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Keep It Classy (Bear Bottom Guardians MC #7)
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Ghosts are real.
Well, technically speaking, maybe not. But the ones that haunt a man’s soul? Those are very real. So real, in fact, that there are times when Castiel would rather silence them forever in the worst way possible than to go on living with them haunting his every step.
All it took was one single second in time for his attention to drift, and everything changed.
Now he’s struggling to make sense of the pieces that are left, and he’s fairly sure at least half of them are missing.
His club—the Bear Bottom Guardians.
His work as a police officer for Bear Bottom Police Department.
And the occasional glimpse of a girl that makes his spirit feel free.
Despite the ghosts that haunt him, he’s not willing to present them with another target. Which is why he has to stay away from her. He can’t touch her. He can’t talk to her. He can’t get anywhere near her.
Not and live with himself afterward.
The only problem is, Turner doesn’t care what Castiel wants. She also has a solution for his ghosts.
You may call her Ms. Ghostbuster.
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10 years ago
16 years old
“Look, it’s the fat fuck that likes to play like she can race cars,” I heard from my side.
I didn’t bother to look up.
In fact, I would’ve driven right back out onto the track had my fuel not been low and my father not been standing in the pit road giving me a look from hell.
Now his back was turned, and he was talking to a few of his pit crew, and I was wondering how in the hell I was going to get out of this car without hearing it double time from the asshole twins.
I swallowed hard, wondering if I could just sit here until they left.
But then my dad’s voice barked out, “Get out now, Turner Hooch. We’ve got places to be!”
I took the steering wheel off, placed it next to me, then started the painstaking process of getting out of the car—through the window—while others watched.
I didn’t miss the boys snickering at my side. I also didn’t miss the ‘look at that fat ass slide out of the car’ or the ‘do you think she needs to be greased?’
I felt a tear hit my eye as I swung my first leg out.
Then, before I could control it, I lost my footing on an oil slick next to the car window and fell the rest of the way out of the car.
I hit the ground with a bone-jarring thud and then stared up at the quickly dimming night sky as I tried to catch my breath.
My hair was laying in the oil next to me, and I was having a hard time deciding what I should do next.
Should I roll to my side and get up on my hands and knees before using the car to push up?
Or should I use the car to pull myself up from the position I was currently in?
My father saved me, however, by walking over and offering me his hand.
“You okay, baby girl?” he asked.
I took his hand and felt my six-foot-four, two-hundred-and-twenty-pound father haul me onto my feet.
But did he have to add the grunt of exertion at the end?
Yes, he probably did.
Which set the asshole twins off even more.
It was at this point that there was no denying that they were laughing at me.
Yet my father, being his clueless self, ignored them and kept his gaze on me.
“You okay?” he repeated.
“Sometimes, I don’t think she can get any fatter, and then she does,” I heard someone else say.
My head dropped.
“Let’s go, baby,” my father urged, guiding me away by placing his large arm around my shoulder and pulling me into his body.
We made it all the way out to the truck before he said, “Don’t listen to them, sweetheart.”
“Yeah, like it’s that easy to do,” I muttered almost to myself.
He didn’t reply, only kept his arm around me until we were at his vehicle—the one that was given to him by his sponsor, Chevrolet—and guided me inside the vehicle before closing the door behind me.
I automatically reached for the seat belt and latched it into the lock, repositioning myself until the belt wasn’t digging so uncomfortably into my chest and belly.
We made it all the way home in silence, and by the time I arrived inside the house, I was about to break down all over again.
My dad had heard.
I was embarrassed.
So, so embarrassed.
Usually I kept all the problems I was having to myself.
If he’d known that there was a problem, he would’ve kicked the asshole twins out, and then I would’ve heard it even more while we were at school.
But this time there was no hiding the problems.
Nor the tears.
“Baby, wait,” my father said before I could head in the direction of my room.
I stopped in the mouth of the kitchen, then turned and stared at the man that knew how to mend my heart. The only man that had ever been good to me.
“What?” I asked.
“What they said? Don’t take it to heart,” he tried.
I heard the distinctive shuffle of my mother entering the room and turned to find her staring at us with wariness on her face.
I turned back to my dad.
“You don’t understand,” I whispered, eyes filling with tears. “You’re not fat. You don’t know what it’s like!”
My mother made a sound in her throat, and I looked over at her to see that she was staring at the ground.
My mother, Patty, did know what it was like.
She’d always been a big-boned woman and had gained a lot of weight over the last ten years.
Hell, she and I sometimes even shared clothes at this point.
I was not happy with my body.
I was not happy with the way that I couldn’t seem to control it even with diet and exercise.
Where some people accused me of not trying, I had to point out that I did try. A lot.