Kellan

By: Jayne Blue

Great Wolves M.C. - Book Four




Chapter One

Kellan

It’s the little shit that ends up changing your life in big ways. Ways you never could have expected. If I hadn’t leaned six inches over to my left to grab a canteen off the floor of that Humvee, the IED blast would have blown a hole through my chest too, instead of just tearing off my right leg below the knee. Or if I had leaned over just two or three inches more, maybe I wouldn’t have been hit at all. Or if I’d have just stayed home like the rest of my M.C. brothers, I never would have been on that shithole of a road in the Parwan Province. Instead, I might have just had a sweet piece of ass squeezing her thighs against me as she straddled the seat of my Harley while we blazed down I-75.

It’s not that I spend a lot of time thinking about the what ifs. I have no regrets. Even after all of it, I know I came home lucky, if not easy. Sometimes though, don’t you get that feeling low in your gut when you know some little thing is about to blast your world apart again?

“Just give them about five more minutes.” The bartender, a college kid, early twenties, flashed me a toothy grin as he brushed the hair out of his eyes. What the fuck was I doing here? I was in a hole-in-the-wall lakefront bar in what had to be the hick capital of Michigan. The only other place to get food around here was at a truck stop called Hummers. I shit you not.

The kid slid me a fresh cold draft beer. “Boss says that one’s on the house,” he said. At least that was something. I was about to say that when my phone buzzed in the back pocket of my jeans. I pulled it out.

“Hey, Prez,” I said. Colt hated when I called him that. He was still getting used to the title though it suited him damn well.

“You on your way back yet?”

“No, the headlining act hasn’t even come out yet. You sure you heard the name of this place right? The Sand Bar?”

“That’s the place.” Colt laughed. He was getting a kick out of my misery. We’d just opened a new bar in our hometown, Lincolnshire, Ohio. We called it The Wolf Den. It was club headquarters, but we were turning it into the kind of place the whole town felt comfortable spending their money in. A big part of that was lining up a killer house band. I’d been scouting the tri-state area for months trying to find just the right talent. So far, I’d seen nothing but a string of pop star wannabes and shit that was half grunge and half . . . well . . . shit. I had no reason to think The Sand Bar was going to bring me anything better, but here I was.

“Just come on home when you finish up there,” Colt said. “We’ll take a break and regroup. There’s some shit going on down here we need to talk about anyway.”

“Sounds good,” I said, curious what kind of shit he meant. But before I could ask anything else, I had to click off because the crowd of townies and college-aged kids started to stir. I couldn’t help thinking what a huge waste of my time this was. Just like all of the other dives I’d been in. I don’t know what the hell I was thinking agreeing to take this on. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Most of the rowdier hicks crowded around the dance floor, beers in hand. A few of the busboys doubled as roadies on stage, setting up the microphones and amps for tonight’s act. The real party was happening past the patio out on the beach and anchored just beyond it. Boats had come in from all over the Irish Hills area to watch the band play. That is, if they ever fucking made it on stage.

The bartender vaulted over the bar one-handed and ran up to the stage. He stepped to the mic, adjusting it higher as the crowd playfully booed him and the din died down.

“Are you ready, people?” he shouted too close to the mic and the reverb made me as well as everyone else in the room wince. This wasn’t a good sign.

“Show us your tits, Brad!” came a shout from the back. All activity in the bar stopped; everyone was focused on the stage, including the busboys and bartenders.

Brad, the bartender, stepped back, running a hand through his unruly blond hair. “You couldn’t handle this jelly,” he said. Oh for fuck’s sake. I was outta there.

When the catcalls and whistles started to escalate, Brad put his hands up, then waved them downward to quiet the crowd. “Okay. Without further ado. I’m pretty sure she’s finally ready. You ready, Miss Rhodes?” he called behind him.

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