Wheels of steel book 2, p.1
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       Wheels of Steel, Book 2, p.1
 

          
Wheels of Steel, Book 2


  WHEELS OF STEEL

  BOOK 2

  Pepper Pace

  Girl, you amaze me! Music has no color.

  -Ho-Z

  Copyright

  © 2012 by Pepper Pace. All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission of Pepper Pace.

  Disclaimer

  ~***~

  This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental. Any reference to music is in no attempt to claim ownership. All rights belong to the musical artists. This book contains graphic depictions of sexual acts and is intended for adults only. This book is part of a series and should be read in order.

  COVER ART

  Ho-Z Design

  http://hozdesign.com/

  ABOUT WHEELS OF STEEL

  This story is more a journey than a book. I didn’t want to split it, however it was the size of 3 novels and therefore I really felt that it needed to be separated into 3 separate books. My intent is not to leave you with cliff-hangers, although that will probably be the case. These 3 books are NOT separate stories and should be read in chronological order. If you want to know more about WOS then refer to my blog where these characters are still living in continuing stories at: ttp://pepperpacefeedback.blogspot.com/

  PEPPER PACE BOOKS

  ~***~

  STRANDED!

  Love Intertwined Vol. 1

  Juicy

  Urban Vampire; The Turning

  Urban Vampire; Creature of the Night

  Wheels of Steel Book 1

  Table of Contents

  ABOUT WHEELS OF STEEL 7

  Chapter 1 11

  Chapter 2 16

  Chapter 3 32

  Chapter 4 44

  Chapter 5 50

  Chapter 6 57

  Chapter 7 68

  Chapter 8 75

  Chapter 9 86

  Chapter 10 96

  Chapter 11 100

  Chapter 12 108

  Chapter 13 114

  Chapter 14 123

  Chapter 15 134

  Chapter 16 140

  Chapter 17 143

  Chapter 18 162

  Chapter 19 178

  Chapter 20 196

  Chapter 21 211

  Chapter 22 236

  Chapter 23 247

  Chapter 24 261

  Chapter 25 273

  Chapter 26 289

  Chapter 28 316

  About the Author 328

  Awards 329

  WOS

  Book 2

  ~***~

  Chapter 1

  Robin was lying in her bed. Patty had already left. Link had come by to pick her up just a few minutes ago. But before she left she had explained that Link hadn’t meant to be so rough.

  “A couple years ago he had been to a college party with some friends. They had all driven together with one boy that had sworn he was okay to drive. He hadn’t been. Everyone had been killed except for Link. He was paralyzed from the waist down because no one had the guts to say no, you’re not okay to drive.” Robin watched her. “Just know that he cared enough to do that. Some wouldn’t put themselves out there like that.”

  Robin sighed. “I understand.” She just felt bad that she had caused so many people to worry about her.

  The next day her stomach still hurt too bad to do much more then to lay in bed. She mostly lay curled in a ball feeling miserable; a deep ache between her legs from the loss of her virginity, a throbbing headache that amplified every other ache and pain that she was experiencing. How could it be that she had lost her virginity and the respect of Jason in just one day?

  With a sigh she decided to call her mother to tell her that she needed to call off church tomorrow.

  “What’s wrong, honey?”

  “I’m just coming down with something.”

  “How about I come over and make you some soup?”

  “Okay.” Damn, she knew she was feeling poorly if she didn’t even mind Mama coming over. Betty Mathena fussed over her like she had when she was a kid. Robin thought that if only her Mama knew that the root of Robin’s illness was based on the effects of drinking and sex, she definitely would not have received the primo attention. She made chicken noodle soup and then cleaned Robin’s dusty apartment. She did her grocery shopping and then folded her laundry. All of this was done while Robin dozed off and on throughout the day. Robin grimly checked her cell phone, but no call from Jason.

  Later that evening the two sat at her little used dinette table and had soup and crusty French bread. Mama reached out and touched her forehead. “You don’t have a fever.”

  “No.” Robin agreed. She was feeling better, but not well enough to spend two days in a row with her mother.

  “So what made you cut off that beautiful hair?”

  “Oh Mom…” She touched her head. “It wasn’t all that good looking before. I couldn’t do anything with it but pull it back. I think this is much better.”

  “I don’t know why you didn’t grow it out and get it relaxed. Our family has always been blessed with good hair.”

  She hadn’t been. Her hair was springy and not apt to lay down even if pressed with a hot comb. Why was Mama telling that lie? She didn’t need her hair processed if it fit the true definition of ‘good hair’.

  “Mama, did you know that you were in love with Daddy from the first moment you set eyes on him?”

  “No.” She laughed. “I hated that arrogant, cocky man!”

  Robin gave her a surprised look. “Really?”

  “Oh yeah. You’ve heard this story before, Robin.”

  “Yeah; about how you two met, but I didn’t know how you felt about him.” Mom folded her hands on top of the table and had a thoughtful look on her face.

  “Well, there must have been something there. Anyone who expends as much energy hating someone else has to acknowledge that there is an excess of passion. I believe that too much of any emotion is akin to love; disappointment, jealousy, hatred.”

  “It all means attraction?”

  “That’s what I think.”

  “When did it change from hatred to love?”

  “I don’t know if it was ever truly hatred…but, one day we were debating. I don’t even remember what it was. But I was so aggravated and he smiled and looked at me closely. I just…well I just felt warm.” Mama was smiling and her cheeks reddened.

  “Is that when you knew that you loved him?”

  “No.” She chuckled. “I spent a lot of time denying my feelings. I knew I loved your father with our first kiss.” Robin smiled. “And then I didn’t want to ever kiss another boy…and I never have.” Robin gave her mother a sad smile. Betty patted her hand and quickly stood. “Do you want something to drink? Iced tea?”

  “No. I’m fine.” She twirled her spoon in her bowl. “Mama…do you ever think about falling in love with someone else?”

  “Oh…” She poured Robin more tea, even though she hadn’t asked for any. “I-well I’m too old for that now.”

  “Mom that’s crazy. You are only in your forties. You’re not even forty-five!”

  Mama sat down with a sigh. “Oh I know…but what’s the point? Your father and I built our first home together, we made a child and raised her. Everything that I have accomplished is all tied in with your father. There seems no reason to try to…be with someone else.”

  Robin blinked at her in surprise, thinking about Miss Lucille’s sad, lonely life. “But…there’s so much more. There’s trips to the Bahamas and…forty more Christmases and forty more Thanksgivings. Mom, you don’t really think it’s over yet, do you?”

 
Mama reached out and patted her hand. “You couldn’t understand. When you love someone and it ends—not because of mutual consent or because of infidelity, but because of some stupid stupid disease…well then, it’s like it’s still there; the love…it’s still there but with no one to point it to.”

  ***

  “Why are you moping?” Jason’s mother asked. “You are so quiet. You’ve barely said five words since I’ve been here.” Jason stared at the computer screen where he was supposed to be doing homework. His mind kept replaying last night; his anger, his fear, even his lust.

  He looked at his mother and tried to offer her a half smile. “I’m sorry. I just have a lot on my mind with school and stuff.”

  “Do you want to talk about it?”

  Jason shrugged. “Not much to talk about; just school stuff.” His mother shrugged as well.

  “Jason…you and I used to be so close, son. What happened?” He looked at her.

  “We’re still close, Mom. How many guys my age spend this much time with their mother once a week?” She smiled.

  “True.” She reached out and ruffled his hair. “I love you, baby boy.”

  “I know Mom. I love you, too.”

  His mother only stayed until early in the afternoon. After lunch at a seafood restaurant, she returned home. Link had left him a message and he called him back on SKYPE.

  “How’s Sweetheart?” His friend asked.

  “I don’t know. I haven’t talked to her.”

  “Look, I’m sorry if I came off a little too heavy last night.”

  “I’m sure she’ll be okay, Link. It’s no biggie. And look, I want you to keep all of the money from the gig.”

  “Don’t be stupid. You played half of the gig-”

  “Yeah, but I left you in a lurch and besides…it’s not about money. I only played so that I could get Robin to come out. Little good that did…”

  “Is she…an alcoholic or something?”

  “I don’t know. I don’t know all that much about her.”

  “Look…maybe you should…ask some more questions about her.” Jason shrugged.

  “She gets nervous easy. But yeah…I do need to know more about her.”

  “Do you want me to bring your braces and crutches?”

  “Nah, can you just leave them in your van and I’ll get them Monday?”

  “Sure. See you Monday.”

  After his conversation with Link, Jason navigated to Yahoo. Robin’s icon was unlit. He left her a message.

  ~How are you feeling?~

  ***

  Once Robin was alone in the house, she felt restless. She had been sleeping off and on all day and it was Saturday night. Her stomach still ached, but after eating the soup it wasn’t quite as bad. Since Mama had cleaned her house, done the shopping and finished the laundry there was nothing that she needed to do.

  She picked up the laptop and carried it into her bedroom. She saw that Jason’s Icon was lit. He had left her a message; how are you doing?

  She closed the lid on the laptop without responding.

  Chapter 2

  By the time Monday rolled around her stomach only held a dull ache and she had made herself a stern promise never to touch liquor again! She drove to Jason’s house still feeling like she’d made an idiot out of herself. She was embarrassed and a little hurt that he had yelled at her at the party. It had caused her to clam up. She wanted to explain but the words wouldn’t come. It really didn’t matter anymore. She’d made one big mistake after the other. She rang his bell nervously. He was in his wheelchair when he answered.

  “Hello.” She said.

  “Hi.” She came inside and placed her purse on the chair.

  “My crutches are still in Link’s van.” He explained. “I was just having breakfast.” She followed him into the kitchen. He was eating a bowl of Cheerios and had already made coffee. She sat down.

  “No coffee?” He asked.

  “My stomach is still a bit queasy.”

  “Yeah,” he ate and pretended to read the paper; at a loss for what to say to break the chill that had developed between them. He just didn’t understand why she had to go off with those guys. That’s what just didn’t make sense to him. It just had created unnecessary worry. She should have just stayed inside!

  When he finished breakfast he went to the bathroom to brush his teeth and Robin finished with the dishes. Wow, he wasn’t even talking to her now. Did that mean that they were broke up? Normally they would have kissed by now. Jason’s friends surely thought she was a freak and now he did, too.

  She just went about her duties wordlessly. They drove to school and listened to the radio without commenting on the music. She set up his computer with each class, wrote out his calculus problems, took out his books from his book bag and wheeled him from class to class; all with very little talking.

  She followed him to the cafeteria and wished that he would just want to go outside to the courtyard so that she wouldn’t have to face these people that she’d made a fool out of herself in front of. But once they had gotten what they wanted to eat he wheeled straight for his usual table. There was the usual jovial welcome and then stiff and awkward greetings directed at her. She forced herself to eat her ham sandwich even though her stomach had gotten knotted up again.

  Amberly was telling some guy about how good the ‘boys’ had played at the party Friday and Robin stiffened, wondering if she would mention her part in Friday’s fiasco. But she didn’t acknowledge Robin after a brief hello.

  Patty got up from her place at the table and sat down on the other side of Robin. “How are you feeling?”

  “Fine.” Patty saw that she had dark circles beneath her eyes.

  “Dude, you want your braces and crutches from the van now or after school?” Link suddenly asked Jason.

  “Now is good. I’m done eating.” He collected his trash and wordlessly placed it on the tray for Robin to get rid of. Link led them out of the cafeteria; Jason, Robin and Patty following him. Link kept up a steady stream of conversation which Patty punctuated with sarcasm or insults. Robin wondered why she did that if she liked Link so much.

  Once at the van Link had them all climb inside so that Jason could take down his pants and put on the braces. Once in the van, Link discreetly ran his fingers along the back of Patty’s hand. Patty gave him a knowing look and Robin tried to pretend not to notice. She caught Jason watching her but he turned away quickly and worked on unbuttoning his pants.

  “Want me to do it?” She asked.

  “Sure.” She reached over and unbuttoned and unzipped him. He quickly pushed down his pants and while he strapped on one of the braces she strapped on the other. When she looked up Link and Patty were staring deeply and lovingly into each other’s eyes. She looked away uncomfortably.

  “Okay, look you two!” Patty yelled. Robin jumped. “Get it out in the open right now. Nobody leaves this van until you two start talking!” She heard the distinct click as the locks engaged. Robin and Jason sat there quietly and avoided looking at each other.

  Link cleared his throat. “I’ll start. Robin, I didn’t mean to seem pushy about the keys. I just…don’t want to ever have to lose anymore friends to drinking and driving.” Robin met his eyes.

 
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