Badd motherf cker, p.3
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       Badd Motherf*cker, p.3

         Part #1 of Badd Brothers series by Jasinda Wilder
 
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  I growled. "Complicated? What's that mean? What's complicated about who Dad left his money to?"

  "Well, usually in circumstances such as these, the monies are distributed equally amongst all parties, or in favor of one or another of the deceased's issue, which usually leads to arguments and lawsuits, but that's neither here nor there, in this case."

  I twirled my hand in a circle. "Get on with it, Dick. What's the short version for us poor uneducated folks?"

  He sighed. "It means your father left specific instructions which must be completed before any of the funds can be released."

  "Instructions?"

  Richard nodded. "Caveats is the legal term applicable here. It means neither you nor any of your brothers get any money from your father's estate until the terms are fulfilled."

  "So? What are the terms?"

  He quoted from the will: "'Before anyone gets a cent of my money, all seven of my wayward sons must return to Ketchikan, Alaska for a minimum of one calendar year, and spend that year living within reasonable proximity to Badd's Bar and Grill, and they must contribute a minimum of two thousand working hours in Badd's Bar and Grill during that time.'"

  I had to sit down, then. "The fuck?"

  "It means your brothers have to come back to Ketchikan to live and work here for one year. The two thousand hours figure is based on a forty-hour work week in a calendar year of fifty-two weeks."

  I tried to get my brain going. "So...what else does it say?"

  "It names each of your brothers and their likely locations of residence. It awards you sole ownership of the bar, upon signature of the deed, and awards you--and only you--ten thousand dollars. The rest of the money will be split evenly between the eight of you, which comes to...thirty-six thousand two hundred and fifty dollars each."

  "So the ten grand to me..."

  Richard consulted the will. "'To my oldest son Sebastian, I leave ten thousand dollars outside the parameters of the execution of the will's preceding terms, as a minor reward for his faithfulness over the years to me and to Badd's Bar and Grill.'"

  I choked up. "Minor reward...shit." I blinked hard, went around behind the bar and poured more Johnny, slugged it down facing the grimy mirror behind the rows of bottles on the back wall. "Minor reward for my faithfulness. A fucking lifetime I've spent back here, and I get ten fuckin' grand." I had to laugh. "Jesus, Dad."

  I leaned against the back counter, took another long hit of scotch, and cackled. To be honest, I felt a little unhinged. Ten thousand bucks?

  I mean, thanks Dad, that's awesome. It'd keep the bar afloat for a while longer. But...shit. I kinda felt like maybe I deserved a little more by way of thanks. I was pissed, now. At Dad, for dying, and then for giving me a measly ten grand after all the hours I'd put into this place. Ten grand? Fuck. Felt like an insult. I'd have rathered it just go back into the pot to split up.

  My brothers were going to flip the fuck out, though, that was a given--though whether they'd be more pissed that I got extra money or that they were being forced back here was anyone's guess. Zane hadn't been back in years, and I wasn't honestly sure he was even still alive. The twins were in Germany or something, last I heard, on that crazy world tour opening for some big name act.

  I glanced at Richard. "Did the will say where Lucian is?"

  He flipped through the papers. "Um...no. It says Lucian's last verified location was...Udon Thani, Thailand. That was as of six months ago, when your father created his will."

  "Thailand? What's the little shit doing in Thailand?" I rubbed the back of my neck, feeling a tension headache coming on.

  "I'm sure I have no idea, Sebastian. That wasn't my business to ask."

  "Any idea how you're going to get hold of the rest of my brothers, then?" I asked. "Good luck with Lucian, by the way."

  Richard closed the file, looking prim and satisfied. "Actually, I hired a private investigator to find your mysterious brother and, as of last month, my investigator was able to make contact with Lucian and inform him of the will. I don't know where he is or what he's doing, but he's been contacted and informed of the situation. I've already been in contact with the rest of your brothers. I've spoken on the phone with Xavier, Baxter, and Brock, and I exchanged emails with Zane and the twins, Canaan and Corin, all of this within the last month or so, and they all save Lucian have indicated that they will be returning as soon as their respective situations allow. Most of them should be arriving in Ketchikan within the next few days, I do believe."

  I frowned. "You have Zane's email address?"

  Richard seemed perplexed. "Well, yes, of course. It was included with your father's will."

  "Didn't even know the bastard had email. Woulda been nice to know." I took a long sip of my drink. "'Course, it wouldn't do any good even if I did since I don't have one."

  Richard coughed, which I suspected was meant to cover a laugh. "You were, honestly, the hardest to contact of all your brothers, with the exception of Lucian. There is no phone for the bar, you yourself do not have a cell phone, and this isn't the kind of scenario I could arrange via mail, thus necessitating my trip here from Anchorage."

  "Yeah, I'm a caveman like that. I like to beat my prey over the head with a club before I eat it. Women too, as a matter of fact." I could tell Richard wasn't sure I was joking. "So. My asshole brothers are all coming back, then?"

  "Zane is, I can say that for certain. He's making his way here from his most recent duty station, although I'm not sure where that is. The others said they would return as their respective schedules allowed. The twins are committed to the duration of their overseas tour last I heard, but they said they'll be back when it's over, or sooner if they could work it out. And, as I said, I was only recently able to locate Lucian, so his intentions are anyone's guess."

  I rubbed my face with both hands. "My brothers all hate this place." I looked up at the lawyer. "Why would Dad do this, Dick? I don't get it."

  "I would only be speculating, of course, since he didn't explain his reasoning to me. But if I were to venture a guess, I would say it was his final attempt to force you to reconcile with your brothers."

  "There's nothing to reconcile. We've never had any beef between any of us...they just hate it here. All this bullshit does is saddle with me seven pissed off brothers who hate this bar and this city."

  Richard shrugged. "I'm sorry, Sebastian. I'm only doing my job. There's nothing I can do to change this. You could challenge it, of course, but that would be a costly and lengthy legal endeavor, and I honestly do not believe any judge would be inclined to change or reverse your father's will for no good reason. The conditions are eminently reasonable, so it would stand, I'm certain."

  "Awesome." I finished my scotch. "Well, that's that, unless there're more fun surprises in that will of Dad's."

  "No, that's everything." Richard set a stapled stack of papers on the bar. "This is a copy of the will, which you may keep. I've covered all the important factors. If you have any questions after reading it through, call me. I've attached my business card."

  "Want a drink, Dick?" I asked.

  He hesitated. "A glass of wine wouldn't go amiss."

  I laughed. "Wine. You're funny, Dick. This ain't a wine bar, bub." I poured him a measure of scotch in a clean glass and slid it over to him. "We serve liquor and beer and scabies."

  "Scabies...very funny." Clearly unwilling to come across as rude, Richard took a tentative sip of the scotch, swallowed, and coughed. "Well, that will certainly put hair on one's chest, won't it?"

  I laughed. "You're a grown man, Dick, don't you already have hair on your chest?"

  "It's...it's a matter of phrasing, Sebastian. I am not a hirsute person by nature, however, if you must know."

  "Hirsute?" I ain't stupid, but I'm not the most well-read person ever. My vocabulary doesn't really extend to Ivy League sorts of words.

  He took another sip and then indicated his chest, his voice hoarse from the whisky burn. "Hairy. Covered in fur."


  I struggled not to laugh as he tried gamely to finish the scotch without coughing, but it clearly wasn't his cup of tea. Or, cup of whisky, I should say. He finished it, though, I'll give him that.

  I came around from behind the bar and slapped him on the back. "That's a man's drink, Dick. Want another? It's on the house."

  Richard winced. "No, thank you. If you don't mind, I must be going. My flight back to Anchorage leaves shortly."

  "Suit yourself." I shook his hand, and just because I was that kind of asshole, I put a little extra crush into my grip. "Thanks for coming, Dick."

  "Yes, I...well, I can't truthfully say it was my pleasure, as my job is created via bereavement, but...I'm glad to have been of service. Call me if you have any further questions."

  "Sure will, Dick, sure will."

  He left shaking his hand and flexing his fingers. I may possibly have left handprints on his skin.

  I spent the rest of the evening wondering which of my brothers would show up first, and how I'd react.

  I was about to turn off the 'OPEN' sign and close up when the door opened, letting in late night rain and cold.

  Instead of one of my brothers, though, an angel walked in.

  A wet, bedraggled, hung over, pissed off angel in a sopping wet wedding dress.

  But sweet mother of goddamn, she was the most beautiful girl I'd ever seen.

  Five-eight, hourglass figure. Hair that would probably be somewhere between full-out Irish red and auburn, when it was dry. Creamy, flawless skin. Fuckin' curves, man. Like, Jesus. Whoever this fine-as-wine honey ditched at the altar was a sorry son of a bitch, or a complete jackass.

  Those eyes though, bright blue, the kind of blue eyes you don't see on redheads that often. I don't know all the fancy words for different shades of blue, but if you've ever seen pictures of the ocean over by Greece, the kind of blue that's just so damn blue it seems impossible...that was the color of this girl's eyes. Did I mention curves? My cock went hard in my jeans just watching her stomp across the bar, watching the way the tight dress molded to her bell-curve hips and the way her silky, milky cleavage jiggled with each step.

  That dress...Jesus goddamn. Skin-tight, obviously custom cut to fit her body, all drawn up into bunched wrinkles around her hips and waist, sleeveless top with heart-shaped bra cup things pushing up tits I'd love to drown myself in for hours on end.

  And she was also the unhappiest looking person I'd seen in a long time.

  I went back around behind the bar and leaned against it, gripping the edge so my forearms and biceps rippled; chicks seemed to dig the pose, so I used it to my advantage.

  She plopped down in a chair, crossed her arms on the bar, and let her forehead thunk down hard. "Alcohol, now," she mumbled into her arms.

  "Don't got any wine, princess, sorry."

  She raised her head and gave me a glare so fierce and furious I felt it scorch the hairs on the back of my neck. "Fuck you, you goddamn orc." She thunked her head back down. "Scotch on the rocks. And leave the bottle."

  Well. This could prove to be interesting.

  3

  Dru

  I was in no mood for bullshit. Even if it was coming from the most intensely masculine man I'd ever laid eyes on. Intensely masculine, fucking gorgeous, in a tall, dark, rock-star gorgeous, badass, burly, tattooed sort of way. Six-four if he was an inch, arms that stretched the sleeves of a thermal Henley--what was it about those shirts that was so fucking sexy, anyway?--with tattoos covering his forearms and obviously extending up past his elbows. He had massive shoulders and a broad chest that tapered to a wedge, and I'd bet all the money I had left that his sexy V-cut lead down to a huge cock.

  I blushed at the thought, because why was I thinking about his cock? I wasn't, not really.

  I was too pissed off, too heartbroken, too lost, too hung over, and too hungry to think about a penis. Even if that penis was very likely a lovely, perfect organ the size of my forearm.

  Stop--no more cock thoughts.

  His hair was, put plainly, brown. But if I was going to be fair about his hair color, it was the kind of brown you'd see on a grizzly bear. Same texture, same color. He had it brushed backward in a casual, messy way that said he didn't really care because he knew he was damn sexy and didn't have to try. God, his hair. Plus the scruff on his jaw, a day or two of growth on a jawline Henry Cavill should be jealous of. And have I mentioned his arms? And his forearms? Fuck. They were absolutely perfect. The ink was professional artwork, not just biker or prison crap, it was actual artwork. I saw a raven in flight, some kind of twisted, dark angel, skulls done in the Mexican Day of the Dead style, Native American totems, plus more I couldn't make out.

  But then he had to go and assume I wanted wine.

  Fucking wine.

  But when I called him an orc, he just laughed, a deep, ursine rumble of amusement rather than take offense, and lifted a half-empty bottle of Johnny Walker Black Label off the bar where it had been sitting next to a rocks glass, as if he'd already been helping himself to his own wares. Although, considering the dearth of customers, I didn't really blame him.

  He snagged a clean rocks glass from a stack by the service bar, tossed it into the air and caught it upright on the flat of his palm, poured what had to have been a triple, or even a quadruple. The man didn't fuck around with his pours, clearly. We might get along just fine if he keeps pouring the Johnny Black so liberally. When I had mine he poured a healthy measure into his own glass, and then held it out to me.

  "To being so hung over tomorrow neither of us will remember why we're drinking tonight," he said, and god, even his voice reminded me of a bear, deep, feral, rumbling, with a hint of snarl.

  I clinked my glass against his and took a long blissful drink before answering. "That's the best goddamn toast I've ever heard," I mumbled.

  We drank in an oddly not-uncomfortable silence for a while, watching ESPN highlights, during which I finished my scotch, and the bartender poured more, another full glass.

  I was in a foul mood, and the scotch helped a little, but only a little. A turbulent three and a half hour flight, followed by a rough landing, which had been on the sea itself rather than an airfield. In my drunken rush to get away from Seattle, I hadn't even noticed that the airplane I'd gotten into was a seaplane.

  The length of the flight meant I'd gone from hammered to hung over, and then the pilot had taken my money and left me on the docks with my purse and wedding dress and not a damn thing else except a splitting headache and a broken heart. Well, the pilot actually wasn't that much of a dick: he'd given back six hundred of my cash, saying I looked so messed up he figured I needed it more than he did. But he still left me on the docks with nowhere to go, no one to talk to, in a rainstorm, alone...

  Plus, I hadn't eaten since I couldn't remember when. Lunch? I'd left Seattle sometime around nine or ten, which meant it had to be nearing two in the morning now, if not past.

  As if on cue, my stomach let out a vociferous snarl.

  The gorgeous bartender's stupidly perfect Cupid's bow lips quirked. "Hungry?"

  I shrugged and tipped back the rocks glass. "A bit, yeah." I was fucking starved, actually, but I'd be damned if I'd admit it to him.

  "I could use a bite myself," he said, slugging back the rest of his scotch as if it was nothing, "so I'll rustle something up. Won't be fancy, but it'll fill ya."

  He ducked under the service bar and went into the kitchen, flicking on lights as he went. From my angle, I could see most of the kitchen, which gave me an opportunity to watch him while I worked on my second big ol' glass of tasty scotch.

  He turned on the grill, the kind with a flat metal top used in short order restaurants, turned on a deep fryer, pulled out a tray of hand-shaped burger patties and tossed four of them onto the grill, then opened a freezer and poured a few handfuls of French fries into the now-crackling deep fryer. He did all this with casual familiarity, moving with grace and ease around the kitchen. He set the handle-press thin
gy onto the patties to flatten them and make them cook faster, tossed two buns onto the grill to toast them, then set up two platters with tomatoes, onions, lettuce, and a side of mayo, all done expertly and neatly, with an eye for presentation. A few more minutes and the fries were done, so he lifted the basket out to drain, flipped the burgers, and then shook salt onto the fries, shaking the basket so the salt distributed evenly.

  Next came a cardboard Miller High Life six-pack holder filled with silverware rolls, ketchup, mustard, vinegar, and A-1. There were no wasted motions, no idle moments spent just waiting for the food to cook. He laid a slice of cheddar on each burger, and then a slice of pepper-jack, and then slid his spatula beneath two patties at a time and set them in a top-down heater to melt the cheese, which only took a few seconds, then he laid two patties each on a bun bottom, set the top bun on them at an angle, and then shook half the fries onto one plate and half onto the other.

  He shut off the grill and fryer, wiped down all the surfaces he'd used, and carried both plates in one hand and the condiments in the other, and even managed to shut off the kitchen lights with his elbow. He set one plate in front of me and the other next to me then, leaning over the bar from the customer side, poured us each a pint of some local amber beer.

  Fifteen minutes after I'd said I was hungry, I'd finished my quadruple scotch and had a thick, juicy double cheeseburger in front of me, complete with still-steaming golden-brown fries and a pint of cold beer.

  I liked this guy.

  Just, you know...not too much.

  And then, after a liberal slathering of mayo, I sank my teeth into the burger...

  The man was a short order god, I tell you.

  "Oh my god," I said, still chewing, "this burger is fucking amazing. I'm sorry I called you an orc."

  He finished a bite of his own and grinned at me. "Hey, I've been called worse. Glad you like it."

  I'm not sure I even paused to breathe, after that. The burger was the most incredible thing I'd ever tasted, which may have partially been due to extreme hunger on top of being hung over and on my way toward getting re-buzzed. But it was also just a damn good cheeseburger. I knew I'd have to find a gym at some point to work off the calories, but right then I didn't even remotely give a shit. Not even half a shit.

 
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