Authors: C.L. Riley
A Scorched Souls Serial
2015 C.L. Riley. All rights reserved.
Names, characters, and incidents depicted in this book are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental and beyond the intent of the author or the publisher.
No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written prior permission of the author.
Firetrap / C.L. Riley
All rights reserved.
There are so many people who need to be recognized when it comes to creating a book. I need to say thank you to my kids. Jordyn and Jade, you two have put up with a single mom who works a day job and writes at night, sometimes very late at night (more like the wee hours of the morning). You’ve seen me tired and grumpy (manic) but understand what this means to me. Love you both! Thank you to my friends. Times have been hard, especially with my precious mother’s death during the writing of this book. I couldn’t have made it through without you. Thank you Roxanne of Bewitching Book Tours and all the awesome bloggers who help spread the word for us indie authors. You rock! And readers, thank you for choosing this book when there are such an abundance of awesome authors and stories available. I am honored. Thank you to my awesome and talented editor, Gemma Newey, who is an author in her own right. Find her on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/GothBeard?fref=nf&pnref=story
To my awesome, talented, and super savvy book designer, Laura Gordon, with The Book Cover Machine, your astounding art skills make this book shine. Thank you! Authors like me need amazing designers like you. Thank you for your dedication to this project and putting up with my stalking you for promo items
To anyone and everyone who ever showed me how magic could overcome madness and how love conquers hate.
I stared at the smoldering rubble, my throat raw from the smoke and my screams. All that was left of our family guest house, where my mother had been staying since she discovered my father’s infidelity, was its blackened and charred remains. A few stubborn pieces of furniture and household appliances protruded from the wreckage, like bones from a shallow grave.
Our small town fire department, consisting mostly of volunteers, had put out the blaze just an hour earlier. Two police officers, I’d known since I could first walk, were in deep conversation with several firefighters. They’d made sure to have their discussion far enough from me that I couldn’t overhear.
Every so often, someone would dare a glance my direction, their expression reflecting the pain that threatened to consume me - pain I swallowed down each time it started to surface.
Until I could be alone, I refused to examine my heart-crushing emotions. The hard shell I erect when times got tough was firmly back in place, sheltering me from the unwelcome feelings.
I knew I was in shock, but didn’t care. Other than the heavy blanket draped over my shoulders, I’d refused any medical attention. No EMT or doctor could mend a shattered heart. To be honest, I wasn’t sure my heart was even repairable.
Before today, I’d considered myself fortunate, blessed even, despite my dad’s wandering ways and a few boyfriend
I’d recently dealt with.
My dad was Seal’s Cove’s mayor, and my mom was the gracious wife, mother, and perfect hostess to everyone. We were rich, respected, and for the most part, as far as I knew, well-liked.
For the people gathered on our property, their sorrow was real. I didn’t doubt their sincerity for a second. My mom had made everyone feel special. Even when her world was falling apart, she’d always gone the extra mile to help others.
My chest tightened as another wave of anguish crashed over me. I struggled to shove thoughts of my mom aside. I’d undoubtedly be tormented by a barrage of memories in the days and months ahead. Worse, I’d never forgive myself for turning off my alarm clock. Had I gotten up on time, I might have saved her.
To distract myself from images I’d never forget, and feelings I could never bury, I studied the volunteers instead; wondering why they’d want to take on such a dangerous position, like fighting fires, especially without pay.
One on the team stood out from the rest. His eyes were narrowed as he surveyed the scene. Anger rolled off him like heat from the steaming embers. He was huge, reminding me of a tank, in his firefighting gear. He stalked around the destruction, searching for something.
The ambulance had already left with my mom’s burned body. Everyone understood it was just a formality. She’d died from the fumes and smoke inhalation before the explosion and subsequent torrent of flames had engulfed the two-story home. I had to believe she’d avoided the fire’s scorching agony. The alternative was just too unbearable to consider.
If what our fire chief said was true, she had done the unthinkable. She’d left the gas stove on, after taking a handful of sleeping pills, and killed herself. He’d found a half-empty pill bottle and its remaining contents, spilled across her car’s front seat.
Parked down the long driveway, my mom’s treasured VW Bug had been spared from the blast. The car might have been ancient, but the prescription was new. According to the receipt, she’d returned from the 24-hour pharmacy not long before the fire started.
It didn’t make sense.
She’d been so happy lately, dating a man she’d met online. She was planning to move out, and finalize the divorce with my dad, once I graduated from high school in June. In the meantime, my parents had called a truce of sorts, for my sake, and had been getting along fairly well, all things considered. On his way back from a meeting in Salem, my father was devastated by the news.
There was no way my mom would end her own life. Not a chance. She was the flower that never wilted, even when water was scarce.
Despite initial evidence, I couldn’t begin to grasp why everyone had accepted her death as suicide, without more questions. I was sure my father would find the circumstances suspicious and insist on an outside investigator.
The volunteer I’d noticed before, approached, his mouth set in a firm line.
“Did you see anything?” he asked, wiping soot from his face, and standing way too close. His eyes, an icy blue, scanned my frame before returning to my face.
I took a step back.
Black tattooed flames licked the skin on his neck. I’d never been a tattoo fan, and this one, considering the situation, was offensive. When his gaze met mine, I froze. He reminded me of a feral beast ready to bite. Add in the fact he’d pretty much cornered me, and I was pissed.
“Yeah, I watched my mom’s house burn to the ground, with her in it. What do you think I saw?” I crossed my arms, feeling the need to cover myself.
He shook his head and raised a brow. “Just asking. Sorry for your loss.”
Before I could smart off again, he spun around and strode away.
It hit me then who, more like,
The flaming tattoo marked him as one of those disgusting bikers that my father had been trying to chase out of Seal’s Cove for years. Their clubhouse, more like a military compound, was about five miles north of town. They considered Seal’s Cove their territory.
was a major point of contention between my mom and dad. She’d argued that they did good things for the community, where my father considered them hardened criminals and drug dealers.
I agreed with my dad when it came to the Soul Scorchers Motorcycle Club.
They were a bunch of creepy old guys with beards and tattoos. Their Harleys were too loud, and they ran the biggest strip club on the Oregon Coast. Some of the senior boys from school had managed to get in for a show, bragging about what they’d witnessed. Gross all around.
At least the biker, slash fireman, hadn’t been sporting a bushy Santa beard or mustache. From what I’d glimpsed under all the dirt and grime, he’d looked pretty young. I had to give him some credit for being here. At least he’d tried to help.
“Olympia, I know this is hard, but I’d like to take your statement while things are still fresh in your mind,” Police Chief Wells interrupted my inner debate.
Keeping the wall fortified around my heart, I told him everything I could remember about the day that changed my life forever.
“Fuck, Twila! I’m gonna fucking come. Take it all.”
She groaned around my cock, no longer able to move due to my hands fisting her hair so tightly. She couldn’t do anything but suck, while I fucked her mouth.
Just the way I liked it.
Every club whore had a specialty, and Twila’s was giving head. The blowjob queen; she sucked dick like a Kirby sucked up dirt.
“Fuck.” I jammed my cock deeper down her throat. She choked, but held on like the pro she was. “Swallow it, bitch,” I hissed through clenched teeth. I could feel my muscles straining and my balls tingling.
I exploded, flooding her mouth.
She swallowed, gulping down what I gave her.
The second I finished, I grabbed a towel from the bed, cleaning myself, before yanking up my jeans. I never fucked bareback, but an occasional ‘condom-free’ blow job was a necessity. We paid to have the main whores checked monthly. Sweet butt pussy was always in high demand, and diseases were not acceptable.
“What about me, Boone? Are you going to take care of me?”
“Not this time, babe. Now get the fuck out and find someone else to fill your hole.”
Ignoring her wounded expression, I turned to find my cut.
She scurried from my room, slamming the door behind her. I’d be talking to her about that. Her place was on her knees, nothing more. She’d never be an old lady, and the sooner she accepted that, the better. Emotional drama didn’t go over real well in the clubhouse. Even so, there was a never ending soap opera inside our walls.
I plopped on the bed’s edge, and ran my hand through my hair. I hated how I despised women.
Since the boys’ mom had set our house on fire, after nodding out and dropping her cigarette, I’d taken out my grief and fury on pretty much anything with a pussy, using my dick as the weapon. The fucking crazy bitches, no matter how prude they played, seemed to like the brand of punishment I dealt out. Go figure. Most wanted seconds, thirds, and some wanted a lifetime in my bed, and on my bike.
What they got was a goodbye slap on the ass, and a “maybe I’ll call you sometime” on their way out the door.
I never called.
One time was enough. If I wanted seconds, I stuck to our few available whores, Twila being my most frequent go-to-girl.
In addition to my crusade against women, I’d made it my personal project to destroy a low-level street gang that had sold Rita heroin. She’d been off the shit for almost five years before that night. I couldn’t punish Rita for what she’d done, but I sure as hell could punish women stupid enough to mess with me, and the wannabe gangsters foolish enough to fuck with what was mine. The gang was no more, but women, hell, they weren’t going anywhere.
It still surprised me that no matter how crude and rude I was, they still wanted me. I fucked them hard and left them quick. I was crystal clear about my motives, and didn’t work real hard to hide my disdain.
Sons of Anarchy
series gained popularity, suddenly every bitch wanted to fuck a biker. I was more than happy to oblige.
So far I’d only met one female who wouldn’t open her legs for me.
I’d crossed paths with her for the first time about four years ago, while putting out the fire that killed her mother. Since then, I ran into her everywhere. Each time, she treated me like shit on the bottom of her designer shoes.
Olympia Olsen, the mayor’s only daughter - my secret obsession - needed to be put in her place.
According to my sources, not long after her mom died, she’d made it her mission to make people around her suffer. She flaunted her stunning appearance, new fiancé, overflowing bank account - thanks to her mom’s life insurance payoff - over everyone. She’d become a major ‘Prima Donna’. In my world, that equaled a selfish, stuck up bitch.
I’d stopped by once, shortly after the fire, to see how she was doing.
Considering Rita’s death, I had my own issues with fire. That was why I volunteered to put them out. I understood the pain of losing someone to a furnace of flames, and wanted to offer my condolences, see if there was something I could do to help. Looking back, I don’t know what I’d been thinking.
The meeting hadn’t gone well.
Giving in to temptation I usually resisted, I let myself remember that afternoon.
Standing on the mansion’s porch,
I raised my fist to knock. The door swung open, and Olympia greeted me in her cheerleading outfit, with a gym bag slung over her shoulder.
“What do you want?” she snapped. Glancing around me, her desire to escape past my hulking form couldn’t have been more obvious.
Not expecting her reaction, I immediately went on the defensive. “Not you. Where’s the mayor?”
She cocked her hip, drawing my attention to her long, tanned legs.
I couldn’t help myself. Sure she was at least eight years my junior, but damn she was hot. I let my gaze trail up from her legs to her tight tummy, which was on full display, due to her uniform’s cropped top. The girl worked out. She was curvy with just the right amount of muscle, young and athletic.
I tore my gaze away to find her glaring at me with gorgeous, hazel eyes.
“Are you enjoying yourself?” she spat. “I figured you for a pervert.”
“I always enjoy myself,” I shot back, feeling myself harden.
Fuck. This teenage eye candy had my dick up and ready. Her rejection and attitude was unexpected. I wanted to bend her over and pull up that skirt. She wouldn’t be smirking when I slammed into her from behind.
“If you’re done eye fucking me, I have a game to get to. I’ll make sure to tell my dad you stopped by.”
She had a mouth on her too. Most people took in my appearance and backed the fuck off. Not her.
“You do that. Let him know the pervert stopped by to leer at his princess.” I sneered, going for the shock factor.
“Oh my God! You are so sick!” She shoved by me without another word.
I watched her ass all the way to her new, perfectly waxed BMW. By the way she swayed her hips, short skirt flouncing; it was obvious she was well aware of my gawking.
Shit. Just picturing her firm ass in that skimpy cheerleading skirt had me hard all over again. Maybe I’d call Twila back up and give her something to be happy about after all.
The heavy footsteps tromping down the hall could only belong to one person, club President, Brian “Bones” Richards, my dad.
It appeared I’d have to put my fuck-fest on hold.
He knocked three times. “Boone, I’m calling church. We gotta a problem. Ten minutes.”
I didn’t bother with an answer. He knew I’d be there. I was surprised he’d been the one to find me. He usually sent one of the prospects to round up the guys. This couldn’t be good.
In fact, I already had a real bad feeling.
“Daddy…!” I stomped through my birthday gift, searching for my father.
For my combined twenty-second birthday and graduation from college, he’d decided to have the guest house rebuilt just for me. Until construction started, six months ago, the land had remained empty, following the fire tragedy. Now a mini-mansion, far larger than the former structure, filled the space.
“What sweetie?” He wiped the perspiration from his forehead. “How do you like the furniture?”
“The furniture is fine. I love the house. I love everything …” I paused, knowing he’d get the hint.
I smiled my sweetest smile, the one I always used to get what I wanted from any man who crossed my path. They were all suckers for my smile, my father the biggest one of all.
Guilty about the relationship he believed drove mom to kill herself, he did whatever it took to keep the smile on my face. Last summer he’d sent me and three girlfriends on an all-expense paid trip to Europe. The house was his latest guilt offering.
“Thought I heard you guys up here.” Conner appeared behind my dad, his eyebrows raised. “Mayor Olsen, good to see you, though your daughter is a lot cuter.”
My father chuckled. He was a big fan of Conner.
“I was just telling daddy how much I like my gift. There’s just one
“Give us a minute, Olympia.” Conner canted his head, indicating my father should follow him into the hallway.
He shot a glance at me over his shoulder. A look of irritation crossed his face, but he quickly pasted on his own phony smile before turning away - the same smile that had caused women across the state, to drop their panties.
The difference with me; I refused to take off my panties for Conner Mills, no matter what expression he wore. I was an enigma - the one woman who wasn’t left speechless and stupid because of his amazing good looks and mega charisma.
I was also the woman he’d asked to marry him.
He understood the only way my panties were coming off, was to put a ring on my finger and behave until our wedding night.
He’d definitely got the ring right.
Wiggling my fingers, I admired the stone.
Despite the expensive ring, our engagement was more of a business arrangement. At some point, Conner intended to go into politics. He was smart, sexy, and had his own money. It just made sense for us both, and me as his first lady would be ideal.
I’d first met him when my dad pulled strings and opened a more extensive investigation into my mother’s death. Like me, Dad hadn’t believed she’d committed suicide; though, overtime, his opinion had changed to one of begrudging acceptance. I still wasn’t buying suicide. Conner wasn’t convinced either.
As a fire investigator working for the ATF, Conner had been assigned the case. He was already investigating a string of arson-related fires that had taken place over the past six years, from Seaside all the way to Brookings. He couldn’t tell me much about his work, but he had let it slip that the Soul Scorchers bikers’ club were suspects. A club member’s wife had died in a fire too. That revelation hadn’t surprised me at all.
Since my mother’s death, I’d seen that one cocky, firefighting biker around town, too many times to count. He’d even come to our house following the fire.
What an asshole.
My smile didn’t work on him. Every time I caught his attention, I found him glowering at me.
So why is it him I fantasize about when I touch myself?
That was one question I couldn’t seem to answer. So rather than suffer the frustration and embarrassment of trying, I turned my thoughts back to my future husband, who I did not fantasize about - ever.
Originally from Seal’s Cove, Conner was thrilled to be assigned here. He was five years older than me, so we hadn’t really crossed paths until the investigation. From what I’d heard, besides the fact he was a total lady-magnet, was how he’d always been fascinated with fire, volunteering to fight them in high school. His career was his first priority, which, for now, was fine with me. It gave me time to do what I wanted. As long as he didn’t embarrass me with his legendary male whoring, we’d be fine.
“Sorry about the interruption, just business stuff. Nothing major.” Conner reappeared with my father. “Go on, please, honey. What were you telling your dad?” He had the apologetic boyfriend expression mastered.
I smiled sweetly at them both. “Well, as I was saying before you so rudely interrupted …”
“Olympia,” my dad scolded. “You have my undivided attention now.”
“My personal bathroom. It’s not right. I wanted wall-to-ceiling cabinets on the east wall, and I was supposed to have starfish painted around the windows. Remember?”
Dad glanced at Conner and shrugged. “I don’t know who can paint what you want. I figured we could add the cupboards later.”
“Find someone! It’s my present from you. You said it would be perfect. It’s not. Fix it.” I refused to give up my vision. I wanted things a certain way.
How hard could it be to paint some freaking starfish?
“I might have an idea,” Conner offered, his voice calm. “Bryce Richards does custom painting on cars and motorcycles. I’m sure he could do your work. He’s also a carpenter. But even better, he’s VP for the Soul Scorchers. It would give me a chance to learn more about him, and the club.”