But in this moment, the biggest lie I’ve chosen to believe is the one I tell myself: that I trust the Terror. I’ve always believed there was more, and the detective was correct—if I’m going to find any peace, I have to learn the truth.

“Who are you going to believe?” Eli asks. “Us or him?”

“The brotherhood,” I respond with so much ease it should scare the hell out of me, but it doesn’t. The doubt’s always been present. I’ve just now decided to no longer live in purgatory. I’m going to discover what happened. Not sure how, but I’ll die trying.

I hold my hand out and, after a second of staring at the image of Mom’s car, Eli returns my cell to me. With a flick of my finger, the photo disappears.

“It’s my mom,” I say as if that can explain away everything that went down. As if that can absolve me from any sin I’ll commit here on out with the club. It’s a low thing to say to Eli. His mother, Olivia, recently died.

A shadow passes over Eli’s face and it’s an expression that’s all understanding. “I know, and I also heard what you came home to the other night. It’s been a rough few days for you.”

He allows me time to digest his statement and I wonder how many people are aware of the promise Dad made to me...or how many are aware he broke it.

“You and your dad—you two need to find some peace when it comes to your mom and you need to find some peace with each other, otherwise the entire club is going to suffer. That shit that went down with the detective—it wasn’t right. He disrespected you and your father, which means he disrespected this club. Trust me when I say we’ll take care of it.”

I should feel justified the board is pursuing some course of action with the detective, but the truth is I might need the cop. He might be the lone person willing to inform me what happened, and in the end I’m not sure I do trust the club to follow through.

The picture of Violet on Bragger did come down, not of my doing, but by the club’s. Regardless, it’s on the web forever. Even with my computer skills, I still can’t prevent copies from popping up. But what I’m really pissed at is that the club hasn’t figured out who’s responsible yet and nailed them to a cross.

Why should I trust them to watch out for me when they can’t bring justice for Violet or look me in the eye when I mention my mother?


“Pigpen warned us the detective fucked you up,” Eli says. “But we had no idea how bad. I’ll talk to your dad, tell him that you need time and space, but you need to work through this. You need to find a way to trust the club and you need to work it out with your dad.”

I nod, and when I stand, Eli stands with me. He walks around the table and pulls me into a strong hug. One arm high to keep from hitting my three-piece patch. It’s a sign of utmost respect and I return the gesture with the same amount of emotion.

The club has been my family, my rock, my port in a raging storm, and what I’m about to do might cost me my family forever.


WE BYPASSED MY curfew of ten hours ago. This is the first time I’ve been out this late with friends without parental guidance and I have to admit it’s exhilarating.

Shamrock’s is a hole-in-the-wall. Hole. Like a dig-through-thirty-feet-of-slime-then-let-it-fall-back-in-around-you hole, and I’m loving every single second. The music pumps from the speakers and vibrates against the walls. Every corner is dark and strobe lights create this crazy movement of people like we’re pages flipped through a comic book. The stench of sweat from too many humans occupying one room mingles with the scent of something sweet.

I hated the smell when we arrived, but with a few more drinks and a few more songs, I don’t mind it nearly as much. What I’m loving the most is that the rumors are true. Army boys do buy drinks and they are glorious dancers.

“You know what I love?” I say to Addison as she wraps her arms around my neck in the middle of the dance floor. We start to slow dance with each other during a song that has too many beats and too many chords.

“What?” Strands of her blond hair stick to her face and a sheen of sweat covers her exposed skin.

“I am not number five tonight!”

“No, brat, you are not! You, girl, are number one!”

We take each other’s hands and spin like we did when we were six, except then it was in my backyard and the sun was shining. We slow, and when I search the room for Reagan, the world around me fades. I become concreted to the floor and my breathing hitches. He’s here.

Blond hair. Blue eyes. A body so ripped that every girl near him is gaping. It’s Razor. He’s in the corner on the opposite side of the room. His elbows rest on a raised table, and he’s staring at me.

As always, he’s the perfect mix of heart-stopping gorgeous and dangerous. His hair is styled so the longer bangs almost cover his eyes, but not quite. He wears his black biker cut and in the darkness it blends into the black T-shirt that hugs the muscles of his biceps.

My mouth dries out. I bet he can dance. I bet he could rival any Army boy here. I bet he’s every fantasy I’ve ever had and I bet he’s a fantastic kisser.

I smile. He smiles. I melt.

Addison appears by my side and whispers in my ear, “What is up with you and Thomas Turner?”

I give her my best answer. “I don’t know.”

“He’s hot,” she says.

I agree, he is. I should stop looking at him, but I can’t, and I love that he hasn’t stopped watching me. He inclines his head as if he’s assessing my outfit. To show off my dress, I cock a hip and even lift my skirt like I’m about to perform a curtsy. I’m here to be seen, to be someone other than the Breanna everyone thinks they know, and I like being seen by Thomas Turner.

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