Tig stumbled out of his dorm room far later than she should have but far earlier than he wanted. Last night there had been a hell of a party. The gun drop had gone well and they had a new bigger order for the one-niners. They had been on their way back to the Clubhouse when Jax’s had gotten a call from Opie. There were definitely dealers out Sawyers Lumber mill. They had been about to put a beating on the 3 guys there when they had overheard that there would be a shift change. Opie figured dealing with 6 rather than 3 would be a good plan, but they needed more bodies. Jax agreed and they headed out to join up with their brothers.
The fight had been glorious and a whole lot of fun. They had surprised the morons and managed to get a few blows in before they knew what was happening and then the fun had really started. By the time Jax called them off there were 6 very sorry looking men looking back at the larger group of sons. Sure the Son’s had a few black eyes and bruises of their own, but that was all in a days business for the MC. They had given the warning that drugs wouldn’t be tolerated in Charming before heading back. Clay had rolled his eyes when he saw his boys coming back in but had to grin when they told him what went down - and then the beer, and crow eaters started to flow and now TIg Trager needed coffee and a couple of pain pills.
The main room of the club was exactly the mess he expected to see, half clothed brothers and crow eaters interspersed with empty booze bottle. Shaking his head while grinning he looked around for the prospect. The smell of fresh coffee lead him top the kitchen and Half Sac. “Prospect! - the Club house is a mess, get to it and make sure the Crow eaters actually leave. Gem will be in soon and I don’t want to have to deal with her when she sees the mess here “
Half sac jumped up before stopping at the doorway “Um Tig, what do I do if they don’t want to leave?” Tig shook his head “You want to earn your top kicker kid you better work it out!” he grumbled as he grabbed himself a drink.
Gemma had, as Tig predicted, turned up and been pissed about the mess. She had put any hang arounds who were still there to work doing laundry and mopping while the men had Church and then set about doing their day job and actually fixing cars.
Tig was on a smoke break when Chibs called over “Hey brotha’ Juicy boy has got some info on those morons from yesterday” Stubbing out his cigarette he headed over to the club house.
“So I got some details on some of these guys, they all seem to be low level dealers working for Darby” Juice laid out 3 mug shots “These 3 guys have been around Charming a lot. they’ve done time for dealing and for being racist assholes, this one “ Juice added a fourth mugshot “Is Jason Tasker, he has a record as log as your arm. He was in Chino with Darby and by all accounts he makes Darby look like a progressive thinker. The cops have looked at him for human trafficking as well as Drug distribution and hate crime but it looks like he’s setting up to stay with the Nords. These last 2 are new on the block. No real serious criminal history. A couple of drunk and disorderliness and your regular traffic violations. This first guy Carter Wheelan, has been around. He went away to college, came back 3 years later with a degree and joined the family business, his family owns Wheelan construction. They do a lot of work in San Jose and the surrounding area but not Charming, Based on the company site he still works for them so I’m not sure what his story is, and lastly we have John Cunningham. He was discharged from the army after his unit was caught in a fire fight in Afghanistan. He was pretty badly injured, they died, he got PTSD. He moved around a bit, lived with his family and recently moved to Charming. His connection with Darby is that he had a cousin in the same Unit and Cunningham. It’s how they made contact so I can only assume he’s brought him through here to help. Other than that Cunningham’s father was Timothy Cunningham, he ran with the Devils Tribe for a while, was in and out of Jail for various offences, he died in a prison riot. ”
Tig froze what were the chances that another ex vet, brother would move to Charming recently. Was this guy related to Belle? was she tied up in the mess? Fuck this could get real ugly real fast. For the rest of the morning and into the afternoon Tig continued to work on the backlog of cars but his mind was mostly elsewhere. The more he thought about it the more he tried to convince himself that Belle wasn’t involved and the more he worried about what would happen when if it turned out she was.
Belle had, after careful consideration, managed to enjoy one of the best mornings that she had in a long time. She had managed to have a really positive conversation with Mrs Sanchez who owned the day care who put the help wanted notice Her mother had been up and about and seemed relatively cheerful and John had already been out of the house . She had realised that she didn’t have a good way to make the call and after a moment of panic she had run to the coffee shop and Jill had let he make the call from the back office. She had thanked per profusely before heading off to buy beer from John and a small bunch of flowers that she had taken into Jill to say thanks. It wasn’t a grand flower arrangement but she hired that it would bring Jill some pleasure. She was now on her last errand for the day, she was returning the money and groceries to Tig.
Working out the location of T-M had been a little tricky when she realised that T-M wasn’t in the phone book, but she had come across Teller-Morrow and a grocery store clark had confirmed they were one and the same. Belle was enjoying the walk, she hadn’t headed out this far in her wonderings and so it as interesting to her to see how different certain areas looked. The local mote, looked like palace she wouldst fancy staying but a lot of the smaller businesses around seemed nice enough.
T-M was, she decided an imposing looking place, with big gates, barbed wire and warning signs posted. she supposed that when you stored large numbers of cars overnight you had to take precautions. As she walked through the gates she noticed that there was an entire cadre of motorcycles parked to one side and a building that more the same logo that Tig had on his jacket the other day.
Unsure of where to go to find Tig she paused and looked around trying to decree quite where to start. She didn’t want to disturb the other mechanics but equally didn’t want to just blunder about. As she trend to her left she saw an impressive looking woman, clad from head to toe in black with some of the highest heals she had ever seen come striding from a small building towards her. Belle smiled a little, perhaps the woman would be able to help her
“Can I help you “ The woman asked curtly. She had her hands on her hips and her face said quite plainly that Belle wasn’t welcome here
‘Um yeah, well I hope so, um I was directed here I’m looking for Tig”
“You’re looking for Tigger: The woman raised an eye brow. “And why would a tiny thing like you be looking for him hmm? If you have a car then you check it in with me, otherwise this isn’t a drop off centre - you come see Tigger out of business hours”
Belle could feel herself withering under this woman gaze and she knew her face had to be scarlet “I’m sorry Ma’am I didn’t know that he wasn’t to see people in work hours, I was just coming to drop off his groceries and pay him back the money I owe him. I’ll come back later though. What time do you close” Belle didn’t relish coming back here but she needed to give Tig back his things. She stood quietly waiting.
Gemma continued to stare at the tiny looking woman in front of her. She seemed harmless but she didn’t want some gash wondering about the lot. Perhaps it was just better to let her see Tigger and have him send him on his way.
“Pay him back?” she questioned “You owe him cash?”
“Yes Ma’am. He was kind enough to help me out yesterday and I wanted to make sure that he wasn’t left out of pocket” Belle’s side and back ached but she didn’t put the bags down. She figured that this lady would not take kindly to her doing so
Gemma huffed in annoyance “It’s Gemma not ma’am” turning on her heal the woman squinted over the lot before shouting out “Chibs - get Tigger, tell him he had a guest” Turning back to Belle she pointed at her with a well manicured figure “You wait here, Chibs will bring Tig out if he’s free, Don’t let me catch you disturbing my boys again ok?
Belle nodded and watched as she strode away. As scary as she was at least Gemma has a real name and not something weird like Tig or Chibs.
Soon enough Tig and the man she guessed was Chibs were striding across the lot, They were both deep in conversation but she couldn’t help but smile at Tig in his work overalls,. They suited him somehow just as much as his jacket had the other day.
When Chibs had called him out from under the car he was working on he had been surprised to hear he had a guest and even more so when the Scot had mentioned a ‘Bonny young lass”. When he had looked over to see Belle being quiet by Gemma he had muttered a curse under his breath, He still didn’t know how to deal with the new information about the man who could be her brother
“Is there a problem brother - I can go and send her away, leave you to get on with this?” Chibs questioned
“Nah man she’s a good girl, well at least I think she is” Chibs raised an eyebrow in surprise “Now Tig what would a good girl be doing coming to see an old rogue like you” The playful shove let him know that Chibs was joking but he couldn’t bring himself to return the smile “I don’t know man, perhaps we should go find out”
As the men walked across the lot Tig found himself giving the Scot a brief run down of what had happened the day before and his concerns about the bruises. Chibs nodded his understanding, but was astounded by the final bomb shell Tig dropped. “ I think one of those assholes Juice had pictures of may be related to her.” , “Jeysus Tig” was all he could fit in before they reached Belle.
While Tig was worried, concerned and a whole host of other things he couldn’t help but smile when he got up close Belle. She was still the prettiest little thing he had seen.
“Doll! well there is a sight for sore eyes. What you are doing all the way over here?”
“Hey” Belle found herself giving a small wave to both men “I’m sorry to disturb you at work Tig, it wont happen again but I ended up with your groceries as well as my own yesterday and I wanted to return them to you - and pay you back of course” Belle held out one of the grocery bags towards Tig, her cheeks a little pink
“Don’t worry about disturbing us lass Mama Gemma just likes to look out for her boys and this one” Chibs clapped Tig on the shoulder “is a trouble maker so she keeps a closer eye on him” The Scot answered.”I’m Chibs by the way” he held out his hand. Belle looked surprised when he spoke but extended her hand. Chibs for his part watched her closely as she carefully rested the other grocery bag on the floor. He took note of the wince as she bent but kept the smile on his face. She didn’t look like the type who would work for Darby but who could say. He was surprised to see just how small her hand was in his
“Pleased to meet you Mr Chibs” Belle found the other mans accent soothing and was shocked and a little embarrassed when both Chibs and Tig both roared with laughter drawing the attention of some of the other guys.
“Oh lass, just Chibs is fine. None of that Mr business here. It’s awfully kind of you to bring old Tiggy here his “ Chibs looked in the grocery bag and laughed “things. Interesting shopping lit there Tiggy” .
“Really it was nothing. If it wasn’t for Tig it would have been a hungry night in our house. He really helped me out and listened to my tale of woe.” Belle answered quickly. She found herself feeling more than a little uncomfortable when some other men started to approach. Looking back at Tig she noticed he had a couple of bruises on his face and one of his hands looked swollen “Tig! Your hurt!” Tig looked surprised, he’d completely forgotten about his bruises “Nah doll, just a little bruising from training,” he gestured back where, if she squinted, Belle could just see the corner of what looked like a boxing ring. “ Nothing to worry about! Say did you make that call today?”
The smile that lit up Belle’s face made his day “ I did, you know it went so well. Mrs Sanchez has asked me in for a face to face interview. I mean the job sounds wonderful. I’ll get to read and help out with the kids and its regular work you know “
Before either Chibs or Tig could comment Jax interrupted “Well well, whose your guest Tig. Pleasure to meet you Darlin’ I’m Jax” Belle couldn’t help but be put off by his swagger, The guy just seemed to try to hard and she didn’t like the way he was in her personal space. The way he moved reminded her of her brother just before he hit her. Minding her manners she gave Jax a tight smile but didn’t offer him a hand shake, “Hi, I was just returning some things to Tig, I didn’t mean to cause a commotion. I’ll just head off now. Oh Tig here “ Belle tried to hand him some money but Tig held his hand up “Nah Doll. It was my good deed for the month - you keep that and maybe next time coffee is on you yeah ?” Belle felt herself blush again. The idea of coffee with Tig made her unreasonably happy. She just nodded.
Jax bent in front of her and picked up the other grocery bag Belle had been carrying “You don’t look much like a beer drinker to me Darlin’, or was this a gift for us” he joked Belle felt the colour drain from her face. She didn’t want to be rude but she couldn’t turn up at home without the beer for John either. Perhaps she could use the money Tig wouldn’t take and leave these other guys with the beer. She was about to say sure when Chibs intervened “Don’t you worry lassie. Jackie boy here is just joking” Taking the bag from his VP Chibs smiled and handed it back to Belle. “Tiggy why don’t you walk Belle out and us other layabouts will get to work before mama Gemma comes out with her ass kicking boots on. It was nice ta meet you Belle. you take care now” Chibs then began to usher the others away.
Tig sent a nod of appreciation to his brother before he rested his hand on Belle’s back “Come on Doll lets get you headed home” He gently guided her towards the gates “The beer is for my brother John” Belle broke the silence “There was some todo at work and he wasn’t happy that there wasn’t beer, luckily he managed to get paid so I was able to get him some and come pay you back. Are you sure you won’t take the money Tig please” Tig looked down into those soft brown eyes and nearly caved, but them remembered the look in them when she couldn’t afford groceries. “Nah Doll like I said next coffee is on you. Where did you park?” He asked suddenly aware he didn’t see a car. “I walked, it was nice you know, I’ve not been to this side of town before”
“You shouldn’t be out walking round here on your own Belle, Charming is pretty safe but nowhere is completely. I’d offer take you home but Ive got to finish my shift. let me call you a cab”
Belle’s soft hand on his arm stopped him, “Please Tig. its fine. I like walking and I feel safe here. You’ve already been too kind” Belle put down her bag and stood on tip toe placing a gentle kiss on Tig’s cheek. “You’re a good man Tig, thank you “
Tig was so stunned he just stood there as Belle picked up her bag of beer and started walking down the road. He raised a hand to wave to her before dashing back into the yard hollering for the prospect. “You follow that lady who was just in here, you keep your distance, you don’t spook her and you make sure she gets home safe and sound you hear me” Half sack nodded quickly and headed off.
As Tig prepared to get back to work Chibs headed over leaning over the car engine to make it less obvious that they were chatting about what had happened. “She seems a good girl Tig. I don’t see her being involved with Darby and his crew but somethings got her hurt and scared brotha” Tig nodded he thought the same. She moved today like she was in more pain than the day before and he was definitely concerned. As he started to walk away Chibs paused and turned back “I gotta ask though - what the hell do you do with coconut milk and lube ?”