Jul. 13th, 2012

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This takes place well over 15 years ago

The disinterested prison guard slid a yellow manila envelop toward him. Granger carefully opened it to find the few possessions that he owned slide out into his palm--a silver ring that could knock a person out, a leather cuff, keys and his aged wallet. Next the guard opened a locker and sorted through labels before pulling out a clear plastic bag and setting it out before Ethan. It crinkled as he took out the items--a worn pair of jeans, black motorcycle boots with the tips sanded down through the leather. The shirt he heaved over his head had the slash of a knife through it that match the length of the scar running along his side in the same place but the black leather jacket he tossed on didn't seem older than the day he started his sentence, almost two years ago.

Like a bull before the gates open, he shifted from one foot to the other as a series of buzzes let him through one section of the prison to freedom. Hand in front of his eyes, he squinted at the sun and smiled. He could hear the claps before he could see them. Sure enough though the "coffin crew" as they were dubbed by those retards in the media stood on the other side dressed in black leather like some fucked up guardian angels. The sun reflected off the chrome of the Harley's behind them. It was the most beautiful thing ever.

"Welcome back, brother." They thumped him on the back and it was like being reborn. Fresh air pumped into his lungs. He lived. "Thanks. S'been a while." Some nodded and others grew quiet. Those that took the fall looked at those that didn't and it was all right. Sometimes shit went down and that was just the way it was 'cause they all took hits for the club. Last time it was his turn. Trafficking. His first stint in prison. Taught him a thing or two.

"Got sumpthin' that belongs to you." 
Granger raised a brow and looked at the club's Treasurer. He held out a leather vest. Granger's cut. He reached out to whoops and cheers to claim it back, his passport to what he knew of family, loyalty and strength. Taking off his jacket, he slid the vest on. It was like laying on armor...or a bulls eye, depending on where you were and what you were doing. It no longer said "Prospect", the small patch across the front now said Member and the club's emblem was fully emblazoned on the back.
"Where's Alvarez?" Ethan inquired, and Blain, the VP. Jose Alvarez was the club's Prez. The next two highest ranking members eyed each other. "Thing's changed, the Prez is a very busy man these days, Granger. Don't worry about it. You'll see him tonight at the clubhouse. He's gonna be there for your 'welcome home' shindig." Now there was a hangover that would last for days.

"Wait. What's she doin' here?" Came a curious mutter from a member of the club.
Hm? Who? Granger turned and raised his hand to the sun to make out the person storming toward him. Before he could make out the features, something, a fist, was being hurled at him. Small and dense, the impact didn't throw him off balance but it did spit the skin of his cheek. Prison reflexes were about acting before you thought. There was no time to think. He grabbed the person, swinging them around to him and his hand around their neck. The other hand balled into a fist.

"Woaw ,woaw, Granger, wait!"
His squinted against the sun, eyes coming into focus and meeting large dark almond shaped eyes. Pissed off looking almond shaped eyes. Rowan.
"Ro?" She wasn't supposed to meet him here. Immediately his fist loosened of its own volition although those sad haunting eyes may have had something to do with it. Her jaw was locked and strong, she carried her shoulders wide with pride that gave height to her chin. Her demeanor spoke of business but it was the tears that she was fighting back and the slight tremble to her lips that gave her game away.

"Asshole." She said with a quiver. "ASSHOLE!" Her voice rose to a shrill yell.
"C'mon Rowan, give the man a break". Mumbled the prospect. The glare she threw him should have ignited him on the spot.
Her hand slapped Ethan's chest. "I hate you." But it wasn't for this. Once, twice, three times, she slapped at him. Then she shoved him. "Do you hear me? I. Hate. You." Now she sounded angry and wounded. Her hands folded into fists and she hit his chest.  "Don't you ever...EVER.." She stopped, shaking her head at him, her voice shaking and her shoulders slacking a bit. Ethan stood very still, concern crinkling a smooth brow, searching her face and seeing the writing between the lines. She shook. He reached out quickly, before she could protest and pressed her tightly against him to the sound of cheesy 'awwwwws' from the club. "Don't you ever do that to me again." She cried against his shoulder. "You asshole." And by 'that' she meant prison.
"Shuush. S'alright. S'alright now." He soothed. "Ro, I'm sorry, baby. I am."
"Had to be done." Chimed in the MC's Sergeant In Arms, Chitto Elsu.
"YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP!" She yelled back before burying her head in Granger's shoulder. That sort of outburst would only fly once. "She was upset," Chitto would assure Ethan later, "don't worry about it." But Chitto never forgot shit like that. 
Not sure what surprised Granger more, that she cursed out the club's sergeant or that she was crying. Likely the latter.

The kiss he placed on top of her head lingered and was warm and apologetic. She stepped back, wiping her eyes with her sleeve. "I'm fine. I'm fine." Rowan found her smile and wore it for show, but she slid her arm underneath his and took her hand. "I really missed you." He rumbled out.
"Well, you've got nearly two years worth of that to make up for, now don't you?" That was more like her. He smiled, bending to kiss her temple as they strode toward the Harleys. They had his too...it was tradition. You got out of prison, you then rode home. 

She held his jacket, shaking her head with a small uncertain smile as he got on the bike and then got on behind him. Watching the row of riders, she had to pause and wonder what life would be like now that Ethan was a member. With everyone in a line, her lips formed the words written on everyone's patch--Los Muertos.


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