Authors: Adair Rymer
|Too Wild To Ride (Steel Veins MC Romance, #1)|
The road behind them littered with corpses, Remy and Star speed toward a breaking point.
Her small town innocence is ash in the breeze. Strip clubs, sex, murder... Star will do whatever it takes to show Remy that she can earn a place by his side. But is the price too high?
With every decision charring the frayed edges of her soul, Star struggles with who she needs to become in order to survive.
Hit men, Police and rival gang members bear down on all sides. Death rides from every cracked corner and still, Remy can't shake Star from his mind. And what he's done to her.
Can a man who has nothing left really give up the only person worth fighting for?
Book 2 in the Steel Veins MC Romance series, contains ground-shaking violence, filthy sex and an alpha male hero who will tear the world apart to get what he wants. Approx: 115 pages, ends in a cliffhanger.
TOO WILD TO RIDE
Steel Veins MC Romance
Copyright © 2014 Adair Rymer
All rights reserved.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. They are not to be construed in any way. Resemblances to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
To Amanda for being my magnetic north.
To Julie A. for sanity and absurdity.
elcome to Las Vegas! Bienvenidos!” flashed the old sign in Remy's headlights. This was my first time in Vegas. I honestly thought it would be different circumstances and... well, a different Vegas. We had landed in Las Vegas,
I've never heard of the place and apparently neither did the rest of the country.
We hadn't spoken much since we left Muse's place, aside from a quick pit stop to let me pee. He asked me if I was OK. I didn't really know how to answer that, so we both just got back on and kept riding. I kept picturing the bodies left in Remy's wake. Littered all around him like he was the center of a furious whirlwind and anything that got too close was chewed up. Was I an anomaly? Here I was standing in the center, raging winds all around me, looking up at his startling beauty. God, I hope I stayed here forever.
Whenever I had the courage to pull my face from his muscled back on the long ride, I couldn't fight the urge to look over my shoulder at those who might be pursing us. I expected to see this Tolkien-esq army of bikers, fire and bloodlust carving a dark scar across the lonely farmland. Of course there was nothing. Just that long stretch of infinite black. It felt worse somehow. Like the calm before the storm or like I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.
The idea of riding off with Remy into the sunset was alluring, but it didn't fit. It was too clean. Too
. If there was a happy ending in store for us it would be hard fought. We'd have to pay for it in pounds of flesh. Of that, there was no doubt. I didn't know much about the kill teams that were supposedly on our heels but the name certainly painted a vivid picture. A
I was scared. How could I not be? Everything was so up in the air. I didn't know where we were or where we were headed and at the speeds he moved us, talking to him was impossible. He had been leaning forward so I had been leaning forward. One wrong move and I would become a bird for a very short time.
Still, despite the danger looming around every corner, I was glad to be wrapped around Remy. I've always had a weakness for strong, confident men and although some got me in trouble before, none of them could compare to him. Remy could spit in the Devil's eye and dare him to move and I'd put the odds at about half that he would. If seeing Remy deny his whole MC family just to protect me wasn't real, I don't think I could go on living. I would burn that into my eyes and only see that for the rest of my life if I could. I squeezed him tighter.
Remy pushed his Kawasaki so fast and hard, it felt like we'd rode back in time. There was nothing out here. The blocky, painted brick buildings were reminiscent of deep, Spanish colonial roots; a ceremonial town that existed more out of habit than function. This was the kind of town a person could easily disappear in. I now knew why were in
Vegas New Mexico. Or at least, I thought I did. With Remy, one can never truly know anything.
Remy's rocket sped us through the dusty, dead center of town. The glowing green and blue display above the gaudy bank pulsed the time. Jesus, we'd been riding for five hours! Had it really been that long? For most of the ride I'd been immersed in haunting memories so recent that I still felt their various sensations. Top's concrete hands pulling me apart, Rio's horrid black breath on my cheek and the sting of Muse's fine-toothed glare when she sized me up in the hallway. Muse... that misplaced hope. I hated her more than the rest, I hated her as much as I'd grown to love Gloria. Gloria was a lone sunbeam trapped in a dirty mason jar.
I could only imagine what must be going on in Remy's head. He'd lost everything today. His family, his livelihood, everything he'd ever known all gone because of some stupid, spoiled girl. I hope, beyond all else, that he lets me put more cracks in that stone shell around his heart. I needed to know him. I yearned to bathe in the light of his love. I didn't care that it was a toxic glow. I didn't care one bit.
Even sleepy Vegas vanished behind us. I thought we'd never stop. That is, until we pulled into the “Pick and Pay,” a closed-for-the-evening convenience store.
I slid off and stretched. I felt like I'd just gotten off a boat, except that my legs were almost completely numb. Most of the residual vibration was from the ride but I caught myself biting at the corner of my bottom lip when I realized that some of it— that soreness deep within me— was from him. The dented hood of that car. Remy's sweating body sliding on top of me. I had to shake those incredible thoughts from my head. There would be time for that later. Plenty of time, I hoped.
Remy hunched forward over the handlebars and ran both hands over his face and through his wind-tossed hair. It was a long ride, he must have been exhausted. He just stared off into the distance. Had he not been within arms reach I'd have thought him a million miles away.
“Are you ok?” I asked tentatively.
His hand shook slightly as he tugged a crushed pack of cigarettes out of his back pocket. It was only when he lit the cigarette that I saw his other hand slightly shaking as well. It wasn't just the vibrations of the long ride that crept into his bones. It was something else. Something far more painful. I could read him. Dark thoughts marred his handsome features.
“Remy?” My fingertips grazed his bare shoulder. We'd tossed his shirt before he killed Rio. God, the image of Remy's thumb in the man's eye socket made my stomach turn.
I started pulling away. He grabbed my hand and pulled me back on the bike. I landed side-saddle on the gas tank. Were it not for his strong legs, the explosive force jerking me toward him, I would've knocked the bike over with us beneath it.
My shoulders were pinned back, the metal bars and the edge of the windshield pushed into my spine. His dark eyes mirrored the burning cherry tip of the lit cigarette as they breathed me in like the smoke. It was that same searching look Muse had given me. What were they looking for?
“What is it?” I asked. He turned me around and pulled me back into him. I think it was so I couldn’t look at him, or maybe it was so he couldn't look at me.
“A ghost.” He exhaled a plume of smoke out the side of his mouth before flicking away the cigarette.
“Nothing.” I felt his face press against the back of my head. His relaxed hot breath on my scalp. “You remind me of someone I used to know.”
“...Maria?” The name Muse told me slipped out of my mouth. I almost gasped when I heard myself say it. I desperately didn't want to know. I was afraid for some absurd reason. I didn't want him to love me just because I looked like another girl.
“Doesn't matter anymore,” he said, and I hoped to hell he was telling the truth.
I sat, motionless in his arms, afraid that a pinprick might come along and pop whatever fantasy world I was currently in.
“Where are you from?” It was the first normal thing he'd ever asked me.
“New Hampshire. Manchester.” The ludicrous thought of introducing him to my parents almost made me laugh out loud.
“Is it nice there?” His voice was low and soothing.
“Some parts. The fall is beautiful, with all the changing leaves.”
“I've never seen leaves change color.” Some part of me never thought we'd get this. The ability to talk to each other on a less than primal level. It wasn't that I thought he was dumb or anything. It's just, I don't know. I never thought we'd make it that far together.
“Hop off,” he said finally.
I didn't want to. The way he held me... I felt like I was the most important woman in the world. I knew that I wouldn't get many of those feelings, which made it was so damn hard to pull away, but I did. I needed to be the one to move. If he had to push me off it would've tarnished the moment.
His hands were no longer shaking. Jesus, he was so in control. I can't even stop myself from fucking hiccuping fits. He took several long breaths. He was trying to forget something or at least put it aside enough to focus on whatever task he felt was next.
“Why are we here?” I genuinely had no idea what we could be doing at a place like this and I knew we didn't stop to just rest our legs.
“Didn't have time to take my cut. We need some cash.” Remy got off and walked around to the back of the store. He searched for surveillance cameras.
Oh my god, he was going to rob this place! “Remy, wait!” I half-jogged after him. Given everything else I've seen him do, robbery ranked closer to neutral on the morality scale, but for some reason pangs of guilt compelled me to at least try and stop him. The “Pick and Pay” looked like a family-owned business and I still had a lot of trouble shaking off what had happened to my aunt and uncle. “Do we really have to do this?”
“You like to eat? Most places don't accept
“I still have that money you gave me!” I was really hungry. Fuck, I hadn't eaten all day. Why'd he have to say that?
He looked at me with those heavy eyes, then sighed in resignation as he saw it would take more than that to dissuade me. “This thing I dragged you into— this life. It's too rough for a girl like you. You have fire, Star, it's what saved your life.” The corner of his mouth spread in a devilish smile but quickly faded. “But you don't have the skin for this. I belong here. Violence, chaos, blood. That's home to me. You're innocent. You're better than this. You need to go far away. To somewhere that's safe. Safe from me.”
I was staggered. Rio's punch hurt far less. I didn't have the words.
He couldn't just leave me here with some money and expect me to be ok. I couldn't go back to that life now. Not after everything that's happened.
life wasn't a fucking light switch I could just flip back on. New Hampshire felt like a fairy tale now. That whole life felt like a facade, pretty but empty. Nothing but painted false walls and actor egresses like a Disneyland that had been closed for renovations.
“I don't have a home anymore!” I blurted at him, just to stop him from walking away.
It worked, he turned to face me. “And if you stay with me, I'll rob you of your future too,” he warned.
“Don't push me away, Remy. You brought me this far.”
His soft words were barely audible. “You didn't deserve to die at a gas station.”
“You saved me. I can help you. I've always been good at reading people. Tell me what your plan is. Let me help you!”
“Goddammit, Star! Are you fucking suicidal?” Remy blew up. His volume stayed steady but his tone hardened like a spike of ice. I backpedaled a step. He saw this and softened. “I have a nasty way of getting those I care about killed. My own brother is dead because I was careless.”
I hesitantly took a step toward him and put my arm out. He really hadn't had the time to cope with his brother's murder. I wanted to comfort him. He slapped my hand away and grabbed either side of my face, forcing me to look him dead in the eyes.
“Without protection, everyone will be coming after us. The kill teams, Los Lobos, the cops, everyone. I might be able to scrape by but there is no way this doesn't end with your glasses under someone's boot.” His forehead fell gently into mine. “I can't let that happen.”