A Little Bit Wicked by Melissa Foster

Chapter One





IF ALAN ROGERS had been referred by anyone other than Chloe Mallery—the only woman Justin Wicked wanted in his bed—Justin might have already cut off the long-winded, condescending jerk and been on his way out for a drink with his older brother and business partner, Blaine. They’d spent the hour since closing time listening to the executive director of the Lower Cape Assisted Living Facility (LOCAL) drone on about his expensive home and the elaborate patio he wanted them to install.

“I assume you two will be doing the work?” Alan asked, giving Justin and Blaine a scrutinizing stare.

Justin could feel the pompous prick judging his tattoos, worn jeans, black T-shirt sporting a Dark Knights at Bayside motorcycle club logo, biker boots, and the leather jewelry he wore. The Dark Knights were known in most circles for the work they did to keep the community safe, and for their charitable efforts, like raising awareness about suicide and bullying prevention. Justin doubted this guy, with his fancy suit and patronizing looks, had any idea about the good they did, and he didn’t give a rat’s ass what the guy thought of them. After spending nearly a third of his life afraid to envision a tomorrow, much less a future, not a day passed when Justin didn’t thank his lucky stars for the Wickeds and the motorcycle club that his father, Rob “Preacher” Wicked, and his uncle Conroy had founded more than thirty years ago.

The tension on Alan’s face eased as he shifted his attention to Blaine, just as Justin had known it would. While Justin carried a usually well-hidden chip on his shoulder from the rough life he’d lived prior to being fostered and then adopted by the Wickeds, Blaine was a James Marsden lookalike with an easy smile and clear, unhaunted eyes. Like Justin, Blaine was a member of the club, along with their other two brothers. But Blaine played the games Justin refused to take part in, like wearing button-down shirts or Cape Stone polos and covering most of his tattoos when he was at work. But looks could be deceiving. His badass brother was a fucking beast who wouldn’t hesitate to unleash his wrath in order to protect others.

No one knew how deceiving looks could be better than Justin. The universe had known exactly where he belonged when he’d been placed in the Wicked household. He and his brothers shared the same tall, broad-shouldered stature, dark hair, and ice-blue eyes as Preacher. Their younger sister also shared their coloring, though she was petite, and her eyes were as clear as the summer sky. No one had ever guessed that Justin was adopted.

“I’ll be drawing up the plans,” Blaine said, exchanging a knowing glance with Justin.

“But as we explained, our team will be laying the stone.” Justin rolled his shoulders back, feeling twitchy from standing still too long, and said, “Our guys are bonded and insured and have worked with us for years. You’re in competent hands.”

Alan nodded and said, “Chloe has good things to say about you boys.”

Justin gritted his teeth against the man’s condescending tone. Preacher called them his boys, but he said it with respect and pride. Even their sister, Madigan, called them boys from time to time, but always with the loving tone of an adoring sibling. But he’d had enough of this guy’s attitude. He pushed to his feet and said, “Boys? I’m pretty sure Chloe can attest to—”

“That’s good to hear,” Blaine interrupted, shooting Justin a biting look. “We always appreciate referrals. We’ll need to come out and assess the property before giving you an estimate.”

They scheduled an appointment to see the property the following Thursday morning. Alan wouldn’t be home, but he assured them that his wife could show them around. Justin couldn’t imagine what woman would marry his pretentious ass. He bit his tongue until Alan walked out the showroom doors, and then he said, “Fucking prick.”

“Maverick, you sure you want to take on this job?” Blaine asked.

Like Preacher, Justin went by his given name in business and by Maverick, his road name, when he was with other Dark Knights, while Blaine and their younger brothers, Zeke and Zander, preferred not to use road names. Before Justin could answer, the showroom doors opened and in walked Zander and their cousin Dwayne aka Gunner. Like Justin’s their jeans were worn and their boots scuffed.

Gunner, a stocky ex-marine-turned-animal-rescuer with closely shorn blond hair and tattoos from neck to wrist, hiked a thumb over his shoulder and said, “Who was that douchebag?”

“He works with Chloe.” Justin was as close to Gunner and his brothers, who also went by their road names, Tank and Baz, as he was to his own siblings. He’d also been close to their late sister, Ashley, who had committed suicide by overdosing several years ago, when she was in college.