Ashton Grove M.C.
Forced into prostitution at the age of 17, Shelly has never known the soft touch of a man. She's found them to be cruel and vicious. But when she sees him across the room - the man they call Ghost - she knows he's unlike anyone she's ever met before.
Ghost has noticed her. How could he not? Those legs. Those curves. That gorgeous mouth. But Ghost isn't ready for an old lady, and his beast won't settle for anything less when it comes to Shelly. So he keeps his distances and watches. And waits.
When Ghost realizes Shelly is being forced to sell her body, and that her pimp is a little too free with his fists, he realizes he can't sit back and wait any longer. Charging in on his Harley, he swoops in and rescues the damsel in distress. There's only one problem. Who's going to rescue him from her?
“Why did he beat you, Shelly?”
“I came home empty-handed. Preacher pays for us to come to the clubhouse, but that isn’t enough for Richard. We’re supposed to pick the pockets of the bikers while we’re there, bring home some extra cash to him, and the bikers generally don’t say anything because they don’t want anyone to know they were taken by a woman.”
“Aw hell, honey. How did you get mixed up in all this?”
“It’s a long story.”
Ghost nodded. “Let’s get you dressed and then we’ll get you out of here.”
He helped Shelly off the bed, then rummaged in the dresser drawers until he found a tank and some shorts. He tossed a few more things onto the bed then went to the closet and dug around until he found a backpack. Stuffing the clothes inside, he helped her put on a pair of tennis shoes.
Shelly rose unsteadily to her feet and he wrapped an arm around her waist. She stared up at him with uncertainty and a bit of hope. “Why are you helping me?”
“Because it’s the right thing to do. You don’t belong to this way of life, not if you didn’t choose it.”
“You’re never going to get past Richard. He won’t let me walk out of here.”
Ghost pulled a Glock from his holster. “I don’t recall saying I was going to give him a choice.”
She stared at the gun then nodded.
Ghost took her by the hand, gave her the backpack, which she slung over her shoulder, and then he guided her down the stairs. Richard was standing at the foot, smirking, until he saw Shelly.
“You can’t take her with you. She has other customers to take care of.”
Ghost cocked his weapon and pointed it at Richard’s head. “Are you sure about that? Because my hour isn’t up yet and I’ll take her wherever I damn well please. And if you disagree? Well…” Ghost gave him a sinister smile. “Your brains won’t be the first I’ve splattered. Pimps are somewhere below cockroaches, so if you think I’d lose sleep over it, you’d be wrong.”
Anger simmered in Richard’s eyes, but Ghost could tell the man knew he’d been bested. He gave a curt nod and stepped out of their way. Ghost kept him in his line of sight until Shelly was safely on the back of the bike, her arms wrapped around him. He holstered his weapon and they took off, not even pausing to look back. Ghost had no doubt that he’d be hearing from Richard sooner or later, but for now, Shelly was safe.
At the clubhouse, she hesitated at the foot of the stairs, looking frightened as she stared at the double doors with the club’s logo burned into the wood. The fear and indecision in her eyes infuriated him. This was the one place a woman should feel safe. Ghost was part of Axel’s crew, a group of five who rescued abused women. Crimson was part of that group, but obviously, he was fucked in the head at the moment. Or he hadn’t realized what was really going on. For the moment, Ghost would give him the benefit of the doubt, but if he said one wrong word to Shelly, Ghost was going to knock his teeth down his throat.
“Come on, doll. No one inside is going to hurt you.”
“Crimson said he would turn me over to Preacher. If Preacher gets mad, he’ll tell Richard, and then…”
Ghost shushed her the only way he knew how. He gently placed his lips over hers, silencing her protests with a gentle kiss. When he pulled back, she fingered her lips and stared up at him with a bewildered expression. You’d think she’d never been kissed before. And for all Ghost knew, she hadn’t. Kissing wasn’t exactly a requirement for fucking. How many times had he taken a woman without kissing her first? Suddenly, he didn’t feel so great about his many one-night stands, or quick fucks against the wall.
Ghost took her hand and led her through the doors. He knew what he was about to do was dangerous, but it was time the club knew what their illustrious leader had been up to. He knew several would be just as angry as he was over the use of prostitutes in the clubhouse. They rescued these women! They didn’t exploit them. What the fuck had Preacher been thinking when he’d set up this deal?
Ghost stopped in front of Preacher, ignoring the curious looks from Reaper and Scorch.
“This is what your money has paid for. You’ve exploited the very women we’ve sworn to protect; and when they don’t do exactly as their pimp says, they get the holy hell beat out of them and then they’re forced to service customers while they have busted ribs and bruised faces.”
Preacher scanned Shelly from head to toe before his cold eyes settled on Ghost again. “Are you saying I’m responsible for this girl’s bruises?”
“You know damn well what I’m accusing you of. You’ve been purchasing girls for the club, exploiting the women we’re supposed to save. Did you think it could go on forever? That no one would figure it out? What? We’re such a sad lot we can’t get pussy on our own?”
Preacher shrugged. “We needed easy pussy around the club and I knew these girls would put out without question. Do anything the boys wanted them to. It was a business deal, nothing more.”
Reaper looked at Shelly a little closer.
Ghost lifted her shirt to show off the bruising on her body. “Can you sleep at night knowing that you funded this kind of abuse? That you let it go on under your very nose and did nothing to stop it?”
Reaper rose from the table. “Church. Now. Bring the girl.” His voice carried across the room.