A song by the Weeknd plays over the speakers, and it instantly makes me think of my ex-boyfriend, and what feels like another life ago for me. I wasn’t always the person I am now, and I think it’s important for me to acknowledge that. It’s taken a lot to get me here, to be so strong, and when I think of the old me and the decisions I have made, it makes me cringe.
But I guess we all aren’t born strong–it’s something we are made into.
“Orion Stenton called up wanting a few custom bikes,” Bronte says to me as she approaches. “He’s dropped over two hundred thousand dollars so far. He must be loaded.” We buy the motorcycles, custom them and sell them as one package. It can end up being pretty pricey.
“Name doesn’t sound familiar,” I mutter, turning to Chains. “Who is this guy?”
“Orion Stenton owns half of the city,” Chains explains, stretching his neck from side to side. “Old family money, not all of it clean. Orion is the oldest out of four, and from what I’ve heard handles most of the businesses they own.”
“He’s friends with the club?” I ask.
Chains shrugs. “I don’t know about friends. I haven’t even met the guy, but Trade has known him for years.”
“Trade told me to give him whatever he wants,” Bronte adds, eyes bulging slightly. “I haven’t heard him say anything like that before. He said he’s to be treated as a VIP client. I didn’t even know that was a thing until now.”
Neither did I. Trade is usually the one saying everyone can wait until it’s their turn, and no customer is more important than another.
This Orion guy must really be someone.
I find Trade out front, on his knees as he looks over his own bike. “So who is this VIP client we have?”
He lifts his head, brown eyes locking with mine. “He’s an old friend, and with him rocking one of our bikes, the garage is going to get even more popular.”
“We’re going to have to hire more people if we get any more popular,” I mutter.
“Yes, we are, and that’s not a bad problem to have,” he agrees. “Orion is a very rich man, and he’s also a good one to have on your side. Anything Orion protects is untouchable.”
“Why do we need protecting when we’re backed by the Knights?” I ask, genuinely curious. It seems unfathomable that the Knights would need protection from anyone.
“Orion is a stand-up guy, but he knows a lot of people. Some people even the Knights wouldn’t want to get involved with.” I stare at him in disbelief, and he smirks in return. “I’ll just leave it at that.”
“Uh, okay. I better finish Pink Beauty before I have to start in on his order then,” I say, more to myself than Trade. I haven’t even looked at what Orion wants, but going by the sound of him, it’s going to be extra as fuck.
“Pink Beauty,” Trade repeats, lip twitching.
I nod. “A prettier girl never did exist.”
He stands, eyes now smiling down at me. “You’re going to love working on his bikes. The man has good taste, and everything will be the best of the best.”
Excitement fills me. I do love a challenge, and I love working with people who have new ideas and concepts, ones that let me add in my personal design touch. Having an unlimited budget doesn’t hurt either. “I’m looking forward to it.”
I’m about to head back inside
“Yeah?” I reply, turning back to him.
“Watch out for Orion,” he says, eyes narrowing slightly.
“Why is that?” I ask, brow furrowing. “I thought he’s your friend.”
“Because you’re just his type,” he says, eyebrows lifting knowingly. “Just his type.”
I roll my eyes. “Wouldn’t be the first to try, and wouldn’t be the last.”
Trade smirks. “I know, but just giving you a heads-up. He’s different, and never a man I’d underestimate.”
I don’t like the idea of being someone’s type. Anyone who only goes after people who look a certain way is shallow and narrow-minded. So he likes green-eyed, leggy blondes? Is that what Trade means? Or maybe he likes tattooed women. I’m covered in those. Or female mechanics. Who knows?
I’m many things, though, to many different people. I’m not a woman you can put in a box. My journey has been full of regrets, mistakes and heartache, but it brought me to where I am today, and it brought me so much strength.
I’m a different woman than the one who moved away from my small country town a few years ago, and I’m definitely not the same woman who did time behind bars.
Either way, the only thing I’m interested in is how this Orion wants his bikes designed.
(c) Chantal Fernando, Carina Press, 2021. Reprinted with permission from the publisher.
Fast & Fury #2
Cameron Davies has the job she’s always wanted—designing custom motorcycles at Fast & Fury. No way is she going to screw this up. But when her wild, sexy one-night stand ends up being the shop’s new VIP client, her life is suddenly turned on its head.
Orion Stenton radiates power, danger and, most of all, sex. His lavish lifestyle is fraught with dangers for Cam—and a far too intimate link to her past. She has to keep things professional, but it’s impossible to forget the feel of him or the way he whispers her name.
The connection between them demands far more than a quick fling. But when Cam’s past puts Orion in danger, she must face her demons if she’s going to save them both.
Fast & Fury
Book 1: Custom Built
Book 2: Custom Made
About Chantal Fernando
New York Times, Amazon & USA Today Bestselling Author Chantal Fernando lives in Western Australia.
Lover of all things romance, Chantal is the author of the best selling books Dragon’s Lair, Maybe This Time and many more.
When not reading, writing or daydreaming she can be found enjoying life with her three sons and family.