AN: hi there this is the first SOA fic that I've posted, so lets see how it goes shall we. I hope you like it drop me a review.
Cheers my dears.
I only own my ocs
Heart Shaped Box
I always said that if you come into this life of ours looking for perfection and a happy, easy life you're always gonna be sorely disappointed. Our life doesnt just hand you a stack of unmarked bills with a smile on its face. No it gives you sleepless nights, restless days and its known to jade all of the innocents that it touches.
You need to be stronger than every other bitch you're facing down, yet you have to strike a balance, because your club still have to be able to come to you for support. Balls of steel and a heart of gold.
Its us old ladies, the wives, the mothers, the sisters that can make or break a charter, even the mother charter of Samcro. We're the glue that holds it all together, whether the guys like to admit it or not, the truth is just what it is.
Zoe Teller had no idea what day it was, never mind what time it was, her studio was bereft of clocks and calenders. She'd been on lock down, knee deep in her work, not stopping for anyone or anything, the only thing that got her attention was food and sleep, it had been that way for fuck only knows how long now.
The knocking on the locked metal door had long since ceased and she'd worked through bikes coming and going, through the loud rock music, it had all ended hours ago from her reckoning. But her eyes were now growing gritty, she could no longer focus on the canvas in front of her. Damn it she was hitting the brick wall of exhaustion- finally it had caught up with her.
Zoe's long dark hair was falling out of its once neatly piled up bun. She removed the paint brushes that had been spearing it and dropped them into the waiting jar of terps on the ledge of the blacked out solitary window. Her whole body was aching and sluggish as she padded bare foot to the tiny bathroom in the corner of her of her sanctuary. While washing her hands and arms she ignored her reflection in the mirror hung over the sink, that horror show could be saved until after she'd slept.
Throwing herself down on the old chez, she pulled the dark blue throw over herself, eyeing her completed painting on its easel and exhaled- totally worth feeling this fucking tired over! She let her big green eyes slide shut and let her ever over fertile subconscious take her over...
Zoe's mind was taken back in time to that night six years ago. His words- so unnecessarily harsh and painful, made that much worse by the cruel sneer painting his hard mouth-
'Get the fuck out of here, you're just a fucking kid.'
It had been at a party at the clubhouse for her college graduation, she'd been 22- far from being a kid! But how could she compete with all of the blonde crow eaters he surrounded himself with? The answer was- she couldnt compete.
One misguided crush from her school days, a beer buzz and some encouragement from that little invisible devil on her shoulder and bang- one shattered heart.
After what he'd said to her she knew that she couldnt break, she'd refused to cry in front of him. That'd have been one humiliation too far, so she'd walked away, head held high, hitched ride home from her mom, faking illness, wanting as much distance between them as possible in a town the size of Charming.
That night had been the catalyst for her first big contracted exhibition. The pain and the rejection, itd been poured into those twenty pieces and she'd worked like a woman possessed on them. Her studio was an old garage at Teller Morrow- mainly so her mom could keep an eye on her. And by this time Zoe was sure that she'd turned into a big bag of crazy, even she couldnt fool herself there.
Her work was beautiful- some full of scenes of great passion, love and sex. Others full of horror, shame and pain. But she'd done a very special one that she was particularly proud of, it was a self portrait- she was wearing just an evil smile, sat in a dark room, lit only by a few candles, surrounded by scattered bullets, her long fingers with their red painted nails, reaching down to the bullets, it was aptly named- The Culling of Him.
It was Zoe basically picking her bullet to commit her fantasy murder with- hell hath no fury- and all that good shit.
That cold prick had devastated her, because under all of her sexy clothes that her mom had encouraged her to wear- she'd still only been 22, still young in so many ways, her naïve heart had been foolish to believe that he was just waiting for her to make her move.
At her lowest point she'd done two paintings that had really said it all- one was of a girl walking in the fog on a dirt road surrounded by eery dream like trees, the other was of the same girl laid on the road, clutching her chest, blood spilling from between her pale fingers and a heavy booted foot was stepping on her torn out heart.
The guys of the club were used to seeing Zoe covered in paint, not a scrap of make up, not speaking, shutting out the world. But they all figured that that was how all crazy artists worked. After all they were hardly the poster boys for normality, so who were they to judge?
To them she was a typical Teller- a deep thinker, just like John. They worked their shit out alone and they went at their own pace, people just had to sit back and wait, like it or not- they'd never rush or be rushed.
It was Gemma who'd been the one to finally get sick of waiting for her baby girl so snap out of it, she'd barged past her daughter in the studio doorway and took a look at the work that'd held Zoe captive for so long and it was nothing short of disturbing. Beautiful and sexy in places with it all had a bitter edge to it.
''Baby girl , this bullshit isolation has to end right now.''
''Well, you've got some good timing ma I've just finished.''
Zoe's smile looked forced, her once life filled eyes were glassy and tired, Gemma knew this girl was in hell-
''Cut the shit Zo, what's going on in that big brain of yours? This -'' Gemma pointed to all of the paintings lining the room- ''isnt the work of a happy girl.''
Zoe had inwardly cringed at the use of the H word-
''I needed to vent this-'' she flipped her paint covered hand to the work- ''it's just a job ma, just work.''
''You've been in here for the better part of three months, you dont come to family dinners, you dont go home and you ditch club parties. Its like we've got this fucking ghost on the lot, who drifts through our lives every so often, surrounded by silence.''
She laughed at her mom's words and to her own ears it was a hollow sound- ''I'm not insane ma...just..hurt.''
''Hurt? Who hurt you!?'' the fierce momma side of the biker queen emerged, hackles up, claws ready to tear apart the guilty.
''Just some guy. I thought he liked me back...fucker flirted with me enough...every time I saw him in fact. When I finally made a move, he just gives me this look like its the most horrific thing I could dream up, the look was boarder line disgust.''
''Hence these?'' Gemma's eyes went around the paintings again.
Zoe nodded- ''Hence.''
''Honey if a guy dares to treat my princess like that, then he barely registers as worthy of a god damn doodle on a coaster never mind a whole exhibition.''
she smirked at her mothers words- ''Maybe, but this way I get to make some money off the jerk off.''
the look of motherly pride was unmissable, the fire was still alive under all of the damage, she was her mothers daughter after all in many ways. But scratch beneath the surface and in her heart she was all J.T, just like Jax was.
Zoe became quite a famous artist over the next six years, for her gritty, sexy but haunting work. It all sold for large sums and she'd been exhibited all over the USA and Europe. She'd travelled the world for inspiration and in that time she'd really grown up and learned to live with her once misguided heart. She'd found out exactly who she was, she was strong, a survivor, a true Teller.
Jax entered the office wiping his hands on the oily rag-
''Hey ma, any sign of Zo yet?''
''No, she's pushing herself too hard again, Juice says she hadnt been home in days.'' Gemma lit a cigarette, holding it between her perfectly manicured fingers- ''She'd better come out from under her rock soon, we've got Tacoma coming down, big patch in huh. She has to be there, she's the sister to the pres after all.''
Jax saw her proud smirk- ''I know ma,but we can't and never could control Zo. She is who she is, goes where ever the hell inspiration takes her. Her work's her baby.''
''If she'd get off her cute butt and found herself a man, she'd have real babies.''
he couldnt help but grin- ''Two grand babies not enough for you now?''
''Don't let Tara hear you say that shit, she'll think you want her to be the lone Teller baby factory.''
From outside they heard Chib's shout in his broad Scottish brogue for most of Charming to hear-
Gemma craned her neck and looked down the lot, sure enough Zoe was stepping out of her self imposed prison, shielding her eyes from the early morning sun.
Zoe laughed at all the guys cheering from the auto shops open bay doors, she did a cute little curtsey for them. Tig hopped off the swing, discarding his cigarette and met her half way across-
''How you doing sweetheart?''
she hugged him close- ''Not too bad Tigger, just one question- what day is it?''
He couldnt hold back the chuckle at her cute puzzled expression- ''Its Friday, big party tonight, we got a patch in going down, from Tacoma.''
''Tacoma?!'' she felt a little light headed, but had to pull it together, she couldnt let her guard slip around this guy, Tig was too sharp not to spot shit like that- ''You're still smiling to can't be Koz.''
''Nah, surfer boy aint coming home, but he'll be here, I'm not spilling. Go see Juice, retards worried.''
She nudged his side- ''Aww Tigger you look kinda worried too.''
''We all are doll, especially that moron, so go see him, give us some peace, his practically your old lady.'' he teased.
Zoe rolled her eyes- ''Button it Trager, we're just friends , so lay off him he had enough of your shit when you sponsored him.''
''Then go be real friendly and check in with him.'' he said not wanting to see Juice's worried face bringing down his day yet again.
''Yes momma Tigger.'' she smiled full of mock sweetness, loving that she could make him smile as he rolled his piercing blue eyes and off she went to the clubhouse.
Heading through the door she saw Juice in his corner of the darkened main room, some sane member had left the blinds mainly shut. He was at his little work station typing furiously, utterly focused. The usual smell of the clubhouse- smoke, booze, cheap perfume and equally cheap pussy- momentarily masked by the fresh scent of pine and lemon cleaning products. She had to thank Phil again for being thorough, he had the oddest flair for cleaning.
She tip toed over to her friend and house mate. Loving how caught up he got when it came to his hacking. Unable to help herself she stood behind him, leaned in and said in her sexiest voice very close to his ear-
''Juicy baby I've missed you so much.''
Juice jumped a mile- ''Shit!''
Hearing Zoe's rich laughter brought him back around, there she stood all 5ft6 of her, petite hipped in her boyfriend style jeans , her snug black tank top show casing her incredible 34DD rack to perfection. Zoe was a striking little thing, a really bizarre mix of scary bitch and free spirited artist, the scary side made him glad to be in her good graces in the roll of- best friend.
''Zo, you nearly gave me a heart attack.'' he breathed heavily.
''I know.'' she smiled from ear to ear- ''I couldnt help myself, sorry Ortiz. So what'd I miss this time?''
''Not much, Tacoma coming down, a patch in vote, Tig's latest freak fest sex marathon in the dorms, you know just the usual shit.'' he shrugged dealing her a big smile, he was so glad to see her looking so happy and normal.
''Good.'' she didnt dare ask Juice who was patching in, he'd give her the truth and that particular truth had the potential to ruin her good day, so she just winked and headed off to his dorm room- ''I'm using your shower.''
''Good you stink.'' he called watching her shoot him the finger over her shoulder as she left.
Zoe didnt want to think about who else could be riding in from Tacoma, she loved Kozik to death, but he was the only one from Washington that she really spent time with, he was fun and they always had movie marathons on the nights when couldnt sleep and she was at the the clubhouse.
Her guts still churned as she tried not to think of the bad turn this patch in could take, she got pretty rough with her hair washing, until she was forced to calm down when she grabbed her conditioner to attempt to smooth out the knots she'd created. Please dont let it be him.
Once she was done, in her worried state she got dried and into the clean clothes she had stashed on the top shelf of Juice's closet. There was only one way to appease this kind of tension- baking. Bobby had taught her well. So by lunch time she had a counter top full of muffins, which the guys were swarming all over like locusts.
Tig's phone rang through the layers of conversation-
''Hey bro...sure...no problem...hell yeah we are man!''
when the call was wrapped up he looked around- ''Guys, they're gonna be here within the hour, Happy can't wait to get here, said they're about an hour away, they made really good time.''
Zoe forced back the urge to vomit in the sink, oh god Happy! If Koz wasnt patching in the Happy was! Fuck! SHE'D AVOIDED HIM FOR SIX WHOLE YEARS! Every party, every charity run, every stop over, she'd been magically too busy to attend, clearly her luck had packed up its ass and hit the bricks big time.
Juice watched her go pale beneath her cute as hell freckles, her big green eyes were darting all over the kitchen looking for the quickest route to the door for her escape. He was hot on her heels when she made her get away from the noisy group. He'd seen that look before and it didnt lead anywhere good.
Zoe was pacing in his dorm room, then very thankful for his OCD tidiness, the floor was clutter free, so she had saved herself a broken ankle while being too distracted to give much mind to her safety.
Nobody but Luann's daughter Kelly knew about her past dealings with Happy. The former Nomad had always been her crush, so itd been a revelation when he'd started secretly flirting with her at just 15 years old.
He was a man of few words, but he let his actions speak volumes. It'd be a wink, a stroke to her lower back when nobody was watching. It's be a heavy look after a win in the boxing ring- all sweat slicked and bloody, his eyes wild with dark fire and sheer dangerous heat.
It had been torture how he'd give her just enough to keep her crush alive, but not enough to be at all obvious, never stepping over the line, so he still had full deniability.
Looking back now she knew that he'd kept her on the hook, but she'd allowed that, just to hear the way he'd say her name, that rough gravel voice of his had been one of the sexiest things she'd heard even to that very day. The summer she'd turned 17 before he senior year, he'd spent the whole summer in Charming and that had been when she'd fallen for him and first love had hit her hard. The flirting in hind sight had probably been a sick game to pass the quiet days of that long hot summer.
After all when she was old enough to go for it and experienced enough to handle what his reputation amongst the crow eaters had promised, she'd been kicked to the curb and treat like she was still 15 not a grown woman of 22.
Zoe turned hearing the dorm room door open, meeting Juice's concerned big brown eyes-
''talk to me Zo.'' he urged her in his soothing tone.
Her long skilled fingers speared into her elbow length natural waves gulping- ''I think I've fucked up.''
''remember when I was 22 and all...''
''crazy?'' he bit his tongue- ''Sorry- depressed.''
''yeah that, I think its coming back- in a manner of speaking.''
He felt scared for her back then no amount of talking of valium had helped break her from her rut, the only thing that had helped was letting her paint and focus on her job.
He carefully took her wrists to keep her from tugging at her hair-
''No, you're not like that any more, you're a bit eccentric and obsessive but you're not crazy, I'm not sure what flipped the switch and made you think that but I'm here for you just like I was back then.''
''Just like you were back then huh?'' she smirked winking at him, managing to calm down a little more.
He chuckled at the memory she was hinting at, six years ago, to break through the log jam of her work stress and his club stresses, they'd given in and had one long wild night of red hot sex. Leading him to confessing to a pretty odd fetish- a passion for ''shaving'' women. He had called it personal pleasure grooming and she'd indulged him and allowed him to shave her, he'd gifted her with a lightning bolt.
Juice met her eyes and wanted to keep her smiling so her said-
''You never know lightning could strike the same place twice.''
Thankfully she laughed, a true laugh and she enveloped him in a hug-
''Thanks for just being...you Ortiz.''
He smoothed back her strawberry scented hair and said softly-
''I wouldnt really know how to be anyone else Teller.''
Juice didnt know any details about what or who had sent her over the edge back then but it had to be a guy. It pissed him off that some random prick could fuck with her like this. It took someone really fuck dumb or brave to screw with the princess of the mother charter.
Zoe rested her head on his shoulder enjoying the way that he stroked her hair and couldnt help herself-
''Careful Ortiz, you'll get me crazy turned on with all of this close contact TLC.''
From the open doorway Opie cringed-
''I dont even need to hear that shit.''
The two friends laughed at the big guy, who was like her second big brother-
''then quit eves dropping Ope.''
''Gladly princess,'' he called over his shoulder heading down the corridor back to work.
She knew that her time to escape was growing short, she had to avoid Happy, that meant either going home or back to her studio...home was her best bet. Quickly she got to her vintage Mustang, keys in hand only to be caught by her mother.
''Oh no you dont Zoe.''
She met that triumphant smile, damn that woman was fast even in four inch heels.
''Here take this.'' Gemma said handing Zoe the long grocery list- ''For the pre party food, once that's in the car, head to my place, you've got old lady duty.''
''Ma, I'm not an old lady, I'm a young single one.''
''Smart ass, either way you're helping. Then you're gonna go home put this painter-hippy look in the laundry hamper and dress like the true princess of Charming that you are.''
Zoe knew that this was not a request, so she saluted the Queen B-
Gemma rolled her eyes- ''Less of that ma'am shit, I'm not that fucking old.''7
''because you're not old ma.'' she then began singing to her- ''you the hottest bitch in this place.'' a line from that annoying Robin Thicke song that was plaguing the air waves still.
''get your bony ass to the store and no bailing or I'm sending Tigger after you again.''
Zoe knew he'd cause a scene where ever he caught up with her, just to flat out embarrass her, the last time she'd hidden in the library after not many of the guys would venture in there. Apart from Tig of course who didnt give a shit what anyone thought of him, never mind some stuffy old library chicks. He'd crept up behind her and yelled-
''No lady you can't blow me in the modern romance section!''
Which had lead to the pair of them getting a two year ban from Charming Public Library.
''Ok ma I'll be the dutiful daughter for the day make the most of it.''
''Oh I will baby, I'll chain you to the stove.'' Gemma moved away from the car door hoping she'd stay true to her word.
The second Zoe was off the lot , she could hear the rumble of Harleys behind her. Checking the rear view mirror she saw a whole fleet of Sons! Koz,Hap and a few Tacoma guys? What a crock of shit! That was a full on rager in the making, fucking shit there'd be no escape in sight now. She hit Kelly Delaney's number on the speed dial of her cell sat in the hands free-
''Hey Zoe Ramone.'' Kelly's voice chimed from the speaker.
Zoe smiled at the old nickname-
''Hey Kell's Angel, are you on old lady duty too by any chance?''
''How ever did you guess?'' Kelly giggled- ''I'm heading over to Gemma Towers right now, my mom's already there cooking up a storm.''
''Well hang on to your Tupperware because I've got news- its Happy's pre patch in party we're fucking well catering for.''
''Fuck me hard!'' Kelly yelled in shock.
''Wow you really are your mothers daughter, no wonder you direct awesome porn.'' Zoe let out a stunned laugh at her friend.
''Hey!'' Kelly tried not to laugh- ''Focus here- Happy? As in Tacoma Killer? Man who's death we've been dreaming about for 6 years?''
''the very same one, he'll be here 24/7, here's hoping shit doesnt get stirred up with him again.''
Kelly gasped overly dramatically as usual- ''he wouldnt dare!''
''No...'' Kelly wasnt so sure any more after all he was the guy who'd lead Zoe on, given her hope only to drop her on her face when it got too real.
The guy was a cold hearted killer, with no conscience when it came to his job for the club or about how he'd dealt with her best friends heart. She was way too good for him, he was a reputed man whore, his name was notorious for all the wrong reasons as far as she was concerned.
She wanted to see Zoe get together with Juice, they had wicked chemistry, they understood each other, damn their kids would be little stunners.
In the supermarket she ran into one of her favourite people in the whole town- Wayne Unser-
She couldnt believe her eyes- ''Jesus Wayne you looked great.'' she hugged the former police chief, unable to fully comprehend the changes in the man. Gone was the unshaven man who'd given up on himself and his entire world, here stood a man with his faith restored in both, including the Sons.
''Well thanks sweetheart, I guess you can thank my mystery benefactor. They've been an angel in my twilight years.'' he gave Zoe a knowing smirk, which she returned.
When she'd see Wayne getting left to his fate after he'd retired, thanks to Clay, while he lined his pockets, left in a trailer with no pension, no nothing, she knew she'd had to step in. This man had put everything on the line over his career and wound up with not a penny to show for it. So Zoe had thanked him by buying him a little house and making sure that the bills for his medications were taken care of too. Wayne now even had a job at the community centre hosting meetings for cancer survivors. People came from all over the county to attend his nights.
She preferred to keep her financial details private, the reality of her true wealth was a secret even from Juice, she'd made good investments, her expenses were small, so using her money for good things was her way of lightening the down side of the club to the people on the edge of it.
''Wayne you loyalty deserves so much recognition.''
He smiled as the sweet girl- ''Your dad would be so proud of you and Jackson.''
Her emotion filled eyes went down to her paint spattered feet in her flip flops- damn she'd missed those in the shower. Once the tears that had threatened had faded she met his eyes-
''I'd like to think dad was proud of me and Jax.''
Wayne knew she missed her dad something crazy, they'd been so close and he knew that JT saw his kids as the future of the club, not his chosen successor. Anyone not a Teller was just treading water, passing the time until a Teller took the gavel.
Zoe had been 10 when JT had died and in her heart of hearts, even at that age she'd never believed that it was an accident that had killed him. Her father didnt make mistakes with his bike, this suspicion had been silenced by Piney, he'd sworn her to secrecy but he'd been thinking the same thing she'd seen it in his own grief stricken eyes.
For 18 years she'd seen it in Clay's cold blue eyes what he was capable of, it killed her knowing that her mother was in love with the man that had cost them JT. She also knew that the man that Clay had become would have no problem taking her out if he heard so muc whisper of what she was thinking.
No, he wouldnt have done it personally, oh no, he'd have had her kidnapped, tortured, then dealt with. Or she'd have met with an accident in her car or while home alone.
Gemma was now free of the man she'd grown to hate, his patches had been stripped, his seat at the redwood had gone to Jax. It was all kept in house, outside charters had no clue to the treachery the former president was capable of, it would have torn the Sons of Anarchy apart nation wide.
So, for appearances only and for the deal with the Irish, Clay sat away from the table like all none riding members, he didnt get to vote either. Clay's hands were shot now, he could barely dress himself without the help of a home carer and Zoe took some sick pleasure in his crippled state- Karma was a vicious bitch when you got up in her face.
One wrong move from that bastard against the club and the Teller siblings had dibs on his removal one way or another, to hell with the Irish and the Cartel. It was all about settling the score- for beating their mother, his hand in the death of Donna, Piney's murder, the plot against Ope, the attempt on Tara. Fuck there was so much to take payment for, the man had a very short life expectancy and the sand was rapidly running out of the hour glass.
When she got to her mom's Kelly and Luann were hard at work, Lyla was at the butchers getting the barbecue meat and the paper plates- by far the easiest job as she wasnt much of a cook, but she tried that was the sweetest thing.
Zoe called entering with her first two heavy grocery bags, setting them down on one of the free kitchen counter tops.
Kelly and Lu smiled at the sight-
Kelly looked so cute today, her long dark blonde hair back in a French braid, looking a knock out in just a white tank top and a denim mini skirt and flat sandals, Zoe couldnt help but wish she looked that cute while in a red hot kitchen.
''Zo I'll help you with the bags, something tells me Queen B gave you the big list.''
''Thanks and how did you guess?'' the youngest Teller smirked appreciatively.
Down at the car Kelly scooped up two bags from the trunk and looked at her friend-
''So, he's Samcro now huh?''
''Yep, how did I miss that fucking vote?''
''It was kept hush hush, but you were too busy to even notice it going down.''
''Sorry, work shit.'' Zoe replied feeling guilty.
''Hey, dont feel bad, we all know your job is your number one, the club has to learn to ride shot gun with it. Dont ever feel bad for having a career outside of the club, I certainly dont.''
''Thanks Kell, but him of all people.'' she sighed hefting the bags higher on her hip.
''You can't let him run you off, you're not 22 any more and you're more entitled to be here than he is, fuck what he thinks.''
Zoe got her head in the right place, Kelly was right who was he to make her head do all of these self doubting bullshit?
''I'm not running, I wouldnt gibe the Killer the satisfaction...hold up just had a weird thought- if he used to the Tacoma Killer, is he now the Charming Killer?''
Kelly saw her friends humour sparking-
''Well that has a porno- thriller written all over a title like that, we could write a spoof character of Happy.''
Zoe let out a big rich laugh- ''Hell yeah we could, we could call him- 'Smiley- The Charming Thriller'.''
They headed up to the house goofing off about their idea. When they got back to the kitchen Kelly called to her mother-
''Ma, Zoe has just had a great idea for a biker based porno spoof, move over blue chicks of 'Avatart',this had the Golden Wang awards written all over it.''
Laughter filled the Teller house, just like it was always supposed to be.
AN: I hope you liked meeting Zoe Teller and taking a few steps into her world, well stay tuned because next chapter we meet Happy and get the ball rolling on the plot, drop me a review with any idea, feedback anything as this is my first SOA story, cheers my dears :) xx