Home > Ignite (Men of Inked : Heatwave #5)(5)

Ignite (Men of Inked : Heatwave #5)(5)
Author: Chelle Bliss

She keeps her hazel eyes down, not giving me the thing I want the most. “You’re not a burden. If it were me who was injured, would you think of me like that?”

“Of course not. I’d do everything in my power to make you better. I love you too much to watch you suffer and not do something.”

She tips her face back, staring up at me, tears resting near her eyelashes, ready to fall. “Goddamn you. I’m not a crier. I’ve never been a crier, but you were such an asshole, Mammoth. You never treat me that way. Never. It just threw me, hearing you order me to make you a sandwich. I thought we’d gone backward about fifty years in time and I should find a set of pearls to put around my neck so I could become Little Suzy Homemaker.”

I cringe at her words. “Listen, I didn’t mean it that way. My head’s foggy, and I don’t feel like myself. I should’ve said please and asked if you could make me something to eat. I’m sorry, princess. Truly sorry.”

“You should be,” she whispers, moving her face into my palm, melting into my touch.

“Why the tears, Tam? I know there’s more to this than a sandwich. I mean, the woman I know would’ve told me to just shove the sandwich right up my ass, given me the middle finger, and slammed the door as she marched her fine ass out.”

She leans forward, falling into my chest, smashing her face against my skin. “I don’t think I’ve ever been so scared,” she whispers and wraps her arms around my body, holding me so damn tight I’m almost winded.

But I don’t dare move.

I don’t speak.

Hell, I’m barely breathing.

Although I was pissed when the argument started about something unimportant, this conversation is about something else…something that’s changed her. She needs to get this off her chest, and I’m not about to stop her by opening my mouth. I’m going to give her what she needs and hold her as tightly as possible, letting her get everything out.

“When Pike called, I thought you were going to die,” she confesses. “I lost my mind. Images of you lying on the gravel at some shithole, bleeding out…” She shakes her head, rubbing her tears into my skin. “I didn’t think I’d ever get to see your face again. Touch your skin. Feel the warmth of your arms around me, holding me, comforting me.”

“Baby, I’m fine. Pike shouldn’t have—”

“No,” she interrupts, tipping her head back and gazing up at me with her eyes blazing. “He told me everything. He didn’t freak out. He didn’t say you were dying. But my mind went there. I allowed myself to feel that fear. I know the longer you’re across the state, living with the Disciples, the closer we come to the day when I really get the phone call that you were shot and didn’t make it. What if next time it isn’t a shoulder wound? We were lucky. The guy had shit aim, but what if he’d moved the gun just a few more inches? He could’ve shot you right in the chest, stopping this heart.” She places her hand in the middle of my chest, right over my heart. “What would I have done then?”

I bend my neck, placing my lips against her forehead. “It won’t happen.”

“It could,” she tells me.

“It won’t. I won’t be in the club long enough or put myself in a situation like that again. I’ll talk to Tiny and Morris. We’ll speed up my exit. They’ll understand. This wound—” I dip my chin toward the bandage on my shoulder “—will get me what we want earlier than we expected.”

“They already said you’ll never be free.”

I pull her closer, resting my cheek against her soft hair as she snuggles into my chest. “No one leaves completely, but I’ll be as free as anyone can be. I won’t have to be a part of them day-to-day. I won’t have to wear my cut, making myself a target. I won’t have to go on spur-of-the-moment rides. Sure, I may be called upon if shit goes sideways or if they need a favor over here, but other than that, I’ll be more out than in.”

She sighs, running her hand down my back, tracing the line of my spine. “I need you to be here more than you’re there.”

“Done.”

“I need you in my bed at night.”

“I’ll make it happen.”

“I need to grow old with you.”

“I’d have it no other way,” I promise her, meaning every fucking word.

She stares up at me with so much hope. “I want babies with you. Lots of babies.”

I swallow, trying to push down the fear I’ve always had about being a shit father. “Whatever you want, princess. You know I’d give you the moon and the stars if I could reach high enough.”

“At least you have time to recuperate before you have to go back to the compound.”

I stiffen, and her eyes widen.

“Do not tell me you’re going back already.”

“I have to go back tomorrow. They need me there, and I don’t have a choice. I’m still a member of the club, injured or not.”

She sighs, dropping her head to the middle of my chest again. “Fuckers,” she murmurs against my skin, digging her fingernails into my back. “You can’t ride like this.”

“I’ll have Pike drive me,” I tell her, hating that I have to ask anyone to drive me across the entire state and can’t do it myself.

“No,” she says quickly, keeping her face pressed into me. “I’ll take you.”

“I don’t think—”

“I don’t care. I’ll take you. You need a ride. I’m your ride. This isn’t up for discussion or debate. Understand?”

A smile spreads across my face because I do like it when she’s bossy…at least, sometimes I do. Other times, not so much. “You can take me, then.”

She peers up, a smirk finally back on those beautiful lips. “I wasn’t asking for your permission.”

“We good, then?”

She nods. “Always.”

“I’m yours today. What do you want to do?”

“I want you to finish eating and then go back to bed.”

I sigh.

“But I’m going to be in that bed with you, baby. We’ll see if you can handle me before I bring you back to the compound. We’ll call it a test.”

I smile, liking her way of thinking. “You going to grade me?” I lift an eyebrow.

She laughs. “Of course.”

I slide my hand down to her ass. “Will there be extra credit?”

She moves her hand into the waistband of my jeans. “It’s possible, but it won’t be easy.”

“I’m up for the challenge, princess.”

“I’m sure you are,” she says, winking.

 

 

3

 

 

Tamara

 

 

I gasp, sucking in air like I’ve had my head underwater for more seconds than humanly possible. “Jesus fucking Christ,” I mutter, collapsing back against the mattress.

“Princess, Jesus had nothing to do with that.”

I close my eyes, my head spinning from lack of oxygen and the orgasmic aftershocks that are still coursing through my body. “I’m pretty damn sure I saw God.”

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