Crash and Burn, tiger shifter twins, patched into the Steel Riders M.C. when they were twenty. It’s been a fun life filled with women and booze, and maybe the occasional joint, but all parties must come to an end eventually. When a woman betrays the club, and the trail leads to the Double Deuces, it’s time to exact some revenge.
Willow has known no other life than that of a pet. Abducted at the age of five by the Black Daggers, and later traded to the Double Deuces, she’s never been on a date, never been kissed, and never known the gentle touch of a man. When the Double Deuces’ clubhouse begins to burn, with her tied to the wall, she knows her life is at an end. Until a tiger comes crashing through the front window…
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Copyright ©2015 Jessica Coulter Smith
The Steel Riders slunk through the darkness and shadows, creeping up on the Double Deuces’ clubhouse. The sounds of revelry inside sickened Crash. They acted like nothing had happened, even though Celia had broken down and confessed everything. Granted, it was her word against theirs, but what reason did she have for lying? Either way, she faced banishment from the Steel Riders’ clubhouse, and that was if she was lucky. Blitz was still contemplating her fate. She’d not only tried to steal their cash, she’d tried to confiscate their drugs to give to the Double Deuces. And she’d listened for intel, selling them all the Steel Riders’ secrets she could gather.
If it were up to Crash, she’d be turned over to the authorities. He was certain they could come up with some charges that would stick. Every one of his brothers would back him if he said she was trying to sell herself on clubhouse property. Solicitation might not be a huge charge, but it would get her out of their hair, and hopefully, teach her a lesson, but no one wanted to hear his opinion on the matter.
Blitz slid a two by four through the handles of the front door and sent Flash around the back to do the same. Crash and Burn watched the front windows while their other brothers fanned out around the building, making sure no one escaped. The Double Deuces had fucked them over before, but this would be the last damn time. Besides, there had been rumors they were involved in human trafficking, and the Steel Riders weren’t down with that shit.
On a count of three, the building was doused in accelerant and matches were tossed onto the fluid. The building went up like a torch and the shouts of the men inside could be heard over the roar of the flames. Crash turned to Burn and was about to make a snide remark about the assholes inside when he heard something. It was faint but…
He snarled and began tearing his clothes from his body.
“What the fuck are you doing?” Burn, his twin, asked.
“There’s a woman trapped inside. I’m going to shift and go get her. The flames aren’t quite so bad by this window just yet, but you know some of those assholes inside are going to try to escape this way. You’re going to have to be prepared to take them on, or let them go and we’ll chase them down later. Either way, I can’t leave her in there.”
Burn nodded and gathered Crash’s fallen clothes and boots, setting them away from the burning building.
Crash called to his beast. Fur sprouted along his body, a tail began to form behind him, and he dropped to all fours as his beast took over. Where Crash had once stood in human form, now was a Siberian tiger.
“Go get her,” Burn said.
Crash crouched then launched himself through the window, glass shattering and clinging to his fur. He snarled at any men who came near him as he picked his way through the inferno. His paws felt like they were on fire, but he carried on, knowing she had to be somewhere in the smoke-filled room. He heard her faintly call for help again before a round of coughing shook her body.
In the corner, he saw a petite blonde, but when he saw the rope attached to the O-ring on the wall, he couldn’t hold back his snarl. They’d tied her up and left her to die! Assholes. Worse. He just couldn’t think of anything worse to call them just then. He approached cautiously, not wanting to frighten her more. When her gaze settled on him, her eyes widened and a scream seemed to be trapped in her throat.
Crash approached as slowly as he could, nuzzled her before licking her cheek; then he went to work on chewing through the rope. When he had her free, he tried to think of a way to get her onto his back so he could carry her out. He crouched low and purred at her, looking from her to his back, then back to her again. It took her a moment but she seemed to understand.
“You want me to ride you?” she asked, her voice scratching from the smoke.
Her eyes widened again, but she climbed onto his back, leaning down and wrapping her arms around his neck. She was nearly chocking him, but Crash began moving through the building. When he reached the window, he hoped like hell she wouldn’t be cut by the broken glass, but the front door remained barred. He leapt and landed on the other side, his paws on fire from walking across the hot floor.
The woman slipped from his back and his brother, Burn, caught her. Needing the magick of his shift to heal the slight burns he’d received inside, he slowly shifted back to human. At her gasp, he looked her way. If he’d thought her eyes were wide before, it was nothing compared to now. Apparently, no one warned her shifters were real. He jerked on his jeans, then held out his hand to her.
“I’m Crash. Are you all right?”
She placed her hand in his and a tingle shot up his arm. Hmm. Interesting. Smoke still filled his nose so he couldn’t have begun to guess what she smelled like, but she was definitely something special. Their mate, perhaps? He’d always known he would share one with Burn, but he wasn’t sure what his brother thought of their rescue.