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Savoring Mila (Angels Halo MC Next Gen & Rockers' Legacy Book 3)

By:Terri Anne Browning

Chapter 1


Mila


Getting up before dawn to catch a private jet to the East Coast was not how I expected to start the summer before my first year of college, but I had to admit, it held some perks. A girl could get used to the royal treatment, that was for sure.

Taking a limo to the biggest mansion I’d ever set eyes on, yet another plus. And it was all thanks to Tavia. She was one of many honorary cousins I had, and thanks to some bratva bastard who tried to kill her three years before, she was now family.

Monroe and I both liked her, considered her just as much one of us as we did Lexa. And there was no way in hell I was going to miss her wedding.

Or the bachelorette party her soon-to-be sister-in-law was demanding we all attend.

By all of us, she included everyone under the age of twenty-five, which meant the parentals were off the invite list. Which was just fine with me. I needed a break from my dad’s watchful eye and Mom’s occasional nagging. Plus, maybe I could get Monroe to tell me why she suddenly seemed like she might slit her wrists at any moment.

My baby sister didn’t get depressed, ever. She was too sweet, too full of life. So, this sudden change in her was rubbing off on me, and I couldn’t stand to feel down. She was going to spill her guts about what was putting that forlorn look in her normally sparkling eyes and that tremble to her chin, or I was going to start pouring shots down her throat until she was so trashed, she had no choice but to tell me everything.

But first, I had to stand there and listen to Dad lecture us about watching each other’s backs, not being reckless, and blah-blah-blah. The usual rant he spewed whenever we were leaving his watchful eye for longer than two minutes. I loved my father more than life itself, but fuck, he was too overprotective.

And yes, there was definitely such a thing as too overprotective. Look it up online. I’m sure you would see the picture beside the definition was none other than James “Spider” Masterson, with his Angel’s Halo MC cut and the Enforcer patch front and center.

That was why he was so over-the-top protective of Monroe and me. He’d seen shit. Done shit. So, he knew the evil there was in the world. And of course, he automatically assumed it was out to get his baby girls.

He stood in front of me, his dark eyes boring into my gray ones that were just like Mom’s. I was the one he was all growly at, not Monroe. She was the good one. The sweet and precious one. I almost smirked at the thought of me ever being sweet or precious. We might be identical in every physical way when I didn’t dye my hair, but we were totally different people on the inside.

Dad knew that. He didn’t trust it—and he didn’t trust me not to get into trouble. Because, yeah, I was the troublemaker. The wild child. The one who was always stirring up something.

And the thing was, if he didn’t get all growly beforehand, he also knew I would twist and bend him around my finger. I would bat my eyes and smile up at him like he hung the moon—because he did—and get my way. Which was why he tried to be a hard-ass before I could do any of that, so he could get his point across and relax. Just a little. For a minute.

Because come tomorrow, when I was talking my way out of trouble as I always did, he wouldn’t be all growly. He wouldn’t be the deadly MC enforcer with a list of men he’d killed to keep those he loved safe. He wouldn’t be the man who co-owned the only strip club in Trinity County, California. He wouldn’t even be Willa Masterson’s husband.

He’d be Mila’s daddy and the only man who could do no wrong in my eyes.

Dangerous and deadly he might be, but he was nothing more than a teddy bear with a sick-ass spider inked on his neck when I needed him to be.

“You go nowhere alone,” Dad said, pointing his finger at me. “Not even to the bathroom. You hear me, Mila?”

“Yes, Dad,” I told him with a bored sigh. “I heard you the last five times you said it, too.”

“Don’t get smart with me, young lady.”

“Daddy, we’re going to make everyone late,” Monroe tried to soothe, putting on a smile I seemed to be the only one who noticed didn’t reach her eyes. “I promise we won’t go anywhere without each other. And Tavia will be with us. Along with all those guards Theo never lets her leave the house without.”

Dad scrubbed his hands over his face, and I could see him trying to come up with some excuse to make us stay behind while everyone else went out to the clubs. The guys were going one way, the girls the other, which was another reason he wasn’t liking the idea of my sister and me leaving the Vitucci mansion.

Maverick wasn’t going to be there to watch over us, and he was just as bad as Dad when it came to being overprotective. I was actually surprised he’d agreed to go with the guys, though, seeing as River was going to be with us girls and he didn’t like it when she was out of his sight for even a second.

Not that Dad knew that. Mom and River’s mom barely knew, mostly because they didn’t want to know. No one ever talked about it, so I doubted her dad and ours suspected anything.

Because if they did, Uncle Colt would never let River out of the house. Or my brother within ten feet of his only child.

River was only seventeen, but she wasn’t going to let that stop her from joining in the fun tonight.

“Okay, sweet pea,” Dad said to Monroe. He pulled her in for a hug, kissing the top of her head, and I watched as she wrapped her arms around his waist, pressing her face to his chest and inhaling deeply. Her shoulders shook ever so slightly before she released him, and for a moment, I wanted to grab her and demand she tell me everything right there in front of Dad.

“Have fun,” Dad told her before he dropped a kiss on top of my head. But then he pointed a finger in my face again. “Watch your sister.”

I barely stopped myself from rolling my eyes. He acted like she was years younger than me rather than just two minutes. We were the same age, for fuck’s sake, yet he and everyone else treated her like she was an infant.

Not that I could really judge. I did the same thing a good bit of the time. There was just something about Monroe. Something delicate. Something…precious.

“See you tomorrow, Daddy,” Monroe told him as she took my hand and pulled me out the door.

All the other girls were already in the back of the limo waiting in front of the mansion. All the other girls except for Nova. She was too young to go with us, not that she cared. She was up in the room that was considered hers when she visited her mom’s family every summer, with the one person in the world I figured she couldn’t live without—Ryan.

As soon as my ass slid over the buttery soft leather of the limo seat, a guard shut the door and the driver pulled away from the mansion. Tavia’s soon-to-be sister-in-law handed us each a glass of champagne and made some lame toast.

I drained my glass then watched with my mouth gaping open as Monroe did the same after only a small hesitation. Fuck, she was going to get plastered if she wasn’t careful, and it was only one glass of weak, bubbly alcohol.

“Mon, take it easy,” River said, eyeing my sister with just as much concern as I was, her glass going untouched. “You haven’t even eaten.”

I took the full glass from River’s hand and drained it. “We need to get some food in you, ASAP. Tavia,” I called out, and she turned from talking to Theo’s cousins Zariah and Ciana. “This club we’re going to serve food? Monroe is going to be trashed in two minutes flat if she doesn’t eat soon.”

“No, but we can stop for something if you want,” Tavia assured me, her eyes going to Monroe with concern. “What would you like? I’ll even have the driver go through a fast-food line if that’s what you want.”

“I’m not hungry,” Monroe muttered, turning her head to gaze out the window. Her hand went to her chest, no doubt to play with that stupid medallion she never took off, only to then drop into her lap without touching it.

Because it wasn’t around her neck.

Holy shit. She wasn’t wearing it.

“Mon, what the hell is going on with you?” I hissed, leaning closer so no one else could hear.

“I don’t want to talk about it, Mila,” she said in a voice that shook. Catching her gaze, I realized she was close to tears, and I wrapped my arms around her.

“Did he do something? Did he…?” I didn’t even know what to ask. Her stalker was an enigma to me. I’d never met the guy, never even seen his face, yet he was my twin’s whole world.

Or he had been.

Now, I wasn’t so sure, but I knew he had to be why my sister wasn’t acting like herself. He had the power to make her light up a room whenever she was thinking about him. Yet now, there was only darkness when I looked at my beautiful-soul sister.

And I fucking hated it. Monroe should never be sad. Never cry or frown. She was too good, too everything I wasn’t. Which was what I loved about her the most. I never wanted to be her; I just wanted to be near her.

Always.

“We eating or not?” Zariah, the oldest of Scarlett and Ciro Donati’s daughters, asked with an arch of her red brows. “Because I could seriously go for some Taco Bell.”

“Same!” her younger sister squealed. “Please, please, please? Come on, Tavia. Say we can stop.”

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