Disclaimer: I do not own or possess any copyrights in relation to this story, nor am I being compensated in any way ... unless you count warm fuzzies from reviews. Sadly my bank does not accept those as currency.
Fair warning: There is violence, cussin', and sexin' ahead, so read at your own risk ... be prepared for MA/NC-17 content.
A/N: This is set in S2 and S3 (anyone else notice how very short the time frame of a season is at times?).
I'm not following canon completely, but canon events will be mentioned as things that happen "off screen". Just imagine what happened on the show unless told otherwise. Gemma's rape and rape in general will be referenced, but only the aftermath will be written about. There is also a torture scene, but I marked it in case you're squeamish.
The first four chapters are written a bit differently since I couldn't seem to merge Happy and Rachel's views of events quite yet. They're just too different until I give them some back story, and Happy needed to be fleshed out a bit first. I do merge them when she starts to get involved with him and the club.
This is about the relationship between Happy and a woman who is strong and successful in public, but who is flawed and damaged, just like he is. It's about the difference between public and private persona's and how people relate to them. A relationship that both parties enter into with open eyes and minds.
I've removed almost all of my old A/N's on each chapter when I completed posting this, so I'll leave you here for now. I hope to see you again at the finish line and that you enjoy the journey.
Rachel grumbled to herself as she wondered what possessed her to pick today of all days to handle this. Well no, she knew why she picked today, but god it's already been such a long day and she is exhausted. She looked around the bar and sighed a bit before her gaze landed on someone she actually knew. What in the world is Dr. Tara Knowles doing in a bar like this? Since her prey didn't seem to be showing up any time soon, she smiled at Tara and walked over.
"Hey lady! What's a nice girl like you doing in a place like this?" Rachel teased.
Tara smiled back at her while rolling her eyes, "Now there's a pick up line I haven't heard in a while. I was in LA for a medical conference and my car broke down a few blocks from here. What in the world are you doing here?"
Sidestepping the question, Rachel looked concerned, "Do you need a ride back to Charming?" She really didn't want to have to come back and do this next week instead, but she also didn't want to leave someone as nice as Tara stranded in a place where it looked like they used a hose to clean it once a month. Besides, considering what Rachel had come here to do, she didn't think it was safe to leave Tara here on her own.
Tara grinned at her, "No I called my boyfriend, god that sounds so stupid at our age, he'll be here in a bit to pick me and the car up."
"Oh, that's good, this isn't a great area to be stranded in. And hey, at least you have someone to call a boyfriend, I'm stuck with batteries!" Rachel replied while snickering and wiggling her eyebrows. In the next instant she almost smacked herself in the forehead when she realized what she said. "I'm so sorry, my brain to mouth filter is apparently made of a coarse weave and the holes in it get larger the more tired I get." Tara snorted beer all over her shirt while she tried to stop laughing.
As Rachel started to turn the conversation towards something that wouldn't make her blush like a stoplight, she suddenly realized that it was very quiet in the room. Tara's snickers were slowly dying down, but her green eyes seemed to be dancing as she looked over Rachel's left shoulder. All of a sudden every movie that this scene has played out in flashed in front of Rachel's eyes.
"There's someone behind me isn't there", she groaned while letting her head bang down on the tabletop. "You'd think I'd be used to putting my foot in my mouth, but I always feel so damn surprised the next time it happens!" She left her head down while taking a few deep breaths – while she hated being embarrassed, it wasn't going to kill her and anyway, do I really care what anyone in this bar thinks of me?
"Rachel Taylor, I'd like you to meet my boyfriend, Jax Teller," Tara snickered. Mumbling obscenities under her breath that only one person caught, she looked up and smiled at the charming and very handsome guy standing next to Tara's seat. She said hello while thinking loudly that Tara was a lucky girl. Mentally giving herself a bitch slap she wondered if she should try dating again. As the blush slowly went down in her cheeks, Jax introduced her to the other two men who were moving in from the side.
Oh my. Definitely should try dating again. And pick up some new batteries. While the one he called Juice reminded her of a very attractive and hyper puppy with his greeting, the other man simply nodded as Jax told her his name was … Happy? Wait what? She knew she was staring, but she couldn't help it.
"I'm terribly sorry, but did he say your name was Happy?" Rachel was calling herself an idiot as soon as the words left her lips, this did not look like a guy who could be teased, but she just couldn't help it. She didn't think she could come up with a more unlikely name for the tall and menacing guy standing across from her. Her eyes flicked over them again and she realized they were all Sons and thought about drowning herself. Maybe the Happy one would help – lots of water, some clothing removed … Dragging her thoughts back from wet naked Happy's, she groaned. Teasing a man who belonged to the local MC was dangerous enough, but she had to pick the one who looked like he could snap her in half and use her bones for toothpicks?
Tara shot Happy a slightly worried look and the guys shifted uneasily but Happy simply stared at her with his dark eyes. "Sorry sorry, that was rude, again when I'm tired I'm an idiot. Sometimes I don't even have to be tired." Rachel apologized, while flashing what she hoped was a smile and not a grimace. Seriously, could I put myself in a worse light with these guys? And then she caught sight of who walked in the door. Well shit, today is just not my day is it.
Rachel hurriedly excused herself, after apologizing again, to use the restroom – hoping that when she came out they would be gone. Walking off, she heard Jax ask Tara who she was.
In the bathroom Rachel took a few deep breaths while looking at herself in the mirror. She took off her headband and fluffed her short red hair out so it looked more tousled and less business like. Her make up only needed a touch up, so she added a bit more eyeliner to make her eyes stand out more. Digging around in her purse she finally located her porn star pink lipstick and applied it generously. Grimacing, she took off her hoodie and unbuttoned two more buttons on her black shirt. Stuffing everything back into her oversized purse, she looked herself over again in the mirror. Hot enough for what's needed. Blech.
Giving herself a pep talk while remembering why she was doing this, she slowly pulled on the mental armor she used in this type of situation. Fixing a sultry look on her face and walked out of the bathroom as a different woman.
Of course they're still here, she sighed to herself when she glanced over. It doesn't matter anyway, you're not here to make friends or drool over the local MC, you're here to make sure this situation is dealt with. Even if tall dark and broody is yummy. Really yummy.
After shoving everything back down except what she needed to pull this off, she fixed her eyes on the tall slim man who was sitting at the bar. She paused just long enough to gain his attention and then smiled slowly at him, making sure to give him a surprised and yet interested look.
Sauntering over, she could almost feel the eyes on her back from the other side of the bar. She was hoping that by the time she saw Tara again that she will have forgotten about this or maybe they'd leave before they saw the show inside … yeah that probably isn't going to happen – fuck me. Rolling her hips as she rounded the bar she noticed that she definitely had his attention. Pete Towne, a wonderful excuse for humanity who seemed to think it was ok to beat the hell out of women and children.
When Angela had shown up for work at the shelter terrified last week because this ass was back in town and she managed to work the story out of her, Rachel almost lost it. While Rachel had only known Angela and her six-year-old daughter Pammy for a few months, she really liked them. Pammy especially was a firecracker. So with a few well placed questions to Angela and a short conversation with Short Stack, she managed to glean enough information to know he'd be here tonight and that he had a weakness for bubbly slutty girls.
Rachel wasn't bubbly or slutty typically, but she was pretty good at faking what she needed, at least short term. She pulled on her idiot girl persona and pasted a coy and flirty look on her face as she came up to him.
"Pete! How have you been, I haven't seen you in forever! It's me, Reese from Animal's, down in LA, gosh it's been so long!" she gushed. As she spoke she leaned towards him and gave him a quick hug making sure to press her breasts against him and breathing in his ear. She knew when she set this up that she couldn't just come on to the man, that wouldn't be believable at all. She wasn't runway hot, but she was attractive and this guy just wasn't. So an earlier meeting where she could pretend they had met and then work it from there seemed to be the best route to take. Not giving her real name was just smart.
Exchanging small talk, she managed to keep smiling while he undressed her with his eyes, while her eyes flicked back over to the area where Tara and the Sons were sitting. Tara's brow was wrinkled in confusion, her boyfriend was chatting with the mohawked puppy and Happy was … well he was staring at her. Trying to avoid trouble, she looked back at Tara and as she leaned forward to whisper something in Pete's ear. I am so on autopilot with the flirting by this point. She stared meaningfully at Tara she shook her head back and forth. Tara just stared back at her and then nodded slowly.
Rachel wasn't sure what that meant, but she was hoping it meant that Tara would keep quiet and stay out of this. She saw Tara lean over and speak to Jax in a low voice and then his eyes went to her as well, but just then she had to focus.
"Pete I'm sooooo happy we ran into each other. I was so sad we weren't able to get to know each other better down in LA," she cooed, running her finger down his chest. Inwardly shuddering, she realized she needed to hurry this part of it along before she blew it. As his hand came around and squeezed her ass, she bit her lip and forced a smile while reciting again in her head why this had to be done and that this was the easiest way to get him outside the bar. Picturing Pammy with bruises around her neck helped to considerably stiffen her resolve.
Fluttering her eyelashes and tilting her head and doing all the things that normally drove her insane to see another woman do, god just be yourself, she wondered if part of the reason she wasn't dating much anymore was because of her volunteer work at the shelter. See enough women who are treated like punching bags, physically or emotionally, and you start to get a bit jaded about men and motives.
When he finally … Jesus, am I losing my touch … asked if she wanted to get out of there, she gave him a real smile that caused him to blink a few times. Walking towards the door, she tilted her head slightly so she could warn Tara off if necessary. All four of them were staring at her, but Tara's expression was calculating while Jax and Juice looked confused and Happy looked; well Happy didn't seem to ever have emotions on his face, but the vibe was kind of angry and irritated. Happily though, none of them seemed like they were going to interfere, so she tilted her head back up and leaned into her new buddy Pete. Pressing her breasts against his arm guaranteed that he didn't think about her lack of attention for those few moments.
Now the tricky part of the plan – getting him to the alley she picked out on her reconnaissance without making him suspicious. Her first thought was to drag him there on the pretense of sex, but she was pretty sure she couldn't sell that long enough to actually get him in place, since the very thought made her stomach churn. Finally she settled on a combo – seduction and a short cut to her place. Normally her acting skills were quite good, if she did say so herself, but this type of acting was always harder for her. Add to that the worry of things going wrong and the controlled danger she was placing herself in and her nerves started fraying. Best to keep this simple.
Internally groaning when they got to the alley and she saw the Harley's and a tow truck parked just past it, she wondered if these were all signs that she shouldn't be doing this tonight. From running into someone she knew, and wasn't that a stupid idea to go TALK to her while waiting, why not make sure she notices and thinks your alter ego is a slutty girl with no taste, to making a fool of herself in front of those guys, teasing a guy who made her throb in all the right places who then watched her get all slutty and stupid over a very unattractive guy that she left with in less than 15 minutes … yeah tonight could have gone better.
Sucking it up, she finally got Petey boy into the alley and close to the bag that she had tossed in here earlier. This part? This part she liked. This part she could do all day long and sleep well at night. She leaned around and as she slid partly in front of him, she brought her right foot up, encased in a nice thick boot with a pointed toe, and then smiled at him as she kicked his knee out of the socket. When he went to scream, she flattened her hand out and chopped him in the throat. As he flailed a bit on the ground, she took advantage of the moment and grabbed her gloves out of the bag and made a quick decision to grab the pipe instead of the knife. She did ease it into the sheath that sat in the back of her pants just in case. This was more poetic. Besides bloodstains are a bitch.
As she leaned down and zip tied his hands behind him she yawned a bit. God she was tired, thank heavens tomorrow was Saturday. Leaning against the building, she kicked her foot up behind her and waited for dumbass to quit crying and pay attention to her. She was positive she'd gotten him out of there before he had too much to drink – she wanted him to remember this very very clearly. As his breathing sort of evened out, even if he was really raspy from that throat chop, he started trying to get up while telling her all the wonderful things he was going to do with her and intimating that she was all manner of a cunt and whore and bitch and slut and ... When he started getting repetitive, she sighed and kicked him in the nuts.
"Look asshole, I'm tired and I don't really feel like listening to much more of your shit. I let you get a bit of it out because I'm really a nice person, but enough is enough. We're going to have a chat now about how you are NOT a nice person and how you ARE going to become a better one in the future." Rachel smiled prettily at him, happy there was enough light in the alley that he could see it. I do so enjoy the contrasts, my words are sugar sweet, but my body is going to cause him some serious pain in the next few minutes. Sometimes she wondered if she enjoyed this too much, but then the woman she was acting for would flash in front of her eyes and with the memory of how broken, bloody and bruised they often were, the moral issues seemed to just go poof.
"Now, let's chat about women. As a woman, I feel it is my duty to let you know that when you treat women like you have in the past? They don't like it. They don't deserve it. I will not put up with it." As he sputtered and asked what the hell was going on and what she was talking about, Rachel stared at him wondering if she should drop the names now or later. Screw it … I prefer to let them know why the entire time – after all, if they're unconscious at the end, then they don't get the same message.
Tilting her head so the light fell on her face, Rachel smiled and could feel the anger that was starting to emanate from inside paint her face. She waited a few moments and then leaned down and grabbed his hair while she placed one knee on his chest and faced the outside of the alley, the last thing I need now is to get caught. Good intentions do not go far with law enforcement. I passed the not going to jail exit about three back.
"I wonder," she mused, "if you ever thought about how it must feel to be helpless when someone you love takes a pipe to you?" Rachel smiled gently and slowly waved the pipe that was in her other hand.
"See my friend Angela? She's such a nice girl. Anyway, my friend Angela was telling me this story this week about her ex-boyfriend who recently came back to town. I'm as romantic as the next girl, so gosh, you can imagine how my heart warmed to hear that her man came back to her. Then," Rachel smiled at him with her teeth as he closed his eyes and started repeating fuck over and over, "she started telling me about her man. How he treated her. How he made sure she knew her place. How he put her into the hospital. How he raped her. How his favorite weapon was not his hands, because that could damage HIM, but a pipe."
She casually swirled the pipe in her fingers and then brought it down twice hard on his ribs. Rachel needed him to be able to talk for a bit longer, but she also needed an outlet for all of this anger so she could continue. He screamed in a breathy way, guess his throat was still bothering him, shame that,and tears started leaking out of his eyes.
"So she told me this story and I was sad and angry that someone could treat my beautiful friend in such a way. However I also realize that she is an adult. The very first time you laid a hand on her she could have walked out the door. So anything past that first time? That's on her. It's not her fault, don't get me wrong, don't think that was ok on your part you son of a bitch. But she is an adult and her choices are her own and while I can be sad at her choices and angry for her, I can't live her life for her since she made a choice to stay." He opened his eyes and actually looked relieved. Unfuckingbelievable. Best to nip that thought right in the goddamn bud. Rachel took a few breaths to calm down; this is about punishment and deterrence – not revenge. Methodical, not explosive.
"Then I remembered. And I bet you remember her too, she's such a sweetheart. Pammy is just the cutest little girl isn't she?" Her voice dropped an octave and she actually started trembling before she got control over herself while he paled even further. "Oh look at that, you DO remember Pammy. I looked at my friend and asked her, optimistically that – wait do you even know what optimistic means? It means hopeful you stupid imbecile. That even if he didn't treat you right, he DID treat Pammy ok, right? And she looked at me with those big brown eyes and I saw the pain in them and knew. It didn't take long for her to tell me what you did and why she finally was able to leave you. Mothers protecting their young are often so much stronger than they think they are. Three years later they've healed – maybe not completely, but they're doing well. Good job, doing well in school, making friends – living their life." Rachel took another deep breath, oddly enough both to brace herself for what she was going to do next and calm herself down before she went ape shit on him.
"Why are you back?" Rachel asked him point-blank. "Tell me why, after three years you decided that looking Angela and Pammy up was a GOOD idea." She stared at him as his mouth opened and closed like a fish. Rachel twisted her hand in his hair and pulled his head back a bit, "If you don't want this pipe coming down on that dislocated knee, you will answer me shithead and you will answer me fast." When he just stared at her with a defiant look on his face she sighed.
"I would like to say, for the record, that I've given you every – well almost every – opportunity to get out of this lightly. Yes your knee is dislocated and I probably fractured a rib or two and yes, it will be difficult to swallow for a while. However, I know you can still talk because you exercised that privilege earlier … so we're not going to fuck around on excuses. Either you tell me what I want to know right now, or I'm going to shatter your kneecap and then slowly and carefully break your fingers until you talk. After all, if a three year old can endure it – so can you."
The look in Rachel's eyes seemed to scare him since he looked away, maybe hoping someone would walk by the alley. She had done her homework though and knew that people simply don't stroll past in this area and where they were at had enough shade to keep a casual glance from seeing them. She did spare a few thoughts for the bikes parked out there, but figured she would deal with that situation if and when it happened.
Finally he looked back up at Rachel, just in time, because she was shifting to start working on his left hand, and told her that he was broke and needed somewhere to stay. He knew Angela was working and figured if he sweet talked her, she'd let him stay. He swore up one side and down the other that he wouldn't have hurt her or Pammy, he just wanted somewhere to live for a while. Rachel sat there and listened to him make excuses and wanted to cry. How could he think so little of what he'd done in the past that he would think it would EVER be ok that he was around them again?
Rachel finally waved the pipe in the air to shut him up and asked him what she couldn't not ask – in a sad and lost voice she questioned, "How could you ever think they'd want to see you again after what you did? You violated Angela, you hurt her so badly she was hospitalized, you beat a three year old, and Pammy has cigarette burns on her little body that will always be there. You will always be something she has to live through and you just wanted a place to stay?"
By the time she finished speaking she wasn't looking for a response anymore and when Rachel swung that pipe for the third time, she aimed straight at his jaw. She didn't want to hear another word. The crack when it landed soothed her as she remembered Pammy crying about how some other kid made fun of her legs because of the burns. I am so done here.
Rachel jerked at his head to get his attention, since he was mostly writhing around on the ground at this point; apparently that crack wasn't in her imagination. "Here is what is going to happen, are you listening to me Pete? Good good, ok, so here's your new life deal. And let me tell you right now, if you want a life, you're going to follow my instructions. You are going to leave town and never contact either Angela or Pammy again. See how easy that is? Super simple, leave and leave them alone. I'm going to even give you gas money, how awesome am I? You are going to get in your car with that gas money and you're going to drive as far away as you can get as soon as you can. You are probably going to want to hit the closest charity hospital on the way out, but that's ok, as long as you are either A, on the road or B, in a hospital bed – I will leave you be. But you need to listen to me closely; you will be gone by the end of the week. You will be a bad memory. Or I will make you into one." Rachel stared down at him and watched as he realized what she was saying.
"In case you are as stupid as the past has indicated, I also want to let you know that Angela and Pammy have left town. There will be no retaliation for this. Well I'm going to retaliate a bit because your stupid fucking actions have cost me a friendship that I'm going to miss, but you – you are not going to retaliate. Are we clear on all of my instructions? Are there any questions?" The adrenaline was starting to really wear off at this point and Rachel needed to get this done and over before she crashed and made a fatal mistake. He slowly shook his head while crying. He did look pitiful, but the twinge was quickly smothered when she remembered hugging her friends goodbye.
"Goodbye Pete, I really hope we don't meet again, for your sake." With that, Rachel put pressure on the proper spot to make him unconscious. Why my dad taught me how to do that is beyond me. Handy as hell though. After verifying that he was still breathing she sighed, stood up, stretched and then swung the pipe four more times – once on each hand for Pammy and once on each side of his ribs for Angela. Tossing the pipe back into the bag she leaned down and verified that he was breathing and that he wasn't bleeding too badly since some of the hits had broken skin, and then cut the zip ties with her knife. Rachel quickly backed away because she had seen entirely too many movies where they're faking even if she knew he wasn't.
Taking a few deep breaths as she stood there, Rachel dropped a baggie on his chest that had $100 in it for gas, since she knew damn well he didn't have the money to leave town. With her foot she nudged it into his jacket and covered it back up – she really should have done that before she cut him loose. I am getting seriously tired and it's starting to show.
Taking off her gloves, she picked up the bag and put her hoodie back on, then used a wet wipe on her face. Rachel looked back at Pete when she was almost to the mouth of the alley and felt another twinge. She is not a naturally mean and violent person and this part bothered her a bit. Unfortunately the fact that she'd seen people tonight that she knew and that she hadn't heard leave meant that calling this in so he got picked up, as she planned on, would mean that those people could get caught in the crossfire. And Rachel wasn't stupid enough, not for a rapist and abuser, to put any of the Sons of Anarchy in the crossfire.
Except – they were right there – sitting on the back of the tow truck – staring at her.
Next up - Same day, Happy style