Baby Maker(9)

By: Jenny Jax

“Why didn’t you call the police?” Amanda asked, and he shook his head.

“They don’t tend to be very responsive to guys like me,” he said, shrugging. “They would probably have just assumed that I had hurt Ella and set this up to hide it, or one of my guys had done the same.”

“Your guys?” I wondered aloud.

“From the club.”

“And you’re certain it wasn’t any of them?” Amanda pressed. He met her gaze steadily, and I could tell he was pretty mad at even the implication.

“I’m totally sure.”

That was all I needed to hear—the conviction in his voice came off of him in waves.

“Well, thank you for your time today.” Amanda got to her feet, and shook his hand once again. “We’ll come back to collect copies of those pictures to put with your report, and we’ll be in touch if we need anything else.”

“Thanks.” He bowed his head, clearly glad it was all over. He glanced at me, and I felt a flutter in my chest. I wasn’t ready to be done with this guy—not quite yet, at any rate. He caught me by the arm, gently, and pulled me close, close enough that I could smell the shampoo from his still-wet hair. I stared at him, my eyes flicking down to his lips, and wondered for a crazy second if he was going to kiss me.

“I’ll call you about more babysitting, yeah?” He raised his eyebrows, and I nodded. I glanced over at Amanda, silently asking if this was okay.

“I actually think it’ll be good for you.” She clasped her hands together. “Not to mention for Ella’s recovering after the…incident.”

Phew. Okay. Heartbeat returning to normal, even if my brain was a little disappointed. I headed for the door, and back out on the street—back to reality, back to my own shitty little apartment, and back to a life without smoking-hot single dads who ran motorcycle clubs.

Chapter Six

It was incredible how quickly you could adapt to something new.

I had thought that anything that took me away from Ella would change my life for the worse, but it turned out that Mona only made it better.

She was amazing with my daughter—there was no doubt about that. She didn’t try and play mommy, but instead just reached out to her as a companion. I knew Ella adored her. She had never said as much to me, but it was clear from her excitement every time Mona appeared at the door, and her quiet little pout when it was time for her to go. I took it personally the first couple of times, but I began to relax when I saw what an amazing impact Mona was having on her life. And mine.

Yeah, sometimes I wished she would absentmindedly wander downstairs in her nightshirt a few more times, but I had to do my best to keep those thoughts out of my head for the sake of my daughter. It was nice having a woman around the house though, no doubt—not to do all the womanly shit like cook and clean, but just to have some female energy that came from somewhere other than my own daughter. I spent so much time around dudes with the club that it was good to get away from that once in a while and enjoy the company of someone who didn’t base their masculinity on the size and loudness of their bike.

Not that Mona and I saw a lot of each other; she stayed over maybe four nights a week, and I would stay out as long as the club would allow me each evening. I would return to the house, make us both a coffee, and enjoy some adult conversation before Ella got up and I got her ready for school. Mona would go out to work, I would catch some sleep, and Ella would head off to school. We felt like a little family.

I knew it was dangerous. I would have been stupid not to see it. The last time I played happy families, it blew up in my face in the most dramatic way possible. Even just thinking about putting myself and Ella through that bullshit again was scary, but goddammit, I couldn’t argue with the fact that it felt right to have someone filling in the mother-adjacent role in this house. And Mona seemed to enjoy it, too—even if she and I were missing out on the most fun parts of the arrangement.

One morning, I came into the house later than I normally did—morning had already broken by the time I crept through the door, and Mona was already making up a pot of coffee when I walked in.

“Morning.” She turned to me, eyebrows raised. “I missed you when I came down.”

I eyed her for a second, and she quickly corrected herself.

“Missed the coffee, that is,” she jumped in, flushing slightly. I made my way across the room towards her, dumping my helmet on the table as I went. I peeled off my jacket and collapsed onto one of the bar stools around the counter, letting out a small sigh of relief.