***Lucky Wolf Casino, Near Sebida***
“Shitpisscockcuntmotherfuckinsonsofbitches.” Jack caught Abigail in his arms. She did not just say that. And why did the feel of this woman in his arms complete him in some fucking way? And… “What the fuck were you people thinking? Even if it weren’t for this damned virus, you don’t let…”
Mercy stood up; it was almost like old times. That look in her eyes and that finger pointed straight to his chest, “Don’t do what, Jack? We’re having a bachelorette party.”
“And you let her get shit-faced drunk!”
“Abby Jean is not that little girl you need to watch out for anymore. She’s not even that silly teen with stars in her eyes. She’s twenty-seven, Jack. She’s been engaged for two years. And just discovered her fiancée in bed with another woman. So, hell yeah, it ain’t gonna kill her to drown her sorrows in…”
“You know her family history…”
“Yeah, but one night’s binge drinking to drown your sorrows over a worthless piece of shit she never should have been involved with, to begin with, does not make an alcoholic.”
Jack recognized the truth in Mercy’s words, but logic had fled outside of Sebida Methodist church yesterday. As hard as he had fought it, all day, this woman was the only thing he could think about. And this was not how he had imagined Abigail in his arms.
He was going to hell for sure now. This was Abby Jean. She was too young for him. He had pushed her in that old swing when she was just a scared little kid. He had rescued her from a handsy senior who thought taking a sophomore to the prom entitled him to way more than a dance. This was Abby. And he was some fucked up shit to even consider the shit he had been.
“Jack, relax. Reb and I will take the girl home later,” Stacey Reynolds stared him down over the rim of a beer bottle.
“No, no, you won’t.” He didn’t trust any of them to properly care for his… “Fuck, fuck, fuckity, fuck, fuck, fuck!”
He turned to stare at Lizzie Patterson, “You, of all people, should have…”
She held up her hands, “I tried. But like Mercy said, she is an adult. Abby Jean is old enough to make her own decisions…”
Jack knew he was making a scene in his own damned casino. Not that it mattered. Besides their little bachelorette party and their men-folk hanging out in the corner nursing the same warm beers they had all night, it was only staff and a half a dozen die-hard gamblers. Sure, it was Monday night, the Baptist preacher’s hellfire was still licking at a few people’s asses, but this was not good. This place was in real trouble.
But he could not think about that with her pressed so tightly against his body. Jack had been damned careful not to look down. Until she moaned and buried her face in his chest. His cock went on full alert. And his eyes dropped to the sweetness he held in his arms. Damn, when had little Abby Jean grown a rack that drove circles around both Laura and Mercy’s? Those tits almost burst out the sweetheart neckline of a rockabilly dress that ticked all the boxes in his kinkiest fantasies. If she wore a garter belt and hose, he was a goner.
Except he would not be finding that out. Not tonight. Not ever. She was ‘That’ woman’s granddaughter. And he was not about to go repeating old family history. No matter how goddamned right she felt in his arms.
“Hey, buddy, how about Stacey and I take the little lady off your hands? We’ll take her…”
“Hell, no.” Jack swung around on his friend so quickly that he almost lost his grip on the girl. “Fuck,” he scooped her over his shoulder. His hand firm against the softest ass. If they weren’t surrounded by all these people and on camera, he might be tempted to slip his hand under that dress just to feel how soft her skin was. He was definitely going to hell.
“Jack, let Mama and Reb take her home if you’re so all-fired worried about your precious Abby Jean,” Mercy’s hands were on her hips, and not even the scowling man behind her stopped Jack from growling at her. In fact, Will’s presence just incited him more. He was fucking surrounded by ‘true love.’ The one thing he wanted so goddamned badly. And would never have. Because the one woman he wanted it with was ‘Her’ granddaughter.
But that did not mean he trusted any of them to care for her properly. Hell, they had let her get in this state, to begin with. “I’ll take her home myself.”
Mercy dared to laugh. It was a good thing that Will swatted her butt, or Jack might have… Hell, the ass under his hand was the only one he ever wanted to spank again. But that was not a line of thought worth exploring. He growled again and headed towards the door. He was almost there when a hand grabbed his elbow. He turned to give whoever was brave enough or stupid enough to fuck with him right now what’s for.
“Here. It’s her purse. Her keys are in it. I took it and hid it after her second shot.”
Jack wanted to be angry at Lizzie Patterson. He had not known the girl growing up in the town. He was already enlisted in the Army when her family moved here. It was one of the reasons she had once been top of his list as potential brides. But the girl was just wound too tight and bottled up. “Thanks.”
“Jack, please take care of her.”
Something about the other woman’s pleas broke his heart, sent him on a guilt trip, and pissed him the hell off all at once. “I’ve been looking after Abigail since she was six years old. You certainly don’t need to tell me that.”
“But she’s not six anymore. And when it comes to you…” The woman stared at the floor, but Jack knew the ugly red, black, and white chevron carpet was not that interesting. “Just don’t hurt her, okay?”
Hurt a Monroe woman? It wasn’t possible. To hurt someone, they’d have to have a heart. Except Jack knew that wasn’t fair. Abigail had always been… His little angel. Except she wasn’t fucking little anymore. And what kind of fucking pervert fell in love with the little kid they used to push on the swing?
But Lizzie didn’t know any of that. Well, knowing this shithole, she knew it all. But she didn’t understand the pain that went with any of it. Watching ‘That’ woman bring the greatest man he ever knew to his knees. The distinguished Miss Myrtle Monroe, teacher, high school principal, and deaconess at the Baptist church, wasn’t too proud to spread her white thighs for ‘Injun Joe,’ but she would never stand by his side or wear his ring. And the old fool kept going back for more.
“I need to get out of here.” Was he talking to Lizzie or himself? He jerked the damned purse from the woman’s hands and stormed towards the front doors.
“Damn it,” Jack cursed as he shifted the unconscious woman into his arms. He first turned towards his baby parked behind the bar. But then he thought better of it. Leaving THAT car in the parking lot of the casino was disastrous.
Wasn’t she some kind of teacher at the high school now? Hell, he knew about those ‘moral turpitude’ clauses. There weren’t that many people there tonight, and he could erase the video. Of course, he might keep a copy for himself. At least that little dance she did by the jukebox. There was a good chance that no one else in the dark bar recognized the young woman, knew who she was. Just as he had not recognized her yesterday, the little girl that had followed him everywhere anytime her self-righteous grandmother was ‘entertaining’ his grandfather.
But that car, everyone in this whole damned town, knew Miss Myrtle’s car. It always came down to her. ‘That’ woman. All his life, Jack had stood by and watched helplessly as that woman jerked his grandfather’s string. The dynamic and powerful force that built one of the first Indian casinos in the country, that took in and raised an angry young man to become a star athlete and scholar, that spoke eloquently for his people’s rights, had just one weakness.
A woman. A woman that he had loved for half a century. A woman that was too proud to acknowledge the passion that they had shared. A small, self-righteous, pious, and prejudiced woman that had ruled this town for most of her life. And like the fool he was, his grandfather had followed her – straight to the grave.
Rage had been building inside Jack since he came back and learned the truth of his grandfather’s death. When he first came back, Jack wanted to expose the whole damned tawdry thing to the town. Except that he couldn’t, he had no proof of the illicit affair that had ruled the man he loved for almost his whole life. Thirty years of passionate assignations, and there was not a single love note, photograph, or any other proof. His grandfather had been her dirty little secret, and what angered Jack the most was that the man took it, accepted the crumbs of affection she tossed to the lowly Native American. It went against everything the man he knew stood for.
Why? Jack had asked himself that same question a million times since he found out the truth when he was thirteen. He even asked the Old Man a couple of times. But his grandfather shrugged his shoulders and said that she would come around one day. It was an excuse that never satisfied Jack.
She had never come around, either. She had died and taken her dirty little secret to the grave. Then the Old Fool followed her within two months. A previously healthy man had mourned himself to death – over a woman that would never acknowledge him to this town.
Jack turned towards that car. He wanted to drive the damned car over a cliff somewhere and watch it explode like in the movies. He wanted to destroy something that woman held dear as she had destroyed what he did.
And what of the tiny scrap of humanity that he held in his arms? He could not forget her. Abigail Monroe Whatever-her-mama’s-married-name-was, not that it mattered in this town. All that mattered was that she had been born a Monroe, the last of a proud heritage that traced its history back to the founding of this great state. A great-granddaughter of the Alamo…and the Confederacy.
And drunker than a skunk, as they would say around these parts. What did the princess have to be so fucking worried about? He frowned as he leaned her weight against the side of the car. The girl had a far sight more meat on her bones than her grandmother had, but that was a good thing, at least in Jack’s opinion. Stick-thin women had never been his thing. Curvy was more his style, and this one them in all the right places.
He fumbled around in her purse, looking for the keys. Her ample tits practically spilled out of the top of her dress. Passed out as she was, she looked more like that young teen with her blonde hair falling across her face. She had that same delicate pink rosebud mouth too. He wondered if it could have the same stubborn set when riled up. This was not part of his plan. Falling in love with ‘Her’ granddaughter was…
He placed Abigail delicately upon the big back seat of the car. He had to admit one thing: they did not make cars like they used to. He ran his hand across the crisp leather seat as he arranged her on her side, her delicate hand under her cheek. She stirred a bit, rubbing seductively against him. He cursed his body’s natural reaction.
After over a decade roaming most of this fucked up world fighting battles that were not even his own, wars in places that the people of Sebida had never even heard about, he was tired. He needed to come home. Hell, even if it wasn’t for that deadline in his grandfather’s will hanging over his head, he still wanted to settle down. Get married, have a couple of kids, raise some horses in this dusty old town that had meant so much to the Old Man.
Sebida was his roots, every bit as much as it was princess’s. For a motherless young man, he craved the stability that home was supposed to mean. He wanted what that woman had denied his grandfather for a lifetime – a loving wife at his side.
He slammed the door. She turned a bit in her sleep but settled back down as he got behind the wheel of the car. He knew the way to that place by heart. How many times had he sat slumped over a book as the Old Man drove there? How many hours had he waited in the cab of his grandfather’s truck? Even when he discovered the truth, it was not horse-trading the Old Man was doing with Miss Myrtle.
He had been thirteen when this little slip of humanity came to stay with her grandmother. He doubted that she would remember it, but he and his grandfather had spent the morning putting up an old wooden swing from the big oak tree in the front yard for her. Then the Old Man had looked at Jack meaningfully and told him to push the little girl while he ‘talked’ with Miss Myrtle. They were doing lots more than talking, of course.
Jack had been resentfully pushing the six-year-old as she gleefully yelled ‘higher, higher,’ but her tiny screams were soon drowned out by adult ones from the house. His grandfather came storming out of the house and told Jack to get in the truck. They had driven back to the bar in silence. It was the only time in his life that Jack remembered seeing his grandfather touch the white man’s ‘firewater’ that had destroyed his mother’s life.
He had thought that perhaps the Old Man had come to his sense, was done being that woman’s dirty little secret. And for a few months, his grandfather had stayed away. Then he began to sneak away occasionally, alone sometimes. As if he too had something to hide even from his grandson. Jack never confronted him, never told him that he knew the truth.
He looked up as he turned off the deserted county road onto the dirt one that would take him to the ranch. The holes in the street were getting deeper with each season’s rain. That could not be good for an old car like this. He drove as carefully as he could, missing the worst of them. He swallowed hard as they came out of the tree-lined stretch of road that led to the house.
There it stood — the old oak tree. As dry as these parts could get, its existence was practically a miracle in itself. Mesquite was much more common than oak around these parts. But somehow, despite the rocky soil and dry weather, this old tree had found a way to take root and grow. To survive it all for over a hundred years, pushing two now.
Yep, he had not been wrong yesterday. Hanging from that tree was the weathered piece of wood dangling from a rotting piece of rope. The swing that he and his grandfather had put up that day for her. Jack swallowed hard past the lump in his throat and asked the question that had plagued him a lifetime, “Why, Old Man?”
He had been asking himself that same question for two decades. He sure as hell was not getting any answer tonight. Drop her off. Put her to bed. Get the hell as far away from this place as fast as he possibly could. And then what? Jack knew in his heart as he lifted that soft body into his arms, he would never get her out of his mind or his heart. “Fuck,” even if he ran and never came back, the truth was…he was already caught. Another Greywolf man victim to a Monroe woman’s silky web.
Jack shook his head as he carefully balanced his load while pushing open the front door and flicking on the hall light. Damn, the girl had not even locked the front door. Sure, loads of people did that shit still around Sebida. But not young women living alone. What the hell was she thinking?
The loud squeak announced that he was stepping back into time as much as the faded and yellowed rose damask wallpaper that was so old it had come back into style. The dark wooden furniture in the front parlor, as it was properly called, was covered in hand-crocheted lace doilies that remained pristine white. He half expected the couches to be covered in plastic but was a bit relieved that they were not. He looked at the sofa and took a step in that direction. No one deserved the double punishment of waking up to a hangover and a stiff neck. He had endured that hell a few times himself. And he did not wish it upon his worst enemy.
He cursed the chivalry that the Old Man had drummed into his head as he turned to the right and made his way up the winding staircase to the second floor and its bedrooms. He was relieved to see that the one at the end of the corridor was closed. He did not want even to consider the memories that one brought up.
When he had fallen and broken his wrist, jack had come looking for the Old Man. Some things young impressionable tweens should not see. Your grandfather naked and humping away at his ‘lady friend’ as the Old Man always called Miss Myrtle was most definitely one of those. Jack shivered and pushed the thought back, way to the back of his mind, closed the door on that memory, and locked the damn thing away. He wanted to toss out the key, too, but it was all too wrapped up in the recollections of the Old Man.
He shouldered the half-open door to the right and drowned in pink. Pale pink walls, a small four-poster pink bed that looked like it belonged to that six-year-old little girl. It was covered in a patchwork quilt in every imaginable shade of pink. Even the dressing table by the window and chifferobe against the wall were painted a disgusting shade of bright pink. It should be against the law to paint antiques like those such a color. It looked as if someone had gotten drunk and vomited pink all over the place.
He pulled back the quilt and laid ‘sleeping beauty’ in her pink disaster zone. He stood up and studied her closely for the first time in the dim light that drifted in from the hallway. Abigail had grown into a striking beauty. That was the only appropriate word, though perhaps delicate, innocent, demure, and a few dozen others that he had not had cause to use concerning a female of the species in quite a long time.
She seemed to fit perfectly with this place. Even her dress, and what young woman her age wore a dress to a bachelorette party in a fucking casino? It was a throwback to another time. He knew, of course, that there was a whole segment of the fetish scene that favored such things. Hell, the fifties made the top of his kink list. And the white dress covered in roses with its flounce that draped about her shapely legs had his libidos attention. The black Mary Janes on her feet just sealed the deal.
“Damn,” he cursed again. An outfit like that was neither comfortable nor wrinkle resistant. He should undress her, at least partway. He began by unbuckling the shiny patent leather footwear. She moaned as he slipped the first one from her foot. His cock hardened even more at the soft gasp and the perfect ‘O’ that those pink lips made.
He forced his attention to the rest of this mission. He unbuttoned the dress to the waist to reveal a satiny lace slip. What woman wore those these days? Only in his wildest fantasies. She turned over onto her side, facing him, and he used her motion to slip one arm out of the dress. He looked at the way her hand tucked softly under her cheek. He rolled her over the other direction, facing away from him. Partly to remove the other arm and partly to save his sanity.
He went to the foot of the bed and gently tugged the flouncy skirt down shockingly long legs. He cursed again when he noticed the white garter belt and neutral stockings that she wore beneath the slip, which had ridden up in the tussle of carrying her up the stairs.
“Shitpisscockcuntmotherfuckinsonsofbithces!” Her perfect little cunt was… Bare. The damned girl had been dancing around the casino in that dress. And no underwear! What the hell was she thinking? He wanted to turn her over and spank that lush ass until it was red. And that cunt soaked his jeans. Add a pair of white gloves and a string of pearls, and she would have everything to make his darkest fantasies come true.
Except that this woman was off-limits. He would not get caught in the black widow’s web the way his Old Man had. He would not fight helplessly to free himself from her silky strings of bondage as she sucked the very life out of him. But for the first time, Jack could appreciate how easily his grandfather might have fallen under that witch’s spell. He shook his head as he pulled the quilt up.
Some insanity drove him over the edge; he just had to taste those pink lips once. Would they taste like the first ripe strawberries in spring? He bent and foolishly placed a soft kiss on those lips. No, sweeter even. He cursed silently. She stirred in her sleep, and he held his breath, afraid to move. When he thought she had settled back down, he started to stand up.
But Jack found himself entangled in her arms, wrapped about his neck as she pressed her upper body against his, tugging him down towards that tiny bed. His fingers tried to unlace her arms as those pink lips brushed across his jaw. As they sought his own once more.
“Please, Jack,” was her whispered plea. And Jack’s downfall. He could almost feel those silken threads wrapping tighter around his heart.