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 little over six months later, Rachel dove shallowly into their pool in the gorgeous summer sun, surfacing only when she ran out of air. Peeking over the edge, she smiled at the picture of Happy and Peanut. Happy was eating grapes at the table, under the now forest green umbrella, and occasionally flicking one out into the yard for their weird dog to chase.
"You know he won't actually eat those, right? He'll get it in his mouth and freak out that it's round and slimy," Rachel giggled.
Happy quirked a single brow at her and replied, "Why do you think I do it?"
Standing up as she floated away on her back, Happy made his way to the edge of the pool, eyes fastened on her. "You all packed?" he asked, as he eased himself into the warm water.
"Mmhmm, and I already dropped Annabel and Lily off at Luann's. Peanut is already packed too and has a few bags of food at the clubhouse. We're going to get back and he's not going to want to come home. All those Sons to love …"
Allowing herself to float gently away from the man slowly stalking her, Rachel hid a smile.
A few weeks after they had returned from Ireland, the house was almost completely repaired. Rachel spent long days cleaning and repainting walls, then refinishing the hardwood floors in the kitchen and hallway to remove all traces of blood. Happy had stopped grumbling about her doing all the work when she explained that it would help her get over what had happened, that it would be their house again, not marred by what she had been forced to do.
The refinishing of the floors helped Rachel in more ways than one. It did allow her to purge the memory of what had happened, but it gave her time to finally process everything else that had happened recently. She was able to finally grieve for Kip too. Using the repetitive motions, she slowly started calming down from the high of the stress, letting go of all the shit she had been carrying and bottling up.
Hanging the new patio doors was a treat. Redwood Originals had picked up two new prospects a week after they returned and neither of them were skilled in the art of home repair. Rachel had ended up doing a great deal of it herself and using them for the muscle. They all conspiratorially agreed not to mention that to anyone.
Writing up a grocery list, trying to get ready for the huge combo party SAMCRO was holding next weekend, all weekend, Rachel was humming along with the radio while leaning over the counter and swaying to the beat. Hearing the door, she smiled a tiny little smile and made sure her swaying twitched her hips.
"Hey lover, be careful, I hear my boyfriend is a jealous man," she said when she felt the hands come around her hips and a lean body press into her.
Pulling her up straight and wrapping his arms around her, Happy bent down and nipped her neck. "Oh he is, a very jealous man," he growled into her ear, watching as she shivered in reaction. Spinning her around and lifting her up onto the counter top, he fit himself in between her legs.
"Nooner? We haven't had one of those in a long time …" Rachel purred as she wrapped her legs around his hips and leaned forward to scrape her nails across his scalp.
Cupping her face and laying a gentle kiss on her lips, Happy smiled. "Baby girl, I'm always up for you, morning, noon, and night. Wanna talk though."
Eyebrows shot up and a concerned expression instantly replaced the growing arousal that had been forming on Rachel's face. "What's wrong?"
"Nothing is wrong," Happy said as he chuckled. Squeezing her tightly around the middle, he took a deep breath. This is harder than I expected, shit.
Looking into her eyes, he explained, "We talked once about you getting the crow, but you were right, I wanted to do it for the wrong reasons. Thank you for stopping me, because that would have been something that always had that shit attached to it."
Eyes still confused, but showing relief that nothing was wrong, Rachel smiled a little at him. "You're welcome Hap. I don't understand what you're …"
"Now I want to do it for the right reasons Rachel," he said simply, watching her.
Blank shock appeared on her face, before a slow smile replaced it, starting in her warm blue eyes. "Ok. I have a condition though."
A bark of laughter startled Lily who had just bent down to get some food. "Of course you do. Let's hear it."
"I want it on both sides. I know how you fuckin are and if we put it on my back, I'll never see your damn face again when we're having sex. So whatever you put on, it has to be mirrored on the same spot on the other side of my body," she said impishly, eyes twinkling at him.
Staring at her in shocked disbelief, he finally started laughing, a laugh that began deep inside and forced its way out of his body. "Damn Rachel, you are something else. I accept your condition, like it was ever in any fucking doubt." Pulling something out of his pocket, he handed it to her expectantly.
Rachel leaned forward and gave him a quick kiss before opening up the folded piece of paper. "Oh Happy, it's beautiful!" And it was. She had to admit, she had never really warmed to the crow. She'd accept it, because that was club tradition now that he was patched into SAMCRO and not a Nomad, but it wasn't really her. This … this was.
It was still a crow, but it had flashes of color along the wings that lightened it from being so serious. Instead of the normal spread wings, this crow was standing up almost majestically, proudly. The absolute best part was the little apricots and smiley face's scattered around the crow's feet. She could see this on her body … it rode the line between serious and playful very well.
"You really have a thing for that body lotion I use, don't you?" Rachel said as she threw her arms around his neck. "Thank you for making it something I'd like too."
"Tig helped, believe it or not. Asked what I thought of first when I thought of you and you were far away. Fucker laughed and called me a pussy when I told him, but this is what we came up with. Got any idea where you want it?"
"I'll have to thank Tig as well then. Oh I might have considered the idea a time or two," she said with a nonchalant air. More seriously, she touched the area below her collarbone on her left side. "Here please, with a reverse on my back, same spot. That way I'm yours all the way through."
Leaning down to kiss her deeply, Happy murmured against her lips. "Rach you've always been mine all the way through."
Seeing Rachel drift off into thought, he wondered what she was thinking about. Leaning against the edge of the pool, enjoying the warmth of the day and hearing the buzz of a lawnmower from a few doors down, Happy reflected that shit had definitely changed.
Watching the way the water beaded up on her crow, he remembered the party the weekend after he put it on her. Neither of them were the type to show off or talk about their private lives, which is why it took people so long to figure out they were together. And I had to fuckin kiss her in the middle of the clubhouse for them to get a fuckin clue even then.
The weekend after he inked her, on both sides as she had requested, he wasn't surprised to see that she wasn't wearing an outfit that would immediately show it off at the party. It didn't bother him, they both knew it was there, and what it meant.
When he had finished that letter the night they returned, Happy forced himself to let her keep sleeping. He hadn't even been sure what the hell he'd have said to her anyway. Part of him wanted to scream at her for even preparing for shit like that, expecting it, accepting it. Another part of him was battling the urge to fuckin cry, something he hadn't done since he was small.
Sitting in the window seat that night, staring at her face where it was illuminated in the moonlight, Happy realized that she was right. This shit wasn't temporary. Maybe it hadn't been from that first talk, where they had shared secrets and stripped themselves bare for each other just long enough to give them a glimpse of who they really were.
It had taken months before they were able to trust each other enough to show more than those temporary glimpses, but now it was when they were around other people that they pretended. At home, together, they were simply themselves. They were still the same people, but they had smoothed each other's rough edges, made them fit. She was right.
So yeah, they both knew what it meant when, for the first time in his life, he claimed a woman as his. He wasn't like some of the younger brothers, who did shit like that and then paraded her around. Neither of them would be comfortable with that many fuckin people staring at them. He would have been fine with someplace only they would ever see, but he knew why she picked the place near her heart.
A few hours after they had arrived at a party that felt like it had every Son in the country attending, Happy heard Gemma's voice ring out in disbelief and annoyance.
"What the fuck Rachel, why the hell didn't you tell anyone? Lemme fuckin see that."
Tilting his head slightly, he could see Rachel drop her head as she realized what she'd just done. From what he could see, it looked like Abel had spilled something on her outer shirt and she had taken it off, leaving her in one of those sexy little tank tops that showed a lot of skin. As she held still while Gemma peered at her back, he saw her smile slightly at something Gemma said to her.
Turning around, she straightened her spine and tried to ignore all of the eyes pointed her way, catching his look and giving him a 'Sorry, I fucking forgot' expression that she wiped before Gemma caught it. Gemma was now holding her shoulders and twisting her front and back so she could compare the crows.
He had altered the sketch slightly when he inked her, so that when you saw the crow on her back it looked like you were seeing the back of the front tat. Like it truly went all the way through. Took awhile to get all of the details right and make it so you could still see the defining elements on both, but he had to admit it came out well.
Giving her a hug and letting her hide her face in his t-shirt after Gemma finally let her go, he leaned down to whisper to her. "Once they've all seen it, they'll leave you alone. I know you hate having all of this attention on you girl, but it was going to happen today anyway because of how you helped Abel and shit. May as well get it all over with at once."
Startled out of the past, Happy opened his eyes when he felt her small hands slide up his abdomen to his chest. Snaking his arms out and catching her to him, he grinned when she squealed. Holding her slippery body and staring into her darkening eyes, the mood slowly shifted from playful to sexual.
Leaning back farther against the pool, he lifted her up slightly and wrapped her legs around his hips, nestling her against his cock. Closing his eyes for a second when she moaned and bucked her hips at him, he palmed her ass and rocked her slowly against him. Neither of them said a word as she leaned away from him and using only her legs and stomach muscles, slid herself over him until they were both breathing hard.
Pulling her closer so he could untie her bikini, he bit down gently on her fabric covered nipple as he fought with the wet tie before finally pulling it away. Jerking his hips up when he felt her hand slide down into his trunks and wrap around him, he abandoned her bottoms to push his own trunks down. Sliding her silky bikini covered center against his now free dick, he ran a finger along the inside edge, but not touching where she wanted until she was shaking slightly and pleading silently.
Still not talking, they stared into each other's eyes as he slowly peeled her bottoms off of her and resettled her against him. Sucking at his bottom lip, Rachel held Happy's hands against the edge of the pool with her own. Letting her take control, he was rewarded a few seconds later when his dick was suddenly inside her tight hot heat. Trying not to move, letting her control shit, he almost lost it when she didn't move at all.
Then he felt her start to squeeze him rhythmically, over and over, as she clenched and seemed to ripple around his dick, but still didn't move; just leaving her hips pressed tightly against his. Biting down on the plea to ask her to fucking move, please move, and locking his hips in place, Happy leaned his head back, still watching her with hot dark eyes.
Fists clenching and muscles starting to strain against themselves, he lost it when her body started shaking and he could feel her spasming uncontrollably around him. "Jesus Christ Rachel," he grunted as he felt her milking him. Leaning forward and slanting his mouth over hers, he slid one arm around her waist, anchoring her to him as he jerked his hips in small thrusts, still deeply buried inside her.
Swallowing the cries that were now escaping, as he broke her control as well, Happy pulled her head back so he could run his lips and tongue over that silky neck. Keeping those short jerky thrusts, slamming his pelvis against her clit, he brushed a kiss against the ink that marked her as his.
Hearing the whine in the back of her throat, he curled both of his hands around her shoulders and started pulling her down at the same time as he snapped his hips forward. Watching as the flush deepened again over her neck and traveled down to the top of her chest, he looked into those deep blue eyes that were fastened on his.
Knowing he didn't have much longer, that his control was slipping fast, he pulled her forward so her entire body slid against his as he pulled her down over and over again. Sucking on her lobe, and biting gently, he could feel the trembling start deep within her. Lips pressed against her ear, Happy huskily whispered, "Come for me wife."
Just as most of their relationship hadn't been traditional, the proposal wasn't either. Happy had inked her six weeks earlier, and it was now completely healed. Rachel was just coming back from a run and smiled as she saw him asleep on the couch with a book on his chest.
Annabel was staring at him from the top of the couch, and Rachel hoped she remembered what happened the last time she jumped on him when he was asleep. Thinking back on that, she pointed her finger at Annabel and stared until the obviously suicidal cat finally walked away from Happy. Eyes softening as she looked back at him, she went to take a shower.
Staring into the mirror after taking her shower, she ran her fingers over her tattoo and bit her lip. It was stupid to feel nervous. He fucking branded her for god's sake. Which by the way, made her inner woman want to both cheer and bitch slap herself. Her inner monologue was becoming increasingly psychotic in her opinion.
Hearing a shout as she walked back down the hallway after throwing on some clothes, she moved out of the way as Annabel came skittering past with what she'd swear was a feline grin of satisfaction. "Idiotic cat," she muttered, as Rachel went into the living room to assess the damage.
Happy was sitting up with his shirt yanked to his chest, examining the brand new holes in his stomach. Looking up at her as she fought to keep the smile off of her face, he scowled. "We're putting a fuckin bell on that one. That's the second time this month that she's ambushed me, the little shit."
"Constant vigilance!" Rachel quoted with a laugh as Happy threw a small pillow at her.
"Fuckin Harry Potter, I don't know how the hell you convinced me to read those."
Rolling her eyes and pushing his shirt back down, she made herself comfortable straddling his lap, smiling inwardly as his arms automatically came around her and held her close. Taking a deep breath and filling her lungs with Happy scent, she reached two fingers into the pocket of her shorts and removed something.
Leaning back a bit so she could see his face, even as he made a protesting noise, she slowly opened her hand and watched him. Dark eyes stared at the simple gold band for a long moment before sliding up to her eyes.
"You asked me to be yours forever with ink, the way you do it in your world. I'm asking you to be mine forever, the way I do it in my world," she explained softly. The actual answer was lost in the crush of his mouth against hers, but she was pretty sure it was yes.
One week later, standing in an ecstatic Rosa Lowman's living room, with only Happy's family and Quinn in attendance, Rachel and Happy quietly married. No one noticed their rings for almost a month.
Coming down off of her orgasm, feeling Happy trying to catch his breath against her neck, she ghosted a kiss against his temple. Even while they had made their commitment to each other, to their relationship, a public one, things hadn't been all sunshine.
With the wisdom that comes from age and the surety that comes from being loved by a man like Happy, Rachel knew that the fights and arguments they had would never really stop. In private they were both passionate people, with opinions and experiences that were often completely opposed to the other. It didn't lessen what they had, didn't break it down, because they knew that eventually they'd figure out a way past it.
Where it really mattered, they weren't that different at all.
Feeling him shift and one of his strong hands start to rub up and down her back, Rachel leaned back enough to gently kiss him. Cupping his face, she rubbed her nose with his and said, "Thank you."
Knowing she wasn't talking about the sex, his eyes held a faint question.
"Thank you for waiting until tonight. So we could spend the day doing things like this. I know that's why you changed the time we were leaving. You knew I'd miss it and you wanted to give me a chance to say goodbye."
A quick smile flitted across his face, but she saw it. She always saw it. "I just didn't want to start the trip with it being so hot out, figured you'd be more comfortable if we left tonight instead. Had nothing …" he trailed off as she pinched him.
Pressing her lips against his she murmured, "It's rude to lie to your wife when you still have your dick inside her," holding on tight when he started laughing. One of her goals in life was to make Happy laugh as much as possible. Best sound in the fucking world.
Letting him move her around slightly, she nestled her head in the crook of his neck and relaxed into his warm body. Happy had patched into SAMCRO not long after they returned from Ireland, but told her that he still wanted to go on the road occasionally, for things other than jobs. She agreed and then said that he had to take her with him on at least the first one. If they both had fun, then it could be their vacation. If they didn't, then he could go and she'd do something else. Tonight they'd be leaving for two weeks to go on the road, visiting various charters along the way.
In return for his trips, solo or not, she had gotten the concession that he stop being such a man about her money. She pointed out that if they didn't use it, most of it would end up in government hands when they died anyway, because it's not like they would ever have kids to leave it to. They had set up substantial trusts for Abel and Thomas, who had been born just a week ago, so that when they turned 18 they could use some of it for college. If they choose not to go to college, they would receive it all at 25. They hadn't mentioned it to Tara or Jax yet.
Right now it simply meant that they used a combined account to pay for Rosa's care and their bills. Later, when Happy started slowing down and she was retired, they had discussed exploring the world together. Neither of them had been out of the country more than a couple times, and always for work. The idea of buying a bike and traveling Europe together until they got tired of it had a pretty powerful appeal.
Today though, smiling as her husband rubbed a hand gently up and down her back, they were still in Charming, quietly drifting and enjoying the peace before the next storm hit.
A/N: Warning, excessively long authors note follows which says a lot while not saying much at all. =)
This is the end of Rachel and Happy's story. Yes, it is open ended enough to revisit their world if I want, but I don't know that I will. I've got an idea, but it hasn't really compelled me yet, which is one reason I think this came out so well. I had to write this. In any case, if I don't, I'm happy with where they are and god knows they fought to get there.
I promise if I do write anything more in this world, I'll put an excerpt/summary on a new chapter here so that those who are following this get a notification.
When this originally came to me, the idea of a woman who could fit with the Happy in my head, I hadn't really envisioned much of her other than some basic personality traits. I think the Rachel that emerged is someone that is realistic, who I'm proud of creating, but hopefully she doesn't come across as a Mary Sue (I think that's what the term is). These two are always going to have issues.
Their life together just isn't ever going to be sunshine and roses – it's going to be small moments of peace, like the ones detailed in the epilogue, surrounded by violence from the club (legitimate earnings will never take over completely) and stress from life. It will be endless compromises, complete with arguing. It's bending some of the things that make them who they are, like her independence and his need to protect, until they can work together.
I apologize to Kozik and Chibs fans. I couldn't quite figure out how to work Kozik into the story any deeper, although I did want to. Chibs … I love Chibs a lot, believe it or not, but I can't write that accent for the fuckin life of me. I spent more time fucking with the accent portion of those chapters than I did anything else. I was kind of relieved that he was hurt for so long, as horrible as that sounds, so I could ignore him.
I wrote this, abandoning my husband in the process, in 17 days according to the date stamps on my Microsoft Word files. I probably left plot holes or dangling strings and I'm sure there are plenty of places my grammar and/or punctuation is off. Of course writing for characters who speak like the Sons made sentence structure a lot more forgiving. I am still very proud of it considering this is the first piece of fiction I've ever written.
I've enjoyed writing this and sharing it with you all. I know I've said this before, but I really did only write this for me in the beginning. Well, I said it and then later edited out all of my old A/N's, but the point remains. To know that so many other people thought it was worth reading was something of a surprise, but the best kind. I got a pleasurable thrill out of every single review or PM, favorite and follow notification.
Even if I never write again once this is completely posted, I'll never forget this experience, and a lot of that has to do with you.
Thanks again for coming along,