She would give anything to pull a I Dream of Jeannie moment and transport herself into her own condo. "I didn't mean anything." looking up at him briefly.
Almost whispering, "Thought we didn't lie to each other." Happy stated watching her eyes narrow at him.
"Don't you dare.."
Pulling his phone out, he scrolled through his text messages finding the one she had been sent. "So you didn't get this text message?" he asked.
Without hesitation she grabbed the phone out of his hand, staring intently at the photo she was unfortunately familiar with. "How did you get this?"
Using the distraction to his advantage, he stepped even closer to her so that their bodies were touching. Turning her face toward him, "Why didn't you tell me someone sent this to you?" determined to remain calm now that he had her talking.
She could tell by looking at him that he wasn't going to let this go. "I didn't think it was any of my business who you were with at the clubhouse, so I just deleted it." hating this conversation. "Wait, how did you know about this?"
It was his turn to confess. "Elliott."
"ELLIOTT?" her voice louder.
"Yeah. Said he noticed you looked upset after you got it, so when you went to the restroom, he looked at it and sent it to his phone." noticing she now looked mad. "He was worried about you." grabbing her hand. "Why didn't you tell me about this?"
She just shrugged her shoulders, uncertain at how to answer without sounding as pathetic as she thought she would if she told him the truth. "It's not my business who you spend time with." again feeling a wave of nausea wash over her.
"Not spending time with anyone." he paused, "except you." as his eyes never left hers.
"Yeah! I guess spending the night with a stripper doesn't count." as soon as the words left her mouth she regretted it.
His eyes went completely black hearing her, "Who told you?" his suspicion now valid.
Why did she continue to put her foot in her mouth, she scolded herself silently. "Happy, can't we just drop it and call it a day. I'm tired and I'd like to just go home and relax."
Somehow she had managed to get him out of the model unit and lock up but lost the battle of her thinking he was going to leave. He followed her up in the elevator, his hand either on her waist or the small of her back. Now in her condo, she went straight to her bedroom, hearing him following behind her.
He sat down on the chaise in the corner and watched as she empty the shopping bags on her bed. Deciding he needed to adjust his approach, he avoided for the time being asking her how she found out about the night before.
"Nothing happened last night." he confessed seeing her look up at him.
Pausing for just a second at his statement, she continued to look at what she had purchased. "You spent the night with a woman who just happens to be a stripper, not to mention has openly propositioned you in front of me. Forgive me if I'm doubting your story."
Leaning forward with his forearms braced on his thighs, he looked her dead in the eye. "Nothing happened Olivia. I've told you before, I'm brutally honest. I don't lie." his voice strong.
Scanning his face, she was searching for any sign of dishonesty, but it wasn't there although she wasn't prepared to simply turn the other cheek. "So, the two of you just spent the night talking?" hating herself at the moment for sounding like a scorned woman, when she had no clue what she was or wasn't to the man staring back at her.
She immediately turned walking into her large closet, which gave him the opportunity he needed. He stood up while unzipping his hoodie to reveal his kutt. Quickly folding the jacket he placed it on the chaise as he shrugged off his vest, gently resting it on top.
He watched quietly as she stood somewhat inspecting the dress in her hand. "I went to Diamonds, sat at the bar, then followed her to her apartment. Spent the night sitting in a shitty ass recliner."
Startled by his voice, she turned around to find him standing in her walk-in. "Okay. Still find it hard to believe that nothing happened, I mean she's what every man dreams of right? Sexy woman with a great body, eager to please." the words tasting like vinegar.
She was talking and he wanted her to continue, so he remained silent. "Believe me, I get it. I've known for a long time that there are two types of women in this world. The sex goddess that men can't get enough of and then there's the safe girl like myself, who they want to settle down with, meet the parents, get married and pop out a few kids." as she continued to hang up clothes.
"You want every detail?" Happy asked, fully prepared to tell her everything.
That was a loaded question. Having random thoughts was one thing, but to actually know every detail was almost too much to digest, but something within her had to know. "Yes." accepting his offer.
"Got to her apartment, she went to take a shower. I sat in the recliner. Checked my phone for any calls or texts. She came back wearing almost nothing, offering me a beer and to fuck her."
Olivia thought her eyes would pop out of her head. Swallowing down the bile that had made it's way into her throat, she refocused herself on hanging up the last maxi dress. She had heard more than enough. "Okay." her one word response as she turned to walk out of the closet, not bothering to look at him. "Listen, I've had a long day, and I'm going to call it a night."
He was right behind her as they walked into her bedroom, both stopping as they heard a loud clap of thunder followed by a bright flash of lightening, and rain beating against the glass. "Olivia.." calling after her as she walked toward the wall of windows.
"It's pouring." looking outside, noticing it must have been raining for awhile. She was just about to say something when she felt his hands on her waist.
"Olivia." he voice low as he turned her around to face him. He needed her to start talking again before she shut down completely on him. "Listen to me, okay." noticing she wasn't going to argue with him. "You have my word, nothing happened. I never touched her." watching her eyes look away from him. Using his hands to cup both sides of her face, as he refocused her attention to him, "And I wouldn't let her touch me."
Olivia stared silently up at him praying her usual spot on good judgement and gut instinct would kick in. As dumb as some people would think she was in believing him, he had made it known to her from day one that he didn't lie, and as much as she hated the idea of him spending the night with another woman, she believed him when he said nothing had happened.
Happy was intently trying to gauge her reaction, knowing the woman standing in front of him wouldn't settle for anything less than the truth, something he was fully prepared to give her. "Olivia?" he whispered feeling anxious to know what she was thinking as he thumbs swept over her jaw line.
"I believe you." she responded as his lips crashed onto hers as the last word left her mouth.
For the next few minutes, he continued kissing her, not allowing her to pull away from him. Happy wanted to make sure she had no doubts about what he had told her, wanting to make sure that she knew he was telling her the truth, because he knew lying to her was a deal breaker.
...two hours later
Pressing the power button on the remote, he turned the television off. He had spent the past hour and a half watching a classic UFC fight and attempting to unwind. Glancing toward her bedroom, he settled in on the couch as the rain outside continued to pour down. It wasn't his choice to be camped out on her large sectional, but he was trying to be understanding at why she had requested him to not sleep in her bed. Even with her assurance that she believed him, it left him unsettled.
Walking over to the windows, he could barely make out the back entrance of the cigar store across the alley below as the heavy rain continued. Instantly feeling his blood pressure rise, he reminded himself that the bastard was going to be dealt with before too much longer. Thinking about where he had to be the next evening, he knew he needed to get to sleep, but that wasn't going to happen on her couch.
...Seven thirty Sunday morning
The first thing she felt was a familiar warmth. Snuggling herself closer to the source of the intense heat, she felt his arms tighten around her, as her eyes stayed closed. She could feel herself falling back asleep as her hand rested comfortably on his chest. It only took her a few seconds to remember she went to bed alone the night before, with a certain biker assigned to her couch, but Happy wasn't in her living room. There was no need to open her eyes to know who she was intimately wrapped around in her bed. She recognized the feel of him next to her, how their bodies molded into each other, his hand resting underneath her panties as he always slept with one hand cupping her butt, and his scent that she had yet to decipher. As much as she was enjoying her current situation, her curiosity was getting the better of her.
"I thought you were on the couch." she asked, her voice still full of sleep.
He woke up the second he felt her hand move on his chest. "I was."
The sound of his voice always sent a shiver down her spine. "When did you sneak into my bed?" feeling him turn more toward her.
He grinned as he placed a kiss onto her head, "Didn't sneak."
Finally opening her eyes, she tilted her head so that she could look at him. "Then what would you call it?" now somewhat propped up.
She still looked sleepy as she stared back at him. "Walked in here. Put your Ipad in the top drawer and got into bed."
Not wanting to actually interrogate him, although she still wanted answers. "Thought you understood why I asked you to sleep on the couch?" as she thought back to their conversation the night before.
Happy shifted himself so that she was now on her back as he leaned over her, resting his head on his left arm as he kept his right arm wrapped around her. "I do understand why you asked me to sleep in there, but I need you to realize there was no reason for me to sleep anywhere but here."
Olivia was a little put off by his statement. "What exactly do I need to realize?" feeling him tuck a strand of hair behind her ear.
This was just another thing he liked about her. Their talks in bed were always in a whispered tone, almost as if neither of them wanted anyone else to hear what they talked about. "That I would never touch her." noticing she was searching his face for any sign of deceit. "Like I've already told you, you have my attention."
She just stared back at him quietly, letting his words wash over her. "You look like you're still sleepy." he stated glancing back at the clock on the nightstand, "Let's go back to sleep for a while." as he turned onto his back, pulling her tightly into his side.
After a few minutes in silence, he knew she was already back asleep feeling her hand stop moving on his chest. He felt relieved that she hadn't been pissed to find him in her bed, but he told her the absolute truth about the previous night, confessing he wouldn't allow that skank to touch him. Thinking back to the night before, he remembered not even being the slightest bit interested in the girls at the club or Melissa, something that he knew without a doubt had everything to do with the woman asleep in his arms. Deciding to stop thinking and get some more sleep, he tightened his arms around her, placing a kiss on her forehead, hearing her slightly moan at his touch.
"By the way, there's nothing safe about you." he confessed before finally closing his eyes.
She opened all the blinds in the living room as she made her way into the kitchen. It surprised her that it had turned out to be such a beautiful day after the never ending rain storm they'd had the night before. He was still in the shower, so she knew she still had time to unload the dishwasher before they left for lunch up at the diner. As much as she loved cleaning, this was her least favorite. Just as she was about to start putting away the silverware, she heard a knock at the door. Quickly wiping her damp hands on the towel, she made her way over, careful to check the peep hole, totally caught off guard at her unexpected guest.
Olivia slowly opened her door to find a very cheery Luanne Delany standing in front of her. "Ms. Delany."
She instantly knew she caught the brunette off guard, which was to her advantage. "Hi Olivia." as she smiled innocently back. "I hope you don't mind me stopping by unannounced, but I have a little gift for you since you were unable to come to my party." as she noticed the stunned look on Olivia's face, before she stepped into her condo. Luanne looked around her place, "Nice pad."
Speechless was the only thing that came to her mind. "Ugh, thanks." gently closing the door as she watched the older woman now standing by her dining table.
"Look, I won't keep you, but I just wanted to bring you over a little something that will do wonders for you being able to keep Happy interested in you." as she held out the gift bag. "It's a win win for you both." her voice oozing with sweetness.
For a split second as she stared at the bag in Luanne's hand, she questioned if it could possibly be a bomb, but knew the woman standing in front of her wasn't that stupid. Taking the bag, she gently lifted out the tissue paper onto the table, noticing several items in the bottom. Pulling the item closest to the top out first, she kept her reaction in check as a large bottle of lube came into view.
Looking up at the older woman standing in front of her, she couldn't find any words. "Here let me help you." as she took the lube out of Olivia's hand and sitting it on the table. "I've put together a little goodie bag for you with some of Happy's favorites." as she continued to pull items out.
She surely had just heard her wrong. "What?" questioned Olivia still shocked this woman was standing in her condo.
"Sweetheart, these are some of Happy's favorite toys to use." as Luanne wiggled the spiked dildo box in front of her. "I've got confirmation from several of the girls that he loves this stuff."
"WHAT STUFF?" his voice boomed throughout the room as both women now noticed him standing there.
Luanne turned instantly at his harsh voice, dropping the dildo on the floor, not realizing that he was here. Olivia had been so stunned, she herself hadn't even noticed that he had slipped into the room, fresh from his shower, shirtless and wearing only a pair of his black lounge pants.
He knew he had startled both of them. Keeping his eyes on Luanne, he walked slowly almost predator like toward the two. Eyeing the toys on the table, he made eye contact with Olivia before he started with Luanne. "You want to explain this shit?" as he positioned himself between the two women, making sure they could both see his face.
Luanne Delany hadn't expected him to be here, especially not after hearing that he'd spend the night before at Melissa's. Confident in her role as the club's former VP's old lady, she spoke up. "Just wanted to bring Olivia her gift since she couldn't make the party the other night." not sure what he had heard before he announced his presence.
The look he gave her sent chills down both women's spine, as he gathered up the sex toys throwing them back in the bag. "So who's the bitches telling you I like this shit, cause I'd like to know who the fuck is lying about me." his voice eerily calm as he stared down the former porn star, watching as she looked like a deer caught in head lights. "There are no bitches, because fucking sex toys have never been my thing." as he shoved the bag into her hands. "Listen carefully. I don't tolerate anybody spreading lies and shit about me, you got that?" his black eyes boring into hers.
She swallowed hard, knowing that the man standing in front of her had just called her out. Still unable to speak, she stepped toward the door, anxious to get away from him. Just as she was about to open the door, he yelled her name.
"Luanne." Happy stated, waiting for the woman to turn and face him. With her now staring back at him, he placed his arm around Olivia's lower back, tucking her into his side, as he glared back. "She doesn't need that shit to keep my attention."