I dart through the clubhouse, breaths quickening with each step. Back in the house, I take the stairs two at a time. Racing into my bedroom, I dig out a pair of well-worn jeans, slip into them, and transfer my cell phone into a pocket. I pull on socks, then root around in the bottom of my closet for my hiking boots and lace them up. They are the closest thing I own to motorcycle boots. With one foot out the door, I pause, considering one additional accessory.
You think he’s hiding something. Better to be safe than sorry. Especially given Kort and the other missing women.
Reaching between my bed and nightstand, my fingers sweep across the four access keys of my gun vault as if I’m playing a piano piece. As the last button in the combination depresses, the side of the safe pops open. Grabbing my compact Walther PPS handgun, I drop the single stack mag, checking it for bullets before jamming it back in and racking the slide. I locate my inside-the-waist holster in my sock drawer and slide it just behind my right hip, securing it with a belt. The gun slips in and once my loose tank top gets pulled down, the weapon barely prints.
Digging my wallet out of my purse, I slide my driver’s license and concealed carry permit into my back pocket. Leaving my bedroom, I clomp back to the clubhouse, grabbing my mother’s leather jacket and helmet off two pegs on the wall next to the French doors.
Celeste Straub is a hopeless romantic who enjoys plotting the slightly sadistic journeys her characters go on before they finally reach their happily-ever-after. She enjoys a quiet country life in northeastern Pennsylvania, residing on a piece of the old family farm with her husband, son, and two cats. Writing as a hobby since childhood, Celeste spends her days as the grant writer and operations director for a local non-pro3t agency focusing on public health issues. When she’s not penning steamy romance scenes in her spare time, her interests include traveling, visiting amusement parks, collecting baseballs, hiking, and reading.