Read Duke (Aces MC Series Book 2) Online
Authors: Aimee-Louise Foster
Book 2 - Aces MC
Text copyright © 2015 Aimee-Louise Foster
This book is
dedicated to the memory of
my aunty, Pamela Watts and my uncle, Ronald Watts.
Main Club Members
Mitchell ‘Duke’ Groves - President
Ethan ‘Diesel’ Stokes - Vice
Andy ‘Bear’ Harper - Sargent
Daryl ‘Justice’ Hayes - Treasurer
Frank ‘Hound’ Watson - Secretary
Mark ‘Woods’ Davies - Road
Connor ‘Spike’ Stokes
Jake ‘Locke’ Dixon
Caleb ‘CJ’ Jones
Paul ‘Rex’ Regus
Charlie ‘Stoney’ Henderson
Jacob ‘Skinner’ Burns
“That’s it, all finished.” I stepped back placing my hands
on my hips looking at the salon, admiring my handy work. I thought about the
blood, sweat and tears, that I’d put into this salon over the past eight weeks
and I was proud of what I’d achieved.
“Taylor. Where are these flowers going honey?” My aunt asked walking around the
salon with a vase full of white lilies.
My aunt was a fantastic lady. She’d given up everything to
move to England forty years ago when she emigrated from U.S with my uncle. They
were the strongest, closet couple I’d ever met, up until my uncle’s death
earlier this year.
My aunt and uncle couldn’t have their own children, so they’d given extra
attention to me and my younger sister Sophia, from an early age. When my mother
was diagnosed with postpartum depression six months after the birth of my
sister, we came to live with my aunt and uncle in England. Dad was in no fit
state to look after two young children and support my mother through her therapy
so this solution worked well for everyone. My aunt and uncle treated us as if
we were their own and we became very close.
Sophia and I moved back to the U.S when I was in my early teens but I
frequently visited them and started to fall in love with England and everything
English. When Uncle Ron passed away, to my surprise, I learned that he’d left us
a large sum of money in his will. When I received this substantial sum, I decided
to immigrate to England, to look after my ageing aunt and open my own salon.
Working as a hair stylist in New York for the past six years had run its course
and it was time for me to spread my wings and become independent. This was the
perfect time for me to do so and I was looking forward to the challenge and the
next chapter of my life.
Although I had to rein in my aunt’s creative flair, who
loves anything tacky, I enjoyed spending time with her and she’d helped me to
complete the refurbishment at the salon in time. I wanted to achieve a shabby
chic feel to the salon, attracting a classier clientele. I hung purple drapes
from the ceiling and added a huge chandelier as a centre piece. The white
leather sofas added to the welcoming feel of the reception area and I
accessorised using different shades of purple. It looked more like a hotel
reception area than a salon but reflected my personality perfectly.
“On the reception desk please Pam.” I thought the flowers
would look lovely positioned on the high reception desk, as they could be seen
from the entrance.
My aunt placed the vase and let out a loud sigh looking at her watch, “It’s
getting late honey, let’s call it a night and get some food.”
My stomach had been rumbling for the past hour but I wanted to get the last of
the jobs completed before I went home. I was looking forward to the grand
opening but I was also apprehensive.
What if no one turned up?
be absolutely devastated. I had been canvassing hard over the past four weeks
and had advertised in the local newspaper, distributed leaflets and my aunt had
informed her friends, although I didn’t want all of my clients to be over the
age of seventy!
I slowly walked around the salon, making sure everything
electrical was turned off and made a mental note to bring in the new kettle
tomorrow. The English loved a cup of tea!
We left the building, turning off the lights and bolting the
door securely before crossing the street to where my car was parked.
I stood back looking at the salon, “I’ve finally done it Pam.”
“Uncle Ron would have been so proud of you honey.” My aunt replied with a
I wrapped my arms around Pam’s shoulders, pulling her in for a hug as we stood
there admiring the shiny purple sign that read ‘Elite Hair Styling’.
I let out a loud yawn, “Oh sorry Pam.” I said covering my mouth quickly with my
“Not a problem honey, let’s get you home. You have a very busy day tomorrow.”
The following day I arrived at the salon an hour early to
make sure I was ready for the grand opening. My new assistant was starting this
morning. Chanel was a lively local teenager and had impressed me at her interview
so much that I’d taken her on as an apprentice straight away. She would work in
the salon learning her trade but would go to college one day a week to gain the
relevant qualifications. She knew the locals and I was hoping her friendly personality
would shine and help to create a happy atmosphere.
I unpacked the kettle and placed it in the kitchen along
with the other new appliances I’d bought. As I was repositioning them for the
umpteenth time, I heard the chime of the door. Looking at my watch I could see
that it was still early so I went to investigate who had entered the building.
I walked into the salon to see Chanel looking fantastic in the new fitted black
uniform I’d provided her.
“Morning Chanel.” She was hanging her coat in the closet that we’d be using for
the customers clothing.
She turned when she heard my voice, “Morning Taylor. Is everything set? I
thought I’d get here early to make sure we were ready.”
Thank god I’d taken on this young lady. I was a little concerned at first
because of her age but she was keen and had a willingness to learn.
“Could you please put the helium balloons outside and turn the sign to open,
then I think we’re ready for our first customer.” I said excitedly.
Savannah was a striking blond, blue eyed beauty with a
fuller figure. She bounced into the salon oozing confidence in a pair of ripped
jeans, heels and an amazing top that looked like a high end fashion piece. I
watched Chanel offer her a drink and she wasn’t thrown off track when Savannah asked
for iced water. She confidently led her over to the basins and washed her hair
with shampoo and then conditioner like I’d shown her, keeping conversation
light on every day topics. I was like a proud momma bear watching her baby cub
and had to stop myself from staring.
“Hi Savannah, please take a seat. What are we doing for you
today?” I asked putting one of the new purple towels around her shoulders and
swivelling the chair so that she was directly in front of the mirror.
“I want a change. I’m bored with this.” She said grabbing her hair and fluffing
it with both hands. Savannah rummaged around in her bag and pulled out a
crumpled magazine clipping, “I kinda like this.” She said pointing to the top
Well that was doable and the style would suit her oval shaped face well.
I worked my magic for the next hour and finally set her hair
“What do you think?” I asked nervously whilst playing with my necklace.
Savannah swivelled the chair from side to side looking at her hair from all
angles in the salon mirror. “I fucking love it.” She said proudly as she stood
from the chair, flinging her hair around.
I was a little taken aback by her language but was pleased that she appreciated
my hard work.
“The guys are gonna go wild for me this evening, which means more tips.” She
said with a wink. “Have you got any fliers or business cards that I can hand
out to the other girls?” Savannah asked digging around in her bag, trying to
find her keys.
Chanel grabbed a small handful of business cards that I’d strategically placed
on the reception desk and handed them to her.
“Well, thank you ladies and I’ll be seeing you again very soon.” She handed
Chanel a handful of notes and left with a spring in her step.
Chanel opened the crumpled notes and calculated that Savannah had over paid by around
£45. She glanced at the money and then at me as she mouthed, “WOW!”
I smiled hoping that this was the start of something really special.
I’d had a busy day at the garage and needed a little light
relief at the strip club.
“Right we’re done for the day lads. Let’s go over to the Bird Cage for a few
drinks and entertainment.” I threw down my tools and wiped my hands on the
nearest rag. Bear started ribbing Diesel about this afternoon’s antics with
Harlow which I’d found amusing. Diesel had fallen for her hard. Don’t get me
wrong I liked her but women came with drama and I had no room for drama in my
life. I joined the conversation sniggering, “Leave the poor girl alone. She
probably needs to rest before round two.” The guys started to laugh as I patted
Diesel on the back, slowly directing him out of the garage.
“Okay, Okay!” He shouted, “Alright, I’ll go for one drink.” He was most
certainly pussy whipped!
The club was busier than normal. We sat down at our usual
spot and a bottle of Jack was placed on the table along with six glasses. As
the Aces owned the joint we didn’t ever pay but one rule I’d insisted on, was
that the brothers would tip the girls who work here. They weren’t doing it for
“Let me know if you want anything else guys.” Yasmin said walking away swinging
I smiled knowing exactly what she meant. I’d been with Yasmin a few times when
I came to the club looking for a little relief but she certainly wasn’t a
keeper. All the girls knew I wasn’t looking for anything serious but that
didn’t mean we couldn’t have some fun.
Something caught my eye up on stage. I turned to see Savannah performing a new
routine. God that girl was fucking beautiful.
Had she done something
different to her hair?
I mentally kicked myself. Fucking hell I was a dick for
noticing a thing like that. I started to shake my head, pissed with myself for
Diesel was in turmoil trying to get hold of Harlow and Jimmy. He was up and
down like a fucking yoyo and doing my head in. I wouldn’t have minded but he’d
only seen her a couple of hours ago. Drama!
“Hi handsome.” Savannah said slipping into the chair to the right of me with
her trade mark iced water. “Did you like my new routine?” she asked sipping her
drink through a straw, wanting to hear my honest opinion.
“Fucking hot babe.” I put my arm around the back of her chair and played with a
piece of her hair. “This looks good too.”
Savannah turned slightly looking at me with those beautiful blue eyes. “I
wanted to talk to you about that.” I stopped playing with her hair and picked
up the bottle of Jack pouring myself another drink. “A new salon has opened in
the high street. The woman is fantastic and has just moved here from New York.”
She took a quick sip of her drink. “She’s looking for business and her prices
are very competitive. I thought we could recommend her to the girls at the
club. Maybe get her to give some of the rattier ones a makeover.”
I started to laugh. Savannah always had a way with words. I rubbed my chin
contemplating what she’d just said. “Text me her address, I’ll go and check her
out later in the week.”
Savannah stood and leaned over placing a kiss on my cheek. “Thanks Duke. I’m on
again in an hour. Are you sticking around?”
We both turned at the noise Diesel made as he came through the doors. I raised
my arms towards Diesel and shrugged, indicating that my plans may suddenly
“I’ll leave you to it.” She said with a grin before sauntering off into the
throng of people.
I’d been open for a week and business was going well. I’d
hired a new stylist to keep up with the demand and was contemplating extending
the beauty side of the business because of the requests over the past week. I
was proud of myself because it was proving that I’d researched well. There were
other local hair salons but not high end and the lack of beauty therapists in
the area would give me room to expand and grow as a business.
“How’s it going honey?” I turned to see my aunt and her two partners in crime
entering the salon. “Very well Pam. To what do I owe this pleasure?” I said
walking over to her and placing a kiss on her rosy cheek.
My aunt stood there in her M&S brown suede coat with a lighter brown
assortment of gloves, scarf and hat. It was early September so it wasn’t
particularly cold but since my uncle had died of pneumonia earlier on in the
year, my aunt took it upon herself to promote a good healthy lifestyle and
would do everything within her power to not catch a cold. It looked like her
friends had also been to the same clothes shop, which made me giggle.
My aunt looked at me puzzled, “What’s funny Taylor?”
I shook my head from side to side. “Nothing at all Pam. You were about to tell
me why you were here?” I shot them a questioning look.
“Oh yes honey. I wanted to check that you had been to the doctors about your
ear ache and we wanted to invite you out to lunch. You’ve been working so hard
lately, that we thought you deserved a break.”
The three of them turned to each other nodding their heads in agreement. They
meant well and it made my heart swell inside my chest knowing that they cared.
“The doctor has given me some antibiotics for my ear, so it should be better in
a week or so. Regarding lunch Pam, I can’t. I have a customer in fifteen
minutes so I was just going to grab a slice of toast.”
Pam scoffed and the other ladies started laughing. I folded my arms across my
chest in defence looking at the three of them in mock disgust. They’d obviously
discussed my inability to cook anything.
“And what do you mean by that?” I said trying to look affronted but I couldn’t
hide the smirk on my face.
“Look honey, you’re a very talented hair stylist but you’ll never be Delia
Smith.” My aunt said placing her hand on my upper arm sympathetically.
I shooed the ladies out of the salon. “That’s why I’m just having toast.”
I pulled up outside the salon after getting the address from
Savannah. It had been a hectic week after the kidnapping of Ink and the death
of Jimmy. In any other environment that would sound outrageous but I have to
deal with things like this, every day of my life. The thought of moving on so
quickly may sound harsh but things had to start getting back to normal and I
was concentrating heavily on making my legitimate businesses more successful,
so that we could pull out of all the illegal shit and get the authorities off
our backs. Something I’d been planning for five years.
Taking a closer look, the salon looked classy in comparison to other
establishments along the high street. I removed my helmet and walked slowly to
the salon taking in my surroundings. If I was going to invite this woman into
my business, I wanted to find out as much about her as possible and CJ was
finalising an extensive background check. We’d learnt the hard way with Ink and
I didn’t make the same mistake twice.