Rylynn scrapped butter over the toast and placed it in front of her grandfather’s place at the table. Just as she poured his cup of coffee, the man himself strode into the room as he straightened his cut around his massive shoulders.
“Morning, grandpa. How was your night?” Ry asked with a hint of a chuckle.
Hammer scraped the feet of his chair as he pulled it out to sit, “Productive and yours?” he chuckled as he picked up his mug for his first jolt of caffeine for the day.
“Not nearly as fun as yours, but I got some paperwork done. Speaking of, I need to show you some numbers that don’t add up. I need you to look at them and see if they are things you sanctioned.”
“I got a lot on my plate today. I can meet you at the garage tonight,” he offered as he worked his fork into the eggs she slid onto his plate. “I’ll let you know when I’m in the area.”
“Cool,” she smiled then kissed him on top of his head then reached for her bag. “I’ll see you tonight,” she called as she pulled open the door to leave. “Oh, hey!”
“Hmm…,” Hammer mumbled behind his eggs.
“I hope you wore a condom! I sure as hell ain’t calling Sprinkles grandma if you knock her up.”
Hammer choked at the words she threw at him spitting eggs across the table. Rylynn laughed heartily as she tugged the door closed behind her.
“Not funny, lil’ girl!” she heard as she straddled her ride and stuffed her helmet over her massive braid. “Yes, it was,” she chuckled as she started her day.
Rylynn stopped at the bar to do a quick inventory to see what needed to be ordered for the next week and gathered up receipts along the way. She knew she would have to make a quick stop at the club to see if there was anything she needed to order for there, but she would hold off until it cleared out of club honey’s and the hung-over masses allowing her less of a chance of running into Cameo and his ego.
Ry made a quick stop at the office supply store to pick up a jump drive to store the accounting documents she planned to scan at her office. Her base office was at The Tool Crib, the club run garage in town. She had a good set up in the back with everything she needed to do the books and keep everything above board for the IRS. Ry had always helped her grandfather with the books growing up. He used it as a teaching tool when helping her with her homework. Numbers came easy to Rylynn, it was only when you threw the alphabet into the equation that she held any animosity towards math. Math is Math and English is English. The two should never meet on the same page.
Ry pulled around to the back of the garage and parked her sportster in full view of her office window. It was a better view than the dumpsters on the other side of the property line. Rylynn maneuvered the locks to her office and then dropped her bag on the chair behind her desk. Coffee. She needed to make coffee. Priorities. Fuzz, Casper, and Brick would be in within the hour to start their shifts of coaxing out the gremlins in the bikes and cages that lined up in front of the bay doors. Business was good and keeping her mechanics hyped up on coffee was good business.
Time slipped through her fingers as she fed page after page of receipts and ledger pages into the scanner, sending all the documents to her, ever present, laptop where she would save them to the cross shaped jump drive she wore around her neck. It served a dual purpose, storage and fashion. What girl wouldn’t love that? It would also make it a lot easier to carry around than the fifty pounds of books and electronics she lugged around in her bag.
Rylynn looked up to see Brick helping himself to a large mug of Joe. “Good Morning. How’s the day looking?”
“Heavy. I got a crotch rocket that hit asphalt, basic upkeep on a fatboy, and a beater truck needing new brake pads. Not sure with Cas and Fuzz have going, but the front counter is lined up with work orders.”
“Let me know if you guys need any help. I can do the brake pads if the bikes take up to much of your time.”
“’s all good. The fatboy won’t take long.”
“Let’s do this,” chirped Rylynn as she walked by Brick with a ring of key dangling from her fingers. She flipped the sign to ‘open’ and then unlocked the doors. “Get the shades for me,” she called to Brick who was already heading to the windows to do just that. “Thanks.”
The sensor over the door chimed as Casper stormed in followed by Fuzz who had a shit eating grin on his face. “I told you they would be out. Didn’t I? I said it. But you blew me off,” he smirked.
“Fuck you, Fuzz-man.”
“Wha? You said who would what?” Ry asked as she watched the exchange.
“I got a fucking coupon,” snarled Casper waving the ‘failure to stop’ notice he earned that MORNING.
“I told him the cops would be out and happy to ticket his ass for blowing through stop signs.”
“One! One fucking sign and I get a hundred dollar ticket!”
Brick hid his mirth behind his coffee mug as he mumbled, “When ya gonna listen?”
Casper threw him an evil look, “I heard that and I will listen when I’m fucking ready to listen. Fuck!”
Rylynn tried to suppress a laugh, “Okay, go get a cup of coffee and cool off before you hit the bay. Come on. We have a full day of work out here.” Casper stormed to the office while Fuzz shuffled along behind him laughing all the way.
Brick shook his head at the childish display, “When’s he gonna learn to listen to Fuzz? The man knows where the cops are gonna be, yet he won’t listen.”
“How does he know where they will be?”
Brick looked at Ry like she had a dick hanging off her forehead, “You don’t know?” he asked with a chuckle. Ry shook her head and he chuckled even more, “His sister is the dispatcher for the PD.”
Rylynn responded with a round of laughter and a smirk in Casper’s direction.
“No, I’m busy tonight, but thanks for asking. Now, here is the finalized…”
“Come on. What’s so important that you can’t skip it to come to a party with me? You know you want to.”
Rylynn was quickly becoming annoyed with the little piss-ant that wouldn’t take a hint. “Listen,” she started then looked down at the invoice to find the loser’s name, “…Brady, if I say I’m busy then take the hint. I am busy.” Rylynn spun the invoice in front of Brady, “Please, sign at the bottom.” He scratched his name on the line with a pissy look on his face.
“Let me guess, you gotta a gang bang going with your biker losers and you are the main attraction?” He snarled as she stuffed the customer copy in him hand.
“Thank you for your business. Good night,” she snipped as she held open the door for him.
“You’re a fucking bitch! I ask you out all nice like and you blow me off like I ain’t shit,” he snarled as he stormed toward her. Brady was stupid. Brady thought he had balls. Brady was wrong. Before Rylynn could brace for his impact Brady found himself being thrown through the air landing outside on the parking area.
“You don’t treat a lady like that. You don’t talk to a lady like that and you don’t bring your piece of shit bike here again,” boomed Hammer. “If I so much as see you near my grand-daughter again I will break you in half!” Hammer watched as Brady scurried to his crotch rocket and left more rubber than he could spare peeling out of the lot. “Fucking lil’ shit,” grumbled Hammer as he strode back into the garage.
Rylynn locked the door behind him and turned the closed sign ending the day. “Thanks, I could have handled it, grandpa, but I’m glad I didn’t have to.”
“Lil’ fucker needs his ass kicked.”
“I agree,” she smiled then threw are arms around her favorite person. “Do you want coffee or is it beer time?”
“Beer, definitely beer.”
Ry popped the top off a beer and handed it to her grandfather, “Are you here for the numbers or are you on your way somewhere else?”
Hammer took a healthy swig of ice cold beer and sighed, “Needed that.” He popped his neck and shoulders and then settled behind the desk, “Show me these numbers so I can figure out what’s going down in my club.”
Rylynn tugged the cross from around her neck and uncapped the jump drive. She plugged it into her laptop and booted up the stored pages. Over the course of the next hour she explained where she found money, where it wasn’t, and where it seemed to be going. Hammer paid close attention to the flow of funds and was linking the trajectory as quickly as Rylynn had. “I don’t know who he is working with, but he is laundering someone’s cash through the clubs businesses. Clearly he doesn’t know how to fucking do it or I wouldn’t have found it so easily.”
“Is there any way to find out what he is doing with the cash once he withdraws it?”
“No, cash is cash, grandpa. He could be doing pretty much anything with it. Short of following him I wouldn’t have a clue what he does with it, but the amount indicates someone serious.”
“In my own house,” Hammer growled, “a fucking thief in my house. Can we lock down the accounts to keep him out?”
“I did that this morning. I changed all the passwords and access info on all the accounts. I contacted the distributors he has been hiding under and changed contact into on their end as well.”
“How quick before he finds out?”
Rylynn scratched her head and grimaced at the possibility, “Any time. He may already know. I made the changes this morning, so he would have had all day to figure it out. Problem is…he would know it was me that locked him out.”
Hammer pointed at the jump drive, “You need to take care of that and I will take care of you.” Ry disconnected the drive and tucked it back around her neck then slipped it inside her shirt. “Did you talk to Brick about what you found?”
“No, sir.” It hadn’t occurred to her to talk to the club’s enforcer. Sadly, she didn’t know who she could trust. Cameo was diverting money, but he was also a brother to the men in the club that included Brick. “I’m sorry, grandpa, but I don’t know who to trust or who not. You are the only one I have talked to about this.”
“Good girl. Let’s get outta here. I need another beer and you need some grub.”
Rylynn kissed his cheek, tucker her phone in her back pocket and took her keys to lock up. She skirted around the garage making sure it was locked down. She made it to the bay just as Cameo was stepping through the back door leading to the dumpsters.
“Ah, there you are. I was wondering if you were still here,” he chimed. “I think we have something to talk about.”
“Why are you here? What the fuck do you want, Cameo?”
“You, I want several pieces of you.”
“No still means no, now get out!” she hollered loud enough to ensure Hammer heard.
“Tsk, tsk, tsk, you shouldn’t fucking talk to me like that ya little bitch. I get what I want when I want and what I want right fucking now are the fucking passwords you changed. Then, maybe, I’ll let you live long enough to feel it when I take every fucking hole you have.” He shrugged as he contemplated the image, “Then…Pez can finish you off.”
Rylynn jerked her head around to see Pez leaning against the wall behind them, “Dead, alive, I care which,” he mumbled causing a shiver to skate up Rylynn’s spine.
Cameo snatched Ry by her braid and jerked her slamming her into Brick’s tool chest shifting the contents. Ry scanned her options for escape.
Cameo’s fist was wound so tightly in Rylynn’s hair that there was no way she would be able to pull free. He wrapped his fingers deep into her Rapunzel length braid raking his finger nails along her tender neck. She was in his grasp, but the razor knife that sat only a few feet away in Brick’s Tool Crib could give her freedom. Ry tugged and jostled just enough to shift herself and Cameo closer to the blade she needed. Just as she was reaching for the handle Hammer burst though the entryway at a full tilt run. Before she could scream to warn him a bullet screamed from the muzzle of Pez’s 9mm and struck Hammer dead to rights in the head. There was no doubt that he was gone long before his body hit the cold concrete floor. The pool of blood was rapid in its formation. Rylynn took the sacrifice as an opportunity to grapple for the knife and cut away her own hair to get away. With a few quick slices she was running across the open bay while Cameo screamed in agony. Rylynn did not aim while chopping away at her hair. She was aiming for freedom, but if she took bits and pieces of Cameo in the process then it was just that much sweeter. It was a back handed benefit to know that she had chopped away chunks of Cameo’s hand and left them to rot on the bay floor where her Grandfather lay dead. Rylynn jumped on her Sportster, gunned it and left rubber and smoke in her wake. She did not look back. Looking back took time she did not have. She did not think of what was. It was a distraction she could not afford. She drove. She drove with the intention to stay upright and to be fast, the faster the better. She kept her head low and elbows in to ensure less drag as she rounded curves and sped down straight a ways.
She tried to make since of what had happened, but knew if she lost focus on her drive that she could be caught. Drive. Drive faster. She knew where do go. Every three months he would surprise her with an escape drill so that she always knew the plan and how to put it into practice in any situation. Run, stay low, and get to the Out truck. Do not look back, do not wonder what happened to him, and keep moving until you are in the clear. She tucked in closer to the bike frame and gunned it harder and faster until she was nothing more than a red streak in the night. Until all she resembled was a smear of light along the darkened highway.
She exited two stops early and weaved in and out of random neighborhoods to ensure she was not followed. Rylynn stopped behind a dimly lit gas stationed, cut the engine and listened for the roar of Harley’s. Silence allowed her a moment to breath. With a clear road ahead she drove to the salvage yard and found the shed her grandfather built years earlier.