Hostage (Predators MC #3)(3)

By: Jamie Begley



“What time?”

Penni almost rolled her eyes again. Men’s egos were their weakest spot and a woman’s greatest weapon.

“Any time after six.”

She was leaving for the next Mouth2Mouth concert at five, so that gave her plenty of time to be far from home before he arrived.

“I’ll be there.” Jackal gave her another twisted smile, holding the door open for her.

Penni’s conscious kicked in as she headed toward her car, which hadn’t been parked at the curb when she had entered, nor had the other two bikers who were waiting on Jackal with his bike.

“Dammit,” Penni swore. She couldn’t do it. She couldn’t send a man deliberately to his death, no matter how much she detested him. She needed to learn to control her temper, mentally throwing her antagonism into the wind.

She was about to go back and tell Jackal she had been joking when her cell phone rang. Juggling her coffee and purse, she grabbed her cell phone from the depths of the huge bag, hearing the motorcycles roar to life behind her.

“What’s up, Grace?”

“The executive officer of the arena in California called, Erick Dunaway … He said he didn’t receive the signed contracts you faxed to him, and if he doesn’t have them in ten minutes, he’s rebooking.”

“Dammit, I know I sent them. I’m on my way.” Penni disconnected the call, hurrying to her car.

By the time her key went into the ignition, she had a niggling feeling she had forgotten something important. Had she forgotten to send the contracts?

Oh, well, she would be at her office in five. It wasn’t like it was a mistake that couldn’t be fixed.





1





Penni snatched the coffee from the cup holder.

“Dammit!” She slammed down the empty coffee cup into the hapless cup holder. That wasn’t the only thing on empty. The red light was flashing in the dim lighting.

Hearing the phone ring, Penni pressed her hand to the steering wheel, answering the call.

“Hello?”

“How did the concert go?” Grace’s voice filled the interior of her car.

“Great. It went off without a hitch.”

“Where are you now?” Grace asked.

“About three hours away from home.”

“You’re making good time. Why didn’t you just catch the bus back?”

“Too many roadies.” Penni squinted at the gas gauge. Was it her imagination, or was the red light becoming brighter in the dim lighting of the car?

Grace’s voice sharpened. “Kaden warned the men no women were allowed on the tour bus. He said the roadies should drive their own cars.”

“It’s easier said than done,” Penni commented wryly.

“Not when Kaden hears about this. He’s going to be furious.”

“He’s not going to know. Sawyer and Kaden wanted a small vacation. They’re on their way to Kaden’s cabin, which is why I’m driving my own car.”

Grace laughed. “When are you going to get tired of keeping the band out of trouble?”

“I don’t know. Maybe about the time I can stop renting and buy myself a big home. Even better, when someone buys me an even bigger diamond ring,” Penni joked. “Or when Kaden fires me.” This time, she was only half-joking. While she was considered friends with him and his wife, he expected the business to stay separate.

“You should tell him before he finds out on his own,” Grace warned.

“Nope. I’m not a stool pigeon.”

“You’re not going to listen to me?” Grace muttered then changed the subject. Penni’s friends were all too familiar with the stubborn streak that would make a Rocky Mountain jackass proud. “I need to be off Monday. I’m sorry about the notice—”

“Thank God!”

“Penni?”

“Sorry, I found an exit. I’m almost out of gas.” She gripped the steering wheel as she drove the lonely road.

“How many times have I told you to fill up your car before you drive?”

“Hindsight is a pain in the ass!”

“Where are you?”

“Calm down! Jesus, I’m fine.” At least, she thought so.

The red sign hanging in front of a bar glinted through her windshield then turned off as she drove closer. Her prayers had been answered. She wasn’t stranded on a highway during the middle of the night, but the uneasy feeling brushing at the back of her neck had her vowing to delete the numerous True Nightmares shows she loved to watch.

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