Inked Soul (Riders of Silence MC 3)

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Stall Talk

Raven

I hit the punching bag again and again getting out the frustration of my life. Long ago I choose to never be a victim ever again. When I moved here, the moment I had extra change I signed up at the local gym and took the boxing classes that were available. I even got a gun license with a registered Glock by my bed and a shotgun in the barn.

Even my little girl comes to gym, she came with me once and loved it just as much as I did making her beg to be signed up for her own classes. Part of me will always be broken hearted that she didn’t have the childhood she deserved, whatever she wants I will find a way to give it to her. I will be sure she is strong for whatever comes her way, and she feels the same, to never be the girl scared for when her father comes home.

Josh took something from us both, he will always haunt me and I pray that Sienna won’t ever remember that night. When I met him he was nice, high school sweethearts where the girl got pregnant too early. The classic stories the police hear. Though it took till Sienna’s birth, when they found out her hearing wasn’t perfect, he changed. Josh expected perfection and in his eyes Sienna wasn’t perfect and I was carrying body weight I didn’t shouldn’t. That’s when the beatings started on me and with Josh’s position in the Boston government nothing stuck to him despite the amount of hospital and police visits. Six years in that hell before he came after Siena and the night that changed everything.

People may judge me that it took six years to get out but when your husband doesn’t let you out of the house and completely controls you in the fear that he will take your little girl from you… you can’t do anything. I mean I tried twice and after the last time, the beating and threats of taking her away I was stuck, stuck in hell. How could I take the risk that his money will take my daughter away from me and give her to him? Then who would protect her from that monster?

My fist slammed into the bag harder.

I shielded Sienna from that. Josh ignored her with her bad hearing. Her father never let her in his presence and she could only sign but that was due to the fact he wouldn’t put money in for hearing aids. He left her emotionally insecure where she only talks with her hearing aids in and is sometimes scared to sign unless she is sure the other person doesn’t mind.

Like Tatt. When Sienna got worried and scared about him lashing out about signing he comforted her about it and gave her the green light. For some reason, my little fighter has taken to him, following him around the barn like a puppy.

Tatt. Why does every time I think of him I flutter? Or anytime I try to talk to him hoping he says something stupid, flirty that will make me realize he would only play me for what’s between my leg. But he does the opposite. Being honest, and sincere.

“Mommy I’m all done.” Sienna said making me hold my fists as I breathed in deeply. Her hair in braids, the small boxing gloves in her hands.

I smiled at her. “As am Sweetie, shall we pack up and head home?”

She nodded enthusiastically, “could we grab Chinese food and see if Tatt is still around? I want to give him pictures for his shop.”

“I don’t think Tatt will still be there but you’ll see him tomorrow morning.” I said grabbing my water bottle as we started walking to the changing room. I bit my lip to keep from chuckling at her sad expression about missing Tatt though she just saw him, “but you can draw lots of pictures tonight to give to him.”

Sienna smiled as we entered the changing room heading right to our stuff so we could head out. I walked over to the shower and toilet stalls to splash water on my face to rinse the sweat. As I reached the sink I stopped hearing someone crying.

Turning to one of the bathroom stalls I could hear the small cries, the mother in me knocking on the door. “Hello are you okay?”

“I-I am fine.” She answered softly.

“Mind if I am annoying and ask you to open the door? Just want to make sure you actually are okay and if you need to talk.”

I heard her grab some toilet paper to wipe some of tears away before the door slowly opened showing me a young woman with blonde hair, the object of her crying coming into view, “ah. So, good or bad crying?”

She sniffled looking down at the pregnancy test in her hands, two other tests of different brands right beside it. “Positive. I knew there was a reason why I was throwing up so much but pregnant? This wasn’t in the plan I am still young how can I do this so young?”

I shrugged sliding down onto the floor, my back on the stall, “I had my girl at sixteen so I know that feeling.”

She looked at me wiping under her eyes, “Sixteen? Fuck I am 24 and I think that’s too young.”

I shrugged at her, “It wasn’t easy but I wouldn’t trade my girl for the world. What about the sperm donor?”

The woman lifted up her left hand showing me her gorgeous ring and wedding band. “Newlyweds. Got married few month ago. Hunter is amazing, I love him with every part of my heart and he the same. It’s just we never really talked about kids. We have briefly but it was never a thought for now but in the far, far future. And now here I am on a toilet, at gym, crying over three pregnancy tests rambling to a stranger.”

I chuckled reaching over to shake her hand, “Raven.”

“Birdy sorry Serenity. Take your choice I suppose. God how am I going to tell Hunter. I don’t think he has even babysat a kid before and now I am going to give him a baby. Shit what if something goes wrong?”

I went to speak before a little voice came up from behind me, “what goes wrong?”

Sienna looked between Serenity and me with a quizzical look shrugging and sitting beside me on the floor. “Sienna this is Serenity, Serenity this is my daughter Sienna.”

“Hello. Why are you sad?” My daughter asked before hopping up and running away.

I sighed and looked back at Serenity, “Uh she means the sorry and first step is being prepared for kids doing that, being unpredictable. Their mind runs just as fast as their feet. Don’t panic about anything, tomorrow morning call your OBGYN to set up an appointment and they can run it down. And if you want my number I will answer any questions you may have.”

A small smile spread across her face, “mind grabbing coffee this week to go over it? I don’t know anyone who has had a kid and I know the second I start reading books I’ll have a thousand questions.”

My head went back as I laughed at her, “just give me a heads up and I’ll meet you for coffee. I could use some new friends. I am usually too busy at my farm to meet people so I wouldn’t mind telling you all the joys of weight gain, childbirth and raising a kid. Though I have no idea if my advice is even good.” I winked.

She chuckled, “that little girl is adorable I can definitely use it.”

Pads of rapid feet approached us as Sienna jumped into sitting cross legged beside me, “I’m back.”

Serenity chuckled at her pointing to her, “look at you all gym ready, you boxing with your mom?”

“Mhm, I take classes so one day I’m going to be like Black Widow.” Sienna beamed at her, “she’s tough and no one comes after her. This is for you.”

Sienna passed Serenity a couple pieces of paper that I could see were drawings she had made earlier today. “These for me?”

Sienna nodded wringing her hands as I tucked some loose hair behind her ear, “I made them for Tatt but you could use a smile.”

Serenity’s head went to the side as she looked up from the pictures, that smile still on her face and tears dried up. “You know Tatt?”

“Mhm, he’s a biker criminal whose working at our barn. But he draws on people during the day so I drew him some designs to use at his shop.” Sienna bounced up and down making Serenity laugh as I shook my head.

“Baby you can’t go around calling him a criminal.” I stood up, walking to the sink to get tissue for Serenity so she could stop using rough toilet paper.

Sienna stood, “sorry mom, but he isssssss. But he a nice criminal.”

I held out the tissues for Serenity as she sat up from the stall and walked over to me, her hand on her stomach already with the thought of her child, “he is a nice guy. He’s friends with my husband. How should I tell Hunter?”

I put my hands on her shoulders looking at her, “Hey, if he loves you the same way your eyes look when you talk about him he will be ecstatic. I don’t know him but if he and Tatt are friends then I can assume he is a good guy. Go home, throw on lingerie and tell him you have a mini you in your uterus. I’m assuming he is a biker so chances are he will be all alpha about it.”

That got a laugh at her as she hugged me, “thanks Raven you’re a lifesaver and your right he will definitely be excited that it means I am all his. He will probably try to baby proof the whole club house.”

She let go and I smiled, longing for that kind of good love in my life instead of the trap I fell into. “We have to get going, but here’s my contact call if you need anything.”

Sienna nodded beside me, “same here I got more pictures or ponies to make you happy.”

We exchanged numbers and headed out of the stall before Serenity gasped turning back looking horrified, “oh god. I can’t drink coffee for nine months!”

Laughing I waved goodbye to her taking Sienna out of the gym to our car ready to go home. It had been a weird night. Excellent workout but everything else was weird. Seeing Tatt in his parlour threw me off big time, seeing him fitting in so well in the gorgeous setting and designs he has made hanging on the wall. You could see the pride he has in his work and talent. It is just another insight into the man who keeps popping up in my mind. I see him. But if my reflection on Josh tonight has any purpose it is reminding myself that just because someone shows themselves as one thing doesn’t mean they can be someone else.

I will never risk my daughter no matter how much this biker calls out to me.

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