Pie saw that Duke looked proud.
“How is Holly handling that shit?” Pike asked.
“She wanted him to be ready to make his own choices. Being a kid of an MC Prez, she had an idea what it was like,” Duke said.
They all took a moment to be silent as they respected Russ and his passing once again.
“It’s not the same without him,” Pie said. “I know he did a lot of shit and made mistakes, but he was still part of the club.”
“Amen, brother,” Crazy said.
“He was a good man. All the other bullshit aside, he stood by this club through thick and thin,” Knuckles said.
“He didn’t kill me for having sex with his daughter,” Raoul said. “I know he wanted to kill me. Sorry, Duke, I just … Russ was a good man.”
“He is missed. Don’t reference anything that happened between you and Holly. I don’t want nor do I need to hear it.”
Raoul and Duke had an agreement when it came to Holly, and it worked for the two brothers, especially as Raoul had his own old lady and Zoe wouldn’t take too kindly to being reminded of Raoul’s previous screw.
“What do you think he’d have said about the Billionaires’ deal?” Pie asked.
“Shove your money up your fucking ass,” Dime said. “He’d have been pissing himself laughing at all the clubs that were there.”
“I can’t even believe we went to that bullshit,” Duke said. “Damn, it just goes to show I don’t always make the best decisions.”
“Come on, we got a look in at the competition, and the kids enjoyed it. Not a bad day, to be honest,” Pike said.
Pie had fun. He and Lindsey had been there, eyeing up the competition. He’d enjoyed the day, even though tensions had run high.
“We don’t need them,” Duke said.
“It’s not our way to jump to another fucker’s tune,” Knuckles said. “Never has been and never will be.”
They all agreed.
None of them faulted the Billionaire Bikers MC for their mission statement. They were tackling human trafficking and had made it their personal mission to bring the men responsible to justice. It was a good cause, the best. It just wasn’t their cause.
After church finished up, Duke asked Pie to stay behind. Several of the brothers gave him a handshake on the way out, and he took the ribbing of others as well. He got it. He was finally handing in his bachelor keys for a life with a woman, and he fucking relished it.
The last man left, and he and Duke were alone.
“You can sit down if you’d like,” Duke said.
“Am I in some kind of trouble?”
“Not at all. Just wanted to make sure everything was going well between you and Lindsey. Taking her as your old lady, that’s a big fucking step. Huge.”
“Was it a big step for you and Holly?”
“It’s always a big step, man. It doesn’t ever stop getting hard, and I don’t mean my dick either.” Pie smirked. “Nah, relationships, love, the club, everything. This life is not for everyone. Lindsey’s a good woman. I saw that after she dealt with that asshole boss of hers. This life is tough, but she’s a tough cookie. You’ve picked well.”
“You ever regret not taking that Billionaire Bikers deal?”
“Not at all. There is a time and place for that shit. It’s not with us. Their fight is not ours. We don’t have those kinds of resources, and I’m not willing to change who we are to suit another club. We already took a vote on that when we got back. No one wants in on that kind of crazy. Any news from Diaz on Lindsey’s boss?”
“Nothing new yet. We went through his place. Fucker had files on the women he’d stalk and then hurt. You know, I thought evil had a distinctive look.”
“Leather jacket and a bike?” Duke asked.
“Yeah. The world looks at us as if we’re the monsters, the problems, yet it seems half the problem is living with them.”
“I’m happy for you and Lindsey. It’s about time the two of you settled down. You’ve been dancing around each other for the past couple of years. It was getting old real fast.”
“Oh, come on, we weren’t that bad.”
“You weren’t that good either.” Duke winked. “Half the time you looked like you were ready to kill every single guy who came near her.”
“None of them were good enough.”
“And you were?”
“I’m an improvement.”
“Keep telling yourself that. We’re all good. Congratulations,” Duke said. They shook hands, and Pie made his way out of the clubhouse.
Several of the guys had settled in for a game of pool and drinking. He wasn’t interested in any of that and wanted to get to see his woman.
Leaving the clubhouse, he made his way toward his bike. Straddling the bike, he stopped off at their apartment to change and shower, before driving toward her work. Everything was finally falling into place. It wouldn’t be long now for him to claim her as his wife.