Home > Cash's Fight (The Last Riders #5)(9)

Cash's Fight (The Last Riders #5)(9)
Author: Jamie Begley

“Should we let them rest for a few minutes?” Lucky asked, grinning at him.

“No, let’s give them something to wake up for,” Cash answered, reaching for Raci.

* * *

Rachel misted her plants lightly, walking up and down the aisles of her greenhouse. When she finished, she cleared away the dead ones then repotted others that were growing too big for their containers. She hadn’t worn her gloves again, so when she began getting hungry, she quickly washed her hands. As she noticed they were becoming rough and cracked, she opened a jar of her hand balm, smoothing it into her hands. She clenched them into fists when she realized she was thinking of The Last Riders’ women and the manicured, soft hands they had.

She went into the house, making herself another cup of green tea before starting breakfast. Her oldest brother came to the table, yawning.

“Late night?” Rachel noticed the dark circles under his eyes.

“Yes.” He gave her a lopsided smile as he picked up his cup. “But not because of what you’re thinking. I spent the night in the fields.”

“Any luck catching anyone?”

“No, but I set some traps.”

“Tate…”

“They have to practically be on top of the pot before they would get caught in one.”

“You’re asking for trouble,” Rachel warned.

“No. Anyone stepping on our property despite all the ‘no trespassing’ signs is the one asking for trouble.”

Rachel fixed him a plate of food. It would do no good to argue with him since his mind was made up. Greer came in looking just as tired.

“It’s your turn to watch the field. I’m going to bed. At least I was up all night working,” Tate said unsympathetically.

“I was, too. It was hard work to satisfy Diane,” Greer boasted.

“You promised to stay away from her, Greer.” Rachel glared at her horn-dog brother.

“She’s calmed down. She promised she’s not seeing anyone but me.” Greer avoided her accusing eyes.

“Diane’s promised the same thing twice before,” Rachel reminded him.

“Well, she means it this time.”

Rachel and Tate both shared a glance.

Diane was incapable of being faithful, yet Greer kept giving her chance after chance. He often came across as the meanest of her brothers; however, he was the most softhearted. He wanted to fall in love and have a big family, but the women he chose never had settling down in mind.

“Morning.” Holly came in the kitchen, wearing jeans and a yellow top.

Rachel caught the expression on Greer’s face before he could hide it. He cared about Holly, but he wouldn’t make a move on her because he still held a grudge against her keeping Logan a secret after the boy’s mother’s death. Rachel, nor the rest of them, blamed her because she was trying to protect the boy, but Greer couldn’t let go of the fact that she had nearly left town with Logan. Greer took their family’s protection more seriously than his own breathing.

“I’ll grab a bite to eat. Then I’ll go sit in the deer stand awhile,” Greer stated.

“Be careful of the traps I set,” Tate warned.

“I will.” Greer buttered a piece of toast.

Rachel sat down at the table with her green tea and oatmeal.

“If you would just listen to me, we could bring in more money with Ginseng roots. I could expand the greenhouse to include…” Rachel began her usual speech only to stop as Tate and Greer both shuddered in mock horror.

One of these days, her brothers would have to see that it made more sense to listen than ignore her. She only hoped they weren’t behind bars when that time came.

Rachel had no appointments today, so she used the time to clean the house and make Logan’s favorite chili in the crock-pot. Afterward, she decided to go back to her greenhouse where she potted several more plants she had taken from the woods that she wanted to experiment with for their medicinal value.

Going to her grandmother’s journal to make notations of her own, Rachel ran her hand lovingly over the old book. She was proud of her heritage. Her great-grandmother had been full-blooded Cherokee, a descendent of one who had crossed the Appalachian Mountains during The Trail of Tears. She had passed down her gifts and knowledge to Rachel’s grandmother, who had taught them to her as soon as she was able to walk. Rachel would hand down the same knowledge to her daughter someday.

An image of a strawberry-blond little girl flashed through her mind, making her drop her hand tool.

Shakily, Rachel went to the sink to wash her hands. The likeness to Cash in the little girl had been obvious. Her attraction to Cash had been building over the years to the point her mind was making images of a child in his likeness. She had to put a stop to her wayward fantasies.

Seeing it was getting dark, she headed back to the house. She had spent hours outside, becoming lost in her work. She would back up her notes on the computer before she went to bed, though.

She ate a bowl of chili and was about to take a shower when her cell phone rang. Recognizing Cheryl’s number, she answered.

“Hello?

”Rachel, I had a fight with Jared.” Cheryl’s voice trembled on the other end.

“Are you okay?”

“No. I need to get out for a while. Will you go out for a drink with me?”

“Of course.” Rachel couldn’t deny Cheryl. The sound of tears in her voice took away any hesitation.

“I’ll meet you at the Pink Slipper.”

“I’ll be there in thirty minutes,” Rachel said, disconnecting the call.

“Who was that?” Dustin questioned, looking up from the television with Logan on his lap. The others were listening unashamedly.

“That was Cheryl. She wants to go out for a drink at the Pink Slipper. She and Jared had a fight.” Rachel saw no reason not to give them that much information.

“If you have more than one drink, call me and I’ll drive in and pick you up,” Tate offered.

“All right.”

Rachel took a quick shower then pulled on a blue dress that clung to her curves. She had every intention of doing a little man-trolling while she listened to Cheryl cry on her shoulder.

Brushing her hair out, she left it loose to fall to her waist. Stepping back from the mirror, she saw the same tomboy she always saw except dressed up, pretending to be someone else.

She decided to put some light makeup on, giving herself the smoky eyes that everyone said looked sexy on a woman. When she was done, she looked like she had two black eyes. Quickly, she washed it off, simply using a light, natural color and mascara instead.

Feeling more normal, she picked her purse up and headed for the door.

“Why did you get all dressed up?” Tate came out of the kitchen, holding a soda.

“Because I’m meeting her at the Pink Slipper, and I didn’t want to stand out like a sore thumb in my jeans.” Before her other brothers could chime in, Rachel went out the door, closing it behind her.

She drove into town, pulled into the parking lot, and was surprised to find it empty with a note on the door. Rachel drove closer, reading the large writing from the front seat of the car. Hearing a car pull up next to her, she turned her head and rolled the window down when she saw it was Cheryl.

“A water pipe burst. It’s closed until tomorrow.” Rachel saw her friend’s trembling lips and grabbed her purse. Getting out of her car, she then got into Cheryl’s.

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