One Last Sin, Page 2Georgia Cates
She goes to the front door, turns the knob and pulls. “Padlocked from the outside. Trust me, I’ve tried. There’s no opening it from this side.”
Lainie is an Order member but I can’t see her as my enemy. If anything, this tortured soul is my ally. I’m neither afraid nor ashamed to use that to my advantage. “We have the same goal: to get out of here alive. Are you willing to put aside your loyalty to The Order if it means escaping?”
“I have no allegiance to The Order. None. Any obligation I felt was terminated the day my parents traded me to a man who would repeatedly rape me and consider killing me if I’m unsuccessful at conceiving his child. I want out of here and I’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen.”
She may be broken but she’s angry. I can use that. “All right, then. Tell me about their routines.”
“Broden or Reuben checks in every two days. Deacon brings food and supplies every four.”
That’s a new name. “Who’s Deacon?”
“My brother’s mate. He’s kind. Not like the others at all. Has a soft place in his heart for me.”
Ah. That has potential. “Is this soft spot big enough to free you?”
“No. He isn’t willing to die so I can escape.” Not the answer I was looking for.
“How often does Torrence visit?”
“Only when I’m ovulating.”
He should burn for what he’s doing to her. “When will that be?”
“I have four days left until he’ll come for me five nights in a row. And just so you know, I don’t fight him because that can get me killed, but that doesn’t make it consensual.” Her eyes become distant while staring at the white cracked plaster wall. “I can’t go through it again. I’ll kill myself before I let him touch me again. I even have a plan on how to do it.”
Her threat isn’t empty. If she’s formulated a plan, she’s a serious contender for suicide.
She needs reassurance, to know there is a way out. “My husband is coming. I don’t think there’s going to be a peaceful trade so we can probably expect guns blazing. Either way, I won’t leave you behind.”
She comes to attention, her head jerking in my direction. Her sunken eyes enlarge. She places praying hands against her lips and mutters something I can’t decipher before dropping her hands to her lap again. “Swear to me.”
“I swear I’ll take you with me.”
I fully expect an all-out war when Sin comes for me. We should be prepared.
“My father-in-law tried to barter for me but Torrence wouldn’t agree to a trade. Thane offered him everything we had and still Torrence refused to hand me over.”
“Something bigger is going on. Torrence loves money and power too much to refuse a bountiful offer,” Lainie says.
“He wants revenge for Jason’s death more than he wants those things.”
Lainie lifts her brows and nods. “Aye. Now this makes sense.”
I pray Sin suspects the same thing when his father tells him Torrence turned down the deal.
“Why didn’t your husband come to negotiate for your return?” she asks.
“I was told he was taken into custody. After tonight’s events, I suspect his arrest might have saved my life. I’m hoping Sin won’t contact Torrence for a trade.”
“What would he do instead?”
“I hope he and the brothers will rush this place as soon as he’s released. We need to be ready to move in a hurry.”
There’s no time to waste. “Do you know how to fight?”
She snorts. “Do I look like a brawler?”
Appearances can be deceiving. She doesn’t look like she could punch her way out of a wet paper sack but even the smallest person can be taught to deliver powerful blows. “I’m going to show you some defense and attack maneuvers.” I get to my feet. “What’s his signature move?”
“Show me how he usually restrains you.”
She comes forward and places her hands around my throat. At five six, I’m looking down on her several inches. “He chokes you?”
I look at her neck and see the faded yellow remnants of his last attack. Fucking bully.
“Watch my motion.” I lift my arms over my head and rotate my body. I bring my left arm down slowly over her wrists, forcing them from my neck. I use my right hand to grab her wrists and demonstrate how to hyperflex them.
“Show me again,” she says.
I demonstrate several times before reversing roles with her. She gets a feel for it quickly.
“It takes twice as much energy to swing and miss as to swing and hit. Are you right-handed?”
I pat my right shoulder. “Reach across my body and put your hands here. Pull me down diagonally to your right.” I bend at the waist to show her what I mean. “You’ll bring your right knee up to kick his face. Do it fast and hard.”
“When do I stop?”
The booking process is long and tedious. As a solicitor, I’m never involved in this part. My clients have already been charged and booked by the time I arrive.
I’m escorted to an interrogation room and left to sit in an uncomfortable chair at a lone table. There’s a video camera mounted on a tripod in the corner. I hope they don’t think they’re going to question me without my attorney present.
I don’t sit long before Buchanan comes into the room. “I want to speed this process since it’s late. I hope you don’t mind that I took the liberty of calling Rodrick for you. He should be here any minute.”
I don’t reply.
“Might as well pass the time with a little friendly conversation. Is married life all you thought it would be?”
I give him nothing.
“I have to hand it to you, Breckenridge. That little wife of yours is one fit piece of arse. But I guess you already know that.”
He’s trying to provoke me but I won’t fall for it.
“I bet it’s killing you to know they have her. And I’m guessing I’m not the only one who thinks your wife is fit. The Order is probably putting their filthy hands all over her right now. And there’s not a damn thing you can do about it.”
Hold it together, Sin. Stay in control no matter what he says.
“I guess you should be grateful she’s already pregnant so she doesn’t come back to you knocked up by your nemesis. That would put a real damper on the honeymoon phase.”
It’s taking every ounce of self-control I have to not jump over this table and strangle the fuck out of him.
“I wonder if you’ll ever be able to touch her again without thinking of all the nasty things they did to her.”
He’s enjoying this way too much; I refuse to contribute to his satisfaction.
“Oh wait. I don’t know what I was thinking. You’re going to jail for the rest of your life so you’ll never get to fuck your wife again. Damn. That must be depressing as hell knowing you’ll never get between those fine legs again. But don’t worry. I’ll check in on her from time to time to make sure she’s doing all right. I can even come back and give you a report on how things are going.”
I clasp my hands behind my head, lean back in my chair, and prop my feet on the desk. I want to appear as nonchalant as possible. He won’t stop this game if he thinks he’s getting to me.
Buchanan. Meet my poker face.
It works. The motherfucker gets up to leave. “I’ll be back when Rodrick arrives.”
I may appear calm on the outside but a shitstorm brews inside me. I’m a fucking mess.
Rodrick arrives but Buchanan gives us no time alone. I’m unable to get an update on what’s happening with Bleu. Bastard. He’s doing this on purpose.
“Do you understand your rights before we begin questioning?”
I was unaware Buchanan believed I had any.
“We understand,” Rodrick answers.
did you know Malcolm Irvine?”
I’m questioned for the next two hours. The longer I sit here, the more I realize that Buchanan’s grasping at straws. He doesn’t have shite on me and we both know it. I’m going to walk on these charges but it’s going to take time to be released. The evidence will have to go before a judge—he’ll decide if there’s a case against me. There clearly isn’t.
This has to be a set-up. But by whom?
The questioning ends and I finally get a private word with Rodrick. “Tell me what you know about Bleu.”
“Thane met with Torrence. Of course he made a very generous offer in exchange for your wife but Grieve refused. He’s demanding to see you.”
“That’s not the report I was hoping to hear.”
“Torrence wants to deal directly with you. He was adamant about it. That should be enough to keep Bleu alive.”
“I know what he’s up to. If I make a trade, he’s going to kill her so he can avenge his son’s death. That’s the whole point of this game.”
“Then don’t make the trade.”
“I’m not.” I couldn’t if I wanted to. The bomb makings have been confiscated by the authorities.
“We both know these charges are shite. You’ll walk but it’s going to take a couple of days. When you get out, you have to go after your wife immediately. The Order can’t discover that you’ve been released and didn’t reach out to them for an exchange as soon as your feet hit the pavement. They’ll know something is up and the whole thing will fall apart at the seams.”
Bleu and the babies will be the ones to pay. That can’t happen.
* * *
People like me don’t need bars. We build our own cells.
That’s what I used to think. Until I met Bleu. She freed me from the prison I’d built around myself, around my heart.
I’m lying in my jail bed thinking of her and our babies when I hear movement rushing toward me in the dark. Instinct sends me hurtling forward. I tackle my assailant and feel a sudden sharp pain in my thigh.
“Prepare to die, Sinclair Breckenridge.”
My attacker and I wrestle on the floor but I easily overtake him. The lights turn on and an alarm sounds. Three guards rush into our cell and yank me off my cellmate. I didn’t pay attention to him when I was brought into the cell but now I take a closer look. Young. Skinny. Hair in need of a cut. I don’t recognize him but he certainly knows who I am.
I notice a huge blood smear on the floor and then the bloody gash on my leg. Fuck. It’s right above my amputation.
I can’t afford for people to find out about this.
“Looks like he got a stab in on you, Breckenridge. You’ll need to have that seen to.”
This isn’t good. I don’t need anyone else knowing about my prosthesis. The guard who saw it when I changed my clothing is more than enough.
“It’s just a scratch. I don’t think that’ll be necessary.”
“You don’t get a choice. Can’t have you suing us over an improperly treated injury you sustained while in custody.”
I’m taken to the infirmary and locked inside an exam room. I’m given a towel and told to hold pressure over the bleeding wound to my thigh until the doctor arrives. It isn’t long until I see Jamie come in.
How the fuck did he pull this off?
“Mr. Breckenridge. I’m the on-call physician for the jail tonight. I’ll be taking a look at your wound to see what kind of treatment you require.”
“I’m happy to see you,” I whisper.
Jamie cuts a slit in the upper leg of my pants so my prosthesis isn’t exposed. “Doesn’t look too bad. A few stitches and it’ll be fine.”
The guards are leaning against the wall talking, not paying any attention to Jamie and me. Perfect.
“Any word on Bleu?”
“Thane brought Debra in to assist with finding her.”
That pleases me. I’ve come to trust Debra and have complete faith in her abilities to track my wife.
“Tell Dad I’m not negotiating. I want our most experienced men prepared to move as soon as I’m free. We’re going after Bleu before The Order has a chance to realize I’ve been released.”
Jamie cleanses my stab wound. “Damn.”
“Sorry. My choice of antiseptic supplies are limited.”
“No complaints. I’ll take what I can get.”
“I don’t know how you made this happen but I’m glad you’re here. I wasn’t looking forward to anyone else finding out about my leg.”
“I might have called a colleague and volunteered for the jail rotation when I found out you were here. Turns out people are generally pretty happy to give those up. Good thing since you can’t stop getting yourself injured.” Jamie uses stainless steel pliers to grasp the needle portion of a suture and pulls until it’s freed from the packet. “Whoever supplies the infirmary is functioning under the belief that incarcerated people have no nerve endings. I can’t believe this place isn’t stocked with lidocaine. Ridiculous.”
Jamie pushes the needle through my skin for the first suture. “Not your first experience with little to no anesthesia.”
Doesn’t matter. Still hurts like a son of a bitch.
I recall Bleu talking me through the pain when Jamie was fishing for the bullet in my shoulder. Breathe in slow and deep. Exhale gradually.
“Sometimes I feel like I went to medical school just so I could learn how to treat your arse. I was hoping that would change since you’re married with a baby on the way.”
Maybe I take chances but now isn’t one of those times. “This cannot be considered my fault. My cellmate jumped me with a shank. The only reason he didn’t get a better jab in was because I was awake—too worried about Bleu.”
If I had been asleep, I’d be a dead man.
It’s my guess that Buchanan put me in with someone from The Order. And while my cellmate was obviously privy to knowing I’m Fellowship, I wasn’t given the same courtesy regarding his allegiance. Again, likely thanks to that bastard Buchanan.
“Your wife is going to be all right. You’re going to get out of here soon and rescue her like a white knight should. You’ll be her hero and she’ll love it.”
It’s time to make good on my promise to protect her. And I’ll do whatever it takes, even if it means wiping out every member of The Order.
I offer to prepare lunch since Lainie cooked breakfast this morning. There are two of us eating from the supplies for one. The man she calls Deacon hasn’t come with groceries so the cupboard inventory is shrinking fast. “Pickings are slim. How do you feel about BLTs?”
“That’s fine. I’m not accustomed to gourmet meals around here.”
I’m nauseated. I don’t really feel like eating but I’m fatigued more than usual today. I need iron from a food source since I don’t have my vitamins or iron supplement. Pork is the best option I see from what’s left in our scant food supply.
We’re eating our sandwiches when Torrence arrives with Broden, Reuben, and the third man present during my kidnapping. I never heard them say his name so I call him the short one.
Terror spreads over Lainie’s face. “Don’t be afraid. He’s here for me,” I whisper.
“Mrs. Breckenridge. I trust your accommodations suit you.”
Like he cares if I slept well. I won’t whine. He’d enjoy that. “Can’t complain.”
“Did you become fast friends with my wife?”
He doesn’t need to think Lainie and I are chummy. We can’t afford for him to suspect we’re partnering. “No. She’s not terribly friendly.”
He looks at her and snarls, “She certainly isn’t. But the two of you will have time to become better acquainted. You’re staying a while longer.”
I don’t care for the sound of that but I need to keep up my charade. “Let me guess. Sinclair is refusing to come for me.” I shake my head and purse my lips. “That son of a bitch will be sorry when my father
finds out what he’s done.”
“Sinclair isn’t coming because he’s still sitting in jail. Which I don’t mind, except it’s putting a wrench in my plans for you.”
Rodrick should’ve gotten him out first thing this morning. What’s taking so long?
I should use this opportunity to convince Torrence that Sin and I aren’t in love. He needs to believe killing me in front of Sin won’t accomplish what he hopes. “Good. Maybe they’ll keep his ass in jail until it rots so I don’t have to look at him again.”
“Your hatred for Sinclair Breckenridge seems passionate, yet you defended him. You said he didn’t mean to kill my son. That sends mixed messages.”
Shit. He’s right. I shouldn’t have defended Sin.
Now is the time to steer this in a different direction. “I was trying to save my own neck. I thought you might consider releasing me if you thought my husband didn’t intentionally kill your son. But he did. The bastard even boasted about Jason’s murder. The Fellowship celebrated his death.”
“My son was so young. He had a promising future ahead of him. He was going to take my place as leader one day.”
I hate speaking about the man I love this way but I have no choice. I must win Torrence over. “If you intend on making Sinclair suffer, I can assure you that killing me isn’t the way. He loves another––a woman Thane wouldn’t let him marry.”
“That’s interesting. If it’s true.”
“It is. And he’s kept the whore as a lover after marrying me.”
“You’re jealous.” He’s laughing.
“Not jealous. Pissed off and determined to get even is more like it. I was forced to leave the man I loved in America and move to Scotland to become Sinclair’s wife. I lost my beloved. He deserves to lose his as well. And I won’t be happy until I make that happen.”
“He deserves to lose much more than a woman.”
I think I could be persuading Torrence in the right direction. “I absolutely agree.”
“Who is this woman?”
I call off a bogus name. “Kenna McGregor. He brought her into our home as a housekeeper. As though I’m too stupid to know what they’re doing behind my back.”