Book 15: The Lost Kings MC
From Chapter One…
One hurry-the-fuck-up face from Rock and I decide to eat my breakfast cold so I can get my ass to church on time.
I rush to get my ass dressed then meet Z and Teller outside.
Z loops a heavy arm around each of our necks and yanks us close. “Miss you, fuckers.” He slaps sloppy kisses on both our cheeks before setting us free.
Teller wipes the back of his hand over his cheek. “We just spent like three weeks on the road together.” He starts walking toward the clubhouse, and I follow.
Z’s not one to be ignored or dismissed. He muscles in between us. “I got so used to your grumpy mug every day. Now my life seems so empty without it.” He slaps Teller’s cheeks with an affectionate amount of force.
I clamp my hand on Z’s shoulder and pull him away before Teller punches him. “It’s not the same without you here, bro.” They’re not empty words. Z’s been our VP since before I patched into the club. Our whole dynamic feels off without him. This isn’t the same as him being off on a run.
This is life-altering.
We haven’t even tossed around names to fill the position yet. Love all my brothers. Trust them too. But no one can replace Z.
There’s no denying how he turned around our downstate charter, either. While the loss sucks personally, Z’s presence down there is good for the whole club. Something I try to keep reminding myself.
The three of us clomp up the front steps to the clubhouse, but Z freezes inside the door.
My gaze searches the main room, finally landing on Wrath’s maniacal grin. “Come here, brother.” He crooks a finger at Z.
“Don’t touch me, fucker,” Z growls.
Well, that’s as good as saying, “Please come give me a bone-crushing hug—” which is exactly what Wrath does. After chasing Z around the living room for a few seconds.
“One positive about moving downstate—I’ll need to see a chiropractor less often,” Z wheezes as Wrath sets him down.
“Stop being a pussy.” Wrath slaps Z on the back, knocking him forward a few inches. “You’re one of the few people I actually like.”
Z adjusts his cut and slaps Wrath’s shoulder. “Life isn’t the same without you trying to rearrange my insides every day, you fucking beast.”
Rock stomps into the clubhouse behind us and surveys the room. “Where’s Dex?”
Wrath turns. “Yo, Dex! Move your ass!” he bellows down the hallway.
Teller rubs the side of his head. “Jesus Christ, I think they heard you down in Empire.”
Sparky’s over in the corner getting wet-nosed kisses from Z’s dogs. I clap my hands, and they trot over to me for some attention.
Fifteen minutes and lots more grumbling later, we’re finally all seated around the table.
Rock’s not in a let’s-sit-around-and-bullshit mood. He slams down the gavel to call the meeting to order instead of telling us to shut the fuck up like he normally does.
“First order of business.” He pauses and casts a long look Z’s way. “Official word has come down from Priest. Z stays as president downstate.”
A mixture of congratulations and disappointment goes around the table. This isn’t news. It’s been obvious for months. Our national president has just made it official.
“How’d Sway take that?” Stash asks.
Rock shrugs. “He’s still having trouble with recovery. He knows he’s not in any condition to lead.”
“Never was,” Dex mutters.
“Amen to that.” Wrath leans over and taps knuckles with Dex.
“You worried he’ll make trouble for Z down the road?” I ask Rock.
“He can try.” Z grins.
“No way,” Sparky says. “You worked your dimple-magic and won them over, Z. That’s your club to lead. Sway can suck it.”
“Dimple what?” Wrath stares at Sparky.
Z grins, showing off said dimples.
“I dunno, bro. He just looks deranged,” Birch says, earning a high-five from Hoot.
“Look who strapped on a pair of balls this morning and came to play with the big boys.” Z’s smile fades. “I hope you know my choice was to come back home.” His gaze goes around the table. “I miss every one of you.”
“You’re doing good things down there, Z,” Dex says. “They need you.”
“And as much as I hate saying it, we need a new VP.” Rock points his gavel at Z.
Z leans forward, looking down the table. His gaze lands on me, and the usual mischief on his face disappears. “I nominate Murphy for the position of vice president.”
Air stalls in my lungs. I blink and stare, then slowly turn my head, searching my brothers’ faces as if someone else here shares my road name. The implications of what Z said sinks in and I swivel back to face him. “Are you serious?”
“I second Murphy for VP,” Teller says, lifting his hand in the air.
Loud chatter spreads around the table, and Rock bangs the gavel again.
“What’s going on here?” I ask.
“Are you deaf?” Z asks. “By-laws say I nominate my successor. And I nominate you.”