Chapter 1- Papa Joe calls for help!
As if thinking about him made my phone ring and without looking at the screen, I answered “Rooster.”
“Rooster, it’s Joe Crankston. I need your help, please.” Papa Joe said.
“Hey Papa Joe. I was just thinking about you. What’s up?”
“I got a call about what I think may be a snake problem in town. The principal of the high school is an old friend and he called me saying that there have been some bikers harassing the kids as they are coming and going to and from school as well as around town in their favorite places to hang out.
They are never in the same place from one day to the next and the police here just don’t have enough men to keep up as well as deal with all of the other issues of which I understand have been many around town. Businesses being broken into, property being vandalized. People are terrified and don’t know where to turn for help.
Earlier today, one of the cheerleaders was waiting for her boyfriend on the field when two of the bikers grabbed her and started pushing her around, clutching and ripping her clothes, fondling her. Thankfully the coach and a bunch of the players chased them off but the poor girl was terrified. Dr. Jill is talking to her now at the hospital. She also called me and alerted me to the problem. I think they are looking to set up shop here and I can’t let that happen. Especially not this close to the farm. I’ve had to make Chris stay home from the vegetable stand because I’m afraid they will go by and try to mess with her.” Papa Joe explained.
“We’ll head your way right away. Everyone is here eating lunch so it shouldn’t be long.” I told him and then hung up. I pushed out of my chair and left my office. I walked into the dining room and whistled to get everyone’s attention.
“Listen up everybody. I just got a call from Papa Joe. He said he’s got bikers in their town creating havoc, scaring residents especially the school kids. Two of them pushed some cheerleader around, ripping her clothes off and generally just scaring her but that’s probably only because the coach, her boyfriend and some of his teammates chased them off.
They’ve been breaking into businesses, vandalizing property and just causing general havoc. Papa Joe says he thinks they are trying to set up shop in town and has asked for our help.” I told them and wasn’t at all surprised when the first people to react were Marley and Charlie.
“Dixie, can you please watch my babies?” Marley said and Charlie said “Crystal too?” And Dixie nodded “Of course.”
Both of their men reacted “WHAT?” “Are you kidding me?” Hunter and Cruise shouted at them.
“Hunter. This is Papa Joe and Mama Mae and Aunt Chris! They may not be my parents by blood but they are the only ones I’ve ever really had since my mom died. They need help and I’ll be damned if I sit here and wait to find out if they are alright. I will go crazy and believe me, I will take you with me. I’m going! You can drop me off at the Farm while you deal with what is going on in town but I’m going!” Marley shouted right back at him, punching him in the chest with her finger as he towered over her.
Cruise made the mistake of trying to grab Charlie by the arm to hold her back but she turned on him and said, “If you ever want to touch me again, you will let me go, right now. I’m going with Marley. Papa Joe and Mama Mae are the reason I’m here now and I will not desert them when they need us. Now let go!” She said as she ripped her arm out of his grip, turned around and stomped over to where Marley and Hunter were still staring each other down.
“All right. We’ll drop you off at the farm but take your gun. Papa Joe might need you to back him up.” Hunter finally gave in.
Together, Charlie and Marley ran upstairs, quickly grabbed their weapons and kissed their kids, who were napping, goodbye and left their rooms. They came back downstairs and ran to jump on the backs of their men’s bikes as we all began to pull out. Half the club was riding with us and an hour later, we all stopped at the Farm to drop Marley and Charlie off with Papa Joe and Mama Mae. They met us on the porch when they heard our bikes coming up the road.
“Somehow I knew you girls would show up.” Papa Joe said as he embraced first Marley and then Charlie.
I got off my bike and walked up to the bottom step and asked Papa Joe. “Any idea where they might be hold up?”
Just then Bill and one of the boys from the farm came around the corner and Bill said “Brad here says that he heard some bikes going up the old mining road towards that old camp when he was chasing some cows out of the back pasture last night. We also just found a puddle of blood near the fence and one of our new calves is missing. It was just a month old and we had just let them out a couple of days ago. I want a gun before I take any of the boys up there to gather the rest of the cows and bring them back to the barn. I’m going to close off that pasture and keep the cows closer to the barn for now.” Bill said.
I turned around and yelled “Richie! Come here. Anyone else know how to ride a horse?”
Jailer raised his hand and I told him and Richie “Park off to the side and ride out with Bill and his hands to help them gather the cows and bring them back closer to the barn. Also check out where they found the puddle of blood but don’t go after these guys yet. We need to find out how many there are. The rest of us are going into town to see what we can find out.”
Then I turned to Papa Joe and said. “We’ll check in with you later.”
“Are you going to the school first? Classes should be letting out soon.” Papa Joe asked.
“Yeah, that’s probably a good place to start. I’ll talk to the principal about calling an assembly to tell the kids what to do to keep themselves safe.” I told him.
“Good deal. I’ll let Principal Roads know you are coming. Thanks Rooster.” Papa Joe said.
I walked back to my bike and saw Hunter and Cruise both watching Marley and Charlie and understood what they were all feeling but now was not the time to address it. We were all doing what we felt was right and necessary. I pulled out and knew that Hunter and Cruise did not want to leave their women but the only way for them to be truly safe was to put an end to the threat.
It only took us about 15 minutes to reach the high school and thankfully classes had not let out yet and while I told the men to take a ride around the block to see if they could spot any of the bikers, I went inside to talk to Principal Roads.
Papa Joe had let him know I was coming and he was waiting in the main office for me. “Principal Roads?” I asked when I saw the middle aged balding man that reminded me of my old math teacher in high school. Slightly overweight, thinning hair on the top and a pair of oversized glasses that just refused to stay up.
“Yes. You must be Rooster. Joe called and said you were coming to help us. Thank you so much. I only have two other male teachers on campus. Mr. Willoughby is our science teacher and is over 60 years old and about to retire. His health is not all that good. And Coach Ward. He’s in good physical condition but he can’t be expected to take on a whole gang of bikers.” Principal Roads said as we shook hands.
“Any idea of how many of them there are? I’ve got thirty men with me but I can call in more if need be.”
“We’ve only heard about a dozen all together. I know there are about half that around here almost everyday after school for the past week. Most of the girls are terrified to leave the buildings and many have called in sick because they are afraid to come to school after what happened to Debbie Williams. I’m just thankful that Coach and the team were still having a meeting in the boys locker room when they heard her start screaming.”
“Have you seen what is on the back of their cuts?” I asked and he gave me a strange look, not understanding what I meant. “On the back of their vests? We call them cuts.”
“Across the top it says “Satan’s Riders” and across the bottom it said “New Mexico” and there’s a picture of the grim reaper wearing six guns on his hips, ammunition belts across his chest and carrying a scythe in his left hand.” Principal Roads told me.
“Damn, I thought they had all been wiped out years ago.” I muttered to myself. “Have you seen any strange vehicles around at the same time? A van or large truck with a cover on the back?” I asked him.
“Come to think of it, there was a panel van that I didn’t recognize out there yesterday parked along the street but they weren’t anywhere near it so I didn’t think much about it. My concentration has been on keeping an eye out for them.” Principal Roads said.
“How much longer before classes let out?” I asked.
“About 10 minutes.” he replied.
“How many grades do you cover here?” I asked.
“We have from 7th to 12th grade here.” He said.
“Can you please call an emergency assembly in your auditorium or cafeteria, whichever is larger?” I asked.
He nodded and walked over to the PA system and a moment later I could hear his voice over the loudspeaker system. “Attention! Attention all students and teachers. Please quietly proceed to the cafeteria for an emergency assembly right now! Make sure you stay together and don’t run. Just proceed there immediately.” He said and then clicked off the button. “Mrs. Carson, please follow us.” He told the school secretary and motioned to the vice principal to come with them as well. “Go tell the nurse to join us.” he told the vice principal as we all left the office.
Once we were all in the cafeteria and all of the students were assembled, I noticed that we were lacking in girl students but he had mentioned how many of them had called out sick due to fear. He clapped his hands together and called for attention. “Everyone quiet down please and listen up. This is Mr. Rooster. He is here to talk to us about the bikers who are making trouble in our town. Pay attention to everything he has to say.”
I stepped forward and said “My name is Rooster and I’m the president of the Monster Slayers MC near Jackson. Our primary focus is to help children and young adults who are being neglected, abused or molested and to get them away from the people who are mistreating them. We received a call saying that a biker gang from out of state is here causing trouble in your town and we’re here to either send them on their way or to end them. We’ll be here for however long that takes.
In the meantime, I need to ask you to take some precautions to protect not only yourselves but your families and those you care about. The number one deterrent is to stay together! They will prey on people, especially women or children they can catch alone. As has already been proven this rule should even be enforced here on school grounds. These vultures will wait in hiding for someone to be alone and that’s when they will strike. When you get home, keep your doors and windows locked. Also, keep something you can use to protect yourself handy. Even if it’s just a broom handle. Keep your phones on you and make sure your location feature is turned on in your settings. Even if you don’t get a chance to use it, we can track and locate your phone using that feature. Make sure not only your friends and family have that number but the school as well. Often they are going to be the first ones to notice if you don’t turn up one day. DO NOT travel anywhere alone. To and from school, the store, wherever you go, make sure you are with a group of people, preferably with at least 3 or more of you.
Boys, don’t assume just because you are male that you are exempt from these rules. These guys are more than likely human traffickers and will grab you if they can, kill you if they can’t. Stick together guys. It’s for your own protection and the protection of your friends and classmates.
Also, keep an eye on the younger children. They are in the most danger. I’m sure you don’t want your younger sisters or brothers being gang raped, beaten and tortured or possibly killed so keep an eye on your siblings.
Come up with what we call “emergency names” and let your parents, siblings and friends know that if you call them by whatever the agreed upon name is, they will know you are in trouble and to send help. For instance, if say, Mrs. Carson here was in trouble and she called Principal Roads here and said “Ruben, can I talk to so and so?” “Or something like “Hi baby cakes!” Principal Roads would automatically know that she’s in trouble, has her phone and that she can’t talk freely because someone is listening in.”
Everyone started to laugh as both Principal Roads and Mrs. Carson turned bright red.
Work with your friends and family and classmates. Talk to your siblings so that you are all on the same page and can get help to you or to them quickly. NEVER try to go alone to rescue them! Call the authorities and let them deal with it. I want everyone in here to write down or enter my phone number in your phones right now. (I announced my cell phone number a couple of times).
If you are in trouble and need help, text me with your first name and what is wrong. I will come to wherever your phone is. If you can, let me know if it’s safe to text or call you back. If I can’t get to you, I’ll get someone to you. Anyone in my MC will be wearing a patch like this on the vests or as we call them our cuts.” I said and turned around for everyone to see.
Just then the com in my ear went off. “Prez, we’ve got 8 of them in a bar about 6 blocks from the school. They are getting drunk and causing trouble with the staff. You want us to confront them?” Cruise reported.
“Where is Hunter?” He and half the guys are down the road where we saw some bikes in front of a store.” Cruise said.
“Unless you hear gun fire or anyone scream, just wait for me. I’ll be there in a couple of minutes.” I told him. I turned to Principal Roads and said “We’ve got 8 of them making trouble in a bar about 6 blocks from here and some others in a store down the street. I’ve got to go. Get these kids home safely. I’d recommend they all load on to buses and be delivered to their door steps. Make sure you pass my instructions on to the grade school principal.” I told him and then quickly left the building.
I ran across the grounds and jumped on my bike but before starting it up, I looked at my rear view mirror and noticed a blue panel van parked across the street from the school. I put my hand up and hit the button on my com and told Hunter. “I think those two groups are a distraction. Send me four guys to the high school. The principal told me about a van that had been hanging around lately and I’ll be damned if it’s not here right now. The final school bell is about to ring.”
I couldn’t tell if there was anyone in the van or not. I pretended to be on my cell phone after I found the number for the school on Google. I called but the phone just rang and rang for over a minute. Finally Principal Roads answered. About the same time, students started to file out of the doors to the main building.
“Damn, I was hoping to get you to stop any students from leaving the building. Stop as many as you can. The van is here and I think the trouble in town is part of a distraction. I’ll try to stop the kids who have already come out.” I hurried to tell him as I began to wave my arm at the kids who thankfully were all looking in my direction because of my bike. They all stopped and looked confused but then one by one they turned around and went back inside just as my brothers pulled up.
“Surround that van. I’ve got some questions I want answered.” I told them before I started my bike. We started towards the van and they saw us coming. I saw their brake lights flash indicating they were shifting gears and then they began to move forward.
“They’re gonna run. Stay with them. Don’t let them get away.
When we are clear of town, shoot out their tires.” I told my guys.
The van was driving like a maniac, running the red light, passing cars in oncoming traffic causing the other driver to jump the curb or at least swerve to avoid being hit. The town was so small that it didn’t take long before we were beyond where there was any chance of us accidentally shooting someone or of the van running through a building or hitting a pedestrian. I was in the lead and pulled my gun out and began to aim for the tires when suddenly the back door to the van flew open and I was shocked to see a huge looking man hanging on to a half naked girl who had a bandana tied around her mouth.
Whoever was hanging on to her, threatened to push her out the back so we immediately gave up the chase and I released my gas. We all slowed down but kept an eye on the van. The person holding the girl threw her back inside and closed the door. Through my com I said “Let them go and let’s drop back to where they can’t see us. I’m going to stop and call Papa Joe and tell him to keep an eye out for the van going up to the campsite.”
I pulled out my cell and quickly called the Farm. Papa Joe picked up on the second ring.
“Papa Joe, I don’t have time to waste. Get word to Jailer and Richie and tell them to watch for a blue panel van and to let me know right away if they show up there. These bastards have at least one young woman and we were chasing them but they threatened to throw her out of the van doing over 60 so we backed off. They are headed in your direction. How many horses do you have?”
“There will be 5 waiting and saddled when you get here. I’m going to them now.” Papa Joe said and hung up.
I turned my bike back on and caught up with my guys. The lead man, Crusher, pointed off to the mining road as we drove past it and actually there was still dust settling in the distance as the road rose up the hill. I stopped and told Crusher and two of the prospects. “Park out of sight. No one but us comes down from there. If the van comes back down, shoot out the tires before it can get back on the road. Hopefully they have dropped her off and won’t have anyone with them but to be honest, I’d be surprised if they come back down.”
“You got it, Prez.” Crusher said and then rode across the road and hid their bikes behind some bushes as the remaining three guys and I took off to Papa Joe’s place. As soon as I pulled up, Mama Mae came running out and said “Marley and Charlie followed Papa Joe. I couldn’t stop them. Please, Rooster, don’t let anything happen to them.”
“Oh good lord! Don’t worry, Mama Mae. We’ll be back as soon as we can.” I kissed her on the cheek, grabbed my kevlar out of my saddle bag and ran for the barn with the guys right behind me.
“I hope you guys know how to ride horses.” I said as I grabbed the reins of the nearest horse and jumped on his back.
“Not a clue but I’ll figure it out.” Knuckles said. Knuckles was almost right behind me as we raced across the pasture. We found Papa Joe, Bill and one of the farm boys, Marley, Charlie, Jailer and Richie watching a small group of cabins where the blue van was parked.
“Marley, what the hell are you and Charlie doing here? Hunter is going to strangle you first and then me.” I whisper yelled at her.
“If they have a young girl in there, she’s going to be scared. You guys are going to be useless when it’s time to get her.” Marley said. “I didn’t come here to sit by in comfort on Papa Joe’s front porch waiting while some girl is being raped by these motherfuckers. Not in my sanctuary.”
Jailer was crouched down low as he came to where I was standing. “Let me guess, the school told you a bunch of girls called in sick today, right?”
“Oh lord, NO! Please don’t tell me there is more than one girl in there?” I asked.
“Besides the two they brought in on the van a little while ago, we saw at least 4 more. Thankfully, I think it’s only 4 prospects in there right now besides what appeared to be a patched member on the van but damn, he’s a big motherfucker. Almost as big as Hulk.” Jailer told me.
I put my hand to my com and said “Hunter, Cruise. Get back to Papa Joe’s and get up here. We’ve got 6 men and at least 6 captives and there’s only 6 of us plus Marley and Charlie. Your women have gone warriors on us.” I prepared myself for the shouts that came through the com as I pulled it out of my ear to keep from having my eardrum blown as both Hunter and Cruise began yelling.
“Rooster, knock her out if you have to but don’t you let my woman get hurt.” Hunter said with deadly calm after a moment. “I’m on my way.” He said a second later and I heard his bike start up. Two seconds later Cruise came across with “Ditto” and then I heard his bike start.
I motioned for Jailer and Rickie to make their way one way and Knuckles and Tracker the other way. “Find out if there are any women in those cabins in the back and let me know if there is a back door out of these things.” I told them through the com. Then I turned to Marley and Charlie. “You stay low and keep out of sight. Hunter and Cruise are pissed as hell and they are going to be here soon. I don’t envy either one of you once this is over. I never would have let you come if I knew you were going to pull a stunt like this.”
Neither Marley or Charlie had taken their eyes off of the cabin when suddenly one of the girls broke free and ran out the door. She was the same one we had seen in the back of the van. She was still naked from the waist up, her hands were tied behind her back and she still had the bandana in her mouth. She had big blue eyes and you could tell she was scared out of her mind as she looked around for a way to escape.
The large man Jailer had described stepped into the doorway and for half a second, I was amazed. He really is as big as Hulk. He had no shirt on and his chest was covered in hair. He looked like a huge grizzly bear. His belt was undone and hanging down his thighs. His pants were unzipped enough to see his boxers and he was laughing like a mad man.
Just as his pistol-filled hand came up, the girl tripped and fell to her knees off the one step to the ground from the porch and then I heard several shots of a silencer and the chest of the grizzly bear man nearly exploded and ran red. He had a shocked look on his face just before he fell backwards into the cabin. I turned and saw Marley still holding her gun out in front of her and smoke coming out of the barrel.
We heard shouting from inside and women screaming. I stood up and yelled. “We’ve got you surrounded. Come out with your hands in the air and leave the women inside. You’ve got 30 seconds or we are coming in after them. If any of the women are harmed anymore, none of you will be able to walk out of there.”
Just about then, I heard bikes coming up the road and someone from inside started to laugh. “Now, we’ll see who dies today.”
Someone yelled out.
“Dumb ass, that’s the rest of my crew. Yours are either in jail or dead. Oh and by the way, the person who shot your friend was a woman and she was being generous in letting him die quickly and peacefully but your slow moving ass is wearing her patience out. You’ve got 10 seconds left.” I yelled back.
5 seconds later, 5 young men came out of the door with their hands in the air. They looked over at where Marley was kneeling with her gun still trained on them. It was as if she was frozen in place. She never moved, never blinked as she watched them file out the front door. It was like watching Eagle when he went into his “war zone” and none of us dared to step in front of her. All of the young men standing on the porch were shaking in their boots as they looked over at her. Her face showed no emotion. It was kind of scary actually. I had never seen her like that. Not even the night she had shot and killed Carlos.
Hunter and the others had finally reached the top of the hill and he kicked his stand down at the same time he turned off his bike and jumped off of it. He started to race over to her until Papa Joe held up his hand to stop him. We had to grab him to keep him still and I whispered in his ear. “She’s in a zone, Hunter. Go slow. Let Papa Joe get the gun out of her hand first.” I said as I watched what was happening.
Papa Joe stepped closer to her and from behind put his hand on her shoulder with one hand and then reached over her head and slid his hand down her arm and covered her hand and the gun at the same time as he softly talked to her in her ear.
“Marley. Let go sweetheart. You got him. He’s dead. The others have given up. We need you to help recover the women. Marley. Do you hear me?” Papa Joe said softly.
Marley nodded and let go of the gun. She slowly let Papa Joe help her to stand up and without even looking around, she started to walk towards the split rail fence and climbed through the rails. She walked up to the porch and the men standing there with their hands in the air scooted away from her as much as possible. Jailer and Richie, Knuckles and Hacker stepped forward to secure the prisoners while Marley and Charlie entered the house.
“What the fuck, Rooster? She didn’t even look at me. What the hell is going on?” Hunter said.
Papa Joe stepped up to join us. “Don’t be upset Hunter. Marley has gone to a place I’ve only seen her go one time before. We had a girl come in about 4 years after Marley. She hadn’t been as physically damaged as Marley but she would have awful night terrors and one night she started screaming about Snake. It took me, Mama Mae and Chris over 12 hours to find Marley.
She had hidden in the basement behind some boxes of Christmas decorations. We never would have found her but she had wet herself and Mae smelled the urine when she went down there after I had already checked the basement. She was in kind of a daze but she was so very protective of that girl for the entire time she was there. It set Marley back in her recovery by at least two years. I had to let Mae know I was entering my own home or Marley would freak out and run to hide and it would take hours to get her to come out.
Hunter, if you can’t get her to calm down and come out of it, I’m going to call Max and get him to come by. They have some kind of special connection and he’s always been able to calm her down.” Papa Joe informed him.
All Hunter could do was nod. He had seen her upset a few times but nothing like this. “Papa Joe, I think I need to talk to Dr. Jill and find out how to handle this for her. Marley and I have been together for over 5 years now and we’ve had our ups and downs but nothing like this. Could this be part of her postpartum blues? She’s suffered with that a lot with both kids but more so with Faith.” Hunter asked.
“I’ll get a hold of Dr. Jill and ask her to call you. Okay?” Papa Joe said and just then Marley called out “Someone bring us some t-shirts or blankets or towels or something for these girls to cover themselves. The jackasses ripped their shirts off of them so that they wouldn’t run away.”
I walked over to the van where the prisoners were loaded up and said “Take off your cuts and your shirts.” They all hurried to strip and handed their shirts to me. I walked them over to Marley who began to laugh and said “Now that is justice!” She passed the shirts around and then gave them the cuts.
“You know what? There was one of those guys that if he had approached me like a normal person and asked me out, I would have said yes but it wasn’t him that grabbed me but the ugly one and that hairy jackass. He was crazy!” One of the girls said.
We called the police and they came and gave the girls a ride back to town as well as collected the prospects and took them to jail. Papa Joe talked to the cops and no one said a damned thing to us about the dead grizzly man.