A Lexus pulled into her driveway and I saw the bitch get out of the car. Two boys slid out then a slim form with subtle curves. Charisma. She lifted her face to the sun and my heart stuttered in my chest. Christ! I swallowed my food and nearly choked on the large bite. Shade had mentioned she’d been with Heather for a decade, which made her around twenty-seven now. Roughly half my age, but fuck if she wasn’t stunning. She reached into the car and helped out a little girl I knew had to be her daughter, Nova.
And that’s the moment I knew I’d do whatever it took to keep those four safe. Charisma, Nova, and the two boys would never be hurt again. The way she cradled her daughter against her side, the protective stance she took between Heather and those boys, told me one thing -- the girl wasn’t hurting anyone. Unless it was Heather. She had murder in her eyes when she stared at the woman. Crazy bitch only smirked back at her.
I texted Shade.
Change of plans. I’m bringing them all home with me.
Those boys reminded me of Samurai when he’d been a teen. Small and wiry. And they were both at least half-Asian. It seemed Heather had a type.
I watched them go into the house with the She-Devil and shut the door. After I finished my food, I pulled out of the parking lot and moved over to her home, stopping my Jeep right behind her fancy car. Reaching into the backseat, I picked up my cut, as well as the brass knuckles I’d hidden underneath it. I slid the weapon into my pocket and got out of the vehicle. Pulling on my cut, I shut the door, locked the car, and went up to ring the bell.
Charisma opened the door, her eyes going wide when she saw me. She skimmed over my cut, her gaze locking on the patches denoting my club, name, and rank. She finished her perusal before lifting her gaze to mine again. I caught movement in my peripheral. Judging the size and shape, it was her daughter.
I pulled my keys from my pocket and tipped my head toward the driveway. “Take your daughter and get in the Jeep. Lock the doors and wait for me.”
Her eyebrows went up. She stared, not moving and not speaking. She reached up to tuck her hair behind her eat and I growled at what I saw. Someone had damaged her with what looked like acid. I moved slow, not wanting to startle her, and checked the other side. Son of a bitch. Whoever had hurt her, had harmed both ears. Which meant… I mouthed the words slowly. “Can you hear me?”
Her eyes widened and she shook her head.
“What else did that bitch do to you?” I asked, mouthing the words slowly again.
Her cheeks flushed and she dropped her gaze. Shame. Whatever had been done to her, she was ashamed to tell me. I had a feeling I understood why she was still here with Heather. The woman used the boys against her, and probably used her against them. If she’d touched Nova, I’d make her suffer longer.
I tipped her chin up. “Take my keys. Get your daughter and wait in the Jeep. Lock the doors. Do you understand?”
She nodded and reached behind her. I saw Nova’s small fingers wrap around hers and Charisma took my keys. She hesitated, her gaze searching mine.
“I’ll get the boys out too.”
Her posture relaxed and she hurried to the Jeep with Nova in tow. Nothing in the reports Shade had found from social services mentioned Charisma being unable to hear. It had to have happened either right before she aged out, or after. For whatever reason, he couldn’t find any updates from the social workers the months leading up to her turning eighteen. Her exit had been little more than a few notes including how wonderful Heather had been to let her stay. I didn’t like being blindsided, but at least she would be safe now. All of them would be.
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