Blurb from Temper by Chantal Fernando, available now.
Every year, the hot, tatted biker comes into Abbie’s bar, orders whiskey, and asks her out. Every year, Abbie turns him down. After all, dating a man that goes by Temper seems like a really bad idea, no matter how attracted she is to him.
But this year is different. Abbie’s different. Older, wiser, and tired of being stuck behind the bar in a sleepy town. This year, she’s ready for whatever adventure the sexy but sweet biker has in store for her.
Or so she thinks…until an elegant candlelit dinner ends with a dead body.
Now, Abbie finds herself on the ride of her life, whisked away to the big city in Temper’s protective custody. She should be scared but—despite his nickname—it’s clear the last thing Temper would ever do is hurt a hair on her head. And when danger catches up with them, Abbie soon realizes that holding tight to her man while straddling a Harley may be the safest place of all.
“That man keeps staring at you,” Sierra says under her breath, eyes on the cash register. “He’s kind of sexy, in an ‘I don’t know if I’m going to give you the best orgasm of your life or kill you in your sleep’ kind of way.”
I don’t bother looking up, because I already know exactly who she’s talking about. Temper, President of the Knights of Fury MC, has been coming into our family-owned bar, Franks, for several years now. He’s not a regular—in fact, the MC only passes through maybe once or twice a year—but he’s not someone that’s easily forgotten.
The last time he was here, he told me that he was now the president because his Prez had died, and he practically cried as he said it. When he asked me out, like he always does each time he is here, I almost caved.
“Abbie,” Sierra growls. “Pay attention, he’s coming over here.”
I glance up just as he stands in front of the bar. “Abbie,” he says with a nod, smiling. “How have you been?”
“Not too bad,” I reply, taking in those brown eyes and shaved head. I’m not quite being honest. With my mom’s declining health, I’ve had to take over Franks, and had to drop out of college to do so. I spend every day here or at home, helping her as much as I can. My younger sister, Ivy, helps too, but I insisted she stay in college, so she can’t always be here.
One of us had to make a sacrifice, and I volunteered. She can still become something, get out of this small highway town and follow her dreams.
“Really? It’s been about eight months since I’ve seen you, and that’s all you have to say?” he asks, brow furrowing.
I wish I had something exciting to say, like maybe tell him about a vacation I went on, or a competition I won, anything really, but I have nothing.
“Just work,” I explain, smiling sadly. “Mom’s not well, so I’ve had to take over with running the place.”
He nods, understanding reaching his eyes. “I see. So you and Ivy work here full time now? What about school?”
“I’ve had to put that on hold,” I admit, and it hurts to do so. I’ve always wanted to be a lawyer, ever since I can remember, but now it looks like my life is going to be spent serving drinks. When I brought up the idea of selling the place to Mom, you would have thought I had asked her for a million dollars. Franks has been in our family for decades, and it’s more than just a bar to her, it’s our family legacy. “Hopefully next year or so I can go back.”
Temper’s lips tighten. “I know how important that is to you.”
He’s killing me. I can’t believe he remembers. Last time he was here, in addition to him opening up to me about Prez, I had told him just how much I was loving my courses. He commented on my excitement over it, telling me it was cute, and he could see just how passionate I was about school. And now here I am, months later, admitting to him how I’ve basically dropped out to work full time.
“Whiskey?” I ask, changing the subject. The last thing I want to discuss with him is how my life is no longer going according to plan, and I’m here because I need to be. Mom didn’t want me to drop out either, but there was no other option, and now I’m stuck.
I always do this. I’m the first to want to help, the first to volunteer myself up, and you know what they say—no good deed goes unpunished. I’m learning how true that is firsthand. It’s not like my mom is helping the situation either; she’s milking it by just lying around the house feeling sorry for herself. And yesterday she didn’t even go to her doctor’s appointment. She seems depressed, and it’s almost like the roles have reversed and I’m now the parent, and it’s a whole lot of stress for me. I wish she would take her health seriously—she did have a stroke—and be responsible. Her doctors have said she will make a full recovery so long as she puts in the work. It’s hard running Franks and constantly worrying about her as well.
I’m going to go gray soon, I can feel it.
Chantal Fernando is the New York Times bestselling author of the Wind Dragons Motorcycle Club series, the Cursed Raven Motorcycle Club series, and the Maybe series, along with several other novels. She lives in Western Australia, where she is working on her next book. Find her online at AuthorChantalFernando.com, and on Twitter and Facebook.
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