Bared:Dirty Cruisers MC

By: Brook Wilder
Prologue


She had to catch her breath as she stepped out of the small car into the balmy Colorado spring air. She stared, her warm dark eyes wide on the large, rough looking building that seemed to jut out unnaturally from the mountain range that ran on like jagged, snow-capped teeth behind it. It looked rough, and it was rough. She knew that from experience.



Outside, it looked like a nearly abandoned warehouse or old industrial factory, with weathered and grey raw wood boards as siding and most of the windows barred. She forced herself to take another step forward, easing out from behind the shield of the driver’s side door and closing it firmly behind her. Each step closer to the front door was a battle and as she neared the sound of the loud rumbling of raised voices coming from inside reached her, and she nearly turned around and bolted back for her the safety of her car then and there.



She was Elle Watson, and Elle Watson didn’t belong in a place like this. Elle Watson didn’t frequent biker bars, or low brow establishments and she certainly didn’t go to parties at a notorious biker gang’s clubhouse. And yet, there she was, her trembling fingers grasping the rusty metal bar that served as a doorknob on one of the heavy double doors that barred the entrance.



Elle took another deep breath, trying in vain to calm her racing nerves. She’d never been comfortable in social situations, and it didn’t help that she knew she was walking into a pit of Vipers. Literally. She knew one of the bikers whose name really was Viper. Or at least, that’s the nickname that he went by. And then there were the others. Tucker, and Hot Wheels. Sparkplug and Joel. And of course, Honey.



Ridiculous name, she scoffed to herself. You’re stalling, another voice whispered back, the small voice deep inside herself that she kept locked away most of the time. Of course I’m stalling, she hissed back, I don’t belong here.



You could. Those words whispered through her and she let them for the briefest moment before shoving them, and that little voice, back into the corner of her mind. Without waiting to give herself time to have any more second doubts, she yanked the heavy door open and strode in. And immediately froze.



The inside of the clubhouse looked just as rough and weather worn as the outside but instead of wind and snow and icy temperatures, the wear was from booted feet and broken glass and copious amounts of spilled beer that let the uneven wood boards of the floor slightly sticky as she took another tentative step forward. The place was also packed.



She knew it would be. Carla had told her that the celebration of a raising a new president was a wild one, drawing every member of a biker gang out and could last for days on end. It seemed like the Dirty Cruisers weren’t any different.



At the thought of Carla, her best friend and next door neighbor, Elle scanned the loud, hard partying crowd for her familiar dark brown hair and bright blue eyes. The same eyes that had given her the nickname Bluebird when she had first started dating Joel Lasseter, the man of the hour and newly raised president of the Dirty Cruisers himself.



Elle shuddered slightly at the thought, unconsciously. At first, she had disapproved of Carla getting involved with a biker, and a criminal at that. They had first met the year before. Carla had been working at Honey Bud Farms, a marijuana farm just outside of Denver, and had been driving a shipment of the stuff to a dispensary when her truck had been run off the road, and the shipment stolen by none other than Joel and the Dirty Cruisers.



But after everything that had happened with Maurice, Carla’s old boss and owner of the farm, Elle had come to trust him. Marginally. He had saved her best friend from a murdering scumbag, after all.



You’re stalling again, that damn voice was back, egging her on, taunting her and it didn’t help that it was right. Elle stared helplessly around the large crowded room, feeling her heartbeat spike in her chest as anxiety sunk deep. She hated crowds. She hated loud places. Ever since she was a kid, she’d felt a crushing sense of nervousness whenever she was forced to be in one, like now. She never would have come if Carla hadn’t made her promise that she would, and Elle Watson never broke a promise.



As if the thought had conjured her, Elle suddenly saw Carla’s beaming face break through the rowdy crowd and rush towards her. A moment later Carla was giving her a big, squeezing hug.



“I’m so glad you made it!” Carla said, breathless and red cheeked from fighting through the throng of leather clad bikers, “I was worried you weren’t going to come.”



“I wouldn’t want to miss my best friend’s further descent into a life of crime,” Elle said, with a mock serious look, “Besides, I promised.”

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