I stare unblinking into the eyes of my enemy and pull the trigger. The sounds of gunfire reverberated off the walls as I let the bullets fly. Pop. Pop. Pop.
“Triple kill,” the TV announces, but I was already moving before their bodies even hit the floor. I click a series of buttons on the controller with practised hands, where I aim; bloodshed follows.
Two kills away from beating my big brother’s all-time high score and only 60 seconds left on the clock; I failed to notice the bedroom door opening. If I hadn’t been sitting so close to the screen, propped up on my elbows, with the sound of gunfire reverberating all around me, I might have heard him coming. I might have had the time to roll out of the way before he could grab me.
But I had been foolish, assumed I was safe. What with the Eagles Wing hosting a party in the bar downstairs, the guys should have been too busy sucking face with their latest conquest to bother with me. A mistake I would not make again.
A high pitch breaking past my lips as I’m hastily dragged backwards by my ankles with one all-mighty tug, causing my arms to fall out from under me and my skull to connect with the hardwood floor. I had only enough time to turn my head to avoid a broken nose.
Pain like I had never experienced before throbbed down the right side of my face, and even my teeth seemed to sing with agony. I groan, blinking several times to clear my clouded vision. I was vaguely aware of someone laughing nearby, or maybe it was multiple people, but with the pounding in my head, it was near impossible to tell.
Before I could recover, my attacker flipped me onto my back and dropped my ankles with a thump that seemed to vibrate through my whole body—stealing a gasp of pain from my lips before I could stop it.
My bottom lip quivered with fear as my attacker crouched down beside me, his pine-green eyes gazing down at me with so much disguised made me flinch. Samuel Waters.
I should have known it was him, my own fucking brother. Not once had Sam tried to hide the fact he despised me; then again, I’d probably hate me too if I were in his shoes.
If it weren’t for me, Anna never would have had a breakdown and left us. Daddy would have never needed to become a criminal to support us, and the Eagles Wing Motorcycle club might have never been formed. A brotherhood of murders, crooks and thieves, my brothers had been raised to lead. But not me. Never me. Simply because I had been born a girl with features resembling his beloved Anna, Daddy had protected me.
“I’ve told you time and time again, little sister, don’t touch my stuff,” he spits the words like the very idea of us being related sicked him, making tears prick at my eyes.
But Sam didn’t just intimidate me; he haunted my waking nightmares. Every inch of Sam’s six-foot-two frame was packed with hard-earned muscle, making his easily double my size. Sam’s skin was covered in tattoos that snaked up his arms and poked out the neckline of his tight t-shirt. His bottom lip was pierced with two black rings. His hair, like mine, was raven black, but while his was cropped short on the sides and longer on the top, mine was long and wavy.
But it was more than that. Something sinister lurked beneath Sam’s inked skin that took great pleasure from causing others pain. I wasn’t naive enough to think he hadn’t killed before and more than once, if his reputation as a ‘butcher’ was to be believed. Sometimes I could have sworn that dark park of him gazed back at me with hunger like it could taste my fear.
“I’m sorry,” I whisper, my voice barely more than a breath of hot air as I try to hold in my sobs. Not that it helped stop the tears and snot from leaking down my chin, my fear too great to risk whipping it away. Sam clicks his tongue in irritation, almost seeming disappointed I had broken so easily.
“Leave the slut, and come party with us, Ghost,” whined one of Sam’s groupies from the doorway.
Ghost was Sam’s bike, name; a name disposed on him by the club to protect his identity, should shit hit the fan. Though officially, I had never been given one myself, it hadn’t stopped everyone from calling me, Sissy. Everyone except Sam.
My brother ignored the whining girl and instead gathered me up into his large arms, despite my protest . Yet no matter how much I screamed and struggled in his grasp, I couldn’t break free. His grip as unmoving as iron around me.
“Ghost, stop; you made your point.” A familiar male voice speaks up from me. Making my heart fluttered in response, Ace, I’d recognise that voice anywhere, and although I couldn’t see my brother’s best friend over Sam’s bulking frame, I knew it was him.
If Sam was darkness, Ace was the light. Yet somehow, even he had gotten himself caught up in the club’s brutality, so he couldn’t have been that bright. But I liked the analogy too much to change it; besides looks wise, it worked. Ace long blond hair to Sam’s black, which he usually had tied up in a messy high bun atop his head with a beard to match. His eyes were a soft blue with brown flecks and a smile that could light up an entire room.
But the idea of my childhood crush seeing me like this made me feel nauseous above all else.
“She’s Gunna piss herself”, the whiny girl remarks, earning a few snickers from their friends but not Sam. Who didn’t dame to look at me as I thrash in his arms, holding me in such a way as to keep as much distance between our bodies as possible, like even touching me repulsed him. How could my own blood hate me so much?
I didn’t get time to dwell on it as Sam’s tossed me into the shower in his ensuite bathroom, causing the thin fabric of my t-shirt to rip in the process, leaving my pastel pink bra exposed for all to see.
I yelp, stumbling into the far wall with painful force, catching myself just in time to keep my face from colliding with the cool titles. And then the shower started, sending a waterfall of icy cold water crashing down atop my head and drenching my clothes within seconds and plastering my hair to my head.
Laughter echoes off the bathroom walls, causing me to flush with embarrassment. I count at least six of Sam’s groupies standing in the doorway, including Ace. Oh, gods.
I try to cover my exposed breasts with one hand while using the other to blindly push my way past my brother—no such luck. With one quick trick, he twists me around and shoves me back into the wall.
“Please,” I beg, sobbing through the assault of icy water. Sam meets my gaze, a half-smile tugging at his lips. He always liked it when I begged.
Sam glances at my chest just for a second as if contemplating humiliating me further. But before he could act on his crawl plans, Ace was their swing for my brother. Only Sam was quicker, dodging the blow with inhuman speed, and hooking his foot around Ace’s leg, causing him to fall headfirst into the wall. His nose makes an audibly crunches as it connects with the tiles.
Then Sam was in his face, so close their breath mingled, a knife suddenly appearing at Ace’s throat.
“You want her; Ace, is that it? Hu?” Sam demands, practically shouting.
“No, she’s sixteen, for fuck sake. A girl.” Ace assures, his voice was desperate as if he honestly believes Sam might kill him for this. For protecting me. Yet it didn’t stop the words from stinging me all the same, and with them, any hope I ever had of him thinking of me as more than Sam’s sister crushed to dust.
Ghost, stop!” Ace’s girlfriend sobs…Stacy, was it? I could never remember when they seemed to go through so many. Yet none of the men tried to stop him, not when a knife was so close to one of their own. Ace had toed a dangerous line jumping between us, crossing his club brother for a female that wasn’t his to protect.
“My Sister isn’t bad on the eyes, is she?” Sam continued, his voice like ice. “Got tits bigger than your women, and In a few years, she’d make a prize bitch. Why wait? Stake your claim while she’s still pure,” Sam offers.
I knew it was a trap, but it didn’t stop the bail from rising up my throat, hearing him talk about me in that way like I was no more than property to be owned and used. Did I mean that little to him that he’d sell my virginity to anyone who asked?
I needed to get out of here before Sam could think of new and twisted ways to punish me. But they were still blocking the shower door, and I didn’t dare draw his attention back to me.
“It would be a death wish. No man in this state or the next would dare. Sissy is a Waters, the blood of the club, and we protect our own.” Ace defends.
For a long moment, nobody dares to speak or breathe as we wait to see Sam’s reaction. A man renowned for being unpredictable and bloodthirsty, I wouldn’t put it passed him to slip his best friend’s throat just for fun. My brother had done far worse things in the name of boredom.
But no matter how bitter it tasted, Ace had spoken true. Daddy had forbidden me from dating, period. I wasn’t even allowed to have male friends or teachers, not that anyone in my school was eager to befriend the daughter of a criminal. Even the Eagles Wing knew to keep their distance or risk losing more than just their head. Yet somehow, Sam’s bullying had managed to slip the net. I had tried telling him, of course, but Sam only ever came back angrier than before, and the punishment had never felt worth it in the end.
Sam stepped back from Ace; a thin red line stained the blade and Ace’s neck. “Get out,” he orders no one, in particular, his groupies instantly jumping to follow his commands. But Ace lingered, not for me, I realised with no small amount of dejection. Instead, he was silently waiting for my brothers’ permission to leave. His loyalty was unfazed by the shallow cut marring his otherwise flawless skin. Sam nods, barely more than a slight dip of his head as if still debating if he wanted to cut open his friend’s throat.
As if Ace saw the hesitation too, he quickly leaves, the bathroom door clicking shut behind him, leaving no witness for whatever Sam had planned next.
I shrink back, pressing myself into the icy titles, watching as Sam takes his time placing the knife back into his belt. Before approaching the shower door, making me shriek in fear.
But Sam didn’t even look at me as he reached out, altering the controls. The water slowly turned from cold to lukewarm. I almost moaned as the warmth hit my icy skin. Then just like that, he left.