Penni wrinkled her nose up at him. “Is that smell what I think is?”
“No.” Mag pressed the glass jar between the side of her wheelchair and her thigh.
“You ready to go inside?” Rachel asked, gripping the back of Mag’s wheelchair.
“Might as well. The good Lord might come tonight.”
Jackal buried his head between Penni’s shoulder blades as Rachel and Mag went inside.
“Did you get Mag drunk?”
“Don’t blame me. Greer dropped it off when he passed through on his way to Genny’s house.”
“Well, if God does come, she won’t feel it.”
“Rider was supposed to take over an hour ago. Want to sneak me into your bedroom? Or do you want to go upstairs to my room? He can have watch duty for the rest of the night.”
“I’m not going to lose my virginity when twenty men could hear it.”
Jackal picked up his glass, taking a swig. He would make damn sure they wouldn’t hear a thing. The shape he was in, it would take him longer to get it out of his jeans than to actually fuck her.
“Are you drinking moonshine?”
“The whole it’s burning in my stomach takes my mind off my dick.” Jackal teased the back of her neck.
“Ah … You’re so romantic. Uh … Jackal?”
“What?” He crossed his arms over her breasts, pulling her back to his chest.
“Do you see the fire coming from town?”
The dark sky was filled with red flames that could be seen over the trees. Penni moved to the edge of the porch, terrified for Genny. The flames were coming from the direction her house was located.
Jackal’s cell phone began ringing, but before he could answer it, Viper, Shade, Ice, and Max ran out the front door.
“Genny’s house is on fire,” Viper announced, halting as the other men ran down the steps toward their motorcycles. “We’re going to check it out. No one other than us gets in or out.”
Rider came out the door, taking a position next to Jackal. “Is Genny okay?”
“Yes. Greer and Tate took her to the police station to make sure she was safe while the fire station puts out the fire.” With that, Viper ran down the steps, not taking any longer to answer their questions.
“Go inside,” Jackal told Penni.
She didn’t argue, wanting to be with Lily and John. However, Penni did stop and grab his T-shirt, telling him, “Be careful,” trying to tell him she was worried without being all girly.
It was hard for her to know how to react. She had considered him the enemy for so long the new feelings he had roused in her made it difficult to respond to him normally.
Jackal didn’t have that problem, though. “Go take care of Lily. I’ll be fine.”
Penni nodded, reaching toward the sky and trying to pull down any good Karma she could, worried about Genny.
Seeing the room full of men tightened the fear in her chest. They were located at every window, two at the door. The women had been ushered upstairs where Cruz, Hennessy, and Crash stood with guns. The large one in Crash’s hands had her rushing through the room and into the kitchen.
“Holy Shit.” There were almost as many men in the kitchen as in the living room. Lucky and Train were guarding the back door.
“Where are you going?” Train asked as she drew close.
“They’re down in the basement with Beth.”
Penni nodded before going downstairs.
She steadied her nerves, not wanting Lily to see she was worried.
Bliss, Diamond, Willa, and Winter sat stoically on the couch, Lily held a sleeping John, and Beth paced back and forth, watching their children play. Cash, Razer, Drake, and Stump stood by the door that led to the outside. There were more men upstairs than there were down here to protect the children.
Cash saw her staring at the door with a worried expression and assured her, “The door is steel, and the window is bulletproof. If I hit the button, the door at the top of the steps closes, and no one can get in or out.”
“Is it steel, too?” Penni asked, reaching down to pick up the pretty, little girl who had wrapped her arms around her legs.
“Yes.” Cash’s stony countenance wasn’t what she was used.
Penni was surprised that he had been willing to be left behind at the house, but now she knew. He would die to protect every woman and child in the room. All of the men would.
Bliss rose to take the beautiful child in her arms. “Sorry. When Darcy gets tired, she wants to be held.”
“I didn’t mind.”
Penni had met Bliss several times when she had visited Shade, but she had never become friends with her.
The love she held for the little girl she and Drake had adopted as she sat back down, singing softly to her, showed how content Bliss was in her new life.