Until July, p.1Part #1 of Until Her series by Aurora Rose Reynolds
Aurora Rose Reynolds
Copyright © 2015 Crystal Aurora Rose Reynolds
Cover and Cover design by Sara Eirew
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All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used factiously, and any resemblance to any actual persons or living or dead, events or locals are entirely coincidental.
The author acknowledges the trademark status and trademark owners of various products referenced in this work of fiction, which have been used without permission. The publication/ Use of these trademarks is not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owner.
All rights reserved.
To Corina, may you never settle until you find the man who gives you butterflies and takes your breath away
Table of Contents
Bonus Excerpt of Until Jax
From Me to You
About the Author
Other books by this Author
I turn onto the highway and pull back on the throttle, watching as the speedometer reaches sixty. I tuck the upper part of my body behind the windshield where there is less wind resistance and yell out, “Wahooo!” when the feeling of flying hits my stomach. This is what I love. Freedom.
I sit up when I see a few bikes in the distance. I don’t recognize their patches, but that doesn’t surprise me. Tennessee has a huge MC community, and there are always new clubs popping up all over the state. I slow down as I close the distance between us.
The closer I get, the more details I can make out. The group of about five bikes in front of me are all Harleys, all ranging in colors from almost purple to black. None of the men are wearing helmets, which is the complete opposite of me, who is covered from head to toe in black leather. Even my helmet is all black, with leather piping.
I take the men in, noticing they are all well-built, their leather cuts displaying a large eagle, with its wings spread wide like it’s midflight. The talons of the bird are carrying a long stem rose, with petals falling off it onto their club name, The Broken Eagles. I begin to speed up and pass them one by one, thankful for the security of my helmet, the black visor making it impossible to see me.
I keep my head straight until the last guy, the one who is at the front of the group, catches my attention. From the back, his hair is the first thing I notice. It’s slightly long on top and buzzed on the sides. My eyes move to the expanse of his back, the wide set of his shoulders, and the tan skin covering his lean muscles. His bike is low to the ground, and the bars are in front of him in a way that he has to stretch his arms straight out, causing every muscle to flex and move, making it look like the tattoos are alive and dancing.
My eyes skim farther down over his chest, which is covered in a white tank top tucked into a pair of light jeans, and around his waist is a black belt with a large silver buckle. I continue to pass him, my eyes shifting from the road to him and back again. This time when I look over, his head is turned towards me, and if I didn’t know any better, I would have swear he is looking directly into my soul.
“Holy shit,” I whisper, taking in his hair, the set of his jaw that is covered in days of stubble, and a pair of light eyes I can’t quite make out through the tint of my helmet. He is seriously hot, but equally scary-looking. I look from him back to the road. It must not have been even a second, but when my eyes go to the asphalt in front of me, I see a bird that is trying to make its way across the road, its wing hanging in an awkward position. I swerve to the right just in time to miss the poor animal.
“What the fuck?” I hear roared, and I look over my shoulder at the man who is now coming up quick on my right side. I yell an apology over the sound of my engine and his pipes. Do a quick wave and take off, lowering my body and pulling back the throttle, wanting to get away from them. Dude looks seriously pissed off, and even though I hate leaving the bird behind without helping it, I would like to live to see my next birthday.
I think I’m in the clear, but then the sound of pipes fills my ears, and I don’t even know how it happens, but they all catch up with me, surrounding my bike. I can’t make out what they’re saying, but my stomach starts to roll at the sound of their voices. I feel my side to make sure I have the Taser my dad insisted I carry.
I see a clearing and pull my bike off to the side of the road. I know this is probably one of the stupidest things I have ever done, but if they keep chasing me like they have been, we could all end up seriously hurt. I pull over and don’t even shut down my bike. I just lower my kickstand as my heart, which was already beating hard, begins to bang violently against my ribcage as they surround me.
“What the fuck is wrong with you?” the guy who was at the head of the group asks, stepping in front of my bike.
I shake my head as my words get lodged in my throat.
He pulls me off my bike, and the men who are with him begin yelling obscenities as well.
“Sorry,” I croak out, and I don’t even know if he hears me as his hand goes to the collar of my leather jacket, where he shakes me hard. My hand accidently presses down on the button that ignites the Taser. The loud crack fills the air, and his eyes go wide then he falls to the ground, and I fall on my ass and crabwalk backwards. I look up when I hit something, only to meet the eyes of another man, who looks pissed.
“Get up,” he growls, picking me up. My feet flail under me as I’m lifted off the ground with my hands restrained behind my back.
“Hold him still,” the guy who I had tasered growls in front of me as I try to get away from the anger I feel coming off him. His hands go to my head and he rips my helmet off, causing my hair to float down around me.
Complete silence descends. I swear no one even takes a breath.
“Um.” I bite my lip and the guy in front of me blinks a couple of times before his hands at my shoulders release then tighten.
“What the fuck were you thinking?” he barks, dipping his face closer to mine, and the scent of him fills my lungs. He smells like leather, musk, and man.
“I…” I start to explain to him what happened, when he cuts me off.
“Fucking bitches always trying to be fucking hard.”
Oh, hell no, he did not just call me a bitch. “You did not just call me a bitch,” I lean forward and hiss in his face.
“Yes, bitch, I asked you what the fuck you were thinking?”
“You cannot be serious right now!” I scream. Have I mentioned that I may have a little bit of a temper? I come by it honestly.
“You gonna explain yourself?” He crosses his arms over his muscular chest and then lifts his chin to the guy behind me, who immediately lets me go, causing my feet to hit the ground hard without warning, making me stumble.
Once I right myself, I turn around quickly to
Then I swing my body to face the scary, hot biker dude. “First of all, I didn’t want to kill a poor, innocent bird, so I swerved to miss it. I apologized for almost hitting you, but then you proceeded to chase me down like this is an episode of Sons of Anarchy, which it is not, I might add,” I yell, flinging my arms around. I hear someone chuckle, but I’m too caught up in my own tirade to pay any attention to how crazy I might appear.
“You flipped me off,” he says.
I look at him and my eyebrows pull together as I reply, “I totally did not flip you off.” I’m pretty sure that I didn’t flip him off. Did I flip him off? I ask myself then shake my head. “I did not flip you off,” I confirm out loud.
“This bitch is crazy.” I turn my head and come face-to-face with a guy who is at least a foot and a half taller than me. He’s slim, and kind of cute in that ‘I just got out of prison. Wanna take a walk on the wild side?’ kind of way.
I swing around in a circle, stating, “The next one of you assholes who calls me a bitch is going to get tasered.” I stop on skinny cute guy and hold the Taser out in his direction, causing him to suck in his already thin stomach.
“Watch it,” he complains, but I swear I see his lip twitch.
“Stop fucking around,” Hot Biker Dude says, grabbing the Taser from my hand.
“Hey,” I protest, and turn to face him, holding out my hand while putting my other hand on my hip. “Give it back.” I wiggle my fingers and he looks me over, making every inch of me tingle. “I’m not kidding; give it back. It was a gift from my dad.”
He looks me over again then looks over my head, and says, “Lets roll.”
“What?” I look at him then all the guys walking away and getting on their bikes. I don’t know why I’m not happier about them leaving, but I swear I want to run up to that guy, jump on his back, and wrap myself around him. I shake my head at my stupidity and yell, “Good riddance!”
That comment must have come too soon, ’cause Hot Biker Dude slips off his bike and comes back to me. I think he’s going to be a jerk, but instead, he hands me my Taser and mutters, “Be safe, babe.”
I watch him walk away; his ass in jeans is like nothing I have seen before. He lifts his leg and straddles his bike, and I stay in place, watching his arm muscles flex from behind. “Holy shit,” I whisper as they all pull off. I get on my bike quickly and head back towards the area I saw the bird. I finally find the poor guy off the side of the road near the edge of a field. Once I have him in my hand, I get back on my bike, and that’s when I hear the sound of pipes once again. A shiver slides down my spine, but I ignore it and focus on what I need to do.
I unzip my leather jacket and unfold the bird’s wing so that I can tuck it closer to his body. Once I have his wing adjusted, I place him near my belly with one hand.
“What are you doing?” a dark, rich voice asks, and I startle almost dropping the poor bird, so I lift my head and glare.
“He broke his wing.”
“It’s a bird,” Hot Biker Dude says, looking at the tiny animal in my hand.
“I know that.” I roll my eyes and zip up the lower part of my jacket so the little bird is secure against me, with his miniature head sticking out the top of the zipper.
“What are you doing with him?”
“Taking him to my office, where I can hopefully get him fixed up.”
“You a doctor?”
I lift my head and our gazes connect. This time, without the visor, I can see his eyes are green, a green so light that they remind me of mint chocolate chip ice cream.
“You gonna answer, or just stare at me?”
What the hell is wrong with me? “I’m a vet.” I feel my face pinking from being called out. “Sorry about earlier,” I murmur, picking up my helmet from behind me and slipping it on, feeling instant relief when he’s blocked out. I lean forward and start up my bike, being careful of the bird that is now sitting close to me. I look at Hot Biker Dude one more time and lift my chin. He smiles, crosses his arms over his chest, and leans back in his seat. I know right then that if I ever see him again, I’m screwed.
“Hey, Dad.” I smile, walking into my parents’ house. My dad lifts his head from the papers in front of him on the island and smiles as I slide onto the seat next to him, leaning my head on his shoulder.
“Hey,” he says, tenderly pressing a kiss to the top of my head then wrapping his large arm around my shoulders. I set my bag down on the counter and lean forward, picking up the coffee cup in front of him and taking a sip. “What’s going on?”
I let out a shaky breath, set the cup down, and lean back so I can look at him.
“There was another dog left on the hospital’s doorstep this morning,” I tell him, and anger instantly fills his features. “I hate it, Dad,” I whisper. “I hate knowing someone is fighting dogs and getting away with it. I hate that when they get to me, they are so badly broken I don’t have any choice but to help them pass peacefully.” I feel tears sting my nose, but I fight them back. You can’t cry in front of my dad. He doesn’t deal well when his girls cry.
“What did Uncle Nico say?”
“He’s putting up cameras out front to see if he can catch anyone, but there isn’t much he can do right now,” I mutter, picking his cup of coffee back up and taking another sip.
“I’ll call your cousins and see if they can have some of their boys do a round in the area.”
“Dad, seriously, they’re busy.” I shake my head. I know my cousins would do rounds if I asked them to, but I hate the idea of them worrying about me. They may be my younger cousins, but you would never know it by how they treat any of us girls. They make my uncles and dad look tame.
“If things don’t pan out with the cameras, I’m asking them.”
I roll my eyes, knowing there is no point in arguing. There are times you may as well be talking to a brick wall when speaking to my father.
“Hey, honey.” My mom smiles, walking into the kitchen, wearing a robe that isn’t exactly appropriate, but still looks good on her. My mom is beautiful, and judging by the look on my dad’s face, he seems to think so too. Which is my cue to leave.
“Hey, Mom,” I mumble as her arms wrap around me and she kisses my cheek.
“I didn’t know you were coming by.” She looks at my dad over my head, but I still catch the look she gives him. Gross.
“I just wanted to come steal some food before I went home,” I tell her, and then want to take it back, ’cause I need to get out of here.
“Do you want me to make you something?” she offers, going to the fridge.
I shake my head. “No, I’ll stop at the store,” I assure her.
I swear my parents are complete freaks, and I do not want to witness anything that will have me bleaching out my eyeballs later. Been there, done that, never going back.
“Are you sure?” She frowns, looking me over.
“Babe, she’s leaving,” my dad growls at her, making me smile.
“Asher Mayson.” She puts her hands on her hips and I almost laugh.
“I’m sure, Mom.” I pick up my bag and kiss my dad on the cheek before giving my mom another hug. I yell, “Love you, guys,” over my shoulder as I rush out of their house.
I drive twenty minutes to my house across town. I live in a yellow, three-bedroom, ranch-style home with a huge front porch that sits two rocking chairs. Even though my house is in town, the houses in my neighborhood are all spread out, each of us on my block having around one-acre lots.
I shut down my car in my driveway, not bothering to park in the garage since I would have to crawl out my trunk, and grab my bag before making my way up to my front porch. I grab my mail from the mailbox next to my door before making my way inside, quickly closing the door behind me so that Juice doesn’t have a chance to escape.
He walks around in circles for a moment before curling himself up into a ball and closing his eyes. I shake my head, wishing I could fall asleep as easily as he does. I always find it hard to sleep after work. My body is normally exhausted, but my mind is in a constant state of worry. I’m always wondering if I missed something, or if I should have done something differently with one of the animals in my care. I slip off my clothes, pull on a pair of cut-off sweats that are now shorts, find a tank top, and put that on before making my way into the kitchen.
“Hey, Taser,” I say as I go to the cage that is now on a stand near the double doors that lead to my back deck. His little bird head turns towards me, and I check to make sure he has enough water and food before placing a sheet over the top of his cage. Since the day I brought him home, Taser has been improving, but judging by the way his small wing still hangs awkwardly, I don’t think he will ever be free again.
I fix myself a peanut butter and banana sandwich and a glass of milk then carry both back to my bedroom, turn on the TV, and get into bed. I make myself comfortable while flipping through channels until I find one of my favorite shows, Ancient Aliens. I lean back and pick up my sandwich, taking a large bite before moaning at its perfection, and then wash it down with a gulp of milk. After I’m done eating, I take my dishes back to the kitchen then go handle my nightly routine before getting back into bed. I make sure I hold back the covers for Juice, who, like always, curves himself against my stomach as I watch the supposable hidden secrets of an ancient alien race until I fall asleep.
Until July by Aurora Rose Reynolds / Romance & Love / History & Fiction have rating 4 out of 5 / Based on32 votes