Authors: Sam Crescent
Jesse leaned back, his gaze on hers. His brows furrowed close as he stared at her chest. Glancing down, she saw her shirt gapped open, showing a lot of cleavage. She tugged the shirt together before looking back at him.
“That’s a shame. I really enjoyed the view.”
Her cheeks must be hotter than the sun. Crap, what the hell was this guy doing to her?
“No, I don’t know a John Rix.” He stopped as the waitress put down a mug of coffee with a plate of sandwiches.
Piper saw the waitress place her number underneath the plate.
“I don’t think so, sweetheart,” Jesse said, handing back the card. “I’m not interested.”
She watched the waitress storm off, calling Jesse a chubby chaser.
“You didn’t have to do that,” she said “I wouldn’t take offense. She’s a beautiful woman.”
Jesse stared at her without saying a word for several seconds.
“I’m happy staring at the beautiful woman in front of me. No, I don’t know John Rix and I’d like to take you out on a date.”
“You don’t know me.”
“I watched you walk here. Why do you keep your head down? Why are you here alone? Do you have a man at home?” His questions kept coming her way.
Flustered, she picked up her cold coffee and took a sip. “You’re asking a lot of questions.”
“I’m getting to know you. How can we get to know each other without asking questions?”
“We don’t.” Biting her lip she glanced down at her book, wishing he would disappear.
“You’re going to make it difficult for me to know you?”
Glancing up, she stared at him. “I come here to enjoy some coffee and to have something to eat. I’m not interested in whatever you’re trying to do.”
He sat back staring at her. “Then you’re going to have to get used to it, baby. I’m not giving up.”
Hearing the sound of a motorcycle, she looked out of the window to see her father’s vice president pulling up near the window. Dale was a good man but he wasn’t known for his patience.
“I’m done for the day.” Piper closed her book and climbed out of her seat. She took out some bills out of her pocket and left. She felt his eyes on her as she left.
Trying her best to ignore him, she grabbed the helmet Dale offered. “What’s wrong with you, princess?”
“Nothing, I’m fine.”
She didn’t look toward the window. Climbing on the back of the bike, she wrapped her arms around his waist and together they drove off toward the clubhouse.
The drive to the clubhouse didn’t take long at all. Piper gave the helmet back to Dale before making her way into the building. She was frozen to the core.
“Honey, how was your trip?” John asked, coming out of his office.
“Good.” She opened her mouth to ask him about the guy at the coffee shop, then she simply smiled. If he employed someone to sit with her during those days, she didn’t want to know the answer.
The following week she’d all but forgotten about the man who’d joined her for coffee. She ordered her coffee and a sandwich before sitting down to start to read her book.
“I see you have the same table again,” Jesse said, sitting down without asking permission first.
“Are you following me?” she asked, sitting back.
“Yes.” He put the newspaper on the table staring at her the whole time. “I wanted to make sure you came here. I only watched you from outside.”
A thrill shot through her body at his admission. “You were watching me?”
She’d never had a man watch her before or pay any kind of attention to her. Piper hated the fact she liked it. How pathetic was she? A virgin begging for attention.
“Yes, I like watching you. Do you only come here Friday mornings?” he asked.
“No, I come here Mondays as well. I only have coffee then.”
Would it hurt getting to know the man who was looking back at her? His gaze wandered down her body and she felt owned by him. The possession wasn’t something she was used to.
The waitress placed their orders on the table before leaving again.
“What is your game?” she asked. Growing up around the men of the Hell’s Charter gave her good insight to the male psyche. She knew a lot of men only did certain things for attention.
“No game at all. You must have dated some serious rats to be this dubious about men.”
She tore open two packets of sugar and poured them into her coffee. She probably should steer clear of sugar to lose some weight but she’d grown tired of the never-ending battle. John always got pissed when he found out she was dieting. The New Year would be upon them in no time and she vowed to lose weight then.
“You’ve gone all quiet on me,” he said, pulling her out of her thoughts.
“Look, I just want to have coffee. I don’t want to make any commitments or even understand why you’re interested in me.” Licking her lips, she tried to keep her thoughts on her words. “Please, stop with the flattery. I don’t know why you’re here and I don’t care.”
“Wow, you really know how to shoot a guy down.” Jesse looked around him and smiled. “You’re a challenge. I’m always up for one.”
She shook her head and couldn’t help but smile. Piper looked forward to seeing more of him, especially if he wasn’t there at her father’s demand.
For three weeks Jesse went to the coffee shop twice a week. A total of six meetings including the two prior, which meant eight in total and he still wasn’t close to finding out anything about the Hell’s Charter—or even about Piper Rix. She kept her feelings close to her chest. There were flashes of emotion that crossed her face but before he got a read on her, they disappeared. He hated the lack of reading her more than anything else.
Never in all of his life had he found wooing a woman so difficult. Piper was reserved around him. He got her to smile at least. But getting her to smile was entirely different than her telling him club secrets.
He ran his fingers through his hair for something to do with his hands. His nerves were totally fried when it came to Piper. Fuck, three weeks without getting his dick wet from one of the club whores and sitting across from a sexy woman was starting to wear thin. When Piper leaned forward or moved in such a way he got a good glimpse of the pale flesh of her breasts, he wanted to bury his head against those mounds to lick and suck her nipples. Her nipples would be large and he’d spend plenty of time on each bud.
He was getting hard thinking about the time he’d spend fucking her.
A knock at his door brought him out of his plan. He lit a cigarette and checked who stood in front of his door before he opened it.
“I thought I wasn’t allowed near the club?” he stated, letting Charley inside
“So? This is an apartment building, genius. I could be visiting anyone.”
They walked toward the sitting room. Jesse differed to the kitchen to grab a beer from the fridge. He threw Charley a cool beer then took a seat across from him.
“What’s the news?” Charley asked.
“Nothing new. Bitch is a hard nut to break.” Jesse took a long inhale on his cigarette. He didn’t want to let on that he liked her. Crap, thinking about Piper had heat rushing to his cock making him rock hard. There was no way he’d be able to handle getting a hard-on with his boss seeing.
“Come on, Jesse, I know you. You’ve had a month of working the charm. What’s taking so long? We need to know what Junior gave up or we’re all fucked,” Charley said. “The Hell’s Charter and the Demons have an understanding not to fuck with each other’s business. If Junior was a fucking snitch and working elsewhere besides with us, then I understand why they offed him but I need to make sure.”
“What more do you want from me? I’m drinking coffee and talking. She’s got tighter lips than a fucking virgin.” Thinking about Piper’s plump lips made Jesse want to kiss her over and over. Great, he was turning into a fucking pussy who thought about kissing, romance, and other shit.
“You’ve not gotten fucking inventive? Did I say you had to woo her at the fucking coffee shop? How are you going to screw her there? For fuck’s sake, Jesse, I thought you had some fucking brains to you.”
“I do have brains.” He’d just not thought about leaving the coffee shop. Wasting three weeks hadn’t been his idea of fun.
“All the boys are tense waiting for you to come through. I suggest you pull your finger out and start wooing this girl.” Charley stood, heading toward the door. At the last minute he stopped and turned around. “Be careful with this girl. I’ve heard she’s a sweetheart.”
“How am I supposed to do that when you want me to fuck her for information?” Jesse asked, following close behind.
“Don’t make any fucking promises you can’t keep? Only promise and give her what you’re prepared for.”
Charley walked out. Kicking the door closed, Jesse stubbed his cigarette out before heading out. He’d hired one of his boys to follow her over the last few weeks. He checked the time. She’d be shopping at the supermarket right now. It was time to step up his wooing and get this shit over with. Grabbing his jacket from the back of the door, he hated the fact he couldn’t wear his leathers. Since he’d taken the job of dealing with Piper Rix, he’d put all of his leather cuts into his safe. Anything relating him to the Demons he’d gotten rid of. What he hated most was not being able to ride his bike. He’d spent years working on his pride and joy, replacing the engine then getting the paint work done. Before joining the Demons he’d qualified as a mechanic. He loved working with machines but he loved working for Charley more.
Firing up the engine in his truck, he pulled out of the lot, heading toward the supermarket out of town. He spotted Piper’s car instantly. It was a shit make and model and something women would drive. He learned she only drove it on very rare occasions and her father preferred her to be escorted by one of the club. Her father was very protective of her. Parking beside her, he headed into the supermarket. Jesse, with basket in hand, started to put groceries inside. He couldn’t freak her out by just showing up looking like a stalker.
He kept an eye on the people around him. Jesse spotted her around the meat counter looking at a large piece of beef.
“Do you think that will serve thirty?” Piper asked. “I’ve got a Sunday lunch and the whole family is going to be there.”
“I’d recommend a second, miss.”
“Okay, I’ll take the two.” She was looking down at her list, nibbling her lip as she crossed off another item.
The guy tried to talk to her some more. Jesse stayed back to see what she’d do. Piper smiled at him, wished him a good day then walked away. She had no idea how beautiful she was.
Following behind her, he saw the aisle she went down. Going around, he walked toward her from the opposite direction.
She was bent down looking at some chocolate.
When she stood, he bumped into her, reaching out to stop her from falling. He wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her in close.
“I’m so sorry,” he said, staring down into her eyes.
“Jesse, coffee shop guy.” She chuckled. Caressing her waist, Jesse really didn’t want to let her go. “Are you following me around?” Piper took a step back giving him no choice other than to release her.
“No.” Lifting up his basket of goods to show her, he returned the smile. “I’m out shopping. Being a single guy I’ve got no choice but to keep myself supplied. You?”
“Shopping for the family.”
“Pretty big family.” He eyed the steaks, knowing how many she cooked for.
“Yeah, all my dad’s boys are going to be there. They love their steak and potatoes. What about you? Would you like an invite or something?”
Staring into her eyes, Jesse knew that’s what she was waiting for. She truly believed he was after a shot in the Hell’s Charter. “Nah, I’d rather spend time with you than getting to know your family.” He meant the words he spoke.
“Really?” she asked. Piper looked into his basket and frowned. “What are you making?”
He checked out what he’d put inside his basket, a bag of apples, four tins of tuna, a can opener and some peppers. The combination alone made him feel sick.
“Erm, a stir fry.”
She giggled. “Come on. I can get you the right stuff for a stir fry.” Piper linked arms with him and together they made their way through the supermarket.
For several minutes Jesse forgot about the club life and everything else. Piper took his attention away, making him feel alive. The way he felt in her company was similar to the way he felt on a bike.
“I promise you, chicken stir fry with fresh vegetables and the right sauces is much better than that pre-packed stuff you can buy. Better for you too.” She paid for her shopping, waiting for him.
They headed out together.
“Where are you parked?” she asked.
“You’re right beside me.”
“Wow, I must be lucky,” he said, smiling. His gut tightened at the lies he was spinning. All of a sudden the real reason he was pursuing her invaded his thoughts.
“What’s the matter?”
“Nothing. Do you want to come to my place? You can bring your shopping and I’ll put it in my fridge to keep. We could have some dinner, talk, get to know each other without coffee present.”
He just created the perfect opening to get her alone away from prying eyes.
The smile froze on her lips. Piper had so much fun shopping with him. She shouldn’t be giving him the time of day. Was he a stalker? How did he seem to know everything about her?
Stop it, Piper.
She always doubted everyone, especially men. Glancing over at the supermarket, she nibbled her lip trying to think about his question.
“I promise, chicken stir fry is the only thing on the menu. I won’t be chopping you up or anything.” She saw his cheeks heat as he looked away.
Piper laughed. “I’d love to have some food with you.”
“Excellent. Do you want to follow me?”
“Yes, I’m just going to make a call and then I’ll be with you.” She quickly put the bags into her car then climbed into the front seat. Her hands were shaking as she picked up her cell phone.
“Hey, honey, what’s the matter?” John asked.
“Dad, I’m going to be a bit longer. I’m going to a friend’s for dinner.”